1. militantagnostic says

    I just head this driving back home from the north end of of the Morridor

    You can find CBC radio’s Ideas about previous American Fascist movements and the current one at or download an mp3 from their RSS feed.

  2. says

    “Fatal Measles Complication Killed Patients Years Later”:

    A deadly measles complication that kills kids years after they seemingly recover may not be as rare as doctors thought, researchers said Friday.

    The fatal and incurable complication has killed at least 16 California adults and children, the researchers in Los Angeles and San Francisco said.

    They say they’re afraid the condition is far more common than anyone thought, and say it strongly reinforces the need for vaccinating every single child who can be.

    “This is really frightening,” said Dr. James Cherry of the University of California, Los Angeles medical school.

    The victims all had a condition called subacute sclerosing panencephalitis or SSPE. It’s caused when the measles virus stays in the brain, usually for years, after a young child is infected and has recovered.

    For reasons that no one understands, it can reawaken and causes an immune response that leads to seizures, coma and death. There’s no treatment and no one has been known to survive it….

    I learned from the article that Europe has much higher rates of measles than the US, which surprised me.

  3. says

    “How the Media Manufactured the Public’s Anger at Hillary Clinton”:

    We all know the story. This is the hate election, the lesser-of-two-evils election, the most-unpopular-candidates-in-the-history-of-modern-presidential-politics election. Everybody hates Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton….

    But I began to speculate on how much of the Hillary hatred at least (Trump was very unpopular as reflected in polling data from the get-go) was driven by the press coverage,…

    And while there is no definitive way to measure the impact of press coverage on public opinion, I think a fairly powerful case can be made that the media narrative created the media narrative – yet another case of political post-modernism.

    The fact is that Hillary Clinton wasn’t unpopular when she announced her decision to run in April 2015. If you look at the Gallup survey in March of last year, 50 percent of Americans had a favorable impression of Clinton, only 39 percent an unfavorable one. So there was clearly no deep reservoir of Clinton hatred among the general public at the time. On the contrary: Americans liked her; they liked her quite a bit.

    Already by June, however, her favorability had not only taken a hit. It had plummeted. By July, according to Gallup, her favorability hit an all-time low with only 38 percent positively and 57 percent viewing her negatively — putting her 19 points underwater.

    What you do hear is not only that everyone hates these candidates, but that the hatred is well-deserved….

    This is rampant “bothsidesism,” since everyone knows that even if you despise Hillary Clinton, even if you think every policy prescription of hers is misguided, even if you feel she is a criminal who ought to be imprisoned, she hasn’t degraded our political discourse….

    Wrong-headed or not, none of this explains Clinton’s July 2015 plunge; it only certifies it. What makes that plunge somewhat baffling is that Clinton made several major policy pronouncements that month – two laying out the broad strokes of her economic policy, and another discussing race. Again, whether you agreed with these pronouncements or not, she was being a serious candidate. It certainly couldn’t have accounted for the sudden turn by voters.

    But policy wasn’t what the media were focused on that July. They were focused on emails. There was a court-mandated dump of Clinton’s emails late that month, and the media leapt on it with alacrity. This certainly wasn’t the first time the public had heard about Clinton using a private email server while Secretary of State. That news had come out in March 2015 and hadn’t affected her favorability at all. But the fixation on emails, which had long been an addiction among Republicans and the right-wing media, suddenly became an addiction in the mainstream media as well….

    And that wasn’t all. As reported in a study by Harvard University’s Shorenstein Center on media coverage in the pre-primary period, Clinton received especially negative coverage — overwhelmingly negative. At the same time, both Sanders and Trump received extremely positive coverage. As the report put it: “Whereas media coverage helped build up Trump, it helped tear down Clinton. Trump’s positive coverage was the equivalent of millions of dollars in ad-buys in his favor, whereas Clinton’s negative coverage can be equated to millions of dollars in attack ads, with her on the receiving end.” And Shorenstein found there was a ratio of 45 negative stories to one positive story on the emails,… Eighty-four percent of Clinton’s coverage in this period was negative in tone. Moreover, her coverage in the primary period, as studied by Shorenstein, continued to be disproportionately focused on emails and continued to be heavily negative — 10 negative stories for every positive one.

    The elision from the story of the emails to the story of unpopularity itself followed as night does day and rapidly gained a momentum all its own, to the point where it is now quite possibly the central narrative of the election….

    …The miasma that hangs over this election and that has exasperated and angered so many Americans emanates from the idea that the system that coughed up these two candidates has failed the voters miserably and irrevocably. It is an idea that, again, in some ways echoes Trump’s own self-serving sabotage. The media, reverting to their negative and cynical default, have worked very hard to convince us we have an unacceptable choice between two terrible candidates, so much so that most of us think this was our idea all along.

    It wasn’t — not before July 2015. But now that our faith in the political system is gone, will the media who hammered away at it help restore it?

  4. says

    “Supreme Court Agrees to Decide Whether Trans Students Can Use School Bathrooms”:

    On Friday, the Supreme Court agreed to hear Gloucester County School Board v. G.G., a blockbuster case whose outcome will affect whether transgender students can use the school bathroom that aligns with their gender identity. G.G. involves the validity of guidance by the Department of Education interpreting “sex discrimination” to encompass anti-trans discrimination. The case marks the first time the Supreme Court has directly addressed trans issues head-on. Its outcome will have ramifications in schools throughout the country….

    Quotations I posted last year give a sense of what Gavin Grimm faced at the lower levels the legal system.

  5. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Comey was warned prior to releasing his letter that the letter went against DoJ policy.

    Senior Justice Department officials warned the FBI that Director James B. Comey’s decision to notify Congress about renewing the investigation into Hillary Clinton’s private email server was not consistent with long-standing practices of the department, according to officials familiar with the discussions.
    Comey told Justice officials that he intended to inform lawmakers of newly discovered emails. These officials told him the department’s position “that we don’t comment on an ongoing investigation. And we don’t take steps that will be viewed as influencing an election,” said one Justice official who spoke on condition of anonymity to describe the high-level conversations.
    “Director Comey understood our position. He heard it from Justice leadership,” said the official. “It was conveyed to the FBI, and Comey made an independent decision to alert the Hill. He is operating independently of the Justice Department. And he knows it.”

    Sounds like Comey should be investigated for a possible firing offense.

  6. says

    A welcome update on the strike at Harvard that I posted about recently:

    “In 583-1 vote, Harvard dining hall workers OK labor contract”:

    Harvard University dining hall workers will return to work for Thursday morning’s breakfast shift, ending the school’s first strike in more than three decades, after they voted 583 to 1 Wednesday to approve a five-year labor contract.

    Under terms of the deal, about 750 employees will receive wages of about $35,000 annually and won’t have to pay more for health insurance, according to their union, Unite Here Local 26, satisfying the major demands that led to a three-week work stoppage.

    About 100 workers celebrated in Harvard Square Wednesday, chanting “Victory!” and “We love the students!” as union officials detailed the agreement.

    “We achieved every goal, without exception, with no concessions to Harvard,” said union president Brian Lang. He added that the outcome means minimum annual pay of $35,000 is “the new standard for food-service workers, and we’re going to bring them out of poverty.” Local 26 represents food-service employees at several Boston-area schools.

    As part of the agreement, a committee will be formed to address workers’ concerns about diversity and racial issues, a measure the union had also demanded.

    During the strike, the Harvard workers won widespread support from students, faculty, alumni, the Boston and Cambridge city councils, Senator Elizabeth Warren, and celebrities such as Ben Stiller and Keegan-Michael Key….

  7. says

    A group of Christians is being both intolerant and Big-Brotherish at the same time.

    On its website, the non-profit InterVarsity Christian Fellowship/USA describes itself as a “vibrant campus ministry that establishes and advances witnessing communities of students and faculty.” […]

    IVCF issued a restatement of its belief that sexual activity outside of “traditional” marriage is immoral. To stay true to its principles the organization is asking all of its employees – from its accounting staff to its chief executive and director of operations – to “volunteer” whether they disagree with these beliefs. If so, they will then be “involuntary terminated.”

    Gregory Jao, a vice president at ICVF, offered this explanation. “Even though we are asking staff to volunteer their disagreement, we are treating this as an involuntary termination because we want to treat departing staff with as much dignity as we can,” he told Publishers Weekly. The dignity here is allowing them to remain eligible for unemployment benefits. […]

    Washington Post link

    Publishers Weekly link

  8. Ogvorbis: I have proven my humanity and can now comment! says

    Lynna @13:

    Nice. Lie or we terminate your employment. Where is the dignity in that?

  9. says

    This is a followup to comments in the previous chapter of this thread (all related to FBI Director Comey).

    Former prosecutors comment on Comey’s questionable actions

    From SC: Comey: “At the same time, however, given that we don’t know the significance of this newly discovered collection of emails, I don’t want to create a misleading impression.”

    Oh, no, that is not a good excuse! Not a good set of excuses!

    BTW, the “Previous Thread” link at the top of this chapter of Moments of Political Madness does not work properly. It takes one back to comments made in August.

    Here is an excerpt of what the New York Times posted:

    Mr. Comey could immediately inform Congress about the emails, which were found in an investigation into former Representative Anthony D. Weiner. That unusual step, months after Mr. Comey had cleared Mrs. Clinton of any criminal wrongdoing in the email case, would risk accusations that he was unfairly harming her presidential campaign less than two weeks before the election.

    Or he could delay any announcement and examine the new emails more closely, risking criticism that he had suppressed important new information if it came out after the election, despite his pledges of “transparency” in the investigation

    And here is Mark Sumner’s cogent analysis of the choices Comey had:

    […] the choice should have been obvious—Comey shouldn’t have made any announcement. There shouldn’t have been a decision to make.

    That there was even a choice in Comey’s mind comes back to the same thing that’s caused the FBI Director to err at every single stage of this investigation. It’s not that “Jim Comey is an apolitical straight shooter,” as every talking head is eager to tell you. It’s that Jim Comey is very concerned that he be seen as an apolitical straight shooter. Because of that, he has, repeatedly, put preservation of his own reputation ahead of both justice and the good of the nation.

    From his ludicrous, finger-wagging press gaggle in announcing Clinton’s innocence, to his ham-fisted intrusion into the final act of the election, Comey has felt compelled to insert Jim Comey, straight-shooter, into every moment.

    As a result he’s caused serious harm to the FBI, to the election, and to the nation. And, just incidentally, he’s ruined his reputation in the process. […]

    My thought was that Comey should be able to stand up criticism from Congressional Republicans if he summarized what he found in the Anthony Weiner email stash after the election, and after the FBI had concluded its review of those emails. Is Comey afraid of Congressional Republicans? Maybe they would try to impeach him like they did the head of the IRS?

    At the very least, Comey could have made his premature announcement in a clearer, less election-threatening way. He handed Trump some ready-made innuendo. He gave Trump a ready-made boost of the conspiracy-theory Trump has already spewed about Huma Abedin. He handed Trump a megaphone. Trump doesn’t need a megaphone.

  10. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    OpEd in an Ohio paper telling of a movement to get out the vote of black women, “take sister strolls to the polls”.

    One year ago Cleveland was the epicenter of the police brutality and the Black Lives Matter movement, as the group held their first national convening here in an effort to keep a spotlight on the death of 12-year-old Tamir Rice at the hand of the city’s law enforcement officers.
    This past March, Cleveland voters flexed their growing political power in a local election by turning out Black voters in large numbers and voted out Cuyahoga County prosecutor’s Timothy J. McGinty.
    And as the saying goes: as goes Ohio, so goes the rest of the country.
    Ohio has long been titled a battleground or bellwether state and is a key component towards the pathway to 270 electoral votes. 2016 will be no different and Black women voters’ turnout will play a pivotal role in who will win the state.
    In the last two presidential elections, Black women have demonstrated their proven power to determine national elections. In 2012, Barack Obama won re-election by 4.9 million votes. Black women cast a total of 11.4 million ballots, providing the margin he needed to win.
    With little over a week until Election Day, polls show that in southern states like Florida, North Carolina and Virginia early vote numbers have already exceeded 2012 numbers. However, the Midwest numbers are down — in fact, Cleveland and Columbus numbers are much lower than early vote activity in 2012.
    There is too much at stake for Black women to sit this election out. According to the September 2016 Essence and Black Women’s Roundtable poll, Black women voters are overwhelming worried about affordable healthcare and living wage jobs, but increasingly more concerned about criminal justice reforms. Black women from Cleveland can certainly identify with these issues affecting their day-to-day lives.
    What’s more, our detractors are not only expecting us to stay home but also looking for every opportunity to suppress and repress the Black vote.
    Over the next week, the Black women of Cleveland plan to prove them wrong.
    Black women organize our block, take others to the polls, and have tremendous influence on those around us when we simply take the time to call and discuss the issues sister to sister.
    Local efforts will organize Black women to activate their networks from their household and blocks to their churches, sororities, and community groups.
    Black women on the ground in Cleveland have been active participants in ‘Sister-to-Sister’ phone banks to encourage voting, as well as a Sister Stroll to the Polls, in which shuttles have been transporting Black women to early vote together.
    In Ohio, we know this election is extremely important and then it’s not just about the top of the ticket, and that you can’t exercise power you don’t know you have.
    Black women over-performing at the polls once again could easily change the landscape at the city and possibly state levels. It’s why the opposition doesn’t want us to vote. And it’s why we must.

    *salutes their effort*

  11. says

    Ogvorbis @14, I guess that is the Christian version of “dignity,” where dignity means submission to your overlords. Also, the Christians probably think they are being generous by not killing the non-conformists.

    The people they fire will get unemployment insurance? Republicans should object to that. It’s not an appropriate use of the unemployment payment system, since the employees will have been fired for unjust causes. Is it a waste of tax-payer funds? Can we have Trump sue the Christians for bilking state and federal governments?

    In other news, here’s more followup to comment 15. The Wall Street Journal is also reporting that the emails in question are likely duplicates of those already reviewed. Wall Street Journal link
    Excerpt below:

    […] Many of the emails were discovered on a laptop used by both Ms. Abedin and Mr. Weiner, according to people familiar with the matter. In searching the laptop, investigators found thousands of emails, and they determined earlier this week that some of the emails involved Ms. Abedin discussing work issues. Ms. Abedin was questioned earlier this year by the FBI in the Clinton email probe.

    Authorities haven’t yet determined how many emails involved work, or if any of those included classified information, these people said. They also haven’t determined if the work emails in question are copies of messages already reviewed by the FBI. […]

  12. says

    This is the kind of bullshit that Trump’s lies about a “rigged system” will cause … that his lies are already causing:

    […] Terri Lynn Rote, who is 55 years old, was charged with first-degree election misconduct, according to the Des Moines Register.

    Rote cast one early voting ballot at the Polk County Election Office and another at a county satellite voting location in Des Moines, according to a police report cited by the Register.

    In an interview with Iowa Public Radio, Rote said that it was a “spur of the moment” decision, and that she was afraid her first vote for Trump would be changed to one for Hillary Clinton.

    “The polls are rigged,” Rote told Iowa Public Radio.

    Rote was released from jail on Friday after posting $5,000 bond. Her next court appearance is scheduled for Nov. 7, according to the Register.


    Is Trump going to pay her legal fees?

  13. says

    Trump is speaking at a rally today. I listened to some of his speech. He is claiming that “more than 10,000 emails” were found on the Weiner laptop, and he is claiming that those emails are all related to the investigation of Hillary Clinton’s private email server. Trump has no way of knowing that. He just riffing on stories that are being circulated in the fringe rightwing media.

    At his rally, Trump also claimed that “all of those emails” were “withheld” from the FBI deliberately. Trump doesn’t know that either.

    Trump also said that “97%” of the people at the FBI back Comey’s latest actions; and he added that the Justice Department does not back Comey because they are all in Clinton’s pocket.

    This kind of rhetoric is a tsunami of lies, and it is likely to incite all kinds of turmoil.

    It is too late for Comey to put the mistake right. It is too late to stop Trump from leading millions of people to believe that Huma Abedin, Hillary Clinton and the Justice Department conspired to stop the FBI from conducting an investigation that would surely reveal Clinton’s criminality. What a huge mess.

    The Drudge Report, Breitbart, and Alex Jones’ Infowars are almost too scary to even look at.

  14. says

    From Jane Mayer, writing in the New Yorker:

    […] Comey’s decision is a striking break with the policies of the Department of Justice, according to current and former federal legal officials. Comey, who is a Republican appointee of President Obama, has a reputation for integrity and independence, but his latest action is stirring an extraordinary level of concern among legal authorities, who see it as potentially affecting the outcome of the Presidential and congressional elections.

    “You don’t do this,” one former senior Justice Department official exclaimed. “It’s aberrational. It violates decades of practice.” The reason, according to the former official, who asked not to be identified because of ongoing cases involving the department, “is because it impugns the integrity and reputation of the candidate, even though there’s no finding by a court, or in this instance even an indictment.”

    Four years ago, then Attorney General Eric Holder formalized this practice in a memo to all Justice Department employees. The memo warned that, when handling political cases, officials “must be particularly sensitive to safeguarding the Department’s reputation for fairness, neutrality, and nonpartisanship.” To guard against unfair conduct, Holder wrote, employees facing questions about “the timing of charges or overt investigative steps near the time of a primary or general election” should consult with the Public Integrity Section of the Criminal Division.

    The F.B.I. director is an employee of the Justice Department, and is covered by its policies. But when asked whether Comey had followed these guidelines and consulted with the Public Integrity Section, or with any other department officials, Kevin Lewis, a deputy director of public affairs for the Justice Department, said, “We have no comment on the matter.” […]

  15. says

    SC @22, suggesting that Comey was partisan and that he did not indict Hillary Clinton because he was somehow pressured by a liberal conspiracy to NOT indict her … that’s exactly what Trump has claimed for months on end.

    In good news, low-wage workers in Cook County, Illinois will get a raise starting in July 2017. The minimum wage will rise from $8.25 per hour to $10 per hour; and then it will go up again in 2019 to $13 per hour.
    Progress Illinois link

  16. says

    This is a followup to comments 18 and 19.

    Trump bloviated at some length today about the election being rigged by people who are throwing away mail-in ballots if they don’t “like” them. Dolt.

    […] “I have real problems with ballots being sent,” Trump said, […]. “People say, oh, here’s a ballot, bing. Here’s another ballot, throw it away. Oh, here’s one I like, we’ll keep that one.” […]

    “We’re trying to have some pretty good supervision out there,” he said. “We have a lot of people watching you people that collect the ballots.” […]


  17. says

    SC @22, suggesting that Comey was partisan and that he did not indict Hillary Clinton because he was somehow pressured by a liberal conspiracy to NOT indict her … that’s exactly what Trump has claimed for months on end.

    He was claiming it yesterday morning!

  18. says

    Great piece by Fahrenthold at WaPo – “Trump boasts about his philanthropy. But his giving falls short of his words.”:

    …For as long as he has been rich and famous, Donald Trump has…wanted people to believe he is generous. He spent years constructing an image as a philanthropist by appearing at charity events and by making very public — even nationally televised — promises to give his own money away.

    It was, in large part, a facade. A months-long investigation by The Washington Post has not been able to verify many of Trump’s boasts about his philanthropy.

    Instead, throughout his life in the spotlight, whether as a businessman, television star or presidential candidate, The Post found that Trump had sought credit for charity he had not given — or had claimed other people’s giving as his own.

    It is impossible to know for certain what Trump has given to charity, because he has declined to release his tax returns. In all, The Post was able to identify $7.8 million in charitable giving from Trump’s own pocket since the early 1980s.

    In public appearances, Trump often made it appear that he gave far more.

    The result of The Post’s examination of Trump’s charity is a portrait of the GOP nominee, revealed in the negative space between what he was willing to promise — and what he was willing to give….

    Maybe the most interesting foundation gift was the one to the National Museum of Catholic Art and History.

  19. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Jebus, it appears all the Trump surrogates have chips on their shoulders the size of Montana. They do need to tone it down.

  20. says

    Joy Reid, “Republicans Weaponize James Comey’s FBI To Kneecap Hillary Clinton”:

    We need to talk about Republican abuse of power.

    Something got lost in the sturm und drang over the FBI’s “October surprise” that dropped Friday afternoon,…

    Behind Comey’s defiance of both precedent and the guidance of his boss, the attorney general, was the subtext of intense pressure being put on the FBI and the Justice Department by Republicans, some of whom rushed Comey’s vague letter to members of the press.

    Republicans have relentlessly pursued investigations of Hillary Clinton, going back to her time as secretary of state (to say nothing of the 30-year project to take down both Clintons by right-wing outside groups). The goal of the eight Benghazi committees, one of which produced and nurtured “emailgate,” has been clear from the start: to prevent Hillary Clinton from becoming president of the United States. Comey disappointed Republicans in July by not going along with what would have been a highly unusual indictment of a public official given the facts of Clinton’s email use, Republicans responded by dragging him before Rep. Jason Chaffetz’s House Oversight committee. Donald Trump called for Comey himself to be investigated.

    Republicans including Chafftez eagerly tweeted out Comey’s news Friday, and Trump supporters (and some media outlets) ran with the erroneous claim that the FBI had “reopened” its Clinton email probe (it never closed it) and that the agency is revisiting its decision not to prosecute Clinton over her email server (there’s exactly zero evidence of that). And since Republicans have openly signaled that they plan “years of investigations” of Clinton should she win on November 8th, it’s not hard to see where this is going. They’re hoping this new “revelation” sinks Clinton, but expecting to use the faux scandal to drag her down over the next four years.

    This follows a pattern that dates back to the Bill Clinton administration, when Republicans used the majorities they gained in the House in 1994 to pursue endless, relentless probes of the first family in search of a scandal that could hand the White House back to the GOP….

    There’s simply nothing on the other side of the aisle that’s equivalent….

    The abuse of congressional power for pure partisan gain has become a specialty of the GOP.

    After the election, should this ugly gambit fail, be assured Republicans will use every ounce of their time and authority to take the meager gifts the bumbling FBI director has given them and put them to use in service of the next election. The people’s work be damned.

  21. says

    Erdoğan becomes even more dictatorial:

    Turkey said it had dismissed a further 10,000 civil servants and closed 15 more media outlets over suspected links with terrorist organizations and U.S.-based cleric Fethullah Gulen, blamed by Ankara for orchestrating a failed coup in July.

    More than 100,000 people had already been sacked or suspended and 37,000 arrested since the failed coup, in an unprecedented crackdown the government says is necessary to root out all supporters of Gulen from the state apparatus.

    Thousands more academics, teachers, health workers, prison guards and forensics experts were among the latest to be removed from their posts through two new executive decrees published on the Official Gazette late on Saturday.

    The decrees have ordered the closure of 15 more newspapers, wires and magazines, which report from the largely Kurdish southeast, bringing the total number of media organizations closed since the emergency rule in July to nearly 160.

    In another move set to anger President Tayyip Erdogan’s opponents, the ability of universities to elect their own rectors was also abolished. Erdogan will from now on directly appoint the rectors from the candidates nominated by the High Educational Board (YOK).

    Lale Karabiyik, another CHP lawmaker, said the move was a clear misuse of the emergency rule decrees and described it as a coup d’etat on the high education system. Pro-Kurdish opposition said the decrees were used as tools to establish a ‘one-man regime’.

    Speaking to reporters at a reception marking the Republic Day on Saturday, Erdogan said the nation wanted the reinstatement of the death penalty, a debate which has emerged following the coup attempt, and added that delaying it would not be right.

    “I believe this issue will come to the parliament,” he said, and repeated that he would approve it, a move that would sink Turkey’s hopes of European Union membership. Erdogan shrugged off such concerns, saying that much of the world had capital punishment.

  22. says

    SC @37, the figure I saw this morning was that about 84% of people with health insurance through the Affordable Care Act will NOT see a premium hike. And, yes, of those that do see an increase in premiums, many will also get a tax credit that offsets the increase.

    Unfortunately, there some swing states, like Arizona, where the premium hike may be enough to affect the election

    As far as the continuing news related to Director Comey’s “abuse of power,” as Joy Reid called it in SC’s post 36, a former Bush Ethics head has filed a complaint against Comey. Richard Painter was chief White House Ethics Lawyer for the Bush administration from 2005-2007.

    […] I have spent much of my career working on government ethics and lawyers’ ethics, including two and a half years as the chief White House ethics lawyer for President George W. Bush, and I never thought that the F.B.I. could be dragged into a political circus surrounding one of its investigations. Until this week. […]

    The rules are violated if it is obvious that the official’s actions could influence the election, there is no other good reason for taking those actions, and the official is acting under pressure from persons who obviously do want to influence the election.

    On Friday, the director of the F.B.I., James B. Comey, sent to members of Congress a letter updating them on developments in the agency’s investigation of Mrs. Clinton’s emails, an investigation which supposedly was closed months ago. This letter, which was quickly posted on the internet, made highly unusual public statements about an F.B.I. investigation concerning a candidate in the election. The letter was sent in violation of a longstanding Justice Department policy of not discussing specifics about pending investigations with others, including members of Congress. […]

    The FBI’s job is to investigate, not to influence the outcome of an election […]

    This is is no trivial matter. We cannot allow F.B.I. or Justice Department officials to unnecessarily publicize pending investigations concerning candidates of either party while an election is underway. That is an abuse of power. Allowing such a precedent to stand will invite more, and even worse, abuses of power in the future.

  23. says

    A Talking Points Memo reader sent an email to Josh Marshall that makes a lot of sense. Here is an excerpt:

    […] I’m sure you’re getting a million takes on the Comey/email situation from former AUSAs, but here is what I think is going on (healthy doses of speculation here informed by my experience as a former federal public corruption prosecutor in high profile cases) […]

    [I snipped the details outlining the events and the FBI’s response.]

    I’ve generally been a big Comey fan, but I’m appalled at what’s happened here. At the end of the day, the DOJ policies on not commenting on ongoing investigations are really important and should have been followed from the beginning. He acted prematurely here and, I think, irresponsibly by sending the letter, especially without knowing whether there was anything new.

    Many voters can’t help but assume that the FBI must have found something new. Regardless, if you think you’re in a no-win, fall back on the policy and make no comment.

    I think back to investigations of members of Congress that I handled and cannot fathom having my FBI agents make public comments about reviewing potential new evidence in real time less than two weeks before an election. It’s just insane. Career destroying, Democracy distorting, insanity.

    At this point, I think he has to say the following: (1) we have not seen any new evidence that changes our prior conclusion; (2) we do not know whether the new email collection involves any emails that were not previously reviewed in reaching our prior conclusion; and (3) we will refer all further questions on this matter to the DOJ.

  24. says

    Trump said some stupid stuff:

    Wow, Twitter, Google and Facebook are burying the FBI criminal investigation of Clinton. Very dishonest media!

  25. tomh says

    @ #41

    It would be nice if he said something like that, the problem is that Comey appears to be a complete partisan hack, who won’t say anything like that. His first disclosure, about Clinton being “careless” was way out of line, and this letter is a complete joke. Her first act as president should be to fire Comey for incompetence.

  26. raven says

    Trump claims Evan McMullin is “going from coffee shop to coffee shop” trying to win…Utah.

    LOL. Sure. And he has also been going from bar to bar. In Utah.

    McMullin, as a devout Mormon, would shrivel up and melt at the sight of coffee or a beer. This is funny though.

