Incompetence or Disloyalty?

That always seems to be the choice with these bozos.

Mr. Tillerson has voiced skepticism that the United States is even capable of doing anything to counter the Russian threat.

“If it’s their intention to interfere, they’re going to find ways to do that,” Mr. Tillerson said in an interview last month with Fox News. “And we can take steps we can take, but this is something that once they decide they are going to do it, it’s very difficult to pre-empt it.”

This is a man who was the CEO of Exxon. If he knew that Shell was stealing his top geological talent, would he have said something like that? Presumably he can talk to the NSA about what they would suggest? WTF is wrong with this guy?

Amazingly, there is actually a person in the relevant job of under secretary for public diplomacy, who seems to have a different view from his boss.

“This funding is critical to ensuring that we continue an aggressive response to malign influence and disinformation,” Mr. Goldstein said.

I really hate the conclusion that so many folks at the top of our government are disloyal. But they keep pushing me toward it.

It might be worthwhile to frontpage a list of all the Russia-friendly things that they’ve done. There’s this, and, only this week, Trump’s total disinterest in, and active distraction from, Vladimir Putin’s threatening speech.

If you’ll supply them, I’ll write a post in a day or so. My excuse for crowdsourcing is that it’s allergy season, and I’ve got a very busy Monday and Tuesday.

69 replies
  1. 1
    Sab says:

    I am not voting for incomptence from Tilletson. It’s much worse.

  2. 2
    Corner Stone says:

    Tillerson is lazy, inept and incompetent. He came into office with nothing but profit motive on his mind and once that was stymied, he does not give a shit about doing anything else.

  3. 3
    rikyrah says:

    They are traitors to this country.
    Period.😠😠😠

  4. 4
    Corner Stone says:

    So Over This
    ‏ @Johngcole
    18m18 minutes ago

    I’m craving creamed salmon and peas over toast.

    Am I pregnant?

    Based on your love of overalls I am going to say No. Unless they used the MRI to artificially inseminate you.

  5. 5
    JPL says:

    The repubs still need help winning races in 2018, so give him a break.

  6. 6
    🌎 🇺🇸 Goku (aka Baka Amerikahito) 🗳 🌷 says:

    @Corner Stone:
    Then why doesn’t he just resign? What’s the point of continuing in this shitty job? Prestige? The security detail? He already had those things, more than likely. Perhaps Drillerson is really a traitor like his boss.

    Wasn’t on that leaked list of communications that Mueller was requesting?

  7. 7
    Jeffro says:

    I’m going to go out on a limb and say that the guy who personally received a Russian medal of friendship from Putin himself might, just might, not have the best interests of the United States at heart.

    “No matter what we do, they’re still going to interfere”….give. me. a. fucking. break. If that’s the case, Rex, why don’t you leave the front door to your house open…heck, leave your safe unlocked and let the bad guys know which bedrooms your wife and kids are in, too…unbelievable

  8. 8
    Procopius says:

    I have a suggestion. Try counting all the Russia-hostile things our government has done since January, 2017. You’ll feel a little better, I assure you. Then try counting all the Ukraine-friendly things. You’ll feel even better. Now try counting all the Syrian/Russian-hostile things our armed forces in Syria have done. Presto! Discomfort gone, unless you also look at the ISIS-friendly things our armed forces have done (mostly air strikes against Syrian-allied forces). I grant you, Tillerson’s lack of action is pretty puzzling, but we never see any news of what he’s doing anyway, so how can you tell? Is he still trying to get MbS to lift the blockade of Qatar?

  9. 9
    Redshift says:

    “If it’s their intention to interfere, they’re going to find ways to do that,” Mr. Tillerson said in an interview last month with Fox News.

    It struck me that this is basically the NRA’s (and ammosexuals’) argument against gun laws. Which just reiterates how dishonest it is.

  10. 10
    clay says:

    Am I crazy, or was there another post here just now? Was it pulled due to anti-bigfooting?

  11. 11
    Elizabelle says:

    I’m up for discussing another set of overpaid critters in fancy clothes.

    We can haz Oscars thread?

    I am fucking the fucking Trumps-ed out.

  12. 12
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    The answer to the question is yes.

  13. 13
    🌎 🇺🇸 Goku (aka Baka Amerikahito) 🗳 🌷 says:

    @clay:
    There was and I think that’s why

  14. 14
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Elizabelle:

    I second the motion for an Oscars thread.

