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  1. #3106

    Re: A Chronicle of our Descent to Hades

    Anyone who has a chance should give a listen to Lawrence O'Donnell's 12/7 broadcast and the part of Brian Williams 12/7 broadcast that deals with the documents released yesterday.

    Lawrence is pushing hard for the Dems to hit the ground in January going for impeachment. Others are saying Speaker Pelosi is right in not tabling it but making legislative moves to benefit voters Dems promised. The politics of this thing are dicey no matter how wonderful it would be to see a perp walk out of the oval office.

    I think it's possible for the Dems to overplay their hand.

    BUT if anyone involved decides to flee (Jr is said to be hiding out in Canada) it's going to be impossible for the Dems to overplay their hand.
    "Even if you dance for your enemy on the rock, he will accuse you of splashing water on him." ~ African Proverb

  2. #3107

    Re: A Chronicle of our Descent to Hades

    Quote Originally Posted by suliso View Post
    Actually this is an interesting topic to consider. Let's do a thought experiment. You are a Republican senator from a mildly red state and your ambition is to get reelected and perhaps even contend for a president/vice president in the future. Forget all the blah blah about laws, patriotism, loyalty, caring about people, doing what's right etc. None of that matters, it's now Game of Thrones territory. Power and money is all that counts. What is the most rational thing to do right now to increase either or both? Keep close to Trump or oppose him?
    I have been thinking about your "thought experiment". I just can't see how we can make it quantifiable.
    However, as you say, if we are in GoT territory:
    If you are a GOP senator in a 50% state, and you are running for re-election, and all you care about is yourself (which is kind of a GOP nature), you have to look at the independents. The solid Trump base will be around 35-40%. Let's say 5% of those are open to turning on Trump is he is found to have committed treason. The Anti Trump right now are about 40-45%. (Those numbers of course vary from state to state). So, if the Mueller investigation confirms collusion, which with a little twisting can be set to TREASON, you are left with a very small percentage to win your election. BUT there is a catch: the people revolting away from Tiny will turn to the DEMS. So, if you are saying GoT mentality, and all you care about is keeping your senatorial seat, you have to jump ship from Tiny AND the GOP. Either you go independent (leave the door open to a future GOP return, "when the GOP regains sanity over this traitor") or you join the DEMS.
    Your past record will chase you, of course (if you were an anti-abortion, pro gun nut it will be hard to make the switch) but still: betting on Tiny or against him will likely be a definite bet in your political life. Miss it and a dwarf will put an arrow through you in the latrine.
    DEMS don't have to make that choice. They simply have to oppose him.

    Don't know.
    Last edited by ponchi101; Today at 07:50 AM.
    Starry starry night

  3. #3108

    Re: A Chronicle of our Descent to Hades

    Ponchi's look on this is interesting. I do think that it is more likely that someone in that 50-50 state will stay Republican. And then, supporting Tiny makes more sense, since a huge risk is that, if that senator does not support him, he will face a major primary challenge. Surviving a primary challenge in the Republican Party has proven difficult (I'm basing this a bit more on House races) for moderate Republicans and those who dare to question Trump. And there will almost certainly be a primary challenger put up by the ultra-conservatives against anyone who would vote against Trump on impeachment charges.


  4. #3109

    Re: A Chronicle of our Descent to Hades

    I agree with Glenn about staying Republican. Jumping parties is likely going to end badly because the chances of losing a primary to a "real" Democrat are high.
    Roger forever

  5. #3110

    Re: A Chronicle of our Descent to Hades

    It's pretty simple. You make it your complete focus to never mention the president ever. Even when asked a direct question, you just pivot.

    "Do you agree with the President's policy of ___?"

    "What we need to be focused on is getting the good people of Indiana back to work! And that's why we need to pass my bill of _____."

    It sounds unsustainable, but most of politics involves only answering the few questions you want to answer, and never answering anything else directly. Avoid specifics, that way everyone can imprint their own values and opinions on you based on if they like your soundbites, height, and hair.

    The idea that all these Republicans should be fleeing the party is unrealistic to me. Let's say a Democrat gets elected, but is completely insane. Are you really going to start voting for someone who is pro-life and pro-gun because they seem even-tempered? You'll do what Republicans are doing now. You'll point out people you hate on the other side, and avoid talking about the psycho on yours.

  6. #3111

    Re: A Chronicle of our Descent to Hades

    Kenneth P. Vogel
    ‏Verified account

    REVEALED: The $125k payment to MANAFORT in 2017 (about which he allegedly lied to MUELLER) involved @RebuildingAmNow, a pro-TRUMP super PAC started by TOM BARRACK & funded by @LINDA_MCMAHON & @HomeDepot co-founder @BERNIE_MARCUS.