    All the LDS church would have to do is wave their arms and McMullin would win. The church doesn’t get involved in politics though except when they are almost always…involved in politics.

  27. raven says

    Her first act as president should be to fire Comey for incompetence.


    He should be investigated first, after being placed on paid leave. The investigation should take a year and have hundreds of witnesses. Then he should be investigated again. And again.
    And then he should be fired for cause.
    And oh yeah, someone needs to go through all his emails. And post them to Wikileaks.

    IIRC, Hillary was investigated 8 times over Benghazi even though it was known at the beginning that it was just a witch hunt.

  28. says

    The Daily Kos’s coverage of David Fahrenthold’s reporting on Trump’s charitable efforts is amusing.

    Previous discussion from SC is in comments 27 and 40.

    […] […] His [Fahrenthold’s] comprehensive essay on what those efforts turned up reads like a Dickensian satire. Not only are Trump’s charitable efforts few, far between, and almost exclusively self-serving, his attempts to play the role of a philanthropist without doing the philanthropy part seem like a far more malevolent version of an Andy Kaufman prank.

    The highlight of the piece, without question, is the story of Donald Trump showing up at a charity event for the Association to Benefit Children, strolling onto the stage, and plopping himself down in the seat reserved for one of the event’s real top donors.

    Trump was not a major donor. He was not a donor, period. He’d never given a dollar to the nursery or the Association to Benefit Children, according to Gretchen Buchenholz, the charity’s executive director then and now.

    But now he was sitting in Fisher’s seat, next to Giuliani. […]
    [Trump took the stage, took the microphone, and spoke for 15 minutes.]

    Trump left without offering an explanation. Or a donation. Fisher was stuck in the audience. The charity spent months trying to repair its relationship with him.

    Rather than ejecting Trump from the podium in front of the audience and causing a scene, they let him stay; their reward was not one thin dime from the billionaire before he trundled off again, apparently under the assumption that his shining presence was all the benefit those children needed.

    Looking back, it was yet another case where if only someone had humiliated Trump in the manner he deserved rather than gritting their teeth and putting up with his asininities, it would have saved America a lot of time down the road.

    The same dynamic would play out in the press and in the Republican primaries twenty years later. The stupid and stingy man strolls onto the national stage like he owns the place, and everyone is too concerned with keeping up the appearances of a serious election to point out that the buffoon hasn’t done a thing in his life that would suggest he deserves to be there and can’t string together more than ten words in defense of his new hobby as political savior-of-the-moment.

    We really need to be crueler to our moneyed stupid people; the nation is not their therapist. […]

  29. says

    At a rally in Florida today Hillary Clinton responded the Washington Post story written by David Fahrenthold. (See comments 27, 40 and 46.)

    […] “We’ve heard some outrageous things in this campaign, I’m sure we’ll hear more in the next nine days. But I got tell you, I was beginning to think that nothing we learned about Donald Trump could surprise me anymore,” said the Democratic nominee, campaigning at Manors, an LGBT night club here. “But yesterday, the Washington Post published a report that was truly stunning.”

    Recounting the story’s opening anecdote about Trump appearing at a charity function for children with HIV and AIDS despite not donating to it, Clinton asked, “Who does that?”

    “The same kind of person who would pull a bait-and-switch on a high school chess team,” she continued, launching into another section from the story that ended with a woman donating to the chess team Trump spurned.

    “The coach remembers this woman saying, ‘I am ashamed to be the same species as this man,’” Clinton said, to cheers. […]

    Politico link

  30. says

    The highlight of the piece, without question, is the story of Donald Trump showing up at a charity event for the Association to Benefit Children, strolling onto the stage, and plopping himself down in the seat reserved for one of the event’s real top donors.

    I think it’s a toss-up between that and what he did to the high-school chess team in the Bronx in 1997:

    The chess team was holding a bake sale, Hot & Crusty danishes and croissants. They were $5,000 short of what they needed to travel to a tournament.

    Trump had brought something to wow them.

    “He handed them a fake million-dollar bill,” said David MacEnulty, a teacher and the chess team’s coach.

    The team’s parent volunteers were thrilled.

    Then disappointment.

    Trump then gave them $200 in real money and drove away in a limousine.

    Why just $200?

    “I have no idea,” MacEnulty said. “He was about the most clueless person I’ve ever seen in that regard.”

    The happy ending, he said, was that a woman read about Trump’s gift in the New York Times, called the school and donated the $5,000. “I am ashamed to be the same species as this man,” MacEnulty recalled her saying.

  31. says

    Jesus – “Study Confirms Network Evening Newscasts Have Abandoned Policy Coverage For 2016 Campaign”:

    Walking away from a long-standing tradition of covering issues and presidential policies during campaign season, the network evening newscasts have all but abandoned that type of reporting this year, according to recent tabulations from Tyndall Report, which for decades has tracked the flagship nightly news programs.

    Since the beginning of 2016, ABC’s World News Tonight, CBS Evening News and NBC Nightly News have devoted just 32 minutes to issues coverage, according to Andrew Tyndall.

    Differentiating issues coverage from daily campaign coverage where policy topics might be addressed, Tyndall defines issues coverage by a newscast this way: “It takes a public policy, outlines the societal problem that needs to be addressed, describes the candidates’ platform positions and proposed solutions, and evaluates their efficacy.”

    And here’s how that kind of in-depth coverage breaks down, year to date, by network:

    ABC: 8 minutes, all of which covered terrorism.

    NBC: 8 minutes for terrorism, LBGT issues, and foreign policy.

    CBS: 16 minutes for foreign policy, terrorism, immigration, policing, and the Environmental Protection Agency.

    And this remarkable finding from Tyndall [emphasis added]:

    No trade, no healthcare, no climate change, no drugs, no poverty, no guns, no infrastructure, no deficits. To the extent that these issues have been mentioned, it has been on the candidates’ terms, not on the networks’ initiative.

    t seems clear that the media’s abandonment of issues coverage benefits Trump since his campaign has done very little to outline the candidate’s core beliefs. Clinton, by contrast, has done the opposite….

  32. says

    WaPo oped:

    …Decades ago, the department decided that in the 60-day period before an election, the balance should be struck against even returning indictments involving individuals running for office, as well as against the disclosure of any investigative steps. The reasoning was that, however important it might be for Justice to do its job, and however important it might be for the public to know what Justice knows, because such allegations could not be adjudicated, such actions or disclosures risked undermining the political process. A memorandum reflecting this choice has been issued every four years by multiple attorneys general for a very long time, including in 2016.

    As former deputy attorneys general in the Bill Clinton and George W. Bush administrations, we are troubled by the apparent departure from these standards in the investigation of Hillary Clinton’s email server….

    Events as they have played out point to the value of the department’s traditions. Having taken the extraordinary steps of briefing the public, testifying before Congress about a decision not to prosecute and sharing investigative material, Comey now finds himself wanting to update the public and Congress on each new development in the investigation, even before he and others have had a chance to assess its significance….

    …It is antithetical to the interests of justice, putting a thumb on the scale of this election and damaging our democracy.

  33. says

    Trump makes some more noise on the campaign trail:

    […] As you’ve heard it was just announced on Friday that the FBI is reopening their investigation into the criminal and illegal conduct of Hillary Clinton. Hillary has nobody but herself to blame for her mounting legal problems. Her criminal action was willful, deliberate, intentional and purposeful. […]

    Nope. None of that is true. Trump is making Clinton a “criminal” in the public’s mind by repeating this stuff over and over.

  34. says

    Creepy and annoying things Trump surrogates say (aside, of course, from content):

    – “Mr. Trump”
    – talking about “The Clintons” as if they were running for president together – such a sexist jibe

  35. says

    SC @54, I agree. Tthe surrogates say “Mr. Trump” as if he is always standing behind them, lurking to see if they show proper deference.

    As for “The Clintons,” yes that is a sexist jibe at Hillary. When Republicans say that, it is sometimes a reference to “The Clintons” as a criminal enterprise.

  36. says

    Republican mailers in Kansas fear-monger about Muslims/refugees. Apparently, they found that “safety” was the one issue on which to base a successful Republican appeal. They have a twisted understanding of safety. The policies of their Republican governor have ravaged state finances, forcing cuts to education, healthcare, public services (including public safety), and infrastructure. They’ve also led to massive job losses. Brownback has a score of 0% from the League of Conservation Voters. He’s signed laws cutting public assistance and Medicaid. He opposed the ACA/Medicaid expansion in Kansas.

    So Republicans have plunged (or tried to plunge) the state into profound precariousness and insecurity in pretty much every area of life: food, health, clean air and water, education, jobs, public assistance, public services, infrastructure,… Furthermore, as the article notes, it was in Kansas that a terrorist plot was recently foiled – a plot by Trump supporters planning the mass murder of Muslims. But the Kansas Republican Party believes that their best bet is convincing citizens that Muslims and refugees are the greatest threat to their safety.

  37. says

    SC @57, apparently, there are posters all over the red states (mostly in the south, that depict Hillary Clinton behind bars. Trump is the guy that has been found guilty, that has had to pay fines. Hillary has never been found guilty, and has never been indicted.

  38. says

    Trump is the guy that has been found guilty, that has had to pay fines. Hillary has never been found guilty, and has never been indicted.

    It’s crazy. His campaign is under FBI investigation for involvement with Russia, his foundation is under investigation by the New York AG (and likely soon many other states), he’ll soon be in court(s) over his “university” scam, and a rape case is moving forward against him (I don’t know enough about that one to comment). His campaign has illegally solicited money from foreign sources. He’s released no taxes – unprecedented – and multiple indicators point to his having lied in his FEC financial disclosures. He has a long history of tax cheating. How are none of these headline news?

  39. says

    “A Hillary Clinton secret: lots of voters really like her”:

    …Mallonn, 50, is just as committed to her cause as the aggrieved Donald Trump fans who have been exhaustively profiled in the media. But she is part of a group that has been treated as close to nonexistent amid the flood of features on Trump’s angry army: people who really, really like Hillary Clinton.

    Yes, for real, it’s true. The woman favoured to be elected president next week has a large number of fierce devotees.

    The base is millions strong. In one recent ABC tracking poll, 56 per cent of Clinton voters said they were voting for her more than voting against Trump — versus just 41 per cent of Trump voters who said they were voting for him more than against Clinton.

    Mallonn, for example, doesn’t feel like she’s choosing the lesser of two evils. She feels she has found — re-found — the candidate she has been waiting for.

    “What that woman has been put through in her public life, and her private life. And she has stood there with dignity all of these years,” said homemaker Rose Marie Nin, 70, in line for Clinton’s rally last week in Philadelphia.

    Where Sanders bitter-enders see a centrist or conservative posing as a progressive, her core supporters see a committed liberal with the record to prove it. Where Trump backers see a “career politician,” they see a public servant with critical experience.

    The Obama era produced millions of winners uninterested in radical transformation. Mallonn has a brother with a disability who finally got health insurance because of Obamacare and a gay brother who is now married in Texas.

    “I feel like we’ve made some great progress,” she said, “and I feel like she’ll help to continue to push those things forward.”

    Clinton, whose rally speeches can sound stilted, has struggled to excite the young voters who were thrilled by Obama’s gifts as a communicator. But for some women of her generation, both professionals and homemakers, her preference for quiet labour over grandiose performance is familiar….

  40. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Where Sanders bitter-enders see a centrist or conservative posing as a progressive, her core supporters see a committed liberal with the record to prove it. Where Trump backers see a “career politician,” they see a public servant with critical experience.


  41. says

    Made me laugh.

    Incidentally, Conway’s brownie analogy is wrong (how did she get through the LSAT?). It should be that she lets him have all the brownies he wants and then suggests that he have an apple or two because that’ll somehow cancel out the brownies.

    I have to keep reminding myself that this is about a major party presidential candidate.

  42. says

    Full text of Reid’s letter:

    Dear Director Comey:

    Your actions in recent months have demonstrated a disturbing double standard for the treatment of sensitive information, with what appears to be a clear intent to aid one political party over another. I am writing to inform you that my office has determined that these actions may violate the Hatch Act, which bars FBI officials from using their official authority to influence an election. Through your partisan actions, you may have broken the law.

    The double standard established by your actions is clear.

    In my communications with you and other top officials in the national security community, it has become clear that you possess explosive information about close ties and coordination between Donald Trump, his top advisors, and the Russian government – a foreign interest openly hostile to the United States, which Trump praises at every opportunity. The public has a right to know this information. I wrote to you months ago calling for this information to be released to the public. There is no danger to American interests from releasing it. And yet, you continue to resist calls to inform the public of this critical information.

    By contrast, as soon as you came into possession of the slightest innuendo related to Secretary Clinton, you rushed to publicize it in the most negative light possible.

    Moreover, in tarring Secretary Clinton with thin innuendo, you overruled longstanding tradition and the explicit guidance of your own Department. You rushed to take this step eleven days before a presidential election, despite the fact that for all you know, the information you possess could be entirely duplicative of the information you already examined which exonerated Secretary Clinton.

    As you know, a memo authored by Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates on March 10, 2016, makes clear that all Justice Department employees, including you, are subject to the Hatch Act. The memo defines the political activity prohibited under the Hatch Act as “activity directed towards the success or failure of a political party, candidate for partisan political office, or partisan political group.”

    The clear double-standard established by your actions strongly suggests that your highly selective approach to publicizing information, along with your timing, was intended for the success or failure of a partisan candidate or political group.

    Please keep in mind that I have been a supporter of yours in the past. When Republicans filibustered your nomination and delayed your confirmation longer than any previous nominee to your position, I led the fight to get you confirmed because I believed you to be a principled public servant.

    With the deepest regret, I now see that I was wrong.


    Senator Harry Reid

  43. says

    Daniel Dale, chronicler of Trump (and before that Rob and Doug Ford) falsehoods, who wrote the piece I linked to just above @ #61, has another about Trump supporters in Virginia:

    “Murderous, rotten, no-good, pious … bitch,” said Waldo Ward, a 60-something retiree, as he left Walmart with Halloween candy for the neighbourhood kids. “She should be taken out and shot. Absolutely.”

    “I confess that I’m a Christian, and I shouldn’t hate, but it’s awful close,” said Charles Graves, a smiling 71-year-old recently retired from a career in logistics.

    “It’s not like I’m not a Donald Trump fan,” said Rusty Gibson, 47, an electrician. “But it’s like good versus evil.”

    This was not a Trump rally. This was not some downtrodden bastion of blue-collar rage. This was four guys going about their Saturday in a Republican-leaning high-income Virginia town an hour from Washington, D.C.

    Each one of them said that they were not especially fond of Trump. But asked about his Democratic opponent, on the record, and they could barely contain their loathing or didn’t even try….

    A significant percentage of Trump supporters believe that Clinton is literally a demon.

  44. says

    Daniel Dale, chronicler of Trump (and before that Rob and Doug Ford) falsehoods, who wrote the piece I linked to just above @ #61, has another about Trump supporters in Virginia [redactions mine]:

    “She’s a wh***,” said Jim Brewster, a 62-year-old farmer, as he walked into the bakery for some coffee.

    “Murderous, rotten, no-good, pious … b****,” said Waldo Ward, a 60-something retiree, as he left Walmart with Halloween candy for the neighbourhood kids. “She should be taken out and shot. Absolutely.”

    “I confess that I’m a Christian, and I shouldn’t hate, but it’s awful close,” said Charles Graves, a smiling 71-year-old recently retired from a career in logistics.

    “It’s not like I’m not a Donald Trump fan,” said Rusty Gibson, 47, an electrician. “But it’s like good versus evil.”

    This was not a Trump rally. This was not some downtrodden bastion of blue-collar rage. This was four guys going about their Saturday in a Republican-leaning high-income Virginia town an hour from Washington, D.C.

    Each one of them said that they were not especially fond of Trump. But asked about his Democratic opponent, on the record, and they could barely contain their loathing or didn’t even try….

    A significant percentage of Trump supporters believe that Clinton is literally a demon.

  45. says

    I see some responses to the Dale story drawing on classist caricatures of Trump supporters, despite the fact that he says he’s describing people in a “Republican-leaning high-income Virginia town.” FWIW, of the four Trump supporters in my extended network, three are rich. Three are women. Two are in positions of economic or political power. The one who isn’t rich is solidly middle class and has a steady job. True, they’re not a representative sample, but I’m tired of the claims that Trump’s followers are economically desperate. Economic desperation is not the primary driver of Trumpism, by a long shot. (Capitalism, very broadly, is a primary driver, but that’s a different and more complex story.)

  46. says

    Or better yet the Seinfeld episode “The Stranded”:

    Jerry (noticing a coffee table book): Oh, you got the Civil War book. I saw some of that show, it was wonderful.
    Elaine: Six hundred and twenty million people died.
    Jerry: Thousand.
    Elaine: Thousand. Six hundred and twenty thousand. The horror, the horror.

  47. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    A long article on the vengeful Trump, and how vengeance is his policy. A sample:

    Trump’s emphasis on violence and retaliation, especially outside the confines of the law, is unique among modern nominees and is rooted in a set of guiding principles.
    In his eyes, the world is an unforgiving place where cities are “war zones,” where “rapists” are streaming across the border and where jealous rivals are hatching plots to humiliate America and Trump personally.
    To prevail in such an environment, he suggests, the response to any slight must be swift and overwhelming. Dwelling on limits imposed by law or tradition is usually a secondary concern.
    This framework has expressed itself in policy, in which Trump has extolled the use of torture, threatened reprisals against the families of terrorists and pledged to jail Clinton, a former senator and secretary of state. It has expressed itself rhetorically in vicious insults against critics and in his encouragement of violence by supporters.
    “She’s nasty, but I can be nastier than she ever can be,” Trump told The New York Times after Clinton criticized his past comments on women’s appearances in their first debate. The next day, he suggested at a rally that she had cheated on her husband, while offering no evidence for the claim.

    Definitely a ego-driven bully.

  48. says

    I can’t agree with this piece by Ryan Lizza.

    Think of the decision from Comey’s perspective. He could either disclose the new development now and risk being accused of influencing the election, or he could keep quiet; then, when the news of Abedin’s laptop inevitably leaked, he could be accused of caving to Lynch and her staff and keeping the information from voters. If the news leaked after the election and after Hillary Clinton was President, Republicans would turn the non-disclosure into a monumental scandal and allege that Comey played a role in a Lynch-instigated cover-up. If Clinton were President, the ensuing scandal would taint her victory, with Republicans arguing that voters were kept in the dark about a major development in one of the central issues of the campaign.

    Republicans would argue that whatever the circumstances. The issue is that the policy concerning taking action and releasing information close to elections has long been in place for a reason. This sort of prejudicial information is supposed to be kept from voters, because the basic fact of an ongoing investigation/review/subpoena/attempt to get a warrant, which might or might not turn up anything, is unduly prejudicial to a candidate without providing any solid information. Lizza’s argument – and Comey’s rationale – seems to assume the opposite: that the FBI has a duty to disclose the existence and details of its investigations of candidates just before elections. That’s plainly wrong.

    The best argument for Comey’s disclosure is that he was aware that there was a strong possibility of this leaking in the next several days (as opposed, for some reason, to the seemingly airtight Russia/Trump-campaign investigation). Aside from the irony of that problem given the nature of the investigation, it’s an FBI problem and is separate from the other purported justifications.

    While Comey’s disclosure created many hours of breathless coverage on Friday and Saturday, the truth is that the new information is not very significant: the F.B.I. will examine some of Huma’s e-mails. So what? Most polls show that voters’ minds are made up about Clinton and the e-mail scandal.

    I think this is true, but it’s not the point. Further, the manner in which Comey went about informing Congress – compounded, of course, by Chaffetz’ dishonest spin and Trump’s rampant lies (with an assist from the media), which he could have seen coming – failed to impress upon people the limited nature and significance of the new information.

    For those still on the fence, shouldn’t we trust them to be sophisticated enough to understand the development even if they don’t have all the information they may want? As a general rule, more information and disclosure about a candidate is always better for voters in a democracy.

    It’s far better for the public to have this information now than after the election.


    Perhaps it’s possible that this revelation will swing the election to Trump. But it seems highly unlikely. Clinton is still favored to win, and, if she does, Comey will have done her a favor.

    Oh, honestly.

  49. a_ray_in_dilbert_space says

    Actually, I think Lizza’s argument has some merit. If anything, this undercuts Drumpf’s contention that the election is rigged against him. It also removes most of the oxygen from the Wikileaks/Clinton Foundation nontroversy.

    The biggest problem I see is that there is no way this will be resolved before the election–and that would be made worse if the news were leaked right before the election and Comey had not announced it. I think Comey has been rather hamhanded about the issue, but if HRC can’t get 270 electoral votes even under unfavorable conditions, then she probably doesn’t have the political body fat to make it through the winter anyway.

  50. says

    I was wondering about this – Orin Kerr suggests the expansion of the search of Weiner’s computer to Abedin’s emails might have violated the Fourth Amendment:

    …We don’t know all the facts yet, so it’s somewhat hard to say. But here’s why the expansion of the investigation might be constitutionally problematic. Consider this a tentative analysis unless and until more facts emerge.

    …Here’s the problem. If the FBI was searching Weiner’s computer, it presumably had a warrant authorizing the search of the computer only for Weiner’s communications with underage girls. If that is correct, going from that narrow search to a broader search of Clinton’s emails raises two potential problems for the FBI.

    The first issue is whether the FBI was permitted to search through Abedin’s email account for records of Weiner’s illegal messages with underage girls….

    There might be similar problems because the alleged Weiner texting crimes apparently occurred in 2016. I gather that the Clinton emails were from her time as secretary of state, which was several years earlier from 2009 to 2013. If I’m right that there was a several-year gap between the warrant crime and the second investigation, it’s not clear the government could search through older emails for evidence of such a recent crime….

    A second issue is whether the FBI was permitted to seize the Abedin emails, which were outside the scope of the warrant, and to use them to reopen the investigation into Clinton’s email server. I think this is the bigger legal issue for the FBI. Most courts have treated this as a matter of the “plain view” exception….

    But if that’s true, there’s a problem: The plain view exception does not allow evidence to be seized outside a warrant unless it is “immediately apparent” upon viewing it that it is evidence of another crime….

    But it’s not clear how that would be the case here. Comey’s letter to Congress is really tentative….

    The Fourth Amendment plain view standard doesn’t allow a seizure of emails based on a mere we-hope-to-later-determine standard. The government can’t seize the emails just because the Clinton investigation is extra important and any possible evidence is worth considering. Rather, the Fourth Amendment requires the initial look at the emails to generate “immediate” probable cause that they are evidence of a crime first, before their seizure is permitted and used to get a second warrant….

  51. says

    Actually, I think Lizza’s argument has some merit. If anything, this undercuts Drumpf’s contention that the election is rigged against him. It also removes most of the oxygen from the Wikileaks/Clinton Foundation nontroversy.

    But that doesn’t address the arguments Lizza was responding to; if anything, it strengthens them. It seems that the constant allegations of rigging from Trump and the Republican partisan hacks in the House were weighing on Comey and got so under his skin that he was led to violate policy. That’s the problem.

  52. KG says


    Actually, I think Lizza’s argument has some merit. If anything, this undercuts Drumpf’s contention that the election is rigged against him. It also removes most of the oxygen from the Wikileaks/Clinton Foundation nontroversy.

    What a load of tosh. As though this, or anything else, is going to stop Trumplethinskin claiming rigging if he loses, or his supporters from believing it. I suggest you educate yourself on the topic of salience in electoral contests.

    if HRC can’t get 270 electoral votes even under unfavorable conditions, then she probably doesn’t have the political body fat to make it through the winter anyway.

    WTF does that even mean? If Clinton gets 270 electoral votes, she will be President, unless she dies before inauguration. If she doesn’t, we’ll be lucky to survive four years of President Trump.

  53. consciousness razor says


    It’s like that scene in Broadcast News in reverse.

    Your link here is missing its address. I haven’t seen that movie in a long time, so no guesses what the reference is about.

    He could either disclose the new development now and risk being accused of influencing the election, or he could keep quiet; then, when the news of Abedin’s laptop inevitably leaked, he could be accused of caving to Lynch and her staff and keeping the information from voters.

    Totally misguided. He could disclose actual substantive information that he knows, which he thoughtfully and carefully determined is some sort of significant development in the Clinton email investigation that ought to be openly available to the public. Then, once he’s actually done that, he’d be in a position to decide whether or not to keep said information from voters. But he’s still provided nothing that voters can inform themselves about, not a single bit that anybody can use to understand anything, meaning he in fact did something other than that: namely, he wrote a fucking letter. There’s just a dude who’s at best trying to keep up appearances to avoid being unfairly criticized by the Clinton mob in his imagination, or at worst he’s trying to influence an election with the possible smell of a hint of a vague innuendo.

  54. consciousness razor says

    Then, once he’s actually done that,

    Once he’s determined what it is and whether it matters…. not once he’s (already) disclosed it to people, obviously.

    Pretty sure the FBI director knows a thing or two about investigating, so this probably doesn’t need to be explained to him…. Instead, this bullshit needs to be explained to us. If he writes another letter saying “I was just being super paranoid, nothing to see here” or “Trump has dirt on me, so I agreed to play a role the farcical investigation he wishes we were having”, then I think I would understand.

  55. a_ray_in_dilbert_space says

    HRC still has the inside track to win the election. She has fairly strong leads in most of the critical swing states–and in those where she is down, it is close. She has a huge edge in organization and funding going into the final week of the campaign. She has a huge lead among women.

    The FBI has already found there was nothing worthy of prosecution arising from the private email server, based on the fact that any mishandling of classified info was inadvertent. It is virtually impossible that any of the info on the Weiner’s hard drive would change that conclusion. The longer this has to play out in the press and the minds of the electorate, the more likely they are to arrive at this conclusion. We are already starting to see this happen in some of the saner media outlets.

    You ignored the main point–that the worst case would have been for this bomb to be leaked on Friday or Monday, and leaked in such a way that exaggerated its significance. FWIW, I don’t agree with the way Comey handled the issue, but I do see that the way it was handled is not the worst way it could have been handled.

    At this point, “the rigged system” is the only “message” Drumpf has. It was actually having an effect. This does not support that narrative, and it has thrown him “off message”.

    We just have to hope HRC can make it across the finish line with >270 votes. With all the advantages she has, she should be able to, despite this distraction.

  56. says

    Your link here is missing its address. I haven’t seen that movie in a long time, so no guesses what the reference is about.

    I didn’t add the link because I was too lazy last night to deal with the script formatting. Here it is:

    TOM: The House Armed Service Committee has a secret report which says that the General Stillwell tank the Army has dumped a fortune into plain won’t work. I have it cold, confirmed. They have five million dollars in this thing already.

    JANE: Billion.

    TOM: Okay, billion…right, of course. They told me I could have any producer I wanted — and I want you.

  57. says

    No idea. I just have no idea. Trump has gone so far off the rails that I can’t even trace his lies back to a source.

    He said yesterday that Hillary Clinton will “triple the size of our county in one week” by letting “650 million people” immigrate to the USA. WTF?

    The Hill link

  58. Moggie says

    650 million immigrants in one week is more than one thousand every second. It’s also far more than the combined populations of Mexico and Canada. It’s such an outlandish statement, even by Trump’s standards, that I was literally open-mouthed when I first read it. It’s… just cartoonishly unreal.

