June 1, 2017

The NYT sees Vladimir Putin "shifting away," but I don't.

The just-up news story begins:
Shifting away from his previous blanket denials of Russian involvement in cyberattacks last year to help the presidential campaign of Donald J. Trump, President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia denied any state role on Thursday but said that “patriotically minded” private Russian hackers could have been involved.
What's the shift? All he did was acknowledge the possibility that private actors might have been involved. He's still saying the Russian government did nothing. How could he ever have purported to know what every person in Russia was doing, outside of the government? I think it would be hard for a leader even to know what everyone in the government is doing — does Trump know what every employee of the federal government is doing, what's going on in the "deep state"? — but it's patently impossible to know what every private person is doing. It was necessarily always implicit that he didn't know what private Russian hackers might be doing.

Two things are interesting.

First, Putin is asserting that he doesn't know that there were private Russian hackers doing anything. Maybe he does know but he's disclaiming knowledge.

Second, he's approving of what these people — if they exist — did, because he's calling them "patriotically minded." Or... that's only the first paragraph of the news story, which I've already shown I find misleading. Let's get down to more detailed paragraphs:
Raising the possibility of attacks by what he portrayed as free-spirited Russian patriots, Mr. Putin said that hackers “are like artists” who choose their targets depending how they feel “when they wake up in the morning.”

“If they are patriotically minded, they start making their contributions — which are right, from their point of view — to the fight against those who say bad things about Russia,” he added.
That's not saying it would be patriotic of private hackers to interfere in the American election! He's talking — and I'm trusting this translation and cherry-picking — about the motives of hackers in general, saying they operate according to their own whims. Putin distances himself from these people. They do what they like, but they might choose to do things that are good for their country. The example he gives is not affecting a foreign country's elections. He speaks only of defending against speech that is disparaging to Russia.

The headline of this story is "Vladimir Putin Hints at Russian Role in Hacking of U.S. Election." I see no hint here at all. I'm calling "fake news" on this.

By the way, The New York Times just revealed that it is ending the position of "public editor":
"The responsibility of the public editor ― to serve as the reader’s representative ― has outgrown that one office,” Times publisher Arthur Sulzberger Jr. wrote in a memo to staff. “There is nothing more important to our mission, or our business, than strengthening our connection with our readers. A relationship that fundamental cannot be outsourced to a single intermediary.”...

Internal complaints about [Liz Spayd, the paper's sixth public editor,] had been rumbling for months. Though all public editors are, to a certain degree, unpopular within their own newsrooms, the disapproval with Spayd was particularly pronounced.

Times editor Dean Baquet called her piece on the paper's coverage of Trump and Russia "a bad column."
I enjoyed Baquet's use of the word "bad" — "a bad column" — so soon after reading Putin's "those who say bad things about Russia." It's so primitive, so elemental. Baquet fights against those who say bad things about The New York Times.

I've got to step up my monitoring of the NYT now that it's not relying on "a single intermediary" anymore. Baquet has triggered heightened scrutiny on "the paper's coverage of Trump and Russia."

You know, I've been working as an intermediary between you and the NYT every day, nonstop, for 13 years.


David Begley said...

Putin continues to win as the Dems and MSM divide the country with their crazy conspiracy theories. Putin owns the Dems.

DKWalser said...

If writing a bad column was all it took to get fired at the NYT, no one would be employed there. They'd have fired all their writers years ago.

TreeJoe said...

So much to comment on here. Let's start with this....

A financially struggling company who claims it is ethically bound to certain standards decides to cut it's Ombudsman/internal watchdog saying it's no longer necessary.

Would this pass NYT reporting muster for any public company? I think not.

Also, I love the idea that "social media" will provide a watchdog effort of the NYT. That's literally saying "The public" will determine if the NYT is reporting accurately. Sure, that's true. Of course, that was true before the rise of social media. So why was their a public editor position?

TreeJoe said...

Second, let's talk about "Russian interference in the election"

In almost every current reporting on this, I see no claims as to WHAT interference the Russians were claimed to have done. The word interference is used as if it's self-explanatory and no background is necessary. Did they alter votes or vote counting? Did they disrupt electoral operations?

