Patterico's Pontifications

4/8/2019

Yes, Rich People Get Away with Tax Fraud for Years

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 9:26 pm



Again and again, I see Trump fans telling us that there can’t be anything illegal in his returns, because if there was, the IRS would have caught it by now — and also, he hired accountants, and they never knowingly participate in fraud!

If you weren’t viewing this through a partisan lens you’d already be laughing, because these arguments are very, very silly. But I’m not mischaracterizing them. They are stated in the comments again and again, by people like a commenter named Dana who is most assuredly not the guest blogger Dana:

Mr Trump is a billionaire, and the Infernal Revenue Service scrutinizes, and frequently audits, the returns of billionaires. Do you believe that the IRS under Barack Hussein Obama didn’t look very carefully at Mr Trump’s tax returns once he declared himself to be a candidate?

Billionaires don’t just file with TurboTax, but have accountants, plural, doing their returns; do you believe that professional accountants, some of who are CPAs, are going to file anything that is criminal? That will cost them their licences [sic], and might get them thrown in jail as well.

Here is Ingot9455:

When we want to look at Trump’s tax returns, are we looking for illegal actions, or are we looking for opposition research purposes?

If it’s for illegal actions, New York’s tax people and the Feds audit high earners every year to a greater or lesser degree. New York especially. You’re unlikely to find anything grossly illegal.

And here is steveg:

The NYT makes Trump sound shifty, but if it was legal… and if the IRS didn’t jump on them, it probably was legal at the time. If it was legal enough for the IRS to pass on.

Also it must be good enough because the IRS and the state of NY are still passing on it.

Or Kevin M:

[Trump has] been subjected, every year to audit after audit at both the state and federal level. Just as no one put a gun to his head to sign those returns, no one put a gun to the IRS’s head to sign off on them either. But they did. How many bites at the apple do they want?

The logic is repeated again and again: if the IRS hasn’t done anything to you, and you’re rich, it probably means you paid all your taxes. Because government catches everybody, right away!!

Well.

Depending on who’s telling the story, Bernie Madoff’s Ponzi scheme began in the 1970s (according to federal investigators) or the 1990s (according to Madoff). I doubt Madoff used TurboTax. He was very, very wealthy, and got away with this for years. Not only did the SEC sign off on his Ponzi scheme for years, but the IRS signed off on his returns! And yet:

During the fraud trial of five Madoff staffers accused of profiting off Madoff’s epic $65 billion Ponzi scheme, prosecutors revealed an IRS analysis showing that the 75-year-old mega-scammer, who is serving a 150-year federal-prison sentence, was a tax deadbeat to the tune of $242.9 million for the years 1993 through 2007.

He reported only $183.5 million in taxable income over the ­period when he should have listed $829.1 million, according to an analysis of Madoff’s federal tax filings and testimony by IRS agent Margo Dabnee.

How about that. Oh hey, and Frank DiPascali, a top Madoff official, knew for years about the Madoff fraud, and drew millions in phony salaries for years and years. He probably did not use TurboTax. He was very wealthy, and got away with this for a very long time. He was ultimately convicted of tax evasion — years and years and years later. After the IRS had signed off on his returns for years.

Paul Manafort got away with tax evasion for years, until he painted a target on his back by becoming Trump’s campaign manager while also having had a very visible career as a lobbyist for folks like Ukranian dictator Viktor Yanukovych. I’m pretty sure Manafort did not use TurboTax. He was very wealthy, and the IRS signed off on his returns for years.

I could go on and on and on and on and on. These are just examples that leap to mind. But I’ll put the power of the commentariat to work, and invite you to come up with many other examples of people who got away with tax evasion for years. Rich people — very rich people — employing multiple accountants, plural, and not using TurboTax.

Under the logic proffered by my commenters, at any point in these folks’ lives up until the time they were arrested, we could confidently conclude that they had done nothing wrong. Why? Because they were very rich, had fancy accountants sign off on their tax returns, and had not (yet) been arrested or prosecuted.

Never mind all the red flags. Do you believe that the IRS didn’t look very carefully at these people? The SEC investigated Madoff multiple times and found no wrongdoing, over and over again. Because the government doesn’t always catch people. And when they do, it sometimes takes them waaaaayyyyy too long.

This is true even if the tax cheats and fraudsters don’t use TurboTax, but have accountants, plural, doing their returns. Do I believe that professional accountants, some of who are CPAs, are going to file anything that is criminal? Of course I do!!! because I was not completely asleep during the financial crisis, and I am aware that accountants sign off on shady and even totally illegal shenanigans all the time. All. The. Time. Sometimes they even plead guilty for it!

As for the wonderful accountants that Trump must have hired, if they are anything like the other “professionals” he has hired, like his quack of a doctor, or his crooked lawyers, then yeah: I’d certainly believe they’d sign off on fraud. Indeed, we know that accountants signed off on laughable financial statements, while larding them up with caveats saying, in essence: these financial statements are a joke and you should not take them seriously.

Stop making this argument. It does not fly. Not even remotely.

596 Responses to “Yes, Rich People Get Away with Tax Fraud for Years”

  1. Brilliant.

    Liars can figure; figures can lie.

    And everybody’s so very sorry– but only when they get caught.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  2. It’s also true that in the previous years, Trump donated to all the right causes and was a good New York Democrat, wealthy playboy billionaire. That gets you a long way towards not having your tax return picked over both at the federal and especially the New York level. He was Connected.

    But that all stopped once he came down the elevator.

    And there was that ten year old tax return that got leaked (perhaps with Trump’s permission), the one with the billion-dollar loss on it that he’s been bringing forwards through the years to play against his gains whenever he has a problem.

    Ingot9455 (0433d6)

  3. *laugh* i apologize again for conflating the two Danas!

    aphrael (3f0569)

  4. Let’s see what there is when the dust settles.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  5. Sometimes the way people become very rich is by playing very very far into the gray zone. And sometimes they don’t notice when they stray through the gray and into the darkness.

    Nic (896fdf)

  6. Do I believe that professional accountants, some of who are CPAs, are going to file anything that is criminal? Of course I do!!!

    I suppose next you’ll be trying to convince that us there are lawyers who don’t always tell the truth!

    /sarc

    Dave (1bb933)

  7. Trump’s holdings aren’t publicly traded, so he doesn’t have to fret about an accounting firm that may or may not offer an unqualified opinion of his financial statements, so it’s a given that his tax returns are not prepared and signed by a Big Four or similar firm. Instead, he’s hired someone who will just accept his numbers and not ask probing questions.

    Paul Montagu (7968e9)

  8. Bill Gates never had any income to speak of until he cashed it in to give it away. I guess he’s a crook, too.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  9. My point, mostly taken out of context, is that there is little chance that the Ways & Means committee is going to find something that no professional auditor did, even though their request suggests that’s why they want it.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  10. Do I believe that professional accountants, some of who are CPAs, are going to file anything that is criminal? Of course I do!!! because I was not completely asleep during the financial crisis, and I am aware that accountants sign off on shady and even totally illegal shenanigans all the time. All. The. Time. Sometimes they even plead guilty for it!

    Then there is Hollywood.

    Yes, there are crooks, but most of the time it’s just sharp practice. Why commit a crime when you don’t have to? Take Apple.

    Apple ships stuff to Ireland where they have tax concessions, literally has their left-hand Irish business sell them to their right-hand Irish business at a steep markup, then sells them into the EU near “cost.” They pay a VAT, but very little income tax in that segment of their business.

    The EU got fed up with it and ordered Apple to pay billions of Euros in “back taxes” to Ireland, but IRELAND refuses to take the money and is suing the EU for interfering in Irish tax policies.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  11. Question: Let’s say you have a complicated tax situation and you ask three tax professionals and get three different answers. You maybe have a sizable deduction and maybe you don’t. The deduction seems reasonable — it’s clearly not evasion — but the law isn’t clear whether it is allowed.

    Do you take the deduction?

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  12. Hows about we figure out how congress critters all end up multimillionaires with high paying lobbyist jobs?

    mg (8cbc69)

  13. He must be innocent of something.

    nk (dbc370)

  14. To say nothing of the opinion of the law.
    Under Fireglate’s Three Felonies A Day rule, anyone’s tax return has a mess of felonies in it if you look hard enough.

    Ingot9455 (0433d6)

  15. 11. You make a decision about whether to take deductions and file the tax return. Of course, the same thing can happen with doctors, lawyers, and even plumbers. You make decisions there, too, and what they will be depends on your personality: Like to take risks? Then take the riskiest deduction, don’t take any medical tests the doctor orders, take the biggest legal risk, and patch the water leak with duct tape.

    DRJ (15874d)

  16. Sounds like Trump, doesn’t it?

    DRJ (15874d)

  17. Duct tape is terrible for water leaks. You should use stretchable rubber or silicone tape that you keep around for your tool handles.

    nk (dbc370)

  18. Famous tax cheats, including Leona Helmsley and Al Capone. She used accountants but he didn’t. Her tax conviction case offers insight into the way government stumbles on tax evaders like Leona:

    Meanwhile, a series of events that would bring the Helmsleys’ misdeeds to the attention of the government had begun. A New York Post reporter, Ransdell Pierson, had at one time pursued a tip about the misuse of corporate funds by the Helmsleys but had abandoned the quest after finding little hard evidence. However, an investigation into a sales tax avoidance scheme by two jewelers had caused Mrs. Helmsley to make two appearances before state grand juries during which she gave immunized testimony. Some time later, a New York Times article implicated Mrs. Helmsley in the state sales tax avoidance scheme. Pierson’s interest was renewed by the Times story, and, tipped by a disgruntled former Helmsley employee named Jeremiah McCarthy, Pierson published an article in the Post on December 2, 1986, stating that the Helmsleys had used false invoices to pay personal expenses with corporate funds. This article triggered investigations by both the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York and the New York State Attorney General. Their investigations, later combined, resulted in the federal indictment that is the genesis of the instant case and in a separate state indictment, since withdrawn.

    I didn’t know the IRS rewards whistleblowers for turning in tax evaders. More productive than audits. It has been around since 1867 but the law was revamped in 2006 to (apparently) encourage more whistleblowers.

    DRJ (15874d)

  19. Goid advice, nk. I guess that means you won’t be buying the shiny metallic gold-colored duct tape sold at Amazon.

    DRJ (15874d)

  20. I can’t imagine what I’d want it for, DRJ. I do have the metal foil, not cloth weave, tape which is actually used on ductwork, but it’s silver. I last used it for the microwave vent.

    nk (dbc370)

  21. No doubt, there have been many noteworthy examples of tax evasion, some extending over many years. And it is possible, of course, that Trump could turn out to be one of them. But what always bothered me about his unwillingness to make his returns public was not so much illegal tax evasion–although that possibility of course exists–but also the possibility (I’m tempted to say likelihood) that he must be hiding things that, though technically legal, would be extremely embarrassing if they came to light. Otherwise, I can’t think of a persuasive reason why he doggedly continues to refuse to hand them over. Why not, if everything in them is squeaky clean? But at this point, I’m not sure that any revelations would rock the unstinting support of his “base.”

    Roger (2a5c36)

  22. I agree, Roger. I think his returns would show he has limited net income and isn’t as wealthy as he pretends. Much of his “wealth” is in his perception of his brand, his celebrity, and his opulence.

    DRJ (15874d)

  23. You could wrap your name in gold: N K

    DRJ (15874d)

  24. 11. You always take the deductions. That’s not evasion, it’s avoidance. And it’s the reason that no matter how much the politicians promise to simplify the tax code, it will always be complex enough for the politicians to give their friends and favored constituencies under-the-table favors.

    Gryph (08c844)

  25. Licence is a perfectly legitimate and acceptable acceptable spelling variant.

    Our esteemed host wrote:

    Never mind all the red flags. Do you believe that the IRS didn’t look very carefully at these people? The SEC investigated Madoff multiple times and found no wrongdoing, over and over again. Because the government doesn’t always catch people. And when they do, it sometimes takes them waaaaayyyyy too long.

    Yet, in an open-ended, wide ranging investigation loaded up with opposition party lawyers — Mr Mueller himself is a registered Republican — subpoena power, a grand jury and FBI agents, nothing was found sufficient for Mr Mueller to recommend either criminal charges or reference to Congress for possible impeachment proceedings. Yet, you still “think he’s a criminal and I think his tax returns are one of the keys to the box.

    Mr Madoff wasn’t exposed by his tax returns, but by being unable to keep ponzi-ing. It was, usually, outside forces which clued the Infernal Revenue Service into greater investigation of tax returns. Yet that outside force, the Mueller investigation, already existed, and there’s still nothing.

    You have multiple pages in a site search for Lois Lerner, indicating that you do recognize that yes, the IRS sometimes does get used for political purposes. Mr Trump made noises about running for President in 2012, while Mrs Miles — Lois Lerner is married to Michael Miles, and, sexist pig that I am, I always used a married woman’s married name — was still at the IRS. Are we to think that you would not believe she wouldn’t have investigated a potential Republican candidate.

    Mrs Miles was gone by the time Mr Trump announced his candidacy, but there were other people at the IRS who were certainly motivated to dig even deeper into the audit of his tax returns. We had top people at the Justice Department who were trying everything that they could to undermine Mr Trump, and yet they couldn’t find anything. The Clinton campaign, doing it’s damnedest to find something against him could not, and the Obama Administration, with the power of the Department of Justice and the FBI behind it could not.

    Yes, there have been cases in which the IRS didn’t find anything wrong in returns despite audits, but how many of those cases had a loaded political background, and how many had no outside investigations as has been the case of President Trump?

    Again, you “think he’s a criminal,” despite outside investigations finding nothing sufficient to recommend charges; what is you logic behind that? Yes, he’s an [insert slang term for the rectum here] but being such is not criminal. That you don’t like him does not mean that he’s a criminal.

    I have a garage floor to pour today, so will be away from the computer until this evening.

    The Dana who can spell. (3a78d7)

  26. Roger wrote:

    But what always bothered me about his unwillingness to make his returns public was not so much illegal tax evasion–although that possibility of course exists–but also the possibility (I’m tempted to say likelihood) that he must be hiding things that, though technically legal, would be extremely embarrassing if they came to light. Otherwise, I can’t think of a persuasive reason why he doggedly continues to refuse to hand them over.

    That, I would guess — I certainly don’t know — would be the reason he declined to release his tax returns: embarrassing but nevertheless perfectly legal deductions.

    As to the reason he “doggedly continues to refuse to hand them over”? That’s his personality: Mr Trump never gives an inch if he can help it, he always fights back.

    The reasonable Dana (3a78d7)

  27. He does not need a reason to doggedly refuse to hand them over; and the fact that Jimmy Carter started a trend that Bush 41, Clinton, Bush 43, and Obama followed, is no reason why he should.

    nk (dbc370)

  28. good point, how about the two employees caught leaking info out of the treasury fin cen division, curiously one fellow john fry was never pictured, but he picked the right target so it’s all good,

    narciso (d1f714)

  29. When I was very young, this criminal judge refused to allow me to present my client’s lack of prior criminal history as evidence of good character. His more or less exact words were: “It only means he wasn’t caught.” If you will read the article at the link, you can see as how maybe he knew what he was talking about. 😉

    nk (dbc370)

  30. I disagree, Gryph. Just because an accountant (or anyone) suggests a deduction doesn’t mean it makes sense to use it. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Ask Willie.

    Accountants (like all professionals/experts) educate clients about tax issues so they can use that information to make informed decisions, not just take every deduction like kids in a candy store.

    DRJ (15874d)

  31. well one can disallow, and then appeal:

    http://dianawest.net/Home/tabid/36/EntryId/3862/A-Radical-Suggestion.aspx

    narciso (d1f714)

  32. as with castle bank, bcci, franklin national, the names go on and on,

    narciso (d1f714)

  33. friends don’t let McClatchy shape an agenda, and yet they do:

    https://saraacarter.com/nunes-files-a-150-million-lawsuit-against-the-fake-news-mcclatchy-company/

    so the ray Donovan question?

    narciso (d1f714)

  34. My point, mostly taken out of context, is that there is little chance that the Ways & Means committee is going to find something that no professional auditor did, even though their request suggests that’s why they want it.

    I thought the post made it very clear that was your point and that your point is not congruent with reality for the reasons stated at length in the post. I linked your comment so whatever context you think is missing is readily available, plus you can explain what you think I left out, but I thought I fairly characterized it AND showed how professional auditors miss shit literally all the time, for years — a point you failed to address with your “out of context” complain. It’s as if I had not bothered to make an argument at length at all. Why am I wasting my time talking to you if you do not even respond to what I say?

    Patterico (8ba5da)

  35. Your subsequent comments do not address my comments in any meaningful way. Basically you argue: “OK crime happens but sometimes it also doesn’t” and “here is an unrelated and off-point hypothetical.”

    Patterico (8ba5da)

  36. Trump can do what he wants, nk, but to me things change when there is credible evidence of self-dealing. BTW Carter did release his tax returns. He also used a qualified blind trust but then opened it and released his business financial information after allegations of wrongdoing by his campaign.

    DRJ (15874d)

  37. Did professional auditors catch Madoff? Not for a long time. Did the government? Not for a long time. Not even when multiple people had publicly warned the public about exactly what he was doing.

    For people supposedly skeptical of government you guys sure do think the IRS is all-knowing and all-powerful. When it fits your Trump-defending partisan narrative that is, of course.

    Patterico (8ba5da)

  38. All the high speed u-turns on this thread are gonna give me whiplash.

    Democrats do it too, got it. They should be removed from office too – like Trump.

    Leviticus (646937)

  39. BTW Carter did release his tax returns.

    That’s what I meant, DRJ. That he was the first. Nixon’s returns were gotten by Congress through a subpoena, and Ford only released summaries of his similar to the disclosures all federal employees now file which, BTW, were also signed into law by Carter.

    nk (dbc370)

  40. Bad news, Trump fans: Trump lies about everything and especially lies about everything having to do with his finances. He cheats on his taxes. The only question is whether he gets caught.

    So the time has come for you to revert to Plan B, and start arguing that everybody cheats on their taxes. It is inevitable that Trump superfans will make this argument in his defense. You might as well get ahead of the curve and start now.

    That way we can use his awful example to undermine one more norm underpinning the Rule of Law.

    Hooray. Please: don’t hold back on my account.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  41. Yet, in an open-ended, wide ranging investigation loaded up with opposition party lawyers — Mr Mueller himself is a registered Republican — subpoena power, a grand jury and FBI agents, nothing was found sufficient for Mr Mueller to recommend either criminal charges or reference to Congress for possible impeachment proceedings.

    You don’t know this to be true (referral for impeachment). You made it up. Maybe you believe it and maybe you don’t. If you don’t, it would not surprise me, of course; you have admitted you will make stuff up to win a partisan argument. However, I need to warn readers that you have said something that you have no idea whether it is true or not.

    Also, Mueller’s mandate was not to investigate tax evasion.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  42. Bad news, Trump fans: Trump lies about everything and especially lies about everything having to do with his finances. He cheats on his taxes. The only question is whether he gets caught.

    Well, why didn’t you say that in the first place, instead of merely pointing out that it is fallacious to argue that he does not on the grounds that he hasn’t been caught yet?

    nk (dbc370)

  43. Mueller’s investigation was more wide tanging than Ahab, based on published reports it was going after Israel and the gulf state connection, as much as anything to do with Russia,

    narciso (d1f714)

  44. “Did professional auditors catch Madoff? Not for a long time. Did the government? Not for a long time.”
    Patterico (8ba5da) — 4/9/2019 @ 7:04 am

    What political office did Madoff run for? Was it president, as an outsider/gadfly, while an administration hostile to his candidacy was in power?

    Madoff was once NASDAQ chairman. He was the consummate Wall Street insider and swamp thing. As we’re finding out, people like that get cut some major slack.

    Munroe (ce0dd5)

  45. Plumbers fix water leaks

    mg (8cbc69)

  46. and who was the committee chair and ranking member for much of the time that Madoff was looting, chuck schumer,

    narciso (d1f714)

  47. Mueller got Manafort on financial crimes. Gates as well. If Mueller had found indictable financial offenses that he could pin on Trump, odds are we’d know it.

    You’re wishcasting, Patterico.

    Phil Smith (9aa8c0)

  48. Trump lies about everything

    This is manifestly untrue and I demand you take it back. Examples:

    Congratulations to Virginia – Great game!

    Congratulations to the Baylor Lady Bears on their amazing win last night against Notre Dame to become the 2019 NCAA Women’s Basketball National Champions!

    frosty48 (491023)

  49. If Mueller had found indictable financial offenses that he could pin on Trump, odds are we’d know it.

    Or Mueller thinks he can’t indict a sitting President, or he thinks it is a matter for Congress (via impeachment), or he has referred it to the SDNY for further investigation, or all of the above.

    By the way, what odds are you offering?

    DRJ (15874d)

  50. Wouldn’t Trump have to watch the Baylor game to say it was amazing? Do you think Trump watched the Baylor game?

    DRJ (15874d)

  51. Not all plumbers do good jobs, mg. Consumers in all areas need to be responsible and make informed decisions, too.

    DRJ (15874d)

  52. 52-

    Baylor is a bit more watchable because they dont have that tree Griner anymore, plus the style of uniforms throughout the sport are becoming flattering, not PAC-10, softball, but it would do. Or perhaps maybe Justice Kavanaugh, patron of the girls game he is, put him up to it.

    urbanleftbehind (5eecdb)

  53. when do they determine that overtime is warranted, virginia was one point over texas tech?

    narciso (d1f714)

  54. “Also, Mueller’s mandate was not to investigate tax evasion.”
    Patterico (115b1f) — 4/9/2019 @ 7:20 am

    It wasn’t to investigate Tony Podesta either, apparently. For some reason nobody can figure out, because it’s a total mystery, some people get cut some slack.

    Munroe (8cb21f)

  55. One can imagine a future in which Democrats, reflecting on our present, are shouting to their past selves, “Walk away!” As I will show below, the Democrat’s continued obsession with opening the pandora’s box of the Mueller report will only make things worse for the get-Trump crowd as the hoax chickens increasingly come home to roost.

    Politico recently reported how Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s office rapidly wound down operations after delivering the report to Attorney General Barr. It took most of a weekend for Barr to wade through the report before issuing a summary. Calls for a full, unredacted release of the report could not be accommodated immediately because virtually everything in the report remained a tangled mess of grand jury information, classified information, and innuendo that the Justice Department could not ethically release in the absence of an indictment.

    In contrast with Kenneth Starr’s report on President Bill Clinton, which was drafted in a form ready for public release, the Mueller report inexplicably requires additional work to get the lion’s share into the public domain. Why, Byron York asked, would the Mueller team not prepare the report for public release? Why force the attorney general to spend the time to comb through the materials to redact and excerpt the materials which must not be released. Didn’t the attorney with oversight, Rod Rosenstein, publicly warn Americans that uncharged conduct could not be released into the public domain? Isn’t that exactly one of the reasons that Rosenstein supported the dismissal of James Comey? The answer portends disaster for the Trump-Russia hoaxers.

    Mueller’s team has played dirty from the start. Contrary to the public narrative that the team was “leak-proof,” the opposite is actually true. As I recently wrote, “It has been three years of innuendo and leaks, leaks, leaks, leaks, and uncountable more examples of leaks dripping poison into the poison-addicted pens of the partisan media. The Mueller team has never had to prove anything involving Trump-Russian collusion to anyone because the special counsel needs no proof to function as a potent political weapon.”

    To name two awful examples: the leak of the Cohen/Trump audio recording that appears to have been seized by the feds and the leak of the written questions to the president. Add to that list a new leak reported by the New York Times, “Some of Robert S. Mueller III’s investigators have told associates that Attorney General William P. Barr failed to adequately portray the findings of their inquiry and that they were more troubling for President Trump than Mr. Barr indicated, according to government officials and others familiar with their simmering frustrations.”

    Did you get that? Anonymous sources claiming to be familiar with other anonymous sources on the Mueller team are the source for the New York Times article. Double secret hearsay. My editor would laugh in my face if I tried to publish an article with such flimsy of sourcing. But no standard is too low in the pursuit of getting Trump.

    I asked a friend of mine what she thought would be in the Mueller report. “Only one of two things: lies or nothing.” We have reason to think exactly that based upon a little-noticed release of a letter from Senator Charles Grassley (R-Iowa) to Mueller in which he chastised the special counsel for misleading Americans in the public indictment of George Papadopolous. As reported by Fox News, Mueller’s public filings strongly implied that the Trump campaign was looking for opportunities to meet and coordinate with the Russians when the actual emails spelled out the exact opposite…”

    https://amgreatness.com/2019/04/07/democrats-will-regret-not-walking-away-when-they-could/

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  56. 56.

    …some people get cut some slack.

    You bet they do. Politicians gonna politic. And calling someone a “consummate politician” (which Donald J. Trump absolutely is) isn’t a compliment.

    Gryph (08c844)

  57. @52 Absent a duly adjudicated due process that found that it was a bad game Trump would be both exonerated and found innocent of any allegations of lying about the quality of the game.

    I’m also partially confident there is a statutory basis for him legally being able to delegate this function.

    Although, I’ve heard rumors that the NYT has anonymous sources claiming Visclosky and Carson are working on articles of impeachment and other anonymous sources close to Carson’s office are saying the Intelligence committee needs to open investigations into Russian involvement.

    Which I think is a travesty. The real Russian involvement is obviously in the missed call in the Virginia-Auburn. I don’t think it’s any coincidence that Barr is from Virginia.

    frosty48 (491023)

  58. i hope your being facetious, Frosty – Barr might live in NOVA, but he’s Noo Yawk, maybe he knows that Jerome kid (who’s from Iona Prep/Yonkers) on the Wahoos (UVA Cavaliers).

    Visclosky and Carson are gonna learn the hard way about “cracking” in the next redistricting go-round. That or fellow Hoosier Mike Pence has called in one hell of a solid.

    urbanleftbehind (5eecdb)

  59. “Also, Mueller’s mandate was not to investigate tax evasion.”

    It appears Mueller’s mandate may have been anything he wanted it to be and anywhere he wanted to go.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  60. Ok, so you think people can opine on the quality of things they have never seen. Good to know, frosty.

    DRJ (15874d)

  61. That’s done here nearly every day.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  62. @63 Yes, I also think people can opine on the Battle of Tours, how the pyramids were built, whether the earth is round and the moon landing. Crazy I know but it’s how I roll.

    frosty48 (491023)

  63. So you have never heard or seen anything about those events/places but you still opine? Interesting.

    Had Trump said he heard the game was amazing, I get that. But he said it was amazing and that implies he saw it.

    DRJ (15874d)

  64. @53. The Big Dick learned that the hard way.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  65. Maybe he did watch it. It doesn’t seem likely to me but he might.

    DRJ (15874d)

  66. Wonder if Billy Barr smokes a pipe, too…

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  67. It would be ironic if Trump watched basketball as much as Obama did, especially after all the grief Trump gave Obama about it.

    DRJ (15874d)

  68. “Madoff was once NASDAQ chairman. He was the consummate Wall Street insider and swamp thing. As we’re finding out, people like that get cut some major slack.”

    – Munroe

    I wonder if you even recognize the irony of this statement, as a Trump defender.

    Leviticus (efada1)

  69. “My editor would laugh in my face if I tried to publish an article with such flimsy of sourcing. But no standard is too low in the pursuit of getting Trump.”

    Next sentence:

    “I asked a friend of mine what she thought would be in the Mueller report. “Only one of two things: lies or nothing.”

    Unnamed friend’s opinion is good a source, but anonymous sources are a bad source.

    Trumpkin logic at its finest.

    Leviticus (efada1)

  70. @66 So, now you are both moving the goalposts and putting words in my mouth?

    frosty48 (491023)

  71. * a good source

    Leviticus (efada1)

  72. Not at all. If Trump had heard about the game he would have said he heard it was amazing. I was talking about things he saw. You offered a comparison to the Battle of Tours, how the pyramids were built, the moon, etc. I assume you weren’t there personally so at best you must have heard about it, so you changed the goalposts.

    DRJ (15874d)

  73. You can certainly opine about things you have heard but not seen, and I am sorry I carelessly said both. But isn’t it important to be clear about what we know from personal knowledge versus second-hand? You might think it was just a basketball game but it merited a Presidential tweet.

    DRJ (15874d)

  74. Or you can ignore my comments from now on. Your sarcasm shows they obviously annoy you.

    DRJ (15874d)

  75. @72 I read that as a joke or illustration of his point. Sort of a see what I did there type of thing. Maybe his editor didn’t get the joke and when he objected the writer said he wasn’t using this to prove the matter asserted.

    frosty48 (491023)

  76. I confess, right now, that if I am ever heard saying something nice about college basketball or women’s basketball it will be, at best, a white lie.

    nk (dbc370)

  77. If a corrupt real estate developer wants to defraud his accountants, it’s not all that difficult. He can hire some corruptible appraisers to produce phony values and the accountants would be none the wiser. Unless they’re trying doing an audit in order to issue an opinion on the developer’s financial statements, they won’t really know the truth, and they’ll assume the information given to them is accurate. But even with Enron and other fraudulent companies, accounting firms can miss a lot. They’re far from infallible.

    Paul Montagu (7968e9)

  78. “I wonder if you even recognize the irony of this statement, as a Trump defender.”
    Leviticus (efada1) — 4/9/2019 @ 9:01 am

    All this time, I didn’t know I had the power to indict.

    Munroe (365246)

  79. so the estimable bob Morgenthau was unwilling to indict, ok lets go with that,

    narciso (d1f714)

  80. Maybe he did watch it. It doesn’t seem likely to me but he might.

    There exists the possibility that Trump didn’t watch the game, but heard or read that it was amazing, so he put that in his tweet. That wouldn’t be a lie, it would just be him repeating someone else’s take on the game.

    Chuck Bartowski (bc1c71)

  81. @22. I can’t think of a persuasive reason why he doggedly refuses to hand them over.

    Start with he isn’t “required” to do so– which is why they’ve been trying to pry them out of him for years.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  82. @77 Ok, you’re serious. I apologize. I didn’t get that. I thought you were playing along.

