March 21, 2018

I vehemently disapprove of myself for clicking on "A stunning leak rattles Trump and his aides."

I knew it was hype/fake, but I was overcome by curiosity about the details. Don't do that! I hate to compound the error of clicking by linking, but I will. It's Axios.

The "stunning leak" was the information that Trump was advised not to congratulate Putin on his election victory. The leak went to the Washington Post, which published what to me is a nonstory: "Trump’s national security advisers warned him not to congratulate Putin. He did it anyway."

Axios seems to have a leak about the leak:
The speed and sensitivity of the leak prompted immediate finger-pointing within the administration, as aides reeled from a leak that could only have come from a small group of people, each of whom is trusted with sensitive national secrets....
Are they really reeling or do they just want to create the factoid that Trump did it on his own? In which case it's not really a leak at all. For all I know, Trump himself divulged that his aides told him not to congratulate Putin... and maybe that was a lie. This is why I consider it a nonstory. The whole thing is a phantom.

73 comments:

Tank said...

The teens and the pros can figure this out.

Unknown said...

This is reminiscent of the outrage when Obama congratulated Putin on his re-election victory in 2012.

I remember all the press coverage and criticism then.

Or not.

Gahrie said...

Why shouldn't Trump congratulate Putin?

No one cared when Obama did it.

Could someone please remind me when Russia became the bad guys? Apparently it was sometime between Mr. "The 80's want their foreign policy back" Obama told the Russian president he would be more flexible after the election and November 2016, but I can't pin it down.

Fernandinande said...

Axios pulled a cunning stunt.

Phil 314 said...

"OH MY GOD!!!"

should be the lede on all headlines these day

the 4chan Guy who reads Althouse said...

Has anyone considered that Trump himself divulged that his aides told him not to congratulate Putin?

Has anyone considered that maybe that was a lie?

The Germans have a word for this.

rhhardin said...

More bags than cats.

Bob Boyd said...

Maybe we need to call in a Professional Journalist to help us navigate this.

brylun said...

I wonder what the Columbia School of Journalism thinks about these click-bait non-stories?

rhhardin said...

Nothing rattles like a leak.

rhhardin said...

One of the joke items you could by in ham radio stores in the 1950s was a grid leak drip pan.

tcrosse said...

And in the end, the leaks you make are equal to the leaks you take.

Fernandinande said...

A guy with the classically Scottish name "Count Dankula" has been convicted of being offensive for teaching a Pug to lift its paw when he said "Sieg Heil" and letting people see a video of it.

"Please be aware that we will continue to monitor comments on social media & any offensive comments will be investigated."

Henry said...

This is the self-driving car of journalism. The story writes itself. Just change a few names and dates.

Darrell said...

Every day Trump picks up the red phone and says "Hillary Clinton will never be President of the United States" and then Putin and he laugh for fifteen minutes. It never gets old.

Heartless Aztec said...

ABCNBCMSNBCFOXCBS are all phantoms. In my house anyway. Along with the first 10 minutes of my local (when it bleeds it leads) stations. As such I'm rately exposed to leaks - oher han in my sailboat.

traditionalguy said...

A great panic has hit MSNBC and CNN: Trump is off the leash and being the President. Run for the hills.

JohnAnnArbor said...

People are acting all shocked that he made a minor diplomatic gesture to an adversary--one he has worked to contain more aggressively than his predecessor.

Anonymous said...

AA: ...but I was overcome by curiosity about the details. Don't do that! I hate to compound the error of clicking by linking, but I will. It's Axios.

Don't feel bad - no click, no post. The links may not be worth reading in themselves, but your commentary probably will be. Just think of it as taking one for the team.

I never take the click-bait, but it's not because of I'm just too noble for that sort of thing. I scan the headlines every morning to have a laugh at "professional", highly-credentialed, oh-so-serious journalists and TotallyNotFakeNews media organizations debasing themselves in this fashion, to ever lower levels.

Enjoying other human beings' degradation like this makes me a far worse person than an honest clicker whose worst sin is gullibility.

Anonymous said...

Phil 3:14:

"OH MY GOD!!!"

should be the lede on all headlines these day


Lol. (But it should be just "!!!OMG!!!)

tcrosse said...

Trump congratulates Putin, and you won't believe what happens next.

Paul Zrimsek said...

