Ken Vogel Has a Bullshit Story To Tell That Will Help the President and He Would Appreciate It if the President and Rudy Giuliani Would Shut Up Because They Are Screwing Up His Work!

Ken Vogel has a bullshit story to tell about Vice President Biden and his son Hunter Biden that would help the President’s reelection chances. Vogel’s story is bullshit, but he’s very upset that the President and Rudy Giuliani just won’t shut up long enough so that Vogel can peddle his bullshit.

Former FBI Special Agent specializing in counterintelligence Asha Rangappa summarizes Vogel’s efforts very, very well.

How do we know the story that Vogel, as well as the President and Rudy Giuliani, are peddling is bullshit? Because two different publications, The Washington Post and The Intercept have debunked it.

And we know where this disinformation comes from, Russian government media outlets. And they started pushing it all the way back in 2014 most likely because most people reasonably assumed Vice President Biden, as the incumbent vice president would run to succeed President Obama positioning his campaign as a third Obama term (see the dates in the third tweet below). This also shows that Putin’s planning to interfere in US politics and the 2016 presidential election through information warfare goes farther back then has been previously recognized.

There’s another piece to the puzzle that debunks Vogel’s, the President’s, and Giuliani’s bullshit disinformation that they lifted whole cloth from Putin’s information warfare campaign against the United States – the legal and Federal professional ethics piece. And here too, even if everything Vogel, the President, and Giuliani are alleging were true, which it isn’t as both the facts and the timelines do not line up, there is no there there. Here’s a deep dive into these issues to answer a question asked by former Federal prosecutor Ken White, who tweets and blogs as Popehat.

And the response from courtesy of the Thread Reader Ap:

asked if anyone had done a law-based deep dive into the allegations that Biden somehow did something legally impermissible (i.e., conflict of interest) by being involved in the Ukraine prosecutor negotiations. I decided to look into it. BLUF: No /Tweetstorm
First off, the general financial conflict of interest laws that generally prohibit Federal employees from participating in matters in which they have financial interests (namely 18 USC.208) expressly do not apply to the Vice President (nor the President). 18 USC 202(c)
Moreover, w/r/t family members of executive branch employees, the primary financial conflict of interest statute only prohibits employees from participating in particular matters in which the employee, their spouse, or their MINOR children have a financial interest. 18 USC 208(a)
So, even assuming for the sake of argument that the conflict of interest statute applied to the VP & even if the departure of the prosecutor were to have had an impact on Hunter’s finances (which all reputable reports suggest was an impossibility given the timeline of events)…
the VP’s involvement in discussions re: the prosecutor still would not have constituted a criminal conflict of interest because Hunter was obviously not a MINOR child at the time.
That said, if the Federal conflict of interest laws did apply to the VP, the fact that a criminal conflict didn’t exist under the statute wouldn’t have ended the legal analysis…
Federal employees are also subject to Standards of Ethical Conduct, which are set out in broader regulations issued by the Office of Govt Ethics. 5 CFR 2635.
Under the Standards of Ethical Conduct, Federal employees generally should recuse themselves from participating in certain matters even if there is no prohibited financial conflict of interest under 18 USC 208.
Under 5 CFR 2635.502, an employee is generally required to recuse when there is a “particular matter involving specific parties, the employee has a “covered relationship” (such as a close family) and a reasonable person would question their impartiality.
Applying this here, even if it were true (its not!) that the prosecutor was investigating the company Biden’s son was involved with at the time that Biden was engaged in discussions re: the prosecutor’s removal, its not clear that this rule would be directly applicable here…
The rule, by its terms, only applies to “particular matters involving specific parties,” which is intentionally narrow and applies to specific proceedings affecting the legal rights of the parties or transactions between identified parties. 5 CFR 2640.102(1).
Examples of such matters are particular contracts, grants, product approval applications, litigation, investigations, etc. Here, it seems a stretch to say that discussions re whether the prosecutor should remain in his position was a “particular matter involving specific parties”
Moreover, even if you stretched & decided it met that definition, the particular rule would not apply directly here anyway, because Biden’s son (nor even the company) was most definitely NOT a party to the matter at issue (whether the prosecutor should remain in his position)…
A caveat: there’s a catch-all provision at 5 CFR 2635.502(a)(2), acknowledging that even in other circumstances not addressed in the reg, an employee should generally recuse anytime their participation in a matter would reasonably raise a question re: their impartiality.
If Biden’s son was involved with a company under active investigation by the Ukrainian prosecutor (again, apparently this is not true!)…
I think nearly any Federal ethics official would have cited this regulation and advised the VP NOT to get involved in discussions regarding the future of the Ukrainian prosecutor, even if only to avoid creating the appearance of a potential conflict
Even still, this is very much a judgment call and even under this incredibly-strained counter-factual hypothetical, the VP’s involvement still would NOT have been a criminal violation.
In short, even if the VP wasn’t exempt from these conflict of interest laws, and even if the facts were other than they actually appear to be, Biden’s behavior still would have been lawful. /End @waltshaub @NormEisen @RWPUSA

Vogel, the President, Giuliani, even the Vice President, are all peddling this bullshit or actively involved with trying to get Ukraine’s new president and his government to assist them in ratfucking the 2020 presidential election, really ratfuck the Democratic primaries, to the President’s benefit. So we already know the cui bono or who stands to benefit piece of this active measures information warfare campaign of disinformation aimed at the American people: the President. What we don’t know, but someone really should be looking into it, is what exactly does Ken Vogel get out of this? What does he stand to benefit? The real question here is why is Vogel clearly peddling debunked Russian disinformation that was created and first used back in 2014 to help obscure Putin’s moves to scarf up Crimea, invade the Donbass, and potentially dirty up a potential Biden 2016 candidacy? Is Vogel just a useful idiot or is he actively participating in an act of information warfare begun by Putin, weaponized by Giuliani and the President, which is intended to propagandize Americans in order to achieve Putin’s strategic interests? This is the real story, not the bullshit that Vogel is pushing. Enterprising reporters and investigators should be looking into it; trying to figure out exactly why Vogel is doing this and what he is getting out of it.

Open thread!

PS: Someone should really also be looking into exactly what it is that Giuliani has been doing in Europe, especially the post Soviet states, over the better part of the past ten to fifteen years supposedly as part of his consulting work as a security expert, which he is not. Journalists and investigators should also be looking into who has been paying for whatever it is he’s been doing. It isn’t all just beer, skittles, and cuckolding Marines. And it clearly has made Giuliani a very wealthy man.

Full Disclosure: I served as the Cultural Advisor (senior civilian advisor for culture) to the Commanding General of US Army Europe under temporary assigned control (TACON) from December 2013 to June 2014 and under operational control (OPCON) from June to August 2014. The views expressed here are solely my own and do not reflect those of US Army Europe and the US Army either in 2014 or now.

247 replies
  1. 1
    trollhattan says:

    Wait, “The Intercept” is calling BS? My decoder ring done got broke, I think.

  2. 2
  3. 3
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @trollhattan: They do some good stuff. Mehdi Hassan writes there and he’s sharp as a tack and almost always on point.

    The bigger takeaway should be that this bit of disinformation was started as part of a Russian information warfare op from 2014!

  4. 4
    trollhattan says:

    @John Revolta:
    We’re here to (self)serve. :-P

  5. 5
    Matt says:

    what exactly does Ken Vogel get out of this? What does he stand to benefit?

    Nuclear take: maybe he’s just a fascist. Maybe he goes home every night and rubs one out while imagining crying children in cages.

    The NYT has been run by fascists for a long time, we need to stop pretending otherwise.

