Memo Released — Updated

Of course Trump was going to release the memo. He ordered it, after all, like an overdone steak with a side of ketchup. Via The Post:

GOP memo criticizing FBI surveillance is released

A GOP memo alleging surveillance abuses by the FBI has been released, intensifying a fight between the White House and Republican lawmakers, on one side, and the nation’s top law enforcement agency over whether the origins of a probe into Russian interference in 2016 were tainted by political bias.

President Trump had approved release of the memo without redactions Friday morning.

The president told reporters in the Oval Office, “I think it’s a disgrace what’s happening in our country. A lot of people should be ashamed of themselves and much worse than that.”

The FBI and the Justice Department had lobbied strenuously against the memo’s release. In a statement Wednesday, the FBI had said it was “gravely concerned” that key facts were missing from the memo, which, it said, left an inaccurate impression of how the agency conducted surveillance under the authority of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court.

Yesterday, Paul Ryan said the memo isn’t “an indictment of the FBI, of the Department of Justice.” Trump yanked the rug out from under his widow-peaked lackey about 12 hours later with this tweet:

So, now we get to find out if Trump and his stooges can convince folks that the all-Republican, Trump-appointed FBI and DOJ leadership team and overwhelmingly Republican investigator crew are biased against the president who hired them and in favor of the candidate the FBI sandbagged just days before the election.

This absurd theory is already an article of faith on Fox News, but will it resonate outside the 27%? US Senator from Florida Bill Nelson, not known to be a wild-eyed lefty, said this:

Those are fighting words, Bill. Good.

Courtesy of The Post, here’s a link to the memo.

ETA: Okay, I read it. Initial impression:

This is going to blow up in their stupid fucking faces SO hard.

220 replies
  1. 1

    The House server is overloaded. NPR has it, and so does Lawfare. I’ve managed to access both.

  2. 2
    Jeffro says:

    Here we go, republic – hope to see you again once this is over.

  3. 3
    efgoldman says:

    Yeah, my kid says all of DC basically stopped. Like Wile E in a cartoon

  4. 4
    Baud says:

    I wonder who’ll be the first person to seek to invalidate their search warrant on the basis that the information came from an allegedly biased source.

  5. 5

    The cover letter says the memo has been declassified, so Adam can comment on it.

  6. 6
    TenguPhule says:

    @Baud:

    I wonder who’ll be the first person to seek to invalidate their search warrant on the basis that the information came from an allegedly biased source.

    Donald Trump.

  7. 7
    Barbara says:

    @Baud: Donald Trump Jr. He’s the one in the most direct path of the tornado at this point.

  8. 8
    dmsilev says:

    It uses a lot of words to say virtually nothing.

    Shocking, I know.

  9. 9
    Jeffro says:

    @Baud: “man under investigation by FBI claims FBI is biased”

  10. 10
    Miss Bianca says:

    @Cheryl Rofer: So, just curious – Adam said he couldn’t read the memo or comment on it unless the memo had been formally declassified. Has it been?

    ETA: Oh, whoops, should have read a little farther down!

  11. 11
    Tilda Swintons Bald Cap says:

    This morning on Fox they had 20 minutes of FBI bashing. Then they followed that with a story about preparations for Super Bowl security. They interviewed the FBI SAIC. So if the FBI is bad why are they in charge of Super Bowl security? SMDH

  12. 12
    Niles says:

    The memo is disturbing.

  13. 13
    efgoldman says:

    Mealy-mouthed justification in second paragraph of the letter.

    Speaking of Lawfare, I told you earlier in the week that my kid’s new job is at CQ. It’s actually CQ Legal. Her stories go to Westlaw/Reuters where they live behind a very tall pay wall. I can’t even read them. Maybe some of you law type people have access

  14. 14
    Another Scott says:

    @Cheryl Rofer: TheHill says:

    Intelligence Committee Republicans, led by chair Devin Nunes (R-Calif.), leveraged an obscure House rule never before used by the committee to override the classification of the document, arguing that its findings are serious enough that the public deserves to know about them.

    As I said downstairs, because of course they did. Rules and norms are for little people.

    Cheers,
    Scott.
    (“Who wonders what important news today will be buried by this bit of theatre…”)

  15. 15
    eric says:

    Guess who:

    “The latest attacks on the FBI and Department of Justice serve no American interests — no party’s, no president’s, only Putin’s,” he said. “The American people deserve to know all of the facts surrounding Russia’s ongoing efforts to subvert our democracy, which is why Special Counsel Mueller’s investigation must proceed unimpeded. Our nation’s elected officials, including the President, must stop looking at this investigation through the warped lens of politics and manufacturing partisan sideshows. If we continue to undermine our own rule of law, we are doing Putin’s job for him.”

  16. 16

    Page is a US citizen who served as a volunteer advisor to the Trump campaign.

    Little bit of distance there.

    The FBI obtained one initial FISA warrant targeting Carter Page and three FISA renewals from the FISC.

    The FBI has to show they got something useful out of the previous warrant to justify another.

  17. 17
    eric says:

    @efgoldman: I am sure that I do. If i knew what I was looking for, I could summarize them for you…… ;)

  18. 18
    mai naem mobile says:

    I wonder if asshole Orange Fuckhead will not allow the Dem rebuttal to be released because that’s what assholes do. Also too, I want any fucker who enabled this pig to be ‘elected’ locked up and the keys the on away.

  19. 19
    randy khan says:

    The memo is devastatingly . . . vapid.

    Also, it takes an awfully long time to say nothing much. I could have said as little in no more than 2 pages.

  20. 20

    @dmsilev: It is a tale told by an idiot, so what did anyone expect?

  21. 21
    MisterForkbeard says:

    Oh look, traitorous traitors are traitoring for another traitor. Couldn’t see that coming.

  22. 22

    The memo complains that the Democratic Party funding of the work in the Steele dossier should have been disclosed to the FISC and wasn’t. It doesn’t matter where the evidence came from, just whether it meets the court’s standards. In any case, the first FISA warrant was in 2013, long before the presidential campaign. The memo doesn’t mention that the first work by Fusion was funded by the Washington Free Beacon, a rightwing rag.

  23. 23
    gene108 says:

    @eric:

    Chuck Schumer? Nancy Pelosi? Dianne Fienstein?

  24. 24
    eric says:

    @gene108: John McCain

  25. 25
    MJS says:

    The FBI Agent’s Association released a statement yesterday supporting Wray. It would be nice to see an update, in response to the idiot’s tweet, along the lines of, “Thank you for your kind words in support of FBI rank and file. We, the rank and file, remain committed to all investigations into Russian interference in the 2016 election, as well as investigations into obstruction of justice.”

  26. 26
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @eric:

    McCain. NPR quoted a bit of his statement a short time ago in a news update and I recognized the phrasing. Time for a couple of choice tweets from Trump about “losers who get captured.”

  27. 27
    MisterForkbeard says:

    @Cheryl Rofer: Imagine that! And that’s in addition to whatever other “Material omissions of fact” the FBI have identified.

    Well, I hope someone hangs over this shit but I’d settle for kicking Devin Nunes and Paul Ryan out of office. And into jail. Not going to happen, but a man can dream.

  28. 28

    Going to war against people who know where the bodies are buried, literally and figuratively is incredibly stupid.

