Speculations Are Open

We’ve all been wondering about the subject of the whistleblower complaint being withheld by Acting DNI Joseph Maguire from the House Select Intelligence Committee.

Tonight, Washington Post has a hint for us. Twitter is exploding with speculation, and why should they be the only ones?

From Adam Schiff’s letter to Maguire, it can be surmised that the incident that provoked the whistleblower’s concern had to do with someone in the White House.

From WaPo:

The whistleblower complaint that has triggered a tense showdown between the U.S. intelligence community and Congress involves President Trump’s communications with a foreign leader, according to two former U.S. officials familiar with the matter.

Trump’s interaction with the foreign leader included a “promise” that was regarded as so troubling that it prompted an official in the U.S. intelligence community to file a formal whistleblower complaint with the inspector general for the intelligence community, said the officials, speaking on the condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the matter publicly.

What was the “promise”? And which foreign leader?

Have at it. Here are some tweets.

155 replies
  1. 1

  2. 2

  3. 3
    zhena gogolia says:

    @Cheryl Rofer:

    its job

  4. 4
    B.B.A. says:

    Calling it now – nothingburger. Fool me once, can’t get fooled again.

  5. 5
    Damien says:


    Except like…one time, guys.

  6. 6
    J R in WV says:

    Rachel seemed to think it was a phone call with Putin, but of course no idea what Trump (R-Stooge) promised Putin illegally.

  7. 7
    PeakVT says:

    It would be irresponsible not to speculate.

  8. 8
    🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳🌷 says:

    My speculation: the whistleblower is John Bolton

  9. 9
    zhena gogolia says:

    @🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳🌷:

    I don’t think he has enough integrity for that. I’d be happy to be proved wrong.

  10. 10
    lumpkin says:

    Would anyone, supporters or opponents of trump be surprised that he would offer help to Russia before he would to California? From my observations of typical conservatives these days, I would expect them to applaud it. There’s a hobby interest forum I follow that is mostly populated by conservatives and I can guarantee that they truly are this treasonous. Almost all of them.

  11. 11
    ola azul says:

    @J R in WV:

    “Yeah, Vladdy, that Magnitsky Act, yeah, we’re gonna get rid of it. Gone. I promise. Bee-liiieve me!”

  12. 12
    geg6 says:

    I forget her name but she got fired right after Coates was fired. What’s her name????

    That’s who I think it is.

  13. 13
    Another Scott says:

    Oooh. I know. Donnie promised Margrethe II, Queen regnant of Denmark, that he would have Ivanka name a shoe line after her if Donnie could buy Greenland.

    What do I win?



    Donnie will just say – I was joking! like he always does.



  14. 14
    zhena gogolia says:


    Sue Gordon.

  15. 15
    ola azul says:

    @zhena gogolia:

    Spite not integrity would be the animating force for the Moustache of Misunderstanding, were it him, methinks. Tho don’t expect it is Bolton.

  16. 16
    Jeffro says:

    You know, I thought this story might be a little bit more important…glad to see it get a post tonight! (thanks Cheryl!)

    Tomorrow should be a doozy!

  17. 17
    Gelfling 545 says:

    @zhena gogolia: Still, he likes to see himself as patriotic rather than batsh!t. He might become quite overwrought if Trump made promises to the wrong (in Bolton’s view) people.

  18. 18
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    Not to derail things, but PM Justin Trudeau dressed up in brownface in 2001 for an event at a private school where he taught. Photos have just emerged — shockingly, and purely coincidentally, a month away from a general election in Canada.

    Again, I don’t want to get into it on this important thread, but wanted to put down a marker for the next open thread.

  19. 19
  20. 20
    Quinerly says:

    Thanks, Cheryl!

  21. 21
    Steve in the ATL says:

    @SiubhanDuinne: is brown face better, worse, or same as black face? And it wasn’t on Indigenous Peoples Day, i trust?

  22. 22
    Another Scott says:

    From the Lawfare link:

    According to Schiff, on Aug. 12 an individual (it’s not public who) in the intelligence community submitted to the inspector general a whistleblower disclosure intended for Congress. The inspector general determined that the disclosure was credible and qualified as an “urgent concern,” and on Aug. 26—exactly 14 days after receiving it—transmitted to Maguire the whistleblower disclosure together with his determination on the disclosure’s credibility and urgency.

