Monday Morning Open Thread: The Profitable Stigmata of Palmer Comey

After all, he has a book to sell…

Ed Kilgore, at NYMag:

The belief that Clinton couldn’t lose is the only way to make sense of what a lot of people said and did in October 2016. But most of them did not have as much power to derail her campaign as Comey.

Polls are usually blamed for the illusion of Clinton’s invulnerability. But for the most part, they weren’t that far off track, particularly if you recall that she won the popular vote by more than 2 percent, and prescient observers noted before the election that Trump was in striking distance based on the polls.

Perhaps all the pollsters and prognosticators who guessed wrong about 2016 are complicit in fostering the overconfidence of the Clinton campaign, Democratic voters — and yes — even James Comey. Certainly the big national news organizations whose coverage decisions reflected an apparent belief that the victorious Clinton could safely be taken down a few pegs over the email “story” have a lot to answer for. But in the end it was probably the difficulty of envisioning a President Trump that fed the overconfidence about Clinton most of all. It couldn’t happen here, until it did. And Comey is just one of the players in the political game who must now regret their lack of imagination. His mistake, however, had far bigger consequences than most.

Let it not be forgotten — Comey is *still* a Republican:

Look, just give us till 2020, okay? By then I personally, and the people I care about, will have had time to consolidate our gains and gotten out, after which we can sadly shake our heads over the destruction of ‘bipartisanship’ from our gated compounds.

Meanwhile, blurb for the next printing…

190 replies
  1. 1
    rikyrah says:

    Good Morning, Everyone😄😄😄

  2. 2
    rikyrah says:

    I am tickled by folks who are not on the Comey train , but still despise Dolt45.

  3. 3
    EveryDayIHaveTheBlues says:

    1. Was he in the room when Mitch McConnell decided that this was all just politics and wouldn’t sign onto a bipartisan statement re: Russia?

    2. George S. Asked him if it mattered that the dossier had been financed by Trump’s political opponents. Come said it didn’t for his (Comey) purpose. But he didn’t say that the FBI continued the funding because they found it credublecredible

  4. 4
    Padraig says:

    @rikyrah: Honestly, I’m willing to forgive the schmuck, but purely on the basis that his sin was overweening self-regard and appalling lack of judgement, not venality or corruption. He was willing to pursue the Russia investigation in the teeth of 45*’s threats, so I’m willing to grant him some rectitude on that. He’s tragic, in the original sense: brought low by his own hubris – his belief that he was the only moral man in Washington.

    That said, I’m never buying him a beer.

  5. 5
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    So people everywhere over estimated the American voter. No shit.

  6. 6
    Chet Murthy says:

    @rikyrah: I was reading Jennifer Rubin over the weekend. She was (predictably) somewhat positive on them, but had some issues. Predictable b/c she’s always been a neocon, eh. And these were illegal missile strikes.
    Illegal under international law, illegal under American law. But she’s pretty vigorously anti-Trump, and doens’t look for changin’. What can I say? Roosevelt:Stalin :: Us:Rubin ?? No, Rubin’s better than Stalin, in the comparison. But she’s not effin’ Churchill. And neither is Comey.

    I would guess that a lot of well-informed Dems are in that place, eh?

  7. 7
    Mary G says:

    I hope someone has the guys to ask him harder questions at one of these gigs. Maybe the foreign press.

  8. 8
    kd bart says:

    If only she’d made one more trip to Green Bay and Traverse City.

  9. 9
    EveryDayIHaveTheBlues says:

    To follow-up, as Scott L at LGM points out, Comey exclusively reveal details of Ms. Clinton’s investigation, while sa ying nothing about DJT. This is the peoblem. What is sauce for the goose is also sauce for the gander (literally, in this case).

  10. 10
    NotMax says:

    FYI (emphasis added).

    Syria air strikes: Macron says he convinced Trump not to pull out troops
    Speaking in a live TV interview, during which he was grilled on several subjects, Mr Macron said: “Ten days ago, President Trump was saying ‘the United States should withdraw from Syria’. We convinced him it was necessary to stay for the long term.”

    In telephone calls with Mr Trump, he also said he “persuaded him that we needed to limit the strikes to chemical weapons [sites], after things got a little carried away over tweets“. Source

  11. 11
    p.a. says:

    @Chet Murthy: Yes. One uses the tools at hand.

  12. 12
    Luthe says:

    @EveryDayIHaveTheBlues: Well, one of them is *still* under investigation…

  13. 13
    NotMax says:

    Abrupt about face.

    China’s Sina Weibo on Monday reversed a decision to remove gay content after outcry among gay Chinese who say the company had smeared homosexuality by lumping it with pornography as it tried to meet government censorship directives.
    The fight against Sina’s decision saw LGBT groups, advocates and gay Chinese speaking out through letters and hashtags.

    The tag “I am gay” was viewed nearly 300 million times on Weibo before being censored on Saturday. Source

    Money talks?

    The microblogging site, which saw its Nasdaq shares fall on Friday, amended the announcement on Monday, saying, “This clean-up of games and cartoons will no longer target homosexual content.” A spokesman refused to provide further details. Source

  14. 14
    HinTN says:

    @kd bart: If only Al Gore had done some BBQ events in Tennessee. ..

  15. 15
    Baud says:

    @rikyrah: Good morning.

  16. 16
    Baud says:

    @rikyrah: Comey is already testing my resolve to keep the focus on Trump. We really are surrounded by horrible people.

