March 17, 2017

Enough about squeaky, it's time for Spicey.



From "White House Tries to Soothe British Officials Over Trump Wiretap Claim" (in the NYT).

5th highest-rated comment: "And this is the man that has the nuclear codes? It was be laughable if it weren't so downright terrifying."

Which reminds me of this other thing on the NYT front page right now: "Rex Tillerson Rejects Talks With North Korea on Nuclear Program."
“The policy of strategic patience has ended,” Mr. Tillerson said, a reference to the term used by the Obama administration to describe a policy of waiting out the North Koreans, while gradually ratcheting up sanctions and covert action....

Mr. Tillerson’s tougher line was echoed by President Trump on Twitter later Friday. “North Korea is behaving very badly,” he posted. “They have been “playing” the United States for years. China has done little to help!”

125 comments:

bagoh20 said...

You know, they never gave Obama the nuclear codes. He said he didn't need them, and the whole world, especially North Korea, Putin, and Iran knew it.

buwaya said...

Yes, and what Trump said has been the foreign-policy analyst consensus since the 1990's.

buwaya said...

Soothing British politicians does not require telling the truth.
The truth, whatever it is, is not relevant.

Hagar said...

About these "wiretap" claims, no one should take their mouths too full. I do not think anyone knows who told whom what and why, or what may or may not have some reality to it.

bagoh20 said...

What would be the bigger story: That Trump said Obama spied on him, or that Obama might have actually done that?

For some reason, the press was never real interested in looking into the second part.

Obama was the most powerful man in the world with an inexhaustible circle of people around him who could and would spy on anybody he wanted them to, and many who would do it without being asked on anyone they felt a threat to him, his legacy, or his party . The idea that he would have to actually order such spying is not how it happens. He sits around at a meeting of the right people and over a beer, simply says "I wish I could catch Trump saying something un-American in that damned tower of his. He could win and screw up everything we built here."

No direct order required. No court order required. It just gets done. You know, like Watergate did.

Quayle said...

"And this is the man that has the nuclear codes? It was be laughable if it weren't so downright terrifying."

I wonder if certain other world leaders are saying the same thing. And would it be bad if they were?

Drago said...

I sure hope Judges Watkins and Chuang have developed an effective containment strategy for North Korea now that the judiciary is in charge of our foreign policy and national security.

Chuck said...

So Althouse; since you are so often (and so often very perceptively) criticizing the New York Times for bias and reporting errors...

... You aren't criticizing the substance or the style of this article... right?

I regard it as a big story. An important story. President Donald Trump accused his predecessor, President Barack Obama of having been a "bad (or sick) guy" in the matter of a "tapp" or a "wire tap" or a tap of "wires" in Trump Tower. If that is wrong -- as seems to be the elaborately and exhaustively questioned case -- and if the Trump administration has none of the startling/amazing facts that would support such a claim, then it seems that there is a huge Presidential Level Apology that is owed.

You are not taking issue with the story you linked, am I right? You don't have to take a side in any substantive dispute, but since you read the story and linked it in your blog, you could have taken issue with it. And you are not taking issue with it, it appears.


tcrosse said...

"And this is the man that has the nuclear codes? It was be laughable if it weren't so downright terrifying."
Some federal judge would intervene if he tried to use them.

rehajm said...

I wonder if certain other world leaders are saying the same thing. And would it be bad if they were?

Yes. Once informed of the game theory of nuclear weapons this is precisely why you continue to have them.

Sebastian said...

It's good to be nice to the Brits, tough on the Norks, and firm with the Chinese. We need regime change in NK. We will get regime change in NK, one way or another, sooner or later. The only question for China, SK, and the US is when and how.

Chuck said...

bagoh20 said...
What would be the bigger story: That Trump said Obama spied on him, or that Obama might have actually done that?

For some reason, the press was never real interested in looking into the second part


I think that it is becoming the commonly-accepted wisdom in Washington that they are each big stories to different constituencies. And that the truth doesn't matter. And that Trump's baseless Twitter allegations were all that was needed, to give TrumpLand something to chew on. And the fog of media-war would defy any general resolution. Alternative facts.

Trumpit said...

If I were President Trump, I'd make sure that tyrant Kim Jung Un was safely tucked in his bed, then I'd nuke the son of a bitch. We have experience with such things having nuked Japan twice to end World War II.

Achilles said...

Chuck blatantly lies...

and if the Trump administration has none of the startling/amazing facts that would support such a claim,

February 14th, 2017 The New York Times specifically states Obama agencies monitored Trump.

"Phone records and intercepted calls show that members of Donald J. Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign and other Trump associates had repeated contacts with senior Russian intelligence officials in the year before the election, according to four current and former American officials."

There are many other such stories. You are a lying sack of shit.

Quaestor said...

If I were President Trump, I'd make sure that tyrant Kim Jung Un was safely tucked in his bed, then I'd nuke the son of a bitch. We have experience with such things having nuked Japan twice to end World War II.

Why so bloodthirsty, Trumpit? You've been down this road before. Quaestor senses a pattern...

Achilles said...

Chuck said...

I think that it is becoming the commonly-accepted wisdom in Washington that they are each big stories to different constituencies. And that the truth doesn't matter. And that Trump's baseless Twitter allegations were all that was needed, to give TrumpLand something to chew on. And the fog of media-war would defy any general resolution. Alternative facts.

January 19th 2017 another New York Times story shows that Chuck is a lying sack of shit.

"Intercepted Russian Communications Part of Inquiry Into Trump Associates"

"The continuing counterintelligence investigation means that Mr. Trump will take the oath of office on Friday with his associates under investigation and after the intelligence agencies concluded that the Russian government had worked to help elect him."

buwaya said...

"And that the truth doesn't matter."

It doesn't. This is a power struggle just short of open warfare.

Truth , of course, is the first casualty. There is no truth at all to be expected from any source.

TreeJoe said...

I've always wondered the point: When do we take a murderous regimes claim to want to war with us with any weapons they have at hand seriously?

NK at least is mostly contained, but they could sell their nuclear technology or course launch a full scale regional war as they seem to be on the brink of doing now.

Iran doesn't seem to have nuclear weapons, but they directly and indirectly war with us within the region while large portions of their government publicly proclaims their desire to wipe us off the map without any rejection by government leaders.

