Patterico's Pontifications

2/15/2022

About That “Hillary Had Trump Hacked” Narrative

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 8:29 am



Maybe slow your roll on that one. Here is the counter-narrative — which, at first glance, looks more credible. The title of Charlie Savage’s news analysis at the New York Times is Court Filing Started a Furor in Right-Wing Outlets, but Their Narrative Is Off Track with a deck headline that reads: “The latest alarmist claims about spying on Trump appeared to be flawed, but the explanation is byzantine — underlining the challenge for journalists in deciding what merits coverage.”

When John H. Durham, the Trump-era special counsel investigating the inquiry into Russia’s 2016 election interference, filed a pretrial motion on Friday night, he slipped in a few extra sentences that set off a furor among right-wing outlets about purported spying on former President Donald J. Trump.

But the entire narrative appeared to be mostly wrong or old news — the latest example of the challenge created by a barrage of similar conspiracy theories from Mr. Trump and his allies.

Savage says that it’s complicated and requires “significant mental energy and time” to disentangle it all. But in short, Durham has brought a case against Michael Sussman, who was a Democrat-linked cybersecurity lawyer. Sussman had had a discussion with the CIA regarding “odd internet data suggesting that someone using a Russian-made smartphone may have been connecting to networks at Trump Tower and the White House, among other places.” Sussman had learned that from a tech executive whose company had been involved in maintaining servers for the White House, and Durham says that Sussman had “exploited this arrangement” by, as Savage puts it, “mining certain records to gather derogatory information about Mr. Trump.”

Here’s what conservative media did with that:

Citing this filing, Fox News inaccurately declared that Mr. Durham had said he had evidence that Hillary Clinton’s campaign had paid a technology company to “infiltrate” a White House server. The Washington Examiner claimed that this all meant there had been spying on Mr. Trump’s White House office. And when mainstream publications held back, Mr. Trump and his allies began shaming the news media.

“The press refuses to even mention the major crime that took place,” Mr. Trump said in a statement on Monday. “This in itself is a scandal, the fact that a story so big, so powerful and so important for the future of our nation is getting zero coverage from LameStream, is being talked about all over the world.”

There were many problems with all this. For one, much of this was not new: The New York Times had reported in October what Mr. Sussmann had told the C.I.A. about data suggesting that Russian-made smartphones, called YotaPhones, had been connecting to networks at Trump Tower and the White House, among other places.

The conservative media also skewed what the filing said. For example, Mr. Durham’s filing never used the word “infiltrate.” And it never claimed that Mr. Joffe’s company was being paid by the Clinton campaign.

Most important, contrary to the reporting, the filing never said the White House data that came under scrutiny was from the Trump era. According to lawyers for David Dagon, a Georgia Institute of Technology data scientist who helped develop the Yota analysis, the data — so-called DNS logs, which are records of when computers or smartphones have prepared to communicate with servers over the internet — came from Barack Obama’s presidency.

Basically, as I understand it, the cybersecurity company had “lawful access” to analyze non-private data from the White House and other places, and after the Russian hackings, they became concerned that some of that data suggested Russian-made phones were “in proximity to” Trump’s campaign and the White House.

Much of this is in the nature of a defense raised by someone accused of a crime. I’d take it with a grain of salt the way I take the allegations of the indictment. And there seems to be some disagreement between Durham and the cybersecurity people about the meanings and significance of their findings.

But what seems beyond dispute is that Durham himself has not alleged a) that the Clinton campaign paid the company examining the data, b) that the company “infiltrated” anything, or c) that the data was from the Trump era.

I have not read the filings to verify that, but that’s what Savage claims. And if he’s right, then the initial narrative floated by several entities — Fox News, Karen Townsend at Hot Air, and the Washington Examiner — appears to have been garbage.

I think all of this bears watching. But as we watch, let’s bear in mind this moral: beware stories that seem too good to be true.

160 Responses to “About That “Hillary Had Trump Hacked” Narrative”

  1. Reposted from the Weekend Open Thread:

    Jesse Watters Makes WILDLY Unfounded Claim That Hillary Paid Hackers to Plant Evidence on Trump
    ………
    On Friday, Special Counsel John Durham filed a motion alleging that Clinton hired a tech executive with legal access to non-public, non-private internet data, some of which was allegedly used in an effort to link Trump to Russia. That executive has elsewhere been confirmed to be Rodney Joffe.
    ………
    On Monday, (Watters) told his audience:

    Durham’s documents show that Hillary Clinton hired people who hacked into Trump’s home and office computers before and during his presidency, and planted evidence that he colluded with Russia.

    Yeah. You heard that right. Hillary broke into a presidential candidate’s computer server and a sitting president’s computer server, spying on them. There, her hackers planted evidence, fabricated evidence connecting Trump to Russia, then fed that doctored material to the feds and the media.

    The problem is that Durham’s documents don’t show this – at all.
    ……….
    Rather than an elaborate hacking scheme, Durham states that Sussmann and a tech executive had access to certain non-public Internet data and that the tech exec “exploited” this by passing on data to the Clinton campaign.

    The Government’s evidence at trial will also establish that among the Internet data Tech Executive-1 and his associates exploited was domain name system (“DNS”) Internet traffic pertaining to (i) a particular healthcare provider, (ii) Trump Tower, (iii) Donald Trump’s Central Park West apartment building, and (iv) the Executive Office of the President of the United States (“EOP”). (Tech Executive-1’s employer, Internet Company-1, had come to access and maintain dedicated servers for the EOP as part of a sensitive arrangement whereby it provided DNS resolution services to the EOP. Tech Executive-1 and his associates exploited this arrangement by mining the EOP’s DNS traffic and other data for the purpose of gathering derogatory information about Donald Trump.)

    …….Durham’s motion (doesn’t) contain any allegations of hacking, fabricating, or planting evidence.
    ……….

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  2. They are all crooks. Every last one of them.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  3. ‘But as we watch, let’s bear in mind this moral: beware stories that seem too good to be true.’

    Been there. Done that:

    “Look, there are two thousand reporters in this town, are there five on Watergate? When did the Washington Post suddenly get the monopoly on wisdom? Why would the Republicans do it? McGovern’s self-destructed just like Humphrey, Muskie, the bunch of them. I don’t believe this story. It doesn’t make sense.” – ‘All The President’s Men’ 1976

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  4. Shoot. I took over an hour to read through the allegations, making a comment at 8:36am, and Patterico beats me to the punch at 8:29am, but I’ll cut-and-paste what I wrote below.

    I take back my previous comment about Durham.
    Turns out that the so-called “Hillary hacked Trump servers” scandal is a nothingburger. Durham left out of his filing that most or all of Joffe’s sleuthing was while Obama was prez, and it was legit.

    “What Trump and some news outlets are saying is wrong,” said Jody Westby and Mark Rasch, both lawyers for Mr. Dagon. “The cybersecurity researchers were investigating malware in the White House, not spying on the Trump campaign, and to our knowledge all of the data they used was nonprivate DNS data from before Trump took office.”
    In a statement, a spokesperson for Mr. Joffe said that “contrary to the allegations in this recent filing,” he was apolitical, did not work for any political party, and had lawful access under a contract to work with others to analyze DNS data — including from the White House — for the purpose of hunting for security breaches or threats.

    Ms. Wheeler has more here. Morning Joe spent a full half-hour on the topic.
    Mr. Sussman shared the results of Joffe’s work with the CIA in February 2017, and hyperpartisans like Kash Patel knew that.
    If nothing else is produced by Durham, then his investigation can be fairly viewed as a big fat waste of time, a “witch hunt” as it were. He nailed Clinesmith, which was handed to him by IG Horowitz, and he may have caught Sussman in a false statement.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  5. Basically, as I understand it, the cybersecurity company had “lawful access” to analyze non-private data from the White House and other places, and after the Russian hackings, they became concerned that some of that data suggested Russian-made phones were “in proximity to” Trump’s campaign and the White House.

    I haven’t had the time to read the findings or the analysis (and NYT behind the paywall…) but if anyone has, can you answer how a DNS search of IPs hitting of the White House servers could determine Russian-made phones were “in proximity to” Trump’s campaign and the White House?

    Sounds like you would have had to do at least several more searches to determine that info.

    Hoi Polloi (121542)

  6. I’m confused. The filing says:

    “The Government’s evidence at trial will also establish that among the Internet data
    Tech Executive-1 and his associates exploited was domain name system (“DNS”) Internet traffic
    pertaining to (i) a particular healthcare provider, (ii) Trump Tower, (iii) Donald Trump’s Central
    Park West apartment building, and (iv) the Executive Office of the President of the United States
    (“EOP”). (Tech Executive-1’s employer, Internet Company-1, had come to access and maintain
    dedicated servers for the EOP as part of a sensitive arrangement whereby it provided DNS
    resolution services to the EOP. Tech Executive-1 and his associates exploited this arrangement by
    mining the EOP’s DNS traffic and other data for the purpose of gathering derogatory information
    about Donald Trump.”

