Kremlingate part 2

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Michael Moriarity Michael Moriarity's picture

Juan Cole has a piece up about what the Mueller report reveals concerning the Jan. 12, 2017 meeting between Erik Prince and Kirill Dmitriev in the Seychelles, organized by George Nader, who spilled the beans to Mueller's investigators. There may not have been collusion before the election, but there sure seems to have been some after. Cole concludes:

Juan Cole wrote:
This story of influence-peddling still does not have an ending because we aren’t entirely sure about the motives of the major players, and much documentation appears to have disappeared. My own guess is that the Trump officials were mainly interested in whether they could somehow make a boatload of money by taking sanctions off key Russian concerns. It would, in any case, be safe enough to suggest that we should keep following the money.

NorthReport
NDPP

In case you missed it...

Glenn Greenwald: Mueller Did Not Merely Reject the Trump-Russia Conspiracy Theories. He Obliterated Them

http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/51459.htm

"The two-pronged conspiracy theory that has dominated US political discourse for about three years - that (1) Trump, his family and his campaign conspired or coordinated with Russia to interfere in the 2016 election, and (2) Trump is beholden to Russian President Vladimir Putin was not merely rejected today by the final report of Special Counsel Robert Mueller. It was obliterated: in an undeniable and definitive manner.

The key fact is this: Mueller - contrary to weeks of false media claims - did not merely issue a narrow, cramped, legalistic finding that there was insufficient evidence to indict Trump associates for conspiring with Russia and then proving their guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. That would have been devastating enough to those who spent the last two years or more misleading people to believe that conspiracy convictions of Trump's closest aides and family members were inevitable. But his mandate was much broader than that: to state what did or did not happen.

That's precisely what he did: Mueller, in addition to concluding that evidence was insufficient to charge any American with crimes relating to Russian election interference, also stated emphatically in numerous instances that there was no evidence - not merely that this was insufficient to obtain a criminal conviction - that key prongs of his three-year-old conspiracy theory actually happened. As Mueller himself put it: 'in some instances, the report points out the absence of evidence or conflicts in the evidence about a particular fact or event..."

josh

In case you missed it, the Mueller report details how the Russian government hacked the DNC and the Clinton campaign.

https://techcrunch.com/2019/04/18/mueller-clinton-arizona-hack/

NDPP

Is Trump For Detente or Militarism - A Talk With Stephen Cohen (and vid)

https://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2019/04/is-trump-for-detente-or-militari...

"It is quite distressing to see the Mueller report take up, as if it were settled fact, the idea that Russia influenced the 2016 presidential election, particularly since his investigation doesn't provide any information that supported this theory. So this TRNN interview with professor Stephen Cohen provides a badly needed counterpoint. Please also view the preceding segment 'Is Russian 'Meddling' an Attack on America?' - RAI with Stephen Cohen."

NorthReport

NDPP that was an interesting article in post #356

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

I love spy games. Why would anyone believe a spook especially one with his track record. I know I don't know what really happened but I also know I don't trust a liar not to lie.

https://www.c-span.org/video/?c4719428/mueller-testifies-iraqs-wmds

NDPP

Putin on Russiagate

https://youtu.be/X-H5BXyfbwk

"The problem is not with us. The problem is American politics. But about interference, you should see what your colleagues are doing here..."  (2017)

Pogo Pogo's picture

I have developed quite the filter for 'whataboutism'.  One of the benefits of babble.

NDPP

Perhaps it's time you replaced them...

Pogo Pogo's picture

When it is what about "something that no one is denying" then it is just fluff.  Pretty well everyone on babble will acknowledge that the US is the worst meddler in foreign governments, so Russians saying "I am not a meddler, your a meddler" is just a distraction.  Most if not all the people here saying there was Russian meddling also hold the following views:

1) That the US is a meddler

2)That Israel, Saudi Arabia and others meddle.  I would take the extra stance that any of the current probes will end up clearing allies - 'in the national interest'.

3) That Canada meddles or facilitates meddling with our allies.