As far as I can tell, the entire basis of election interference is that someone gained access to the DNC's internal e-mail (and John Podesta through the most basic phishing scheme). They then released these - in bulk - to Wikileaks. 99% of those e-mails were benign, but of course 1% showed that the DNC violated it's charter and various ethics rules.

So why is this Russian interference in an election? If a DNC whistleblower had done this, would we be lauding it? If so, would it be electoral interference?

Do we have specific evidence that authorization to obtain or disseminate these e-mails came from anyone in russian government prior to their release?

Is there any other evidence of Russian election interference?

The NYT bypasses all these messy concepts and just reports on presumptions.

This is the most amateur of narrative reporting.

Lewis Wetzel said...

The Russians are paranoid.
Many Russians blame the West for the dismemberment of the USSR and the botched economic reforms of the early 1990s (they shouldn't). So Hillary's (eventual) open opposition to Putin's rule should be seen in this light.

Earnest Prole said...

How could he ever have purported to know what every person in Russia was doing, outside of the government?

Exactly. Listening to otherwise intelligent people say "the Russians" hacked the election is like hearing that "the Muslims" were responsible for 9/11.

Yancey Ward said...

Actually, my take is just a bit different- I think the NYTimes is repositioning its own narrative from, "Putin did it", to, "It only looked like Putin did it". The lack of any concrete evidence becomes more noticeable by the day, and I think the NYTimes is probably now hedging itself away from this. It wouldn't be a surprise at all to find the NYTimes six months from now writing stories about incompetent investigators working in the Trump Administration caused their own problems by making it seem like their was Russian government meddling.

Bad Lieutenant said...

to the fight against those who say bad things about Russia,” he added.

As long as we seek to castigate Trump for every possibly indiscreet utterance out of his mouth/keyboard, maybe Hillary shouldn't have said all those rather gratuitous mean things about Putin.

David Begley said...


Great posts. I've asked the same question regarding so-called Russian interference. We already more or less knew that Podesta was a creep and that didn't cost Hillary the election. When I hear the bots on CNN and MSNBC parrot the interference claims I want to puke. A few kids from Greece posting on Facebook was meaningless.

eric said...

It's been said that many people only read the headline.

This is why it's so important to get the big lie in the headline.

RNB said...

As in 'Spinal Tap,' the Times' dedication to ensuring accuracy in its coverage of the news is becoming 'more selective.'

Ann Althouse said...

"So why was [there] a public editor position?"

To give them cover. Spayd didn't get it.

Big Mike said...

"Just-up"? Initially I read it as "made-up." Thank you, Althouse, for your intermediation over these years. But are you the apocryphal frog in the pot of boiling water? Is there a point where you realize that the ratio of real news (outside the sports pages) to bullshit is asymptotically approaching zero?

Fen said...

Not reading that propaganda rag. But can anyone tell me if the newspaper owned by a Mexican billionaire admitted that by "hacking the election" they mean Podesta's email account and not the voting machines?

And oh, how rich is it that the party that insisted on computerized vote tallies so they could more easily cheat sans a paper trail is now whining that the election was "hacked"?

Nonapod said...

Obviously the NYT and their audience are willing to totally take Putin at his word, as long as his word confirms their biases. They're salivating, hoping that Putin would say something blatant like "Yeah, we hacked your election". It's sort of pathetic.

I mean, even if you believe the narrative, what has Putin got out of Trump since the election?Trump hasn't been a particularly an advantageous POTUS for Russian intrests so far. America's ceaseless fracking has slowed and disrupted OPEC, Russia, and other petrostates attempts to drive up oil prices. The massive arms deal with Saudi Arabia isn't particularly good for Russia. I'd imagine Trump Launching missiles at Assad annoyed Putin too. If it were true that Putin got Trump elected, it sure seems like Putin was an idiot.

Ann Althouse said...

I hope Spayd goes rogue.

I'd like to see her tell all. I'd like to know what her contract says, if she bound herself not to reveal the inside workings of the NYT and the extent to which she was censored. I'd like to know more about their subtle ways, and she should have a story to tell.

Rene Saunce said...

The endless D-press butthurt Hillary lost campaign continues...

