Patterico's Pontifications

12/20/2020

Report: Trump Discussed Possibility of Imposing Martial Law to Steal the Election

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 11:59 am



On Friday Dana told us about the certifiably insane proposal by disgraced liar Michael Flynn that Trump impose martial law to order new elections in swing states that he lost. Now comes news that Trump himself discussed that fascist idea in a recent White House meeting:

During an appearance on the conservative Newsmax channel this week, Mr. Flynn pushed for Mr. Trump to impose martial law and deploy the military to “rerun” the election. At one point in the meeting on Friday, Mr. Trump asked about that idea.

Another idea from the brain trust: appoint certifiably insane Flynn and Kraken lawyer Sidney Powell as some kind of “special counsel” at the White House to investigate election fraud:

President Trump on Friday discussed naming Sidney Powell, who as a lawyer for his campaign team unleashed conspiracy theories about a Venezuelan plot to rig voting machines in the United States, to be a special counsel overseeing an investigation of voter fraud, according to two people briefed on the discussion.

It was unclear if Mr. Trump will move ahead with such a plan.

Trump says the martial law suggestion is “fake news” which he says about literally everything, usually falsely, so it’s almost certainly true.

People wondered why he cleaned house at the Pentagon and installed a bunch of cronies there. Maybe he wanted to keep this option viable. After all, important voices in the GOP are encouraging him to do so — like the chair of the Arizona Republican party:

Kelli Ward says she wants to keep our republic from “crumbing” but she urges Trump to “cross the Rubicon” — which, as a reminder, was Julius Caesar’s point of no return when he decided to end the Roman republic and turn himself into an emperor. (As a further reminder, it did not work out too well for him in the end.) In the end, Caesar crossing the Rubicon was the very thing that “crumbed” the Roman republic, and it crumbed it real good.

I would urge folks to be cautious about lol’ing too hard at the idea that Trump might do something outrageous or dangerous as attempting a military coup. I don’t expect one to happen, but the notion that he might try it is hardly the stuff of resistance psychopaths. Trump cares only whether he benefits from an action, and secondarily whether he thinks he can get away with it. With the head of the Arizona GOP openly urging Trump to declare martial law to reverse the election results, he may increasingly believe he has a chance of pulling it off. Apparently he is at least considering it.

And yes, it’s Maggie Haberman and anonymous sources (which have been wrong on occasion but also right countless times that people conveniently forget about). Do you want to bet the republic that she got this story wrong?

UPDATE:

Fascist.

95 Responses to “Report: Trump Discussed Possibility of Imposing Martial Law to Steal the Election”

  1. Exclusive: reaction from top Banana Republican leaders:

    Patterico (115b1f)

  2. It’s clear that with an actually corrupt, insane president, his cabinet will only be yes men, so the 25th amendment cannot function without congress doing its job and creating some body to make its determination.

    Imagine how easy it will be for Team D to whatabout for every awful thing their guys do. The GOP playing games with martial law are actually changing our country.

    Dustin (4237e0)

  3. I remember way back before the primary, and people said that there was absolutely no way he would become the nominee…and then he eventually became the President. We already know that there are millions of Americans who idolize the man, and are willing to follow his lead wherever it may take them.

    It would be foolish to write off anything Trump suggests by thinking “oh, he can’t possibly be serious,” as if X were a bridge too far. There are no bridges too far for Trump. A four-year history has shown us that. He should never be underestimated. And I don’t mean that as a compliment.

    Dana (cc9481)

  4. They’ve been urging him to break the cycle of peaceful transfer of power for weeks now.
    The GOP as a whole is corrupt and unpatriotic.

    Time123 (154eb3)

  5. UPDATE:

    Fascist.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  6. Imagine how easy it will be for Team D to whatabout for every awful thing their guys do. The GOP playing games with martial law are actually changing our country.

    Unfortunately, you are correct. Biden has free reign to do whatever he pleases and Democrats know they can just yell “Trump!” and Biden will have all the cover he needs…

    Hoi Polloi (139bf6)

  7. Seems Jams Mattoon Flynn is more or less the origin of this; having trial ballooning it on some conservative right wing TeeVee talk show. That Trump saw/heard/inquired about it doesn’t seem all that much of a biggie any more than asking about possibly buying Greenland.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  8. Yeah no biggie that the president inquired about using tanks to change the outcome of an election y’all. Jeez but those masks at the grocery store are basically Hitler.

    Dustin (4237e0)

  9. @8. Hear whispers of plots over water fluoridation, too, eh Dustin?! 😉

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  10. 4.They’ve been urging him to break the cycle of peaceful transfer of power for weeks now.
    The GOP as a whole is corrupt and unpatriotic.

    Reaganoptics.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  11. I kind of liked the America I remember growing up where the military didn’t feel the need to publicly announce that it does not get involved in deciding elections.

    One of the things that makes or at least made America Great was that it was one of the few countries where the idea of a military supported coup was pretty much laughable. Now I read people attempting to assess the loyalty of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and calculating how many Colonels and Majors are needed and possibly susceptible.

    Thanks Republicans. Apparently keeping a Republic wasn’t really the highest priority.

    Victor (a225f9)

  12. We already know that there are millions of Americans who idolize the man, and are willing to follow his lead wherever it may take them.

    There’s a core as with anybody— [dead Reagan… even Ted Cruz has some! And there surely are a few who idolize the Plagiarist-elect as well… like the smartest man he knows: Hunter.] But these are extremes. It’s what he represents– nd that ha bee growing and rooted in the GOP now for several cycles. Another get-it-done-corporatist will come long in a cyl or two– or three… to carry their banner. The pattern is there.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  13. @11. General/President Eisenhower has been dead a long time. But at least he knew from experience how and when the MIC was milking his cow.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  14. If our military doesn’t have the backbone, maybe he could invite in the Spetsnaz.