    So the incident happened before August 12, maybe days or even weeks before. The Greenland stuff blew up later in the month. Drats. ;-)

    Trump’s Wacky, Angry, and Extreme August.



  23. 23
    zhena gogolia says:

    @Another Scott:

    If it isn’t the July 31 phone call with Putin, I’ll eat several hats.

  24. 24
    🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳🌷 says:

    @zhena gogolia:
    Well, even the Joker hated the Nazis.

    Sometimes even evil has standards

  25. 25
    Gvg says:

    @Gelfling 545: i’d Rather it was an actual professional intelligence person. That would make it more credible. I already take it as a given that Trump was never socialized enough to get patriotism. I don’t want to waste time on a fool like Bolton.
    I don’t know if Trump still has any real professional of any type around him. I only hear about Crackpots who shouldn’t work for any reputable organization. The flakes seem to have outlasted the experts.

  26. 26
    🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳🌷 says:


    Not to derail things, but PM Justin Trudeau dressed up in brownface in 2001 for an event at a private school where he taught. Photos have just emerged — shockingly, and purely coincidentally, a month away from a general election in Canada.

    Well, I guess the only sensible thing for Canadians to do now is to poutrage and withold their votes so the neofascist Cons can prevail. Both sides after all /s

  27. 27

  28. 28

  29. 29
    Another Scott says:


    Matthew Miller Verified account @matthewamiller

    Matthew Miller Retweeted Susan Hennessey

    Perhaps telling that the DNI consulted with DOJ before making that determination. Barr’s role in trying to keep this all secret is going to merit a lot of scrutiny.

    Matthew Miller added, Susan Hennessey Verified account @Susan_Hennessey

    This new development makes it completely impossible to believe that the DNI actually, reasonably concluded it was not an “urgent” matter as the DNI GC claimed just 24 hours ago. Just unfathomable that the IC would try to hide this from Congress. https://twitter.com/kyledcheney/status/1174129639507333121
    Show this thread

    6:22 PM – 18 Sep 2019

    Of course Barr is involved in this.


    (via nycsouthpaw)


  30. 30
    ola azul says:

    @Cheryl Rofer:

    Michael McFaul:
    “Fully-fledged bilateral relations” sounds like the lifting of US sanctions on Russian companies and individuals to me. https://twitter.com/RusEmbUSA/stat

    Me too!

    @ola azul:

    Not bad for a dumb fisherman!

  31. 31
    Amir Khalid says:

    @Steve in the ATL:
    Brownface is the same thing as blackface, except brown shoe polish. This Justin Trudeau has something of a shady background, so I hear: the Rolling Stones once wrote a song about his parents.

  32. 32
    🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳🌷 says:

    @🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳🌷:
    I want to make clear I’m not making light of brown/blackface. Trudeau was wrong to do this. I just hate this is happening now. The Canadian Cons have recently made supportive noises about crackdowns in Russia on protesters/activists, describing them as “instructive”. The implications of that are both horrifying and obvious

  33. 33

  34. 34
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @Steve in the ATL:

    It was apparently an Arabian Nights theme, and he was Aladdin, AFAICT. He has apologised unequivocally in both official languages. No idea how this will affect the election.

  35. 35
    Wag says:

    Fascists here
    Fascists there
    Trump and Putin disgust me. When I was a kid, I was confused about Nazis on the right and Communists on the left. They both seemed so similar. My mom explained to me that the right/left continuum was a circle, not a line, and that the extremes of right and left bent reality to meet on the far side of the circle, on the side opposite from representative democracy.

    Trump and Putin are shaking hands on the other side of our circle.

  36. 36
    Steve in the ATL says:

    @SiubhanDuinne: “Que je suis désolé, mes amis marron!”

  37. 37
    Gex says:

    @SiubhanDuinne: I’m seeing lots of people wonder why it didn’t come out when he ran before.

    It would seem maybe a great deal of effort was made to keep it from coming up before. So, yes, there’s probably fuckery going on here, but he could have defused this at any time prior to now. Is he surprised to learn that bad actors are going to be trying to weaponize such things?