  6. 6
    trollhattan says:

    @Adam L Silverman:
    Pretty astonishing to think they stuck with it five years. And one wonders, how many unseen parallel efforts are ongoing, just to keep them viable “in case.”

  7. 7
    James E Powell says:

    I don’t have the resources to do an investigation, but I do have the ability to make reasonable inferences. In this case, my inference is that the NYT wants Trump re-elected but they don’t want to be completely obvious about it, like FOX. They are not going to promote him as the greatest ever, they are just going to downplay or avoid talking about his corruption while pounding every RW bullshit claim against any D who might get the nomination and the eventual nominee. They don’t need to do any work on those because they will just publish whatever stories the Republicans give them.

    That’s what they did in 2016 and it worked for them.

  8. 8
    debbie says:

    Where are the investigations of Trump’s business practices? Pretty nervy of Trump calling anyone out on this kind of thing.

  9. 9
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @trollhattan: Lots and lots.

  10. 10

    Thanks, Adam, for pulling the resources together. I’ve wanted to but haven’t had the time. This is a valuable post.

  11. 11

    Speaking of The Intercept, I wonder why they haven’t mentioned how we blew up 30 or 40 pine nut farmers in Afghanistan with a drone strike the other day? What was the name of that guy over there who was all
    “DRROOOOAANNNNEZZZ!!” back in the Obama days? Mr. Greenjeans? Oh well.

  12. 12
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Cheryl Rofer: You are quite welcome.

  13. 13
  14. 14
    Quaker in a Basement says:

    “…and cuckolding Marine’s wives.”

    No, he is cuckolding a Marine, not the wife. Unless you mean to say that Rudy is sexing the Marine. This has been your Daily Language Pedant announcement. We return you to your comment thread, in progress.

  15. 15
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @John Revolta: He’s a bit distracted right now, he’s got a bad case of Bolsainaro he’s trying to fight off.

  16. 16

    @Adam L Silverman: I’ve posted it on Twitter and Facebook.

  17. 17

    OT and BTW, Mark Zaid is now on the whistleblower’s legal team.

  18. 18
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Quaker in a Basement: Good catch. That didn’t come out quite right. I’ve fixed it.

  19. 19
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Cheryl Rofer: Thanks!

  20. 20
    Chyron HR says:

    But I don’t understand, the assholes who claim to constitute the American left have declared, on this very website, that the Democrats just have to cut the NYT a check and they will start being truthful and fair in their reporting.

  21. 21
    cynthia ackerman says:

    Lock him up.

  22. 22
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Cheryl Rofer: Given that Bakaj is of counsel at Zaid’s firm, Zaid had previously represented Bakaj in his successful lawsuit against the previous and acting IC IG last year, I’m not in the least bit surprised.

  23. 23

    @Adam L Silverman: Nasty stuff, that. Spreads like wildfire.

  24. 24
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @cynthia ackerman: Which one? All of the above? Some of the above? A & B? B & C? A & C?//

  25. 25
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @John Revolta: He should’ve used the lotion!

  26. 26
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Baud: I’m deleting this. Not here. Not even as a joke. That poor family has been through too much by these asshats.

  27. 27
    Baud says:

    I am heartened there is some pushback, unlike in 2016.

  28. 28
    Adam L Silverman says:

  29. 29
    Baud says:

    @Adam L Silverman:

    Oh please. They’re not here.

  30. 30
    JPL says:

    At this point at every opportunity the democratic candidates need to say the president is a liar. They don’t need to expound on it.

  31. 31
    Baud says:


    Doesn’t solve the NYT problem.

  32. 32
    Duane says:

    Kay was saying much the same at the bottom of the last thread. It’s Russians Trumpov, FNYT and the season for treason. Fuckem.

  33. 33
    JaySinWA says:

    Kurt Eichenwald takes on Ken Vogel NYT in disarray! Read the whole thing.

    1. It is very rare that I criticize a reporter by name. However, the recklessness and poor reporting of @kenvogel – and his "we're going to keep pulling back the Biden story" garbage requires pointing out the abject poverty of his "reporting" and his attempts to take a few…— Kurt Eichenwald (@kurteichenwald) September 21, 2019

  34. 34
    MomSense says:

    He killed him in the basement of the comet ping pong pizza parlor with Anthony Weiner’s laptop.

    I’m spending the weekend with my dad while he recovers from back surgery. He’s taking a nap and I’m sitting here keeping him company while tonight’s dinner (split pea soup) simmers on the stove.

  35. 35
    WaterGirl says:

    @Adam L Silverman: Gee, you get to keep your Twitter account for nearly 2 years after you aid in the murder and dismemberment of a journalist in America. Way to step up Twitter.

  36. 36
    The Moar You Know says:

    So far this seems to have done nothing but Streisand effect, in that most are reporting that a Russian attempt is being made to throw the election and the allegations are bullshit. The NYT could possibly reverse that, but time’s running out.

    Deeply hilarious if this ends up helping Biden and hurting Trump. It easily could.

  37. 37
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @WaterGirl: They’re special.

  38. 38
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @The Moar You Know: That was David Axelrod’s take. For whatever that is worth.

  39. 39
    WaterGirl says:

    @MomSense: Sorry to hear your dad had back surgery. But it’s a pretty good sign that your dad is a lot stronger than he was, yes? That they think he could handle surgery?

  40. 40
    Baud says:


    That was good. Again, glad to see it, but it makes me feel sad for Hillary.

  41. 41
    Steeplejack says:

    To save others looking it up: “BLUF” = “bottom line up front.”

  42. 42
    Baud says:


    You’re a good kid.

  43. 43
    Kay says:

    I don’t know why everyone’s so upset. The NYTimes is working with “Rudy” on a story. Not the first time, I’d wager!

    If there hadn’t have been a whistleblower we’d all be wondering 6 months from now why the NYTimes is obsessed with Hunter Biden so at least this time we got a head’s up.

  44. 44
    Adam L Silverman says:

    Just as an FYI, I added this full disclosure above:

    I served as the cultural advisor (senior civilian advisor for culture) to the Commanding General of US Army Europe under temporary assigned control (TACON) from December 2013 to June 2014 and under operational control (OPCON) from June to August 2014. The views expressed here are solely my own and do not reflect those of US Army Europe and the US Army either in 2014 or now.

  45. 45
    JPL says:

    @Cheryl Rofer: or Adam… Why does the whistleblower need a lawyer at this point. Knowing the administration it is smart idea, but is it necessary in normal situations.

  46. 46
    Baud says:


    The forecast calls for clouds and shadows.

  47. 47
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Steeplejack: What’s your point?

  48. 48
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @JPL: Because, as I wrote in my post the other night, the Intelligence Community Whistleblower Protection Act does NOT actually provide any protections for Intelligence Community and/or national security whistleblowers. So hiring a lawyer who specializes in this stuff before proceeding is a very, very, very smart move that can well preserve both one’s career and one’s clearances. I would, in general, highly recommend that no one act as a whistleblower without first consulting and retaining a qualified attorney who specializes in whistleblower law to act on your behalf.

  49. 49
    jon says:

    The bit about the NYT standing by the story and the reporting by the co-author of the Vogel piece got curiouser and curiouser once she took a job in the Ukrainian government. It’s almost as if the NYT has some sort of insider to guarantee the ratfucking will always have a fresh quote at the ready.

  50. 50
    MomSense says:


    He seems so frail, but it was either surgery or never walk again and he’s a fighter. It’s kind of nice just being here the two of us.

