Patterico's Pontifications

3/28/2018

Shulkin Out

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 8:23 pm



March 26:

March 28: Shulkin out.

After weeks of uncertainty atop the Department of Veterans Affairs, President Trump dismissed its secretary, David J. Shulkin, on Wednesday and announced he would replace him with the White House physician, Dr. Ronny L. Jackson, a rear admiral in the Navy.

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[Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.]

188 Responses to “Shulkin Out”

  1. Ding.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  2. “Spokeshole”???

    No trace of Trump Derangement there at all, just calm, fair, reasoned criticism of the Satan Trump and all of his subsidiary Demons from the nethermost depths of HELL!

    Excuse my panting.

    Fred Z (05d938)

  3. He gives a certain amount of lee way, as posited earlier shulkin was a little swampy, for his own good.

    narciso (d1f714)

  4. The 1000% Syndrome.

    Kevin M (752a26)

  5. The fish rots from the head on down.

    Tillman (a95660)

  6. As soon as I heard Shulkin say “we need more resources” (meaning, taxpayer money) to fix the VA, I thought, get the hook.

    Good riddance.

    Patricia (3363ec)

  7. So Jackson’s epic @ss-kissing performance (“good genes” – right…) during his TV briefing about Trump’s physical exam landed him a big promotion…

    Reminds me of this classic Demotivator from despair.com:

    Flattery

    Dave (445e97)

  8. 7 – Or it could be that Jackson, as a military doctor, might bring a different approach to getting the VA to run correctly.

    The Secretary of the VA has been a toilet bowl position pretty much since it was made a cabinet level post. Bill Clinton used it as his designated “Minority Cabinet Member” slot.

    There has only been one other military doctor ever named to the position.

    Shulkin is an interesting guy who probably should have had more success because his background was in running large health care delivery operations, including being CEO of Beth Israel Hospital in New York.

    Most military general officers have been the Chief Administrator of one of the major military hospitals — but Jackson has not. He went from being a combat surgeon in Iraq to the WH Physician in 2006, and he has remained as the President’s Physician through 3 administrations.

    I think naming him is a real risk — putting a guy in charge of running a huge bureaucracy who has no background or experience in running huge bureaucracies.

    But more than his relationship with Trump, I think he has some strong political patrons pushing him given that he’s a graduate of Texas A&M, and the University of Texas Medical School.

    shipwreckedcrew (56b591)

  9. I think naming him is a real risk — putting a guy in charge of running a huge bureaucracy who has no background or experience in running huge bureaucracies.

    He has the only qualification that matters – a proven commitment to telling Spanky what he wants to hear!

    Dave (445e97)

  10. He has the only qualification that matters – a proven commitment to telling Spanky what he wants to hear!

    Sure, but how long will it last as he gets to know Trump better? I think I’ve figured out the reason for the turnover in Trump’s administration:

    Whenever the Vice President and a majority of either the principal officers of the executive departments or of such other body as Congress may by law provide, transmit to the President pro tempore of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives their written declaration that the President is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office, the Vice President shall immediately assume the powers and duties of the office as Acting President.

    As soon as Trump gets to suspecting somebody of getting wise to the fact that he’s a “f***ing moron” and might persuade others, out he goes.

    nk (dbc370)

  11. And, by the way, Mr. President, Rear Admiral does not mean what you think it means.

    nk (dbc370)

  12. Its not a question of funding, its pfioritization, certainly
    shinseki nor Mcdonald’s had that focus.

    narciso (d1f714)

  13. This is shaping up to be one of those fair-minded principled debate threads I hear so much about.

    BuDuh (fc15db)

  14. swc,

    Good points but what political patrons do you have in mind?

    I hope that when Jackson has his confirmation hearing that someone asks him where he stands on privatization of the VA hospitals and services. Also, is it a problem that he is active military now, and thus Trump is his President and C-in-C?

    DRJ (15874d)

  15. DRJ

    I think the very best way to fund the VA is to give veterans a gold card insurance plan with a monthly fee waived in many cases, and accepted at all medical providers and facilities. The VA can then turn towards management and combatting fraudulent claims

    Some of the VA hospitals can be converted to military training and care hospitals.

    Also the imposition of a ten percent tax on all imports solely to pay down the debt

    EPWJ (9957a2)


  16. I think the very best way to fund the VA is to give veterans a gold card insurance plan with a monthly fee waived in many cases, and accepted at all medical providers and facilities.


    That’s the best way I can think of for not only bankrupting the VA but increasing fraud and abuse by 1000%. Why not throw in a new house and free food for life while you’re at it? They’ll need to turn towards “combatting fraudulent claims” with a golden goose like that.

    Rev.Hoagie (1b0402)


  17. Some of the VA hospitals can be converted to military training and care hospitals.


    Or free housing for illegal immigrants and third world “refugees”. Each facility could have a welfare office and DNC recruiting station for convenience.


    Also the imposition of a ten percent tax on all imports solely to pay down the debt

    But if we made the “tax” on imports (known as tariffs) 25% then we can offer free college to every American who hasn’t had enough propaganda in grades k-12. Plus, if we made it 40% we could institute a mandatory gun buy-back law and disarm the people as we indoctrinate their kids to squash “hate speech” and all non-PC thoughts.

    Rev.Hoagie (1b0402)

  18. There needs to be some way to introduce competition into the VA health care system. Privatizing some aspects seems like a reasonable approach to me, but Shulkin opposed privatization.

    I don’t think the entire system should be privatized in the short term, nor do I support turning the system over to the insurance system — that is even less competitive than ever after ObamaCare. I hope complete privatization could work in the long term, but military care has so many things to consider that it may not work.

    DRJ (15874d)

  19. My guess is Jackson is open to privatization, something Shulkin was not, and that’s part of why Trump chose Jackson.

    DRJ (15874d)

  20. Shulkin, had started to cut the tripwires on the minefield,
    but the mines had fired back.

    narciso (d1f714)

  21. Jackson was first brought to the White House by Bush 43 as one of several White House physicians and is reportedly (link is dead but you can see the Google cache here) close to the Bush family. He was ultimately selected as personal physician by Bush 43, Obama and now Trump. If he has any Texas patrons, swc, I assume they are the Bush family members and/or establishment GOP.

    DRJ (15874d)

  22. Second link isn’t working so I will reprint it here:

    George W. Bush shows off Levelland hat during trip to Africa –

    KCBD …
    http://www.kcbd.com › story › george-w-bush…

    Nov 20, 2017 · Waymon Jackson’s son, Ronny, may have been born and raised in Hockley County, but now he is Director of the White House Medical Unit. Ronny has formed a close relationship with the Bush family over the years and that’s …

    DRJ (15874d)

  23. Wasn’t the reason for the VA system that troops were stationed in far-flung places with no available, reliable, local health care? In the past, many came back and stayed in the military or remained in the area, but it’s not as true today. Many veterans live across the US far from VA facilities. Addressing that is one way privatization could help.