  15. 15
    Yarrow says:

    This is a man who was the CEO of Exxon. If he knew that Shell was stealing his top geological talent, would he have said something like that? Presumably he can talk to the NSA about what they would suggest? WTF is wrong with this guy?

    He’s a traitor. Putin didn’t give him that Order of Friendship medal for nothing.

  16. 16
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @Elizabelle: Kimmel’s opening speech was pretty funny. Conservatives are going to hate his dig at VP Pence. Good. Lol.

  17. 17

    I really hate the conclusion that so many folks at the top of our government are disloyal. But they keep pushing me toward it.

    This is 100% how I feel.

  18. 18
    Elizabelle says:

    @Patricia Kayden: I missed it! Came back just as he was finishing. Liked Helen Mirren and the Jet Ski, though.

  19. 19
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Patricia Kayden:

    I like the Jet Ski bribe. 😂

  20. 20
    Cheryl Rofer says:

    @Procopius: It is true that some things have been done that could be called Russia-hostile or Ukraine-friendly. But those have originated at lower levels of the government.

    People in positions like President and Secretary of State send a message to other countries in ways that actions at lower levels do not counter. Trump has said nothing about Russian election hacking. Now Tillerson says, oh they’re going to try anyway, so we might as well let them. There has been some monitoring of intrusion into state election systems, but apparently nothing is going to be done about that. Tillerson’s money is also for information operations. It might be a good idea (although Mitch McConnell would probably disagree) to get the word out to people to be careful of their information sources.

    Then there was that little yukk-it-up session with Trump and his Russian friends in the Oval Office, where he shared some sensitive Israeli intelligence. Or all the times he has said nothing.

    The message is what Jeffro said: The door is open.

  21. 21
    zhena gogolia says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    Guy just thanked his cats.

  22. 22
    hellslittlestangel says:

    Tillerson in a nutshell: What’s the use? They’ve already captured the White House.

  23. 23
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Elizabelle:

    There was another thread that disappeared, but Kimmel really has NFLTG when it comes to bashing Republicans and he let loose.

  24. 24
    Cheryl Rofer says:

    @clay: I delayed it an hour. I would have delayed this one if I could keep straight the two-hour difference between what the blog displays and my own time.

  25. 25
    Bonnie says:

    No one in this administration demonstrates that “American can do” spirit that has existed in previous administrations.

  26. 26
    magurakurin says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: that’s what I was going to say. He’s both. An incompetent traitor.

  27. 27
    raven says:

    @Cheryl Rofer: With most front pagers I’d just go on and talk about the Oscars but your posts are so well thought out I’m not going to do that.

  28. 28
    Mnemosyne says:

    I loved Gal Godot’s dress — very early 1930s.

    And Eva Marie Saint is still sharp as a tack despite being older than the Academy. 😂

  29. 29
    Cheryl Rofer says:

    I took the hint and made you all an Oscars thread.

  30. 30
    Redshift says:

    @🌎 🇺🇸 Goku (aka Baka Amerikahito) 🗳 🌷: He quit the only job he’d had for decades to take this job. If he quits, he has no choice but to retire. Someone who was honorable and not selfish would still do it, but that’s way too much to expect from a CEO of Exxon.

  31. 31
    raven says:

    @Cheryl Rofer: Thanks.

  32. 32
    Elizabelle says:

    We haz an Oscars thread. Yippee!

  33. 33
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Cheryl Rofer:

    Thank you! 😘

  34. 34
    Mike in NC says:

    Hopefully Jimmy Kimmel or somebody else gives a shout out to America’s #1 sexual predator tonight. The angry tweets would be epic.

  35. 35
    Elizabelle says:

    @Cheryl Rofer: Thank you muchly.

  36. 36
    eemom says:

    Anyone else here not give a fuck about the oscars? Just curious.

  37. 37
    Mary G says:

    I am upping the deplorables to despicables. Another horrible story from Axios:(This is the whole story, again not something I usually do, but they called this “tasteless” and that is not enough. Now on to the Oscars thread.

    On Friday night, President Trump entertained around 250 Republican donors in his Mar-a-Lago ballroom. Spotted in the audience: Trump’s lawyer Michael Cohen, who recently admitted to paying $130,000 to porn star Stormy Daniels.

    The most shocking moment of the evening came when Trump brought his old pal Rudy Giuliani onto the stage.

    Giuliani told the crowd he had been down there for Trump’s wedding.

    “Hillary was also here,” he said, according to two sources in the room, “and she actually fit through the door.”

    The crowd gasped. I’m told Giuliani’s wife gave him a “most foul look.” Trump later told the audience: “I’m just glad I didn’t say it.”