Russians! hacked! Trump and Poot coordinated the whole thing using.... embarrassing truths about Hillary.

The Podesta e-mails revealed Hillary wanted to face Trump. She got what she wanted and she lost. oh the agony.

Curious George said...

Althouse: "Second, he's approving of what these people — if they exist — did, because he's calling them "patriotically minded."

That in no way speaks to approval. It indicates good intentions.

Fen said...

I mean think about it - if you thought the Russians hacked the vote tallies and were sincere, wouldn't you be calling for a return to paper ballots?

See any Democrats doing that? Nope.

"The Left doesn't really believe in the things they lecture the rest of us about" - Fen's Law

rhhardin said...

So long as you don't disparage the company you get severance, is the usual out clause.

Fen said...

Althouse, can you throw in a link to Spayd's article that Baquet criticized? I'm not being lazy, my smartphone sucks.

Also, didn't you write some for the NYTs? Did you have to sign anything resembling a NDA? Not a trick or trap, I'm genuinely curious.

Quaestor said...

What we're seeing here is an example of a Darwinian process — The New York Times is evolving, into what we cannot know, but all indications suggest a supermarket tabloid.

Lance said...

From the point of view of Russian oil and gas sales, Clinton would have been preferable. She would have continued blocking pipelines and drilling on federal lands. She almost certainly would have used EPA and the courts to "regulate" fracking on private lands. Thus driving up prices for oil and gas, thus putting more money in Russian (and Saudi and Iranian) coffers.

Mike Sylwester said...

At the American Spectator website, contributor George Neumayr has written a superb series of four articles about the role that former CIA Director John Brennan has played in the Intelligence Community's effort to cause trouble for Donald Trump by conducting a bogus "investigation" of Russian meddling in the 2016 election.

1) All Roads Lead Back to Brennan

2) How John Brennan and Some Brits Tried to Tip the Election to Hillary

3) Confirmed: John Brennan colluded with Foreign Spies to Defeat Trump

4) Obamagate's Origin in John Brennan

The fourth article provides links to the previous three articles.


rhhardin said...

You should't disparage the company in any case. Your next boss will see it and think you'll do it to him too. Always praise your previous bosses amd jobs.

Sebastian said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Sebastian said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Lewis Wetzel said...

Bloomberg, who politically identifies as independent, told New York Times columnist Frank Bruni that he thought Democrats didn't have an effective message to win the 2016 election and could repeat that mistake in 2020.

“Hillary said, ‘Vote for me because I’m a woman and the other guy’s bad,’” Bloomberg said about 2016.


The Dems show no signs that they have learned any lesson from the presidential election of 2016. Or the congressional elections of 2010 and 2014 for that matter. Blaming the Russians is an exceptionally easy way out for them. All Wikileaks revealed was selective truths about the Democrats, using their own words. Some adult-minded Democrats should remind the child-minded Democrats of this.
In 2013 the GOP commissioned a famous post mortem on the 2012 election. This post mortem confirmed everything the GOP donor class wanted to be true -- open immigration and amnesty for illegals was the key to winning the presidency. It didn't quite work out that way.
Some Democrat may someday recognize the undeniable fact that their biggest push for amnesty and the immigrant vote has coincided with their biggest failures at the ballot box.

Sebastian said...

"I've been working as an intermediary between you and the NYT every day, nonstop, for 13 years." Which we appreciate, sort of. One of the unfortunate results is that it has confirmed that I am right in my confirmation bias.

I agree that the evidence of a Putin shift is slight at best. But it's also an NYT CYA move. See, "the Russians" hacked the elections, even if it turns out not to be the Russian, you know, government, but a bunch of hackers. We were right! Putin admits it!

The real harm from the collusion narrative is that it exposes to the Russians, who know what they did, and to all our adversaries, the deep Dem desire to hurt domestic opponents at any cost, with any wild charges, treating foreign relations strictly as a tool to win the culture and power wars. It tells them that a portion of the American elite no longer gives damn about their own country.

traditionalguy said...

IMO the Russians don't understand why America wants to be their enemy. They have tried to be a world power capitalist like us. And they want to be a friend. But our politicians' interest remains only in a cut of Russian cash and Russian natural resources that they plan to steal from the Russian State under cover of a Cold War II script written by the CIA and the Media that they control.