  38. 38
    sukabi says:

    @geg6: Sue Gordon or something…and Coates took her out of a meeting and told her it was time to leave…She submitted her resignation forthwith.

    Resignations Happened on aug 9th so timing is right.


  39. 39
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    compressed thread:

    Brian ‘Obama Netflix?’ Beutler @ brianbeutler
    Some completely random dates in chronological order:
    Jul 31: Trump has shady undisclosed call with Putin about “forest fires.” (It was about “normalizing” relations.)
    Aug 8: Coats and Gordon out at DNI
    Aug 12: Maguire in at DNI
    Also Aug 12: Whistleblower complains to ICIG
    Sept 9: CNN breaks first story about exfiltrated Russian spy in U.S.
    Also Sept 9: IC IG transmits the fact of the complaint to Schiff
    Sept 10: Bolton resigns
    Sept 13: Schiff goes public


    — Connie C. Keys @ hotelkeys
    Aug 7 Huntsman resigned too
    Aug 28, while we’re at it:
    trump freezes military aid to Ukraine

  40. 40

  41. 41
    Yarrow says:

    @Another Scott:

    Of course Barr is involved in this.

    He needs to be impeached.

  42. 42
  43. 43

  44. 44
    sukabi says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist: you forgot one …Aug 10 Epstein is dead in his cell.

  45. 45
    ola azul says:


    I’m seeing lots of people wonder why it didn’t come out when he ran before.

    It would seem maybe a great deal of effort was made to keep it from coming up before …

    Simplest explanation why it didn’t come up before is, I suspect, timing and potentcy. Trudeau elected PM Nov. 4, 2015. The Northam blackface scandal erupted just this year (hard to believe; hadda look it up, seemed longer ago; scandal-fatigue, I guess). 

  46. 46
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @Cheryl Rofer: I was just gonna add the Stencil one about lobbying the G7 on behalf of Putin

  47. 47
    Brachiator says:


    Not to derail things, but PM Justin Trudeau dressed up in brownface in 2001 for an event at a private school where he taught. Photos have just emerged — shockingly, and purely coincidentally, a month away from a general election in Canada.

    Well, it certainly provides a distraction from Canada’s own espionage scandal.

    A senior Canadian police intelligence official charged with espionage-related offenses had access secret information from both domestic and international allies it was confirmed Monday.

    Cameron Ortis is accused of multiple offenses under the Security of Information Act, as well as two sections of the country’s Criminal Code, according to a statement from the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP).

    They include the “unauthorized communication of special operational information” and possession of a device “for surreptitiously communicating, obtaining or retaining information,” the RCMP said.

    The case has rocked the elite Mounties and sent diplomats scrambling to contain the fallout.

    Some of the information may relate to Russian money laundering. I wonder whether there might be a Trump connection here.

  48. 48
    joel hanes says:

    @ola azul:

    Magnitsky Act

    I think Trump was giving up the American spy that the US extracted from Russia, so that Putin can kill him.

  49. 49
    Kelly says:

    @zhena gogolia:

    I’ll eat several hats

    Here’s a link just in case

  50. 50
    Mary G says:

    @Cheryl Rofer: That he promised Vlad the location of the mole the CIA pulled out of Moscow so some horrific poison could be applied was the first thing I thought of.

  51. 51
  52. 52
    ola azul says:

    @joel hanes:

    Excellent supposition. Wouldn’t never take that one offa my Trump-treason bingo card, that’s for sure! (And really, limiting Trump’s possible offenses to just any single one over the course of a long, rambling phone call would be a disservice to his sterling capacity to be multi-treasonal!)

  53. 53
    Quaker in a Basement says:

    Y’all might be jumping the gun to assume it’s Putin. Other possibilities: Netanyahu, Kim, bin Salman.

  54. 54
    sdhays says:

    No way the whistleblower is John Bolton. He doesn’t strike me as the kind of guy who would think that rules like whistleblower process apply to him when he knows people in Congress and the media will take his calls.

    But it would not surprise me at all if this is related to his firing. I never really accepted the party line that it was because Bolton was too hawkish. Though I was assuming that Dump was angry that Bolton had allowed the IC to protect their spy from his leaks.