  38. 38
    cain says:

    @Bonnie:

    This is a man who was the CEO of Exxon. If he knew that Shell was stealing his top geological talent, would he have said something like that? Presumably he can talk to the NSA about what they would suggest? WTF is wrong with this guy?

    True story, my dad was grad students with Lee Raymond (CEO of Exxon). I will say that they had a bit of a falling out due to a prank gone wrong. But I would say that whatever is reported about him could be true. It didn’t seem like he was a generous person. In any case, I will say that Exxon doesn’t seem to promote nice people to the top.

  39. 39
    SFAW says:

    @Mary G:

    “Hillary was also here,” he said, according to two sources in the room, “and she actually fit through the door.”

    Fuck you, Rudy, you evil, grifting, traitorous, moronic fuck. Hillary shits more class than you’ll ever have, you fuck.

  40. 40
    debbie says:

    Why is Tillerson getting all the blame? If Trump didn’t want the money spent, Tillerson wouldn’t spend it.

  41. 41
    Tom says:

    @Mary G: How is Rudy’s “joke” about Hillary that even funny when the guest of honor weighs 239 kilograms?

  42. 42
    cain says:

    @eemom:
    I don’t give a fuck about the Oscars. Unless it is Lady Gaga doing something amazing.

  43. 43
    rk says:

    “Hillary was also here,” he said, according to two sources in the room, “and she actually fit through the door.”

    Am I missing something? What is this supposed to mean? It’s not like Hillary was ever fat and she slimmed down so he’s fat shaming her. It doesn’t make any sense in any context.
    They’re all low and vulgar and incapable telling jokes. Old withered disgusting men who could never get a decent woman to even look at them. I’m not impressed that his wife gave him a “foul look”. She’s married to him so she’s equally worthless.

  44. 44
    cain says:

    I will be drunk posting from here on in.

  45. 45
    ThresherK says:

    “Shucks, we’re too dumb to try” sez Tillerson, is right up there with GWB’s “Shucks, we’re too dumb to try taxing anyone with real money.”

    Them guys got a lotta quit in ’em.

  46. 46
    El Caganer says:

    @rk: Isn’t Rudy the guy whose kids hate him? I seem to recall that at least one or two of them (don’t know how many he has) want nothing to do with him.

  47. 47
    Zinsky says:

    These reptiles like Tillerson and Trump are so confused. They fancy themselves to be great patriots but in reality they are craven cowards and traitors who don’t really understand or respect small “d” democratic principles and want all the wonderful things the United States has to offer, but not pay a dime in taxes to cover them.

  48. 48
    Eric S. says:

    @eemom: Me! I checked out of pop culture in the mid 90s but I’ve always disliked awards shows.

  49. 49
    bluefoot says:

    I hate the term “meddling” in this context. It seems so mild compared to the seriousness of the reality. Maybe interference? Or sabotage? Subversion?

  50. 50
    Jerzy Russian says:

    @eemom:

    Anyone else here not give a fuck about the oscars? Just curious.

    I don’t.

  51. 51
    efgoldman says:

    @eemom:

    Anyone else here not give a fuck about the oscars?

    Raises hand

  52. 52
    efgoldman says:

    @cain:

    Exxon doesn’t seem to promote nice people to the top.

    More properly, nice people don’t claw their way to the top of organizations like Exxon.

  53. 53
    rk says:

    @eemom:
    I’ve never watched the Oscars in my life. Never found them interesting. Maybe seen snippets here and there.

  54. 54
    zzcool says:

    Hey Cheryl,

    u/BabiesOnQuack on Reddit made this list of collusion activities:

    Long Reddit Link

    It might prove useful.

  55. 55
    eemom says:

    @rk:

    Never found them interesting.

    The funny thing is, even people who watch them devoutly every year usually end up admitting that they’re boring as shit. Or at least that they drag on at least 8 hours longer than they should.

  56. 56
    Mike G says:

    I really hate the conclusion that so many folks at the top of our government are disloyal. But they keep pushing me toward it.

    Tillerson and the generals aren’t guys Trump knew from his mobbed-up casino days, and I suspect he was too disinterested to research and recruit them personally. The question is how were they selected and recommended for these high posts and by whom? Was a Russian stooge like Manafort getting direction from Moscow on picking guys for the cabinet who were compromised and/or slanted pro-Russian because of their business connections?

  57. 57
    StringOnAStick says:

    @Mike G: Excellent questions regarding the cabinet members who aren’t from dump’s mob real estate days. I wonder if Adam of Cheryl have any insight on this?