  29. 29
    GregB says:

    Can we assume Pompeo met with the Russian spy agencies to get the final draft of the memo?

  30. 30
    J.A.F. Rusty Shackleford says:

    http://apps.washingtonpost.com.....memo/2746/

    That’s it? That’s the memo? That was so weak that it would be laughable if it weren’t so serious.

  31. 31
    Big Ole Hound says:

    I read this morning that the supplier of this garbage memo, Nunes, is already in trouble in the polls of his very red district in California.

  32. 32
    Corner Stone says:

    Pete Williams on MSNBC carrying some serious water for the House GOP just a minute ago.

  33. 33
    LAO says:

    What’s the over/under on Rosenstein? 2 hours?

  34. 34
    catatonia says:

    @eric:
    McCain. And good for him.
    Never thought I’d follow up the first with the second.

  35. 35
    Corner Stone says:

    @Jeffro: Hey Jeffro Mensch, any odds on getting a solid Friday News Dump today? Look into your prognasticating crystal balls and let us know.

  36. 36
    Jazzman says:

    The president told reporters in the Oval Office, “I think it’s a disgrace what’s happening in our country. A lot of people should be ashamed of themselves and much worse than that.”

    That right there is some gale-force projection.

  37. 37
    Chris says:

    The top Leadership and Investigators of the FBI and the Justice Department have politicized the sacred investigative process in favor of Democrats and against Republicans – something which would have been unthinkable just a short time ago.

    I think this is my favorite part of the whole thing.

    (The bolded part is kind of true, just not in the way he imagines).

  38. 38
    Corner Stone says:

    @efgoldman: Was there a loud “EEERRRRRKKKKK!!!” noise?

  39. 39
    Corner Stone says:

    @Niles: Are you concerned?

  40. 40
    pamelabrown53 says:

    @Big Ole Hound: #31.

    Here’s hoping that there isn’t a red enough district left in CA to re-elect Nunes.

    What was John McCain’s response? Anyone?

  41. 41
    Chris says:

    @eric:

    Comey, I can only assume.

    Fuck off, asshole. The time to give a shit about Putin was before you helped put his stooge in the White House, not after the stooge fired you.

    ETA: oh, McCain? Never mind, I sit corrected. Still, fuck Comey.

  42. 42
    JPL says:

    Philip Bump

    So the Washington Examiner and Fox News got an early look at a memo which was declassified this morning.

    https://twitter.com/pbump/status/959473340883841024

  43. 43
    MJS says:

    @eric: Jesus Christ, I initially thought, right on! Then I read it again. Yes, in fact, the attacks do serve one party’s, and one president’s interests. The elected officials concocting these side shows have ONE party affiliation. FFS McCain, you’re going to croak soon. Screw up the same courage you found as a POW and tell it like it is!

  44. 44
    Immanentize says:

    @Corner Stone: Or is Niles very concerned?

  45. 45
    Alternative Fax, a hip hop artist from Idaho says:

    @LAO: I’ll take the over.

  46. 46
    Gravenstone says:

    From the OP:

    “I think it’s a disgrace what’s happening in our country. A lot of people should be ashamed of themselves and much worse than that.”

    Yes, yes they should Donnie. But they voted for your ignorant, lying ass anyway. Now fuck off and die in a fire, you treasonous whoreson.

  47. 47
    Bill E Pilgrim says:

    Pete Williams just opined in serious tones about the dossier compiled by “Carter Steele”.

    This is really the biggest fail in this dirty tricks attempt, it’s too murky and convoluted for most Villagers to even follow.

  48. 48
    Barbara says:

    @J.A.F. Rusty Shackleford: That’s why the build up is so significant. Most people won’t read it and don’t have the context to understand it. They will take their cues from what others tell them. The first FISA warrant against Page was in 2013, before there was a Trump running for president and before there was a Steele dossier. That’s all anyone needs to understand that the FBI could not have been motivated by either the campaign or the dossier when it chose to follow Page’s interactions with Russia. Nunes is a traitor, full stop, because he is either trying to protect himself directly, or indirectly under threats from Trump if he doesn’t do this.

  49. 49

    The memo also complains about the use of a Yahoo News article. There are typically 50 or 60 pages of material submitted in support of an application for a FISA warrant. Any one of them will be insufficient to support the argument for a warrant, which is why there are 50 or 60 pages. Criticizing one at a time is beside the point, unless you are going to criticize all of them. And don’t forget that there were previous FISA warrants on Page, which presumably turned up useful information.

    Steele spoke to the media after he became concerned that the FBI was sitting on the material he gave them. Unless that was his plan all along, the material he gave them earlier should be as he represented it.

    I’m not knowledgeable about Bruce Ohr and his wife’s putative relationship to Fusion research. Steele thought that Trump should not be president because of the material he turned up.

    Comey briefed Trump on the dossier because it had been widely circulated during the summer and fall of 2016. Someone about to become president should know that something like that is out there. IIRC, Comey said he was clear that the dossier hadn’t been confirmed. (Just as this memo hasn’t been confirmed, because its sources are classified.)

    Strzok was heavily advocating more investigation into Clinton and wrote a draft of the infamous Comey letter. That information came out after the memo was written, but you’d think these guys would have had access to it.

  50. 50
    Miss Bianca says:

    @eric: If that was McCain, good for him. But I wish he’d go a little further and say something along the lines of, “The President’s attempts to obstruct investigation into Russian interference in our elections do not suggest the actions of an innocent man, or a man interested in upholding the oath he swore as President to the Constitution.”

    Yeah, I know. I want a pony, too!

  51. 51
    different-church-lady says:

    Repost from downstairs:

    EMAILS EMAILS EMAILS!!! MEMO MEMO MEMO!!!

    This is entirely about holding on to market share, not increasing it.

  52. 52
    Boatboy_srq says:

    @MisterForkbeard: They can’t very well blame this on The Kenyan IslamoFascoSoshulist time-traveling again to set up his foes years before they acted. Whatever they claim has to at least sound reaso- oh, FFS who am I kidding.

  53. 53
    Corner Stone says:

    @Immanentize: It’s difficult to tell, but it has been noted.

  54. 54
    Immanentize says:

    I think Rosenstein is more protected now in light of the memo. He might get fired (by Sessions?) For something at some point, but to do so for this would relate directly to the Russia investigation from which Sessions is recused. So who fires him? The President can, but won’t.

  55. 55
    LAO says:

    @Immanentize: really. Interested in a wager?

  56. 56
    different-church-lady says:

    @Immanentize: The comment was probably more clear in the original Russian.

  57. 57
    Corner Stone says:

    @Cheryl Rofer:

    Strzok was heavily advocating more investigation into Clinton and wrote a draft of the infamous Comey letter.

    As I have previously stated, it is a real problem for me that Strzok ever found his way initially to the Mueller team. It seems he has a history of radical and unprofessional behavior while on the job.

  58. 58
    catclub says:

    I am sure puzzled. I cannot figure out which bits make it top secret – the FBI firing Steele as an informant? – Just the fact that the FISA order was for Carter page
    there was another one for Papadopoulos? Mainatining the secrecy of FISA orders? Didn’t we already know all that?