    But Patterico says “Durham himself has not alleged…that the data was from the Trump era.”

    That seems contradictory. What am I missing?

    JRH (bdcb40)

  7. @2.’They are all crooks. Every last one of them.’

    ROFLMAOPIP

    “What America needs are leaders to match the greatness of her people.” – The Big Dick, August, 1968

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  8. The Federalist has good coverage of this imbroglio.

    It’s likely……

    It’s also likely……

    LOL! Speculation at its best.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  9. I’ll also add this, with I think the anti-Trumpers on this board needs to take heart.

    We can hold both things true:
    1) Trump was a horrible President who tried to throw the 2020 election into chaos, which undermined our ‘peaceful transfer of governance’ system and should never be considered for public office again.

    2) The Obama holdovers, while may not breaking statutory laws or at the very least given colorable deniability, certainly abused their powers against their political rivals.

    We need to seriously have conversations on how we should depoliticize the environment that’s infecting certain parts of our government.

    I think NR (I suspect written by Andrew McCarthy) has the right tact:
    https://www.nationalreview.com/2022/02/durhams-jaw-dropping-revelation/

    whembly (0a8536)

  10. thank heavens the folks who bought the trump russia collusion narrative are here to clear all this up

    you just can’t fool these people with wildly speculative accusations

    JF (e1156d)

  11. Whembly, I’m 💯 for limiting executive power. But the conversation you want to have needs to start with the facts of what happened and what we want to limit.

    Time123 (a973f1)

  12. You do understand this is merely pre-emptive discreditation; trial balloons are beginning to float with little notes attached hinting a Hillary-to-the-rescue-run. So which camp is really launching them… maybe ‘it takes a village.’ 😉

    The stalest loaf on the shelf… in Birkenstocks no less:

    https://www.life.com/people/life-with-hillary-portraits-of-a-wellesley-grad-1969

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  13. ‘@12. Whembly, I’m 💯 for limiting executive power.’

    ‘Dick Nixon before he dicks you’ eh?!?! 😉 Everything old is new.

    “I am not a crook.” – The Big Dick, 11/17/73

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  14. Patterico: Let’s bear in mind this moral: beware stories that seem too good to be true.

    Durham: If people had done back in 2016, I wouldn’t have this bright shiny investigation. Thanks for nothing, Pat!

    Appalled (1a17de)

  15. OT: Breaking – Fox News reports cyberattack is underway against Ukranian Ministry of Defense, banks and other infrastructure elements.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  16. KYIV, Ukraine (AP) — A cyberattack hit the websites of Ukrainian government agencies and major banks Tuesday, Ukrainian authorities said. The attack, the latest of several hacking operations targeting Ukraine, came after weeks of escalating fears that Russia might invade its neighboring country.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  17. By the way, Trump fans, this is a very big deal:

    https://www.npr.org/2022/02/14/1080698388/trump-accountant-severs-relatioship-financial-statements-unreliable

    Accounting firms don’t do this unless there is Enron level shenanigans. This is the equivalent of the firm admitting publicly that they have been suckers for over ten years. That’s a bit of a business killer.

    Trump is much like Clinton back in 2008. he’s inevitable because he’s inevitable because he’s inevitable. If anything makes him look weak for a number of days, the preference cascade will be something to see.

    Appalled (1a17de)

  18. @12

    Whembly, I’m 💯 for limiting executive power. But the conversation you want to have needs to start with the facts of what happened and what we want to limit.

    Time123 (a973f1) — 2/15/2022 @ 9:51 am

    Not every abuse of power is covered in our statutory laws.

    I think it’s indisputable that various Obama holdovers certainly abused their powers and that the precedents by their actions is unfortunately going to be used in future administrations. It’s the overt political behaviors what I’m primarily focusing on.

    My point is this: Just because you may think Trump’s misdeeds are worthy of discussion, doesn’t mean we shouldn’t discuss the misdeeds his political opponent have done to him. One doesn’t justify the other. It’s the two wrongs, doesn’t make one right kind of thing.

    But, to be sure about Durham, he can only go after clear acts that breaks the law. I don’t think Durham is going to get more than a few perjury cases in the course of his investigations, but his report looks to be more damning politically, than legally. Not unlike the Mueller report.

    whembly (3fad18)

  19. @18: LOLOLOLOL:

    ‘You’ve got to accentuate the positive
    Eliminate the negative
    Latch on to the affirmative
    Don’t mess with Mister In-Between

    You’ve got to spread joy up to the maximum
    Bring gloom down to the minimum
    Have faith or pandemonium
    Liable to walk upon the scene

    To illustrate my last remark:
    Jonah in the whale, Noah in the ark
    What did they do
    Just when everything looked so dark?

    Man, they said we better accentuate the positive
    Eliminate the negative
    Latch on to the affirmative
    Don’t mess with Mister In-Between

    No, don’t mess with Mister In-Between!’

    — Bing Crosby, 1/1/45

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  20. I prefer “Don’t worry, be happy” Pithier message for a populace who might need to google pandemonium.

    I also prefer Louis Armstrong:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BC7DO-luqYw

    Appalled (1a17de)

  21. Trump Suggests Clinton Operatives Deserve Death for ‘Spying Operation’
    …….
    Trump issued a Saturday evening statement responding to the news, suggesting the death penalty would have been warranted for such actions in a different time.

    “This is a scandal far greater in scope and magnitude than Watergate and those who were involved in and knew about this spying operation should be subject to criminal prosecution. In a stronger period of time in our country, this crime would have been punishable by death,” the former president said. “In addition, reparations should be paid to those in our country who have been damaged by this.”
    …….
    Mr. Nuance strikes again.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  22. More to the point, DCSCA, if the financial statements are unrliable, and Deutches Bank relied on those statements, they can pull Trump’s loans. Will they? I don’t know — they’d take a big hit, but maybe the EU will reimburse them for it. I’m sure they wouldn’t mind Trump’s businesses collapsing.

    Appalled (1a17de)

  23. This is the same NY Times whose defense against libeling Governor Palin was that they were too stupid to read repeated emails disproving their mantra, right?

    Yes, that’s where I’ll go for propaganda pushing the narrative all the news that’s fit to print.

    NJRob (eb56c3)

  24. 1. Ignore story when it comes out.

    2. When story morphs into legal action, claim it’s “old news” that’s already been aired.

    3. Throw in “it’s all so complicated. why even bother [shrug emoji]!”

    4. ???

    5. Profit!

    Savefarris (dc84c2)

  25. ………(if)Deutches Bank relied on those statements, they can pull Trump’s loans.

    There are currently three Deutsche Bank loans against Trump properties, which are due in 2023 and 2024, so they will probably wait to see if he will pay up. The bank has said it will no longer do business with Trump.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  26. This is the same NY Times whose defense against who just beat libeling Governor Palin…..

    Fixed.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  27. #26

    They may just want to bail from the whole Trump mess at this point. The knowledge that whatever financial statements they relied on in the loan is a bunch of garbage gives them the ability to exit early.

    This may be a fight these guys want — it disassociates them from Trump in a loud public way.

    Appalled (1a17de)

  28. Ah yes, the same people who breathlessly reported on every Russian collusion “bombshell” are now trying to downplay revelations that a political campaign was spying on the sitting President.

    Edoc118 (f6616a)

  29. “Special counsel John Durham’s team alleged on Feb. 12 that a tech executive aligned with the Democratic Party was paid to spy on former President Donald Trump’s residences and the White House when Trump was president.

    Lawyers for the Clinton campaign allegedly paid the technology executive to infiltrate servers at the Trump Tower and the White House, Durham said in court filings, in order to establish an “inference” and “narrative” to tie Trump to the Russian government. Durham’s office made the claim as part of his investigation that had brought charges against Michael Sussmann, a lawyer who had worked on behalf of the Democratic National Committee and Hillary Clinton’s 2016 campaign and who is currently charged with making a false statement to the FBI.

    Durham alleged Sussmann “had assembled and conveyed the allegations to the FBI on behalf of at least two specific clients, including a technology executive (Tech Executive 1) at a U.S.-based internet company (Internet Company 1) and the Clinton campaign,” according to a section in the court filing, titled “Factual Background.”

    Billing records he obtained suggest that Sussmann “repeatedly billed the Clinton Campaign for his work on the Russian Bank-1 allegations” and that the unnamed technology executive met and communicate with Mark Elias, a left-wing lawyer and operative who has filed numerous election-related lawsuits on behalf of the Democrats. Sussman previously pleaded not guilty and accused Durham of acting in a politically motivated manner.

    “Tech Executive-1 also enlisted the assistance of researchers at a U.S.-based university who were receiving and analyzing large amounts of Internet data in connection with a pending federal government cybersecurity research contract,” Durham’s filing states.