  59. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    I suspect it is a thousand fold over the Syrian refuges HCR has mentioned as her goal (wasn’t it 550,000 or so?). Trump doesn’t understand numbers, which is why he is a bad business man.

  60. a_ray_in_dilbert_space says

    Drumpf: “Numbers, how do they work, anyway?… Verbs, how do they work, anyway?… Reality…”

  61. says

    Oh – I just realized that the link I did provide in #70 didn’t work. It was to something about the “650 million” comment Lynna just mentioned above. Sorry – didn’t mean to be doubly cryptic! The movie/TV references should make more sense now.

  62. consciousness razor says

    Wiki says the entire population of Latin America (i.e., Mexico and everything south) is roughly 626 million. They will all surely come because Clinton wants “open borders” (for trade, not immigration, but it’s a soundbite so whatever). Canadians are probably too white to be afraid of, so 36 million of them don’t count.

    Add all of Syria’s 17 million people, if there were any sense in doing that, and you’re in the neighborhood of 650 million. Toss in a few million Muslim terrorists from anywhere if need be. That’s my best guess anyway, but the only real coherent part of any of this is that Trump and his lickspittle friends are racist fuckwits.

    Trump doesn’t understand numbers, which is why he is a bad business man.

    He may not be great at math (does he actually research anything himself or is it handed to him?), but he’s a terrible person and “business man” for countless reasons unrelated to that. The problem with con artists like Trump isn’t that they’ve made a calculational error — it’s that they’re fucking assholes.

  63. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Trump refusing to pay a polling outfit for their work.

    Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump owes a former pollster three-quarters of a million dollars records from the Federal Election Commission show.
    In the latest filings, which are updated daily because of the close proximity to Election Day, show that Trump is contesting a $766,756 bill from the polling firm Fabrizio, Lee & Associates. The news was first reported by the Washington Post.
    Trump hired his first pollster in May. Tony Fabrizio was an ally of Trump’s second de facto campaign manager Paul Manafort, but was let go during the last shake up when Manafort was fired and Trump hired Steve Bannon and pollster Kellyanne Conway to run his campaign.
    Trump has a long history and dozens of lawsuits recounting his refusal to pay his employees and contractors.

    Trump is just another deadbeat asshole, spelt l-o-s-e-r.

  64. says

    As we know, Donald Trump frequently stiffs contractors who work for him. The Washington Post is reporting that Trump is refusing to pay $767,000 that is owed to a pollster:

    Donald Trump’s hiring of pollster Tony Fabrizio in May was viewed as a sign that the real estate mogul was finally bringing seasoned operatives into his insurgent operation.

    But the Republican presidential nominee appears to have taken issue with some of the services provided by the veteran GOP strategist, who has advised candidates from 1996 GOP nominee Bob Dole to Florida Gov. Rick Scott. The Trump campaign’s latest Federal Election Commission report shows that it is disputing nearly $767,000 that Fabrizio’s firm says it is still owed for polling.

    Trump campaign officials declined to provide details about the reason the campaign has declined to pay the sum to Fabrizio Lee, the pollster’s Fort Lauderdale, Fla.-based firm. “This is an administrative issue that we’re resolving internally,” said senior communications adviser Jason Miller. […]

    By now, no contractor should expect to be paid what they are owed by Donald Trump. Non-payment or incomplete payment has been Trump’s operating procedure for decades.

  65. says

    You ignored the main point–that the worst case would have been for this bomb to be leaked on Friday or Monday, and leaked in such a way that exaggerated its significance. FWIW, I don’t agree with the way Comey handled the issue, but I do see that the way it was handled is not the worst way it could have been handled.

    Nothing you say in the paragraphs previous to this one is relevant to the question under discussion. As I said above, the one arguably reasonable justification for Comey taking action was a problem at the FBI in which rogue agents who aren’t authorized to make such a decision (and have been explicitly informed that it’s against policy) would be expected to leak the information prior to election day for political purposes. That’s a serious problem in the organization. Even then, though, Comey would be giving in to political pressure rather than confronting the problem within and without the FBI; there’s no justification for portraying his letter as doing Clinton a favor by violating protocol or fulfilling some nonexistent duty to inform the public. And that’s aside from the problems with the content of the letter itself.

    At this point, “the rigged system” is the only “message” Drumpf has. It was actually having an effect. This does not support that narrative, and it has thrown him “off message”.

    And onto a new and better message: that she’s always been a criminal, this new information proves it, and she’s now likely to be prosecuted. It doesn’t matter that none of it is based in fact – Comey opened the door to it, and had to have foreknowledge that this would be a consequence of his act.

  66. a_ray_in_dilbert_space says


    Nowhere do I imply that Comey was doing a favor for the Clinton campaign. He is merely trying to limit damage resulting from a cluster coitus. Do you dispute that had he waited and had the news of the new emails been leaked with selective spin and out of context on the Friday before the election, HRC’s campaign would have been worse off?

    All a rogue agent would have to do is get the info to Wikileaks…or the Russians…or any of a number of other outlets. No fingerprints. No real facts. Just spin. And only 2-3 days to make sense of it while at the same time being accused of a coverup.

    Drumpf has been saying “Lock her up” since day one.

    All I am saying is that one need not assume malice by Comey in this. What he did may have been a mistake. I think it was. However, he did not have any good options in this.

  67. says

    E. J. Dionne at WaPo:

    The evidence suggests that FBI Director James B. Comey is a decent man. The evidence also suggests that he has been intimidated by pressure from Republicans in Congress whose interest is not in justice but in destroying Hillary Clinton.

    On Friday, a whipsawed Comey gave in. Breaking with FBI precedent and Justice Department practice, he weighed in on one side of a presidential campaign.

    I don’t believe this was his intention. But his vaguely worded letter to Congress announcing that the FBI was examining emails on a computer used by Clinton aide Huma Abedin accomplished the central goals of the right-wing critics Comey has been trying to get off his back.

    Especially disturbing is that some of those critics are inside the FBI. As The Post’s Sari Horwitz reported on Saturday, “a largely conservative investigative corps” in the bureau was “complaining privately that Comey should have tried harder to make a case” against Clinton.

    For a major law-enforcement institution to be so politicized and biased against one party would be a genuine scandal. If Comey acted in part out of fear that his agents would leak against him, it would reflect profound dysfunction within the FBI.

    Amazingly, a Trump surrogate just suggested as much – about partisan FBI people – on MSNBC. Dionne continues later:

    One measure of the damage Comey has done to his reputation is the praise Donald Trump showered upon him after months of trashing the director for not recommending Clinton’s indictment. Winning favor from a politician who has described how he would use the government’s instruments to punish his enemies is not something a professional like Comey should ever be proud of.

    Correct. He concludes:

    History shows that appeasing bullies never works. Maybe Comey has learned this lesson and will try to make amends in coming days.

    As for the voters, my hope is that they reject this perversion of justice all the way down the ballot.

  68. says

    Hillary Clinton made a few more comments today in reference to Director Comey’s letter about emails on Anthony Weiner’s laptop. At a rally in Ohio, Clinton said:

    […] I am sure a lot of you may be asking what this new email story is about and why in the world the FBI would decide to jump into an election with no evidence of any wrong doing. And with just days to go. That is a good question.

    First of all, for those of you who are concerned about my use of personal email, I understand. As I said, I’m not making excuses, I understand and I regret it. They should look at them. And I’m sure they will reach the same conclusion they did when they looked at my emails for the last year. There is no case here. […]

    Talking Points Memo link

  69. says

    Rightwing media outlets and Trump supporters are sharing and commenting on a photo that purportedly shows an ICE agent arresting an undocumented immigrant in a line of people waiting to vote. Voter fraud! Hair on fire!

    Nope. The image is fake.

    […] Intended to scare Latino voters from going to the voting booth, the image in the tweet is actually two separate photos stitched together to concoct a completely false story. One photo, used widely by other media outlets like the Wall Street Journal, is from a primary voting location in Arizona from March. The other photo can be found on Wikimedia Commons, according to ProPublica and Univision, which first reported the image composite. […]

    Think Progress link

  70. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    All I am saying is that one need not assume malice by Comey in this. What he did may have been a mistake. I think it was. However, he did not have any good options in this.

    Actually, he did have a good option. Not announce it on a Friday. He could have held off until Monday. The warrant to look at the e-mails was not procured until yesterday. A quick peek could see the nature of the e-mails.
    Personally, I think Comey should be investigated under the Hatch Act.

  71. says

    Nowhere do I imply that Comey was doing a favor for the Clinton campaign.

    Lizza argued it. It was the major point of his article. I quoted him saying it above. The title of his piece is “If Hillary Wins, She’ll Be Grateful for Comey’s Move.”

    Do you dispute that had he waited and had the news of the new emails been leaked with selective spin and out of context on the Friday before the election, HRC’s campaign would have been worse off?

    See the article by Dionne I just quoted from. Also, the news of the new emails was in fact leaked with selective spin, by Jason Chaffetz.

    All a rogue agent would have to do is get the info to Wikileaks…or the Russians…or any of a number of other outlets. No fingerprints. No real facts. Just spin. And only 2-3 days to make sense of it while at the same time being accused of a coverup.

    Comey wouldn’t have to “make sense of it.” He could say that in accordance with longstanding agency protocol he’s prevented from releasing information about investigations. That’s it, and he’s adhered to that policy concerning the Russia/Trump campaign investigation, which is far more serious than this concocted bullshit. Then all people would have had a leaked allegation from an unnamed source, with no way of knowing the source’s credibility or any details. Very different situation.

    In any case, I quoted the specific arguments Lizza made about “isn’t it better for the public to be as informed as possible” and argued with them, but you don’t seem interested in addressing that at all.

  72. says

    According to Pat Robertson, God made Comey do it.

    […] Robertson, a Trump supporter, said that God was at work in Comey’s announcement: “It looks like God did something amazing!” […]


  73. says

    All I am saying is that one need not assume malice by Comey in this. What he did may have been a mistake. I think it was.

    Where has anyone here assumed malice? I’ve suggested several times that I think he was played by Chaffetz and his fellow goons, Trump, and now apparently some FBI agents. My most generous interpretation is that his concern with protecting his own image and the FBI’s in the face of relentless hammering by Republican partisans has led him to make serious mistakes.

  74. says

    Trump has noticed Evan McMullin several times. He noted that Mcmullen might cost him the state of Utah.

    Trump has some backup from white nationalists who paid for a robocall to Utahans. The robocall claims that McMullin is gay.

    Prominent white nationalist William Johnson, an ardent supporter of Donald Trump’s campaign […] has paid for a new robocall targeting #NeverTrump independent candidate Evan McMullin in Utah. […]

    “Hello, My name is William Johnson,” the audio recording begins. “I am a farmer and a white nationalist. I make this call against Evan McMullin and in support of Donald Trump.

    “Evan McMullin is an open borders, amnesty supporter.

    “Evan has two mommies. His mother is a lesbian, married to another woman. Evan is okay with that. Indeed Evan supports the Supreme Court ruling legalizing gay marriage.

    “Evan is over 40 years old and is not married and doesn’t even have a girlfriend. I believe Evan is a closet homosexual. […]

    Daily Beast link

    In addition to the inaccurate, supposed slur accusing McMullin of being gay, the robot call contains other inaccuracies.

  75. says

    Eric Holder on Comey:

    …I am deeply concerned about FBI Director James B. Comey’s decision to write a vague letter to Congress about emails potentially connected to a matter of public, and political, interest. That decision was incorrect. It violated long-standing Justice Department policies and tradition. And it ran counter to guidance that I put in place four years ago laying out the proper way to conduct investigations during an election season. That guidance, which reinforced established policy, is still in effect and applies to the entire Justice Department — including the FBI.

    The department has a practice of not commenting on ongoing investigations. Indeed, except in exceptional circumstances, the department will not even acknowledge the existence of an investigation. The department also has a policy of not taking unnecessary action close in time to Election Day that might influence an election’s outcome. These rules have been followed during Republican and Democratic administrations. They aren’t designed to help any particular individual or to serve any political interest. Instead, they are intended to ensure that every investigation proceeds fairly and judiciously; to maintain the public trust in the department’s ability to do its job free of political influence; and to prevent investigations from unfairly or unintentionally casting public suspicion on public officials who have done nothing wrong.

    Director Comey broke with these fundamental principles. I fear he has unintentionally and negatively affected public trust in both the Justice Department and the FBI. And he has allowed — again without improper motive — misinformation to be spread by partisans with less pure intentions….

  76. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Democrats are suing the Trump campaign for voter suppression in four states.

    10/31 1:53 p.m.: Dems sue Trump campaign over alleged voter intimidation in four states
    Democrats are suing the Trump campaign, Trump ally Roger Stone, and four state Republican parties, alleging illegal voter intimidation.
    The four lawsuits, filed Monday, charge that state parties in Arizona, Nevada, Ohio and Pennsylvania are teaming up with the Trump campaign and Stone to raise unfounded fears about voter fraud and intimidate minority voters. The lawsuits cite the Voting Rights Act and the Ku Klux Klan Act, which aim to prevent voter intimidation.
    “The campaign of Donald J. Trump, Trump’s close advisor Roger J. Stone, Jr., Stone’s organization Stop the Steal Inc., the Nevada Republican Party (“NRP”), and others are conspiring to threaten, intimidate, and thereby prevent minority voters in urban neighborhoods from voting in the 2016 election,” the Nevada complaint alleges.
    The suits ask the judges to bar activities that could lead to voter intimidation.
    Trump has numerous times talked about the threat of voter fraud, and has urged his supporters to closely monitor voting in “certain areas”—widely understood as a reference to minority neighborhoods. He has sometimes singled out Pennsylvania as a likely location for fraud.
    The Trump campaign did not immediately respond to a request for comment. An email sent to an address provided on the website for Stone’s Stop the Steal was not immediately returned.
    Trump has offered no evidence that such fraud is occurring, and experts say voter impersonation fraud is extremely rare.
    Stone, a controversial Trump supporter and one-time adviser, is reportedly organizing a volunteer “exit polling” operation that would take place in minority areas across the country.
    Marc Elias, the lead lawyer on the lawsuits, is a top lawyer for the Hillary Clinton campaign.
    Rick Hasen, a leading election law scholar, wrote Monday: “It is not clear that a court would issue a vague order to stop ‘voter intimidation,’ as requested in the relief in these suits (as that term would be vague and difficult to enforce). But the suits will first bring publicity to the activities, and second get these parties on record stating that they do not plan on engaging in voter intimidation, which itself could be useful in the event of problems on election day.

  77. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    One poll shows no effect of Comey’s disclosure on the election.

    Hillary Clinton’s 6-point national lead over Donald Trump remains virtually unchanged since last week, even after FBI Director James Comey announced the discovery of emails that could be “pertinent” to the investigation of Clinton’s use of a private email server.
    The NBC News|SurveyMonkey Weekly Election Tracking Poll showed Clinton with a 6-point lead over Trump in the days prior to the Comey news. When looking at the data for Saturday and Sunday only, her lead remained the same — 47 percent to Trump’s 41 percent. The poll was conducted online from October 24 through October 30. Questions about Comey’s announcement were included on October 29 and October 30.

    The disclosure won’t change our votes, as they were mailed in three weeks ago.

  78. says

    The ACLU has filed a complaint against an Arizona public charter school. A teacher at the Academy of Excellence in Phoenix has allegedly harassed a Muslim student, saying at one point:

    […] I can’t wait until Trump is elected. He’s going to deport all you Muslims. Muslims shouldn’t be given visas. They’ll probably take away your visa and deport you. You’re going to be the next terrorist, I bet. […]


  79. says

    Donald Trump is a hypocrite. Bigly.

    […] Donald Trump’s companies have systematically destroyed or hidden thousands of emails, digital records and paper documents demanded in official proceedings, often in defiance of court orders. These tactics—exposed by a Newsweek review of thousands of pages of court filings, judicial orders and affidavits from an array of court cases—have enraged judges, prosecutors, opposing lawyers and the many ordinary citizens entangled in litigation with Trump. […]

    Newsweek link

  80. says

    Whoa – from Franklin Foer (I recommend reading the whole thing):

    …The researchers quickly dismissed their initial fear that the logs represented a malware attack. The communication wasn’t the work of bots. The irregular pattern of server lookups actually resembled the pattern of human conversation—conversations that began during office hours in New York and continued during office hours in Moscow. It dawned on the researchers that this wasn’t an attack, but a sustained relationship between a server registered to the Trump organization and two servers registered to an entity called Alfa Bank.

    …When the researchers pinged the server, they received error messages. They concluded that the server was set to accept only incoming communication from a very small handful of IP addresses….

    …Eighty-seven percent of the DNS lookups involved the two Alfa Bank servers. “It’s pretty clear that it’s not an open mail server,” Jean Camp told me. “These organizations are communicating in a way designed to block other people out.”

    Earlier this month, the group of computer scientists passed the logs to Paul Vixie. In the world of DNS experts, there’s no higher authority. Vixie wrote central strands of the DNS code that makes the Internet work. After studying the logs, he concluded, “The parties were communicating in a secretive fashion. The operative word is secretive. This is more akin to what criminal syndicates do if they are putting together a project.” Put differently, the logs suggested that Trump and Alfa had configured something like a digital hotline connecting the two entities, shutting out the rest of the world, and designed to obscure its own existence….

    …“It’s the inter packet gap, the spacing between the conversations, the total volume. If you look at those time stamps, they are not simulated. This bears every indication that it was collected from a live link.” I asked him if there was a chance that he was wrong about their authenticity. “This passes the reasonable person test,” he told me. “No reasonable person would come to the conclusion other than the one I’ve come to.” Others were equally emphatic. “It would be really, really hard to fake these,” Christopher Davis said. According to Jean Camp, “When the technical community examined the data, the conclusion was pretty obvious.”

    Tea Leaves and his colleagues plotted the data from the logs on a timeline. What it illustrated was suggestive: The conversation between the Trump and Alfa servers appeared to follow the contours of political happenings in the United States….

    … The computer scientists believe there was one logical conclusion to be drawn: The Trump organization shut down the server after Alfa was told that the Times might expose the connection….

    Four days later, on September 27, the Trump organization created a new host name…which enabled communication to the very same server via a different route….

    …Soon after the New York Times began to ask questions, the traffic between the servers stopped cold.

    What the scientists amassed wasn’t isn’t a smoking gun. It’s a suggestive body of evidence that doesn’t absolutely preclude alternative explanations. But this evidence arrives in the broader context of the campaign and everything else that has come to light: The efforts of Donald Trump’s former campaign manager to bring Ukraine into Vladimir Putin’s orbit; the other Trump advisor whose communications with senior Russian officials have worried intelligence officials; the Russian hacking of the DNC and John Podesta’s email.

    We don’t yet know what this server was for, but it deserves further explanation.

  81. says

    From NBC News:

    The FBI has been conducting a preliminary inquiry into Donald Trump’s former campaign manager Paul Manafort’s foreign business connections, law enforcement and intelligence sources told NBC News Monday.

    Word of the inquiry, which has not blossomed into a full-blown criminal investigation, comes just days after FBI Director James Comey’s disclosure that his agency is examining a new batch of emails connected to an aide to Hillary Clinton.

    And it comes a day after Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid criticized Comey’s revelation and asserted that Comey possesses “explosive information about close ties and coordination between Donald Trump, his top advisors, and the Russian government.”…

  82. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Just checked on-line with the county clerks office, and both our mail ballots were received and recorded on 10/19. Our votes count.

  83. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Just to provide context for my #109, the Redhead got a call this afternoon saying we hadn’t voted. I thought I had better check it out.

  84. says

    This is a very interesting article, which accords with my previous suspicions. It also appears, on the surface at least, to be an interesting piece of political science research (I admit I have a liking for maps):

    …President Obama was drawing on a common wisdom that had been making the rounds among pundits from David Brooks on the right to Thomas Frank on the left. According to this narrative, the frustration of Americans living in post-industrial heartland towns led them to ignore their economic interests and embrace the cultural conservatism offered by the GOP.

    This narrative started with the stark red and blue maps of counties and congressional districts that began to appear every other November since 2000. The maps seemed to reveal “two Americas.” Blue America, according to Brooks, was located “around big cities on the coasts,” while people in Red America “tend to live on farms or in small towns or small cities far away from the coasts.”

    This understanding of the Democrats as the party of metropolitan America and the Republicans as the party of smaller post-industrial cities and towns is deeply ingrained in the American political discourse, and has shaped many analyses of the upcoming presidential election.

    It is also completely wrong.

    …[W]e have gazed for too long at election-night maps of counties or congressional districts that lacked sufficient granularity to differentiate between towns and their surrounding suburbs and rural peripheries. We also obsess over polls that lead us to assess categories like “low-education non-metropolitan whites,” blinding us to the difference between deep-blue Johnstown, Pa., for instance, and the red county of Cambria in which it is located.

    The distinction between industrial towns and their surrounding rural peripheries is especially important in the 2016 presidential election. The Republican presidential candidate has adopted a nativist, anti-trade platform that seems explicitly tailored not only to white rural voters — who have been voting reliably Republican for years — but also to white voters in post-industrial towns who have been voting overwhelmingly Democratic for decades. This strategy is based on the notion that Obama’s description of “anti-immigrant” and “anti-trade” sentiment among small-town voters was correct.

    Given his difficulties among educated voters — especially women — in large metropolitan areas, victory for the Republican candidate seems to require a major transformation of the maps displayed above, such that deep-blue industrial towns begin to resemble their Republican rural surroundings….

  85. says

    Boo! – David Corn at Mother Jones:

    …a former senior intelligence officer for a Western country who specialized in Russian counterintelligence tells Mother Jones that in recent months he provided the bureau with memos, based on his recent interactions with Russian sources, contending the Russian government has for years tried to co-opt and assist Trump—and that the FBI requested more information from him.

    …”It started off as a fairly general inquiry,” says the former spook, who asks not to be identified. But when he dug into Trump, he notes, he came across troubling information indicating connections between Trump and the Russian government. According to his sources, he says, “there was an established exchange of information between the Trump campaign and the Kremlin of mutual benefit.”

    Mother Jones has reviewed that report and other memos this former spy wrote. The first memo, based on the former intelligence officer’s conversations with Russian sources, noted, “Russian regime has been cultivating, supporting and assisting TRUMP for at least 5 years. Aim, endorsed by PUTIN, has been to encourage splits and divisions in western alliance.” It maintained that Trump “and his inner circle have accepted a regular flow of intelligence from the Kremlin, including on his Democratic and other political rivals.” It claimed that Russian intelligence had “compromised” Trump during his visits to Moscow and could “blackmail him.” It also reported that Russian intelligence had compiled a dossier on Hillary Clinton based on “bugged conversations she had on various visits to Russia and intercepted phone calls.”

    “This is something of huge significance, way above party politics,” the former intelligence officer comments. “I think [Trump’s] own party should be aware of this stuff as well.”

    There’s no way to tell whether the FBI has confirmed or debunked any of the allegations contained in the former spy’s memos. But a Russian intelligence attempt to co-opt or cultivate a presidential candidate would mark an even more serious operation than the hacking.

    In the letter Reid sent to Comey on Sunday, he pointed out that months ago he had asked the FBI director to release information on Trump’s possible Russia ties. Since then, according to a Reid spokesman, Reid has been briefed several times. The spokesman adds, “He is confident that he knows enough to be extremely alarmed.”

  86. says

    Meanwhile, in other leaks and dueling news outfits,…:

    …F.B.I. officials declined to comment on Monday. Intelligence officials have said in interviews over the last six weeks that apparent connections between some of Mr. Trump’s aides and Moscow originally compelled them to open a broad investigation into possible links between the Russian government and the Republican presidential candidate. Still, they have said that Mr. Trump himself has not become a target. And no evidence has emerged that would link him or anyone else in his business or political circle directly to Russia’s election operations.

    F.B.I. officials spent weeks examining computer data showing an odd stream of activity to a Trump Organization server and Alfa Bank. Computer logs obtained by The New York Times show that two servers at Alfa Bank sent more than 2,700 “look-up” messages — a first step for one system’s computers to talk to another — to a Trump-connected server beginning in the spring. But the F.B.I. ultimately concluded that there could be an innocuous explanation, like a marketing email or spam, for the computer contacts.

    The most serious part of the F.B.I.’s investigation has focused on the computer hacks that the Obama administration now formally blames on Russia. That investigation also involves numerous officials from the intelligence agencies. Investigators, the officials said, have become increasingly confident, based on the evidence they have uncovered, that Russia’s direct goal is not to support the election of Mr. Trump, as many Democrats have asserted, but rather to disrupt the integrity of the political system and undermine America’s standing in the world more broadly….

    The last sentence is interesting.

  87. says

    “Donald Trump Used Legally Dubious Method to Avoid Paying Taxes”:

    …Newly obtained documents show that in the early 1990s, as he scrambled to stave off financial ruin, Mr. Trump avoided reporting hundreds of millions of dollars in taxable income by using a tax avoidance maneuver so legally dubious his own lawyers advised him that the Internal Revenue Service would most likely declare it improper if he were audited.

    Thanks to this one maneuver, which was later outlawed by Congress, Mr. Trump potentially escaped paying tens of millions of dollars in federal personal income taxes….

    Tax experts who reviewed the newly obtained documents for The New York Times said Mr. Trump’s tax avoidance maneuver, conjured from ambiguous provisions of highly technical tax court rulings, clearly pushed the edge of the envelope of what tax laws permitted at the time.

    Moreover, the tax experts said the maneuver trampled a core tenet of American tax policy by conferring enormous tax benefits on Mr. Trump for losing vast amounts of other people’s money — in this case, money investors and banks had entrusted to him to build a casino empire in Atlantic City.

    “He deducted somebody else’s losses,” Mr. Buckley said. By that, Mr. Buckley meant that only the bondholders who forgave Mr. Trump’s unpaid casino debts should have been allowed to use those losses to offset future income and reduce their taxes. That Mr. Trump used the same losses to reduce his taxes ultimately increases the tax burden on everyone else, Mr. Buckley explained. “He is double dipping big time.”

    In any event, Mr. Trump can no longer benefit from the same maneuver. Just as Congress acted in 1993 to ban stock-for-debt swaps by corporations, it acted in 2004 to ban equity-for-debt swaps by partnerships.

    Among the members of Congress who voted to finally close the loophole: Senator Hillary Clinton of New York.

  88. tomh says

    One of the better takes on the Comey debacle is a column by Paul Krugman, in the NYT, Working the Refs.

    “…the best guess is that Mr. Comey, like many others — media organizations, would-be nonpartisan advocacy groups, and more — let himself be bullied by the usual suspects. Working the refs — screaming about bias and unfair treatment, no matter how favorable the treatment actually is — has been a consistent, long-term political strategy on the right. And the reason it keeps happening is because it so often works.”

  89. says

    Josh Marshall:

    …Think of it this way.

    If Trump is advocating for Russia in the US political arena (he is), and Russia is conducting an espionage and disruption campaign on Trump’s behalf in the US political area (highly likely), do I need to know if they’re actually talking to each other while both these things are happening? I’m not sure I do.

    Isn’t this a much bigger deal than it has been made out to be?

    If they are, if Russia has coopted or cultivated or compromised Trump that is a threat of the highest order. I can’t go on the word of an unnamed retired spy whose identity we don’t know, whose motives we can’t interrogate and whose evidence we can’t see. But I don’t think I need additional evidence. What’s been in plain sight for weeks, actually months, is more than enough to ring every alarm bell. And yet, with all the hints and arch remarks about Russia, the alarms have barely been rung.

