No Minister

Posts Tagged ‘FBI

Whistleblowers and Consequences

with 2 comments

As I’ve watched the FBI descend to the level of an American Stasi over the last few years I’ve despaired that there would be any real punishment for these assholes.

After all, FBI lawyer, Kevin Clinesmith, who falsified the CIA email by reversing its attestation that Trump aide Carter Page had been working with them against the Russians, suffered … nothing:

After Durham got Clinesmith the government requested a three-to-six month prison sentence but instead the judge sentenced him to community service and imposed no fine. In June 2021 his law license was suspended for just one year, but it was applied retroactively from his guilty plea so he got it back in August 2021.

For lying to not just any court but the FISA court to enable spying on US citizens. Must be nice to be a partisan Democrat working for the FBI, DOJ or the State Department.

However, in the last couple of weeks there have been some new developments; whistleblowers from inside the FBI who have been coming forward to Republican members of the Senate and Congress to testify about at least some of the shit their agency has been pulling.

The main issue Grassley is interested in is the Hunter Biden laptop and the actions the FBI took to protect Hunter Biden. Of particular interest is the role of an FBI analyst, Brian Auten, in discrediting the Hunter Biden laptop and, seemingly, trying to create a false perception of the laptop in a briefing delivered to Grassley and Wisconsin Senator Ron Johnson.

Naturally they didn’t approach any Democrat members, and naturally the Democrat’s allies in the MSM (meaning almost all of them) either ignored these stories or dismissed them as “partisan” (haha). And Auten was apparently not the only FBI person identified by these whistleblowers (read the link). Senator Grassley has not been known as a hardline partisan – a few years ago he was foolishly boasting of his bipartisan creds in passing Democrat-nominate judges – so this was significant.

Even so, I figured it would not even rise to the pathetic level of Clinesmith’s treatment.

Maybe not:

Former FBI Washington Field Office Assistant Special Agent in Charge Tim Thibault was reportedly escorted out of the bureau on Friday, amid whistleblower allegations that he showed political bias in his handling of politically sensitive investigations.

The Washington Times reported eyewitness accounts that “Mr. Thibault was seen exiting the bureau’s elevator last Friday escorted by two or three ‘headquarters-looking types.'”

Whistleblowers alleged that Thibault concealed the partisan nature of evidence from FBI Director Christopher Wray and Attorney General Merrick Garland to secure their approval to open an investigation into former President Donald Trump. That investigation culminated in the FBI’s raid on Trump’s Mar-a-Lago estate earlier this month.

That was a few hours ago. Now comes this news:

A top FBI agent at the Washington field office reportedly resigned from his post last week after facing intense scrutiny over allegations he helped shield Hunter Biden from criminal investigations into his laptop and business dealings.

Timothy Thibault, an FBI assistant special agent in charge, was allegedly forced out after he was accused of political bias in his handling of probes involving President Biden’s son, sources told the Washington Times on Monday.

I’m an optimist. I like to believe in our institutions. I like to think they are staffed by ethical men and woman and that the bad apples get weeded out by other outraged employees. That last few years have led me to seriously question that faith and optimism in a lot of US Federal government institutions.

But perhaps there’s still hope?

Hahahahaah…

The day after Mark Zuckerberg said that Facebook limited a polarizing story ahead of the 2020 election because of an FBI warning, the federal agency said it can only alert a private entity of a potential threat, not require it to take action.

In an episode of the “Joe Rogan Experience” podcast made available Thursday, Zuckerberg said that although the FBI didn’t specifically name a New York Post article about Hunter Biden’s laptop, it “fit the pattern” of what the FBI warned about.

In a statement Friday night, the FBI said it has provided companies with “foreign threat indicators” to help protect their platforms and customers, but that it “cannot ask, or direct, companies to take action on information received.”

“The FBI routinely notifies U.S. private sector entities, including social media providers, of potential threat information, so that they can decide how to better defend against threats,” the agency said.

Meta on Friday night responded to the FBI statement via Twitter. “The FBI shared general warnings about foreign interference — nothing specific about Hunter Biden,” the statement said.