    DRJ (15874d)

  24. Its not a question of funding, its pfioritization, certainly
    shinseki nor Mcdonald’s had that focus.
    narciso (d1f714) — 3/29/2018 @ 6:52 am

    Most of the troops I knew REALLY didn’t like Shinseki who was considered a political facetimer (not the Apple app and not a good thing at all) who didn’t give a darn about soldiers, the Army, or anything besides himself. That was his focus. Getting another bullet point for his evaluation. I’m sure his Mom liked him though, so he had that going for him.

    Stashiu3 (466cdf)

  25. I’m all for privatization, if only to break up the political structure at the VA. I worked there after retiring from the Army and only lasted as long as I did because I knew my job and actually cared about veterans. When they started violating their own personnel policies just to mess with me I knew it was time to leave. I didn’t join cliques while on active duty and certainly wasn’t going to do it as a civilian.

    The entire VA structure is now structured as a jobs program for both union and management. Very few people are afraid for their jobs once they get into the system. A civilian nurse I worked with later was amazed that I had left the VA. She called it a “gold system” that she had been trying to get into for quite a while. No, she wasn’t a very good nurse, but she did end up getting in. She now brags about being able to read books and play on her phone for about 90% of her shift. I believe her.

    Stashiu3 (466cdf)

  26. Yes, he was only chief of staff because the rank and file couldn’t stand weasely clark.

    narciso (364166)

  27. The theory is that you have to understand how the bureaucracy works if you want to downsize/unravel it and I think there is truth to that, but maybe that isn’t as important if you want to privatize government functions. However, how much experience or knowledge does Jackson have with private sector options if he’s been in the military his entire career?

    He probably has contacts with doctors outside the military and in the NIH. The NIH is successfully working with public and private medical institutions with programs like the Undiagnosed Disease Network. That is a form of government being privitized, so it can be done.

    DRJ (15874d)

  28. Stashiu,

    Rev Hoages objections noted, but the VA, food stamps, the agriculture department, the post office, all are past their sell by date.

    We should keep military hospitals, for the immediate treatment and full rehabilitation of our immediate wounded. The long term care, needs to be privatized.

    EPWJ (8377cc)

  29. DRJ,

    The NIH, is a sick joke, billions of wasted dollars. To note, they hired Bill Schmalfeldt, Brett Kimberlins Chief propagandist, as their podcast spokesperson, and retained him, after years of complaints of his foul sex laden screeds on the forums of his former employer XM radio.

    His, screeds, including photographs of him in his office at the HQ of The NIH, were so foul, I can’t even hint at them here. This went on for years.

    He was criminally tried in of all places Carroll County MD, years after his separation from the NIH, he was the one who harassed the Breitbart family during Andrews funeral, he was the one who harassed the 5e Stranahans during the death of their baby daughter. Well getting back to the trial, he said he had a magic Rolodex of access to special life saving programs that he was offering to someone who had a restraining order against.

    Apparently, Schmalfeldt was one of the “better” NIH” employees…

    EPWJ (8377cc)

  30. How many times have you been treated at, or been to, the NIH?

    DRJ (15874d)

  31. Some of the NIH research grants seem ridiculous. Some of the employees may be troublesome. But there are benefits from having a national institute of health, especially for rare/orphan diseases that medical centers and hospitals have no incentive or ability to treat. That is something the NIH has tried to do.

    DRJ (15874d)

  32. DRJ

    So you’re okay for a National hospital, funded with billions of taxpayers dollars, treating a handful of people?

    EPWJ (8377cc)

  33. Yes.

    DRJ (15874d)

  34. DRJ,

    Our research hospitals in Texas have spent a fraction of what a single national hospital has, and trained thousands of first class doctors and nurses,

    All with out a multi billion dollar annual budget

    EPWJ (8377cc)

  35. Because the research benefits everyone. They study the extremes in medicine, especially the sickest people or the rarest diseases, in order to understand how the body works or to identify the genes that do/don’t work. They also help the people with rare diseases that mainstream medicine can’t help. The NIH has the doctors of last resort for the very sick and the people with rare diseases.

    DRJ (15874d)

  36. DRJ,

    No they don’t exactly share the research, that’s a myth

    EPWJ (8377cc)

  37. DRJ,

    No, they don’t study, they pontificate, they used to do those things, but not for some time. They are a bloated, politically correct, SJW, organization now.

    Take the top 150 hospitals in the Country, they are treating, sharing and researching, on a scale a thousand times the efforts of the NIH.tthe pharmaceutical companies, are doing the extreme heavy lifting in the fields of medical research.

    EPWJ (8377cc)

  38. And those same Texas hospitals work every day with the NIH to treat difficult diseases. The first Bubble Boy Syndrome case that was treated in Houston and made into a movie with John Travolta? It was treated in Houston but he died. It was pioneered by the NIH because no single hospital could afford to treat someone like thst. Now, many of those children live now because of the NIH.

    Hiw do you think those hospitals get funding for research?

    The National Institutes of Health (NIH) is the main source of federal funding for medical research in the United States, investing over 80 percent of its $30.9 billion budget in competitive grant awards that support more than 300,000 researchers at over 2,500 universities, medical schools, and other research institutions. Since 2007, every UT System institution has received funding from NIH.

    DRJ (15874d)

  39. Again, How many times have you been treated at, or been to, the NIH?

    DRJ (15874d)

  40. DRJ

    it’s budget is over fifty billion, these grants are small piecemeal giveaways. Texas hospitals don’t need the NIH, the NIH needs the Texas Hospitals.

    The NIH gave the local university who charges the students 35k a year, money for a phone system.

    They are not funding research, they are funding office supplies, minor lab equipment.

    It’s a crazy game.

    EPWJ (8377cc)

  41. Because of the NIH, 11 states agreed to newborn screening for severe immune degiciency. It was thought to be rare but, after the program began they discovered it occurs in 1 in every 58,000 births.

    DRJ (15874d)

  42. The NIH budget for 2017 was $34.7 Billion.

    DRJ (15874d)

  43. …the post office, all are past their sell by date.

    ROFLMAO! From our cold, dead letter office:

    Article I, Section 8, Clause 7 of the United States Constitution, known as the Postal Clause or the Postal Power, empowers Congress “To establish Post Offices and post Roads”.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  44. Considering the research equipment and diagnostic equipment can run to ten million a unit, with the avg grant being less than 200k, that wouldn’t even buy a 6 month maintenance contract on an average priced diagnostic imager

    EPWJ (8377cc)

  45. DRJ

    The budget has other spending under other departments, they typically spend over fifty billion,

    EPWJ (8377cc)

  46. It’s a crazy game until you need medical research or someone in your family needs it. The hospitals help many people but they help people with common diseases, because that gives them a patient volume that can pay the bilks. The NIH is the only facility that will help people with rare diseases.