    No, I don’t think that level of precision in language is required in general conversation or on twitter, even from the President, on something like an NCAA basketball game. Whether he watched it, heard about it verbally, read it in a txt, or any and all other ways he may have acquired the information he used to make his subjective determination it makes no difference to me (I’m speaking imprecisely here because I do care if claims he got it from Lincoln’s ghost because we all know Mary is the more reliable sports commentator).

    This is my point about ‘he always lies’. That claim itself is an imprecise statement and it is further undermined by including arguments like ‘he implied he saw something but that’s a lie because I don’t think he really saw it with his own eyes’. We’re getting to the point where what constitutes a lie is so vague as to be meaningless. He could tweet about the wonderful blue sky and there would be analysts on CNN explaining that the sky was not really blue at the precise time the tweet was sent at his location. We’d get detailed meteorological analysis showing it was more precisely described as pale indigo. And the segment would close out with a deadpan serious ‘and he who lies a little lies a lot’ or somesuch.

    frosty48 (491023)

  83. 72… you apparently missed the “Anonymous sources claiming to be familiar with other anonymous sources on the Mueller team are the source for the New York Times article.”

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  84. 83… no… you must think the worst, even regarding the most mundane crap imaginable.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  85. 72… and the two are pretty fuggin’ far from comparable.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  86. 9, Kevin M (21ca15) — 4/9/2019 @ 12:15 am

    …there is little chance that the Ways & Means committee is going to find something that no professional auditor did

    But that’s what they actually did with Nixon. One thing because they investigated further, and the second thing because of a somewhat creative legal interpretation.

    The first thing is, a person can deduct as a chartiable contribtion, the value of an item, even if it something with an unrealized capital gain. This is often done with stock or a painting. For years, politicians and writers and such had been able to deduct, as a charitble contribution an assessed market value of their papers (which cost them little or nothing to produce, but for which they never had t declare income.)

    Congress changed the law with regard to manuscripts and private papers effective July 25, 1969.

    Nixon donated his vice presiential papers somewhere, with the intention of doing it before July 25, 1969, but it seems the transfer was not complete and final by July 25, and his tax lawyer, Herbert Kalmbach may have backdated something or other. The lawyer was eventually cleared of committing fraud because he wasn’t responsible, but he had pleaded guilty and wss sent to prison for other things. Nixon had intended to make the gift before, but all the i’s and t’s weren’t dotted untl maybe even april 1970 – the selection and appraisal was completed much later – and there was even a question as to whetehr it amunted to a gift at all.

    Here is some decription of the issue;

    http://jfk.hood.edu/Collection/White%20Materials/Watergate/Watergate%20Items%2012710%20to%2013024/Watergate%2012799.pdf )Jack Anderson here describes some of this. Jack Anderson had also been given a copy of Nixon’s 1969 tax return, evidently before it was made public.

    The second big issue wih Nixon’s 1969 tax return was the sale of his home in New York and his purchase of one in California (San Clemente) A taxpayer is able to avoid a certain amount of capital gain if he sells his main home and buys another within a specified period of time. Nixon had applied that provision.

    Under the audit conducted by the Democrats in Congress, that as disallowed because they said, after January 20, 1969 his main home was the White House!

    There were other possible issues, like was every change made ti the grounds at San Clemente necessary for security.

    Sammy Finkelman (30b6b6)

  87. @88 Exactly! One is quality journalism and the other is suspiciously not anti-Trump.

    frosty48 (491023)

  88. 57.

    the leak of the Cohen/Trump audio recording that appears to have been seized by the feds

    No, that probably came from Michael Cohen’s lawyer, Lanny Davis. It was conveniently chopped off to make Trump look guilty in a way that Cohen was arguing.

    the leak of the written questions to the president.

    Did that leak? Isn’t what leaked the questions that Trump’s lawyers thought Mueller was interested in? It presumably came from someone who got access to it through a Trump lawyer or ex-lawyer.

    Sammy Finkelman (30b6b6)

  89. @13. He must be innocent of something.

    He wasn’t in Dallas back in November, 1963.

    But Nixon was! The plot thickens…

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  90. “Judicial Watch announced today that it uncovered 422 pages of FBI documents showing evidence of “cover-up” discussions related to the Clinton email system within Platte River Networks, one of the vendors who managed the Clinton email system. The documents also show Intelligence Community Inspector General (ICIG) Charles McCullough forwarding “concerns” about classified information in former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s emails.
    The new documents uncovered by Judicial Watch also contain Clinton’s 2009 classified information Non-Disclosure Agreement bearing her signature.

    (…)FBI notes of an interview with an unidentified Platte River Networks official in February 2016 (almost a year after the Clinton email network was first revealed) show that Platte River “gave someone access to live HRC archive mailbox at some point.” The same notes show that an email from December 11, 2014, exists that reads “Hillary cover up operation work ticket archive cleanup.” The interviewee said that the “cover up operation” email “probably related to change to 60 day [sic] email retention policy/backup.” The subject indicated that he didn’t “recall the prior policy.” The notes also indicated, “[Redacted] advised [redacted] not to answer questions related to conv [conversation] w/DK [David Kendall] document 49 – based on 5th amendment.”

    https://lidblog.com/hillary-cover-up/

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  91. Opaque transparency.

    Barr tells America:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MMzd40i8TfA

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  92. @93 The same notes show that an email … reads “Hillary cover up operation work ticket archive cleanup.”

    That sounds like the setup for an April Fools joke.

    frosty48 (491023)

  93. They will never give up, as their spokesman indicates… https://youtu.be/AR1Q4vD-Ceo

    Colonel Haiku (8c245a)

  94. But what always bothered me about his unwillingness to make his returns public was … the possibility (I’m tempted to say likelihood) that he must be hiding things that, though technically legal, would be extremely embarrassing if they came to light

    Of course he is. He’s a NYC real-estate developer. How could it be otherwise? The business climate he lives in is a sewer. It’s hard to say which is more repugnant, the developers, the city officials or the pressure groups that play both against each other.

    I will go so far as to bet there would be some embarrassed city officials if his returns became public. Oh, not bribes as such, but amazing coincidences of side projects favoring officials who recently favored Trump.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  95. Your subsequent comments do not address my comments in any meaningful way. Basically you argue: “OK crime happens but sometimes it also doesn’t” and “here is an unrelated and off-point hypothetical.”

    To be fair, your post has it’s own non-sequiturs, such as bringing Madoff’s crimes into the picture, which suggests that Trump is somehow like him.

    The points in my comments were:

    #8: There are some easy ways to avoid income taxes, such as not taking a salary, and not taking cap gains directly, but borrowing against stock. None of it criminal.

    #9: The context was in what I was replying to as much as what I wrote, and linking to that doesn’t mean that people actually went to the link when they read the excerpt.

    #10: Business practices that are COMMON in the world are sometimes shocking to laymen. Exposing Trump’s returns to people who have no understanding of COMMON tax strategies is prejudicial, and intended to be so. Apple isn’t the only one doing stuff like that in Ireland. Intel does it too, and there are 48 other companies doing the same thing, all listed at the same Wikipedia link I provided.

    #11: nearly everyone writes off things they are unsure of at times. That tree that fell on the house and caused $30K in damage during the hurricane. Is that a disaster loss? It’s not on the list of federally-approved disasters. It’s defensible and most would take it, but the IRS might not accept it. Not criminal though. I very much doubt Trump is taking deductions for his dog. Or even for his bribes.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  96. Patterico,
    We are concerned about you. Please seek mental help from a professional. We beg you.
    – Your Friends

    Friends (f1b3a8)

  97. BTW Carter did release his tax returns. He also used a qualified blind trust but then opened it and released his business financial information after allegations of wrongdoing by his campaign.

    Carter’s business interests were the Southern-gentleman type that even a committee of moron bankers could run. Entrepreneurial businesses are different. This will be a problem for Schultz if he runs.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  98. #99 is not mine

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  99. Bad news, Trump fans: Trump lies about everything and especially lies about everything having to do with his finances. He cheats on his taxes. The only question is whether he gets caught.

    How do you plead Mr Trump? Guilty or obviously guilty?

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  100. You don’t know this to be true (referral for impeachment).

    The dog that did not bark in the night. If there HAD been a referral, do you seriously think that *someone* in the confidence of the Speaker’s office would have not leaked it by now?

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  101. One thing is clear, though, Trump’s opponents — not being happy with the Mueller report so far — are dialing it past 11 to 43. The problem with that is that you have to win, or the reaction will crush you. If Trump is the candidate in 2020, the election will be a landslide, one way or the other.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  102. There are good, but not perfect, arguments that Trump did not commit tax fraud. OTOH there are no arguments at all that he did so. It’s mere nasty speculation or wishful thinking by Trump-haters. Why are we even discussing this subject?

    David in Cal (0d5a1d)

  103. Patterico: Here’s another example you can cite of the argument yoiu are arguing against.

    From today’s Morning Jolt by Jim Geraghty of National Review:

    https://www.nationalreview.com/the-morning-jolt/we-have-bigger-problems-to-tackle-than-culture-war-politics

    The notion that the IRS is somehow negligent in its duties regarding Trump is implausible; even if we didn’t have the existing evidence of the partisan passions within that government agency, Trump would still be a big and juicy target for any ambitious tax investigator. It is reasonable to believe that if any of the methods Donald Trump used to minimize his tax bill over the past decades were provably and indisputably illegal, the IRS and prosecutors would be all over him. It is easy to believe that Trump and his accountants used every legal method to minimize his tax bill to the fullest extent and got into gray areas, but again, if at any point in the past decades the IRS thought it had a winnable case, why would it hesitate?

    You acn argue that the IRS is incompetent. Of course it doesn’t audit many people, but Trump was audited. Now maybe they only check it for internal consistency. Or maybe they walk away after making abig recovery.

    Sammy Finkelman (102c75)

  104. “Some of Robert S. Mueller III’s investigators have told associates that Attorney General William P. Barr failed to adequately portray the findings of their inquiry and that they were more troubling for President Trump than Mr. Barr indicated, according to government officials and others familiar with their simmering frustrations.”

    associates: their anonymous bartenders as they proceeded to get even more drunk.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  105. Here’s s what seems to be the complete story about the audits of ichard Nixon’s tax returns 9and I may have to correct some things)

    http://www.taxhistory.org/thp/readings.nsf/cf7c9c870b600b9585256df80075b9dd/f8723e3606cd79ec85256ff6006f82c3?OpenDocument

    During his first term in office, Nixon had relied on the IRS to review his tax returns, which the Service did not challenge. However, Nixon also asked the staff of the Joint Committee on Internal Revenue Taxation (JCT) to review the 1968 sale of his New York City apartment — the proceeds of that sale were used as the down payment for his San Clemente “Western White House” — to see if he could meet the test to defer the gain on the sale of a principal residence. The JCT staff was not as awestruck as the IRS when examining the president’s financial affairs. The staff determined that despite extensive use of the San Clemente home, it was the White House that had become Nixon’s principal residence. Therefore, the gain on the sale of the New York property was taxable because Nixon had not reinvested the proceeds in a new principal residence (Bittker, pp. 44-61).

    On September 5, 1973, Nixon gleefully announced that he had been audited for tax years 1971 and 1972, and that no additional tax was owed (The Wall Street Journal (WSJ), Sept. 6, 1973). In a press conference, Nixon claimed that after a “full field review or audit,” the IRS “didn’t order any change.” He said that because no additional tax was assessed, the IRS had agreed with his treatment of some previously undisclosed issues. Nixon also said that he had not recognized gain when he had sold part of his San Clemente estate to his two friends, C.B. “Bebe” Rebozo and Robert Abplanalp. Abplanalp had also been the lender of the money for the San Clemente purchase in 1969. Nixon said that if the IRS had found a deficiency, “he would have paid the tax.” He concluded that “this is good news for people who wonder if presidents are exempt from what the IRS does.” An IRS spokesman at the news conference only related the IRS policy of confidentiality and said, “We can’t comment on anybody’s tax affairs. We can’t even confirm or deny that an audit was done.”

    The press conference had many historical ironies. It proved to be the tip of the iceberg as the story unfolded. Public concern had been raised. It caused newspaper reporters to dig more deeply for answers to the tax questions that were being raised; their stories resulted in a congressional investigation. Why Nixon held a press conference about his audit success can be understood only in the historical setting, politics, and presidential crisis of the time…Nixon made the September 5 announcement about the results of the IRS audit as a way of presenting some good news to show the public that his taxes and finances were beyond reproach because an investigation by the IRS had found nothing. By inference, he was trying to say that a Watergate investigation would also be a waste of time because he had nothing to hide.

    It was the Joint Committee on tazxation that looked at his taxes and Nixon himself had raised the question hi smain home before Congress got to evaluate it..

    Another issue I didn’t know about: Nixon had not been paying income tax either to California or to Washington, D.C. What state was he a citizen of, then?

    Another issue the IRS missed:

    Nixon had been deducting depreciation and maintenance for 25 percent of the San Clemente estate, claiming that the percentage represented the portion of time that the property was used for business versus the total time spent there. In the ordinary taxpayer situation, the IRS would have required that the percentage be based on the number of business days used to 365, rather than business days to days spent at San Clemente. Thus, as an ordinary taxpayer, Nixon would have found the business-day percentage and the deduction amount drastically reduced from his (and the IRS auditor’s accepted) numbers. As the Journal noted, the IRS had not challenged Nixon’s figures, even though other taxpayers with a business deduction for their personal residences typically were challenged, and those deductions usually were denied. Only by prevailing in a court trial would an ordinary citizen be allowed similar deductions for a personal residence.

    Of course, in many ways it wasn’t his prime personal residence, so maybe you vould count alot more of it for business.

    It wasn’t Congress that found the two big issues. The Wall Street Journal editorialized on them on january 2, 1974: `

    In a January 2, 1974, Journal editorial, more revelations were made public. Nixon, since 1970, had paid $22,000 for tax advice while paying only $5,979 in income tax. As the editorial noted, that $22,000 had been a very good investment. The editorial said the tax returns were full of items that the IRS should have challenged. First, the $576,000 valuation of the donation of presidential papers seemed excessive, and the IRS typically employed its own appraisers for large noncash gifts to charity. Second, Nixon had excluded on his 1969 tax return the gain from the sale of his New York apartment. That gain could only have been excluded only if the proceeds had been reinvested in a principal personal residential property, purchased and occupied within the specified time after the sale. Because the White House, not San Clemente, was Nixon’s principal residence during the years after the apartment sale, the gain seemed taxable.

    As previously noted, the sale of part of the San Clemente property to Nixon’s friends who had helped finance the property should have caused a taxable gain of at least $117,000, rather than the reported zero amount. The editorial argued that even the $117,000 amount understated the gain, because the property’s basis was presumed to have been reduced by the gain on the sale of the New York apartment. Thus, the combined result of the New York apartment and San Clemente property sales should have caused a taxable gain of $234,000.

    Further, the deduction for the office at San Clemente was grossly overstated, not only by the miscalculation of the number of days in the denominator but also by the second required percentage allocation: the number of business rooms (space) to total residence rooms (space). The article described several other errors that an otherwise dutiful IRS auditor would have caught. The writer concluded that Nixon’s tax for 1970-1972 should have been $71,000, rather than $5,979. Yet even the $71,000 was small — less than a 10 percent average tax rate on Nixon’s large income during those years.

    .

    Sammy Finkelman (102c75)

  106. Assuming for the sake of argument that Trump’s lies are next level. That they are so damaging to the republic they pose an existential threat. Are people who lie about his lies complicit? We clearly see how the lies about his lies undermine the perceived threat the original lies are assumed to represent. When does the ‘cry wolf’ effect kick in. His approval rating is north of 40% now. What will he be capable of when that goes above 45%?

    frosty48 (491023)

  107. If Trump could be shown to have committed tax fraud, this would be impeachable (an otherwise well-respected judge was impeached for just that some years ago). If something there was dubious and needed backup information, it could have been asked for (and Mueller could have done so as well).

    I find the argument that Trump and Trump’s lawyers are too good for this to be found unconvincing, considering what garbage most of his lawyers turn out to be.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  108. Here’s about the backdating:

    Apparently, on March 27, 1969, the vice- presidential papers had been physically transferred to the National Archives, which was under the supervision of the GSA. However, because Nixon intended to have those papers housed in the Nixon Presidential Library that would be built after he left office (as had been done by his predecessor), he wanted to ensure that such a retransfer would actually be carried out in the future. Therefore, Nixon had his lawyers draft an agreement with GSA officials. Drafting and signing delayed the agreement and the deed for a year. It was later discovered that the deed and other papers had been backdated to indicate that the title had been transferred before the cutoff for the deductions. Edward L. Morgan, a presidential aide and lawyer, had prepared and signed the documents. In testimony in January 1974 to the JCT, Morgan said he now believed that he did not have the power of attorney to sign for the president (WSJ, Jan. 21, 1974). Morgan failed to mention the backdating. Instead, he lied in his testimony and said that the paperwork was signed on April 21, 1969, a month after the vice-presidential papers had been delivered and before the deadline that ended those deductions. Contemporaneously with his testimony, Morgan unexpectedly resigned as assistant Treasury secretary. Less than a year later, Morgan received a four- month jail sentence after he pleaded guilty to falsifying documents (WSJ, Dec. 20, 1974).

    But Kalmbach, Nixon’s tax lawyer, was cleared on that matter. He pleaded guilty to violating campaign finance law.

    Sammy Finkelman (102c75)

  109. Nixon’s private San Clemente office did not disappear when he was at the WH, and remained closed to all (and under Secret Service control) when he was not there. I see no fault with that deduction.

    As for the personal residence of the President (or other elected federal officials), there are special rules for that. Senators may lifve in DC, but they “reside” in their home states. GHWB “lived” in Texas for tax purposes.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  110. @108 And I thought this would be a boring thread. Hat tip to you sir! Anonymous bartenders and drunk as a euphemism for what I imagined when I read that is my vote for thread winner.

    frosty48 (491023)

  111. Pat… I get you believe that it’s likely that Trump is a tax cheat of some sort. But, you’ve yet to really substantiate it in any meaningful way.

    I’m not that concerned that Democrats are trying to get his tax reports… and I know they’re going to leak the crap out of this. If anything, I’m more worried about this setting precedents in the future. (I can see Trump “retaliating” to ask the IRS to show his staff Pelosi’s or Schumer’s taxes).

    Furthermore, the IRS/DOJ make it their business to prosecute high-profile tax cheaters. You brought up Paul Manafort’s case, as his tax-cheat actions is the typical kind of prosecutions the DOJ does (although he was a smaller fish, as evidenced by the Obama admin refusing to pursue it at that time).

    Candidate Trump pretty much fits that “high-profile” alleged tax cheater…don’t you think?

    In the run-up to the election, don’t you think that the likes of McCabe/Strock/etc… would’ve reached out to a sympathetic IRS connection (under Obama admin) to access Trump’s taxes to that “insurance policy” to stop him? Maybe they did… but, didn’t see any angle worth pursuing? Frankly, if there were some malfeasances in Trump tax’s returns, that would’ve been a much STRONGER predicate to investigate Trump than anything else they’ve used.

    I know I’m speculating here…but I would think that we’d hear much more about this tax cheat allegation than we have been getting.

    whembly (51f28e)

  112. It’s a family blog.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  113. Why are we even discussing this subject?

    Because we can no longer discuss “Suppose Putin is blackmailing Trump over the collusion?”

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  114. the number of business rooms (space) to total residence rooms (space)

    You can use square footage if you want these days. Don’t know about then.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  115. I’ll point out that Obama did not take a deduction for government use of his house — he RENTED it to them 24/7, which got him a damn sight more than a mere deduction would have.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  116. But Kalmbach, Nixon’s tax lawyer, was cleared on that matter. He pleaded guilty to violating campaign finance law.

    I had an uncle who was a partner in Kalmbach’s firm. He resigned from the firm when he found out what Kalmbach had done. Ended up a LA County Superior Court judge. Probably before our host’s time.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  117. @119 Watched a video recently commenting on the low crowd turnout at Hillary and Bill’s speaking tour. The guys doing the video kept asking why they would do this and I kept thinking to myself that clinton foundation money won’t launder itself.

    frosty48 (491023)

  118. @105. Actually two things are clear: one, as of today, the Mueller Report -redacted or otherwise- has not been made public and two, only the four-page Barr memo has.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  119. @120. Hmmmmm. Back in the day, had a friend who quite by chance ran into Nixon himself at a McDonald’s in Manahawkin, N.J. [At the time the Big Dick vacationed on the Jersey shore on the north end of LBI.] People posed for a few pictures w/t ex-prez and according to my friend’s account, guess what he ordered… a milk shake and— cheeseburgers. History rhymes.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  120. 117… again, Mueller’s scope was anything he wanted it to be and anywhere he wanted it to go.

    Beria would be proud.

    Colonel Haiku (8c245a)

  121. Three weeks away from the parking ticket scofflaw intrigue…

    Colonel Haiku (8c245a)

  122. @117. Helsinki.

    Unforgivable. End of story.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  123. Madoff was once NASDAQ chairman.

    The reason he got slack was the SfB SEC Chair who actually believed that businessmen and investors had the public’s good at heart. A former Congressman from Newport Beach.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  124. one, as of today, the Mueller Report -redacted or otherwise- has not been made public and two, only the four-page Barr memo has.

    Attorney General William P. Barr said he will deliver the Mueller report to Congress and the public within a week, reiterating his earlier promise to release it by mid-April.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2019/04/09/us/politics/william-barr-testimony.html

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  125. BTW, I resent having to defend Trump against this political axe-grinding. Most of the people doing the axe-grinding have agendas I oppose, so I find the alternatives to Trump — at this time — more repellent.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  126. Paul Manafort came to the attention of a U.S. Attorney around 2014.

    I’m not clear if the issue was tax related.

    Manafort’s Wikipedia article has a parade of horrors about him.

    One web site says that the case may have been dropped because they were more interested in spying on him as a counter-intelligence matter.

    https://www.justsecurity.org/46878/long-non-indictment-paul-manafort-years

    But that got dropped too.

    So I need to do more research.

    Sammy Finkelman (102c75)

  127. “Some of Robert S. Mueller III’s investigators have told associates that Attorney General William P. Barr failed to adequately portray the findings of their inquiry and that they were more troubling for President Trump than Mr. Barr indicated, according to government officials and others familiar with their simmering frustrations.”

    That New York Times front page story didn’t tell us anything we didn’t already know, except, possibly, if they actually have any solid information., that some people who had been on Mueller’s staff were unhappy about the way Mueller’s findings are being portrayed in public by the media, but we could have guessed that too.

    We knew that Barr understated Mueller’s findings because he said so!

    In his letter to Congress, Barr wrote:

    PDF: https://www.chron.com/file/409/3/4093-4092-Attorney%20General%20Letter.pdf

    Non-PDF: https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2019/03/24/us/politics/barr-letter-mueller-report.html

    The Special Counsel therefore did not draw a conclusion – one way or the other – as to whether the examined conduct constituted obstruction. Instead, for each of the relevant actions investigated, the report sets out evidence on both sides of the question and leaves unresolved what the Special Counsel views as “difficult issues” of law and fact concerning whether the President’s actions and intent could be viewed as obstruction. The Special Counsel states that “while this report does not conclude that the President committed a crime, it also does not exonerate him.”

    Now, since Barr does not tell you what any of the arguments in favor of viewing Trump’s actions as obstruction were, it is obvious, therefore, that Barr’s letter “failed to adequately portray the findings of the inquiry,” and that that what he left out would be troubling for President Trump.

    Sammy Finkelman (102c75)

  128. But there actually is a lot we can deduce from Barr’s letter.

    first of all, “Russian election interference” activities are divided mainly into two types of activities, sockpuppeting and hacking.

    With regard to the sock puppeting, Mueller did not find that any U.S. person, let alone a Trump campaign official or associate, conspired or knowingly co-ordinated with the Internet Research Agency (which was involved only with that.)

    With regard to the hacking and subsequent leaking, he did not find that any Trump campaign official or anyone associated with it conspired or co-ordinated with the Russian government in that.

    That doesn’t mean no U.S. person did!

    Note: Barr carefully writes around what I just noted. The co-ordinnation might be more, or only, co-ordination in leaking. That is probably not a crime, unless someone is encouraging them to hack before they do it.

    And I think that co-ordinaton in hacking didn’t happen for the simple reason that Putin would never discuss Russian spying with any non-Russians for operational security reasons. It’s not like he would trust any Americans to keep it secret.

    Hacked material was only made public some time after a hack had been discovered or stopped. At the time of the first Wikileaks disclosures, the spying into John Podesta’s GMAil account was still going on. That went on till late August, and Podesta’s emails were made public starting in early October.

    Reading between the lines, the Mueller report says no one in the Trump campaign, or associated with it, conspired or co-ordinated with the Russian government in anything. But they did find other Americans who did. This had to do with the hacking and the subsequent leaking to affect the election because the words “any U.S. person” are only used with regard to the sockpuppeting, but not with regard to the hacking and leaking.

    The letter to Congress was definitely written by a lawyer, used to not being able to disclose things. It was honest but tricky and we can use that to deduce things.

    Sammy Finkelman (102c75)

  129. Shorter:

    Barr says:

    “Special Counsel did not find that any U.S. person or Trump campaign official or associate conspired or knowingly coordinated with the IRA in its efforts”

    That refers ONLY to the sock-puppeting

    And he says:

    “The Special Counsel did not find that the Trump campaign, or anyone associated with it, conspired or coordinated with the Russian government in these efforts.”

    That refers to the hacking and leaking.

    Therefore, we can deduce, that one or more U.S. persons, who, however, were not in the Trump campaign, or anyone associated with it, conspired or coordinated with the Russian government in the hacking or leaking.

    And that is probably only the leaking. Putin would not take any Americans into his confidence. He is not crazy.

    Sammy Finkelman (102c75)

  130. Anyone see the disgusting actions by Nadler and Lulu . Candace Owens put them in their place. Nadlers shrug and facial expression towards Owens is quite alarming.

    mg (8cbc69)

  131. @128. Again, what Barr ‘says,’ ‘promises’ etc., – regarding any planned future release of a redacted, ‘color-coded’ version of the Mueller Report is pretty much irrelevant. And disingenuous.

    As of today, the report has not been made public– just his 4-page memo. Under the rules, he doesn’t have to release anything so after spinning out that memo, presenting the pretense of gifting Americans of something we’ve already paid for w/a sanitized, hence incomplete version is utterly bogus and totally unacceptable. Whatever point of the compass you come from, the country has paid for this and deserves to see the whole thing- warts and all. Especially if there’s ‘no collusion’— and nothing to hide.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  132. A tax audit is designed to verify whether the deductions, income and expenses listed on a tax return are accurate. It does not investigate whether you were honest with or deceived your insurance company, bank, investors, or other businesses.

    If law enforcement or a prosecutor gets a complaint, they may investigate and that might involve looking at tax returns. But just because someone has been audited by the IRS doesn’t mean they have been cleared of all financial wrongdoing.

    DRJ (15874d)

  133. speaking of crooks and frauds looks like the bottle deposit crook just lost his get out of jail free card! maybe trump can pardon him otherwise bib bye bibi to the tune of he’s in the jail house now.

    lany (4cbe59)

  134. THe core issue isn’t if Trump cheated on his taxes. He may have, but it has nothing to do with why his political enemies are baying for his tax returns. They want his tax returns because they are sure they can come uo with a plausible accusation, which given the state of the tax laws is highly probable. Were the IRS politically neutral, there might be an argument for Trump releasing his returns…but even skipping over the recent scandals about political bias at the IRS, tax collectors have never in recorded history been politically neutral.

    For Trump, there simply is no upside to releasing his tax returns.

    C. S. P. Schofield (f7316d)

  135. @137. A picture is worth a thousand votes: could you draw that for us, Bibi-style? 😉

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  136. The CBS Evening News said today maybe that Mueller produced (several?) summaries but Barr did not release them at the time.

    Barr gave Mueller a chance to review his conclusions in the 4-page letter, but he declined.

    Mueller sometimes had to dispute New York Times and Washington Post stories

    https://www.theepochtimes.com/mueller-team-calls-out-new-york-times-washington-post-for-incorrect-stories-on-manafort_2571661.html

    Sammy Finkelman (30b6b6)

  137. No, but they have been vetted regarding the tax returns alone. And what Ways & Means is seeking is these same tax returns. Since taxes are their remit, this would be the focus of their inquiry and it is hard to see how they would glean more information.

    What it says is their stated purpose is a sham, and the fact that Trump’s stated reason for withholding them is ALSO a sham does not change that. Except maybe in some Karmic sense.

    Trump would have been better advised saying “I don’t want to” when asked about releasing his eturns, or done what Romney did, and released an abstract.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  138. All of a sudden everyone starts typing. My last referred to DRJ’s #136

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  139. CNN Chyron: Putin breaks silence on Mueller Report; calls it “a dark page in American history.”

    Ahem….. Mr. Barr, Mr. Trump: hs Vlad got his copy and read it already?! Before Americans? Did you FedEx a thumb drive or just email him?

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  140. Barr says he will release the full 300 plus page Mueller report with redactions, but the redactions explained. Democrats are asking for every last word. and the problem is that releasing everyting may not be legal (anythng derived from grand jury testimomny alone) or prudent (some intelligence information) or may harm the reputaton od certain peripheral individuals.

    Sammy Finkelman (30b6b6)

  141. Putin knows what the Barr memo said, so he as a good idea that it isn’t going to convey avery favrable opinion of Russia.

    Sammy Finkelman (30b6b6)

  142. I’m somewhat surprised the no commenter here is (or claims to be) a CPA whose practice includes high-wealth individuals and their closely held businesses.

    If you’re lurking out there, Mr. or Ms. CPA, we hope you’ll de-lurk long enough to comment on the premise of the post, even if you don’t care to comment in detail on Trump’s particular tax situation (which would be hard since he won’t release his taxes)! But given the calendar, you’re probably not spending any time lurking in blog comments sections, much less writing replies there.

