Reason Roundup

List of Obama Officials Who Sought Unmasking of Michael Flynn Includes Joe Biden

Plus: Washington, D.C., extends its lockdown and U.S. COVID-19 cases might finally be declining.

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Republican senators have obtained a list of top Obama administration officials who sought the "unmasking" of General Michael Flynn.

Unmasking is "a routine practice used to identify a U.S. person who is anonymously referred to in an intelligence document—in this case, the intercepted conversations of Sergey Kislyak, then the Russian ambassador, who was a target of U.S. surveillance," according to The Washington Post.

Flynn was chosen by President-elect Donald Trump to serve as national security advisor but was then fired and arrested during the course of the FBI's investigation into Russian election interference. Flynn had conversations with the Russian ambassador in which he asked the Russian government not to retaliate against sanctions placed on the country by the Obama administration; he then lied to Justice Department investigators about those conversations. The Justice Department under Attorney General William Barr has moved to drop the case, arguing that the lies Flynn told to FBI agents were immaterial to the investigation.

Richard Grenell, acting director of national intelligence and ambassador to Germany, declassified the list of Obama officials who had sought Flynn's unmasking earlier this week. It includes Biden, former FBI director James Comey, and other key intelligence officials, according to Fox News:

The roster features top-ranking figures including then Vice President Joe Biden—a detail already being raised by the Trump campaign in the bare-knuckle 2020 presidential race where Biden is now the Democrats' presumptive nominee.

The list also includes then-FBI Director James Comey, then-CIA Director John Brennan, then-Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, and Obama's then-chief of staff Denis McDonough.

Biden has countered that unmasking requests are perfectly normal, and do not on their own reflect any ill intent.

"These documents have absolutely nothing to do with any FBI investigation and they confirm that all normal procedures were followed—any suggestion otherwise is a flat out lie," said the Biden campaign in a statement.

Even so, conservatives have seized on this development as a means of tying Biden to the Flynn investigation, which they have portrayed as a partisan witch hunt that was intended to damage Trump's presidency before it had even begun.

Flynn eventually pled guilty to lying to FBI agents, but this says little about whether he behaved in a way most of us would consider criminal. It is quite common for the subjects of law enforcement investigations to make mistakes during questioning that give the government cause to charge them with procedural crimes—perjury, obstruction of justice, etc.—rather than the underlying crime for which the subjects were being questioned. In this narrow sense, Republicans are correct that that's essentially what happened with Flynn. Many Republicans also believe his prosecution was part of a broader Justice Department effort to undermine Trump. Paradoxically, the fact that law enforcement agents attempt to induce all kinds of defendants to lie undermines that theory, while the fact that they seldom do that to people of Flynn's stature supports it.

"Yes, federal law enforcement routinely interviews people hoping they will confess (and get prosecuted) or lie (and get prosecuted)," noted Reason contributing editor Ken White. "Yes, they plan that in advance of the interview. That's how it works. That's how it has worked for a very long time. If people really cared about it, thought it was an unacceptable tactic, you could get Congress to change the materiality element of 18 USC 1001, the false statement to the feds statute."

Unfortunately, Congress has no intention of making it more difficult for federal authorities to harass American citizens in the abstract. (See the Senate's vote on Wednesday to reject an amendment to the Patriot Act that would have prohibited warrantless searches of people's web browser history.)

Healthy outrage over the treatment of Flynn would mean a concerted effort to actually rein in the feds, not a one-off lament that the incredible punitive power of law enforcement was exercised against someone Trump likes.

CORONAVIRUS UPDATE

  • U.S. unemployment figures for the last two months have now exceeded 36 million.
  • Washington, D.C., Mayor Muriel Bowser extended the city's stay-at-home orders for another three weeks, even though neighboring states—Virginia and Maryland—are beginning to reopen.
  • The conservative majority on the Wisconsin Supreme Court rejected attempts by Democratic Gov. Tony Evers to extend that state's lockdown.
  • Doctors see a link between coronavirus and an outbreak of an inflammatory disease among children. This condition, termed "Kawasaki-like," is serious but thought to be quite treatable if detected early enough.
  • U.S. COVID-19 cases appear to finally be declining.

NEXT: Second Amendment Challenge to N.J. Gun Range Closure

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  1. U.S. unemployment figures for the last two months have now exceeded 36 million.

    Luckily there’s no cost to that. Stay home! Stay Safe!

    1. We are in this together!

    2. Hello.

      Can’t believe there are low IQ politicians who still push ‘extended lockdowns’ with all that we know now. Thankfully their Reign of Retard is coming to a close it feels like. No way in hell they can milk this any further without truly pushing us over a cliff.

      1. People are loving the lockdowns in NYC. Pots and pans every evening at 7 P.M., hollering from windows and balconies, to celebrate King Cuomo and his army of essential workers, and what soon promises to be an army of contract tracers.

        They love this shit. Fun little club.

        1. I bet you they put the pots on their heads and pound on it with a wooden spoon too.

          Or, they play Ram the Pots with each other in the hallways.

          Fucken morons.

          1. While I agree with the sentiment regarding coronovirus panic and the stupid response; I vigorously disagree with your assessment that playing Ram the Pots is moronic. Its just good ol’ fashioned drunken American fun, and coming from a nation that prides itself on it’s ice brooming skills your statement is quite laughable. *haughty laugh*

            1. I had a roommate in college who dated a Canadian chick. She was all in on the curling. We took great pleasure in her ridicule.

        2. Yesterday the governor of PA (I think?) was comparing people who wanted to open their businesses as TRAITORS in the war against COVID- people who surrendered to COVID.

          Let’s set aside this pathological need to treat every liberal cause as a war, and look at how stupid his analogy it. We have a virus out there killing people. The brave fighters are the folks hiding in their houses? And the cowards are the ones who (purportedly) put themselves at risk on the front lines so that we can get the goods and services we need? This fucker does not understand how war works.

          1. He knows 2 + 2 = 5.

            1. Donald J. Trump

              ✔@realDonaldTrump

              I had to fire General Flynn because he lied to the Vice President and the FBI. He has pled guilty to those lies. It is a shame because his actions during the transition were lawful. There was nothing to hide!

              1. Nobody cares, shitstain.

              2. Well, I guess Trump’s understanding of civil rights has evolved, and he now realizes that the FBI’s going after Flynn is the biggest political crime ever? And he is now a champion of reforming the FBI for the benefit of all citizens?

                1. Absolutely no facts have emerged from that statement of Trumps. None at all. Not revelations about edited 302s. Not revelations that the fbi was going to close the case in Jan 2017 before political intervention. Not the threats to Flynns son. Nothing at all has come out since January 2017.

                  What fucking retards media matters sends to this site.

                  1. Those are actually all good points.

                    I was just joking around. It looks like there are some real violations of ethics or laws here.

                    Still Trump is hyperbolizing when he calls it the biggest scandal ever. He was around for Watergate.

                    1. How is this not bigger than Watergate? Because the Washington Post hasn’t said so?

                      The chief federal law enforcement agency in this country, along with the intelligence agencies, wiretapped an opposing President’s campaign, at the behest of the incumbent, for absolutely no credible reason at all. That’s Soviet Russia levels of government fuckery. If Nixon were still alive, he’d be pissed he got drummed out of office for what he did, while these people skated, still unindicted.

                    2. “Still Trump is hyperbolizing when he calls it the biggest scandal ever. He was around for Watergate.”

                      No, you’re a complete fool if you think Watergate was worse than this.
                      The only thing in US history that would top what the Obama administration did would be if the CIA and LBJ had Kennedy assassinated

                  2. Also, Ken White is spot on about this: “If people really cared about it, thought it was an unacceptable tactic, you could get Congress to change the materiality element of 18 USC 1001, the false statement to the feds statute.”

                    Is there any evidence Trump cares about solving the problem in general, beyond how it affects him?

                    1. As soon as I’m in charge I’ll change it. Happy? Until then, as someone who thinks it is an unacceptable tactic at all times, I’m going to be specifically pissed about it being used in a coup attempt.

                    2. Popehat has a lot of chutzpah coming up with that take, given seemingly a third of his posts at his blog are him bitching about the Feds and perjury traps. (Many of the rest being back and forth between him and some IP troll law firm.)

                      Now, he says it’s up to people to push Congress to change the law? Why? Because it finally ensnared someone on the opposite side of the political fence?

                      How disappointing.

                  3. The kidnapping of Martha Mitchell, for one.

              3. Wow, this really has you frightened, huh.
                They’re all going to jail, Jeff. Even Biden and Barack.

                1. I dare you scum to try and arrest the Democratic nominee for President. Please fucking do that.

                  1. “I dare you scum to try and arrest the Democratic nominee for President”

                    Lol
                    Leftists can’t meme, and have absolutely no self awareness.
                    You’re lucky we tolerate (for now) your existence.

                  2. Why? They arrested Ted Stevens when he was running. They ran and leaked a false investigation of Trump while he was running. Or are you saying those rules only apply to Republicans and not Democrats?

                    1. Hell they even ran an investigation on Hillary, too.

                    2. I could live with arresting all the D and R candidates.

                  3. “I dare you”
                    internettoughguy.jpg

                    Jeff, I’m betting you can’t even touch your toes let alone interfere with the rule of law.

                    Face it. Biden and Barack are far bigger crooks than Tricky Dick Nixon was and are going down.

              4. Haha. Your crying amuses me.

          2. It’s his Germans bombed Pearl Harbour moment.

        3. If progressives aren’t careful their whole “life will never be the same!” stance is a much bigger threat to their way of life than they imagine.

          Ok, let’s change society forever. No mass transit, no dense workplaces, and work from home forever. Ok, so NYC basically shuts down and property values plummet as offices empty out. Same for San Francisco.

          Ok. If you say so.

          1. Please, no. The rest of us are much better off with the nut jobs all sequestered in coastal enclaves. When they start infecting fly-over country, things really go to hell.

            1. They won’t do that. Cuomo shutting NYC down indefinitely would be his own undoing, and he knows that.

              He wants to shut it down until the election is over and they have bailouts.

              They’re not going to “change society forever” and screw themselves.

              1. Wait, did the mask fall off without warning? Was this a parody account all along? For once you’re speaking sensibly.

                1. Once Biden is in office and we have a return to normalcy, things can return to…normal, after compensating states like California and NY that were disproportionately impacted by the national nightmare for the last four years.

                  This is all part of the plan and very sensible.

          2. I can’t wait to buy up some cheap-ass property

      2. They’ll get some freedoms back in November after it can be shown that they can take their voting rights seriously and use them to put the correct top men in charge.

        1. This. It will be absolutely amazing how fast Covid fades from the media’s spotlight if a Democrat wins in November. Especially if a bailout of blue state pensions happens before then.

          The worrying thing, if you care about things like scientists ostensibly working in search of truth, is how fast the scientific community will also start saying Covid is no big deal.

    3. Hmm, what could the cost be? A purely speculative estimate:

      We end up with 50 million unemployed for some time, each of whom suffers long term income decline, say $100k. So the personal financial cost is $5 trillion.

      We also end up with 100k COVID-19 deaths. If we had been less restrictive, maybe that would have doubled, with another 100k dead.

      Thus each life saved cost other people $50 million. Fair deal?

      1. “We also end up with 100k COVID-19 deaths. If we had been less restrictive, maybe that would have doubled, with another 100k dead.”

        There is no evidence that shutting down the entire country reduced deaths by half.

        1. True, but I am trying to be generous with the life-saving benefit. Use any numbers you want.

          1. In that case, include the 250+million that the WHO/WFO say will starve to death due to the COVID shutdown.

            The Population Living In Acute Hunger May Double This Year Due To Coronavirus

            https://www.npr.org/sections/coronavirus-live-updates/2020/04/21/840022794/already-a-perfect-storm-world-s-food-crises-may-double-as-coronavirus-spreads

        2. And there likely never will be.

      1. #guillotinesforkaren

  2. Republican senators have obtained a list of top Obama administration officials who sought the “unmasking” of General Michael Flynn.

    LET THE POUNCING BEGIN.

    1. Read my mind.

      The. First. Fucking. Sentence.

      I mean, it’s not like everyone else didn’t have the list…

      1. The interesting part was Sullivan subsequently going full exceptional, and basically asking a retired judge who already has decided that Flynn is guilty to recommend perjury charges.

        Wonder who within Obama or Hillary’s circle threatened Sullivan with suicide from two bullets to the back of the head, that he’d turn into a full-blown Spanish Inquisitor.

    2. That moment when calling Trump a fascist turns into a self-fulfilling prophecy because you tried to stage an illegal coup and now Trump gets to legally arrest the entire leadership of the opposition party based off of all the hard evidence you left lying around

      1. needs a gif-meme or it never happened.

  3. https://www.spectator.co.uk/article/can-we-trust-covid-modelling-more-evidence-from-sweden

    Gardner et al predicted that Sweden would have 82,000 Covid-19 deaths by 1 July. That implies around 1,000 deaths every day since the paper was published in mid-April. However, the total number of Swedish Covid-19 deaths at the time of writing is 3,313.