    It’s expensive, true. Why bother helping people with rare diseases? Because “rare diseases” iis defined as anything that affects less than 1 in 200,000 people and in a nation of 325 million, that is a lot of people.

    DRJ (15874d)

  47. Please provide links if you want to continue this discussion.

    DRJ (15874d)

  48. Nasas. Budget is 18 billion
    Dept of homeland security is 48 billion

    The non food stamps portion of the USDA is less than the NIH

    EPWJ (8377cc)

  49. DRJ

    It’s all right there.

    It’s a huge discussion, they have sooo many grants that the oversight costs more than the grant amount

    They have a database, just to track the tens of thousands of tiny grants they stupidly grant.

    EPWJ (8377cc)

  50. Here is a link to the NIH budge details. I am sure there is waste and abuse, as there is in every federal agency, but it is beneficial to have the NIH so there is research for more than just cancer, heart disease and diabetes.

    DRJ (15874d)

  51. You like NASA. Think of the accidental discoveries and inventions made by NASA when no individual had the ability to go into space. Now we have private space ventures and that is great. We also have private medical ventures. But the aid for rare diseases is, well, rare. Lorenzo’s oil is the only one I can think of where a rare disease was helped by private folks — in that case, the child’s parents. Yay for them but do you really want every American with a rare disease to have to solve their own medical problems?

    DRJ (15874d)

  52. Maybe you do and, if so, that is fine. Just say you think we should let people die rather than spend the money to research diseases that hospitals don’t want to research. Because that is how you get to the NIH as a patient: You have a disease no one knows how to treat.

    DRJ (15874d)

  53. I agree with DRJ. The NIH’s job is to keep America on the cutting edge in medical advances. The grants for private research are only part of it. Pointing out that they’re the smaller part of NIH’s budget is like pointing out that firemen don’t bring down kittens from trees all that much.*

    *Actually, the Chicago fire department does not do it at all. I was three feet away from a Chicago fireman when he was asked about it. He said, “Have you ever seen a cat skeleton in a tree?”

    nk (dbc370)

  54. 53.You like NASA. Think of the accidental discoveries and inventions made by NASA when no individual had the ability to go into space.

    Yep. Consider actual HSF operations as more less a ‘loss leader’ revealing new discoveries applicable in other areas beyond basic spaceflight. A means to an end of sorts. Keep in mind, too next time you fly that the NASA in NASA stands for Aeronautics as well.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  55. Read David Finkels book “Thank You For Your Service”. If you can read more than 2-3 pages without wanting to disembowell somebody (with a rusty meathook) you’re a better person than I am.

    Red Headly (5a4596)

  56. “Spokeshole”???

    No trace of Trump Derangement there at all, just calm, fair, reasoned criticism of the Satan Trump and all of his subsidiary Demons from the nethermost depths of HELL!

    Excuse my panting.

    You seem a bit overwrought. Try putting the word into my search box, so you can see how I have used that word for easily ten years, to refer to spokespeople for all kinds of people — Obama, Democrats, etc.

    Yes, the word evinces contempt. As you can easily see, the spokeshole was lying when he made his statement about Shulkin. I tend to have contempt for people who are paid to lie on a regular basis.

    But your flipping out about this, when I do this all the time, is pretty clear evidence of TCDS: Trump Criticism Derangement Syndrome. Criticism of Trump makes you sad. This is not healthy. Get help.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  57. But your flipping out about this, when I do this all the time, is pretty clear evidence of TCDS: Trump Criticism Derangement Syndrome. Criticism of Trump makes you sad. This is not healthy. Get help.

    like mr. trump the president said about soldiers with ptsd some people are strong and can handle it but a lot of people can’t handle it

    criticism of mr. trump the president i mean

    nk (dbc370)

  58. if you have ptsd all up in it a mistake a lot of people make is they try to self-medicate with carbs

    this is what they call the “vortex of fail”

    and this is a vortex Dr. Shulky-shulk is not personally unfamiliar with

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  59. You’re biggest hassle is probably with a swing line stapler, so don’t be a jackalope

    narciso (d1f714)

  60. you’re not wrong

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  61. excuse me. excuse me. i believe you coward-sluts have my stapler all up in it

    Patterico (115b1f)

  62. There has been a systemic issue with veteran care going back to Charlie Forbes at the veterans bureau, moving on to the bonus march

    narciso (d1f714)

  63. DRJ and others:

    We see in some of the interactions the biggest problem I perceive in political discourse: folks who know nothing about a topic opining furiously, unfairly, and inaccurately. While being vulgar, far too often.

    I have seen people in these comments section attack “all” lawyers as being “worthless.” I have had people claim that “all” university professors are “out for cash” and “lie about their research.”

    These comments are generally from people who aren’t lawyers, or professors.

    That doesn’t mean lawyers and professors don’t partake of Teh Crayzee as well.

    But over and over again, we attack the Left for being inaccurate, rude, and ignorant of topics. Like firearms. Free markets. And so on.

    And then we do it too.

    Since no one is going to insist of courtesy and thoughtfulness in our world (though several posters here really do try, and often get insulted for their trouble), at least we can be aware of our hypocrisies.

    I include myself. We not try to be better.

    And DRJ, thank you for your posts about rare diseases. It’s an inmportant topic.

    Simon Jester (c8876d)

  64. No pikachu doesn’t care Simon, its an act, others I can’t quite grok, the last administration did let the veterans dry up on the vine, and the enablers were rewarded

    narciso (d1f714)

  65. As you can easily see, the spokeshole was lying when he made his statement about Shulkin.

    In this instance, don’t you think it is necessary? Letting top people know they are about to get canned could result in them retaliating with some sort of sabotage that would prolong a cleaner start for the new person.

    I agree that constant lying about everything isn’t a good thing at all, but I also think the public statements that throw the media, and the soon to be fired, off the scent are a necessary component of running an executive in the environment that has been around a long time before the age of Trump.

    BuDuh (fc15db)

  66. I won a stapler once in a contest at work it’s red.

    It’s a red swingline stapler – very beautiful and just like new because my stapling needs are few.

    Swingline moved its production and jobs to Mexico after NAFTA was done on us, so my beautiful red stapler is a mexican stapler not an american stapler and I didn’t steal it I won it in a contest at work.

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  67. If Shulkin is so untrustworthy and devious, why would Trump nominate him for his Cabinet?

    We aren’t talking about some mid-level employee that Trump doesn’t even know. Shulkin was a Cabinet member who was hand-picked by Trump. If Trump thought it was even possible that Shulkin could act the way BuDuh suggests, then Trump is the one to blame for picking him.

    DRJ (15874d)

  68. Mr. Shulkin carried over from the food stamp administration he was approved unanimously more or less by the senate.

    He was the secretary of the veterans administration department. He did stuff like making sure people got their treatments and that everybody followed the rules.

    When you’re in charge of making sure other people follow the rules it’s important that you set a good example.

