President Trump makes himself an even BIGGER asshole

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Re: President Trump makes himself an even BIGGER asshole

Postby Absentia » Fri Jul 20, 2018 5:54 am

There are actually a lot of reasonably intelligent and responsible journalists at Fox News, they just aren't the ones who get prime time TV programs.

Speaking of Trump doubling down...

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Re: President Trump makes himself an even BIGGER asshole

Postby Crimson847 » Fri Jul 20, 2018 10:31 am

Yeah, David Frum is quite alarmed about that 2-hour private meeting between Trump and Putin, with no aides or Cabinet members present whatsoever.

https://www.theatlantic.com/internation ... mp/565604/

In the weeks after Donald Trump was elected, bad things started happening to senior Russian officials. Two of Russia’s leading cybersecurity figures were arrested and charged with treason in December 2016. Over the following months, Russian officials worldwide abruptly began dying in suspicious numbers and suspicious ways. A 61-year-old former FSB general was found dead in his car in Moscow on December 26, 2016. On December 20, 2016, a senior Russian diplomat was found dead in his apartment with a pillow over his head, and a fatal gunshot wound beneath the pillow. A lawyer for Sergei Magnitsky—for whom the U.S. sanctions law is named—tumbled from his fourth-floor apartment and nearly died from his injuries. And so the tally runs.

Are these coincidences? Or something more sinister? Trump inadvertently disclosed at least one high-level U.S. secret to the Russian foreign minister in the Oval Office in 2017. How secure are other secrets in his trust?


This is an angle I haven't heard before. Of course, Russia kills dissidents all the time, and I have no idea whether Frum is correct that the rate shot up after November 2016. Nor do I know enough about Russian domestic affairs to have any idea whether there's a plausible alternate explanation if that's so. However, giving up intelligence sources to the Russians seems like it would alert other members of the administration--wouldn't folks in the intelligence community notice if a bunch of their best sources in Russia suddenly went dark one after another for no apparent reason? Finally, not that this would necessarily be a deal-breaker for Trump, but it bears mentioning that a deal like this would almost certainly cause even his base to turn on him if it was discovered.

After thinking about it, the possibility that concerns me more is that Trump was briefing Putin on US cyber defense measures for this year's election. Easier to hide, and requires fewer assumptions because it doesn't rely on Putin having something on Trump. Outing intelligence sources has no apparent intrinsic benefit to Trump, so presumably some added incentive like bribery or blackmail would be necessary. By contrast, Putin hacking Democrats or election systems in an effort to expand Trump's power over Congress is its own inducement, no bribe or kompromat needed. And his core base might even stand by him if such a move was discovered, reasoning that the Russians are just making important information free (or Trump must have thought that was all they were doing) and this too is a Flight 93 election that requires suspension of ordinary principles. I doubt that would save his presidency under such a circumstance, but it might save him from prosecution.

But of course, it's also possible that Trump-skeptical Republicans are correct and he just wanted to have an opportunity to tell Putin all about his historic election victory for two uninterrupted hours. Maybe he wanted to bro out without The Man harshing their mellow, in hopes of using bro power to create a diplomatic breakthrough. Maybe he wanted to show Putin his пенис and compare whose is bigger. Or, hell, maybe he was giving Putin the nuclear codes and the deed to the country. Who knows, besides the two most unreliable sources on the planet?
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Re: President Trump makes himself an even BIGGER asshole

Postby Ceiling_Squid » Fri Jul 20, 2018 5:10 pm

Either way, we know Putin operates like he never left the old KGB.

The fact that Donald is so cozy with and openly fawning over him is chilling. And the fact that he even considered handing an American over to his thugs.
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Re: President Trump makes himself an even BIGGER asshole

Postby iMURDAu » Sat Jul 21, 2018 1:28 pm

Just don't let Putin take the Stanley Cup home with him plz. And in the fall? Make that fucker be here in the summer and have to take Metro everywhere. He needs to visit D.C. next month. It isn't hot enough in the fall. Trump should make him suffer. But that's his boy so :roll:
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Re: President Trump makes himself an even BIGGER asshole

Postby blehblah » Sat Jul 21, 2018 2:40 pm

Trump continues to thank Obama.

https://www.thestar.com/news/world/2018 ... putin.html

U.S. President Donald Trump said in a television interview broadcast Friday that President Barack Obama was “a total patsy” for Russia, as he touted his own efforts to forge a better relationship with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

“Getting along with President Putin, getting along with Russia, is positive, not a negative,” Trump said during the interview on CNBC’s Squawk Box, which was recorded Thursday shortly as the White House announced it was inviting Putin to Washington in the fall for another meeting with Trump.
[..]