  55. 55

  56. 56
    cain says:

    He kind of does look like Aladdin. He should have put that picture out there himself way back when so that he can’t be used against him.

  57. 57
    🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳🌷 says:


    I was reading this LG&M article about Malcolm Gladwell’s new book that has a chapter on the Sandusky scandal at Penn State. Gladwell tries to defend Paterno, absurdly claiming that he couldn’t possibly have known what was going on, on account of him being a doddering old fool obsessed with football. Which is not even close to what the real Joe Paterno was like

    Apparently, there are people who are so obsessed with Penn State football that they refuse to believe that Paterno knew about the rapes, lest it ruin their enjoyment of the team. Which is pretty fucked up to say the least. Can any BJer football fans explain to me why people who never went to college follow college ball in the first place? The NFL I can understand, but who cares how many games Flyover State Technical wins? Is it because that’s where the NFL gets their players from?

  58. 58
    Brachiator says:

    @Amir Khalid:

    This Justin Trudeau has something of a shady background, so I hear: the Rolling Stones once wrote a song about his parents.

    What? The Rolling Stones song, “Respectable,” which you may be referring to, came out in 1978. Justin Trudeau was 7 years old. Must have been a hell of a shady kid. Or not.

    Trudeau’s mother had been seen partying with Mick Jagger and the Stones in 1977, and soon after divorced her prime minister husband. But she was a troubled woman.

  59. 59
  60. 60
    Kay says:

    Robert O’Brien ‘Looks the Part,’ but Has Spent Little Time Playing It
    Mr. O’Brien, President Trump’s new national security adviser, is said to bring milder views and a sunnier personality to the job than John R. Bolton.

    Oh, no. Not again. “This one will be different

    He’s horrible, or he wouldn’t have been asked. It’s a job requirement.

  61. 61

    Preview of tomorrow’s tweets tonight…”Deep State, Deep State”…this concludes the preview of tomorrow’s tweets tonight.

  62. 62
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @geg6: @zhena gogolia: It is not Sue Gordon.

  63. 63
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Jeffro: I’ll have a follow on to Cheryl’s post tomorrow where I’ll focus on the counterintelligence angle.

  64. 64
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    I interrupt your speculation with a bulletin on our serial-lying liar who lies most junior associate Justice

    lison Kodjak @ alikodjakNPR
    Brett Kavanaugh agreed to talk to @katekelly and @rpogrebin for their book – If they wrote that they didn’t talk with him. The authors — who told the story tonight @PressClubDC — refused and walked away from the interview.

    they say they didn’t put it in their book because it happened so late in the process… but they’re talking about it now… these journalists strike me making some odd decisions

  65. 65

    @🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳🌷: Well, here in LA, we went 20 years without a NFL team; so the college game(UCLA and U$C) were the only game in town.

  66. 66
    🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳🌷 says:

    @Adam L Silverman:

    I was only half-serious tbh

  67. 67

    @Adam L Silverman: Don’t forget the ICIG will testify to the House Intel Committee behind closed doors tomorrow!

  68. 68

    Good night, y’all. The kitties need their late-night crunchies.

  69. 69
    Hitlesswonder says:

    @Kay: NPR played a clip of a previous interview with the new guy in which he said that Trump would not be a “Panda hugger” with regard to relations with China. Regardless of what you think those relations should be, using that phrasing in an interview seems less than circumspect or serious. The piece also noted that O’Brien was dispatched by Trump to monitor the trial of A$AP Rocky in Sweden. So, yeah, what you said.

  70. 70
    🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳🌷 says:

    @Cheryl Rofer:
    Good night!

  71. 71
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @zhena gogolia: The problem is we do not actually know all of the phone calls the President makes because the White House has been less than forthcoming about what, exactly, the President actually does all day. And that’s not even counting the calls he makes on his unsecured phone from the residence at night when he’s on his own.

  72. 72
    🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳🌷 says:

    Yeah, I didn’t think of that angle. I suppose if you like football and don’t have a nearby professional team, college football is your next best option

  73. 73
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Gvg: The way the WaPo story is reported, the person who filed the complaint with the IC’s IG is a career intel officer who was detailed to the National Security Staff on the National Security Council.