  17. 17
    HinTN says:

    Meanwhile, this

    Comey truly does not seem to get that his job was to go by the book and then be willing to absorb the heat from the partisans, not to conduct his own assessment of the political landscape and then try to transcend the partisans.

    is where the rubber meets the road.

  18. 18
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Mary G: It’s a book promotion tour. Give it up.

  19. 19
    Baud says:

    @NotMax: China has adopted a new credit scoring system that is based on not just finances but personal behavior. It would be an interesting post for discussion here if we could stop watching the daily train wreck for a few moments.

  20. 20
    Schlemazel says:

    How does one score a persons “personal behavior”? If there is a mistake in this scoring how would it be corrected? Which personal behaviors will be added to the scoring mix? Seems like the road to hell. Not that we are not already on that road just that this seems to be an expressway.

  21. 21
    Waldo says:

    Speaking of shifty shits who write books, Michael Wolff’s Fire and Fury sold more than a million copies in the first week. I didn’t buy it and I wouldn’t buy Comey’s either, but if it infuriates Twitler, I hope he sells 10 million.

  22. 22
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Baud: @Schlemazel: Pretty sure I’d score in the single digits on personal behavior.

  23. 23
    David 🎅🎄Merry Christmas🎄🎅 Koch says:

    Stormy Daniels [will] confront Michael Cohen in court on Monday — and she’s looking into suing him for wiretapping

    Stormy Daniels’ lawyer says Michael Cohen will be indicted within 90 days

    Stormy Daniels’ lawyer drops a bomb on Michael Cohen — and tells CNN his cigar buddies have ‘Russian ties’

    Michael Avenatti is the greatest. He’s carpet bombing them.

  24. 24
    Baud says:


    The GOP’s Never-Trumpers Are Really Just Never-Democrats

  25. 25


    stop watching the daily train wreck

    Try as I might, I MUST WATCH!

  26. 26
    Baud says:


    Sorry, it’s not yet implemented.

    Imagine a world where many of your daily activities were constantly monitored and evaluated: what you buy at the shops and online; where you are at any given time; who your friends are and how you interact with them; how many hours you spend watching content or playing video games; and what bills and taxes you pay (or not). It’s not hard to picture, because most of that already happens, thanks to all those data-collecting behemoths like Google, Facebook and Instagram or health-tracking apps such as Fitbit. But now imagine a system where all these behaviours are rated as either positive or negative and distilled into a single number, according to rules set by the government. That would create your Citizen Score and it would tell everyone whether or not you were trustworthy. Plus, your rating would be publicly ranked against that of the entire population and used to determine your eligibility for a mortgage or a job, where your children can go to school – or even just your chances of getting a date.

    A futuristic vision of Big Brother out of control? No, it’s already getting underway in China, where the government is developing the Social Credit System (SCS) to rate the trustworthiness of its 1.3 billion citizens. The Chinese government is pitching the system as a desirable way to measure and enhance “trust” nationwide and to build a culture of “sincerity”. As the policy states, “It will forge a public opinion environment where keeping trust is glorious. It will strengthen sincerity in government affairs, commercial sincerity, social sincerity and the construction of judicial credibility.”

  27. 27

    @Baud: China’s government is already “Big Brother”.

  28. 28
    oldster says:

    I would hate to give Trump anything useful to him, but if he dropped “Lyin’ Comey” and instead slammed the guy as “St. James,” I think a lot of people would nod in agreement.

    He had no excuse for not going by the book. And if he was going to ignore the regulations, he had no excuse for ignoring them w.r.t. HRC and not DJT. Disclose both investigations, or disclose neither.

  29. 29
    gene108 says:

    I find keeping up with Trump and general Republican fuckery exhausting. I don’t have the energy to keep up with Comey’s book tour.

    Thanks for keeping me informed on what folks are saying.

  30. 30
    PST says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: A recent story in The Atlantic described China’s emerging system of social credit scores.

  31. 31
    Baud says:

    @🐾BillinGlendaleCA: I think we owe ourselves a reminder that we aren’t necessarily worse off than everyone else.

  32. 32
    gene108 says:

    @David 🎅🎄Merry Christmas🎄🎅 Koch:

    Stormy Daniels’ lawyer drops a bomb on Michael Cohen — and tells CNN his cigar buddies have ‘Russian ties’

    Sure, who hasn’t gotten a few souvenir ties, after visiting Russia? I mean the gift shops in St, Petersburg and Moscow are famous for selling high quality silk ties. I bet every American, who has visited Russia in the last 20 years has gotten Russian ties.

  33. 33
    debbie says:

    Trump continues to be his own worst enemy. It’s not enough that his attorney is going to court to ask that he be allowed to review what the FBI seized before Mueller’s attorney, now Trump has sent a letter demanding he be allowed to view the materials before his own lawyer. Still looking for that pee tape, I guess.

  34. 34
    NotMax says:


    Aside from the obvious potential for political manipulation of data or other vendettas from powers on high, sounds like hackers’ heaven.

  35. 35
    Baud says:


    Trump has sent a letter demanding he be allowed to view the materials before his own lawyer. 

    Won’t happen. Judges deal with lawyers, not clients.

  36. 36
    bemused says:


    Convincing Fubar of anything aside from the voices in his head is fleeting…2 to 3 minutes tops.

  37. 37
    Baud says:



    ETA: Reverse translation wasn’t accurate.

    “What could possibly go wrong?”

  38. 38
    NotMax says:


    “Fake news, I was egregiously misquoted. What I said was Russian pies.”

  39. 39
  40. 40
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @David 🎅🎄Merry Christmas🎄🎅 Koch: Yes, Avenatti is a very good lawyer. Which also means not inexpensive. How is Stormy paying his bills?