    There’s no law against inviting foreign commandos into the country to overturn an election and install you as dictator, so it’s not even impeachable.

    Dave (dbda34)

  15. How could this not bother people, even if it is just talk that is never acted on? It erodes both the concept of peaceful, free elections and our civilian-led government. It suggests they are negotiable if you have the power, instead of founded on the firm foundation of our nation’s Constitution.

    DRJ (aede82)

  16. Dave,

    You’re right. As I learned from suffering through the impeachment, “abuse of power” is a Democratic fiction, and unless you can point to something being violated in today’s federal criminal code, the Founding Fathers 230 years ago wouldn’t allow you to impeach for it.

    Victor (a225f9)

  17. @8. Hear whispers of plots over water fluoridation, too, eh Dustin?! 😉

    Flouride is a lie

    it’s all in the chemtrails homey.

    You’re naive if you don’t think Trump really would do it. Read Flynn’s statements. Watch the tear gas deployed in DC. Read Trump praise the Tienanmen Square massacre. None of this has been hidden. Stand down and stand by. He would actually do this, and people have been rolling their eyes or cheering him along, or somehow, both.

    Dustin (4237e0)

  18. Can you imagine four more years of this?

    The roster: Michael Flynn. Sidney Powell. Rudy Giuliani. Stephen Miller. Kelli Ward.

    With an assist from Ted Cruz, Rand Paul and Ron Johnson.

    noel (9fead1)

  19. Kelli Ward is doing such a great job as AZ GOP chair, that the state went blue, and Martha McSally(hitching her wagons to the Trump train didn’t pay off) lost to Mark Kelly by an even wider margin than Trump lost to Biden. This in addition to her promoting crackpot conspiracy theories about the election, and egging on Trump to declare martial law. She and other sycophants are validating every seemingly far fetched(at least once was, before Trump) stereotype the left and the MSM had about conservatives(pre-Trump). It’s not surprising that many of the younger generation of people are embracing socialism and far leftism, because they look at the party that is supposed to embrace free market capitalism, and see Trumpism on full display, and get understandably repelled by it. More and more of them are reaching voting age, and will not forget about Trump anytime soon(so long as the latter keeps it up).

    HCI (92ea66)

  20. As for Tommy Tuberville, he is a worthless sycophantic tool. My guess is he’ll easily be the worst of those in the Senate GOP conference. It was disappointing that he beat Jeff Sessions for the GOP Senate nomination. Granted, I wasn’t thrilled with Sessions shilling for Trump early on(in a way, by being trashed by Trump and losing a Senate race, he is getting what he deserved). Watching Tuberville’s campaign, he never really articulated anything substantial policy related, except that he was 100 percent on the Trump train. Being a former football coach at Auburn(In Alabama, FB coaches at U. of Alabama and Auburn are like demigods) certainly helped him along no doubt. Just be a MAGAbot, coach a major Alabama FB team, and don’t be Roy Moore(such a low bar to clear), and you have a Senate seat gift wrapped to you.

    HCI (92ea66)

  21. Which of these would you have never imagined your President doing? Consider declaring martial law to steal the election? Or… allowing Russia to engage in a nationwide cyber attack without making them pay? (Then he blames China to cover for Putin.)

    This is the new normal. I could just explode.

    noel (9fead1)

  22. 15. How could this not bother people, even if it is just talk that is never acted on?

    ROFLMAO:

    “In December 1961, [conservative icon Barry Goldwater] told a news conference that “sometimes I think this country would be better off if we could just saw off the Eastern Seaboard and let it float out to sea“, a remark which indicated his dislike of the liberal economic and social policies that were often associated with that part of the nation. That comment came back to haunt him, in the form of a Johnson television commercial, as did remarks about making Social Security voluntary and selling the Tennessee Valley Authority. In his most famous verbal gaffe, Goldwater once joked that the U.S. military should “lob one [a nuclear bomb] into the men’s room of the Kremlin” in the Soviet Union.”

    Most famously, the Johnson campaign broadcast a television commercial on September 7, 1964 dubbed the “Daisy Girl” ad, which featured a little girl picking petals from a daisy in a field, counting the petals, which then segues into a launch countdown and a nuclear explosion. The ads were in response to Goldwater’s advocacy of “tactical” nuclear weapons use in Vietnam.

    “Confessions of a Republican”, another Johnson ad, features a monologue from a man who tells viewers that he had previously voted for Eisenhower and Nixon, but now worries about the “men with strange ideas”, “weird groups” and “the head of the Ku Klux Klan” who were supporting Goldwater; he concludes that “either they’re not Republicans, or I’m not”.

    [Romney an Rockefeller refused to back the nutbag;] Nixon and Reagan did; Voters increasingly viewed Goldwater as a right-wing fringe candidate. – source, wikiGoldwater.com

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  23. It’s not surprising that many of the younger generation of people are embracing socialism and far leftism, because they look at the party that is supposed to embrace free market capitalism, and see Trumpism on full display, and get understandably repelled by it.

    No. They saw it failing them- and their parents, long before Trump: Reaganomics.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  24. That Trump was discussing martial law is unsurprising. It’s precisely the way he dreams of “leading”. He’s always admired both the might of the military and strong arm rulers in the world. He would love to rule by fiat and order, and have the military do his personal bidding even if it’s unconstitutional. I think that is in large part why the role of president came so hard to him: he really thought he could just do what he wanted and had no real grasp of the checks and balances involved, as well as that pesky Constitution. This talk just reflects his view of “governing” and being a “leader”.