  74. 74
    sdhays says:

    @Cheryl Rofer: I don’t remember where now, but I’m sure I read today a quote from Mark Warner about how this is serious and the DNI should release the information that’s required by law. It was much more measured than Schiff’s letter, and it didn’t suggest any extra knowledge.

  75. 75
    🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳🌷 says:

    @Adam L Silverman:

    The problem is we do not actually know all of the phone calls the President makes because the White House has been less than forthcoming about what, exactly, the President actually does all day.

    Huh, it’s almost like they’ve got something to hide. What’s that old right-wing saw about having nothing to hide and nothing to fear?

  76. 76
    ola azul says:

    @Adam L Silverman:

    Codename: Deep Mole.

  77. 77
    Mai naem mobile says:

    Sad that the automatic assumption is that this has to do with Putin. There is no speculation that its anybody else. Not NK, not Bibi, not MBS, not China. Fucking traitor in the WH.

  78. 78
    sdhays says:

    @Adam L Silverman: That occurred to me too. Why should we assume that the promise was made on one of the calls we’ve been told about? It even makes more sense that it was on an unsecured call since that could be how the issue came up through the IC system in the first place – listening in on Putin (or whoever) and surprise, surprise Captain Traitor is on line one.

  79. 79
    jonas says:

    This sounds more serious than Trump offering to lift sanctions on Russia. We know that’s basically what Flynn was negotiating and it’s sort of old news at this point. I’m betting it was something more alarming to the IC like promising to unmask or withdraw our intelligence assets in a critical country like Russia or China in return for some kind of specific quid pro quo. Trump’s been quoted in recent weeks complaining about how human intelligence (i.e. spying) is “unfair” or something like that, and we know now that the CIA smuggled a highly-placed mole out of the Kremlin last year fearing Trump would say something compromising to the Russians about him.

    This is totally normal, by the way.

  80. 80
    Another Scott says:

    @Adam L Silverman: But they don’t say that the person was on Donnie’s NSC staff at the time, do they? Maybe the person heard the information through other channels?


    I assume we’ll know more in coming days.


  81. 81
    Mai naem mobile says:

    @Cheryl Rofer: Butr is a big chickenshit and I am not all that impressed by Warner. Not sure what Warner got elected in VA as governor and senator twice .

  82. 82
    ola azul says:


    Truly a (disg)race to the bottom.

  83. 83
    Kay says:


    seems less than circumspect or serious

    They should just pick people from a Trump rally. Make it a contest. Call them up on stage and have Trump pretend to interview them. Fun! The three hour hatefests aren’t getting the ratings they used to.

  84. 84
    sdhays says:

    @Mai naem mobile: I think it’s either Putin or Prince Bonesaw. I don’t see Dump as being sufficiently subservient to Kim or Xi. And I think what Dump might promise Bibi wouldn’t be disturbing enough (to career IC) to warrant all of this. But it’s more than possible that I’m just not imaginative enough.

  85. 85
    joel hanes says:

    @🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳🌷:


    Humans are social animals, and for most of our history, we lived in bands or tribes.
    We have a deep need to belong to a tribe, and to affirmatively demonstrate membership in that tribe.

    Watch the primate dominance displays in the opening “Africa waterhole” scenes of 2001 A Space Odyssey — not so much the invention of the weapon and the killing, but the capering and screaming that precede it.
    Then watch the fans at a close sportsball game.
    Then watch Rep Collins’s recent performance in the Lewandowski hearing.

    I see deep connections.


  86. 86
    Mai naem mobile says:

    @Kay: Pompeo doesnt get along with him which I like because Pompeo is an evangelist nutjob but he kinda sorta gets along with Mick Mulvaney who I think will end up being labelled as one of the top three assholes in the Trumpov admin and that’s saying something with so many assholes competing for the top 5 spots.

  87. 87
    MomSense says:


    One of our allies could have picked it up, too. I don’t know that it’s necessarily Putin. Trumps been hot to get dirt on Joe and Hunter Biden from Ukraine.

