Facts and Fears: The Russians Did Elect Trump

General James Patton is famous for this advice. Carefully account for and consider all the facts, and all your fears. Armed with this information, make a plan. Then, put aide your fears and attack! James R. Clapper, who is the offspring of an intelligence operative and who has spent his entire life engaged in intelligence, under each and every one of the United States Presidents from Lancer through Renegade, just wrote a book. In it, he gives us something to be afraid of, when he presents a startling and important conclusion.

Well, maybe not so startling for those who have been following, but still.

You will remember when James Clapper as recently retired DNI, and others of nearly his grade, were being questioned by congress (in, I think, at least two separate sets of hearings), and they all said the same thing: The Intelligence Community did not conclude that Russian interference with the US election altered the outcome of that election and put Trump in power. However, that was because the Intelligence Community did not address that question. The IC has nothing to say about the issue, one way or another, because they did not ask that question and, in fact, asking that question at that time would have been problematic.

In Facts and Fears: Hard Truths from a Life in Intelligence, James Clapper states very clearly that in his opinion as the top person in the US Intelligence Community at the time, that yes, the Russian interference determined the outcome, it was sufficient to turn the election to Trump, and had it not happened, had the Russians not interfered, there would be no President Trump.

That is, of course, not all that is in this 400+ page book! As we run of the mill Americans find it more and more important to understand the inner workings of the Intelligence Community, this will become an important touchstone into that process, its history, and its psychology and professional orientation. Clappers book is a must read.

The former Director of National Intelligence’s candid and compelling account of the intelligence community’s successes–and failures–in facing some of the greatest threats to America

When he stepped down in January 2017 as the fourth United States director of national intelligence, James Clapper had been President Obama’s senior intelligence adviser for six and a half years, longer than his three predecessors combined. He led the U.S. intelligence community through a period that included the raid on Osama bin Laden, the Benghazi attack, the leaks of Edward Snowden, and Russia’s influence operation during the 2016 U.S. election campaign. In Facts and Fears, Clapper traces his career through the growing threat of cyberattacks, his relationships with presidents and Congress, and the truth about Russia’s role in the presidential election. He describes, in the wake of Snowden and WikiLeaks, his efforts to make intelligence more transparent and to push back against the suspicion that Americans’ private lives are subject to surveillance. Finally, it was living through Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election and seeing how the foundations of American democracy were–and continue to be–undermined by a foreign power that led him to break with his instincts honed through more than five decades in the intelligence profession to share his inside experience.

Clapper considers such controversial questions as, Is intelligence ethical? Is it moral to intercept communications or to photograph closed societies from orbit? What are the limits of what we should be allowed to do? What protections should we give to the private citizens of the world, not to mention our fellow Americans? Are there times when intelligence officers can lose credibility as unbiased reporters of hard truths by inserting themselves into policy decisions?

Facts and Fears offers a privileged look inside the U.S. intelligence community and, with the frankness and professionalism for which James Clapper is known, addresses some of the most difficult challenges in our nation’s history.

Check it out.

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74 thoughts on “Facts and Fears: The Russians Did Elect Trump

  1. “…the Benghazi attack…”

    That will be the focus of the right’s attack on the conclusions he makes: “If he allowed HRC to stand by and let our people get killed and did nothing about it, nothing he says can be trusted.”

    The fact that none of the assertions about Benghazi the right loves to toss out were true will not matter.




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    1. Yes – Benghazi was also a factor. Smaller in my opinion than rigging the primary and running all her official email through her own private server (which allowed her aid to send confidential and/or classified emails home to be printed by her hubby (Weiner)).




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  2. Had Hillary Clinton not rigged the primary against Bernie, when this was revealed by the Russians, she wouldn’t have lost so many votes of Democrats, who were disgusted by the naked power manipulation by the DNC. So revealing this no doubt did influence the election. If she didn’t cheat in the first place it wouldn’t have mattered – but she did and she got caught.

    That and the private email server debacle were what prevented her from winning.

    It is not some sort of Russian advertising campaing which convinced people to go against their grain and vote for Trump. It was the Russians (maybe, probably) revealing the truth about what sort of character Hillary had.

    If only all the Hillary and Trump voters had voted for Gary Johnson – it would all have been different. He was robbed!




