HOME



Digby's Hullabaloo
2801 Ocean Park Blvd.
Box 157
Santa Monica, Ca 90405



Facebook: Digby Parton

Twitter:
@digby56
@Gaius_Publius
@BloggersRUs (Tom Sullivan)
@spockosbrain



emails:
Digby:
thedigbyblog at gmail
Dennis:
satniteflix at gmail
Gaius:
publius.gaius at gmail
Tom:
tpostsully at gmail
Spocko:
Spockosbrain at gmail
tristero:
Richardein at me.com








Infomania

Salon
Buzzflash
Mother Jones
Raw Story
Huffington Post
Slate
Crooks and Liars
American Prospect
New Republic
Common Dreams
AmericanPoliticsJournal
Smirking Chimp
CJR Daily
consortium news

Blog-o-rama

Eschaton
BagNewsNotes
Daily Kos
Political Animal
Driftglass
Firedoglake
Taylor Marsh
Spocko's Brain
Talk Left
Suburban Guerrilla
Scoobie Davis
Echidne
Electrolite
Americablog
Tom Tomorrow
Left Coaster
Angry Bear
oilprice.com
Seeing the Forest
Cathie From Canada
Frontier River Guides
Brad DeLong
The Sideshow
Liberal Oasis
BartCop
Juan Cole
Rising Hegemon
alicublog
Unqualified Offerings
Alas, A Blog
RogerAiles
Lean Left
Oliver Willis
skippy the bush kangaroo
uggabugga
Crooked Timber
discourse.net
Amygdala
the talking dog
David E's Fablog
The Agonist