    Therefore it wasn’t President Trump’s fault because President Trump did not have the information.

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  69. I have seen people in these comments section attack “all” lawyers as being “worthless.” I have had people claim that “all” university professors are “out for cash” and “lie about their research.”

    While appreciating your point there, Mr. Jester, a point of clarification may be in order…When one, someone…not saying anyone in particular, says:

    The problem with lawyers boils down to simply this…

    Is this read as:
    “The problem with all lawyers boils down to simply this…”
    or
    “The problem with many lawyers boils down to simply this…”
    or
    “The problem with most lawyers boils down to simply this…”

    or could it possibly be read as:
    “The problem with lawyers who are a problem is this…”

    …in so far as we are discussing lawyers who have problems, that is.

    Skorcher (5b282a)

  70. Simon,

    Thank you. I don’t think the NIH is the most imprtant federal agency, and it’s good to consider what the NIH does and decide how much funding is appropriate. But my impression is that most people think all the NIH does is hand out grant money for crazy research. I don’t support that but there are good NIH programs that I think are worth funding, and I’m fortunate to know about some of them.

    DRJ (15874d)

  71. The problem with lawyers boils down to simply this…

    If the author wanted to limit this statement to some, more, or most lawyers, he should have done so. Saying “the problem with lawyers” has no limitation, so it would be understood as “the problem with all lawyers.”

    DRJ (15874d)

  72. If Shulkin is so untrustworthy and devious, why would Trump nominate him for his Cabinet?

    Ugh. It is as if you try to not understand. Not telling someone that they are getting fired until they are actually fired is an across the board strategy. Shulkin could be as straight a shooter as possible but still be subjected to a good system of letting people go.

    Do it for everyone and no one sees it coming. The same strategy happened with Comey and when he was let go he was clear across the country. He had zero access to his office. We probably disagree, but I think Comey would have been a dangerous person to leave in office for a few days after not lying about his future with the FBI.

    BuDuh (fc15db)

  73. With spring comes the hope of rebirth, the hope of something new and even better. In last weekend’s student-led marches, that hope was so evident. Everyone of all ages can feel pride for this new generation we all helped set in motion. But as good as pride is, working to have the back of these young people as the forces of the NRA and Fox News try to shut them down is even more important. Support these amazing young people, they’ve earned it.

    Frozen Pizza Seasoning, too.

    If last weekend’s marches and speeches taught us anything it’s that this new generation is going to leave a better America in their wake. Along the way there’s going to be the need of many late night, low cost, easy to prepare meals. With who these new young people are today, this is going to mean many really tasty from scratch cooked meals. But if the experience of previous generations holds true, this will also mean a sizable number of frozen pizzas as well. No reason they can’t be tasty. Our Frozen Pizza Seasoning really does make wonderful flavor incredibly convenient. Now’s the time to pass some along. Great for pasta and ramen, too.

    – penzey’s spices email sign up here yay america

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  74. If the author wanted to limit this statement to some, more, or most lawyers, he should have done so. Saying “the problem with lawyers” has no limitation, so it would be understood as “the problem with all lawyers.”

    If the author was writing a contract, sure. If the author was speaking as normal people (not that some lawyers are not normal people) speak, such isn’t entirely necessary. You may find it enlightening to observe that another commenter, a lawyer IIRC, was able to parse such a statement without getting bunched up about it. Let us take another example:

    I think the notion of any socially useful “objective reality” is far more philosophical than the work done by lawyers, though.

    Would you say this applies to all, many, some or an indeterminate number of lawyers? Sure, if you want to read it as a certain way, you obviously can. Or another option is to avoid the general point, some might say obfuscate the issue, by nit picking words and thus dragging the discussion off on a tangent. Not that such is a problem with all lawyers. Some though.

    Skorcher (5b282a)

  75. Some lawyers have all the luck

    Some lawyers have all the pain

    Some lawyers have all the breaks

    Some lawyers do nothing but complain.

    Pinandpuller (cb14cb)

  76. Rod Stewart didn’t get sued by Bob Dylan over Forever Young so I feel pretty safe.

    *Some lawyers get all the breaks.

    Pinandpuller (cb14cb)

  77. Well I ain’t first class but I ain’t white trash

    I’m wild and a little crazy too

    Some lawyers don’t like boys like me

    But some lawyers do

    Pinandpuller (cb14cb)

  78. Shulkin was saying relying on private doctors was bad, because sometimes there wouldn’t be agood private doctor, or they’d be overwhelmed; instead improve the VA.

    I don’t think anyone culd contemplate that allowing veterans to see private doctors would solve al;l poroblems, but it certainly could improve the chances of getting good care, even if it reduiced teh chances of getting good care at the VA.

    But if the VA is run that badly that it does, it surely would be run that badly if veterans had lesss choice.

    This is the argument against charter schools.

    Sammy Finkelman (02a146)

  79. narciso @76

    What did you know about Whitey Bulger, and when did you know it? is in fact avery good question.

    The most favrable interpretation could be that Mueller was intere3sted in protecting other people in government.

    I haven’t considered the FBI to be run by people of integrity since William Sessions was fired by Bill Clinton (on July 19, 1993)

    Sammy Finkelman (02a146)

  80. From my Congressman:

    The future of America is on the line this November. Donate now before tomorrow’s first FEC filing deadline of 2018, and ensure Democrats have the resources to take back the House and allow Jerry to provide the oversight the Trump administration desperately needs.

    That means an impeachment inquiry, although maybe not so much a strong effort to actually impeach. But this could be of subpoenas about anything.

    Outside of the justification of an impeachment inquiry, I don’t think the House Judiciary Committee has that much oversight authority.

    Sammy Finkelman (02a146)

  81. That is a good point, 77, but my point is that it’s reasonable for readers to believe the comment was about all lawyers. Asking questions and additional comments let’s us clear up what was meant.

    DRJ (15874d)

  82. I think the notion of any socially useful “objective reality” is far more philosophical than the work done by lawyers, though.

    I don’t understand this comment so it’s hard for me to say what was intended.

    DRJ (15874d)

  83. I agree regarding Comey, BuDuh, because he worked for Obama and I think Trump should have had his own people run the FBI.

    But Shulkin was in Trump’s Cabinet. That is about as high profile and close to Trump as you can get. They are people he trusts to run (remember “drain the swamp?”) an entire department/agency. Do you really think any of them will act like scorned babies if Trump removes them? If so, were they the right people for Trump to choose?

    DRJ (15874d)

  84. Trump aside, is that how you would expect to be fired if you were a high-ranking executive in an organization? Isn’t the method you describe the way it works with employees you think might try to steal office supplies or ruin a business deal on their way out the door?

    DRJ (15874d)

  85. Shulkin worked for Obama.

    BuDuh (fc15db)

  86. Excellent point! I take my comment back but why in heaven’s name would Trump appoint him? I am shocked at his stupidity.