    *****

    As a lawyer, I do not ever advise or represent clients on tax matter. I conspicuously disclaim, in every engagement letter, both intention and ability. However:

    In much ordinary civil litigation (including domestic cases, in which I am only rarely involved), and in essentially all civil fraud litigation (in which I’ve been continuously involved for almost four decades now), litigants demand production of each other’s tax returns.

    We lawyers who are representing such clients don’t typically ask for tax returns with the purpose in mind of ferreting out tax fraud — although noncompliance, at a minimum, is rampant, and occasionally a tax payer does find that the whistle blown on him to the IRS as the direct or indirect result of civil litigation between private parties. But we’re generally not trying to retrod the IRS’ steps or do its work for it.

    Instead, we demand — and albeit subject to protective orders which limit use outside the proper purposes of the litigation, we generally get — private tax returns in the hopes and reasonable expectations that they will point us to other fruitful places to look, other threads to pull, other witnesses to subpoena, that we’d never have learned of any other way.

    And we also find, and exploit, inconsistencies between what the taxpayer has told the IRS and what he’s told, say, his banks or his business partners or the general public.

    I’m not only, or even primarily, demanding that Trump release his taxes, then, because I believe that if he does so, they’ll reveal that he’s committed any particular act or acts of tax fraud that are civilly or criminally culpable.

    I’m demanding them because I believe they will provide a vast treasure trove of information that both (a) identifies unsavory (even if legal) conduct that’s relevant to his character and fitness for office, and (b) utterly contradicts his public shtick and the gigantic ball of fabrications he’s used to build his personality cult.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  143. Bah. I didn’t proof-read #146 at all, which ought have begun: “I’m somewhat surprised that no commenter here ….”

    Beldar (fa637a)

  144. Why are we even discussing this subject?

    Because we can no longer discuss “Suppose Putin is blackmailing Trump over the collusion?”

    Kevin M (21ca15) — 4/9/2019 @ 2:14 pm

    We’re discussing because:

    Again and again, I see Trump fans telling us that there can’t be anything illegal in his returns, because if there was, the IRS would have caught it by now — and also, he hired accountants, and they never knowingly participate in fraud!

    It’s the first line in the post. I’m not the best at closely reading blog posts. But how can you miss the opening line?

    I don’t want the returns released to catch Trump at tax fraud. I want them released because I want transparency. If trump doesn’t release his no candidate in the future will ever release theirs.

    Bernie never has.
    Kristen G. hasn’t yet.

    They’re all making stupid, dishonest noises about how they will if/when.

    Information makes Democracy better. Where a candidate gets their money is relevant information.

    Time123 (80b471)

  145. Wrong week to ask, Beldar.

    urbanleftbehind (4157c7)

  146. 143… I guess that’s supposed to be funny. Or you are just displaying your “flexibility”.

    And Putin leered…

    Colonel Haiku (8c245a)

  147. I have never known our host to grasp at straws before:

    Yet, in an open-ended, wide ranging investigation loaded up with opposition party lawyers — Mr Mueller himself is a registered Republican — subpoena power, a grand jury and FBI agents, nothing was found sufficient for Mr Mueller to recommend either criminal charges or reference to Congress for possible impeachment proceedings.

    You don’t know this to be true (referral for impeachment). You made it up. Maybe you believe it and maybe you don’t. If you don’t, it would not surprise me, of course; you have admitted you will make stuff up to win a partisan argument. However, I need to warn readers that you have said something that you have no idea whether it is true or not.

    I don’t know that Mr Mueller found nothing sufficient to reference to Congress for impeachment? What we all do know is that he certainly hasn’t done so yet, after making his final report to the Attorney General.

    Perhaps you are suggesting that Mr Mueller might have found sufficient evidence to refer to the House for impeachment but has kept it to himself?

    “The whole purpose behind such a machine is lost, if you keep it a secret? Vhy didn’t you tell the vorld, eh?” — Dr Strangelove

    The clear-thinking Dana (3a78d7)

  148. @ urban (#149): Every CPA I know spends this part of the year busier than the proverbial one-armed paperhanger.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  149. @134 The look on her face was classic. That moment when you know you’re dealing with at least two sociopaths.

    frosty48 (491023)

  150. Next week: The Trump-Barr Conspiracy.

    Colonel Haiku (8c245a)

  151. Our possibly angry host wrote:

    Bad news, Trump fans: Trump lies about everything and especially lies about everything having to do with his finances. He cheats on his taxes. The only question is whether he gets caught.

    You accused me of “hav(jng) admitted you will make stuff up to win a partisan argument. However, I need to warn readers that you have said something that you have no idea whether it is true or not.” Yet here you have made the unambiguous declarative statement, “He cheats on his taxes.” So, how do you know this? Do you have direct information about this, information which you should turn over to the House of Representatives or publish publicly, or is this an example of “you hav(ing) said something that you have no idea whether it is true or not.”

    Hooray. Please: don’t hold back on my account.

    I haven’t, although I have attempted to remain within the confines of civility.

    The brutally frank Dana (3a78d7)

  152. @145. Don’t be surprised if Putin wrote the first draft of ‘the Barr Memo,’ Sammy 😉

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  153. @150. Dark page… dark comedy.

    Helsinki.

    And Putin smiled…

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  154. @ C. S. P. Schofield, who wrote (#138):

    For Trump, there simply is no upside to releasing his tax returns.

    I agree with you that Trump is acting purely out of self-interest here, and not at all in the interest of America or its citizens, voters, and taxpayers.

    However: Since the earliest days of the GOP primaries, certainly at least as far back as 2015, Trump was promising that he’d release his tax returns as soon as they were no longer under audit.

    Can we agree, Mr. Schofield, that this is, and has always been, a deliberate, baldfaced lie told by Donald Trump to the American voting public with the intent to deceive them, because of his accurate perception that there simply is no upside for Trump in releasing his tax returns?

    Beldar (fa637a)

  155. DRJ wrote:

    Maybe (President trump) did watch (the women’s NCAA championship game). It doesn’t seem likely to me but he might.

    Are you kidding? 6’4″ blonde Lauren Cox in short shorts? Of course he watched it!

    The sexist pig Dana (3a78d7)

  156. To avoid misattributing something to Mr. Schofield that he didn’t say, let me re-phrase one sentence from #159, in which I ought better have written:

    “I agree with you that Trump is acting purely out of self-interest here, and I further submit that his self-interest is not at all in the interest of America or its citizens, voters, and taxpayers.”

    I don’t want to overstate the extent of Mr. Schofield’s and my agreement by attributing more to him than is in his words that I quoted.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  157. Mr M wrote:

    One thing is clear, though, Trump’s opponents — not being happy with the Mueller report so far — are dialing it past 11 to 43. The problem with that is that you have to win, or the reaction will crush you.

    “When you play the game of thrones, you win or you die.” — Cersei Lannister

    The Dana who has read the books (3a78d7)

  158. However this ends, noses will be vigorously rubbed in the excrement – with great relish – and deservedly so.

    Colonel Haiku (8c245a)

  159. it will likely end like maddow’s facepalm,

    https://legalinsurrection.com/2019/04/live-israeli-election-results-2019/#comments

    narciso (d1f714)

  160. “a dark page in American history.”

    Maybe, but coming from a former KGB official, that’s risible. Except for a brief moment in the early 90’s there has never been anything BUT dark days in Russian history.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  161. Actually, sometimes when you play the Game of Thrones, you get soundly whipped, and return to a long, mostly quiet life in Plains, Georgia, as an all-around scold, hypocrite, and crank while you watch successors vie with one another to out-do you for a higher position on the list of historically bad presidents.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  162. 162, the real question is disciple of Dave Ramsey or Robert Kiyosaki?

    urbanleftbehind (4157c7)

  163. Dana–

    I had a reference to Queen Cersei in that, but decided it was too much.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  164. I wonder if, when we get to see the report, it will have any clue about why it couldn’t have come out before the midterms.

    frosty48 (e5f48a)

  165. RIP, Richard Cole… last survivor of Doolittle’s Raiders. He was 103 years old.

    Colonel Haiku (8c245a)

  166. “He cheats on his taxes.” So, how do you know this?

    It’s a fact that he cheated on his taxes. Since he lies about pretty much everything, it would be out of character for him to make an exception and not lie to his accountants.

    Paul Montagu (7968e9)

  167. I have to ask: why are the conservative anti-Trumpers so virulently opposed? Sure, he isn’t a nice guy, but as far as his actions as President, he has nominated two excellent Supreme Court Justices as well as a host of good lower court judges, he has carried through, as much as he can, with policies designed to reduce illegal immigration, he has reversed previous Administrations anti-Israel policies, he has reversed the Title IX policies which were depriving college students of due process, he has reversed the previous Administrations policies of allowing the ‘transgendered’ in the military, he has been a defender of the right to keep and bear arms — though he did fail with the ridiculous ‘bump stock’ ban — he has withdrawn us from the cockamamie Iran nuclear deal, and wages have been rising, in real terms.

    Of course, he hasn’t been perfect by any means: the tax cut without spending cuts wasn’t a good thing, the deficit has exploded, and the Obaminablecare repeal failed, in large part because the President proposed no replacement.

    What we have is an absolute [insert slang term for the rectum here] for a President . . . but consider the alternative. I expect opposition from conservatives when his policies are wrong, but what I am seeing here is just personal animus, real hatred for the President who has accomplished some, if not all, of the things conservatives have wanted.

    The confused Dana (3a78d7)

  168. The people who rank presidents have Carter in the mid-20s out of 40-some, tied with people like Ford, Coolidge, Hayes and Arthur. Then again, they also rank Obama and Reagan similarly, so obviously there’s a bias. And I don’t get why Truman rates so high.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  169. Mr M wrote:

    I had a reference to Queen Cersei in that, but decided it was too much.

    It’s never too much!

    The amused Dana (3a78d7)

  170. but consider the alternative

    The choice we were given was execrable. But if the other path were taken, Hillary would have collected up all* the guns by now, with a 6-3 court saying the 2nd Amendment is unconstitutional.

    ——–
    * meaning those in law-abiding hands

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  171. I had a reference to Queen Cersei in that, but decided it was too much.

    And, somehow, defending Trump against his attackers feels a lot like defending Queen Cersei. Thank God Hillary doesn’t own dragons.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  172. https://www.standard.co.uk/go/london/arts/aleksandra-mir-prepresidential-library-exhibition-donald-trump-a4030836.html

    A show 35 years in the making! Lord, recall seeing rows of folks reading these on the subway back in the day.

    Hilarious.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  173. I prefer allusions to dune, that show is a nasty piece of work, peaky blinders is an interesting substitute

    Narciso (0402a0)

  174. @175. I don’t get why Truman rates so high.

    “Plain Speaking.”

    He’d recently passed near Watergate times and his rep was revisited and revamped; blunt, straight talk sounded refreshing given the stink of chatter from The Big Dick and his crew.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  175. “Thank God Hillary doesn’t own dragons.”

    Not to worry. Even if she did, they’d be named Elliot.

    Colonel Haiku (8c245a)

  176. It’s a fact that he cheated on his taxes

    I’m most of the way through that exasperating article. While is suggests that Trump plays games with valuations in order to move “profit” and “wealth” around to avoid the tax man, only once does the article say that he is doing so illegally. Underhanded, false, misleading, “potentially illegal”*, yes, all those things. But never illegal

    What they call illegal has nothing to do with taxes, but with financing of casinos. Fred Trump made an unsecured loan to Trump’s casino by buying chips, which is apparently illegal. But wait, that’s on FRED!

    All hat, no cattle. Just breathless innuendo and suspicion.

    ————
    * Weasels of the world, unite!

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  177. Truman left office in disgrace, with minimal support, having got us into a war in Korea that killed 36,000 and THEN got us into a war with China where we were forced to sue for peace.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  178. A reminder… after that long Mueller investigation, not a single American was indicted for collusion with the Russians.

    Colonel Haiku (8c245a)

  179. @174. That’s a very pragmatic post; but it’s herecy to ideologues.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  180. As mentioned during questioning of Barr, he is wondering how this investigation got started, he wants to understand what these people were thinking.

    Colonel Haiku (8c245a)

  181. @184. See 181. Korea looked distant and pretty peaceful to a Vietnam weary America sloshing through Watergate. The walks and straight talks w/reporters, etc., caught fire against the contrast of a dark, sour Nixon walking alone along the beach in his wingtips. FWIW, recall thinking it was a bit curious, then, too.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  182. The problem was largely with the post war defense drawdown, task force Smith was the only sizable infantry element, one might fault MacArthur for crossing the yalu, but that is the way one wins war is the previous era.

    Narciso (0402a0)

  183. @184. Kevin- Chicago even released a Harry Truman pop tune in ’75- remember this?:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4mCQHqig-Uk

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  184. I don’t know that Mr Mueller found nothing sufficient to reference to Congress for impeachment? What we all do know is that he certainly hasn’t done so yet, after making his final report to the Attorney General.

    Perhaps you are suggesting that Mr Mueller might have found sufficient evidence to refer to the House for impeachment but has kept it to himself?

    We don’t know anything other than what Barr put in his letter. And he didn’t say Mueller didn’t make an impeachment referral.

    I’d be surprised if Mueller explicitly referred something to Congress and Barr didn’t mention it — but it’s not impossble. And I would not be at all surprised if Mueller said something like: “This report does not conclude, one way or another, whether the extensive evidence of obstruction of justice laid out above reaches
    a level that justifies prosecution. Such a pronouncement involves difficult issues of law and fact that the undersigned believes may be more appropriately resolved by Congress. Given that Congress is a co-equal branch with an oversight role that can include sanctions as provided by the Constitution, the undersigned believes that the evidence described above is more appropriately reviewed by Congress to determine whether that body believes that obstruction has occurred — and, if so, what (if any) sanction is appropriate for that obstruction.”

    In fact, I think a statement somewhat along those lines is completely consistent with Barr’s letter and may well appear in the report. I personally find it quite likely.

    Would that be a referral for impeachment? Debatable. Do you have any idea whether this report contains language like this, Dana (and to be clear which Dana we’re talking about I’ll call you (the Dana who cheerfully admits engaging in hypocrisy for partisan purposes)?

    No, you don’t. You haven’t a clue, despite repeatedly asserting that you do.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  185. @134 Here’s a good clip for the Candace Owen thing; https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DGmFQfKTkFc.

    What do they say in golf? I’d like a ruling? I’d like a ruling from our moral judges. Are these two guys morally fit? Do we have a scale and if so where are they in relation to Trump?

    frosty48 (6226c1)

  186. And the NYT shows that Trump cheats on his taxes. And he cheats on everything else in life — especially his finances — so I would truly be shocked if his taxes were entirely on the up and up.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  187. I know these people [those who have witnessed and called out the extreme bias shown by the MSM] are there, I know I’m not a Lone Ranger, I know I’m not the only journalist who remembers what great, independent journalism is supposed to look like, I know I’m not the only journalist who is watching in horror as opinion and pejorative language is passed off as fact, where anonymous sources are given complete cover to do political assassinations without any regard for the consequences of what they’re doing, where journalists are walking hand in hand with propaganda groups in pushing forward narratives that are not based in fact, that are not based on honest journalism, that are nothing more than political targeting thinly disguised as journalism today. And you know the best thing about this, Mark, there’s one set of people who are not fooled by any of it. They lack the context, very often, they lack a lot the information to know exactly the extent of how they are being deceived and manipulated but they know in their guts and that’s the audience… that the viewers that’s the readers, whether they are Democrats or Republicans…

    Lara Logan on Mark Levin Show

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  188. @134 Here’s a good clip for the Candace Owen thing; https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DGmFQfKTkFc.

    What do they say in golf? I’d like a ruling? I’d like a ruling from our moral judges. Are these two guys morally fit? Do we have a scale and if so where are they in relation to Trump?

    Am I supposed to feel sorry for her after watching that clip? I don’t.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  189. “BTW, I resent having to defend Trump against this political axe-grinding. ”

    – Kevin M

    Bully for you. I resent having to admit that a scumbag, cheat, moron, and criminal like Trump is the president of the country into which I was born.

    Whose grievance is more legitimate? You don’t wanna defend Trump? Then stop defending Trump. It’s not rocket science.

    Leviticus (646937)

  190. Very fertile ground out there for all of this propaganda and still, the bullschiff gets deeper by the day.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  191. To be fair, your post has it’s own non-sequiturs, such as bringing Madoff’s crimes into the picture, which suggests that Trump is somehow like him.

    Kevin M,

    I love having to deal with an utter lack of logic and the inability of my commenters to process a very simple point.

    Here’s the argument:

    YOU: Every rich guy who cheats on his taxes gets caught! Ergo Trump is supes innocent!

    ME: Here’s a rich guy namaed Bernie Madoff who got away with tax fraud and lots of other stuff for years. So you’re wrong.

    YOU: Oh so you’re saying Trump is exactly the same as Madoff???

    Is this the level of argumentation I can expect from you in the future? If so, let’s not talk any more. Dealing with thickheadedness this dense makes me crabby. I don’t like being this crabby.

    Do better or we’re done.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  192. Bully for you. I resent having to admit that a scumbag, cheat, moron, and criminal like Trump is the president of the country into which I was born.

    Whose grievance is more legitimate? You don’t wanna defend Trump? Then stop defending Trump. It’s not rocket science.

    LOL. I thought something very similar but you put it well.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  193. The points in my comments were:

    #8: There are some easy ways to avoid income taxes, such as not taking a salary, and not taking cap gains directly, but borrowing against stock. None of it criminal.

    #9: The context was in what I was replying to as much as what I wrote, and linking to that doesn’t mean that people actually went to the link when they read the excerpt.

    #10: Business practices that are COMMON in the world are sometimes shocking to laymen. Exposing Trump’s returns to people who have no understanding of COMMON tax strategies is prejudicial, and intended to be so. Apple isn’t the only one doing stuff like that in Ireland. Intel does it too, and there are 48 other companies doing the same thing, all listed at the same Wikipedia link I provided.

    #11: nearly everyone writes off things they are unsure of at times. That tree that fell on the house and caused $30K in damage during the hurricane. Is that a disaster loss? It’s not on the list of federally-approved disasters. It’s defensible and most would take it, but the IRS might not accept it. Not criminal though. I very much doubt Trump is taking deductions for his dog. Or even for his bribes.

    None of this has anything to do with the fraud the NYT documented. This wasn’t stuff that was a clever but legal loophole. It was fraud, pure and simple. Fraud of the sort the guy engages in so routinely that anyone who denies how routine it is, at this point, is someone not worth my time to talk to.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  194. I’m hardly that mad at Trump anymore. He’s a bad person but there’s lot of bad people.

    The part I can’t get over is realizing how little regard people have for their own credibility, as they cheerfully toss it overboard to make mind-bendingly absurd arguments on behalf of bad people.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  195. If you have a chance, watch Lara Logan on Mark Levin’s “Life, Liberty & Levin”, she is very special and she has a lot to say about the current state of “journalism”.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  196. If you have a chance, watch Lara Logan on Mark Levin’s “Life, Liberty & Levin”, she is very special and she has a lot to say about the current state of “journalism”.

    Yeah? Did she talk about screwing up a major story on 60 Minutes? What was her take on that? Good if she does it, bad if Dan Rather does it?

    Patterico (115b1f)

  197. And he didn’t say Mueller didn’t make an impeachment referral.

    I’d be surprised if Mueller explicitly referred something to Congress and Barr didn’t mention it — but it’s not impossible.

    After the entire thread about having to carefully parse the Barr wording and the Mueller quotes, needing to carefully translate the legal language used we’re here? Really? He didn’t not say something? It’s not impossible? You’ve even got fan fiction.

    There are a lot of things we can speculate the Mueller report says and there are a lot of things that aren’t impossible. It’s not impossible that Mueller found Jimmy Hoffa.

    frosty48 (6226c1)

  198. After the entire thread about having to carefully parse the Barr wording and the Mueller quotes, needing to carefully translate the legal language used we’re here? Really? He didn’t not say something? It’s not impossible? You’ve even got fan fiction.

    There are a lot of things we can speculate the Mueller report says and there are a lot of things that aren’t impossible. It’s not impossible that Mueller found Jimmy Hoffa.

    Do you think the language I used is as likely as Mueller finding Jimmy Hoffa?

    Then you and I have a very serious disagreement, because Mueller found the evidence of obstruction so strong that he couldn’t even rule out a criminal prosecution (although he could not rule it in either). What about that leads you to conclude that the most logical possibility — that he suggested Congress evaluate the evidence of obstruction — is so vanishingly unlikely that you feel free to mock someone who advances it?

    Patterico (115b1f)

  199. “It’s not impossible that Mueller found Jimmy Hoffa.”

    That would be absolutely fabulous!

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  200. @202. Are you trying to be funny… etc., etc… 😉

    If she cared about the state of journalism, she wouldn’t appear on an opinion, especially show on Fox.

    ‘I could end your career with a phone call.’ – Lara Logan, one time friend of Les Moonves.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  201. Am I supposed to feel sorry for her after watching that clip? I don’t

    You’re supposed to be shocked that two sitting congressmen during a hearing tried to falsely smear someone as a Hitler apologist, lied, and then didn’t show an ounce of regret when they got busted.

    Especially after you’ve made it clear engaging in hypocrisy for partisan purposes and making arguments on behalf of bad people is something you think is a bad thing.

    frosty48 (6226c1)

  202. ^opinion show

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  203. You can’t follow the game unless you know the players; the once chubby Nadler and the then Marla-banging Trump have been light saber jousting in NYC media circuses for years- the local feud has just gone national.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  204. Earlier Tuesday, Attorney General William Barr told Congress Horowitz is likely to wrap up his investigation by May or June.

    https://dailycaller.com/2019/04/09/stefan-halper-doj-fbi-informant/

    Sounds like a summer full of “mind-bendingly absurd arguments on behalf of bad people” awaits!

    Munroe (3ba8e6)

  205. “Attorney General William Barr has assembled a team to review controversial counterintelligence decisions made by Justice Department and FBI officials, including actions taken during the probe of the Trump campaign in the summer of 2016, according to a person familiar with the matter.”

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  206. @205 Just to be clear; I’m not mocking that he suggested Congress evaluate the evidence of obstruction I’m criticizing, not mocking, he didn’t say Mueller didn’t make an impeachment referral.

    First, I don’t think those are interchangeable statements. Second, I think you are doing what you are criticizing, not mocking, Dana of many names for. You don’t know what’s in the report either and the most logical possibility is based more on what you hope for than what we’ve seen in the summary.

    Also, I’m sorry about the fan fiction thing. That was over the line and went into the mocking territory.

    frosty48 (6226c1)

  207. 134. Nadler sent a fund raising e-mail saying Trump had attacked his character by saying he wanted information (not sure what info both of them were talking about) in order to hand it over to the 2020 Dem nominee.

    Sammy Finkelman (f202fe)

  208. https://www.nytimes.com/2019/04/09/nyregion/newyorktoday/nyc-news-trump-taxes.html

    Federal laws, for instance, shield federal tax information. If New York were to release federal return information contained within a state return, the I.R.S. wouldn’t be happy and could even “cease cooperation with the state,” said Daniel Hemel, an assistant professor at the University of Chicago Law School.

    Is this true?

    Sammy Finkelman (f202fe)

  209. This is the latest bill (which seems designed to affect only Trump)

    A bill in the Democratic-controlled Legislature would allow the Department of Taxation and Finance to release any state tax return requested by three committees in the United States Congress for any “specific and legitimate legislative purpose.”

    This one Cuomo seems inclined to back.

    Sammy Finkelman (f202fe)

  210. You’re supposed to be shocked that two sitting congressmen during a hearing tried to falsely smear someone as a Hitler apologist, lied, and then didn’t show an ounce of regret when they got busted.

    Especially after you’ve made it clear engaging in hypocrisy for partisan purposes and making arguments on behalf of bad people is something you think is a bad thing.

    I think she dug the hole herself and I don’t agree that she was falsely smeared:

    Patterico (115b1f)

  211. I’d like to hear the question, but if you listen to her answer it sounds pretty clear that:

    1. She is the one who brought up Hitler
    2. She is the one who tied Hitler to Trump’s slogan, and
    3. She is the one who made it sound like she was fine with whatever Hitler wanted to do inside his own country (you know, like killing Jews to Make Germany Great Again) as long as he didn’t try to make the whole world into Germany.

    She dug herself a hole and Lieu played the audio. Bring out the world’s tiniest violin.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  212. @201. Remember your Tom Lehrer, Patterico: ‘…allegiance ruled by expedience…’ – It’s a slippery slope.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  213. @218. Herr Trump says America is ‘full up’ now, too.

    Lady Liberty needs some ‘Liebensraum!’ ‘Round about September 1, watch out, Mexico.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  214. @218 Yes, it was fairly easy to infer that #3 was your interpretation of her comment.

    Do you think Nadler truthfully represented Owen’s response after he interrupted her? Or do you think it was a mistake? And once corrected do you think his response was correct, i.e. did he acknowledge his mistake or was it clear he was going to stand by his false statement?

    frosty48 (6226c1)

  215. Do you think Nadler truthfully represented Owen’s response after he interrupted her? Or do you think it was a mistake? And once corrected do you think his response was correct, i.e. did he acknowledge his mistake or was it clear he was going to stand by his false statement?

    Nope, he clearly was not listening to her and garbled what she had said. He did not acknowledge his mistake.

    But I didn’t think your dander was up because Nadler garbled her statement at the hearing. I thought you were upset because she conned you into thinking her Hitler statement was totally ripped out of context when I don’t think it was at all. I think her little display today was intended to paper over her idiocy with faux righteous rage, and a lot of people (focusing only on attitude and/or not really caring about the facts) decided she had been smeared when I don’t think she was at all. She has herself to blame for the idiot Hitler comments, and she can go perform unspeakable acts on herself as far as I am concerned.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  216. Beldar illustrates the issue perfectly, I think:

    “Instead, we demand — and albeit subject to protective orders which limit use outside the proper purposes of the litigation, we generally get — private tax returns in the hopes and reasonable expectations that they will point us to other fruitful places to look, other threads to pull, other witnesses to subpoena, that we’d never have learned of any other way.”

    Well, that’s understandable, but as the past two years have shown, WE CAN’T REASONABLY TRUST THE PRIVATE INFORMATION OR THE RETURNS TO STAY PRIVATE, nor can we expect reasonable penalties for those who leak, so you can’t assume infinite investigative powers and authorities under the assumption that all procedures will be followed without information leakage, sorry about that. All this talk of hermetically sealed procedures and perfectly protected proceedings are the spherical, frictionless cows of the lawyering profession-constantly ask us to assume them all the time and we’re going to stop inviting you to our parties, respecting your traditions and best practices, indulging your jargon, upvoting your posts, and paying your salaries.

    “I agree with you that Trump is acting purely out of self-interest here, and I further submit that his self-interest is not at all in the interest of America or its citizens, voters, and taxpayers.”

    I am very much of the contrary opinion. If lawyers as a class and profession can, by dint of dogged lawyering, bring down ANYONE, even a righteous man or a President, then lawyers simply have too much power, and they must have their power limited by whatever means necessary. The separation and limitation of powers is, indeed, what America is all about.

    Granting journalists and bureaucrats as a class the ‘win’ of taking down President Nixon already caused them to run roughshod over the entire American media landscape for decades afterward. We will not make the same mistake twice.

    Johnald (0283fe)

  217. I am very much of the contrary opinion. If lawyers as a class and profession can, by dint of dogged lawyering, bring down ANYONE, even a righteous man or a President, then lawyers simply have too much power, and they must have their power limited by whatever means necessary.

    Um, are you saying you think Trump is a “righteous man”?

    And what exactly (he asked nervously, fearing the answer) does “by whatever means necessary” mean to you?

    Totalitarian shit of the sort Trump routinely praises? Violence? Murder? Or “by whatever means necessary” within reason?

    Just curious.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  218. Granting journalists and bureaucrats as a class the ‘win’ of taking down President Nixon…

    Are we playing the “poor Richard Nixon” game now?

    Patterico (115b1f)

  219. I learned yesterday that Nixon was set up as part of a conspiracy involving the invasion of Cyprus. I’m pretty sympathetic to Nixon now.

    frosty48 (6226c1)

  220. I learned yesterday that Nixon was set up as part of a conspiracy involving the invasion of Cyprus. I’m pretty sympathetic to Nixon now.

    It bothers me that I don’t know whether you are joking.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  221. Clinton voter upon hearing Congressional Democrats have demanded Trump’s tax returns…

    https://www.nydailynews.com/resizer/gxY5zns1OrycOHcK5zjLnHzPgRo=/800×0/arc-anglerfish-arc2-prod-tronc.s3.amazonaws.com/public/XEIN7AFAZRDERFTY5T5BSWAPLU.jpg

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  222. And the NYT shows that Trump cheats on his taxes. And he cheats on everything else in life — especially his finances — so I would truly be shocked if his taxes were entirely on the up and up.

    Trump’s eponymous “charitable foundation” has admitted to fraudulent self-dealing, including stealing money from kids cancer charities and routing it to his golf courses and was finally shut down by the authorities over fraudulent conversion of tax-exempt funds in transactions carried out personally by Donald Trump himself.

    So there’s that.

    Dave (1bb933)

  223. @223. Bureaucrats? The press???? Are you frigging kidding???????????

    Sober up: The Big Dick destroyed himself:

    “Others may hate you. But those who hate you don’t win unless you hate them. And then you destroy yourself.” – Richard Nixon, 8/9/74

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  224. “Um, are you saying you think Trump is a “righteous man”?”

    Just ignoring the ‘or’ like that? Now who’s maliciously misquoting someone? I’ll now throw your highly hypocritical opinion of Candace Owens into the trash where it belongs, what she was saying was simply good sense and accepted foreign policy at the time-invading another country just because they’re massacring their own people is never good foreign policy, there has to be an actual threat to America or America’s interests.

    She is, after all, a principled conservative…or at least capable of a principled conservative position when it’s not her people getting killed.

    “Are we playing the “poor Richard Nixon” game now?”

    Your deflection is as sophomoric as your prose. Poorer us for not giving him a pass, and thus empowering the Democrats, the lying media, and a man already acknowledged upthread as one of America’s worst Presidents this century.