  90. says

    Interesting article in The Atlantic about Putin’s efforts in support of far-Right parties and movements in “the West.”

    …We are now witnessing a curious phenomenon: The resurgent far-right parties in numerous Western countries, which harp incessantly on the sovereignty, independence, and world-historical uniqueness of whichever country they happen to live in, have self-organized into a transnational alt-right “comintern” that appears to be more effective than the leftist comintern of the Soviet era. No doubt this development was inevitable in the age of digital communication, but it has undeniably received a boost from the Kremlin. It also bears emphasis not only that Russia is attempting to influence politics in Western nations, but that this influence comes prepackaged with a specific ideological content….

    It goes further than most in providing historical context, but provides little in the way of an analysis of the US government’s decades of global meddling – from the Cold War through today – in support of amenable rightwing groups and parties, including through (this same sort of) propaganda, promoting political and economic destabilization, and sponsoring coups against democratically elected governments (especially in Latin America and the Caribbean, but elsewhere as well).

  91. Owlmirror says

    It’s already been pointed out that Trump’s joke about Melania’s speech having been plagiarized was plagiarized, but I found that the original cartoonist had a wry comment:

    “If I write a good joke in July that puts words in Donald Trump’s mouth and then draw it up in a cartoon, everybody loves it. It’s fantastic. They think it’s absolutely great. Donald Trump tells the exact same joke in October and people get on his case, and I don’t get it! I don’t know why. It wasn’t his fault those words came out of his mouth.”

    — R.J. Matson

    Very meta.

  92. says

    Several people are calling the Foer story into question (or rejecting the claims altogether). I know about as little about this field as it’s possible to know, so I have no independent basis for judgment.

    The argument in the last sentence I quoted of the NYT article @ #114 above is the same as I was making here a few weeks ago (although I talked about some other purposes as well). In any event, I agree with what Marshall said (quoted @ #117 above).

    Here’s a recent article about relationships between the Kremlin and far-Right movements in the US independent of the Trump campaign.* Some of the links drawn are tenuous, but it sketches out an overall picture of a US Right embracing Putin directly or through European ultra-nationalism. The article concludes: “A ‘Traditionalist International’ may not rise within the immediate future, but the mutual support between the Kremlin and the American far-right will outlive this campaign and, if current trends hold, will only expand over the foreseeable future.”

    * I should add that, as I discussed in the other thread I just linked to, US and European intelligence agencies are playing their own disinformation and propaganda game. All articles on this subject should be read with skepticism.

  93. says

    I don’t think there’s enough time between now and the election to really sort through all of the Trump-Russia connections, nor the rightwing-Russia connections. I see the smoking gun (guns), but doubt that the inquiries will be turned into coherent narratives that the public and the pundits can adequately digest.

    We also have plenty of detail regarding Trump organizations deleting emails and/or shredding documents, but we don’t yet have the sound-bite version that might be able to influence the voting public.

  94. says

    Interesting analysis from Steve Benen of Trump’s tendency to project all of his faults onto other people:

    […] Trump decided it’s time to project one of his faults onto his opponent. People think he’d be an awful role model for kids? Fine, Trump says, Clinton is actually setting a terrible example for children.

    This keeps happening. As we talked about a month ago, after Clinton accused Trump of being unstable and reckless, Trump said Clinton is “unstable” and “reckless.” When Clinton accused Trump of being a “puppet” for his allies in Moscow, Trump responded, “You’re the puppet. You’re the puppet.”

    Trump has accused Clinton of being “filthy rich,” despite his vast wealth. He’s accused her of mistreating women, despite his alleged sexual misconduct towards many women. Trump’s accused Clinton of corruption, despite his lengthy record of corruption.

    Trump has accused Clinton of being a “bigot,” despite his overt racism. Trump has questioned Clinton’s “temperament,” despite his erratic and alarming behavior.

    Were it not for projection, I’m not sure Trump would have much of anything to say at his campaign rallies at this point.

  95. says

    Here’s a summary of the controversies surrounding Trump’s ties to Russia. The article is by Steve Benen:

    […] Controversy #1: FBI scrutiny of Russian hacking

    […] there’s some evidence that the FBI recently reached an important conclusion: Russian hackers did, in fact, steal Democratic materials in the hopes of helping Trump win the U.S. presidential election. The FBI didn’t tell the public, however, because Director James Comey believed the revelations came too close to Election Day (a concern he didn’t apply to the Democratic candidate for reasons that are unclear).

    Controversy #2: FBI takes an interest in Trump’s former campaign chairman

    NBC News reported late yesterday that the FBI “has been conducting a preliminary inquiry into Donald Trump’s former campaign manager Paul Manafort’s foreign business connections,” including connections in Russia and Putin’s allies in Ukraine. Manafort has denied any wrongdoing.

    Controversy #3: The Trump Organization’s server

    Franklin Foer published a piece in Slate on the findings of computer scientists, who found something unexpected: the Trump Organization had a server that had a series of suspicious, exclusive transmissions with a Russian bank operated by Putin’s oligarch allies. When a reporter began inquiring about the connection, the transmissions stopped without explanation. (see SC’s post #107)

    Controversy #4: David Corn’s foreign source

    Mother Jones’ David Corn reported late yesterday that “a former senior intelligence officer for a Western country who specialized in Russian counterintelligence” told him a doozy of a story: the unnamed officer says he provided the FBI with “memos, based on his recent interactions with Russian sources, contending the Russian government has for years tried to co-opt and assist” Donald Trump. The report added that the FBI “requested more information from him.”

    […] The New York Times, for example, reports today that the FBI has scrutinized the Republican team’s connections to Russia, and at least for now, “none of the investigations … found any conclusive or direct link between Mr. Trump and the Russian government.”

    Of course, given the broader circumstances, we don’t know who’s responsible for leaking this to the Times or what political motivations may be at play.

    Whether anything will come of these allegations is unclear, and it’s entirely possible that we’re looking at smoke without a fire. But the allegations themselves are nevertheless serious and worth exploring in the campaign’s final week.

  96. says

    Compared to the hundreds of newspaper endorsements for Hillary Clinton, Donald Trump has very few. However, he can now add one more to his paltry total. “The Crusader,” which is the self-proclaimed “Political Voice of White Christian America!”, has endorsed Donald Trump.

    “The Crusader” is the official newspaper of the KKK. The newspaper has lauded Trump for months, but now they have issued a formal endorsement of Trump for president.
    Daily Kos link

    Rachel Maddow also covered this endorsement on her show last night.

  97. Saad says

    SC, #122

    Three US Senators have now said they would block any Clinton Supreme Court nominations.

    LOL, without even seeing who the nominee is. They sure are working for the good of the country. What a bunch of assholes.

    Yet another example of the unjustifiable levels of job security these people have. Imagine making an analogous statement in any other important, specialized field of work.

  98. says

    Donald Trump seems to be cheering for ISIS.

    Here’s what Pentagon official say:

    Pentagon officials said Monday that the campaign to reclaim Mosul was proceeding as planned and that so far anti-ISIS forces in Iraq are succeeding in their fight against the terror group.

    Here’s what Trump has to say:

    For weeks, Trump has lambasted the coalition effort to re-capture the city of Mosul from ISIS, calling the undertaking a “total disaster” and saying the US and its allies were “bogged-down” there even as defense officials say they are encouraged by the progress being made.

    CNN link

  99. says

    Excerpt from Keith Olbermann’s presentation (link in comment 130):

    […] Comey either knowingly tried to tamper with a presidential election, 11 days out, on a hint of a possibility of a rumor of an inference of a chance of Clinton emails that reportedly aren’t from Clinton and aren’t to Clinton, which his bureau had not bothered to tell him about nor gotten a warrant for until last night — OR — James B Comey had no idea that his statement would impact a presidential election in such a way that there would not be a chance to disprove the negative he threw against the wall like the shit, […]

    Comey is merely criminally stupid. A man who did not foresee that his actions were the equivalent of crying “fire” in a theater, without saying which theater he means and with no evidence that there is any fire anywhere.

    […] this is far worse than just an FBI Director swinging the mighty weight of his Bureau against one presidential candidate while refusing to confirm that the Bureau is even investigating the other presidential candidate and his staff, and his former staff, for it’s manifestly obvious ties to Russian propaganda and disinformation.

    Far worse than that.

    The actions of the Chairman of the United States House of Representatives Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, before and after Comey’s letter, imply either collusion or guesswork on the part of the Chairman that rises to the level of extra-sensory perception.

    Because on Friday, on Saturday, yesterday and even this morning, the timeline of how that Chairman, Mr. Chaffetz of Utah, former wrinkle-cream spokesman, came to know about the investigation has been almost utterly ignored, and that timeline is at best disturbing.

    On the night of Friday, October 7th, hours after the release of the Access Hollywood tape of Donald Trump boasting about his preferred methods for sexual assault, Representative Chaffetz spoke of his fifteen year old daughter.

    Quote: “Do you think I can look her in the eye and tell her that I endorsed Donald Trump for president when he acts like this? And his apology? That was no apology. That was an apology for getting caught. So I’m not gonna put my good name and my reputation and my family behind Donald Trump for president when he acts like this. I just can’t do it.”

    The morality of Chairman Chaffetz lasted exactly 19 days. […]

  100. says

    Libby Nelson, writing for Vox highlighted the fact that Trump supporters are hostile toward women.

    […] Wayne, Valentino, and Oceno’s research, conducted in June, found hostility toward women was a major factor, predicting support for Trump more strongly than authoritarian attitudes and about as well as racial prejudice. The political scientists used a four-question survey to determine sexist attitudes, asking if people agreed with the following statements:

    Most women interpret innocent remarks or acts as being sexist.

    Many women are actually seeking special favors, such as hiring policies that favor women over men, under the guise of asking for equality. […]

    Feminists are making entirely reasonable demands of men.

    The survey also asked how strongly respondents supported Clinton or Trump. The higher they were on the sexism scale, the more likely they were to support Trump and the less likely they were to support Clinton. Hostile sexism was nearly as good at predicting support for Trump as party identification was. […]

  101. says

    Wonkette’s coverage is amusing as always, and on point: FBI Sure Managed To Light A Fire Under Its Ass To Clear Donald Trump Of All Crimes Past, Present And Future

    […] When all this Trumpchurian Candidate hullaballoo came out yesterday, the FBI managed to light a fire under its ass and clear Donald Trump of all possible wrongdoing, and even unwittingly being a dupe of Putin, within like 20 minutes. And you’ll never guess whose pen they guided, it is the august New York Times!

    Reporter Eric Lichtblau, according to the Slate server piece, had also been working the story of the server. Maybe he got scooped! Maybe he decided there was no there there! And yet, this was the same Eric Lichtblau who just a few weeks ago earned Wonkette’s unending admiration for his magnificent expose “How Is The Clinton Foundation Raping Puppies Today?”

    In that masterpiece, Lichtblau poses the headline just-asking beaut, “Emails Raise New Questions About Clinton Foundation Ties To State Dept.” It went a little something like this:

    WASHINGTON — A top aide to Hillary Clinton at the State Department agreed to try to obtain a special diplomatic passport for an adviser to former President Bill Clinton in 2009, according to emails released Thursday, raising new questions about whether people tied to the Clinton Foundation received special access at the department.

    My goodness, that top aide, all that collusive-y wrongdoing, she gets to go to the top of the story! Oh, but read on, and you learn the adviser was joining Bill Clinton on a trip to North Korea, to free our hostages, not “going to Cabo and partying and killing people or whatever, which would be a bad reason to get a diplomatic passport.”


    So what I am saying is “Eric Lichtblau sure knows how to make up a story about nothing when he wants to,” and also “fuck that guy.” […]

    Within hours of Franklin Foer’s piece at Slate and David Corn’s piece at Mother Jones, Lichtblau had managed to put the upstarts in their places, writing in a Voice of God style quoting “law enforcement officials” as arbiters of the fact that there was nothing to the server piece, and nothing to the Putin piece, and that even the investigation into the Russians hacking the DNC and Hillary Clinton campaign’s emails (along with a few state voting sites) had absolutely nothing to do with Mr. Donald J. Trump, they were just absolutely sure of it. Let’s have a sniff!

    Intelligence officials have said in interviews over the last six weeks that apparent connections between some of Mr. Trump’s aides and Moscow originally compelled them to open a broad investigation into possible links between the Russian government and the Republican presidential candidate. Still, they have said that Mr. Trump himself has not become a target. And no evidence has emerged that would link him or anyone else in his business or political circle directly to Russia’s election operations.

    NONE evidence??? Him or “anyone else” in his business or political circle? Not even Roger Stone […]

    Hmmm, maybe these FBI fellows aren’t that good at looking!

    Law enforcement officials say that none of the investigations so far have found any conclusive or direct link between Mr. Trump and the Russian government. And even the hacking into Democratic emails, F.B.I. and intelligence officials now believe, was aimed at disrupting the presidential election rather than electing Mr. Trump. […]

    One hacks and disrupts only one side of an electoral campaign in order to sow chaos and not because one is backing the fellow who wants to get rid of NATO for you, and also has a “disproportionate” number of his assets in Russia, and yet has “nothing to do with Russia,” and who has a great relationship with Putin, but also “no relationship” with Putin. What kind of crazy conspiracy theorist would think that?

    The excerpt is from a much longer article which is worth reading in its entirety.

  102. says

    This is a followup to comment 134.

    Let’s begin with NYT’s reporter Lichtblau’s method of dismissing the server story:

    F.B.I. officials spent weeks examining computer data showing an odd stream of activity to a Trump Organization server and Alfa Bank. Computer logs obtained by The New York Times show that two servers at Alfa Bank sent more than 2,700 “look-up” messages — a first step for one system’s computers to talk to another — to a Trump-connected server beginning in the spring. But the F.B.I. ultimately concluded that there could be an innocuous explanation, like a marketing email or spam, for the computer contacts.

    Here is Wonkette’s take on the explanation that all the traffic between the Trump organization server and the Russian bank server could have been spam.

    Sure, yes, absolutely, “it could be spam.” That only goes back and forth between two servers, until reporters ask about it, and then it stops and the server is renamed and it starts again. Sounds about right. […]

    Yes, that’s what I thought.

    It’s beginning to look more and more like the FBI feeds pro-Trump and anti-Clinton stories to Lichtblau.

  103. says

    Putin is trying to manipulate or control or join forces with other rightwing politicians. Take, for instance, Marine Le Pen:

    In an investigative piece from Raphaël Tresanini for Canal+’s Spécial Investigation followed the money trail from its recipient, the French far right Party Le Front National, to its donors, Russian Oligarchs. […]

    The way the French Far Right deals with questions about Putin reminded me of Trump… […]

    The report begins by showing Marine Le Pen praising Putin. She loves the man.

    In March 2014, she publicly accepted the results of the referendum on the return to Russia of Crimea (A.K.A the annexation)

    A few months later, Russian banks lent 11M euros to the FN. The first time in the French 5th Republic that a Political Party receives finances from a foreign country.

    It’s not only about money. There are also ideological convergences. Russians have a geopolitical project for Europe, including France.

    At the 15th congress of the Front National in the French city of Lyon in 2014, Marine Le Pen is elected president of the party getting 100% of the votes. […]

    More details here.

  104. says

    “For Helping Immigrants, Chobani’s Founder Draws Threats”*:

    By many measures, Chobani embodies the classic American immigrant success story.

    Its founder, Hamdi Ulukaya, is a Turkish immigrant of Kurdish descent. He bought a defunct yogurt factory in upstate New York, added a facility in Twin Falls, Idaho, and now employs about 2,000 people making Greek yogurt.

    But in this contentious election season, the extreme right has a problem with Chobani: In its view, too many of those employees are refugees.

    As Mr. Ulukaya has stepped up his advocacy — employing more than 300 refugees in his factories, starting a foundation to help migrants, and traveling to the Greek island of Lesbos to witness the crisis firsthand — he and his company have been targeted with racist attacks on social media and conspiratorial articles on websites including Breitbart News.

    Now there are calls to boycott Chobani. Mr. Ulukaya and the company have been taunted with racist epithets on Twitter and Facebook. Fringe websites have published false stories claiming Mr. Ulukaya wants “to drown the United States in Muslims.” And the mayor of Twin Falls has received death threats, partly as a result of his support for Chobani.

    …[T]this summer, Breitbart, the conservative news website whose former executive chairman, Stephen K. Bannon, is now running the Trump campaign, began publishing a series of misleading articles about Chobani.

    One drew a connection between Chobani’s hiring of refugees and a spike in tuberculosis cases in Idaho. Another linked Chobani to a “Twin Falls Crisis Imposed by Clinton-Era Pro-Refugee Advocates.” A third conflated Chobani’s hiring practices with a sexual assault case in Twin Falls involving minors.

    As Breitbart began publishing its articles, the online attacks grew more intense….

    Breitbart said it was simply covering the news.

    Mr. Ulukaya appears undeterred. Last month, he participated in a round-table discussion with President Obama and business leaders on how corporations could do more to help refugees.

    And his work with refugees is part of a broader suite of initiatives. He recently gave 10 percent of Chobani shares to his employees, and he is offering paid parental leave to all employees.

    “He’s the xenophobe’s nightmare,” Mr. Roth said. “Here’s an immigrant who isn’t competing for jobs, but is creating jobs big time. It runs completely counter to the far-right narrative.”

    * As an animal liberation advocate, I’m naturally not a fan of yogurt. I’m also not a fan of capitalism. That said, the article is about cruelty toward humans.

  105. says

    Some rightwing dunderheads know exactly what’s going wrong when it comes to Christian voters: liberals are using witchcraft to make Christian minds foggy. And liberals are acting in league with the devil. They are authorizing Satan to manifest. That’s what Lance Wallnau says.

    Wallnau also believes that Trump is the candidate that God is using to “destroy the demonic” stranglehold over America. But in the meantime, we have this noticeable and irritating brain fog that is affecting Christians:

    […] And what’s sad is, how many Christians feel this fog on their head at times? Do you feel that? It’s almost like everything’s going wrong. We don’t realize it’s a remnant operating strategically through organizations that are intent on shifting the American culture and discipling the country. And that fog that’s on Christians is the collective witchcraft that comes over the Body of Christ because there’s spirits being authorized to be released.

    Wherever there’s agreement, there’s power. The more unbelievers agree with the narrative that they’re hearing, the more power and authorization Satan has to manifest. So unless the church has an exposure of what the enemy’s doing and begins to agree together with a counter-strategy, we’re going to deal with more and more fog. And the worst part is—we don’t have to surrender nations to the devil. […]

  106. says

    Lynna @ #134, 135, and 137:

    On first reading I thought the Lichtblau piece might have been written in anger over Foer having scooped him. But it is strange how intent he is on dismissing any and all reports pointing to links. I’d forgotten or didn’t notice at the time that he wrote that earlier article about Clinton. It does seem plausible that the anti-Clinton contingent in the FBI would consider him reliable.

    The last sentence of his article in my quote is so interesting. As I said, it agrees substantively with my earlier conclusion – that Putin’s interests are something other than necessarily helping Trump get elected – but tries to present that as meaning Putin isn’t supporting and has no involvement with the Trump campaign. That doesn’t make sense. Putin’s efforts to destabilize democracy, promote allies and far-Right media operations in foreign countries, and expand the network of far-Right movements and parties in Europe, the US, and beyond are entirely consistent with supporting Trump’s campaign (and Bannon’s) and seeking to undermine Clinton’s support. And the available evidence – even setting aside the most recent allegations – points to that being what the Kremlin is up to.

    Two things: First, the Russian government’s criminal interference in the US election on Trump’s behalf and Trump’s unwavering deference to Putin are hugely politically important regardless of any direct links between Putin and the Trump campaign. Both should be receiving far more coverage. Second, links appear to exist.

    That article about the FN is very interesting. From the end:

    The 2nd MP then explains that Marine Le Pen herself may end up in trouble for being too naïve. He specifically says “She risks to be phagocytized” meaning she will progressively lose freedom of action and become Putin’s puppet….

    The report ends with the reporter attempting to get Marine Le Pen to say something about the phagocytize comment. She obviously had nothing to say. I personally won’t be surprised if one day the news says that Trump has been totally phagocytized by Putin.

    Far-Right MPs caught on a hot mic using obscure biological metaphors is an advertisement for the French educational system.

  107. says

    SC @140, yes “it is strange how intent he is on dismissing any and all reports pointing to links.” This doesn’t mean that Lichtblau is an FBI-leaker’s lapdog. I went too far in guessing about that connection. But when you look at the earlier, inaccurate hit piece he wrote about Clinton and compare that to the piece dismissing evidence (or implications) of a Trump-Russia connection, you see that Lichtblau is too malleable when it comes to presenting the facts. Lichtblau leans on the facts too hard in order to bend them to an unwarranted conclusion.

    Lichtblau seems like a good writer that is partially coopted by confirmation bias. The FBI would not trust him, but they would know him and his tendencies.

    I agree with you that Russian interference in the election, and the criminal hacking that is part of that, is the bigger story. Trump doesn’t see that story at all, apparently. And he, perhaps unwittingly, supports Putin’s plans.

    I see the FBI posted links to some previously unavailable documents related to an old investigation of Bill Clinton. That looks like bad timing for the Clintons and good timing for Trump.

    Wikileaks falsely claimed that the newly released documents were part of an investigation into the Clinton Foundation. That’s not true.

    FBI finally releases some records of its investigation into the Clinton Foundation

    Nope. Not accurate.

    From Brian Fallon:

    Absent a FOIA litigation deadline, this is odd. Will FBI be posting docs on Trump’s housing discrimination in ’70s?

    From Steven Portnoy we get a comment that may point to a way that Trump can use the newly released documents to say something like, “yeah, I evaded paying taxes, but Bill Clinton pardoned his donors that evaded taxes.”

    Today’s release of 2001-2005 FBI documents reminds us on his last day in office, Bill Clinton pardoned a donor indicted for tax evasion.

  108. says


    LOL, without even seeing who the nominee is. They sure are working for the good of the country. What a bunch of assholes.

    It’s unbelievable.

    “Clinton’s Supreme Nightmare Is GOP Blockade of Court Nominees”:

    There’s a potential nightmare for Hillary Clinton if she wins the presidency but Republicans hold onto control of the Senate — a blockade of her Supreme Court picks.

    That prospect — which could impact every aspect of American life including climate regulations, abortion and gun rights — was first raised by Senator John McCain of Arizona, then Ted Cruz of Texas and now Richard Burr of North Carolina, who CNN reported Monday talked up the idea at a private event over the weekend.

    “If Hillary Clinton becomes president, I am going to do everything I can do to make sure four years from now, we still got an opening on the Supreme Court,” Burr, chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, told a group of Republican volunteers, according to CNN.

    The idea of blocking Clinton’s court choices has been percolating for weeks.

    On Oct. 17, McCain told a radio station, “I promise you that we will be united against any Supreme Court nominee that Hillary Clinton, if she were president, would put up.” His office later backtracked, saying he would examine each nominee.

    Cruz took it a step further last Wednesday, telling reporters there “is certainly long historical precedent for a Supreme Court with fewer justices,” according to the Washington Post. “That’s a debate that we are going to have.”

    The same day, conservative legal scholar Ilya Shapiro of the Cato Institute said it plainly in a piece for titled, “The Senate Should Refuse to Confirm All of Hillary Clinton’s Judicial Nominees.”

    He argued that the Senate, which has total authority on whether to bring up nominations, “is fully within its powers to let the Supreme Court literally die out.”

    Shapiro is essentially advocating that one branch of government eliminate another. Very respectful of the Constitution.

  109. says

    I see the FBI posted links to some previously unavailable documents related to an old investigation of Bill Clinton.

    The FBI is leaking like a sieve, if different sections of the sieve were actively competing to leak the most.

  110. says

    Followup to comments 134, 135, 137, 140 and 142.

    After the fact, the New York Times attempted to soften the worst of the article by Lichtblau:

    […] The New York Times, meanwhile, quietly altered their story on Monday night adding the caveat “conclusive or direct” to a sentence that previously read “law enforcement officials say that none of the investigations so far have found any link between Mr. Trump and the Russian government.”

    Later, the headline was changed from “After Lengthy Inquiries, Officials Doubt Trump Has Direct Link to Russia” to something far less definitive “Investigating Donald Trump, F.B.I. Sees No Clear Link to Russia.”

  111. says

    This is an important read by Alison Turkos.

    I keep coming back to a segment on AM Joy this Saturday, especially when I’m watching pundits going on and on excitedly about polls maybe tightening and how this could possibly turn out to be the nail-biter they all seem to want. One of the guests (Maria Hinajosa?) was talking about how when she was growing up and George Wallace was running she and a Jewish friend were planning where they could hide together if he was elected. The prospect of a Trump presidency is terrifying for any of us in groups that he and his followers have targeted. (In the interview I just linked to above, Tony Schwartz says he and his family have a plan in place to leave the country if Trump is elected. Ana Navarro has said she’ll seek exile in that event. Most people don’t have the option of leaving or escaping the reach of a fascist presidency.) I want Trump to lose and to never again have to hear his bargain-basement surrogates claiming that none of this is really important to voters. Not having a misogynist and sexual predator, surrounded by a coterie of other misogynist extremists, promoting misogynistic policies and encouraging harassment of and violence against women is fucking important to me.

  112. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    NBC reality check on the presidential race. Some Higlights:

    There’s plenty of hand wringing and stomach churning in Democratic households this week as polls show the presidential race tightening in its final days — and the Hillary Clinton campaign is making a series of moves that some see as panicked desperation.
    A week out from the election, the campaign has started running ads in Colorado and Virginia, states it long ago felt comfortable leaving, and went on air for the first time in other, bluer states like New Mexico. …
    “Make no mistake, they are in panic,” Rush Limbaugh said on his radio show Monday.
    But the reality is that Clinton’s chances of winning 270 electoral votes have hardly changed from last week. While Democrats’ agitation is palpable, it’s driven more by anger than panic at what they see as unprecedented and appalling meddling by outside forces in the election.
    FiveThirtyEight’s election forecast still gives Clinton a 71 percent chance of winning, while the New York Times’ Upshot model gives her an 88 percent chance, and Princeton University’s model pegs her likelihood at 97 percent. …
    A panicking campaign would be moving money from one state to another, or pulling out of states entirely, but campaign officials say the blue state ads are more a product of surplus cash and a desire to help Democrats down-ballot.
    Clinton has not changed her travel schedule and will still head Wednesday to Arizona, a red state aides believe they have an even shot of winning.
    In the last 72 hours, the campaign raised $11.3 million in online donations, according to an aide, the most at any point since the Democratic National Convention….
    Robby Mook, Clinton’s Twitter-phobic campaign manager, just tweeted for the first time last week to deliver one simple message.
    “We’ve seen polls tighten since the third debate and we expect things to get even closer before Election Day,” he said two days before the campaign was blindsided by the Comey news.
    David Plouffe, the former Obama strategist, has become many Democrats’ anti-bed-wetter-in chief this cycle, with his reassuringly bullish projections of Clinton’s chances.
    “We saw in 2012 our leads after the Mitt Romney’s 47 percent moment got really large, but they were never going to stay that big and people panicked back then,” he said at the first Clinton-Trump debate, when Democrats were having an earlier bout of agita. “Democrats should focus on turning out the vote and turning off their computers.”
    On Sunday, Plouffe said he still thought Clinton was “rock solid” to garner over 300 electoral votes. …
    One Democratic nervous operative said he’s been trying to head the wise words of Luke Skywalker — or at least Mark Hamill the actor who played, him — who told followers: “Don’t panic — VOTE!”

