Retired Senior National Security Leaders and Their Clearances: These are Their Stories…

In response to a significant number of now retired military and civilian senior national security leaders speaking out regarding the President’s actions, behaviors, apparent campaign connections to a variety of Russian oligarchs and/or intelligence operatives, Senator Paul decided it was time to take decisive action to protect the Republic.

From CNN:

Republican Sen. Rand Paul tweeted Monday that he will ask President Donald Trump to revoke the security clearance of former CIA Director John Brennan, who criticized Trump’s performance last week at the Helsinki summit with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

In an unusual move, Paul wrote that he will meet with Trump on Monday to discuss allegations that Brennan is “monetizing his security clearance” and “making millions of dollars divulging secrets to mainstream media.” Paul added that he would ask Trump to revoke Brennan’s clearance.

Former intelligence officials typically maintain high-level security clearances after they leave their posts — in some cases, they provide counsel to current officials during times of turnover.

GENIUS!!!!

Earlier today, White House Spokesperson Sarah Huckabee Sanders had this to say:

Former Director of Central Intelligence and retired US Air Force General Hayden responded with:

Senator Paul’s idea, as well as the President’s/White House’s response, is absolutely stupid. Aside from the fact that this type of action would be tied up in court for years, it demonstrates how little either Senator Paul or the President actually understand about how and why clearances are granted or revoked. While I know that the President, as the highest originating classification authority (OCA) in the US government may classify or declassify anything he so chooses, my understanding is that the President does not have the ability to simply order the revocation of a properly adjudicated and granted clearance. Or, in this case, their eligibility. These retired senior leaders do not have access, that is largely cut off as soon as they step down. They’re read off of whatever compartments they had access to, though some are not fully read off for about a year or so. Rather they retain their eligibility – their clearances remain good/properly adjudicated – until they reach the end of the validity of their current background investigation. For a top secret clearance that is now seven years – they had to change it back at the end of 2016 because of the renewal backlog. For sensitive compartmented information (SCI) that is twenty-four months after one’s most recent read off. Specifically, the computer database system that contains SCI status drops you automatically after not being read onto any compartment for twenty-four months. After that one must be renominated for SCI access, which depending on the SCI, which department, agency, bureau, command, and/or office is asking for it, may include a polygraph.

My understanding is that access for retired senior leaders is maintained for a year or so and that their clearances, ie their eligibility, are routinely renewed, subject to successfully the renewal and adjudication process. And the reason that retired senior leaders, both military and civilian, need to keep their clearances is in case their successors need to consult with them on either past classified issues or current ones. This is so that the current senior leaders are able to actually speak to their predecessors in order to maintain continuity of government from one administration to the next on exceedingly important and highly sensitive issues. Moreover, retired senior military leaders – general officers/flag officers – are subject to recall should there be need as a condition of their retirement. Maintaining their clearances streamlines any potential recall to service. Finally, publicly stating political opposition is not grounds for revocation of a clearance.

For instance:

As one of the national security attorneys who specialize in clearance and classification related issues indicates:

Here’s the list of reasons for having a clearance revoked:

Grounds For revocation of security clearance

All federal agencies adhere to the Adjudication Guidelines, which establish 13 potential justifications for denying or revoking federal security clearance:

  • Allegiance to the United States – Affiliating with or sympathizing with terrorists or overthrow of the government
  • Foreign influence – Association with foreign citizens or businesses that could lead to coercion
  • Foreign preference – Conflict of interest due to dual citizenship, service in a foreign military, or receiving benefits from another country.
  • Outside activities – Involvement with any foreign individual or organization engaged in dissecting or disseminating material relating to U.S. defense, foreign affairs, intelligence or protected technology.
  • Criminal conduct – Conviction for a serious crime or multiple lesser offenses; allegations or admission of criminal activity
  • Security violations – Willful breaches, unauthorized or reckless disclosure of classified information
  • Misuse of information technology – Unauthorized access (hacking), malicious coding, hindering access to systems, removing hardware or software, disabling security measures
  • Personal conduct – A wide spectrum, such as associating with known criminals, hindering a clearance investigation, giving false information, or reports from past employers or neighbors of unsavory behavior
  • Sexual behavior – Criminal acts, sex addiction or sexual activities that compromise the employee or show lack of judgment
  • Financial considerations – Unexplained wealth, heavy debts, gambling addiction or a pattern of being irresponsible with money and financial obligations
  • Alcohol consumption – Alcohol-related incidents, medical diagnosis of alcohol abuse, relapse after treatment
  • Drug involvement – Drug-related incidents, diagnosis of drug addiction, using drugs after rehab
  • Psychological conditions – Failure to follow prescribed treatment for emotional, mental or personality disorders; a pattern of incidents or high-risk, aggressive or unstable behaviors.

One final important point: everyone on the proposed list, other than Ambassador Rice and, perhaps, DCI Brennan, are all either publicly acknowledged to be Republicans and/or were appointed to their positions by past Republican presidents.

We are off the looking glass and through the map!

Open thread.

243 replies
  1. 1
    Raoul says:

    I’m just not even feeling frosty any more.

  2. 2
    the Conster says:

    Rand Paul and Bernie Sanders were the two votes against Russian sanctions.

  3. 3
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Raoul: It’s the global heat wave.

  4. 4
    father pusbucket says:

    Grounds For revocation of security clearance

    Bad news for Tantrum Tribble.

  5. 5
    Gin & Tonic says:

    Maybe they should revoke Jared’s while they’re at it.

  6. 6
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @the Conster: Rand is just following in Daddy’s footsteps.

  7. 7
    Yarrow says:

    We are off the looking glass and through the map!

    Feel like we’ve been stuck at this level for awhile. Is there a higher (or lower, in this case) level in this game?

  8. 8
    Raoul says:

    OT, but the latest Party ID breakdown has the GOP below the crazification factor.

    via Mark Salter “Voters who previously identified as GOP are no longer doing so since it’s become the party of Trump. In most recent Pew poll 26% of voters identify as Republican. Lowest number in a decade.”

  9. 9
    JPL says:

    Trump is desperate to take his love fest in Helsinki off the front page.

  10. 10
    Mnemosyne says:

    — Foreign influence – Association with foreign citizens or businesses that could lead to coercion

    — Foreign preference – Conflict of interest due to dual citizenship, service in a foreign military, or receiving benefits from another country.

    — Outside activities – Involvement with any foreign individual or organization engaged in dissecting or disseminating material relating to U.S. defense, foreign affairs, intelligence or protected technology.

    So, basically, everyone in the Trump administration and at least half of the Republicans in Congress should have their clearances yanked.

  11. 11
    rikyrah says:

    Thanks Silverman

  12. 12
    germy says:

    @JPL: He knows how to play the media. He’s been doing it for 30+ years.

  13. 13
    Raoul says:

    @Adam L Silverman: Nobody could have predicted it!
    Oh, wait.

  14. 14
  15. 15
    germy says:

    @Raoul:

    In most recent Pew poll 26% of voters identify as Republican. Lowest number in a decade.

    Meanwhile the media is pushing all these “he’s immensely popular with republicans!” stories and polls right now. But they rarely mention that first part.

  16. 16
    Raoul says:

    @Mnemosyne: We still don’t really know what the 4th of July Eight did on their trip to Moscow, do we? Does Jon Huntsman even know what they discussed or why?
    Total shitshow all around.

  17. 17
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Gin & Tonic: He was denied his SCI. So he actually has very little access unless his father in law decides he should see/know something. So whatever access he has is ad hoc and outside the normal process and system.

  18. 18
    PeakVT says:

    It would be nice if the “accused” (slandered is more like it) were to “turn in” their clearances, saying that they are no longer willing to provide their assistance to a foreign-controlled administration.

  19. 19
    Kraux Pas says:

    @Raoul:

    OT, but the latest Party ID breakdown has the GOP below the crazification factor.

    But the crazification factor is surely within the margin of error, no?

  20. 20
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Yarrow: Up the rabbit hole.

  21. 21
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Raoul: Which is not being pointed out enough in regard to polling of the President’s popularity. That while his #s among Republicans is either stable or has gone up, this is because there are fewer Republicans.

  22. 22
    eemom says:

    What if they come after YOU? Maybe you should purge your previous posts and go undercover with a new nym. Don’t worry, none of us here ever heard of you.

  23. 23
    Raoul says:

    @germy: Innumeracy in the press is a legit problem.

    “It’s the statements that are mathematically correct but bear no logical relationship to the conclusions that do the most violence to the truth. This is because most people don’t know they’ve been had. Which is the whole point.”

    And, yes, Adam Silverman, indeed the lack of context matters!

  24. 24
    MomSense says:

    @Adam L Silverman:

    More like a wormhole

  25. 25
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Mnemosyne: The Home Office has scheduled the next batch of annual performance reviews!