    One reason why the models failed is that they – just like most countries’ politicians – underestimated how millions of people spontaneously adapt to new circumstances. They only thought in terms of lockdowns vs business as usual, but failed to consider a third option: that people engage in social distancing voluntarily when they realise lives are at stake and when authorities recommend them to do so.

    And obviously, there is an argument that these models scared us into changing our behaviour and ramping up capacity, and so helped us to avoid a disaster. But they were also clearly based on faulty assumptions that would always result in absurd predictions. We know this, because both models actually assumed that it was already too late, and estimated that ICU capacity would be exceeded by around 10 times even if Sweden switched to strong mitigation.

    The need for ICU beds in Sweden will be ‘at least 10-fold greater [than capacity] if strategies approximating the most stringent in Europe are introduced by 10 April’, wrote Gardner et al.

    Those strategies were never introduced in Sweden, and yet, additional ICU capacity is 30 percent and the number of patients in intensive care has been declining for two weeks. The newly constructed field hospital in Stockholm, with room for hundreds of patients, has still not received any patients. It will probably never have to open. Here’s a zoomed-in graph of eventual ICU: numbering in the hundreds, not the predicted thousands.

    1. But there is still plenty of time to panic!

    2. What CFR did they initially plug into the model? Because for awhile in February and early March, it was looking like something in the single-digit percent was a reasonable assumption. 3-5, and I saw a few papers that were guestimating SARS-type numbers.

      Now, because of serology testing for antibodies, we’re finding out the percentage of people who die after being infected is far lower. Yes, some of the antibody tests are over inclusive; yes, there are a lot of false positives; this bug still doesn’t kill more than 0.5% of the people it infects, and that’s still probably a high estimate.

      Knock the death rate down by an order of magnitude, and wildly different numbers are going to result.

    3. From what I understand, Sweden’s deaths are primarily concentrated within the elderly, which is expected, and immigrants in the larger cities. In reading some stuff by people who have lived there, Sweden is a country that is so passive-aggressive by now that they’ll use a new problem to try and correct an existing one–got crime and social degradation amongst immigrant/refugee populations, who tend to throw molotovs at ambulances? Welp, here’s a shiny new pandemic that will correct some of that issue. “Oh, oops, we have to keep the borders locked down because of the coof, public safety is paramount! Hey, we tried providing medical help, but we can’t force people to go to the hospital!” Meanwhile, the native elderly end up getting care because of Swedish welfare state policies, and even if they don’t survive, at least they pass away in relative peace and comfort.

  4. I guess Reason got the okay from Slate to cover the unmasking thing, even though it’s old news to anyone who has been paying attention and Reason continues to miss or ignore the bigger picture. Plus, Rico even manages to includes a “Conservatives seized.”

    Pathetic.

    1. The next time some cop shoots an innocent person and reason reports on it I guess the story will be “reason seizes on police shooting in Mudville”.

      It is so pathetic. When there is a Republican scandal the story is that there is a Republican scandal. But when there is a Democratic scandal, the story is not the scandal but the Republicans “pouncing” and making and issue of it. Robby is so out of touch with reality that I doubt he even understands what he is doing. It is just what you do in his mind.

      1. But when there is a Democratic scandal, the story is not the scandal but the Republicans “pouncing” and making and issue of it.

        Agreed even absent any scandal both ways. Bodies piling up and Republicans asking “WTF happened?” is “pouncing”, an uncorroborated paper trail of somebody who heard somebody who heard half a conversation with the President is just Democrats being duly diligent.

        Complete propaganda garbage.

      2. He knows, he also knows that if he doesn’t they’ll be shitloads of exposés in Huffpo and Vice about how right-wing extremist Robby is causing terror with his shilling for Orange Hitler.

        To be honest I don’t know what I’d do in Robby’s situation.
        Report the stuff the press is ignoring, tell the truth, get doxxed and become a pariah like Andy Ngo.
        Or report the stuff the press is ignoring, but cover it with a patina of wokespeak and Official Narrative like Robby is doing now.

        I think a lot of journalists who aren’t establishment acolytes wouldn’t even touch the story to begin with, because it’s simply too dangerous.

        1. I know what I would do; find a different way to make a living.

    2. To anyone literate about history, it was pretty damn clear a soft coup was underway. It was easy to spot because the people who were orchestrating it were fools and knaves and couldn’t even do it in any nuanced manner.

      Obama thinks he was some kind of dark matter mango things behind the scenes when in reality we saw him all along. It would make for a hilarious political sketch.

      He’s such a douche.

      1. It is telling just how late Reason is to this story. And that they have not seen fit to mention Obama’s recent comments on “the rule of law.”

        I guess they figure better to remain silent than make their hypocrisy apparent.

        1. Reason also continues to ignore the dozens of House Committee transcripts that have been released that demonstrate that literally no one had any direct knowledge or evidence that Trump or any member of his campaign were working with Russia. The entire thing was a bald-faced lie from the start and most of the legacy media went with it, some knowingly, others because they are useful idiots. Reason is aggressively demanding to join the latter category.

          1. Didn’t one of these baboons–Clapper or Brennan, I think–try to cover up intel that showed Putin actually preferred Hillary to be in the seat?

            1. I wonder why he would? On the one hand, his intelligence organization was probably well aware of the multitude of dirty shit she’d gotten up to, and perhaps he felt she would be malleable? On the other hand, she was incompetent enough, both in her direct supervision and in the appointment of fellow incompetents, in her affairs as SecState that her future attempts as President to sabre-rattle at Russia stood a decent chance of actually causing a conflict.

              Gripping hand, she’d continue the process of weakening and overextending America, and would likely cripple US attempts to increase domestic oil and gas production, never mind export. As Russia’s main export is oil and gas, less supply competition would mean higher prices for their products.

              OK, I see why he might’ve preferred her, despite her venal stupidity.

              1. “As Russia’s main export is oil and gas, less supply competition would mean higher prices for their products.”

                I’m sure there are several reasons why, of varying degrees, but this is the main reason.

            2. Yep. Just add it to all the evidence they withheld from fisa court too.

          2. It’s absolutely disgraceful they continue to ignore the Flynn story and associated Russia hoax tangents. Just today more evidence came out that yovanovich, the ambassador hag of ukraine, lied under oath during impeachment hearings that she never heard of burisma before. Including nearly 160 pages of letters and emails referencing burisma and at least 3 separate meetings about burisma with their various press relation firms and other state department officials.

            Reason is a fucking joke. We need to heckle, shame, smear, and spit on every one of their writers. Everyone should cancel their scrip if they are dumb enough to pay for this shit.

            Is there anywhere to track reasons subscription numbers month by month? Because i bet zerohedge is getting more traffic from current and former reason subs than reason is.

            Also…It brings me happiness that Jeff gets triggered by mentioning zerohedge lmao. Zerohedge zerohedge zerohedge!

    3. Like most who now work for Reason, Rico is a left-liberal pretending to be a libertarian.

      Like most left-liberals, he worships, adores, and venerates Barack Obama.

      Also like most left-liberals, he’s virtually incapable of accepting and believing any new facts or information that challenge his beliefs.

      That’s why he cannot and never will be able to accept the fact that his hero was and is nothing but the democratic party version of Richard Nixon.

      What we have here across the board at Reason is a textbook case of cognitive dissonance, and the willful denial of obvious reality that results.

      1. What the Obama administration did was way, way, WAY worse than Nixon

        1. Yeah. Nixon would have actually gone to jail if he’d done this sort of thing.

      2. ” nothing but the democratic party version of Richard Nixon.”

        Not even close. Nixon did not co-opt the FBI and intelligence apparatus into performing the break-in.

        1. Really, all things being equal, they’d need to build a new jail just to house all the coup participants.

          Chuck Colson of Watergate fame was sentenced to prison for possessing a single FBI file on a political rival.

          What’s the penalty for a President employing the Director of the FBI, the Deputy Director of the FBI, the Chief of the Counterespionage Section of the FBI, the Director of the CIA, the Director of National Intelligence, and members of the Justice
          Department and the State Department to gather dirt on members of the opposition political party in an effort to ensure his former Secretary of State wins the Presidency?

          1. What’s the penalty for using the IRS, the EEOC, OSHA, and the Corps of Engineers to go after private citizens fighting voter fraud or having peaceful rallies?

          2. A Netflix special and a book deal.

          3. “Really, all things being equal, they’d need to build a new jail just to house all the coup participants.”

            I like it. Make the courtroom look like the one in Italy during those high-profile Mafia trials in the 80s.

            It needs to be jail, and it needs to not be Club Fed in Lompoc, or Florida. People need to break rocks over this. Or other people will take it upon themselves to break heads.

    4. which they have portrayed as a partisan witch hunt

      Nice “Libertarian” magazine you got there. If they aren’t pouncing, they are busy portraying

  5. https://www.washingtonexaminer.com/opinion/who-sent-coronavirus-positive-patients-into-nursing-homes

    The result: One-third of reported coronavirus deaths in the United States, according to the New York Times’s reporting, are of nursing home residents or workers. And nursing homes accounted for a majority of deaths in heavily hit states, such as New Jersey (52%), Massachusetts (59%), Pennsylvania (66%), and Connecticut (55%), and for 80% of deaths in otherwise lightly hit Minnesota.

    That percentage is much lower (20%) in America’s COVID-19 epicenter, New York, but the Empire State still leads the nation with 5,403 nursing home deaths — about 1 out of every 14 COVID-19 deaths in the entire country.

    Why so many? On March 25, the state health commissioner ordered nursing homes to accept patients with the virus.
    New York wasn’t the only state that insisted on placing infected patients in nursing homes. New Jersey’s policy was similar, explicitly barring homes from requiring testing before admitting patients. California had the same policy but dropped it after 10 days.

    It was known from the very beginning that people who were old and sick were by far the most vulnerable to this virus. The decision to send people known to have the virus into nursing homes is murder. There is no rational way to justify that decision other than they wanted to kill the people in these nursing homes. They can claim it is a well meaning mistake all they want. But for something to be well meaning, it has to have some basis in rationality. Some actions are so reckless and show such a depraved indifference for the safety of others, they can only be interpreted as being malevolent. Forcing nursing homes to accept people infected with the virus is no different than dropping bowling balls off the Empire State Building onto the sidewalk below during rush hour. The people in government who made these decisions are guilty of murder. I am sorry, no one is that incompetent. They knew what they were doing. There is no other explanation.

    1. Yeah, but Cuomo ::swoon:::

      1. Indeed, as just one example, the Gurwin Jewish Nursing and Rehabilitation Center had no coronavirus fatalities before the March 25 mandate from the state government requiring them to accept cases. Since then, 24 residents have died of the disease.

        https://www.dailywire.com/news/walsh-some-states-forced-nursing-homes-to-accept-coronavirus-patients-many-died-as-a-result-this-is-a-massive-scandal?fbclid=IwAR2gISYtE7sRbIh2kLuKhAPoJsiRAC3IS4n0DnKnY4fkyjmZ-yUkG-D-_xo

        How is Cuomo not guilty of the murder of those 24 residents? Talk about “blood on your hands”. If New York and New Jersey and PA had not decided to murder their citizens who were in nursing homes, the death rate from this would be not much different than a typical flu season. We have put ourselves into a recession and put 16% of the work force out of work in response to a threat that was largely created by the malevolent incompetence of three state governments.

        1. “We have put ourselves into a recession and put 16% of the work force out of work in response to a threat that was largely created by the malevolent incompetence of three state governments.”

          Not only will there be no punishment for those officials, they’re likely to be rewarded by having the Feds bail out their states’ budgets.

          It’s evil. There is no justification for housing Covid patients among elderly people who don’t have the disease. For Chrissake, if they wanted the Army Corps of Engineers to build something, build a segregation area/hospital for Covid patients. But for the love of God, don’t return them to live amongst healthy, extremely elderly people.

          1. FEMA and the feds could have built the capacity to care for those people in a New York minute. All they had to do was ask. Instead, they sent them back to their nursing homes to kill their neighbors.

        2. “We have put ourselves into a recession and put 16% of the work force out of work in response to a threat that was largely created by the malevolent incompetence of three state governments.”

          Don’t forget the media. Fear of the media saying “they’re not doing enough!” in an election year may be the single biggest contributor to this insanity. They get to get down on their hands and knees and beg for draconian policies and then report on the fallout of those policies as if they’re just flies on the wall.

    2. The people in government who made these decisions are guilty of murder. I am sorry, no one is that incompetent. They knew what they were doing. There is no other explanation.

      I agree, but what recourse is there besides voting them out?

      1. There is none. They will never be held responsible for what they did other than going to hell, which all of them are likely to end up.

        1. “There is none”

          No. That is wrong.

          But no one wants to consider that step, and I totally understand why. I don’t want to either.

          1. If I were some old guy and my wife died in one of those nursing homes, I think I might know what to do. There are worse deaths than delivering justice to those assholes.

            1. Yup.

            2. Wrongful death class action? Name Cuomo as a defendant, not just the state.

              1. Sure if you don’t mind losing and wasting your time and money.

              2. Why would the Cuomo family name one of their own in the wrongful death action?

                1. Uhmmm I said defendant not plaintiff.

                  1. That’sthejoke.jpg

          2. “But no one wants to consider that step, and I totally understand why. I don’t want to either.”