    The executive also “tasked these researchers to mine Internet data to establish ‘an inference’ and ‘narrative’ tying then-candidate Trump to Russia,” the filing states, adding that the technology firm that the executive worked for “had come to access and maintain dedicated servers” for Trump’s executive office.”

    https://www.theepochtimes.com/mkt_app/john-durham-democrats-paid-to-infiltrate-trump-white-house-servers_4274913.html?utm_source=partner&utm_campaign=badblue

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  30. I look forward to Aaron Rupar’s take…

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  31. I look forward to Aaron Rupar’s take…

    I look forward to what Durham can prove in court……

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  32. I’m with the “waste of mental energy” view. We have far more important things to deal with now, and to move forward on, than what piddly-assed transom-peeping went on nearly six years ago between a couple of old has-been losers who lost.

    nk (1d9030)

  33. @8: I guess that SIZE tags are disabled here.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  34. There are currently three Deutsche Bank loans against Trump properties, which are due in 2023 and 2024, so they will probably wait to see if he will pay up. The bank has said it will no longer do business with Trump.

    It’s pretty terrible when a bank that did business with Hitler won’t do business with you.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  35. The word exploited was used.

    EPWJ (0fbe92)

  36. The Epoch times story isn’t supported by the details of the filing.

    Time123 (a973f1)

  37. I thought this was patterico not clinton defense. @4 you forgot to mention what suss men is being prosecuted for. “analyze data including the white house-and gathering other data for the purpose of gathering derogatory information on donald trump.” This is spying.

    asset (2c5d66)

  38. @38 unless they had a legal right to that data.

    Time123 (a973f1)

  39. @23. The last thing Deutsche Bank needs is for folks to start looking under the rocks at their financial practices again:

    Deutsche Bank faces action over $20bn Russian money-laundering scheme

    https://www.theguardian.com/business/2019/apr/17/deutsche-bank-faces-action-over-20bn-russian-money-laundering-scheme

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  40. Whembly, I’m fine with what you’re laying out. But what specifically did the Obama administration do that they shouldn’t have? Russia did hack the DNC. That’s a legitimate crime that happened. There was plenty of reason to be deeply concerned about Trumps ties to Russia. The senate report confirmed that. Trump fired the head of the FBI and said on TV he did it to stop the investigation. It doesn’t look like they were pretending to be concerned out of political malice, it looks (based on IG report and their internal coms) like they were actually concerned.

    Time123 (a973f1)

  41. It’s pretty terrible when a bank that did business with Hitler won’t do business with you.

    Check your pantry, your medicine chest… your family photo albums…and perhaps, your driveway:

    https://historycollection.com/10-famous-companies-collaborated-nazi-germany/8/

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  42. @39

    @38 unless they had a legal right to that data.

    Time123 (a973f1) — 2/15/2022 @ 12:18 pm

    That’s a separate and distinct question.

    But, let’s go with that… let’s assume they had the legal right to that data. Then what? The issue then, which is what Durham needs to prove, is that did Sussman leverage this information in a way to purposely send the various agencies in government on a wild goose chase in order to undermine Trump politically? That is, did he do this for partisan reasons, as opposed to as a former prosecutor legit concerned what he saw?

    That still doesn’t address why the various agencies didn’t have a more critical view of these allegations, but that’s a whole ‘nother different set of questions.

    whembly (0a8536)

  43. you forgot to mention what suss men is being prosecuted for…

    Sussman has been indicted for making false statements to the FBI:

    Sussman, a lawyer at a large international law firm, met with the FBI General Counsel at FBI Headquarters in Washington, D.C. Sussmann had requested the meeting to provide the General Counsel with certain data files and “white papers” that allegedly demonstrated a covert communications channel between the Trump Organization and a Russia-based bank. Sussmann, who had previously represented the Democratic National Committee in connection with a cyber hack, falsely stated to the General Counsel that he was not bringing these allegations to the FBI on behalf of any client. This false representation led the General Counsel to understand that Sussmann was providing information as a good citizen rather than a paid advocate or political operative. In fact, Sussmann assembled and conveyed the allegations to the FBI on behalf of at least two clients, including a U.S. technology executive and the Clinton Presidential Campaign.

    Source

    My emphasis. Nothing in there about spying or hacking. Pretty weak tea.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  44. The issue then, which is what Durham needs to prove, is that did Sussman leverage this information in a way to purposely send the various agencies in government on a wild goose chase in order to undermine Trump politically? That is, did he do this for partisan reasons, as opposed to as a former prosecutor legit concerned what he saw?

    Durham needs to prove that Sussman lied to the FBI about whom he represented when he spoke to the FBI’s General Counsel. That is all what he has been indicted on. Durham is mudding the waters.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  45. @43, if we assume they had a legal right to the data the the claims of spying and infiltration are false.

    Time123 (a973f1)

  46. Durham prosecution faces hurdles in D.C. court
    ………
    Getting a Washington jury to convict Sussmann could be far harder, judging by a case with significant parallels: the 2019 prosecution of former Obama White House counsel Greg Craig.

    Craig, too, went to trial on a single felony false-statement count unaccompanied by any other substantive charge. The case had strong political overtones and came down, largely, to a swearing contest between the defendant and a longtime government lawyer.

    It took the jury less than five hours to acquit Craig after a two-and-a-half-week trial, with some jurors saying they suspected politics were at work in the decision to go after the longtime Democratic lawyer.
    ………
    The similarities go further, with both cases turning on murky memories of an in-person meeting that was not recorded or transcribed……
    ………
    Sussmann’s case revolves around an exchange with James Baker, the FBI’s general counsel at the time, at the bureau’s headquarters. Baker took no notes, although an FBI colleague who did not attend the session wrote down that Baker said Sussmann said he wasn’t coming forward on behalf of any client in relaying the information about possible computer links between Trump and a Russian bank.
    ………

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  47. @44 what were the allegations? @39 they have no legal right to gather derogatory information on donald trump. People are prosecuted all the time for misusing information they otherwise have a right to use. This is formally called the old army game. Cop: I pulled you over because their is mud on your license plate and it is hard to see the last number, not because your driving while black. Now open the truck and glove box and then I am going to do a full body cavity search because I have a legal right to pull you over.

    asset (2c5d66)

  48. @41

    Whembly, I’m fine with what you’re laying out. But what specifically did the Obama administration do that they shouldn’t have?

    They should’ve let the career-level investigators perform the initial investigation and not let the upper-echelon, politically motivated leadership run it. That was a major deviation of their standard practice, such that many former FBI investigators has illuminated.

    Russia did hack the DNC. That’s a legitimate crime that happened. There was plenty of reason to be deeply concerned about Trumps ties to Russia. The senate report confirmed that.

    The senate report confirmed the likelihood that Russia was involved in the hack.

    Neither that report, nor did Mueller find anything substantiating any meaningful “ties” to Russia. Such allegations seriously amounted to “guilt by association” types analysis, and you should do better. Furthermore, congressional investigation should always be met with caution as it’s a partisan effort. It’s not conducting an investigation worthy of the same standard as what the DOJ aspires to.

    Trump fired the head of the FBI and said on TV he did it to stop the investigation.

    As it was his prerogative. You may not like his reasoning, but Director Comey was not forthright and as such became untenable to hold his position. I hope by now, this idea that the FBI is “supposed” to be independent from the political spheres of the executive branch dies in the fire. It has not, nor ever been the intent.

    It doesn’t look like they were pretending to be concerned out of political malice, it looks (based on IG report and their internal coms) like they were actually concerned.

    Time123 (a973f1) — 2/15/2022 @ 12:23 pm

    That’s a mischaracterization imo.

    There were numerous accounts of certain low level investigators questioning the continuing investigation. Another way to look at this: For the moment, disregard Trump and his croney’s behaviors stemming from the investigation itself (ie, the obstruction allegations). The absolute full might of the government, staffed with vigorous anti-Trumper/Democrat supporting individuals, could NOT find any collusion relationship between Trump and Russian. Such that, if there was truly a relationship, I’d find it difficult to believe they wouldn’t find anything at all to support such allegation. There was simply, no there there.

    We cannot/should not expect our federal government to act as if it’s the American Praetorian Guards. Meaning, these agencies (or deepstate if you will), cannot exert powers and/or influences that would make/unmake the Presidencies. That is stuff you’d find in a banana-republic.

    All of that to say, doesn’t excuse any of Trump’s behaviors during his presidency.

    whembly (0a8536)

  49. I would be interested in The Epoch Times has to say about the persecution of Falun Gong by the ChiComs — but I would be slow to believe anything they have to say about American politics.

    Falun Gong administers a variety of extensions in the United States and elsewhere, which have received notable media attention for their political involvement and ideological messaging, particularly since the involvement of these extensions in the 2016 United States presidential election. Falun Gong extensions include The Epoch Times, a politically far-right[30] media entity that has received significant attention for promoting conspiracy theories, such as QAnon and anti-vaccine misinformation, and producing advertisements for former U.S. President Donald Trump.