  26. 26
    Jeffro says:

    SURELY these are the actions of an innocent man and party! Walking back the walk-back and declaring the whole Russia thing a “hoax”, outright lying about the FISA warrant that was used (and then renewed, multiple times) to surveil Carter Page, and now threatening the IC folks who’ve dared to criticize his allegiance to Russia.

    I mean, it doesn’t get much more innocent than that, does it?

  27. 27
    Kraux Pas says:

    @eemom: As if Trump pays enough attention to detail to conduct this purge beyond cabinet officials and other top-level officials.

    It’s always theatre with this drama queen.

  28. 28
    Adam L Silverman says:

    Hayden is not amused:

  29. 29
    dmsilev says:

    @Raoul: “How to Lie with Statistics” is a classic book that everyone should read. It’s probably about 60 years old at this point, so this is not a new problem.

  30. 30
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @rikyrah: You’re welcome.

  31. 31
    TenguPhule says:

    And the reason that retired senior leaders, both military and civilian, need to keep their clearances is in case their successors need to consult with them on either past classified issues or current ones. This is so that the current senior leaders are able to actually speak to their predecessors in order to maintain continuity of government from one administration to the next on exceedingly important and highly sensitive issues. Moreover, retired senior military leaders – general officers/flag officers – are subject to recall should there be need as a condition of their retirement. Maintaining their clearances streamlines any potential recall to service.

    Sure seems like Trump doesn’t intend on there ever being another administration after this.

    But it would be rude to call it a clear and present Nazi.

  32. 32
    Jeffro says:

    @Adam L Silverman: Will the last non-bought-and-paid-for-in-rubles GOP elected official in America please turn out the lights?

  33. 33
    dmsilev says:

    @Adam L Silverman: Following the link,

    The League of The South, an organization described by analysts as a neo-confederate hate group, has launched a Russian language page on their website to explore shared ideas on “Southern nationalism.”

    “We understand that the Russian people and Southerners are natural allies in blood, culture, and religion,” Michael Hill, the league’s president, wrote in a letter addressed to “our Russian friends.” The note was published online on July 17 – a day after President Donald Trump met with, and praised, Russian leader Vladimir Putin in Helsinki, Finland.

    I wish I could say that I find this either shocking or surprising, but it’s a sad commentary on the world that we now live in that this seems …expected.

  34. 34
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @MomSense: I think you missed what I was doing.

  35. 35
    Raoul says:

    @Adam L Silverman: Dr. Spraytan: How I Learned to Relax and Love the Putin.
    Coming to a drive in near you this summer! Don’t fail to miss it!

  36. 36
    TenguPhule says:

    Senator Paul’s idea, as well as the President’s/White House’s response, is absolutely stupid.

    But the real question is, will they get away with it consequence free? Because we passed “unthinkable” about 16 months ago and are headed straight for “this can’t be happening”

  37. 37
    Gravenstone says:

    Senator Paul decided it was time to take decisive action to protect the Republicans.

    Made a minor tweak to your post, Adam.

  38. 38
    Anonymous at Work says:

    Flynn bats 10 for 13

  39. 39
    TenguPhule says:

    @Raoul:

    I’m just not even feeling frosty any more.

    The only chills I’m feeling are like someone is walking on my grave. And he weighs a fuckton more then 239 pounds.

  40. 40

    Moscow Agent Grabs America.

  41. 41
    Brachiator says:

    Press Sec. Sanders: “Not only is the president looking to take away Brennan’s security clearance, he’s also looking into the security clearances of Comey, Clapper, Hayden, Rice, and McCabe…because they’ve politicized and in some cases monetized their public service.”

    Sanders said this and was not immediately turned into a pillar of salt or something?

    Dayum!

  42. 42
    germy says:

    There could be a financial impact on those leaders

    Won’t someone think of the retired natsec people who shill for defense contractors pic.twitter.com/FIPhUaIglL— Eoin Higgins (@EoinHiggins_) July 23, 2018

  43. 43
    TenguPhule says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    and at least half of the Republicans in Congress should have their clearances yanked.

    Only half?

  44. 44
    Boussinesque says:

    @Raoul: while I certainly agree with the quoted part, reading the first 4-5 paragraphs of the article made me want to punch the author in the throat.

  45. 45
    Jeffro says:

    @JPL:

    Trump is desperate to take his love fest in Helsinki off the front page.

    We’ll know he’s TRULY desperate if he actually tries governing.

  46. 46
    TenguPhule says:

    @Adam L Silverman:

    So he actually has very little access unless his father in law decides he should see/know something. So whatever access he has is ad hoc and outside the normal process and system.

    So he has access to everything then, basically.

  47. 47
    jl says:

    ” their successors need to consult with them”? “continuity of government”?
    As a practical matter, isn’t this issue kind of moot?

  48. 48
    Elizabelle says:

    Seeing Smokey Eye Sanders speaking on people “monetizing” their security clearance — the projection involved could light a movie from space.

    Trump. Kushner. All about the monetizing. I hope it’s one of the charges for which they are convicted.

  49. 49
    germy says:

    This is a big deal. Stripping a former CIA director of his security clearance will be seen as a grave insult to some in intel community. And there could be a financial impact: former officials depend on clearances to serve on boards of directors of defense contractors, etc.— Eamon Javers (@EamonJavers) July 23, 2018

  50. 50
    TenguPhule says:

    @Jeffro:

    Will the last non-bought-and-paid-for-in-rubles GOP elected official in America please turn out the lights?

    Nixon is still dead.

  51. 51
    SFAW says:

    @germy:

    Meanwhile the media is pushing all these “he’s immensely popular with republicans!” stories and polls right now. But they rarely mention that first part.

    It’s like homeopathy? They distill it down further and further, until there’s only one molecule of the essential ingredient left, but it’s really pure.

    NB: Yes, that’s probably a poor, inaccurate description of how homeopathic medicine works. Fine. Think of it as a “literary device.”

  52. 52
    germy says:

    @Jeffro:

    We’ll know he’s TRULY desperate if he actually tries governing.

    Like starting a war in Iran.

  53. 53
    Elizabelle says:

    @Brachiator: You beat me to it. My eyebrows have been stuck the ceiling over that one ever since I read it (breaking news in the WaPost).

  54. 54
    TenguPhule says:

    @germy:

    Stripping a former CIA director of his security clearance will be seen as a grave insult to some in intel community. And there could be a financial impact: former officials depend on clearances to serve on boards of directors of defense contractors, etc.

    Did they do everything they could to thwart Trump and the GOP shit parade that preceded him? Otherwise, fuck their golden retirements.

  55. 55
    jl says:

    @Adam L Silverman: Now that Vlad is really sowing chaos. The Senators have to choose between McConnell’s order to man the Chamber 24/7 until the election and the boss’s performance review?

  56. 56
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Jeffro: I don’t know. You will have to ask them.

  57. 57
    hitchhiker says:

    @Adam L Silverman:

    Exactly. The Venn diagram of people who call themselves Republican and people who love Trump looks like one circle, because the party has successfully purged almost all the sane folks, and the only ones left are batshit cray-cray.

    88% of 26% is 23%.

    Less than a quarter of American adults are enthusiastically sticking with him. If the rest of us vote, this can end.

  58. 58
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @dmsilev: I saw the reporting on this about a week or so ago. It is not particularly surprising.

  59. 59
    SFAW says:

    @TenguPhule:

    Only half?

    She said “at least,” not “only” or “approximately.”

  60. 60
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @TenguPhule: I have no idea. He could be seeing everything, he could be seeing very little.

  61. 61
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @jl: I would expect this will be during the truncated, but still on the calendar, one week senatorial recess in August.

  62. 62
    🌎 🇺🇸 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳 🌷 says:

    @TenguPhule:
    22nd amendment. But yeah, I’m sure Trump would jump at the chance to be president-for-life. Cincinnatus he ain’t.

  63. 63
    Wapiti says:

    @TenguPhule: Not really. That SCI is stuff that can’t be talked about unless both/all parties are in the system. So Jared would have to know what he doesn’t know, and then tell Donald that (a) he doesn’t know something and (b) he needs special permission, again. If people don’t want Jared to know, he might never realize a big chunk of what he’s missing.

  64. 64
    Jeffro says:

    @germy: That too.

  65. 65
    Raoul says:

    @Boussinesque: Sorry, I probably shouldn’t be linking to Libertarian Libraries* (aka Forbes). It was a quick search on my part.

    *Apparently Forbes may have pulled the incredibly bad scholarship of one Dr Mourdoukoutas. Chickenshits.

  66. 66
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @hitchhiker: I’ve actually seen that it is closer to 19% of total Americans who support him. I think that was based on his popular vote total in the election.

  67. 67
    ewrunning says:

    Love the Bugs and Wile E. Coyote reference. (Are you in, genius? Are you incompetent?) Also, brings to mind when I used to carry codeword around to brief people in Main State as a junior officer in INR. After reading a particlarly dubious sounding item one time, an acerbic Deputy Office Director handed it back to me rather than passing it to the other briefees, telling them, “You can’t read this unless you’re cleared for RUBS.” When asked “What’s RUBS”, he replied “ridiculous unadulterated b***s***.