    DRJ (15874d)

  87. DC isn’t like any office any normal person works for. There is an entrenched group of leakers that seem to think they are running the government. Even if Trump terminates some top of the food chain employee that was lawful good, that doesn’t mean that the career people that remain won’t have their vengeance for the firing of their friend. Getting fresh eyes in place during a short turnover period seems like an obvious positive.

    BuDuh (fc15db)

  88. Are you shocked because you are lighting your strawman with electricity instead of a match?

    BuDuh (fc15db)

  89. Do you really think any of them will act like scorned babies if Trump removes them?

    she was a food stamp trollop but trashcan Leandra English is very very typical of the petulant filth what run departments in the washington dc metroplex

    i wouldn’t expect someone like Mitch McConnell’s corrupt pig wife to act any better than Leandra if her corrupt piggy ass got fired

    these people are just filthy and juvenile and pathetic

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  90. Trump is so establishment that he can’t help but appoint entrenched Beltway personnel to his Cabinet? That’s who Trump is — a Rockefeller Republican that DCSCA has been telling us about. Good call, DCSCA.

    DRJ (15874d)

  91. What happened to “drain the swamp”?

    DRJ (15874d)

  92. I am disappointed. I hoped for so much more after Obama.

    DRJ (15874d)

  93. Oh, new argument? Gone is the desire for a millisecond long 1st day swamp draining.

    Surprise.

    Tillerson and Carson didn’t strike me as Beltway hires.

    BuDuh (fc15db)

  94. Oh, wait! Back to that argument.

    You are snapping my neck.

    BuDuh (fc15db)

  95. shulky-shulk was promoted just as the CNN Jake Tapper propaganda sluts were doing a fake news “trump is an anti-semite” propaganda campaign all up in it – a campaign that built to a crescendo and peaked just a few weeks after the Shulkin appointment

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  96. Is ironic the correct word?

    All lawyers aren’t bad says the same person who says all beltway hires are bad.

    BuDuh (fc15db)

  97. @93. He’s the transient we’ve been waiting for; the means to an end. Phase 2 this November. :-)

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  98. He’s a good man.

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  99. @101. Cruzin’ to a second term, Mr. Feet!!! “Swing for the fences!!”

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ssYJuKQenHU

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  100. @95.Conservatives got a Gorsuch and assorted judges appointed. Trump got the gold mine; ideologues got the shaft. 😉

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  101. I’m disappointed Trump retained some Obama selections as high-ranking officials, but I’m shocked that Trump would choose for his Cabinet an Obama selection. That doesn’t seem like something a person who really wants to change Washington would do. Or maybe I underestimated how blue New Yorkers are willing to be when it comes to politics.

    DRJ (15874d)

  102. Maybe you are faking outrage thinking it will be convincing?

    BuDuh (fc15db)

  103. And, Yes, all Obama Beltway hires are bad if you are a Republican, let alone if you ran as a Drain the Swamp Republican.

    DRJ (15874d)

  104. Ohh. You meant to say “Obama beltway hires.” Thank you for that late clarification.

    BuDuh (fc15db)

  105. What, exactly, were your “drain the swamp” expectations and what date did you attach to complete and total drained swamp?

    Before you had a clever 75/25 argument where you wiggled out of the debate you engaged at that moment by declaring that Trump has 3 more years.

    No longer convenient?

    BuDuh (fc15db)

  106. “And, Yes, all Obama Beltway hires are bad if you are a Republican,”

    They are bad for the country whatever your political affiliation. Even for those who have taken the Swiss Route and play the Goldilocks Game.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  107. Shulkin was unanimously confirmed for Obama and unanimously confirmed for Trump.

    Any harsh words of disappointment for the Republican Senators?

    BuDuh (fc15db)

  108. Maybe all the R Senators that confirmed Shulkin are Rockefeller Republicans. Are you disappointed that Trump didn’t fire Senators?

    BuDuh (fc15db)

  109. I was dissatisfied with tillerson nearly from the outset, less so with mcmaster but he had his flags.

    narciso (d1f714)

  110. Yes, narciso, but he did slim down the State Debt. DRJ may be the only one who doesn’t consider a bloated State Dept to be part of the Swamp Map, but it is Friday. She will possibly have a different opinion tomorrow.

    BuDuh (fc15db)

  111. I grant that, but in the broad policy points he was an obstacle to the administration agenda.

    narciso (d1f714)

  112. And now he is gone. 75/25.

    BuDuh (fc15db)

  113. Alexander haig lasted about 2 yrs, William Rogers and powell 4

    narciso (d1f714)

  114. BuDuh,

    Are you intent on interpreting everything DRJ says in the least charitable way possible? Where is the good faith in that?

    Leviticus (719d48)

  115. And that doesn’t even account for your potshot at 113. DRJ is not one to vacillate in her beliefs – despite her attempts to analyze yours, which you apparently do not appreciate.

    Leviticus (719d48)

  116. What is “the Swamp,” and which parts of it need to be “drained,” and what does that “draining” entail?

    Or is it just a meaningless and amorphous bumper sticker slogan?

    Leviticus (719d48)

  117. Nixon had a problem with the accomodationists, re south east asia, south America et Al (the pentagon papers were compiled by the former group, so did Reagan with the detenteists at state and even in the company (Richard Burt a times reporter was the leader of the former, and even Paul nitze sympathized)

    narciso (d1f714)

  118. Okay…

    Leviticus (719d48)

  119. the swamp is all the people who don’t love mr. trump the president with all their heart and all their soul like i do don’t be silly

    nk (dbc370)

  120. BuDuh doesn’t like me or my comments for some reason, Leviticus. Thank you for your comments. I think they help lower the temperature and bring clarity to the discussion.

    DRJ (15874d)

  121. I pointed out examples in the past, back in the 70s the likes of Anthony lake (who still hasn’t apologized over his grandstanding over Cambodia) mort halperin who aided Phil age in his dgi purge of the CIA) Robert white the Salvadoran guerrillas friend) who worked with John Kerry and Jonathan winer, to defame the contras)

    narciso (d1f714)

  122. I liked Tillerson, BuDuh, especially his efforts to downsize the State Department and lessen its importance. Trump is the one who disagreed with Tillerson’s performance, as is his right.

    As for 75/25, that is applicable to the Trump 4 year Presidency or any Presidency. In a 4 year term where 1 year is completed, that is 25% of the term with 75% to go.

    DRJ (15874d)

  123. As for the Senators, I am tremendously disappointed in the ones who caved in to Trump’s bullying, but they should nevertheless confirm his Cabinet picks because he gets to choose the Executive Branch personnel. However, I hope some would object or try to point out to him the dangers of appointing Obama personnel.