    The Wikipedia article includes this quotation from Los Angeles magazine:

    Despite its conservative agenda, Epoch Times took pains until recently to avoid wading into partisan U.S. politics. That all changed in June 2015 after Donald Trump descended on a golden escalator to announce his presidential candidacy, proclaiming that he “beat China all the time.” In Trump, Falun Gong saw more than just an ally—it saw a savior. As a former Epoch Times editor told NBC News, the group’s leaders “believe that Trump was sent by heaven to destroy the communist party.

    By cozying up to a former KGB operative, and a Communist monarch, Kim Jong-un? And making a trade deal with “Emperor” Xi? I must admit I do not see how that works.

    Jim Miller (edcec1)

  50. @46

    @43, if we assume they had a legal right to the data the the claims of spying and infiltration are false.

    Time123 (a973f1) — 2/15/2022 @ 12:33 pm

    I was just making a hypothetical argument.

    Having said that: why defend it now? Why all the previous subterfuge?

    whembly (0a8536)

  51. correction: “interested in what

    Jim Miller (edcec1)

  52. Squinty McStumblebum addresses nation; talks about WW2, 77 years ago; says you will suffer higher energy costs for his incompetence. Insists his deck full of jokers beats Vlad’s pair of deuces.

    … and Putin smiled.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  53. I must admit I do not see how that works.

    There doesn’t have to be a logical connection from one thing to another in Trumplandia. What counts is the will to believe the Great Heroic Patriot mythology, and the readiness to go through endless mental contortions to shore up the myth.

    Radegunda (c970ff)

  54. In America, gathering derogatory information on political opponents is called “opposition research” — and can be pursued legally, or illegally. Since we are not choosing between angels, it is a routine part of almost any political campaign. Some political operatives, for example, Peter Schweizer, even make a living at it.

    (For the record: From what I have seen, Schweizer has been right more often than he has been wrong, but he has often been careless.)

    Jim Miller (edcec1)

  55. The media will use a couple of “My Pillows” to smother this story until it doesn’t move.

    mg (8cbc69)

  56. OT- Biden tells Russian people: “NATO is not your enemy.”

    Jesus. Which is why it has expanded since the USSR dissolved, eh, Magoo?

    Bob Gates is right.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  57. @56. Scarrborough sure tried– but he’s just ‘Morning Joke.’

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  58. “the readiness to go through endless mental contortions to shore up the myth.”

    Nice capsulization of Pro-Democrat/nevertrump efforts during the period of 2016 through the present! 👍

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  59. @44 what were the allegations? @39 they have no legal right to gather derogatory information on donald trump. People are prosecuted all the time for misusing information they otherwise have a right to use. This is formally called the old army game. Cop: I pulled you over because their is mud on your license plate and it is hard to see the last number, not because your driving while black. Now open the truck and glove box and then I am going to do a full body cavity search because I have a legal right to pull you over.

    The only allegation that counts is that Sussman lied to the FBI. Sussman has not been indicted on anything else. Durham is trying to muddy the waters with allegations that have no bearing on the indictment. Prosecutors (federal prosecutors particularly) use the investigation narrative technique to amplify facts that put the defendant in a bad light but don’t directly relate to the actual indictment.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  60. As everyone knows, NATO has been good for the Russian people, deterring their leaders from leading them into wars in which the Russians would suffer horrendous losses.

    Jim Miller (edcec1)

  61. Jesus. Which is why it has expanded since the USSR dissolved, eh, Magoo?

    In other words, why did the nations that were formerly oppressed and controlled by the Soviet Union seek to join an alliance that would protect them from future Russian aggression? Your question is unserious, DCSCA, I dare say Magoo-esque.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  62. @60 preliminary filing people still being brought before grand jury.

    asset (2c5d66)

  63. @63-
    We’ll see. Trial is scheduled for late July.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  64. The expansion of NATO has made it even better at protecting the Russian people from their awful leaders.

    Jim Miller (edcec1)

  65. Sussman Trial Must Be Delayed, John Durham Says, Because He’s Really Bad At Discovery
    ……..
    Durham’s rationale is that the government can’t possibly fulfill its discovery obligations on such a short timeline. Sussman argues that this is a piddly little false statement charge, and anyway the government is already taking advantage of the long runway to delay disclosing Brady material. As evidence of this, he enters as exhibits two recent disclosures which directly undercut the government’s allegation that Sussman explicitly denied that he went to the FBI on behalf of a client, either the Clinton campaign or the DNC.

    Baker (FBI General Counsel at the time) insists that he had no idea the Perkins Coie lawyer represented Democratic clients — in which case, he is probably the only lawyer in DC who hasn’t made that connection. Indeed, the only record of the conversation is in notes taken by Baker’s deputy Bill Priestap when his boss called to report on the one-on-one meeting and hand the problem off. The notes, which are probably hearsay anyway, read: “said not doing this for any client,” and immediately after “Represents DNC, Clinton Foundation, etc.”
    …….
    In his scheduling motion …… Sussman reveals two additional instances, which were only recently disclosed by prosecutors, in which Baker contradicted the version of events put forth in the indictment. In one, “Baker said that Sussmann did not specify that he was representing a client regarding the matter, nor did Baker ask him if he was representing a client.” And in the other, Baker described Sussman as bringing him information from “some number of people that were his clients.”
    ……….
    Related:

    Jim Baker doesn’t agree with Jim Baker about what happened in the meeting. Baker has provided at least four different versions of his understanding of why Sussmann shared the Alfa Bank information with him (I’ve got longer excerpts below). At an October 3, 2018 interview with the Oversight Committee (where Baker brought it up), he said, “I don’t recall [Sussmann] saying that,” he worked for the DNC. At an October 10, 2018 interview with the Oversight Committee, he told Jim Jordan he didn’t “remember [Sussmann] saying that he was acting on behalf of a particular client.” In a July 15, 2019 interview with DOJ IG, Baker explained that Sussmann said their meeting “related to strange interactions that some number of people that were his clients, who were, he described as I recall it, sort of cyber-security experts, had found about some strange connection between some part of Donald Trump’s organizations and Alfa Bank.” In a June 2020 interview with Durham’s team (which as a 302 may be less reliable than the other sources), Baker said, “it did not seem like Sussmann was representing a client. Baker repeated his earlier assertion that he did not know Sussmann was representing the DNC at the time and Sussmann did not advise him of that fact at this particular meeting.” Presumably, Baker testified to the grand jury, too, but that interview would have been after all of these earlier versions. In none of the publicly available versions of Baker’s story does Sussmann affirmatively say he was not representing the DNC or any other client, and in one case — the DOJ IG interview — Baker remembered Sussmann commenting that he had a client; and that version (which Sussmann wouldn’t have had access to before getting it in discovery) matches Sussmann’s public story.
    ……..
    Durham already confessed that he had no evidence Sussmann was working directly with the Hillary campaign on this. Most importantly, all the researchers believed and still believe that the Alfa Bank DNS data showed a real anomaly, and they first discovered it in a legitimate attempt to identify further attempts Russia made to tamper in the 2016 election. If that case were made to the jury, then Sussmann will be able to explain why Baker didn’t apparently think it all that important to ask who Sussmann was representing: because it was an alarming anomaly, no matter who brought it to the FBI.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  66. OT:
    Jury rules against Sarah Palin in New York Times libel case
    ……..
    In 2017, when Rakoff first reviewed Palin’s case — in which the former Alaska governor sued the Times for an editorial that inaccurately suggested a link between some rhetoric from the political action committee and a 2011 mass shooting — he dismissed it, stating that it was doubtful that she could demonstrate that the Times had shown the “actual malice” required by that 1964 standard. The newspaper corrected the error hours later.

    Yet an appellate court reinstated Palin’s case, prompting many legal scholars to wonder if the courts’ once-forgiving attitude toward journalistic errors had begun to wane — and whether media organizations may find themselves increasingly beset by costly litigation.
    ……..
    Sad!

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  67. I expect the Lindbergh baby kidnapping to be solved before this. The 4th tier of justice will see to that.

    mg (8cbc69)

  68. RIP PJ O’Rourke (74).

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  69. @51, whembly, I’m not sure what the facts actually are here. But the claims seem to be in excess of what they show. As far as covering it up? Well a lawyer working for Hillary Clinton might lie on pure muscle memory.

    Time123 (a973f1)

  70. @62. No, Paul- you got it backwards: Squinty McStumblebum’s comical assertion is what’s Magoo-esque.

    … and Putin smiled.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  71. @61. As everyone knows, NATO is full of dead beats– and obsolete. See SEATO for details.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  72. @61/@62. Where can we buy Ukraine Defense Fund War Bonds, Joe????? Or are you putting the expense of deploying and maintaining U.S. troops in Eastern Europe along with this year’s NATO dues on Uncle Sam’s credit card– guaranteed with borrowed Chinese financing? Do tell… do tell…

    … and Jinping grinned.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  73. @69. The indispensable PJ O’Rourke.