    Dana (cc9481)

  25. mr. quasi-president donald trump, who was assigned a male gender at birth, never had to say thanks to no man for a happy tune

    in some ways, i envy him

    there must be something to be said for having only wants and no regrets

    not that i would know, you understand

    or most people, for that matter

    that’s why i envy him

    nk (1d9030)

  26. 21.Which of these would you have never imagined your President doing?

    A- Sending American boys to fight and be maimed and/or die in an undeclared war he knew was unwinnable by a very report his own people compiled; and his successor followed suit– just so they could say they’d ‘never lost a war.’

    B- Watergate.

    C- All of the above.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  27. Do you want to bet the republic that she got this story wrong?

    Maybe, but for sure I’d bet the republic that Haberman is a Democrat hack cheerleader as opposed to a bona fide journo.

    beer ‘n pretzels (042d67)

  28. @17. ROFLMAOPIP! You’re the naïve one after fours years for believing anything ‘Larsen’ says.

    “You can’t cheat an honest man; never give a sucker an even break or smarten up a chump.” – Larsen E.Whipsnade [W.C. Fields] ‘You Can’t Cheat An Honest Man’ 1939

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  29. Kelli Ward says she wants to keep our republic from “crumbing” but she urges Trump to “cross the Rubicon”
    Rubies are exclusively red. Although “they can range in tone, saturation and secondary colors, meaning some rubies may display pink, brown, purple or orange coloration”, I’d go with the with the Citrine Con, really.

    nk (1d9030)

  30. 2. Dustin (4237e0) — 12/20/2020 @ 12:12 pm

    It’s clear that with an actually corrupt, insane president, his cabinet will only be yes men.

    That’s not the case.

    Thia past Friday in the White House nobody but Mike Flynn, whom she brought with her, was endorsing Sidney Powell’s ideas, and they’re not even Senate confirmed Cabinet appointees:

    Ms. Powell’s ideas were shot down by every other Trump adviser present, all of whom repeatedly pointed out that she had yet to back up her claims with proof. At one point, one person briefed on the meeting said, she produced several affidavits, but upon inspection they were all signed by a man she has previously used as an expert witness, whose credentials have been called into question.

    The White House counsel, Pat A. Cipollone, and the White House chief of staff, Mark Meadows, repeatedly and aggressively pushed back on the ideas being proposed, which went beyond the special counsel idea, those briefed on the meeting said.

    Mr. Cipollone told Mr. Trump there was no constitutional authority for what was being discussed, one of the people briefed on the meeting said. Other advisers from the White House and the Trump campaign delivered the same message throughout the meeting, which stretched on for a long period of time.

    At another spot, Maggie Haberman does write that:

    Most of his advisers opposed the idea,[of naming Sidney Powell a special counsel to investigate election fraud, without going through the Attorney General, or the Acting Attorney General after Bill Barr leaves after December 23] two of the people briefed on the discussion said, including Rudolph W. Giuliani, the president’s personal lawyer.

    To be clear she’s not saying that Giuliani was one of her anonymous sources. They must have been people in the White House counsel’s office.

    Sammy Finkelman (3915d0)

  31. 21. noel (9fead1) — 12/20/2020 @ 5:03 pm

    Or… allowing Russia to engage in a nationwide cyber attack without making them pay? (Then he blames China to cover for Putin.)

    He didn’t allow that.

    If you mean not making them pay, not even that’s really the case, as ideas are apparently being discussed. They are leaving it up to Joe Biden. Now Obama, in 2016 had announced sanctions.

    What Trump did do, was, just as a statement blaming Russia was being prepared in the White House, tweet that he’d been briefed and the penetration really did no harm, and second it could have been China.

    Not likely. Probably because they’d seen some of the malware that was used, was used before, which had been identified as Russian; and because of the sheer skill of the attacks; and because it seemed to be a separate group of hackers that used different computers – and Russia is noted for having different hacking groups work independently. And then there’s little things like Microsoft didn’t find any computer systems in Russia that were actually penetrated.

    Sammy Finkelman (3915d0)

  32. The Rs need someone with intestinal fortitude and power to come out publicly and say, “What the FVCK is wrong with you people? I know it was an honest election and you know it was an honest election. Stop feeling this bullsh!t dishonest conspiracy story to people who trust you and get back to being real Americans who do your jobs.”

    No politically correct, mealy mouthed “well, I guess some say this might’ve happened.” or “it’s a legitimate concern…”. Straight up “No, it was an honest election. Biden won. Now we have to get on with things.”

    Where is that guy? He could lead the party for the next 2 decades.

    Is every republican currently in power a gutless wonder? A coward? So concerned with their own safety that the can’t take a modest risk? Women are going to start gluing their underwear on every time they are around these guys.

    Nic (896fdf)

  33. 18 U.S. Code § 2384. Seditious conspiracy

    If two or more persons in any State or Territory, or in any place subject to the jurisdiction of the United States, conspire to overthrow, put down, or to destroy by force the Government of the United States, or to levy war against them, or to oppose by force the authority thereof, or by force to prevent, hinder, or delay the execution of any law of the United States, or by force to seize, take, or possess any property of the United States contrary to the authority thereof, they shall each be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than twenty years, or both.

    If Trump discussed overturning the election by force in the Oval Office, who is this not seditious conspiracy (aka conspiracy to commit treason)?

    I think that the effing Commander-in-Chief has to be presumed to have the power to at least kick it off, so it’s not just idle talk.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  34. *who = how.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  35. To be clear she’s not saying that Giuliani was one of her anonymous sources.