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    1. That and the private email server debacle were what prevented her from winning.

      No, it was Russia’s hugely extensive and well-funded propaganda campaign that installed the nation’s greatest narcissist and ignoramus as president.

      You have no concept of proportion (or truth, or empiricism, or logic, or ethics) do you?




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    2. Who? Gary “what’s Aleppo” Johnson?

      He never had a chance. Nor did Jill Stein. Or, let’s be honest Bernie Sanders either.

      Hillary Clinton vs Trump were the two options the US people had to choose between.

      They actually choose her by three million voters or so.

      Yet that wasn’t enough and in the fouled up US system with its appallingly undemocratic Electoral College, Trump became POTUS anyhow – with lots of help from his Russian and facebook & Wikileak “friends” and to the detriment of pretty much everyone else on the planet.




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    3. Bernie Sanders didn’t have a chance because he didn’t want to win. He just wanted to represent issues for the Left and move the Party to support his issues.

      On the other hand, what if Bernie had done what Trump did, saying if you don’t nominate me, there will be rioting at the convention, and I will run third party? How would Hillary supporters vote then? Enough would say it’s not worth the risk that Bernie would win more primaries, and the superdelegates would fall in line.
      He even could have done it late in primary season, by having his numerous supporters directly defeat a superdelegate in the primaries, and threaten the whole bloc.




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  3. “Had Hillary Clinton not rigged the primary against Bernie”

    JFC, you’re still pushing this debunked line of shit?




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    1. Along with all your other conspiracy crap? Don’t try to complain and say “I don’t lie” any longer.




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    2. If it’s debunked, you should tell your fellow Democrats. DNC fundraising is terrible despite all the enthusiasm. BernieBros aren’t willing to give any money.

      Are you OK with the $2 million plus being paid to Hillary by DNC and DCCC for her e-mail list?




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    3. dean said “Along with all your other conspiracy crap? Don’t try to complain and say “I don’t lie” any longer.”

      Having a difference of opinion which you characterize as conspiracy crap does not make me a liar. My opinion is Hillary and the DNC rigged the primary (i.e. tilted it in Hillary’s favor). If you don’t agree, that is your right. But having a difference of opinion doesn’t make either person in the disagreement a liar. You really need to look up the definition of a liar, because you use the word improperly (all the time). It is beginning to make me question your intelligence.




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  4. What does Clapper have to say about lying to Congress? He was asked about this by Meghan McCain, and he lied again saying he got confused about a different program.

    I’ve always thought that Clapper’s answering truthfully would have been revealing classified information, so his lie was justified, and found it surprising that he would lie about it on The View(unless for some reason he’s still not allowed to admit to it).




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  5. Clapper pushed Comey to brief Trump about the dossier, to give CNN a news hook to publish the story.
    He then lied about leaking this in an interview with Congress, then corrected his lie after being specifically asked about a reporter.
    CNN was also dishonest, putting up Clapper in an interview to deny that he leaked anything to the media, when they knew that Clapper had leaked to CNN.




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  6. “Having a difference of opinion …”

    Repeating something as fact after it was investigated and found to be false is lying. The fact that you think you are unjustly labeled as such can mean one of two things: you don’t care that you are dishonest, or that you are in massive denial.

    Clapper pushed Comey to brief Trump about the dossier, to give CNN a news hook to publish the story.

    Yes, the usual right-wing crowd is pushing that (federalist and the other homes for scum), but that doesn’t seem to be remotely true.

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/fact-checker/wp/2018/05/03/the-unsupported-claim-that-james-clapper-tipped-jake-tapper-about-the-dossier/?noredirect=on&utm_term=.ad5ac2affc86




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    1. FYI,

      Clapper was interviewed by Joshua Johnson on the second hour of this morning’s 1A program on NPR. I mention this just in case there are any conspiracy theorists out there who think it’s necessary to misrepresent some more people being reasonable.




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    2. Another dishonest fact check. Completely ignores the part where Clapper says around the time of the brief.




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  7. Obstreperous Applesauce, it is quite amazing (although long established by their actions) that neither rickA nor mikeN ever rely on facts for their comments. Really indicates that if rickA really is a lawyer you’d have to be a fool to use him.