  51. 51
    Chetan Murthy says:

    Via hylen at LG&M:
    Kendzior and Andrea Chalupa: Starting at 43:00, they talk about Vogel. But the build-up, starting around 32:00 and continuing past 44:00, is pretty gripping. I HATE PODCASTS. AND YET I’m still listening, b/c so gripping. Also enraging.

  52. 52
    aj says:

    @adam L Silverman what’s your twitter?

  53. 53
    sharl says:

    Got notice of this post via Cheryl’s tweet. Well done!

    Regarding Giuliani, I formed my conclusion about him a couple years ago, in light of the pro-Trump political corruption in the FBI’s NYC field office. Rudy was a conduit for that crap. But from nycsouthpaw’s TL, here’s someone who apparently been documenting Rudy’s travels and whatnot for awhile, e.g.,

    This is so alarming. Rudy Giuliani really only travels abroad for 3 reasons:1. Collect paychecks from foreign govt's for "cybersecurity consulting" 2. Conduct secret, backchannel foreign policy negotiations3. Launder Americans voter data to ex-US entities for cyber operations— Portlus Glam (@PortlusGlam) October 20, 2018

    I don’t see much new in Portlus Glam’s twitter TL or on her Medium page, though Rudy’s corruption is timeless and follows a more-or-less consistent pattern. With a corrupt Attorney General in place, I’m not optimistic that justice will be served to Rudy or the NYC FBI scumbags any time soon, if ever. There’s a lot more from Portlus Glam that I’ve only glanced at, which I haven’t verified and won’t try; I’m prepared to believe anything negative about Giuliani I see, based solely on what IS known about him.

  54. 54
    Steeplejack says:

    @Adam L Silverman:

    Easy, tiger. When I read Popehat’s thread earlier this week, I had to look up “BLUF” to see what it meant. No point other than that.

  55. 55
    WaterGirl says:

    @Adam L Silverman: I heard on either Preet’s podcast with Susan Hennessey or a Lawfare podcast from this week that those guys have their own special/separate whistleblower protection statute or act. And that is the sum total I know about that, which isn’t much. But it seemed better than nothing.

  56. 56
    Kay says:

    You know what we need to straighten this mess out? We need to hear from the whistleblower.

    If this were any other fucking President everyone in media would be demanding the President disclose. This isn’t funny anymore. These people need to explain why they REFUSE to hold this President to ordinary ethical and transparency norms.

    Enough. Whatever it is- book deals, career concerns, a certain affection for authoritarian manly men, we need to know why they have all decided that Donald Trump is a ONE-OFF who is exempted from rules. They supposedly enforce the standards of their profession. Set some and start enforcing them. They get legal protections and that is supposed to be in return for some value that is in the public interest. Their fucking book deal or personal career trajectory isn’t the public interest.

  57. 57
    WaterGirl says:

    @Steeplejack: Thanks, I had no idea.

  58. 58
    WaterGirl says:

    @Kay: I keep thinking that surely this will be the thing that gets the Dems off the bench and opening real impeachment hearings. They have to defend our constitution.

  59. 59
    germy says:

    @The Moar You Know:

    Deeply hilarious if this ends up helping Biden and hurting Trump. It easily could.

    It would also piss off Trump if all these clouds and shadows cost Biden the nomination, and Trump gets his ass kicked by Democratic nominee Warren.

  60. 60
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @aj: I don’t have a twitter account. I monitor it for work I do, as well as for analytical and Floriduh! Man/Woman posts here. But I don’t tweet.

  61. 61
    aj says:

    @Adam L Silverman: Ah, mis-parse on my part.

    When Cheryl said she posted it I somehow thought you’d said that.

    Thanks for all your work here, I find the depth and detail very helpful.

  62. 62
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Steeplejack: Okay, no worries.

  63. 63
  64. 64
    🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳🌷 says:


    I keep thinking that surely this will be the thing that gets the Dems off the bench and opening real impeachment hearings. They have to defend our constitution.

    And what happens when admin/Republican witnesses blow those off too? How would they be held to account?

  65. 65
  66. 66
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Kay: I’ve seen a number of people already demand the President disclose. From former officials, to current Democratic members of the House and the Senate, to commenters.

    As for hearing from the whistleblower, that is a bad idea. If he or she says anything they can and, I expect, will be charged with violations of the Espionage Act.

  67. 67

    @JPL: Any whistleblower needs a lawyer.

    As we saw in Adam’s post yesterday (or the day before?), the whistleblower laws are tricky, and a lawyer can guide the person through, to do the proper thing at the proper time, to assure both that what they have to say will be heard and to protect the whistleblower against the inevitable blowback.

    Also, the law firm involved with this has experience in the area, which the whistleblower does not, so they can anticipate the kinds of trouble/ objections that are likely to come up and prepare the documents to anticipate or avoid as much as possible.

    And when you go up against any president, you need a lawyer.

    Blowing the whistle is a one-shot deal, so you need to get it right. For whatever reasons, Edward Snowden got it wrong. There are many other ways to get it wrong.

    The whistleblower’s identity will come out, whatever the supposed protections. I would be surprised if the White House didn’t have a VERY good idea who it is. As Adam said, this person will never work in the government again, even a Democratic government. They might become an advisor and critic as Daniel Ellsberg has. But there is no going back. And there is plenty of reason for the whistleblower to be moving to a place where nobody knows them. Christine Blasey Ford got death threats. People on Twitter get death threats for tweets. Lawyers can help in this.

    This is a very brave person and they need a lawyer badly.

  68. 68
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @aj: No worries. She put it out on blast from her twitter account.

  69. 69
    Kay says:


    I don’t have that much faith in impeachment as a process. It’s too arbitrary for me. Anything that doesn’t apply to lying to start a war that kills hundreds of thousands of people but does apply to perjury in a civil case seems to me to be a hugely flawed tool. I like tools that work. This one, this endlessly elastic impeachment thing, I don’t know WTF it’s for or anything.
    I knew the day he was elected he wasn’t going to follow the laws without an enforceable order and many contempt citations. There aren’t a lot of people like him but there are enough so the type becomes familiar if you practice law. They have to be hammered. They often inspire BIGGER hammers! These people are the reason laws exist. They have no internal governor of any kind. It has to be external and it has to be harsh.
    The impeachment discussion is interesting to me, but ultimately abstract. I don’t think it’s reliable. I myself wouldn’t lean on it.

  70. 70
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Kelly: Norm is a friend. I sent it to him and let him know if he thought it was worthwhile, that I’d be honored if he’d tweet it out. He did the counterintelligence one the other night as well.

  71. 71
    JPL says:

    @Adam L Silverman: Thanks I missed that.

  72. 72
    Kathleen says:


    Is Vogel just a useful idiot or is he actively participating in an act of information warfare begun by Putin, weaponized by Giuliani and the President, which is intended to propagandize Americans in order to achieve Putin’s strategic interests?

    I think Adam has nailed not only Ken Vogel but most of the NYT and a large percentage of other print and broadcast outlets. Engaging media is on To Do list of those hatching coup.

  73. 73
    WaterGirl says:

    @MomSense: I can see how it would be nice to have it be just you and him. A simple dinner out, just my dad and me when I was 18, is one of my fondest memories.

    Did you ever locate the email I sent you? Sounds like you have your hands full, so totally not nagging, just want to be sure it arrived, at least.

  74. 74
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Cheryl Rofer: Snowden got it wrong because he’s not a whistleblower. He was a/the key human asset in a planned and executed Russian intelligence operation.

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


    I’m spending the weekend with my dad while he recovers from back surgery. He’s taking a nap and I’m sitting here keeping him company while tonight’s dinner (split pea soup) simmers on the stove.