    Johnald (911dc7)

  225. @223. Fella, you outta make some popcorn, find a comfy chair, log on to the National Archives or the Nixon Library and educate yourself w/a weekend of listing to the Nixon tapes.

    Then take a shower.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  226. @227 Joking. I think it’s pretty uncommon for someone to sympathize with Nixon. For something like that, I’d want more unambiguous information.

    frosty48 (6226c1)

  227. YOU: Every rich guy who cheats on his taxes gets caught! Ergo Trump is supes innocent!

    When did I say that? I resent having words I did not say put in my mouth. When other people do that, you get angry at them. I’m just going to point out I NEVER SAID THAT.

    All I have EVER said on this subject is that Trump’s returns have been repeatedly gone over by people who don’t like Trump and they haven’t brought charges. I imagine that, in some cases, Trump has had to pay for disallowed deductions, but that’s a different thing. Not cheating, just not wishing to litigate the issue.

    The point of that being that the Way & Means request is BS, and only made preparatory to a public release and crowd-sourcing/associate-doxxing.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  228. I think somebody is confusing Nixon with the Greek “Colonels” junta. Cyprus brought them down in 1974.

    nk (dbc370)

  229. Then, responding to something I didn’t say, and near as I can tell no one said, you say:

    Here’s a rich guy namaed Bernie Madoff who got away with tax fraud and lots of other stuff for years. So you’re wrong.

    This is what is known as “prejudicial.” And I can’t be wrong as I didn’t say it. If you really want to set up strawmen, do so, but don’t put the straw in MY mouth.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  230. None of this has anything to do with the fraud the NYT documented.

    What does the NYT have to do with this at all? You never referred to it at all. One of the lefter commenters later referred to such a article, and I went and read it and found it mostly air. But whatever, this had nothing to do with the post or my early comments.

    It was about “rich people getting away with fraud for years” which WAS the title of the post.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  231. The part I can’t get over is realizing how little regard people have for their own credibility, as they cheerfully toss it overboard to make mind-bendingly absurd arguments on behalf of bad people.

    WOW. Just wow. I am not going to respond to this, there’s no profit in it.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  232. Just ignoring the ‘or’ like that? Now who’s maliciously misquoting someone? I’ll now throw your highly hypocritical opinion of Candace Owens into the trash where it belongs, what she was saying was simply good sense and accepted foreign policy at the time-invading another country just because they’re massacring their own people is never good foreign policy, there has to be an actual threat to America or America’s interests.

    She is, after all, a principled conservative…or at least capable of a principled conservative position when it’s not her people getting killed.

    “Are we playing the “poor Richard Nixon” game now?”

    Your deflection is as sophomoric as your prose. Poorer us for not giving him a pass, and thus empowering the Democrats, the lying media, and a man already acknowledged upthread as one of America’s worst Presidents this century.

    So long.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  233. YOU: Every rich guy who cheats on his taxes gets caught! Ergo Trump is supes innocent!

    When did I say that? I resent having words I did not say put in my mouth. When other people do that, you get angry at them. I’m just going to point out I NEVER SAID THAT.

    No, not those words exactly — nor would any reader conclude I was saying you said those words exactly.

    All I have EVER said on this subject is that Trump’s returns have been repeatedly gone over by people who don’t like Trump and they haven’t brought charges.

    So?

    If your point is not that, therefore, he did nothing wrong, then what exactly is your point? Go ahead and spell it out. Trump’s returns have been repeatedly gone over by people who don’t like Trump and they haven’t brought charges — therefore, WHAT?

    Patterico (115b1f)

  234. What does the NYT have to do with this at all? You never referred to it at all. One of the lefter commenters later referred to such a article, and I went and read it and found it mostly air. But whatever, this had nothing to do with the post or my early comments.

    It was about “rich people getting away with fraud for years” which WAS the title of the post.

    I have myself referred to it several times in the last two threads, in response to people who argued that Trump’s returns have been repeatedly gone over by people who don’t like Trump and they haven’t brought charges — therefore Trump has committed no tax fraud. I have cited the NYT article to establish that we KNOW he has committed tax fraud.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  235. @233. ‘They’re entertaining, erudite, and filled with bracing common sense that’s quite a breath of fresh air.’

    Only to anti-semites, race baiters and the criminally insane. Make yourself two bowls of popcorn, fella– and a little cottage cheese and ketchup– you’ll love ’em.

    @235. The press didn’t bring Nixon down; The Big Dick brought himself down. He resigned; a criminal president who let down the nation, betrayed his oath of office and his party which, in that era, found the courage to wise up, to put country ahead of party and make him walk the plank.

    Do sober up.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  236. nor would any reader conclude I was saying you said those words exactly

    Isn’t the style ‘: ‘ the same style you see in a transcript? Isn’t a transcript supposed to be a record of what someone said? Or am I using thinking of the wrong thing?

    frosty48 (6226c1)

  237. Perhaps we are talking about two different articles.

    There is one from last October –linked upthread somewhere — that purports to have the goods on Trump, and indeed discusses some shady deals, but it only calls one thing “illegal” and that was something Fred Trump did. Most of it is implication, innuendo and phrases such as “potentially illegal.”

    Reading political articles in the Times or WaPo is about as mind-numbing as listening to Hannity or Trump himself, so I don’t do it a lot. I may have missed the article you find so telling.

    As to why do I defend someone like Trump? Because you always put your defense of individual rights at the worst end of the spectrum, lest you find the problem at your doorstep later. And yes, even if the assh0le has no compunction about other people’s rights.

    I remember a time when we both defended Larry Flynt.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  238. My comment didn’t translate:

    … the style ‘person : dialog ‘ …

    frosty48 (6226c1)

  239. YOU: Every rich guy who cheats on his taxes gets caught! Ergo Trump is supes innocent!

    >>When did I say that? I resent having words I did not say put in my mouth. When other people do that, you get angry at them. I’m just going to point out I NEVER SAID THAT.<<

    No, not those words exactly — nor would any reader conclude I was saying you said those words exactly.

    No exactly, not even close. I don’t even believe that.

    I worked with a billionaire once (guy named Al Mann, now deceased) and he was as crooked as they come. And yes, he cheated on his taxes and didn’t get caught. Used a “Foundation” to invest in his for-profit enterprises among other things. Not only did he have to win, everyone else had to lose.

    I ask that you take a bit more care in attributing words to other people. Perhaps the same care that you ask them to use with you.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  240. Trump is just an entertaining scumbag, such is the popular fare these days; a transient to something else. But Nixon was a much smarter animal. And all the anger toward him is well-founded because he should have known better.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  241. 220. DCSCA (797bc0) — 4/9/2019 @ 7:22 pm

    @218. Herr Trump says America is ‘full up’ now, too.

    That was Switzerland, not Germany.

    Of course it’s not true. The only thing that’s full is the immigration jails.

    Sammy Finkelman (30b6b6)

  242. Kvin M @246

    guy named Al Mann, now deceased) and he was as crooked as they come. And yes, he cheated on his taxes and didn’t get caught.

    Did he get audited?

    Sammy Finkelman (30b6b6)

  243. 218. Patterico (115b1f) — 4/9/2019 @ 7:15 pm

    3. She is the one who made it sound like she was fine with whatever Hitler wanted to do inside his own country (you know, like killing Jews to Make Germany Great Again) as long as he didn’t try to make the whole world into Germany. That’s what she said, although from what she said in the committee hearing, she didn’t actually believe that. But she was trying to justify this globalism thing, with globalism being the baddest thing, and being equal to doing anything about what’s going on in another country.

    Sammy Finkelman (30b6b6)

  244. While is suggests that Trump plays games with valuations…

    It’s more than just “games”, the valuations were fraudulent.

    Paul Montagu (7968e9)

  245. I didn’t close the quote.

    My words start with “That’s what she said.”

    Sammy Finkelman (30b6b6)

  246. They have been taking these dues from me at gunpoint for years.

    run 3 unblocked (f07484)

  247. When did the ny times become quotable?
    lmao

    mg (8cbc69)

  248. I can’t wait for the no trumper presidential primaries. Anti American SJW’s could have a hard time picking their Hitler like candidate.

    mg (8cbc69)

  249. So far the IRS has seemingly allowed all the evil stuff in the NYT story you linked. Nothing has been proven in court it’s all allegations that haven’t gone anywhere in decades.
    But keep pounding. You’ve got a hammer so Trump must be a nail.
    Has anyone ever told you you are vindictive when even slightly crossed? Or prompted you towards introspection and self inventory?
    If so, I’m guessing you responded by mocking them, arrogant in dismissal.
    Don’t eat yourself from the inside out over Trump. He is just another flawed human who became a leader. One of the ongoing themes in the Bible is a parade of deeply flawed leaders. Moses murdered an Egyptian. David committed adultery and sent Uriah into the heart of the battle to be killed.

    Have a better day tomorrow and an even better day the next.

    steveg (e7a56b)

  250. @254. Gee, let me check the papers in the den… GLENN ORBITS EARTH 3 TIMES… MEN WALK ON MOON … NIXON RESIGNS …

    Yup… fake news.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  251. Did he get audited?

    He got reamed at one point and had to pay a lot of money and his Foundation had to have some new directors.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  252. It’s more than just “games”, the valuations were fraudulent.

    I say games, you say fraud. Company A sells to Company B. Both are owned by Trump (or Apple, or NBC, or…). The price of these items is whatever works out best for the bottom line, given the various tax jurisdictions. It’s not illegal, quite, but it does piss off the high-taxers (and sends jobs towards the low-taxers). In some respects it’s a public service.

    If you wanted to say: let’s make this illegal because it sure looks like it should be, well OK. Let’s. But here the Trump Organization is singled out not because people want what they are doing made illegal, but because it is crap that can be laid at their enemy’s feet.

    Find me a NY Times article about the INCREDIBLE crap that Apple pulls in Ireland, or places in South Asia, and prove me wrong.

    Look, Trump is an assh0le, but he’s not a unique one. What all this is about is bringing him down as President because some people are unwilling to accept that he beat Hillary, and other people are upset that their apple cart is being overturned. It’s never about the man or his business.

    I said earlier that I was defending him because he was being attacked unfairly, and to some degree that’s true, but he is ALSO the only champion we have standing between us and the Communist hordes. I won’t help them.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  253. Gee, let me check the papers in the den

    Also, McCain Has Affair, Trump Colludes with Putin, Romney Paid No Taxes Says Senator

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  254. ny times couldn’t even get the Israel election correct.

    mg (8cbc69)

  255. And so we’re back to the idea of what is the point of this? Finding illegality or finding stuff to point and shriek at Trump about?

    Ingot9455 (0433d6)

  256. So long.

    That’s too bad. He’ll be expelled into the void thinking @233 was directed at him.

    frosty48 (6226c1)

  257. @238 WOW. Just wow. I am not going to respond to this, there’s no profit in it.

    I’ve been getting LGF flashbacks lately.

    frosty48 (6226c1)

  258. Before the NYT was covering UP the Holomodor — Stalin’s Ukrainian Holocaust — it had an editorial mocking Goddard’s claim that his rockets would work in the vacuum of outer space without an atmosphere to push against. It’s not a coincidence that the most famous defamation case is New York Times v. Sullivan. They just make sh!t up, and if it’s correct it’s by sheer chance.

    nk (dbc370)

  259. 231:

    I’ll now throw your highly hypocritical opinion of Candace Owens into the trash where it belongs, what she was saying was simply good sense and accepted foreign policy at the time-invading another country just because they’re massacring their own people is never good foreign policy, there has to be an actual threat to America or America’s interests.

    Of course a government that is in the habit of massacring its own people – for reasons directly related to said behaviour and others – might just be an actual threat to America’s interests and those of her allies.

    JP (f06813)

  260. Candace Owens is what she is. A 29-year old college dropout who says things that Trumpkins like. That she was invited to that hearing by Republican “members” helps to explain why 1) they are now in the minority and 2) why they weren’t worth a cow’s fart when they were in the majority.

    nk (dbc370)

  261. So in other words, their AOC.

    urbanleftbehind (4157c7)

  262. Our esteemed host wrote:

    We don’t know anything other than what Barr put in his letter. And he didn’t say Mueller didn’t make an impeachment referral.

    Well, it’s certainly true that the Attorney General did not say, explicitly, that Mr Mueller didn’t make an impeachment referral. But it stretches credulity beyond the breaking point to think that he could have made an impeachment referral to the Congress and it not have been made public.

    I’d be surprised if Mueller explicitly referred something to Congress and Barr didn’t mention it — but it’s not impossble. And I would not be at all surprised if Mueller said something like: “This report does not conclude, one way or another, whether the extensive evidence of obstruction of justice laid out above reaches a level that justifies prosecution. Such a pronouncement involves difficult issues of law and fact that the undersigned believes may be more appropriately resolved by Congress. Given that Congress is a co-equal branch with an oversight role that can include sanctions as provided by the Constitution, the undersigned believes that the evidence described above is more appropriately reviewed by Congress to determine whether that body believes that obstruction has occurred — and, if so, what (if any) sanction is appropriate for that obstruction.”

    In fact, I think a statement somewhat along those lines is completely consistent with Barr’s letter and may well appear in the report. I personally find it quite likely.

    Would that be a referral for impeachment? Debatable. Do you have any idea whether this report contains language like this, Dana (and to be clear which Dana we’re talking about I’ll call you (the Dana who cheerfully admits engaging in hypocrisy for partisan purposes)?

    No, you don’t. You haven’t a clue, despite repeatedly asserting that you do.

    Emphasis mine.

    With all of the Democrats scrambling to try to find something hidden in the full report, had an impeachment referral been made, they’d have trumpeted it to high heaven. I’d say that’s a pretty good clue that I have there.

    You, on the other hand, have made a wholly speculative statement about what you “personally find it quite likely.”

    The New York Times reported than some of Mr Mueller’s staff have said that the report is a bit more damning than what Mr Barr said, but, oddly enough, none of them said that an impeachment referral is in there. Does that mean it’s impossible? No, it doesn’t, but it’s a real clue that it’s highly improbable.

    You are grasping at straws here.

    The very amused Dana (10ea9e)

  263. 268: nk that is fine, take your word for it.

    It is a very shallow and telling view all the same.

    JP (f06813)

  264. So in other words, their AOC.

    Yup.

    nk (dbc370)

  265. Kevin M (21ca15) — 4/9/2019 @ 9:30 pm
    Kevin, Al Mann was great man who, like all philanthropists, spent he majority of his vast fortune for the benefit of mankind. His detractors assumed that just because he put his money into his own businesses, that he was selfish. No, it simply meant that he did not trust the big, popular public institutions to wisely spent the money he had.

    to this day, the Mann trust is owed millions by one of his companies that would never have produced an inhaleable insulin, Afrezza, or market it to the benefit of diabetics everywhere. It is beside the point that there are many other options available, or that Afrezza struggles in a very competitive market. The Manntrust could have called in this debt long ago, but patiently waits.

    The great good that Al Mann did for mankind endures today. I know it is easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle, than a rich man enter into heaven, but I have no doubt that Al Mann made it.

    felipe (5b25e2)

  266. “(you know, like killing Jews to Make Germany Great Again)”
    Patterico (115b1f) — 4/9/2019 @ 7:15 pm

    When Hitler comparisons were offered up back in the Bush era, it always struck me as a top notch debate point.

    Munroe (7eca0f)

  267. Is joke they say in EU. I tell now:
    First, setup for people not live in EU. EU have a couple dozen cigarette package warnings. Caution, not for faint of heart.
    Now joke. Man walk into tobacco shop and ask for pack of cigarettes. Tobacconist give him pack with warning say “Smoking increases the risk of impotence”. Man say: “No, I don’t want these. Don’t you have the ones that cause cancer?”

    nk (dbc370)

  268. @222 I thought you were upset because she conned you into thinking her Hitler statement was totally ripped out of context

    The clip is a practical test of principles. At the beginning of the hearing, Nadler made a point of showing that youtube had disabled comments on the livestream. That is, he was validating censorship. Then Leiu engaged in what could, at best, be described as some ham-handed McCarthyism. Followed by Nadler doubling down on the censorship by lying.

    We live in interesting times.

    frosty48 (6226c1)

  269. What, I wonder, will the #NeverTrump conservatives do when President Trump is renominated by the GOP — not only is he the incumbent, but he enjoys tremendous support within the GOP — and he faces far-left whackos Kamala Harris and Pete Buttigieg — my way early guess for the Democratic nominees — in the general election?

    Perhaps the conservatives who hate President Trump due to his personality and personal belief that he is a criminal will find Miss Harris and Mr Buttigieg to somehow be better people, but the policies which they would impose on the United States ought to be wholly repugnant to any conservative.

    You like Justices Gorsuch and Kavanaugh? Prepare for the nominations of Elizabeth Warren and Hillary Clinton to the Supreme Court! You oppose illegal immigration? Prepare for President Harris to order ICE and DHS to simply stand down in immigration enforcement. You oppose Obumblecare? Prepare for Medicare for All!

    The vast majority of us will never interact with any President on a meaningful, individual basis, but we will all be affected by the President’s policies. Jimmy Carter was supposed to be a nice guy, but his policies were a disaster for our whole country. Barack Obama was, we were told, extremely likable personally, and seems to have no real personal scandals attached to him, yet his policies were disastrous.

    Of course, the never Trump conservatives could support an independent candidacy, but any independent candidacy by conservative or moderate opposition to President Trump is almost certainly going to result in a Democratic victory. Is that really preferable?

    We will have a choice in November of 2020: an absolute [insert slang term for the rectum here] who nevertheless has reasonably conservative policies, or the Democratic nominee, whomever he may be, who will be a policy disaster for conservatives?

    Our choice will be between a man who f(ornicated) a few women he shouldn’t have, versus a person who would f(ornicate) the whole country. An unpleasant choice, to be sure, but there’s really only one choice to be taken.

    The curious Dana (10ea9e)

  270. Is maybe I have ESP? I anticipate response to Curious Dana’s comment 277 in my comment 275?

    nk (dbc370)

  271. What, I wonder, will the #NeverTrump conservatives do when President Trump is renominated by the GOP — not only is he the incumbent, but he enjoys tremendous support within the GOP — and he faces far-left whackos Kamala Harris and Pete Buttigieg — my way early guess for the Democratic nominees — in the general election?

    I’ll probably vote for a Libertarian Candidate.

    GOP results for the issues I care about most, fiscal discipline, limited government, personal liberty, & reduced corruption have been decidedly weak. So far not enough to overcome the good reasons not to vote for him.

    That doesn’t mean i’ll vote for a democrat.

    to vote for someone I need to expect they will accomplish something I value.

    Time123 (af99e9)

  272. 280. Speaking for myself, all I know is that I will not vote for Trump in 2020. My vote is up for grabs for anyone who is willing to run on a (serious) platform of repealing the 16th and 17th amendments, de-evolution of power to the states, and with that, dismantling of the Departments of Housing and Urban Development, Energy, Education, and Labor. No candidate will receive my vote unless they can credibly convince me that they are for these things and willing (if not able) to make them happen.

    But Gryph…

    Yeah, yeah. I know. What are the odds? We’re witnessing history in the making here, folks. A slow national suicide. And whatever your opinions of his character, the truth of the matter is, Donald J. Trump has done precisely s**t to stop it.

    Gryph (08c844)

  273. That is the fallacy in Mr. Dana From Kentucky’s argument. Mr. Trump the President’s only faults are not that he is an asshole who can’t keep it in his pants. He has fornicated up in many other ways too, from losing the House, to losing his window on the Wall, to making the deficit worse, to funding Planned Parenthood, to being a total pansy on the Second Amendment, to looking to get into Kim Jong Un’s pants instead of looking to take his nukes away, ….

    nk (dbc370)

  274. 282. And don’t forget NK, we still have Obamacare.

    Gryph (08c844)

  275. Yes, thank you, next to the Wall, “repeal and replace” was his other big promise.

    nk (dbc370)

  276. 284. And it can not be stated loudly or often enough, he has done neither.

    Gryph (08c844)

  277. 285. Correction: NO ONE has, in fact, done either.

    Gryph (08c844)

  278. I mean, come on. How many of you slobbering Trumpists really believed that we’d get a “big beautiful wall?” And of that number of you, how many of you people believed he’d somehow force Mexico into paying for it?

    Gryph (08c844)

  279. They don’t care, Gryph. They just want to attack Patterico for not agreeing with them about Trump.

    DRJ (15874d)

  280. 288. Silence speaks just as loudly as words sometimes, DRJ. And no one has stepped up to tell me why they think Trump is acting or will act in good faith on any of the campaign promises he hasn’t fulfilled now. They cheer when he talks about closing the border and remain silent as he walks it back within two days. I’ll keep asking the questions as long as Trumpists keep neglecting to answer them.

    Gryph (08c844)

  281. “And don’t forget NK, we still have Obamacare.”
    Gryph (08c844) — 4/10/2019 @ 7:07 am

    Another legacy of prosecutorial misconduct, re: Stevens, not that it would ever get mentioned here.

    Munroe (af62ec)

  282. 290. Maybe so, but that does not change the fact that Obamacare is one of many unfulfilled campaign promises, or that Trump’s most slavish slathering followers simply don’t care.

    Gryph (08c844)

  283. Tallying unfulfilled campaign promises became a vocation starting January 20, 2017.

    Munroe (be81e0)

  284. That’s another Trump supporter from of argument that’s annoying.
    Trump critic: “Trump said he’d fix the street and he hasn’t.”
    Trump supporter: “Obama broke it.”

    Sir, how Obamacare passed is one of the reasons to repeal it. Not an excuse for not repealing it.

    nk (dbc370)

  285. So in other words, their AOC.

    Yup.

    There are a couple of differences. One is a US congresswoman who is quickly becoming the face of the progressive wing of her party and the other is a youtube personality. One is straight espousing fascism and the other has such a well hidden crypto-fascist ideology you’d need Alan Turing to find it.

    frosty48 (6226c1)

  286. No exactly, not even close. I don’t even believe that.

    I worked with a billionaire once (guy named Al Mann, now deceased) and he was as crooked as they come. And yes, he cheated on his taxes and didn’t get caught. Used a “Foundation” to invest in his for-profit enterprises among other things. Not only did he have to win, everyone else had to lose.

    I ask that you take a bit more care in attributing words to other people. Perhaps the same care that you ask them to use with you.

    OK. I asked you a question. Since you are huffily denying the seemingly clear implication of everything you have been arguing, I am going to ask it again. This time I’d like you to answer it rather than ignoring it as you have done so far. This is the question:

    All I have EVER said on this subject is that Trump’s returns have been repeatedly gone over by people who don’t like Trump and they haven’t brought charges.

    So?

    If your point is not that, therefore, he did nothing wrong, then what exactly is your point? Go ahead and spell it out. Trump’s returns have been repeatedly gone over by people who don’t like Trump and they haven’t brought charges — therefore, WHAT?

    Patterico (115b1f)

  287. I think they’re a couple of dipsticks who are where they are because half the population has an IQ below 100.

    nk (dbc370)

  288. If I get the sense that I actually did attribute to you a position that you don’t believe, I’ll apologize — but your ignoring that question makes me believe I was right on the nose and you just don’t want to admit it. We’ll see, I guess.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  289. With all of the Democrats scrambling to try to find something hidden in the full report, had an impeachment referral been made, they’d have trumpeted it to high heaven. I’d say that’s a pretty good clue that I have there.

    You, on the other hand, have made a wholly speculative statement about what you “personally find it quite likely.”

    The New York Times reported than some of Mr Mueller’s staff have said that the report is a bit more damning than what Mr Barr said, but, oddly enough, none of them said that an impeachment referral is in there. Does that mean it’s impossible? No, it doesn’t, but it’s a real clue that it’s highly improbable.

    You are grasping at straws here.

    Do you think the quote I gave is “an impeachment referral”?

    I didn’t say I found an explicit impeachment referral likely. I said the opposite and you are trying to twist my words, as one does when they are willing to be hypocritical to win partisan points as you admit you do.

    But do you really find it ridiculously unlikely that something along the lines of WHAT I ACTUALLY SAID I THINK IS IN THERE is so unlikely as to be grasping at straws?

    I’d like to get you on record, clearly, before the report comes out. My phrasing said nothing about impeachment. Read it again.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  290. So far the IRS has seemingly allowed all the evil stuff in the NYT story you linked. Nothing has been proven in court it’s all allegations that haven’t gone anywhere in decades.

    And there goes the point of the entire post, sailing over your head.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  291. As if Congress doesn’t exist. If Trump were the tyrannical dictator altNeverTrump claims he wants to be, I would certainly blame him for failing to repeal Obamacare. So, which is it?

    Munroe (505c89)

  292. READER: “x”

    ME: “Here are a bunch of reasons why x is a very bad argument.”

    READER: *blinks*

    *blinks again*

    “x”

    “Also you’re a jerk.”

    Patterico (115b1f)

  293. Gryph,

    I applaud your efforts to point out that Trump hasn’t kept his promises.

    I really want a Wall and I don’t want ObamaCare so his ineptness and stupidity are very disappointing to me. Just because Trump won by being erratic doesn’t mean he has to shoot-from-the-hip in governing. He could read and learn and think, but he won’t.

    DRJ (15874d)

  294. “They don’t care, Gryph. They just want to attack Patterico for not agreeing with them about Trump.”

    No… the attacks are one-sided, very short-lived on one end, protracted on the other. They don’t mean anything any more, they have no sting.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  295. See? They even admit it’s about getting even, which is very Trump-like.

    DRJ (15874d)

  296. This thread has become abusive and I am at least partially to blame. Personal insults are being tolerated and that leads me to engage in the same, which the very reason I don’t permit them. So I’m declaring a reset and reminding everyone of the usual rules. Very clearly:

    • No personal attacks
    • No personal attacks
    • No personal attacks
    • No deliberately misstating another’s position
    • No pretending to address a position while actually ignoring it

    “But you violated rule x” at this point is a personal attack, because yes, I just admitted that which is the whole point of the reset. GOING FORWARD IN THIS THREAD THESE RULES MUST BE OBSERVED, NO EXCEPTIONS, SO THINK BEFORE YOU HIT SUBMIT COMMENT.

    I will give at LEAST a one week vacation to anyone who abuses these rules going forward.

    I apologize for all the personal attacks I myself have engaged in, in this thread and others. I have failed in acting the way I want everyone to act and that helps set the tone. I apologize to Dana Not the Guest Poster for repeatedly throwing his comments about hypocrisy in his face. I apologize to Kevin M for disparaging his credibility. If I missed anyone, I apologize to them too.

    Now let’s all do better. Starting now.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  297. And no one has stepped up to tell me why they think Trump is acting or will act in good faith on any of the campaign promises he hasn’t fulfilled now.

    Hasn’t he been putting in funding requests for the wall that keep getting shot down? Wasn’t there a big deal recently about him using DOD money to build it? That seems like a good faith attempt to me. The make Mexico pay part always sounded to me like a chicken in every pot sort of line. I generally interpreted this entire thing as a way to say he was going to be tough on immigration. The argument that because there isn’t a wall covering every inch of the US-Mexico border and that Mexico didn’t directly pay for every single penny of it Trump broke his campaign promise and all Trumpkins were duped is self-undermining. That might be why you don’t hear many people stepping up on it.

    On Obamacare; the mandate was removed and it looks like another court case might be the final nail. No one is complaining about him not keeping his promise to get rid of Obamacare because everyone, including Democrats, is too busy staking out claims on it’s replacement.

    frosty48 (6226c1)

  298. 306. You do have some valid points there. I agree there is only so much Trump can do without the cooperation of Congress. That, in turn, begs the question, why did he make those promises when any reasonable person could have guessed that he would face nigh-impossible odds in fulfilling them? Again, that does not speak well to Trump’s character. Although I would agree that he is an excellent retail politician, to me that is not a compliment.

    Gryph (08c844)

  299. And another thing to remember is, “Repeal and Replace” isn’t what Trump ran on in the truest sense. He promised to get rid of Obamacare as he spoke about it like an evil scourge. Which I think was an absolutely fair characterization, then as now. That’s not how he (or Congress for that matter) is approaching it.

    And for those of you still holding out hope, Trump has gone on the record as saying he’s not going to bother with health care at all until after the 2020 election. Does that sound like the fire-and-brimstone orator you elected back in 2016? Honestly?

    Gryph (08c844)

  300. 226. frosty48 (6226c1) — 4/9/2019 @ 7:47 pm

    226.I learned yesterday that Nixon was set up as part of a conspiracy involving the invasion of Cyprus.

    I haven’t read that but I don’t think that’s correct. It’s probably a distortion of what did happen, with unwarranted accusations against nameless people thrown in.

    The Cyprus crisis was created by the second military government in Greece. There had been a military coup de etet in Greece in 1967, and then asecond coup in 1973. It had always been a Greek nationalist cause that Cyprus should be annexed to Greece, because it was largely Greek speaking.

    But it had a Turkish minority. Also Greeks had lived in Anatolia (which was most of post-World War I Turkey) since long before Alexander the Great, and they were expelled by Ataturk after World War I (the Allies were not inclined to fight any more) and many Turks were expelled from Greece. This was about 1923. They called it a population exchange. There was later a much bigger one between India and Pakistan after the partition of India in 1947. But the idland of Cyprus, being a British colony then, was kept out of the population exchange,.

    Anyway, Cyprus became independent in 1960 (with two British military bases remaining I think under British rule) on the condition that it remain a separate country. So, now, in 1974, the new miliary dictators in Greece staged a coup in Cyprus and toppled Archbishop Makarios. And they were presumably going to annex Cyprus.

    Then the Turkish military invaded northern Cyprus (and they were to expand their zone of control once or twice.)

    Greece and Turkey were both NATO allies, and so there was this whole worry about 2 NATO countries going to war with each other. This is what Kissinger scared Nixon about with the idea that the United States couldn’t handle it while he was in his kind of political crisis — it was a danger to the world, even nuclear war! Who knows what the Soviet Union might do??

    The upshot of the crisis was that the Greek military government resigned (I don’t know what convinced them) and they brought back Constantine Karamnalis, a conservative who had been Prime Minister before, the last time till 1963. He was a sort of Greek Charles de Gaulle, and democracy was restored and the crisis was defused.