  68. 68
    Jeffro says:

    TPM is reporting the names of the five Manafort witnesses. I don’t recognize any of them. (apologies if this was in an earlier thread)

    James Brennan
    Donna Duggan
    Conor O’Brien
    Cindy Laporta
    Dennis Raico
    The unsealed court documents do not provide details about what the witnesses may be expected to testify about. None of the newly revealed witnesses have figured prominently in the case or the coverage of the case to this point.

    A person named Dennis Raico was previously affiliated with Federal Savings Bank (FSB), a small Chicago bank that provided Manafort with $16 million in loans shortly after Manafort left the Trump campaign. FSB founder Steve Calk served as an economic adviser to the Trump campaign. NBC has reported that Mueller is investigating whether Manafort promised to secure Calk an administration position in exchange for the loans.

    “Both O’Brien and Laporta work for the accounting firm of Kositzka, Wicks and Company, according to the firm’s website. KWC was Manafort’s accounting firm, according to a person familiar with the matter,” Bloomberg reported.

    A “D. Duggan” appeared several times on a list of exhibits filed by prosecutors in the case last week. Duggan was part of email chains involving proof of insurance for a property at 377 Union St. in Brooklyn, which is known to be a brownstone owned by Manafort that is referenced in his indictment.

  69. 69
    NotMax says:

    Just slap an “in the interest of national security” tariff on ’em. $10 per word ought to do it. //

  70. 70

    @Jeffro: Not a chance, that’s hard work. As one of his predecessors said, “Presidenting is hard work”.

  71. 71
    TenguPhule says:

    You might think that managers and workers at Banner Metals would be up in arms over the Trump administration’s trade policies. After all, tariffs on imported steel and aluminum have pushed raw-material prices up and margins down, forcing the company to delay plans to purchase a new $1 million cutting machine and hire two new employees to operate it.

    But the reaction at the plant is based on more than self-interest. “I’m not looking at what’s best for Banner right now,” said Bronson Jones, a part-owner of the company and its chief executive. “I’m looking at what’s best for the national economy. The U.S. has been taken advantage of for too long.”

    That proposition, tracing a volatile political fault line, is frequently encountered on the factory floor here, a few miles from this prosperous city’s gleaming downtown.

    Casey Jackson, a maintenance technician, said he would support the tariffs even if they cost him personally. “If it comes out of my paycheck, so be it,” he said. “You got to look at the big picture. That tiny bit of sacrifice we make will create jobs.”

    FTFNYT decides that the solution to ignorance is interviewing more idiots.

    As Mr. Jackson, a 34-year-old Air Force veteran, sees it, the current trade war recalls past military conflicts. “We had victory gardens in World War II,” he said during a break between shifts, which run from 6 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and then from 4:30 p.m. to 2:30 a.m. “I know the tariffs have an impact on us, but I don’t think it was a mistake.”

    I thought I’d run out of empathy to lose with these people. Boy was I wrong.

    Even as the talk of a trade war has intensified, and new duties go into effect, Mr. Jones said he saw the Trump administration’s moves as part of a negotiating strategy, not a fundamental move away from free trade, which he said he supported.

    “I don’t think hundreds of billions in tariffs are going into effect with other countries, but it sure gets their attention,” he said. “I don’t think it will all stick, and they’ll meet in the middle. It’s short-term pain for long-term gain.”

    The results of the survey for The Times echoed Mr. Jones’s analysis. Among Americans who said they approved of the tariffs, a third said they thought Mr. Trump’s approach to trade would be “helpful in the long term but harmful in the short term.”

    I want to see that company crash and burn. I want these employees struggling to get unemployment benefits and food assistance, only to have it denied based on the updated requirements. I want them to suffer.

  72. 72
    James E Powell says:

    @germy:

    Meanwhile the media is pushing all these “he’s immensely popular with republicans!” stories and polls right now. But they rarely mention that first part.

    He’s still a very solid just above 40% with the whole country. That’s scary, really it is.

  73. 73
    germy says:

    Maurice Rucker, the guy who was fired from his Home Depot job for talking back when a customer went into a racist tirade against him got a call from the corporate office. Not his local home depot, the main office. They told him “We want you back.”

    “‘We want you back.’ It’s like, no, you want this to stop. That’s what you want,” said Rucker.

    Rucker says there was no raise or promotion offered to him — just come back to work.

    He’s turned them down.

  74. 74
    Brachiator says:

    Senator Paul’s idea, as well as the President’s/White House’s response, is absolutely stupid.

    Also known as Republican Standard Operating Procedure.

  75. 75
    patrick II says:

    Adam L. Silverman says:

    And the reason that retired senior leaders, both military and civilian, need to keep their clearances is in case their successors need to consult with them on either past classified issues or current ones. This is so that the current senior leaders are able to actually speak to their predecessors in order to maintain continuity of government from one administration to the next on exceedingly important and highly sensitive issues.

    President Trump says:

    “I’m the only one that matters”

    in setting U.S. foreign policy

    Clearly the new administration don’t need no stinkin’ consultations. Just check his huge successes with Kim Jong Un and at Helsinki.

  76. 76
    TenguPhule says:

    @🌎 🇺🇸 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳 🌷: They’ve done their best to rip apart all the passing of the torch of experience in government. All those people that left government last year and this year? That’s knowledge lost, possibly forever, and means basically having people coming into government and learning how to invent the wheel all over again. It means slower processing, more mistakes and much greater risk of corruption and ignorance of the rules and regulations.

  77. 77
    Jeffro says:

    @🐾BillinGlendaleCA: I still have to laugh remembering the time Don Jr was asked what, exactly, his dad was going to do as president if Trump had gotten his way and been able to pull in John Kasich as VP

    Junior’s response (per Slate):

    When Kasich’s adviser asked how this would be the case, Donald Jr. explained that his father’s vice president would be in charge of domestic and foreign policy.
    Then what, the adviser asked, would Trump be in charge of?
    “Making America great again” was the casual reply.

    Yes…just run around dispensing Fox News talking points and getting his grift on, that’s right.

  78. 78
    bluehill says:

    Saw an NYT article about factory workers hurt by the tariffs remaining loyal to Trump. Don’t know how representative this quote is

    “If it comes out of my paycheck, so be it,” he said. “You got to look at the big picture. That tiny bit of sacrifice we make will create jobs.”

    but wonder if he realizes that you could do say the same about taxes, union dues, insurance mandate, etc. Cognitive dissonance is strong with this one.

  79. 79
    Ladyraxterinok says:

    @Dorothy A. Winsor: Thanks for link. Very interesting analysis. Reminds me to visit your blog.

  80. 80
    TenguPhule says:

    @Wapiti:

    If people don’t want Jared to know, he might never realize a big chunk of what he’s missing.

    That’s less comforting when you remember how many fucking asshat Trump cabinet members there are.

  81. 81
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @germy: His starting wage with them a decade ago was $12 an hour. His wage at time of termination last week was $12.78 an hour.

  82. 82
    Booger says:

    @TenguPhule: Do you suppose Mr. Jackson knows WHY we had Victory Gardens in WWII??

  83. 83
    TenguPhule says:

    @bluehill: The entire company is peopled by Darwin Awards in progress.

  84. 84
    germy says:

    @Adam L Silverman: He made the correct decision.

  85. 85

    @Ladyraxterinok: Thanks for telling me you found it interesting. Sometimes I think I’m boring the pants off the rest of the world.

  86. 86
    jl says:

    @Ladyraxterinok: Some of DAW’s ideas are interesting. But beyond the skill of the Trumpsters. Won’t make the press conferences for summits with US allies more interesting, they won’t be able to manage it.

  87. 87
    J R in WV says:

    @the Conster:

    Rand Paul and Bernie Sanders were the two votes against Russian sanctions.

    I’ve always thought, believed that Bernie Sanders is owned by first the Soviets, now the Russians have inherited that ownership.

    Rand Paul may be just a tool in every sense, first of his parent and the libertarian line, now a dupe of the Russians by some accident. Perhaps too stupid to know which?

  88. 88
    Yarrow says:

    @Adam L Silverman: Are we at the totally sane no tea unparty level yet?

  89. 89
    piratedan says:

    the more I think on it, the more I begin to suspect that the GOP are actually Lectroids from Planet 10 who crossed over into our dimension upon the dropping of the first atomic bomb. Because the way that they run the government seems more like the situation at Yoyodyne Industries than it bears any kind of resemblance to a major political party that has a platform based on anything other than major and petty cruelty.

  90. 90
    p.a. says:

    @hitchhiker: If the rest of us can[editorial addition] vote, this can end.

    There’s the rub.