    That sounds nice. Hope dinner is delicious and your father has a speedy recovery!

  76. 76
    Spanky says:

    @Cheryl Rofer:

    Blowing the whistle is a one-shot deal, so you need to get it right. For whatever reasons, Edward Snowden got it wrong.

    Point of order. Edward Snowden was NOT a whistleblower, else he wouldn’t have needed to take two (or 3?) laptops full of intelligence data and techniques first to CHINA, then to RUSSIA. He was a foreign intelligence asset, no more and no less. The “whistleblower” shit was just to muddy the waters.

  77. 77
    JPL says:

    @Cheryl Rofer: If and when the name comes out, I hope they have security protection.

  78. 78

    @Adam L Silverman: “For whatever reasons” covers a lot of ground…

  79. 79
    Kathleen says:

    @Adam L Silverman:

    He was a/the key human asset in a planned and executed Russian intelligence operation.

    Thank you. For this insight and the article. I really value your knowledge and perspective.

  80. 80

    @JPL: One of the things I’ve been thinking is that going public at some point might be beneficial for the whistleblower. It would give them a measure of protection from the crazies with guns. They could ask for police protection. It’s one of the decisions a law firm with experience in the area can help advise on.

  81. 81
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Cheryl Rofer: It does indeed.

    You’ve said too much! Activate your exfil plan!//

  82. 82
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Kathleen: You’re quite welcome.

  83. 83
    Spanky says:

    @Kay: So I have a legal question. Did the opinion that a sitting President cannot be indicted originate in Nixon’s Administration? Was it not again upheld by Clinton’s Administration? Were both of those presidents not in danger of being indicted at the time of those opinions?

    Why are those opinions not considered tainted?

  84. 84
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    Since this is an open thread, I’ll use it to share the sad news that Tommy Young apparently passed away about ten months ago (November 2018).

    I know there was some bitterness during an unsuccessful site rebuild a few years back, but I always thought his motives were good and he was a sweet, well-meaning person. I hope he can rest in peace.

  85. 85
    SWMBO says:

    @SiubhanDuinne: I just saw that today as well. I know his house burned a few years ago. He stopped posting on Facebook around that time. RIP Tommy.

  86. 86
    JPL says:

    @SiubhanDuinne: That is so sad.

  87. 87
    NotMax says:


    Oh my. He was a young’un, too IIRC.

    some bitterness

    Ha. Mob Enforcer and Mistress of Understatement.


  88. 88
    germy says:

    @Adam L Silverman: Why does he want to leave Russia?

  89. 89
    🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳🌷 says:

    That’s terrible! I remember Tommy vaguely. I lurked when he was still posting here. He seemed nice enough. Do you know how he passed away? RIP

  90. 90
    germy says:

    Snowden wants to use a public interest defense:

    He says “I don’t want a pardon” and yet Doctorow labels his thread “Pardon Snowden”

  91. 91
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Spanky: It was created during the Nixon administration in order to allow for the DOJ to go forward with their prosecution of Vice President Agnew. The larger context was that DOJ OLC was already aware that Congress was working towards impeachment, so they didn’t have to worry about potentially prosecuting a sitting president that would leave the country with an indicted or under prosecution sitting vice president assuming the presidency. The whole thing is a 1973 specific Rube Goldberg legal device to prevent the creation of a line of succession nightmare and crisis.

  92. 92
    SWMBO says:

    @🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳🌷: His brother posted about their dad’s obituary on Facebook and mentioned that it was hard after Tommy’s passing in November last year. Dad passed away from cancer but it didn’t say about Tommy.

  93. 93
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳🌷:

    No, the obituary didn’t say.

    His father passed just a couple of days ago. His brother Jeff posted that news on FB, and said it had been a very tough ten months with Tommy’s death last November, and his father’s death from cancer just six weeks after being diagnosed. Tommy was a Facebook “friend,” although he hadn’t posted in a few years.

  94. 94
    debbie says:


    Hope his recovery is speedy and complete. You’re a very good daughter.

  95. 95
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @germy: It’s a scam.

  96. 96
    Mary G says:

    @SiubhanDuinne: RIP Tommy, even if he went off the rails at the end. He brought us Alain, too, or am I remembering it wrong?

    Adam, thanks for this post. I wondered on Twitter yesterday what Putin had on Vogel and am glad that I’m not alone.

  97. 97
    germy says:

    @Adam L Silverman: He doesn’t really want to leave? I wish I understood what he’s really trying to do.

  98. 98
    SWMBO says:

    @SWMBO: His favorite quotes from his Facebook:

    Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler. – Albert Einstein

    We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence then, is not an act, but a habit. — Aristotle

    It is better to have enough ideas for some of them to be wrong, than to be always right by having no ideas at all. — Edward de Bono

    Life is trying things to see if they work. — Ray Bradbury

    The stone age didn’t end because they ran out of stones. – Unknown

  99. 99
    Baud says:


    Oh, wow. Thanks for sharing. I’m sad how things ended up.

  100. 100
    debbie says:


    I’m sorry to read of this. There was plenty of snideness in addition to bitterness, and I thought a lot of it was rude and undeserved.

  101. 101
    mrmoshpotato says:

    @germy: I’m confused about FSB Eddie too.

  102. 102
    SiubhanDuinne says:


    Thanks for sharing Tommy’s favourite quotes. Some fine ones there.

  103. 103
    Steeplejack says:


    RIP. Obituary or details?

  104. 104
    🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳🌷 says:

    @SWMBO: @SiubhanDuinne:
    That’s awful, especially for the remaining brother. Losing your brother and father within the same year can’t be easy, which he stated.

    @Mary G:

    It’s been so long, I can’t remember. How did he go off the rails? I remember he had some kind of freak out or something on here

  105. 105
    Alain says:

    @SiubhanDuinne: thanks for the news.

    @Mary G: yes, we became brief business partners. When I drove past Mascoutah, IL on my way East back from Colorado, I wondered how he was doing. Sorry to hear the bad news.

  106. 106
    SiubhanDuinne says:


    Agree. Im sorry he’s gone, but glad he’s beyond that bullying.

  107. 107
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @Mary G:

    He brought us Alain, too, or am I remembering it wrong?

    I think that’s right.

  108. 108
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Mary G: He may not have anything. Vogel may just be the journalist equivalent of a shitlord/shitposter.

  109. 109
    Mary G says:

    @Alain: I love you and the On the Road feature, appreciate Tommy for bringing you in.

  110. 110
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @germy: Stir up shit.

  111. 111
    trollhattan says:

    That’s a shame, sorry to hear.

    Not that I’m good at reading people in person, much less over the internet but he projected an undercurrent of sadness when engaged here. Hope he found peace.

  112. 112
    Kay says:


    I don’t know. When it came about. I do know though that impeachment for me is so wildly arbitrary that it is, IMO, a useless tool

    In regular-person legal world, people who think they are exempt from rules have to be sanctioned repeatedly. Even then they sometimes don’t comply, but it’s more a matter of applying persistent and patient opposition than clever lawyering. If they don’t follow the judgment you file contempt. If they still don’t you attach a lien. And so forth. It costs and it absolutely fucking ENRAGES the person on the other side, the person who DOES follow laws, but you’re really just wearing the lawbreaker down and it kind of runs out of steam and ends. The other thing that stops them is an EXTERNAL event. They’re assholes and they create discord and misery so bad things happen to them. Sometimes the bad things that happen to them act as check on their behavior.
    Following laws is 99% consent. Most people don’t need to be hammered, which is good, because there wouldn’t be enough police and jails to hold them all if this social contract fell apart and everyone behaved like Donald Trump and the people he hires. IMO we’re watching it fall apart. It’s spreading. It’ll trickle down too, because if people at the top are just scoffing at laws people at the bottom will start to, too. It was always fragile. It’s an agreement. Without voluntary compliance it no longer exists.