    "Even if you dance for your enemy on the rock, he will accuse you of splashing water on him." ~ African Proverb

  7. #3112

    Re: A Chronicle of our Descent to Hades

    Nick Ayers, Trump’s once-likely replacement for chief of staff John Kelly, won’t take the job

    By Felicia Sonmez , Josh Dawsey and Damian Paletta December 9 at 4:55 PM

    Trump’s top pick to be his next chief of staff, Nick Ayers, will not take the job and instead leave the White House at the end of the year, reopening negotiations over who will succeed the departing John F. Kelly.

    Four other candidates are now believed to be in the running to direct Trump’s White House, administration officials said Sunday. Ayers, a longtime operative who is currently Vice President Pence’s chief of staff, said in a tweet that after departing he “will work with the #MAGA team to advance the cause.”

    Thank you @realDonaldTrump, @VP, and my great colleagues for the honor to serve our Nation at The White House. I will be departing at the end of the year but will work with the #MAGA team to advance the cause. ���� #Georgia

    — Nick Ayers (@nick_ayers) December 9, 2018
    Trump’s new list of potential chiefs includes Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney, who is also acting director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, and Rep. Mark Meadows (R-N.C.), a leader of the conservative House Freedom Caucus, according to a White House official.

    Sources said Ayers would work with the super PAC set up to assist the president’s reelection campaign. News that Ayers would not take the chief of staff job was first reported by the Wall Street Journal.

    Trump had previously spoken with Ayers about the top administration job and had settled on him as Kelly’s likely replacement, the president’s advisers said.

    But Ayers, who has young children, had insisted on serving temporarily, which frustrated Trump, who had wanted a replacement to stay on through 2020.

    Ayers was also skeptical of taking the job based on the challenges that Kelly and his predecessor, Reince Priebus, faced in the position, and talks between the two sides broke down, according to an administration official with direct knowledge of the negotiations.

    The 36-year-old Ayers also had faced opposition among many senior White House aides, who worried that his elevation could trigger departures of other high-level staffers.

    After initially agreeing that Kelly would announce his departure on Monday, Trump abruptly shifted course and announced Saturday that Kelly would leave the White House by the end of the year. The position might be filled on an interim basis, he added then.

    That announcement closed out Kelly’s rocky tenure and ushered in a second straight messy chief-of-staff handover for the president. Last year, Trump took to Twitter to announce Priebus’s departure and Kelly’s arrival while aboard Air Force One, his outgoing top administrator having just left the plane.

    With House Republicans poised to return to the minority in the next Congress following their party’s midterm defeat, Meadows could find the chief of staff position an appealing one. His rise to the job would signal anew that Trump’s response to the November drubbing is to move further to the right, rather than toward negotiations with the ascendant Democrats.

    Besides Mulvaney and Meadows, other names on Trump’s shortlist were not immediately known.

    Another senior administration official said that Mulvaney and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin have both expressed internally that they aren’t seeking the job but could change their minds if pleaded to take the post by Trump.

    Kelly, a four-star general who previously served as homeland security secretary, has been lauded by current and former aides who say he brought order to the West Wing. But he has at times clashed with Trump, who openly voiced his frustration with Kelly for months.

    Kelly struggled to corral the various factions in the White House, including members of Trump’s family, and was criticized by the president as lacking political skills — an increasing concern heading into the president’s 2020 reelection campaign.

    Ayers, a veteran operative who was previously the executive director of the Republican Governors Association, had been viewed as a candidate well-positioned to fill that gap, even as he had alienated some members of the staff.

    As news broke Sunday night that Ayers would not take the position, prompting renewed attention on the tumult in the White House, Trump made no mention of his chief-of-staff search and instead sought to shift the focus to his administration's successes.

    “The Trump Administration has accomplished more than any other U.S. Administration in its first two (not even) years of existence, & we are having a great time doing it!” he said in a tweet. He offered no specifics.

    He followed up with a swipe at his favorite target, the “Fake News Media,” which he said has “gone totally out of its mind-truly the Enemy of the People!”

    Pence, meanwhile, wished Ayers well and said in a tweet that he would “always be grateful for his friendship, dedication to the @VP team and his efforts to advance the @POTUS agenda.”

    He also thanked Kelly, who he said had served the administration “with great distinction.”
    "Even if you dance for your enemy on the rock, he will accuse you of splashing water on him." ~ African Proverb

  8. #3113

    Re: A Chronicle of our Descent to Hades

    A story broke out of Florida today about Jerry Falwell, Jr, his wife, son and a pool boy from Miami. Oh, and Michael Cohen.

    Laura Rozen

    Can’t quite diagram the paradigm. But with David Pecker & perhaps Putin, the favor they offered Trump was not just to bury the dirt on him

    but to weaponize the dirt they had on his rivals. think the cohen case makes explicit that trump was affirmatively read in/directing that

    the essentially political blackmail part of cohen MO/business model, that function he served for Trump....(see the broidy case)...