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    1. dean finally realizes that an opinion is not a fact.

      About time.

      My 2nd amendment opinions are based on Supreme Court decisions.

      My climate change opinions are based on temperature data, sea-level data and what I have read in the climate change literature.

      My nuclear power opinion (I am pro-nuclear) is based on the need for fossil fuel backup to renewable – so why not just skip right to nuclear (which is baseload but more expensive than fossil fuel).

      So I do rely on some facts in my comments – but I often express opinions.

      The funny thing is you often express opinions also – but you think your opinions are actually facts.

      Isn’t that ironic?




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    2. My climate change opinions are based on temperature data, sea-level data and what I have read in the climate change literature.

      Oh stop it with your nonsense. You understand nothing and your opinions are crap. So many people have explained this to you here and at ATTP’s now that it’s not even funny anymore.

      You are either an idiot or a liar or both. QED.




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  8. ricka, your climate change comments are based on denial of the science. When. You say you aren’t a denier you are lying.

    The only use you have for facts is to twist them. There aren’t many people more habitually dishonest than you.




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    1. dean:

      Thank you for sharing your opinion.

      I disagree.

      My climate change opinions are based on my understanding of the science.

      I cannot lie if I believe what I say (which I do).

      I may be wrong (but I don’t think I am) but I am not a liar.

      We don’t know what ECS is – it can be anywhere from 1.5 to 4.5C.

      We don’t know what TCR is.

      My opinion is they are at the low end of the range – but only time will tell.

      That is not a lie and you cannot even prove I am wrong.

      I also do not think humans are responsible for 100% or more of the warming since 1950. That is my opinion.

      The fact that the global mean temperature has dropped .2C in the last year or two, coming off the el nino just shows how much nature can impact the global temperature. Nature and not just humans contributes both to warming and cooling of the climate. The quiet sun may show us more in the next 15 or 20 years (we will see).

      Of course humans have had an impact on the climate.

      But not all of the warming can be laid at the feet of humans.

      That is my opinion. Which is based on my understanding of the science.

      That is the truth.




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    2. My climate change opinions are based on my understanding of the science.

      You don’t understand the science, so your opinions are crap.




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    3. My climate change opinions are based on my understanding of the science.

      Therein lies the problem.




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    4. The fact that the global mean temperature has dropped .2C in the last year or two, coming off the el nino just shows how much nature can impact the global temperature.

      This is not news. The residual in the data after fitting a trend line to global temperature data over time is &plusmin; 0.2 °C – this has been known for decades, and the presence of a drop in “the last year or two” does not alter the fact of the underlying warming. And that rate of warming against the rate of atmospheric CO₂ increase indicates that the equilibrium climate sensitivity is at least close to the value Jim Hansen put forth decades ago – 3 °C or slightly more.

      You can try as much as you can to thimblerig the people here with your disembling blather but it’s not going to fly. We know how fast the planet is warming, we know what’s causing it, and we know what the consequences are. You might want to shill for the companies in which you invest but that’s simply a reflection of your own corrupt ideology and poor ethical stance – it’s not going to change the understanding of people who are able to assess the evidence better than you.




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  9. Meanwhile rightwingers in the US and the UK continue to piss in the face of democracy and do the Kremlin’s work by proxy.




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  10. My climate change opinions are based on my understanding of the science.

    Your comments about climate change are based on one thing: you don’t like what the science says is going on, so you do your best to distort and misrepresent the conclusions. That’s lying.




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  11. Is it just me or is RickA using boilerplate in his comments?

    Maybe it’s a bot- a sort of malignant Xaioice.




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  12. Progress of a sort.

    BBD and Bernard think I just don’t understand – which is fine and they are entitled to their opinion. At least BBD and Bernard don’t constantly call me a liar (thank you for that).

    dean still thinks I am a liar – because he thinks I “distort and misrepresent the conclusions” of science. Of course dean only thinks that because I disagree with his opinions, and he gets angry and stomps his foot. I don’t actually distort and misrepresent – I merely cite different science, like Nic Lewis (Lewis and Curry 2018).

    OA thinks I am a bot. I do repeat myself. I have to because I get accused of being a liar constantly and have to defend myself. Maybe if dean stopped flinging around the same old false accusations in every post, I could stop repeating myself so often (I am not a liar).