    DRJ (15874d)


  124. 122.the swamp is all the people who don’t hate mr. trump the president with all their heart and all their soul like i do don’t be silly
    em>

    FIFY

    Rev.Hoagie (1b0402)

  125. As narciso said, Tillerson seemed to be at odds with Trump on Iran. I’d like to know why Tillerson wanted to keep the Iran agreement. I tend to agree with Trump that it is not a good agreement, but the reports of Tillerson’s position makes me reconsider that.

    DRJ (15874d)

  126. I always figured The Swamp was a metaphor for all the tens of thousands of nameless bureaucrats at all levels who “execute” the laws and bend them to their own desires while they do so. That includes the Cabinet Secretaries down to the clerks who believe their job is to expand the tentacles of government bureaucracy to infinity. They never get voted in and they can’t be voted out. For the most part they can’t even be fired because of civil service and union rules. They stay from one administration to the next over and over until they retire on a big fat government pension and benefits all paid for by the people they made a career of screwing over.

    Rev.Hoagie (1b0402)

  127. And the Paris accord, and very grudgingly responded to the attack on American diplomats in Cuba, meanwhile you can never be rid of Obama officials:
    http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2018/03/29/big-tech-companies-offer-gilded-safe-space-for-obama-officials.html

    narciso (d1f714)

  128. Shulkin was unanimously confirmed for Obama and unanimously confirmed for Trump.

    They grabbed the first poor sucker who didn’t say no to the job! Wanting to be Secretary of the VA is like wanting to be the deck steward on the Titanic after it hit the iceberg.

    nk (dbc370)

  129. BuDuh, normally I would ignore your question “Are you disappointed that Trump didn’t fire Senators?” as trolling me or as a taunt, bullying, or sarcasm. But you seem to dislike me so much that you may actually believe I am that ignorant. Let me reassure you that I know Trump cannot fire Senators.

    DRJ (15874d)

  130. Serious now. My idea of the Swamp is the lobbyists and political action committees who exercise undue influence in Congress and in the various agencies, on behalf of special interests, from military contracts to banning smoking in public.

    nk (dbc370)

  131. They usually are allied with the old way of thinking, and seeing as they have done such a bangup job,on korea, Iran, et Al Of course they have a powerful mouthpiece in friendly media, the times the post politic ( re those crocodile tears for that niac intern) or the slanders of traitorous ex con kirkikaou.

    narciso (d1f714)

  132. That’s a great topic. The “swamp” may be one of those nebulous terms that we know only when we see it. Some view it as focusing on corruption like nk’s focus on special interest lobbyists. Others like Hoagie see it as the entire bureaucracy. But what does Trump mean? I submit Trump may be more concerned with corrupt globalists who, in his view, don’t put America first. If so, that wouod explain his focus on tariffs.

    DRJ (15874d)

  133. Its of a piece, and its unique to trump, he only pivoted on that aspect this year, trade used to be a tool but now it has become an end in itself.

    narciso (d1f714)

  134. And yet you are disappointed that a nebulous swamp hasn’t been dismantled in microseconds.

    What timeline and metrics did you use to determine that Trump has failed?

    I see your “3 more years” argument is no longer the rally cry.

    BuDuh (fc15db)

  135. Ok. Progress. We both agree that Trump can’t fire Senators. Will that knowledge facilitate getting an answer to #110.

    BuDuh (fc15db)

  136. Are you intent on interpreting everything DRJ says in the least charitable way possible? Where is the good faith in that?

    Somehow you see “good faith” in her ever changing “pin the blame on Trump” game. Or her distortion of my initial comment on Shulkin.

    We just came off a “words matter” discussion yet it doesn’t apply to one side?

    Got it.

    Maybe I’ll check in in a few days. Have fun amongst yourselves.

    BuDuh (fc15db)

  137. As I said, I am disappointed that Trump appointed an Obama selection, someone I think is less likely to change things. I doubt he even thinks there is a swamp. And, again, a year of Trump’s Presidency has already elapsed. It is hard to uproot entrenched lobbyists, bureaucracies, and/or globalists. Uprooting them early will mean there is more time for their replacements to take root and make changes. That’s what I think Tillerson was trying to do.

    DRJ (15874d)

  138. I did not distort anything you said, BuDuh. I did not realize Shulkin was an Obama holdover, and I changed my mind when you pointed that out. Instead of claiming I distorted your comment, you should be taking credit for changing my mind.

    DRJ (15874d)

  139. “Microseconds”? He’s had fifteen months. Being too incompetent to staff the State Department does not count as “draining the swamp,” in my book. Maybe you will lay out your chosen “swamp-draining” metric – but I seriously doubt it.

    Either way, the fact that you have set the bar so exceedingly low for Trump doesn’t mean the rest of us have to do likewise.

    Leviticus (719d48)

  140. Your comments and attitude indicate you don’t like me, not that my words don’t matter.

    DRJ (15874d)

  141. “Maybe I’ll check in in a few days. Have fun amongst yourselves.”

    – BuDuh

    Taking your ball with you, I assume?

    Leviticus (719d48)

  142. The dems held Negroponte, because they never move on, only September 11th broke the hold.

    narciso (364166)

  143. Let’s take his suggestion and talk, Leviticus. We both have things to do but I would enjoy it for a few minutes. I think Tillerson was trying to drain the swamp through attrition. His other efforts have not gone well butbattrition is the one method that takes away union/bureaucracy objections and ability to fight back in court.

    DRJ (15874d)

  144. Maybe the attrition approach wasn’t fast enough for Trump and, if so, I appreciate his motives. But it appears that wasn’t Trump’s objection and what really irked him was Iran. Either way, I hope the new Secretary of State retains Tillerson’s attrition program.

    DRJ (15874d)

  145. You all may think that happyfeet is over the top but in my opinion he is a perfectly accurate parody of Trump’s True Believers. Do not expect them to accept anything other than fulsome praise of Orange Leader; and expect only vituperation if you criticize him in even the slightest way.

    nk (dbc370)

  146. By attrition, do you mean attrition with respect to the staffing of the State Department? Restricting the arguably overreaching activities of the Department by reducing its ability to carry them out, as a matter of simple man-power?

    Leviticus (719d48)

  147. Leviticus, I don’t think BuDuh likes it when he has to deal with more than one person in a debate, and it is hard. But even if I’m the only one to challenge him, I will when I think it should be said.

    DRJ (15874d)


  148. 133.Serious now. My idea of the Swamp is the lobbyists and political action committees who exercise undue influence in Congress and in the various agencies, on behalf of special interests, from military contracts to banning smoking in public.
    nk (dbc370) — 3/31/2018 @ 6:57 am


    You make a good point but remember the NRA would be numbered among these groups and they are hardly a group of ne’re-do-wells. I’m sure there are other groups just as worthy (I just can’t think of any right now). The idea here seems to be The Swamp is a nebulous group of people who believe their own self interest is more important than anyone else including the Constitutiion and the Republic itself. Sooooo The Swamp is democrats?