  41. 41
    NotMax says:


    Frankly, interpreted that last sentence in the snippet as diplo-speak for “read him the riot act.”

  42. 42
    David 🎅🎄Merry Christmas🎄🎅 Koch says:

    @gene108: that reminds me:

    President Trump was reportedly furious when the U.S. plan to expel 60 Russian diplomats was made public, hurling expletives and insults at White House aides he claimed misled him regarding the magnitude of his own administration’s response to the poisoning of a former Russian spy in the U.K.

    “There were curse words, a lot of curse words,” a White House official told the Washington Post after the announcement was made public on March 26.

  43. 43
    SFAW says:


    If only Al Gore had done some BBQ events in Tennessee. ..

    Oh, bullshit.

    It was that he wore earth tones. Or didn’t. Or did, but not soon enough.

    I think.

  44. 44

    @Gin & Tonic:

    How is Stormy paying his bills?

    One lap dance after another.

  45. 45
    Baud says:

    @🐾BillinGlendaleCA: I’m surprised that worked given the brightness of the city.

  46. 46
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    Hmmmmm… Some people weren’t very impressed by Comey’s performance last night:

    Seven current or former FBI agents and officials spoke throughout and immediately after the broadcast. There was a lot of anger, frustration, and even more emojis—featuring the thumbs-down, frowny face, middle finger, and a whole lot of green vomit faces.

    One former FBI official sent a bourbon emoji as it began; another sent the beers cheersing emoji. The responses became increasingly angry and despondent as the hour-long interview played out.

    “Hoover is spinning in his grave,” said one former FBI official. “Making money from total failure.” When a promo aired between segments announcing Comey’s upcoming interview with The View, the official grew angrier. “Good lord, what a self-serving self-centered jackass,” the official said. “True to form he thinks he’s the smartest guy around.”


    One longtime Team Comey source—who is still an FBI agent—sent thumbs-up emojis repeatedly during the first half hour, but even this loyalist began to lose patience by the halfway mark—sending a frowny face. A few minutes later there was a nauseous emoji, and then a poop emoji after the final segment.

    Another former FBI official not historically known for their use of emojis, sent a bowing emjoi which—they explained in a follow up message—they believed to mean “slamming my head into something, obviously.”

  47. 47
    SFAW says:


    Won’t happen. Judges deal with lawyers, not clients.

    It would not surprise me to find out that Shitgibbon thinks he’s smarter, and a better lawyer (licensed or not), than his entire cadre of lawyers.

    Of course, in Cohen’s case, that might be true, but still …

  48. 48

    @Baud: It’s Photoshoped, but the original shot does show a faint Milky Way.

  49. 49
    Baud says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: Polling by emoji? Really?

  50. 50
    Kay says:


    Ivanka and Don Jr are at real risk too. They were up to their necks in the shady business dealings, and I think all the illegality went thru Cohen. Once he laundered/hid all the transactions they could then bring them onto the legit side of the ledger.

  51. 51
    Lapassionara says:

    Good morning, everyone. My WiFi went down briefly, then the “server not responding” message came up when I tried to bring up Balloon Juice, and I had that moment of thinking that the feds had finally had enough of the jackals.

    Which reminds me to ask again, is Alain ok?

  52. 52
    Darrin Ziliak (formerly glocksman) says:


    If only Al Gore had done some BBQ events in Tennessee.

    It’s been almost 20 years since I looked into it, but from what I recall, that wouldn’t have helped.

    IMHO, Gore lost his home state for several reasons, not the least of which was his literal embrace of Sarah Brady & the Brady Campaign.

    Gun control in Tennessee didn’t poll well in 2000.

    Possibly, but I don’t really know.

  53. 53
    bemused says:


    Another Brian Fallon tweet that I agree with, Trump’s image of Comey is way off but so too is Comey’s image of Comey.

  54. 54
    SFAW says:


    Photoshopped or not, it’s beautiful.

    Thank you.

  55. 55
    NotMax says:

    @Darrin Ziliak (formerly glocksman)

    Also, Gore was never gonna win TN after he so stridently came out in public against tobacco.

  56. 56
    David 🎅🎄Merry Christmas🎄🎅 Koch says:

    Yesterday on AM Joy a reporter from Bloomberg said Drumpf has never paid Michael Cohen. That instead of money, Drumpf “compensates” Cohen by allowing him to say he’s part of his company and letting him use company email and letterhead.

    Two issues:

    1) pretty hard to claim lawyer-client privilege if you’ve never paid someone.

    2) this is the same scheme Drumpf had going with money launder Felix Sater. Cohen doesn’t have any other “clients”. It’s starting to look like Cohen may be involved in money laundering (like the whole rest of them: Drumpf, Manafort, Sater, Gates).

  57. 57
  58. 58
    lollipopguild says:

    @🐾BillinGlendaleCA: Many thanks for your beautiful pictures and may we see many more in future days.

  59. 59
    Kay says:


    He just keeps compounding errors. It’s like he can’t stop. Writing this book has to be the last mistake he makes on this issue, right? It’s now impossible for him to fuck it up more, so we’re done?

  60. 60
  61. 61
    debbie says:


    What gets me is the absurdity that he’d even request it.

  62. 62
    randy khan says:


    I read that article when it first came out – China’s credit/social rating system is voluntary now, but it’s being implemented. Real people are having their credit scores affected by social standing (including who their friends are and what scores their friends have).

  63. 63
    Baud says:

    @Kay: I’m glad he did this. He deserves to be taken down a peg, and there was a risk of that not happening because of the focus on Trump’s much worse actions.