    Is it knowledge about the FBI opinions at different times – which give insights into what the FBI methods are?

    I sure don’t feel that I have learned anything new. Maybe that Steele was being monitored and that is how they know about the Yahoo news leak so thoroughly?

  59. 59
    Baud says:

    @catclub: It doesn’t take much for information to be classified top secret.

  60. 60
    Corner Stone says:

    @Boatboy_srq:

    Whatever they claim has to at least sound reaso- oh, FFS who am I kidding.

    NOBODY!

  61. 61
    Gravenstone says:

    @eric: Was gonna say Ken Starr, but something jogged my memory that it’s actually John Yoo. World class hypocrisy in either event.

    Eta: and I see it was yet another hypocrite. fuckem all

  62. 62
    Chyron HR says:

    Well, the important thing is that we saved the country from “Neoliberals”.

  63. 63
    Corner Stone says:

    @LAO: I am more interested in how many resignations come from the FBI and/or DoJ.

  64. 64
    Gravenstone says:

    @Cheryl Rofer: Let’s see if the “volunteer” drew a paycheck from the campaign…

  65. 65
    GeoWHayduke says:

    @Niles:

    I am worried about your mental faculties

  66. 66
    Immanentize says:

    @LAO: yes. I’ll bet you Rosenstein lasts, what, the weekend? A week?

    You have unearthed my core personality, as sceptical as I am, I believe optimism is a strategy….

  67. 67
    Tilda Swintons Bald Cap says:

    Also, I enjoy everyone getting all upset at the GOP getting political with the FBI. They’ve been doing it to the IRS for years.

  68. 68
    LAO says:

    To call the memo a nothingburger is a mistake, it actually debunks a couple of insinuations about the Trump/Russia case that Republicans have been making for months.— Matthew Yglesias (@mattyglesias) February 2, 2018

  69. 69
    efgoldman says:

    @schrodingers_cat:

    Going to war against people who know where the bodies are buried, literally and figuratively is incredibly stupid.

    Do they? They haen’t found Jimmy Hoffa yet

  70. 70
    Boatboy_srq says:

    @Bill E Pilgrim: Carter Steele sounds like a gay pr0n nym.

  71. 71

  72. 72
    Immanentize says:

    @Chyron HR: And we heightened the distinctions!

  73. 73
    different-church-lady says:

    @LAO: An inverse-burger?

  74. 74

    @catclub: I don’t recall seeing that there were four FISA warrants on Page. My impression was two.

  75. 75
    LAO says:

    @Immanentize: I can’t help my cynical cynicism — I think we all agree that these memo was released, in part, as cover for Rosenstein’s firing. Nothing wrong with optimism.

  76. 76
    Immanentize says:

    @efgoldman: oh, they know where that one is because they supplied security for the disposal.

  77. 77
    different-church-lady says:

    @efgoldman: They don’t need to “find” him if they already know where they put him.

  78. 78
    efgoldman says:

    @Corner Stone:

    Was there a loud “EEERRRRRKKKKK!!!” noise?

    And a cloud of cartoon dust.

  79. 79

  80. 80
    MisterForkbeard says:

    @Chyron HR: Sadly, I’m actually seeing some of this on twitter. “Trump is awful and I don’t trust him, but we all know Hillary personally removed 200k votes, personally made superdelegates happen and threatened them into voting for her, cheated on all the debates and totally sold our uranium to Russia, so I’m not sure we’re better off. We should have voted for Stein or Bernie.”

  81. 81
    catclub says:

    @Corner Stone:

    It seems he has a history of radical and unprofessional behavior while on the job.

    How long was he in the Manhattan FBI office? How about Boston with Whitey Bulger?

  82. 82
    Corner Stone says:

    @Bill E Pilgrim: As I said upstairs, Pete Williams is doing his faithful errand boy routine for the GOP.
    He’s now downplaying the actions of the WH.

  83. 83
    different-church-lady says:

    @efgoldman:
    “SCRREEEEEeeeeeee e e e e e e e e e e e …”
    “**poof**”

  84. 84
    Immanentize says:

    @LAO: Yes, Rosenstein swam with the sharks and got bit. It is a just ending for a too-clever weasel. And I would waive ta ta if so much other stuff was not at stake.

  85. 85

  86. 86
    Baud says:

    @MisterForkbeard:

    Sadly, I’m actually seeing some of this on twitter.

    The sad part is that you are on Twitter.

  87. 87
    different-church-lady says:

    @Baud:

    The sad part is that you are on Twitter.

    Big tobacco for the mind.

  88. 88
    Immanentize says:

    @MisterForkbeard: That person is either a bot or did not vote at all. Idgit.

  89. 89
    Bill E Pilgrim says:

    @LAO: Pretty much like anything else coming from Donald Trump, contradicting and undermining in a single act some story that Republican conspiracy theorists have been feverishly constructing for months.

  90. 90
    Immanentize says:

    @LAO: What are we betting? Lunch when we meet?

  91. 91
    MisterForkbeard says:

    @Cheryl Rofer: Maybe that should be amended to “The latest attacks on the FBI and DOJ server no American interests – no party’s but the Republican, no president but Trump. Oh, and Putin.”

    @Baud: I am not on twitter. I just read a fair bit of that while reading an analysis of this thing.

    @Immanentize: Entirely possible, but there were several of them on one twitter thread. Bots, trolls, paid trolls, or idiots is where I’m going with this.

  92. 92
  93. 93
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @Cheryl Rofer: I wonder what the state of his health is, and what he would do if could (ETA) as in: Would he do anything at all. He had plenty of chances before his diagnosis, and since.

    @MisterForkbeard: we had one of those here the other day

  94. 94
    MJS says:

    @Cheryl Rofer: In what universe do these attacks on the FBI and DoJ NOT serve the interests of the Republican party, and the interests of Trump?

  95. 95
    Yutsano says:

    This is going to blow up in their stupid fucking faces SO hard.

    Opponent.
    Mistake.
    Let them.

  96. 96
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    this second point weakens an already silly argument

    Glenn Kessler @ GlennKesslerWP
    Memo actually confirms a timeline not favorable to Trump:
    1. Counterintelligence probe opened in July 2016 by FBI because of George P./Wikileaks/emails.
    2. FISA application on Carter Page obtained late Oct. 2016, after Page had left Trump campaign.

  97. 97
    Immanentize says:

    @LAO: you’re on Counselor!

  98. 98

    The minority statement on the release.

    The Republican document mischaracterizes highly sensitive classified information that few Members of Congress have seen, and which Chairman Nunes himself chose not to review. It fails to provide vital context and information contained in DOJ’s FISA application and renewals, and ignores why and how the FBI initiated, and the Special Counsel has continued, its counterintelligence investigation into Russia’s election interference and links to the Trump campaign. The sole purpose of the Republican document is to circle the wagons around the White House and insulate the President. Tellingly, when asked whether the Republican staff who wrote the memo had coordinated its drafting with the White House, the Chairman refused to answer.

    And more at the link.

  99. 99
    Bruce K says:

    Is this going to blow up in the traitors’ faces? Please let this blow up in their faces. Please tell me they’re not going to actually get away with this.

  100. 100
    catclub says:

    @Baud: my theory now is that ANYTHING on the FISA process is automatically top secret.

