Saturday, April 01, 2017

Why Trump's Days Are Numbered.

I've spent the past couple of days in online searches of people I’d never heard of before and a couple that I had. What they have in common is that they’re all associates of or friends or friends of friends of America’s president, Donald J. Trump, and most of them are or have been career criminals or their close associates.

If, like me, you’ve wondered about the FBI director, James Comey’s curious behaviour in the run up to the November election – why he twice announced criminal investigations into candidate Clinton but stood mute about the ongoing FBI investigation into Trump, his campaign and various shady Russians – it seems there’s an answer. It’s laid out, complete with searchable links, in an article entitled, “Why FBI Can’t Tell All on Trump, Russia.” A big h/t to friend, Dana, for passing along that link.

It’s a long article, replete with links. At first I thought “this is more conspiracy theory garbage, fake news nonsense” but then I went through the links, all of them. They ranged from court documents to reports from the New York Times, Washington Post, the Observer, and web sites including The Smoking Gun, Mother Jones and such. From there I went through my own online searches of the named individuals. I’m still not finished. What I have concluded, based on the article, the linked documents and reports and my own due diligence, that the article or at least most of it seems accurate and credible.

The media are closing in on Trump, his seemingly unending ties to Russian oligarchs and their dodgy money (apparently about a trillion dollars U.S. has been stripped out of the country since Putin took over) and their thugs in the United States. This was the guy who boasted on the campaign trail of how he loved to sue people, especially those who defamed him. If that’s the case he has the suits of his lifetime and they’re stacking up – fast. Even USA Today is getting in on the action.

Do you remember when the Trump campaign started the “lock her up, lock her up” chant about Clinton and her crime against humanity, using an unsecure email account? That was a horrific crime, one for the books, wasn’t it? Now, as the evidence mounts of Trump’s collaboration with the Russians to undermine the 2016 election and American democracy, Hillary’s alleged misconduct looks petty.

Then there's the people who serve and associate with the Cheeto Benito. Trump's campaign, transition and administration teams, at the highest levels, are heavily represented, if not dominated, by people with Russian connections.  Trump himself, his son Don Jr., his daughter Ivanka, her husband Jared Kuchner, secretary of state Rex Tillerson, secretary of Justice Jeff Sessions, former national security advisor Mike Flynn, commerce secretary Wilbur Ross, Paul Manafort (big time), Felix Sater, Carter Page and Roger Stone.

I'm sure that's sheer, unimaginable coincidence. Maybe not. Take the most senior cabinet post, secretary of state. America's diplomat. Enter Exxon Mobil CEO Rex Tillerson. We don't hear much from Tillerson. He doesn't hold press conferences. On his travels sometimes the press pool stands at just one.

Before he clammed up, in perhaps an unguarded moment, Tillerson let slip something that he hasn't repeated - how he became secretary of state.  He said that, out of the blue, he was summoned to Washington. He'd never met Trump. They had never communicated.  Tillerson thought he was going for a chat on energy policy. Instead he was offered the crown jewel of the cabinet, secretary of state. You're offering that plum post to someone with no government experience, no diplomatic record of any sort, a person you've never met before but someone who is intensely connected to the Russians.

In my legal career I did a fair number of fraud cases. I got good enough that I wrote a guide book, manual if you like, on legal remedies and investigative approaches.  The one case I used, perhaps almost as much as every other case, was the 1915 decision of the Supreme Court of Canada in Koop v. Smith.

Trump has done a masterful job of trying to lie his way out of his misdeeds – he lies as effortlessly as he breathes - but the facts are catching up with him. This isn’t Hillary-grade scandal, this is genuine corruption on a big scale. The stare decisis of the case is that, while fraud, being quasi-criminal in nature, must always be strictly proved the demonstration of certain conditions can change that. Koop shiufted that burden of proof. It looked at "badges of fraud" and said when they were shown to exist, the onus shifted back to the defendant.

Trump's is a Koop case. It more than satisfies the "if it looks like a duck, and waddles like a duck, and quacks like a duck - it's a duck," test. The ball, at this point is in Trump's court.