            History says that’s awfully hard to turn off once it starts. Northern Ireland, Lebanon, Yugoslavia, Syria, and so on.

            If we had rule of law, perhaps there would be some justice for such evil acts. No one will go to jail, lose their house, or lose their job over this. What is left to do?

            1. The rule of law wouldn’t even help. What we need is a society that has some sense of shame and moral values. We used to have such a society. And in the past, these people would have resigned in disgrace and the guilt they had to live with and the shame over what they did would have been a bigger punishment than prison.

              Today, we no longer have such a society. And these people don’t give a shit. Cuomo won’t lose a minute of sleep over this. He might if he thinks it will affect his political career but he is incapable of caring about or feeling guilty over the damage he actually did. The only thing that matters to him is how it affects him. So he won’t resign and will go happily on with his life convinced how wonderful he is.

              1. Pissing on the AMERICAN PEOPLE for skipping Scalia’s funeral. The moral degradation!

        2. The Fourth Estate grants them a pardon, but cannot manage absolution, so I am sure you are correct.

          1. I’m stealing that.

      2. You know what that answer is. The quesion is, has it reached that point yet.

        1. Apparently it has not.

          Another question is, how would *that*, um, virus be dealt with?

    3. Maybe they were just trying to improve SS and Medicare solvency.

      1. Remember the triumphant demographic gloating that the old and narrow minded Brexit/Trump voters are going to die and leave the government to young Socialists?

        I do. Looks like government is trying to escalate that.

      2. I don’t think it is even that crude or sensible. My best guess is that they consider equality to be a higher value than survival. Denying people infected with this virus entry into a nursing home would be unfair and unequal. Nursing homes can’t be allowed to discriminate against the sick. That would unfairly stigmatize the sick.

        My guess is their logic went something along those lines. The fact that doing that would end up killing the people in these homes was immaterial. Nothing is more important than equality and not stigmatizing people. It is seriously sick and twisted logic. Frankly, I would find it less terrifying if it turned out they did it just to kill people to save money. That at least I could understand. But, I don’t think they are even that rational.

        1. From a personal, anecdotal perspective: we experienced the NYC metro area nursing home ecosystem during the final years of my mom’s life. The best ones we saw were depressing, dysfunctional waiting rooms for death. The worst made me think of concentration camps. Sure, some patients, including my mom “recovered” enough to go home, at least for a while. But the majority go there to die.

          I am not excusing what Cuomo and others did in any way, but I can imagine some of them thinking that adding more death to nursing homes was no big deal.

        2. “My guess is their logic went something along those lines.”

          I will be a little more (and less) charitable and say that they feared hospitals would be overrun and they wanted to broaden the base of beds available to the sick. They thought “hey we have all these old people, let’s get them into long term care so they aren’t in the hospitals getting sick”. The problem was that, like the universities who sent kids home, they were not protecting those patients, they were sending them to infect others.

    4. Question I don’t have the answer to: Where do you send them if they’re not serious enough (yet) to need to stay in the hospital?

      1. You create special facilities just for them. You put them in their own wing of a hospital. You move people out of some nursing homes and into others and make some nursing homes just for people with the virus. They had all kinds of federal aid and emergency funds to do things just like that. And they didn’t do it. They just stuck them in regular nursing homes and let them kill the other residents.

        1. You move people out of some nursing homes and into others and make some nursing homes just for people with the virus.

          That was proposed in CT and met with thunderous denouncements.

          No nursing home operator wanted to have a plague nursing home, bigger risk to their care providers/employees etc etc.

          It does seem like it would have been a much better use of the field hospitals or the USS Mercy than… doing nothing with them though. The point about the hospitals I think misses the mark though, the concern at the time was running out of beds entirely.

          1. Plenty of states did not do this and they never had a problem. So it wasn’t impossible. And New York and New Jersey had tons of field hospitals and the USS Mercy that were almost never used. That would have been the obvious answer.

            And I think plenty nursing homes would have taken them for the right price. Nursing homes are money making operations. Had the state offered enough money to make your nursing home the Covid one, they would have had plenty of takers.

            1. Agreed, but nursing homes rarely can make money well off of state funded beds. Especially in CT, the state did its best over decades to ruin the industry and then be surprised that there are so few nursing homes that take people on state money.

              I do think paying them to do it could have been a good solution (assuming the numbers work out roughly, if you have to clear 1000 patients out to move 100 in, you need to have an additional 900 open beds). In CT most of the state never got near capacity though for hospital use so they also could have just put people in hospital beds in the counties further away from NYC.

              I think NY with all the money and focus, and need could have come up with a MUCH better solution. I’m confident we’re missing a lot of details and subtlety, but what they did was such a failure it can’t have been the best option.

              1. I don’t think there is any more subtlety than “We don’t know what to do about this, so let’s just make it the nursing home’s problem and hope no one notices”. They probably bought the hype and figured there were going to be tens of thousands of deaths in each state and figured no one would notice a few thousand deaths of old sick people in nursing homes. The best explanation is likely laziness and callousness combined with a dose of politically correct “we can’t stigmatize sick people” rationalization.

            2. “Nursing homes are money making operations. Had the state offered enough money to make your nursing home the Covid one, they would have had plenty of takers.”

              Often on a shoestring budget. Per family that used to operate a few of them.

              If .Gov offered 10X the typical Medicare reimbursement rate to house COVID and only COVID patients, plus threw in a stipend for total decontamination at the end, you’d have had nursing home operators fighting to take these patients.

              1. Nursing homes make money on rehab – private pay and/or Medicare short stay patients.

                They do not make any money on long term residents, the vast majority of whom are Medicaid.

                Take a look around – wherever you are – I seriously doubt you will find a nursing home that has been built in the last ten or fifteen years.

                1. The vast majority are NOT Medicaid, NHs have to be forced to set aside an allotment of Medicaid beds. Everyone else is private pay ( we are talking the good ones here, not the shitholes)

                  1. Are people dying mostly in the good ones, or the shitholes?

                    So bumping government compensation to take Covid patients wouldn’t work because even a 10X bump is chicken feed compared to cash patients? I didn’t know that. All I knew was that the family member in question was a scumbag, running a set of nursing homes in the mid 80s was entirely up his alley, and he always bitched that there never was any money coming in. Oh, and that none of our relatives should ever end up in one.

                  2. It varies a lot by state.

                  3. Nash, I work in long term care. Have for thirty+ years and across the country. The average daily cost of nursing home care ranges about $200-400 depending on the state. Nobody does that for very long.

                    So yes, the majority of all nursing home residents are Medicaid (over 60% per CMS). When you exclude short stays that percentage skyrockets.

        2. Yep. This isn’t an unsolvable problem by any means, especially when there’s an empty hospital ship sitting in your harbor.

    5. It was known from the very beginning that people who were old and sick were by far the most vulnerable to this virus.

      It was known well before COVID that such a move would be actively killing some individuals in the nursing home. The question is/was how many people were you freeing up the hospital bed for.

      There might be some narrow situation where the decision makes sense. Otherwise, as policy it was going to produce the effect observed, with the degree being the open question.

    6. John,

      You’re understating the sociopathy of what was done. When the state decided to stick the COVID patients into nursing homes, the nursing homes complained, saying that they didn’t have the ability to treat them. The Governor threatened to pull their licenses if they didn’t. They then explained that they didn’t have the supplies or equipment to deal with the patients. “That isn’t our problem” was the response from the Governor. When the consequences predicted by the nursing home came to fruition, the Governor accused the nursing homes of letting the patients die to save money.

    1. Because we have allowed judges to be tyrants. And people on all sides of political spectrum have had a hand in creating the situation. They all have been happy to support judicial tyranny when it gave them some pony they couldn’t get via an election.

      1. Now that we we’ve recognized the danger of this, it’s going to stop right?

        1. By “we”, you mean libertarians, right?

          ‘Cause the only danger seen by Rs and Ds is that it isn’t their judge giving them the pony they wanted.

          1. only libertarians understand and only libertarians have no say. It’s bizarro world.

            1. It’d be funny if it weren’t so sad.

  6. https://www.washingtonexaminer.com/opinion/who-sent-coronavirus-positive-patients-into-nursing-homes

    Other states, recognizing the dangers of infecting the vulnerable, required or encouraged nursing homes to set up separate units or staffs to handle patients testing positive. Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, widely criticized in the national media for avoiding a total lockdown, zeroed in on nursing homes, encouraging repeated testing and temperature-taking of residents and staff and isolating anyone testing positive. Florida, a state with 2 million more people than New York, had just 714 nursing home deaths, 13% of the number in New York.

  7. “These documents have absolutely nothing to do with any FBI investigation and they confirm that all normal procedures were followed—any suggestion otherwise is a flat out lie,” said the Biden campaign in a statement.

    Even so…

    I’m not sure this is an “even so” statement on Biden’s part. Routine for would-be unmaskers who have a legitimate reason to make the request, no?

    1. Let’s not forget that almost immediately following the election, the Obama administration vastly expanded the list of people and agencies authorized to make unmasking requests, and the number of requests skyrocketed in the final two months of his tenure. This was all about taking down the incoming administration, or at least neutering it.

      Bear in mind, too, as we learned from all the recent transcripts that came out over the past couple weeks, literally no one had any direct knowledge or evidence of Russia colluding with any American citizens. None. This was a con job from the get-go, and everyone in the administration knew it.

      1. If only there was a political party or ideology interested in protecting the civil liberties of all people. Maybe there is one somewhere. If so they should start a publication.

        1. That will never work.

        2. Yes they should. And they should not invite Dalmia, Suderman, Boehm, Binion with in 1000 miles of it.

        3. Seriously, why don’t a bunch of you get together, register a domain name, put up a website, and start publishing your own libertarian views?

          John, and others, spend hours here every day, writing hundreds of words of comments. And whining about Reason writers. During fundraising drives, you post comments about how you won’t support Reason financially because the quality of their content has declined.

          Compete with Reason. Put up your own publication. It’s the libertarian, free market way.

          Or, yeah, just keeping whining.

          1. “Oh shit! People are complaining that Reason has abandoned libertarian values and is now just parroting establishment orthodoxies, what’ll I do?
            I know, I’ll call them ‘whiners’, I’m a genius.”

            Fuck off, Jeff.

          2. Sure, but then we wouldn’t be rubbing Reason’s (and your) nose in their shittiness.

          3. I’d pay for it.

  8. https://threadreaderapp.com/thread/1260725990021640192.html

    Judge Sullivan has now appointed a retired judge to look into “whether the Court should issue an Order to Show Cause why Mr. Flynn should not be held in criminal contempt for perjury.” Thus, the court is not only considering denying an uncontested motion for dismissal but…

    1. Federal judge mulls contempt charge against Michael Flynn
      https://www.politico.com/news/2020/05/13/judge-appoints-retired-judge-to-represent-flynn-prosecution-256509

      A federal judge is signaling that he might pursue perjury or contempt charges against former national security adviser Michael Flynn over his effort to abandon a guilty plea to a charge of lying to the FBI.

      The Justice Department moved last week to drop the prosecution of Flynn launched by special counsel Robert Mueller, but U.S. District Court Judge Emmet Sullivan slammed the brakes on that effort by announcing Wednesday evening that he is appointing a former federal judge to argue against the government’s unusual bid to dismiss the case against an ally of President Donald Trump.

      Sullivan’s order also directed the retired judge, John Gleeson, to recommend whether Flynn should face a criminal contempt charge for perjury — apparently for declaring under oath at two different court proceedings that he was guilty of lying to the FBI, before he reversed course in January and claimed he had never lied.

      1. https://www.nysun.com/editorials/united-states-v-flynn-an-invitation-to-the-anti/91129/

        The decision of a United States judge to stall America’s motion to drop its case against General Michael Flynn appears calculated to delay the matter until after November. That’s how it looks, at least to us, in the wake of the judge’s decision to invite outside parties to file friend-of-the court briefs on what to do next. Could it be that the judge hopes the Democrats will win the election and, come January, drop the motion to drop the case?

        1. Looks like someone has gone the full Red Queen.

          1. Again, you’d think there would be some civil liberty concerns about a ‘judge’ going so far over to one side, especially in a criminal case.

            But I’m confidant Reason has some flunkies combing databases to find a ‘both sides do it’ angle before putting anything to print on this.

            1. Flynn had already admitted his guilt. There was no case to drop. The point you think you’re making about “going over to one side. I.e. acting without impartiality” literally applies to what Trump and Barr have done but you’re another 1984 disciple so why do I even bother.

              1. “Flynn had already admitted his guilt”

                Lol.

              2. Flynn “admitted his guilt” without knowing the evidence against him. That makes his plea involuntary and invalid.

                If the government withholds exculpatory evidence from a defendant, any resulting plea the defendant makes is not knowing and is not a voluntary plea. That is what happened in this case.

                You need to get better talking points. The ones you have are not going to convince anyone.

                1. Give him a break, he can only repeat the talking points handed out by WaPo, NYT, MSNBC and CNN.

              3. >>>Flynn had already admitted his guilt.

                dude.