  91. 91

    @jl: I can’t even read Trump’s tweets any more without feeling both bored and brain damaged. So it’s mutual.

  92. 92
    TenguPhule says:

    @J R in WV:

    Rand Paul may be just a tool in every sense, first of his parent and the libertarian line, now a dupe of the Russians by some accident. Perhaps too stupid to know which?

    No. He’s a fully on board Russian asset in every sense of the word. His head is destined for a pike. May that day come soon.

  93. 93
    bluehill says:

    @Adam L Silverman:

    The Home Office has scheduled the next batch of annual performance reviews!

    The Kremlin announces another trip by Republicans senators being planned for August. Wonder which senators will go and whether they will tell their constituents or wait for the Kremlin to reveal the details? pic.twitter.com/8CGOontdtm

    — Olga Lautman (@olgaNYC1211) July 23, 2018

    Red Dawn is fictional, right? Along with the Putin visit, seems to be too many to be just coincidental.

    Semi-serious question – if Trump and the repubs wanted to stage a de facto coup – which to me would include a media shutdown, suspension of due process and suspension of elections or more significant restrictions on voters/candidates – is there a way to do it with support of a cooperative legislative branch?

  94. 94
    Gravenstone says:

    @TenguPhule: Someone will make a killing buying off his hardware once his company goes belly up. Can’t happen to a nicer jackass.

  95. 95
    Yarrow says:

    @James E Powell: The economy and gas prices. If the economy tanks and/or gas prices go up further and stay up after summer then his approval numbers will fall.

  96. 96
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    Have been offline nearly all day, haven’t even glanced at earlier threads and have only barely skimmed this one, so maybe someone else has caught this — but given…

    Brennan
    Comey
    Clapper
    Hayden
    Rice
    McCabe

    …the first thing that popped into my mind was (yes, in all caps) “ENEMIES LIST!!!”

    This is chilling.

  97. 97
    TenguPhule says:

    @bluehill:

    Red Dawn is fictional, right?

    Yep, only in the movies do the Republicans fight against a Russian invasion.

    In reality, they invite them in of their own accord.

  98. 98
    patrick II says:

    because they’ve politicized and in some cases monetized their public service.”

    Nothing quite like Trump to call people for monetizing their government service.

  99. 99
    Another lurker says:

    @dmsilev: Please, please, please, tell me to calm down and step back from the ledge, but I am worried about this. I am worried about Russia, a professional ratfucker and experienced at overthrowing governments, will use this outreach to actively train and deploy groups to launch attacks against State and Federal personale and facilities, for the purpose of further disrupting and destabilizeing our county’s situation.
    Please tell me I’m wrong and needlessly worrying.

  100. 100
    Mike in NC says:

    I have to confess that when I retired from the Navy, my TS/SCI clearance made me millions of dollars. Oh, wait…

  101. 101
    TenguPhule says:

    “Tesla has asked some suppliers to refund a portion of what the electric-car company has spent previously, an appeal that reflects the auto maker’s urgency to sustain operations during a critical production period. The Silicon Valley electric-car company said it is asking its suppliers for cash back to help it become profitable, according to a memo reviewed by The Wall Street Journal that was sent to a supplier last week. Tesla requested the supplier return what it calls a meaningful amount of money of its payments since 2016, according to the memo.”

    Wapo cribbed from the FTWSJ

    Tesla and Musk are so fucked.

  102. 102
    Yarrow says:

    @J R in WV:

    Rand Paul may be just a tool in every sense, first of his parent and the libertarian line, now a dupe of the Russians by some accident. Perhaps too stupid to know which?

    No. Look at some of Adam’s previous posts. He (Rand Paul) has Russian connections going way back and his dad was (is) all up with the Soviets/Russians. Don’t make the mistake of thinking these people are stupid and don’t know what they’re doing and got duped by some Russians. It’s much, much worse than that.

    At this point, based on their behavior alone, it’s easier to ask which Republicans are not Russian assets. It’ll take much less time to answer than it would be if the question were asked the other way.

  103. 103
    rikyrah says:

    THREAD

    TokenSuperhero (@MarcusTheToken) Tweeted:
    So this morning @PlanetFitness, I was working out with my teenage son. Now when I workout, I always wear a hoodie. Always up. Headband, and headphones. I’ve been going to planet fitness for years. I’m in New Hampshire, and this is my second day going to this location. 1/10 https://twitter.com/MarcusTheToken/status/1021048298424160256?s=17

  104. 104
    Brachiator says:

    @bluehill:

    Saw an NYT article about factory workers hurt by the tariffs remaining loyal to Trump. Don’t know how representative this quote is

    “If it comes out of my paycheck, so be it,” he said. “You got to look at the big picture. That tiny bit of sacrifice we make will create jobs.”

    The problem is, the “sacrifice” will not create jobs.

    It is wild to see these supporters create defenses out of thin air to rationalize their defense of Trump.

    A grifter might say that when you can get the sucker to defend a con against any attack, you have hit the jackpot.

  105. 105
    Baud says:

    Good article.

    Why So Many Reporters Are Missing the Political Story of the Decade

    https://washingtonmonthly.com/2018/07/23/why-so-many-reporters-are-missing-the-political-story-of-the-decade/

  106. 106
    TenguPhule says:

    @Another lurker:

    I am worried about Russia, a professional ratfucker and experienced at overthrowing governments, will use this outreach to actively train and deploy groups to launch attacks against State and Federal personale and facilities, for the purpose of further disrupting and destabilizeing our county’s situation.
    Please tell me I’m wrong and needlessly worrying.

    You’re wrong and needlessly worrying. What you should be worried about is that they’re going to taint recruitment pools and get into those institutions the legal way.

  107. 107
    TenguPhule says:

    @Yarrow:

    At this point, based on their behavior alone, it’s easier to ask which Republicans are not Russian assets.

    None of them, Katie!

    Those not active participants are accomplices after the fact.

    Traitors all. And they will be rewarded as a traitor deserves.

  108. 108
    Ladyraxterinok says:

    @Dorothy A. Winsor: I checked out your blog some time ago in response to a comment and link here at b-j, then later forgot that it has interesting info re writing.

  109. 109
    RedDirtDirl says:

    @Boussinesque: Ditto.

  110. 110
    raven says:

    @Mike in NC: I was in so much shit I couldn’t get a confidential! I was really vital in a Signal Unit!

  111. 111
    Jeffro says:

    @piratedan:

    the more I think on it, the more I begin to suspect that the GOP are actually Lectroids from Planet 10 who crossed over into our dimension upon the dropping of the first atomic bomb.

    Sounds quite plausible at this point.

    Heck, just last month this here atheist, yours truly, was starting to think about re-reading Revelations, just to see what was going to happen this month…

  112. 112
    Millard Filmore says:

    Open thread! And with Adam! I have a question about the president’s control of security clearance. Is there a process, a signature, required before the president can give away Top Secret information? I am thinking specifically about the meeting with the Russian ambassador right after the inauguration. If he did not take the proper steps, and it can be shows that he burned some assets in Russia, is that espionage (not treason)? Can the president say “its ok for a foreign power to have this information”, but a serious crime if I happen to bump into it and blab all over the world?

  113. 113
    sukabi says:

    Re: revocation of security clearances…

    Trump and his entire cabal check ALL of those boxes. Not a one of them should be able to have a security clearance. Not even trustworthy enough to be county dog catcher.

  114. 114
    jl says:

    @rikyrah: I heard on the news this morning about a black business owner who has been repeatedly reported to the police as being suspicious when he opens his own business early in the morning. So far, the police responding have known its BS so nothing terrible has happened yet.

  115. 115
    Steve in the ATL says:

    @Dorothy A. Winsor: “I’m just going to say it. Most fight scenes in books are boring.”

    Steve in the 407 concurs.

  116. 116
    MattF says:

    @Baud: I certainly hope it’s true– specifically, that women, en masse, are going to change the political landscape.

  117. 117
    sukabi says:

    @TenguPhule: well that’s ballsy. Thought Musk was supposed to be a super genius or something. Seems like if he was he could figure out how to not bankrupt his company…or alternatively figure out that money paid out 2 years ago will not be returning.

  118. 118
    NeenerNeener says:

    Interesting that Condi Rice, whose expertise was supposed to be Russia, is being cut off at the knees.

  119. 119
    MattF says:

    Has there ever been an administration where getting and keeping security clearances are continuing, serious issues? It’s plainly true that Trump would never get a clearance, even for FOUO– maybe he’s just setting the tone.

  120. 120
    Brachiator says:

    @Baud:

    Why So Many Reporters Are Missing the Political Story of the Decade

    Because too many editors and reporters are white men.

    Yep. Good article. Of course, Bernie Sanders is jumping in and trying to divert the power of the resistance for his own purposes, and lazy reporters then turn him into a leader of the resistance.

  121. 121
    Millard Filmore says:

    @dmsilev:

    “How to Lie with Statistics” is a classic book that everyone should read.