Tony Bobulinski, Hunter Biden’s business partner who blew the whistle on this and confirmed the authenticity of the emails in the laptop that he was included on, never received a single phone call from the FBI to ask him about the laptop’s authenticity, despite his having gone on national television to give his testimony.

Advertisement

Written by Tom Hunter

August 30, 2022 at 5:18 pm

Institutional legitimacy

with 2 comments

Yes, you were, you were also the head of the NSA (National Security Agency) when the 9/11 attacks happened (he missed all the signs), and the NSA warrantless surveillance controversy. Yet somehow you failed up to the CIA.

You’re also a good example of why such people should be psychologically tested before being given such roles, like nuclear ballistic missile submarine crew members – because you appear to be an unhinged psychopath who is keen on starting a civil war in the USA.

The really scary thing is that his mindset appears to be widespread in Washington D.C.:

Summoning all the gravitas she could muster, Cheney—and then her father, the former vice president—referred to Donald Trump as “the greatest ever threat to our Republic.”

Yes, it’s self-evidently insane hyperbole. But it’s extremely dangerous.

First—even if it’s completely wrong—it’s an opinion that’s now shared by the vast majority of the most consequential parts of the US government: the people who make up the justice, law enforcement, national security and intelligence bureaucracies and (allegedly, on paper) are tasked with keeping us safe and making sure there is equal justice under the law.

Second, this cadre of officials feels sufficiently empowered with this belief that they feel entirely justified in acting on it.

It’s all about belief. Belief in our institutions and the people who run them – and that seems to be fading:

That is what has happened with the FBI. The Bureau once enjoyed near-universal respect, but in the wake of a series of scandals culminating in the Mar-a-Lago raid, Rasmussen finds the FBI’s favorability rating dropping to 50%, with 46% disapproving. Worse still:

Roger Stone, an adviser to former President Donald Trump, has said there is “a group of politicized thugs at the top of the FBI who are using the FBI … as Joe Biden‘s personal Gestapo.” A majority (53%) of voters now agree with Stone’s statement – up from 46% in December – including 34% who Strongly Agree. Thirty-six percent (36%) disagree with the quote from Stone, including 26% who Strongly Disagree.

See also the CDC:

America’s public health establishment:

A great deal of confidence: 9%
Quite a bit of confidence: 27%
Not much confidence: 43%
No confidence: 19%
No opinion: 1%

Total confident: 36%
Total not confident: 62%

That last was from a survey of 500 people in Minnesota, one of the deepest of deep Blue, Democrat states in the USA.

Yet there are people who still believe. Unfortunately they’re largely the same people responsible for this loss of trust and legitimacy, as this commentator asked in the wake of the Mar-a-Largo FBI raid and Hayden’s Tweet:

Hey NeverTrump and the rest of the brain-dead dead-ender Establishment Institutionalists…

Is your worship of the institutions without any limits whatsoever? Is your religious faith in the Works of Government Man unshakable and just a blank check that can never be overdrawn? Are you just all secularist religious fanatics incapable of ever questioning the Strange Atheistic Gods you serve?

Is there literally no outrage the Cult of the Holy Government Institutions can commit that will cause you to say, “Now wait a minute, that goes against what the Holy Books say…”

He also pointed out the same issue with a Never-Trump Right-Wing commentator:

He’s a traditionalist, you see. He’s traditionally had faith in these institutions. It doesn’t matter to him that these institutions are no longer the same institutions, that they have been skin-suited by angry, deranged partisans and put to essentially religious-cultist ends by the skin-suiters.

It’s enough that they still have the old branding on them. The buildings still say “FBI” and “CDC” and “The Science (TM)” on them.

And the branding is enough for worship.

He’s a very poor atheist. He doesn’t have a lack of faith; he has a promiscuous overabundance of it. He just decided he didn’t believe in God and poured all that Believer Energy into Anthony Fauci, the CDC, Christopher Wray, Robert Meuller, the FBI, the DOJ, Jeb!, etc.