              4. “Flynn had already admitted his guilt”

                What the hell. Seriously man?

              5. “lying to the FBI” is one the most bullshit crimes there is. It’s a tool for the king’s men to fuck over anyone they like who is dumb enough to talk to the FBI without a lawyer present.

                You should never, ever ,ever talk to the cops. I mean EVER.

                https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d-7o9xYp7eE

                Because it’s a scam on innocent people. They are TRAINED to scam you into looking/sounding guilty even when you are not.

                1. Talking to regular cops has its place. Plenty of people have avoided a ride by explaining their actions and their innocence. Easy to overdo it though.

                  The Feds, OTOH, are different. Really don’t talk to them without advice of counsel. Fostering a lying to a federal official charge is a lot of what they try to do. Seems to be an easy charge to catch, too.

              6. you’re another 1984 disciple

                I don’t see right-wingers literally doing Two Minutes Hate every day against Emmanuel Trumpstein.

              7. Flynn had already admitted his guilt.

                Absolutely.

                But the thing he was guilty of isn’t a crime.

              8. You know who else pleaded guilty to save his family, Nilolai Bukharin and millions more Russians under Stalin…is that what our justice system has come to?
                As to Sullivan I take another tack, I think one of two reasons for what he is doing:
                1. He is pissed that the prosecutor went ahead without informing him first when he was likely to the same himself. He knows he has no case and would be overturned on appeal if he does convict him.
                2. He wants to bring all this out in the light. Contrary to what a lot of people have been saying on the right, this judge is not a democrat stooge. Yes he was appointed to this position by Clinton but so far have not seen him make any outrageous rulings. From what I have seen everything has been to stretch this out and get to the nitty gritty of what happened and who did what. If anything the dems are really worried where this would lead and that more than anything scares them.
                Just my opinon.

      2. Has it ever been considered that withdrawing from a plea deal to be perjury?

    2. It’s mind-boggling. He’s now inviting amicus submissions, despite disallowing Flynn’s team’s requests over and over, and he’s mulling contempt charges against Flynn even though the prosecutors lied in open court, withheld exculpatory evidence, and violated court orders.

      We are fully down the rabbit-hole at this point.

      1. It is completely unconstitutional. The judge does not have the power to bring charges of his own. That power belongs exclusively to the executive. Even if he were to hold Flynn in contempt, the executive would be under no obligation to enforce the order or pursue the charges.

        The answer to this is for the AG to tell Sullivan to go fuck himself. He can make what ever charges he wants or whatever declaration he wants but DOJ is not going to pursue or enforce those judgement. Declaring Flynn in contempt only means something if the Federal Marshals are willing to arrest him and the Bureau of Prisons are willing to lock him up. And both of those organizations work for the President and the AG not the judge. The judge can declare Flynn guilty of perjury or treason or anything else he wants. And it won’t mean anything if DOJ is unwilling to enforce the judgement.

        In this case, both parties have agreed to dismiss the case. The judge has no power to reverse that. DOJ should just ignore any attempts on Sullivan’s part to do that. If I were, Barr, I would tell my attorneys to just refuse to come to court and tell the Marshal services to ignore any contempt orders Sullivan issued. He can sit on the bench alone and bang his gavel all he wants.

        1. Judges have the authority to hold people in contempt for lying in the courtroom. It’s got nothing to do with the executive branch.

          1. Lol you clearly didn’t read his post in your fevered haste.. He addresses that, and why it is meaningless.

          2. They can hold all the people in contempt they want. But they can’t make the AG order the Marshals to enforce that order. The order only means something if the executive is willing to enforce it. And Barr is under no obligation to do so. Indeed, he arguably has a duty not to enforce it since such an order would be unconstitutional.

    3. Surely there is a way we can invoke the death penalty.

      1. It’s “Off with their heads!” all the way down!

        1. Can we have some cake first?

          1. “They *all* want cake.”

            1. “You’re lucky we’re Church of England.”

        2. Time to take off our culottes and put on our pantaloons.

    4. Should we bring up the man the judge appointed is on record being opposed to Trump and being opposed to dismissing charges against Flynn.

  9. “U.S. unemployment figures for the last two months have now exceeded 36 million.”

    That means we need unlimited, unrestricted immigration more than ever.

    #OpenBordersWillFixEverything

  10. Healthy outrage over the treatment of Flynn would mean a concerted effort to actually rein in the feds, not a one-off lament that the incredible punitive power of law enforcement was exercised against someone Trump likes.

    Drain the swamp, put it in a centrifuge and then put pour back the part you like.

    1. You can both care about prosecutorial abuse in general, and also GIVE A FUCK ABOUT BASICALLY A COUP ATTEMPT.

      1. http://ace.mu.nu/archives/387260.php

        The liberal media and their NeverTrump allies — who are also the liberal media, so why bother making the distinction — will point that we are now in very dangerous territory which legitimately may end the American Republic.

        Surely it will end the peaceful transfer of power, with one party knowing it might be criminally investigated and imprisoned if it loses an election or gives up power — so of course no one will give up power.

        And that of course is why there are no stable, long-term democracies in most parts of the world. People caught on the fact that the moment they peaceably departed from the presidential palace they’d immediately be sent to the prisons or gallows, and so stopped peaceably departing the presidential palace.

        So yes, this is dangerous.

        Nice of you to notice… now.

        Four years into your coup.

        But here’s the thing, Fuckers:

        You should have thought of that before you sought to undo 244 years of peaceful transitions of power, before you weaponized the intelligence and law enforcement capabilities of the United States against your political opponents.

        But now you wanna cry because Andrew Weissman and James Comey and John Brennan and Peter Strzok and (gasp!) maybe Barack Hussein Obama himself might find themselves prosecuted?!

        Funny, you didn’t worry about these things when you were giggling and gloating over throwing Trump allies in jail.

        You sowed the winds — now you will reap the whirlwind.

        So fuck off, and if this is in fact the end of the peaceful transition of power — this be on YOUR heads, not ours.

        But we will not be subject to rules that you are not also subject to.

        And if we are now to be prosecuted when there’s a change in administration — so will you.

        You made the New Rules.

        You will now be made to suffer by the New Rules.

        1. They impeached Trump for less than what we now know Joe Biden did.

          1. It’s all projection. I’m really at the point where, when I see someone accuse a Republican of something, I look to who the most prominent member of the Democratic party is at the moment, and assume that individual is actually guilty of it.

            See, e.g., colluding with Russia; refusing to accept the results of the election; refusing to provide funding to Ukraine; grabbing by the pussy; canceling elections; undermining the peaceful transfer of power.

            1. It’s a useful tactic to accuse your enemies of what you’re actually doing and take the suspicion off yourself.

              See the landmark case of Smelt it V Dealt it. It was eventually reveal that the prosecution was the responsible party and was gaslighting everyone in the room both metaphorically and literally.

              1. In psychology they call it, “deny, attack, redirect”.

                1. In politics they call it “standard procedure.”

        2. Peaceful transition of power ended when Obama holdovers stayed on in an effort to sabotage the incoming administration. Now that they are (maybe?) getting exposed, they are begging that they not be treated the way they tried to treat the current administration.

          I remember when the Mueller report initially dropped, CNN and MSNBC were harping on how Trump was going to not let it go, use it against his opponents, and he needs to just move on. No, assholes, you accused him and his family members of capital crimes and tried to destroy their lives, fortunes, and reputations. Over a lie.

          The people involved in this need to be brought to justice. The rule of law and the continued existence of the Republic really is in danger otherwise.

          1. Remember this was the whole reason behind the Ukraine impeachment- they were specifically trying to create the narrative that Trump uses the power of his office to persecute his opponents. They did that because they knew what would soon come out of Durham’s report, and they wanted the media to have cover to say “See, there goes trump again!!”

      2. Nah, that wouldn’t work

  11. The conservative majority on the Wisconsin Supreme Court rejected attempts by Democratic Gov. Tony Evers to extend that state’s lockdown.

    COVID-19 or constitutional protections: Which is the more partisan issue maker?

    1. Consti-what?

    1. Cuomo for prom queen!

    2. Since most of America’s C19 infections originated from visitors to New York City, I propose we call it the “New York City Virus.”

      1. “”“New York City Virus.”””

        Didn’t they play CBGBs in the early “80s?

  12. This condition, termed “Kawasaki-like,” is serious but thought to be quite treatable if detected early enough.

    Are we still waiting for blue lips before heading for the hospital?

    1. It’s more Honda like.

      1. I enjoyed my Yammy till it betrayed me.

  13. Yes, the “outrage” over harassment of Americans by the FBI and other intelligence and law enforcement entities is so loud that 1% are willing to vote Libertarian. The other 99% are content to speak up only when their ox is gored.

    1. The libertarians are about to nominate someone who fully endorsed that abuse

    2. After our 3% showing when the choices were trump and clinton, im either never voting or never voting libertarian again.
      Absolutely pathetic.

      1. that’s fair. but still, the libertarian option is far and away the best one. Not perfect, but good.

  14. U.S. COVID-19 cases appear to finally be declining.

    Democratic politicians hardest hit.

    1. And Republicans seize on the declining numbers!

  15. Biden has countered that unmasking requests are perfectly normal

    The VP is a position known for running international espionage investigations…

    1. Trump, the guy who says a president can investigate anyone, fired Flynn and Pence called Flynn a liar but of course you mfers live in a 1984 world where 2 ÷ 2 = whatever the party says.

      1. So Pence was an idiot for believing the FBI. I doubt he’ll make the same mistake twice.

        But what will be your excuse?

        1. Pence believing or not believing the FBI has nothing to do with it. Flynn said Pence knew about the conservation. Pence called him a liar. I actually believe Flynn when he said he was acting at the direction of Trump.

          1. Of course you do. Whatever makes Trump looks bad is what you believe even if the evidence doesn’t support it. I am betting you still believe Schiff has evidence of collusion despite the transcripts clearly showing he didn’t and lied about it.

      2. Which explains why Biden was involved…

        1. Flynn committed a crime and confessed to it. Pence and Trump called him a liar and fired him. Trump even acknowledged Flynn was legal jeopardy hence the “go easy on Flynn” conservation with the FBI director.

          1. He admitted to a crime because the FBI withheld evidence and threatened his family if he didn’t admit to it. It definitely changes when you put all the facts on the table. Also, the FBI originally concluded he didn’t commit a crime but were ordered to charge him anyhow. Again, once you state the facts, you thesis is weak at best.

            1. talking to the FBI was an idiotic move. NEVER, EVER, talk to the FBI. You have nothing to gain and everything to lose.

      3. The president can investigate anyone, subject to the restrictions and limitations set out in the Constitution and the U.S. Code.

        Flynn lying to Pence, whether or not it happened, is not a crime. Nor is getting fired.

        I’m not sure what any of that has to do with the VP being involved in the unmasking requests….

        1. Nor am I

      4. “… you mfers live in a 1984 world where 2 ÷ 2 = whatever the party says.”

        Cry some more you whiny fascist bitch.

  16. https://pagesix.com/2020/05/12/dakota-johnson-says-her-depression-is-beautiful/

    Dakota Johnson has learned to accept into her depression.

    “I’ve struggled with depression since I was young — since I was 15 or 14,” she told Marie Claire’s summer 2020 issue. “That was when, with the help of professionals, I was like, ‘Oh, this is a thing I can fall into.’ But I’ve learned to find it beautiful because I feel the world.”

    1. Never heard of her. Sounds like a downer.

      1. She was the chick in 50 Shades of Grey. She is smoking hot. But like many smoking hot women, she is also nuts apparently.

        1. ugh. No I don’t get her appeal. I’m not saying shes a haggerd hideously ugly person but with the bloodlines she has she should be much hotter.

          1. I never found Melanie Griffith attractive. She had a good body back in the day but I always thought she was a butter face if there ever was one.

            Johnson isn’t a raving beauty by Hollywood standards. Compared to someone like Katheryn Winnick or Rebecca Ferguson she is a homely step sister. But by ordinary standards, she is still pretty hot.

            1. The fact that Winnick and Ferguson aren’t in every movie till the end of time is oversight of monumental fucktardery.

              1. I had never heard of Ferguson. Then one night my wife is watching the White Queen on cable. I was like “oh my God who is she”. Ferguson is just a goddess. I hear she is going to play the Lady Jessica in the Dune movie that is coming out in December. That is a very good casting choice.

                1. I hear she is going to play the Lady Jessica in the Dune movie that is coming out in December. That is a very good casting choice.

                  Almost makes up for whatever moron cast Zendaya as Chani. Almost.

                  1. For as much deserved flack the old David Lynch Dune movie gets, they really did a great job casting that movie. Francesca Annis as Lady Jessica, Kyle MacLachlan as Paul, Sting as Feyd Reutha Harkonen, Sean Young as Chani were all perfect for their roles. I doubt this movie even if it is better overall will be cast as well as that one was, although Feguson is just as good as Annis.

                    1. Sean Young likely the good kind of insane.

                    2. Zendaya as Chani is fine with me. Blended ancestry, looks fit, and I thought the Fremen were supposed to be fairly ragtag genetically.