    Because they never teach you how too write a proper sentence in J-school.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  36. The Rs need someone with intestinal fortitude and power to come out publicly and say, “What the FVCK is wrong with you people? I know it was an honest election and you know it was an honest election. Stop feeling this bullsh!t dishonest conspiracy story to people who trust you and get back to being real Americans who do your jobs.”

    More to the point: “What the FVCK is wrong with you people?! Even if they DID cheat, it’s happened before and it will happen again. You still can’t use the fracking army to “fix” things!”

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  37. @37 Nope, that still feeds the bullsh!t conspiracy theory and would continue to support the dishonesty that is undermining the very basis the US was built on. You have to fight on firm ground, not quicksand.

    Nic (896fdf)

  38. *@36

    Nic (896fdf)

  39. Can’t say NeverTrumpers didn’t warn you about his character 5 years ago.

    Bowling Alone (27d313)

  40. @37: Your method buries the lead (“No coups!”)

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  41. Is every republican currently in power a gutless wonder? A coward? So concerned with their own safety that the can’t take a modest risk? Women are going to start gluing their underwear on every time they are around these guys.

    Lol. Mitt Romney criticized, or rather mocked Trump today. Unfortunately, he remained ever restrained and polite:

    “It’s not going to happen. That’s going nowhere,” Romney, the former Massachusetts governor, said Sunday of Trump’s efforts to overturn President-elect Joe Biden’s victory on CNN’s “State of the Union.” “I understand the president is casting about trying to find some way to have a different result than the one that was delivered by the American people. But it’s really sad in a lot of respects, and embarrassing.”

    Watching video of the exchange, you can tell that Mitt is absolutely gobsmacked for the hundredth time by Trump’s recklessness and outrageous behavior.

    Dana (cc9481)

  42. Most of his advisers opposed the idea, two of the people briefed on the discussion said, including Rudolph W. Giuliani, the president’s personal lawyer.

    SF: To be clear she’s not saying that Giuliani was one of her anonymous sources. They must have been people in the White House counsel’s office.

    Kevin M (ab1c11) — 12/20/2020 @ 8:17 pm

    Because they never teach you how too write a proper sentence in J-school.

    I made it worse, with my addendum in brackets, because that separated the clause further from what it referred to,but it probably should have been:

    Most of his advisers, including Rudolph W. Giuliani, the president’s personal lawyer, opposed the idea, two of the people briefed on the discussion said.

    Or maybe even better, although that’s not journalese:

    Two of the people briefed on the discussion said that most of his advisers, including Rudolph W. Giuliani, the president’s personal lawyer, opposed the idea.

    Or maybe now you can keep most..opposed together and have it go:

    Two of the people briefed on the discussion said that most of his advisers opposed the idea, including Rudolph W. Giuliani, the president’s personal lawyer.

    That places et tu Giuliani as an additional thought, she added later, which it was.

    Sammy Finkelman (3915d0)

  43. Here’s the thing I don’t get: What are these Republicans afraid of? Trump is on the way out. He will not be in a position of active and direct power. I can only reasonably assume that they say nothing because they are true believers in his lunacy.

    Dana (cc9481)

  44. True believers who know their constituents are too, and they don’t want to risk losing their votes.

    Dana (cc9481)

  45. It was really standard inverted pyramid (mention the most important facts first) all in one sentence.

    Most important fact: Most of Trump’s advisers opposed the idea.

    Of secondary importance: Her sources.

    Of least importance: That included Giuliani.

    Sammy Finkelman (3915d0)

  46. 43. Well Trump can still veto the defense bill, or maybe not do a few things they may want, but that should really not explain things.

    They may think, however, he could make trouble for them, what with his political following, even if a minority of the Republican voters, or with his new campaign warchest, but if they wait, and say as little as possible, this will all go away.

    Sammy Finkelman (3915d0)

  47. 43.Here’s the thing I don’t get: What are these Republicans afraid of?

    74-plus million voters.

    You still don’t get it; the core aside, it’s not about Trump; it’s about the messaging. They’ve had it w/t Charens, Goldbergs, Wills and assorted nuts on the outs who perched in the tail w/that peculiar view of the world and wagged the dog for decades.

    They’re pooped out; done. So office holders either adapt to the change o/t electorate- which grew from 2016 to 2020– to survive, leave the party in a self-righteous huff and master insignificance–or try to start their own party. Except there’s just not enough of them.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  48. Coup talk is in a league w/ sinister plots over water fluoridation.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  49. FWIW,CNBC is running a series titled ‘Empires of New York.’

    Classic Reagan-era-cesspool, 1980’s NYC stuff.

    The Trump -and assorted co-stars like Helmsley, Giuliani etc., — are perfectly chronicled. The series shows you exactly how they were and those alive, still are. Ain’t nothing new from them. The NYC Trump of the 1980s is exactly the same as the Trump of today, kids.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  50. Committee to Protect Journalists
    @pressfreedom

    There are 274 journalists jailed worldwide for doing their job; the worst year on record.

    These are the worst jailers:

    China 47
    Turkey 37
    Egypt 27
    Saudi Arabia 24
    Eritrea 16
    Vietnam 15
    Iran 15
    Belarus 10
    Russia 10
    Cameroon 8
    Ethiopia 7

    #pressfreedom

    https://cpj.org/reports/2020/12/record-number-journalists-jailed-imprisoned/

    __ _

    Stephen L. Miller
    @redsteeze

    Weird, not a single journalist in facist Trump’s Dangerous Time to Tell the Truth in America
    __

    harkin (0db537)

  51. Kevin M – who has the constitutional authority to arrest the President for violating that statute, or to prosecute him for it, while he is in office?