Possibly even worse than the belief that still exists is the insane joy that the likes of Hayden are taking in all these efforts to destroy Trump and more importantly, his supporters, rubbing their noses in the fact that they control the likes of the FBI, CIA, CDC and the rest, irrespective of stupid elections:

What is really worrying about America today is not that everyone isn’t equal before the law, or that people cheat, or that dollars count more than votes. These things are normal. What isn’t normal, what is worrying, is the glee with which many in America celebrate each new step guaranteed to make larger and larger slices of the population stop believing in the system’s legitimacy. It’s things like Hillary Clinton selling merchandise with the slogan “But Her Emails” to celebrate the FBI’s raid on Donald Trump.

None of this bodes well for the 2024 elections:

The solutions to all the crises come down to the components of the machine, the administrative state, corporate leaders, technocratic monopolies, educational bosses, activist front groups and many others urgently grabbing more power to cope with the threat of losing elections

Democracy is not just in its name, but its facade. When it loses the facade, people start to notice that elections don’t seem to change very much. And that things still run the same way.

Written by Tom Hunter

August 20, 2022 at 3:00 pm

The State of a Nation

with 3 comments

Wait, wait and tremble, yet mad masters, this barbarism, this infamy you practice upon us , and with which you regale yourselves presently, will not go unanswered, unavenged, forever! The whirlwind gathers, before which you must fly like chaff.

I thought of that quote the other day when I saw the following Tweet from Michael Hayden, former US Air Force 4-star General, former Director of the NSA (National Security Agency), former Director of the CIA – and a man who allowed his NSA to wiretap US citizens without warrants.

In case you’re not aware, this latest insanity arises from “leaks” out of the FBI and DOJ about “nuclear” secrets being among the classified materials held at President Trump’s home in Florida – as if the National Security agencies would sit on their butts for eighteen months were that true, among other farcical aspects of this situation.

As Leftist Matt Taibbi points out in his great article, Welcome to the Third World, this is all exactly what happened before:

Most will see this as a war between Trump and the Washington D.C. bureaucracies (plus their handmaidens in the Democrat and Republican Parties). But it is actually a war between the gentry classes of the USA and everybody else, it has been escalating since the Great Financial Crisis (GFC) of 2008, it is being fought on multiple battlefields and its end is not yet in sight.

All this nonsense about Trump is not intended to be serious in terms of charges and convictions. The idea is simply to kneecap, once and for all, the dreaded Orange Hitler, from being elected President again in 2024. As just one example of the double standards that have to be applied in order to achieve this outcome, take another stroll down memory lane (warning: lofi hip hop included)

You can also enjoy the following as an example of people who never learn.

The quote given at the start of this post is from Ethel Rosenberg as she sat in prison awaiting death by electric chair. It must be noted that the National Security State prevailed in her case, simply because there were not enough communists in the USA to provide a whirlwind.

I don’t think the same can be said about 75 million Trump voters and if the Republican Party is stupid enough to gather up their votes to take Congress and then do nothing about this situation then they too will become like chaff that flies.

It’s all going swimmingly

with 12 comments

A couple of readers and co-bloggers have asked if I’ll be posting on the whole FBI raid of Trump’s Florida home and in due course I will in more detail.

But not until the dust settles a bit.

Even then it will be more about the FBI and I’ll be using this incident as yet another data point to add to a bunch of others showing the professional decline and corruption of the agency. Anybody who is surprised by this does not know the history of the outfit under J Edgar Hoover, although at least in his case the corruption was for his personal benefit in remaining as the Chief until he died.

What the payoffs to the likes of Wray are in this case I can’t say and it may be that all of Washington D.C. is in on it, such is the Establishment’s hatred of Trump and any other outsider – the Establishment being the D.C. bureaucracies and the leadership of the Democrat and Republican Party’s. Yet I think this is a sign of their weakness and their power slipping as much as it might shock people as an NKVD or Gestapo tactic. Strong, confident groups would not be so terrified of someone like Trump.

Suffice to say that all this does not surprise me in the least as none other than Democrat Senate Leader Chuck Schumer explained in 2017 as Trump became President:

You take on the intelligence community, they have six ways from Sunday at getting back at you, so even for a practical, supposedly hard-nosed businessman, he’s being really dumb to do this,” Schumer said to Rachel Maddow while speaking on MSNBC.

“What do you think the intelligence community would do if they were motivated to?” Maddow asked.

“I don’t know,” Schumer said. “But from what I am told, they are very upset with how he has treated them and talked about them.”