  113. 113
    JPL says:

    @Adam L Silverman: You should consider writing a letter to the editor asking why Vogel is spreading Russian disinformation

  114. 114
    trollhattan says:

    @Adam L Silverman:
    He should grow a beard and get a cat. Winter is coming.

  115. 115
    SiubhanDuinne says:


    This is the obituary for the father, Tommy II. Bold refers to “our” Tommy, Tommy III.


    Dr. Tommy R. Young II, 78, of Mount Carmel, Illinois, passed away Wednesday, September 18, 2019 at The Linda E. White Hospice House in Evansville, Indiana surrounded by the love of his family. He was born August 10, 1941 in Princeton, Indiana, the son of Dr. Tommy R. Young and Katherine (Anstaett) Young. He married Joyce Brewer on June 25, 1966 and together they enjoyed fifty-three years of marriage. At the age of fourteen, Tommy attended the Kentucky Military Institute where he graduated in 1959. Tommy was a graduate of DePauw University, University of Arkansas and Louisiana State University obtaining his PhD in American History. He had quite an extensive teaching career teaching at Texas Tech University, US Army Command & General Staff College, the University of Missouri, Kansas City, St. Mary’s College at Kansas State Men’s Penitentiary and the US Disciplinary Barracks. In 1981 Tommy went to work as a historian at the Air Force Communications Command Center. He would later transfer to the Office of History at the Air Mobility Command. Tommy retired in September of 2001, then he and Joyce returned to the family home in Mt. Carmel. In Retirement he continued to write encyclopedia articles on Military Communications. In addition, he wrote a history of the Kentucky Military Institute. Tommy also served on the Board of the Wabash County Museum and was a member of the Board of the Wabash Valley College Foundation. Tommy will forever be remembered by his wife, Joyce; son, Jeffrey Young his wife, Sarah of Swansea, Illinois; granddaughter, Katherine Young; and many friends he made all throughout his life. Tommy was preceded in death by his parents; one son, Tommy R. Young III. In keeping with Tommy’s wishes, there will be no public services. A private burial will take place at Rose Hill Cemetery in Mt. Carmel, Illinois. Memorial contributions may be made in Tommy’s memory to the Linda White Hospice House, 611 Harriet Street, Evansville, IN 47710. Keepes Funeral Home is serving the family with the arrangements. To view Tommy Young’s tribute wall and leave condolences for the Young family, please visit

    To send flowers or a remembrance gift to the family of Dr. Tommy R. Young II, please visit our Tribute Store.

    Additionally — which I only saw when I looked at his FB page — this past summer, on his birthday, there were a few messages saying things like “Happy birthday in heaven,” “Missing you on your birthday,” and similar.

  116. 116
    Mary G says:

    @🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳🌷: My pov is like @debbie: says. He was doing a site rebuild that may have been a bit over his head, but some commenters were horrible to him. If I remember right, he threatened to doxx someone and had his keys to the blog taken away.

  117. 117
    SiubhanDuinne says:


    Still seeking an actual obit for Tommy III, but with no luck so far. If only Balloon Juice had a commenter with mad Google skillz….

  118. 118
    Ruckus says:

    I’d say, using just my BGJ (best guess judgment) that they really are all in this together and are profiting in some way from this. They may only have their own backsides in mind but they do think/know they will gain, professionally, monetarily or both. IOW I’d bet that vlad is putting some of his cash to better use for him than buying another billion dollar home. All roads do seem to lead back to vlad. He has no legal issues to think about, this doesn’t even have to be about power – but it always will be with him, he could be doing it for the giggles. In his circles this is/would be costing him chump change, and what else is he going to do with it? He has been an enemy of the US his entire life, he isn’t going to change as long as air goes in and out.

  119. 119
    Alain says:

    @Mary G: thanks! It’s not often in life that one can jump deep into a community you’ve followed for years. I comment more than I used to, but I’m much more a reader, so I was a stranger to everyone; my entré was indeed working with Tommy on the rebuild. I read his comments about the site and figured we could team up and make it better.

  120. 120
    Bill Arnold says:

    Very nice (top post), thanks Adam.

  121. 121
    WaterGirl says:

    @Mary G: Oh, dear. I fear an Al Franken thread might be headed our way. I hope we can resist that; nothing good ever comes of those kinds of threads.

  122. 122
    🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳🌷 says:

    @Mary G:
    He did seem to have his quirks, but yeah he didn’t deserve to be bullied for being in over his head

  123. 123
    JPL says:

    @Alain: Your morning posts are always a treasure.

  124. 124
    JPL says:

    @SiubhanDuinne: I tried and I think I found his father’s.

  125. 125
    NotMax says:

    @Goku (aka Amerikan Baka)

    Short version: It was a distasteful experience for all concerned but once he crossed the line into God mode, all bets were off.

  126. 126
    debbie says:


    Sensitivity was what caught him up.

  127. 127
    JPL says:

    @trollhattan: That was my feeling as well.

  128. 128
    Bill Arnold says:

    Since open thread, The Intercept, short piece on some of Barr’s decades-long coverup history.
    William Barr Has Long Tried to Limit What a President Must Share With Congress. The Whistleblower Complaint is No Exception. (Alex Emmons, September 20 2019)

  129. 129
    Ruckus says:

    Very interesting take. I like it and agree with it as well.
    It seems to me that impeachment was put in as a sweetener so that some concept of a totally corrupt person could be taken out. It requires so many people to line up reasonably to make it work and of course the Bill Clinton thing sort of screwed up the concept of impeachment that it does seem to be a shibboleth any more. And with moscow’s bitch making himself the entire senate it is a totally useless tool.

  130. 130
    patrick II says:

    I am reminded of the many stories about the Clinton Foundation, which is an actual highly rated foundation doing good work around the world, compared to the many fewer stories about the Trump Foundation which was just a scam. So, now we have Biden’s son who actually did some work for a company that had nothing to do with his father, and at the same time we have Jared Kushner getting a loan through a Qatar front company to bail out him out from bankruptcy not long after Kushner had meetings with Saudi, gave them classified information and names of Saudi dissenters, after which Saudi blockaded Qatar. One seems much more serious than the other. Or maybe I’m wrong. Maybe Mr. Vogel needs sort of pull that back and do a ten-part front-page story on Kushner to straighten me out. I’m not expecting it.

  131. 131
    WaterGirl says:

    @Kay: I see what you are saying. I think, though, that Congress needs to stand up and hold their ground as an equal branch of government before we get to the point of no return. Which, I believe, we are nearer to than I like to believe.

  132. 132
    Bill Arnold says:

    Another from The Intercept, topical because of the upcoming Modi-Trump rally in Houston. (11:00 AM Houston time if i’m reading it correctly, with more events earlier in morning.)
    How the White Nationalists Who Love Trump Found Inspiration in the Group That Gave Us Narendra Modi (Mehdi Hasan, September 21 2019)

    How to watch, and everything else you need to know about Modi’s Houston mega event (Niharika Sharma, September 21, 2019)
    Donald Trump Is Holding a Rally With… Narendra Modi? – With this weekend’s stadium event in Houston, America First will meet India First. (Jeet Heer, 2019/09/20)
    Schedule. The weather is suggesting that it might not collaborate. :-)

  133. 133
    zhena gogolia says:


    I’m so sorry. I’ve missed him.

  134. 134
    SiubhanDuinne says:


    Oh my. He was a young’un, too IIRC.