4) That every country that is a world power meddles. 

So when someone posts repeatedly that Russia didn't meddle, would never meddle and any evidence has to be fake, pardon me if I take it with a grain of salt.

NDPP

Don't forget to also put some salt on your characterization of my supposed position...

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

I agree with your post Pogo but that logic begs the question, why would anyone believe Mueller's version of events?

NDPP

Patrick Armstrong: Putin Derangement Syndrome After Mueller

https://www.strategic-culture.org/news/2019/04/09/putin-derangement-synd...

"So, the sad conclusion is that Putin Derangement Syndrome will probably continue and the best we can hope for is that it is dialled down a bit and the 'act of war' nonsense is quietly forgotten..."

Pogo Pogo's picture

kropotkin1951 wrote:

I agree with your post Pogo but that logic begs the question, why would anyone believe Mueller's version of events?

  I am not a big fan of Mueller.  I lean more to Sara Kendzior.  That said there is ample evidence on the public record that Trump is way worse than Nixon.  And if this tame report was all we got why did so many of Trump's confederates like Manafort get deals that allowed them to avoid facing justice for their treason. The FBI is mostly right wing Republicans and they cut a bunch of Republicans a bunch of slack.

josh

kropotkin1951 wrote:

I agree with your post Pogo but that logic begs the question, why would anyone believe Mueller's version of events?

Because it’s supported by the evidence?

josh

Pogo wrote:

When it is what about "something that no one is denying" then it is just fluff.  Pretty well everyone on babble will acknowledge that the US is the worst meddler in foreign governments, so Russians saying "I am not a meddler, your a meddler" is just a distraction.  Most if not all the people here saying there was Russian meddling also hold the following views:

1) That the US is a meddler

2)That Israel, Saudi Arabia and others meddle.  I would take the extra stance that any of the current probes will end up clearing allies - 'in the national interest'.

3) That Canada meddles or facilitates meddling with our allies.

4) That every country that is a world power meddles. 

So when someone posts repeatedly that Russia didn't meddle, would never meddle and any evidence has to be fake, pardon me if I take it with a grain of salt.

Russia never does anything wrong.  You obviously haven’t gotten the message.

NDPP

No. The message is that Russia ALWAYS does something wrong. Which is why it was thought so perfect for the Dems to weaponize it to explain their election loss and for the Repugs to 'shadow-box' with them over it for reasons of their own. This is how the US duopoly works. 

 

Petras: Shadow Boxing For Empire - The Mueller Report

https://petras.lahaine.org/shadow-boxing-for-empire-the-mueller/

"...In a word, the Democratic Party and President Trump engaged in prolonged shadow boxing over whom and how they would direct the US global power grab. The key to the party-partisan shadow boxing was the Mueller Report; specifically, the Democratic Party's attempt to oust Trump without exposing their imperial convergence. After a two-year investigation no Russian conspiracy was discovered and no one cared - the public have other concerns..."

Sean in Ottawa

NDPP wrote:

No. The message is that Russia ALWAYS does something wrong. Which is why it was thought so perfect for the Dems to weaponize it to explain their election loss and for the Repugs to 'shadow-box' with them over it for reasons of their own. This is how the US duopoly works. 

 

Petras: Shadow Boxing For Empire - The Mueller Report

https://petras.lahaine.org/shadow-boxing-for-empire-the-mueller/

"...In a word, the Democratic Party and President Trump engaged in prolonged shadow boxing over whom and how they would direct the US global power grab. The key to the party-partisan shadow boxing was the Mueller Report; specifically, the Democratic Party's attempt to oust Trump without exposing their imperial convergence. After a two-year investigation no Russian conspiracy was discovered and no one cared - the public have other concerns..."

The rhetorical strategy here is to take biases that exist in the mainstream and use them to accuse other babblers of supporting that bias if they raise any concern about anything against the protected entity.

The people doing the protecting are unwilling to acknowledge that some genuine, unbiased, legitimate points of concern do not mean that the bias that exists elsewhere exists here.