    He’ll be missed.

    lurker (59504c)

  74. @70 @51,

    whembly, I’m not sure what the facts actually are here. But the claims seem to be in excess of what they show. As far as covering it up? Well a lawyer working for Hillary Clinton might lie on pure muscle memory.

    Time123 (a973f1) — 2/15/2022 @ 2:04 pm

    lol… had a good laugh at that one.

    whembly (7e0293)

  75. Nice capsulization of Pro-Democrat/nevertrump efforts during the period of 2016 through the present!

    I’m obviously speaking of the ridiculous efforts to portray Donald Trump as a truth-teller who’s zealously devoted to rooting out corruption, and a self-sacrificing patriot who loves America more purely than all his opponents and critics — even though he says our country is “corrupt” and a laughingstock and it’s going to hell and it’s no better than Putin’s Russia, etc.

    And of the feverish persistent efforts to find the case-clinching bit of evidence to prove that 1/6 was not what the massively overwhelming preponderance of evidence shows it to be, but rather a Deep State plot against Trump and his devotees.

    And the ongoing efforts to back up the “rigged election” mythology when every investigation and audit undermines it.

    And the weird contortions that people go through to maintain that Trump is only ever a victim of other people’s malice — that there can’t possibly be any misdeed by him that demands accountability, or anything about him that could make an extraordinarily large number of people who worked at the White House hold him in very low regard. It’s only the Great Patriot being attacked by bad people.

    The recent revelations about Trump’s contempt for rules about handling official documents is not remotely surprising. It would have been far more surprising to be told that he scrupulously respected the rules.

    Trumpies can be counted on to spin and deflect and whatabout, because they’ve committed themselves to defending their god-king at all costs. The dishonest Trumper takes on Durham are part of the pattern.

    Radegunda (c970ff)

  76. Surprised and sad at the P.J. O’Rourke news. 74 is way too young. (My mom is 90. Still drives. Still cracks wickedly funny jokes.)

    I’ll never forget P.J.’s point about a fundamental problem at the heart of our government–“concentrated benefits, dispersed costs.”

    norcal (2c7427)

  77. Radegunda (c970ff) — 2/15/2022 @ 3:07 pm

    My experience with Trumpers has been a little different. They acknowledge he has serious faults, but they believe our country is in dire straits, and that Trump is a crude but effective tool in pushing back against all the degradation going on.

    I disagree with that view, and consider Trumpers to be excessively alarmist and paranoid. They see what they want to see–walls closing in on them from every direction. It’s an emotional, reactionary, scapegoating mindset, and they will not be dissuaded. One might as well reason with a zealous jihadist.

    norcal (2c7427)

  78. I read a little more inn a Wall Street Journal editorial and even in aNew Yotrk Post editorial

    Sussman made a second approach (to a different federal agency than the first) on February 9. 2017, after Trump had become president, to make a new set of allegations. It seems like this time he was given no credibility at all. Now internet traffic pertaining to the White House is included but it is not clear that this is supposedly current information.

    Durham is very cryptic in what he says.

    This is the actual Durham motion filed in court on Friday

    https://storage.courtlistener.com/recap/gov.uscourts.dcd.235638/gov.uscourts.dcd.235638.35.0_1.pdf

    …The Indictment further details that on February 9, 2017, the defendant provided an
    updated set of allegations – including the Russian Bank-1 data and additional allegations relating
    to Trump – to a second agency of the U.S. government (“Agency-2”). The Government’s evidence
    at trial will establish that these additional allegations relied, in part, on the purported DNS traffic that Tech Executive-1 and others had assembled pertaining to Trump Tower, Donald Trump’s New
    York City apartment building, the EOP, and the aforementioned healthcare provider. In his meeting
    with Agency-2, the defendant provided data which he claimed reflected purportedly suspicious
    DNS lookups by these entities of internet protocol (“IP”) addresses affiliated with a Russian mobile
    phone provider (“Russian Phone Provider-1”). The defendant further claimed that these lookups demonstrated that Trump and/or his associates were using supposedly rare, Russian-made wireless
    phones in the vicinity of the White House and other locations. The Special Counsel’s Office has
    identified no support for these allegations. Indeed, more complete DNS data that the Special
    Counsel’s Office obtained from a company that assisted Tech Executive-1 in assembling these
    allegations reflects that such DNS lookups were far from rare in the United States. For example,
    the more complete data that Tech Executive-1 and his associates gathered – but did not provide to
    Agency-2 – reflected that between approximately 2014 and 2017, there were a total of more than 3
    million lookups of Russian Phone-Provider-1 IP addresses that originated with U.S.-based IP
    addresses. Fewer than 1,000 of these lookups originated with IP addresses affiliated with Trump
    Tower. In addition, the more complete data assembled by Tech Executive-1 and his associates
    reflected that DNS lookups involving the EOP and Russian Phone Provider-1 began at least as early
    2014 (i.e., during the Obama administration and years before Trump took office) – another fact
    which the allegations omitted.

    7. In his meeting with Agency-2 employees, the defendant also made a substantially similar false statement as he had made to the FBI General Counsel. In particular, the defendant asserted that he was not representing a particular client in conveying the above allegations. In truth
    and in fact, the defendant was representing Tech Executive-1 – a fact the defendant subsequently
    acknowledged under oath in December 2017 testimony before Congress (without identifying the
    client by name).

    Tech Executive-1= Rodney Joffe. Who Rodney Joffe was working for or assisting is not alleged.

    Sammy Finkelman (02a146)

  79. They were trying to frame Trump, or kick start an investigation.

    Sammy Finkelman (02a146)

  80. Allegation 1 – dating to 2016:

    4. The Indictment also alleges that, beginning in approximately July 2016, Tech Executive-1 [= Rodney Joffe] had worked with the defendant, a U.S. investigative firm retained by Law Firm-1 on behalf of the Clinton Campaign, numerous cyber researchers, and employees at multiple Internet companies to assemble the purported data and white papers.

    In connection with these efforts, Tech Executive-1 exploited his access to non-public and/or proprietary Internet data. Tech Executive-1 also enlisted the assistance of researchers at a U.S.-based university who were receiving and analyzing large amounts of Internet data in connection with a pending federal government cybersecurity research contract. Tech Executive-1 tasked these researchers to mine Internet data to establish “an inference” and “narrative” tying then-candidate Trump to Russia. In doing so, Tech Executive-1 indicated that he was seeking to please certain “VIPs,” referring to individuals at Law Firm-1 and the Clinton Campaign.

    5. The Government’s evidence at trial will also establish that among the Internet data Tech Executive-1 and his associates exploited was domain name system (“DNS”) Internet traffic
    pertaining to (i) a particular healthcare provider, (ii) Trump Tower, (iii) Donald Trump’s Central
    Park West apartment building, and (iv) the Executive Office of the President of the United States
    (“EOP”). (Tech Executive-1’s employer, Internet Company-1, had come to access and maintain
    dedicated servers for the EOP as part of a sensitive arrangement whereby it provided DNS
    resolution services to the EOP. Tech Executive-1 and his associates exploited this arrangement by
    mining the EOP’s DNS traffic and other data for the purpose of gathering derogatory information
    about Donald Trump.)

    Sammy Finkelman (02a146)

  81. Now, Trump was not in secret communication with Russia. Paul Manafort was in limited communication with someone he could have known was a Russian government agent to whom he revealed internal Trump campaign polls. Mike Flynn they just never looked at it.

    Sammy Finkelman (02a146)

  82. RH (bdcb40) — 2/15/2022 @ 9:32 am

    But Patterico says “Durham himself has not alleged…that the data was from the Trump era.”

    That seems contradictory. What am I missing?

    There are two separate akllegations, but it not clear even in the second one that any info came from the White House, or if any of it was real.

    J

    Sammy Finkelman (02a146)

  83. * that any info came from the White House after Trump became president.

    Sammy Finkelman (02a146)

  84. Hey Joe, they ain’t payin’ $6.00/gallon for gasoline in Moscow:

    https://fuelprices.ru/en/cfo/moskva

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  85. NJRob (eb56c3) — 2/15/2022 @ 10:31 am

    This is the same NY Times whose defense against libeling Governor Palin was that they were too stupid to read repeated emails disproving their mantra, right?

    The editorial was published six years later, after a former Bernie Sanders supporter had tried to kill Republican members of Congress at a baseball practice. It had never registered with the person who wrote that about Sarah Palin that it had been established that “Mr. Clean” had probably never read what Sarah Palin wrote and he was angry at Gabby Giffords because he felt she patronized him. (which she did)

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  86. 66.