    Scroll down for a view of the election map by zip code. The analysis in that segment is good.

  113. says

    Polling guy on Lawrence O’Donnell said that 28% of FL registered Republican early voters have voted for Clinton. If that’s true and continues, I will cry tears of joy.

  114. says

    Michael Isikoff has published video of Trump next to mob-linked Robert LiButti at a 1988 WrestleMania event. Earlier this year, Trump denied knowing LiButti in – as they note in the video report – strikingly similar terms to those he’s used when denying relationships with others, including Putin (the delusional inclusion of the claim that he was “very successfully” running the casinos is a nice touch).

    The LiButti relationship, covered in depth by David Cay Johnston in The Making of Donald Trump, perfectly encapsulates the different elements of Trump’s character and history: sleazy underworld dealings he lies about and denies, sexual predation, open discrimination against women and black people (for which his business was fined hundreds of thousands of dollars), reneging on business deals,…

  115. says

    In August, around the same time the decision was made to keep the Manafort investigation at a low simmer, the F.B.I. grappled with whether to issue subpoenas in the Clinton Foundation case, which, like the Manafort matter, was in its preliminary stages. The investigation, based in New York, had not developed much evidence and was based mostly on information that had surfaced in news stories and the book “Clinton Cash,” according to several law enforcement officials briefed on the case.

    They agreed to keep the case open but wait until after the election to determine their next steps. The move infuriated some agents, who thought that the F.B.I.’s leaders were reining them in because of politics.

    The only thing that could make this more FBI is if it was also based on information that had surfaced from an inept sting operation targeting black people.

  116. says

    Bill Weld was interviewed by Rachel Maddow last night. He clearly feels he can’t abandon the Libertarian ticket or his running mate and leave the race, but he in every other way endorsed Clinton (and not just by criticizing Trump). He also said he disagreed with some of the statements made about Clinton by Johnson and in his party’s campaign materials.

  117. Ogvorbis: I have proven my humanity and can now comment! says

    Comey seams to think that he is the new J. Edgar Hoover — using the normal information flow to determine who can, and, more important, can not, run for public office. Hoover used secret files on politicians to force legislation he wanted and to convince some politicians not to run for certain offices. Comey wants this power. Luckily, he is showing himself as incredibly inept at using the power of his appointment. Doesn’t mean he isn’t damaging democracy, but he is, like Trump, inept.


    New York Times: Trump has a 12% chance of winning the election. He would have to flip so many states in which Clinton has a statistically significant lead to win.

    Despite Comey’s vendetta.

  118. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Interesting polling results from Florida. The poll able to look at those who had voted early, besides likely voters. 28% of early registered republican voters actually voted for Hillary Clinton. Only 6% of the registered democrats voted for Donald Trump. The final predicted vote was 48% Clinton, 40% Trump. Trump has no chance without Florida.

  119. says

    This is a video made a few weeks ago by the man who ambushed and killed two police officers in Iowa this morning. He was ejected from a high school football game after waving a confederate flag in the stands during the national anthem. Here’s more background.

    In the comments of one of the videos, Greene wrote, “I was offended by the blacks sitting through our anthem. Thousands more whites fought and died for their freedom. However this is not about the Armed forces, they are cop haters.”

    He’s a racist with a long history of violence and threats of violence.

  120. says

    SC @152, that’s a good interview. Regarding Trump, “There are no redeeming qualities, not that I’ve seen.”

    SC @158, that “Clinton Cash” book veers from poorly-sourced to unsourced claims. It is full of lies and innuendo. It is somewhat scary to think of FBI agents reading it.

    From this June:

    Donald Trump forwarded conspiracies from the book Clinton Cash during his June 22 speech attacking Hillary Clinton. Numerous reporters correctly noted that the book suffers from serious factual problems; as CNN analyst David Gergen noted, “that book has been basically discredited.” […]

    During his speech attacking presumptive Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton, presumptive Republican nominee Donald Trump cited Clinton Cash, which he claimed “documents how Bill and Hillary used the State Department to enrich their family at America’s expense.” The book is a trainwreck of sloppy research and shoddy reporting that contains over 20 errors, fabrications, and distortions. Reporters previously criticized author Peter Schweizer for pushing conspiracies “based on little evidence” that are “inconsistent with the facts” and “false”; taking quotes “badly out of context”; excluding exculpatory information that undermines his claims; and falling for a fake press release. [, 6/22/16; Media Matters, 4/30/15] […]

    [Peter] Schweizer is a Republican activist and consultant who currently works for the pro-Trump website Schweizer has a disreputable history of reporting marked by errors and retractions, with numerous reporters excoriating him for facts that “do not check out,” sources that “do not exist,” and a basic failure to practice “Journalism 101.” [Media Matters, 4/20/15] […]


  121. says

    Matt Yglesias on policy stakes in the election and the failure of the mass media to help people be aware of them.

    …[I]magine that none of the darkest fears of Trump’s critics come to pass.

    He doesn’t staff his administration with inept sycophants or sell America out to the Russians or unleash an unprecedented wave of race riots and pogroms or abuse power to persecute his enemies or steal taxpayer money or undermine democratic institutions and the rule of law.

    Imagine, in other words, that Trump does what he says he wants to do on taxes, the environment, immigration, and health care. It’s true that he is not a passionate policy wonk; nor does he seem like someone who is deeply invested, on a personal level, in the non-immigration aspects of his policy agenda. But the agenda is there, and on all these non-immigration issues his views are basically in line with the vision put forth by Speaker Paul Ryan and Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, who will do the boring work of drafting the bills for Trump to sign.

    The result would be a sweeping transformation of American life. Millions would be forcibly removed from their homes and communities as new resources and a new mission invigorate the pace of deportations. Taxes would drop sharply for the richest Americans while rising for many middle-class families. Millions of low-income Americans would lose their health insurance, while America’s banks would enjoy the repeal of regulations enacted in the wake of the financial crisis. Environmental Protection Agency regulation of greenhouse gas emissions would end, likely collapsing global efforts to restrain emissions, greatly increasing the pace of warming.*

    …Someone who’d been following the election moderately closely — scanning headlines, watching cable news, and tuning in to debates — would simply have no idea that this sweeping shift in American public policy is in the offing if Trump wins. Nor would they have any real sense of what the more modest shift in public policy that would emerge from a Clinton win would look like. Beneath the din of email coverage and the mountains of clichés about populism, the mass-market media has simply failed to convey what’s actually at stake in the election….

    * Reproductive rights would also be demolished. And this is just to speak of domestic policy.

  122. says

    Extreme Trump supporter, Fox News host and radio host, Sean Hannity actually apologized for spreading a fake story. The apology is unusual, but spreading fake stories is not.

    Sean Hannity has apologized for reading a fake news story on air that claimed first lady Michelle Obama had scrubbed her Twitter account of mentions of Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton.

    The conservative radio talker and Fox News host also says one of his radio listeners called in to say President Barack Obama and Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren did the same. On Twitter Tuesday , Hannity said, “Fact is they didn’t. I humbly apologize. Live radio.”

    Baby steps in the right direction? Or, only apologizing because he is so egregiously wrong that even his own listeners called him out?

  123. says

    White Nationalists have some fairly specific plans to intimidate voters on Election Day. They are calling for armed poll watchers, for hidden cameras in polling places, for people to conduct fake exit polls, and for marijuana (and/or alcohol) distribution in the ghettos. Excerpt:

    […] “We also have some teams going in to the ghettos in Philly with 40s and weed to give out to the local residents, which we think will lead to more of them staying home. We have had success with this in the past,” wrote the representative of, who said four teams of two employed this tactic in Detroit during the Democratic primary in an effort to help Bernie Sanders. […]

    The Republican operative — less concerned with fraud committed by voters than with vote-rigging by elections officials —is organizing a volunteer exit-polling operation that he hopes will reach 7,000 precincts he sees as prone to rigging because of the voting methods employed and their one-party control. Stone said the precincts targeted included 2,000 in Philadelphia as well as some Republican-controlled areas in Ohio, though he declined to specify where. “If I told you I would be warning the [Republican Gov. John] Kasich machine,” he said.

    Stone said he planned to present his findings to Trump and that he would consider any deviation of more than 2 percent between his exit polls and the posted precinct totals to be suspicious, citing the State Department’s standard for monitoring foreign elections. […]

    Politico link

  124. says

    Nerd @161, I certainly hope those polls are accurate.

    Hillary Clinton and her team are working hard in Florida. Clinton even made an extra, unscheduled stop in Broward County today.

    […] “I am sick and tired of the negative, dark, divisive, dangerous vision and behavior of people who support Donald Trump,” she said late Tuesday night in Fort Lauderdale, her voice rising over a heckler who called her husband a “rapist.”

    It was her third Florida rally of the day, and her second trip to Broward in two days. Scheduled for 8:30 p.m., the rally began 73 minutes late. Some 4,300 people attended, according to Clinton’s campaign. Many of them stood for more than four hours at Reverend Samuel Delevoe Memorial Park, waiting for the delayed Clinton. […]

    Miami Herald link

  125. says

    Ogvorbis @160, J. Edgar Hoover was even worse. But Comey is scary enough. He is abusing the power of his office. And, from all reports, he is susceptible to pressure from within FBI ranks and from Congressional Republicans. A “man of integrity” with one, huge, Shakespearean flaw? Comparison of Comey to J. Edgar Hoover is a good idea. I hope journalists follow up on that. People need to see the historical context.

    In good news, representatives from the Trump campaign will have to appear in court in Nevada this afternoon. A judge has ordered them to appear as part of an inquiry into their voter intimidation tactics. Representatives of the Nevada Republican Party will also have to appear before the judge.

    […] U.S. District Judge Richard Franklin Boulware also ordered the Trump campaign and state party to turn over any training materials they provided to “poll watchers, poll observers, exit pollsters or any other similarly tasked individuals.” […]

    Talking Points Memo link

  126. a_ray_in_dilbert_space says

    It appears I am going to have to take back my charitable analysis of Comey’s actions. Taken in aggregate, malice is the only possible explanation.

  127. says

    About time. President Obama announced that the federal government is considering re-routing the Dakota Access Pipeline. This should have been done long ago, before law enforcement officials used pepper spray, attack dogs, and billy clubs on Native American protestors.

    […] as a general rule, my view is that there is a way for us to accommodate sacred lands of Native Americans, and I think that right now the Army Corps is examining whether there are ways to reroute this pipeline. We’re going to let it play out for several more weeks and determine whether or not this can be resolved in a way that I think is properly attentive to the traditions of the First Americans.


  128. says

    a_ray @169, President Obama weighed in on Comey’s actions today, sort of.

    […] In an interview with NowThis News, Obama said that “there is a norm that when there are investigations we don’t operate on innuendo, we don’t operate on incomplete information, we don’t operate on leaks. We operate based on concrete decisions that are made.”

    Obama also said he has “made a very deliberate effort” to avoid the appearance of meddling in government agencies’ independent processes. […]

    Talking Points Memo link

  129. says

    Well, this is disgusting. Apparently, someone tried to disable the call center for Obamacare in Minnesota:

    […] “Somebody’s trying to jam the call center, and making robocalls to try to snafu the thing — which is deplorable,” Dayton [Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton] told the Star Tribune. “They’ve identified that culprit, and are acting … to exclude them from the system.”

    Scott Peterson, the chief business technology officer with the state’s IT services, told the Twin Cities Pioneer Press said that the call center on Tuesday morning received thousands of calls from the same number, which he said was “consistent with a robocall” operation.

    Twin Cities Pioneer Press link

    Star Tribune link

  130. says

    Oh, FFS. This is not going to work. It reminds me of creationists trying to rebrand their swill as “intelligent design.”

    The country’s leading ex-gay professional organization has a new plan for rebranding the harmful, ineffective “treatment” they offer. Not only do they hope the treatment will sound more appealing under the new name, they also hope it will skirt the increasing number of state and local laws protecting minors from being subjected to it.

    Attempts to de-gay people have gone by numerous names over the years: ex-gay therapy, conversion therapy, reparative therapy, reorientation therapy, sexual orientation change efforts (SOCE), “pray the gay away,” and even “the homo no mo’ half-way house.” But the Alliance for Therapeutic Choice and Scientific Integrity (ATSCI, the network of ex-gay therapists formerly known as NARTH) has a new name they want clinicians to use: “Sexual Attraction Fluidity Exploration in Therapy” (SAFE-T). […]

    Think Progress link

  131. says

    SC @174, portents of things to come? I hope not, but I fear so.

    SC @175, yeah, worth a raised eyebrow, that’s for sure.

    In more White Nationalist news, The New York Forum advertises itself like this:

    We are a non-party aligned group for patriots, nationalists, identitarians and independent thinkers – in other words we represent the diverse range of opinion that dares dissent from the artificial and increasingly restrictive consensus that’s been forced upon our people by the mass media, banksters, political correctness enforcers and thought police.

    White Nationalist, Greg Johnson sponsors The New York Forum, (there’s also a London Forum). Johnson says that his Counter-Currents Publishing, along with Trump’s candidacy, will increase the influence of White Nationalists:

    If I get my way, our online influence will grow to the point that our ideas completely saturate the entire web and Leftists are as marginalized as pedophiles trading jpegs in secret forums. […]

    […] if Trump wins, he will give us some demographic breathing room. He will build the wall, deport 30+ million illegals, ban Muslim immigration, and crack down on black crime. Such policies will slow down but not stop white demographic displacement. So in a Trump administration, we will have to exert constant pressure first to get Trump to keep his promises and then to move the goalposts further toward White Nationalism. […]

    Plan A is reform. Plan B is revolution. Trump is not the last chance for white people in North America. He is the last chance for plan A. He is the last chance to save America. He is the last chance of the system to cede power and change course to avoid the multicultural bloodbath that their policies will inevitably produce. Trump is their last chance, not ours.


    Why do they always threaten a “bloodbath”?

  132. says

    From Trump ally and advisor Roger Stone:

    Phew! .@HillaryClinton “rarely bathes-smells of boiled cabbage, urine and farts”

    Stay classy, Trump supporters.

    Now, where did Roger Stone get that bogus information? He fell for a fake email posted online.

    […] Stone’s link went to a site claiming that in a hacked WikiLeaks email, Podesta wrote that Clinton smells “of a combination of boiled cabbage, urine and farts. I’m guessing it’s either connected to her fall or simply the fact that she rarely bathes.”

    The purported email is not real. As noted, the document is “fabricated” and “it was pretty simple to discern via WikiLeaks searchable archive that no such offensive e-mail exists.”

    Stone tweeted hours later: “I’m told this is a parody. If it isn’t true it should be. Lighten Up Liberals.” […]

    Stone regularly forwards false information. He recently had to retract his “breaking news” that Clinton secretly met with a Broward County, FL, election official in order to rig the election. Despite Stone having no credibility — or perhaps because of it — Trump has repeatedly relied on his research during this presidential campaign. […]


  133. says

    SC @176, OMG. Katy Tur should get some kind of award … and a vacation.

    In other news, remember that email from John Podesta (leaked by Wikileaks) that purportedly advised Hillary Clinton to destroy emails? Well, no, that email did not say that. Podesta wrote “We’re going to have to dump all those emails.” David Brock put this matter to rest:

    […] Right well, as you know in Washington parlance, “dump” means “release or make public.”

    […] what he was saying was we’re going to have to release or make these emails public. Now, he knew, for example, that 55,000 pages of Secretary Clinton’s email had already been turned over. And what he was doing was saying we’re going to make them public.

    And the fact is Secretary Clinton asked the State Department a few days after the date of that email to make these public. They were made public, which people forget was really an unprecedented act of transparency to make all those business-related emails public.

    So that’s what he was talking about. He references Lanny Davis in there, or Lanny — that’s clearly Lanny Davis — who was out on television saying the same thing, “Let’s put all these emails out.” So that’s what that dump meant. […]

    The quoted text above is a partial transcript from an interview with David Brock on MSNBC Live with Stephanie Ruhle.

  134. says

    In other news, remember that email from John Podesta (leaked by Wikileaks) that purportedly advised Hillary Clinton to destroy emails? Well, no, that email did not say that. Podesta wrote “We’re going to have to dump all those emails.” David Brock put this matter to rest:…

    I linked @ #149 to Trump being caught tweeting out the true story, then realizing or being informed of the problem and tweeting 12 minutes later to congenial fake spin from the Washington Times.

    (On a personal side note, I detest Lanny Davis, so it’s perfect that his name would crop up during this miserable week.)

  135. What a Maroon, living up to the 'nym says

    From Lynna’s 177:

    We are a non-party aligned group for patriots, nationalists, identitarians and independent thinkers – in other words we represent the diverse range of opinion that dares dissent from the artificial and increasingly restrictive consensus that’s been forced upon our people by the mass media, banksters, political correctness enforcers and thought police.


    If I get my way, our online influence will grow to the point that our ideas completely saturate the entire web and Leftists are as marginalized as pedophiles trading jpegs in secret forums. […]

    […] if Trump wins, he will give us some demographic breathing room. He will build the wall, deport 30+ million illegals, ban Muslim immigration, and crack down on black crime.

    The cognitive dissonance, it burns!

  136. says

    “I’m told this is a parody. If it isn’t true it should be.”


    One of Stone’s latest tweets calls for scrapping the FBI and replacing it with a new agency (called, I think, the Federal Agency of Investigation). No one formerly employed in the FBI could work there. This is someone close to the candidate one contingent in the FBI evidently support.

    At this point, Stone and WikiLeaks seem to be feeding off each other.

  137. militantagnostic says

    Lynna @166

    Stone said he planned to present his findings to Trump and that he would consider any deviation of more than 2 percent between his exit polls and the posted precinct totals to be suspicious, citing the State Department’s standard for monitoring foreign elections.

    I expect the largest discrepancy will be in the number of votes for Fuc Hoff.

  138. Ogvorbis: I have proven my humanity and can now comment! says

    This does not surprise me.

    “This is unequal application of the law based on race,” Chandra said. “Smaller, rural counties in Ohio are counting votes they’re not supposed to under these laws, while larger, urban counties are disenfranchising voters for the same errors.”

    And the fact that it does not surprise me makes me sad and angry.

  139. Ogvorbis: I have proven my humanity and can now comment! says

    And the GOP is already threatening impeachment.

    The outcome of the 2016 election won’t be decided for another six days, but the topic of impeaching Hillary Clinton if she wins is already a topic of discussion on conservative talk radio.

    They are threatening impeachment if Clinton is indicted. Odd that they are not saying the same thing about Trump with all of his (real, not politically created and maintained) legal troubles.

    I predict that, even with no indictment, the GOP will begin impeachment hearings. Probably on the first day of the new congress.

  140. consciousness razor says

    if Trump wins, he will give us some demographic breathing room.

    The word is Lebensraum…. Didn’t work out so well the first time.

    It’s kind of odd that you don’t usually have to remind people that the South lost and will not be winning again. Sure, there are civil war reenactors and secessionists here and there, but most don’t seem to think they should really be trying the exact same terrible shit all over again. They want things to be as they were in the “good old days,” so the goal hasn’t changed much, but the plan would start from conditions in the modern world (which is recognizably different) and would work from there somehow.

    But with the more Nazi-flavored bigots (to the extent there’s any distinction), that isn’t so clear. They really seem to believe that all is not lost, that they’re just in a different phase of the same war, or something like that. It doesn’t seem to occur to them that using all of the same methods/tools/weapons/whatever would probably fail again.

    Does that sound right to anyone else? I mean, I really don’t get it, and maybe there’s an entirely different way to think about it which would be more helpful. If that is more or less right, what explains it? Is it that the US is a different place than Europe in WWII, so maybe it will work better in a new context? Is it that WWII was not as long ago in the past, so a do-over seems a bit less absurd? Do they have more in common with their parents/grandparents, compared to more distant ancestors/influences?

  141. consciousness razor says

    “I’m told this is a parody. If it isn’t true it should be.”


    If she doesn’t smell like boiled cabbage, urine and farts, then she should smell like boiled cabbage, urine and farts…??

    I’m going to say it’s false that she should smell like that. So, let’s see where we are:
    1) Claims something false.
    2) Claims that if #1 isn’t true, it should be. That is also false.
    Next obvious step:
    3) Claims that if #2 isn’t true, it should be true that if #1 isn’t true, it should be. That would also be false.
    4) Profit? I’m afraid this could go on for a long time. Maybe there will be profit.

  142. What a Maroon, living up to the 'nym says

    consciousness razor @193,

    I think there’s a flavor of southern nostalgia in which people long for (what they perceive as) the good parts of southern heritage–the manners, the food, the architecture–while either rejecting (best-case scenario) or ignoring the racism (and misogyny and overall violence) of that heritage. And then on the other hand there are the hard-core racists, who will take their racism from whatever source, as long as it’s “white”. So they take their imagery from Nazi Germany and the Confederacy, and also their ideals of some Nordic past, and whatever else fits their ideal of white superiority.

    On a somewhat related note, it always amazes me that Germany has the reputation for military ruthlessness and success, while the French are stereotyped as “cheese-eating surrender monkeys”, based largely on the first few months of each world war. I mean, yes, the French did collapse pretty spectacularly in the beginning of WWII (for a lot of reasons, not all related to the ineptitude of their leadership), but aside from that, Germany lost both wars and ended up with a much smaller country that was divided and occupied for nearly half a century while France was on the winning side. And since the last war, France has been one of the more aggressively militant countries in the world, while Germany has been largely peaceful.

  143. says

    This is a followup to the second half of comment 169.

    In addition to Nevada, the Trump campaign has to answer charges of voter intimidation in other states.

    On Monday, a federal judge in New Jersey ordered the RNC to turn over all communications with the Trump campaign related to poll watching, voter fraud, or “ballot security.” The judge specifically requested testimony and documents related to Conway and two RNC officials—Rob Gleason in Pennsylvania and Ronna Romney McDaniel in Michigan—who have allegedly recruited poll watchers and organized “massive, statewide anti-voter fraud efforts.” All of this has to be gathered up in just three days.

    Then, two days ago, state Democratic parties in Arizona, Ohio, Nevada, and Pennsylvania sued Trump for encouraging unlawful voter intimidation. They argue that Trump’s calls for his supporters to “watch” polling for suspected “cheating” and “fraud” violate two laws: the Klu Klux Klan Act of 1871, which was passed during Reconstruction to protect newly emancipated freedmen from harassment at polls, and the Voting Rights Act of 1965, which prohibits “intimidation,” “threats,” and “coercion” of voters. The parties are also suing their respective Republican party counterparts, along with a man named Roger J. Stone Jr., who is allegedly recruiting poll watchers and organizing “ballot security” efforts in a number of states.

    The Atlantic link

    Arizona sounds particularly ripe for trouble, with GOP officials in that state having told Trumpish poll watchers that it is okay to “follow voters out into the parking lot, ask them questions, take their pictures, and photograph their vehicles and license plate” if the poll watchers perform all of those activities at least 75 feet away from the polling place. No. Just, no. In my book that is not okay, and it sounds very much like voter intimidation and/or harassment.

  144. says

    Another Republican politician has called for Hillary Clinton’s death. Oklahoma State Representative John Bennett used the words “firing squad” in a Facebook post. The post linked to a conservative blog that blamed Clinton for the deaths of Americans that died in Benghazi.

    The Oklahoman newspaper

    […] reported that Bennett sent them a text message saying the post was meant to be sarcastic, but also that Clinton “has committed nothing less than treason by leaving fellow Americans to die in Benghazi.”

    “If anyone else had done that they would be charged with treason and thrown under the jail at a minimum, and a firing squad likely,” he wrote to the Oklahoman.[…]

    Bennett’s Facebook page is filled with posts presenting the Islamic faith as violent. It also includes many anti-Clinton posts and his strong support for the Second Amendment and gun owner rights. Bennett’s Facebook profile picture includes a family portrait where each member is holding a gun.[…]


  145. says

    After a lot of pressure and repeated requests, Twitter has finally suspend the account of a doofus who was posting text and graphics meant to disenfranchise voters.

    The doctored/propagandistic graphics featured the Hillary Clinton campaign logo and instructed voters to “Avoid the line. Vote from home. Text Hillary to 59925” etc. Many of the Twitter postings featured black or Latino voters. One was in Spanish.


  146. says

    Dillard University is an historically black university and most of the present-day student body is African American.

    David Duke will be speaking at Dillard. He and five other candidates will participate in a debate as part of their campaigns for a U.S. Senate seat in Louisiana. The organizers of the debate were worried about black students being in the audience where Duke will speak, so what was their solution? They banned all students and journalists from attending the debate.

    Dillard students are noticeably upset by this decision, so they plan to protest outside of the debate hall.

  147. says

    Trump supporter, radio host, and head honcho of InfoWars, Alex Jones, said some stupid stuff:

    I have interviewed — on and off air — generals, spy chiefs, former spy chiefs, you name it. And the consensus is, and the evidence is overwhelming even in mainstream news, that Hillary Rodham Clinton is the number one communist Chinese agent in the world and the WikiLeaks all show that and she’s in direct contact with the president of China, doing his bidding. […]

    It’s all high treason, ladies and gentlemen, that’s why she wears 1960s Maoist era outfits, silk outfits from China. It’s a total message that “I’m your bitch” to China. We have been blown wide open. […]


  148. says

    Trump ally Alex Jones said some stupid stuff:

    I have interviewed — on and off air — generals, spy chiefs, former spy chiefs, you name it. And the consensus is, and the evidence is overwhelming even in mainstream news, that Hillary Rodham Clinton is the number one communist Chinese agent in the world and the WikiLeaks all show that and she’s in direct contact with the president of China, doing his bidding. […]

    It’s all high treason, ladies and gentlemen, that’s why she wears 1960s Maoist era outfits, silk outfits from China. It’s a total message that “I’m your [B-word]” to China. We have been blown wide open. […]


  149. says

    He’s doing it! A few weeks ago, I likened Trump to Lance Armstrong at his most fraudulent, and linked to an old post of mine about Armstrong’s cynical use of “faith” and “hope” in his fight against the people trying to reveal the truth about his doping racket. In that 2014 post, I quoted him speaking after his win in the Tour de France:

    The last thing I’ll say for the people that don’t believe in cycling – the cynics and the skeptics. I’m sorry for you. I’m sorry you can’t dream big. And I’m sorry you don’t believe in miracles. But this is one hell of a race. This is a great sporting event, and you should believe.

    Today, Trump’s using the same rhetoric – about how the future belongs to the “dreamers” (ahem) and not the “critics or the cynics” and everyone should believe in him. Anyone who believed in Armstrong or who was shamed out of questioning or criticizing him should see that as a lesson.

  150. says

    There’s a strange lack of attention to women in this week’s discussion of the campaigns and polls. When Lawrence O’Donnell reported on the wild FL poll, people immediately asked how many of the (alleged) cross-over Republicans were Latino or specifically Cuban people. I don’t think anyone asked what percentage were women. I heard yesterday that of the early voters so far, 55% have been women. And I don’t believe it can be assumed that women who are Republicans have voted for Trump. I could well be wrong, but I think there might be a hidden wave of support for Clinton among women. I certainly wouldn’t stake anything on it, but I would be surprised if we don’t swing this far more in Clinton’s favor.