Mainstream bias is used to silence all discussion about the protected entity.

As such there is an opposite bias here coming from the people who are pretending to attack bias elsewhere.

The bullying is so intense here on the topic that few people will engage in the topics allowing them to become echo chambers.

If you want to really stop bias rather than just turn it around to your advantage -- the way to do that is start with a presumption of integrity and a lack of bias amog those you disagree with. Examine what they say on merits instead of shooting down all they say negative to those you protect.

Most of all understand that the mainstream biases do not necessarily exist here -- that the slant of this place is different, thankfully, and that we could be in a position to consider things in a different light. things that cannot be discussed on their merits elsewhere could be here, if we are not totally closed.

In the end the best way to defeat bias is to engage on merits, as defeating things without foundation is more powerful than suppressing them. Allowing discussions to occur on merits also allows more faith that the positions here are legitimately held rather than self censored.

This does not mean questioning basic principles that this place is founded on. but this place is not founded on any presumptions that one side or the other is always right. We should be loyal to truth, fair examination, fair discussion and principles but not specific parties, countries, individuals who become above scrutiny.

Timebandit Timebandit's picture

We should be loyal to truth, fair examination, fair discussion and principles but not specific parties, countries, individuals who become above scrutiny.

Should be. But NDPP has no interest in that. I don't forsee that changing any time soon.

Sean in Ottawa

Timebandit wrote:

We should be loyal to truth, fair examination, fair discussion and principles but not specific parties, countries, individuals who become above scrutiny.

Should be. But NDPP has no interest in that. I don't forsee that changing any time soon.

I wish I could say there was only one like that here. I think this place is full of factions and biases and a lack of interest in criticizing or examing their own side. The ones really open to that exist here but they are outnumbered. Many discussions are shut down becuase one group takes over daring anyone else to be calle names like Conservative in disguise, imperialist, pro US, anti (whomever), not really progressive etc. etc. Most discussions turn into one side trying to deligitimze the debate that we are supposed to be here having.

Timebandit Timebandit's picture

People have differing reasons for being here. For some, it's exploring ideas. For others, it's more about asserting a worldview. The balance used to be more of the former with a few of the latter. That's been reversed in recent years. It's been interesting to observe that over 17 and a half years or so.

IOW, I largely agree with you.

Mobo2000

Michael, re: your post 352, wouldn't Cole be talking about run of the mill corruption post election?  Not collusion?   Influence peddling and breaking your own country's sanctions for money or political favours is practically an American tradition.

Collusion is the radioactive word in this media narrative, and when I read it in this context, I immediately think the writer is a democratic partisan (it's Juan Cole, I know...) writing for his "still hoping" base.    Point being, overall, the MSM conflation between corruption and collusion is in my view dangerous, transparently dishonest and likely to, post Mueller report, help Trump politically going forward.   Frankly I think the MSM has largely poisoned the well with what remains of the American centre on corruption charges too at this point.   Curious for your thoughts on the above.

Mobo2000

Pogo:   I'm glad you mentioned "whataboutism".    I'm very interested to know what you mean by it and where you apply in this context.   I'll include Sean and Timebandit in this as well, as you've mentioned relativism on the Demonizing China thread, and it seems to me you're largely coming from the same place as Pogo, but I could be wrong.   

Charges of whataboutism and relativism often comes up in conflicts between well meaning progressive minded folks like ourselves, maybe we can discuss it directly to some collective benefit?

 

Michael Moriarity Michael Moriarity's picture

Mobo2000 wrote:

Michael, re: your post 352, wouldn't Cole be talking about run of the mill corruption post election?  Not collusion?   Influence peddling and breaking your own country's sanctions for money or political favours is practically an American tradition.

Collusion is the radioactive word in this media narrative, and when I read it in this context, I immediately think the writer is a democratic partisan (it's Juan Cole, I know...) writing for his "still hoping" base.    Point being, overall, the MSM conflation between corruption and collusion is in my view dangerous, transparently dishonest and likely to, post Mueller report, help Trump politically going forward.   Frankly I think the MSM has largely poisoned the well with what remains of the American centre on corruption charges too at this point.   Curious for your thoughts on the above.