    In a June 2020 interview with Durham’s team (which as a 302 may be less reliable than the other sources), Baker said, “it did not seem like Sussmann was representing a client. Baker repeated his earlier assertion that he did not know Sussmann was representing the DNC at the time and Sussmann did not advise him of that fact at this particular meeting.”

    That means that, while he knew that one client of the law firm was the DNC, he did not volunteer that that what he was doing then and there, that is, forwarding this (what was actually disinformation) was in his capacity as a lawyer. This kind of silence would add to his credibility.

    Q. Would not mentioning anything be equivalent to an assertion that his concern was his own?

    Q. If the FBI, or Baker, at some point stated in internal FBI records that Sussman brought this allegation to the attention of the FBI at his own initiative, and not as somebody’s agent, can Sussman be blamed for that?

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  87. Ah yes, the same people who breathlessly reported on every Russian collusion “bombshell” are now trying to downplay revelations that a political campaign was spying on the sitting President.

    Did you miss the part about how even Durham has not said that was what was happening?

    Again: I have not read through the filings, but if Savage is wrong, combat it with a quote from the filings.

    Patterico (7e54d1)

  88. “The Government’s evidence at trial will also establish that among the Internet data
    Tech Executive-1 and his associates exploited was domain name system (“DNS”) Internet traffic
    pertaining to (i) a particular healthcare provider, (ii) Trump Tower, (iii) Donald Trump’s Central
    Park West apartment building, and (iv) the Executive Office of the President of the United States
    (“EOP”). (Tech Executive-1’s employer, Internet Company-1, had come to access and maintain
    dedicated servers for the EOP as part of a sensitive arrangement whereby it provided DNS
    resolution services to the EOP. Tech Executive-1 and his associates exploited this arrangement by
    mining the EOP’s DNS traffic and other data for the purpose of gathering derogatory information
    about Donald Trump.”

    But Patterico says “Durham himself has not alleged…that the data was from the Trump era.”

    That seems contradictory. What am I missing?

    That’s a good question. From Savage’s analysis, it appears that the contention is that the monitoring of the executive office of the president was done during the Obama administration, with lawful access, of non-private data. Now, how that would amount to gathering derogatory information about Donald Trump, I think remains to be seen — and I think the detailed answer to your question will show us whether Durham is phrasing his allegations in a misleading way or whether the people like Savage minimizing the allegations are just wrong and/or lying.

    Patterico (7e54d1)

  89. In short, I don’t think we necessarily know enough for anyone to be doing a victory dance here. But I would say: if you initially believed that the allegations were that Hillary paid to have Trump hacked/spied on, slow your roll.

    Patterico (7e54d1)

  90. I haven’t had the time to read the findings or the analysis (and NYT behind the paywall…) but if anyone has, can you answer how a DNS search of IPs hitting of the White House servers could determine Russian-made phones were “in proximity to” Trump’s campaign and the White House?

    Sounds like you would have had to do at least several more searches to determine that info.

    Yeah, I don’t really understand that part. Seems like Paul Montagu has spent more time with the filing than I have (I have spent none; he says he spent an hour) so if he sees this comment, perhaps he could address your question, which also seems like a good question.

    Patterico (7e54d1)

  91. Lawyers for the Clinton campaign allegedly paid the technology executive to infiltrate servers at the Trump Tower and the White House, Durham said in court filings

    Yeah, this quote from the horseshit Web site Epoch Times is just wrong. The word “infiltrate” was not used. Savage says that explicitly. Haiku, if you have a quote from the filing saying otherwise, quote it. Otherwise you’re just using my comment section to spread misinformation.

    Patterico (7e54d1)

  92. So… premature pontification.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  93. @DCSCA@85 Neither are you. I personally paid 3.89/g last week in California.

    Nic (896fdf)

  94. @DCSCA@94 bad weather for tanks for the next 2 weeks. Lots of rain in the forecast and no frozen ground.

    Nic (896fdf)

  95. Sounds like you would have had to do at least several more searches to determine that info.

    In addition to the NYT and parts of the filing, I read three from Marcy Wheeler (here, here, here), which took some time to unpack because IANAL. She’s thorough and not unbiased.
    The main questions I have are: (1) what evidence is there, if any, that the Hillary campaign was involved with Sussman, (2) did Joffe do anything wrong or illegal, and (3) if Kash Patel knew by Dec-2017 what Sussman gave to CIA in Feb-2017, why is this a story today and not 4-5 years ago.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  96. FWIW, I looked up Yota, and it was a broadband provider and its devices included a mobile hotspot. That might have provided the Russian signature.

    nk (1d9030)

  97. What else I saw was, that the statute of limitations having expired, Durham is looking for “process crimes”. The case against Sussman is a “he said-he said” claim by one FBI agent who neither recorded the conversation nor took notes that Sussman lied to him about weather he had a client. Really solid and worth every penny of the gasoline tax poor DCSCA is paying (not).

    nk (1d9030)

  98. @95. Paid $5.25/gal for Shell Regular, Nic.

    … and Putin smiled.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  99. @96. Best you revisit that weather site again, Nic- it’s a 3/2 cycle prediction around one town they’re only going to encircle; and the ground temps is the primary concern. He’ll go on his own timetable. He’s already driven Joe to close a second embassy in 6 months.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  100. “To the citizens of Russia. We are not your enemy!” – Squinty McStumblebum, 2/15/22

    President Plagiarist strikes again:

    “Look and know what I’m telling you! I’m not your enemy! – Dr. Arthur Carrington [Robert Cornwaithe] – ‘The Thing From Another World’ 1951

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  101. What’s going on, I think, is that Durham was supposed to whitewash Trump’s Russian connections, but although Putin could “silence” the hooker hotel, there are no number of coats that could cover Manafort, Flynn, Papadopoulos, Veselnitskaya, or even the Sessions/Kislyak connection. So Durham is squirting ink (like a squid) to cloud the waters, and spraying scent (like a skunk) to stink up other squirrels.

    nk (1d9030)

  102. Mueller investigation: Indictments on 34 individuals and 3 companies, and 9 convictions. Net cost: $3 to $5 million.
    Durham investigation: Two indictments and one conviction, and the conviction was basically handed to him by IG Horowitz. The cost? About the same as Mueller’s net cost.
    Unless Durham can find a solid connection with the Hillary campaign, people might be calling this a “witch hunt”.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  103. Memo to GOP: Stop labelling U.S. President Biden ‘weak’ in media tirades.

    He’s incompetent.

    Big difference. The United States is not weak.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  104. @DCSCA@100/101- Buying premium in the North Bay are you? AAA says the highest price in the state is 5.20 for premium in SF.

    I did look at the weather site. Not great tank weather until the 27th at the earliest. Now obviously they can send the tanks out in the muck, because tanks can roll through the muck, but it’s messier and harder on old and/or bad equipment.

    Nic (896fdf)

  105. Can somebody put DCSCA on suicide watch in the event Putin doesn’t invade?

    norcal (2c7427)

  106. Can somebody put DCSCA on suicide watch in the event Putin doesn’t invade?

    Well, I wasn’t going to say anything, but I was relieved to see him around today, the day after St. Valentine’s Day, because it’s a sure bet that Putin did not send him a valentine, flowers, chocolates, a card, or even a selfie, and I was worried that he might do something rash in his heartbreak.

    nk (1d9030)

  107. @108 😆

    norcal (2c7427)

  108. @107/@108

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4NwP3wes4M8

    Ketchup is Red, too.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  109. @95. It’s at $5.25 in San Diego for regular, Nic. And $6 in some places in LA.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  110. @95. Joe says you must prepare to suffer due to his incompetence, Nic; gas prices in Moscow will have you seeing Red:

    Gasoline (1 gallon): Range: $2.29-$2.72

    https://www.numbeo.com/gas-prices/in/Moscow?displayCurrency=USD

    … and Putin smiled.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  111. @95. Paid $5.25/gal for Shell Regular, Nic.

    … and Putin smiled.

    Well, Royal Dutch Shell did anyway. Gas is as low as $4/gallon in most parts of CA.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  112. Diesel up 9.4% in January alone. 56% for the year.
    You morons.

    mg (8cbc69)

  113. @95. It’s at $5.25 in San Diego for regular, Nic. And $6 in some places in LA.

    It’s $4.50 in Pacific Beach. You must only go to full-serve stations.

    You can believe DCSCA or you can look for yourself: https://www.gasbuddy.com/gasprices/california/san-diego

    Kevin M (38e250)

  114. You must only go to full-serve stations.

    Are those still a thing? (Apologies in advance if you were making a funny.)

    lurker (59504c)

  115. @DCSCA@112 but you have to live in Moscow. No thanks. I’ll pay the extra buck fifty and live in Cali.