                      The true howler is casting a woman as Kynes. You know, the military leader of the Fremen, a group with very defined gender roles. Because there weren’t enough strong female roles in Dune. LOL. The whole Bene Gesserit faction was evidently a figure of my imagination.

                    3. Gray Jay, Casting a woman as Keynes is like making a movie about the 8th Century Arab conquest of the Levant and making the commanding general a woman. It is a fucking joke. It goes totally against the entire culture of the Freeman and undermines a lot of the point and the plot of the book all to make the same tired ass PC bullshit points about “girls can”. No, girls can’t sometimes. I wish Hollywood would get the fuck over it and just make movies.

                    4. You can cast a woman as Kynes, but then don’t go around telling everyone, like Villeneuve has, that he ‘has always loved the book’ and ‘this will be a faithful adaptation of the story.’

                      Gender roles are kinda important to the whole plot, being it’s a multi-thousand year scheme to breed an OverMan who can experience race memory the way Reverend Mothers can, only including the parts they physically can’t use. And it’s absolutely hilarious to think of—as you noted—an expy for the militant evangelical early history of Islam, and have their warrior band be led by a woman.

                      If you can’t even get this part straight, what else are you going to fuck up when you tell the story, Villeneuve?

                    5. Zendaya as Chani is fine with me. Blended ancestry, looks fit, and I thought the Fremen were supposed to be fairly ragtag genetically.

                      I don’t have a problem with Zendaya’s identity. Paul and Chani’s love was deeper and more complex than Peter and Mary Jane Parker’s and she absolutely butchered that. Arguably it was writing/directing, but even the moments where she was supposed to be connecting with Parker were just terrible.

                      The true howler is casting a woman as Kynes. You know, the military leader of the Fremen, a group with very defined gender roles. Because there weren’t enough strong female roles in Dune.

                      I think you guys have Liet Kynes, Imperial Ecologist and bureaucrat secretly turned native Fremen, confused with Stilgar (being played by Javier Bardem). Agreed that the gender swap is irritating and the can’t-remember-her-name actress won’t be anywhere near as good as Von Sydow, but Kynes is a serial failure in the books who’s effectively dead before the Paul’s awakening. Like gender swapping Dr. Yueh.

                      The other casting decision that concerns me is Momoa. The role of Idaho is written for someone like him so long as he doesn’t show up and play the Jason Momoa. The same character who played Aquaman, Conan. The character he ripped off of several of Dwayne Johnson’s movies.

                    6. but Kynes is a serial failure in the books who’s effectively dead before the Paul’s awakening

                      Ah, fuck, I may’ve spoken too soon:

                      After the Harkonnen’s attack Arrakeen, Paul and his mother Jessica flee the city. They are rescued by Duncan Idaho and Kynes. Kynes informs them that she can offer Paul and Jessica safety among the Fremen. However, before they can escape to safety, a storm approaches and they are forced to take shelter in an old Ecological Testing Stations where Kynes informs Paul about her plans to terraform Arrakis. While Kynes confides in her vision for Arrakis, Paul reveals his own plans to become Emperor.

                      Now, *that* could be some major horseshit. Turning Kynes into an eco-nut magic negro and turning Paul into just another power-hungry privileged white dude would be a serious fuck up.

                    7. While Kynes confides in her vision for Arrakis, Paul reveals his own plans to become Emperor.

                      Matter of fact, that line right there, if true, pretty much fucks the whole movie as far as I’m concerned.

                      This makes Paul sound power hungry immediately after his father was murdered, which he wasn’t. And I agree that it makes Kynes sound more like a general and power figure that you guys portray which, in the books, he was more of a taciturn bureaucrat with a secret life. More of a arbiter turned sexton than a general or leader to be reckoned with.

                      Fuckin’ neuters the story on so many levels that Paul already had plans of becoming Emperor practically the minute after his father died. Godfuckingdammit.

                    8. No, Liet Kynes, Pardot’s kid, was in addition to being the Something or other Imperial official of the Change, was I thought the military leader of the Fremen, and the main guy on their ecology project. Stilgar just ran Sietch Tabr. Which was a big Sietch, but I don’t remember that Stilgar could speak for all Fremen. Liet could.

                      Ironically, they probably could have made Pardot a woman—if they wanted to introduce that character at all—given his role was mainly to give the Fremen hope that something better could be in store for them with Arrakis. I’d think a woman could be a Messianic egghead inspirational figure—like the Reverend Mothers, but different—while individual sietch leaders did the military heavy-lifting.

                    9. Agreed, the wanting to be Emperor is absolute horseshit. Paul was, IIRC, still wrestling with the prescience dreams, what they meant, and how to incorporate his hyper senses with them.

                      There’s a scene during their flight, after Jessica and Paul kill the two Harkonnens that were assigned to dump them in the desert and kill them, where Paul and Jessica get caught in a sandstorm. During the time they’re turtled in a tent, Paul goes into a trance, and starts to flex his powers a bit. He starts thinking he might be the Kwisatz Haderach, and I think he sees that one of his paths is being married to Irulan, but the guy never ever wanted to be Emperor.

                      Or to lead the Jihad, but it never was about what Paul wanted.

                    10. No, Liet Kynes, Pardot’s kid, was in addition to being the Something or other Imperial official of the Change, was I thought the military leader of the Fremen, and the main guy on their ecology project. Stilgar just ran Sietch Tabr. Which was a big Sietch, but I don’t remember that Stilgar could speak for all Fremen. Liet could.

                      I read it differently. Liet certainly held sway with the Fremen, but he was more of a shadowy rebel leader. I recall he could antagonize the ruling Harkonnen, but was powerless to get the water merchants to do his bidding. Prior to Paul, IMO, the Fremen had no formal standing army which anyone could be a General and the entirety of Liet’s character served to ingratiate the Atreides with the Fremen (and, after Paul obviously, Stilgar was an effective General or higher). Pretty much everything else Liet had as motivation or goals (overseeing The Change, terraforming the planet, leading the Fremen to freedom) he failed to achieve.

                    11. @mad.casual, @Gray_Jay,

                      In the books, Liet-Kynes had inherited his father’s Imperial Planetologist position, and his mother was Fremen. My recollection is that Kynes – as Liet, his Fremen name – had the “allegiance” of all Fremen, but not their “fealty” – he could not command them. Given that the Fremen had a patriarchal society, the idea that a female Kynes could receive the loyalty of all Fremen doesn’t hold water (sorry, couldn’t resist a play on words). That said, most moviegoers probably won’t give it much thought. Plus, “Down with the patriarchy!”…or whatever, I guess…

                      Regarding the “eco nut” comment, in the books Kynes actually did want to essentially terraform Arrakis, something else he had inherited from his father. By the 4th book, that process is mostly done, and Leto II’s travel is severely limited due to the potential for getting wet.

                    12. Regarding the “eco nut” comment, in the books Kynes actually did want to essentially terraform Arrakis

                      Soft “It would be nice to have more water so more people could live more comfortably.” terraforming, agreed. My point being, I think a black female Liet Kynes could be written. But, rewriting his death, I don’t think we’re going to get a “The only good Arrakis is a green Arrakis.” Liet Kynes. I think the idea hits all the shitty SJW beats too perfectly to be dismissed.

                      I think the gender roles issue wrt the Fremen is a bit overplayed. Chani is a trained combatant who gets the drop on Paul at their first meeting and the only reason Stilgar lets Paul and Jessica live is so that Jessica can train them in the weirding ways. The Fremen certainly have their gender roles but they’re also hard-scrabble combatants.

                    13. I don’t think we’re going to get a “The only good Arrakis is a green Arrakis.”…

                      Er… I think we are going to get…

                      Goddamned edit button.

                    14. Because Jessica beat his ass without even breathing hard, and Stilgar was always a practical guy.

                      Thanks for the discussion guys. This was fun.

            2. Griffith had her time in the sun but she had a very short shelf life you are right.

    2. I can actually respect her position. Who says being happy is the proper end of life? Maybe she is better off accepting her nature and learning to live with it rather than forever trying and failing to change it.

      1. Some people can deal with reality. Most can’t.

  17. https://twitter.com/ggreenwald/status/1260663277492854784

    I have a feeling that when Biden aides like this tweet vicious attacks on the integrity and reliability of journalists who report things they dislike, that’s not going to be depicted as an authoritarian assault on a free press.

    I’m correct about that, aren’t I?

    1. The Tweet is unavailable. What did it say?

      1. Dunno – it was pulled.

      2. He called a reported for CBS a “rightwing hack” for her mentioning that Biden’s name was on the unmasking list.

    1. https://threadreaderapp.com/thread/1260602077392171009.html

      1/ The CDC put out more data on “select causes” of death!

      Up until know we had only #COVID19, flu & pneumonia for 2020.

      A BIG revelation from this data… more strong proof that #COVID19 was here BEFORE January.

      Let’s begin with ALL deaths by week and year:

  18. Obama is the best president whole world had seen that. I also give the latest news related to movies at https://www.epmovies.com

    1. Way to know your audience, bot.

      1. It’s probably Jeff.

  19. https://www.telegraph.co.uk/global-health/science-and-disease/unicef-warns-lockdown-could-kill-covid-19-model-predicts-12/

    The risk of children dying from malaria, pneumonia or diarrhoea in developing countries is spiralling due to the pandemic and “far outweighs any threat presented by the coronavirus”, Unicef has warned.

    In an exclusive interview Dr Stefan Peterson, chief of health at Unicef, cautioned that the blanket lockdowns imposed in many low and middle income are not an effective way to control Covid-19 and could have deadly repercussions.

    “Indiscriminate lockdown measures do not have an optimal effect on the virus,” he told The Telegraph. “If you’re asking families to stay at home in one room in a slum, without food or water, that won’t limit virus transmission.

    “I’m concerned that lockdown measures have been copied between countries for lack of knowing what to do, rarely with any contextualisation for the local situation,” he said.

    “One size fits no one. The objective is to slow the virus, not to lockdown people. “We need to lift our eyes and look at the total picture of public health.”

    According to a stark report published in Lancet Global Health journal on Wednesday, almost 1.2 million children could die in the next six months due to the disruption to health services and food supplies caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

    1. https://www.telegraph.co.uk/business/2020/05/12/governments-handling-covid-19-british-disaster/

      “Our policy was to let the virus rip and then ‘cocoon the elderly’,” he wrote. “You don’t know whether to laugh or cry when you contrast that with what we actually did. We discharged known, suspected, and unknown cases into care homes which were unprepared, with no formal warning that the patients were infected, no testing available, and no PPE to prevent transmission. We actively seeded this into the very population that was most vulnerable.

      “We let these people die without palliation. The official policy was not to visit care homes – and they didn’t (and still don’t). So, after infecting them with a disease that causes an unpleasant ending, we denied our elders access to a doctor – denied GP visits – and denied admission to hospital. Simple things like fluids, withheld. Effective palliation like syringe drivers, withheld.”

      The public has yet to realise that the great quest for ventilators was worse than a red herring. The overuse of ventilators was itself killing people at a terrifying ratio and behind that lies another institutional failure.

      “When the inquiry comes, it will show that many people died for lack of oxygen supply in hospitals, and this led to early intubation,” writes the doctor. “Boris survived because they gave him oxygen. High flow oxygen wasn’t available as a treatment option for all patients.”

      1. https://www.nytimes.com/2020/05/13/nyregion/nursing-homes-coronavirus-new-york.html

        Many lawmakers were unaware of the language when they approved the budget a few days later. But it provided unusual legal protections for an influential industry that has been devastated by the crisis: nursing home operators.

        The measure, lobbied for by industry representatives, shielded nursing homes from many lawsuits over their failure to protect residents from death or sickness caused by the coronavirus.

        Now, weeks later, more than 5,300 residents of nursing homes in New York are believed to have died from the outbreak, and their relatives are finding that because of the provision, they may not be able to pursue legal action against the homes’ operators over allegations of neglect.

        1. You’ll see the same type of liability shielding when a putative Covid vaccine appears.

          I guess tort litigation is only a tool some of the time for finding the truth, and holding reckless companies accountable.

    2. The stay at home-work at home-school at home lockdown was only a semi-functional fashionable solution for the 10 percent (globally, the 1 percent). But it feels so safe and righteous.

  20. Experts cannot find a single child under 10 who has passed on coronavirus to an adult despite huge trawl of data raising hopes they pose no risk
    https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-8271703/Experts-single-child-10-passed-coronavirus-adult.html

  21. I sometimes have a fantasy of outwitting an FBI interrogation by writing down “I refuse to answer or speak on the grounds that any notes taken will be used to incriminate me, regardless of how accurate those notes are, the lies which provoked my answers, or the context of my answers.” then draw a tight box around what I wrote and add a note explaining the line is there to prevent later additions, and finally count the words and letters and write that down to.

    Then I realize that fantasy includes having led such a remarkable freedom-fighting life that I had come to the FBI’s attention, and I wake up and laugh.

    1. My fantasy would involve wearing a wire and secretly recording the conversation. Then when they lied on the 302s revealing the recording. That would end up with me no doubt being charged with some felony for secretly recording my own interrogation. But the embarrassment and anger it would cause might be worth it.