    Rev.Hoagie (1b0402)

  149. Yes, that is what I mean by attrition. My Dad worked in the oil and gas industry, and attrition is one of the biggest tools the majors (like Exxon) use to control costs and maintain a productive workforce. I think that is why Tillerson used it, and it does work.

    DRJ (15874d)

  150. Let’s take his suggestion and talk, Leviticus.

    Me, too? Me, too? I can’t agree with Hoagie that the Swamp is the bureaucracy because we need those faceless nebishes in their mind-numbing paper-shuffling jobs to run the government. I would call them the cogs in the machine. Some of which might break or break loose on occasion but we could not have a government without them.

    nk (dbc370)

  151. We cross-posted, Hoagie.

    nk (dbc370)

  152. Attrition has a side benefit of limiting litigation. The industry had years of age discrimination suits with layoffs. Attrition avoids those costs.

    DRJ (15874d)

  153. Absolutely you and Hoagie, too, nk. What about draining the bureaucratic executives/management instead of the entire bureaucracy? It’s doable through reassignments and attrition and it takes away the people who target conservatives, like the Lois Lerners.

    DRJ (15874d)

  154. Hoagie, the key word is “undue influence”. Like (honest, I’m only using it because it’s in the news) an energy lobbyist giving a sweetheart deal on a condo to the head of the EPA.

    nk (dbc370)

  155. Good motivated managers can control employees through policies and oversight. Bad managers let employees run wild.

    DRJ (15874d)

  156. “I don’t think BuDuh likes it when he has to deal with more than one person in a debate, and it is hard.”

    – BuDuh

    I have next to zero sympathy for him, if that is the case. We’ve all done it plenty of times over the years.

    As to your point about attrition, I have no problem with an attrition model designed to prune back certain departments of the federal government – chief among them the State Department. But I still don’t see that as “draining the swamp,” because I don’t see it as having any meaningful effect on either the nature and power of the federal government or the culture of Washington.

    And I ultimately agree with nk: government needs a substantial amount of bureaucracy to function. Blaming bureaucracy for the problems of government is like being mad that it takes a long time to wash engine grease off your hands.

    Leviticus (719d48)

  157. I agree that attrition alone isn’t enough but it is easy to implement right away.

    I think dealing with the managers in all the agencies is also necessary. Each new President should put his people in power as much as possible. Obama certainly did, but Rick Perry also did it in Texas so it isn’t just a Democratic approach. It is their lasting legacy because personnel can outlive a President’s/Governor’s term, if the successors let them and many do.

    DRJ (15874d)

  158. It will surprise none of you to hear that I think “the Swamp” is Congress (if it is anything). Between the wasted-vote disincentives of single member districts, the incumbency advantage, and partisan and racial gerrymandering, there is insufficient incentive for congressional representatives to be responsive to their constituents. The resulting disenfranchisement, political stagnation, and popular nihilism are the source of the stench we all smell.

    In my opinion.

    Leviticus (719d48)

  159. DRJ (15874d) — 3/31/2018 @ 7:09 am

    Tat is a very good idea. I am pleased with how you acted upon it. What a fruitful discussion resulted! I thank you all.

    felipe (023cc9)

  160. So why is grenell, not out of committee, for instance.

    narciso (d1f714)

  161. You all may think that happyfeet is over the top but in my opinion he is a perfectly accurate parody of Trump’s True Believers. Do not expect them to accept anything other than fulsome praise of Orange Leader; and expect only vituperation if you criticize him in even the slightest way.

    I have wondered if he is an actual parody. Something he said recently — I forget what — sounded like he was dropping a hint. I have no idea why people would keep up a parody at such a furious pace for years. But then again, little about him makes sense to me.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  162. I believe it was during his exchange with a commenter who wanted to know if HF commented elsewhere.

    felipe (023cc9)

  163. The voting public is screwed as we have political hacks with no morales in connection with the constitution.

    mg (9e54f8)

  164. We both have things to do Leviticus,

    Actually, we all three have things to do which makes this:

    I don’t think BuDuh likes it when he has to deal with more than one person in a debate

    and this:

    Taking your ball with you, I assume?

    both lazy and childish.

    DRJ, you misrepresented my very 1st comment on the subject. Asking for a pat on your recognition of who appointed Shulkin is unrelated to how this conversation started.

    At this point it is entirely possible that we will never agree and my dropping the subject should be met with something more mature than spit balls flying in at my backside. Especially from the two who ask for more decorum during debate.

    Maybe you will be more mature this time. Maybe not. It is between you and your own high standards, I imagine.

    Leviticus, I honestly don’t think you have followed this objectively from the beginning. What I have read of your comments throughout my lurking and eventually deciding to comment makes me think you will see the argument I was making and parse between the insults both DRJ and I swapped. Anyhow, I hope you do.

    I have things to do. Keep the ball and play a game. :)

    BuDuh (d7b427)

  165. Patterico @164.

    An unintended parody can still be a parody. 😉

    nk (dbc370)

  166. No pikachu diesnt believe in anything, that I can tell, tillerson had certain positive interests that won’t be lost with pompeo replacing, and quite a few difference. Now one might argue thAT Jared has operated a a minister without portfolio, for what is worth.

    narciso (d1f714)

  167. Quelle surprise, now soros takes up where the ips( which tony lake was affiliated with)

    http://www.breitbart.com/big-government/2018/03/29/hold-soros-funded-groups-fueling-laura-ingraham-advertiser-boycott

    narciso (d1f714)

  168. I’m not sure in government it’s possible for anyone even Trump to completely drain The Swamp because as we’ve pointed out here The Swamp is a multi-headed dragon which when one head is cut off seems to instantly grow another.

    I will say in my own experience as a restaurant owner I have bought restaurants and taken over in two ways- I tried keeping all the employees and I tried firing all the employees. In neither case did I get the 100% result I was looking for (but who ever does in business?) but I will say the best result was firing everybody and starting from scratch, IOW draining my swamp. It wasn’t perfect but I blew out a lot of “privileged” employees, dead wood and incompetent a-holes that were just holding on “because”. Besides, I found I could always hire the good ones back.

    So, I agree with nk that the lobbyists and PAC’s are part of the problem and I agree with Leviticus that Congress is part of the problem and I still maintain the imbedded bureaucracy is also part of the problem. So I presume The Swamp is undrainable. At least without a purge.

    Rev.Hoagie (1b0402)

  169. Maybe you will be more mature this time. Maybe not. It is between you and your own high standards, I imagine.

    Maturity is the way to go. Am I correct that you don’t like me or my comments as I speculated in comment 123?

    DRJ (15874d)

  170. Some lobbyists are privileged like the sierra club ‘crucify them’ guy, at the energy department.

    narciso (d1f714)

  171. I’m sure we all have things to do but when you left, you did not say that. You said “Maybe I will check in in a few days. Have fun amongst yourselves.” That sounds like you left because of what was happening here, not because of what was happening in your real life.