    Unless Congress impeaches and the Senate convicts, there’s no way to do this until after Jan. 20.

    aphrael (4c4719)

  52. Has trump enacted the insurrection act and declared martial law yet? I don’t see any tanks in the streets. Has trump sent sydney powell out of the white house to arrest the bidens, kamala harris, the cuomos and the clinton yet?

    asset (f03de3)

  53. @dcsca I have tried to tell the people here this very thing for years. They still can’t believe they are not wanted in the republican party.

    asset (f03de3)

  54. Conservative thought leader paul weyrich said it many years ago “I want as few people as possible voting!” When too many people vote republicans loose.

    asset (f03de3)

  55. If Trump discussed overturning the election by force in the Oval Office, who is this not seditious conspiracy (aka conspiracy to commit treason)? I think that the effing Commander-in-Chief has to be presumed to have the power to at least kick it off, so it’s not just idle talk.
    Kevin M (ab1c11) — 12/20/2020 @ 8:14 pm

    Conspiracy requires an agreement to commit a crime, followed by an overt act in furtherance of the agreement. Here there’s no agreement, much less an overt act. Trump should be hounded from office, shunned from polite society and marked by history as a small “t” traitor. If he committed crimes he should be prosecuted for those. But this isn’t criminal. It’s just speech. Despicable, anti-democratic and anti-American, but protected.

    lurker (d8c5bc)

  56. Yeah no biggie that the president inquired about using tanks to change the outcome of an election y’all. Jeez but those masks at the grocery store are basically Hitler.
    Dustin (4237e0) — 12/20/2020 @ 2:41 pm

    It’s both sides.

    lurker (d8c5bc)

  57. With respect !!!

    mamaligadoc (6723e5)

  58. My grandfather dropped out of school after the 3rd grade and went to work plowing fields with an an ox. That’s hard labor. First you have to take care of the ox, second you have to plow the fields.

    He worked to support his family, but he saved his money. When he was around 20, he walked into the San Antonio business school, passed the entrance exam, and earned a business degree, became a bank manager.

    How was he able to do that? I mean today that would be like earning an MBA with a 3rd grade education.

    He helped his sisters with their homework every night, read all the textbooks, helped them study for quizzes and exams. They all graduated from Catholic school. In other words, he benefited from a Catholic school education without attending class. He also read everything he could get his hands on.

    He also was a convicted felon. Yeah, my grandmother had been stricken with tuberculosis. The doctors said that all they could do was lung removal and hope she survives. That cost a lot of money in the late 1940s. (It would cost several hundred thousand today.)
    , my grandfather robbed the bank. He was the manager; had the keys; he knew the code. He robbed the bank! To save his wife’s life. And the ultimate irony is that she outlived him.

    Gawain's Ghost (b25cd1)

  59. .

    September 13, 2020…

    Headline from The Guardian: Roger Stone to Donald Trump: bring in martial law if you lose election

    noel (9fead1)

  60. Gawain’s Ghost, that’s an incredible life story.

    Dustin (4237e0)

  61. We know Trump has been the Chicken Little of rigged elections for five years now. His polling numbers have always been poor and he knew he could easily lose. But does anyone know how long has this “martial law” idea has been floating around?

    noel (9fead1)

  62. Let me clarify that. How long have Trump’s goons been floating martial law as an option?

    noel (9fead1)

  63. harkin @50

    https://cpj.org/reports/2020/12/record-number-journalists-jailed-imprisoned.

    These are the worst jailers:

    China 47
    Turkey 37

    There are some other figures (earlier?) and Turkey is right up there pr was right up there with China, In these figures, the PRC leads Turkey by only 1: 48 to 47.

    https://cpj.org/reports/2019/12/journalists-jailed-china-turkey-saudi-arabia-egypt

    Since CPJ began keeping track of journalists in prison in the early 1990s, Turkey has frequently vied with China for the ignominious title of the world’s worst jailer. In 2019, CPJ found at least 48 journalists jailed in China, one more than in 2018; the number has steadily increased as President Xi Jinping consolidated political control of the country and instituted ever tighter controls on the media.

    No change in China 2019 to 2020??

    China may have just gotten better at concealing that or avoiding some arrests being counted as journalist arrests.

    Sammy Finkelman (3915d0)

  64. Meanwhile — the President takes a twitter time out from Executive time to talk (yet again) about Georgia:

    Governor @BrianKempGA and his puppet @GeoffDuncanGA, together with the Secretary of State of Georgia, are very slow on Signature Verification, and won’t allow Fulton County to be examined. What are these RINOS hiding? We will easily win Presidential State race. @KLoeffler and @sendavidperdue will not be able to win on January 5th. unless these people allow Signature Verification in presidential race. K & D need it for their race also, & Georgia spirit will rise to such a high that they will easily bring home a great victory. Move fast BrianKempGA

    Appalled (1a17de)

  65. Let me clarify that. How long have Trump’s goons been floating martial law as an option?

    Since the 2016 primaries. Yes, five years ago. And not only Trump’s personal goons hoping to become Reichsfuhrers and Gauleiters, but all the way down the line, to the ones hoping to become camp guards, and the ones hoping to bid at forfeitures for their immigrant neighbors’ homes, businesses, and ’63 Impala ragtop lowriders.

    nk (1d9030)

  66. Trump wants to wishful think a coup into existence. If you tweet it, will it come?

    Appalled (1a17de)

  67. I am not joking. It also answers the question why “they” are all still his lackeys, hell-bent on stealing the election. The ship may have sunk but the rats are still clinging to the straws, and a straw can be enough of a life preserver for a rat.

    nk (1d9030)

  68. I mean today that would be like earning an MBA with a 3rd grade education.

    Third grade isn’t what it used to be.