  64. 64
    rikyrah says:

    Uh huh.
    We should never look to convert them, but just enjoy their attacks on Dolt45.

  65. 65
    randy khan says:

    @Gin & Tonic:

    He appears to usually work for a contingent fee, not hourly. But sometimes lawyers take on cases where they know they won’t get paid much because they expect that they will get more business later.

  66. 66
    Kay says:

    @David 🎅🎄Merry Christmas🎄🎅 Koch:

    I think we find out that the Trumps screwed Cohen- left him hugely vulnerable while trying to insulate themselves.

    It’s mind-boggling that he didn’t see it. He AGREED to be the garbage dump for Trump Inc.

  67. 67
    rikyrah says:

    @Gin & Tonic:
    He has been getting free publicity with all his TV appearances. Shouldn’t be charging her anything.

  68. 68
    Baud says:

    @rikyrah: Agreed. We need to learn to stop chasing people who hate us.

  69. 69
    charluckles says:

    @David 🎅🎄Merry Christmas🎄🎅 Koch:

    Yes, but was he wearing a tan suit with his feet on the oval office desk?

  70. 70
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Gin & Tonic: Wouldn’t surprise me in the least if it was for free (I think I read somewhere they were taking donations)(maybe that was in the Greitens case)(dono) The free press alone is worth millions.

  71. 71
    rikyrah says:

    Yes, Kay. That is Cohen’s real value- the exposure of Fredo And Lucretia.

  72. 72
    Baud says:

    @randy khan: I have good credit under the U.S. system. I guess I should be thankful I’m not under China’s system. BJ alone would preclude me from getting a mortgage.

  73. 73
    David 🎅🎄Merry Christmas🎄🎅 Koch says:

    @Gin & Tonic:

    How is Stormy paying his bills?

    She’s crowd souring. She’s raised over $300,000 in the past month, averaging $27 per donation.

    And Avenatti just became the hottest trial attorney in the country. His future business will be off the charts.

  74. 74
    rikyrah says:

    Must agree. Thanks for the beautiful pictures 😄

  75. 75
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Baud: Not polling, communicating with sources.

  76. 76
    satby says:

    @rikyrah: Good morning 🙋!

    Purposely avoided the entire Comey meshugas last night figuring I’d get the important points here. Way easier on the brain that way.

  77. 77
    bystander says:


    I bet every American, who has visited Russia in the last 20 years has gotten Russian ties.

    Who among us doesn’t want to look nice when applying for a loan from a sanctioned Russian bank? Like you do. You can’t go in looking like a loser.

  78. 78
    rikyrah says:

    @David 🎅🎄Merry Christmas🎄🎅 Koch:
    If he totally breaks the NDA, I am thinking that he has at least a half dozen more women in the wings with stories about Dolt45

  79. 79
    Baud says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: Can’t the sources speak English?

  80. 80
    Peale says:

    @Baud: yep. So your loudmouth anti communist party uncle who posts up stories about corruption can lower your score. Your friend who watches an unsanctioned cut of a movie in which a Chinese government official is portrayed as corrupt and a villain, reflects badly on you.

    @NotMax: On the plus side, China banning gay romantic content has meant that the production of gay romantic web series in Taiwan has taken off, and with rare exceptions, it’s been better than what was coming out of the mainland before the ban.

    I’m laughing a little at the outcome here. China seems to be ending up with an lgbt community that is awake and starting to push back against the ban, which is what the censors were trying to avoid when they banned gay romance stories two years ago. It wasn’t the content per se that the censors were after…it was that so much of it was unofficial and critical and could lead to such dangerous things as people asking for change.

  81. 81
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Kay: “Put down the shovel, James. The hole only gets deeper.”

  82. 82
    Princess says:

    Comey is making bank off of this book. But it, and his interviews, are going to trash his reputation completely and for all time, and I am glad. The good he did — not agreeing to Trump’s pressure to lay of Flynn — is the absolute bottom line of decency which any public servant should be able to achieve. It does not make him a hero. The other good he did was getting fired, which a smarter president would not have done — it’s not a situation Comey controlled.

  83. 83
    Kay says:


    Maybe that’s right. Maybe his grandstanding makes it more about the failures of him as a person. It’s kind of horrifying to read the transcript because you realize this guy actually considered himself the ethical guardian of all of government. He decided
    Lynch was discredited. That was just one of the decisions he made. None of these decisions were necessary, and he always chose wrong, but he was making them on the regular!

    God, let’s hope the SDNY prosecutors aren’t as anguished and conflicted, grappling with huge moral questions, in the Trump investigation. They won’t get any work done. Thank God they have a manual, huh? Just follow that, please.

  84. 84
    Lee says:

    I think the Brian Fallon and Nate Silver tweets really encapsulate my feelings about Comey. Which is also along the same lines as something I had read earlier. Which is basically he thought he was so honorable he could break the rules but it turns out he was more interested in looking honorable than actually being honorable.

  85. 85
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Baud: They’re FBI agents and former agents. They have to speak in code. Departmental rules and all that.

  86. 86
    Haroldo says:

    @bystander: The ties doubtless carrying the Trump brand and flapping in one’s crotch.

  87. 87
    NotMax says:


    Found it of interest that the U.S. Attorney for SDNY recused himself and it was the next in line who handled the referral to obtain warrants. Still haven’t seen hide nor hair as to the why of the recusal.

  88. 88
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @EveryDayIHaveTheBlues: That is exactly the problem. Did Stephanopoulos ask Comey about that?