    If so, the protection of sources and methods complaint seems very thin to me. I would label it as a nothingburger which also violates
    standard FISA regulations.

  101. 101
    Bill E Pilgrim says:

    @Corner Stone: Yeah, I guess my point was that even people totally committed to claiming “well both sides have valid points” can’t follow the damn thing enough to make their case. “Well Andrea, it seems that there was a nemo, it says here, clearly a reference to some sort of sort of secret underwater mission, and a claim that one of the original documents called the “carter page” has gone missing, and then, uhm..”

  102. 102
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @Boatboy_srq:

    Carter Steele sounds like a gay pr0n nym.

    Heh. My car is one of those ubiquitous slightly metallic greyish-beigeish colors, but the official name is “Mocha Steel.” When’s the told me that at the dealership I burst out laughing and told the salesman it sounded like a stripper’s stage name. I think he was slightly offended.

  103. 103
    catclub says:

    @Cheryl Rofer:

    and ignores why and how the FBI initiated, and the Special Counsel has continued, its counterintelligence investigation

    It looks to me that the 2013 start date of the Carter Page FISA coverage is classified.

  104. 104
    Gravenstone says:

    Seems apt, popped over to CNN.com and saw the blaring headline about the “Disputed TRUMP-NUNES Memo”. My mind edited it as “TRUMP-NONSENSE”. You go, inner editor.

  105. 105
    Corner Stone says:

    @Bill E Pilgrim: Trying to explain or justify this memo is like trying to tell someone how to tie various knots used aboard sailing ships, but not using a rope to demonstrate.
    “So, the rabbit runs around, then around again, then through the rabbit hole, then under and back and back into the rabbit hole.”

  106. 106
    catclub says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist:

    after Page had left Trump campaign.

    That does seem kind of important. I wonder if this is also how Trump (believes he was) was bugged in Trump tower – that Carter Page was under surveillance and going in and out of Trump tower.

  107. 107
    Immanentize says:

    @catclub: That is probably true. For foreign intelligence sources to learn about our gathering capacities (who do we bug, how deep does our Intel burrow, how quickly can we get a secret warrant) that date would be super useful.

  108. 108
    Bill E Pilgrim says:

    @SiubhanDuinne: Mocha Steel is actually hilarious. Like they’re trying to market to two entirely different demographics. “New at Starbucks – the Cammoccino”

  109. 109

    @catclub: I’ve got that 2013 wrong, although I suspect that the dates and anything included in the warrant application are classified. The surveillance seems to have been prompted by Papadopoulos’s revelations.

  110. 110
    Corner Stone says:

    @SiubhanDuinne:

    “Mocha Steel.” When’s the told me that at the dealership I burst out laughing and told the salesman it sounded like a stripper’s stage name.

    *sips my chocolate milk*
    “But I wouldn’t know anything about that.”
    *sips*

  111. 111
    Elie says:

    @Miss Bianca:

    My guess is that McCain is pretty close to the end of his life and may not be totally lucid anymore. He may have left instructions or an outline to his assistants about what to say in certain events, but who knows. I don’t think that he will be with us much longer…

  112. 112
    A different Mike from DC says:

    What jumped out at me is that the memo did not allege/claim that the FISA court relied on misleading or incorrect information, just that there was bias in the dossier.

    The other thing is that it basically states that the entire thing was started by suspicions raised about Papadopoulos, which runs counter to the whole dossier narrative.

    I’m a pretty left leaning individual, so my interpretation is that it reeks of desperation, but I don’t know how a more moderate person would read it.

  113. 113
    LAO says:

    sorry no tweets for a little while i read the memo and it was indeed 100x bigger than what started the American Revolution so I had to rush from Boston on horseback to rouse the people— Alexandra Petri (@petridishes) February 2, 2018

  114. 114
    Immanentize says:

    I am trying to figure out how to teach my students, as lawyers, to read this memo. One tip is the same as reading a warrant — first, drop out any and all conclusions. Then, from the facts remaining, take out adjectives. Then look at what you have.

    In this case, legally, nada.

    ETA. One more step — if you have a question about a fact, you need it answered. And if a fact doesn’t seem related directly to the issue, ignore it.

  115. 115
    low-tech cyclist says:

    I’m on a U.S. government computer, so since AFAIK this memo’s still classified despite having been released by POTUS, I’d better wait ’til I get home to join the fun and read it.

  116. 116
    catclub says:

    @LAO: she is a treasure – and fun.

  117. 117
    Baud says:

    @Immanentize: That’s how I read Greenwald articles (on the rare occasions when I read them).

  118. 118
    smedley the uncertain says:

    @Cheryl Rofer: So does WAPO.

  119. 119
  120. 120
    Immanentize says:

    @Baud: yes it is a useful technique in so many circumstances!

  121. 121
    Steve in the ATL says:

    @efgoldman:

    I can’t even read them.

    There are some wonderful adult literacy programs out there

  122. 122

    @low-tech cyclist: It’s been declassified. The cover memo and the markings on it say so.

  123. 123
    Bill E Pilgrim says:

    @catclub: I lurve Petri. She retweeted me a couple of times and it was the best compliment I could imagine.

  124. 124
  125. 125

    The Nuclear Posture Review is coming out this afternoon.

  126. 126
    pamelabrown53 says:

    @low-tech cyclist: #115,

    I’m confused. I thought that once The Imposter okayed it’s release it automatically was declassified?

  127. 127
    aimai says:

    @MisterForkbeard: People will never, ever, be able to face their complicity in putting Trump in power. The pain and the shame is too great. They will always blame HRC and the democrats for not, somehow, being good enough or clear enough about the danger of Trump. People just can’t take the shame of their stupid, vicious ill informed choices.

  128. 128
  129. 129
    Miss Bianca says:

    @Immanentize: y’know, it isn’t often that I think, “gee, I wish I’d gone to law school after all,” but every time you post something about what you go over with your students, I do.

  130. 130
    The Dangerman says:

    I’m missing something (it’s Friday, I’m barely caffeinated, cut me some slack). The “fruit of the poisonous tree” thing plays great on Law and Order and maybe in a typical court case….

    …but no one is gonna give a shit if Mueller finds that the Trump Campaign collude with Russia or tried to obstruct justice. Impeachment is a political process, not a legal one.

    The only thing this could be good for is grounds for Trump to fire Rosenstein and install someone to fire Mueller. Good luck with that one, Republicans.

  131. 131
    Miss Bianca says:

    @Cheryl Rofer: Is “duck and cover” considered a “Nuclear Posture Review”?

    I’ll see myself out now.

  132. 132
    burnspbesq says:

    @Baud:

    Speaking of Greenie, his take on this should be comedy gold.

  133. 133
    Aleta says:

    I’m facing up to how I’ve changed during this cruel administration.
    After reading this morning about HUD rent increases + work requirements for the oldest and poorest—and ICE/GOP treatment of a teenage immigrant—and obscene grab of public land—I saw this headline:
    Scott Pruitt Orders EPA Employees To Stay In Office Over Weekend While It’s Being Fumigated
    and accepted more outrage. Started to click to read, until I saw it was a wild alliaceous plant.

  134. 134
    burnspbesq says:

    @Miss Bianca:

    I’m probably in the minority on this, but I had a great time in law school.