  88. 88
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Cheryl Rofer: This is the real counterintelligence problem. Or one major part of it. Because there’s nothing but a preemptory readout of the 31 July call, if that is even the actual call since the White House is less than forthcoming about what exactly the President does all day, and it is highly likely that whomever he was speaking with made their own recording, that the President has opened himself up to blackmail and to be influenced by a foreign power. Even if the promise is something that shouldn’t be a threat to American interests or those of our allies, because almost no one in the US knows anything about it, but whomever he made the promise to does, the President has made himself open to blackmail and foreign influence. He’s turned himself into an insider threat to the security and interests of the US.

  89. 89
    Kay says:

    @joel hanes:

    I think Trump was giving up the American spy that the US extracted from Russia, so that Putin can kill him.

    i have no idea and you may well be right but isn’t it wild how this is now part of normal speculation? I wondered about that “frog boiling” thing and that turns out to be true. What becomes normal, over time.

  90. 90
    sdhays says:

    @Kay: The level of organization required to institute that professional a process is beyond these people.

  91. 91
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Cheryl Rofer: This is possible, but I don’t know how plausible as the story about the mole hadn’t broken yet.

  92. 92

    @Kay: So a live version of The Apprentice?

  93. 93
    sdhays says:

    @Adam L Silverman:

    He’s turned himself into an insider threat to the security and interests of the US.


  94. 94
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    Kay says:

    @Mai naem mobile:

    I don’t know- aren’t all these descriptions of him just basically saying “they like how he looks and he’s friendly”?

    He literally could be 20 million other people. The descriptions are like “well, he isn’t an evil gargoyle, that’s for sure”

    Most people aren’t. I just thought one needed a little more than that. It’s a very low bar.

  96. 96
    🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳🌷 says:

    @joel hanes:
    That’s also a good explanation. On a related note, most televised sports aside from high-stakes games like the Super Bowel, bore me to tears. The only times I have found sports exciting is when I’ve either physically been in the stands or played them

  97. 97
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Cheryl Rofer: I’m waiting for Nunes to be Nunes.

  98. 98
    Martin says:

    Apropos of nothing, this July 31 Trump-Putin phone call, which Trump initiated ostensibly to offer assistance for wildfires in Siberia, has never made sense to me. Also, California was burning at the time, and Trump barely lifted a finger.

    To his credit, Putin delivered WAY more votes for Trump than California did, so y’know.

  99. 99
    Martin says:

    @Adam L Silverman: This strikes me as some staffer brought over from CIA, etc. No political appointee would do this.

  100. 100
    🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳🌷 says:

    @Adam L Silverman:
    Let Nunes be Nunes! Make the Azores Great Again! //

  101. 101
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Another Scott: The way the piece read to me, the implication is this was a career intel officer detailed to the National Security Council from their home agency. That may not be the case, but I’m not the only one who read it that way. Former CIA officer and National Security Council spokesman Ned Price had the same takeaway. We could both be wrong. We could both be right. We won’t know until we know.

  102. 102
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Mai naem mobile: It might be because O’Brien is Mormon. There’s major bad blood between evangelicals and Mormons.

  103. 103
    dww44 says:

    @SiubhanDuinne: For pity’s sake. Sounds like a nothingburger to me. Now the suppressed whistleblower complaint seems a tad more than a nothingurger. It could even be a Whopper burger.

  104. 104
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @sdhays: I’m not sure what’s funny about that.

  105. 105
    dlwchico says:

    @lumpkin: I am interested in slipjoint pocketknives and the right wingers are thick in this hobby. I have just about quit several times just because I don’t want to be associated with them. I did quit all the FB groups I was in about the hobby.

  106. 106
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Martin: That’s my read. Could be CIA, could be DIA, could be one of the few career DNI folks (most of the folks at DNI are also detailees/seconded), could be someone from the National Security Sections at DOJ or FBI or someone from NSA, etc, etc.

  107. 107
    NotMax says:

    Speculation begats eructation.

  108. 108
    🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳🌷 says:


    And a fracas begats flatus

  109. 109
    MomSense says:


    Even if it’s a whopper burger, what is the likelihood the senate republicans will do anything about it?

  110. 110
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳🌷: Those are Freedom Molecules.

  111. 111
    sdhays says:

    @Adam L Silverman: He was an insider threat on January 21, 2017 at the latest. “Ha ha”. :-(

  112. 112
    feebog says:

    @Adam L Silverman:

    he way the WaPo story is reported, the person who filed the complaint with the IC’s IG is a career intel officer who was detailed to the National Security Staff on the National Security Council.