    In the 1940s, the U.S. Army used 5th grade as indicative of literacy. That stopped working during the Korean War because they started teaching reading using the whole word method in the 1930s.

    He helped his sisters with their homework every night, read all the textbooks, helped them study for quizzes and exams. They all graduated from Catholic school. In other words, he benefited from a Catholic school education without attending class. He also read everything he could get his hands on.

    Did they teach him to read, or did he learn that in school?

    I suspect school. It really takes only four to six months to teach a first grader to read.

    He also was a convicted felon.

    After becoming a bank manager not before! I thought for a second you meant before. I had to read further to see what you meant.

    After I read that story, I remembered you told it before. Well, actually I remembered the story, not who on Patterico told it.

    Didn’t he eventually get pardoned or something?

    Yeah, my grandmother had been stricken with tuberculosis. The doctors said that all they could do was lung removal and hope she survives. That cost a lot of money in the late 1940s. (It would cost several hundred thousand today.)

    The Pasteur cure for rabies was labeled expensive in a Berton Rouche book of New Yorker articles published originally in the 1950s – it was $5 a shot for up to ten shots.

    Sammy Finkelman (3915d0)

  69. Giuliani is back petitioning the Supreme Court and asking for the Pennsylvania electors to e thrown out and the Pennsylvania legislature being allowed to pick new electors – apparently not noticing the day for the electors to vote has passed, nor that giving Trump Pennsylvania would still not win him the election (it would be 286 to 252 in Biden’s favor) nor that the justices aren’t scheduled to conference until Friday, January 8.

    The grounds are that the Pennsylvania Supreme Court made three incorrect rulings regarding election procedures:

    1) That state law only required election officials to allow partisan observers to be able to see mail-in ballots being processed, but did not require them to be able to stand close enough to election workers to see the writing on individual envelopes.

    2) THAT more than 8,300 mail-in ballots in Philadelphia that had been challenged by the Trump campaign because of minor technical errors — such as a voter’s failure to write their name, address or date on the outer ballot envelope — should be counted.

    3) That counties are prohibited from rejecting mail-in ballots simply because a voter’s signature does not resemble the signature on the person’s voter registration form. (i.e. there must be further evidence of fraud)

    Sammy Finkelman (3915d0)

  70. Unless Congress impeaches and the Senate convicts, there’s no way to do this until after Jan. 20.

    I believe I’ve said that I’m for impeachment even now. Particularly since conviction can include a bar to further “service.”

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  71. It’s just speech. Despicable, anti-democratic and anti-American, but protected.

    Such speech by the Commander-in-Chief is but a phone call away from actual capital-T Treason.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  72. Such speech by the Commander-in-Chief is but a phone call away from actual capital-T Treason.

    Yup. And any one of us is but a phone call away from solicitation to commit murder for hire. Those hypothetical phone calls are hypothetically criminal. Without them, no crime.

    lurker (d8c5bc)

  73. Chris Matthews substituting for Rush Limbaugh says there were some vvery misleading leaks from that Friday afternoon meeting (I think even in Maggie Haberman’s article, it says there was on;y a brief discussion of calling in the military and presumbably that was not what they were arguing about.

    During an appearance on the conservative Newsmax channel this week, Mr. Flynn pushed for Mr. Trump to impose martial law and deploy the military to “rerun” the election. At one point in the meeting on Friday, Mr. Trump asked about that idea.

    Chris Matthews says that he doesn’t believe Russia did the hacking both this year and in 2016. He also said of people who think Bidnen won that they’re stupid.

    Here’s a good picture of what went on in Pennsylvania:

    https://www.nytimes.com/2020/12/16/magazine/trump-election-philadelphia-republican.html

    Schmidt had published an opinion column in The Philadelphia Inquirer titled “One Party Rule in Philadelphia Makes Everyone a Loser,” in which he wrote that “political competition, not criminal prosecution, is how we should hold our leaders accountable.” Schmidt told me, “I think the system works best when people have options, and in general elections here, there weren’t any.”

    This philosophy extended to taking on his own party. In running for the board, Schmidt challenged a 16-year Republican incumbent. “I did not have confidence that he was providing the sorts of checks and balances required to maintain the political ecosystem,” he said. Schmidt alienated the local Republican bosses who had facilitated his rise in the party. He didn’t care. He hadn’t the bile for party politics, he had learned by then, and he liked the Board of Elections for the same reason he’d liked the G.A.O. — it was impartial.

    In theory, at any rate. In practice, elections were occasionally subject to the same chicanery that characterized so much government in Philadelphia, where federal prison is sometimes called “the 67th ward.” The city had been home to the nation’s first major vote-rigging scandal, in 1781. Its Republican machine had maintained power in the 19th century partly through election fraud, and more recently Philadelphia had experienced a series of scandals, including one Trump would reference, in which a Democratic state senator’s campaign submitted hundreds of fraudulent absentee ballots. Schmidt, like many Pennsylvanians, had been raised believing the city was a hotbed of dirty electioneering.

    Schmidt joined a group of reform-minded Republicans and progressive Democrats who wanted to clean up the election system. During the race, he exposed a trove of correspondence that showed local elected officials in both parties violated ethics rules by hiring poll workers. Once in office, he undertook an investigation of election fraud. “There’s a universe of people who think that voter fraud never happens and a universe of people who think it’s widespread,” Schmidt told me. “They’re both wrong. It’s not somewhere in the middle, but they’re both wrong.” He discovered that cheating “does occur, but it typically occurs in primaries in local races, and when it does occur, it involves handfuls of votes.”