  135. 135
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @Corner Stone:

    “But I wouldn’t know anything about that.”

    Nope, not a thing.

  136. 136
    Ben Cisco says:

    @Corner Stone:

    Look into your prognasticating crystal balls

    BWAHAAHAA!!

    Damn this place cracks me up sometimes.

  137. 137
    GregB says:

    Frogs legs anyone?

    2016: Trump talking point was: No contact with Russia. Outrageous lies!

    2018: How dare anyone spy on a Russian operative who was working for the Trump campaign.

    The frog has been boiled.

  138. 138

  139. 139
    Ohio Mom says:

    Ohio Dad was just about to leave work — this is probably his last week of half-days — when one of his co-workers turned up the audio of some talking head announcing the memo (knowing the fellow who did this, probably Fox). Most of the office huddled around like old timers around the radio.

    This was followed by five of the other six in the office breaking into a chant of “Lock them up.” Fortunately, OD was able to steal away before anyone noticed he was gone.

    I’m not kidding. He works with nuts.

  140. 140
    CindyH says:

    @Ohio Mom: So do I, a coworker just came back from lunch and asked if we had read the memo – when we said no (we’re actually working), he said it should be required reading. He’s a Trump supporter so he buys into the whole thing. Unfortunately, he’s not the only one.

    So, I stopped working and came to BJ instead. :)

  141. 141
    Aleta says:

    @Aleta: And I’ve seen one example of this with my own eyes:
    Former Hippies Put in Horrible Position of Rooting for F.B.I.

  142. 142
    Mnemosyne says:

    @MisterForkbeard:

    Internet trolls are everywhere. I was looking for information about something that led me to a message board at the Chronicle of Higher Education website and some jackhole was trolling there.

  143. 143
    JMG says:

    “Lock them up” is a chant that can be interpreted in more than one way.

  144. 144
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @Ohio Mom:

    this is probably his last week of half-days

    Sounds as though he is fully recovered. Yay!

  145. 145
    Amaranthine RBG says:

    @Cheryl Rofer:
    I kind of wish Comey would keep his mouth shut and stick with the “Just a professional doing his job” persona.

  146. 146
    Immanentize says:

    @Miss Bianca: thanks. I think? This is part of my long term effort to teach my students that as lawyers, they shouldn’t hold any opinion that does not have a credible basis (and can withstand reasonable opposition)

    Mostly I don’t succeed (yet in their young lives)

  147. 147
    Barbara says:

    @GregB: I’m stealing this!

  148. 148
    Duane says:

    House republicans decided to declare war on the IC over this. Talk about stupid and its ability to burn. These folks are going to DIAF of their own making.

  149. 149
    different-church-lady says:

    @CindyH:

    when we said no (we’re actually working), he said it should be required reading. He’s a Trump supporter…

    Did you ask him if he read the memo?

  150. 150
    Zach says:

    Hasn’t pretty much everything about Carter Page in the Steele dossier turned out to be true? Isn’t it pretty obvious that Steele wasn’t globetrotting on his own dime to dig up dirt on Trump associates… I’m like 99% certain the FISA court people would know it was a product of opposition research (or maybe anti-Trump corporate intelligence or paid for by someone in the media).

  151. 151
    GregB says:

    FBI, if you are listening, Release the dirt on Devin Nunes.

  152. 152
    bystander says:

    @eric: Must be the chemo drugs talking.

    @Corner Stone: Pete Williams and Chuck Todd are aural Ipecac.

  153. 153
    different-church-lady says:

    @Zach: Your questions make the common mistake of applying logic to a political stunt. The veracity of what is in the memo or the Steele dossier does not matter one bit. All that matters is “MEMO!” We are talking about playground bullies. When has anything a playground bully ever said ever made any sense?

  154. 154
    Corner Stone says:

    The IC is going to have to start a sustained campaign of damaging leaks, before it’s too late. The “dossier” talking point is being cemented into RWNJ’s minds – that this whole witch hunt is based on a dossier bought and paid for by HRC, and then lied about by FBI leadership.
    That’s in the Trump base as solid evidence right now and if it is not countered it will seep into the minds of the mushy middle and low info everybody else. It’s impossible to explain the FISA process to average people because they just don’t give a shit. But start talking about a false, slanderous, “dodgy dossier” and you’ve got their lizard brain’s full attention.

  155. 155
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    Sigh. Turned on MSNBC to see if anything had happened in the last hour, just in time to see Tweety both-sides Clinton’s blowjob and trump Inc’s collusion with Russian intelligence

    ETA: @Corner Stone: Isn’t Williams the one Cheney wanted to hire as his spokesman? Counseled Dick and Lynne through Mary’s coming out?

  156. 156
    jimmiraybob says:

    Operation One Branch

    Phase I: The Trump loyalty pledge – largely done behind closed doors
    Phase II: The Trump loyalty test – by public act, e.g., the memo
    Phase III: Continue purge of anti-Trump American loyalists
    Phase IV: Install Trump loyalists
    Phase V: Major “bad thing” happens

    So far, on time and on budget.

    Who said he’s not a stable genius.

  157. 157
    different-church-lady says:

    @Corner Stone:

    The IC is going to have to start a sustained campaign of damaging leaks

    You mean accelerate, not start, don’t you?

  158. 158
    Miss Bianca says:

    @burnspbesq: @Immanentize: If I had it to do over again, I think I would have picked law school. Interesting how my dad pushed teaching for me and law school for my brother. I honestly think I’d have been much more suited for lawyering than teaching, and my brother would have had a much happier career as a teacher than as a lawyer. Oh, well!

  159. 159

    @Zach: No. The dossier rhymes with a lot of events, but it isn’t precisely true. Carter Page went to Russia and talked to some Russians, but not the ones identified in the dossier. And the dossier says they were talking about a payoff, but we don’t know what they were talking about. Page says it was innocuous.

    If this prompts more investigation into Carter Page and the group of weirdos surrounding him – Papadopoulos, J.D. Gordon, Sam Clovis, and Jeff Sessions – it will be a good thing.

  160. 160
    Calouste says:

    @Duane: The Banana Republicans didn’t declare war on the IC over what is in the dossier. It’s about stuff that hasn’t come out yet.

  161. 161
    Mart says:

    @Elie:

    My guess is that McCain is pretty close to the end of his life and may not be totally lucid anymore.

    Meghan McCain on Colbert last night said her dad was in poor shape over the holidays but had rallied…

  162. 162
    Miss Bianca says:

    @Cheryl Rofer: Thanks for nothing, Jimmy! This administration, and its wrecking ball approach to any institution that gets in the way of maximum grift and fraud, is as much your responsibility as any of the millions or morans who voted for it.

  163. 163
    catclub says:

    @Amaranthine RBG:

    I kind of wish Comey would keep his mouth shut and stick with the “Just a professional doing his job” persona.

    I wish Comey had KEPT his mouth shut and done his job. Now he is out of a job, it don’t matter much.

  164. 164
    MomSense says:

    @GregB:

    Can we assume Pompeo met with the Russian spy agencies to get the final draft of the memo?

    My son texted me he thinks that they were probably shoring up their 2018 midterm election hacking plans.