Amongst all that has been written about the raid I would point you to two articles. First is this National Review one by Andrew McCarthy, who is a former US Attorney who knows what he’s talking about (he led the 1995 terrorism prosecution against Sheikh Omar Abdel-Rahman). He points out that, in keeping with how he and others have set up searches in the past, the search warrant based on the Presidential Records Act is a cover for the real information target, the January 6 “Insurrection”:

As a prosecutable crime, I am betting the Biden Justice Department is not very interested in this. The DOJ is very interested, however, in the Capitol riot, and it is under intense pressure from the Democratic base to charge Trump with crimes arising out of it.

As McCarthy points out the Democrats are playing with fire here, as is the FBI.

The second article agrees and is written by Lefty Matt Taibbi in his Substack site, with a very appropriate title, Welcome to the Third World:

The FBI really better have something “pulverizing” on Trump, because otherwise we’ve just witnessed one of the dumbest moves in the history of politics

If you didn’t think Trump was running for President in 2024 then think again. I regret that because I think he’s now too old for the job and I still don’t think he knows what he’s facing in Washington D.C. or how to dismantle it. Ron DeSantis does, and he won’t carry into the 2024 election the hate baggage that Trump will. In fact I’ve seen suggestions that this is a ploy by the Democrats to get Trump to declare his run now so that they can turn the 2022 Mid-Terms into yet another referendum on Trump, which is basically their only hope of surviving now. But I think that argument is a stretch.

In the meantime there’s always President Biden if you need to laugh, although in this case it’s more like Black Comedy, as Jim Treacher lays out here with video. Here are just two:

This one is worse, especially when you remember the infamous shaking hands with air scene a couple of months ago.

Treacher (definitely not a Trump fan) also has something to say about the Mar-a-Lago raid, which I find myself agreeing with:

I feel neither outrage nor delight. Lock him up, reelect him, whatever. Just don’t complain when the Republicans get back in power and start using the FBI to go after their political opponents. The precedent has been set. So be it.

Who will rid me of this troublesome Justice?

leave a comment »

I’ve finally found a real US domestic terrorist threat that Biden’s poolboy, Merrick Garland, and his fabulous FBI and DOJ, could look into.

But this is a domestic terrorist group associated with the US Left and the Democrat Party so naturally there’s no interest.

When I say no interest I mean the MSM as well..

As always.

You think that these are merely “protests”? No, the “Ruth Sent Us” group also include juicy information like the above stuff about Barrett, just in case someone as passionate as Nick Roske decides to take sterner measures and needs to know exactly where to go (wink, wink)

However, there’s a new group on the scene and even their name is more explicit, “Jane’s Revenge”

Radical abortion activists who firebombed the office of a pro-life groups in Wisconsin and Oregon and who have vandalized over a dozen churches and pregnancy centers have struck again.

Early this morning police and fire departments in Buffalo, New York responded to smoke and fire at CompassCare, a pro-life medical office and pregnancy center that helps women and children. The building was firebombed and the windows in the reception room and nurses’ office were broken and fires lit.

Graffiti on the building left by the arsonists refers to the abortion terrorist group Jane’s Revenge reading, “Jane Was Here.” The group took responsibility for a firebombing of a pro-life organization in Madison, Wisconsin in May, and it could have been responsible for bombing the offices of Oregon Right to Life during the same month. It has also vandalized and destroyed multiple churches and pregnancy centers.

Actually we’re up to fifty nine such attacks as of this writing and Jane’s Revenge has made it clear that there will be more by sending out a announcement, which is as clear as Osama Bin Laden’s was in 1998:

You have seen that we are real, and that we are not merely pushing empty words. As we said: we are not one group but many. You have seen us in Madison WI, Ft. Collins CO, Reisertown MA, Olympia WA, Des Moines IA, Lynwood WA, Washington DC, Ashville NC, Buffalo NY, Hollywood FL, Vancouver WA, Frederick MA, Denton TX, Gresham OR, Eugene OR, Portland OR, among others, and we work in countless locations invisibly. You’ve read the communiqués from the various cells, you’ve seen the proliferating messages in graffiti and elsewhere, and you know that we are serious

Your thirty days expired yesterday. We offered an honourable way out. You could have walked away. Now the leash is off. And we will make it as hard as possible for your campaign of oppression to continue. We have demonstrated in the past month how easy and fun it is to attack. We are versatile, we are mercurial, and we answer to no one but ourselves. We promised to take increasingly drastic measures against oppressive infrastructures. Rest assured that we will, and those measures may not come in the form of something so easily cleaned up as fire and graffiti.