Somehow, I don't think a deal solely aimed at a 10 year delay in nuclear development combined with a bucketload of cash is the way to handle it.

Achilles said...

How short are the memories of leftists and "lifelong republicans?" It has been mere weeks since Trump was a foreign Russian plant who was caught in a counter-intelligence net. Now? Those tweets were unfounded!

You people are totally ridiculous. And look at Trumpit go.

Deranged. Stupid.

AReasonableMan said...

GOP Rep.: Without Evidence, Trump Owes Obama Apology For Wiretapping Charge

Extraordinary claims at least require ordinary proof.

An apology for the Brits but none for our own President. Sad!

Chuck said...

Achilles said...
Chuck blatantly lies...

and if the Trump administration has none of the startling/amazing facts that would support such a claim,

February 14th, 2017 The New York Times specifically states Obama agencies monitored Trump.

"Phone records and intercepted calls show that members of Donald J. Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign and other Trump associates had repeated contacts with senior Russian intelligence officials in the year before the election, according to four current and former American officials."

There are many other such stories. You are a lying sack of shit.

Fuck you! I am not taking that shit from you; not for one fucking post. The Times doesn't say that "Obama wiretapped Trump Tower." And for the sentient portion of the population, we know full well that there may have been early FISA warrants for freak Russian lobbyists like Roger Stone and Paul Manafort; there may have been a US or British intercepts of Flynn talking to Russian agents from a phone in the Dominican Republic.

If you have evidence of an "Obama... wiretap... of Trump Tower," then show it, sport.

Stick to the point. Trump made the claim. The claim that Obama... wire-tapped... Trump Tower. Nobody wrote that but Trump. Nobody made Obama write that. And it is on nobody but Trump to back it up. Not the failing New York Times. Not the failing Fox News Channel. Not the failing Breitbart website.


Chuck said...

Achilles said...
How short are the memories of leftists and "lifelong republicans?" It has been mere weeks since Trump was a foreign Russian plant who was caught in a counter-intelligence net. Now? Those tweets were unfounded!


Don't try to run that shit by me.

I never claimed that Trump was a Russian plant. I don't have a Twitter account.

You had better be a lot more careful when you try to quote or characterize me.

robother said...

"Wiretapping" is yet another term the media takes literally. I suspect most of the internet and wireless communications of Americans is captured and stored without the benefit of any FISA warrant. The "search" is data mining, or targeted after a hostile (to Deep State) person is appointed or nominated, and damaging information leaked to a compliant press.

Since none of this is being captured to build a criminal case, but rather to identify risks and take them out proactively, FISA compliance is optional, ass-covering only.

Unknown said...

Trump isn't going to get the same sort of acceptance of his bullshit from the rest of the world. He's going to mess with the wrong nation one day and get Americans killed.

Achilles said...

March 1, 2017 New York Times. But Obama had nothing to do with it! We are cereal!

"WASHINGTON — In the Obama administration’s last days, some White House officials scrambled to spread information about Russian efforts to undermine the presidential election — and about possible contacts between associates of President-elect Donald J. Trump and Russians — across the government."

This is going to get messy. A lot of leftists and DC lifers are going to jail.

Achilles said...

Unknown said...
Trump isn't going to get the same sort of acceptance of his bullshit from the rest of the world. He's going to mess with the wrong nation one day and get Americans killed.

OMFG. You are such a parody. You can't make this shit up.

Remember that democrats nominated the biggest warmonger in either party in 2016 and Obama and Hillary literally got people killed in Benghazi because of their politicking.

Chuck said...

robother said...
"Wiretapping" is yet another term the media takes literally.

Only because "wiretapping" is widely used in the law, including about 20 different places in the United States Code, and in law enforcement, and is very well understood with a reasonably specific meaning in the general public.

Don't blame anybody else, for Donald Trump's own chosen words. Or his badly-chosen, ill-advised, mangled, imprecise, reckless words.


Mike said...

Fake news. Spicer did not apologize to the Brits. He simply explained that he was quoting published sources. Do news orgs do ANY real news now?

No. No they don't

Achilles said...

Chuck said...

Don't try to run that shit by me.

Weak sauce liar. I have posted multiple sources for Obama administration surveillance. You just got owned.

And are you seriously saying that you were not blathering about Trump's Russian connections or is this another semantic "it wasn't a wire tapp" dodge?

Mike said...

Chuck bleats, "The Times doesn't say that 'Obama wiretapped Trump Tower.'"

Actually that was exactly the wording of the NYT headline on page 1 on January 20 of this year. How short your memory is!

Achilles said...

Chuck said...

Don't blame anybody else, for Donald Trump's own chosen words. Or his badly-chosen, ill-advised, mangled, imprecise, reckless words.

Bullshit. You just want to lie about what happened.

Obama had surveillance conducted on a political opponent through a variety of sources and leaked the information to the press. Period. It is printed in a dozen articles in the New York Times alone.

Semantics is not going to bail you out. The truth came out in those tweets. All you are doing now is whining about how you lost.

Mike said...

Oh, unless we are playing the game-without-rules where NOTHING that happened under Obama's tenure accrues to him while EVERYTHING that happens under Republican admins accrues to the top man. See Bush, GW; Reagan, RR; etc.

Big Mike said...

@Chuck, if you want to play semantic games over the word "wiretap," then be our guest. While you're at it you might also argue for a flat earth and a geocentric solar system.

Chuck said...



Mike said...
Fake news. Spicer did not apologize to the Brits. He simply explained that he was quoting published sources. Do news orgs do ANY real news now?
No. No they don't


You have screwed the pooch on this one. The Times DID report that. Here:

Other White House officials, who also would not be named, said Mr. Spicer offered no regret to the ambassador. “He didn’t apologize, no way, no how,” said a senior West Wing official. The officials said they did not know whether General McMaster had apologized.


What is wrong with you? Didn't you read that part? Of course, Spicer SHOULD have apologized. But the Times reported -- accurately, I presume -- from sources friendly to both Trump and Spicer, that Spicer didn't offer any apology.

What is your problem with that? Why your insult of the the Times?

Chuck said...

Big Mike said...
@Chuck, if you want to play semantic games over the word "wiretap," then be our guest. While you're at it you might also argue for a flat earth and a geocentric solar system.