      State and local police now almost universally record interrogations. What they found out when they started doing that is that it almost always works against the defendant. Nothing hangs a defendant quicker than his own words and nothing is more compelling to a jury than seeing the defendant speak those words. A recorded confession or statement is a exponentially more persuasive than some flat foot cop’s memory of the statement or even a written statement. Once they started recording interrogations, the opposition from police died pretty quickly because the police realized how much more effective recorded statements were in convicting defendants.

      The lone exception to this is the FBI. They are pretty much the last law enforcement organization who do not record their interrogations. This after years and thousands of cases showing the efficacy of doing so. And I don’t mean that it is fair or helps defendants. No, the empirical evidence shows that recording interrogation nearly always helps to convict defendants.

      So you tell me why the FBI is the lone hold out. The only reason I can see is that they routinely lie on those Form 302s and don’t want to lose that ability. I can see no way to explain their opposition to recording interrogation other than they don’t want to lose their ability to lie without consequence.

      I take the FBI’s refusal to record interrogation as per say evidence that they lie about every single one of them when it is necessary. I would never convict anyone based upon an FBI agents’ testimony about an interrogation.

      1. Not sure what charge they could bring for secretly recording them. They are public employees acting in the course of their duties. They can have no expectation of privacy.

        1. I agree. I was just being cynical. And even though such a charge would be unconstitutional, it is not like that would stop them.

      2. I’ve thought of variations of that. Bring a spare cell phone used for nothing else, no SIM card even, so if they confiscate it, no info is lost. Set it in the middle of the table, and start video and audio recording. (Not sure if the selfie camera would be wide enough to be useful, but what the heck.) Speak my little piece about why I would answer no questions, then shut up.

        Of course they wouldn’t accept that; don’t know if they’d refuse to talk, if they’d shut the phone off (I’d start it up again), if they’d confiscate the phone, or what. But at least that action would be in my notes.

        That’s another thing I’ve thought of. Bring my own notepad and pen, and write down everything they say; if they talk too much or too fast, ask them to repeat it, and ask them to initial after each question when I’ve finished writing it down. If nothing else, it would be fun pissing them off and slowing them down.

      3. I’ve long thought the same. Nothing else makes sense: they want to lie, they intend to lie. I think the rot has penetrated everything they do. Look at their hair-matching lab, which IIRC knowingly lied for years until finally caught. I have no faith in the FBI for anything remotely political. Maybe they are still useful for bank robberies and kidnappings, but that kind of pervasive rot doesn’t give me much confidence.

        1. The FBI has had one scandal after another over the last 40 years. The hair matching lab, John Conolly in the Boston office, now all of this with Trump, the list goes on and on. And throughout all of that, there has never been a single whistle blower from the agency. Not one agent has ever stepped forward and alerted the public to wrongdoing. Every time the FBI has a scandal it is because someone from the outside discovered it. That tells me there isn’t a single clean agent in the whole organization. There are only dirty agents and those agents who while not dirty themselves, enable and cover up for those who are.

          1. That last observation applies to practically all police departments, except possibly the very small ones. So-called good cops have to be positively good by outing the bad cops, actively reporting them, not just standing by to preserve their pensions. I have come to the conclusion there simply are no good cops, unless it is Sheriff Andy in Mayberry RFD with a single deputy.

        2. they want to lie, they intend to lie. I think the rot has penetrated everything they do.

          they are literally TRAINED to lie and trick the interviewees. You’d have to be an absolute goddamned idiot to talk to the FBI if you’re the kind of person who is in at the level of Flynn and others who have been recently convicted of “lying” to the FBI. they were fools to agree to talk with the FBI

      4. It is like body can footage. It often ends up exonarating the officers of excessive footage charges but they still resist it.

        1. *Excessive force
          Not sure where footage came from.

      5. I take the FBI’s refusal to record interrogation as per say evidence that they lie about every single one of them when it is necessary.

        This is absolutely correct.

    2. you should just refuse to talk to the FBI at all.

      1. One word I would say now is “lawyer”.

        1. the is the only word you should ever say to law enforcement.

          “Sir, can i ask you a few questions?” “lawyer”

          “where were you this evening?” “Lawyer”

          “Did you kill your wife?” “Lawyer”

  22. https://www.acpjournals.org/doi/10.7326/M20-1565

    Fifth, updated projections already reveal substantial volatility. For New York, the model predicted 10 243 deaths (range, 5167 to 26 444) on 27 March and 15 546 (range, 8016 to 22 255) on 30 March. Given the opaqueness of the model and underlying source data, it is challenging to understand why other regions’ projections also change dramatically. The alignment of past predictions with reality and current predictions should also be reported transparently.

    Ultimately, IHME’s model may be reliable only for short-term projections. For hospital demand projections, patient-level clinical outcome data will enable more accurate conclusions than poorly reported worldwide aggregate mortality data with point estimates of how deaths translate into hospital use. Local data are less likely to be subject to undercounting or reporting errors, helping hospitals better prepare for the immediate future. It is also unlikely that a “one-size” model will fit all regions at all times.

    1. https://www.statnews.com/2020/04/17/influential-covid-19-model-uses-flawed-methods-shouldnt-guide-policies-critics-say/

      On March 27, it projected that New York would see 10,243 deaths (and that the total had a 95% chance of falling between 5,167 to 26,444) by early August. Three days later, the New York projection was 15,546, and on April 3 it was 16,262, Jewell and her colleagues pointed out in another analysis, published in JAMA on Thursday.

      Even the predictions of daily deaths “have been highly inaccurate,” said statistician Sally Cripps of the University of Sydney, who led a team that examined IHME’s up-and-down projections. “It performs poorly even when it predicts the number of next-day deaths: The true number of next-day deaths has been outside the 95% intervals 70% of the time.” If the 95% calculation correctly reflects a model’s uncertainty, then textbook statistics say the true numbers can fall outside that range no more than 5% of the time.

  23. Andrew Sullivan believes that describing someone born male with male genitalia as male in a court case whose central question is whether persons with male physiology can be excluded from women’s sports divisions is a slur.

    “Andrew Sullivan
    @sullydish

    I’m with the judge. Calling trans females “male” is pointlessly offensive. “Trans female” is more accurate. Why does the opposition have to be so callous and hurtful? Their case remains solid without any hurtful slurs.
    Quote Tweet

    National Review

    @NRO
    · May 11
    Attorneys for Conn. High School Runners Ask Judge to Recuse after He Forbids Them from Describing Trans Athletes as ‘Male’”

    A statement of biological fact cannot be a “slur”. We cannot censor plain language because a person may be offended by it because it clashes with their personal worldview.

    1. Writes to Sullivan.

      /puts Beanie cap. Spins propeller.

      Dear Andrew,

      Hi! My name is Rufus. You don’t know me but I’m American’s favourite Canadian. Ha, ha! I’m starting a fundraiser to raise money for people who pant shitted so much during Wuhan the shit ended up in their brains. We can clean the mess up but it will take a lot of money. You’d be surprise how hard it is to clean shit out of low IQ brains. Anyway, I invite you to sit in the Dunk Tank. It’s for a good cause. And you’ll get a prize!

      I eagerly await your response.

      Best,

      Rufus in Montreal.

      1. America’s. Maybe I need to go to the dunk tank.

    2. Andrew Sullivan is a sick and depraved person. He is nothing but an old pervert. Why anyone listens that sick little fucker is beyond me.

      1. But people do, and Sullivan complaining about callousness in language in a court case is missing the point of the thing. Truth is callous, it does not care if it offends. If it cares about offense, it is not truth.

        Our elites seem intent on making LGBT activism into a strange kind of religion in which blasphemy and heresy to its doctrines is not allowed to be spoken publicly.

    3. How about we call them “mutants”?

      1. If “male” is an offensive slur, “mutant” surely is.

    4. The witness didn’t perjure themselves, they just transitioned away from being completely honest. The law can’t call them liars, “Trans honest” would be more accurate.

      Holy Fuck is this religion absolutely retarded.

    5. I’ve never memorized which way a trans is transiting: is the named gender the departure or the destination? Does it change after the halfway point? Is there a halfway point, or any other point — can one ever truly depart a gender or arrive at one, or is one always in transit, or always in doubt? How fluid is gender when transiting — can one wander in circles without departure or arrival gender?

    6. I’m with the judge. Calling trans females “male” is pointlessly offensive. “Trans female” is more accurate. Why does the opposition have to be so callous and hurtful? Their case remains solid without any hurtful slurs.

      Everyone has lost their goddamned minds

  24. In a better age, Fauci (and Tam and all those medical bureaucrats standing dazed and confused behind low IQ politicians spreading a panic virus worse than DA WOOHAN) would get a seat at a Dunk Tank.

    I want closure. I want public shaming for what was done to us.

    And then I want China’s Commie head on a platter. With all the accoutrements including….

    1. You would just be hungry an hour later.

      1. Thread over. We have a winner.

  25. “If people really cared about it, thought it was an unacceptable tactic, you could get Congress to change the materiality element of 18 USC 1001, the false statement to the feds statute”

    Wow, thanks Ken White, why didn’t I think of that? Brb, going to “get” Congress to change a law

  26. The biggest political story of the day is the special election, held last night, for the district that represents Santa Clarita, CA–the mother of all planned suburban communities, just north of Los Angeles.

    The Republican won. That would be big news by itself, but the interesting thing is how he won.

    Nationwide, Mr. Garcia will be the only House Republican to hold a seat that Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton won in 2016 with more than 50% of the vote, noted David Wasserman, House expert at the nonpartisan Cook Political Report.

    . . . .

    Mr. Garcia’s victory was backed by a strong showing in both mail-in and in-person voting. A higher percentage of Republicans mailed in ballots, and they also appear to have voted in person more as well.

    Of the 4,199 votes cast in person in Los Angeles County, Mr. Garcia won more than twice as many as Ms. Smith, according to analysis by Paul Mitchell, vice president of Political Data Inc., which tracked the special election.

    https://www.wsj.com/articles/republican-wins-special-house-election-in-california-11589406506?

    The Republicans haven’t picked up a House seat in California in 20 years. The worm has turned. If what the Democrats have been trying to do to Trump and the Republicans isn’t working in suburban Los Angeles, then how do you think their strategies are playing out in Michigan, Ohio, western Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin? Given COVID-19 and unemployment, the Democrats should be killing it right now, but instead, they just lost a House seat in California–in a district that voted for Hillary Clinton in 2016!

    The even more interesting aspect of this is the part about in-person voting. Mail-in votes tend to come from older people who tend to be more conservative, and the news media was already spinning that narrative for fear that they’d lose this seat. The news that the in-person voters broke for the Republican by a 2-1 margin puts that media narrative to rest.

    To some extent, this is a repudiation of Newsom, but then, isn’t lockdowns and forcing people to do things against their wishes for their own good what being a Democrat is all about these days? Being the champion for lockdowns has consequences that run far beyond Newsom.

    It certainly isn’t the repudiation of President Trump the Democrats were hoping to see. President Trump could have stepped on any one of a thousand landmines over the last two months and hurt the Republican party. Instead, after two months of disaster, the Republican brand is strengthening–even in California. No doubt, President Trump could still grab feat from the jaws of victory, but this data point suggests that things aren’t likely to go well for Biden and the Democrats come November.

    1. It may be because a lot of people did not bother to vote because it was largely mail-in. The stereotypical Democrat voter hates having to put in effort to do things. I am not sure how much you can extrapolate from this result.

      1. I appreciate that mail-in ballots tend to be skewed for the benefit of the Republicans at the expense of Democrats.

        I hope you appreciate that the in-person votes broke 2-1 in favor of the Republican–which is a landslide for the Republican in district that voted for Hillary Clinton in 2016.

        Furthermore, as of yesterday, the general consensus is that there probably won’t be a vaccine (and all of us vaccinated) by the summer. Mail-in ballots may be the norm nationally come November.

        If the Democrats win the next election, they may have to do it nationally despite it being a mail-in election–just like this one was.

        1. I am not unhopeful, just pointing out that this may be a very special, special election and much salt should be taken with it before jumping to conclusions.

          1. It’s just a data point, but it is a data point, and from a sampling standpoint, if the Democrats’ message and the media narrative aren’t playing well among middle class voters in southern California, then where are they playing well?

            1. In a district that went for Hillary Clinton, mind you.

            2. It could also be that the democrats were all cowering in place, and the Republicans don’t believe this virus is that scary.

              1. We’ll check the voter turnout data.

                Newsom ordered mail-in ballots to be sent to every registered voter, and I don’t believe they required a stamp.

                If the voter turnout was substantially smaller than it’s been in the past, that might have been a factor.

                Meanwhile, LA County announced that they’re keeping the lock-down order in place at least through the end of July.

                I think that’s probably a bigger factor.

                1. P.S. The voter turnout data doesn’t appear to be available yet, which makes sense because they’re still opening ballots.

                2. My last “several” CA mail-in ballots (permanent absentee for several decades) have all been postpaid.

    2. I have been very skeptical of your claims that this is turning people against the Democratic governors Ken. But that election is decent evidence you may be right. Yes, it is a special election and those can be strange. You have to be careful not to read too much into a special election. But it is in California. A Republican winning anything in California is a very rare and big deal. I am not ready to totally believe you but I am willing to admit it is more likely you are right after this than it was before this.