While I consider it a non-story because I know the difference between an adviser and a decision-maker.

Beloved Commenter AReasonableMan said...

Putin is a sponsor of state terrorism against our closest ally. Trump congratulates him on his 'electoral victory' and no one thinks that's a problem?

The Cracker Emcee Refulgent said...

“I never take the click-bait, but it's not because of I'm just too noble for that sort of thing. I scan the headlines every morning to have a laugh at "professional", highly-credentialed, oh-so-serious journalists and TotallyNotFakeNews media organizations debasing themselves in this fashion, to ever lower levels.”

I understand you’re kidding/not kidding but the gob-smacking thing is you’re not even slightly exaggerating. What’s the difference between the article links at the LA Times website and the usual Havana omelette of click bait links at the bottom of an off-brand website page? At least the click bait will try to use boobs to entice your click.

Anonymous said...

BCABM: Putin is a sponsor of state terrorism against our closest ally. Trump congratulates him on his 'electoral victory' and no one thinks that's a problem?

Correct. The usual gang of Tartuffes and pharisees want to flim-flam other people into thinking it's a problem, but that'll probably work as well or badly as their previous efforts in flim-flammery.

Gahrie said...

Putin is a sponsor of state terrorism against our closest ally. Trump congratulates him on his 'electoral victory' and no one thinks that's a problem?

The 1980's are calling and they want their foreign policy back.

The Cracker Emcee Refulgent said...

“Putin is a sponsor of state terrorism against our closest ally. Trump congratulates him on his 'electoral victory' and no one thinks that's a problem?”

We well remember your righteous outrage when Obama congratulated Putin. Your consistent integrity is like a torch in the darkness.

Anonymous said...

The Cracker Emcee Classic: What’s the difference between the article links at the LA Times website and the usual Havana omelette of click bait links at the bottom of an off-brand website page? At least the click bait will try to use boobs to entice your click.

The difference is that the latter is less disreputable and more honest, the production of which an honest man would not despise himself wholly and irredeemably, if he were reduced to earning his bread in that fashion.

Hagar said...

How about all the articles about "advisers" warning Trump not to fire Mueller?

rhhardin said...

Trump is never in just one place. The congratulations are part of a negotiation.

Henry said...

Putin is a sponsor of state terrorism against our closest ally. Trump congratulates him on his 'electoral victory' and no one thinks that's a problem?

I think Trump has earned our trust in his insincerity.

tcrosse said...

"Vlad ? Donald. Congratulations, asshole."

Beloved Commenter AReasonableMan said...

So we are all OK with Putin killing people in Great Britain? What about Canada would that be OK? Or Louisiana? Still OK?

Darrell said...

Putin is killing Russians in Great Britain, not Brits. It would be like one of your Anarchist buddies putting a grenade in your inflatable hemorrhoid doughnut.

Beloved Commenter AReasonableMan said...

Darrell said...
Putin is killing Russians in Great Britain, not Brits.


So no problem then? What if he was killing Russians seeking asylum from the lunatic KGB assassin in the US. Not a problem for you?

Darrell said...

If they were shooting at me, you'd have no problem with it. Admit it.

rhhardin said...

So no problem then?

Trump is negotiating for the US, not for a scolding feel-good moment.

Be pleasant to Putin and impose sanctions where they hurt. Trump is two places at once.

tim in vermont said...


Blogger Darrell said...
Every day Trump picks up the red phone and says "Hillary Clinton will never be President of the United States" and then Putin and he laugh for fifteen minutes. It never gets old


After that, Trump calls Bill and the same thing happens.

tcrosse said...

Putin is killing Russians in Great Britain, not Brits.

And HM Government is dealing with it with some severity.

tim in vermont said...

Apparently the Democrats response to Trump is identity politics, and using the FBI, CIA, and NSA as domestic secret police is OK. We don't have a lot of good choices here. I don't know that we want to fall into another war with Russia, like Hillary's little proxy war in Syria, because the Democrats are in a snit over the election.

Drago said...

ARM: "Putin is a sponsor of state terrorism against our closest ally. Trump congratulates him on his 'electoral victory' and no one thinks that's a problem?"

History began yesterday morning.

Perhaps ARM would feel better if Trump promised Putin another 20% of our uranium as well as additional "flexibility" after his Trumps next election.