    Sammy Finkelman (3915d0)

  74. Here’s a well-timed and accurate statement about criminal law I just saw retweeted by Popehat:

    Crimes, even treason or sedition, have elements that must be proven beyond a reasonable doubt.

    Crimes are not things that feel crim-ish. Crimes are not things that “but how can that not be a crime?!?”

    Crimes have elements. If it fails to meet the elements, it’s not a crime.

    If my contempt and animosity, or yours Kevin, were all that were necessary for a criminal conviction, by now Trump would long be rotting in a dank prison cell. Luckily for all of us it takes more than that.

    lurker (d8c5bc)

  75. 53. That’s because they’ve lived in an echo-chambered blogosphere and talk radio universe that bucket-brigades their spin and makes’em believe there’s more of ’em than there actually are. The tail no longer wags the dog.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  76. @53. He outta mess w/their heads one last time and make an offer on purchasing Greenland. 😉

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  77. That it was even discussed in the Oval Office is ample grounds for impeachment. Doesn’t have to be a crime. Being beyond the pale is sufficient.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  78. @77. ROFLMAO hilarious coming from a Nixon apologist; have you ever listened to some of the crazy crap on those tapes he not only talked about but ordered done yet ignored by his henchmen in the Oval??????????????

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  79. It’s not surprising that many of the younger generation of people are embracing socialism and far leftism, because they look at the party that is supposed to embrace free market capitalism, and see Trumpism on full display, and get understandably repelled by it.

    The GOP has been front and center in jacking up the national debt for 40 years, and it was the neocon Bush gang that begged Congress to bail out the banks with TARP, after these same banks had essentially committed securities fraud to build a bubble economy with garbage housing loans.

    The GOP lost whatever credibility it had as a free market capitalism party long before Trump came along. How exactly are they supposed to counter-attack when mainstream Democrats are demanding things like a student loan debt jubilee–which will actually benefit the white, neo-yuppie, left-liberal upper middle class, who are up to their eyeballs in student loan and consumer debt, far more than it will minorities?

    The Trump -and assorted co-stars like Helmsley, Giuliani etc., — are perfectly chronicled. The series shows you exactly how they were and those alive, still are. Ain’t nothing new from them. The NYC Trump of the 1980s is exactly the same as the Trump of today, kids.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5) — 12/20/2020 @ 9:47 pm

    It says something about how pathetic the GOP became that the base turned to a 1980s Democrat to be their leader. The neocons could only run on Reagan nostalgia (which was really nostalgia for late 1980s hedonism) and Cold War victory for so long. And as you alluded above, Reagan became the shining light of the GOP precisely because he cleaved to the right-wing populism and nationalism espoused by Goldwater. Even if Trump hadn’t won, someone would have come along who adopted his pose, because that’s the direction the base has been trending since 2008. That’s why the old-guard pundits like Kristol/Brooks and campaign managers like Rick Wilson still can’t figure out how they lost control; their whole political paradigm is jammed hard in a time frame where the only thing the base cares about is tax cuts and reducing government spending.

    Factory Working Orphan (f2abc6)

  80. hilarious coming from a Nixon apologist; have you ever listened to some of the crazy crap on those tapes he not only talked about but ordered done yet ignored by his henchmen in the Oval?

    I’ve never said that Nixon was wronged by the impeachment attempt, only that his fall was a classic tragedy — a man of substance done in by a terrible flaw. His strategy for winning the Cold War was the one we used.

    Trump is nothing but a flaw.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  81. Factory Working Orphan (f2abc6) — 12/21/2020 @ 8:15 pm

    It says something about how pathetic the GOP became that the base turned to a 1980s Democrat to be their leader.

    In the 1980s, Donald Trump was a Republican. He toyed with running for the Republican nomination for president in 1987 and tried to interest George Bush the Elder in naming him his vice president.

    Sammy Finkelman (3915d0)

  82. In the 1980s, Donald Trump was a Republican. He toyed with running for the Republican nomination for president in 1987 and tried to interest George Bush the Elder in naming him his vice president.

    Sammy Finkelman (3915d0) — 12/22/2020 @ 4:02 am

    There’s very little in Trump’s political positions to indicate that he was a Republican in the 1980s, other than lowering taxes. He didn’t even register as one until 1987, changed party affiliation frequently, was particularly critical of the free trade deals they supported, distrustful of international alliances where he felt we were shouldering all of the load, and was pro-abortion and pro-drug legalization.

    Factory Working Orphan (f2abc6)

  83. Factory Working Orphan (f2abc6) — 12/22/2020 @ 6:20 am

    There’s very little in Trump’s political positions to indicate that he was a Republican in the 1980s, other than lowering taxes. He didn’t even register as one until 1987,

    No, I think that’s when he registered to vote in Manhattan instead of Queens. It’s just that 1987 as far back as the records that someone looked up went. And 1987 is the 1980s. (he may possibly not have registered in a political party before 1987)

    https://www.politifact.com/factchecks/2015/aug/24/jeb-bush/bush-says-trump-was-democrat-longer-republican-las

    According to the New York City Board of Elections, Trump has changed his party affiliation five times since registering as a Republican in Manhattan in 1987. A form that year notes he had previously been registered in the Jamaica Estates neighborhood of Queens, where he grew up, but his prior affiliation was not identified.

    changed party affiliation frequently, was particularly critical of the free trade deals they supported, distrustful of international alliances where he felt we were shouldering all of the load, and was pro-abortion and pro-drug legalization.