      1. I’m not saying that California is about to flip Republican.

        I am saying that the Republicans are becoming stronger.

        It’s almost like being a Republican is becoming socially acceptable again–and that isn’t merely despite President Trump, like so many media mavens would have it. That may partially be because President Trump has been entirely competent through all of this, but a lot of it is because the Democrats have been so bad.

        The in-person voters broke 2-1 for the Republican? 67% is a landslide–in a district that went for Clinton in 2016. Something big must have happened between 2016 and 2020 to change those people’s minds so dramatically–and I think that something is probably the Democrat sponsored and media supported lock-downs.

        1. Newsome is done. And he was the fucking golden boy a couple years ago!

    3. Ballotopedia was claiming that this seat’s election in the past had been remarkably non-partisan. I.e., the seat came and went with the general political tides. It was something like +12 R, with 76 percent of the ballots in. If that comes close to the final total, I wonder how much we can extrapolate that result to swing districts around the nation?

      The seat was vacated because the (D) Rep liked taking bong rips naked in front of some of her staffers. Having 3-somes with them too, IIRC.

      Interesting that Santa Clarita broke so strongly Republican. It’s not Orange County at all.

      1. Santa Clarita is like a bedroom community for suburbanites who left the San Fernando Valley as home prices soared and immigration swept in. Your average Valley Girl doesn’t shop at the Galleria anymore. She has a quinceañera.

        Santa Clarita was the model for “Agrestic”, the planned community that was the setting for Showtime’s Weeds. It started out as a lower cost place because it was a further drive for those who were driving to work somewhere else, but it became like Orange County after a while, maybe the last place in LA County with lily white suburban communities.

        They used to be conservative just like Orange County used to be conservative, but as the Republican party became more about going after gay marriage, immigration, etc., they skewed more and more away from the Republicans and more towards the Democrats.

        That change was largely driven by soccer moms and single moms–like the ones you see depicted in Weeds. They have an illegal immigrant who comes in and cleans their house for them once or twice a week or another that comes in and watches the kids while they’re at work. Regardless, they don’t want to be mean to immigrants or gays, and they don’t like people who they think are being mean to them.

        This is pretty typical throughout southern California. This is Reagan country. It’s just that people forget that Ronald Reagan wasn’t big on culture war issues, and when you aren’t, you do a lot better in California. In order for Californians to vote on economic issues (taxes and spending), you have to drain the swamp of social justice issues. That’s what we’re seeing right now, and that’s why this guy won so big in Santa Clarita.

        The only issues that matter right now have nothing to do with which bathroom the transsexual community should use and everything to do with lockdowns, unemployment, and the economy.

        1. I just remember that Magic Mountain is right across the street from them.

          Had no idea the demographics had changed that much. Thanks for the info.

        2. Trump won because he doesn’t give a shit about bible-thumper issues that a lot of Republican candidates have usually focused on.

          Basically, one of Trump’s biggest strengths is that he IS a degenerate, coke-snorting party boy billionaire who couldn’t give a shit if you are gay, had an abortion, or are an atheist. OR IF YOU ARE BLACK. He doesn’t fucking care.

          He’s what liberals have always claimed to be but never came through on. He’s the best President of all time if you are a gay black weed-dealer, for example. How are you going to beat a guy like that with Joe Biden who is the architect of minimum sentencing laws from the 80s and ran on the platform of anti-gay marriage with Barack Obama in 2008? You can’t.

          1. Ronald Reagan was more or less the same way. He never so much as threw the social conservatives a bone. Reagan was a conservative like Barry Goldwater was a conservative, by which I mean Goldwater was the kind of conservative who regularly lambasted the religious right for their culture war bullshit.

            That isn’t to say that Goldwater wasn’t criticized by those who favored the Civil Rights Act, that Reagan wasn’t denounced as a tool for the religious right on issues from abortion to AIDS, or that President Trump doesn’t manipulate the media into attacking him on various culture war issues–like NFL players kneeling during the national anthem.

            Being denounced by the left for holding centrist positions–like criticizing NFL “role models” for disrespecting the flag–will actually help you with the kinds of voters you need to win in California. Actively advocating some of the more controversial culture war positions, on the other hand, will hurt you with these voters.

    4. Don’t worry. They will gerrymander to get back to the correct balance of D/R for the state just like Maryland did.

    5. New CNN polling of battleground states has Trump with +7. Also, national Trump has improved +4 while Biden has dropped -3. When polled who will get the economy back on track the best, Trump was the favored by a wide margin.
      Democrats were crowing last week that the bad economy will sink Trump. But maybe voters noted that the economy overall has been good under Trump and that this downturn was about bad (usually state driven) policies?

      1. It’s astounding.

        The bad economy should have sank Trump’s approval ratings, like it has everyone else’s since the first wave of layoffs hit the land of Sumer.

        The only thing that seems to be different this time–and this is just my working hypothesis–is that the lockdowns championed by the governors of California, Michigan, and New York and applauded by the progressive news media–have convinced the American people that our problems are because of the Democrats rather than the Republicans.

        35 million people have been laid off over the last two months–and President Trump’s approval ratings are more or less where they were before COVID-19 hit?

        That’s amazing.

        I don’t know that it will stay that way, but it’s amazing that it’s that way now, and the lockdowns seem to me like the most likely explanation.

        1. The other thing that was mentioned about the CNN poll is it was Registered voters as opposed to all voters and had a large sampling from swing states. CNN tried to report these two facts as if that cast doubts on the polling’s accuracy. I tend to think it reinforces the accuracy. A poll of swing states that actually looked at people who are likely to be voting in those states. How dare they?!

        2. Everybody in Washington state knows that our problems begin and end with Inslee. If anything, the federal anti-revolution check is the only thing keeping them afloat, as many have been waiting on UI for months.

          Yet we’re supposed to blame Donald Trump in November. Yeah right.

  27. Remember good ole noble Ambassador Yovanovitch from the impeachment hearings? The one the Trump Administration apparently targeted?

    She claimed she had very little interaction in regards to Bursima during testimony. She claimed no issues of Hunter’s work with Burisma were ever brought to her attention. Her claims are surprisingly wrong.

    “Yovanovitch, for instance, was specifically warned in an email by her top deputy in September 2016 — three years before her testimony — that Burisma had hired an American firm with deep Democratic connections called Blue Star Strategies to “rehabilitate the reputation” of the Ukrainian gas firm and that it had placed “Hunter Biden on its board,” the memos show.

    She also met directly with a representative for Burisma in her embassy office, less than 45 days before Trump took office, a contact she did not mention during her impeachment deposition.

    The discussions about Burisma inside Yovanovitch’s embassy were so extensive, in fact, that they filled more than 160 pages of emails, memos and correspondence in fall 2016 alone, according to the State Department records obtained under FOIA by the conservative group Citizens United.”

    https://justthenews.com/accountability/russia-and-ukraine-scandals/impeachment-boomerang-contacts-exposed-between-us

    1. WHY ARE YOU DREDGING UP THIS OLD STORY???

      TRUMP IS GOING TRYING TO RETALIATE AGAINST YOVANOVITCH FOR HER IMPEACHMENT TESTIMONY

      REPUBLICANS LATCH ONTO DEBUNKED RIGHTWING CONSPIRACY THEORIES ABOUT BURISMA

      There, I’ve written the headlines for you.

    2. “Her claims are surprisingly wrong.”

      I’m assuming this is tongue in cheek?

  28. Colleges and universities in multiple states are planning to move to exclusively online learning this fall. How does that affect courses that have mandatory lab or field components: general biology and chemistry, organic and analytical chemistry, biochemistry, human anatomy and physiology, limnology, physics — just to name a few?

    Is the United States postsecondary education system seriously thinking it’s going to get away with giving the middle finger to students pursuing careers in STEM fields? Or are they hoping and praying that graduate programs and medical schools will waive requirements for lab components?

    I can see enormous class-action lawsuits arising from this debacle.

    1. I can see enormous advances in social science arising from this debacle. 8-(

      1. I’ve had a very similar thought.

    2. So, 100% gender studies and third world literature from now on!

    3. They’re already starting, the lawsuits.

  29. “Point Reyes Station restaurant Station House Cafe prepares to close after rent hike”

    OK, landlord kicks up (sub-market) rent after long time, operator whines, so what? Well:

    “…“While the Station House sees really high volume in the summer months, I have to save up all summer to make it through the winter,” she said.
    That’s partially because she keeps all of her employees year -round. Cahill said she wouldn’t compromise on her workplace values, which includes offering fair wages and benefits such as health insurance and a 401(k) retirement plan with a 4% match on contributions…”

    She’s been using the largess of the building owner to support *HER* ‘workplace values’!
    How sweet! Have any of the employees sent a thank you note to the owner?
    https://www.sfchronicle.com/food/article/Point-Reyes-Station-restaurant-Station-House-Cafe-15267961.php?cmpid=gsa-sfgate-result

    1. Good grief. Thanks for reporting that. These idiots are clueless, even when, like her, they get hit by their own clue-by-four.

  30. I’m shitting all over an article about Wisconsin ruling at Volokh.

    I’m having none of two (or many) things anymore.

    WE HAD NO CHOICE and you want granny to die as a couple of clowns are suggesting over there.

    And Trump is a Literal Nazi.

    It’s my job as an educated man to lace into people squishing a lemon in their eye.

    No more just sitting there listening to people say stupid things without much push back. Now it’s all Rambone!

    1. Why do you pretend like you’re a Canadian? If you are Canadian, why are so obsessed with American politics? You’re pathetic either way.

      1. Has to do with a concept called “principles” and fucking immature lefty ignoramuses have no idea what that means.
        Go back to your games, scumbag.

        1. Sevo knows!

          1. Stop the foreign meddling on social media!!!

      2. Canadian politics almost exclusively involves debates over the types of moose you are and are not allowed to have sex with.

        1. It’s their Roe v. Wade.

        2. You’re so ignorant.

          That happens with CARIBOU.

          1. caribou much sexier.

          2. Little known fact: That is where the greeting “Hey, bou!” originated…

      3. I am who I am and nothing else.

        /bows regally.

        1. Popeye, is that you?

  31. Pet peeve of the day . . .

    In the 1990s, when people were asking whether it was ethical for a man in a position of power to take advantage of an intern, Bill Clinton countered that it wasn’t illegal.

    When Al Gore was exposed for funneling campaign contributions from the Chinese government by way of making public appearances for a weird fucking cult, something that seemed obviously unethical, his response was that what he didn’t wasn’t illegal.

    When the George W. Bush administration was challenged about the ethics of the USA torturing people, they countered that nothing they did was technically illegal.

    When the Obama administration was asked about whether it was wrong to violate the Fourth Amendment rights of 300 million Americans by way of the NSA, they countered that what they did was legal.

    Now, when we ask whether it was ethical for Joe Biden to effectively use our intelligence services to “unmask” a political rival, the Democrats and their cheerleaders in the media are telling us that what he did was perfectly legal.

    There are a million things out there that are both unethical, awful, and horrible and are also perfectly legal. The question isn’t whether Joe Biden should go to jail over this. The question before us is whether we should vote for Joe Biden or someone else. The fact that Joe Biden has been publicly exposed for abusing his office in a corrupt manner more than once now (for other examples, see his efforts on behalf of his son with Ukraine), and anyone who wants to argue that he would make a better president than Donald Trump needs to make that argument in spite of Biden’s corrupt behavior.

    Don’t tell me that what he did was legal. Tell me why what he did was acceptable. Those are two different things.

    1. P.S. Last I read, there were some 54 people in the Obama administration who were given the Flynn’s identity. I find it hard to believe that 54 people needed this information for anything but political purposes.

      Using Occam’s razor, the explanation with the fewest number of assumptions to my eye is that Flynn’s identity became common knowledge in the Obama administration, inadvertently or otherwise, and they went back retroactively and made sure that everyone who knew about it submitted the paperwork after they knew about it.

      For all we know, Obama may have blurted it out in a White House staff meeting, and they went back retroactively and filed the paperwork on everybody there to make it seem like he hadn’t done anything illegal. In a way, that would vindicate Biden because it would mean that he didn’t seek out Flynn’s identity for political purposes. In another way, that would implicate Biden in the cover up of something illegal Barack Obama did.

      1. This unmasking stuff is very old news, but for the specific names. Following the 2016 election, the intel community expanded the authority of who could make unmasking requests, and basically everyone in the upper echelons of Obama-World began doing so an an enormous rate. Susan Rice and Samantha Powers were the two biggest culprits, but there were numerous others. All of this was part of their CYA over their illegal activities in the prior two (eight?) years and to try to neuter the incoming administration.

        1. The question is why did they want to know the person’s name? They get the intel that says some named foreigner talked with some unnamed US person. You don’t get the name of the US person unless you have a reason and you ask for it. They already had the contents of the conversation. If we had a functioning media, someone would ask Power why she needed to know the name of the American involved. I would love to hear the answer to that question.