  151. says

    “Stone’s link went to a site claiming that in a hacked WikiLeaks email, Podesta wrote that Clinton smells of a combination of boiled cabbage, urine and farts. I’m guessing it’s either connected to her fall or simply the fact that she rarely bathes’.”

    “It’s all high treason, ladies and gentlemen, that’s why she wears 1960s Maoist era outfits, silk outfits from China. It’s a total message that ‘I’m your [B-word]’ to China. We have been blown wide open.”

    These people are so repulsive.

  152. says

    “Judge: North Carolina Voter Challenge Process Seems ‘Insane'”:

    North Carolina’s process for challenging voters’ registration seems to harken to a bygone era when fewer safeguards were in place, a federal judge said Wednesday as she presided over a lawsuit that alleges voters are being purged unfairly.

    U.S. District Judge Loretta Biggs said the process sounds “insane.”

    “This sounds like something that was put together in 1901,” she told lawyers for the state.

    Biggs also said she was “horrified” by the number of removals in Cumberland County, which accounted for most of the statewide total….

    The book White Rage describes the endless, tenacious efforts to make the system operate in a way that forces civil rights advocates to defend against aggressive ongoing racist policies instead of the promoters of racist policies having to try to justify them in advance of their being implemented. Those efforts have been successful on multiple fronts.

  153. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    I’ll let the title of the video speak for itself. Trump claimed not to know this mob figure

    Trump has, on more than on occasion, said he didn’t know a man named Robert LiButti. That might be because LiButti had a personal history of fraud and was reported to have ties to mob boss John Gotti.

  154. Ogvorbis: I have proven my humanity and can now comment! says

    Just overheard a conversation in our office. Old guy. Heading for retirement. Said he was voting for Trump. When asked why, he said, “Because I’m a man. The rest of you wouldn’t understand.” There were no women in the office. All men.

    I did ask why he would vote for someone who wants to eliminate severely reduce federal land agencies (including large parts of the one he works for), give the land to the states, and encourage them to sell the lands so they can cut state taxes. His reply? “Oh, he’s just using that to score points. No one actually wants that.”

    Additionally, this is the candidate who has stated, in speeches (not sure if it is part of his platform) that federal workers should be stripped of their retirement benefits.

    The GOP has done a great job convincing people to vote against their economic interests.

  155. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Interesting polling in the rust belt. More voters trust Clinton on trade than Trump according to a Reuters/IPSOS poll.

    Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump’s promise to restore American jobs by renegotiating international trade deals appears to be failing him in states most affected by outsourcing, according to a Reuters/Ipsos poll.
    Voters in Michigan, Ohio and Pennsylvania – three competitive states in the Nov. 8 election that form the bulk of a region dubbed the Rust Belt for its swaths of shuttered factories – favor Trump’s Democratic rival, Hillary Clinton, on the issue of trade, according to the polling, with some respondents citing how international trade can bring down prices.
    The results underscore the uphill battle the New York businessman faces on Election Day, when he needs to sweep a broad array of battleground states to win the White House.
    “Trump has made a strong effort to portray Clinton as favorable to trade policies that he has labeled ‘a disaster’ for the United States,” said Thomas Nelson, a political science professor at Ohio State University.
    In the automaking state of Michigan, which has voted reliably for Democratic candidates in recent presidential elections but which Trump has fought hard to win, some 40 percent of likely voters believed Clinton would be better equipped to address trade, compared with 36 percent for Trump.
    In Ohio, known for its aerospace, steel and rubber industries, 45 percent said Clinton would be better on trade, compared with 38 percent for Trump. In Pennsylvania, long a steel and heavy manufacturing center, 45 percent favored Clinton on trade, compared with 38 percent for Trump, according to the polling, conducted in mid-October.
    Clinton is leading Trump in all three states among likely voters, with advantages of 4 points in Michigan, 3 points in Ohio and 6 points in Pennsylvania, according to the Reuters/Ipsos polling.
    But other polls show the race tightening in those states. RealClearPolitics, which averages data from most major polls, shows Clinton leading Trump by 6.6 points in Michigan and 5.1 points in Pennsylvania, and Trump leading Clinton by 2.7 points in Ohio….

  156. says

    So David Duke participated in the LA Senate debate last night. From what I’ve seen, it was every bit as grotesque as expected. He also tweeted this. Back in 2013, I linked to a post about the EDL repurposing anti-Semitic propaganda as anti-Muslim propaganda. Duke’s tweet is exactly the same format – “Hey ____…whatcha doin’?” – being used in the US for anti-black hate. Does anyone know how old that trope is, and whether it originated in the US or in Europe?

  157. says

    In what looks like a report from the news archives, the DOJ is planning to send elections monitors to four NC counties:

    The Department of Justice is planning to send elections monitors to four counties in North Carolina, the Fayetteville Observer reported. The North Carolina State Elections Board informed the counties Forsyth, Wake, Cumberland and Robeson counties via a memo Wednesday to expect federal elections monitors at their polling places next week, according to the AP.

    State Board of Elections’ executive director Kim Strach said she did not know why the DOJ intended to send monitors,…

    Yes, that is a mystery.

  158. krsone says

    Donald Trump is the Republican candidate and he’s an outspoken white supremacist who is officially endorsed by the fucking KKK. White cops kill black people and get away with it with a slap on the wrist at worst. White terrorists kill black people in churches. No wonder that so many black people feel unsafe in America and are ready to strike back.

    This is the time for justice, for reparations for everything that white people have done and still do to black people in America. Otherwise I don’t know how long many black people are going to take it in stride. Black Lives Matters is starting to make some headway, but unless white people actually start caring about giving their stolen money back to black people I’m afraid that it’s going to end badly for the wizards and their white hoodied friends, for the whites who fled living cities in disrepair and for the ones who gentrified black spaces, for the Beckies in their white-fenced neighborhoods and for the Johnny Whitefaces sipping lattes in their Starbucks. Something fierce is brewing in this nation, and black people want justice, now, and are tired to wait.

    He’s doing it! A few weeks ago, I likened Trump to Lance Armstrong at his most fraudulent, and linked to an old post of mine about Armstrong’s cynical use of “faith” and “hope” in his fight against the people trying to reveal the truth about his doping racket.

    The difference is that while Armstrong was just a garden-variety entitled white guy taking unfair advantages (how very white) and milking his cancer sob story for all its worth Trump’s dream is to enslave black people again and kill or enslave brown people. His hope is to live in a country where all non-white people are either servants of his or dead. Of course like all white supremacist men he’s also a rapist and abuses of prostituted women because he would have no idea how to get women to give consent to sex with him if he wasn’t rich.

    If Trump wins the election black people won’t stay silent and be led to the slaughter. They will fight back, and fight back hard, and they’ll not let him get away with his genocidal plans.

  159. says

    This has been coming for some time and now it is here. This is the week in which the Trump International Hotel in Toronto goes to bankruptcy court.

    […] On Tuesday, a Canadian bankruptcy judge placed the glass-and-granite building into receivership, just four years after Trump and his children cut the ribbon at its grand opening. Once it’s auctioned off, whether or not Trump is the leader of the free world by then, his name may well vanish from its marquee.

    Trump is not the project’s developer or even an investor; one of his partners, a Russian-born billionaire who got rich in Ukraine’s steel industry, controls the firm that’s in default. […] the saga of the property’s glittering rise and rapid fall is classic Trump, featuring a tsunami of litigation and bitterness, money with a Russian accent, and a financial wreck that probably won’t hit its namesake particularly hard.

    Trump first got involved in the project 15 years ago, when he held a press conference with Toronto’s mayor to announce his plan to build a new Ritz Carlton downtown. That plan fell apart when it came out that his development partner was a fugitive who had been convicted of bankruptcy fraud and embezzlement in the U.S. Trump then forged a licensing and management deal with Shnaider and another Russian-Canadian named Val Levitan, whose name comes up a lot in the documents because he had no development experience. Talon pre-sold 85 percent of the units at near-Manhattan prices before the groundbreaking in 2007, but most of the buyers backed out after the global financial crisis ravaged the real estate market, and Levitan was eventually forced out. […]

    Trump’s campaign, with its hostility towards foreigners, progressives, and others, has not played well in Toronto. […]

    Trump has presided over four corporate bankruptcies, and the flurry of lawsuits and countersuits over Trump Toronto’s broken promises is rather typical for a Trump property. But this is Talon’s bankruptcy, not his. The project was built with other people’s money; he just got paid for the use of his name and his hotel management team. […]

    Then again, Trump did license his name and his brand to Talon. […] he can’t deny all responsibility for the failure of a Trump project, especially when the Trump Organization is running the Trump hotel. The project’s partners, investors, and lenders all got a Trump Experience, one that isn’t available from the concierge.

  160. says

    The difference is that while Armstrong was just a garden-variety entitled white guy taking unfair advantages (how very white) and milking his cancer sob story for all its worth…

    He was enormously popular in the US and had political ambitions at one time. As I said in my old post, we probably dodged a bullet when he was disgraced. Imagine him as Trump’s running mate.

    Anyway, my point was that they’re similar character types and respond similarly to critics and those seeking to expose their wrongdoing and sell their frauds in similar ways.

  161. says

    The FBI is investigating at least part of itself.

    […] The FBI has launched an internal investigation into one of its own Twitter accounts.

    The account at issue, @FBIRecordsVault, had been dormant for more than a year. Then on October 30 at 4 a.m., the account released a flood of documents, including one describing Donald Trump’s father Fred Trump as a “philanthropist.” […]

    But it wasn’t until two days later, when the account tweeted documents regarding President Clinton’s controversial pardon of Marc Rich that the account began to attract significant attention. […]

    Candice Will, Assistant Director for the FBI’s Office of Professional Responsibility, said she was referring the matter to the FBI’s Inspection Division for an “investigation.” Upon completion of the investigation, the Office of Professional Responsibility will be referred back to the Office of Professional Responsibility for “adjudication.” […]

    News of the internal investigation is at odds with the FBI’s official position, which is that the Twitter account followed all FBI procedures. […]

    […] there has been a series of leaks about FBI activity that appear to be designed to damage Hillary Clinton and benefit Donald Trump. An anonymous source for example, leaked to the Wall Street Journal that there was an investigation — including “secret recordings” — into the Clinton Foundation. The New York Times, also citing anonymous sources, reported that the FBI believed that Russia was just trying to disrupt the U.S. election, not help Donald Trump.

    Think Progress link

  162. says

    “Brexit plans in disarray as high court rules parliament must have its say”:

    Parliament alone has the power to trigger Brexit by notifying Brussels of the UK’s intention to leave the European Union, the high court has ruled.

    The judgment…, delivered by the lord chief justice, Lord Thomas of Cwmgiedd,* is likely to slow the pace of Britain’s departure from the EU and is a huge setback for Theresa May, who had insisted the government alone would decide when to trigger the process.

    The lord chief justice said that “the most fundamental rule of the UK constitution is that parliament is sovereign”.

    A government spokesman said ministers would appeal to the supreme court against the decision. The hearing will take place on 7-8 December….

    * That is a fantastic word.

  163. says

    More Republican dunderheads are accusing Hillary Clinton of “treason.” I assume this is part of the ramp-up for an impeachment effort.

    House Homeland Security Chairman Mike McCaul (R-TX) accused Hillary Clinton of committing “treason” Thursday morning because of the way the former secretary of state handled her emails.

    McCaul accused Clinton on Fox and Friends of taking devices abroad that contained classified e-mails even though the State Department advised against it.

    “Now we find out –as James Comey told me previously–it’s very likely that foreign adversaries from other nations got into her private server. This is why you have security protocols to protect classified information,” McCaul said. “She exposed it to our enemies and now … our adversaries have this very sensitive information that not only jeopardizes her and national security at home, but the men and women serving overseas. This is in my opinion quite frankly it’s treason.”

    Fox News reported Thursday morning that according to two anonymous sources with knowledge of the FBI’s investigation, the FBI was “99 percent” certain that foreign adversaries had been able to access emails on Clinton’s private server.

    The FBI said publicly in July while it was “possible” Clinton’s email server had been hacked by foreign entities when she was abroad, there was no direct evidence it had happened.

    McCaul’s “treason” comment came just hours after he told Fox News Wednesday that Clinton should be “impeached” if she were elected.

    Fox News is way off the track here. They’ve gone further than they usually go. This “99 percent” certainty claim is bogus. And if the source for that claim really did start with the FBI, then the FBI (or persons within the FBI) are further off course than we thought they were. Panic over the probability that Trump will lose and Clinton will win?

  164. says

    “Bret Baier Is Serving As A Mouthpiece For Unknown Sources On FBI Stories”:

    Amid an unprecedented stream of leaks from anonymous FBI sources to various media outlets, Fox News’ Bret Baier is reporting unverified but explosive allegations about bureau investigations involving Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton based on extremely sketchy sourcing, escalating the scandalized tenor of the campaign just days before its climax. Baier’s unsubstantiated claims based on anonymous sources contradict reports from other media outlets and public FBI statements and are overplaying what is reportedly a common dispute between law enforcement and intelligence agencies.

    Baier’s uncritical reporting of anonymous sources first and foremost calls into question the veracity and motivation of the allegations being made. Who are Baier’s sources? They could be disgruntled FBI agents pursuing the investigations. But the description of “sources with intimate knowledge of the FBI investigations” doesn’t require that the sources have firsthand knowledge — Baier’s sources could include partisan congressional Republicans seeking to influence the election or even someone like Trump surrogate Rudy Giuliani, who reportedly has “illicit FBI sources” who “[circumvent] bureau guidelines to discuss a case with a public partisan.”

    Regardless of the source, Baier has decided to parrot their claims with no scrutiny, turning him into a mouthpiece for these unknown actors.

    …The reports leave little doubt that Fox News is acting as “the pipeline for the fifth column inside the bureau” that is publicly seeking to influence the election.

  165. says

    This is a followup to comment 217.

    This part, “Fox News reported Thursday morning that according to two anonymous sources with knowledge of the FBI’s investigation, the FBI was “99 percent” certain that foreign adversaries had been able to access emails on Clinton’s private server” is being walked back. Probably too late. The story was picked up and widely disseminated by rightwing media.

    Fox News’ Bret Baier walked back his November 2 claim, which was based on two unnamed sources, that FBI investigations relating to Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton will “continue to likely an indictment.” On the November 3 edition of Fox’s Happening Now, Baier described his comments as “inartful,” acknowledging that “that’s not the process.” Baier’s uncritical reporting of anonymous, unvetted sources has been parroted by a stream of Fox hosts and correspondents, as well as right-wing blogs. […]

    Media Matters link.

    Also, Bret Baier’s walk-back was disingenuous.

    I want to be clear — I want to be clear about this, and this was — came from a Q and A that I did with Brit Hume after my show and after we went through everything. He asked me if, after the election, if Hillary Clinton wins, will this investigation continue, and I said, “yes absolutely.” I pressed the sources again and again what would happen. I got to the end of that and said, “they have a lot of evidence that would, likely lead to an indictment.” But that’s not, that’s inartfully answered. That’s not the process. That’s not how you do it. You have to have a prosecutor. If they don’t move forward with a prosecutor with the DOJ, there would be, I’m told, a very public call for an independent prosecutor to move forward. There is confidence in the evidence, but for me to phrase it like I did, of course that got picked up everywhere, but the process is different than that.

    These dolts! Sheesh.

  166. militantagnostic says

    Lynna @217

    Of course, even if all the allegations were true and foreign adversaries had obtained emails due to Hillary Clinton’s carelessness, she would not be guilty of treason.

  167. says

    I see I posted almost identical information that was in SC’s comment 218. Thanks for the additional info, SC.

    In other news, Roger Stone hates Mormons. That should play well with Trump supporters in Utah. /sarcasm

    Longtime Donald Trump adviser Roger Stone has repeatedly smeared and attacked Mormons and complained that they’re trying to take over the Republican Party and religiously convert people. […]

    Stone is one of the last people anyone should count on for unifying Mormon Republicans, who have been in an “all-out revolt” against Trump’s candidacy due to his remarks about engaging in sexual assault and his religious bigotry.

    Stone has attacked and mocked Mitt Romney for his Mormon religion (“Mitt the Mormon,” “Holy Underwear”) and suggested the 2012 Republican nominee is a polygamist. He also complained that Mormons are taking over the Republican Party and said, “I don’t want to be a Mormon”; when Romney lost the election, Stone concluded: “Well at least now we don’t have to all become mormons.”

  168. says

    militant agnostic @220, good point.

    Treason against the United States, shall consist only in levying War against them, or in adhering to their Enemies, giving them Aid and Comfort. No Person shall be convicted of Treason unless on the Testimony of two Witnesses to the same overt Act, or on Confession in open Court.

  169. says

    Rick Wilson has long been hinting at big stories about Trump still to come. I believe in the past he’s suggested they’re worse than the Access Hollywood recording. His hints have ramped up in recent days, and now he’s saying specifically:

    I’ll say it for the 10th time:
    1. Media has the two story leads.
    2. Neither was the story from yesterday.
    3. I don’t control timing.

    This all might drop tomorrow. No idea what it’s about, but I can’t imagine he’d be doing this if there weren’t something there.

  170. quotetheunquote says

    RE: #212 – I live just about 100km west of Toronto, and think of it, for all intents and purposes, as my home town.

    I’m doing a little “happy dance” on the inside, at the mere thought that this vile name may, some day soon, no longer besmirch the Toronto skyline.

  171. Ogvorbis: I have proven my humanity and can now comment! says

    This is out of nowhere and I have neither read nor heard any information on this: I wonder if Russia (or China) are buying up any of Trump’s debt? It would be a very small investment (compared to the size of their economies) for the potential of a YUGE return.

  172. says

    From Spencer Ackerman at The Guardian:

    Deep antipathy to Hillary Clinton exists within the FBI, multiple bureau sources have told the Guardian, spurring a rapid series of leaks damaging to her campaign just days before the election.

    Current and former FBI officials, none of whom were willing or cleared to speak on the record, have described a chaotic internal climate that resulted from outrage over director James Comey’s July decision not to recommend an indictment over Clinton’s maintenance of a private email server on which classified information transited.

    “The FBI is Trumpland,” said one current agent.

    This atmosphere raises major questions about how Comey and the bureau he is slated to run for the next seven years can work with Clinton should she win the White House. […]

    This makes it sound like some of the people working for the FBI are Fox News/Drudge Report/Breitbart/InfoWars doofuses every bit as unreasonable as the doofuses in Congress. Imagine Trey Gowdy working as an FBI agent.

  173. says

    More from Ackerman’s report (link in comment 227):

    […] The currently serving FBI agent said Clinton is “the antichrist personified to a large swath of FBI personnel,” and that “the reason why they’re leaking is they’re pro-Trump.”

    The agent called the bureau “Trumplandia”, with some colleagues openly discussing voting for a GOP nominee who has garnered unprecedented condemnation from the party’s national security wing and who has pledged to jail Clinton if elected.

    At the same time, other sources dispute the depth of support for Trump within the bureau, though they uniformly stated that Clinton is viewed highly unfavorably.

    “There are lots of people who don’t think Trump is qualified, but also believe Clinton is corrupt. What you hear a lot is that it’s a bad choice, between an incompetent and a corrupt politician,” said a former FBI official. […]

    Again, it sounds like some people working for the FBI live in the pseudo-news bubble that has been anti-Clinton for decades.

  174. says

    Looks like some housecleaning is in order at the FBI. It probably won’t be too difficult for the internal investigation you discuss in #215 to identify these people – they’re likely to be the same ones who’ve been complaining. I don’t have a high opinion of the FBI, to put it mildly, but I do think there’s a substantial mass of people in the organization, whatever their political leanings, who consider themselves professionals and are horrified at the damage being done by the anti-Clinton contingent.

  175. says

    Followup to comments 218 and 219.

    You will have noticed by now that even the Fox News host Brett Baier did not claim that his iffy sources were FBI agents, nor that they worked for the FBI. He said “sources with intimate knowledge of the FBI investigations.”

    Nevertheless, The Hill, Breitbart and other media sources have stripped that careful (weasel) wording out of the report and are claiming that FBI sources say they have enough info to guarantee an indictment of Hillary Clinton.

    And guess who else is making that claim repeatedly today as he speaks at rallies, Donald Trump of course:

    “The FBI agents say their investigation is likely to yield an indictment,” Trump told an enthusiastic crowd in Jacksonville. Cheers of “lock her up” rang through the room.

    “She is likely under investigation for many, many years,” Trump said. “Likely to conclude in a criminal trial.”

    “This will be a mess,” he went on. “They say it. They say it. This is going to be a mess for many years to come before they figure it all out. We don’t need that.” […]

    Aaaarrrggghhh! A firehose of totally incorrect crap.

  176. says

    Melania Trump:

    We need to teach our youth American values. Kindness, respect, compassion, charity, understanding, cooperation.

    This is diametrically opposed to everything her husband represents.

  177. says

    SC @229, my guess would be that the FBI people who thought using “Clinton Cash” as reliable source material are the same ones speaking to ex-FBI friends who then pass on a bunch of bogus stuff to the likes of Brett Baier.

  178. says

    This is what Trump was saying about the Cubs in March. He tweeted similar things at the time.

    Congratulations to the Cubs! I actually fell asleep just after it started raining but awoke I guess just after the rain delay. I thought I’d only nodded off for a few minutes – didn’t realize there had been a delay until they were interviewing the players after the game. So it worked out nicely – the delay must have been excruciating to wait through.

  179. says

    SC @229, my guess would be that the FBI people who thought using “Clinton Cash” as reliable source material are the same ones speaking to ex-FBI friends who then pass on a bunch of bogus stuff to the likes of Brett Baier.

    Exactly. Come to think of it, even without the spin-leaking, their taking Clinton Cash seriously calls their intelligence and competence into question.

  180. says

    Some backup for my speculation in comment 232 that ex-FBI personnel with connections to current FBI agents are feeding anti-Clinton bullshit to rightwing media sources:

    Kallstrom [Jim Kallstrom, who worked for Comey] is the former head of the New York FBI office, installed in that post in the ’90s by then-FBI director Louis Freeh, one of Giuliani’s longtime friends. Kallstrom has, like Giuliani, been on an anti-Comey romp for months, most often on Fox, where he’s called the Clintons a “crime family.” He has been invoking unnamed FBI agents who contact him to complain about Comey’s exoneration of Clinton in one interview after another, positioning himself as an apolitical champion of FBI values.

    […] Megyn Kelly interviewed Kallstrom on Fox. “You know a lot of the agents involved in this investigation,” she said. “How angry must they be […]?”

    “I know some of the agents,” said Kallstrom. “I know some of the supervisors and I know the senior staff. And they’re P.O.’d, I mean no question. This is like someone driving another nail in the coffin of the criminal justice system.”

    Kallstrom declared that “if it’s pushed under the rug,” the agents “won’t take that sitting down.” […]

    When Comey cleared Clinton this July, Kallstrom was on Fox again, declaring: “I’ve talked to about 15 different agents today—both on the job and off the job—who are basically worried about the reputation of the agency they love.”

    The number grew dramatically by Labor Day weekend when Comey released Clinton’s FBI interview and other documents, and Kallstrom told Kelly he was talking to “50 different people in and out of the agency, retired agents,” all of whom he said were “basically disgusted” by Comey’s latest release.

    By Sept. 28, Kallstrom said he’d been contacted by hundreds of people, including “a lot of retired agents and a few on the job,” declaring the agents “involved in this thing feel like they’ve been stabbed in the back.” So, he said, “I think we’re going to see a lot more of the facts come out in the course of the next few months. That’s my prediction.”

    Kallstrom, whose exchanges with active agents about particular cases are as contrary to FBI policy as Giuliani’s, formally and passionately endorsed Trump this week on Stuart Varney’s Fox Business show, adding that Clinton is a “pathological liar.” […]

    The Daily Beast link.

    There’s a lot more detail at the link. This excerpt is definitely an incomplete presentation of the case.

  181. says

    Wonkette’s coverage of the parlous state of the FBI is a good read:

    Time for an update on the FBI’s complete loss of credibility as an independent American law enforcement agency!

    We talked Wednesday about how FBI Director James Comey seems to have lost ALL control of the institution he’s supposed to be running, as agents in the New York office were pursuing a dead-end investigation into the Clinton Foundation, even though their higher ups in the FBI and the Justice Department were like “Can it, fools,” because there was nothing to pursue.

    We talked about how this rogue investigation started because a bunch of agents had a weekly book club circle jerk (allegedly) reading Peter Schweizer’s Clinton Cash, a bullshit, right-wing, WorldNetDaily-grade hit piece on the Clinton Foundation that was highly debunked before it was even published. Oh, and it was also funded by Stephen Bannon, the guy who took a rumspringa from being CEO of Breitbart to see if it would be more fun to run Donald Trump’s campaign. Schweizer even runs a shady nonprofit for Bannon! For real! These goons are being used as “sources” by the FBI! No shit! America fuck yeah!

    The Wall Street Journal now has some new details on that bullshit investigation. It seems that the agents with the anti-Clinton hard-ons had heard some recordings of somebody talking about the Clinton Foundation, which absolutely convinced them they had a real case, even though their higher-ups were still saying, “Nope, you idiots.”

    In February, there was a meeting between the Justice Department and the FBI, and it didn’t go so great:

    The public-integrity prosecutors weren’t impressed with the FBI presentation, people familiar with the discussion said. “The message was, ‘We’re done here,’ ” a person familiar with the matter said. Justice Department officials became increasingly frustrated that the agents seemed to be disregarding or disobeying their instructions.[…]

    […] The FBI had secretly recorded conversations of a suspect in a public-corruption case talking about alleged deals the Clintons made, these people said. The agents listening to the recordings couldn’t tell from the conversations if what the suspect was describing was accurate, but it was, they thought, worth checking out.

    Prosecutors thought the talk was hearsay and a weak basis to warrant aggressive tactics, like presenting evidence to a grand jury, because the person who was secretly recorded wasn’t inside the Clinton Foundation.

    […] But the agents had also interviewed the Clinton Cash author a bunch of times! […]

    But the answer from the top kept coming back, “SERIOUSLY STOP LISTENING TO ALEX JONES AND DO YOUR ACTUAL FBI WORK, PLEASE.” In fact, by August, there was a call between Justice and FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe, where Justice again said, “DID WE FUCKING STUTTER?” and McCabe was like “No, but they’re still going to keep doing the investigation because the FBI isn’t an American agency anymore, we’re the Breitbart comments section,” […]

    But was that the only rogue FBI leak last night? […]

    Crooks & Liars points us to two other things that happened on Fox News, involving alleged REAL LEGITIMATE LEAKS that are probably DEFINITELY TOTALLY TRUE. First, we have Lou Dobbs saying the FBI is “99% sure that as many as five foreign intelligence agencies were able to hack into the Clinton email server and did put national security in jeopardy, according to FBI sources.” WHOA IF TRUE! This preliminary look at some bullroar from Anthony Weiner’s laptop told the FBI all that and some dudes whispered into Lou Dobbs’s pants about it? YOU BET!