    Given that information it is only a matter of time before the whistle blower is identified by some industrious reporter. There can’t be that many intelligence analysts coming and going on the National Security Staff, no?

  113. 113
    Amir Khalid says:

    Yes, the link is indeed to Respectable. Margaret Trudeau was actually following the Rolling Stones tour party in Canada that year. (I don’t know if she was an actual groupie, but at the time it did kind of look that way.) It was a tour with extra scandal points — the Mounties busted Keith Richards for heroin. Keef narrowly avoided a long stretch in jail, which could have meant the end of the Stones. Does that make Justin’s past potentially shady? If you squint the rght way …

  114. 114
    Amir Khalid says:

    @🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳🌷:

    Super Bowel

    If typo, oopsie. If bon mot, most excellent!

  115. 115
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @sdhays: I think I wrote that post in January 2017.

  116. 116
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @feebog: Right now Mick Mulvaney, having been screamed out of bed by the President, is now screaming at someone to compile a list of the senior career IC officials assigned to the National Security Staff at the National Security Council who went back to their home agencies at the end of July/beginning of August.

  117. 117
    Amir Khalid says:

    @Adam L Silverman:
    I thought it was already publicly known that what this President does all day is goof off.

  118. 118
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Amir Khalid: Also, Chris Claremont and Jon Byrne didn’t like him very much.

  119. 119
    dww44 says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist: I agree with this assessment. Saw their interview last evening and came away totally perplexed by what their goal seems to be?

  120. 120
    Martin says:

    @Cheryl Rofer: This sounds right to me, fwiw.

  121. 121
    Millard Filmore says:

    @Adam L Silverman:

    whomever he made the promise to does, the President has made himself open to blackmail and foreign influence

    Unless there is other blackmail behind all this, Trump can just claim “I never said that.” With Trump, it has to be big to be useful as a stick.

  122. 122
    Yarrow says:

    @Adam L Silverman:

    the President has made himself open to blackmail and foreign influence. He’s turned himself into an insider threat to the security and interests of the US.

    So nothing new then. This has been the case since before he became President.

  123. 123
    dww44 says:

    @Mai naem mobile: I don’t dislike Warner but agree with you about how he got elected in Virginia. He seems to be a quite right of center Democrat. And in the not so distant past, Burr gave off some true patriotic vibes, but of late seems to be firmly in the Trump camp. I swear I hope I live long enough to understand what exactly Trump has on these elected Republicans that’s rendered them spineless and/or sycophantic supplicants.

  124. 124
    🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳🌷 says:

    @Adam L Silverman:

    @Amir Khalid:

  125. 125
    Martin says:

    @Adam L Silverman: And it seems to me that a career staffer would go ballistic if Trump was promising to turn over a US asset under US protection to Putin, who would most likely disappear forever. That transcends the disagreement over policy, declassification arguments.

  126. 126
    Chetan Murthy says:


    what exactly Trump has on these elected Republicans that’s rendered them spineless and/or sycophantic supplicants.

    He has their voters. And they’re nihilistic creeps who only believe in one thing: power.

  127. 127
    🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳🌷 says:

    @Adam L Silverman:
    Damn. The Bronze Age was a lot different than the Silver Age of Comics. A lot more mature themes. But honestly, I have a hard time seeing the PM of Canada trying to fuck with the US government in practically any universe

  128. 128
  129. 129
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @Mai naem mobile: @dww44: Mark Warner was basically the Bill Clinton of Virginia — the guy who tweaked Democratic strategy just enough (by being wonkish and good for jobs/business) to make the party palatable to the middle-class suburbanites who used to be the Republican base. I mean, it wasn’t that long ago that George Allen and his nooses were a dominant force in Virginia state politics.

  130. 130
    dww44 says:

    @MomSense: I think it’s a given that the Senate Intel committee is likely to do nothing. But Adam Schiff and the House committee will do something. And, as Adam L says above, we shall wait to see if Devin Nunes highfoots it to the White House after the closed door hearing in the a.m. I sure hope Schiff has figured out that angle ahead of 9 a.m.