In other words, it’s a terrorist communique.

I do have to wonder why the SCOTUS Chief Justice Roberts has not simply issued the decision. Is he actually hoping that all this pressure will change one Conservative vote, even if only for the base reason of “not wanting violence”?

Meantime the President has finally spoken up…

“Violence and destruction of property have no place in our country under any circumstances, and the President denounces this,” White House Assistant Press Secretary Alexandra LaManna told The Daily Wire. “We should all agree that actions like this are completely unacceptable regardless of our politics,” she added.

Wow! The Assistant Press Secretary, someone you’ve never heard of, issuing a statement… via email and emphatically not on camera, so that they’ll be no actual evidence that the White House condemned one its few remaining Mid-Term Election Friends, as far as the Video-Is-King media is concerned.

You can tell they’re really serious about this.

I’m just waiting for the big FBI takedown where half of Jane’s Revenge will turn out to be FBI undercover operatives, like the collapsed case of the Great Kidnap Governor Whitmer Plot.

District of Columbia Jury Finds Close Clinton Felon Not Guilty of Lying to FBI.

with 7 comments

And other shocking judicial operations by Democrats and their established enablers, cornered by their own stupidity.

No surprises there as three of the twelve jurors admitted being “Donors” to The Hillary Clinton Campaign, another was the mother of a daughter who was a player on a sports team with a daughter of Sussman, the defendant, and the Judge was an Obama Appointee, the Jury pool was drawn from an electorate that voted 92% for Clinton. Wave a white Flag right there but Durham persisted, eliciting sworn evidence that Sussman did actually lie to James Baker of The FBI, Hillary Clinton did actually personally authorize the use of the fraudulent Steel Dossier to create the Trump-Russia collusion hoax when a “Defence witness”, undisputed, testified under oath confirmation of those facts.

The Department of Justice in the US is broken and regarded by many to be impossible to fix in any meaningful way.

Next up a Production by pro Democrat House members to report on “The January 6th Insurrection” by way of a judicial committee that Pelosi House Speaker had two Trump loyalist members Jordan and Banks removed from. In a late desperation move The Democrat controlled Committee ( 7 to 2 with the two republicans avowed RINO’s) has now recruited an ex ABC news producer to maximise any remaining electoral advantage from purely Democrat sponsored hearings. James Goldston  has been recruited by the Democrat-led House select committee investigating the January 6 attack on the US  Capitol meeting to validate the election of the most cognitively impaired Potus ever.

Meanwhile in further politicisation of due process, Trump Counsel Peter Navarro who lawfully declined to participate in the entire Kangaroo Court charade was publicly arrested by agents on Pelosi direction at an airport when normal process would involve a request of Navarro’s Lawyer to present a client for submission at a designated time and place. No “The Roger Stone” doctrine was employed to maximise for TV, the takedown. Such overt politicisation is now weaponized by an increasingly desperate Democrat Party facing a substantial defeat in the Mid Term elections in November this year largely down to their promotion of a senile old 50 year veteran of the Federal political scene as POTUS.
Five armed agents took 72 year old Navarro into custody, placing him in hand cuffs and leg irons, strip searched him, denying food, water and access to a lawyer for refusing to comply with a subpoena to Pelosi’s Kangaroo Court on grounds of “Executive Privilege” as a counsel to then President Trump.

Do not ever suggest such could not happen here, it is already occurring with Mallard as House Speaker denying opposition attempts to hold the government to account, the promotion of That Woman and ad hominem attacks on Luxon and Seymore all cemented in the public mind in the never attempted to hide, buying of almost all mainstream media with millions of taxpayer dollars while denying oxygen by fiat for all voices opposing.

It will end in tears, I will warrant that, revolutions have started from lesser beginnings and provocations.