Who is playing semantic games? I don't propose to back down on this one inch. What are we supposed to understand that Trump meant, by "wiretap"? And, I am going to have a follow up for you after you answer that question directly.

Trumpit said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
buwaya said...

"What are we supposed to understand that Trump meant, by "wiretap""

Every modern method of capturing communications. These no longer require stripping wire and attaching alligator clips.

Hagar said...

Former Prime Minister Urquhart was unavailable for comment.

buwaya said...

"If KJU is sane and amenable to reason as you pacifist Rethuglicans assume, then he will do as he is told"

If the South Koreans or Japanese are unsure about this, or would rather not take the risk, then this isn't possible. There are more than two players here.

Mike said...

Chuck your post says exactly the same thing mine did: No apology. So I stand by my assertion it is fake news that he DID apologize. You really do have poor reading comprehension for a moby.

buwaya said...

"Former Prime Minister Urquhart was unavailable for comment."

You might very well think that; I couldn't possibly comment

Mike said...

Man, reading it again makes me laugh again. Great work, Chuck!

Trumpit said...

Another way to deal with Kim Jung Un (KJU) is to give him an ultimatum to put all his cards on the table and denuclearize, or else the end is drawing nigh for him and his barbaric regime. Supposedly, we gave Saddam an ultimatum, and a trumped up neocon war ensued as was intended all along. If KJU is sane and amenable to reason as you pacifists assume, then he will do as he is told. If you are wrong about his judiciousness and sanity, then he'll go down in a blaze of glory and start launching nukes before he and his regime are pulverized.

Human history is "bloodthirsty" if I'm not mistaken. Around 60,000,000 people died in WWII (1939-1945) alone, and that was before the advent of nuclear weapons. Does anyone doubt that Hitler would have used such weapons if he had had them? KJU is another Hitler.

Mike said...

Chuck said...


Mike said...
Fake news. Spicer did not apologize to the Brits. He simply explained that he was quoting published sources. Do news orgs do ANY real news now?
No. No they don't



You have screwed the pooch on this one. The Times DID report that. Here:

Other White House officials, who also would not be named, said Mr. Spicer offered no regret to the ambassador. “He didn’t apologize, no way, no how,” said a senior West Wing official. The officials said they did not know whether General McMaster had apologized.


What is wrong with you? Didn't you read that part? Of course, Spicer SHOULD have apologized. But the Times reported -- accurately, I presume -- from sources friendly to both Trump and Spicer, that Spicer didn't offer any apology.

What is your problem with that? Why your insult of the the Times?


3/17/17, 1:06 PM

Mike said...

See it gets better every time you read it!

Bruce said...

I think it is interesting (whether meaningful or not) that British intelligence do not literally deny that they searched the NSA databases for data about Trump and his communications.

"It is ridiculous". "The statement should be ignored". "We've been assured the White House won't say it again".

None of those statements says "we did not do it".

I'm not a big Trump supporter or anything, but every formal statement about the possible surveillance incident seems carefully worded and contain enough weasel words that they imply that they are saying something, without actually saying what they imply. The same was true of Obama's statement right after Trumps tweets.

Chuck said...

Mike said...
Chuck your post says exactly the same thing mine did: No apology. So I stand by my assertion it is fake news that he DID apologize. You really do have poor reading comprehension for a moby.


What is your point? Who claimed that Spicer apologized? Where is there any "fake news" of a Spicer apology?

Chuck said...

Bruce said...
I think it is interesting (whether meaningful or not) that British intelligence do not literally deny that they searched the NSA databases for data about Trump and his communications.

"It is ridiculous". "The statement should be ignored". "We've been assured the White House won't say it again".

None of those statements says "we did not do it".

I'm not a big Trump supporter or anything, but every formal statement about the possible surveillance incident seems carefully worded and contain enough weasel words that they imply that they are saying something, without actually saying what they imply. The same was true of Obama's statement right after Trumps tweets.


I don't have any doubt, but that British intelligence, along with all intelligence services, are listening to lots of telephone conversations. I sure hope so!

Back to the point: Did "Obama... wiretap... Trump Tower"?

If you want to assert that Trump didn't really mean that it was "Obama" who ordered something, or that it was a "wiretap" at all, or that it even occurred in "Trump Tower," then I ask you; what sort of weasel-words was Donald Trump attempting?

Big Mike said...

Who is playing semantic games? I don't propose to back down on this one inch.

Nor do I propose to back down one nanometer from regarding you as an ignorant, pissant, moby who is the bastard son of a five dollar whore.

Your turn.

AReasonableMan said...

"Britain’s Daily Telegraph newspaper, citing unnamed intelligence sources, reported on its website that Spicer and Trump’s national security adviser Lieutenant General Herbert McMaster had made formal apologies to Britain."

Chuck said...

Big Mike said...
Who is playing semantic games? I don't propose to back down on this one inch.
Nor do I propose to back down one nanometer from regarding you as an ignorant, pissant, moby who is the bastard son of a five dollar whore.
Your turn.


My turn: I ask you for a second time, what did Trump mean by claiming that "Obama" "wire-tapped" "Trump Tower," and explain why it is not "word games" on Trump's part, if he claims that his allegation meant anything other than the simple idea that Barack Obama ordered a wiretap of someone, or some phone, inside of Trump Tower.

DanTheMan said...

I used to chuckle (no offense) when the far right loonies said that O nailed Petraeus by intercepting his emails and phone calls.

I don't anymore. I agree that Trump's claim requires some serious evidence, but I no longer think it's outlandish. It seems quite possible, and perhaps even likely...

Fernandinande said...

buwaya said...
These no longer require stripping wire and attaching alligator clips.


I wear a trench-coat, pull hat brim low over my eyes, and watch over my shoulder whenever I do that.

Matthew Sablan said...

I didn't think there was any question whether Trump was monitored -- just the extent of exactly how he got so. Especially with all the leaked kompromat that the left insisted they had seen but couldn't share, or hadn't seen but could swear existed.

buwaya said...

"than the simple idea that Barack Obama ordered a wiretap of someone, or some phone, inside of Trump Tower."

Because its more likely that the entire stream of data of all kinds out of Trump Tower, or NYC, is cached somewhere, and searchable, or that a dynamic filter of some sort was implemented to copy sections of this into some database. Its not a matter of taps but copies and searches. Go explain that.