If I were a Russian, and saw Trump being politically assassinated for making a friendly outreach to Russia, then what does Rusia have to lose in fighting back any way they can.

Quayle said...

Perhaps the New York Times could open up some backchannels with Russia to get the full scoop.

David Begley said...

The NYT doesn't want any check on its power. No public editor needed. NYT lives in its own silo.,

Fen said...

I think Putin is trolling the Left, because the more they can hamstring their own President, the weaker America is around the globe.

Putin was trained as an Intelligence Officer, so the "but maybe patriots" line should be taken as a deliberate. To what effect?

I think it's to keep the Left agitated. I predict the media will run with a "Putin nervous that investigation about to out Russia hack of election, falls back on 'rogue agents' escape clause".

It will breathe energy back into the "impeachment is just around the corner" crowd. Which serves Russia's interest just fine. Distracting the US President with domestic unrest gives Putin more flexibility globally.

Yes Lefties, Russia is using you to hamstring American foreign policy. Nice job, traitors.

Snark said...

I call fake news on Althouse on the purported headline.

Martin said...

So the NYT and the rest of the Democratic media universe tell us fro 6 months that Putin "hacked the election" (whatever that is supposed to even mean) and cannot be trusted, but as soon as he says something that can be interpreted as supporting the narrative, if you squint and try real hard, it is important and newsworthy.

Feh, liars lie, it's what they do.

Drago said...

traditionalguy: "IMO the Russians don't understand why America wants to be their enemy. They have tried to be a world power capitalist like us. And they want to be a friend."

The Russians are not our friends and do not wish to be our friends.

They do have national interests which at times intersect positively with US interests (as the Russians interpret them) and at other times intersect negatively with US interests.

The Russians are now quite fully aware of the democrats using the Russian collusion excuse as a way to explain away their defeat as well as cover up the now clear democrat/obambi admin spying on US citizens, US legislators, journalists etc.

Trumps win caused a panic stampede in "establishment" Washington which has led to the many changes to intelligence information handling/leaking that has resulted since Nov of last year as well as a clear attempt to bring down a sitting US President by innuendo and, if possible, a "process" crime (similar to Scooter Libby) which results from no actual underlying crime having been committed.

The need for the democrats to get Trump removed is an existential question because if Trump is not removed (which would provide rhetorical and "moral" justification for the illegal spying and weaponizing intelligence agencies) then its highly likely that at some point the full exposure of all democrat/establishment activities will be made public which would prove disastrous for the dems.

Fortunately for the dems, they have the MSM as direct allies in this but it might not be enough.

There are also, clearly, some members of the IC that were willing to let the republicans know about the FISA court rebuke of the Obama admin actions and even leak the FISA court document which exposes this.

The subpoenas for Rice, Brennan (the guy at the center) are fully expected but the Powers subpoena is very interesting indeed.

Fen said...

I'm reminded that the Left had a similar tantrum over the 2000 election, which significantly delayed Bush getting his cabinet in place. Significantly delayed a peaceful transfer of power, putting the Executive Branch behind the power curve, messing with the OODA loop. What could wrong?

3000 New Yorkers and the Left still thinks this is a game.

traditionalguy said...

Russia, Russia, Russia. Doesn't anyone fight the German Empire anymore. The Huns are determined to fight the USA since the Surrenderer-in-Chief got replaced with an America First President.

Lance said...

Spayd didn't get it.

Neither did Daniel Okrent, Arthur Brisbane or Margaret Sullivan.

Richard Dolan said...

"You know, I've been working as an intermediary between you and the NYT every day, nonstop, for 13 years."

Yes, I do know that, having read this blog almost every day for those 13 years. And you do it very well, separating and identifying the spin, hype and agenda from whatever kernel of fact might be cited as support. It's a form of cross-examination. Ever think that you missed your calling, in choosing teaching rather than litigating?

Your effort is much appreciated. Thanks.

Big Mike said...

@traditionalguy, you may be onto something. Maybe we need to restore our World War II alliance with Russia and Great Britain against Germany. Macron has already made it obvious that France has been economically captured by Germany, and Greece and Italy likewise.