Well, mobo, you may be right, but I can't think of another example offhand of any U.S. administration, however corrupt, which attempted to establish a communications channel with a rival country outside of the standard State Department diplomatic channels. Do you know of such an example? To use the obvious parallel, what do you think the Republicans would have said if Obama had done something similar with, say Iran? Oh, wait, Reagan actually did that with Iran, but unfortunately all the criminals in that case were pardoned by George H. W. Bush. One of the worst offenders, Oliver North, current leader of the NRA, is still a huge hero to the right.

Pogo Pogo's picture

Whataboutism is a clear deflection.  In its worst form it simply a squirrel ("we caught you dead to rights on this","Oh yeah well what about that guy over there").  On babble in the early years it was often put forward by the Israel defenders - how can you call Israel bad, Saudi Arabia has public executions.  Nowadays whataboutisms are put forward by everyone. To me it is just an either lazy or dishonest debate technique unless it is part of larger argument that also responds substantively to the charges/claims and isn't just turning the page.

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

josh wrote:

kropotkin1951 wrote:

I agree with your post Pogo but that logic begs the question, why would anyone believe Mueller's version of events?

Because it’s supported by the evidence?

So you  have seen the full report and the supporting documents? It seems like pretty thin gruel so far but go ahead believe a spy because of course they never lie, unless told to.

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

Timebandit wrote:

We should be loyal to truth, fair examination, fair discussion and principles but not specific parties, countries, individuals who become above scrutiny.

Should be. But NDPP has no interest in that. I don't forsee that changing any time soon.

Keep trying you will eventually drive away everyone who is further to the left than the centrist NDP and liberal left. Mind you it has been over 17 years that you have been nasty to all the leftists on this site and it hasn't worked so maybe you won't succeed. Anything that doesn't support the NATO oligarchy on this site is sure to draw fire from you and Magoo and other apologists for the imperial system that we all rely on to steal from the rest of the planet.

WWWTT

I’m going to build on this drift so my apologies to readers (the thread is still kremlin gate)

Russia and China are clearly very passionate topics here with two distinct teams with strong determination/stubbornness here on babble!

I’m well on one side (we all know where I stand), but I believe I see the position of the other side? I’m of the belief that Canada should be adopting more from the Communist Party of China! I suspect that this thought drives the opposite team here on babble up the freekin wall!

Now Russia is no longer communist, but isn’t the communist party still strong throughout Russia? Would it be fair to say that they form opposition in Russia?

Timebandit Timebandit's picture

@kropotkin

Hello, pot!

I’m not even sure where to begin with this. I don’t feel defensive about your accusation that I’m nasty to “all leftists”, which I think is a pretty broad claim. I wouldn’t flatter myself that I’ve been a constant enough presence here to drive anyone away - I’ve objected to conspiracism, for sure. But I don’t tend to get abusive to people even if I disagree with them. 

You and I may disagree on some things, kropotkin, but not everything. You often have things to say that are educational and interesting and I’m glad you’re here. But I’ve observed, over the years, more people like myself leaving than the worldview promoters. And you’re being far nastier to me right now than I’ve ever been to you. 

So who’s being driven away?

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

Timebandit you started this thread drift with an unwarranted gratuitous insult to NDDP. But yeah its now about me.

Timebandit Timebandit's picture

I responded to Sean. Drift is something that happens. If you want to argue that NDPP isn’t so much here for reasoned discussion as he is to promote his worldview, go ahead. I’ve been known to change my mind in the face of a good argument. I think it’s relevant that this thread isn’t much of a discussion and that it’s a pretty nice little click farm for sites that support that worldview. Hence my response to Sean . I don’t see any evidence in this thread or a number of others that NDPP is cool with having his assertions challenged or discussed. So I don’t think it’s either an insult or unwarranted to say he’s not much interested in discussion - although your claim that I’m deliberately attempting to drive people from babble might be a little of both. 