  58. 58
    joel hanes says:

    hilzoy FTW, as always.

    when blogging was a thing, hilzoy was the best blogger, better than digby even.

    hilzoy is the answer to Kevin Drum’s question “who do I want to see on the NYT opinion page?”

    how could I have forgotten hilzoy …

  59. 59
    Calouste says:

    @Redshift: Funny how that argument doesn’t apply to say drugs or undocumented immigrants.

  60. 60
    SgrAstar says:

    @rikyrah: Agree completely! That they’re doing it with the full complicity of the republican party is absolutely gobsmacking.

  61. 61

    He’s a religious extremist. Perhaps he wants to bring about armageddon.

  62. 62
    AnonPhenom says:

    Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has eliminated a key office within the State Department that coordinates foreign sanctions policy, according to a new report.

  63. 63
    AnonPhenom says:

    A Russian-owned group of companies will pay the U.S. government $6 million to settle a wide-reaching money-laundering case that had quietly rippled through U.S.-Russian relations for years.

  64. 64
    AnonPhenom says:

    …yeah, I think I’ll include this;

    House Speaker Paul Ryan and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell both resisted pleas to speak out in a bipartisan manner on Russia’s hacking when President Barack Obama pressed them to do so, according to The Washington Post.

    because…

    Donald Trump and the political action committees for Mitch McConnell, Marco Rubio, Scott Walker, Lindsey Graham, John Kasich and John McCain accepted $7.35 million in contributions from a Ukrainian-born oligarch who is the business partner of two of Russian president Vladimir Putin’s favorite oligarchs and a Russian government bank.

  65. 65
  66. 66
    AnonPhenom says:

    This …

    Trump, the two officials said, was angry and gunning for a fight, and he chose a trade war, spurred on by Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross and Peter Navarro, the White House director for trade — and against longstanding advice from his economic chair Gary Cohn and Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin.

    ’cause Ross runs a kleptocrat laundromat & the F.U.D. would make Vladimir smile

  67. 67
    AnonPhenom says:

    When generals and diplomats gather for Europe’s most important security conference in Munich next month, President Donald Trump will not be in the room. But the U.S. president will cast a long shadow over the annual event, as his provocative comments about the NATO alliance have shaken the confidence of America’s partners across the Atlantic.

  68. 68
    Cheryl Rofer says:

    Big New Yorker story out today, with a part that is relevant to this thread.

    One subject that Steele is believed to have discussed with Mueller’s investigators is a memo that he wrote in late November, 2016, after his contract with Fusion had ended. This memo, which did not surface publicly with the others, is shorter than the rest, and is based on one source, described as “a senior Russian official.” The official said that he was merely relaying talk circulating in the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, but what he’d heard was astonishing: people were saying that the Kremlin had intervened to block Trump’s initial choice for Secretary of State, Mitt Romney. (During Romney’s run for the White House in 2012, he was notably hawkish on Russia, calling it the single greatest threat to the U.S.) The memo said that the Kremlin, through unspecified channels, had asked Trump to appoint someone who would be prepared to lift Ukraine-related sanctions, and who would coöperate on security issues of interest to Russia, such as the conflict in Syria. If what the source heard was true, then a foreign power was exercising pivotal influence over U.S. foreign policy—and an incoming President.

    As fantastical as the memo sounds, subsequent events could be said to support it. In a humiliating public spectacle, Trump dangled the post before Romney until early December, then rejected him. There are plenty of domestic political reasons that Trump may have turned against Romney. Trump loyalists, for instance, noted Romney’s public opposition to Trump during the campaign. Roger Stone, the longtime Trump aide, has suggested that Trump was vengefully tormenting Romney, and had never seriously considered him. (Romney declined to comment. The White House said that he was never a first choice for the role and declined to comment about any communications that the Trump team may have had with Russia on the subject.) In any case, on December 13, 2016, Trump gave Rex Tillerson, the C.E.O. of ExxonMobil, the job. The choice was a surprise to most, and a happy one in Moscow, because Tillerson’s business ties with the Kremlin were long-standing and warm. (In 2011, he brokered a historic partnership between ExxonMobil and Rosneft.) After the election, Congress imposed additional sanctions on Russia, in retaliation for its interference, but Trump and Tillerson have resisted enacting them.

  69. 69
    cleek says:

    Trump is declining to punish the people who helped him get elected, and who will probably help the GOP this year (and in 2020)?

    shocking.

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