Matthew Sablan said...

"What are we supposed to understand that Trump meant, by "wiretap""

-- Probably whatever the left, the NYT and others meant why they said they had caught compromising things about Trump and his administration through wiretapping, as shown on the front page of the NYT above.

DanTheMan said...

>>I wear a trench-coat, pull hat brim low over my eyes, and watch over my shoulder whenever I do that.

Don't forget your Minox camera.

Matthew Sablan said...

"I don't anymore. I agree that Trump's claim requires some serious evidence, but I no longer think it's outlandish. It seems quite possible, and perhaps even likely..."

-- Obama spied on Congress and wiretapped unfriendly American journalists in an attempt to silence their stories. His administration routinely linked private tax documents of his political enemies to his political allies.

So, yeah. Not too far fetched to believe he might have used his administration to try and weaken his political rival.

exiledonmainstreet said...

bagoh20 said...

No direct order required. No court order required. It just gets done. You know, like Watergate did.

3/17/17, 12:20 PM

Obama made a public quip about auditing his enemies. The IRS promptly began harassing Tea Party organizations and succeeded in shutting many of them down prior to the 2012 election.

That's how you do it.

FullMoon said...

C'mon now Chuck. After you give Obama personal credit for Obamacare which was created by his appointees, you must assign responsibility for the surveillance to Obama.
BTW, you earlier asked "Why do you think they call it Obamacare?" Surely you have not forgotten the nickname was created as a derogatory term?

FullMoon said...

Informed anonymous sources saying Merkle gonna make a public statement about Obama being personally responsible for surveillance on her phone....

Matthew Sablan said...

"Informed anonymous sources" -- Take those with more grains of salt than movie pop corn.

Chuck said...

FullMoon said...
C'mon now Chuck. After you give Obama personal credit for Obamacare which was created by his appointees, you must assign responsibility for the surveillance to Obama.
BTW, you earlier asked "Why do you think they call it Obamacare?" Surely you have not forgotten the nickname was created as a derogatory term?

If you are going to misquote me, you should at least make an effort at trying to make it believable.

I never suggested that Obama got "personal credit" for Obamacare, which I never thought was a good idea.

What I said was that Obama got personally involved in the process, in a way Trump does not seem inclined to attempt. And that nothing would be passed in 2017, without maximum effort from everybody with an (R), and maybe more.

I am not even disappointed. I don't think that Trump is smart enough to comprehend health care reform. Or how monumentally hard -- historically hard, if not impossible -- to ever roll back a federal entitlement-type law.

Chuck said...

Matthew Sablan said...
"I don't anymore. I agree that Trump's claim requires some serious evidence, but I no longer think it's outlandish. It seems quite possible, and perhaps even likely..."

-- Obama spied on Congress and wiretapped unfriendly American journalists in an attempt to silence their stories. His administration routinely linked private tax documents of his political enemies to his political allies.

So, yeah. Not too far fetched to believe he might have used his administration to try and weaken his political rival.


Well, then it also should not be too hard for Trump to prove it, right?

HoodlumDoodlum said...

AReasonableMan said...Extraordinary claims at least require ordinary proof.

That's a good standard, ARM. A good standard!

Let's see: for several months now it's been widely asserted that Trump and people close to him are "working for the Russians"--that they've been corrupted by the Ruskies. That, to me, is a pretty extraordinary claim. Weirdly there hasn't been much in the way of "ordinary proof" offered. Even longtime Republicans like Chuck--who I think has stopped short of accusing Trump directly but has played the "for some reason Trump doesn't criticize Vlad, really makes you think" insinuation game--should be willing, under your standard, to oppose any extraordinary allegations made without even ordinary proof, right?

I mean, it's strange, isn't it, that the same Media that runs story after story about allegations (from unverified dossiers provided by an ex-spy in the employ of a Dem-affiliated organization, etc) of a very extraordinary nature, without much of anything in the way of ordinary proof, now themselves act indignant that someone else would make an assertion not backed adequate support? What do you think could explain such a divergence?

It's a good standard, though, ARM; standards only work when they're applied equally, to everyone.

buwaya said...

"Don't forget your Minox camera."

Lovely little jewels, but a huge PITB IMHO.

steve uhr said...

Another brilliant move by Trump. Get the press obsessed about your latest crazy tweet and repeal/replace Obamacare when no one is looking.

FullMoon said...

Ha! moving up AA blog, I now see Trump brought it up.Hilarious.

Chuck said...

steve uhr said...
Another brilliant move by Trump. Get the press obsessed about your latest crazy tweet and repeal/replace Obamacare when no one is looking.

Another typical move by Trump. Alienate 50% or 60% or 75% of the country, including perhaps 90% of high level decision makers, distracting from more serious messaging on subjects of real consequence (the budget, tax reform, health care reform). All in order to thrill the narrow percentage of the population that is your ideological base.

tim in vermont said...

The British can see most anything and the law allows them to listen to anything they deem to be in the interest, defined very broadly, of the UK to listen to.

Matthew Sablan said...

"Well, then it also should not be too hard for Trump to prove it, right?"

-- I'm waiting for the proof; I just see no reason to dismiss this as a "radical" claim. It's... actually kind of disturbingly expected.

tim in vermont said...

Weird about Trump's approval numbers.

HoodlumDoodlum said...

exiledonmainstreet said...Obama made a public quip about auditing his enemies. The IRS promptly began harassing Tea Party organizations and succeeded in shutting many of them down prior to the 2012 election.

Who will rid me of these troublesome Tea Partiers?!

It's worse than that, though: from some of the office emails that were actually recovered from Lerner (as opposed to the thousands that--oops--happened to get destroyed despite being under federal subpoena) we know she and her friends in the IRS shared Lefty Op-Eds (WashPo, I think) complaining about charities being involved in what the writer considered impermissibly-political activities--by coincidence activities opposing the Left--and on that basis said "we ought to do something about this!"
So you've got a high-ranking official in the IRS reading a Lefty op-ed and deciding to do the bidding of that writer. Pretty bad!