Lol

You can google the loving and adoring handshake obambi gave Putin as obambi congratulated Putin on his reelection in 2012.

Beloved Commenter AReasonableMan said...

Darrell said...
If they were shooting at me, you'd have no problem with it. Admit it.


I have a problem when people like you shoot at each other, so no, your claim is idiotic.

Darrell said...

You cheered when Lenin killed Trotsky in Mexico.
Be honest.

Can Of Cheese for Hunter said...

Is this worthy of impeachment? Proof! proof! Proof!

Darrell said...

Now it took 16 years for his ghost to get it done, but you still cheered.

Bob Boyd said...

Congratulusion.

Chuck said...

To me, the significant part of the Trump-congratulating-Putin story was the simple fact that in 2012, Obama did it too.

Prompting this earlier comment on this page:

Gahrie said...
Why shouldn't Trump congratulate Putin?

No one cared when Obama did it.

Could someone please remind me when Russia became the bad guys? Apparently it was sometime between Mr. "The 80's want their foreign policy back" Obama told the Russian president he would be more flexible after the election and November 2016, but I can't pin it down.

But in truth, some people DID care about it. Example; the Weekly Standard. Here's a link to the Weekly Standard, which I have carefully coded as a hyperlink and not one of those terribly annoying cut-and-pasted url's:

Weekly Standard LINK!

They criticized Obama, for all the right reasons.

And now, faithful to the story and their own consistency, the Weekly Standard again reports on criticisms of Trump for doing the same thing. I'd like to have seen a stinging WS anti-Trump editorial on the subject, going back to their 2012 position vis-à-vis Obama. But I can't have all my dreams fulfilled...

Hey another Weekly Standard link!

Reporting on the mainstream Republicans who criticized Trump (and, I have zero doubt also criticized Obama if anyone goes back six years to dig out their quotes).

The bottom line is clear enough; Trump-doubting conservatives owe no apologies in this. We criticized Obama; and now we criticize Trump. Consistent. Principled. Clear. Understandable.

Ray - SoCal said...

The US deals with lots of bad guys and shithole countries.

Unfortunately we can’t pretend they don’t exist.

Putin has done worse. The apartment buildings he had blown up and blamed on the Chechens.

Bob Boyd said...

I wonder if Hillary called to congratulate Putin on his acquisition of US uranium deposits.
I bet she congratulated herself after she got paid.

Marty Keller said...

ARM's hyper-partisan myopia prevents him from knowing (or acknowledging) that the US, via Nikki Haley, has joined Great Britain in unambiguously condemning Russia's using their country for spy-murder.

Such obvious flacking for the DNC always makes me wonder just what the heck ARM thinks he's doing here. Where's Garage when we need him (or did he just change his handle . . .)?

The Cracker Emcee Refulgent said...

"So we are all OK with Putin killing people in Great Britain? What about Canada would that be OK? Or Louisiana? Still OK?"

ARM tries to dance away from his initial absurdity with further absurdities.

Hey, if Obama isn't worried about it, I'm not worried about it.

readering said...

Sometimes Althouse makes no sense.

Anonymous said...

Chuck: [Weekly Standard link, Weekly Standard link...] "...which I have carefully coded as a hyperlink and not one of those terribly annoying cut-and-pasted url's [sic]:"

Chuck, while I too find cut'n'paste links a minor annoyance, and really do appreciate people taking the very small effort necessary to learn how to make a link, is it really an accomplishment for a grown man to brag about? We all appreciate your mastering coloring within the lines, too.

(I threw that "sic" in as an homage to your spergy glory.)

The bottom line is clear enough; Trump-doubting conservatives owe no apologies in this. We criticized Obama; and now we criticize Trump. Consistent. Principled. Clear. Understandable.

True, Chuck, nobody could ever impugn the consistency and clarity of the foreign policy principles of neo-connery and its media organs. (The sanity and congruence with national interest, on the other hand...)

Johnathan Birks said...

I'm still stunned at how WaPo has turned into straight garbage. Remember when Bezos was supposed to be the savior, the guy who the Grahams claimed would stop the bleeding of cash and talent? All he's done is turned it into Buzzfeed. Good show.

Inga...Allie Oop said...

“Sometimes Althouse makes no sense.”

As long as Meade and her majority conservative readers understand her...