In the CNBC interview, Trump also faulted his predecessor for an incident in March 2012 in which Obama told then-Russian president Dmitry Medvedev that he would “have more flexibility” after the U.S. presidential election to negotiate on missile defence. The exchange was captured on a live microphone.

“Look at the statement he made. He thought the mics were turned off, OK, the stupid statement he made,” Trump told CNBC. “No one makes a big deal of that.”

During the interview, Trump brushed aside suggestions that Putin might hold some leverage over him because of his past business dealings in the country or for other reasons.

“It’s called the Democrat hoax,” Trump said. “It’s a big fat hoax.”


Damn straight. Trump makes sure the microphones are on. And he's been tough. So tough. Sanctions! And being friends with Putin, with Russia, is a good thing. And these are totally consistent, big fat thought bubbles.

Here's an interesting take on how kompromat works within something called "sistema". Basically, everyone involved with Russia has something on others, and nobody knows exactly what is out there, which keeps the entire system in a constant state of mutual blackmail. While Putin sits atop the system, and has the courts and other authorities on his side, he might not have all of the available kompromat on Trump.

https://www.newyorker.com/news-desk/swa ... -kompromat

It's interesting. Trump may not know what Putin, and others, have on him (and the rest of the family), so he's being extremely deferential, perhaps even more so than Putin would like. Putin, then, wasn't working several moves ahead by collecting kompromat on Trump; it's simply the way business is done. Financial misdeeds, and anything else, may have been collected by the people with whom Trump was doing business simply as a matter of course.

EDIT: Adding Trump's latest... because it, in some way, follows the kompromat theme.

https://www.theglobeandmail.com/world/a ... cording-2/

“Inconceivable that the government would break into a lawyer’s office (early in the morning) — almost unheard of,” Trump wrote on Twitter. “Even more inconceivable that a lawyer would tape a client — totally unheard of & perhaps illegal. The good news is that your favorite President did nothing wrong!”

[...]

While the president suggested that Cohen’s recording may have been illegal, New York law allows one party to a conversation to tape it without the other knowing. Over the years, Cohen, in his dealings on Trump’s behalf with journalists, opposing lawyers and business adversaries, frequently taped his conversations, unbeknown to the people with whom he was speaking. Trump himself also has a history of recording phone calls and conversations.


What Trump doesn't have, but Putin does, is a way to deal with such pesky things. It's not illegal for Cohen to have recorded the conversation, or any other. It's also not protected by client-attorney privilege if it was part of committing a crime.

Giuliani, following his usual style, seems to figure this helps Trump.

http://thehill.com/homenews/administrat ... y-evidence

“Nothing in that conversation suggests that he had any knowledge of it in advance,” Giuliani told The New York Times of the taped conversation about the payment.

“In the big scheme of things, it’s powerful exculpatory evidence,” he added.


Right. So, paying-off a woman who Trump slept with so she would keep shtums long after the affair, but just before the election, is exculpatory, because Trump didn't know about the payment in advance. The problem, according to Giuliani, isn't about whether or not the payment was made, which is a campaign finance violation, and certainly not about Trump banging a Playboy model shortly after the birth of his son with his current wife, but about whether he knew about the payment before it was made, or not. That's some fine hair-splitting.

Except that...

https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics ... 5b02874538

One month before the conversation, AMI, the parent company of the National Enquirer, bought the rights to McDougal’s story for $150,000, then shelved it. Trump’s attorney Rudolph W. Giuliani said in a statement Friday that the recording is “powerful exculpatory evidence,” because it does not contain anything suggesting that Trump knew about that payment in advance.

But the recording does show that Trump was considering buying the rights to McDougal’s story from AMI — despite the fact that Trump’s spokeswoman at the time, Hope Hicks, called McDougal’s claims “totally untrue” and said Trump had “no knowledge of any of this.”


Trump not knowing about AMI buying the rights to the story, to kill it, is fine. Given that the guy who runs AMI is a Trump supporter is problematic, from a campaign finance perspective, but it is, at least, indirect. That Trump, for some unknown reason, was discussing paying AMI $150K for the rights to the same story, is interesting. Why would Trump, through Cohen, want to purchase the rights from AMI? Why not leave it indirect, making it a less obvious contribution in-kind?

It is almost as though Giuliani thought the discussion was about the initial AMI payment, and hoped the recording would show Trump didn't know about it until later, and his client didn't tell him otherwise; otherwise being that the recording was about Trump and Cohen discussing buying the rights from AMI, not AMI having bought the rights a month before.