Trump’s “honeymoon” ratings are now at a staggering 35% – lower than Richard Nixon’s in the closing days of Watergate. His legislative agenda is in shambles. He’s at war with congressional Republicans who have suddenly learned not to fear him.

The Orange Bloat won’t even be able to build his wall. Congress isn’t inclined to write him a blank cheque and, better yet, his new Interior Secretary has discovered that nearly 900-miles of the US-Mexican border is the Rio Grande where, to build a wall, would be to give the river over to the Mexicans.

Anyway, it’s the weekend. Read the article, “Why FBI Can’t Tell All on Trump, Russia,” check out the links and then spend some fascinating time with Google searching about the miscreants and the events unveiled. It’s easy to imagine that, this time next year, Mike Pence will be POTUS and the Republicans will be bracing for trouble in the mid-terms.

By the way, if you do some independent searching, see if you can find something, anything that explains something that seems inexplicable to me. This information is pouring out now. It's a deluge. Yet a lot of it was known during or even well before last year's election campaign. Not obscure stuff either - court records, stories in America's major newspapers, that sort of thing.

What troubles me is why, back when Trump was in the "lock her up, lock her up" mode, the Dems, like the FBI, stood down, mute. Major parties pay people to dig up every ounce of dirt to be found about their presidential rival. Even Christopher Steele, the former MI6 operative, was dishing up the goods on Trump and his Russian contacts. Yet the Dems didn't say "boo."



Anonymous said...

Don't know "why", but the "deep state" is not going to roll over and give up without a fight...

P.S. Note: deep state "also include the Department of the Treasury because of its jurisdiction over financial flows, its enforcement of international sanctions and its organic symbiosis with Wall Street."

Toby said...

As you may remember I had a hard time believing those tales of Putin interfering with an American election; it just rang too far fetched. American governmental agencies such as the CIA and FBI are notorious for their dis-information and the Putin story looked like more of the same to me.

What is emerging is Trump being mixed up with wealthy Russian gangsters. This I can believe. Trump wouldn't be the only businessman to turn to nefarious sources for financial backing and other services not provided by legitimate institutions. It looks like a cozy relationship.

The Koch Brothers must be wringing their hands in anticipation with their man Pence in line to replace Trump.

Anonymous said...

Could we add, Barclays Bank Deutsche Bank all the tax free banks around the world etc.
Money laundering and tax evasion ,for the rich, cements their position in political circles.
Let's not let the Clintons off the hook as they are likely as corrupt as Trump.
If the FBI is indeed investigating Trumps financial connections then I am quite sure other prominent politicians will be involved.
The crooked class is under attack.
An expose could result in the fall of the USA Government; all of it ; Democrats and Republicans alike..
Take the dirty money out of the economy and the 2007/8 crash will look like a blip.


The Mound of Sound said...

A..non, I'm not sure how this relates to the supposed "deep state." This is Trump, his connection with some really sketchy Russians and their associates. These dealings and, it appears, the involvement of the FBI go back a few years, well before Trump decided to seek the Republican nomination. To bring this deep state into play in this one sounds like a conspiracy theory to me unless you have something to connect it to Trump, his associates and their dealings.

I don't buy much of this deep state business. Here's why. Yes there are senior people in the US government who have little good will toward Trump. Yet the oath they have taken is to the country, not the president. If they see their country imperiled, even by its president, they're sworn to defend it. They're caught up in a situation never confronted before. There has never been a president whose loyalty to the country was questioned. Trump is damaging the United States in several serious ways. He's undermining America's alliances. He's left Washington's intelligence partners, 5 Eyes, doubting his integrity. He could be putting America on course for a major war. Domestically and internationally he's untrustworthy, unreliable.

The intelligence/security community released two open letters, one during the primary campaign, the other during the election campaign. Those letters were signed by prominent officials, recently retired, almost entirely Republicans. They didn't pull any punches. They declared Trump a grave threat to American security and to world peace. I think those are conclusions they could easily come to in good faith. When you have reached those beliefs what do you do when you see your fears being played out?\

Greenwald can bitch about it but what would he have them do, aid and abet a narcissistic, deceitful president with obvious psychological issues to harm the country? That seems to be what Greenwald is driving at. I would invite you to take a few minutes and watch this interview with Wilkerson.