Denofcinema.com: Saturday Night at the Movies by Dennis Hartley review archive

01/01/2003 - 02/01/2003 02/01/2003 - 03/01/2003 03/01/2003 - 04/01/2003 04/01/2003 - 05/01/2003 05/01/2003 - 06/01/2003 06/01/2003 - 07/01/2003 07/01/2003 - 08/01/2003 08/01/2003 - 09/01/2003 09/01/2003 - 10/01/2003 10/01/2003 - 11/01/2003 11/01/2003 - 12/01/2003 12/01/2003 - 01/01/2004 01/01/2004 - 02/01/2004 02/01/2004 - 03/01/2004 03/01/2004 - 04/01/2004 04/01/2004 - 05/01/2004 05/01/2004 - 06/01/2004 06/01/2004 - 07/01/2004 07/01/2004 - 08/01/2004 08/01/2004 - 09/01/2004 09/01/2004 - 10/01/2004 10/01/2004 - 11/01/2004 11/01/2004 - 12/01/2004 12/01/2004 - 01/01/2005 01/01/2005 - 02/01/2005 02/01/2005 - 03/01/2005 03/01/2005 - 04/01/2005 04/01/2005 - 05/01/2005 05/01/2005 - 06/01/2005 06/01/2005 - 07/01/2005 07/01/2005 - 08/01/2005 08/01/2005 - 09/01/2005 09/01/2005 - 10/01/2005 10/01/2005 - 11/01/2005 11/01/2005 - 12/01/2005 12/01/2005 - 01/01/2006 01/01/2006 - 02/01/2006 02/01/2006 - 03/01/2006 03/01/2006 - 04/01/2006 04/01/2006 - 05/01/2006 05/01/2006 - 06/01/2006 06/01/2006 - 07/01/2006 07/01/2006 - 08/01/2006 08/01/2006 - 09/01/2006 09/01/2006 - 10/01/2006 10/01/2006 - 11/01/2006 11/01/2006 - 12/01/2006 12/01/2006 - 01/01/2007 01/01/2007 - 02/01/2007 02/01/2007 - 03/01/2007 03/01/2007 - 04/01/2007 04/01/2007 - 05/01/2007 05/01/2007 - 06/01/2007 06/01/2007 - 07/01/2007 07/01/2007 - 08/01/2007 08/01/2007 - 09/01/2007 09/01/2007 - 10/01/2007 10/01/2007 - 11/01/2007 11/01/2007 - 12/01/2007 12/01/2007 - 01/01/2008 01/01/2008 - 02/01/2008 02/01/2008 - 03/01/2008 03/01/2008 - 04/01/2008 04/01/2008 - 05/01/2008 05/01/2008 - 06/01/2008 06/01/2008 - 07/01/2008 07/01/2008 - 08/01/2008 08/01/2008 - 09/01/2008 09/01/2008 - 10/01/2008 10/01/2008 - 11/01/2008 11/01/2008 - 12/01/2008 12/01/2008 - 01/01/2009 01/01/2009 - 02/01/2009 02/01/2009 - 03/01/2009 03/01/2009 - 04/01/2009 04/01/2009 - 05/01/2009 05/01/2009 - 06/01/2009 06/01/2009 - 07/01/2009 07/01/2009 - 08/01/2009 08/01/2009 - 09/01/2009 09/01/2009 - 10/01/2009 10/01/2009 - 11/01/2009 11/01/2009 - 12/01/2009 12/01/2009 - 01/01/2010 01/01/2010 - 02/01/2010 02/01/2010 - 03/01/2010 03/01/2010 - 04/01/2010 04/01/2010 - 05/01/2010 05/01/2010 - 06/01/2010 06/01/2010 - 07/01/2010 07/01/2010 - 08/01/2010 08/01/2010 - 09/01/2010 09/01/2010 - 10/01/2010 10/01/2010 - 11/01/2010 11/01/2010 - 12/01/2010 12/01/2010 - 01/01/2011 01/01/2011 - 02/01/2011 02/01/2011 - 03/01/2011 03/01/2011 - 04/01/2011 04/01/2011 - 05/01/2011 05/01/2011 - 06/01/2011 06/01/2011 - 07/01/2011 07/01/2011 - 08/01/2011 08/01/2011 - 09/01/2011 09/01/2011 - 10/01/2011 10/01/2011 - 11/01/2011 11/01/2011 - 12/01/2011 12/01/2011 - 01/01/2012 01/01/2012 - 02/01/2012 02/01/2012 - 03/01/2012 03/01/2012 - 04/01/2012 04/01/2012 - 05/01/2012 05/01/2012 - 06/01/2012 06/01/2012 - 07/01/2012 07/01/2012 - 08/01/2012 08/01/2012 - 09/01/2012 09/01/2012 - 10/01/2012 10/01/2012 - 11/01/2012 11/01/2012 - 12/01/2012 12/01/2012 - 01/01/2013 01/01/2013 - 02/01/2013 02/01/2013 - 03/01/2013 03/01/2013 - 04/01/2013 04/01/2013 - 05/01/2013 05/01/2013 - 06/01/2013 06/01/2013 - 07/01/2013 07/01/2013 - 08/01/2013 08/01/2013 - 09/01/2013 09/01/2013 - 10/01/2013 10/01/2013 - 11/01/2013 11/01/2013 - 12/01/2013 12/01/2013 - 01/01/2014 01/01/2014 - 02/01/2014 02/01/2014 - 03/01/2014 03/01/2014 - 04/01/2014 04/01/2014 - 05/01/2014 05/01/2014 - 06/01/2014 06/01/2014 - 07/01/2014 07/01/2014 - 08/01/2014 08/01/2014 - 09/01/2014 09/01/2014 - 10/01/2014 10/01/2014 - 11/01/2014 11/01/2014 - 12/01/2014 12/01/2014 - 01/01/2015 01/01/2015 - 02/01/2015 02/01/2015 - 03/01/2015 03/01/2015 - 04/01/2015 04/01/2015 - 05/01/2015 05/01/2015 - 06/01/2015 06/01/2015 - 07/01/2015 07/01/2015 - 08/01/2015 08/01/2015 - 09/01/2015 09/01/2015 - 10/01/2015 10/01/2015 - 11/01/2015 11/01/2015 - 12/01/2015 12/01/2015 - 01/01/2016 01/01/2016 - 02/01/2016 02/01/2016 - 03/01/2016 03/01/2016 - 04/01/2016 04/01/2016 - 05/01/2016 05/01/2016 - 06/01/2016 06/01/2016 - 07/01/2016 07/01/2016 - 08/01/2016 08/01/2016 - 09/01/2016 09/01/2016 - 10/01/2016 10/01/2016 - 11/01/2016 11/01/2016 - 12/01/2016 12/01/2016 - 01/01/2017 01/01/2017 - 02/01/2017 02/01/2017 - 03/01/2017


 

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?

Hullabaloo


Tuesday, December 13, 2016

 
Michael Flynn's second in command is just as nuts as he is

by digby
















I wrote about yet another of Trump's loony hires for Salon this morning:

One of Donald Trump’s top contenders for a cabinet post, former United Nations ambassador John Bolton, went on TV over the weekend and suggested that he thought it was possible that the alleged Russian hacking of Democratic emails before the election was actually a “false flag” — a ruse — perpetrated by the Obama administration. When pressed, Bolton he told a Fox News anchor, “We just don’t know. But I believe that intelligence has been politicized in the Obama administration to a very significant degree.” On Monday Bolton walked this back, saying he didn’t mean to suggest that it was necessarily the Obama administration but merely some entity other than the Russians. OK.