          1. My bet is that somebody talked about it out of school, maybe even the President, and then they went back and got clearance for everybody who heard him say it after the fact as a CYA maneuver.

            Call it a hunch.

            1. No. No one at the White House had any authority or reason to know who the American was to talk out of school. The names of the Americans are redacted and never leave the IC. So, that is not what happened.

              It is not uncommon for these names to be unmasked. If you have a reason for needing to know the information, you can get it. But it isn’t given without a request. It doesn’t happen by accident ever. It happened because someone who had access to the intel reports decided they needed and wanted to know the names of the American persons involved and asked for the names. It is a very specific process that doesn’t happen retroactively or by accident.

              Your hunch is wrong.

              1. The real question there is on what information were they basing their decision to need to know who it was?

                I mean, everyone agrees that there was nothing improper discussed in the conversation. So what possible National Security purpose could be served by finding out who it is?

                Now, we know that what happened immediately after was that they leaked this conversation to the press as a means of undermining Flynn and the Trump transition team. But in order to request the identity of the person so that you could make political hay out of it, you had to know that it was someone that you could make political hay out of.

                So the question is, why did you request this unmasking? The answer seems to be that this is routine and a perfectly legal action to take. Which is to say, they’re not answering the question.

                Just spend a moment trying to imagine what that information could possibly be. What could have possibly been on a summary it says the Russian Ambassador was talking with an American citizen about these routine policy matters that would have then inspired so many White House officials to fill out a form to find out who it is?

                It isn’t like it was a one-off. Whatever was on that summary, it looks like half the White House flew into action trying to find out who it was. Could it be, that person one was a high-ranking trump transition Team official? Would that have, perhaps, been the fact on the summary?

              2. As to his hunch, I think he has put his finger exactly on the pulse.

                Comey, Brennan, Clapper, et.al. were working on the Trump investigation. This call was interesting because of that investigation. The only logical ways it they could have known to ask about this call was for someone from the FBI or CIA to have given them a heads-up that it might be of interest. And by someone, I mean Comey. Or any of the other high-ranking FBI officials involved.

                Otherwise, it gets very convoluted. Figuring out what could have possibly been on some summary that made a bunch of disparate people go I need to know who that is seems impossible. But if, came over and said ” hey guys, you are going to want to hear what Trump’s New National Security adviser is saying to the Russian ambassador”, and then they all make the requests to cover their butts, that makes a lot more sense.

                1. A bunch of the unmasking requests were before the Kislyak phone call too.
                  And why are ambassadors, treasury officials, etc getting in on it?
                  Probably, because the unmasking and entire Russia hoax was itself a cover up

                2. Yeah, the question is why did 54 people want to know the identity of someone that shouldn’t have mattered to them?

                  It makes sense that they wanted to know now because we know the identity of the person in question and where he fit into the 2016 election.

                  And it would have made sense that they wanted the official permission to know–if they already knew who Flynn was and why it was important.

                  If you guys already know something you never should have known about, then here’s the way to account for that–file this form and we’ll take care of the rest.

                  1. You don’t pay $100,000 for a piece of property because you think there might be pirate treasure buried on that land.

                    First you find the pirate treasure on that land, and then you buy the land so that they can’t accuse you of taking it from whomever owned the land.

                    I suspect they already knew it was Flynn. In short, it doesn’t seem to me that they’d want to know the identity of that person unless they already knew it was Flynn. The only reason that piece of land is interesting is because there’s a pirate treasure buried on it.

                    1. Unless it’s Oak Island and the History Channel promises to make a reality show about the search.

                    2. That’s from the same Discovery Channel group that makes Ancient Aliens, right?

                      They may have made more money from shooting that show then they would have if they found the treasure.

                      They’re on their seventh season?!

                      They’d have found more gold over seven seasons if they’d just excavated the tailings behind Todd Hoffman’s mining rig.

                    3. Remember when The History Channel bused to run actual history.
                      Pepperidge Farms Remembers.

                    4. History Channel used to be my default station, always on in the background.
                      They had some great stuff. There was one special they did on the Peloponnesian War that had a huge impact on me.
                      Sad to see it turn into utter trash over the last decade or so

  32. Would anyone here want to entrust his care to a doctor who never dissected a cadaver in medical school and spent four years doing nothing but online modules? Third- and fourth-year medical students nationwide who should be getting their hands dirty on clinical clerkships — actually learning the rudiments of patient care — are instead sitting around completing poorly constructed distance-learning courses . . . and they’re paying full price for the privilege. It’s a disgrace, and I feel sorry for the residency program directors who are going to have to waste time holding crash courses to whip their interns into shape, not to mention the patients who will have to endure being cared for by residents who have never learned how to touch a patient. Remember, resident stipends are paid for with your taxpayer dollars. You’re footing the bill for the cowardice of school administrators.

    1. Would anyone here want to entrust his care to a doctor who never dissected a cadaver in medical school and spent four years doing nothing but online modules?

      “‘Want’ has nothing to do with it.” 8-(

    2. Shit, this was supposed to be posted as a reply to my previous comment.

  33. https://twitter.com/Surgeon_General/status/1233725785283932160

    U.S. Surgeon General
    @Surgeon_General
    Seriously people- STOP BUYING MASKS!

    They are NOT effective in preventing general public from catching #Coronavirus, but if healthcare providers can’t get them to care for sick patients, it puts them and our communities at risk!

    6:08 AM · Feb 29, 2020

    1. Low blow, RaG! That was before we started using Data and Science to make our policy decisions!

    2. >>>U.S. Surgeon General

      dude does *not* come off as an authority on anything

      1. There is a surgeon in the Whitehouse who,

        “”As a pioneer in neurosurgery, achievements include performing the only successful separation of conjoined twins joined at the back of the head; performing the first successful neurosurgical procedure on a fetus inside the womb; performing the first completely successful separation of type-2 vertical craniopagus twins; developing new methods to treat brain-stem tumors; and revitalizing hemispherectomy techniques for controlling seizures.[4][5][6][7] He became the youngest chief of pediatric neurosurgery in the country at age 33.[6] He has received more than 60 honorary doctorate degrees, numerous national merit citations, and written over 100 neurosurgical publications.[8] In 2001, he was named by CNN and TIME magazine as one of the nation’s 20 foremost physicians and scientists, and was selected by the Library of Congress as one of 89 “Living Legends” on its 200th anniversary.””

        From Wiki, name omitted for affect.

        But he is overseeing HUD.

        1. Savvy political operator too. Before Super Tuesday, it was obvious he wasn’t going to win. An endorsement from him would have some decent weight with social conservatives though. He didn’t endorse Cruz or Huckabee, politicians whose public cultural views aligned with his own, and politicians who desperately needed the boost. He ended up, after Super Tuesday, endorsing Trump.

          The pyramids thing was really weird though.

        2. Sounds like he should spend less time in the house…. or that he has many nephews.

        3. He was also in the underrated film “Stuck On You”

    1. it wouldn’t surprise me in the slightest.

  34. How can we base anything on “numbers of confirmed cases”? These numbers depend on the level of testing, which is not constant. Testing increases, confirmed cases increase, but it tells us nothing about whether the virus is still spreading or is in decline.

    1. Because all the metrics that make sense (hospitalizations) aren’t advancing the narrative.

  35. “‘There will be a resurgence’: Ousted doctor says US facing its ‘darkest winter in modern history’ with coronavirus rebound”
    […]
    “America faces the “darkest winter in modern history” unless leaders act decisively to prevent a rebound of the coronavirus, says a government whistleblower who alleges he was ousted from his job for warning the Trump administration to prepare for the pandemic…”
    https://www.chicagotribune.com/coronavirus/ct-nw-rick-bright-whistleblower-darkest-winter-20200513-wekxmwpj2zfijpkkgf2dvt55cy-story.html

    The term “whistleblower” has now been corrupted to mean ‘someone who got fired by Trump after he ignored their advice’.

    1. We shut down the entire country. Exactly what does this guy want us to do?

      1. Put a bullet in his head?

      2. >>darkest winter

        turn the lights off too.

        1. Green New Deal FTW!

    2. I was saying the exact same thing yesterday. That is a ludicrous use of the word whistleblower.

      1. Sorry I missed that.
        And you’ll notice he was “ousted” instead of fired.
        Just checked; it’s an AP feed.

  36. >>Healthy outrage over the treatment of Flynn would mean a concerted effort to actually rein in the feds

    zoom protest? wtf.

  37. I feel like “the walls are closing in” is finally happening… only its the democrats who are trapped.

    1. I am very cynical about this. I refuse to get my hopes up. But, I am starting to think that you may be right and some of these fuckers may actually go to jail.

      1. I’m not holding my breath. Every time I put my faith that some individual will come through and do the right thing, I am disappointed. Maybe Barr, Durham, and their team will actually hold accountable those who were involved in this, but I’m not counting on it.

      2. There must be blood.
        Without making an example out of anybody, this includes both the coup and pan(dem)ic fear mongering, they’ll just do it again

      3. one photo of Comey w/bars in his face. don’t even care if the smug look remains. just want bars.

      4. ” I refuse to get my hopes up.”

        Ditto. Although the dearth of reporting here tells me that this is getting very serious, and they all know it.

      5. The only way this results in people getting prosecuted is if Trump gets re-elected. If Trump fails at The Ballot Box, this incident is over.

        1. ^this

          as always, principals not principles

  38. All of those unmasking requests review a hell of a lot more than you suggest.

    What this tells us is that all of these people and a reason to want to know who that was. The intelligence Community was routinely monitoring the Russian ambassador’s conversations. We now know that the fun conversation was perfectly normal, a conversation between an incoming National Security adviser and the current Russian government.

    But the report that the people in the White House would have gotten would have said person one and the Russian ambassador.

    That raises two questions. First, why would such a mundane conversation rise all the way to the White House? It isn’t like every conversation with an American citizen and a foreign ambassador immediately gets piped to the White House for attention. So, what else were they told? The only thing that makes this conversation interesting is the political angle. What did they hear that made them say, “I need to know who this is”?

    We were told that these warrants would not be used to surveil American citizens. We were told that unmasking of The Americans on the other end was extremely rare, and only done in situations where it was warranted, such as terrorists conspiring together. But now we see that it was routine in the Obama Administration. Many different officials were looking at conversations of a competing political party.

    And somehow we are supposed to be okay with this? All of the major newspapers are telling me that I’m supposed to be okay with this. They’re telling me that is Criminal to even want to discover that this happened. They’re telling me that Barr should be removed because he looked into it.

    What is going on here? Where is the America I grew up with?

    1. Once people in power realized that the only way they would ever be punished for their malfeasance is if they made up and enforced rules to punish themselves, the wheels came off rather quickly.

    2. “Yes, federal law enforcement routinely interviews people hoping they will confess (and get prosecuted) or lie (and get prosecuted),” noted Reason contributing editor Ken White. “Yes, they plan that in advance of the interview. That’s how it works. That’s how it has worked for a very long time. If people really cared about it, thought it was an unacceptable tactic, you could get Congress to change the materiality element of 18 USC 1001, the false statement to the feds statute.”
      White and Soave continue to be willfully ignorant of the facts in the public record. The FBI was ending the Flynn counter intelligence case for lack of any evidence but Strokz stepped in with the approval of Comey and the knowledge of Obama and pursued Flynn for alleged violations of the Logan act. This was an entirely new investigation. They openly discussed not only getting him to lie but also getting him fired and charging him with violating the Logan act. The Logan act has been on the books for over 2 centuries, is likely unconstitutional, and has never been prosecuted. The idea that the incoming NSA could be charged under it is absurd on it’s face. This was not a process crime committed in an otherwise legitimate investigation as White would have it. The underlying investigation was completely bogus. And nothing Flynn said was material to the counter intelligence investigation that had already been closed by the agents in charge.

  39. Once people in power realized that the only way they would ever be punished for their malfeasance is if they made up and enforced rules to punish themselves, the wheels came off rather quickly.

  40. “Paradoxically, the fact that law enforcement agents attempt to induce all kinds of defendants to lie undermines that theory,”

    As I mentioned when the notes about the discussion before the interview first came out, they didn’t just mention trying to get him to lie, they mentioned trying to get him FIRED from the Trump administration. I don’t believe they do that to all kinds of defendants. And the only reasons I can think of for that are political.

  41. “””Yes, federal law enforcement routinely interviews people hoping they will confess (and get prosecuted) or lie (and get prosecuted),” noted Reason contributing editor Ken White. “Yes, they plan that in advance of the interview. That’s how it works. That’s how it has worked for a very long time. If people really cared about it, thought it was an unacceptable tactic, you could get Congress to change the materiality element of 18 USC 1001, the false statement to the feds statute.”””

    Is this White guy really a lawyer. He missed the part about FBI mentioning “to get him fired.” A good lawyer would not miss a detail like that. Definitively not a good defense attorney.

    1. Ken White is John’s bitch now

  42. Saying flynn lied is extreme. comey was awfully understanding when hillary did not remember, yet flynn was lying? Not even the agents questioning flynn characterized it as lying.

    on page 6

    Flynn responded “Not really, I don’t remember”

    https://www.scribd.com/document/395912257/Flynn-January-302

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