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

So in your view NDPP is not loyal to truth, fair examination or fair discussion but you and your buddies are. I'd call you delusional but Pondering already has a new introspective thread on why this place is so toxic.

Timebandit Timebandit's picture

(I thought you were against drift?)

And I'd counter that relying on state-run media from a country that has an alarming tendency to murder journalists who publish things that don't please their government is even more delusional - Pondering's sensitivities aside.

I don't know what NDPP's "loyalty to truth" is, but I don't think it's any more than anyone else on the board. Discussion with anyone who takes another point of view doesn't tend to happen - and on the rare occasions when it does, it's usually hostile and derisive unless you agree with him absolutely. Just scroll back on this thread. Is there any substantive discussion here? Most of the time he's just going to call you names and insult your intelligence - mind you, just within babble guidelines.

Seriously, you want to call me out for being nasty? Have a chat with your friend first.

NDPP

Taibbi: Russiagate Was QAnon For Journalists (Part 1)

https://twitter.com/mtaibbi/status/1121066505918189575

"Did America's entire 'respectable' news media really spend 22-plus months humping a transparent conspiracy theory, praying out loud for a former FBI chief to save them from Donald Trump, like cultists awaiting passage to Heaven's Gate on the Hale Bopp Comet?

The defining characteristic of the Russiagate press corps was certainty. It knew everything in advance and whenever it turned out to be wrong, it just moved to the next thing it knew..."

Here too...Lots more to come on this from investigative journalist extraordinaire Matt Taibbi. Watch his Twitter feed above for next installment coming soon.

 

Pogo Pogo's picture

kropotkin1951 wrote:

josh wrote:

kropotkin1951 wrote:

I agree with your post Pogo but that logic begs the question, why would anyone believe Mueller's version of events?

Because it’s supported by the evidence?

So you  have seen the full report and the supporting documents? It seems like pretty thin gruel so far but go ahead believe a spy because of course they never lie, unless told to.

Seth Abrahmson has a 451 tweet thread on the report that connects the document to information that was already in the public domain. Seth is a capital D Democrat, but he has fact checked and admitted when he has come up short. Indeed his book Proof of Collusion was fact checked by a third party before going to the printer.

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

I am sure that most of the report will be based on verifiable facts. The problem is I know that a slight tweak of the facts can easily effect the legality of any action. We are not to believe any state-run media except the CBC and BBC but are supposed to accept everything a representative from the 5Eyes tells us. The fascists that run NATO are the people I fear not the modern day, Red Under the Bed. I agree that various spy agencies are trying to interfere in everyone else's elections, Russia included. I would suspect that Canada in the Ukraine has at minimum funded social media sites to influence their election outcomes.

I also believe that the DNC is corrupt to the core just like the GOP hierarchy so forgive my skepticism as I watch various varieties of war criminals fight over whether someone is trying to subvert their undemocratic elections. With the amount of money awash in the US system the idea that the Russians can overpower the various billionaires that both openly and covertly are involved is too me an absurdity so that means that this whole thing is a Red Herring centered on Trump the biggest Red Herring of all time.

Pogo Pogo's picture

The devil is in the detail. Seth went into great detail.  It is good to find a multitude of sources. Sara Kendzior has little faith in the report, mainly because she believes that Trump, Putin, Netanyahu, MBS and other are part of a international Kleptocracy - she wonders why all the sweetheart deals and why if the crimes alluded to are even possibly true that Trump and his crew are still in positions of power.  I try to read the Trump supporters but they are far from convincing.

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

Trump is a grifter and the fact that he was not jailed before he went into politics, given all the people he fleeced with bad deals, says a lot about the US system of justice. Naomi Klein's book, No Is Not Enough, has a very good analysis in the first chapter called; "How Trump won by becoming the ultimate brand."  His political persona is a combination of his nasty boss role on the Apprentice and MAGA idiots favourite talk show host, Rush Limbaugh.