    Turkey kept what its military had taken, with Nicosia a divided city, although what you have is s officially a separate Turkish entity in northern Cyprus. It has proven impossible to re-unify Cyprus, or even get people back their lost property, in the ensuing almost 45 years.

    The werm “Deep State” I learned the other day, was coined to refer to the military in Turkey with maybe some others. They made repeated coups, keeping the government going along the same lines as set byAtaturk (secular, and supposedly modern, but really he was what would later be called fascist, which is autocracy without any claim by the autocrat to “legitimacy.”)

    Only in that sense was there any Deep State” involved here in any way.

    Sammy Finkelman (30b6b6)

  301. nor would any reader conclude I was saying you said those words exactly

    Isn’t the style ‘: ‘ the same style you see in a transcript? Isn’t a transcript supposed to be a record of what someone said? Or am I using thinking of the wrong thing?

    I was counting on people being able to use their judgment.

    Articles in the Onion use the “style” of a headline written in the present tense — the same style you read in an actual newspaper. Yet people exercising judgment are generally able to discern that it’s satire.

    I believe anyone who read my summary of my discussion with Kevin, if that reader is exercising judgment, can easily discern that I was not quoting him. If someone thought I was quoting him, that person should probably exit my Web site for good because they are going to spend a lot of time being confused by a lot of stuff.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  302. I continue to believe that Candace Owens is primarily responsible for her idiotic Hitler comments and I was very pleased to see her embarrassed by them at the hearing. I found her little display of outrage to be wholly unconvincing. Next time don’t gratuitously compare Trump to Hitler and maybe people won’t criticize you for it, lady.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  303. 311. Isn’t Candace Owens a Trump supporter? Talk about open-mouth-insert-foot. All you have to know about Donald J. Trump is that he is Donald J. Trump. There’s plenty to talk about there without weak historical comparisons, whether you like the guy or not.

    Gryph (08c844)

  304. @281 No candidate will receive my vote unless they can credibly convince me that they are for these things and willing … to make them happen

    What would a convincing plan look like? Because you’d actually need some sort of plan and not just candidate X being super-cereal about man-bear-pig right? Especially, on the topics you mentioned.

    Wouldn’t some of the top 3-5 steps involve judges and a metric ton of deregulation? Where do you put Trump on judges and deregulation?

    frosty48 (6226c1)

  305. Berard Sanders is now going to release 10 years worth of tax returns, when he has ten years worth ready, which will be probably around April 15. He says they will be boring.

    Reporters asked him if he wasn’t a billionaire like Trump wasn’t he at least a millionaire, and he acknowledged it, saying anyone wrote a best selling book they would be too.

    Sammy Finkelman (30b6b6)

  306. 314. Heh. So Bernie has become what he hates. The irony is rich.

    Gryph (08c844)

  307. 313. Okay on judges. But I don’t trust judges. The only thing worse than an elected politician is a politician appointed by an elected politician. As far as deregulation, Trump is just as worthless at deregulation as any politician from either party.

    The changes I seek must necessarily start from the bottom up, with the electorate. Yeah, I know. I’m not holding my breath.

    Gryph (08c844)

  308. @305 why this is the best conservative blog imo. Not forgetting to be human. It’s really ugly out there. There’s Trump ofc and Obama was right about the Dems circular firing squad. People are just flat out lying about and smearing each other, across the political spectrum. It’s gonna be an ugly and fascinating policitcal season. As a mayor Pete fan I have at least a couple of years of “Butt” jokes to look forward to. Can’t wait.

    JRH (8f59ea)

  309. My daughter is filing her first tax return this year. For her summer internship stipend last year. She was sixteen. She owes $38.

    nk (dbc370)

  310. 314… Sanders has nearly always been orally attached to the taxpayer teat. I’d rather read of what he’s actually accomplished during his years of adulthood.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  311. Wouldn’t some of the top 3-5 steps involve judges and a metric ton of deregulation? Where do you put Trump on judges and deregulation?

    I’ll reverse the question to you. What judges and deregulation has Trump done that any other GOPe presidential possibility would not have done?

    And to the degree that Trump has (if the reports are true) simply selected judicial nominees off of a Federalist Society list, how much credit should he get for that anyway?

    kishnevi (496414)

  312. The main reason that Trump can expect to be re-elected is not anything he’s done, but the fact that the Democrats have no one to offer who can be reasonably thought of being an occupant of 1600 PA.

    kishnevi (496414)

  313. Patterico (115b1f) — 4/10/2019 @ 8:00 am

    Very well done, sir. This is why you deserve every commenters respect.

    felipe (5b25e2)

  314. Find me a NY Times article about the INCREDIBLE crap that Apple pulls in Ireland, or places in South Asia, and prove me wrong.

    Whataboutism noted, but Apple is a global company and did not break US law, hence the raft of Democrat Congresspeople trying to make Apple pay for moving its cash offshore. As a person who’s worked in commercial real estate since the 1980s, the valuations were fraudulent, even by the loosier goosier appraisal standards of that era. Also noted is the bulls**t notion that criticizing Trump = “lefter commenters”.

    Paul Montagu (7968e9)

  315. I’ve been getting LGF flashbacks lately.

    The difference is that Johnson bamsticked people for simply disagreeing with him, even civilly. Count me as one those banned by that jerkoff.

    Paul Montagu (7968e9)

  316. @311 I think that if this is the limit of your analysis you’re doing yourself a disservice. The difference between nationalism and globalism is important to understand. The relationship of both to socialism is important to understand. The distinction between fascism and genocide of any sort is also important.

    The mapping of fascism to Hitler to genocide keeps us from being able to discuss the modern threat of fascism. Especially, as it relates to censorship and attacks on people for wrongthink.

    frosty48 (6226c1)

  317. I echo felipe… Pat, even though I don’t agree with you on many things, this is my “go to” blog to scratch my political itch.

    @Gryph:

    288. Silence speaks just as loudly as words sometimes, DRJ. And no one has stepped up to tell me why they think Trump is acting or will act in good faith on any of the campaign promises he hasn’t fulfilled now. They cheer when he talks about closing the border and remain silent as he walks it back within two days. I’ll keep asking the questions as long as Trumpists keep neglecting to answer them.

    I’ll play.

    I do think he’s trying to good faith. I think he was given bad advice on many occasions (ie, why didn’t he take the senate’s DACA for Wall deal initially).

    290. Maybe so, but that does not change the fact that Obamacare is one of many unfulfilled campaign promises, or that Trump’s most slavish slathering followers simply don’t care.

    Gryph (08c844) — 4/10/2019 @ 7:29 am

    This criticism irks me as it feeds the Narrative that the GOP “controlled” Congress from 2016-2018.

    No… they did NOT. GOP had a tiny majority in the Senate and didn’t have the power to overcome the 60th vote cloture threshold. They idea that enough Democrats would join in with the GOP to pass legislation that Trump can claim credit is really laughable. That’s not all on Trump.

    307 306. You do have some valid points there. I agree there is only so much Trump can do
    without the cooperation of Congress. That, in turn, begs the question, why did he make those promises when any reasonable person could have guessed that he would face nigh-impossible odds in fulfilling them? Again, that does not speak well to Trump’s character. Although I would agree that he is an excellent retail politician, to me that is not a compliment.

    You just described just about every successful politician…like ever.

    whembly (b9d411)

  318. 321 The main reason that Trump can expect to be re-elected is not anything he’s done, but the fact that the Democrats have no one to offer who can be reasonably thought of being an occupant of 1600 PA.

    kishnevi (496414) — 4/10/2019 @ 9:08 am

    Eh… no one thought Trump had a chance.

    whembly (b9d411)

  319. Thank you, Patterico, for your comment at 8AM. I don’t see that approach from other blogs very often.

    I’m tipping my hat in respect.

    Simon Jester (c8876d)

  320. would that it were reciprocal, you still haven’t figured who the real enemy is, it’s not us, who blocks the conviction of gang members, terrorists, who is enforcing this skydragon scam, who writes algorithms to block the gateways for center right media, who argues for the Cuban proxy regime to crush the lives of the Venezuelan people, as they did in Nicaragua, 35 years ago,

    narciso (d1f714)

  321. Eh… no one thought Trump had a chance.

    That’s not quite what I said. Someone in, say, 2015, look at Trump and think he had it in him to be “presidential”. None of the current crop of Democrats have even that going for them, except perhaps Biden.

    kishnevi (496414)

  322. Yes… I think it qualifies as a bombshell…

    Washington Examiner
    @dcexaminer
    Barr says he believes Trump’s 2016 campaign was spied on.

    @brianschatz
    : “Do you wanna rephrase … I think the word ‘spying’ could cause people in the cable news ecosystem to freak out.”

    Barr: “Unauthorized surveillance … is that more appropriate in your eyes?”

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  323. Perhaps the Trump-Barr Collusion narrative will begin before my prediction of next week…

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  324. That Trump’s AG should publicly say the main talking point of the Trumpian echo chamber for the last two years should surprise no one.

    kishnevi (496414)

  325. 331 Eh… no one thought Trump had a chance.

    That’s not quite what I said. Someone in, say, 2015, look at Trump and think he had it in him to be “presidential”. None of the current crop of Democrats have even that going for them, except perhaps Biden.

    kishnevi (496414) — 4/10/2019 @ 9:56 am

    I respectfully disagree.

    If Trump can win… so could any of the current crops of Democratic candidates.

    whembly (b9d411)

  326. Funny how Barr had respect from both sides of the aisle before Trump.

    We’ll soon see if the case was “overstated, to say the least”.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  327. Perhaps we’ll learn that Trump’s predecessor weaponized the DoJ, FBI and the nation’s intelligence apparatus and used them in a way that will make Watergate look like a high school prank.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  328. apparently it’s only natural, barely an inconvenience, coronello, and it’s apparently unsurprising that two treasury officials were accessing confidential tax info, like with joe the plumber,

    narciso (d1f714)

  329. Kishnevi: “And to the degree that Trump has (if the reports are true) simply selected judicial nominees off of a Federalist Society list, how much credit should he get for that anyway?”

    Trump is reported in the press as having interviewed the judges up for these various positions, so he’s at least involved in the process to that degree. Some of them were mentioned as having not done too well in the interview, Amy Coney Barrett being the one who is popular-but. I thought that was pretty much what every President does.

    Ingot9455 (8e82a1)

  330. Yes, narciso, something stinks.

    “Here are some things we never hear. Seventy-five percent of the black boys in California don’t meet state reading standards. In inner cities like Baltimore within five high schools and one middle school not a single student was found to be proficient in math or reading in 2016. The singlehood–the single motherhood rate in the black community, which is at 23 percent in the 1960s when my grandfather was coming out, is at a staggering 74 percent today. I am guessing there will be no committee hearings about that.

    There are more black babies aborted than born alive in cities like New York and you have Democrat Governor Andrew Cuomo lighting up buildings to celebrate late-term abortions. I could go on and on.

    My point is that white nationalist–white nationalism did not do any of those things that I just brought up. Democrat policies did.”

    —- Candace Owens

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  331. indeed, yet the deray mckissons, the tahnesi coates of the world, don’t address that point, at all, that makes them authentic, their view is it’s johannesberg 1960, and no subtle deviation,

    narciso (d1f714)

  332. We had the election on this issue–the missing tax returns were discussed endlessly. He won.

    The People decided that they didn’t care: they rejected the wisdom of the “What’s a border?” lobby, the “Paris Agreement,” lobby and the “We are citizens of the world,” lobby.

    Rejected as well, was the condescending “wisdom” of the “We Prefer to lose honorably” Lobby, that concluded–in their Superior Wisdom don’t you know–that is was preferable to give Hillary the election, the Supreme Court, 100,000 refugees each year, an open border, and a weaponized FBI.

    Perhaps if CNN and others had been more receptive and fair to Boy Scout Romney, Trump would never have appeared. But they weren’t. And he did. We saw what happened to the Boy Scout.

    Perhaps if Obama’s supporters-and the “Let us lose honorably” crowd had managed to insist on unsealing Obama’s grades with the same zeal his opponent’s divorce files were unsealed, and with the same diligence the WaPo used in investigating trum–Trump’s returns might have resonated more.

    But they didn’t. The focus on the missing returns is simply more evidence that the “Not Trump” crowd’s primary value is losing gracefully.

    Two scoops, two genders, two terms, no tax returns. Deal with it.

    Harcourt Fenton Mudd (5e0a82)

  333. @336. Funny how [insert name and reputation here] had respect from both sides of the aisle before Trump.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  334. @337. Like the Nixon-Mitchell tag team.

    History rhymes.

    “You’d be better advised to watch what we do, not what we say.” – John Mitchell

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  335. @329. Kinda Access Hollywood tapish…. kind Kim love letters like…

    Kinda Helsinki.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  336. I’ll reverse the question to you. What judges and deregulation has Trump done that any other GOPe presidential possibility would not have done?

    To the degree that SCOTUS options generally come from previous lower court picks you’ve got a point. But GOPe does not have a consistent history of putting up reliably conservative judges or trying to block obviously liberal ones. If GOPe was capable of doing this as consistently as D’s puts up liberal judges why haven’t they? Do you think GOPe, absent Trump, would ignore the blue slip process in the 9th circuit? If so why are they only doing it now? The 9th circus is not a new rodeo.

    And to the degree that Trump has (if the reports are true) simply selected judicial nominees off of a Federalist Society list, how much credit should he get for that anyway?

    At a minimum, he should get some credit for recognizing his limits and doing the whole learn and listen to other people thing his terrible character and weapons-grade narcissism is supposed to make him incapable of. The argument here seems to be Trump doesn’t get any credit for keeping his promise to appoint conservative judges because he went to the Federalist Society to get a list of conservative judges and then he appointed people from that list.

    Just like if the wall is built he should get some credit and we really shouldn’t need to debate whether ‘we’re going to build …’ means he doesn’t really deserve any because he didn’t pour the concrete himself.

    frosty48 (6226c1)

  337. Also noted is the bulls**t notion that criticizing Trump = “lefter commenters”.

    This would work better if not criticizing Trump enough != ‘immoral Trumpkin’

    frosty48 (6226c1)

  338. @304. DRJ: which is why that letter from The Big Dick hangs on the wall in the Trump White House.

    https://thehill.com/homenews/administration/310052-trump-to-hang-nixon-letter-in-oval-office-report

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  339. @329. Kinda Access Hollywood tapish…. kind Kim love letters like…

    Kinda Helsinki.

    DCSCA (797bc0) — 4/10/2019 @ 11:27 am

    I’d argue that a previous administration from a different party “spying” on their opponent’s campaign is far more dangerous and corrosive than the ones you’ve listed.

    whembly (51f28e)

  340. @340 Careful there Colonel Goebbels. Die Wiederholung der Wörter bekannter Hitler-Fangirls kann Konsequenzen haben…

    frosty48 (6226c1)

  341. 349. Argue away. We know now LBJ caught The Big Dick, through Chennault, trying to deal w/Hanoi before the election. “Treasonous” behavior. The Republican won. The world moved on.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  342. Today;s lie in the NY Times: “The Border Is Broken. And There’s No Plan to Fix It.”

    https://www.nytimes.com/2019/04/10/us/immigration-border-mexico.html

    Maybe if judges in the 9th Circuit would stop blocking Trump, there might BE a plan.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  343. @350. Per my Playbill, Stephen Miller will be playing the role of Herr Goebbels for the remainder of this show’s run.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  344. @315. So is he. At least by his standards. Do you tell him his campaign has just flamed out or let him wait to watch his donations dry up before he crashes and burns- and tape his new infomercial which will open with the line:

    “If you write a best-selling book, you can be a millionaire too!” – Bernie Sanders

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  345. @355 There is a group of progressives stuck in the same position many Trump voters are in. We can probably recycle a large number of comments on this board by using a simple search and replace then donating them to BernieBrosUSA.

    So, I wouldn’t be so sure he just flames out from this. The multiple mansions information was baked into 2016.

    frosty48 (6226c1)

  346. @356. W/18 candidates now, it’s to “the other side’s advantage” to keep him in the air as long as possible to take aim at an lob daily shots of hypocrisy at him as a distraction. But he’s one of the old hedgehogs in a field of young weasels anyway. Only two people in this day and age can beat Trump with his own game: Trump himself– and Oprah Winfrey.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  347. Bernie can beat Trump IMO. The only way the Dems can lose (IMO) is by nominating someone as unlikeable as HRC, so Hillary again.

    JRH (8f59ea)

  348. Two Long Island populists. Would be a good battle.

    JRH (8f59ea)

  349. Now it’s an attempted “coup.”

    So far, We The People have been ‘told’ a report, 22 months in the making, was deliver 3 weeks ago; an unsolicited 4 page memo was spun out to the public by the AG, assertions of “spying” made by same– and our Captain cries ‘coup’ – attempted “mutiny” as they chum the media waters.

    It’s sucker bait; the lure of shiny objects…”coup-coup-ca-choo” Mrs. Robinson.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  350. All of a sudden the Left sees a broken border; must be an election around the corner.

    harkin (0e8c36)

  351. 326. And let me remind you once again Whembly, that when I acknowledge that Trump is a skilled politician, that isn’t a compliment. In fact, it’s not even damning by faint praise. It is a comment on the malleability of his character, such as it is.

    Gryph (08c844)

  352. 340.

    My point is that white nationalist–white nationalism did not do any of those things that I just brought up. Democrat policies did.”

    —- Candace Owens

    Would she care to outline what Democratic policies?

    I don’t know: Public worker unionization and collective bargaining? Budget policies that favor continuing the status quo? Borrowing money for useless reasons? Compulsory attendance at schools, but not compulsory reasonable behavior? Opposition to any form of honors classes? Opposition to traditional sexual morality to the point where it is not expected any more and not even heard of by new generations? Lowering the punishments for serious crimes by juveniles below that of adult repeat offenders? Emphasis on people voting while making it harder for independent candidates to win?

    I think it’s just a talking point, and she doesn’t have anything in mind, and couldn’t name anything.

    Does she have even anything less basic?

    Tthings that while they didn’t cause it, prevent improvement. Limitstions on charter schools?and opposition to the voucher system.

    https://www.nationalreview.com/2019/04/donald-trump-is-magnifying-the-border-crisis/

    Sammy Finkelman (102c75)

  353. Kevin M (21ca15) — 4/10/2019 @ 11:52 am

    Maybe if judges in the 9th Circuit would stop blocking Trump, there might BE a plan.

    David Frencj of National Review said:

    https://www.nationalreview.com/2019/04/donald-trump-is-magnifying-the-border-crisis/

    America;s immigration and border enforcement regime is established by Congress. It can on;y be refremed by Congress And what he doesn’t say, Congress isn’t interested in doing – in fact is adamantly opposed – to what Donald Trump (and even National Revew) wants.

    Sammy Finkelman (102c75)

  354. 362… the so-called War on Poverty. Daniel Moynihan wrote about the results, google it. There’s much in the way of info and studies out there.

    These trends don’t affect just black folks, but they appear to be more pronounced in that demographic.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  355. Kevin Williamson says Trump always gets criticized by Democrats for the wrong things:

    https://www.nationalreview.com/2019/04/donald-trump-critics-incompetent/

    But it is possible to lie about a scoundrel, to be dishonest about the dishonest. And, for some strange reason, the Democrats have latched on to complaints about Trump that seem to be the least rooted in fact, the narrative that is least connected to that which is documented and demonstrable.

    But I explained it. They always prefer false charges to true ones because they ahve more control over the narrative.

    If someone wants to plan an attack campaign, it’s easier with made up charge. You know what the controversy is going to be. True charges may have a prepared defense. False charges do not.
    False charges don’t have a prepared defense when first made, and they can keep on inventng new ones if they are in that business.

    Fase charges are more clearly evil or can be argued that way. True charges are less controversial than false ones. (at least anyway the attackers know their target audience)

    Sometimes the false charges may be more controversial but this leaves the defense undecided by whether they should argue it wasn’t so bad what he’s accused of, or argue the facts. If it’s true the best thing us to argue it wasn’t so bad. This won’t be done with a false charge.

    Sammy Finkelman (102c75)

  356. Obama’s policies re: disparate impact and behavior in the classroom… the constant propagation of a sense of victimhood, powerlessness, de-emphasis of personal responsibility and self-accountability… identity politics… division and tribalism… and on, and on…

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  357. 326. And let me remind you once again Whembly, that when I acknowledge that Trump is a skilled politician, that isn’t a compliment. In fact, it’s not even damning by faint praise. It is a comment on the malleability of his character, such as it is.

    Gryph (08c844) — 4/10/2019 @ 1:55 pm

    I really don’t dispute that.

    It’s de jour that politicians are malleable (policy-wised AND character).

    So, my perspective is that we shouldn’t look to our elected officials to be of high character (wouldn’t hurt though to be suer). We should be looking at them as “tools” to advance our agendas… even if they ARE a tool. (IYKWIM)

    whembly (b9d411)

  358. 364. The War on Poverty was just a way to waste money. Moynihan wrote about results. He didn’t go into causes.

    Maybe you could argue it reduced the necessity to learn how to make money in a economically sound way, but that was really otehr thins going on at the same time.

    You could argue a higher minimum wage is very destructive.

    Sammy Finkelman (102c75)

  359. except trump wants to build things up, Bernie wants to destroy, and reshape the country in the model of his touchstones, the old soviet union, and Nicaragua, no he isn’t enamored of social democracy, we’ve seen this movie before, the problem is ‘tactile nuclear weapons’ gillebrand, skippy kennedy, et al are much the same flavor,

    narciso (d1f714)

  360. 366. But all that came very late. It maybe helped prevent imporvement, but didn’t cause the problem in the first place.

    Sammy Finkelman (102c75)

  361. “If you write a best-selling book, you can be a millionaire too!” – Bernie Sanders

    Not a exact quote, but close.

    Sammy Finkelman (102c75)

  362. Ari Fleischer

    @AriFleischer
    Today is the day the shoe moved to the other foot. This is a big deal. For two years, the media breathlessly covered, and acquiesced to, allegations against Trump, no matter how absurd. Now the allegations are against the Obama Admin. Why do I think the coverage wil be different?

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  363. Patterico on Candice Owens is…well…that moment when you realize rationality, logic, facts, and reasoned argument has gone completely out the window.

    Yeah, you’re right, Patterico. Owens is guilty of making a Hitler analogy. So it’s OK to paint her has a Hitlerophile, completely and dishonestly distorting her obvious point. And we should all just nod along because darn it, she deserved it. Because she made a Hitler analogy.

    I’m no big fan of Candice Owens, but I know an obvious dishonest hit job when I see one, particularly when the video has her lay it out point by point.

    Let’s be clear about what her point was. Candice Owens was objecting to the fact that Hitler is referred to as a Nationalist. She thinks what he did isn’t Nationalism. The part Lieu quoted was her making the argument that, had Hitler been a normal leader – a Nationalist as she sees Nationalism – then “ok.” But, her point continues, he wasn’t and thus isn’t a Nationalist.

    Now, I disagree with Owens for the same reasons I disagree with all of the Leftists who try to deny the “Socialist” part of National Socialism. The fact of the matter is, Hitler was a kind of Nationalist. Just as he was a kind of Socialist. He was also a vegetarian, but I think it is reasonable to argue his National socialism had more to do with the evils he wrought in Nazi Germany than did his vegetarianism.

    But I have no problem with Nationalists like Owens and Socialists like Sanders arguing that Hitler’s evil was unique, and that the horrific evils he perpetrated were not a function of “Nationalism” or “Socialism” as those terms are generally understood. Whatever you think about that argument, it is obviously not an argument that is in any way excusing it Hitler. It is an argument disassociating one’s own ideological perspective from Hitler, by arguing that Hitler’s evil isn’t consistent with the ‘true’ ideological perspective of Nationalism (for Owens) or Socialism (for Sanders).

    And she has a decent argument there. Much like “conservatism” means something different in America (where we are conserving a liberal republic built on Enlightment principles) versus, say, the conservatism of the Islamic Mullahs in the Republic of Iran, Owens might argue that American Nationalism is different because the American nation is different than the nation that, say, Hitler envisioned. And thus to lump American Nationalism in with the Nationalism of Hitler is a category error. Sure. We could have a decent academic discussion on how much one shares with the other, and how much that matters. Clearly she has staked out her view.

    But it is just as clearly not what Lieu hoped everyone would take away from that partial clip.

    And…Patterico doesn’t care. Do you care about truth, Patterico? Do you care about honesty in public discourse? Do you care about opposing dishonest partisan hit jobs?

    I do. I don’t have to agree with Candice Owens, or even like Candice Owens to care about that.

    Wow. Just…wow.

    D.GOOCH

    GOOCH (270456)

  364. 366… these are just examples, I’m sure you can do some research, it is something you do pretty well.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  365. #363

    Kevin M (21ca15) — 4/10/2019 @ 11:52 am
    Maybe if judges in the 9th Circuit would stop blocking Trump, there might BE a plan.

    David Frencj of National Review said:

    https://www.nationalreview.com/2019/04/donald-trump-is-magnifying-the-border-crisis/
    America;s immigration and border enforcement regime is established by Congress. It can on;y be refremed by Congress And what he doesn’t say, Congress isn’t interested in doing – in fact is adamantly opposed – to what Donald Trump (and even National Revew) wants.
    Sammy Finkelman (102c75) — 4/10/2019 @ 2:21 pm

    Sammy…what I *think* Kevin is articulating is that the 9th Circuit court seems to conflate what is against the law as opposed to a “difference in opinion on a policy matter”. POTUS has an extremely wide latitude in immigration laws, especially pertaining to who can come in for any reason.

    Its the lawfare in action to what we’ve been seeing lately. (although, I think the court is correct with regards to admin’s plan of sending asylum cases to mexico to wait for adjudication, but I digress)

    I will add that David French’s overall point is solid, in that Trump magnifies the powers of the executive branch, that an otherwise traditional potus wouldn’t have merited a blip in the public’s radar. Longterm… I think that will be Trump’s lasting legacy and hopefully Congress & the Courts can reign the in a bit.

    whembly (b9d411)

  366. @371. He said that, Sammy. Sanders said on Tuesday: “I wrote a best selling book. If you write a best-selling book, you can be a millionaire, too.” -source, businessinsider.com

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  367. @372. So Fleischer has read the report, too??? Golly. Hannity musta passed his advanced copy over to Ari for a look-see to pinch off some extra dingleberries in the media soup, too.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  368. Education and the family unit must be highly valued by a people… as one example, chief among the reasons Americans of Asian ancestry are generally successful is due to the high value placed on family and education, Sammy.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  369. @362 She listed abortion in her talking point and almost all of the others are laid at the feet of the destruction of the black family.

    I think the general argument goes something like:

    Abortion has always targeted lower socio-economic groups. Many of the early advocates of abortion cited its value in controlling the black population. Cheap and easy abortion has been part of the foundation of the Democratic party for a while. Cheap and easy abortion is one of the tools used to destroy the black family.

    The destruction of the black family is generally laid at the feet of LBJ but others have helped it along. LBJ gets credit for starting it because The War on Poverty (WoP) consisted, in part, of social workers pointing out to poor black mothers that they would get more money from the government if they weren’t married. It was helped along by The War on Drugs (WoD) which had disparate sentencing policies for different drugs, those drugs weren’t used equally by different ethnic groups, and black men ended up in prison with longer sentences. This was caused in part by Democratic politicians pushing for the higher sentencing and Clinton’s crime bill.

    This is usually backed up by statistics that show trends like overall poverty in the black community increasing after the start of WoP, along with single motherhood, abortion, increase in crime, etc. The stats for children raised by single mothers are not good, especially for boys, and even more so for black boys.

    The general idea is that post-WW2 the black community was showing economic improvements consistent with the US population in general but around the time of LBJ there was a divergence.

    I’m pretty sure she could elaborate it better than I can. It’s not really my area and I’m not trying to defend it. Don’t respond to me saying ‘you’re saying X’.

    I do think that anyone with any level of awareness should at least ask what happened to the black family. And for the white-nationalists out there, it’s also happening to the white family now too.

    I’ll also point out that these aren’t all right-wing talking points. Some of them are but the effect of the WoD on black men and the black family is something you’ll hear from lefty-progressives.

    frosty48 (6226c1)

  370. 367. That’s great while your tools are in power. The problem is, the way things are set up here, “your tools” inevitably become “the other guys’ tools” and before you know it, someone else is advancing an agenda to take away even more of your freedom (that you’ll never get back with any “tool” politician).

    Let me put it to you another way: If a politician has enough power to give you what you want, he has enough power to take it away as his successor almost certainly will, ergo politicians have too much power regardless of what party they belong to or how favorably you look upon their policy preferences. The way to really solve what ails us in the modern body-politic is to figure out how to strip politicians of their power. And very few Republican voters genuinely seem interested in doing that now that Trump is in power. It’s all a sick twisted game, and We the People always turn out to be on the losing end.

    Gryph (08c844)

  371. Col @ 372 – Soon conservatives may have to communicate by smoke signals

    mg (8cbc69)

  372. How many U.S. Deputy Marshalls does Attorney General William Barr have guarding his life?

    mg (8cbc69)

  373. the so-called War on Poverty.

    The Rich won, the Poor lost.

    nk (dbc370)

  374. What’s the joke; if you want more of something get the US Congress to declare a war on it?

    frosty48 (6226c1)

  375. it does seem that way, see war on inflation, the way the war on Islamism has been pursued seems to have yielded similar results, as long as branches of the moslem brotherhood are in operation, we face a problem, effendi khashoggi was a fan of all of them, Algerian Egyptian, the Jordanian version, and the new sanctuary for them is in Qatar, quelle surprise,

    narciso (d1f714)

  376. and Maxine waters, removes all doubt, and Minneapolis starts?? resembling hamlet towers in the uk:

    https://www.powerlineblog.com/archives/2019/04/at-the-noor-trial-6.php

    narciso (d1f714)

  377. @373. “Lets be clear what Owens point was.”

    Lets. Owens says it right up front in the clip Patterico posted: she’s a ‘nationalist’ who opposes ‘globalism.’

    ‘She thinks what Hitler did wasn’t ‘nationalism.’

    No splitting hairs; it was. End of story.