    That is why I said “I don’t think BuDuh likes it when he has to deal with more than one person in a debate, and it is hard.” But you omitted the bold portion to make me look “lazy and childish.” If you are going to play gotcha with my comments, please don’t edit them.

    DRJ (15874d)

  172. I have no idea why people would keep up a parody at such a furious pace for years.

    A$k $tephen Colbert.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  173. DRJ, you misrepresented my very 1st comment on the subject. Asking for a pat on your recognition of who appointed Shulkin is unrelated to how this conversation started.

    I did not misrepresent your comment. Let’s revisit our discussion. Your first substantive comment was number 67, responding to a quote from Patterico’s post (emphasis added by nme):

    As you can easily see, the spokeshole was lying when he made his statement about Shulkin.

    In this instance, don’t you think it is necessary? Letting top people know they are about to get canned could result in them retaliating with some sort of sabotage that would prolong a cleaner start for the new person.

    I agree that constant lying about everything isn’t a good thing at all, but I also think the public statements that throw the media, and the soon to be fired, off the scent are a necessary component of running an executive in the environment that has been around a long time before the age of Trump.

    BuDuh (fc15db) — 3/30/2018 @ 11:23 am

    I replied to that in comment 69 (again, emphasis supplied by me):

    If Shulkin is so untrustworthy and devious, why would Trump nominate him for his Cabinet?

    We aren’t talking about some mid-level employee that Trump doesn’t even know. Shulkin was a Cabinet member who was hand-picked by Trump. If Trump thought it was even possible that Shulkin could act the way BuDuh suggests, then Trump is the one to blame for picking him.

    DRJ (15874d) — 3/30/2018 @ 11:54 am

    I think that is a reasonable interpretation. You say someone about to get fired may “retaliate” with “sabotage” and I called such conduct “untrustworthy and devious.” Your point was that Trump is right not to warn them they were being fired (“canned”) and my point was that Trump shouldn’t put people like that in his Cabinet. I did not misrepresent your comment. In fact, my comment was based on accepting what you said as true.

    DRJ (15874d)

  174. OT — curious new info out today on McCabe’s firing, timing of his “false” statements, and his disputed recollection re Comey.

    Comey said he never authorized any leaks by FBI about ongoing investigations. McCabe admits to having authorized Lisa Page to leak to WSJ in Oct. 2016 on story about Clinton Foundation, pushing back against the reporting that his wife had run for office supported by Terry McAuliffe, and he was a secret Clinton supporter.

    McCabe says he has emails showing that he disclosed the leak to Comey, and Comey knew about it. Comey says he doesn’t recall.

    Fair enough.

    But McCabe’s problems seem to be related to the timing of his other denials.

    In May, 2017, he denied to FBI investigator that he had participated in the leaks. The timing here, and the fact that it was FBI asking, shows it was likely related to the ongoing “leak” investigations that Sessions has referred to a few times. This is in the same time frame as Comey’s firing, and McCabe taking over as Acting Director – which seems to be the basis for McCabe’s claims that it was a time of a lot of distractions and confusion.

    But he repeated the denials to the IG Investigators reviewing the decision-making in the Clinton Email case when they interviewed him a couple months after the FBI interviews.

    Later in the summer, in August 2017, he got in touch with the IG investigators to tell them that he might have authorized some leaks to the WSJ.

    The problem with this timing is that Christopher Wray became FBI Director on August 2, 2017 — McCabe was no longer in charge. Although the date of his removal is not certain – so far as I can find — the first reporting that Peter Strzok was removed from Mueller’s detail and sent to HR in the FBI is around August 15, 2017.

    The justification for his removal, and being sent to HR, was the content of the Text Messages between Strzok and Page that were uncovered by the FBI.

    Its in those same TM’s that Page states she was a source for the WSJ reporter’s story.

    Her Text Messages meant McCabe’s fingerprints were all over the leaks.

    If McCabe’s effort to contact the IG investigators is only timed AFTER Wray takes over, and after the basis of Strzok’s removal is revealed to have been the content of text messages between Strzok and Page, then McCabe’s effort to “further explain” looks like “CYA” on his part.

    But he had lied to both the FBI Investigator and the IG investigators before realizing that his involvement was going to be “outed” by the Page/Strzok communications.

    shipwreckedcrew (56b591)

  175. But… but… Stormy Daniels!

    Colonel Haiku (feb2a4)

  176. Butt… butt… Spanky!

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  177. Of course the purpose of that October disclosure (Barrett has since moved on to fill entous’ s spot as entous has moved on to the new yorker) was to diminish the need for an inbestigation.

    narciso (d7b944)

  178. I’m not sure in government it’s possible for anyone even Trump to completely drain The Swamp because as we’ve pointed out here The Swamp is a multi-headed dragon which when one head is cut off seems to instantly grow another.

    I agree, Hoagie, but he was elected to do more than give it lip service. He was elected to start the process. I think his regulatory reform helps but the real work will fall on the shoulders of his Cabinet and the work they do in their respective agencies. It’s 15 months since the Inauguration. It’s fair to ask what has been done.

    DRJ (15874d)

  179. shipwreckedcrew,

    Why do you think Sessions has declined to name a special counsel re: McCabe? I am open to believe the Utah USA and the DOJ can investigate, but they can be discredited for bias by the left just as Mueller is discredited on the right.

    Or do you think Sessions is waiting for the McCabe report to be released?

    DRJ (15874d)

  180. PS to BuDuh: I believe you are focusing on the bolded part of your comment:

    I agree that constant lying about everything isn’t a good thing at all, but I also think the public statements that throw the media, and the soon to be fired, off the scent are a necessary component of running an executive in the environment that has been around a long time before the age of Trump.

    As you know, I did not realize Shulkin headed the VA under Obama and I acknowledged your point when you told me that. I understand why you have doubts about the attitude and loyalty of an Obama appointee to Trump.

    What I don’t understand is why Trump would put an Obama appointee in his Cabinet. Trump did not run as a bipartisan the way McCain did. He ran as the opposite.

    DRJ (15874d)

  181. I did not realize Shulkin headed the VA under Obama

    he was an undersecretary

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  182. Because he appeared to have a clean recited, perhaps because his chief of staff made it so, like Susan rice unmasks officials surveiled under bogus auspices and she ends up on the Netflix board. Probably still with her security clearance.

    narciso (d1f714)

  183. When they leave out that trite parsi is the head of the Iranian regimes lobby which has cooperated with north Korea:
    https://www.express.co.uk/news/world/939190/North-Korea-peace-sham-John-Bolton-enable-Donald-Trump-worst-instincts-Kim-Jong-un-meeting

    narciso (d1f714)

  184. I would call them the cogs in the machine. Some of which might break or break loose on occasion but we could not have a government without them.

    nk (dbc370) — 3/31/2018 @ 8:09 am

    What’s an acceptable PPM of sh*theads?

    Pinandpuller (b92041)


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