To re-purpose a phrase, his supporters know he is a bastard but he is their bastard.

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Quote:
So who’s being driven away?

I'm curious too.

And who has Timebandit already driven away??

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

Any questions you would like to ask that are possible to answer? If babble will let me have the names and contact information of all the posters who have been here over the many years I might be able to find the answer. That was a rather lame rhetorical devise.

ETA:  The only person I know for sure who has been driven off this board by a specific persons behavior was my wife and it was Catchfire not Timebandit that turned her off for good.

NDPP

Hillary Clinton's McCarthyite Rant

https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2019/04/26/pers-a26.html

"...Nothing is dead in politics. The legacy of McCarthyism is now being revived by the campaign led by the Democratic Party and summed up in a hysterical screed published Wednesday in the Washington Post by Hillary Clinton, the self-professed former 'Goldwater girl',' under the headline, 'Mueller documented a serious crime against all Americans. Here's how to respond.'

In her column, Clinton goes on to call for an alliance between the Democratic Party and the Republicans. The situation calls for 'clear-eyed patriotism, not reflexive partisanship,' she writes. She urges Republicans to work with Democrats in an intensified campaign against Russia - with or without the Trump administration. She writes: 'It's up to members of both parties to see where that road map [provided by the Mueller report] leads - to the eventual filing of articles of impeachment, or not.'

All of this demonstrates that in the conflict between Trump and the Democratic Party there is no programme or democratic faction. The anti-Russia narrative has not been challenged by any section of the Democratic Party, including Bernie Sanders, who is again seeking to cover up his warmongering party with a thin veneer of social reforms that he has no intention of implementing..."

Pogo Pogo's picture

It is good that someone is still paying attention to Clinton.  I think the rest of us have moved on.

NDPP

Clearly the Washington Post is. And prominently. If this is a more or less accurate reflection of Dem strategy then we may certainly expect to see Trump returned for a second term. 

Pogo Pogo's picture

Clinton is an anchor.  She needs to go away.

Unionist

Pogo wrote:

Clinton is an anchor.  She needs to go away.

Can we get her fired by complaining to anchor management? Or a visit to anchor, what?

More seriously, she should be dragged before the ICC for her war crimes. But there's quite a lineup once we go there.

Pogo Pogo's picture

 The Democratic Party is made up mostly of old style Republicans (not to be confused with TrumpRepublicans) but with a heart.  The will still carpet bomb countries and drone strike hospitals and schools.  They just feel horrible doing it again and again.

 

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

Only in America can a "servant of the people" go from being middle class to having personal wealth of around $45,000,000 and that doesn't include Bill's wealth or her kids wealth. She like all of the US politicians with any real power is a member of the plutocracy. Trump is the bad boy member of the club who has never tried to hide his avarice.

Pogo Pogo's picture

kropotkin1951 wrote:
Only in America can a "servant of the people" go from being middle class to having personal wealth of around $45,000,000 and that doesn't include Bill's wealth or her kids wealth. She like all of the US politicians with any real power is a member of the plutocracy. Trump is the bad boy member of the club who has never tried to hide his avarice.
 

From a tweet by Sarah Kendzior:

"Well yes, obviously vote for any Dem over Trump! But we are still owed answers about the mistakes of past admins (Bush as well as Obama) if we want to remedy the structural deficiencies that helped open the way for Trump and his crime syndicate. We deserve honesty and competence."

In other places she will argue that the reason America is quickly becoming a "autocratic kleptocracy" is due to the decades of erosion done by previous regimes.  Mostly by Republicans, but Democrats did nothing to fix a broken system.

 

NDPP

Russiagate: The Collusion Delusion (and vid)

https://www.rt.com/shows/renegade-inc/457798-russiagate-collusion-media-...

"When people stop buying the propaganda, the mainstream media turn up the volume. Host Ross Ashcroft travels to New York to meet journalist Ben Norton from the Grayzone..."

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