Fen said...

I'm not saying the extra 2 months could have made a difference, who's to say? Maybe the extra lead time would have put someone in a better position to sound the alarm. Maybe not.

But think of it this way - you've just taken over a company and are getting your staff and policies in place. And doing a turnover of personel and critical information.

But some Unknown is coming down the pike in the near future that can literally kill you. Would you rather have 6 months to get your groove down of 8 months?

AllenS said...

Yeah, well, put me in the column that thinks Vladimir V. Putin had absolutely nothing to do with this election.

Unknown said...

You might think that the disestablishment of the Public Editor position might merit a mention on the Times Public Editor page.

Fen said...

OR 8 months not of

Michelle Dulak Thomson said...

Fen, the Democrats aren't interested in paper ballots. Partly because of FL 2000, of course (though you needn't have punch ballots; in CA we always had Scantrons), but partly because when they say "Russia hacked the election," they aren't talking about "hacking" individual voting machines, but "hacking" into the DNC's and Podesta's accounts and sending the, um, proceeds to WikiLeaks. The former would've been blatantly dishonest. (Also, impossible, but let's bypass that.) The latter was easy -- in Podesta's case, pitifully so.

Incidentally, anyone happen to know whether HRC's claim that the DNC was "bankrupt" and gave her no help at all is borne out by anything in the email dump? We've been told for so long all about HRC's unparalleled ground operation, &c., &c., that I was beginning to believe it myself. Now it seems that she had to run it all by her lonesome, getting by just barely on those measly Goldman Sachs speaking fees. Of course she massively outspent Trump, but what does that matter? None of it was her fault. Everything was someone else.

rcocean said...

When did Putin become the villain of the hour, and why?

I always get suspicious when the Establishment and the MSM decided we're supposed to hate foreign leader X or Country Y, when they can't give a clear, obvious reason.

I wonder how many people think Putin is a dictator, when in fact Russia is a democracy (yeah, maybe not our kind) and Putin was elected to office. Not only that, but the Russian people thought Putin was right to go into the Crimea, and like his foreign policy.

Comanche Voter said...

Baquet is going to "fight back" against people who "say bad things about the Times".

You know Dean, it's going to be difficult for you when there are a couple of million people who read that swill your people print. How many times will you be able to come up to scratch when people ask you, 'You want to take this outside in the alley?" If I were you, I'd start spending more time in the gym.

Michelle Dulak Thomson said...

ETA: I'm not saying the hacking of the accounts wasn't also dishonest, but it's not nearly as bad as direct vote-hacking. And "the most transparent administration in history" really ought to have come clean on what they tried to do to Bernie Sanders.

Lewis Wetzel said...

Hillary outspent Trump 2:1.
Trump faced an unrelenting hostile press. Hillary did not.
Trump faced a GOP establishment that was hostile to his candidacy. Hillary's DNC actively promoted her selection and discourages opponents within her own party.
She still lost.

Michael said...

I am pleased to be a citizen of a country that has led the technology revolution only to have our national election hacked by Russians who have TV sets as thick as Sumo wrestlers and who are drunk most of the time on questionable vodka. Their genius is overcoming our very solid defenses is now evident. Because even now we do not know how the hack worked, how their capabilities were such that they rigged votes not in any way tied to the world wide web aka the internet.

Otto said...

"You know, I've been working as an intermediary between you and the NYT every day, nonstop, for 13 years."
Wait, did Ann just call us deplorables?

Michael said...

I am a believer in knowing what the enemy thinks so I continue to subscribe to, and occasionally read, the NYT. It is a useful exercise to read their in depth articles to note the number of times a source is actually named. Almost never. It is like finding Waldo. But the exercise aids concentration and concentration has never been more important.

Jim said...

@richarddolan said it better than I could've. Ditto.

Bruce Hayden said...