    We have to run up the score on the vote in November.

  165. 165
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Miss Bianca:

    My dad steered me away from law school. Not because I was A Girl, but because he really hated being a lawyer and didn’t think anyone should subject themselves to that bullshit.

    He paid for me to go to film school, so he definitely had the courage of his convictions. 😂

  166. 166
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @Mart: Glioblastoma only goes in one direction.

  167. 167
    catclub says:

    @jimmiraybob:

    Operation One Branch

    Operation Two: Branch Davidians ?

  168. 168
    CindyH says:

    @different-church-lady: I should, but I choose not to engage him as he is over the top as far as bluster.

  169. 169
    GregB says:

    Dow Jones approaching 500 point drop.

  170. 170
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @bystander:

    Pete Williams and Chuck Todd are aural Ipecac.

    Wow! That is a Cracker-worthy turn of phrase, and one which I fully intend to use (there are so many candidates who qualify).

  171. 171
    catclub says:

    @MomSense:

    probably shoring up their 2018 midterm election hacking plans.

    I wonder how much of a monkey wrench in their plans it was when all the Secretary’s of State refused to turn over their voter rolls to Kobach and his gang.

  172. 172
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @Immanentize: And what, pray tell, do you teach them about non-proliferation? :)

  173. 173
    Peale says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist: They really do have problems evaluating things. Everything is the same except for one point that they might have in common. So giving your wife a dozen roses and a box of chocolates for valentines day is the same as giving her a wilted daisy and a fun sized Hershey bar left over from Halloween. A bombing of another country that results in 100,000 civilian casualties is the same as the Blue Angels showing up at an air show. It wouldn’t bother me so much if their job wasn’t to provide analysis. A big part of analysis involves making evaluations and categorizing things. Why aren’t they ever fired for sucking so much?

  174. 174
    Lyrebird says:

    @Corner Stone:

    is like a person who doesn’t know how to do a clove hitch trying to tell someone how to tie various knots used aboard sailing ships, but not using a rope to demonstrate.

    FTFY :-)

    Thanks for a laugh, needed it…

  175. 175
    Mart says:

    @Gin & Tonic: Maybe Meghan is writing for dad, she did make a point of reminding the audience that Trump attacked her dad’s service to our country.

  176. 176
    El Caganer says:

    @Bill E Pilgrim: I thought it was Remington Steele…..what am I missing here? MSNBC? A little help?

  177. 177
    Zach says:

    @Cheryl Rofer:

    No. The dossier rhymes with a lot of events, but it isn’t precisely true.

    My feeling is that a lot of the imprecise things in the dossier might be a result of telephone-type miscommunication going from people who actually know what the sources of Russian extortion are and Steele’s sources. For example, maybe Trump isn’t being extorted over doing whatever with three prostitutes in a hotel suite, but he apparently was extorted for sleeping with at least two porn stars and at least one of those was pretty easy to find out about.

  178. 178
    Corner Stone says:

    @different-church-lady: IMO it’s been a prelude up til now. I don’t think they have yet begun to fight.

  179. 179
    Zach says:

    @GregB:

    Dow Jones approaching 500 point drop.

    FWIW non-US and US equities have the same losses today (~2%); it’s not anything to do with Trump.

  180. 180
    Immanentize says:

    @Gin & Tonic: ok ok. You really don’t want my syllabus, because that would not tell you anything. What you want is my materials on the topic….

  181. 181
    catclub says:

    @GregB: Never get attached to the last 20%, it could go away and you (I, we) will still probably be ahead.

  182. 182
    Aleta says:

    What angers me is that they have dragged out the memo news drop with timing that imo seems well-orchestrated. (Making me angry again about the perfectly timed handling of Weiner’s computer and the FBI announcements at the end of the campaign.)

    It’s an important story. But timing to manipulate news coverage is one thing the R’s are very good at. (High-priced consultants, paid for with those big contributions from donors.) I noticed contradictory leaks from “WH sources” about the memo yesterday. Both could not be true, so yes the media is letting itself be used for excitement and distraction.

    Other stories that landed this week may or may not hang around for long. Like this one, which imo should be on the national evening news tonight. With a lot of context as a longer piece, but that would be dreamland. It will be eclipsed because ‘it can wait’ (the memo is NOW). Or appear and be shortened, or shifted to the weekend. Or disappear after a few days, like most other ICE/justice stories.

    U.S. Army veteran and green card holder with a felony drug conviction began a hunger strike Wednesday to protest his likely deportation, after a federal court denied his appeal to remain in the U.S., where he has lived since age 8.
    Miguel Perez Jr., 39, a Chicago resident who served two tours of duty in Afghanistan and recently finished a prison term on a drug conviction, had sought to remain in the U.S., arguing his life would be in danger if he were deported to Mexico, where drug cartels target veterans with combat experience to work on their behalf, or else.
    A three-judge panel for the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals rejected that argument last week.

  183. 183
    Corner Stone says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist: Good Ole Petey worked for Cheney in a few different capacities as spokesperson or staff in the House and then again in the GHWB admin as spokesperson for the military.

  184. 184
    Immanentize says:

    @Zach: The US has nothing to do with global market weaknesses? What is the cause, then? I would like to know so I can watch that to save my savings.

  185. 185

    @Aleta: To our MSM we are lesser people any person not voting for Rs does not concern them. Let alone non-citizens like the GC holder veteran or Dreamers.

  186. 186
    Bill Arnold says:

    Cheryl and/or Adam – any opinion on the press stories about North Korea and the Trump Administration today? e.g.
    The Pentagon Is Afraid to Give Trump More Military Options on North Korea. Has this been discussed already?
    In particular, have the warmongers among the Trump administration been identified? And what does Lt. Gen. H. R. McMaster actually believe ./ what has been been saying?

    The national security adviser, Lt. Gen. H. R. McMaster, believes that for Mr. Trump’s warnings to North Korea to be credible, the United States must have well-developed military plans, according to those officials.

    But the Pentagon, they say, is worried that the White House is moving too hastily toward military action on the Korean Peninsula that could escalate catastrophically. Giving the president too many options, the officials said, could increase the odds that he will act.

    (Intuition is getting queasy.)

  187. 187
    rp says:

    @burnspbesq: You’ll be shocked to find out that he thinks this raises some interesting questions.

  188. 188
    TenguPhule says:

    @Peale:

    Why aren’t they ever fired for sucking so much?

    Because they’re willing to swallow without being paid extra for the service.

  189. 189
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    when you’ve lost ‘Berto or Gonzo or whatever Shrubb’s nickname for this clown was…..

    Molly Ball @ mollyesque
    Former AG Alberto Gonzales to calabresim on the memo: “I have no confidence whatsoever in what’s going to come out of the House. Nunes seems to be part of the Trump team.”

  190. 190
    TenguPhule says:

    @Immanentize:

    What is the cause, then? I would like to know so I can watch that to save my savings.

    Brexit shitfest.

    Middle-east Clusterfucks.

    Fucking Turkey.

    China doing whatever the fuck it wants in the Pacific.

    State Departments responsible for enforcing the rules no longer doing so.

    Pick any one of them.

  191. 191
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Gin & Tonic:

    Sadly, yes. My father-in-law survived much longer than his initial diagnosis 2 years vs 6 months) because he responded well to Avastin, but the tumor still got him in the end.