Written by Gravedodger

June 8, 2022 at 3:59 pm

The rule of law – and other fairy stories

with 4 comments

Two stories on this, one from New Zealand and one from the USA, but both related in ways aside from laughing at the law, let alone justice.

First up is the news that our Foreign Minister, Nanaia Mahuta, has been indulging in some good old feather-bedding of relatives that any old-time American city politician would recognise and approve of:

Frankly for me this is a bit of “meh”, and not just because I’m so used to seeing it in American politics. The fact is that Maori and Pasifika whanau have a different attitude towards this sort of thing. If you achieve wealth and power your relatives damned well expect you to take them along for the ride. To do otherwise would be selfish of you. In fact I’d bet that Nanaia was pressured on these matters by her “rellies”.

I did appreciate these comments from Karl du Fresne, where I first read of this a few days ago

Revelations about government jobs and contracts awarded to Mahuta’s family connections first emerged on The Daily Examiner website on May 22, illustrating the point that it’s often online platforms, rather than ethically compromised mainstream media, that break important stories – especially those that show the government in a poor light.

That has increasingly been the case, which is a welcome addition to the likes of blogs merely taking down a reporter and their story for shallow, braindead hopelessness and/or outrageous ideological and partisan bias.

The Platform has since picked up the story and so has Kate MacNamara, a New Zealand Herald reporter who displays a gutsy independent streak that’s all too rare in political journalism – all of which raises questions about how much longer the rest of the MSM can go on pretending there’s nothing to see here.

Yay. However I doubt it will change any fundamental attitudes in the MSM – or in the Labour Government – which will move past this, with the assistance of that MSM. National can scream long and loud about this but they’ll run out of “new” news sooner or later and in any case will be intimidated into silence by a word that still holds magical powers over them, especially when uttered by Maori – “RACIST”.

The second piece of news on this front is that, as I and many other observers suspected would happen, the Clinton and Democrat National Committee lawyer, Michael Sussman, was found not guilty of lying to the FBI by a jury of his peers – which means a jury selected from a Washington D.C. population that voted 92.5% for Biden:

Turley is a long-time Democrat supporter and long-time Liberal law professor and even he can smell the stench, although it’s also a simple matter of attitudes towards such things.

“I don’t think it should have been prosecuted,” the jury forewomen said, according to an account in The Washington Times. “There are bigger things that affect the nation than a possible lie to the FBI”

Bigger than a lie, plus other lies, that launched a $40 million dollar investigation that handicapped a Presidential Administration for two years?

Well of course! The D.C. crowd, undoubtedly including that woman, hated Trump and wanted him and his policies stopped by any means necessary. They’re all of a piece, which is why former federal prosecutor Andrew C. McCarthy argues that Durham’s mistake was to assume that the FBI were the dupes, when the evidence of three prosecutions has by now demonstrated that at least the upper levels of the FBI knew very well who Sussman was connected with:

… he’d represented the DNC when its servers were hacked, and blocked the FBI from conducting its own forensic investigation. When Sussmann purveyed supposed evidence of a Trump-Russia communications back channel, the bureau knew full well that it was getting political information from a partisan source. The evidence at trial showed that FBI headquarters concealed Sussmann’s identity from the bureau’s own investigating agents.

Funnily enough Sussman’s own defence team made the same argument in claiming that he didn’t lie, and I think that actually has merit.

The connection between the Mahuta and Sussman-Clinton-FBI stories is that both of them demonstrate how our Western democracies are increasingly coming to seem more like feudal systems. If you know the right people, move in the right Establishment circles, and have the opinions of the Gentry Class – then you can make a lot of money and get away with almost anything.

But all this is also enabled by a public, by voters, that increasingly could not care less about such things, even as those things steadily screw them into the ground. I’ll bet that the number of people paying attention to the Heard-Depp defamation trial outnumbered the Sussman observers by millions to one.

The next Durham trials will be covered even less than this one, and slowly it will all just fade away.

Jail time for the attempted coup?

with 18 comments

Only minions go to jail in the US political system. I well recall the triumphant online howls of Lefties after Obama’s election in 2008, with visions of Cheney, and perhaps even the evil BushHitler himself, being “perp-walked” in orange jumpsuits. Similarly with Trump supporters on Clinton with “Lock her Up“. Then there’s the endless fantasies of the Left about convicting Trump himself, yet another of which collapsed just the other day.