    Just a few months shy of 50 when he died. July 12, 1969 – November 20, 2018.

  135. 135
    Steeplejack says:


    Where would we find such a person? 🤔

  136. 136
    SiubhanDuinne says:


    Probably the one I posted above @ comment #115.

  137. 137
    NotMax says:

    @patrick II

    Maybe Mr. Vogel needs sort of pull that back and do a ten-part front-page story on Kushner to straighten me out.

    “Jared Kushner is the kindest, warmest, bravest, most wonderful human being I’ve ever known in my life.”

    // // //

  138. 138
    trollhattan says:

    @Bill Arnold:
    Can’t they hold it in some flooded canal? Like Texas needs to deal with this crap right now.

  139. 139
    Bill Arnold says:

    LGM today:
    Ken Vogel: Hack reporter on the make (Paul Campos, September 21, 2019)
    Paul uplifted a long interesting reader comment

    …But hey, that doesn’t raise your profile as a hot young reporter, whereas “Joe Biden – questions remain despite overwhelming evidence he did nothing wrong” gets you plenty of talking head invites. This is a structural failing in the US media economy, but goddamn Vogel’s exploitation of it is really galling.

    then added:

    Listen. Understand. “It’s out there” is out there. It can’t be reasoned with, it can’t be bargained with. It doesn’t feel pity of remorse or fear and it absolutely will not stop. Ever. Until American democracy is dead.

  140. 140
    trollhattan says:

    Don’t forget Bringer of Mideast Peace.

    What a mensch!

  141. 141
    Jeffro says:

    Kevin Kruse on Twitter: “The break-in at the Democratic National Committee’s headquarters at the Watergate Hotel raises some troubling questions about just what it is that the Democrats are hiding there”

    Also noted by many: if Pelosi thinks that trumpov will benefit from a Senate vote to acquit, what does she think he’ll do with the House’s failure to even impeach?

  142. 142
    piratedan says:

    @Cheryl Rofer: to be honest, I have to say that in no way/fashion/understanding of his actions would I consider Snowden to be a whistle blower, much more likely he was part of the continuing FSB/Putin/Russian Ops plan against America, just my humble opinion mind you.

    This other person, whose identity is not yet commonly known, we shall wait and see.

  143. 143
    Baud says:


    I don’t care where one lands on this, but questions aren’t arguments.

  144. 144
    LuciaMia says:

    Vogel adds, saying “we’re going to continue to, sort of, pull that back.”

    sort of?

  145. 145
    🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳🌷 says:

    Did I say anything wrong to you? If I did, I apologize

  146. 146
    Gravenstone says:

    @LuciaMia: aka- ‘make shit up as we go’.

  147. 147
    J R in WV says:


    Thank you for passing on this sad news. I liked Tommy, always thought he was naive in some ways. Seemed otherworldly in his odd way.

  148. 148
  149. 149
    JaySinWA says:


    questions aren’t arguments

    They seem to be able to start them though.

  150. 150
    zhena gogolia says:

    @Kay: @rikyrah:

    Yeah, Comment of the Year.

  151. 151
    JPL says:

    @Bill Arnold: I think we found trump’s fake news.

  152. 152
    JPL says:

    @SiubhanDuinne: I saw that after I posted. Thanks.

  153. 153
    SWMBO says:

    @Steeplejack: His house burned May 7 2017 (he posted a picture on Facebook). He lived in Mascoutah, Illinois until then. He didn’t post much after that except to say he was living in a hotel room that sucked. I don’t think his beloved cat survived the fire.

  154. 154
    Baud says:


    Truth. Sadly, it was Fox News that popularized this form of argument. We used to call it the Cavuto mark, referring to the question mark at the end.

  155. 155
    Baud says:


    That’s really sad.

  156. 156
    SWMBO says:

    @J R in WV: I believe he posted that he was on the autism spectrum here at one time. Which would explain some oddities of his.

  157. 157
    JPL says:

    @SWMBO: Oh no! That is so sad.

  158. 158
    J R in WV says:


    That sounds right to me too, although I didn’t want to say anything without support from someone.

    A really sad ending for a smart guy. Losing your home and cat, really sad.

  159. 159
    lgerard says:

    Someone should really also be looking into exactly what it is that Giuliani has been doing in Europe, especially the post Soviet states, over the better part of the past ten to fifteen years supposedly as part of his consulting work as a security expert, which he is not.


    Rudy was the TV spokesperson for Lifelock, which makes him one of trump’s most qualified stooges

  160. 160
    WaterGirl says:

    @🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳🌷: I’m afraid I don’t understand why you are asking that. ?

  161. 161
    laura says:

    I can smell the president’s ass all over Ken Vogel’s face all the way here in California.
    I’m glad to see him getting called out in real time and hope that the election interference/disinformation from 2014 gets more reportage that doesn’t continue the “there must be something there if we just keep digging” or Dems in disarray.
    Not at all sad that Cokie’s missing a chance to weigh in.

  162. 162
    lumpkin says:

    Biden’s response so far suggests he intends to participate in his own ratfucking. I really fear that he is going to be nominated and will be destroyed by team gop/nyt. There is just enough complexity to this story that it can be twisted and distorted into clouds, doubts and shadows and the nyt will be more than happy to do that on behalf of trump.

  163. 163
    banditqueen says:

    @SiubhanDuinne: Thank you for letting BJ know–so thoughtful of you.
    @SWMBO: and thank you for your updates on this as well.
    He seemed to be someone who was struggling but kept on trying anyway, which is admirable to me.
    I hope he is at peace now.

  164. 164
    Sister Rail Gun of Warm Humanitarianism says:

    @SiubhanDuinne: So far, I’ve found his college graduation, his grandfather’s obituary, and several articles about his father.

  165. 165
    jeffreyw says:


    I can smell the president’s ass all over Ken Vogel’s face all the way here in California.
    I’m glad to see him getting called out in real time and hope that the election interference/disinformation from 2014 gets more reportage that doesn’t continue the “there must be something there if we just keep digging” or Dems in disarray.
    Not at all sad that Cokie’s missing a chance to weigh in.

    He’s not writing that for the people that are calling him out. He doesn’t care about them. He’s doing it for those who will see it and then call him up: “Hey, we could use a man like you. We like that you have no shame.”

  166. 166
    mrmoshpotato says:


    I can smell the president’s ass all over Ken Vogel’s face all the way here in California.

    Thankfully, the winds are blowing correctly over Illinois.

    (Not that I doubt Vogel’s face reeking of Dump’s fat, orange, fascist ass.)

  167. 167
    Baud says:


    No one we nominate will be immune to that.

  168. 168
    BRyan says:

    Sorry to read about Tommy. That whole immensely sad and depressing episode, the back-and-forth that resulted in his keys being taken away, was the only time I remember this blog going truly jackal.

  169. 169
    Nelle says:

    I skipped ahead to report on the Polk County Democrat Steak Fry. They sold 12,000 tickets and all candidates were there, including some I’ve never heard of (and they did not get stage time). The biggest crowd response was for Elizabeth Warren. Biden had a lot of supporters there. But I heard a lot of comments (from retirees) that he’s just too old for the rigors of the audience. Castro got a lit of appreciation for his story, if elected, of saying “Adios, Trump.” I had an extra button like that and gave it to Booker, who laughed and pocketed it.

    Bernie did not get much response from the crowd at all. When we got there in the morning, all the candidate gathering spaces had supporters. Not Bernie’s tent. An hour later, still none. I didn’t even see Bernie signs in the crowd. (There was even a Tulsie group.)