  192. 192
    Jeffro says:

    @Corner Stone:

    Hey Jeffro Mensch, any odds on getting a solid Friday News Dump today? Look into your prognasticating crystal balls and let us know.

    Ah…um…let’s see: “signs point to ‘no’ ” (although it’s a pretty good bet that Hair Furor will be tweet-knocking critics all evening, starting in 3, 2, 1…)

    From your other comment:

    The IC is going to have to start a sustained campaign of damaging leaks, before it’s too late. The “dossier” talking point is being cemented into RWNJ’s minds – that this whole witch hunt is based on a dossier bought and paid for by HRC, and then lied about by FBI leadership.
    That’s in the Trump base as solid evidence right now and if it is not countered it will seep into the minds of the mushy middle and low info everybody else. It’s impossible to explain the FISA process to average people because they just don’t give a shit. But start talking about a false, slanderous, “dodgy dossier” and you’ve got their lizard brain’s full attention.

    Like different-church-lady, I think they’ll accelerate, not start…and they’ve already been doing a heckuva job. The RWNJs, the 27%, they were never going to be open to this or change their minds about Trumpov anyway. But pretty much everyone else keeps seeing the evidence – and more importantly, the desperation – piling up.

    I’m glad it’s out. It’s nothing but a hail Mary pass and to the 73%, that’s exactly what it looks like.

  193. 193
    Aleta says:

    @Aleta:
    a few paragraphs from the story linked above:

    Perez, who has two children who are U.S. citizens, is one of many legal permanent residents who served in the U.S. military and then confronted the possibility of deportation to their native countries after committing a crime. Perez said he mistakenly thought he became a U.S. citizen when he took an oath to protect the nation. He says his military superiors never offered to help him expedite his citizenship.

    After his military service, Perez sought treatment at the Veterans Affairs hospital in Maywood, where doctors diagnosed him with post-traumatic stress disorder. He was supposed to return for more tests to determine whether he also had a traumatic brain injury.

    Perez said he discovered the citizenship oversight when he was summoned to immigration court shortly before his September 2016 release from Hill Correctional Center in Galesburg. Instead of heading home to Chicago from prison, Perez was placed in the custody of Immigration and Customs Enforcement and transferred to a Wisconsin detention center for immigrants awaiting deportation.

    Perez’s attorney Chris Bergin said he has filed a stay on two grounds. One is based on a medical evaluation finding that Perez needs immediate attention for PTSD and his brain injury. The other seeks retroactive citizenship for Perez to when he joined the military in 2001.

  194. 194
    Jeffro says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist:

    Gonzales: “I have no confidence whatsoever in what’s going to come out of the House. Nunes seems to be part of the Trump team.”

    Alberto that’s good, but you coulda shoulda added “still seems to be part of the Trumpov team”

  195. 195
    burnspbesq says:

    @Zach:

    FWIW non-US and US equities have the same losses today (~2%); it’s not anything to do with Trump.

    Apparently low unemployment and robust job growth are Bad Things, because they put upward pressure on wages and can lead to higher interest rates and RUNAWAY INFLATION OMGSTFU!!!!!

  196. 196
    Corner Stone says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist:

    Former AG Alberto Gonzales to calabresim on the memo: “I have no confidence whatsoever in what’s going to come out of the House. Nunes seems to be part of the Trump team.

    This soundbyte should be followed by a short video of Wittes firing off his tiny cannon. I mean an actual tiny cannon.

  197. 197
    sherparick1 says:

    I have pasted the following from Kevin Drum’s blog as a reminder this is just not about President Trump, but the whole Republican Party and Conservative Movement, and that they have been profoundly anti-democratic (small “d”) since at least the rise of Newt Gingrich in 1993-94. These people have been a threat to the United States and its founding, liberal, principles since they emerged from the Right Wing ghetto in the 1960s and 70s, a combination of madness and reaction to restore aristocratic rule after being shut down by FDR for a generation.

    I would add to Drum’s spiel the following. McConnell, Ryan, Nunes, McCarthy, and all are not just supporting Trump because of fear of the Republican Base (or as Driftglass calls them, “the Tribe that Rubs Shit in their Hair” but of the the plutocratic donor class for whom the Republican politicians are just sock puppets.

    Two quotes from the past week show what is really happening with Trump: First, from Charles Koch at the “Koch Network” conference at Palm Springs California: “We have made more progress (in advancing the Randian agenda) in the last five years then the previous 50.” https://www.cnbc.com/2018/01/27/koch-brothers-network-to-spend-400-million-in-midterm-election-cycle.html The second from Senator McConnell at the Republican Retreat stated the following: “2017 was the best year for conservatives in the 30 years that I’ve been here,” Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said this week. “The best year on all fronts. And a lot of people were shocked because we didn’t know what we were getting with Donald Trump.” https://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2018/2/2/16929764/how-democracies-die-trump-book-levitsky-ziblatt

    “…I am, generally speaking, pretty confident that we will all survive Donald Trump and the country will get back to normal. But it’s stuff like this that gives me pause. If you want to make a case for the slippery slope into fascism or whatever, this is your best bet. Real authoritarians—as opposed to wannabes like Trump—would recognize this playbook and nod approvingly. The first thing you have to do is get control of the security forces. That means smearing the leadership as corrupt and then purging them, to be replaced by loyalists.

    Of course, you can’t do this unless your own party goes along. And boy howdy, are Republicans going along.

    You need a core of devoted followers. Trump has that in evangelicals and racially aggrieved whites.

    You need the press to report everything at least neutrally even if they know your charges are obviously phony. That’s happening too.

    And you need a weak opposition. Trump has that because, let’s face it, the FBI has never been a liberal favorite. Most of the time we’re griping about their racial insensitivity or their treatment of suspects or their mass surveillance. It’s hard to turn on a dime and suddenly become their biggest boosters.

    Finally, you need to put on a show for the masses, and we’re sure getting that with the Nunes memo, aren’t we?

    Like I said, I still think everything turns out OK. Republicans have been running this playbook for a long time. Today it’s FBI corruption. Before that it was Hillary’s emails, Benghazi, the IRS, Solyndra, and Fast & Furious. And before that it was their insane investigatory jihad against Bill Clinton. Even now I don’t think most people have come to grips with just how much of the Clinton stuff was invented and planned as part of a very deliberate campaign.

    The GOP has been Newt Gingrich’s party since 1994. I’m not sure it’s even fair to say that Trump is taking it to new levels. He’s just bringing it to life more effectively than anyone before him. Either way, though, he is Newt Gingrich’s Platonic ideal of a politician brought to life. You bluster for the cameras endlessly. You use words to change reality. You attack any institution that can offer a credible alternative to your reality. You lie so often it becomes the truth. You pretend to be a populist but make sure to retain the support of the corporate class. Newt wrote the playbook. Trump is finally the quarterback who can follow it.” https://www.motherjones.com/kevin-drum/2018/02/newt-wrote-the-playbook-25-years-ago-republicans-finally-have-a-quarterback-who-can-follow-it/

  198. 198
    burnspbesq says:

    @rp:

    You’ll be shocked to find out that he thinks this raises some interesting questions.