  89. 89
    Tokyokie says:


    If only Al Gore had done some BBQ events in Tennessee. ..

    Such events would have had to have been in Memphis, otherwise Al would have had to choke down the crap that is served in East Tennessee, and I wouldn’t wish that on anybody not named “Trump.”

  90. 90
    Baud says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: True. Emojis are an uncrackable code.

  91. 91
    Matt McIrvin says:

    @Kay: He’s probably getting richer from this book than he ever did in government, and he’s flattering his self-image as a straight-shooter at the same time, so where’s the error?

  92. 92
  93. 93
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @NotMax: He was appointed by trump was what I heard.

  94. 94
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @David 🎅🎄Merry Christmas🎄🎅 Koch: #notnormal. That whole setup is bizarre. I’m so glad that Cohen is being fully investigated and that his downfall will damage Trump beyond repair.

  95. 95
    Lapassionara says:

    @Kay: What gets me is that no one making the decisions about the “new” emails seemed to know anything about the technology available to undertake a review electronically, so that reviewers can fairly easily tell if the emails are duplicates, etc. Comey seemed to think the review would take weeks, maybe months, and last past the election. Instead, it took days. The FBI could have done the review when they were discovered and come to the same conclusion without ever making the discovery public so close to the election.


  96. 96
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Baud: They befuddle me.

  97. 97
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Tokyokie: Wouldn’t have saved him in TN. Memphis is full of those people.

  98. 98
    Schlemazel says:


  99. 99
    ed_finnerty says:

    @SFAW: it was those jeans!

  100. 100
    Immanentize says:

    @David 🎅🎄Merry Christmas🎄🎅 Koch:

    She’s raised over $300,000 in the past month, averaging $27 per donation.

    Using the Bernie Bro System, eh?

  101. 101

    My continuing opinion of Comey’s decision is: It’s easy to find a justification to do what you really want. Comey hated Hillary Clinton and wanted to spit in her eye. No more, no less. Everything else was him finding words to convince himself it was noble.

  102. 102
    Schlemazel says:

    @Gin & Tonic:
    A GoFundMe that last I looked was over$350k

  103. 103
    Schlemazel says:

    @Darrin Ziliak (formerly glocksman):
    The loss in TN had a lot more to do with purging voter rolls and a very successful suppression campaign. All the focus on FL buried the story of GOP “success” there

  104. 104
    Immanentize says:


    It’s easy to find a justification to do what you really want

    I love this thought. I’m stealing it….
    But it seems Comey actually had to work really hard to keep his conflicting justifications from exploding his head.

  105. 105
    bemused says:


    He’s got a lot more opportunities to stick his foot in his mouth, interviews galore, book signings and then on to the lucrative lecture circuit.

    The ironic title of his book, A Higher Loyalty, just kills me.

  106. 106
  107. 107
    Immanentize says:

    Just to give y’all a Boston Marathon weather report — It’s a chilly, grey rain-soaked day. A State holiday. Both factors arguing that I should stay in bed all day, but I have to go to a funeral at noon for a colleague who died in his sleep Friday.

    I don’t like Mondays….

  108. 108
    Kay says:


    He sort of screwed Lynch in the book- hinting that she is corrupt. She released a statement saying he had multiple opportunities to raise these suspicions to her but never did.

    She was a prosecutor for a long time prior to AG. She has her own reputation. I bet she’s pissed.

  109. 109
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: As long as the hole is filled up with $$$, Comey’s good. Everyone is grifting.

  110. 110
    Baud says:


    hinting that she is corrupt. 

    So he’s giving her the Hillary treatment. People do seem receptive to those types of accusations against powerful women.

  111. 111
    Amir Khalid says:

    If Comey suspected the AG was corrupt, wouldn’t the Inspector General at Justice be the right person to hear his reasons for suspecting her?

  112. 112
    OzarkHillbilly says:


    She was a prosecutor for a long time prior to AG. She has her own reputation. I bet she’s pissed.

    Maybe she should write a book.

  113. 113
    Immanentize says:

    @Baud: And Lynch is not just any old powerful woman…. By any old, I mean “any old white.”

    Going after Lynch is necessary to his narrative of why he got to choose his own actions. If he didn’t slander her, it would be too obvious how out of control he was.

  114. 114
  115. 115
    Nicole says:

    Ugh. I’m so infuriated that he’s going to make $$$$ off of his disloyalty to both his job and his country. There is nothing that the USA won’t forgive a white man for doing. And if he’s a Republican, they’ll forgive him for starting the fire and for watching from the street while the house is still burning, talking all the time about how terrible it is the house is on fire.

  116. 116
    SFAW says:


    I don’t like Mondays….

    Tell me why.

  117. 117
    Nicole says:

    Also, this excellent comment I saw on Splinter sums him up well:
    “Comey is playing a role of sorts in all of these things – his testimony, interviews, tweets, the book. I think he’s presenting himself in a way that he thinks makes him look more like Mueller, a dispassionate and apolitical seeker of truth. Except that he’s not like him at all temperamentally. It’s like watching Kirk do a bad impression of Spock.”

  118. 118
    David 🎅🎄Merry Christmas🎄🎅 Koch says:

    If Loretta Lynch did something wrong, then why didn’t he write one of his patented memos.

  119. 119
    bemused says:


    I wonder how much self-awareness he has of how his deep dislike of Hillary has influenced his decisions. He really dislikes trump too. Now his book with unending interviews. I can’t disagree with Chris Wallace calling the book “bitchy”. Those gossipy comments on trump weren’t necessary to include to tell his story, burnish his reputation and imo, beneath a former FBI director. I don’t think he’s doing a very good job of salvaging his reputation.