First interesting thing about the hacking claim is that apparently over half the registered Democrats believe (when polled) that the Russians hacked the vote totals. Never mind that it would have essentially been impossible in those 3 critical states that Crooked Hillary lost. And no hacking of voting totals has been shown statistically. Back to Scott Adams' two movie theory - in one movie, the Ruskies hacked itnto all those voting machines to give Trump the win (why would they do that? Never quite answered). And in the other, we have a big nothingberger that Podesta's email account maybe have been pfished by someone using tools that possibly had fingerprints from Russian hackers (but then again, the CIA apparently routinely uses those same Russian fingerprints to hide its own hacking).

The other interesting thing is that there has never really been a tie shown between the Russian govt and the hacking. The hacking (again only of Podesta's pfished account) apparently had the signature of code developed and sold by Russian hackers. Civilian Russian hackers. Many of us have been saying since last fall at least, that there has never been a tie shown between the (alleged) Russian hacking software and the Russian govt. the NYT, better that six months late, has finally, apparently, admitted the obvious. Which, I think is, in itself, an admission that the Russian hacking narrative, that they have been pushing so hard (without any real evidence) for so long, is finally starting to fall apart.

UcaVik said...

Well certainly Putin is not going to proudly proclaim that this wad done by his 'boys' and soon would be followed by even more deadlier cyber attacks. Unless this is seriously explored and investigated by all the top investigation agencies, truth will never come out and guilty will never be caught.

3rdGradePB_GoodPerson said...

Althouse tries to give cover to Putin by claiming he couldn't possibly know what every Russian is doing.

Even the DJT administration says the Russian gov meddled in our election, so the issue of some unknowable 136 kilo dude in a Moscow basement hacking America is silly re reality.

Even so, if folks (e.g. Althouse) want to play along w/ Vlad--Putin is, for the first time, opening this patriot hacker explanation. A shift.

Bay Area Guy said...

Let's step back and look at some recent history, shall we?

From 1945 to 1989, we were in a death struggle (The Cold War) against "Russia," then known as the Soviet Union.

During WWII, we invaded France to LIBERATE the people; while the Soviets invaded west to OCCUPY much of Eastern Europe. See the difference?

In 1962, we almost had a nuclear war with Russia, when they tried to put nuclear missiles in Cuba, about 90 miles from Florida. Remember the Cuban Missile Crisis?

Although we made a ton of mistakes and partook in some ugly proxy wars during the Cold War (Korea, Vietnam, Afghanistan, etc, etc), we prevailed. The Berlin Wall fell, Germany was re-united, and the Soviet Union disbanded.

That was a good thing.

So, 30 years later, after we have defused the nuclear tensions with Russia, a bunch of leftists are trying to demonize Putin and Russia for trivial matters -- solely because their gal, Hillary, failed to campaign in Wisc, and lost a winnable election.

Compared to his predecessors (Stalin, Kruschev, Brezhnev, a few Commissars that died, Gorbachev, and Yeltin), Putin ain't that bad. Maybe, he's a bit worse than Yeltsin and Gorby, but c'est la vie. As long as he doesn't start invading countries, I don't worry about him. And, the dispute over Crimea, is a regional problem, totally unworthy of NATO's attention, or, frankly, our attention. I don't like it, but it's a small problem.

Kevin said...

In the middle of the Russia investigation the NYT fires its Public Editor?

Obstruction of the Truth!

Steve Uhr said...

It it so clear that Russia has the goods on Trump. You can't run casinos for twenty years and not commit a serious felony now and then. If Putin only finds 10% of it it is still enough to turn Trump into their slave.

No tax returns - no company information. Because we wouldn't understand them says Trump Jr. He thinks we are idiots.

They also say the voters voted for him so they don't care about the tax returns. They voted expecting he would release his tax returns as he promised.

White House announced that Trump did not have any business relations in Saudi Arabia. So it is relevant? If the answer had been yes ... what then? He would disclose them? Can't have it both ways.

FullMoon said...

rcocean said... [hush]​[hide comment]

When did Putin become the villain of the hour, and why?

When Trump inferred Putin and Russia might not be so bad, after all, and that maybe US and Russia could work together for common interests.

Additional reason for constant MSM. anti Trumpers hysteria is 2nd Supreme court vacancy likely to appear while Trump is in office.

Hagar said...

I doubt Putin or the FSB were involved in any interference because the current state of American politics is beyond their understanding (or anyone else's) and they are afraid that any intentional meddling or sabotage on their part might just lead to an improvement.