The Mound of Sound said...

Toby, there are plenty of links between the oligarchs and Putin. You should explore the history of the banks, Russian, Cypriot, German and British, that have played a role in this. I don't think this is far fetched at all especially not when you factor in the Russian Burdeau of Trump's cabinet - Tillerson, Flynn, Don Jr., Ivanka, the president, Paul Manafort, Felix Sater, Wilbur Ross, Carter Page and, apparently, Roger Stone to boot. That's Trump's administration - the Russia Bureau, the Generals, the Goldman Sachs Bureau and the billionaire boys' club.

Do you think that many senior cabinet members with such ties to Russia are in Trump's cabinet by happenstance, sheer coincidence? Toby, you're brighter than that.

The Mound of Sound said...

TB, this business is already smothered in the dung of conspiracy theories. Leave Clinton out of this. She lost the election, remember? She was investigated by the FBI for using an unauthorized email server but not for using it for any nefarious ends. There was nothing of that sort found. Stop taking the bait.

Anonymous said...

"Trump has done a masterful job of trying to lie his way out of his misdeeds "

Well, actually, no.

The media - apparently including bloggers who oppose him - keep implying he's been masterful, but he's actually just been lying, because his concept of reality is based on lies, and he knows nothing else. Many of them happen to be the same lies that we've been fed by corporate media for many decades, amd the corporate media will not challenge them for fear of losing their pay cheques.

It's crtitical not to play into the catechism of the Church of Trump, which means either ignore him completely, or be sure to parse every statement you make about him, his cronies, or his mindless supporters very carefully before you throw it out into the big corpo internetz, where cherry-picked echos are all that lingers

Anonymous said...

Blogger The Mound of Sound said...
A..non, I'm not sure how this relates to the supposed "deep state."

Depends upon what you or I call the deep state.
I consider it to be big money, money without borders or taxes.
Money that buys Government influence.
Money that cannot fail.
The Clintons are not immune!


Owen Gray said...

Thanks to you and Dana, Mound.

Anonymous said...

Dismissing presence and influence of a “deep state” on running U.S.A (and Canada too) is akin to jaywalking on a highway with eyes closed.(I concur with TB that deep state is principally ruled by banksters whose allegiance is to money and not to the country). The key question is whether Drumpf is with banksters or with those who would like to rescue the Republic.

The Mound of Sound said...

A..non, TB touches on the problem when he writes "Depends on what you or I call the deep state." It's a term that can mean whatever you want whenever you want. Likewise it carries an assumed malevolence that's never demonstrated. It's become akin to a conspiracy theory. Oh, them banksters, they're pulling all the strings. What's next, chem trails?

Believe what you like but, until you've got something concrete, I'll pass.

Dana said...

"When I use a word, it means just what I choose it to mean- neither more nor less."

So it doesn't matter where and how the term "deep state" first emerged or what it has meant since it's inception - now that certain nameless Humpties have become infatuated with it it means whatever they say it means on any given day. And each time they use it it means its really, really real.

Dana said...

Bill Moyers, of course, is an inculcated, antique fool and knows nothing whatsoever about anything to do with anything that any post-rational Humpty cares about.

But still...

Toby said...

Mound, of course I know that there are links between the oligarchs and Putin. I also know that the people Trump surrounds himself with tell us much about who he is and what he plans to do. Yes, Trumps strings to Russia are many.

Mound, I have distrusted American leaders ever since I figured out that Eisenhower lied about the need to interfere in Guatemala. I also distrust most American media which too easily jumps on the patriotic bandwagon. That Russian hacking story looked like hype to me.

As a contrast, here is someone I trust:

"Seymour Hersh Blasts Media for Uncritically Promoting Russian Hacking Story"

At present, the story is unfolding. I don't know where it will wind up. Regardless, Trump is in it up to his neck.