    Is that anything like ‘Sportsmanship, how to win at games without actually cheating’?

  122. 122
    Yarrow says:

    @NeenerNeener: Isn’t it Susan Rice, not Condi?

  123. 123
    Baud says:

    @NeenerNeener: It’s Susan Rice.

  124. 124
    mike in dc says:

    @Steve in the ATL: The best fight scenes are in comic books, manga and manhua(Hong Kong comics). There are fights in Japanese and Chinese comics that last for dozens of pages. There’s a satirical oversized comic written by Scott McCloud, DESTROY, that pokes fun, in a loving way, of the classic knock down drag out Kirbyesque superhero fights, in an over the top way.

  125. 125
    MattF says:

    @dmsilev: Unfortunately, innumeracy can’t be cured by reading a book. ‘Thinking with numbers’ is a black art to most people.

  126. 126
    Another lurker says:

    @TenguPhule: Good point.
    Thanks.

  127. 127
    Cacti says:

    @the Conster:

    Rand Paul and Bernie Sanders were the two votes against Russian sanctions.

    Bernie’s chief strategist Tad Devine had his name appear 16 times in the Manafort evidence, for work they did together in Ukraine.

  128. 128
    NeenerNeener says:

    @Baud & Yarrow: Ah…my mind automatically goes to Condi when I see “Rice”. And if not Condi, why not?

  129. 129
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @Gin & Tonic:

    Maybe they should revoke Jared’s while they’re at it.

    Didn’t they have to change the rules so Jared could finally be cleared? He lied multiple times on the security forms and had to make scores of “corrections”. And let’s not forget that Trump had a domestic violence monster on his team and was forced to let him go (to work on his campaign). We’re floating towards fascism, folks.

  130. 130
    MattF says:

    @Cacti: That suggests Devine is pals with Roger Stone. Hmm.

  131. 131
    Miss Bianca says:

    @father pusbucket: Yeah, seriously? Is it just me, or is practically every single item on that list something that would be *actual* grounds for revocation for POTUS and his clan and his circle of cronies/accomplices/low-quality hires?

  132. 132
    NotMax says:

    Gee, they left Hillary off the list.

  133. 133
    chopper says:

    yet jared keeps his clearance in spite of his inability to fill out one single form correctly. makes sense.

  134. 134
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @jl: Is there a reason why the police can’t start charging people with a misdemeanor for these frivolous calls? It’s surely wasting the time and resources of police officers who could be doing something more productive.

  135. 135
    NotMax says:

    @NotMax

    And Obama.

  136. 136
    different-church-lady says:

    Speaking of Wile E. Coyote, SHS is increasingly making faces just like his when he sees the train coming towards him.

  137. 137
    Ladyraxterinok says:

    @Baud: No time to read article. From what I read at link and what you report here, I believe media is deliberately missing the point. Anything to disheaten democrats and keep us out of power.

  138. 138
    rikyrah says:

    @Baud:
    Because of their professional malpractice during the 2016 campaign.

  139. 139

    @jl: I saw that on the local news here in LA last night.

  140. 140
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @rikyrah: Racists are being emboldened by the Orange Bigot but forget that unlike him, they’re not protected from the repercussions of their idiocy. Most of us Black folks know our rights and we’re not going to cow tow to racists. If you feel uncomfortable around me because I’m Black, go somewhere else. I love how he handled that woman. I bet she won’t try that with the next Black person she meets.

  141. 141
    chopper says:

    @Booger:

    i guess this schmendrick thinks that the great trade war(tm) is like WWII. makes sense, since his boy trump compared avoiding STDs in college to vietnam.

  142. 142
    different-church-lady says:

    @bluehill:

    “If it comes out of my paycheck, so be it,” he said. “You got to look at the big picture. That tiny bit of sacrifice we make will create jobs.”

    Well, that’s good, because by the time Trump is done fucking this economy up the ass, you’re going to need two jobs.

  143. 143
    SFAW says:

    @Baud:

    “Political Story of the Decade”? Which decade?

    I generally like LeTourneau’s writing, but “old white guys are losing their most-favored-nation status at the center of the political universe” is nothing new, and I’ve lost count of the number of times we’ve been told it’s The Year When Women Really Have An Earthshaking Impact. Be great if that happens, but let’s see what November 7th brings.

    And, frankly, I think the attempted — and far too successful — dismantling of the US government by the Rethugs (especially Traitor Turtle) is a significantly bigger political story for this decade.

    That being said: Fuck Bernie. That self-serving tweet of his (in the article) should be printed onto durable stock and (A) crammed down this throat and (B) shoved up his ass until it meets the one from (A).

  144. 144
    TS (the original) says:

    @Adam L Silverman:

    The Home Office has scheduled the next batch of annual performance reviews!

    It’s becoming so obvious that Russia is the only country interested in having a visit from US congress members

  145. 145
    debbie says:

    Reading his Twitter bio, I can understand why John Walsh is so nervous. Good.

  146. 146
    Yarrow says:

    @Cacti: Of course his name is on the list. Bernie’s campaign was aided by Russia to split the Dem vote and weaken Hillary. It worked great.

  147. 147
    Le Comte de Monte Cristo, fka Edmund Dantes says:

    The level of stupidity and insanity I’ve come across today is off the charts.

    1. A lawyer I know completely fucked up a gang murder trial a month ago through methamphetamine use – he visited a represented Co-D in jail at 2 am during the course of the trial, and the prosecutors actually went to the judge about his visible impairment, seeking a mistrial. Apparently, he thought it smart to sue his family court judge for not sealing the motions and lab report regarding his current meth use in his ongoing custody battle (which he’s representing himself in with genuinely stupid pleadings, demonstrating that he understands nothing of family law or the civil rules).

    2. I stood in for someone on a request to amend a foreclosure complaint to clean up the caption as one of the named debtors had passed away and the property had passed into trust. The home had been owned by the mother of a lawyer that I have a nodding acquaintance with, and have always known to be squirrelly. He appeared, demanded to be heard at the foot of the docket, and went into a strange soliloquy on powers of attorney, the divorce of his mother and a doctor, authorized organ donation and criminal acts regarding the donation. I must’ve said 5 times that I was just standing in, and that none of that was relevant to there being a note, a mortgage and default. He followed me down the elevator to another courtroom, and kept demonstrating that he probably needs a visit from the Lawyers’ Assistance Plan not for substance abuse or depression, but instead for generalized disordered thoughts. I told him to dust off his wallet and hire a real estate lawyer.

    3. I heard from the media employment lawyer from Manhattan. His monstrous company has reached out to the public and private high schools here to insist that no entity can hire my client to do anything for two years without facing a tortious interference complaint, and they’d probably file it as a federal action. He gave her a stark option – work for them until mid September and pay them $750 and sign a release (the contract would specify that she can’t work at all for two years and that she’d owe them $80,000 – two years’ pay). I kind of hope she says “no”, and that I get to trash the fuckers.

  148. 148
    YetAnotherJay formerly (Jay S) says:

    Several twitter accounts like this one point to a https://twitter.com/xtrixcyclex/status/1021499005354823682 tweet by Artem Kylushin suggesting Trump would soon “shutdown” the witch hunt by getting rid of access to secret info for ex-officials. The collective unconscious of stable geniuses hitting on the same solution or colluding brain trusts?

  149. 149
    Quaker in a Basement says:

    …because they’ve politicized and in some cases monetized their public service.

    Says the man who makes a profit on every MAGA hat sold? The same one who says the investigation into Russian hacking is “a Democrat hoax?”

    Huckabee must’ve been wearing her lightning-proof shoes.

  150. 150
    NotMax says:

    FYI.

    Attorney General Jeff Sessions called Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis in October to protest exploratory talks about a plea deal in the 9/11 case that would have taken the death penalty off the table, according to an investigation by defense attorneys who want a military judge to order both men to testify at the war court.
    [snip]
    Now, defense attorneys argue that Trump administration meddling in the guilty-plea negotiations merits, if not dismissing the case entirely, then making it a non-capital trial. Mattis and his acting general counsel, William Castle, have earlier said in affidavits that they fired Rishikof and his legal adviser, Gary Brown, for failure to follow proper Pentagon channels, a taboo in a military culture led by Mattis, a retired Marine general.

    But the alternative explanation involving the plea deal merits open-court testimony from Sessions, Mattis and Castle, military justice expert Eugene Fidell said in an interview.

    “There’s certainly enough there that a thorough evidentiary hearing has to be conducted,” said Fidell, who teaches at Yale law school. “If you’re going to preserve the integrity of the system, and have any hope of fostering public confidence in the military commissions system, this has to be aired in a full way on the record.”

    Sessions needs to answer two key questions, Fidell said: “How did he find out about discussions of a possible plea deal — and did he talk to the White House?”
    [snip]
    At the Justice Department, Sessions’ spokeswoman, Sarah Isgur Flores, said she could not confirm the details but said that the attorney general “certainly speaks with other Cabinet members regularly, Secretary Mattis included.”