    Nic (896fdf)

  116. The remnants of integrity in corporate media have been slipping into oblivion for a while, but ignoring the Clinton bombshell is worse than just an embarrassment. It’s an indictment in their complicity in the stolen election.

    mg (8cbc69)

  117. stolen election

    lol

    lurker (59504c)

  118. No worries for your posse, lurker. Durham is a farce. We will be living under commie rules by the end of the cellar dwellers 2nd term.

    mg (8cbc69)

  119. A good whitewash requires a independent investigation.
    This b.s. is probably another set up to get fox.

    mg (8cbc69)

  120. Will we ever really find out the truth? And when we do, will it be that the spark of the Russian collusion investigation was not Papadopoulos’s drunken blather? That it was Comey and McCabe checking out Melania getting on the Trump campaign 727, and Comey turning to McCabe and saying “I’d tap that”.

    nk (1d9030)

  121. “beware stories that seem too good to be true”

    Apply this to four years of ‘Trump/Russia collusion’ stories.

    Whoops, too late.

    The Never-Trump conservatives went along with it, anything to take down the Orange Monster.

    Obudman (44ba8e)

  122. @116

    You must only go to full-serve stations.

    Are those still a thing? (Apologies in advance if you were making a funny.)

    lurker (59504c) — 2/16/2022 @ 12:02 am

    Yup, I believe NJ and OR are still states that requires staff to pump your gas.

    whembly (7e0293)

  123. Helsinki summit 2018. Trump asked about Russian interference in 2016 election. Replied that Putin had denied that there was any and that he believed him.

    I am the author of a small, privately-published monogram on the 17 distinct strains of Trump supporter, and 14 of them include the allele that everything Trump says is the Gospel Truth (capital “G”, capital “T”); that it is the Mission (capital “M”) of his supporters to propagate it; and any doubt cast on it is Heresy (capital “H”).

    Durham is conducting the Inquisition on behalf of the Holy Office to Promote and Safeguard the Faith.

    nk (1d9030)

  124. $3.09/gal is the prevailing rate in Kenosha (yes, that Kenosha). Up to $3.69 in the suburbs as you cross the border and approach Chicago, and $3.89 in Chicago itself. And you will also have water. And weather.

    nk (1d9030)

  125. To make 125 clearer, “Trump was asked about Russian interference in the 2016 election”. He did not ask. He replied. That there was none because Putin told him so.

    nk (1d9030)

  126. The United States is not weak.

    But still deserves an “azz kicking.”

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  127. It’s a sure bet the NYT and the Washington Post aren’t prepared to admit that their Pulitzers were won based on lies.

    Let’s see if Savage proves to be as honest as the virtuous Maggie Haberman.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  128. There;s not much new coverage on this, but the Wall Street Journal mentions this in its third editorial in tosay’s issue (also there’s something in National Review)

    I’m not too clear on what this means except the point that what kind of government contract tells someone that in case of threat go to the Democrats – how does that follow?

    https://www.wsj.com/articles/a-strange-defense-of-spying-on-donald-trump-rodney-joffe-russia-clinton-john-durham-11644965327

    …Tech executive Rodney Joffe worked with other researchers to mine proprietary internet data, including records from the White House. The filing says Mr. Joffe could access this data because his employer had a “sensitive arrangement” with the government to provide internet services, which Mr. Joffe “exploited” to help Team Clinton gather “derogatory information about Donald Trump.”

    Mr. Joffe’s response, in a Monday statement, is worth parsing. It describes Mr. Joffe as an “apolitical internet security expert” who “legally provided access” to the internet data from the White House.

    “Under the terms of the contract, the data could be accessed to identify and analyze any security breaches or threats,” says the statement. And since there were “legitimate national security concerns about Russian attempts to infiltrate the 2016 election,” Mr. Joffe and “cyber-security researchers” prepared a “report of their findings,” which they gave to the CIA.

    The Russians were a legitimate 2016 electoral threat, but Mr. Joffe’s statement doesn’t explain how or why he cooperated with Clinton representatives. If the contractor’s job was to monitor security threats to the U.S., then the responsibility was to report any suspicious activity to the government—immediately and in a classified manner.

    But according to Mr. Durham’s filing, Mr. Joffe [also] took his information to others—namely, lawyers for the Clinton campaign, who also brought in the oppo-research hit squad Fusion GPS. This partisan team spent months writing anti-Trump white papers full of unproven claims that they spread to the media. We doubt government contracts include: “In case of threats, first call Democrats.”

    Mr. Joffe’s statement raises more questions than it answers. Who in government provided the contract that gave him such access to White House records? Why did he cooperate with Clinton campaign operatives? How did he come to hire the same lawyer who worked for the Clinton campaign? …

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  129. 5. Hoi Polloi (121542) — 2/15/2022 @ 9:30 am

    can you answer how a DNS search of IPs hitting of the White House servers could determine Russian-made phones were “in proximity to” Trump’s campaign and the White House?

    I think that has to do with those Russian made phones supposedly being rare. Durham doesn’t say more, but that presumably would be the idea that the phones had been supplied by the Russians and someone in the Trump White House at the beginning of his administration was in secret contact with the Russians. Durham knows more about what this involves, and that would make his allegation make sense because right now there are too many gaps.

    But in any case nothing of what he says would constitute spying on Trump, or his campaign, in the ordinary sense of the word: to get useful political information. What he’s talking about is the manufacture of evidence, or the misinterpretation of data, in the hopes of kick starting an investigation, perhaps in the hope that, once started, it might uncover something real.

    And the indictment of Sussman concerns possibly lying about background facts in attempt to get untrue allegations taken seriously.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  130. @128. Yep, Rip that’s how you punish incompetence.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  131. Well, Royal Dutch Shell did anyway. Gas is as low as $4/gallon in most parts of CA.

    Certainly not around San Diego– and besides, driving hours and miles doesn’t sdave time– nor gas.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  132. From the NYT mostly: Putin avoids electronic devices, often bans note taking and tells his aides little. They often don’t know what he plans to do and U.S. negotiators, talking with Russians got the impression that they can’t agree to anything because they don’t know what Putin would. And (at least it looks like) Putin doesn’t make a decision until the last possible moment

    The United States has a lot of military information – often more than the Russians they are communicating with – but not much insight into what Putin is thinking. They get some from his phone calls with President Biden, or think they do. They also think that Putin re-evaluated something not so long ago vut they only have varying theories as to what. Putin has reportedly jokingly asked if the exact date and time of the invasion has been published somewhere.

    Putin is surrounded by people – mostly ex-KGB – who say absurd slanders in public. He does not have any liberals around him any more and technocrats stick to their area of expertise.

    John Bolton says the connection with China can be described as an entente – it’s not an alliance or axis. Thomas Freidman says China only has vassals, not friends.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  133. There were two alleations. In the fall, about evidennce that an Alfa Bank server in Trump Tower could be supposedly being used in secret communication with Trump, and in February, 2017, about there maybe being burner phones being used to communicate between the Russian government and someone in the White House – all based just on what were supposedly technological fingerprints.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  134. Yup, I believe NJ and OR are still states that requires staff to pump your gas.

    I tried to pump my own gas, driving through Oregon on 9/12. It was like I was clubbing kittens.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  135. Certainly not around San Diego– and besides, driving hours and miles doesn’t sdave time– nor gas.

    Pacific Beach must be a hellhole then, so close to SD, yet prices are so low.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  136. Thomas Freidman says China only has vassals, not friends.

    Which are we?

    Kevin M (38e250)

  137. Well, Royal Dutch Shell did anyway.

    That’s not how it works at retail, Kev; very few O&O stations by the majors; station operators lease corporate franchise and purchase from regional wholesaler who truck it in and those prices vary week to week. Petroleum product is pretty much ubiquitous once it’s on the market- and in CA’s case, a lot has to do w/pipeline locals, storage sites and the distribution process– not to mention the seasonal additives in CA– along w/t the absurdly high CA state gasoline tax– which is at .51/gal., on top of the Federal tax which is around .18/gal.

    What Squinty did Tuesday was tell Americans THEY will pay more at the pump for his incompetence on U.S. energy policy. Already ‘at war’ in Ukraine; he packed up and abandoned the U.S. embassy in Kyiv and told Americans to get out or they’re on their own. Dear ol’Vlad has ’em by the balls– and is squeezing.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  138. Friedman’s piece is absurd. He’s shilling for Biden.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  139. @138. NJ does.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  140. John Bolton says the connection with China can be described as an entente – it’s not an alliance or axis. Thomas Freidman says China only has vassals, not friends.

    Means to an end. Nations have no “friends”– just interests.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  141. 1970s Biden sends team to Saudi Arabia to beg for more OPEC oil to be pumped.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  142. From Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency CISA:

    * Misinformation is false, but not created or shared with the intention of causing harm.
    * Disinformation is deliberately created to mislead, harm, or manipulate a person, social group, organization, or country.
    * Malinformation is based on fact, but used out of context to mislead, harm, or manipulate.