    Because of his divorce and his bankruptcies he didn’t talk aboout running for office for about ten years after 1988. In 1999, when he was considering running for the nomination of Ross Perot’s Reform Party he changed his registration to Independence. (The Independence party was apparently affiliated with Ross Perot’s Reform Party at the time.)

    Sammy Finkelman (3915d0)

  84. Re: 83 The last paragraph, that looks like a quote, is mine and the previous paragraph is from Factory Working. The paragraph before that is from Politifact in 2015.

    Sammy Finkelman (3915d0)

  85. This behavior is not unique to the Trumpies:

    Cornell Student Government Fails To Disarm Police, So They Expel Opposition Members And Vote Again

    Members of Cornell University’s student government tried to pass a resolution last month that would disarm the school’s police, but the resolution failed.

    Following that failure, anti-police activists within the student government worked to expel other members who had opposed the resolution and then held a second vote to disarm campus police, which narrowly passed on December 10.

    This is hard to excerpt as it is much worse than that:

    After the initial vote failed, members of the student government who supported the resolution circulated recall petitions and held rallies against those who opposed it, removed some of them from subcommittee positions or the assembly itself, and said they were doing it to correct what a “white-cis-het” group had done.

    “Many of these assembly members are white-cis-het men and women who quite literally laughed and danced in our faces when the resolution failed,” Chukwukere added. “Their faces are all over social media,” he added. “We will never forget. … Their campus careers are over. … We must disarm, defund, and disband the Cornell University Police Department.”

    As the Fix reported, student government members who voted against the first resolution were also faced harassment and threats, with nonwhite members getting messages that they were traitors to their race.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  86. Does Trump know who his friends really are?

    Flynn was the first, and still the most substantive, scandalous blunder of his administration. Now, he comes up with martial law. The only person ostensibly on Trump’s team to say it out loud that I know of. A military coup has been a left-wing bugbear since Kirk Douglas stymied Burt Lancaster in 1964. Has any other friend of Trump fed that bugbear out loud besides Flynn?

    And Sidney “Dark Mistress Of The Kraken” Powell. She was Flynn’s lawyer before she stuck her nose into the post-election litigation. Does anybody know any lawyers so laughably incompetent and ineffectual that they maintain a law practice for decades? I’m talking about the election challenges. It’s hard to believe that any of it was for real.

    Who are they really working for? They have not only made Trump look bad but, worse, they have made America look bad. KGB double agents could not have done better.

    Just saying, you know.

    nk (1d9030)

  87. @80.Trump is nothing but a flaw.

    Trump is a Reagan creation, Kevin. CNBC is running a series titled ‘Empires of New York.’

    Classic Reagan-era-cesspool, 1980’s NYC stuff. Trump -and assorted co-stars like Helmsley, Giuliani etc., — are perfectly chronicled in it. I lived and worked through it. The series shows you exactly how they were and those still alive, still are. Ain’t nothing new from them. The NYC Trump of the 1980s is exactly the same as the Trump of today: a go-go 1980s creation from the source of decades of flaws: Reagan and his minions.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  88. @82. There’s very little in Trump’s political positions to indicate that he was a Republican in the 1980s…

    He was a ‘Rockefeller Republican.’ Essentially still is. As a business guy he navigated left and right in NYC as John Lindsay did as mayor.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  89. Trump is a Reagan creation, Kevin.

    Keep saying that. Maybe the next time it won’t sound idiotic.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  90. @89. ‘Denial’ is a river in Egypt, Kevin’ and the true idiocy on display. CNBC has it all– on tape; chronicled on tape just like The Big Dick you keep apologizing for.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  91. Today’s world is like the world of Nixon’s presidency the way Nixon himself is like the Nixon of Nixon’s presidency.

    nk (1d9030)

  92. Reagan too.

    Things change and history is a fable agreed upon.

    nk (1d9030)

  93. @91/@92 Is it lve or is it Memorex?!

    20th century video and audio tapes aren’t fables, nk.

    “Reality. What a concept.” – Robin Williams

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  94. Not TL:DR

    It must be admitted…it is most difficult to obtain absolute certainties for the purposes of history. Fortunately it is, in general, more a matter of mere curiosity than of real importance. … The truth of history, so much in request, to which every body eagerly appeals, is too often but a word. At the time of the events, during the heat of conflicting passions, it cannot exist; and if, at a later period, all parties are agreed respecting it, it is because those persons who were interested in the events, those who might be able to contradict what is asserted, are no more. What then is, generally speaking, the truth of history? A fable agreed upon. As it has been very ingeniously remarked, there are in these matters, two essential points, very distinct from each other: the positive facts, and the moral intentions. With respect to the positive facts, it would seem that they ought to be incontrovertible; yet you will not find two accounts agreeing together in relating the same fact: some have remained contested points to this day, and will ever remain so. With regard to moral intentions, how shall we judge of them, even admitting the candour of those who relate events? And what will be the case if the narrators be not sincere, or if they should be actuated by interest or passions? I have given an order, but who was able to read my thoughts, my real intentions? Yet every one will take up that order, and measure it according to his own scale, or adapt it to his own plans or system…. And then memoirs are digested, memoranda are written, witticisms and anecdotes are circulated; and of such materials is history composed. (9) — Napoleon Bonaparte

    https://shannonselin.com/2014/08/10-napoleon-bonaparte-quotes-context/

    nk (1d9030)

  95. Maybe the next time it won’t sound idiotic.

    Doubtful.

    Dave (1bb933)


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