    The spokeswoman declined to say whether Sessions met with Sept. 11 families or heard from the White House prior to phoning Mattis about the plea discussions. Source

  151. 151
    KSinMA says:

    @Baud: Good article indeed. Thanks.

  152. 152
    MattF says:

    @YetAnotherJay formerly (Jay S): How is that supposed to work? My tinfoil hat must be out of order.

  153. 153
    KSinMA says:

    @rikyrah: Good for him.

  154. 154
    Miss Bianca says:

    @Le Comte de Monte Cristo, fka Edmund Dantes: Monsieur Le Comte, remind me that if/when I need an absolute pit bull in court, to contact you for recommendations. : )

  155. 155
    debbie says:

    @germy:

    The way Brennan and Hayden have been speaking out make me think that’s the last thing they care about at the moment.

  156. 156
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @Quaker in a Basement: Yet, the MSM cried en masse when Michelle Wolf made a polite joke about Sanders’ tendency to lie in our faces every single day without blinking a smoky eye. Sanders is a fascist and she’s representing and lying on behalf of a fascist President. She deserves no politeness from anyone.

  157. 157
    YetAnotherJay formerly (Jay S) says:

    @YetAnotherJay formerly (Jay S): I am pretty sure it wouldn’t work as described, but might fuel the deep state nonsense. @MattF:
    ETA It probably follows out of a deep misunderstanding of American politics. Or a deep understanding of the Illuminati.

  158. 158
    sukabi says:

    @Patricia Kayden: unfortunately she’ll probably just call the cops instead of making an ass out of her self.😕

  159. 159
    Duane says:

    @Mnemosyne: it’s downright laughable that Trumpov would revoke someone’s security clearance because they were monetizing their position.

  160. 160
    JPL says:

    @NotMax: Maybe they want someone to hang, the same day as the military parade. That could be the highlight.

  161. 161
    Yutsano says:

    No one has gone “doink doink” here? I am disappoint.

  162. 162
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @YetAnotherJay formerly (Jay S): Russian bot?

  163. 163
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @sukabi: But in some cases the cops have turned around and arrested the White people who called them. It doesn’t always work out as the White callers think it will.

  164. 164
    sukabi says:

    @different-church-lady: it looks like she’s got 2 left eyes & eyebrows pointing right, and her mouth trying to exit stage left.

    That might be what happens when you lie badly for a living…your individual parts start protesting and try to escape the Bullshit.

  165. 165
    sukabi says:

    @Patricia Kayden: that’s the only upside in this mess. 😕

  166. 166
    debbie says:

    @mike in dc:

    Have you read “Unbroken”? It’s the story of Louis Zamperini, UCLA Oympics-bound runner, WWII airman who was captured, imprisoned, and tortured by the Japanese for the two years he was there. It’s an understatement to say it’s gripping, but I swear, reading the account of a Japanese assault on a small island had me literally ducking bullets.

    Reading about fighting can be very scary.

  167. 167
    trollhattan says:

    @Adam L Silverman: Well played general, well played.

  168. 168
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Yarrow: I do not know.

  169. 169
    YetAnotherJay formerly (Jay S) says:

    @Patricia Kayden: @YetAnotherJay formerly (Jay S): Russian bot? If you are referring to Artem Klyushin, I doubt it. He has been linked in a lot of conspiracy theory for some time and apparently is active on twitter. If you are asking if I am, not the last time I checked. As to the twitter account I linked to, it just came up in the search where I tried to find the original tweet I saw.

  170. 170
    Duane says:

    @rikyrah: Haven’t seen it mentioned here, but that man in Clearwater Fla who came to the defense of his girlfriend and son was flat out murdered. If that qualifies as “stand your ground” i’d get the fuck out of Florida.

  171. 171
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @Raoul:

    In most recent Pew poll 26% of voters identify as Republican. Lowest number in a decade.”

    Yet Trump’s approval rating is up to 46%.

  172. 172
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @bluehill: A cooperative legislative branch would make things easier. But I don’t think that’s going to happen. It’s the same issue you get with the “fear” on the right that President Obama, or HRC had she been elected, was going to confiscate everyone’s guns. Whose going to do the confiscating? Whose going to enforce it? All of us who have taken it, take the oath to the Constitution. You’ll never get enough of the military or FBI or even ATF officers to go along with any of that to make it happen. In either scenario. They won’t go and confiscate guns as it would be unconstitutional and they’re not going to go and round up journalists because it would be unconstitutional.

  173. 173
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Another lurker: The League of the South folks, like the Oathkeepers and similar groups, are a nuisance. A violent nuisance, but a nuisance nonetheless. They’re not going to overthrow the government.

  174. 174
    scav says:

    Monetizing public service.?! Monetizing public service?!!! Who do these past public servants thonk they are?! Only the current officeholders and relatives (and clothes lines, hotel chains, golf courses, . . . ) are supposed to make a buck off their offices!

  175. 175
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Millard Filmore: Technically there is a process, but the President can side step it at any time as the process is established by presidential directive.

  176. 176
    MattF says:

    @Patricia Kayden: Most recent Gallup puts it at 42%. But, more to the point, Trump’s approval rating stays within a rather narrow band. The various ups and downs seem to be noise.

  177. 177
    YetAnotherJay formerly (Jay S) says:

    @Adam L Silverman:

    They won’t go and confiscate guns as it would be unconstitutional and they’re not going to go and round up journalists because it would be unconstitutional.

    With the rash of judicial appointments that may not be a strong argument after a number of rulings depreciating the current constitutional understanding.

  178. 178
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @YetAnotherJay formerly (Jay S): That won’t make any difference.

  179. 179
    Matt McIrvin says:

    @Raoul: Isn’t Democratic identification down as well? Often, D and R party identification move in lockstep, with “independent” taking up the slack.

  180. 180

    @debbie: He went to “college” at the other place, the one across town.

  181. 181
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @YetAnotherJay formerly (Jay S): No. And stop borrowing trouble that doesn’t exist.

  182. 182
    Matt McIrvin says:

    @germy: But Trump’s general popularity has not decreased, so adulation by a dwindling core isn’t the whole story.

  183. 183
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Matt McIrvin: Both Democratic and Independent are both up.

  184. 184
    J R in WV says:

    @Yarrow:

    @TenguPhule:

    OK, you guys convinced me, I’m done with giving these traitors the benefit of the doubt. Sanders is obvious, to me! He’s messing with my Democratic Party, after all.

    But I don’t study so-called libertarians, no even Republican libertarians. The action with the neighbor in Kentucky tells me a lot about “Doctor” Paul.

  185. 185
    Calouste says:

    @Adam L Silverman: You’re pretty naive about the values of the military and LEO, but we knew that already.

  186. 186
    Adam L Silverman says:

    I’m off to the gym. Play nice or I’m sending the clearance investigator that did my renewal to your house!

  187. 187
    YetAnotherJay formerly (Jay S) says:

    @Adam L Silverman: I don’t think it will work to stop the investigation, but it does seem to reflect a remarkable synchronicity in the thinking of Trump and a Russian Oligarch.

  188. 188
    Brachiator says:

    @Adam L Silverman:

    They won’t go and confiscate guns as it would be unconstitutional and they’re not going to go and round up journalists because it would be unconstitutional.

    You don’t have to round up journalists if you can successfully marginalize them.

    Of course, it helps if the newspaper industry continues to collapse, aided by bad corporate decisions.

    The New York Daily News has had its editorial staff cut in half after layoffs announced Monday by publisher Tronc.

    Among the employees departing are editor-in-chief Jim Rich and managing editor Kristen Lee. Robert York, currently the editor at Tronc-owned The Morning Call in Allentown, Pennsylvania, will become the new editor-in-chief July 30, employees learned from an email sent by the Chicago-based media company.

    Tronc, which also owns the Chicago Tribune, The Baltimore Sun and Orlando Sentinel, acquired the Daily News last year for one dollar….

    The layoffs at the Daily News came the same day a new Pew Research Center study revealed that more than one-third (36 percent) of the largest U.S. newspapers, and at least 23 percent of the most popular digital news sites have had layoffs between January 2017 and April 2018. Between 2014 and 2017, the number of newsroom employees at newspapers fell by 15%, from about 46,000 to about 39,000, the study says.

    Rich, the departing editor-in-chief, let his thoughts be known about the move in a tweet early Monday morning. “If you hate democracy and think local governments should operate unchecked and in the dark, then today is a good day for you.”

    Also, we seem to have a core of citizens, abetted by the GOP leadership, who don’t care about democracy and who have reduced the Constitution to the 2nd Amendment. We have to push back against this hard in order to make sure that values and traditions are not further eroded.

  189. 189
    Matt McIrvin says:

    @bluehill: Trump’s most enthusiastic goon squad seems to be ICE. So they’d need to find some way to pull off mass revocation of citizenship of undesirable groups, so ICE can round them up.