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    1. BBD and Bernard think I just don’t understand

      No, we know you don’t understand and we (along with numerous others) have tried to explain why you’ve got your head up your arse about a million times now.

      To no avail.

      So you are either an idiot or a liar or both. QED.




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    2. dean still thinks I am a liar – because he thinks I “distort and misrepresent the conclusions” of science.

      You DO distort and misrepresent the conclusions of science. Climate scientists understand the limitations of L&C’s approach and why it produces underestimates of S. Others who understand the science also understand the limitations of the L&C approach.

      Only those not intelligent enough to understand the science think that L&C isn’t a problematic outlier and instead imagine it to be the ‘best’ estimate. Another class of rhetoriticians do get that L&C is problematic but lie by omission of this fact and also peddle it as the ‘best’ estimate.

      So you are either an idiot or a liar, QED.




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    3. RIckA : “I do repeat myself. I have to because I get accused of being a liar constantly and have to defend myself. “

      The first part of that sentence is true – the second not-so-much. You have a number of alternatives to “having to defend yourself especially given the accuracy of the claim.

      My suggestion would be to stop your lying, face reality, and go rethink your life but then again I’m very glad to say I’m not you so .. shrug.




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  13. So, despite the fact that Russian agents lied about who they were and disseminated false information about a candidate for president over the internet, that’s nothing to worry about as long as it could possibly have been something else that caused that candidate to lose? Really?

    As for HRC, if she did something actually actionable in the Benghazi or e-mail affairs, why hasn’t anything been done about it in a court. Have there not been many “investigations” (dominated by her political enemies) and still nothing? Could it be it’s all bullshit? (Am I wrong or didn’t a similar situation to the Benghazi situation arise in another country later but made no big waves at all?)




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  14. “As for HRC, if she did something actually actionable in the Benghazi or e-mail affairs”

    There were plenty of accusations that she nixed a military response when the first reports came in — the only people who believed that were people stupid enough to think the Sec of state had any influence over military. Other bloviators accused her of “officially” saying the attacks were a response to the Koran burning video — which was also a lie. There were attacks from people who said that her response to the four murders was “What difference does it make?” — a comment taken completely out of context from an answer to an entirely different question.

    But the real reason there was no action because of this came from the Republicans who wasted hours and huge amounts of money holding the “investigations”: they were simply political in nature as even the people in charge of the investigations knew there was no “there there”.

    The emails: same sort of thing: no leaks of important sources (unlike our current president and his administration), no secrets lost, nothing any different than things previous secs of state had done. Again, it was all political.

    (Cue the continually dishonest “yeah but” posters and their lies.)




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    1. >The emails: same sort of thing: no leaks of important sources (unlike our current president and his administration), no secrets lost, nothing any different than things previous secs of state had done.

      Major goalpost shifting, to fit the facts as they are publicly known. No doubt you will have to change the story again if more facts come out. Still doing the ‘nothing marked classified’ too?
      And yes different from what previous secs of state had done.
      Colin Powell was wrong to be using his private e-mail too, but he didn’t set up his own server to avoid records rules.




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    2. Exactly the point I was trying to make, dean. If there had been anything to support the constant drumbeat of Bengazi. Bengazi. Bengazi on Faux News. talk radio, and in the Congress, there would have been some legal action. The lack of this shows there was no such supporting evidence. Just pure (and hateful) politics.

      Apparently the GOP lives by the motto: “Anything worth having is worth cheating for.”




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  15. No mikeN, no goalposts moved. Investigations done, nothing found. Your comment “when more facts come out” has no basis in any fact we know of.

    Your irrational dislike of her is the only motivation for your comments. It’s odd too, that you choose to make up faults to assign when there are so many legitimate reasons to dislike her and her positions.
    Of course, thought is required to understand the facts, whereas your complaints require only belief in years of lies and an active imagination.




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  16. As for RickA and his fellow deniers’ opinions on climate science, as the saying goes: Opinions are like arseholes _ everyone’s got one.

    On the other hand, informed opinions are harder to find.
    Amongst deniers they’re as rare as finding someone with two arseholes.