    What, did they finally catch Huma Abedin BCC-ing the nuclear codes to the Muslim Brotherhood? Is that what it was? […]

    Crooks & Liars notes common threads in all these stories: They are all politically motivated FBI leaks, right before an election! And also too, they all leaked to media properties owned by Rupert Murdoch, gosh how weird is that? […]

    The shorter version of this post is that all these motherfuckers need to GO TO JAIL.

  182. says

    To probably no one’s surprise…:

    Fox News star Megyn Kelly has unveiled explosive new charges against the network’s founder, Roger Ailes, claiming the disgraced 76-year-old executive tried to sexually assault her in his New York office and hinted she would be fired when she “pushed him away.” can reveal that the 45-year-old anchor’s bombshell account was added at the last minute to her long-planned memoir, Settle For More….

    Kelly — who is in the final months of a $15-million-a-year contract with the network — claims in the book that when Carlson first filed her complaint, Ailes commenced an “intense campaign” to get her and other stars to speak in his defense.

    “I was approached several times, and several times I refused,” she claims in the book, obtained by Radar….

  183. says

    People are responding to Melania Trump’s remark “Our culture has gotten too mean and too rough” by retweeting old Trump tweets, like “Barney Frank looked disgusting–nipples protruding–in his blue shirt before Congress. Very very disrespectful” (from 2015) and “Little Jon Stewart(?)* Is a p***y, he would be hopeless in a debate with me!” (from 2013).

    * The “(?)” after Stewart’s name is a reference to his birth name being Jonathan Stuart Leibowitz. Lest anyone think anti-Semitic dogwhistles are something new for Trump.

  184. says

    But the answer from the top kept coming back, “SERIOUSLY STOP LISTENING TO ALEX JONES AND DO YOUR ACTUAL FBI WORK, PLEASE.” In fact, by August, there was a call between Justice and FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe, where Justice again said, “DID WE FUCKING STUTTER?” and McCabe was like “No, but they’re still going to keep doing the investigation because the FBI isn’t an American agency anymore, we’re the Breitbart comments section,” […]


  185. says

    An open letter to James Comey from the girl to whom Anthony Weiner was sending lewd messages:

    …I thought your job as FBI Director was to protect me. I thought if I cooperated with your investigation, my identity as a minor would be kept secret. That is no longer the case. My family and I are barraged by reporters’ phone calls and emails. I have been even been blamed in a newspaper for causing Donald Trump to now be leading in some polls and costing Hillary the election.

    I may have been Weiner’s victim, but the real story here is that I am a survivor. I am strong, intelligent, and certain that I will come out from under this nightmare, but it will not be as a result of your doing your job to protect me. I hope that by making my letter to you public, you will think about how your actions affect the victims of the crimes you are investigating….

    — Girl that lost her faith in America

    P.S. To all reporters: AP, FOX, CBS, NBC, and all other media outlets, please respect my position and stop interrupting my life!

  186. Ogvorbis: I have proven my humanity and can now comment! says

    So when does the FBI cabal leak that Hillary Clinton skipped school in the spring of her 8th grade year and had a cigarette with three of her friends who turn out to be left-wing terrorists, abortion doctors and lobbyists for China?

  187. says

    News reports about the man who murdered the two policemen in Iowa yesterday (see comment #163) are saying people describe him as a “troubled loner” and that “we may never know the motive.” FFS.

  188. says

    There is this:

    In a blow to Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump, a U.S. judge on Thursday upheld a Pennsylvania state law that could make it difficult for his supporters to monitor Election Day activity in Democratic-leaning areas.

    In Pennsylvania, Trump’s poll-monitoring plan faces a significant hurdle because state law requires partisan poll watchers to perform their duties in the county in which they are registered to vote.

    That could make it difficult to recruit monitors in places like Philadelphia, where Democrats outnumber Republicans by a ratio of eight to one. The city has 120,000 registered Republicans and 1,685 voting locations.

    The Pennsylvania Republican Party sought to suspend that requirement so that poll monitors could come from anywhere in the state, which would enable them to bring in supporters from suburban and rural areas where Trump has stronger support.

    But U.S. District Judge Gerald Pappert said that would be too disruptive to change the law less than a week before Tuesday’s vote….

  189. says

    In other legal/election news:

    The Obama administration threw Donald Trump a regulatory curveball as he makes his final pitch to working-class voters.

    The National Labor Relations Board, the agency charged with enforcing federal labor law, ruled Thursday that the Trump International Hotel in Las Vegas violated the National Labor Relations Act by refusing to bargain with a union that represents more than 500 housekeeping, food and beverage and guest services workers there.

    The NLRB’s decision orders Trump Ruffin Commercial LLC to recognize and bargain with the workers, who are represented by Nevada’s powerful Culinary Workers Union Local 226, an affiliate of UNITE HERE….

  190. says

    Kallstrom [Jim Kallstrom, who worked for Comey] is the former head of the New York FBI office, installed in that post in the ’90s by then-FBI director Louis Freeh, one of Giuliani’s longtime friends. Kallstrom has, like Giuliani, been on an anti-Comey romp for months, most often on Fox, where he’s called the Clintons a “crime family.” He has been invoking unnamed FBI agents who contact him to complain about Comey’s exoneration of Clinton in one interview after another, positioning himself as an apolitical champion of FBI values.

    And as that article Lynna quotes @ #235 points out (and discusses in more detail), “The $1M gift that [Trump] gave to veterans in May, under media pressure, went to USMC charity run by Kallstrom.”

  191. militantagnostic says

    Salty Current @202

    The most recent Episode of CBC radio’s science show Quirks and Quarks used a photo of Lance Armstrong to illustrate this segment on how
    Your brain can get used to lying

    Was he thinking of going into politics as a Repugnican?

  192. says

    “FBI examining fake documents targeting Clinton campaign: sources”:

    The FBI and U.S. intelligence agencies are examining faked documents aimed at discrediting the Hillary Clinton campaign as part of a broader investigation into what U.S. officials believe has been an attempt by Russia to disrupt the presidential election, people with knowledge of the matter said.

    U.S. Senator Tom Carper, a Democrat on the Senate Homeland Security Committee, has referred one of the documents to the FBI for investigation on the grounds that his name and stationery were forged to appear authentic, some of the sources who had knowledge of that discussion said….

  193. says

    “Vladimir Putin Won’t Be Sweating the Election Result on Tuesday: Moscow insiders say it doesn’t matter who wins on November 8. Putin has America right where he wants it”:

    … The desired result in this election has not necessarily been the presidency of Donald Trump. In fact, he seems to them to be rather disposable. The mission is sowing disruption, chaos. And in doing that, Putin will have accomplished something for himself, regardless of who wins next week: a deeply fractured American system, once held up as a shining alternative to Moscow’s style of power, now tarnished beyond recognition.

    Even more importantly, Putin will have shown himself to be able to project power far beyond where anyone would have suspected….

    But it’s what happens inside the U.S. political system that will really please Putin. “Moscow understands that the level of unpredictability in American politics is going up in any case,” Markov says. Trump is anti-establishment and unpredictable, and “Clinton will be under constant threat of impeachment, and she will be forced to overcome this challenge. Plus, she’s very hysterical.… Both will be in conflict with Congress, which is good,” Markov says. “Let them focus on domestic politics. The less they focus on foreign policy, the better for the rest of the world.”

    And here is where the importance of chaos comes in. “It doesn’t matter who’s president,” Lipman says. “Any kind of turmoil or internal split that’s hard to overcome, that is good for Russia. If your powerful opponent is disabled from within, it works to your advantage.”…

  194. KG says

    Lord Thomas of Cwmgiedd*…
    * That is a fantastic word. – SC@216

    Just for general interest, Cwmgiedd is of course in Wales (asccording to wikipedia “Cwmgiedd is a village in the community of Ystradgynlais, Powys, Wales”), and I think would be pronounced something like “Coom-gyeth”, with the “th” being voiced as in “these”, not unvoiced as in “thin”. Ystradgynlais would be something like “Iss-trad-gun-lyess”. Welsh spelling is very phonetic, but the sound values of letters are different from those of English. Stress is always on the penultimate syllable,

  195. KG says

    “Brexit plans in disarray as high court rules parliament must have its say” – SC@216

    It’s very unlikely Parliament will try to block the triggering of Article 50 altogether, given the result of the referendum*, even though a clear majority of MPs think Brexit is a terrible idea. But assuming the UK Supreme Court does not reverse the decision in early December – which it well might – it does put a spoke in Theresa May’s chariot wheels. She wants carte blanche to negotiate with the EU without any Parliamentary scrutiny, probably going for a “hard Brexit” – i.e, keeping the dirty/scary foreigners out being the first priority, and stuff the economic consequences if that means losing access to the EU Single Market. If she can’t get the legal decision reversed, she’ll probably try to push through a simple resolution of the House of Commons giving her the OK (such as now happens by convention if the government wants to start bombing people in the Middle East), rather than actual legislation – but that could be vulnerable both to a defeat (because those voting against it can say quite legitimately they just want proper scrutiny), and to further legal challenge. A defeat in the Commons might in turn lead to a general election – she can’t just call one (she needs a 2/3 majority of all MPs, or else must engineer a vote of no confidence in her own government), but if she offered one, it would be politically difficult for Labour to refuse the offer. But then she’d go into the election with the Conservatives badly divided (Labour already are, over the party’s leadership), a revived UKIP to her right, and a revived Liberal Democratic party hoovering up anti-Brexit votes. But framing and pushing through legislation could take a year or more, and would also risk splitting the party.

    Interesting times!

    *The SNP could try to, as they take their mandate from the Scottish electorate, who voted 62%-38% to stay in. But of course they have nowhere near enough MPs, even if they can attract some die-hard Remainers from other parties.

  196. KG says

    Further to my #260, 261

    #260 The syllable I’ve transliterated as “lyess” would be pronounced like the English word “lice”, not “lie ess”. And on second thoughts I’m not sure if Coomgyeth wouldn’t rather be Coomgyeth.

    #261 Quite apart from its Brexit implications, the High Court decision is very important because it indicates limits on the “Royal Prerogative” – the executive’s power of acting without Parliamentary approval.

  197. KG says

    Ugh. Screwed up the bolding @262. I meant to say I’m not sure Coomgyeth wouldn’t rather be Coomgyeth.

  198. snuffcurry says

    With respect to tweets linked to in 223 and 225, one of which is an image from Theiner–a picture of Trump with the date “July 7 1987” and the word “traitor” superimposed–along with a hashtag #KGB in the accompanying tweet, I am assuming this is probably not about property tax abatements (cf NYT article published on 7 July 1987), but more likely to concern Trump’s contributions to the Wharton funds to arm the contras.

  199. snuffcurry says

    Trump also happened to be in Moscow that month and year. From The Washington Post:

    Trump’s 1987 trip represented his first public exploration of business prospects in Moscow. He went with his then-wife, ­Ivana, to scope out sites for luxury hotels he hoped to build in a joint venture with the Kremlin’s hotel and tourism agency, according to Trump’s memoir, “The Art of the Deal,” which was published the same year.

  200. says

    Well, here’s the new Eichenwald piece (was the title from a previous version?) – “Why Vladimir Putin’s Russia is Backing Donald Trump”:

    In phone calls, meetings and cables, America’s European allies have expressed alarm to one another about Donald Trump’s public statements denying Moscow’s role in cyberattacks designed to interfere with the U.S. election. They fear the Republican nominee for president has emboldened the Kremlin in its unprecedented cyber-campaign to disrupt elections in multiple countries in hopes of weakening Western alliances, according to intelligence, law enforcement and other government officials in the United States and Europe.

    Trump’s behavior…has at times concerned the Russians, leading them to revise their hacking and disinformation strategy. For example, when Trump launched into an inexplicable attack on the parents of a Muslim-American soldier who died in combat, the Kremlin assumed the Republican nominee was showing himself psychologically unfit to be president and would be forced by his party to withdraw from the race. As a result, Moscow put its hacking campaign temporarily on hold, ending the distribution of documents until Trump stabilized, both personally and in the polls, according to reports provided to Western intelligence.

    Western intelligence and law enforcement say tens of thousands of people have been working with Russia on its hacking and disinformation campaign for many years. …One U.S. official says there is evidence many of these Americans and foreign nationals do not know they are part of Russia’s propaganda operation.

    The incident that so stunned the British officials…came in the course of a discussion during the third presidential debate, when the two candidates talked about the Russian hacking.

    CLINTON: We’ve never had a foreign government trying to interfere in our election. We have 17—17 intelligence agencies, civilian and military, who have all concluded that these espionage attacks, these cyberattacks, come from the highest levels of the Kremlin and they are designed to influence our election. I find that deeply disturbing. And I think it’s time you take a stand…

    TRUMP: She has no idea whether it’s Russia, China, or anybody else.

    CLINTON: I am not quoting myself.

    TRUMP: She has no idea.

    CLINTON: I am quoting 17…

    TRUMP: Hillary, you have no idea.

    CLINTON: …17 intelligence—do you doubt 17 military and civilian…

    TRUMP: And our country has no idea.

    CLINTON: … agencies.

    TRUMP: Yeah, I doubt it. I doubt it.

    CLINTON: Well, he’d rather believe Vladimir Putin than the military and civilian intelligence professionals who are sworn to protect us. I find that just absolutely…

    TRUMP: She doesn’t like Putin because Putin has outsmarted her at every step of the way.

    …Trump had no apparent means of developing his own information to contradict the findings of intelligence agencies around the world. And that he would so aggressively fight to clear Putin, and cast aspersions on all Western intelligence agencies, left the British officials slack-jawed.

    Officials in Western Europe say they are dismayed that they now feel compelled to gather intelligence on a man who could be the next president of the United States, but believe they have no choice. Moscow is seen as a direct threat to their interests—both in its aggressive efforts to reshape global alliances and for its power to damage Western Europe, which obtains almost 40 percent of its natural gas from Russia. Should the United States, the last remaining superpower, tilt its policies away from NATO to the benefit of Russia, the alliance between America and Western Europe could be transformed in unprecedented ways. And so, for perhaps the first time since World War II, countries in Western Europe fear that the American election, should Trump win, could trigger events that imperil their national security and do potentially irreparable harm to the alliances that have kept the continent safe for decades.

    In a sane election, this article would contain several nuclear bombs: Russia has a massive operation using hacking of US governmental and nongovernmental entities and a vast disinformation campaign to promote a US presidential candidate who will be their stooge; the Kremlin’s goals, beyond the election of their puppet, are to destabilize US democracy and US-European alliances; the Kremlin’s preferred candidate is so unstable that they’ve had doubts about continuing the operation and at times put it on hold; the candidate is so loyal to Putin that he would refuse to recognize the findings of his country’s intelligence agencies even when asked about it during a televised presidential debate and continue to praise Putin; the candidate’s campaign is actively drawing on and exploiting Russian propaganda; European governments are gravely concerned about the candidate and the danger he poses and gathering intelligence on him. But this isn’t remotely a sane election, and the fact that it contains no Trump smoking gun means it could have little effect. I’m not optimistic that the media will rise to the challenge and start to focus on this with only a few days left. We’ll see.

  201. says

    Was he thinking of going into politics as a Repugnican?

    It’s a good question. It doesn’t seem like there were clear indications one way or the other. He had some positions that weren’t Republican, but was friends with George W. Bush. My suspicion is that his personality and Texas roots (and the fact that he seems to have been thinking of running for governor in TX) would ultimately have led him “home” to the Republicans.

    We could still find out! Maybe the candidacy of a pathological liar and corrupt fraud like Trump will make him think he might have a chance in a few years.

  202. says

    Matt Yglesias – “The real Clinton email scandal is that a bullshit story has dominated the campaign”:

    …[E]mailgate, like so many Clinton pseudo-scandals before it, is bullshit. The real scandal here is the way a story that was at best of modest significance came to dominate the US presidential election — overwhelming stories of much more importance, giving the American people a completely skewed impression of one of the two nominees, and creating space for the FBI to intervene in the election in favor of its apparently preferred candidate in a dangerous way.

    Following a long description of Clinton’s allegedly “scandalous” and “criminal” behavior, he concludes:

    …Clinton broke no laws according to the FBI itself. Her setup gave her no power to evade federal transparency laws beyond what anyone who has a personal email account of any kind has. Her stated explanation for her conduct is entirely believable, fits the facts perfectly, and is entirely plausible to anyone who doesn’t simply start with the assumption that she’s guilty of something.

    Given Powell’s conduct, Clinton wasn’t even breaking with an informal precedent. The very worst you can say is that, faced with an annoying government IT policy, she used her stature to find a personal workaround rather than a systemic fix that would work for everyone. To spend so much time on such a trivial matter would be absurd in a city council race, much less a presidential election. To do so in circumstances when it advances the electoral prospects of a rival who has shattered all precedents in terms of lacking transparency or basic honesty is infinity more scandalous than anything related to the server itself.

  203. says

    “The Media Never Raised the Bar for Donald Trump”:

    …Donald Trump’s closing argument is that he can use a teleprompter. Not necessarily that the words he reads off the teleprompter are true or intelligent, just that he can say all of them out loud and in order. In the final days of this campaign, we have returned to where we began, with an odd fixation on whether this man who aspires to the presidency can avoid saying anything ignorant, bigoted, inscrutable, or otherwise disqualifying for an hour or so at a time, once or twice a day.

    …Trump’s bar was never raised, and was actually lowered for a time. As the campaign winds to a close, reporters are still treating fourth-grade demonstrations of poise as political masterstrokes, when the fact that this is an open question at all is actually horrifying.

    Everything we’ve seen over the past several months points to the fact that Clinton is at her strongest when she’s disintermediated, while Trump unvarnished is a walking murder-suicide. By leaving this contrast unstated, and saying nothing at all about its implications for the presidency, the media is failing those Americans who have a choice to make by November 8.

  204. militantagnostic says

    SC @270 regarding Lance Armstrong

    We could still find out! Maybe the candidacy of a pathological liar and corrupt fraud like Trump will make him think he might have a chance in a few years.

    I was thinking the same thing. Trump has proven that a large number of voters do not care whether or not a candidate is telling the truth.

    I heard this on something called Monocle or maybe Monaco 24 during CBC Radio One’s after midnight public radio from around the word rebroadcasts.

    “The problem is, we take Trump literally but we don’t take him seriously while his supporters don’t take him literally bu do take him seriously.”

  205. says

    Statement by Selahattin Demirtaş, arrested HDP co-chair (the other co-chair, Figen Yüksekdağ, has also been arrested) to the prosecutor:

    I don’t want to answer the questions about the alleged charges against me. I just want to make a statement.

    We are the elected representatives of people. We don’t represent ourselves, but the electorate. Currently, I am a member of the parliament and have immunity. I am here as a member of the parliament. I would never let anyone disrespect the identity I represent and the will of my people. And I would never abstain from giving account to impartial judicial bodies.

    I will never accept to be a subject of the judges and prosecutors who wait hand and foot while the dignity of the judicial system is trampled. I don’t mean to disrespect you personally. However, I won’t be a puppet in this trumped-up judicial theater, which is started by the order of Erdoğan who has a really shady and questionable personal background. I won’t answer your questions. I don’t think that any legal procedure that will be carried out by you could be just and lawful. Even my detention is done illegally.

    In the political scene, politicians are addressed by the politicians, not by the judiciary. Thus, you, as prosecutors and judges who are supposed to stick to international and democratic maxims of law and to international conventions that are signed by Turkey and have the power of constitutional law, should refuse to be a part of political games and schemes. I don’t demand or expect anything from you. Only the people who elected me can question me about my political activities.

  206. says

    SC @267, Kudos to Eichenwald for being such a great investigative journalist. You wrote:

    But this isn’t remotely a sane election, and the fact that it contains no Trump smoking gun means it could have little effect. I’m not optimistic that the media will rise to the challenge and start to focus on this with only a few days left. We’ll see.

    I think a few media outlets (mostly MSNBC plus a few web-based sources) will follow up on this, but most will not. The facts don’t lend themselves as easily to sound-biting or dog-whistling as Trump’s choice of “corrupt” and “email!” slurs do.

    I also think that in Trumplandia, voters respond only to months of repetition. We don’t have months. We have a few days before the election.

    I thought Trump’s response during the debate (the dialogue you showed in your comment) was a smoking gun. I guess that because it wasn’t repeated enough to be pounded into the brains of most voters, it just slipped by. Democrats and some media outlets covered it well, to no avail. Fox News and Republicans should not have let such a blatant pro-Russia stance (that was fact-free) go by.

  207. says

    Just one example of Donald Trump grossly inflating his income:

    […] On the financial disclosure forms that Donald J. Trump has pointed to as proof of his tremendous success, no venture looks more gold-plated than his golf resort in Doral, Fla., where he reported revenues of $50 million in 2014. That figure accounted for the biggest share of what he described as his income for the year.

    But this summer, a considerably different picture emerged in an austere government hearing room in Miami, where Mr. Trump’s company was challenging the resort’s property tax bill.

    Mr. Trump’s lawyer handed the magistrate an income and expense statement showing that the gross revenue had indeed been $50 million. But after paying operating costs, the resort had actually lost $2.4 million.

    Mr. Trump has repeatedly held out his financial disclosures as a justification for breaking with tradition and refusing to release his personal tax returns. “You don’t learn that much from tax returns,” he said in September during his first debate with Hillary Clinton. “You learn a lot from financial disclosure. And you should go down and take a look at that.”

    But an examination of his tax appeals on several properties, and other documents obtained by The New York Times through Freedom of Information requests, shows that what Mr. Trump has reported on those forms is nowhere near a complete picture of his financial state. […]

    New York Times link

    The NY Times article goes on to provide other details. For example, he claimed that his “most beautiful building in Lower Manhattan,” 40 Wall Street earns him about $20 million per year in rentals. But forms Trump filed with the New York City Tax Commission show him receiving a cash flow of about $104,000 in 2014; and showing a negative cash flow for the three previous years. In 2015, the building did bring in more cash, about $3 million after expenses. As is his way, Trump earned money on top of the rental income by charging $966,000 for the Trump Organization to “manage” the building. No, Mr. Trump, you do not receive $20 million in profit from rental fees at 40 Wall Street.

    Much more at the link, including Trump International Hotel and Tower on Columbus circle, parking garages, etc. etc.

    No, Donald, you did not receive income of $50 million from Doral. The financial disclosure forms you filed are seriously misleading. You are a liar. You puff yourself up. The facts do not support you.

  208. says

    It’s being reported the U.S. District Court judge James Gwin has granted the temporary restraining order the DNC requested restricting the Trump campaign’s use of “poll watchers” in Ohio.

  209. says

    “Latino Early Vote Surges From Florida to Nevada”:

    Latino voters are already showing up to vote this election and could cast ballots in larger numbers than Democrats saw in recent elections.

    On a call with reporters Friday, Latino Decisions– a polling group focused on Hispanic voting patters– said that Latino turnout is on track to make history next week.

    On the call, Gabriel Sanchez, a principal at Latino Decisions, pointed to early voting trends that show Latino early voting is up 100 percent in Florida, 60 percent in North Carolina and up 25 percent in Colorado and Nevada.

    Sanchez said at this point, Latino Decisions is projecting that between 13.1 million and 14.7 million Latinos will vote on or before Tuesday– a major increase from 2012 numbers when the group estimated 11.2 million voted.

    …Latino Decisions is estimating– using their own turnout predictor– that Clinton is on track to capture 79 percent of the Latino vote….

  210. says

    SC @286, that’s an improvement over Baier’s first walk-back, but I notice that he still can’t say that he lied, or that his report was inaccurate or not factual.

    In other news, Trump is now claiming, in addition to knowing more than the generals do, that he can read the minds of the generals:

    “To think of her being their boss, I don’t think so,” Trump said, before suggesting that active duty generals are simply following protocol by keeping mum about the election. “I know what they are thinking,” he continued. “It’s not for them.”

    Politico link

    Just as a reminder to Trump, Hillary Clinton has more endorsements from retired military leaders than Trump (Clinton 110 to Trump’s 88), and Mitt Romney had more than Trump has. “Here is what is important, I now have more endorsements from retired flag officers than any Democrat other than an incumbent president has ever had,” Clinton said.

    I think that comment from Trump is a misogynist dog whistle.

  211. says

    All of the stupidity that seems to originate in the NY office of the FBI is getting so much attention that a policy statement Trump made on October 26th has gone unnoticed for the most part. This is what Trump said during a speech about his “New Deal for Black America”:

    “I will also cancel all wasteful climate change spending from Obama-Clinton, including all global warming payments to the United Nations. These steps will save $100 billion over 8 years, and this money will be used to help rebuild the vital infrastructure, including water systems, in America’s inner cities.”

    Trump’s policy is bonkers … and his figures are inaccurate.

    From Bloomberg:

    […] the estimate was based on a Congressional Research Service report in 2013 that looked at federal climate change funding from fiscal year 2008 to the administration’s budget request for FY 2014.

    Think Progress took a closer look:

    […] the overwhelming majority of the money that was spent during the Obama years on “climate change” was in fact spent on clean energy technologies from solar energy to advanced batteries. In fact, CRS concluded, “more than 75 percent” of that total spending “funded technology development and deployment, mostly through the Department of Energy (DOE).”

    If Trump isn’t planning to zero out federal funding for clean technology development and deployment, then there is no possible way of coming anywhere close to $100 billion dollars over eight years or $12.5 billion a year.

    If we take the 2014 “climate” budget request of $11.7 billion as the baseline going forward to determine possible budget savings in a Trump administration, then team Trump would have to eliminate everything in it just to save $93.6 billion over eight years. […]

  212. says

    More bad news about states closing polling places, and about states focusing on closing polling places in communities of color:

    Since the Supreme Court struck down a key pillar of the Voting Rights Act in 2013, more than a dozen Republican-controlled state legislatures have passed a wave of laws that restrict when, where, and how people can cast a ballot.

    They have also, a new report reveals, shut down hundreds of polling places.

    A study of nearly 400 counties in Alabama, Arizona, Texas, Louisiana, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Mississippi found that those counties collectively reduced the number of polling locations available to voters by at least 16 percent — eliminating more than 860 places.[…]

    Researchers with the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights found that found that the vast majority of the closures happened in areas with a documented history of racial discrimination that used to hold elections under Justice Department supervision. […]

    Ahead of the presidential primary in March, Arizona’s most populous county slashed the number of available polling places from 200 to 60, calling it a “cost-effective” move. The result: five-hour lines, polling places running out of ballots, voters giving up and leaving without voting, and even voters fainting after waiting in the Arizona heat.

    For Rhode Island’s April primary, the state cut 66 percent of its polling places. […]

    Some counties in Indiana cut two-thirds of their polling sites ahead of their primary in May. The state saw long lines and hundreds of voters improperly turned away after polls closed. […]

    In North Carolina, 17 counties are providing fewer total early voting hours than they did in 2012, and some of the cuts have been deep. Charlotte’s Mecklenburg County , for example, offered 22 locations for the first day of early voting in 2012. This year, they offered only 10, resulting in lines more than three hours long. […]

    Think Progress link

    Etc. The article mentions Guilford County North Carolina, where early voting was reduced by 85%. Pima County in Arizona closed 62 polling locations in areas with high Latino and Native American populations.

  213. says

    Sort of a followup to SC’s comment 288.

    Examples of going lower:

    Alex Jones claims that Hillary Clinton is a “devil worshipper” and that she “wants to destroy the planet.” Link.