The rest of us just shake our heads and say “whaaaaaat?”.

Rigelsen said...

Putin has been a murderous thug since at least the 90’s, incluidng at a minimum a very famous radioactive poisoning case in 2006 in London. So, please spare us the special outrage that we should feel today that should not have been felt in 2012 when Obama did the same thing and when he made the infamous “80’s called” comment. Unless disingenuousness is your thing.

Sam L. said...

But, HEY! You got a post out of it.

Chuck said...

Chuck, while I too find cut'n'paste links a minor annoyance, and really do appreciate people taking the very small effort necessary to learn how to make a link, is it really an accomplishment for a grown man to brag about? We all appreciate your mastering coloring within the lines, too.

I wasn't bragging. I was being sarcastic.

THEY DON'T GET SARCASM?"

Rigelsen said...

“I wasn't bragging. I was being sarcastic.”

It read more like petulance. But you can go with “sarcastic” if you like.

n.n said...

Trump is holding out a sugar beat to the asses, who with gay abandon nip at its sweet confection.

n.n said...

Oh, what lies beneath the noise floor?

Sigivald said...

Never open an Axios link.

Problem solved.

mikee said...

Trump and/or Kelly is running a Canary Trap to find leakers.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Canary_trap
He's done it before and fired people over their leaks.
https://www.americanthinker.com/articles/2017/07/trump_and_the_canary_trap_.html
Ah, the joys of old Tom Clancy novels, rewritten to include current events.

Churchy LaFemme: said...

I was checking an old hotmail account that I use as a throwaway for things I don't want to hear about but which demand emails. When you log out, it throws you to msn.com where the version of the headline was even stronger. Something like: Trump congratulates Putin on victory after being told not to.

My immediate reaction was who the h*** "tells" the President of the USA not to do something like that. I think that headline actually helped Trump.

Clickbait: Hey, if the come-on picture was actually in the stupid slide show, maybe. But it never is. Guys you trained me to never click.

roesch/voltaire said...

The real question is who hung up first? The leakers have no worry because the all signed NDA and everyone knows they can not talk publicly.

Brian McKim and/or Traci Skene said...

What might be needed in America today is a Penn & Teller-like act that exposes, through live performance, videos and other media, just how the media works/has worked with regard to sources, leaks, planted stories, etc. Just a Penn & Teller expose the "tricks" of magicians, the act would expose the "tricks" that journos have employed since before Hearst, and do so in an entertaining manner. Howie Kurtz lacks the sense of humor for the job. He also seems to walk on eggshells when it comes to criticizing his colleagues. Scott Adams comes close. (After all, isn't the mainstream media all about "persuasion?") Perhaps he should be paired with a silent partner.

Yancey Ward said...

"The speed and sensitivity of the leak prompted immediate finger-pointing within the administration, as aides reeled from a leak that could only have come from a small group of people, each of whom is trusted with sensitive national secrets...."

If this was the PDB, it is the entirety of the product that is seen/held by a small group. However, the individual pieces might have a shockingly high number of people who might be aware of the contents.

Yancey Ward said...

Chuck, sure The Weekly Standard is consistent, and that is to be applauded. The point, though, is this- no one on the Left is being consistent. There is a name for someone who plays by one-sided rules- that is "chump".

Anonymous said...

Chuck: I wasn't bragging. I was being sarcastic.

Chuck, I assume everything you write is an attempt at sarcasm.

Michael K said...

"If this was the PDB, it is the entirety of the product that is seen/held by a small group"

Obama changed the distribution of the PDB late in his administration in order to assist the dissemination of "unmasked" identities if Trump associates.

Michael K said...

"The rest of us just shake our heads and say “whaaaaaat?”.

Do you have a mouse in your pocket?

"US?"

JaimeRoberto said...

I wonder what the Columbia School of Journalism thinks about these click-bait non-stories?

The Columbia School of Journalism published a list of 5 reasons why they hate them. #4 will blow your mind.

Dionisio said...

This was the plan from the beginning - if it happened. Put a plea in all caps to the Prez so that it is available to be leaked later. Ridiculously unimportant and up to the President without the "experts" input. Next directives will be "EAT YOUR VEGETABLES" and "WASH HANDS AFTER TAKING A DUMP". And then it can be leaked later.