    Does it suggest that it was not just abt protecting Trump, but giving Trump dirt on others he could use to threaten, control or expose them?

    this piece has sit in my lizard brain. short take, cohen got dirt on falwell jr to get evangelicals to back trump
    "Even if you dance for your enemy on the rock, he will accuse you of splashing water on him." ~ African Proverb

  9. #3114

    Re: A Chronicle of our Descent to Hades

    Early on, Trump-Russia obsessives were marginalized; they're prophets now
    DEC 09, 2018

    “I felt like the guy in ‘Rear Window,’ ” David Corn, the coauthor of “Russian Roulette,” told me this week.

    Corn was referring to his affinity for James Stewart’s character, L.B. “Jeff” Jefferies, in Alfred Hitchcock’s masterpiece film. Jeff witnesses a crime across the courtyard from his New York City apartment. But when he talks about it no one believes him.

    Corn, likewise, had a period in 2016 when he saw a massive global crime going on right outside his window. The Kremlin was waging war on America. And that November, it captured the White House. But for an agonizingly long time, as the media critic Liz Spayd put it at the time, “the majority view [was] that there wasn’t enough proof of a link between Trump and the Kremlin to write a hard-hitting story” during the campaign.

    This majority view persisted even after the election.

    At the end of 2016, a BBC radio reporter asked me — I’m not kidding — whether a Putin puppet had taken the White House because Hillary Clinton wasn’t sexy enough.

    Or because she hadn’t campaigned in Wisconsin?

    No! I wanted to shout. Clinton “lost” because she had failed to campaign in the Urals!

    In 2017, we had front-page reporting on partisanship, palace intrigue and cultural battles. Could Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner be moderating presences in the White House? Did American neo-Nazis and believers in the Pizzagate conspiracy have legitimate grievances?

    The most insulting and consequential national security breach in all of American history was being downplayed in favor of sports reporting.

    And even when the media paid attention to the appointment of special counsel Robert S. Mueller III in May 2017, or the testimony by fired FBI Director James B. Comey in June, or the plea deal of former national security advisor Michael Flynn in December, they often framed the news as more evidence of partisanship.

    Was Comey a secret Democrat? How about Peter Stzrok, who was fired from the Mueller investigation? Was he not just a Democrat — but an adulterer?

    The most insulting and consequential national security breach in all of American history was being downplayed in favor of sports reporting: the red team versus the blue team.

    Perhaps in those days the story of Trump-Russia was too terrifying for media organizations determined to keep their professional cool. Or too far-fetched.

    Corn says he felt “lonely,” even as his stories about about the Russia affair gained traction. Others who reported early about curious Trump connections in Moscow — Franklin Foer in Slate, for example — have said the same thing.

    But they’re not lonely now. And this is mostly because even while some media organizations sidelined, or cautiously framed, the Trump-Russia story, a much more important group of commenters were far less timid. Let’s give a round of retweets for the concerned citizens of the United States.

    Take one look at Twitter: swelling numbers — initially thousands, then tens and perhaps even hundreds of thousands — gather now to raise their voices to undo Trump’s constant gaslighting about the Mueller investigation, which is decidedly not a witch hunt.

    From all quarters, these citizens have kept the Trump-Russia story front and center for the electorate, and provided analysis and even scoops that clarify and help to remedy the global catastrophe that is Trump’s presidency.

    Among the most effective are Marc Murphy (@mnnurse10 ), who retweets articles about the corruption of the president and Mueller’s heroism, and Karen Schwartz (@pithywidow), a novelist and single mother in New York state who studies the indictments coming out of the Russia investigation as if they were the Talmud. She is a genius at details and prophecy.

    Far-flung celebrities also have joined in, from soap-opera delight Morgan Fairchild to Shakespearean heartthrob Rufus Sewell.

    The Twitter chorus initially used #resistance to corral their posts, and later a set of beloved Trump-Russia memes (including Don Jr.’s down-to-collude beaut in response to proffered Hillary dirt: “If it’s what you say, I love it”).

    Enter the Fray: First takes on the news of the minute
    Many with marquee platforms once derided these people for their obsession, calling them Russophobes, crackpots and worse. But those critics are much, much quieter now, as the tweets that once seemed gonzo have been borne out in indictments, sentencing documents, plea deals and white-shoe investigative journalism.

    Trump-Russia is a blind-men-and-the-elephant story. We need people at the trunk, the tail and everywhere in between telling us what they perceive so we can get the full picture.

    But back to “Rear Window.”

    Jeff is thought delusional when he insists he sees a neighbor in a raincoat committing foul play. “Why would a man leave his house three times on a rainy night with a suitcase?” he asks.

    His girlfriend looks bored.

    “What’s interesting about a butcher knife and a small saw wrapped in newspaper? Huh?!” he huffs. He’s right, just as you’d have to be a fool to find uninteresting a Trump Tower meet and greet between “Make America Great Again” campaigners and Russian shady characters. Or a disquieting set of pings to a Trump server from a Russian bank.

    “There’s something terribly wrong!” Jeff shouts.

    Today, finally, that’s the majority view.
    "Even if you dance for your enemy on the rock, he will accuse you of splashing water on him." ~ African Proverb

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