    […] Hillary Clinton is a total and complete wanton power-tripping self-worshiping devil worshiper. […] She acts like Linda Blair. She flops around on the ground. She spits at them [the FBI]. She hits them. She screams. She flips out. She trances out. She stinks. They start having nightmares. […]

    she wants to destroy the planet. She is a Satanist, committed to evil. And the ultimate evil isn’t just pouring blood on yourself and having lesbian orgies and eating women’s milk and sperm and a bunch of filth at these blood sex rituals that Podesta reportedly goes to. It’s war, it’s death, its destruction, it’s all a big, stinking ritual.

    Roger Stone says, “It would not surprise me” to find out that Hillary Clinton is a cocaine addict. Link.

    TIM ALEXANDER (GUEST CO-HOST): Roger, are you aware that Dr. Bill [Deagle] and I broke the story based on the comments of Sally Miller, former Miss Arkansas and one of Bill’s longtime mistresses that Hillary Clinton was a cocaine addict as well?

    ROGER STONE: That would not surprise me. Cocaine runs throughout this entire Clinton history and Bill and his brother Roger were heavy, heavy users.


    ALEXANDER: Sally Miller told us that Bill told her that when he and Hillary would get in a fight it was usually over the fact that their cocaine was almost out and who was going to get the last of it.

    STONE: Nothing would surprise me about these wanton criminals.

    They haven’t accused Hillary of eating her grandchildren … yet. There’s still room at the bottom.

  214. says

    Re comment 292, I left out the bit where Laura Ingraham suggested that Hillary Clinton would try to kill FBI Director Comey after the election.

  215. Ogvorbis: I have proven my humanity and can now comment! says

    Alex Jones claims that Hillary Clinton is a “devil worshipper” and that she “wants to destroy the planet.”

    I thought it was the Christians who wanted to destroy the planet so that Jesus would get to come a second time.

  216. says

    This is a followup to comment 292.

    The Drudge Report is fully behind reporting the satanic and/or wiccan rituals and occult magic in which Hillary Clinton supposedly engages with Podesta.

    Wonkette covered that Drudge reporting, as well as a series of hyper stupid reporting on other stories by Drudge today.

    […] For the record, the links he [Drudge] provides go to:

    A totally legit thing from Alex Jones’s InfoWars that says Hillary’s campaign chair John Podesta eats blood and cum for dinner.

    A Julian Assange circle jerk posted in Russian state media about how (BREAKING NEWS!) the Saudis spend their moneys in some interesting places, some of them very unsavory! No shit, bro?

    A thing that says there’s a heightened terror threat level the day before the election. These things tend to happen around election days, and the 4th of July, and lots of other days.

    A bullshit right-wing read on the monthly jobs report. The actual jobs report, as reported by those vegan hippie gaywads at Rupert Murdoch’s Wall Street Journal, is that unemployment is down to 4.9% and the US and A added 161,000 new jobs in October. […]

  217. says

    Going lower: Trump praised Sid Miller during a speech in New Hampshire. Sid Miller is the guy who called Hillary Clinton a [C-Word] on Twitter recently. Link

    This was at the same rally where, as SC noted, New Hampshire Governor John Sununu joked that Bill Clinton wasn’t interested in having sex with Hillary Clinton.

  218. Ogvorbis: I have proven my humanity and can now comment! says

    A Republican election commissioner in Arkansas has been accused of voter intimidation after he harassed early voters and tried to drive them away from a polling location in Pine Bluff.

    A Trumpist wet dream. Well, except for the arrested part.

    From RawStory.

    A Georgia polling place prevented a mother from voting because her crying toddler was “distracting” to other voters.

    Okay, that one is less voter intimidation than sexism/mysogyny.

    Again, from RawStory.

    I think that we are in the process of gathering unprecidented evidence that the SCOTUS was wrong. Federal oversight of elections IS needed.

  219. says

    Ogvorbis @301, yes. I think your conclusion is spot on. Federal oversight of elections is definitely needed.

    In very slightly reassuring news, the Trump campaign does not have the ground game that would be needed to truly intimidate voters on a large scale. That doesn’t mean that we won’t see more unfortunate incidents like Ogvorbis posted in 301, where people who are not necessarily part of the ground game still wreak havoc because they are afflicted with general Trumpism.

  220. says

    @306, now we have to suspect that partisan political factions in the FBI may have done the bugging.

    @304, Obama had to work really hard for the moment when he brought the crowd under control and gave them a “free speech” and “respect” lecture. He did that well.

    In other Obama news, the president released 72 more nonviolent federal prisoners today. This brings his total to almost 1000, which is more “than the past 11 presidents combined.”

  221. says

    The official ballots in Arkansas spell Hillary Clinton’s name wrong. It is spelled a “Hilliary,” which puts the word “liar” in the middle of her first name.


  222. says

    From comments below the article mentioned in 308:

    A quick Google of “Hilliary” gets me 542,000 hits including a well-traveled Twitter hashtag.

    Random error my ass!
    a quick google search of the spelling “hilliary” brings up a lot of nasty anti-Clinton memes and even a domain that appears to be anti-Clinton.
    Of all the states, this one and New York have the most history with getting her name right

  223. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    As an aside from presidential politics. When I went to the grocery stores today, I took a look at the political signage in yards and vacant lots both ways. I could conclude that there wasn’t a federal election occurring. Only a handful of signs were Clinton/Kaine, none for Trump/Spence. Less than a handful for Duckworth (US Senator candidate, D), none for Kirk, and a handful for Schneider (US rep candidate, D), not Dold. A plethora of signs for local state attorney, coroner, state rep/senator, and county offices.
    Four years ago, lots of Obama/Biden and Romney/Ryan signage.

  224. says

    Interesting statistic, 67% of the agents in the FBI are white males.

    “We have a crisis in the FBI and it is this: slowly but steadily over the last decade or more, the percentage of special agents in the FBI who are white has been growing….We are now 83 percent white in our special agent cadre,” the FBI director said in a July speech at historically black Bethune-Cookman University in Daytona Beach. “I’ve got nothing against white people—especially tall, awkward, male white people—but that is a crisis for reasons that you get and that I’ve worked very hard to make sure the entire FBI understands. That is a path to fall down a flight of stairs.”

    Politico link

  225. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Interesting statistic, 67% of the agents in the FBI are white males.

    how many are “Why isn’t my dinner on the table

  226. says

    Nerd @312, I don’t know, but that is a Trumpian demographic. It may get worse when one looks just at the “special agent cadre,” which is 87% white. (Don’t have the male/female breakdown for special agents.)

    The article noted that many of the FBI agents are also ex-military. The FBI is also well known for recruiting from the ranks of returned mormon missionaries, a group that is solidly Republican.

  227. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    The article noted that many of the FBI agents are also ex-military. The FBI is also well known for recruiting from the ranks of returned mormon missionaries, a group that is solidly Republican.

    I don’t find the ex-military so troublesome as the returned Mormon missionaries. That means the leaks could be religious prejudice, not just run-of-the-mill misogyny.

  228. says

    “STUDY: Top Newspapers Give Clinton Email Story More Coverage Than All Other Trump Stories.”

    @306, now we have to suspect that partisan political factions in the FBI may have done the bugging.

    It’s unreal. If Clinton pulls out a win, she’ll have overcome the opposition not only of an opponent who’s a misogynistic sexual predator, but a Republican House out not just to beat but to destroy her; state Republican parties devoted to voter suppression and intimidation; a 20+-year hate machine; Breitbart; Fox; the Kremlin and its army of hackers, trolls, and disinformation specialists; WikiLeaks; a media being led by the nose; and an FBI fifth column.

  229. says

    “North Carolina counties must restore voters to rolls, judge rules”:

    A federal judge in North Carolina granted a preliminary injunction to the NAACP on Friday, holding that residents whose voter registrations were canceled in recent months because of a so-called “individual challenge law” must have their registration restored.

    The ruling could affect thousands of voters.

    “The court concludes that the balance of the equities and public interest factors weigh decidedly in favor of protecting eligible voters who are being removed from the voter rolls,” wrote Loretta Biggs of the US District Court for the Middle District of North Carolina.

    Kim Westbrook Strach, the executive director of the North Carolina State Board of Elections, issued a statement Friday afternoon saying her office “is working quickly to establish the procedures necessary to comply with the court order between now and Election Day.”…

  230. says

    The way Trump talks about Mosul is amazing. He exploits the tragedy to try to score ridiculous political points – nothing he says about it shows the slightest interest in the people oppressed by ISIS. (I mean, I’ve long argued, and it should be obvious at this point, that he has no capacity for empathy, but it’s so plainly on display in this case, which he keeps bringing up, that it’s worthy of comment.)

  231. says

    “Investigate FBI Leaks to Rudy Giuliani, Top Democrats Tell Justice Department”:

    …Reps. Elijah Cummings and John Conyers, respectively the top Democrats on the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee and the Judiciary Committee, wrote to the Justice Department inspector general on Friday afternoon asking him to investigate the source of the information to Giuliani.

    Calling it “absolutely unacceptable” for the FBI to disclose information* about a candidate so close to an election, the lawmakers said, “Leaking this information to former FBI officials as a conduit to the Trump campaign is equally intolerable.”…

    * Just a note: not actually information.

  232. says

    Two random observations/questions:

    I’m fascinated by Trump’s obsession with cash. He can’t bring up the payment to Iran without pointing out that it was in cash, in a way that appears aimed at making it seem scandalous. I think there’s some psychological factor at work, but I’m not sure what exactly.

    Re Giuliani on Fox: Who wears a loosely-tied bowtie?

    Oh, also: the AP is reporting that Melania Trump worked for 10 months in the US without a visa.

  233. says

    It seems Trump worked 10 jobs, not 10 months, without a work visa.

    “National Enquirer Shielded Donald Trump From Playboy Model’s Affair Allegation”:

    The company that owns the National Enquirer, a backer of Donald Trump, agreed to pay $150,000 to a former Playboy centerfold model for her story of an affair a decade ago with the Republican presidential nominee, but then didn’t publish it, according to documents reviewed by The Wall Street Journal and people familiar with the matter.

    The tabloid-newspaper publisher reached an agreement in early August with Karen McDougal, the 1998 Playmate of the Year. American Media Inc., which owns the Enquirer, hasn’t published anything about what she has told friends was a consensual romantic relationship she had with Mr. Trump in 2006. At the time, Mr. Trump was married to his current wife, Melania.

    Quashing stories that way is known in the tabloid world as “catch and kill.”…

  234. says

    Beyoncé rocked that pantsuit.

    SC @315, excellent summary of all that Hillary is having to overcome!

    Regarding the good news out of Nevada, the newspaper Sheldon Adelson bought was tweeting erroneously that the polls closed at 7. Jon Ralston corrected that to say that Election Department spokespeople said the voting place will stay open at long as it takes.

    Some good news:

    […] in every single state where the gender breakdown of early voting is available, women are voting at higher rates than men are relative to 2012. Every single one.

  235. KG says

    Clarification to my #261:

    assuming the UK Supreme Court does not reverse the decision in early December

    The case is expected to be heard in early December. The judgement may not be delivered until January.

  236. snuffcurry says

    I’m fascinated by Trump’s obsession with cash. He can’t bring up the payment to Iran without pointing out that it was in cash, in a way that appears aimed at making it seem scandalous. I think there’s some psychological factor at work, but I’m not sure what exactly.

    Interesting observation at 323, SC. Perhaps because he’s accustomed to typical grifts involving cash as a means to reduce papertrails and avoid tax, Trump’s conditioned assumption is to regard cash as inherently suspect and legally dubious. That, or he knows his audience enough that when their enemy does it, who is thought sneaky and dishonest, the practice itself must be so. Likewise, I suppose, the American public is supposed to feel — in knee-jerk, unthinking fashion — that any payment or loan to another country, however legal and obligatory, must a kick-back, a ransom, a buy-off, or some combination of the three. Meanwhile, literally or figuratively greasing the (tiny) palms of Russia is Just Good Free Marketism.

    Plus, for many people, I should think, cash in that amount probably sounds obscene and prohibitively unwieldy, again underscoring how “exceptional” the event was supposed to be to people who choose to know nothing concrete about the circumstances preceding it because facts are not in their favor and they’d rather embrace comfortable bogeys that affirm their childish, reactionary worldview.

  237. snuffcurry says

    Also, and I may be reaching here, but there’s a convoluted idea amongst bootstrappers that cash — which can be freely used whenever and for any purpose — softens people (cf resentful dogwhistle aimed at characterizing welfare recipients as layabouts who get their kicks Spending Taxpayers’s Hard-Earned Money on Drugs or otherwise scandalous fun, but this time the baddies are “mooslem” and they Hate America). Conspiracy theories must abound as to what form of Iran-backed terrorism the Obama administration has knowingly enabled by finally paying back some of our debts.

  238. Ogvorbis: I have proven my humanity and can now comment! says

    From a Mother Jones article about the possible bugging of the DNC offices:

    The FBI did not respond to a request for comment.

    Of course the FBI has no comment. They have no way to spin it to make Clinton look bad. They have no way to spin it to make Trump look less slimy.

  239. Ogvorbis: I have proven my humanity and can now comment! says

    This is no real surprise. From CNN:

    In one week of January 2016, one data analysis from Little Bird found that 62% of Trump’s tweets had white nationalist origins or connections.

    The article is a good discussion of the violence inherent in Trump’s campaign.

    Also from CNN , I think Giuliani realized that bragging about having an inside track on FBI investigations was probably not a good idea.

    Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani now denies that he was told by FBI agents that the bureau was reviewing newly discovered emails potentially related to Hillary Clinton’s use of a private server before the review was publicly revealed.

    Earlier, he had suggested that he was told by FBI agents about the review before it became public.

    Too late, asshole. It’s out there. And the DoJ will, hopefully, investigate this blatent violation of ethics, the Hatch Act, and legal standards.

    I hope.

  240. Ogvorbis: I have proven my humanity and can now comment! says

    er, “blatent” should actually be “Batant”. Sorry. All hail Typos.

  241. Ogvorbis: I have proven my humanity and can now comment! says

    Well, that was a blatant homage to Tpyos.

    I really wonder. Why does any veteran or active duty member of the military support Trump? He has insulted POWs. He has insulted those suffering from PTSD. He has insulted the commanders. He has compared his business success to those who died in combat ( Politicususa ). He has accused troops of stealing money in Iraq ( MSNBC, Rachel Maddow ). He has stated, flat-out, that he would issue illegal orders to U.S. troops ( The Guardian ). He dodged the draft — student and medical deferments. He tried to stiff veteran’s groups — and then, when caught stiffing them, sent the money to a group that actually is a right-wing lobbying/think tank. He has insulted the family of a fallen soldier. He has called the militry a disaster, saying it can’t win any more ( Newsmax ).

    I’m a veteran. I’m a disabled veteran. I think about the oath I took, an oatch to defend the Constitution of the United States of America, and I look at what Trump stands for. And what he stands for is not the Constitution. It is not the people of the United States. It is not the ideals (often unrealized, but still ideals) of the United States. He stands for himself. No one else. And he wants to use the office to make money and to make himself more powerful.

    Trump is for Trump service, not public service.

  242. says

    I heard that Trump cancelled a planned trip to Wisconsin today. Steve Schmidt thinks that this means the Trump campaign has given up, that it’s over.

    And here’s some news from Florida and other battleground states. Both candidates (or their surrogates) will be campaigning in some of these states today:

    […] In a conference call with reporters, Clinton campaign manager Robbie Mook announced an early voting turnout record. At least 40% of voters in battleground states are turning out early.

    In Florida, more registered Democrats than Republicans have turned out to vote early or by mail. The Clinton camp believes that they are winning Florida by 170,000 ballots. In North Carolina, there has been a 16% increase in early voting, and in Nevada more than 40% early voted.

    According to Mook, Clinton strategy has been to turn out voters who didn’t vote in previous elections.

    The Clinton campaign manager also said that there had been no surge from the Trump campaign and his voters, so the Republican nominee is going to need to outperform Romney on Election Day in Florida, North Carolina, and Nevada to win.

    Mook also told reporters on the call something that should worry Republicans to death. Hillary Clinton has built a new political coalition.

    The first part of the Clinton coalition is made up of Latino voters. The Latino vote has increased 120%-130%. The second part of Clinton coalition is Asian-American voters who have seen a 90% increase in early voting turnout. The third part of the new Clinton coalition is suburban women. Millennials are supporting Clinton after eight years of backing President Obama. The final piece of the Clinton coalition is African-Americans. African-American early voting turnout is 22% higher than in 2012. […]

  243. says

    Ogvorbis @345, thanks for that post. Your analysis of the problem Trump has in being a good candidate for former or current military personnel is spot on.

    I think we see some military personnel supporting Trump because they have a habit of watching, listening to, and reading only rightwing media sources. As a result, they think Hillary Clinton is a criminal.

  244. says

    Today, in Tampa, Florida, Trump added a few more totally false flourishes to his condemnation of Hillary Clinton:

    […] Can you imagine Anthony Weiner has probably every classified email ever sent. Probably studied every single one. […]

    [Anthony Weiner’s computer included] brand new emails, likely including some very, very classified information.

    If she were to win, it would create an unprecedented constitutional crisis. If she ever got into the Oval Office, Hillary and her special interests and her donors would rob this country blind.

    She’s got a lot of experience, but it’s all bad experience. […]

    I guess Trump has decided that, since he has nothing to lose at this point, he might well sling as much bullshit as possible before the polls close.

  245. says

    “Turkey orders trial for newspaper staff, detains more pro-Kurd officials”:

    blockquote>Turkish authorities ordered on Saturday that the editor and senior staff of a leading opposition newspaper be arrested pending trial, as more pro-Kurdish officials were detained, sparking protests against the widening state crackdown.

    Police fired tear gas and water cannon on a crowd of around 1,000 protesters in central Istanbul who were trying to get to the offices of the secularist Cumhuriyet newspaper. Nine of its journalists and executives were detained on Monday

    Prosecutors said staff at the paper, one of the few still critical of President Tayyip Erdogan, were suspected of crimes committed on behalf of Kurdish militants and U.S.-based cleric Fethullah Gulen, who is accused of instigating a coup attempt.

    Since the failed coup in July, more than 110,000 judges, teachers, police and civil servants have been detained or suspended in a crackdown that Erdogan’s critics say is quashing legitimate opposition.

    Some 170 newspapers, magazines, TV stations and news agencies have been closed in the crackdown, leaving 2,500 journalists unemployed, Turkey’s journalists’ association said….

  246. says

    Hillary Clinton is speaking to voters in Florida right now. I’ll look for a summary soon.

    In other news, this is a blow to the Democratic Party’s get-out-the-vote effort in Arizona:

    The U.S. Supreme Court has reinstated a new Arizona that makes it a felony to collect early ballots.

    Saturday’s order from the nation’s highest court overturns an appeals court decision a day earlier that blocked the new law. […]

    The decisions come just days ahead of a presidential election that has Arizona Democrats hoping to win the traditionally Republican state.

    Arizona filed an emergency appeal hours after the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals blocked the law Friday. Justice Anthony Kennedy referred the case to the entire Supreme Court, and it issued a brief order overturning the appeals court.

    Prior to this decision, Democrats had organized an effort to help voters deliver those ballots to the polls, an activity that has been carried out successfully in the past.

  247. says


    “Turkey orders trial for newspaper staff, detains more pro-Kurd officials”:

    Turkish authorities ordered on Saturday that the editor and senior staff of a leading opposition newspaper be arrested pending trial, as more pro-Kurdish officials were detained, sparking protests against the widening state crackdown.

    Police fired tear gas and water cannon on a crowd of around 1,000 protesters in central Istanbul who were trying to get to the offices of the secularist Cumhuriyet newspaper. Nine of its journalists and executives were detained on Monday

    Prosecutors said staff at the paper, one of the few still critical of President Tayyip Erdogan, were suspected of crimes committed on behalf of Kurdish militants and U.S.-based cleric Fethullah Gulen, who is accused of instigating a coup attempt.

    Since the failed coup in July, more than 110,000 judges, teachers, police and civil servants have been detained or suspended in a crackdown that Erdogan’s critics say is quashing legitimate opposition.

    Some 170 newspapers, magazines, TV stations and news agencies have been closed in the crackdown, leaving 2,500 journalists unemployed, Turkey’s journalists’ association said….

  248. says

    SC @349 (and other posts up-thread), thanks for keeping us updated about Turkey. Sheesh! That is all bad news. Dictatorial, authoritarian, anti-free-speech, anti-free-press. Sounds like Trumpism, but with a government that is actually taking action to implement all of the bad ideas.

  249. says

    Courtesy of Talking Points Memo, here’s what’s happening today on the campaign trail:

    Hillary Clinton:
    1:00PM ET: Hillary rally in Pembroke Pines, FL

    Donald Trump:
    10:00AM ET: Donald Trump rally in Tampa, FL
    1:00PM ET: Donald Trump rally in Wilmington, NC
    5:00PM PT: Donald Trump rally in Reno, NV
    9:30PM MT: Donald Trump rally in Denver, CO

    Bernie Sanders
    1:15 PM CT: Bernie Sanders rally for Hillary Clinton in Ames, IA
    3:30 PM MT: Bernie Sanders rally for Hillary Clinton in Colorado Springs, CO

    12:00PM ET Joe Biden rally for Hillary Clinton in West Mifflin, PA
    3:45PM ET Joe Biden rally for Hillary Clinton in Bristol, PA

    Tim Kaine:
    1:15PM ET: Tim Kaine rally in Fort Myers, FL
    4:45PM ET: Timm Kaine rally in Sarasota, FL

    Chelsea Clinton
    11:15AM ET: Chelsea Clinton rally for Hillary Clinton in Elizabeth City, NC
    5:30PM Et: Chelsea Clinton rally for Hillary Clinton in Asheville, NC

  250. Ogvorbis: I have proven my humanity and can now comment! says

    Trump is calling out Clinton for rapper Jay Z’s language during a concert to energize Democratic voters. Jay-Z apparently used “the n-word, f-bomb”. And I’m sure he did. But did he brag about sexually assaulting women?


    Also, I’m pretty sure that Jay Z is not running for President of the United States. Nor is he trying to lie about or suppress the use of naughty words.

    On another level, though, this is extremely racist. Trump and his campaign are making the claim — overtly and covertly — that a Clinton win means that all of those evil negroes will rape and kill the whites. And the racists, the white nationalists, the christian nationalists, are lapping it up.

  251. says

    Ah, Jason Chaffetz is under scrutiny for using an illegal private email server. Couldn’t happen to a nicer guy. /sarcasm

    The man who has promised to lead the investigations of Hillary Clinton if she wins the White House, Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-UT) is under new scrutiny for his potential use of an illegal private email server.

    Politics USA link.

    The Democratic Coalition Against Trump explained in a statement why they reported Rep. Chaffetz to the FBI:

    The Democratic Coalition Against Trump reported Representative Jason Chaffetz (R-UT) to the FBI on Wednesday morning for possibly breaking Executive Order 13526 and 18 U.S.C. Sec. 793(f) of the federal code, which makes it unlawful to send or store classified information on a personal email. […] Rep. Chaffetz lists his personal Gmail address on business cards brandished with the Congressional seal. Rep. Chaffetz sits on the Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, Homeland Security, and Investigations, which has jurisdiction over “internal and homeland security,” among other things.

    “The mishandling of classified information that concerns the national security of our nation is something that the FBI takes very seriously,” said Scott Dworkin, Senior Advisor to the Democratic Coalition. “The irony is unparalleled- Representative Chaffetz, the person who led the charge against Secretary Clinton’s personal email server use, could actually be the one who is breaking the law and putting our national security at risk in the process.”

  252. says

    The Clinton campaign’s new “Roar” ad is described as having a “positive and unifying message.” The ad is one minute long and is scheduled to appear in battleground states: Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Michigan, Nevada, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.

    YouTube link

    The ad has Katy Perry singing throughout.

  253. says

    Followup to 295 and 304 (Nerd)

    Of course, Trump totally misinterpreted the incident where President Obama calmed the audience down at a rally for Hillary, and then talked to them about showing respect to protestors. Wonkette has some of the best coverage.

    Yesterday, we all had a little love-in for our best president, Barry O, standing up for a protester at a rally with a bunch of Hillary-loving ne’er-do-wells. The Hillz thugs were chanting over an old Trump lover, and Barack Obestguyever yelled at them for a seriously long time before they finally shut up and listened to him and stopped trying to drown out the poor old man.

    It made us love him as much as we always do, because we hate that bullshit “chant over the protester” thing whether it’s at a GOP rally or a Dem one. It’s ugly and spitty and fascist and uncivilized, even if it’s our side doing the drowning.

    So you will be shocked, shocked to learn that Donald Trump then went on stage and accused Barack Okenya of screaming at the protester, and saying the president was “unhinged.”

    “If I spoke the way Obama spoke to that protester,” Trump said, at a rally in Hershey, Pennsylvania, because he can’t help lying even when there is video and there is always video, “they would say, ‘He became unhinged!’ He spent so much time screaming at this protester and frankly, it was a disgrace.”

    Here, watch Trump say it, because there is video, because there is always video.

    He wants us to go back and watch it! He said so like 5 times! So … okay!

    […] He told that crowd to “HOLD UP!” and settle their business down and “I told you to be focused!” and, referring to the protester, said, “He’s not doin’ nothin’, you don’t have to worry about him!”

    First of all, we live in a country that respects free speech.

    Second of all, it looks like maybe he might’ve served in our military, and we oughta respect that.

    Third of all, he was elderly, and we gotta respect our elders.

    And fourth of all, DON’T BOO, VOTE! […]

    (Lest you think this was just a simple mistake on Trump’s part, he repeated the charge at a second rally in Tampa, again telling the crowd to go back and watch the video. This is a special kind of pathology, and we don’t think we want to get too close to the man who’s too unstable for the Kremlin.) […]

  254. says

    Comedian Dave Chappelle is on the Trump train. He is spouting pseudo-facts to back up his dislike of Hillary Clinton:

    Comedian Dave Chappelle lashed out at Hillary Clinton and defended Donald Trump at a show in New York on Friday night. The show, a surprise gig at The Cutting Room, saw Chappelle devote nearly his entire 60-minute set to tearing into Clinton.

    Chappelle blamed the scandal surrounding Trump’s lewd remarks about women on Clinton. “What I heard on that tape was gross,” Chappelle said of the leaked 2005 tape featuring Trump’s “grab them by the [P-Word]” remarks. “But the way I got to hear it was even more gross. You know that came directly from Hillary,” he said.

    Calling Clinton “not right,” the comedian went on to defend Trump against sexual assault allegations by echoing Trump’s argument that the media is out to get him. “Sexual assault? It wasn’t. He said, ‘And when you’re a star, they let you do it.’ That phrase implies consent. I just don’t like the way the media twisted that whole thing. Nobody questioned it,” he said.

    Describing Trump as “the most gangsta candidate ever,” Chappelle praised his handling of the media and resilience in the face of scandal. “They asked him how he knows the system is rigged and he said, ‘Because I take advantage of it.’ […]

    Daily Beast link

    Observer link to full article.

  255. says

    SC @357, “Lee Harvey Oswald, where are you when we need you!”

    Unacceptable. Dangerous. Inciting or calling for violence against Hillary Clinton.