However sharp, or dull as dishwater, Giuliani's legal prowess may be, he seems to be attempting to defend Trump based on media reports, rather than actually working with his client. That doesn't sound like an ideal situation for any lawyer.
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Re: President Trump makes himself an even BIGGER asshole

Postby jbobsully11 » Fri Jul 27, 2018 6:32 pm

”What you’re seeing and what you’re reading is not what’s happening.” — Donald J. Trump, at a VFW national convention this past Tuesday.

In other news, we have always been at war with Eurasia Eastasia.
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Re: President Trump makes himself an even BIGGER asshole

Postby Marcuse » Fri Jul 27, 2018 7:50 pm

jbobsully11 wrote:”What you’re seeing and what you’re reading is not what’s happening.” — Donald J. Trump, at a VFW national convention this past Tuesday.

In other news, we have always been at war with Eurasia Eastasia.


The big difference being we're reasonably sure the Party actually does on some level know what is really happening.
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Re: President Trump makes himself an even BIGGER asshole

Postby blehblah » Fri Jul 27, 2018 9:11 pm

Marcuse wrote:
jbobsully11 wrote:”What you’re seeing and what you’re reading is not what’s happening.” — Donald J. Trump, at a VFW national convention this past Tuesday.

In other news, we have always been at war with Eurasia Eastasia.


The big difference being we're reasonably sure the Party actually does on some level know what is really happening.


The big same is everyone invited to the big party does know, on every level, what is really happening, and has decided between achieving blindness or self-preservation.
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Re: President Trump makes himself an even BIGGER asshole

Postby Aquila89 » Fri Jul 27, 2018 11:11 pm

In light of this, I find it even harder to understand why Trump bothered with paying off Stormy Daniels and Karen McDougal. I've written about this before; when multiple women accused him of sexual assault, he just said they're all liars and his supporters either believed him or didn't care. Why did he try to suppress a claim about a consensual affair?

In fact, the Wall Street Journal broke the story about the National Enquirer buying McDougal's story in 2016, days before the election. Hope Hicks, Trump's spokesperson at the time said that it's fake news and the story had no consequences. Why couldn't they just deny the affair in the first place?
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Re: President Trump makes himself an even BIGGER asshole

Postby iMURDAu » Mon Jul 30, 2018 5:50 pm

Because, as with many other things, they don't know what the fuck they're doing.
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Re: President Trump makes himself an even BIGGER asshole

Postby Crimson847 » Mon Jul 30, 2018 11:08 pm

Aquila89 wrote:In light of this, I find it even harder to understand why Trump bothered with paying off Stormy Daniels and Karen McDougal. I've written about this before; when multiple women accused him of sexual assault, he just said they're all liars and his supporters either believed him or didn't care. Why did he try to suppress a claim about a consensual affair?

In fact, the Wall Street Journal broke the story about the National Enquirer buying McDougal's story in 2016, days before the election. Hope Hicks, Trump's spokesperson at the time said that it's fake news and the story had no consequences. Why couldn't they just deny the affair in the first place?


So if I understand you correctly, you're arguing that American Media Inc's decision in August 2016 to pay off McDougal was clearly and obviously wrong, based on the reaction to the flurry of sexual assault accusations in October 2016 and a WSJ story from November 2016?
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Re: President Trump makes himself an even BIGGER asshole

Postby Aquila89 » Tue Jul 31, 2018 7:41 am

Well, not exactly. In retrospect, I think the reaction to the sexual assault allegations show that paying off Daniels and McDougal was unnecessary. Trump and his people could not have known that in advance. But why didn't they try to pay off women who accused him of harassment? (Maybe they did with some of them and it worked, so we don't know about it?)

And by August 2016, Trump has demonstrated that he can survive scandals that would have destroyed any other candidate; already he said that he could shoot someone in the middle of Fifth Avenue and not lose any voters. And yet he thought that claims of an affair that happened 10 years before could harm him?
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Re: President Trump makes himself an even BIGGER asshole

Postby jbobsully11 » Thu Aug 02, 2018 5:45 am

Trump thinks you need a photo ID to buy groceries. Or do almost anything but vote.

A spokesperson clarified that he was referring specifically to buying alcohol. Because that’s what comes to mind when I think of groceries.
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Crimson847 wrote:In other words, transgender-friendly privacy laws don't molest people, people molest people.

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Re: President Trump makes himself an even BIGGER asshole

Postby aviel » Thu Aug 02, 2018 9:30 pm

jbobsully11 wrote:A spokesperson clarified that he was referring specifically to buying alcohol. Because that’s what comes to mind when I think of groceries.

It's apparently what comes to Trump's mind. Also, he's teetotal.
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Re: President Trump makes himself an even BIGGER asshole

Postby iMURDAu » Fri Aug 03, 2018 12:53 am

We need the next President to be able to communicate without having other people decipher their statements in order to make them seem in touch with reality.
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