    They’re trying really hard to revoke the citizenship of as many naturalized people as they can. The next frontier is native-born citizens. The idea that native-born children of illegal immigrants somehow aren’t due citizenship under the 14th Amendment is a pretty mainstream one among Republicans, and as we saw in that recent WaPo op-ed, they’ve got legal arguments, after a fashion. If they’ve got a Supreme Court majority that will support that, then they can go after grandchildren of illegal immigrants, and so forth. Then all of those people could be herded into concentration camps by ICE. That could go some distance toward whittling down any impending Democratic majority, and scaring away Latinos from any engagement with the political system.

  190. 190
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Calouste: Yeah, I’m just Little Mary Sunshine and Anne of Green Gables all rolled together “Mr. or Ms. I”m posting with a nym, so I could be a 30 year of service retiree or I could just be a dumbass in my Mom’s basement.” Feel free to step into the light and provide your bona fides. Until you do, in this conversation between you and I, I’m the only one with significant experience working with, educating, training, and in some cases supervising US military personnel, including senior officers, Federal, state, and local law enforcement.

  191. 191
    TenguPhule says:

    @Millard Filmore:

    Is there a process, a signature, required before the president can give away Top Secret information?

    Sadly no. A tweet could do in a pinch. We didn’t make any hard and fast rules on this because we relied on enshrined norms and customs.

  192. 192
    J R in WV says:

    @NeenerNeener:

    Condi Rice, whose expertise was supposed to be Russia,

    Nope, Condi Rice knew nothing about Russia, she was a student of the Soviets, the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. aka USSR. She never looked at Russian Federation stuff, and wasn’t that all sharp on Soviet affairs.

    We were lucky that the Soviets/Russians were more worried about their internal security at the time.

    ETA: The Rice being cut off at the knees is President Obama’s NSA chairman, Susan Rice, far more qualified than Condi Rice.

  193. 193
    🌎 🇺🇸 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳 🌷 says:

    @Patricia Kayden:
    I saw his approval was still only at 41.8% at 538.com. Where did you see 46%?

  194. 194
    TenguPhule says:

    @sukabi:

    Thought Musk was supposed to be a super genius or something.

    All the brains in the world are not going to fix a $1 billion dollar cash flow deficit. Tesla Cash Reserves on hand $1.7 billion. Projected cash burn of Tesla for the next 12 months $2.7 billion.

  195. 195
    Calouste says:

    @Adam L Silverman: Go look up your posts about how you said Ronnie Jackson absolutely would not lie about the shitgibbon’s health.

  196. 196
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Brachiator:

    You don’t have to round up journalists if you can successfully marginalize them.

    Of course, it helps if the newspaper industry continues to collapse, aided by bad corporate decisions.

    Also, we seem to have a core of citizens, abetted by the GOP leadership, who don’t care about democracy and who have reduced the Constitution to the 2nd Amendment. We have to push back against this hard in order to make sure that values and traditions are not further eroded.

    No arguments here.

  197. 197
    TenguPhule says:

    @J R in WV:

    Condi Rice knew nothing about Russia, she was a student of the Soviets, the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. aka USSR. She never looked at Russian Federation stuff, and wasn’t that all sharp on Soviet affairs.

    To this day I maintain that Condi Rice was Bush’s Monica. She was hired for her BJ skills, not her brains.

  198. 198
    Matt McIrvin says:

    @bluehill: …Meanwhile… it’s pretty nutty, but my personal favorite completely constitutional means of turning the US into a totalitarian one-party state is the state-spamming route. Suppose the President has a cooperative Congress and at least one deeply loyal state government that’s willing to go along with any scheme. Then do this:

    1. Revoke the Senate filibuster.
    2. Congress, in cooperation with the loyal state government, carves an uninhabited region of that state into a grid of maybe 200 tiny new states.
    3. In each new state, put a few trailer homes and park a few loyal confederates. You need at least three: two Senators and a Representative, who can also be the governor and the state legislature.
    4. You now have super-dupermajority representation in Congress. Call a Constitutional Convention.
    5. Rewrite the Constitution to your liking and slam through ratification of all amendments.
    6. The temporary states can now be dismantled if you like.

  199. 199
    TenguPhule says:

    @J R in WV:

    But I don’t study so-called libertarians, no even Republican libertarians.

    Its easy. All libertarians are FYIGM feudalist assholes. Any that claim otherwise are lying.

  200. 200
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Calouste: I made a mistake. I freely admit I had no idea he was toxic and a bad physician and had no business being promoted to captain, let alone above it. That’s not naivete. That’s working from the information at hand at the time of doing the analysis.

    But, again, put up your real name and bona fides or shut up. Your choice.

  201. 201
    danielx says:

    @Adam L Silverman:

    As I recall, he ordered ‘fix bayonets’ because the 20th Maine was out of ammunition, out of luck and out of time. It was the right order and it worked, but I don’t think putting an end to anything but getting overrun was on Chamberlain’s mind.

    That being said, Chamberlain did have a very clear idea of what he was fighting for and why, and I think it likely he would be appalled by the current occupant of the Oval Office. As, for that matter, would be the occupant of that office at the time.

  202. 202
    TenguPhule says:

    @Miss Bianca:

    Is it just me, or is practically every single item on that list something that would be *actual* grounds for revocation for POTUS and his clan and his circle of cronies/accomplices/low-quality hires?

    its not you.

  203. 203
    Matt McIrvin says:

    @🌎 🇺🇸 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳 🌷: Rasmussen is at 46%. It’s a poll with a historical Republican lean. Some others are close.

  204. 204
    J R in WV says:

    @Duane:

    Haven’t seen it mentioned here, but that man in Clearwater Fla who came to the defense of his girlfriend and son was flat out murdered. If that qualifies as “stand your ground” i’d get the fuck out of Florida.

    Yeah, that’s what I thought. The actual “Stand Your Ground” law as I understand it speaks of in your home or in your vehicle, both for the purposes of the law understood to be “your castle” – rather than a parking space at the Circle B beer store.

    I don’t like Florida much on account of the weather, but this is one more reason not to visit. I guess flying through Miami wouldn’t be dangerous as long as you don’t exit the secure areas.

  205. 205
    Calouste says:

    @Adam L Silverman: The information at hand was that a 70 year old man had grown an inch in the last year.

  206. 206
    🌎 🇺🇸 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳 🌷 says:

    @Matt McIrvin:
    You seem to engage in worst-case scenario thinking a lot lately.

  207. 207
    Matt McIrvin says:

    @🌎 🇺🇸 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳 🌷: I’m a programmer. Figuring out absurd but technically possible ways that some system could fail catastrophically is my job.

  208. 208
    oldgold says:

    When did it become necessary to state your real name to post dissenting comments?

    The enjoy the commenters we have here willing to challenge the orthodoxy.

  209. 209
    zhena gogolia says:

    @TenguPhule:

    brain bleach stat

  210. 210
    TenguPhule says:

    @Le Comte de Monte Cristo, fka Edmund Dantes:

    The level of stupidity and insanity I’ve come across today is off the charts.

    You know tomorrow will be worse.

  211. 211
    Raoul says:

    @Matt McIrvin: Dems stayed roughly flat at 33%. Indies moved bigger than Dems, but seems mostly from GOP.

  212. 212
    TenguPhule says:

    @Matt McIrvin:

    Figuring out absurd but technically possible ways that some system could fail catastrophically is my job.

    And its only considered absurd until some goddamn moron actually goes ahead and does it anyway.

  213. 213
    🌎 🇺🇸 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳 🌷 says:

    @Matt McIrvin:
    I would think mass violence would result if a US government tried that. All of the tens of millions of liberals along with democracy-minded Americans aren’t just going to twiddle their thumbs while all this is happening.

  214. 214
    Raoul says:

    @Patricia Kayden:
    Gallup weeklies:
    7/15 43%/52%
    7/22 42%/54%

    Inside the MOE

  215. 215
    Matt McIrvin says:

    @🌎 🇺🇸 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳 🌷: Probably!

    Basically, if you’ve got majority control of all branches of government there’s no limit to what you can legally do, with sufficient ingenuity. The checks and balances in the Constitution were designed with the idea that the people involved would provide some degree of opposition. They can be worked around somehow, if people put party before everything. If your SCOTUS justices are complete hacks you could just have them flatly state that everything you do is constitutional, and that’s that.

    But the real limit is what you can get away with before there is a violent mass revolt. And I’m not sure we know exactly where that limit is today–if you go very long with a government that is more or less considered legitimate, people may not know. And some might decide to test those limits.

  216. 216
    TenguPhule says:

    @Matt McIrvin:

    Congress, in cooperation with the loyal state government, carves an uninhabited region of that state into a grid of maybe 200 tiny new states.

    I’m confident that if we ever hit that point everything has already gone to shit.