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  17. The “Obama wiretapped me” thing fell apart (because it didn’t happen), the “spy in my campaign thing has fallen apart (for the same reason, it didn’t happen), so one has to wonder: what great lie will Trump and his minions devise next?

    I’m sure the conspiracy mongers in the White House will dream up something.




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    1. There wasn’t a CIA and MI6 associated person who was paid by DOD that met with members of the Trump campaign to surreptitiously find out details from them to report to the FBI?




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  18. No Mike, no spy. It isn’t out fault you don’t understand what went on. Read for comprehension and get back here.




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    1. And note that “famed” lawyer Rudy G has said spygate is pure PR to smear the investigation.

      ” Former New York City mayor Rudy Giuliani said on Sunday that his repeated imputations of a supposed scandal at the heart of the Robert Mueller investigation – which Donald Trump calls “Spygate” – amounted to a tactic to sway public opinion and limit the risk of the president being impeached.”

      You’re gonna need to make up another lie.




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    2. OK Dean says no CIA and MI6 associated person who was paid by DOD that met with members of the Trump campaign to surreptitiously find out details from them to report to the FBI.




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    3. What I’ve learned from New York Times, Washington Post, and other liberal media is :
      1) There was no spy in the Trump campaign.
      2) The spying that did NOT happen was totally justified.
      3) It would be bad for national security to identify the spy who doesn’t exist.
      4) His name is Stefan.




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    4. Stefan Halper was not an FBI spy. He was an external informant doing exactly what FBI legitimately requires its informants to do under the mandate for the FBI’s tasks and duties.

      Nice try at a straw man though MikeN. You truly must have no shame nor dignity whatsoever, given the extremes to which you debase yourself with lies, logical fallacy, and appeals to blind ideology.

      I’ve had dog excrement stuck to the bottom of my shoes that have been more appealing than you.




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    5. Bernard, Mr Halper made a job offer to George Papadop, and also made a run at him with a woman. This is spycraft, not the act of an informant coming from Mr Trump’s campaign. He was sent by FBI or another agency to the Trump campaign. I suspect Mr Mifsud was also another spy.
      Not sure what doing legitimately what the FBI wanted matters for anything. No one is accusing Mr Halper of violating FBI rules.




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  19. Hillary got blamed in Benghazi by Republicans acting as partisans, particularly that she was negligent with embassy security. Benghazi was not an embassy, and perhaps not even a consulate. The full story was never told, but it was some sort of CIA operation.
    Hillary’s blame for Benghazi was lying about it afterwards blaming it on a video. Note Dean’s qualification above ‘official’. Also, she gets blame for her part in pushing the overthrow of Khadafi. “We came, We saw, He died.” This brought Al Qaeda flag to the shores of Italy, very close to Osama Bin Laden’s goal of reconquering former Muslim lands in Europe.




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  20. “Hillary’s blame for Benghazi was lying about it afterwards blaming it on a video”

    Christ mikeN, is there some line of bullshit that’s too fake even for you?




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    1. billyr, I realize that you and mikeN are too fucking stupid to exercise any rational thought or even correctly read definitions in a dictionary. You’re also too stupid to advance any of the valid problems with HRC and the Democratic party, preferring instead your ignorant and fact-free “opinions”.

      The real sign of how scummy you are is your nazi reference: the only people who deserve to be compared with nazis are nazis — like the american nazis who support Trump (and who he supports).

      You’ve lied repeatedly, you’ve demonstrated you have no respect for reality, but the latest is appalling, even for someone as scummy as you.

      Fuck right off.




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  21. “informer
    noun
    A person who informs on another person to the police or other authority.”
    ==================================================================
    “spy
    noun
    1A person employed by a government or other organization to secretly obtain information on an enemy or competitor.”

    Pretty much one of the same. Please, rid yourselves of your PC dictionaries.




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  22. Utube is free, dean. It is only a three minute watch.

    Rotham, said it was the video!! You need to clear
    your CONscience and have your facts straight or else
    work for State, DOJ, IRS or the FBI.




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    1. Not a spy billyR. I realize reality is complicated for you, but this difference is really simple.

      Sadly, you appear to be even simpler.




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  23. Trump is the ideal US president for Russia.

    *Unlike Hillary, Trump loves Putin.

    *Trump has continuously wrecked US standing in the international community with his loutish behavior, abrogation of treaties, and unending string of insults.