    ‘… I disagree with all the Leftists who try to deny the ‘Socialist’ part of National Socialism.’

    Then you disagree with Der Fuhrer himself: “Our adopted term ‘Socialist’ has nothing to do with Marxist socialism.” – Adolf Hitler, September 28, 1930

    Arguing against ‘globalism’ in the first quarter of the 21st century is astonishingly arcane and plays on the natural fears of change for those who sense they’ve been ‘left behind.’

    Hitler liked pretty girls and cream cakes. Guess what: so does Trump. Does that make our Captain a right-wing-fascist-Nazi or merely another of many authoritarian, ‘do-it-my-way-and-do-it-now’ corporatists around the world with similar tastes in junk food and dames. Brown is different from black, be they on a painter’s palette or in a shirt dye, but they’re still dark colors.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  378. Kevin, Al Mann was great man who, like all philanthropists, spent he majority of his vast fortune for the benefit of mankind.

    He fukked me and several people I know, but good.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  379. The great good that Al Mann did for mankind endures today.

    As do the people he crushed, for the greater good.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  380. @383. Guess all those burger-flipping-jobs from the Reagan days didn’t pan out after all. ‘You never get rich by digging a ditch’– so they join the army.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  381. I wonder, will the #NeverTrump conservatives do when President Trump is renominated by the GOP

    Well, that depends. If he is renominated because that’s what the primary voters wanted, then I’ll probably vote for him. If he’s renominated because his minions got the states to dispense with “unneeded primaries” and assign delegates at a stacked convention, I dunno.

    This is assuming there is no credible center-right alternative, of course.

    I will vote for nearly* anyone else in the primary, if there is one.


    * #neverkasich

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  382. the so-called War on Poverty.

    Better labeled “Locking People into Poverty.” When you create a system where people who make more than some threshold lose all their benefits at once, you trap them in poverty far more effectively than the most evil capitalist could.

    Obamacare has situations where ONE more dollar of income costs a family $20,000 in subsidies. That’s a wall that’s hard to breach.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  383. Patrick, I apologize too for letting my temper get the better of me. It was not all your fault. I was reacting rather than thinking.

    One of the things I detest about Trump is how he has fractured the old coalition. He’s good at breaking things, and some things need breaking, but putting things together again is beyond him.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  384. @393. ‘He’s good at breaking things…’

    Meh. Look up what he did to the Bonwit Teller facades.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  385. Democrats 2020: “EVERYONE Needs a Proper Rogering”

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  386. If your point is not that, therefore, he did nothing wrong, then what exactly is your point? Go ahead and spell it out. Trump’s returns have been repeatedly gone over by people who don’t like Trump and they haven’t brought charges — therefore, WHAT?

    At this point, it hardly matters — and the stream of the discussion is now long lost — but I did say it in that same comment:

    The point of that being that the Way & Means request is BS, and only made preparatory to a public release and crowd-sourcing/associate-doxxing.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  387. By all means… don’t tell her how to conduct her committee’s business!

    “Rep. Maxine Waters seemed to demonstrate that she is in over her head Wednesday when she queried several bank executives about student loans even though they were nationalized under former president Obama nearly a decade ago.
    Waters is the chairwoman of the House Financial Services Committee — the committee that regulates the banks.

    During a hearing examining the practices of some of the nation’s biggest banks, Waters complained to a panel of seven bank CEOs that there are more than 44 million Americans that owe … $1.56 trillion in student loan debt.”

    She added, “Last year, one million student loan borrowers defaulted, which is on top of the one million borrowers who defaulted the year before.”

    She then demanded to know what they intended to do about this massive problem. “What are you guys doing to help us with this student loan debt?” she asked. “Who would like to answer first? Mr. Monahan, big bank.”

    Bank of America chairman and CEO Brian Monahan replied, “We stopped making student loans in 2007 or so.”

    Ms. Waters replied, “Oh, so you don’t do it anymore. Mr. Corbat?”

    Said Citigroup CEO Michael Corbat: “We exited student lending in 2009.”

    James Dimon, JPMorgan Chase chairman and CEO, finally spilled the beans: “When the government took over student lending in 2010 or so, we stopped doing all student lending,” he said.

    Waters then quickly changed the subject to small businesses.”

    https://pjmedia.com/trending/maxine-waters-grills-big-bank-ceos-about-student-loans-which-were-nationalized-in-2010/

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  388. … putting things together again is beyond him.

    It may be beyond anyone. It’s not easy going back to believing in Santa. Once you’ve dropped the toast there’s a lot you can think about before it hits the ground but catching it is unlikely. Humpty’s got options but being put back together isn’t one of them.

    There’s a joke and since we’re family friendly; a boy asks his dad … rose … bulldog eating mayonnaise.

    frosty48 (6226c1)

  389. Let’s say that Trump cheats on his taxes but is too clever to get caught. I’ll take that without further examination as true. My question is “Then what?” What outcome follows, and is that outcome acceptable.

    If nailing Trump ends up putting the New Green Deal’s bunch of Malthusian central planners in power, trampling on the rights and livelihoods of millions as they attempt to establish a New Economy with no firm grasp of how economies (or physics or engineering or math arithmetic) work, then I say “Let Trump cheat on his taxes.”

    If nailing Trump results in his agreeing not to run again, opening the field up for actual Republicans, then I say “Let’s get to it!”

    But, given the bias in the press, given the unlikelihood that Trump would back down, given the way the voters tend to ignore anything under Richter Scale 8 in politics, I fear the first path to be likely. And by “fear” I mean “Will tolerate nearly anything so that doesn’t happen.”

    There are other paths, of course, but probably not involving “nailing Trump.” He could die. He could decide he’s had enough of this sh1t. He could be beat in the primaries. IT is even possible a well-heeled independent candidate could win — the two parties have never been this far apart.

    But helping Tump’s leftist enemies dance on his carcass does not seem like the best way forward.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  390. That was more than nine hours ago. Why dwell on the past?

    The point is that the statutory scheme of Section 6103 is to protect the confidentiality of tax returns with specific situations in which they can be disclosed to specific persons or agencies with specified restrictions. Not to permit disclosure with situations in which they remain confidential.

    So when sub-section (f) says “closed executive session”, it means the returns remain in closed executive session. Beldar suggested that the Committee or the full House can vote to make them public, but I point to INS v. Chadha and say that that it will take both Houses and the President’s signature (or override of his veto) to craft that amendment of the law.

    nk (dbc370)

  391. So Russian Collusion did not happen, but domestic spying on the Trump campaign to benefit the opposing party certainly did.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  392. Next time don’t gratuitously compare Trump to Hitler and maybe people won’t criticize you for it, lady.

    Bringing Hitler into an argument is always a loser.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  393. Please, 2-1/2 years under our belts and you are still delusional. Get help.

    G Joubert (917efe)

  394. Legislation targeting Adam Schiff…

    Preventing Extreme Negligence with Classified Information Licenses Act, aka the PENCIL Act

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  395. And whatever your opinions of his character, the truth of the matter is, Donald J. Trump has done precisely s**t to stop it.

    Perhaps. But his opponents want to jump us all off the cliff as soon as possible.

    With what the GOP had going in 2016 (much of which has now been squandered), a capable person given the same opportunities would have been far more effective. Never mind Trump’s character, he’s incompetent. Predictable problems blindside him and leave him reeling, only to be hit by the next one.

    Look what the [District!] courts have done to him. They hated Reagan as much or more, but they knew that Reagan would crush them if they tried that crap, and gain more support for what he was doing. Trump just goes off to a rally and kvetches to the faithful.

    Given the chance, I will vote for a competent, capable center-right candidate over Trump. Cruz would be ideal; Romney is more likely to run. Maybe this Schultz guy isn’t terrible (he’d have to convince me though). If there is no one else likely to win, I will vote for Trump as it matters where I live.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  396. What is it that supposed “conservative” (as if) NeverTrumpers object to about Trump? The peace? The prosperity? The conservative judicial appointments? Or is you you just wanted Hillary that much?

    G Joubert (917efe)

  397. #400:

    And if the Committee can do that to the President’s returns, they can do it to anyone’s returns. And so can the corresponding committee in the Senate. It could get ugly.

    “The only winning move is not to play.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  398. If there is no one else likely to win, I will vote for Trump as it matters where I live.

    It’s easy to stand on principles in a deep red or deep blue state.

    frosty48 (6226c1)

  399. The conservative judicial appointments?

    He picks judges from a list the Federalist Society gives him. DO you expect that Cruz would do much different? (except that he knows the judges).

    Prosperity? Any Republican would have done similar, and probably not lost the House doing it.

    Peace? Obama got us “peace” in Iraq the same way.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  400. I think we should make everyone’s tax returns public. It’s the only way to make sure that all violators are found. Plus we can then make sure that someone is not targeted because “orange man bad.”

    Carl Hinman (c0dee8)

  401. @403. What’s under his belt has always been yuuugely delusional- particularly to him, and he always pays the price… $130,000 is the going rate of late.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  402. The Illhead who accused American Jews of dual loyalty shows what’s under her hajib. https://www.foxnews.com/politics/ilhan-omar-under-fire-after-describing-9-11-terror-attacks-as-some-people-did-something

    nk (dbc370)

  403. Actually, Kevin M, Cruz said early on he would not have picked Kavanaugh. He thought Kavanaugh would be like Roberts and not a reliable conservative. So far, Cruz is right.

    DRJ (15874d)

  404. 379. frosty48 (6226c1) — 4/10/2019 @ 3:23 pm

    The destruction of the black family is generally laid at the feet of LBJ but others have helped it along. LBJ gets credit for starting it because The War on Poverty (WoP) consisted, in part, of social workers pointing out to poor black mothers that they would get more money from the government if they weren’t married.

    The decline of the married black family didn’t start in the 1960s. It started in the 1930s. (that interferes a little bit with some of the thesis)

    The two books that wrote about the Negro family written to doisprove the notion that the problems with the black family cold be traced back to and dated back to slavery, because as slaves they couldn’t legally marry, or necessaily astay together) had terminal dates of 1925 and 1930. That was picked up purpose. One of these books is now very obscure.

    What did happen starting in the 1960s is that incomes of black stopped rising so as to appproximate or get closer, to that of whites – pus the family got much much worse.

    I think social workers began operating on a large scale back in the 1950s at least. Now what they all did, in order to help people, was to try to find a permanent solution to their poverty, and a permanent solution was getting people onto government benefits. It would not have discouraged work very much had it really been permanent, but they had to be re-applied for periodically so people learned they needed to keep their reportable income low. Too much was at risk otherwise. People with low incomes have highly variable incomes, but government benefits are premised on stable source of income, and not quickly and easily recalculated, unlike income tax withholding. It would not go be readily changed up and down, and of somebody was newly eligible, it took time to apply.

    The no-man-in-the=house rule was actually ended around the 1960s. That was something from earlier.

    Marriage declined because too many men were bad men. They were ad men because they were criminals. They were criminals because crime wasn’t being punished and they learned this from their friends.. They were mostly blkacks becasue ahigh crimerate was tolerated there. Partly due to corruption because te drug dealers needed for therir customers to stay out of jail. Now selling drugs everywhere to people who stole to pay for it would have ruined everything for them.
    Crime went uo because of changes in state laws, that reduced penalties. The equilibrium point was higher, and in the 1960s it began to spread geographically also.

    It reached a higher equilibrium point around 1973 (but in away that chewed up territory) and it didn’t go back down again util the AIDS virus began sickening drug addicts after about 1988, this allowed law enforcement to catch up. It wasn’t abortion that rediced crime as the Freakonomics people say. The drop in crime wouldn’t have been so much higher in New York City if that was the case. New York had aver high HIV infection rate.

    The war on drugs, and on drug companies that sell prescription opiods, is killing people, because the law refuses to recognize addiction as a reason to prescribe them, and if substitutes are used it has to be connected with a whole program. Tax away most of the profits maybe but don’t try to prevent people from getting safe opiods. What a wrongheaded policy!

    Sammy Finkelman (30b6b6)

  405. f your point is not that, therefore, he did nothing wrong, then what exactly is your point? Go ahead and spell it out. Trump’s returns have been repeatedly gone over by people who don’t like Trump and they haven’t brought charges — therefore, WHAT?

    At this point, it hardly matters — and the stream of the discussion is now long lost — but I did say it in that same comment:

    The point of that being that the Way & Means request is BS, and only made preparatory to a public release and crowd-sourcing/associate-doxxing.

    It matters to me, because I asked the question and I am the host of the blog.

    So please spell out the logic a little more.

    Your argument is that Trump’s returns have been repeatedly gone over by people who don’t like Trump and they haven’t brought charges — therefore, the Ways and Means Committee’s request is BS.

    Can you explain how

    a. “the Ways and Means Committee’s request is BS”

    follows from

    b. the premise “Trump’s returns have been repeatedly gone over by people who don’t like Trump and they haven’t brought charges”

    without invoking

    c. the principle, which you deny is your argument, that “the fact the Trump’s returns have been repeatedly gone over by people who don’t like Trump and they haven’t brought charges means he is innocent of wrongdoing”?

    How do you get a from b without c?

    I think the answer to that is important, so hopefully this time I won’t have to ask twice.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  406. Patrick, I apologize too for letting my temper get the better of me. It was not all your fault. I was reacting rather than thinking.

    One of the things I detest about Trump is how he has fractured the old coalition. He’s good at breaking things, and some things need breaking, but putting things together again is beyond him.

    Thank you. I wonder all the time how much I have changed and how much others have. I used to hang out with Ace and Charles C. Johnson (not the LGF one) and even had Charles C. Johnson as a guest poster on this blog. Now they make my skin crawl. Did they change or did I? Was my judgment that bad??

    Patterico (115b1f)

  407. Kevin M (21ca15) — 4/10/2019 @ 5:54 pm And if the Committee can do that to the President’s returns, they can do it to anyone’s returns. Lawrence Lessig wrote that theer are 4 things that are constraints on people doing things:

    Law, Norms, Architecture and Market (or cost)

    Take going on aplane trip from Miami to New York.

    Law may stop someone out of bail or on parole if that is a condition.

    Norms may stop someone from suddenly taking off one day and leaving children alone.

    Architecture may stop someone from using somebody else’s ticket.

    Market may stop someone if the price is high.

    It is not the law, but norms that are preventing the House Ways and Means committee from publicizing people’s income tax returns, and also maybe architecture (it requires one of maybe two Congressional comittees to ask for them and then vote to release them. Too unwieldy to do to more than oe or two persons per year. Or at most per month or so.) Actually

    Sammy Finkelman (30b6b6)

  408. The $64,000 Question: name a man at the heart of the 1950’s quiz show scandals -the reality TeeVee programs of their day– who sold out his reputation by cheating and accepting the answers ahead of time to win on Twenty-One.

    And the answer is… R.I.P. Charles Van Doren

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  409. ther’s aclaim that law may stop it too, but that was a slightly diffeent situation (a subpoena by the House UnA_maerican affiars Comittee where it was held there was no legisative purpose)

    Sammy Finkelman (30b6b6)

  410. @409 In the runup to 2016 I was the only Cruz fan I knew in real life. The few people I talked to about him really didn’t like him. The most common response I got was he sounded like a Baptist preacher. He went on the ‘can’t beat Hillary’ list. So, no I didn’t expect Cruz to get the chance to pick judges.

    GOPe going into 2008 were constantly telling us the economy was awesome, unemployment was low, the deficit was no big deal, wars were winding down or maybe not. Let’s see, Kasich, Rubio, Carson, Bush, … sorry I fell asleep. That’s a waste of a list since only 3 won even a single primary. Kasich wrote in McCain. Rubio also on the ‘can’t beat HRC’ list.

    No other GOPe Republican would have beat HRC. This any Republican was, and still is, a unicorn.

    frosty48 (6226c1)

  411. 400. nk (dbc370) — 4/10/2019 @ 5:31 pm

    Beldar suggested that the Committee or the full House can vote to make them public,

    It might be because of the United States Constitution, which trumps a law.

    Article I, Section 6, Clause 1.

    Senators and Representatives…shall in all Cases, except Treason, Felony and Breach of the Peace, be privileged from Arrest during their attendance at the Session of their Respective Houses, and in going to and from the same; and for any Speech or Debate in either House, they shall not be questioned in any other Place.

    Speech or debate has been held to include any official act by Congress – also in committee.

    So, maybe it is illegal for them to release the tax returns, but they are immune from any proceedings in consequence of that.

    Sammy Finkelman (30b6b6)

  412. Patterico #416—-look at what all this has done to each other. Consider “Gooch” on this thread!

    I think that DJT has allowed Republicans and Conservatives to ask some questions:

    1. What do we really believe in, politically?
    2. Does the personal life of a politician matter to us, or only when we don’t like them?
    3. Can we be civil to those with whom we disagree?
    4. How are we different from Democrats and Progressives?

    They are important questions. Your comments about Ace in particular hit home; I am frankly surprised by his “new” attitudes.

    Simon Jester (9d3cf3)

  413. 416. They’ve changed. A lot. And not for the better. While I haven’t been lurking here long enough to speak to how Pat has or hasn’t changed, I don’t enjoy hanging out at Ace’s place like I used to either. So it’s not just you, Pat.

    Gryph (08c844)

  414. Sammy @421. Not so. See U.S. v. Brewster, for the criminal case. See Hutchinson v. Proxmire, for a civil defamation case involving only speech. The members of the Committee can say anything they want about the returns in “closed executive session”. Outside, they’re outside the protection of the Speech and Debate Clause. If corrupt motive can be proven, they are outside its protection even in closed executive session, although I can’t say what the illegal action would be. Maybe conspiracy?

    nk (dbc370)

  415. I’ve been reading Ace and this blog for a long time. Both have changed. Ace’s change was relatively quick and large. The change here I think took place over a longer period and has been more subtle.

    Or it’s possible change isn’t the right word. I know I’ve changed so it’s hard to know where the fixed point is. Maybe changing circumstances have put us into new territory.

    There’s a family guy scene where Brian and an old roommate are watching the OJ verdict. I keep having moments like the end of that scene.

    frosty48 (6226c1)

  416. One of the things I detest about Trump is how he has fractured the old coalition. He’s good at breaking things, and some things need breaking, but putting things together again is beyond him.

    Kevin M (21ca15) — 4/10/2019 @ 4:56 pm

    That is a very interesting observation.

    DRJ (15874d)

  417. The decline of the married black family didn’t start in the 1960s. It started in the 1930s. (that interferes a little bit with some of the thesis)

    Probably everyone here knows Porgy and Bess. It was first performed in 1935, while the book it was based on was first published in 1925. The plotline could easily take place now: drug addiction and casual violence (including two homicides) are central to the story, which takes place in the slums of Charleston. Bess is a drug addict, Sportin’ Life (he’s the one who sings It ain’t necessarily so) is her pusher. The only thing missing is the presence of gangs. But otherwise all the problems of the “hood” can be found on Catfish Row.

    Kishnevi (bb4469)

  418. I know a lot of people think: wow, this guy is opposing the Republican president, so that means he’s changed!

    But seriously, if you grant me (even if you disagree) that I truly believe he’s one of the most horrible human beings I have ever witnessed in public life, and I criticize him on that basis …

    And then you look at literally anything else I talk about …

    How have I changed?

    I’m willing to believe I have. But I’m curious to know how people think I have, if I have.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  419. Kevin M,

    I’ve been thinking of doing a post about the fracture.

    I actually think of it almost as if there are now two parties.

    I don’t feel any emotional kinship to Trump or anything connected with him. To the extent (and I think it’s a large one) that the GOP is connected with him now, I feel disassociated from them.

    I feel that the former GOP has cleaved into two fairly neat groups: the Trump party and conservatives who despise him.

    And I don’t feel any more a part of the former group than I feel a part of the Democrats. If anything, I feel more alienated from the Trump party, I guess for the same reasons that splinter groups seem to hate each other more than they hate anyone else. The People’s Front of Judea HATES the damned Judean People’s Front more than they hate anyone.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  420. “The only people we hate more than the Romans are the fucking Judean People’s Front!”

    Patterico (115b1f)

  421. This is a great article that, while I don’t agree with all of it, says a lot of the things I have been thinking for a while.

    I do think there is a greater detachment and willingness to disagree with the hive mind for Trump critics, even on issues not directly related to him.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  422. What is it that supposed “conservative” (as if) NeverTrumpers object to about Trump? The peace? The prosperity? The conservative judicial appointments? Or is you you just wanted Hillary that much?

    We are no more “at peace” now than we were in 2016. Or 2012. And Trump’s foreign policy has had the effect of decreasing US influence.

    The increased prosperity is partly illusive and far from evenly distributed geographically and otherwise.

    Any other Republican would have done as well with judicial appointments.

    And I think Frosty is wrong. Almost GOPe would have been able to beat the arrogant corrupt uncharismatic Hillary, and probably by a bigger margin than Trump. There were a lot of people who either voted for Hillary or voted for third party (which is what I did) because of Trump’s corruption and incompetence, but would have voted for any other GOP candidate.

    Kishnevi (bb4469)

  423. I feel the former GOP has cleaved into two fairly neat groups: the Trump party and the conservatives who despise him.

    That may be a bit optimistic– repeated polls suggest a high percentage of ‘Republicans’ now identify w/t ‘Trump party’ w/t ‘conservatives who despise him,’ a vocal though much smaller subset. Could be simply a case of Tom Lehrer’s ‘…allegiance ruled by expedience…’ hence the judgeships surge, or more likely, a fundamental shift akin to that experienced by moderate, pragmatic Rockefeller Republicans ousted by the ideological Goldwater conservatives in 1964, culminating w/Reagan in ’80.

    More interesting is the evaporating chance of a corporate executive considering a run in the future, steeped in autocratic experience, w/no previous elected office experience. The chance of a CEO fresh from the boardroom winning a nomination or the top job has likely been set back 25 years, thanks to Trump.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  424. @428 I’ve got serious reservations making a post because I don’t want to create a situation where someone recycles my comments either for or against. But I respect what you’re trying to do and I’ll try to respond in kind.

    First, it’s possible you haven’t, and it’s your blog so you can change if you want, but

    I truly believe he’s one of the most horrible human beings … [a]nd then you look at literally anything else I talk about

    There was a time when everything didn’t get turned back to something you hate or despise.

    For example, there was a time when you could criticize Owens and criticize what happened in that clip as separate issues. At least I thought there was a time when ‘I don’t agree with what you say but I’ll defend your right to say it’ wasn’t obvious. Now, you can’t criticize what happened because of who it happened too. I imagine as you’re reading this you’re already formulating a response about how there are no censorship issues in the hearing at all and she supports Trump.

    The whole point of this thread was to tell readers of this blog to stop making an argument you disagreed with. Fair enough, it’s your blog. But I don’t remember that from years ago. Maybe we changed, or I just agreed with it before. This was my point about LGF and the Family Guy skit. It seems like you woke up one day and realized you really didn’t like a lot of the things you see on your blog, or maybe some of us did. There’s nothing wrong with that but if the root of that is this thing you’ve got going on with Trump that’s not all about us changing.

    I read several blogs of various stripes. I’ve read this blog for as long as I can remember. I never comment other places for a variety of reasons. I never commented here because there was always someone doing it better. Either you or someone in the thread would have a better way to express what I was thinking so there was no need. There was a diversity of thought and anything I could add would only be noise. I’m commenting now because that changed. I could be completely wrong about what changed but something here changed.

    frosty48 (6226c1)

  425. @431 This is a great article that, while I don’t agree with all of it, says a lot of the things I have been thinking for a while

    I think there are a lot of people who are missing some very subtle changes that have been percolating through our collective consciousness.

    There is a reason why conspiracy theories are proliferating and it’s not just the standard line about cognitive biases or stupidity. Once enough people internalize things like ‘question everything’ and the pop culture version of post-modernism, i.e. everything is relative and there is no such thing as objective truth, all of these changes are inevitable. Every argument around norms is already wasted time because norms are not.

    frosty48 (6226c1)

  426. It’s a good thing the use of medieval implements of torture are no longer in use.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  427. Not in use, in play…

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  428. For example, there was a time when you could criticize Owens and criticize what happened in that clip as separate issues. At least I thought there was a time when ‘I don’t agree with what you say but I’ll defend your right to say it’ wasn’t obvious. Now, you can’t criticize what happened because of who it happened too.

    That’s not true. I said Nadler was wrong. Re-read what I said and apologize to me.

    I just said I don’t think it’s that big a deal, because she’s an idiot and her idiot statement got her into hot water.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  429. The whole point of this thread was to tell readers of this blog to stop making an argument you disagreed with.

    Kind of, but you left out the part about how I showed it was a dumb argument, and didn’t say “stop arguing this because you’re not allowed to” but was instead saying “stop making this dumb argument because it’s a dumb argument that doesn’t fly.”

    Oh my the repression.

    Come and see the violence inherent in the system!

    Patterico (115b1f)

  430. There was a diversity of thought and anything I could add would only be noise. I’m commenting now because that changed. I could be completely wrong about what changed but something here changed.

    There’s a diversity of thought here. There are Trump fans and defenders and Trump critics. Find me another blog with this level of diversity of thought.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  431. Groundhog Day.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  432. @426. It ‘broke’ because it was weak… glued together with old, tired messaging that finally gave way.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  433. @431. Interesting piece, but Wehner’s ‘political life’ essentially began in 1980. Third base.

    He missed the wilderness years in the cellar and the long march from 1964 Goldwater to 1980 Reagan. A lot of folks were disciplined enough to stick it out for many years- particularly through the Watergate times. This is his chance to see what it’ll like on the bottom of the deck for a decade or two nd a chance to build something fresh for this century.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  434. If you wanna feel better, Google Trump NY crony/competitor Leona Helmsley. They nailed the Queen of Mean for tax evasion back in the day.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  435. “Ex-Obama counsel”. No mention that he was Clinton’s lead counsel in the impeachment.

    nk (dbc370)

  436. This is a great article that, while I don’t agree with all of it, says a lot of the things I have been thinking for a while.

    I agree with almost everything Wehner said, except I returned to the GOP a few months ago after a 5-year hiatus, for most of the reasons he left, because I’d rather fight against most of Trump’s policies and all of his temperament from within than as an independent. I don’t regret the five years out of the party because it burned off any tribal mentalities and helped gain some perspective.

    Paul Montagu (7968e9)

  437. @ 406:

    “What is it that supposed “conservative” (as if) NeverTrumpers object to about Trump? The peace? The prosperity? The conservative judicial appointments? Or is you you just wanted Hillary that much?”

    Uh-oh, fellas. We’ve been caught! It took them over two years, but they finally understand us! I can’t believe that no one has ever taken this line on this blog before, and certainly not at least 5000 times!

    Well, now that G Joubert has read my innermost thoughts and plumbed the depths of my black soul, I might as well fess up. It was my greatest fantasy to have an immoral, criminal New Yorker as the President of the United States — preferably one associated with tax fraud, and it would be a real bonus if they had also taken a hand in covering up several sleazy affairs. And would you believe it, both the Democrats and the Republicans answered my prayers! Oh, 2016 really spoiled me for choice.

    It’s been really tough hiding this from you guys all this time. Glad I could finally get that off my chest.

    [/sarc]

    Demosthenes (7fae81)

  438. @ Patterico, who wrote (#431):

    This [article by Peter Wehner entitled What I’ve Gained by Leaving the Republican Party] is a great article that, while I don’t agree with all of it, says a lot of the things I have been thinking for a while.

    I agree that it’s an interesting article, and I thank you for linking it. I am unsurprised to read your statement that it “says a lot of the things [you] have been thinking for a while.”

    I likewise fault Mr. Wehner’s perspective and decision to leave the Party, though, for the same reasons that I have tried to persuade you to reconsider yours. First, Mr. Wehner asserts categorically, but marshals no evidence to establish, that “[t]he party of Reagan has been fundamentally transformed. It’s now Donald Trump’s party, through and through.” As I’ve argued before, that focuses solely on the national party and Washington, ignoring states and state parties. And even if Trump is “Mr. Right Now,” he’s not “Mr. Right” — or put another way (as I have before), there’s no such thing as Trumpism, no potential successor who can fill his con-man shoes, and nothing to perpetuate the changes in what is, still, essentially a hostile takeover of the GOP.

    I credit Mr. Wehner substantially for recognizing that “[t]here is even something admirable about” deciding, as he and you have not, to stay within the GOP to try to oppose Trump excesses and lay the groundwork for a post-Trump renaissance. So why does he not follow that admirable path? Is it too hard for him? Elsewhere he writes, accurately, about the difficulty of not being corrupted into reflexive, blind tribalism while surrounded by reflexive, blind tribalists (my paraphrase of several paragraphs in his essay). Well, yeah. I jump that hurdle every damn day, though. Why can’t he?

    Ultimately, then, it left me very much where I was before I read it — comfortable with my decision to remain a Republican long after Trump is dust and Trumpism an ugly memory, and disappointed in those who’ve essentially surrendered to the takeover before beating feet.

    Finally: Mr. Wehner’s Willie Horton epiphany is puerile. Sorry, it mars an otherwise good essay with nonsense that’s obvious pandering to the Atlantic’s editors and leftmost leaning audience. Ugh.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  439. That’s not true. I said Nadler was wrong. Re-read what I said and apologize to me.

    Are you referring to:

    Nope, he clearly was not listening to her and garbled what she had said. He did not acknowledge his mistake.

    If so I don’t think this is responding to my underlying point. My point was to provide an example of a change. There is a pattern of behavior, in the overall clip, that should be easy to criticize and I would have expected no controversy over that in the past. That behavior is being minimized and put in the best possible light because the behavior targets someone you don’t like and you think she brought it on herself. Another thing I think that has changed. I would not have expected that in the past either. I’m not trying to rehash the Owens issue. Ok, I acknowledge you said he made a mistake. But I stand by my point that your emotional response regarding anything Trump represents a change.

    frosty48 (6226c1)

  440. It’s actually more like a one-off successful proxy fight, rather than a corporate takeover per se. The equity — the GOP heartland, if you will, in its voters and its party structure outside of the Beltway, from precinct up to state level — hasn’t permanently changed hands, there’s just been a temporary change in management, which we know will eventually change again.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  441. And even if Trump is “Mr. Right Now,” he’s not “Mr. Right” — or put another way (as I have before), there’s no such thing as Trumpism, no potential successor who can fill his con-man shoes, and nothing to perpetuate the changes in what is, still, essentially a hostile takeover of the GOP.