  120. 120
    Baud says:

    Now I’m wondering how many BJ women are corrupt.

  121. 121
    Quinerly says:

    @Baud: well, I did just delete a bunch of old emails from a laptop. Poco watched.

  122. 122
    Baud says:

    @Quinerly: 30,000 emails, I assume.

  123. 123
    Kay says:


    I was watching a crime documentary – I have no memory of what it was about- but a much younger Lynch was the prosecutor they interviewed. This, of course, is all I remember about this stupid show. Anyway. She has her own career, James! He’s not the only person with skin in this game.

  124. 124
    Quinerly says:

    @Baud: actually 30,001.

  125. 125
    Quinerly says:

    @Baud: my salacious reply is now in moderation.

  126. 126
    gene108 says:


    Bleached and acid washed, so they can never be recovered, I assume

  127. 127
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Kay: But he’s the only person that matters.

  128. 128
    Quinerly says:

    @Baud: 2 replies now in moderation.

  129. 129
    MomSense says:


    Exactly. His justifications also reveal his gobsmacking hubris.

  130. 130
    Lee says:


    He really dislikes trump too now

    I think he was one of many Republicans that had hopes that Trump might grow into the Presidency.

  131. 131
    chopper says:

    Comey truly does not seem to get that his job was to go by the book

    yet here he is, saying “go, buy the book”.

  132. 132
    satby says:

    @Quinerly: huh, so did I. Are we in cahoots?

  133. 133
    Kay says:

    Broken laptops, books held together with duct tape, an art teacher who makes watercolors by soaking old markers.
    Teacher protests have spread rapidly from West Virginia to Oklahoma, Kentucky and Arizona in recent months. We invited America’s public school educators to show us the conditions that a decade of budget cuts has wrought in their schools.
    We heard from 4,200 teachers. Here is a selection of the submissions, condensed and edited for clarity.

    We’re now paying for a decade of tax cuts at the state level. Three cheers for the teachers, who somehow managed to get someone to listen to them.

    Our district has decent textbooks- they aren’t falling apart- but we have lost all art teachers in k-8 (we still have high school) and one full-time music teacher, which means the music teacher instructs HUGE groups- 60 or more kids. What wealtheir parents (like me) do to make up for this is hire a private tutor. In fact, my tutor is a public school teacher from another district. He does tutoring as a second job. So, my son gets first chair in the band because he gets twice the music instruction – the same amount the public school used to offer to all the kids.

  134. 134
    SiubhanDuinne says:


    All of us, Baudie.

  135. 135
    Quinerly says:

    @satby: weird. I typed a large number in one and used the word “salacious” in the other.

  136. 136
    debit says:

    @Baud: All of them, Katie.

  137. 137
    MomSense says:


    At least he felt mildly nauseous about it.

  138. 138
    MomSense says:


    Smashing with a hammer is infinitely more satisfying.

  139. 139
    Immanentize says:

    Don’t worry, I have no gun and the nearest school is over a mile away.

  140. 140
    bemused says:


    Some may have hoped he was going to be malleable and change into a suitable republican but odds are most knew he was going to be a gigantic mess.

  141. 141
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Quinerly: @satby: Didn’t do either one of you any good. I installed a virus in your computers that automatically cc’ed me every single one of them. I am now in negotiations with an individual residing in an Ecuadorian embassy located somewhere in Europe but not on the continent. He very much wants them.

  142. 142
    bemused says:


    Ha, ha, good one.

  143. 143
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    @MomSense: Smashing things with a hammer is very cathartic, addictive even. I just can’t give it up.

  144. 144
    danielx says:

    From the Jonathon Chait article:

    In Comey’s mind, bending procedure and announcing he was investigating a candidate was an acceptable price to pay to avoid the opposite: years of hearings and delegitimization that would surely follow Clinton’s expected election.

    All good and well, except that it wasn’t his decision to make. There can be reasons not to follow the book, but there are also reasons why the book exists. As far as I know, influencing the electorate one way or another isn’t in the FBI director’s job description.

  145. 145
    Vhh says:

    @David 🎅🎄Merry Christmas🎄🎅 Koch: Very mob like. Remember Goodfellas—each if the members of Jimmy’s crew had their own gigs-drugs, heists, loan sharking–under the umbrella of the made men, who did not pay them.

  146. 146
    rikyrah says:

    JUST IN: Incoming Pence adviser withdraws after reports that Trump tried to block him

    — The Hill (@thehill) April 16, 2018

  147. 147
    Manyakitty says:

    @Gin & Tonic: TBH, I suspect he will be flush with clients for years after this. Not saying he’s representing Stormy for free, of course, but the exposure from his excellent work is priceless.

  148. 148
    rikyrah says:

    We just announced the inaugural class of #ObamaFellows. These 20 civic leaders have carried out inspiring work around the world. Now, they’ll come together to collaborate, exchange ideas, and inspire a wave of civic innovation. Meet the Fellows:

    — The Obama Foundation (@ObamaFoundation) April 16, 2018

  149. 149
    rikyrah says:

    Despite some of the best evidence we’ve ever had showing that neither trickle-down tax cuts nor work requirements will work, conservatives continue to solve the problem that the poor have too much and the rich have too little.

    — Jared Bernstein (@econjared) April 16, 2018

  150. 150
    rikyrah says:

    @David 🎅🎄Merry Christmas🎄🎅 Koch:

    Yesterday on AM Joy a reporter from Bloomberg said Drumpf has never paid Michael Cohen. That instead of money, Drumpf “compensates” Cohen by allowing him to say he’s part of his company and letting him use company email and letterhead.