The Eight Key Russia Collusion Hoaxers TL to BR
Michael Haden, James Comey, Andrew McCabe, Susan Rice, Peter Strzok, Fiona Hill, Sally Yates, James Clapper

So it will go for all the assholes shown in this photo, plus many others identified in this Federalist article, who may never even be investigated, which they group as people in: Comey’s FBI, Obama’s DOJ, Obama’s State Department, Democratic National Committee, Clinton Campaign, and Clinton’s opposition research group, Fusion GPS.

Yes, it is that tangled and convoluted, which is yet another reason there will be few consequences. Not enough ordinary people care about what is a bigger scandal and crime than Watergate, because it’s just another complex Washington D.C. scandal they don’t understand – while those who do know, including many outside the USA, don’t care because it helped damage Trump and the implementation of his policies.

The primary criminal investigation is now being led by John Durham, one of the few men in D.C. with a genuine reputation as a straight-shooter, based on his work for both the Bush and Obama administrations investigating the likes of the CIA. He started in 2019 and the going has been so slow that I’d pretty much given up on him catching and convicting anybody. But it turns out that the man does move and in 2022 he’s prosecuting a few people in trials.

Carter Page & Kevin Clinesmith

My cynicism is based on what has already happened to a key, if minor figure in the FBI, who is mentioned in that Federalist article. The story concerns one Carter Page, a Trump campaign aide, who got wire-tapped by the FBI in 2016. By 2018 jokes were being made that Page must be the cleanest man in D.C., for despite all their work there was no sign that the FBI was even going to indict Page, let alone prosecute him, on the basis of dirty work with the Russians, or anything else for that matter. After another year had passed it became clear as to why that was.

Carter Page had actually been working with the CIA. Not unusual; the history of modern spy agencies is that they’ve often used businessmen simply to learn ordinary things that help the spies build a better picture of their frenemies. Thus it’s also standard practice for the FBI Counter-Intelligence group, when they’re about to investigate an American citizen, to contact the CIA and other intelligence agencies to see if they’re using these citizens as a source. The FBI did that in this case and got the confirming email from the CIA.

And then FBI lawyer Kevin Clinesmith changed it to read the exact opposite, which was then presented to the FISA (Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act) Court, together with the infamous fake known as the Steele Dossier, as evidence that Page deserved to be spied on. Incredibly Clinesmith was already serving on the Mueller investigation when he did this – until he got dumped after the revelation of his private texts by the FBI Inspector General’s Report showed an incredible degree of anti-Trump bias. Of course the more famous of these people and their texts was this one between Lisa Page and Peter Strzok:

The IG report said [Lisa] Page texted Strzok in August 2016, after Trump won the GOP presidential nomination, fretting, “[Trump’s] not ever going to become president, right? Right?!”

Strzok replied, “No. No he won’t. We’ll stop it,”

Aside from getting canned by the FBI, Strzok and Page suffered no other penalties. After Durham got Clinesmith the government requested a three-to-six month prison sentence but instead the judge sentenced him to community service and imposed no fine. In June 2021 his law license was suspended for just one year, but it was applied retroactively from his guilty plea so he got it back in August 2021.

For lying to not just any court but the FISA court to enable spying on US citizens. Must be nice to be a partisan Democrat working for the FBI, DOJ or the State Department.

But why pick on Clinesmith, Strzok and Page when other parts of the Establishment were just as dirty, right to the top:

The very day in January 2017 that then-FBI Director James Comey signed a FISA surveillance warrant application declaring content from Christopher Steele’s dossier had been “verified,” he wrote President Obama’s Director of National Intelligence, James Clapper, that “We are not able to sufficiently corroborate the reporting”

“The FBI filed three renewal applications with the FISC, on January 12, April 7, and June 29, 2017. In addition to repeating the seven significant errors contained in the first FISA application and outlined above, we identified 10 additional significant errors in the three renewal applications,” Horowitz’s Inspector General report said.