This wasn’t Bolton’s first foray into conspiracy theories. He has a long history of them. Indeed, many of Donald Trump’s advisers do. His chief political strategist, Steve Bannon, ran one of the top conspiracy sites on the internet, Breitbart News, so there’s no doubt about his embrace of fake news and dark fantasy. Dr. Ben Carson, Trump’s choice for housing secretary, is a self-described reader of “conspiracy books,” drawn to fables suggesting that the Biblical figure Joseph built the Egyptian pyramids to store grain and that the LGBT movement is a communist plot. Trump transition team member Kris Kobach, an anti-immigration zealot who is also the Kansas secretary of state, has mused that Latinos might conduct ethnic cleansing if allowed to become a majority.

These are all domestic advisers, and while that’s not a good thing by any means, it’s slightly less unnerving than the fact that Trump’s foreign policy staff are full blown tin-foil hatters too. We have learned a fair bit about the lurid imagination of incoming national security adviser Michael Flynn, who has eagerly passed on rumors that Hillary Clinton was involved with occult practices and pedophilia and has retweeted white supremacist, anti-semitic and Islamophobic propaganda. His son, Michael Flynn Jr., had to leave the transition team after it became clear that he was spreading fake-news stories about the fictitious #Pizzagate scandal and was involved with some very unsavory white nationalist groups online. His father’s unstable personality has been the subject of many profiles over the past few months, which make clear that he has extremist views across the board. He doesn’t seem to be in any danger of losing his job.


Even that might not be so frightening if he were surrounded by a team of level-headed professionals who could keep an eye on the details and make sure he didn’t go off half-cocked. But if his designated second-in-command, incoming deputy national security adviser K.T. McFarland, is an example of the people he’s going to rely on, we’ve got a big problem. She’s a conspiracy theorist too.

McFarland was last in government during the Reagan era as part of the communications team. After a lengthy hiatus to raise her kids has spent the last decade as a television personality on Fox News. She reportedly got the job after making friends with Eric Trump and Donald Trump Jr. in the halls of the network and received a recommendation from Henry Kissinger, who remembered her from the Nixon administration. Trump saw her on TV which is always a top recommendation in his book. It turns out that McFarland shares a similar worldview with Flynn and Trump, believing that the US should seek a close relationship with Russia and put everything it has into the battle against Islamist terrorism. She likes torture, likes it a lot, and considers failing to profile Muslims to be “political correctness.”

The problem is that this particular job is apparently extremely arduous and requires a heroic level of energy and experience to coordinate foreign policy, intelligence and national security and develop policy recommendations across all levels of the executive branch. According to Politico, there are few people in the field who believe McFarland has the right kind of temperament or experience for the job.

As I mentioned, she’s a conspiracy nut as well. She ran a quixotic Republican primary campaign for Hillary Clinton’s Senate seat in 2006 and claimed that Clinton was so frightened of her candidacy that for reasons which are not obvious she had helicopters flying over McFarland’s house and kept her under surveillance.

Politico related this story from 2009:


“They’re going to want something for their money. They’re not our sugar daddy,” McFarland told a tea party crowd in Times Square, referring to America’s more than $1 trillion in debt to Beijing. “So, 10 years from now, you might not have American Independence Day. … The Fourth of July might just end up being another day on the calendar.”


Unless voters “throw the bums out,” McFarland said, “we can all start learning Chinese.” She then read aloud Mandarin phrases from an index card, including ones for “How can I help you?” and “What do you want from me?”

McFarland pushed the Benghazi meme very hard, claiming that the administration made a political decision not to rescue the embassy personnel and accusing Clinton of having blood on her hands.

And this bizarre recording of a 2011 conversation between McFarland and Gen. David Petraeus in Afghanistan, obtained by the Washington Post, suggests collusion between Fox News and the general in a number of different respects, including a purported message from Roger Ailes saying that he and Rupert Murdoch wanted Petraeus to run for president. This was evidently so embarrassing to Ailes that he threw McFarland under the bus saying it was supposed to be a joke that she misunderstood.

In other words, K.T. McFarland is yet another Fox News extremist who’s spent way too much time in the right-wing fever swamps. That’s probably fine for someone who has a show on Fox News and gives speeches to the Tea Party. She’s got something to say and it’s a nice lucrative gig. But the job of deputy national security adviser is supposed to be held by someone who is highly skilled at managing a vast bureaucracy and analyzing and synthesizing information without prejudice or bias. This person, to say the least, is not that.

So far, in fact, there doesn’t seem to be one Trump hire who has those skills. It looks like we’re about to find out whether the government can be run solely by people who only watch cable news and read Breitbart, the Drudge Report and Alex Jones’ InfoWars. It’s quite an experiment.