    Two issues:

    1) pretty hard to claim lawyer-client privilege if you’ve never paid someone.

    Been wondering that myself.

  151. 151
    Manyakitty says:

    @Kay: I don’t understand why he keeps putting himself in the middle of this stuff. This is the third time. And what about his sketchy timing?

  152. 152
    rikyrah says:

    Does anyone here watch Timeless?

    I love this show, and glad that it got a second season.
    Enjoyed last night’s show with a young JFK

  153. 153
    Jinchi says:

    @Baud: Remember that the literal justification for firing Comey was that he went too easy on Clinton (dropping the invetigation in July 2016), not that he was too hard (reopening it 11 days before the vote). Trump wants Justice officials who will target his political enemies and cover for his friends. That’s why people were outraged at Comey’s firing, not because we suddenly think he’s a hero.

    This isn’t about Comey. Trump will completely corrupt the federal government if given the chance and the Republican party is aiding him. I’ll support the efforts of anyone who is pushing back on that.

  154. 154
    EveryDayIHaveTheBlues says:

    @Luthe: Yes, it seems like there is always justification of some sort. This is like Bill Belichick (sorry, he’s a fairly awful human being, but I’m still a pats fan) saying, “Well, we can’t comment on our players, because these interactions are private”. Then after a player is released/traded/not allowed to play, he says, ” It would not be fair to speak about a player on another team, since they don’t belong to our organization anymore”.

    @Patricia Kayden:
    I don’t know if George asked that question. I can’t watch any “fair” media these days, since it makes me physically uncomfortable. I barely got through the snippets they showed on GMA, and then when George was bugging him if it mattered that DJT’s opponents were funding this, I just gave up.

    This is stupid. If someone commits a crime, it isn’t like the prosecutor says, oh well, the informant was a bad dude so we’re not gonna investigate!

    Mitch McConnell and Paul Ryan can’t be left unmolested about this issue. As far as I can see, nobody has asked Mitch why refused to sign off on that statement, if he still believes the FBI, CIA, NSA, DNI, etc. etc. (which he indicates that he seems to do because he nominally supports the Mueller investigation), and if so, why/how did his views change. The problem is that not enough pressure is being put on Mitch to explain his absolutely reprehensible behavior re: interference.

  155. 155
    Wapiti says:

    @bemused: @bemused:

    Those gossipy comments on trump weren’t necessary to include to tell his story, burnish his reputation and imo, beneath a former FBI director. I don’t think he’s doing a very good job of salvaging his reputation.

    Yup. The stalwart civil servants seem to normally step back into a quiet civil life (with some jobs on various boards).

    One wonders why Comey didn’t just step back into civil life; maybe take up knitting.

  156. 156
    Nicole says:

    @chopper: Nicely done. To what address may I send you your internets for the day?

  157. 157
    rikyrah says:


    Money well spent, IMO

  158. 158
    Just One More Canuck says:

    @Baud: it would be irresponsible not to speculate

  159. 159
    rikyrah says:

    It’s snowing, and bitter cold here too.
    sorry about the loss of your friend.

  160. 160
    Quinerly says:

    @rikyrah: some light snow here in St. Louis. I’m covering my tender vegetation.

  161. 161
    The Ancient Randonneur says:

    Joan Didion on Learning Not to Mistake Self-Righteousness for Morality

    “I followed my own conscience.” “I did what I thought was right.” How many madmen have said it and meant it? How many murderers? Klaus Fuchs said it, and the men who committed the Mountain Meadows Massacre said it, and Alfred Rosenberg said it. And, as we are rotely and rather presumptuously reminded by those who would say it now, Jesus said it. Maybe we have all said it, and maybe we have been wrong. Except on that most primitive level — our loyalties to those we love — what could be more arrogant than to claim the primacy of personal conscience?

    It’s an oldie but just as appropriate today, in light of the Comey interview, as it was when Didion first wrote those words.

  162. 162
    danielx says:


    All of them, Katie….

  163. 163
    Rob in CT says:


    Oh, well done.

  164. 164

    Because America NEEDS his wisdom and honesty, of course!

  165. 165
    satby says:

    Aww, this made me sad for all the jackals who are lawyers.
    Maybe that’s why Comey needed to be the center of attention.

  166. 166
    Dave says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: I think we are misunderstanding the point. The barbeque wouldn’t be for voters but to win over the press. See how easily they were impressed with barbeque and tire seongd offered by w. Of course it probably wouldn’t buave worked because they’d already decided Al was a loser. As the media is supposed to do of course.

  167. 167
    rikyrah says:


    She was a prosecutor for a long time prior to AG. She has her own reputation. I bet she’s pissed.

    Uh huh
    Uh huh

  168. 168
    rikyrah says:


    Morning to Poco and the tribe :)

  169. 169
    rikyrah says:

    the teachers are speaking up – good for them.

  170. 170
    trnc says:

    @Baud: I wonder how long Hendon or her firm will put up with that kind of behavior.

  171. 171
    Elizabelle says:

    Excellent blogpost title, Anne Laurie, although I’ve not read the book. Sounded like a novel, and it is. Philip K. Dick, no less.

    The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch (wiki)

    It is one of Dick’s first works to explore religious themes. As the book explains, the ‘three stigmata’ are a mechanical arm, slotted eyes and metallic teeth, which represent alienation, blurred reality, and despair.