  131. 131
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Martin: I don’t think the timeline is right for the asset that was reported on last week. That story didn’t break until September. The call and the promise had to happen by the end of the first week of August.

  132. 132
    joel hanes says:

    what exactly Trump has on these elected Republicans

    Republican voters are wildly supportive of Trump.
    These elected Republicans know it.

  133. 133
  134. 134
    FlipYrWhig says:

    If this were 24 the call would be Trump telling Netanyahu he’d successfully arranged an election-eve surprise in Saudi Arabia.

  135. 135

    @FlipYrWhig: Bibi would have already known that, remember he has Trump’s phone bugged.

  136. 136
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @🐾BillinGlendaleCA: Judging by his speeches, Trump seems like the kind of person who happily tells people things they already know, and that he’s already told them. “Hey, Bibi, I did that thing, you know, the big thing we’ve been talking about, with the explosions?”

  137. 137
  138. 138
    Amir Khalid says:

    Off-topic, but this story deserves to be highlighted in the next pet post.

  139. 139
  140. 140
    Amir Khalid says:

    Apparently the Trump administration is considering an expansion of its trade war with Asia.

  141. 141
    Amir Khalid says:

    Zippy died a hero.

  142. 142
    piratedan says:

    well, with these guys, I wonder how much damage would be done if someone informed Trump that not only is Sean Hannity working as an Intelligence Asset for Canada, Mitch McConnell has a secret understanding with the PRC in regards to trade concessions for the State of Kentucky and is laundering his cash thru Bloomberg so that Trump never gets a taste….

    with these guys its not only business, its also personal….

  143. 143

    @Amir Khalid: Trump want’s the US to have a trade surplus with every country; of course, trade doesn’t work that way.

  144. 144
    Yutsano says:

    @🐾BillinGlendaleCA: The joke from the rest of the Pac-12 is that LA never needed professional football because the U$C Trojans had that covered.

  145. 145
    NotMax says:

    @Amir Khalid

    Because bellyaching that the the U.S. (population 327 million) buys more from Malaysia than Malaysia (population 32 million) buys from the U.S. makes so-o-o much sense. //

  146. 146

    @Yutsano: Heh, we folk in Westwood know that.

  147. 147

    @NotMax: Remember, Trump’s a stable genius.

  148. 148
    Repatriated says:

    @🐾BillinGlendaleCA: And that stable is Augean.

  149. 149
    Amir Khalid says:

    I’ve done my bit to help reduce the US trade deficit with Malaysia. I have purchased Levis jeans and Linda Ronstadt CDs. I have eaten at McDonald’s. I own guitars and amps from Fender Musical Instruments Corp. (Which Fender made in China, though.)

  150. 150
    2liberal says:

    @Cheryl Rofer:
    re: #1 not your fault but the possessive form of its does not have an apostrophe ! let congress do ITS JOB not IT’S JOB !


  151. 151
    Steeplejack (sky-high wi-fi) says:

    @Amir Khalid:

    Thank you for your support!

  152. 152
    SFAW says:

    What was the “promise”?

    “I will gladly pay you Tuesday someday for a hamberder today”?

  153. 153
    barbequebob says:

    @Amir Khalid: I always took this song as commenting on some of the people associated with the Carter Administration (not Carter himself) who were far less “straight” than prior administrations. Lines like, “you’re the rag trade girl, you’re the queen of pron you’re the easiest lay on the White House lawn” seemed to me to make it a song about Washington DC

  154. 154
    Hunter says:

    “The whistleblower complaint that has triggered a tense showdown between the U.S. intelligence community and Congress. . . . ”

    No — it’s not a showdown between the “intelligence community” and Congress, it’s another case of Trump telling Congress to blow off. And based on Congress’ record to date, he’ll get away with it — again.

  155. 155
    djysrv says:

    Nobody seems to have asked whether the so-called “whistleblower letter” comes with an attachment, that is, a electronic intercept of the person at the foreign power which US intel monitors via NSA. If it exists, then the intercept will contain the US person speaking or “making a promise” and the record will be there. In other words, the US person speaking will be recorded not because they were being tapped, but because the person they were talking to was.

    Case in point, former national security adviser Micheal Flynn was taped talking to potential clients not because he was a target, but because they were.


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