    *Trump divides Americans more just about every day, showing no ability to tolerate or accept anyone who is either white, beautiful, or beneficial to his well being in some way or another.

    *Under Trump, the insidious erosion of the American educational system continues unabashed. Kids in America are no longer able to go more than a few days without hearing of another school shooting. Fear and uncertainty are not conducive to positive educational outcomes.

    *Trump’s advocacy for the Russian backed NRA helps further the dumbing down of America. Lead fumes from shooting lower the collective American IQ just a little, but to Putin, any amount is wonderful.

    *Finally, since the Russian oligarchy is largely dependent upon fossil fuel sales for its power, Trump is the best advocate that Russia can have. While the rest of the educated world is trying to find alternatives to toxic, carcinogenic, teratogenic, limited, groundwater contaminating, earth quake producing, ocean acidifying and global climate warming fossil fuels, Trump is going whole hog back to the middle ages and trying to boost coal as an energy source.

    What an idiot. He is the urban equivalent of an ignorant hill billy. At his core, he is still the nasty little boy who thought it was okay to throw rocks at the neighbor’s baby in its crib. He lies, he cheats, he demeans American institutions. Just like Putin and the Russians wanted.

    Gee, do you think it is possible that the Russians did anything to try to get him elected?




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    1. >Unlike Hillary, Trump loves Putin.

      Hillary sent Putin a make nice RESET button, while Trump produced the first ground combat between Russian and American soldiers in 100 years.

      >Finally, since the Russian oligarchy is largely dependent upon fossil fuel sales for its power, Trump is the best advocate that Russia can have.

      How’s that? By pushing more fossil fuels, Trump drives down the price. It’s not like Russia will stop selling fossil fuels because US says Global Warming.




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  24. BillyGoat, without a shred of self-awareness, tells us that “…liars and
    crooks keep each other company.” Have you counted how many lies your Dear Leader, the sleazy conman, has told, BillyGoat? So, what does that make you _ a crook? a liar?…or just a simple sheep who’s happy to believe unquestioningly what the Dear Leader tweets.

    It’s sad that Trump’s devoted sheep are too dim to know the difference between a spy and an informant but even more concerning is that by pushing this “spying” nonsense as an issue, which Rudy Giuliani has recently said was just a PR tactic to attack the FBI, they seem to be questioning the legitimacy of having informants as a tool of criminal investigations. While they’ve never had issues with informants in the past, to bring down the mafia or other criminal entities, now that more evidence of corruption and collusion is coming to light the sheep are panicking. They’ll say and do anything to protect the corrupt Dear Leader: It’s not fair to have informant informing on us! It’s not on! It’s un-american! It’s a plot against the Dear Leader!

    The sheep, in their zeal and uncritical support for the tweeting moron couldn’t care less about the integrity of their government and couldn’t care less that the pillars of government that sustain the US democratic system _ the justice department, the press and the intelligence agencies _ are constantly being undermined with every tweet from the sleazy conman.

    Millions of morally pliable and gullible people manipulated by a charismatic demagogue who attacked the institutions of government. Hmmm…wasn’t there a similar situation somewhere in Europe in the 1930’s with dire consequences?




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    1. Yes, of course, and apparently the forces of the Europe were unable to cope with the Great Leader back then until the U. S. (reluctantly) took a hand with its military and just as important, its industrial capabilities. Where is the equivalent of the U.S. of yesteryear now that the U.S. seems heading down the same path? I don’t see one, do you?




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    2. JPee, I have extras dictionary if you need one but
      I doubt you ever use them, based on your silly
      explainations.




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  25. There is the Old Christian message of love and compassion for other human beings.
    And then there is Trump, stirring up resentment, even hatred against anybody who is not white, beautiful, and/or a loyal ass-kisser.

    There are the French, recognizing and rewarding the inherent value of bravery and compassion, even in an illegal immigrant, and thereby showing that they are capable of great love and compassion. The French clearly showed that they are capable of humanizing people that others reject.
    And then there is Trump’s America, where Claudia Patricia Gomez Gonzalez, a 20 year old accounting student who could not find work in Guatemala, was summarily executed by a shot to the head by a US border cop, supposedly because her group of illegals was threatening the heavily armed border guard with blunt objects.