  172. 172
    trnc says:

    @rikyrah: Interesting. I always figured the “OK, pay me a dollar before you tell me about your crime” was a tv lawyer trope, but not paying at all seems like a stretch to protect the privilege. On the other hand, if Cohen accepted that deal, maybe that makes the privilege claim possible.

  173. 173
    🌎 🇺🇸 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳 🌷 says:

    That sounds like that one episode of the Orville I saw.

  174. 174
    Leto says:

    @Schlemazel: @Baud: So basically it’s the Black Mirror episode, “Nosedive” in real life:

    The episode is set in a world where people can rate each other from one to five stars for every interaction they have, and which can impact their socioeconomic status. Lacie (Bryce Dallas Howard) is a young woman overly obsessed with her ratings; she finds an opportunity to elevate her ratings greatly and move into a more luxurious residence after being chosen by her popular childhood friend (Alice Eve) as the maid of honour for her wedding. Her obsession leads to several mishaps on her journey to the wedding that culminate in a rapid reduction in her ratings.

  175. 175
    Washburn says:

    @David 🎅🎄Merry Christmas🎄🎅 Koch:
    Atty-client privilege doesn’t depend on payment anymore than priest/penitent privilege does

    That’s why it applies to pro-bono work.

  176. 176
    celticdragonchick says:

    @Gin & Tonic: He is representing her pro bono. However, he is accepting donations.

  177. 177
    celticdragonchick says:

    @randy khan:

    Um…I saw this episode on Black Mirror. It went poorly for people.

  178. 178
    Quinerly says:

    @rikyrah: Big tail wags back to you from Poco. John Lennon doing his morning snooze thang. Have a great day.

  179. 179
    Anotherlurker says:

    @SFAW: It was also implied that Al Gore was fat! A sure disqualification in a health conscious State, such as Tennessee.

  180. 180
    Matt McIrvin says:

    @Elizabelle: It’s one of PKD’s best, and very unsettling.

  181. 181
    Matt McIrvin says:

    @Leto: It’s MeowMeowBeenz!

  182. 182
    Leto says:

    @Matt McIrvin: That honestly sounds like hell on Earth, and it also sounds like something totally in-line with the social networking generation. Although I guess it’s a rather obvious offshoot of nerd culture where we basically ranked any/everything geek related, just taken to it’s potentially more toxic outcome.

  183. 183
    Ella in New Mexico says:

    I am on board with Comey is a self-serving sanctimonious guy who thinks he’s the smartest person in the room. And with holding Comey accountable till the end for his stupid decisions in the summer of 2016 and what it did to HIllary.

    But because I was born with the bizarre ability to hold two, seemingly opposing thing true at the same time, I’m gonna cheer his efforts to help bring down this fucking Trump/Republican cabal every single day. Because no matter what, he really is telling the truth about his perceptions–he’s clearly not a liar, no matter what the mobster in chief Tweets. And I’m seeing this fact poke some holes in the reality of all but the most brainwashed Trumpers standing in my world.

    I know he’s fucking self-righteous and occasionally annoying, but this is about saving the Goddamned Republic. I can accept it as his retribution to society for inadvertently contributing to inflicting this pain on all of us.

  184. 184
    grubert says:

    @The Ancient Randonneur:

    Dang, that’s good! This applies to much of my self-righteous holy-roller family.

    I mean, isn’t a “personal relationship with Jesus Christ” about as self-righteous as you can get?

  185. 185
    grubert says:

    If anyone is still reading, I have a little theory, one possibility that explains Comey’s action.

    What if the FBI has known for years that the Russians have been buying Republican politicians and infiltrating various political organizations like the NRA, for example, as well as the money laundering etc…. What if they hated Hillary ( plenty of evidence of that, ) and Trump deciding to run was a golden opportunity to which the FBI thought “hey, with the powers of a Special Prosecutor, we could get the evidence to stop this Russian interference for good!” so they intentionally worked to throw the election, for which Comey was willing to be a fall guy, taking the heat to help the project.

    They figure they could deal with a year or two of Trump in office, he’s such a bozo. I mean, it’s an arrogant idea, but .. FBI.

    It’s just a theory. Opinions?

  186. 186
    TriassicSands says:

    I’m convinced that the only thing that matters to James Comey is James Comey. He can be plausibly blamed for getting Trump elected. Now, his book and book tour will help Trump avoid justice.

  187. 187
    EveryDayIHaveTheBlues says:

    @grubert: I like the idea… but I think that in any such vast organization, Occam’s razor holds. Such an endeavor would be too complex to a) function as advertised; b) be kept secret.

    But you have an excellent point there about the FBI (or at least, some of the top levels of the org) knowing about the DJT underworld, Russian Intel and Russian Mob connections, especially if they’ve run Counter-Intel ops. So this makes it all the more bizarre as to why they didn’t say a fucking thing about DJT before the election. Surely the knowledge that there were some pretty shady links with the bad guys, that the NRA was receiving shady money (I don’t know if the FBI keeps track of this or not… does the NRA pay taxes, BTW? If so, then shouldn’t the IRS know about their donations? Or do they not have to pay taxes on “donations” from Russian billionares?), that DJT was essentially bailed out a few years ago by his connections to black Russian money, shouldd have set off alarm-bells ringing big-time.

    What happened?

  188. 188
    TenguPhule says:


    I think we owe ourselves a reminder that we aren’t necessarily worse off than everyone else.

    For the moment.

    /Subject to change without prior notice or warning at any time

  189. 189
    TenguPhule says:


    Polling by emoji? Really?

    It would be one of the less insane things we’ve seen.

  190. 190
    charon says:


    It’s my favorite book by Dick. Great read.

Comments are closed.