Mike Sylwester said...

If Russian hackers were interested in John Podesta, it probably began when he was on the White House staff and was a recipient of the Daily Presidential Briefing. At that time, Podesta practiced the same poor security procedures on his personal computer, and so all his e-mails were read.

The hackers simply continued to read his e-mails after he left the White House to work in the Democratic National Committee.

tcrosse said...

It it so clear that Russia has the goods on Trump. You can't run casinos for twenty years and not commit a serious felony now and then. If Putin only finds 10% of it it is still enough to turn Trump into their slave.

Another one of Hillary Clinton's delusions, no doubt. Incidentally, one of that will never make her President. Ever.

Todd said...

Steve Uhr said..
It it so clear that Russia has the goods on Trump. You can't run casinos for twenty years and not commit a serious felony now and then. If Putin only finds 10% of it it is still enough to turn Trump into their slave.

No tax returns - no company information. Because we wouldn't understand them says Trump Jr. He thinks we are idiots.

Not all of us but based on Hillary's totals, I would have to say around half...

They also say the voters voted for him so they don't care about the tax returns. They voted expecting he would release his tax returns as he promised.

I don't. I really, really don't. Making sure that they are kosher is the IRS's job. Also, I know where he got HIS money, he earned it. I care about the returns of politicians that go from middle class to FRIKEN rich on a Government pay check cause that doesn't happen if they are on the up and up...

White House announced that Trump did not have any business relations in Saudi Arabia. So it is relevant? If the answer had been yes ... what then? He would disclose them? Can't have it both ways.

6/1/17, 11:49 AM

Again, sorry don't care. His "get out of jail free card" is HUGE as he saved us from President Hillary.

JAORE said...

Democracy dies in darkness.

Lighten up, NYT.

Lewis Wetzel said...

Blogger Steve Uhr said...
It it so clear that Russia has the goods on Trump. You can't run casinos for twenty years and not commit a serious felony now and then.

Anything like this should have been brought up during the campaign (like the "Russian meddling" BS).
Too late, bro. You try to undo the election you destabilize democratic oversight of the militarily and economically most powerful nation in the world.
Not advisable.

Mark Kleiman said...

"People who say bad things about Russia" is a direct reference to Hillary Clinton's criticism of rigged elections in Russia, consistent with the U.S.'s longstanding commitment to democratic processes. That (entirely accurate) criticism left Putin simmering with rage.

As to Putin's complicity in not only the original hacking exploits but the industrial-scale bot war on social media, no doubt those "patriotically minded" hackers were as completely independent of the Kremlin as the "little green men" in Ukraine, the assassins of Boris Nemtsov and Anna Politkovskaya, and the gangs of street goons that used to break up Russian opposition political rallies, back when there was a meaningful Russian political opposition.

The underlying facts are simple: Putin runs a near-fascist regime, hostile to the United Stats and to liberal principles everywhere (cf. Italy, France, and Hungary). Donald Trump, who shares both Putin's vulgarity and his hatred of liberal principles, id Putin's puppet. And Ann Althouse, as the self-appointed apologist for both Putin and Trump, deserves a Pulitzer Prize for disingenuous commentary.

Lewis Wetzel said...

Blogger Mark Kleiman said...
Donald Trump, who shares both Putin's vulgarity and his hatred of liberal principles, id Putin's puppet.
More bullshit from our self-parodying Left.
There is no evidence to support this statement. It is typical of the intellectual decay of the Left that Lestists merely make assertions and become upset when they are not accepted. It is insult as a substitute for argument.

tcrosse said...

The underlying facts are simple:
Hillary was entitled to win the election.
Everybody I know voted for her
She lost anyway
Ergo Russians

Lewis Wetzel said...

The Democrats should have seen it coming in 2016. Obama's popularity did not carry over to other democrats, not even his handpicked candidates. The Democrats got shellackings in the 2010 and 2014 midterms. They stacked the deck in their 2016 primaries against more populist candidates and in favor of a woman of no particular talent but with deep connections within the party (she was an anti-populist).
She outspent her opponent two to one, had the press on her side, had experience as a senator and as secretary of state, and she still lost to a loudmouthed, undisciplined, inexperienced billionaire "populist."
For this the Democrats blame not themselves, but the Americans who did not vote for their candidate, and shadowy conspiracies by furriners.