    Don’t tell me, lemme guess: the memo “provides further evidence, if any were needed, that the FISA court allows itself to be all too easily scammed into willfully pissing on all Constitutional and statutory limits on the Surveillance State.”

  199. 199
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    n Favreau @ jonfavs
    This conspiracy is so incredibly stupid that you actually feel stupid explaining it to people.

  200. 200
    patrick II says:

    @Cheryl Rofer:

    Next to listening to a Trump speech, self righteous Comey tweets make me the most ill.

  201. 201
    catclub says:

    @burnspbesq:

    RUNAWAY INFLATION OMGSTFU!!!!!

    runaway 2.4% inflation. yep.

  202. 202
    rp says:

    @burnspbesq: getting warm…

  203. 203
    Ohio Mom says:

    @CindyH: Having comraderie is everything.

  204. 204
    NorthLeft12 says:

    The president told reporters in the Oval Office, “I think it’s a disgrace what’s happening in our country. A lot of people should be ashamed of themselves and much worse than that.”

    The irony and lack of self awareness is overwhelming. I could not have stopped from laughing out loud if I had been a reporter in that room.

  205. 205
    Aleta says:

    @Aleta: One more thing. Lack of access to medical care applies to many or everyone in immigration custody.

    Luna said even though military service left Perez disabled, he has not been able to access in detention the medical care available to most veterans.

    I remember when Bush and his buds, needing a lot more enlistment for Iraq and Afghanistan, made splashy announcements offering citizenship to immigrants who would join the military.

    But no one bothered to explain/help Miguel Perez Jr. do the additional application while he was serving in the military. Or at discharge, or meeting with his trial lawyer, or during the 7 years Miguel Perez served in prison, or at his parole. Released to immediate arrest by ICE.

    Everything that is happening to Miguel Perez illustrates what is happening in some form to all people caught up in the ICE reign of terror
    .

  206. 206
    Kay says:

    Trump yanked the rug out from under his widow-peaked lackey about 12 hours later

    So funny, Betty. I didn’t even read the rest. I’m not reading the stupid memo either :)

  207. 207
    JR says:

    @TenguPhule: a reckoning for irrational exuberance. We will see but the Schiller PE was higher than any period in history except for the dot com bubble. The obvious bubble (small capital total but an obvious bubble none the less) is Bitcoin which is collapsing totally. Wouldn’t be surprise if other worthless tech stuff goes up in vapor, too.

  208. 208
    patrick II says:

    @Jeffro:

    I worry that 27% isn’t the operable number anymore. Trump has been between 35% and 40% for the last eight months no matter what happens. And while I know day to day approval ratings aren’t entirely trustworthy, today 538 has Trump approval going over 40% for the first time in a while (40.2%)

  209. 209
    Aleta says:

    @NorthLeft12:

    The irony and lack of self awareness is overwhelming.

    So true. I guess at least a little commitment to the truth is a precursor to irony and self-awareness? He also has a pattern of accusing the other side of what he’s guilty of doing, and just at the moment he’s most engaged in it or exposed for it.

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    clay says:

    @Cheryl Rofer:

    No. The dossier rhymes with a lot of events, but it isn’t precisely true. Carter Page went to Russia and talked to some Russians, but not the ones identified in the dossier. And the dossier says they were talking about a payoff, but we don’t know what they were talking about. Page says it was innocuous.

    Sorry Cheryl, but wouldn’t it be more accurate to say that the dossier hasn’t yet been confirmed or refuted? To use your two examples: 1) just because Page is known to have met with officials not listed doesn’t mean he DIDN’T meet with the listed ones, and 2) they certainly COULD have been talking about a payout — Page is hardly trustworthy here.

    I just don’t know that we can conclude that the dossier isn’t true based on this.

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    Aleta says:

    politicized the sacred investigative process in favor of Democrats and against Republicans – something which would have been unthinkable just a short time ago.

    A tricky situation. The sacred processes are corrupted right now…but don’t go thinking that any corruption by Republicans was ever possible.

  212. 212
    Zach says:

    @Immanentize: Obviously they’re usually correlated. But to the extent it’s relevant to point out a Dow drop in a thread about the memo I assume it’s trying to pin the drop on some impact of Trump on the economy; that’d show up more in US than non-US equities. You see this with the performance of US vs Non-US since the election; US outperforming when post election, underperforming after inauguration when it turned out Trump couldn’t get anything done and tax cuts might not happen, and then catching up again once the GOP figured out how to give everyone free money. Go look at VTI vs VXUS from Election Day 2016 to today: you see this dynamic plus increased valuations overall thanks mostly to the whole world doing alright.

  213. 213

    @Zach: Human intelligence is likely to be like that. The trouble is that without other corroborating sources, there’s no way to tell what’s right and what just rhymes. Hence the need for additional sources, which I’m sure were included in the application for a FISA warrant.

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    @Bill Arnold: My sense of that Times story is that Trump wants a magic military option where everything is set right in North Korea – pew pew pew.

    No such thing exists, of course, so he wants more options. Probably the military, who know this, are slow-walking to keep him from doing something ultimately stupid.

  215. 215
    Steve in the ATL says:

    @patrick II:

    I worry that 27% isn’t the operable number anymore. Trump has been between 35% and 40% for the last eight months no matter what happens

    perhaps the addition of a set of country club republicans who didn’t want to watch our country burn down but decided it’s ok since they got a tax cut?

  216. 216

    @clay: “True” was probably not the best word. I agree that we don’t know how much can be confirmed or refuted. Part of the problem is that, although the Trumpies have denied some of it, like Michael Cohen, they all lie like crazy. And if we think about the inaccuracies in transmission of information among humans, the possibilities grow.

    I think that the best way to look at the dossier is as a starting point for investigations like Mueller is doing. Depending on how it was used and what else was offered as evidence, it could have a legitimate place in a FISA document too.

  217. 217
    TenguPhule says:

    @Cheryl Rofer:

    are slow-walking to keep him from doing something ultimately stupid.

    Pity that so many of them seem to have a hard-on for kicking things off with Iran.

  218. 218
    Ohio Dad says:

    @SiubhanDuinne: To all the denizens of Balloon Juice and to the few of you who I have met personally: thanks for all of the wishes. I will try to work full time starting Monday, although sometimes my co-workers are not easy on my heart. (The painful part is that these people are NOT stupid and are generally excellent at what they do.)

    Normally, I hang out at Charlie Pierce’s shebeen, but its Facebook comment hosting has been acting up recently, so I decided to come here. I know that OM sometimes talks about me, but I was not expecting this reception!

    Since this thread is about the memo, let me offer my two cents: The memo isn’t going to change anybody’s mind and isn’t supposed to. I think that Mueller is going to come up with something much more serious than obstruction of justice — something like blatant treason that would normally compel Republican congressmen to impeach and convict. The memo provides an out for these congressmen: “this is such a serious charge, and we can’t be certain that there was no anti-Trump conspiracy.”

  219. 219
    Magda in Black says:

    @Ohio Mom:
    I am so sorry. He has my complete empathy.

  220. 220
    No One You Know says:

    @Elie: Hm. My MIL is in a similar state, and she’s still sharp. I wouldn’t rule out some reflection on how he wants to be remembered.

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