    You decide:
    https://aaronrupar.substack.com/p/fox-news-hillary-clinton-durham-spying?r=ex4o

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  143. “The latest alarmist claims about spying on Trump appeared to be flawed, but the explanation is byzantine.”

    Silly. Savage would explain it, but why bother.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  144. Trump cant get his twitter account back, and you people think he is a threat to the oval office.
    Paranoid?

    mg (8cbc69)

  145. falsely stated to the General Counsel that he was not bringing these allegations to the FBI on behalf of any client. This false representation led the General Counsel to understand that Sussmann was providing information as a good citizen rather than a paid advocate or political operative

    The question is: Did the former general counsel lie under oath? He seems to be claiming that Sussman never specifically said anything about acting independently, nor was he asked. Or does that apply to only oone of several conversations? If that is the case, which version would be the lie?

    Susssman also seems to have talked to the NSA and the CIA, it’s unclear to me.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  146. There was apparently a September 2016 meeting with the FBI and a February 2017 meeting with the CIA. I am not sure where the NSA comes in.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  147. from link @ 146

    it’s relatively easy for Fox News to lie to viewers about the Durham stuff and trust those viewers not to try to get to the bottom of it themselves. And that’s exactly what they’re doing. It’d be nice if mainstream outlets were willing to call them out on it.

    It;s a subset of viewers, maybe a large majority, and others instinctively disbelieve it, which is wrong also, because it’s a distortion and not made up out of whole cloth.. They are not willing to call them on it, partly to give them the benefit of the doubt – and it is after all, an accusation.

    And to explain exactly what Fox should have said is not complementary to the Democrats.

    Savage says:

    Upon close inspection, these narratives are often based on a misleading presentation of the facts or outright misinformation….The filing was ostensibly about potential conflicts of interest. But it also recounted a meeting at which Mr. Sussmann had presented other suspicions to the government. In February 2017, Mr. Sussmann told the C.I.A. about odd internet data suggesting that someone using a Russian-made smartphone may have been connecting to networks at Trump Tower and the White House, among other places.

    Mr. Sussmann had obtained that information from a client, a technology executive named Rodney Joffe. Another paragraph in the court filing said that Mr. Joffe’s company, Neustar, had helped maintain internet-related servers for the White House, and that he and his associates “exploited this arrangement” by mining certain records to gather derogatory information about Mr. Trump.

    Citing this filing, Fox News inaccurately declared that Mr. Durham had said he had evidence that Hillary Clinton’s campaign had paid a technology company to “infiltrate” a White House server. The Washington Examiner claimed that this all meant there had been spying on Mr. Trump’s White House office. And when mainstream publications held back, Mr. Trump and his allies began shaming the news media….

    ….There were many problems with all this. For one, much of this was not new: The New York Times had reported in October what Mr. Sussmann had told the C.I.A. about data suggesting that Russian-made smartphones, called YotaPhones, had been connecting to networks at Trump Tower and the White House, among other places.

    …And it never claimed that Mr. Joffe’s company was being paid by the Clinton campaign. [If they were so hired, directly or indirectly, it would explain some of this]

    Most important, contrary to the reporting, the filing never said the White House data that came under scrutiny was from the Trump era…In a statement, a spokesperson for Mr. Joffe said that “contrary to the allegations in this recent filing,” he was apolitical, did not work for any political party, and had lawful access under a contract to work with others to analyze DNS data — including from the White House — for the purpose of hunting for security breaches or threats.

    After Russians hacked networks for the White House and Democrats in 2015 and 2016, it went on, the cybersecurity researchers were “deeply concerned” to find data suggesting Russian-made YotaPhones were in proximity to the Trump campaign and the White House, so “prepared a report of their findings, which was subsequently shared with the C.I.A.”

    A spokesman for Mr. Durham declined to comment….

    ….(Mr. Durham says Mr. Sussmann falsely said he had no clients, but was there on behalf of both the Clinton campaign and Mr. Joffe. Mr. Sussman denies ever saying that, while maintaining he was only there on behalf of Mr. Joffe — not the campaign.)

    ….Mr. Sussmann’s meeting with the F.B.I. involved odd data the researchers said might indicate communications between the Trump Organization and Alfa Bank, a Kremlin-linked institution. The F.B.I. dismissed suspicions of a secret communications channel as unfounded. In the indictment of Mr. Sussmann, Mr. Durham insinuated that the researchers did not believe what they were saying. But lawyers for the researchers said that was false and that their clients believed their analysis.

    That’s where we are.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  148. Andrew Egger at The Dispatch has a pretty good summation of the Sussman situation.
    Joffe is not as unbiased as portrayed in the NYT, because he said the following in an email to Sussman: “I was tentatively offered the top [cybersecurity] job by the Democrats when it looked like they’d win. I definitely would not take the job under Trump.”
    There is enough for Durham to be suspicious about, but it’s looks doubtful that there was any illegality. Joffe and the GA Tech researchers were tasked with sussing out sketchy links, and Russian YotaPhones sound sketchy to me.
    By the way, Durham is on Day 1,011 of his investigation, and I’m hearing no one complaining about the cost of his efforts ($3.8 million as of last December) or the length of time. Mueller was done in 674 days at a net cost of $3 to $5 million.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  149. mg, Donald Trump is a brilliant man, but he is a natural loner. He can only be at his best when he works alone. Other people, of lower intellect, character, and competence than his, drag him down. For example, when he plays eighteen holes of golf all alone, just by himself, not even a caddy, he invariably scores a 72. When he plays with anyone else present, even an onlooker, he never scores below 112.

    nk (1d9030)

  150. What we have here is one kind of a scandal (attempting to falsely start an investigation) being treated as another kind if scandal (apying on Trump) by so many people, and then that scandal remains in a state where Durham feels he cannot charge it, probably protected by attorney-client privilege Durham was not able to pierce, and the indictment is over one possible element of what might have been that scandal. (lying to investigators about acting on their own.)

    Durham’s real claim is that they didn’t believe what they were saying, but he can’t prove that, even if the basis for the suspicion that somebody connected with Trump was in regular, secret communication with the Russian government. The basis for asserting evidence of that should have been obviously unfounded, especially to such technically sophisticated people, he no doubt thinks. And so we’re left with a possible lie in support of the idea that the concern was genuine.

    Possibly Durham could have analyzed this better, and/or subpoenaed others, and found something more to the point.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  151. ….Durham’s real claim

    I didn’t impove the writing by attempting to split the sentence.

    ” …even if the basis for the suspicion that somebody connected with Trump was in regular, secret communication with the Russian government should have been obviously unfounded…”

    That just looked too long for many people to parse.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  152. By the way, Durham is on Day 1,011 of his investigation…..

    Piker. Lawrence Walsh took 2,241 days.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  153. And Lawrence Walsh made a politicl indictment timed to the election and exploited by presidential candidate Bill Clinton

    He accuse Casper Weimberger of lying because his supposedly contemporaneous notes contradicted his testimony.

    But his contemperaneous notes (which somewhere I read but cannot find, Prince Bandar suggested he donate to the Library of Congress) were provably false, but nobody who was interested in the truth paid enough attention.

    It said that President Reagan approved the sale of arms to Iran on January 6, 1986. In reality, Weinberger had objected and Reagan did not. In fact that’s why National Security Adviser Admiral John Poindexter had torn up a presidential finding that Reagan had “mistakenly” signed.

    Reagan only approved it on January 17, 1986, after arrangements had been changed to cut out the Department of Defense from that.

    The point of the indictment was the use the Democrats made of it. It was supposed to prove that Bush lied, because Bush was present at that meeting (but not the Jan 17 meeting) but had said he was “out of the loop.”

    Now that itself was another distortion because in 1986 “out of the loop” meant outside the chain of command, not out of the list of people in the know, and I can prove it from the way it is used in profile of Senator Charles “Mac” Mathias in the 1986 Almanac of American Politics (published in 1985 I think)

    The Democrats literally changed the meaning of a phrase in order to slander George Herbert Walker Bush! (for the 1988 election, but this was used more successfully in the 1992 election, as was the Dan Quayle marijuana lie of Brett Kimberlin. The last minute Weinberger indictment gave the whole thing a news peg.)

    Casper Weinberger also got in a shot in against Israel in his false contemporaneous memo. He wrote that it was an Israeli idea to sell arms to Iran. This was not how it was sold to Reagan.

    (It is possibly true that Israel at that time preferred Iran to win the war, possibly because they had better spies in Iran. I think Poindexter and North, in any case, preferred Iran to win. The arms were almost enough to tip the balance and might have caused Iran to prevail had Weinberger not shared intelligence with Saddam Hussein, probably through Saudi Arabia. Weinberger preferred Iraq and Reagan wanted to be neutral, which naturally would have both regimes survive.)

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  154. 158. I’m sure the connection that Joffe has with some Democrats is more than getting a contract, but this was probably the most solid thing Durham had. What you have is some indication he was a fraudster, which I guess could create a need for some high placed political friends.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)


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