    Strangely, there has been a shift in US culture, a revulsion away from love and compassion and towards dehumanization, division and conflict. There has been a shift from magnanimous openness and understanding to it being okay to be an ultra-nationalist, tribalist hater. There has been a shift from the wisdom that an open hand is much more powerful than a fist, to the snarling, reptilian hiss of America- first, me first, screw everybody else. Diplomacy is a waste of time, intelligence is a waste of time, might makes right.

    Can any of the conservative, right wing, authoritarians out there give us any insight into how they feel about any of this? Do they think that love and compassion are obsolete? Do they feel that Trump, who quite clearly fits the description of a sociopathic narcissist, gives them something of value in return for his pathologically destructive purging of American institutions? Do they really think that he is justified in destroying anything that Obama helped create? Inquiring minds want to know.




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  26. BillyGoat displaying his self-awareness: After writing “extras dictionary” and “explainations”, reckons he’s got dictionaries to give away. Well, why not _ it’s obvious he doesn’t need them.




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  27. Trey Gowdy, Fox News, and others: “The FBI did things by the book and did nothing wrong.”

    More proof that you have to be a dishonest hack to believe the “spy” story.




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    1. So you accept the other part of what Gowdy said about no obstruction of justice by Trump?
      “I think what the president is doing is expressing frustration that Attorney General Sessions should have shared these reasons for recusal before he took the job, not afterward. If I were the president, and I picked someone to be the country’s chief law-enforcement officer, and they told me later, “Oh by the way, I’m not going to be able to participate in the most important case in the office,” I would be frustrated too. That’s how I read that.”




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  28. Do you ever get tired of moving goalposts mikeN? You’ve been pushing the bullcap of “deep state”, “spies”, etc., for a long time, despite the complete lack of evidence for any of your comments. You’ve been saying there is nothing to the various investigations in spite of the items that have come out.

    Stick with a consistent story — try to be a little bit rational. Having the Attorney General interfere with an investigation of his boss would be incredibly unprofessional, as multiple Republicans (among others) have said.

    What made you so dismissive of rationality and reality in general?




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    1. If there was a different attorney general there would be no special counsel investigation, nothing to interfere with. The investigation is at odds with the rules for special counsels, which are for criminal investigations, not counterintelligence. Also there is generally supposed to be a public statement of the matters to be investigated.

      And yes, whether Gowdy says it was appropriate or not, the FBI sent a spy. Perhaps more than one. Informants generally are people who are on the inside talking to those on the outside. Halper was on the outside trying to get in.
      Not clear how Mifsud, Downer fit in. A close reading of the indictment of The Greek shows that he was never told about e-mails by Mifsud, and he never told Downer about e-mails. He only brought it up in an interview with the FBI.




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    2. Who is the AG or what AG does with regards to Special Counsel is irrelevant to the point Gowdy was making that there was no obstruction by Trump.

      Regardless of what Trump said then, his most recent attacks on Sessions are lies. He is just trying to get the media to defend Sessions, who has deployed a team of prosecutors to go after all the government agents working against Trump. McCabe is going to need those hundreds of thousands he collected by trying to portray it as Trump took away my pension, before the IG report was released revealing his lies.




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  29. I predict within two weeks there will be another IG report revealing some more criminality by the Hillary/Obama team.
    We are already seeing defensive preemptive leaks like the one about Mueller is looking into discussions between Trump and Sessions, and the McCabe memo after Comey firing.




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    1. I’ll go with Comey’s statement under oath over Gowdy’s interview which ignores this statement.
      Comey said that FBI was investigating coordination between the Trump campaign and Russia. Not just a few individuals but the Trump campaign. He went into more detail later, that some objected to his telling Trump he was not under investigation.
      So FBI was spying on the Trump campaign.




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  30. “while Trump produced the first ground combat between Russian and American soldiers in 100 years.”

    That is profoundly stupid and dishonest. Russians embedded with syrians attacked a location with American forces: the Americans did not seek out the confrontation as your statement implies.

    “I predict within two weeks there will be another IG report revealing some more criminality by the Hillary/Obama team.”

    Since there has been none yet there cannot be more. Join the fact-based universe mikeN.




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