The Obama Justice Dept. worked w/Lerner to go after the Right. Obama appointees running the IRS stonewalled the investigation, helped cover things up, and took no actions against what are almost certainly criminal wrongdoing by IRS and other government employees (obstruction of justice, evidence tampering, etc). The "Obama didn't directly order it!" defense was always a canard--it's Obama's responsibility whether he signed a letter directing the action or not.

The Left likes to talk a lot about people in charge being responsible for creating a "culture" (in reference to institutional sexism/racism/homophobia etc) but somehow don't get around to applying that thinking to the bad acts of the State when the Left is in charge. Can't imagine why.

Dr Weevil said...

It's quite possible to know something for a fact without being able to prove it to others. For instance: the Flynn conversations that were leaked to the press - was Flynn inside Trump Tower when he was having them? If he was, and Trump knew it, there would be no possible doubt that someone was 'wiretapping' Trump Tower in some way, not necessarily involving actual wires.

Of course, Chuck keeps ignoring the main evidence that Obama tapped Trump Tower, although I have pointed it out to him before: the fact that Obama doesn't deny it. He just has a representative make a lawyerly (=weaselly) statement denying that Obama "ordered" a FISA wiretap, which to me clearly implies that he requested a FISA wiretap, or ordered someone to request a FISA wiretap, or permitted someone to wiretap Trump without going through the FISA court, or got the job done in some other way without issuing a direct order to the FISA court, which he can't do anyway. Otherwise, he would have said something sweeping like "No one working for me has eavesdropped on, listed to, stolen, or intercepted the communications of President Trump or any of his staff before or after the inauguration in any location by any technical means whatsoever". That would have been a denial, and the fact that he doesn't issue such a denial is as good as an admission, to anyone who understands lawyerese and politispeak. (If you don't understand both of these languages, you need to go sit at the kids' table and leave the argument to the grownups.)

Chuck said...

Hoodlum:

Last night on FNC, Charles Krauthammer very deliberately went through the process of saying that Washington seems consumed with two fake scandals for which there is no proof.

One fake scandal is any notion that Obama wiretapped Trump Tower. There is no proof, and no indication that any proof might be forthcoming.

The other fake scandal is any notion that the Trump campaign colluded with Russian agents to steal the U.S. election. There is no proof, and no indication that any proof might be forthcoming.

That has been the general message, from the entire Krauthammer-class of punditry (like the Arleigh Burke class of destroyers, or the Ohio class of attack subs) for days now.

And for the most part, they speak for me and of course they speak to me. I am free to pick and choose my selected media, and that is how I have chosen. I don't subscribe to any conspiracy theories against Donald Trump. Trump's own Twitter account is enough of an indictment for me.

Chuck said...

Dr Weevil said...
It's quite possible to know something for a fact without being able to prove it to others. For instance: the Flynn conversations that were leaked to the press - was Flynn inside Trump Tower when he was having them?


No. According to the Washington Post, Flynn was in the Dominican Republic.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/flynns-swift-downfall-from-a-phone-call-in-the-dominican-republic-to-a-forced-resignation-at-the-white-house/2017/02/14/17b0d8e6-f2f2-11e6-b9c9-e83fce42fb61_story.html?utm_term=.04a6578bf27f


Chuck said...

Matthew Sablan:

I don't know why anybody should have to wait, for proof from Trump, to back up a series of Tweets that "Obama... wiretapped... Trump Tower."

You get the proof all ready before you Tweet something like that.

Dr Weevil said...

And Chuck continues to pretend not to have read the argument that Obama has not in fact denied it. Or perhaps he doesn't understand my (rather simple) argument? If that's so, he needs to go to the kids' table.

Matthew Sablan said...

Chuck: I'm a patient man. If Trump is shooting off half cocked, that's, well, perfectly in character for him. It's no skin off my nose either way.

bagoh20 said...

Is it a "fake scandal", If Charlie Sheen is accused of doing drugs with hookers last week. It is if there is proof he didn't do it when they say he did, but with no proof either way, calling it "fake" is at least as presumptive as saying he did it. Obama's known proclivity for surveilling his enemies and others is as strong as Sheen's proclivity for drugs and whores. Which one is more fun is a matter of taste.

FullMoon said...

Chuck said...

steve uhr said...
Another brilliant move by Trump. Get the press obsessed about your latest crazy tweet and repeal/replace Obamacare when no one is looking.

Another typical move by Trump. Alienate 50% or 60% or 75% of the country, including perhaps 90% of high level decision makers, distracting from more serious messaging on subjects of real consequence (the budget, tax reform, health care reform). All in order to thrill the narrow percentage of the population that is your ideological base.


Messaging? Message been sent and heard. America wants what Trump wants. Except for Ca, Ny, and some stragglers.Trump won with his message. Pretty simple. He may be a liar and a buffoon and worthy of your derision. But most Americans are tired of PC and BS.

Chuck said...

Dr Weevil said...
And Chuck continues to pretend not to have read the argument that Obama has not in fact denied it. Or perhaps he doesn't understand my (rather simple) argument? If that's so, he needs to go to the kids' table.

Your argument is nauseating. Like saying that because Obama didn't immediately respond to Trump's claims about Obama's birth certificate, it somehow indicated that Trump's claims were credible.


Pookie Number 2 said...

Alienate 50% or 60% or 75%

He's really not alienating anyone. The people committed to assuming the worst no matter what (like that guy you see in the mirror, Chuck) were already alienated. The people that are exhausted by Washingtonian over-reach and its inherent corruption have long recognized that Trump's public persona is full of bluster, and they don't really give a crap.

HoodlumDoodlum said...

Chuck said...Last night on FNC, Charles Krauthammer very deliberately went through the process of saying that Washington seems consumed with two fake scandals for which there is no proof.

Good; then Krauthammer agrees with me, good.

I don't think Trump should have tweeted what he twote, Chuck--I don't think he should have. It's reputationally harmful if the tweet is (factually) incorrect--and if the tweet is accurate it's probably even more harmful (to the Presidency itself) to publicize it in that way.

My point, Chuck, is to highlight the double standard at work here. The same people who've happily eaten plate after plate of garbage (in the form of "Trump is a Commie plant!" pseudo-news) now act indignant at even having to look at a plate of overly-well-done Trump steaks (in the form of unsupported allegations of Obama admin. wire-tappery).

Chuck said...

