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

Facebook: Digby Parton

@BloggersRUs (Tom Sullivan)

thedigbyblog at gmail
satniteflix at gmail
publius.gaius at gmail
tpostsully at gmail
Spockosbrain at gmail
Richardein at me.com


Mother Jones
Raw Story
Huffington Post
Crooks and Liars
American Prospect
New Republic

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

January 2003 February 2003 March 2003 April 2003 May 2003 June 2003 July 2003 August 2003 September 2003 October 2003 November 2003 December 2003 January 2004 February 2004 March 2004 April 2004 May 2004 June 2004 July 2004 August 2004 September 2004 October 2004 November 2004 December 2004 January 2005 February 2005 March 2005 April 2005 May 2005 June 2005 July 2005 August 2005 September 2005 October 2005 November 2005 December 2005 January 2006 February 2006 March 2006 April 2006 May 2006 June 2006 July 2006 August 2006 September 2006 October 2006 November 2006 December 2006 January 2007 February 2007 March 2007 April 2007 May 2007 June 2007 July 2007 August 2007 September 2007 October 2007 November 2007 December 2007 January 2008 February 2008 March 2008 April 2008 May 2008 June 2008 July 2008 August 2008 September 2008 October 2008 November 2008 December 2008 January 2009 February 2009 March 2009 April 2009 May 2009 June 2009 July 2009 August 2009 September 2009 October 2009 November 2009 December 2009 January 2010 February 2010 March 2010 April 2010 May 2010 June 2010 July 2010 August 2010 September 2010 October 2010 November 2010 December 2010 January 2011 February 2011 March 2011 April 2011 May 2011 June 2011 July 2011 August 2011 September 2011 October 2011 November 2011 December 2011 January 2012 February 2012 March 2012 April 2012 May 2012 June 2012 July 2012 August 2012 September 2012 October 2012 November 2012 December 2012 January 2013 February 2013 March 2013 April 2013 May 2013 June 2013 July 2013 August 2013 September 2013 October 2013 November 2013 December 2013 January 2014 February 2014 March 2014 April 2014 May 2014 June 2014 July 2014 August 2014 September 2014 October 2014 November 2014 December 2014 January 2015 February 2015 March 2015 April 2015 May 2015 June 2015 July 2015 August 2015 September 2015 October 2015 November 2015 December 2015 January 2016 February 2016 March 2016 April 2016 May 2016 June 2016 July 2016 August 2016 September 2016 October 2016 November 2016 December 2016 January 2017 February 2017 March 2017 April 2017 May 2017 June 2017 July 2017 August 2017 September 2017 October 2017 November 2017 December 2017 January 2018 February 2018 March 2018 April 2018 May 2018 June 2018 July 2018 August 2018 September 2018 October 2018 November 2018 December 2018 January 2019 February 2019 March 2019 April 2019 May 2019 June 2019 July 2019


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


Monday, March 25, 2019


Nobody's asking

by Tom Sullivan

One of the few real talents the sitting president possesses is making every story about himself. Even stories that are not about him are about him once he's done grabbing them by the pull quotes.

So focused are we on what Attorney General William Barr's 4-page press release on the Mueller report doesn't say about conspiracy between Donald Trump's campaign and Russia, no one is bothering to comment on what it does say about Russia.

Russia likes that just fine (AP):

Russian officials and state media who have vehemently denied that the Kremlin wanted Trump to win and was helping him in the campaign on Monday relished the news.

“The results of Mueller’s investigation are a disgrace for the U.S. and its political elites,” Alexei Pushkov, chairman of the information committee at the Federation Council, tweeted on Monday. “All of the accusations were proved to be trumped up.”

Russian authorities over the past months portrayed the Mueller probe as a witch hunt against Trump and a tool of the Democratic Party to fan the flames of the anti-Russian sentiment in the U.S.
Etc., etc.

What Barr says Mueller's report did conclude was 1) a Kremlin-connected troll farm, the Internet Research Agency (IRA), "conducted disinformation and social media operations designed to sow social discord, eventually with the aim of interfering with" the U.S. 2016 presidential election, and 2) Russian government actors also "hacked into computers and obtained emails from persons affiliated with the Clinton campaign and Democratic Party organizations." They hacked Republican National Committee computers too, but who's counting? Russia never leaked those emails.

This is old news, of course. Mueller indicted a baker's dozen of Russian intelligence officers for these crimes in February 2018.

But press inquiries and panel after talk-show panel will focus on whether or not the full report exonerates the obsequious "tough guy" in the Oval Office who dreams Russian President Vladimir Putin will let him into the tough guys club. Despite unprecedented documented contacts between a U.S. presidential campaign and representatives of a hostile foreign power, despite being told by the entire U.S. intelligence community Russia committed crimes meddling in the campaign, Trump denied it. He and his campaign did so for months until, after Helsinki, he was forced to admit, grudgingly, that his buddy Vlad might have had something to do with it.

Now that (according to Barr) Mueller's report confirms what we already knew about Russian interference, what does the U.S. president have to say about that? What does he plan to do about that? Nobody's asking.

Mueller may believe "the evidence does not establish that the President was involved in an underlying crime" involving the data theft. But when the redacted report becomes public, we can expect confirmation Trump did engage is a series of quid-pro-quo deals whereby the campaign exchanged promises of lifting sanctions on Russia in exchange for helping him win and/or awarding him Trump Tower Moscow. That is, we can expect confirmation of what David Corn writes is already in evidence:
Trump and his lieutenants interacted with Russia while Putin was attacking the 2016 election and provided encouraging signals to the Kremlin as it sought to subvert American democracy. They aided and abetted Moscow’s attempt to cover up its assault on the United States (which aimed to help Trump win the White House). And they lied about all this ... Trump and his gang betrayed the United States in the greatest scandal in American history.
Trump will crow about how the report clears him. The Russians just did the same. But if he accepts that, Trump must also be made to address the conclusion that his Russian friend attacked the country he swore an empty oath to defend. He ought not be allowed to move on as though his buddy Vlad is this country's friend. Reporters should ask the would-be tough guy and patriot in blunt terms:
  • Vladimir Putin looked you in the eye and said Russia was not involved with "the so-called interference of Russia in the American elections." The Mueller report confirms he lied to your face. What are you going to do about that, Mr. President, and when are you going to do it?

  • As a true, flag-hugging, great-making American, will you, the Trump Organization, and its officials, forsake ever doing business with Vladimir Putin, his emissaries, current and former Russian intelligence operatives, and will you commit now to accepting no more money or loans from the Russian government or its affiliated banks, so help you God?
Don't hold your breath waiting for those questions or the answers.