    I’m afraid your optimism is entirely unjustified.

    Trump had ZERO qualifications, other than a willingness to lie and demagogue shamelessly. You think nobody can fill his shoes, I say ANYBODY sufficiently immoral can fill his shoes, and since they will undoubtedly be more intelligent, they will fill his shoes much better (and present an even greater danger to the Republic).

    And he is continuing to pave the way for his successor, by corroding social, political and ethical norms – making the indefensible routine and unremarkable – all day, every day.

    Dave (1bb933)

  442. @452. Don’t overlook the shifting demographics of that ‘heartland’ either.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  443. @453. ‘… corroding social, political and ethical norms…’

    Yeah, next thing you know, women will want the vote; then the blacks, then divorcees and even a Catholic will dare run for the top spot. 😉

    Trump’s a transient; a bridge to something– or nothing. Might be the candidate after him who cherry picks ‘The Best of Trump’ is next at bat. Then again, it could be slim picking.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  444. Dave, the only other person in America with anything remotely like the kind of publicity base that Trump had before running is Oprah. And she’d run as a Democrat. No, he’s sui generis, thank God.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  445. @456. Now where have I read that before…

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  446. People imitate what works, and demand for a product incentivizes additional supply.

    Trump is the first of his kind. He won’t be the last.

    Dave (1bb933)

  447. That Wehner article is great, by the way.

    Dave (1bb933)

  448. Ultimately, then, it left me very much where I was before I read it — comfortable with my decision to remain a Republican long after Trump is dust and Trumpism an ugly memory, and disappointed in those who’ve essentially surrendered to the takeover before beating feet.

    That is a particularly uncharitable, one-sided analysis.

    DRJ (15874d)

  449. No, he’s sui generis, thank God.
    Do you think the party returns to something or moves forward to something?

    Elsewhere he writes, accurately, about the difficulty of not being corrupted into reflexive, blind tribalism while surrounded by reflexive, blind tribalists
    I would build on that by saying that retreating from the uncomfortable group into the safe group can be just another version of being corrupted into tribalism.

    frosty48 (6226c1)

  450. “When the government took over student lending in 2010 or so, we stopped doing all student lending,” he said

    And at about the same time, thanks to a law thst Senator Schumer was behind, Congress made it difficult for people under the age if 21 to take out any other kind of loan, or at least credit card loans, which have the advantage over student loans, of being dischargeable in bankruptcy. Senator Schumer was all for preventing college students from running up credit card debt.

    But not student loan debt. And student loan debt can be used for more than just tuition. It can give students cash.

    Sammy Finkelman (30b6b6)

  451. Our esteemed host challenged me:

    I’d like to get you on record, clearly, before the report comes out.

    On the record:

    1 – I believe that the full report, when it comes out, will show some claims that the Trump campaign had contact with the Russians, but that there was insufficient evidence to support either an indictment or impeachment referral.

    2 – I believe that the full report will show that some people saw his actions as reflecting an intent to torpedo the investigation, but insufficient evidence to support either an indictment or impeachment referral.

    3 – I believe that his tax returns will show that Mr Trump’s many businesses are very intertwined, and that taxes were avoided wherever possible, but still all legally. I guess that there may be some deductions taken which the IRS could challenge, and which will look bad politically, but do not rise to any level of criminality.

    4 – I believe that there will be not statement in the final report saying that Mr Mueller has referred any matters to the Congress for an impeachment referral.

    Absent an unexpected health crisis, something always possible with an obese 72-year-old man with horrible eating habits, Mr Trump will leave office, peacefully, on January 20, either 2021 or 2025. It will be much better for our country if that is the latter, rather than the former, date.

    The very explicit Dana (10ea9e)

  452. DRJ wrote:

    They don’t care, Gryph. They just want to attack Patterico for not agreeing with them about Trump.

    At least for myself, you have it wholly wrong. This is a great site, and the one which inspired me to start my own far-too-poorly appreciated blog. The primary difficulty with this site is that it attracts so many comments that it is difficult to keep up with the debate unless you are at the computer 26 hours a day. This is the factor which has led me to visit here less; even though I’m professionally retired now, I have a farm to run and a house to remodel.

    Our host has attracted a strong conservative audience, and most conservatives, including many who don’t like the President’s personality or ethics, still appreciate his Administrations actions and policies. To me it seems that our host has erred too much on the personal dislike and attack side than he has supported the President’s policies that he does like, such as his judicial nominations.

    Looking back over the previous six pages of this site, the much better-looking Dana has published a few articles here which I see as reasonably positive and balanced toward the President, such as NeverTrump Conservative: Trump Has Earned My Vote In 2020 Election, but, unless I’ve missed it — which is certainly possible — Patterico himself has not.

    He has assailed the left where they deserve it.

    I, for one, don’t wish to “attack Patterico for not agreeing with (me) for not agreeing with (me) about Trump.” But I do wish that he could separate out his personal distaste for the President and support those policies of Mr Trump’s with which he agrees.

    The clear-thinking Dana (10ea9e)

  453. Mr M wrote:

    I wonder, will the #NeverTrump conservatives do when President Trump is renominated by the GOP

    Well, that depends. If he is renominated because that’s what the primary voters wanted, then I’ll probably vote for him. If he’s renominated because his minions got the states to dispense with “unneeded primaries” and assign delegates at a stacked convention, I dunno.

    This is assuming there is no credible center-right alternative, of course.

    The President enjoys a huge approval rating among Republicans, and will win in the primaries. The GOP cannot simply dispense with primaries in most states because there are other offices with primary elections on the ballot.

    A “credible center-right alternative”? Who would that be, I have to ask? Ted Cruz isn’t stupid enough to run against him, nor is Marco Rubio. All you have is John Kasich, whom you have already said you’d never support, and possibly a couple of so-minor-they-don’t-count candidates.

    Unlike Hillary Clinton, Donald Trump does not need to rig the primaries. He managed to beat all of his opponents without being an incumbent and without rigging the primaries in 2016.

    Heck, Rand Paul, who had his own presidential aspirations in 2016, rigged things so that he could try to win delegates in a state convention and still be eligible to run for his Senate seat by running for renomination to that in Kentucky’s rather late-in-the-season primary. Senator Paul could not be on the ballot for two offices at once under Kentucky state law.

    The Dana in Kentucky (10ea9e)

  454. 424. nk (dbc370) — 4/10/2019 @ 7:01 pm

    The members of the Committee can say anything they want about the returns in “closed executive session”.

    And if they say something inn open session, or on the floor of the House, there is no recourse in any other place besides Congress itself.

    For instance, Sen. Patrick J. Leahy (D-Vt.) resigned from the Senate Intelligence Committee in January 1987, because he’d let a reporter see a draft staff report on the Iran-contra investigation. But the executive branch had nothing to say about that (except maybe trying not to co-operate woth the committee)

    But if a committee, votes to release Donald Trump’s or anybody else’s tax returns, there’s not going to any recourse in Congress either.

    And if a committee would get in trouble with regard to the full House, and it wasn’t prevented from doing what it was about to do, the recourse won’t be criminal, but whatever the full body decides. And if the whole House votes to release his tax returns, obviously there are not going to any complaints against any individual member who does so. (although I suppose a change of opinion or a bad reaction from the public could result in a change of Speaker or something of that nature.)

    Brewster has more to do with the part of that clause in the constitution article that speaks of the privilege from arrest, because accepting a bribe is not a legislative act.

    And Proxmire alludes to the fact that only speech connected with a legislative act is protected (although I think, reproducing parts of the Congressional Record or a committtee report is covered)

    But revealing Trump’s tax returns can be done entirely in Congress. Maybe a member couldn’t send a copy of a Trump’s tax returns to a reporter, but he could place it in the Congressional Record, or read it the way Senattor Mike Gravel (D-Alaska) did with the Pentagon Papers.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gravel_v._United_States

    He’s considering running for president again in 2020, by the way, by which time he’ll be 90.)

    If corrupt motive can be proven, they are outside its protection even in closed executive session, although I can’t say what the illegal action would be. Maybe conspiracy?

    You have to be very careful there. It could be that the promise to do somethng can be prosecuted if corrupt.

    Sammy Finkelman (30b6b6)

  455. From the wikipedia article about the case that involved Mike Gravel:

    In a 5–4 ruling, the Supreme Court held that the privileges of the Constitution’s Speech or Debate Clause enjoyed by members of Congress also extend to Congressional aides. Rejecting the reasoning of the court of appeals and substituting its own, “…the privilege available to the aide is confined to those services that would be immune legislative conduct if performed by the Senator himself,” the Court declared.[8] However, the Court refused to protect congressional aides from prosecution for criminal conduct, or from testifying at trials or grand jury proceedings involving third-party crimes.[9] The Supreme Court also threw out the lower courts’ order permitting some questions and barring others, concluding that if the testimony is privileged then the privilege is absolute.[10]

    However, the Court upheld the district court’s ruling regarding private publication. “[Private] publication by Senator Gravel through the cooperation of Beacon Press was in no way essential to the deliberations of the Senate; nor does questioning as to private publication threaten the integrity or independence of the Senate by impermissibly exposing its deliberations to executive influence.”[11]

    So Trump;s tax returns can be revealed and discussed by members of Congress, with the only problem they would have being in Congress itslf, with reference to the rules of the House or Senate, but they have to be very careful about giving what they say additional publicity.

    Sammy Finkelman (30b6b6)

  456. Speaking of tax fraud:

    A federal grand jury in Los Angeles indicted celebrity attorney Michael Avenatti on 36 counts, including embezzlement, wire fraud, tax evasion and bank fraud connected to his alleged theft of tens of millions of dollars.

    Although Mr. Avenatti has not yet been convicted, who could ever imagine that professional attorneys would file anything that is criminal? That will cost them their licences [sic], and might get them thrown in jail as well!

    *head asplodes*

    Dave (1bb933)

  457. 464… yes. And it’s become a Groundhog Day exercise here, more or less. I posted a link to the 11/8/16 Election Day post because many of the comments were witty, including the host’s. He was able to make clear his absolute disgust with the results, but still was able to be somewhat light-hearted about it. And as he imbibed more and more from the bottle, it only improved the humor, and well… in vino veritas. And we all seemed to share a sense of amazement coupled with dread at what we were witnessing.

    But the impugning motivation, mischaracterization by some of comments, and deriding the intelligence of many who don’t always agree with the host’s take detracts from the overall experience now.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  458. “A bill supported by Democrats and Republicans would make permanent a program that bars the IRS from ever developing its own online tax filing service.

    Just in time for Tax Day, the for-profit tax preparation industry is about to realize one of its long-sought goals. Congressional Democrats and Republicans are moving to permanently bar the IRS from creating a free electronic tax filing system.

    Last week, the House Ways and Means Committee, led by Rep. Richard Neal, D-Mass., passed the Taxpayer First Act, a wide-ranging bill making several administrative changes to the IRS that is sponsored by Reps. John Lewis, D-Ga., and Mike Kelly, R-Pa.

    In one of its provisions, the bill makes it illegal for the IRS to create its own online system of tax filing. Companies like Intuit, the maker of TurboTax, and H&R Block have lobbied for years to block the IRS from creating such a system. If the tax agency created its own program, which would be similar to programs other developed countries have, it would threaten the industry’s profits.

    “This could be a disaster. It could be the final nail in the coffin of the idea of the IRS ever being able to create its own program,” said Mandi Matlock, a tax attorney who does work for the National Consumer Law Center.”

    https://www.propublica.org/article/congress-is-about-to-ban-the-government-from-offering-free-online-tax-filing-thank-turbotax

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  459. @ DRJ (#460): What’s do you see as uncharitable in my analysis?

    Beldar (fa637a)

  460. If one says, “I’m no longer a Republican,” has one not refused to fight the hostile takeover from within the Party? If one says “I’m no longer a Republican,” has one not beaten feet? Am I unjustified in feeling disappointment with those who’ve noted their departure from the big tent to rail from outside against those still inside the tent? I genuinely don’t see what’s uncharitable or even one-sided about that. Help me out, enlighten me.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  461. In other words, tax-preparation joins paper medical record keeping as a job critical to keeping bubbas/bubbettes occupied and office space leased.

    urbanleftbehind (5eecdb)

  462. Trump can have a huge, insurmountable approval rating among Republicans, and yet no successor who is like him.

    The most likely successors are Nikky Haley and Marco Rubio, but others can emerge in time.

    Sammy Finkelman (30b6b6)

  463. @387

    GOOCH: “Lets be clear what Owens point was.”

    DCSCA: “Lets. Owens says it right up front in the clip Patterico posted: she’s a ‘nationalist’ who opposes ‘globalism.’”

    ——
    Ok. So?

    GOOCH: ‘She thinks what Hitler did wasn’t ‘nationalism.’

    DCSCA: “No splitting hairs; it was. End of story.”

    ——
    Saying “end of story” isn’t an argument. It’s not even a point in contradiction.

    GOOCH: ‘… I disagree with all the Leftists who try to deny the ‘Socialist’ part of National Socialism.’

    DCSCA: Then you disagree with Der Fuhrer himself: “Our adopted term ‘Socialist’ has nothing to do with Marxist socialism.” – Adolf Hitler, September 28, 1930
    ——-
    You should read the famous Trumpist, Jonah Goldberg, and his book on Liberal Fascism. The Bolsheviks hated the Nazis and the Nazis hated the Bolsheviks because they were fighting over the same ideological space.

    DCSCA: Arguing against ‘globalism’ in the first quarter of the 21st century is astonishingly arcane and plays on the natural fears of change for those who sense they’ve been ‘left behind.’

    ——–
    Depends on what you mean by globalism.

    DCSCA: Hitler liked pretty girls and cream cakes. Guess what: so does Trump. Does that make our Captain a right-wing-fascist-Nazi or merely another of many authoritarian, ‘do-it-my-way-and-do-it-now’ corporatists around the world with similar tastes in junk food and dames. Brown is different from black, be they on a painter’s palette or in a shirt dye, but they’re still dark colors.
    ——–
    I’m not sure what the point is here. It seems to support Owens’ argument. D.GOOCH

    GOOCH (270456)

  464. @475.

    1. Globalism. Okay, “so”- you don’t mention that at all in your post which was the crux of her rant and torpedoes the meanderings that follow.

    2. Goldberg? Better idea- go to the source; bone up on your Hitler.

    3. Pretty girls and cream cakes… brown, black, dark colors. Self explanatory.

    Thanks for playing– what do we have for him, Johnny…

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  465. I put something relevant here i the Fedeal Judge retires..thread,

    Here are my thoughts:

    While there can be, snd are, lawyers and accountants who do things that haven’t got a shred of a legal defense, relying only on secrecy, that’s probably a deliberate decision that someone makes, and those who have many clients wouldn’t readily want to do that. The Trump awyers probably weren’t on that category.

    The issue with All County Building Supply & Maintenance is that transactions can be declared to be fictional, if they were done only for tax purposes. The IRS is probably loathe to accuse. It could be a matter of judgment. People do transactions for tax purposes all the time, and it’s not held to be fraud. So when does tax fraud occur?

    It would be if All County Building Supply & Maintenance had no business reason to exist. (except maybe made-up untrue ones)

    Ddeclaring seemingly perfectly proper and legal tarsnactions to be nullities and fraud can happen with marriages and divorces. People have gotten divorced and the divorce held to be tax fraud (the opposite, not getting married in the first place even though living together has not been claimed by the IRS, because the IRS does not want to be in the position of recognizing common law marriages.) Marriages can be considered false when used for immigration purposes, but in tax law there;s usually amarriage oenalty so we don’t see marriages challenged by the IRS.

    So anyway paper, and havng all thhe legal documents isnt everything. But it is most of the time. I think only the most minimal independent business reason is enough to render all this paperwork legal.

    In the case of All County Building Supply & Maintenance, the extra charge to the tenants, unfair as it might be, might possibly be regarded enough of a business reason to make this legal, and itself not fraud, so long as the price charged the tenants was not above market value. And the different ownership might also have a justification, or not need to be justified. I think the lawyers aranged for a sall investment.

    The lawyers and accountants working for Fred Trump must have had some justification in mind – at least enough maybe to escape repercussions themselves. Lawyers and accountants, indeed, do brazenly violate the law, relying only on secrecy to protect themselves, but this would be much less likely with lawyers and accountants who had many different clients.

    I

    Sammy Finkelman (30b6b6)

  466. * I think the lawyers arranged for a small investment in All County Building Supply & Maintenance by relative of the Trump siblings. That could be enough to legalize the different ownership nd the mark-up.

    The pont is, they should be expected to have had something to rely on.

    Sammy Finkelman (30b6b6)

  467. If one says, “I’m no longer a Republican,” has one not refused to fight the hostile takeover from within the Party?

    Refusing to fight the hostile takeover from within the Party, and refusing to fight the hostile takeover (“surrendering to the takeover,” as you originally put it), are not the same thing.

    Suppose David Duke or Richard Spencer somehow won the GOP nomination and were elected president. Would you remain in the “Remain” camp?

    Dave (1bb933)

  468. If David Duke or Richard Spencer were going to win the GOP nomination, many other things would already be markedly different. Like the GOP had become a fringe party, displaced by something else, and anyone who was offended by your hypothetical would already be in that new party.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  469. Beldar wrote:

    If one says, “I’m no longer a Republican,” has one not refused to fight the hostile takeover from within the Party? If one says “I’m no longer a Republican,” has one not beaten feet? Am I unjustified in feeling disappointment with those who’ve noted their departure from the big tent to rail from outside against those still inside the tent? I genuinely don’t see what’s uncharitable or even one-sided about that. Help me out, enlighten me.

    “I refuse to join any club that would have me as a member.” Groucho Marx

    Yeah, there are a lot of Republicans who do not like Donald Trump, but, come January 20, 2025, he’s done, out of office, never to return.

    Mr Trump is already 72 years old; this Democrat-turned-Republican will almost certainly go to his eternal reward long before many of those who have left the GOP do. The never Trump Republicans lost the fight in 2016, and have no real chance in 2020, but come 2028 they’ll have another chance at getting the nominee they want and a voice in policy. If they are not registered Republicans, in most states they’ll have no real voice in that.

    Where are the former Republicans who left due to Mr Trump? I’m sure a few are Democrats, but that has come to mean siding with the real loony tunes on the left, or having little voice in that party. Perhaps their votes can be counted on by the Democrats, but unless, like The Washington Post’s Jennifer Rubin,¹ they change not only their political allegiance but their policy opinions, they are cutting off their noses to spite their faces. The Libertarian Party would certainly welcome them, but that means a voice in a party with zero chance of getting anyone elected above the office of dog catcher.
    ______________________
    ¹ – She is so thoroughly eaten up with #TrumpDerangementSyndrome that, writing in the Huffington Post, Dr Munr Kazmir criticized Rubin for being “completely against policies she herself had championed for seemingly no other reason than Trump being in favor of them”. Mrs Rubin was criticized by Warren Henry of The Federalist for changing her view on John R. Bolton after he was named National Security Advisor of the Trump Administration.”

    The Republican Dana (10ea9e)

  470. And I don’t feel any more a part of the former group than I feel a part of the Democrats. If anything, I feel more alienated from the Trump party, I guess for the same reasons that splinter groups seem to hate each other more than they hate anyone else.

    Trump was not my big issue in 2018. California, and it’s murder/suicide was. I found that the 5 generations of roots, the climate, and the benefits of the metropolis were insufficient to make up for several decades of terrible rule. When you have men driving 3 hours to work so that their kids can grow up in a safe place, and all the political leaders can talk about are bike lanes and the dangers of plastic straws, it’s too far gone to save. So I left.

    The fact that I was sitting on a million dollars in equity was part of that. So, with a couple of edits:

    I will leave the city’s rush,
    Leave the fancy and the plush,
    Leave the smog and leave the rush
    And the crowds.
    I will seek the desert’s hush,
    Where the scenery is lush,
    And I never see the rust-brown clouds.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  471. oops. too much rush. Substitute “crush” either place.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  472. It is not the law, but norms that are preventing the House Ways and Means committee from publicizing people’s income tax returns

    Norms change. It used to be normal for kids to play outside until dark without an adult watching them. Now, it’s a crime in some places.

    If Ways&Means does this, what is to prevent a Senate committee from posting the Ways&Means chair’s returns? Norms? Not any more.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  473. As far as being separated from the GOP due to Trump … well, fine. There is a HUGE gap now between the two parties (although I’ll assert the left-center gap is larger than the right-center one).

    It takes THREE people and a modest filing fee to start a new party in California. Draw up your platform and pick a name. I suggest “Federalist” since it will get attention and you could do worse than steal the Federalist Society’s ideals as the platform.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  474. Not everyone believes that what matters most is politics or Party. There are other issues that motivate people such as God, values, and setting a good example for children. To ignore those possibilities and label former Republicans as defectors is uncharitable and closed-minded. I know you could find a way to think of these or other charitable reasons that might motivate people who disagree with you, but you have chosen not to.

    Please understand that I am not saying people who stay in the GOP don’t care about those issues. They simply have different ideas about how to deal with these cultural and political changes. I don’t label Republicans as abandoning principles or morality — even though remaining in the GOP with Trump as its leader does open them to those claims — because that would be just as uncharitable.

    DRJ (15874d)

  475. 486. I am not interested in being charitable. I let the state of the GOP electorate speak for itself, and it does not speak kindly.

    Gryph (08c844)

  476. OT, but in hindsight, it sure looks like Tucker Carlson had the Creepy P0rn Lawyer Avenatti’s number, didn’t he.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  477. Dave wrote (#479):

    Refusing to fight the hostile takeover from within the Party, and refusing to fight the hostile takeover (“surrendering to the takeover,” as you originally put it), are not the same thing.

    Are they not? How so?

    I maintain they are indeed the same thing. I think that when Mr. Wehner declared himself to have quit the Republican Party, he surrendered any position from which to resist the attempted takeover.

    That’s not the same thing as saying he surrendered to Trump. I don’t accuse him — nor others in his position, who’ve left the GOP in reaction to Trump’s nomination, election, and current titular leadership of the GOP — of thereby capitulating to Trump.

    But they’re no longer Republicans resisting Trump. And that is a significant change in status, a deliberately chosen abandonment of the advantages of fighting Trump from that ground. I am disappointed when someone with whom I otherwise agree about so much — including a comprehensive listing of Trump’s faults, inadequacies, and unfitness — deliberately forfeits that advantage. Contra Mr. Wehner, I want to actively discourage Republicans from choosing that path and putting themselves effectively outside of our two-party system.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  478. @ DRJ, who wrote (#486):

    Not everyone believes that what matters most is politics or Party. Not everyone believes that what matters most is politics or Party. There are other issues that motivate people such as God, values, and setting a good example for children. To ignore those possibilities and label former Republicans as defectors is uncharitable and closed-minded.

    I certainly don’t believe, and have never argued, that politics or [P/p]arty, “matters most.” Nor have I ignored “other issues that motivate people.” I didn’t use the term “defectors” because that term may imply that one has left one group to adhere to another, e.g., the Democrats, and that would indeed have been an unfair implication.

    But I do insist that those who’ve publicly renounced their affiliation with the Republican Party have indeed abandoned the effective ability to affect, much less reform, the GOP from within; and I further assert that they’ve thereby abandoned most of their ability to affect, much less reform, the GOP at all.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  479. putting themselves effectively outside of our two-party system.

    Because — unless you are doing this to create a viable NEW second party like the anti-slavery Whigs did with the Republicans — you are consigning yourself to the role of spectator or maybe gadfly.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  480. There is another difference between resisting inside the GOP or outside. The moment you set yourself outside the GOP, you can resist Trump in ways that may hurt the GOP, something you would be reluctant to do while raining a member.

    Such as agitate for impeachment.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  481. @ Kevin M: I submit that y our #492 is a non sequitur refuted by history. Nixon’s resignation was not compelled by Republicans who’d fled the GOP, but rather by GOP senators who fled Nixon.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  482. Ack! Due to an editing error, I accidentally duplicated and repeated a sentence in the portion of DRJ’s #490. Her proofreading skills are consistently better than mine, and this error was entirely mine.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  483. It is not the law, but norms that are preventing the House Ways and Means committee from publicizing people’s income tax returns (and architecture, which makes it hard to do that to too many people, as I added.)

    484. Kevin M (21ca15) — 4/11/2019 @ 2:15 pm

    Norms change.

    Tghat;s exactly right. I was saying it was only norms, not the law that prevented this or prevents this from happening. Now if the norms go away things are different. Also, enough violating of norms, and the law can change.

    It used to be normal for kids to play outside until dark without an adult watching them. Now, it’s a crime in some places.

    A law never passed by any legislature. Not really a crime at all – just an interoretation. Theer are some people who want to pass alaw specifically legalizing kids playing outside without an adult watching them:

    http://www.freerangekids.com/for-states-considering-a-free-range-parenting-law

    If Ways&Means does this, what is to prevent a Senate committee from posting the Ways&Means chair’s returns? Norms? Not any more.

    The complication here is that there’s a 30 to 40-year old norm that presidents, and people running for president, should make oublic their tax returns, or at least let certain key newspaper reporters take a look at and write a story about them.

    With regard to a Senate committee posting the Ways&Means chair’s returns there could be mutual deterrence.

    Nobody gets his financial and medical and other records a more thorough going over than someone running fro vice president. This was already the case in 1988, so you kind of wonder if Donald Trump realized this when he tried to interest George H W Bush in making him his vice president. It probably never got that far that it hit Trump, and besides only the presidential candidate and people hired by him got to look at it.)

    In 2016 Trump ran for president, not Vice president, so he didn’t need to show anyone his tax returns. He did tweet a picture of himself sitting next to a stack of papers about a foot high saying that was his (2015) federal income tax return.

    Sammy Finkelman (102c75)

  484. 485. Kevin M (21ca15) — 4/11/2019 @ 2:18 pm

    It takes THREE people and a modest filing fee to start a new party in California.

    And there’s a jungle primary, too. But so far it hasn’t happened in a substantial way.

    The problem is probably money (and the obstacles to raising money) plus the fact that 20% to 30% of the electorate stays connected with what is ballot box poison in most of California. But in a real way, theer are no longer any political parties in Californoa (except when it comes to money)

    Sammy Finkelman (102c75)

  485. Would I be less uncharitable and one-sided if I wrote that I’m “disappointed in those who’ve essentially surrendered to the takeover by beating feet,” instead of “before beating feet”?

    I didn’t mean to imply that Mr. Wehner or anyone else surrendered to Trump, waited a while as a willing thrall to him, and then beat feet. Rather, what’s been surrendered, by the feet-beating, is the ability to continue opposing Trump’s hostile takeover from within the GOP.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  486. Non-sequitur? It wasn’t Nixon I was talking about. I was simply saying that there are lines one doesn’t cross while still inside the party, until NOT crossing them hurts the party more. Once you have left the party, you are freer.

    The Party have have left Nixon en mass, but the Dems didn’t budge a bit with Clinton.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  487. The complication here is that there’s a 30 to 40-year old norm that presidents, and people running for president, should make oublic their tax returns, or at least let certain key newspaper reporters take a look at and write a story about them.

    Romney only released an abstract.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  488. If David Duke or Richard Spencer were going to win the GOP nomination, many other things would already be markedly different. Like the GOP had become a fringe party, displaced by something else, and anyone who was offended by your hypothetical would already be in that new party.

    Confident, dismissive predictions like this were a lot easier to credit before 2016. I think you could substitute “Donald Trump” for “David Duke or Richard Spencer” in your statement quoted above, and it would have sounded just reasonable in 2012 as your actual statement is today.

    Yet here we are.

    I don’t think it’s likely at all that David Duke or Richard Spencer will be nominated by the GOP and elected president. But I think it’s far from impossible that someone with equally abhorrent views could be.

    Compared to recent GOP presidents and nominees, Trump has arguably taken us more than halfway there already. Moreover, he has proven that if you can scare people enough with the “binary choice” bogeyman, many people will rationalize their votes for even the most repugnant, unqualified and morally bankrupt candidate imaginable. We know this because we just watched it happen with our own eyes.

    If, say, AOC were the Dem nominee, a white nationalist wouldn’t look so bad to a lot of people who supported Trump, would they?

    Dave (1bb933)

  489. Democrats and their NeverTrumpinista confederates are nervous…

    “Democrats seem both angry and frightened, and their kneejerk and perhaps even somewhat panicked response right now is to try to destroy Barr.
    You can feel the frisson of fear they emanate. They waited two years for the blow of the Mueller report to fall on Trump, and now other investigative blows may fall on them. The Mueller report combined with Barr’s appointment could end up being a sort of ironic boomerang (whether or not boomerangs can be ironic I leave to you to decide).

    How could this have happened? they must be thinking. How could the worm have turned? But they are spinning in the usual manner, hoping that—as so often has happened in the past—their confederates in the press will work their magic to make all of it go away and boomerang back to Republicans instead.

    But whatever comes of it all, if anything, Democrats cannot believe that at least right now their dreams have turned to dust and they taste, instead of the thrill of victory, the agony of defeat…”

    https://www.thenewneo.com/2019/04/11/at-what-democrats-thought-would-be-their-time-of-triumph-instead-they-fear-a-day-of-reckoning-may-come/

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  490. “If, say, AOC were the Dem nominee, a white nationalist wouldn’t look so bad to a lot of people who supported Trump, would they?”

    A few thousand, at most.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  491. Are they not? How so?

    I maintain they are indeed the same thing. I think that when Mr. Wehner declared himself to have quit the Republican Party, he surrendered any position from which to resist the attempted takeover.

    “Attempted” takeover? Is it not an accomplished takeover?

    He (and I) did not surrender “any position”. We surrendered one of several possible positions from which to oppose Trump. A morally compromised position, as members of a morally compromised party. I do not suggest that every member is morally compromised, in fact I explicitly reject any such interpretation of my statement, but rather that the organization is. I would be ashamed to identify myself as a Republican, while Donald Trump is leader of the party.