Pookie Number 2 said...
Alienate 50% or 60% or 75%

He's really not alienating anyone. The people committed to assuming the worst no matter what (like that guy you see in the mirror, Chuck) were already alienated. The people that are exhausted by Washingtonian over-reach and its inherent corruption have long recognized that Trump's public persona is full of bluster, and they don't really give a crap.


That's not right at all. Look at the very broad, positive response that Trump had gotten, to his prepared and delivered remarks to the joint session of Congress. That was a real majority. Including all of the NeverTrump Republicans, and the Tea Party Republicans, and mainstream media commentators.

And with this "wire-tap" mess, most Republicans in Congress, conservatives in the media, etc., are all disowning it. Just a half-step behind the process of disowning Trump after his "grab 'em by the pussy" recording.

FullMoon said...

Chuck said...

Dr Weevil said...
And Chuck continues to pretend not to have read the argument that Obama has not in fact denied it. Or perhaps he doesn't understand my (rather simple) argument? If that's so, he needs to go to the kids' table.

Your argument is nauseating. Like saying that because Obama didn't immediately respond to Trump's claims about Obama's birth certificate, it somehow indicated that Trump's claims were credible.


Seriously? Obama claimed to be born in Kenya, didn't he? He may have been unsure what would show up on his college applications and other paperwork. The one little pamphlet that did show up was quickly negated by an Obama worshiper taking credit for the "mistake".
Not a conspiracy guy, but Obama is full of BS in plenty of ways.
Never wrote an article for Law Review? C'mon now Chuck. You have put more effort making comments on this blog than O ever did scholastically.

Drago said...

Poor Chuck.

He simply can't quickly enough wish away his reveling in the fake Russia dossier and now completely false Trump/Russia collusion nonsense.

Recall that Chuckie boy was demanding, DEMANDING, an investigation with zero probable cause.

Yikes!

It's almost like Chuckie is unprincipled and acting as a Moby or something.

Lewis Wetzel said...

North Korea could make headlines very soon.
There are signs that Kim Jong-Un is nervous about the stability of his regime, and China and the US are applying pressure. I don't think they want the regime to fall. I think they want to trade Kim Jong-Un (or a chosen successor) stability in return for laying off of the nukes.

HoodlumDoodlum said...

Chuck said...Your argument is nauseating. Like saying that because Obama didn't immediately respond to Trump's claims about Obama's birth certificate, it somehow indicated that Trump's claims were credible.

I'm with you, Chuck, 100%. That standard is disgusting and has no place in our grown-up discussion of important facts and events. I doubt you could ever find a recent example of that standard in action outside of a few idiotic Trumpists, huh?

Hey, what's this? Is this from, like, now? Sebastian Gorka stonewalled when asked if he belongs to a nazi-allied group.

WEIRD! Almost like people were taking his momentary lack of denial as a tacit admission of guilt, huh Chuck? I mean, of course he actually categorically denied membership, but for some crazy reason the standard you yourself just said sickens you is apparently OK when applied against Trump people. That's just inexplicable.

Buzzfeed itself seems to have updated their article and/or headline on this, but if you search this article for the phrase "non-denial" you'll see it's still in there. How can something like that be explained!? I'm baffled.

Drago said...

Lewis: "I don't think they want the regime to fall. I think they want to trade Kim Jong-Un (or a chosen successor) stability in return for laying off of the nukes."

That sounds about right.

I hope the Chinese govt negotiations with "lifelong republican" Chucks favorite lefty judges is going well. After all, those judges are in charge now.

Dr Weevil said...

Chuck admits to being nauseated when refuted. That could be seen as a first baby step towards intellectual honesty. Until he's willing to take more steps, he needs (as I have already said) to go to the kids' table and leave the conversation to the grownups.

Of course, he continues to pretend that "Trump's claims about Obama's birth certificate" were Trump's and not Sidney Blumenthal's, and that the doubts have all been resolved - they haven't. Typical of an adolescent (whatever his calendar age) butting into adult conversations.

Drago said...

Chuck: "Your argument is nauseating. Like saying that because Obama didn't immediately respond to Trump's claims about Obama's birth certificate, it somehow indicated that Trump's claims were credible"

Gee, it seems like just yesterday or something that Trump wasn't responding quickly enough to denounce alleged anti-semitic attacks. Which, of course, meant Trump was an anti-Semite!

Why, it was all the rage in the media.

And again, this was just a few weeks ago and already down down down the memory hole for the Left and their "lifelong republican" allies.

And, oh, who was it on these very blogs who insinuated that Trump rally-goers seemed quite ill at ease with blacks at those rallies? I think we know who that was, don't we?

Let's just say it was "Mr. It's the Principle"!

Of course, no real "evidence" for such an incendiary charge was ever offered because, well, Moby's usually don't offer real evidence for their innuendo and "cute" smears.

Fernandinande said...

buwaya said...
"Don't forget your Minox camera."
Lovely little jewels, but a huge PITB IMHO.


I've never actually touched one - I was afraid of the film format.

They're still making dinky cameras:
http://www.minox.com/uploads/pics/kopfbild_Kameras_EN_05.jpg
Also scopes, binoculars, etc.

Dr Weevil said...

What do you expect, Drago? You recall the biggest and most famous Moby in history: his last name was 'Dick'. Think about it.

Chuck said...

Dr Weevil said...
Chuck admits to being nauseated when refuted. That could be seen as a first baby step towards intellectual honesty. Until he's willing to take more steps, he needs (as I have already said) to go to the kids' table and leave the conversation to the grownups.

Of course, he continues to pretend that "Trump's claims about Obama's birth certificate" were Trump's and not Sidney Blumenthal's, and that the doubts have all been resolved - they haven't. Typical of an adolescent (whatever his calendar age) butting into adult conversations.


Oh give me a freaking break. Sidney Blumenthal didn't go on tv making repeated claims about the Obama birth certificate. Sidney Blumenthal didn't promote himself with an offer of $5 million to a charity of the choosing of anyone who produced Obama birth records. Sidney Blumenthal didn't claim that he sent private investigators to Hawaii and that those investigators were discovering "amazing" things. Sidney Blumenthal didn't involve himself so deeply in the fake story that he ended up in extraneous litigation with people like Bill Maher.