  170. 170
    Elizabelle says:

    @SWMBO: Tommy Young’s cat did survive the fire. I read back through old FB posts, and he posted a picture of her in her carrier. His message: “Cat made it out. She has had better days. Happy I didn’t get that cheap plastic carrier. The cloth one is more her thinking.” Also commented that the fire apparently started in an (electrical) outlet.

    Very sad to hear of his passing. With a dad born in 1941, Tommy III did not get the gift of years. Someone mentioned he died the Tuesday before Thanksgiving, last year.

    @ Siubhan: thank you for letting us know.

  171. 171
    Baud says:


    Thanks for the update!


    So happy about the cat!

  172. 172
    Elizabelle says:

    @J R in WV: Tommy lost his home and then his life maybe 18 months plus (??) later, sadly, but it’s possible kitteh is still around.

    Too young.

  173. 173
    lumpkin says:


    Yeah, but I think others will handle it a lot better.

  174. 174
    cain says:

    Then better this shit happen now.. if he’s particpating in his own ratfucking then he’ll be out of the race and Warren can pick it up.

  175. 175

    Sad to hear about Tommy, we had some things in common…being a bit on the short side, a 3 sticks… He recommended that I use Lightroom(told me I’d be a fool not to, he was right). I think that he, being a commenter, thought he could better understand what Balloon Juice needed in a rebuild, unfortunately he didn’t understand that familiarity breeds contempt(especially with Jackals). That’s why I think we’re doing it right this time, having faceless programmers doing the work with an able person(thanks WaterGirl) interfacing between the users and the programming folk. RIP Tommy.

  176. 176
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @BRyan: Sorry to read about Tommy. That whole immensely sad and depressing episode, the back-and-forth that resulted in his keys being taken away, was the only time I remember this blog going truly jackal.

    I managed to miss almost all of that, and I’m not sorry about that. Sorry to hear he passed.

  177. 177
    Sister Rail Gun of Warm Humanitarianism says:

    @Elizabelle: Found an article about the men who pulled him from his house. They said there was a downed power line behind the house.

  178. 178
    zhena gogolia says:

    I just watched Warren on Colbert. She is really good. She’s gotten better since 2016.

  179. 179
    JPL says:

    The president is insinuating that the whistleblower is a spy. holy f.k

    I assume this means there is going to be another article coming out.

  180. 180
    sgrAstar says:

    Adam, thanks for the super informative posts.

  181. 181
    Elizabelle says:

    @Sister Rail Gun of Warm Humanitarianism: Ah. Please share the link. (And hello to the kittens. Glad to hear that is going swimmingly.)

    Tommy was very brave in the aftermath of the fire. He commented that he did not have a Tardis; that he was very realistic about all of it.

  182. 182
    NotMax says:



  183. 183
    Baud says:

    Rudy Giuliani accused me of exposing Paul Manafort’s Ukraine deals to help U.S. Democrats. That’s a lie.

  184. 184
    satby says:

    @SWMBO: @J R in WV: @Baud: @JPL: it says on Tommy’s FB page that he and the cat both survived the fire.

  185. 185
    Chetan Murthy says:

    @zhena gogolia:

    She is really good.

    She is, isn’t she? I’ve rarely watched her speeches [was convinced by her work already.] I found especially entertaining (in a “wow, she’s gooood”) way, how she would take one of Colbert’s questions, and turn it into an oppty to reiterate one of her positions and talking points. It almost didn’t matter what the question was, and she was good enough at it, that it was difficult to see the point where she “flips in midair to land on her feet”. There’s a term for it in the lingo of salesfolk, and she has that down. I mean *down*.

    I hope it’s clear that I’m glad of this, that I view the ability to sell as a good thing in a presidential candidate.

  186. 186
    JPL says:

    @NotMax: I think it’s more. He played golf this afternoon, but when he returned something set him off.

  187. 187
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @sgrAstar: You’re welcome.

  188. 188
    trollhattan says:

    @zhena gogolia:
    Agreed. When she entered the race I asked “why?” and since then, she’s only run the best campaign (among two dozen?) and honed her presentation and more importantly, established her stance on myriad issues. Her hammering corruption could eventually seep into the narrative. That would be nice.

    I better have that much goddamn energy when I’m 70, because I’m owed!

  189. 189
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @zhena gogolia: her improvement as a retail candidate are one of the reasons I’ve been feeling better about her, just as Biden’s (to be charitable) rustiness has me more concerned. His staff has put out some good responses to trump’s latest attacks and the criminality of them. HIs own… be more presidential… ask him… have been uninspiring.

  190. 190
    trollhattan says:

    “something set him off.”
    A doorknob? Water? Ecuador?

  191. 191

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist:

    HIs own… be more presidential… ask him… have been uninspiring.

    You just need to put a record on the record player tonight.

  192. 192
  193. 193
    JPL says:

    @Nelle: Bernie’s just gonna yell louder now.

  194. 194
    trollhattan says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist:
    Biden really had me scratching my head at that last…ten people talking thing. Sell-by date, it has passed and that’s a real issue, not some off-the-cuff quip. Same with that other old dude, although in a different fashion.

  195. 195
  196. 196
    NotMax says:


    Occam’s Razor says someone he played golf with made a remark about people spying on him.

  197. 197
    JPL says:

    @trollhattan: Barron asking why I couldn’t participate in the Climate Change march.

  198. 198
    zhena gogolia says:

    No big fan of Tom Nichols, but he turns a good phrase in this piece (Atlantic link)

  199. 199
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @trollhattan: right, and I don’t doubt Bernie’s mental agility, to use the term that’s getting tossed around. I’m not even as certain as I was that trump would beat him, at least in the popular vote. But what a gift he would be to the RCCC and RSCC

  200. 200
    trollhattan says:


  201. 201

    Last month, while taking some Milky Way pics, I met a group of photographers also shooting where I was. I shared my IG with one of them(he does nice work). He posted a pic today taken from the hills above where I sometimes shoot. There’s a person with a light on out where I shoot and a car that looks like mine parked next to the highway(hard to tell for sure due to low resolution on IG).

  202. 202
    Sister Rail Gun of Warm Humanitarianism says:

    @Elizabelle: I can’t post links, unfortunately. If you look on FB for the Mascoutah Police Department, there’s a piece posted 2 May 2017 about the commendations given the responding officers.

  203. 203
    mrmoshpotato says:

    @🐾BillinGlendaleCA: Mmmmm Milky Ways.

  204. 204

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist: Innnteresting how the pic of Kate Middleton and Trudeau
    seems to have been taken down……………………….

  205. 205
    mrmoshpotato says:

    @JPL: And he’ll start sticking his wagging finger up people’s noses while shouting at them.

    “Got your nose!”

  206. 206
    germy says:


    Last month, while taking some Milky Way pics, I met a group of photographers also shooting where I was.

    You should have threatened them with copyright infringement.

  207. 207
    NotMax says:


    Musical interlude.

    MIlky Way (2019)

    Under the Milky Way (1988)

    Milky Way (1970)

  208. 208
    Mary G says:

    Julian Castro came to the Iowa Steak Fry with a mariachi band, Kamala a drumline. Julian went to Warren’s photo line and they hugged. I love a happy warrior.

    ETA: Also, too, lots of reporters and other people dragging Ken Vogel on Twitter.

  209. 209
    Aleta says:

    November 19, 2015 at 6:22 pm
    I do agree with JC on one thing – the commenters here are assholes. I caught some of the bullshit aimed at tommy & it was ridiculous, Those jerks should have been given a time out there was no excuse – he had every right to go off on them.