BTW, I'm also puzzled as to why the Dems remained silent as you posted above.

The Mound of Sound said...

Hi Dana. I read John Light's piece on It didn't do much to pierce the fog of this deep state business. In our system of Parliamentary democracy, we've always had this top bureaucrat class, sometimes called "mandarins," who soldier on from one government to the next. They're the keepers of the keys, the "institutional memory" gleaned from their mentors as they climbed the civil service ladder. Think of the BBC series "Yes, Minister."

Yes they have a history of sometimes turning on their masters. Harper was utterly paranoid of their power. However, as your article shows, they're not some gang of shadow warriors. They're pretty much upfront.

Trump has triggered an exodus of these mandarins from the State Department and, with them, some chunks of the department's institutional memory have been lost. That has had a seismic effect on the foreign policy community who understand what it means to America when diplomacy is taken over by neophytes such as Jared Kushner.

Unfortunately today the term deep state is used as a handy way of setting up straw men and they're always shaped to suit the need and circumstance.

Northern PoV said...

"this time next year, Mike Pence will be POTUS and the Republicans will be" laughing they're asses off all the way to the (gerrymandered) bank

A weakened Trump is less dangerous than an empowered Pence. Be careful what you wish for.

Dana said...

I thought this para from Moyers was pretty clear: "Historically, the idea of a Deep State is an import; it has been used for decades abroad to describe any network of entrenched government officials who function independently from elected politicians and work toward their own ends."

We agree re: relevance. As I said, it means whatever the infatuated want it to mean on any given day.

Dana said...

Pence would be the manifestation of Atwood's nightmare. Coming to a television station near you later this month.

The Mound of Sound said...

Toby, I read the Hersh interview. It was a critique of the American media for unquestioningly accepting government claims of Russian hacking. The focus wasn't what actually happened but how the media handled it.

I've been a Hersh fan since My Lai. When I was in the military I did a paper on military justice in the context of Calley and his immediate superior, Medina, which incorporated material from Hersh's scoop. I was immensely pleased when he broke the Abu Ghraib story. Yet I began to question him when his bin Laden account was published. It had too many gaps and some wobbly assertions. His take on the Russian hacking business is interesting, one of several interesting points of view, but falls far short of anything conclusive especially given that it came from Hersh and Greenwald.

The story, as you note, is unfolding.

Toby said...

Mound, there is definitely a story here. The trick is to avoid falling into traps of which there are many. I have an itch that says that Trump is a decoy, not the real story. I could be wrong about that but the itch keeps niggling at me. The thing is that the world has some very big problems as you have often noted. Instead of paying attention to what really matters we are watching the orange tufted birdie.

Northern PoV said...

Wise words....
" Instead of paying attention to what really matters we are watching the orange tufted birdie."

The Mound of Sound said...

Trump as a decoy begs all the standard journalistic questions - who, what, where, when, why and how? Absent those details it is and should remain an "itch." Fact based evidence is what distinguishes critical thinking from conspiracy theory. Nothing wrong with hunches when they're followed up with questions and answers.

Scotian said...


I have a link to an article from March 3rd dealing with oaths and their power in the Executive branch and what it may mean when those that swear oaths are doing so to an ultimate authority who clearly is incapable of being true to any oath. You might find it of interest...

As to the rest of this business, the Deep State thing has been driving me nuts for a long time now, it has no real meaning except what the writer wants it to be, most often as of late to use as a cudgel against the growing obvious reality that not only did Russia blatantly interfere in the US Presidential elections in ways never seen by them before, they did so to help one side and hurt the other, and they apparently were at it in the primaries on both party sides. As you know, I've been one of the early callers on this one (doing my Cassandra bit yet again...*sigh*) with Russia and the events of 2016. Glad to see you are coming on board.


Good article find, I've seen it elsewhere but still, a great referral piece. Good on you for showing it to MoS.

Anonymous said...


Sign at a Neil Gorsuch protest.


Unknown said...

Drumpf will not make it to the end of his only term.