You still have doubts about Obama's birth? In that case we are done. I don't propose to engage with someone like you at all. Have a nice day.

Unknown said...

Trump is an idiotic fool and the world can see it 24/7.

It doesn't make an iota of difference what Trumpies believe, the rest of us and most of the democratic world can see it plainly.

Trump is so out of depth and is quickly drowning.

Btw, Trump is going to Mar-A-Lago again for the weekend.

hombre said...

The story about the British was triple-sourced. That's at least two sources better than most NYT WaPo stories. What a surprise that the British denied it. The Russians denied everything too. The leftmedia liked the British denial because it furthered their narrative. The Russian denials? Not so much.

FullMoon said...

Chuck says:
Oh give me a freaking break. Sidney Blumenthal didn't go on tv making repeated claims about the Obama birth certificate. Sidney Blumenthal didn't promote himself with an offer of $5 million to a charity of the choosing of anyone who produced Obama birth records. Sidney Blumenthal didn't claim that he sent private investigators to Hawaii and that those investigators were discovering "amazing" things. Sidney Blumenthal didn't involve himself so deeply in the fake story that he ended up in extraneous litigation with people like Bill Maher.

You still have doubts about Obama's birth? In that case we are done. I don't propose to engage with someone like you at all. Have a nice day.


Trump hysteria aside,you are saying there was no legitimate doubt ever about Obamas place of birth?

Dr Weevil said...

And Chuck finds an excuse not to argue with someone whose arguments he can't be bothered to try to refute. He's apparently the only one here who doesn't even understand the concept of a "non-denial denial", something politically-aware people have been talking about since Nixon, or recognize one even when it's carefully explained to him. He finds the whole process "nauseating", poor thing. Some people just can't handle thinking.

He also hasn't apparently heard of the Photoshop anomalies in the copy of a copy that was eventually displayed on the web as Obama's birth certificate. 'Chuck' has a remarkably narrow range of web-reading for a "life-long Republican".

Bob Loblaw said...

Oh, unless we are playing the game-without-rules where NOTHING that happened under Obama's tenure accrues to him while EVERYTHING that happens under Republican admins accrues to the top man.

As everyone knows, Obama was a genius who was able to work his magic without knowing what was going on or being responsible for anything.

hombre said...

"Wiretap" defined by USLegal.com: Wiretapping means connecting a concealed listening or recording device to a communications circuit.

That's about as broad as it gets.

I'm still interested in Flynn. I thought it was illegal to use or disclose non-treasonous communications by an American citizen even if the intercept was during a conversation with a foreign national under surveillance. Flynn was the subject of a wiretap by Obots even if he wasn't the "target" of the wiretaps. It seems clear that some Obot or another disclosed the intercepted material to the WaPo. I wonder how many laws were broken by that disclosure, by whom and if prosecution will follow. The leftmedia naturally is uninterested.

Sessions does not appear to be a particularly aggressive AG.

Mike said...

Chuck, I was reacting to the earlier story I saw here (warning auto-video at link) with this headline: US makes formal apology to Britain after White House accuses GCHQ of wiretapping Trump Tower

I admit I did not click through to the NYT, which I now know had an opposite headline. In light of what the Times wrote I retract this specific reference to your poor comprehension. However, you have to admit that working from the assumption that The Telegraph story was similar to the one referenced your post in contraindication to mine was pretty funny. Now I'll try to see what else happened on this thread since 1:17 CDT.

Darrell said...

If we have to drop Chuck and Unknown/Inga on the North Koreans, so be it. They asked for it.

The Cracker Emcee said...

"He's really not alienating anyone. The people committed to assuming the worst no matter what (like that guy you see in the mirror, Chuck) were already alienated. The people that are exhausted by Washingtonian over-reach and its inherent corruption have long recognized that Trump's public persona is full of bluster, and they don't really give a crap."

Exactly. Below the wailing of the people so morally depraved that they would vote for Hillary Clinton, the mass of Trump voters goes on supporting him. Purely anecdotal, but I know a number of apolitical people who nevertheless like to talk about the news of the day. Apart from a couple of young women ensnared by Facebook hysteria, nobody gives any credence to any of this. I'm impressed by how thoroughly the Left has poisoned it's own well and, especially looking at his budget proposals, how deftly Trump has cordoned off the Left's interests from those of the people he understands truly matter.

Chuck and Inga will never get it. Trump doesn't care if you spend the next four years screaming at the bubble walls. Except as dim-witted foils, you're not part of the calculation.

Mike said...

Obama's comment (through his new official spokesman) was a classic non-denial that completely swerved around the issue. So were many other official responses, like the GCHQ's today. Maybe Chuck can point me to where Obama clearly stated that there was "no surveillance of Trump or his presidential campaign at any time" because that is a statement I have yet to hear or read about ANYWHERE, from ANYONE in the know. Every official statement has been very carefully worded to avoid making such a claim.

Please show me the way to any contrary evidence.

Drago said...

Darrell: "If we have to drop Chuck and Unknown/Inga on the North Koreans, so be it. They asked for it."

Nope. I don't want Trump to be accused of a War Crime against the Norks.

EDH said...

When it comes to North Korea, I would invoke the Frank Pentangeli Doctrine .

Achilles said...

Chuck said...

Fuck you! I am not taking that shit from you; not for one fucking post. The Times doesn't say that "Obama wiretapped Trump Tower."

Brilliant denial you disingenuous piece of shit.

And for the sentient portion of the population, we know full well that there may have been early FISA warrants for freak Russian lobbyists like Roger Stone and Paul Manafort; there may have been a US or British intercepts of Flynn talking to Russian agents from a phone in the Dominican Republic.

So you admit Obama used surveillance on a political opponent and illegally leaked non-redacted transcripts of SIGINT intelligence to people in the media who lacked clearance.

If you have evidence of an "Obama... wiretap... of Trump Tower," then show it, sport.

How painful is it to have to fall back on a disingenuous semantic argument? The loss of honor would be repugnant to a decent human being.

Stick to the point. Trump made the claim. The claim that Obama... wire-tapped... Trump Tower. Nobody wrote that but Trump. Nobody made Obama write that. And it is on nobody but Trump to back it up. Not the failing New York Times. Not the failing Fox News Channel. Not the failing Breitbart website.

A sitting president used surveillance on a political opponent and you fall back on semantics to try to save face.