Ann Althouse said...

"Althouse, can you throw in a link to Spayd's article that Baquet criticized? I'm not being lazy, my smartphone sucks."

I assume it's "Trump, Russia, and the News Story That Wasn’t" (back in January).

Ann Althouse said...

I'm going to read it and do a separate post on it.

I've already got another post on the Public Editor elimination.

steve uhr said...

I'm not trying to undo the election Lewis. He won fair and square. All I'm saying is that Trump is almost certainly a crook, and someday the truth will come out ... soon.

One destabilizes an economy by punishing those who violate the Rule of Law?
Less Rule of Law = better government.
Pretty radical idea.

Lewis Wetzel said...

All I'm saying is that Trump is almost certainly a crook, and someday the truth will come out ... soon.
What criminal law has Trump violated? Specifically? Was he found guilty in a court of law? Was this before or after Trump was elected? Why wasn't it made known during the campaign?
If crooks who have not been found guilty of anything can't be prez, how would the election of Hillary be an improvement over the election of Trump?
If criminal proceedings are brought against Trump now, you have a nasty executive/judicial branch knife fight.
The constitution does not say that "crooks" can't be elected and cannot serve. The people are sovereign, they make the law. They chose Trump.

Hagar said...

For Republicans, a crook is someone who steals money or other valuables.
For Democrats, it is anyone who oppose them and lives.

Luke Lea said...

It all goes back to the diplomatically ill-advised attempt to lure Ukraine into the EU, with IMF support and possibly even NATO membership in the offing. Nevermind that the Russian fleet was long-based in Crimea, which had been part of the Russian empire for almost two hundred years. That it involved Hillary's State Department backing the violent chasing-from-office of a democratically elected Ukrainian head-of-state only made it worse.

Of course Russians would prefer Trump, who made it clear that sanctions over Crimea were not at the top of his agenda. That they may have leaked Hillary's speeches to Goldman Sachs, or that CNN gave debate questions to Hillary ahead of time, would seem only kosher under the circumstances.

Which still doesn't prove that they did it. Israel had motives too, and probably the capability to make it look like it was the Russians. Or it could have been one of Hillary's disenchanted staffers.

Then there is the fact that we interfere in foreign elections all the time and make no apologies.

Lewis Wetzel said...

From the Spayd atory:
"Some news outlets now report that the F.B.I. did indeed have such warrants, an indication of probable cause."
Probable cause of what? I've heard that FISA warrants are absurdly easy to get, because the subjects are non-Americans on foreign soil, and that this is why the FBI (and others) used them as a tool to go on a fishing expedition into Trump's communications.

Quaestor said...

Steve Uhr wrote: He thinks we are idiots.

It's tempting, sooo tempting.

Nah... Let it go. Everybody had the same reaction the instant they read your comment, Steve Uhr.

steve uhr said...

I agree that a crook is someone who steals money or other valuables.

AJ Lynch said...

How do you say "Putin is jerking your chain" in Russian?

It's like the NYT can't decide when to be skeptical and when to not be skeptical. Here is a tip to the new NYT AI non-person, I suggest you be skeptical 110% of the time you beta boy MSM assholes.

n.n said...

NYT is still in denial that Deep Plunger was a disenfranchised Democrat and that Nigerians Phished Podesta to reveal that Democrat deny individual dignity... and intrinsic value as a religious principle.

n.n said...

Deep Plunger was a disenfranchised Democrat now deceased.

D said...

Day after day, Im more confused, so I look to the Times to ease my pain
Aint no way Hilary could lose, .....cant be her shame, if Putin's to blame -
Oh, Give me a leak, boys, cause Trumps an asshole,
I want to get lost in some hyperbole, and just shift away, yeah.

Bill said...

AAlthouse: "You know, I've been working as an intermediary between you and the NYT every day, nonstop, for 13 years."

It's a dirty job, but someone's got to do it. Thanks!

Paco Wové said...

"I hope Spayd goes rogue. "

If Spayd doesn't get neutered first.

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