    Currently, the Republican party is Trump’s instrument. At this time, to support the Republican party as an organization is to support Trump, in my view. To associate oneself with the Republican party is to associate oneself with Trump, its titular and actual leader.

    I don’t need to join the Democratic party to oppose AOC, Pelosi, Harris, Waters, etc. By withholding my membership, financial contributions, votes, verbal support, etc, I oppose them just as effectively as I could support them by providing all those things. And so it is with Trump. I don’t need to be a party member to donate money to or volunteer for any Republican who challenges him, etc.

    Trump should be anathematized. The fact that this wasn’t done from day one by every Republican who believes in the party’s principles is how we got into the present mess.

    Dave (1bb933)

  492. One other point:

    Are we not frequently told how Trump’s base must be respected, and that if their concerns are not adequately catered to they will turn out in lower numbers and cost the party elections?

    Is this not a clear lesson that sometimes withholding support, or even making the mere possibility of doing so explicit, can be an effective form of political leverage?

    Dave (1bb933)

  493. The way the republican party has run away from Trump so will the support for all rino hacks.

    mg (8cbc69)

  494. Dave wrote:

    Trump should be anathematized. The fact that this wasn’t done from day one by every Republican who believes in the party’s principles is how we got into the present mess.

    Well, that’s what the vast majority of Republicans in office thought, and tried, in 2015 and 2016, but it was the Republican primary voters who won the nomination for Mr Trump.

    I know, I know, the plebeians are supposed to follow the dictates of the patricians, but when you allow the riff-raff to vote on things, sometimes they just don’t obey the dictates of their betters.

    Town Crier: The peasants are revolting!
    The King: You can say that again.

    The very Republican Dana (10ea9e)

  495. Dave wrote:

    Are we not frequently told how Trump’s base must be respected, and that if their concerns are not adequately catered to they will turn out in lower numbers and cost the party elections?

    Is this not a clear lesson that sometimes withholding support, or even making the mere possibility of doing so explicit, can be an effective form of political leverage?

    It is an effective form of political leverage. Trouble is, it’s also an effective way to lose elections.

    One thing going around in the time before the 2016 election was that the never Trump Republicans would rather see Hillary Clinton win the election rather than have Donald Trump as President. I regret to say that I see little evidence that that belief was incorrect.

    The Dana in Kentucky (10ea9e)

  496. “Donald Trump” for “David Duke or Richard Spencer” in your statement quoted above

    And I could substitute “Bernie Sanders” for “Gus Hall” or “Earl Browder” and be making less of reach.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  497. Or, Dave, do you really think that Trump and David Duke are pretty much the same? That everyone should have fled the party because Trump was allowed in?

    What can you say then about the Democrat Party before the last Dixiecrat left the Senate? (And, yes, Strom, but there were 30 of those guys in 1960.)

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  498. Dave, Trump’s base must be respected because they are American citizens as deserving of respect as you are. If we get into the habit of disenfranchising people, or barring candidates, because we don’t like how they vote or think, we’ll need an Ayatollah to keep things straight.

    Similarly the fools who would vote for AOC and Bernie, as much as I hate to admit it. Trump had a message that resonated with people who’d been ignored by both parties for years. Mainly that both major parties had forgotten about serving Americans and were serving themselves and their special interests.

    The GOP was about global trade and while the world economy was growing, manufacturing jobs in the US were shrinking — everything was being sourced overseas. Meanwhile, the Democrats were hitting the other end, with open borders and floods of people taking the physical jobs, particularly in construction. When I was young, it was a perfectly reasonable job path to leave high school and work construction. That’s all gone now. Except for some government-driven union jobs, the construction industry spe3aks Spanish.

    There were millions of people getting the sh1t end of both parties sticks, and while you might have preferred them to die quietly, they found a champion in Trump.

    Now, I will agree with you that Trump is a con man and a fool, but the core of his supporters will still be there when he’s gone, and any GOP candidate what writes them off is a fool. It would not surprise me to see one of the socialists on the Dem side make a beeline for closing borders and the Gephart line on trade.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  499. You seem to think I will want to come back to the GOP someday and try to influence the GOP’s future. No thanks. The GOP is as useful to me as other formerly conservative organizations that will never matter to me again (e.g., the Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, Red Cross) because they left me.

    DRJ (15874d)

  500. https://lawandcrime.com/crazy/ohio-woman-with-alleged-history-of-sex-with-a-dog-is-now-accused-of-robbing-a-bank/

    The Ballad of Bonnie and Clyde Amber and Duke

    Amber and Duke… an odd lookin’ twosome
    The scenes they left were gruesome
    They were the devil’s couple

    Amber and Duke began their evil doin’
    One lazy afternoon
    Down Trumble County

    Robbed a pet store
    And high-tailed out of that town
    Got clean away in a stolen car
    And waited till the heat died down

    Amber and Duke advanced their reputation
    And made the graduation
    Into the bankin’ business

    Reach ror rah rye!
    Sweet barkin” Duke would holler
    As Amber loaded dollars
    In the dewlap bag

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  501. So, there will never be a President of your party again? Just because you don’t like the unwashed people who have flooded into the GOP? Why are they not “conservative”? They just don’t like the changes your “conservatives” wrought.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  502. Kevin M (21ca15) — 4/11/2019 @ 7:35 pm

    This is one of the best comments you have submitted, Kevin. Thank you.

    felipe (023cc9)

  503. Kevin M (21ca15) — 4/11/2019 @ 7:51 pm

    This one, not so much. Try banning the words “you” and “your” from your commenting and you may persuade, or at least not inure a reader, to your position.

    felipe (023cc9)

  504. > Now, I will agree with you that Trump is a con man and a fool, but the core of his supporters will still be there when he’s gone, and any GOP candidate what writes them off is a fool

    I agree with that in its entirety. Except that I’d say any candidate, regardless of party, who writes them off is a fool.

    aphrael (3f0569)

  505. See what I did there?

    felipe (023cc9)

  506. A con man’s marks fool themselves. We were saying this three years ago.

    nk (dbc370)

  507. Is that okay, felipe?

    nk (dbc370)

  508. @476

    “1. Globalism. Okay, “so”- you don’t mention that at all in your post which was the crux of her rant and torpedoes the meanderings that follow.”

    Uh, there’s no point in mentioning her views on Globalism, because they aren’t relevant to the distortion of her views we were discussing.

    None of your other numbered points are substantive so…

    D.GOOCH

    GOOCH (270456)

  509. @520.

    1. Except they are; 1,2 & 3. And do bone up on your Adolf.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  510. This one, not so much. Try banning the words “you” and “your” from your commenting and you may persuade, or at least not inure a reader, to your position.

    That was directed to DRJ, but that’s a little unclear, I guess.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  511. The GOP was about global trade and while the world economy was growing, manufacturing jobs in the US were shrinking — everything was being sourced overseas.

    And that was a good thing. Lying to people and telling them otherwise, as Trump and his stooges do, helps no one.

    Meanwhile, the Democrats were hitting the other end, with open borders and floods of people taking the physical jobs, particularly in construction. When I was young, it was a perfectly reasonable job path to leave high school and work construction. That’s all gone now. Except for some government-driven union jobs, the construction industry spe3aks Spanish.

    And that is a good thing. There’s no reason Americans should be doing jobs that third world peasants can do, which implies earning the same wages as third world peasants.

    How did trying to repeal the laws of economics by fiat work out for the Soviet Union? How is it working out in Venezuela?

    Dave (1bb933)

  512. Well, that’s what the vast majority of Republicans in office thought, and tried, in 2015 and 2016, but it was the Republican primary voters who won the nomination for Mr Trump.

    I know, I know, the plebeians are supposed to follow the dictates of the patricians, but when you allow the riff-raff to vote on things, sometimes they just don’t obey the dictates of their betters.

    This is a grossly dishonest misrepresentation of what I said.

    People should reject immorality. Period.

    The majority of the Republican party – “plebeian” and “patrician”, to use the terms that you falsely attributed to me – failed that test in 2016, and they continue to fail it today.

    Dave (1bb933)

  513. @ Dave, who wrote (all excerpts from #503):

    “Attempted” takeover? Is it not an accomplished takeover?

    You assert this as if it’s self-evident and as if you don’t need evidence for it, as if merely saying it or writing it makes it true. That’s the same mistake that Mr. Wehner makes; I pointed it out, but you made it again — which is very off-putting, frankly, if it weren’t so ineffectual as an argument technique — so let me be more emphatic and specific in my denial:

    Obviously he hasn’t taken over me. I’m pretty sure Mitch McConnell and Paul Ryan would deny that he’d taken over them, even though they’d cloak their denials is more politic language that I use. If you put a “lickspittle meter” on every GOP member of the House and Senate, you’d get hundreds of different readings, from full Sean Hanity-level all the way through Jeff Flake level. Even at the federal level in Washington, where the claim that the Party belongs to him is most plausible, he’s having to withdraw nominees to executive appointments for lack of GOP support, and GOP support of legislation undoing his “national emergency” declaration obliged him to exercise his first veto. With the exception of his judicial nominees, other GOP presidents going back to at least Ford enjoyed more consistent and genuine support than Trump has ever had.

    I likewise utterly deny that Trump’s “taken over” the Texas GOP officeholders, who have swept every statewide office in every four-year election cycle since 1994, and owe neither their elections nor any particular thanks at all to him, and who continue to govern for the most part now as they did before Trump. I think that’s true in most other “red” states.

    Moreover, and more important than all of the above put together: Unlike Reagan — the last person to accomplish a “takeover” of the GOP, even though it wasn’t nearly so hostile, and was essentially consolidated by the time the Iran hostages set foot on American soil on his inauguration day — he has no credible political heirs nor prospect of his changes persisting beyond himself.

    He (and I) did not surrender “any position”. We surrendered one of several possible positions from which to oppose Trump. A morally compromised position, as members of a morally compromised party….

    You have not surrendered any “position” on policy, but you have indeed surrendered metaphysical position in terms of where you stand to oppose Trump from: You’re outside, p!ssing in. Every argument you make is the argument of an outsider, of someone who’s already shown an unwillingness to persevere through and beyond intra-Party struggles. You had standing that you’ve thrown away. Now what? Suppose you’re trying to support the less-Trumpy of two candidates in a contested GOP primary for 2020. Can you deny that some Republicans will reject everything you say, regardless of its merit, because it comes from someone (you) whom they deem as apostate? Can you not see that even those willing to consider the merits of your arguments must nevertheless view them with suspicion, since you’ve already demonstrated that long-term party loyalty and cohesion is not on your list of values? You’re a self-proclaimed outsider who can only make outsider arguments — arguments about what “you guys” should do, not what “we” should do. Which class of arguments, as a general rule, do you think is more persuasive, given simple human nature?

    I do not suggest that every member is morally compromised, in fact I explicitly reject any such interpretation of my statement, but rather that the organization is. I would be ashamed to identify myself as a Republican, while Donald Trump is leader of the party.

    I am proud to identify myself as a Republican who opposes Trump’s excesses. You can be proud for having fled the Party if you think that’s something to be proud of — but I emphatically don’t, so pardon me if I don’t make so much as a golf clap. You’re no more virtuous by having left than someone who shares your substantive views (or most of them) and stayed to actually promote them from within despite the challenges and hardships of opposing the Party’s titular leader.

    Currently, the Republican party is Trump’s instrument. At this time, to support the Republican party as an organization is to support Trump, in my view. To associate oneself with the Republican party is to associate oneself with Trump, its titular and actual leader.

    I associate myself with the Party. I have conspicuously and continuously disassociated myself from Trump since long before his nomination. As to me, then, your statement is categorically false — another assertion that is without proof and, indeed, contrary to evidence. Say that to my face and I’d punch you in the nose, Dave. Cloak it with the “I don’t mean to be offensive disclaimers,” but when you continue making absolute statements like this one, it makes me really, really doubt your sincerity when you “explicitly reject any such interpretation of my statement … that the organization is morally compromised.” Again, you’re meeting yourself coming and going in the space of five paragraphs.

    I don’t need to join the Democratic party to oppose AOC, Pelosi, Harris, Waters, etc. By withholding my membership, financial contributions, votes, verbal support, etc, I oppose them just as effectively as I could support them by providing all those things. And so it is with Trump. I don’t need to be a party member to donate money to or volunteer for any Republican who challenges him, etc.

    So which is it, Dave? In the same paragraph you say your opposition is effective because of what you are withholding. Then you immediately proceed to insist that your opposition permits you to donate all the same things you just said you’re withholding. Certainly you can support individual Republicans with your money or volunteer work (including arguing on the internet). But you are, with due respect, an opponent of the Party, not just an opponent of Trump. And you’re certainly not an opponent of Trump from within the Party; my assertion is that only from that position can one claim to be upholding the Party’s traditions, continuing to resist an “accomplished takeover,” and rebuilding for the future.

    Trump should be anathematized. The fact that this wasn’t done from day one by every Republican who believes in the party’s principles is how we got into the present mess.

    I anathematize him; I abjure him; I deplore him. So did many, many other Republicans, through and beyond his nomination, including those millions who voted for him only as a vote against Hillary Clinton. I’m still disappointed, of course, that Marco Rubio and John Kasich continued their vanity campaigns too long for Ted Cruz to beat Trump in the primaries, but your insistence on unanimity — “every Republican” — is just silly. Issues and events that capture the unanimous or near-unanimous support of “every Republican” are spectacularly rare and can be measured in terms of one or two per decade.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  514. In #525, I ought to have written: “only from that position can one claim to be upholding the Party’s traditions, continuing to resist (and prevent the full accomplishment of) Trump’s attempted takeover, and rebuilding for the future.”

    Beldar (fa637a)

  515. @ DRJ, who wrote in #511, which I presume to have been addressed to me:

    You seem to think I will want to come back to the GOP someday and try to influence the GOP’s future. No thanks. The GOP is as useful to me as other formerly conservative organizations that will never matter to me again (e.g., the Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, Red Cross) because they left me.

    I respect you far to much to presume to say what you want or should want.

    My argument is that anyone who wants to persuade others of the correctness and integrity of one’s views can get effective traction only by participating in the two-party system: As my daddy explained it to me long ago, you try to persuade your fellow partisans on every single issue, and you try hardest to persuade them on the issues that you feel strongest about, but if you want to be taken seriously and have the maximum impact on outcomes that’s possible, you have to pick a team, announce your choice, and stick with it.

    I happen to agree with him, but he wasn’t your daddy and neither am I. I hope you’ll return to the GOP and try to influence its future precisely because I believe you have wisdom to contribute, but neither I nor anyone else can compel you to do so.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  516. As long as Tom Donohue and the chamber of commerce control the party of elephants, republicans can rot in a flooded ditch.

    mg (8cbc69)

  517. I guess I’m not a team person and my Dad encouraged me to follow my conscience.

    DRJ (15874d)

  518. 527.

    …if you want to be taken seriously and have the maximum impact on outcomes that’s possible, you have to pick a team…

    No thanks. I had a team for decades, and in no way shape or form has that team done anything to reverse the slouch towards Gomorrah or the travel down the road to serfdom. If I can’t convince my fellow Americans that the Republican Party is worse than useless, we really have nothing else to debate or discuss.

    Gryph (08c844)

  519. If I can’t convince my fellow Americans that the Republican Party is worse than useless, we really have nothing else to debate or discuss.

    You shouldn’t give up on all Republicans just because some people did something.

    nk (dbc370)

  520. 531. I didn’t say anything about “all Republicans.” I said, and I quote, “The Republican Party…”

    I really don’t wish to rehash what I said up-thread about what it would take for me to believe that a “conservative” is serious about positive change. Suffice it to say, the odds of serious positive change coming from the 445 is virtually nil. Beg and plead with me all you want about how “not all Republicans are evil” and all that drivel. What it will take to change my mind, probably won’t happen.

    Gryph (08c844)

  521. I would have thought working with bill Bennett, would gave imparted wisdom to wehner but then explain his opposition to the tea party and then support for the Arab winter

    Narciso (5d05fe)

  522. nk (dbc370) — 4/11/2019 @ 8:49 pm
    Outstanding, nk. Your merest glance is flattery

    felipe (5b25e2)

  523. Snorfle.

    nk (dbc370)

  524. Nk, is that a ilhan Omar reference?

    urbanleftbehind (6a358f)

  525. You shouldn’t give up on all Republicans just because some people did something.
    nk (dbc370) — 4/12/2019 @ 5:42 am

    Maybe we should think of Omar as a master (mistress?) of the understatement.

    felipe (5b25e2)

  526. Teh peeps just keep disappointin’ gryph.

    Gryph done got gypped

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  527. Omar is a child of the old socialist regime, who was cast aside on the plains of Kenya and ended up in Minnesota where they welcomed her.

    Narciso (5d05fe)

  528. Beg and plead with Him if you must.

    Or don’t.

    Seriously… WTF?!?!?

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  529. Yes, urbanleftbehind, yes, it was! And with a purpose. To remind us that there are worse things (and I mean “things”) than whatever faults we may find now with the GOP.

    nk (dbc370)

  530. Didja evah notice Omar looks like Ashley Judd with a good tan?

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  531. 529… there is no “I” in team.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  532. One thing going around in the time before the 2016 election was that the never Trump Republicans would rather see Hillary Clinton win the election rather than have Donald Trump as President. I regret to say that I see little evidence that that belief was incorrect.

    The Dana in Kentucky (10ea9e) — 4/11/2019 @ 6:23 pm

    I am curious why you seem to think anyone owes a candidate their vote. In my America, voters get to make up their own minds. Do you think we are Russia or some third world country where voters have to pledge their loyalty every 2-4 years?

    On second thought, never mind. I know the answer.

    DRJ (15874d)

  533. She understands whose side she is on, as with obama, it’s not the side we want but it’s the one that furthers her interest the qatari Turkish Iranian nexus

    Narciso (5d05fe)

  534. If Trump supporters don’t want people to criticize them for their votes, and it’s clear they don’t, then stop criticizing other people for theirs.

    DRJ (15874d)

  535. Ditto Party membership. If you can only listen to people on your team, so be it.

    DRJ (15874d)

  536. Col- Mitch and Rand, with Bevin filling in at some point means Ashley’s blocked out back “home”, why not pull an islamic Dolezal?

    urbanleftbehind (5eecdb)

  537. 543. Yes there is. It’s hidden in the A hole.

    Gryph (08c844)

  538. If you want a reasonable argument consider Peter wallisons criticism of the new housing policy white paper, but let’s not go back to 1983, for gods sakes.

    Narciso (5d05fe)

  539. 544. Not only that, but there was a third candidate on the ballot in all 50 states. So that nukes the other Dana’s entire premise of “you must prefer Hillary if you didn’t want Trump.” That fallacy can go DIAF.

    Gryph (08c844)

  540. It’s easier if you believe that an organization’s only goal is its own perpetuation, and that the purposes for which it was created are fulfilled by the individuals in it.

    nk (dbc370)

  541. Why don’t they go with Ashley ahes stark racing but that’s a day ending in y.

    Narciso (5d05fe)

  542. Michels irom law of oligarchy, how has the right lizard turned out?

    Narciso (5d05fe)

  543. 552. Is there any other reason for the Republican party to exist now, besides the perpetuation of its own existence and the maintenance of its own power?

    Gryph (08c844)

  544. Of course. The individuals still need a base from which to operate. They fulfill the purposes for which the organization was created and let the organization perpetuate itself.

    nk (dbc370)

  545. nk (dbc370) — 4/12/2019 @ 7:16 am

    Man, I like that. It is familiar.

    In any institution, you will find two kinds of people: The first believe in the mission of the institution, and the second kind believe in the institution itself and will seek to control the institution by promoting like-minded people to positions of power, to the disadvantage of the first kind.

    felipe (5b25e2)

  546. Say you wanted to replace the GOP, like it replaced the whigs recall it was a fusion party of free spoilers immigration restrictionists and abolitionists it wasnt one ideological block

    Narciso (5d05fe)

  547. The GOP will be replaced when the Independents outnumber them and decide it is time for a third party, and can attract the remainder of the rank-and-file.

    felipe (5b25e2)

  548. …and can attract the remainder of the [GOP’s] rank-and-file.

    But you knew that.

    felipe (5b25e2)

  549. Dave thought that I misrepresented him:

    Well, that’s what the vast majority of Republicans in office thought, and tried, in 2015 and 2016, but it was the Republican primary voters who won the nomination for Mr Trump.

    I know, I know, the plebeians are supposed to follow the dictates of the patricians, but when you allow the riff-raff to vote on things, sometimes they just don’t obey the dictates of their betters.

    This is a grossly dishonest misrepresentation of what I said.

    People should reject immorality. Period.

    The majority of the Republican party – “plebeian” and “patrician”, to use the terms that you falsely attributed to me – failed that test in 2016, and they continue to fail it today.

    But Dave had written:

    Trump should be anathematized. The fact that this wasn’t done from day one by every Republican who believes in the party’s principles is how we got into the present mess.

    Clearly, his use of the description “every Republican who believes in the party’s principles” is meant to exclude those Republicans who might not agree with his ideas of what the party’s principles might be. Does that mean that those Republicans who do not believe in the “party’s principles” ought somehow to be excluded?

    It will be noted that I did not use quotation marks with the words plebeians and patricians, and thus did not attribute them to Dave, falsely or otherwise. Rather, they are convenient terms that I use frequently, to point out the differences between the rank-and-file and those who see themselves as their betters.

    Did the majority of the Republican party fail the test in 2016? The test of a political party is to get people elected; not getting people elected is what constitutes failure. Would Dave, and our host, have been happier had we nominated a nice little moderate like Jeb Bush, and then been left with President Hillary Clinton?

    What the Republican voters saw in 2016 was a candidate they believed could not only defeat Mrs Clinton — and I’ll admit it; I didn’t think he could — and who would actually do what he said he would do. In that, though he has not been as successful as we’d like, he has tried, and been successful in a number of areas.

    The Dana who cites what he has written. (10ea9e)

  550. Yes but independents dont swing one way.

    Narciso (5d05fe)

  551. 562. Let me know when we get that big beautiful wall paid for by Mexico. And how about that sweet sweet Obamacare repeal? What? You mean that didn’t happen? SMDH…

    Gryph (08c844)

  552. Kevin M (21ca15) — 4/11/2019 @ 7:35 pm

    If we get into the habit of disenfranchising people, or barring candidates, because we don’t like how they vote or think, we’ll need an Ayatollah to keep things straight.

    The Democrats are somewhat like that, but they don’t want to bar them from being candidates, but just from any serious discussion of issues. Off committees (cf what Google did) , away from college campuses, out of a job, and to boycott businesess associated with them, or in a word, get people “cancelled.”

    But they don’t seem to want an ayatollah to keep things straight – just freelance efforts which can make bold people powerful. Maybe make them some money, too.

    Maybe once things get really established, they’ll look for an Ayatollah. Mark Zuckerberg wants one. (in self-defense, because he really would like for someone to keep things straight to make things easy for Facebook.)

    Sammy Finkelman (30b6b6)

  553. Milton Friedman discussed it a lot in the context of macroeconomics. In the end, it comes down to people, not nations. (Or, transposing it to this discussion, parties). But the Chicago School is big on individual decision-making. 😉

    nk (dbc370)

  554. Narciso (5d05fe) — 4/12/2019 @ 7:53 am

    Don’t I know it! It’s like herding cats.

    felipe (5b25e2)

  555. Gryph wrote:

    …if you want to be taken seriously and have the maximum impact on outcomes that’s possible, you have to pick a team… (beldar)

    No thanks. I had a team for decades, and in no way shape or form has that team done anything to reverse the slouch towards Gomorrah or the travel down the road to serfdom. If I can’t convince my fellow Americans that the Republican Party is worse than useless, we really have nothing else to debate or discuss.

    Worse than useless? The Republican Party stymied the presidential ambitions of Hillary Clinton and the Democrats. Unless you are a Democrat or a liberal, surely keeping the Democrats out of the White House is quite useful.

    You don’t want to “slouch towards Gomorrah or the travel down the road to serfdom”? Just what do you think we’d be doing, even faster, had we a President who couldn’t tell the difference between males and females — except, of course, when it was to her political benefit — who believed in Affirmative Action, who would have opened up our borders to hundreds of thousands of penniless illegal immigrants and Syrian refugees, who would increase the taxes on people who work to give money to people who won’t?

    Donald Trump is far from perfect, and might personally be a scumbag, but as far as the policies which affect all of us, he’s been a clear sight better than the alternatives.

    The realistic Dana (10ea9e)

  556. felipe wrote:

    The GOP will be replaced when the Independents outnumber them and decide it is time for a third party, and can attract the remainder of the rank-and-file.

    And so we were told in 2016, when the Democrats and Republicans nominated two personally reprehensible characters. Gary Johnson, we were told, would get a really significant part of the vote. Evan McMuffin McMullen could actually carry Utah, the pundits informed us. Jill Stein would prove the growing strength of the Green Party.

    How’d that all work out?

    The Dana with a long memory (10ea9e)

  557. 567. I don’t want “good enough.” I want someone who will follow the constitution as it was written and intended by its framers. This is why we can’t have nice things, America.

    Gryph (08c844)

  558. It was like herding cats!

    felipe (5b25e2)

  559. 568. Gary Johnson performed better in 2016 than any Libertarian Party candidate ever had up until that point. And yes, I know that is damning with faint praise. Yes, I know that doesn’t matter. But again, I’d like to point out that he was a third choice on the ballot in all 50 states, ergo the “You must want Hillary if you hate Trump” meme needs to die.

    Gryph (08c844)

  560. #570 was for the “very intelligent Dana.”

    felipe (5b25e2)

  561. Which part did he violate, you’re aren’t on that emolument foolishness.

    Narciso (5d05fe)

  562. Didnt he flip new Mexico for Hillary or maybe it was mcmuffin.

    Narciso (5d05fe)

  563. 573. No president in my lifetime has followed the constitution as it was intended to be written. If they did, the IRS wouldn’t exist and senators would be chosen by state legislators. As for the “emolument foolishness,” that’s exactly the kind of thing that impeachment was written into the constitution for. Bill Clinton made that once-and-for-all impossible with his shenanigans. So Trump Lickers do have that to thank him for.

    Gryph (08c844)

  564. I think an argument could be made that much of academia (Simon gets a pass, of course) should be euthanized. Starting with the administrators and then working our way down through ethnic, gender and social justice study-related programs.

    I – grudgingly – do not mean this literally, but do in the figurative sense.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  565. It hasn’t been observed in 215 years I dont think even tea pot dome fell into that category.

    Narciso (5d05fe)

  566. 574. Only mathematically. Exit polling suggests that Trump would not have been a shoo-in to get all 74k+ votes that Johnson got.

    Gryph (08c844)

  567. A modest proposal, hard sciences seem less subject to contamination climate sciences is not one.

    Narciso (5d05fe)

  568. narciso @558 No the anti-immigrant people were the “American” Party, and they were not part of the 1850s Republican coalition, at least not for long, and they had all sorts of other people intererested in other causes joining in, like Prohibitonists (of alcohol) and even women’s suffrage.

    And the anti-immigrant peoplle weren’t restuictionists, because nobody imagined Congress had the power to restrict immigration (except in connection with foreign commerce) but they wanted discriminatory laws, and a 21-year time residence period for naturalization.

    Sammy Finkelman (30b6b6)

  569. That was the result cause and effect,

    Narciso (5d05fe)

  570. Score one for Beldar.

    Paul Montagu (7968e9)

  571. Forget Section 7214(a). The President’s pardon power can make it “never happened”. And that includes all collateral disabilities.

    nk (dbc370)

  572. And that’s taking the Daily Beast’s word for it. A court may find (or may have already found) that it does not apply the way the Daily Beast says it applies.

    nk (dbc370)

  573. Shush next he’ll find out there is no Santa. Lause.

    Narciso (5d05fe)

  574. More like the Daily Beast inventing the wheel discovering that nonfeasance can be a crime.

    nk (dbc370)

  575. Totally not spying…

    https://twitter.com/seanmdav/status/1116702065538019329

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  576. Gryph wrote:

    567. I don’t want “good enough.” I want someone who will follow the constitution as it was written and intended by its framers. This is why we can’t have nice things, America.

    “Representatives and direct Taxes shall be apportioned among the several States which may be included within this Union, according to their respective Numbers, which shall be determined by adding to the whole Number of free Persons, including those bound to Service for a Term of Years, and excluding Indians not taxed, three fifths of all other Persons.” — Article I, Section 2, Paragraph 3.

    Perhaps you’d allow for a few changes?

    All snark aside, you are making perfect the enemy of good.

    The historian Dana (10ea9e)

  577. 588. Nice try Dana. The 3/5 compromise, had it not been enacted, would have led to counting ALL of EVERY slave as a citizen for purposes of congressional apportionment. It was the slave holders who wanted that. Do you think giving the slaveholding South that much political power would have been a positive thing? It was the northern states who didn’t want slaves to count at all so as to not give apportionment to people who couldn’t vote for it.

    Je*us…the state of civics education today…SMDH

    Gryph (08c844)

  578. he was being very tongue in cheek, which amendment did trump violate, actual deeds not public statements

    http://www.journal14.com/2019/04/11/bring-back-hanging/#comments

    narciso (d1f714)

  579. 591. I didn’t say Trump violated anything. Our government doesn’t follow the constitution as our framers intended it. The sixteenth amendment. The seventeenth amendment. It didn’t start with Trump. And it won’t end when he leaves office. What I am saying is that our constitution itself is a failed experiment, and who we put into office doesn’t matter anymore.

    Civics lessons, people. S<DH

    Gryph (08c844)

  580. Given that the two of the first three Presidents pretty much trampled over the Constitution (John with the Alien and Sedition Acts, Tom with the Louisiana Purchase and the Embargo)…if you follow the L Neil Smith of Anarchy, the first three of three (George, when he suppressed the Whiskey Rebellion)….

    Kishnevi (f6ba20)

  581. The Nineteenth Amendment was the real killer.

    nk (dbc370)

  582. 594. We’ll get rid of the 16th and 17th before we get rid of the 19th.

    Gryph (08c844)


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