You are without honor.

Drago said...

Unknown: "It doesn't make an iota of difference what Trumpies believe, the rest of us and most of the democratic world can see it plainly."

Sounds like precisely the sort of comment I heard all the time prior to November 8th.

Chuck said...

FullMoon said...
...

Trump hysteria aside,you are saying there was no legitimate doubt ever about Obamas place of birth?

Yes. That is what I am saying. I am saying that there was never any legitimate doubt about Obama's place of birth. No intelligent, curious, educated, informed person would have ever doubted the place of Obama's birth, or the nature of his qualified status under Article II, Section 1, Clause 5 of the Constitution.

For anyone who seriously questions Obama's birth in those particulars, I cannot take them seriously. That includes Orly Taitz, Joe Arpaio and Donald Trump. I don't consider any of them (and under other circumstances, I might take Arpaio and Trump as serious persons) to be intelligent, curious, educated or informed. They are living jokes.

Trump, for his part, having renounced his belief that Obama's birth details were suspicious, has in some very small way redeemed himself on this account. But his renunciation doesn't come close, to the profound apology that is owed. Trump is a freak and a worm and a sociopath.

Drago said...

"lifelong republican" Chuck: "Yes. That is what I am saying. I am saying that there was never any legitimate doubt about Obama's place of birth."

In the same way that there is no legitimate, NONE, reason to suspect collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russians.

Drago said...

For anyone who demanded or continues to demand an investigation into an astonishing and ludicrous made-up charge designed to cover for democrat/lefty/"lifelong republican" incompetence we can safely assume they are sociopaths and a profound apology from each and every one of them is required.

Anyone who trafficked in these moronic conjectures is a worm and a freak.

FullMoon said...

Chuck said...

FullMoon said...
...

Trump hysteria aside,you are saying there was no legitimate doubt ever about Obamas place of birth?

Yes. That is what I am saying. I am saying that there was never any legitimate doubt about Obama's place of birth.


Interesting in that he claimed to be born in Kenya and failed to provide a birth certificate.
You did not even momentarily raise an eyebrow.
Personally, the only time it caught my attention was all the emphasis on a birth announcement in the local paper placed by grandparents. Seemed kinda strange for MSM to call that definitive proof. Not that any of it mattered. O was already elected, nothing was gonna change that.

Drago said...

Further, anyone who would traffic in conjecture about young children supposedly suffering from supposed mental conditions are lower than the lowest worm. In fact, they are subhuman scum.

Michael K said...

He's going to mess with the wrong nation one day and get Americans killed.

You mean like Hillary ? Shameful.

Inga is going to be at Andrews AFB with a Manpad Friday evening when Trump tries to go to Mar a Lago. Notice how she watches his schedule ?

Don't do it, Inga !

Jon Ericson said...

Heh.

https://youtu.be/7UI9MlSjiRA

Jon Ericson said...

Thinking of Chuck...

https://youtu.be/o1LsBdvnqyQ

Gahrie said...

Wow...Chuckles defending Blumenthal? Seriously?

Who's paying this guy? Chuckles has to be the worst Moby in the world!

Let me let you in on a secret Mr. lifelong Republican......

There is no...I repeat no, chance that any true lifelong Republican would ever defend Blumenthal. I could see not attacking Blumenthal, ignoring an attack on Blumenthal...but defending Blumenthal?

That's a bridge too far.......

Big Mike said...

@Gahrie, of course Chuck is a moby; he's not like any Republican I've ever met, and I used to be very active in the local GOP back in the day. Chuck is a Republican like Jennifer Rubin and David Brooks are conservatives, ie., they are what a lefty imagines a conservative would be like. Does anybody besides me note how he is Johnny-the-spot with obscure factoids? Now how did he get them if not fed them as talking points by a third party?

Drago said...

Yo, VIP, let's kick it!
Spice Spice Baby, Spice Spice Baby
All right stop, Collaborate and listen
Spice is back with my brand new explanations
Something grabs a hold of me tightly
Flow like a harpoon daily and nightly
Will it ever stop? Yo, I don't know
Turn off the lights and I'll glow
To the extreme I rock a mic like a vandal
Light up a stage and wax a chump like a candle.
Dance, go rush the speaker that booms
I'm killing your brain like a poisonous mushroom
Deadly, when I play a Fake News melody
Anything less than the best is a felony
Love it or leave it, you better gain way
You better hit bull's eye, the kid don't play
If there was a problem, yo, I'll dissolve it
Check out the hook while KellyAnne revolves it
Spice Spice baby, Vanilla
Spice Spice baby, Vanilla
Spice Spice baby, Vanilla

h said...

The journalism approach to this bothers me a lot.

1. When the chair and ranking member had a press conference in which they agreed that they had seen no evidence to support Trump's claim that Obama wiretapped trump tower, not a single journalist asked what (to me) was the obvious question: "Can you also categorically deny the existence of evidence that (a) any element of the Obama administration (FBI, Justice, DHS, CIA) intercepted any communications of any kind to or from Trump or members of his campaign team with offices in Trump Tower? and Can you also categorically deny the existence of evidence that any element of the Obama administration received information from any foreign intelligence source about such communictions?"

It does seem to me that the denials of such activity are couched in precision wiggle-wording. "No member of the White House staff..." "no wiretapping".

2. Why has not one single journalist approached former attorney general Lynch for a denial. If someone has approached her and been rebuffed, that itself is a news story, "Lynch refused to comment on this story," or something like that.

Craig Howard said...

If Trump's wiretapping claim is so outlandishly false, then why did every, single Democrat in the country shut up about investigating him that very, same day?

Just wonderin'.

Rusty said...

Achilles @ 5:35
Please quit provoking the slow kid.

traditionalguy said...

The media opposition party has taken a Running of the Stag approach to covering DJT as Aristocrats so love to do to commoners. It is like watching a continual Onion spoof that takes itself seriously.

.

Dave Hunter said...

The Trump administration did not "accuse" the Brits of surveilling the campaign, someone in the media published that story and Mr. Spicer merely referred to it among lots of other stories he read back to the press.

As far as no proof, I'll wait and see what eventually comes out. The President, in spite of the beliefs of the left, is no fool and would not have tweeted that unless he had something in the way of proof.