  217. 217
    TenguPhule says:

    @Matt McIrvin:

    And I’m not sure we know exactly where that limit is today–if you go very long with a government that is more or less considered legitimate, people may not know. And some might decide to test those limits.

    its telling that the American public has already accepted corruption and failures on a scale undreamed of in the last century. I’m coming around to the conclusion a lot of people are going to have to be killed by Trump and his minions before the gradual acceptance finally stops.

  218. 218
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @danielx: He was pretty much hanging out there by himself. But what saved him was being a scholar. It wasn’t that he ordered fix bayonets, it’s that he remembered a tactical maneuver from an old field manual he’d read: fix wheel right. The French, who invented the tactic, refer to it as a flying wing. He anchored one point of his line, and had the rest stop off like a door opening outward and given he had the heights opening outward downhill. This swept the Confederate Soldiers (Alabamans if I’m recalling correctly) out of the way. They either got stabbed or they fled back to the peach orchard where they were picked up by the Soaves that were returning to the Union lines.

  219. 219
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Calouste: I fucked that post up good. I’m not denying it. What else do you want with the admission? A kidney?

  220. 220
    Jerzy Russian says:

    @Adam L Silverman: Not to belabor this point, but I thought the point of your post was more along the lines of “It would be a very bad idea for the doctor to lie his ass off, given that he is on active duty in the military and there are various rules and norms regarding this” rather than “he will be truthful”. That being said, I won’t take the time to re-read that particular post and the comments.

  221. 221
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @oldgold: Not the point I’m making. Everyone here knows my name and my bona fides. You want to challenge my interpretation, no issue. Want to tell me I screwed something up? Not a problem. Anonymously stating I don’t know what I’m talking about is a different story. I fucked up a post. Everyone will live. But if you tell me I don’t know what I’m talking about in an area of expertise, then you need to demonstrate how you have the expertise to make that assessment. That’s my point.

  222. 222
    Matt McIrvin says:

    @TenguPhule: It’s an interesting question whether enforcement officers sworn to defend the Constitution will accept an extreme but literal “card says Moops” interpretation of the Constitution. Judges traditionally don’t, but if you’ve got all the judges already…

  223. 223
    TenguPhule says:

    @Matt McIrvin: At the end of the day every single officer simply comes down to “where do I stand on the moral scale.” Trump’s continued open corruption without significant personal consequences is…unhelpful in that regard.

    I’ve been hammering the theme again and again, once corruption gets institutionalized into the federal government, everything is going to start coming apart at the seams. We’re going to see real trickle down. And that’s not rain.

  224. 224
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Jerzy Russian: That was largely it, but, regardless I fucked it up. I never expected that the Navy would assign, let alone keep or promote, a toxic Sailor who has a drinking problem and is Dr Feelgood in his spare time to the President’s medical staff. And then put him in charge of that staff.

  225. 225
    Citizen Alan says:

    @dmsilev:

    These people should be in Gitmo.

  226. 226
    TenguPhule says:

    @Adam L Silverman:

    I never expected that the Navy would assign, let alone keep or promote, a toxic Sailor who has a drinking problem and is Dr Feelgood in his spare time to the President’s medical staff. And then put him in charge of that staff.

    Everything Trump touches, dies.

  227. 227
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @TenguPhule: I did not realize you are Rick Wilson.

    Seriously, had Jackson turned the VA offer down, none of this would’ve come out.

  228. 228
    Yarrow says:

    @Adam L Silverman: Doesn’t the Navy have some problems of their own? I’m thinking of the recent issues in the Pacific fleet. Perhaps more widespread than previously thought?

  229. 229
    oldgold says:

    @Adam L Silverman:

    Yes, you know what you talking about. Your posts are very informative and I enjoy that you stick around and mix with the commentariat.

    At times I think you over-rely on your credentials in pressing your opinion, but so what – not a big deal.

  230. 230
    NotMax says:

    .@Calouste

    a 70 year old man had grown an inch in the last year

    They let him wear the MAGA hat this year.

    ;)

  231. 231
    Quinerly says:

    @Adam L Silverman: you do good work here. Much appreciated by many.

  232. 232
    TenguPhule says:

    @Adam L Silverman: Every military officer that’s kissed Trump’s ring has turned out rotten, regardless of prior honors or accolades.

  233. 233
    Calouste says:

    @Adam L Silverman: Just accept the facts as they are over the mythology of the incorruptable officer you believe in. Jackson lied. Kelly is a racist. Flynn sold out. Otherwise you will keep fucking up.

  234. 234
    SFAW says:

    @TenguPhule:

    To this day I maintain that Condi Rice was Bush’s Monica. She was hired for her BJ skills, not her brains.

    Right church, wrong pew?

    When Condi Freudian-slipped about “my husband” (i.e., W), her hand was tipped. Despite her poor choice(s) in men, she’s not really a Monica Lewinsky.

  235. 235
    Bill Arnold says:

    @Matt McIrvin:

    Meanwhile… it’s pretty nutty, but my personal favorite completely constitutional means of turning the US into a totalitarian one-party state is the state-spamming route. Suppose the President has a cooperative Congress and at least one deeply loyal state government that’s willing to go along with any scheme. Then do this:

    My favorite has long been the Corporate Person approach, where a compliant Supreme Court decrees that corporations, because the are comprised of Natural Persons, are to be counted as Persons for census reasons. Then a combinatorial “Person” rush happens (with ludicrously large numbers of corporate-Persons enumerated, e.g. the power set of a state’s population would be much smaller than the winner), and a panel of loyal Republican mathematicians decrees that a Republican state (Alabama, perhaps) is the winner. They get all Representatives except for the 49 others[0]. Your approach also captures the Senate, which is fun.

    [0] “but each State shall have at Least one Representative”

  236. 236
    SFAW says:

    @Adam L Silverman:

    What else do you want with the admission? A kidney?

    Well, I’m assuming you currently have two, so stop being so fucking selfish/greedy about the second one.

  237. 237
    SFAW says:

    @Matt McIrvin:

    You realize that if Traitor Turtle ever sees your scenario/game plan, he’ll start working on getting it implemented PDQ

  238. 238
    Bill Arnold says:

    @SFAW:

    You realize that if Traitor Turtle ever sees your scenario/game plan, he’ll start working on getting it implemented PDQ

    Nah, it was invented by a liberal, so they would feel the need to invert it. Perhaps they would consolidate all Republican states into one Big Red State, then ????, and then PROFIT!!!.
    (Tech has an acronym for this, NIH == Not Invented Here, though the DJT-Republican version is far more extreme and damaging and absurd.)

  239. 239
    NotMax says:

    @Matt McIrvin

    Whatever you’re drinking/smoking/ingesting/injecting, time to taper off.

  240. 240
    SFAW says:

    @Bill Arnold:

    Yeah, I dealt with more than a little NIH when I was doing engineering.
    I, on the other hand, was more than happy to borrow and refine someone else’s ideas/designs. [No, not talking about stealing IP or anyone else’s hard work, just “repurposing” a good idea — sometimes from a different field — into my company’s products.]

    Traitor Turtle has shown himself to be more than willing to use whatever means necessary to destroy a functioning democracy, so I don’t think he’s susceptible to NIH.

  241. 241
    Dan B says:

    @TenguPhule: I feel that the corruption is not yet institutionalized but there are signs that it is close or already inevitable. There are so many GOP critters who are just going along, with the exception of some pushback from Helsinki and some non-electeds like Rick Wilson.

    I wonder how many need to be protecting their butts because they’re Russian or mob assets versus how many are cowering in fear of the Trump mob or just keeping their heads down hoping the smoke will clear. Abd we have the feckless MSM. It seems like a toxic combination.

    The third point is that a small number of Americans seem to understand what’s happening. I hope it’s more than I’m seeing in liberal Seattle. There are many activists who put their energy into stopping gentrification or battling corporations, which are all serious issues in this city. At the same time they don’t seem to notice the huge threat of a captured judicial system, a legislature eager to reshape society into a Randian paradise (and hell for minorities), and an administration with delusions of bullying the world.

    It’s my belief we can halt and reverse the tide only if hundreds of thousands / millions recognize the most critical threat and band together. Marches are a start but the capacity to get people to delay their cause for a time and stand firm in a strategic manner may be our only hope.

    Can we get environmentalists to turn their efforts against ICE? Can we muster enough energy to stall the forces of darkness and realize some profound and energizing victory(ies)?

  242. 242
    Dan B says:

    @Calouste: Sorry to not share your view of ALS. I don’t believe he’s a failure. Repeating your statement, even though there’s an element of truth, comes across as either a purity pusher, a hater of everything military, or a Russian bot. Please ease up before you lose more ground.

  243. 243
    Miss Bianca says:

    @Dan B:

    either a purity pusher, a hater of everything military, or a Russian bot.

    Or simply a smug, self-satisfied little SOB. Don’t discount that possibility.

Comments are closed.