    I am always amazed at how quickly people can get all bent out of shape about changes here. Its not like Cole is making bank here and its not like we are paying to enjoy each others company. Relax and be grateful that we have this place instead of endlessly bitch about frigging comment numbers.
    Thanks to tommy I am sure he put in tons of effort.

    Thanks Schlemazel: “Relax and be grateful that we have this place.”

    Thanks Tommy. I hoped you’d be back.

  210. 210
  211. 211
    debbie says:

    @Mary G:

    I linked to this podcast this morning of an analysis of Warren’s rally at Washington Square. Your “happy warrior” perfectly defines her!

  212. 212
    NotMax says:


    Gotta disagree. As I remember it there was constructive criticism being bandied about and the kablooeyness was instigated by Tommy’s “All of you – all of you– are internetting wrong” statements.

  213. 213
    debbie says:


    Thanks for finding that. He was totally right.

  214. 214
    Nelle says:

    @JPL: He was yelling so loud that we were a long those with hands over our ears and moving away from the speakers.

  215. 215
    Steeplejack says:


    Tommy was born on July 12, 1969, so he was 49 when he died.

  216. 216
    NotMax says:


    Gotta respectfully disagree. Actively soliciting feedback and then dismissing any offered as moronic was not a good look.

  217. 217
    Mary G says:

    @Aleta: Thanks for that. Schemazel rocked.

    @NotMax: We remember it differently. It was only a few people, but high volume and a bit of competition to see who could be hardest on him. You weren’t one of them.

  218. 218
    Steeplejack says:


    What is Tommy’s Facebook page? Link?

  219. 219
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @JPL: I’m going to be lucky I don’t get an email from Vogel…

  220. 220
    Ruckus says:

    Two things. EW and I were born less than 3 weeks apart. So I’m 70 and while I’m not the energy bunny that I was even 10 yrs ago, I’ve still got some left. She has a lot more. I walk to work a mile each way and work all day in a machine shop. Part time but I still do. My mom worked till she was 85. Desk job part time but she worked. Maybe it’s in the genes.
    #2 I went and watched the Colbert segment, she is very good at taking the question and giving a far better and more extensive answer than the question asked. She’s the energizer bunny but far, far smarter. And that answer about corruption she gave, that resinated very well with the audience. She and I agree about the timeline and path we took to get here as well. I’m still worried a bit about her age – but that may be some projection on my part.
    I’d be ecstatic about voting for her, I just like KH a bit more, I like her reality, I like her experience and I like her age better. But it is an extremely close choice. I don’t think I’ve ever had that in all my years of voting.

  221. 221
    Jay says:

    High schoolers and furries: 2Proud Boys: 0— Gwen Snyder is uncivil (@gwensnyderPHL) September 21, 2019

  222. 222
    Nelle says:

    @Mary G: Mary, do you live in Des Moines?

  223. 223
    satby says:

    @Steeplejack: Here. Hope that works for you.

  224. 224
    JPL says:

    @Adam L Silverman: haha I’d be surprised if you didn’t get one from his lawyers. Consider it though because you you are a great writer.

  225. 225
    Jay says:

    Danielle Stella, @IlhanMN's bananas-brain challenger, just picked a fight with Twitter ANTIFA™, then admitted to being a Nazi in the ensuing discussion.— Gwen Snyder is uncivil (@gwensnyderPHL) September 21, 2019

  226. 226
    trollhattan says:


    But it is an extremely close choice. I don’t think I’ve ever had that in all my years of voting.

    Thinking, thinking, thinking on it I can’t come up with a prior comparison, either.

    Will also give some kudos to Beto for getting really aggressive on guns. Somebody needs to be dragging that into the daylight and he’s doing it well.

  227. 227
    Gin & Tonic says:

    A day off the net and in the company of loved ones can do wonders.

    Anyway, thanks for this post, Adam. Seeing that bullshit from Vogel yesterday made me fucking livid, and I had to unplug. I’m glad you put all this in one place.

  228. 228

    @germy: I’ll contact Baud & Baud right away.

  229. 229
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @JPL: If I get one, it is going up on the front page.

  230. 230
    SWMBO says:

    @Elizabelle: So glad the cat made it. He was devoted to her.

  231. 231

    @🐾BillinGlendaleCA: I should note, he goes by the_bludcloud on IG, very good work.

  232. 232
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Gin & Tonic: You’re welcome.

  233. 233
    Adam L Silverman says:

    Time to walk the four foots!

  234. 234
    Mary G says:

    @Adam L Silverman: I want to see the one he sends to Cole, and the flaming response.

  235. 235
    Mary G says:

    @Mary G: No. So Cal, but saw them on Twitter.

  236. 236
    Steeplejack says:


    Yeah, thanks.

  237. 237

    @Steeplejack: (Reply to your comment way downstairs…) I ended up getting a new drinking fountain for the girls, $18 on Amazon. The one I had was WiFi enabled and I may try for a repair later. Thanks for the suggestion, I was already looking at pump replacements.

  238. 238
    Jay says:

    13/ I see no courage in DC—and little in media. I see activists, authors, researchers and citizen journalists working hard, and many Americans earnestly trying to educate themselves, but an increasingly large group in and out of journalism who act like this is all a kind of game.— Seth Abramson (@SethAbramson) September 21, 2019

  239. 239
    Ruckus says:

    I’ll do a little Beto here.
    Yes he fucking is….
    And you are exactly right, somebody has to do it and strongly. That first step and all. Somebody had to say what he said and how he said it, to show that it isn’t a small thing, that it is important, that it is time for a change on guns in this country. I like that the only people seemingly to push back on his language are gun people. No one else seemed to be bothered by the word “fuck,” only those whose fetish is in question.

  240. 240
    debbie says:


    Neither was how that feedback was delivered.

  241. 241
    Noname says:

    @BRyan: I pied a frequent commenter on this site after that incident because I could not believe the vitriolic and cruel remarks they directed at Tommy. RIP

  242. 242
    cynthia ackerman says:

    @Adam L Silverman:

    Yes //

  243. 243
    Aleta says:

    @NotMax: There was more to it than that. Long before Tommy offered help with the site, he was being ridiculed by just a few people. If he was conversing with people on a thread, they’d go to an adjacent thread and simultaneously.mock him. When he offered to work and started in, there were reasonable reactions against that, but also harassment seemingly for the enjoyment of it. He was sometimes good natured but increasingly not. Comments to him got meaner, and iirc he finally said something like (paraphrasing): he was surprised at such attacks, since a person like him with keys could look up someone’s IP address if he wanted to. That’s what I remember as the extent of the threat. Looking up an IP address is a serious violation here, bc John protects commenter privacy above all, so to even say he could if he wanted to was out of bounds. Tommy apologized more than once; not sure if he received any. John iirc invited him to keep commenting and most commenters were supportive. Tommy returned a few times but was finally driven off by intentional vague insinuations about him in RL (also a violation, but ignored). Different standards to make one person unwelcome still seem to me to go against the nature of John’s site.

  244. 244
    hugely says:

    @Matt: why isn’t as simple as the fact that Vogel and others (editors owners) at TFNYFT have been compromised by Russians or Russian adjacent actors? Im no expert but journalism and journalists have been a vector for disinformation for a long time why not the NYT of today? Not all journalists but a few key ones probably have compromat hanging over their heads

  245. 245
    chopper says:


    his posts regarding himself and his history (of which there were many) had a strong undercurrent of not fitting in in the world. he tried to avoid it but it certainly came off as having a strong loneliness associated with it.

  246. 246
  247. 247
    chopper says:


    CS was a pretty huge asshole to the guy but mah nishtanah, right?

Comments are closed.