The following links are an excellent three part summary of the 400 page, 2019 Horowitz report: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3. There are extensive quotes from the report about the problems with both Steele and his “Primary Sub-source” but I’ll stick with summaries from two different articles, starting with Steele…

The FBI had terminated Steele two months earlier for violating the terms of his confidential informant agreement by leaking to the news media. The FBI had also had been warned by the CIA since 2015 that Steele was susceptible to Russian disinformation because he was too involved with oligarchs…the FBI had interviewed in November 2016 one of Steele’s former MI6 bosses, who warned agents that Steele had overstated his seniority during the time he served in British intelligence.

… followed by the details of the “Primary Sub-source”, who should have been investigated before the FISA applications were made:

The FBI also hid all that from the FISA court and even during later testimony before Congress. Comey has no excuses. His FBI knew all this by January 2017. They also fought like hell to prevent then House Intelligence Committee Chairman Rep. Devin Nunes from releasing this in early 2018.

But one big letdown of the Horowitz report was that it treated all this as mere “errors”, and it did not ask why the FBI had failed to investigate a big problem with Steele:

One area the FBI assiduously avoided was Steele’s knowledge that he was working for the Clinton Campaign and his understanding that his research would be publicized and used to affect the 2016 election.  This information, had it been presented, would have been critical to the FISA Court’s ability to evaluate Steele’s bias.

This lack of information or deference means that, first, the IG did not fully establish exactly the relevant chains of command (Comey and McCabe at the FBI; Yates, Boente and Rosenstein at the DOJ); and second, he did not pin down what the players knew and when they knew it.

Some of this information vacuum occurred because several players in the FBI’s crime drama (such as Comey), refused to cooperate with the IG.  What they knew or should have known and when they knew it will be key questions that need to be answered.  Bottom line, the IG’s Report is itself damning, but it is not the final word.

And this is where Durham’s investigation has differed from Horowitz’s: it’s a criminal inquiry. Durham clearly does think that criminal skullduggery occurred across these agencies, and showed his teeth right from the start in 2019 by dissenting from the IG’s view that the Steele dossier “played no role in the Crossfire Hurricane opening”. That link has a concise list of the reasons why Durham does not agree, together with a detailed timeline of how the FBI learned of the dossier and started the investigation, including these two doozies:

  • The FBI’s faith in Steele extended to sharing classified information with him. According to Horowitz, at an October 2016 meeting in Rome, FBI agents gave Steele a “general overview” of Crossfire Hurricane, including its then-secret probes of Manafort, Page, Flynn, and Papadopoulos. The FBI was so eager to enlist Steele that it offered to pay him $15,000 “just for attending” the Rome meeting and a “significantly” greater amount if he could collect more information.
  • Then-senior Justice Department official Bruce Ohr, whose wife Nellie worked alongside Steele at Fusion GPS, first made contact with Steele right before the former British spy’s meeting with [FBI agent] Gaeta on July 5,

Wheels within fucking wheels in this crowd of husbands, wives and lovers. Pillow talk among honourable people! Trust in people you already knew should not be trusted.

Incidentally, it turns out that Trump’s National Security Advisor Michael Flynn (whose clearance from charges I covered here), accused by the Clinton campaign, sundry Intelligence Community leakers and the MSM (of course) of getting too close to Russia, starting in 2015 with a dinner with Putin, was operating then as an intelligence source for the USA. In his case for the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA), who testified to Mueller that Flynn had approached them before the meeting and been de-briefed afterwards. Mueller sat on those affidavits because they weren’t material to his prosecution of Flynn’s 2016 actions as NSA – and also because they would have blown up the Mueller-Clinton narrative. They were only just released the other day after some minor news outfit called JustTheNews extracted them from the government – doing the work the MSM did not want to do. Flynn is now suing the US government for $50 million, and in act of petty revenge they’re suing him for the $40,000 they spent on the 2015 trip.

Igor Danchenko

In November 2021 Durham made public that the “Primary Sub-source” was one Igor Danchenko and indicted him for lying to the FBI. That led to other revelations such as him being investigated in 2009 by the FBI as a possible Russian spy since he was connected to two men they were already investigating as spies.

But, in what would become an alarming theme, the FBI did not follow through and closed the investigation in March 2011, apparently believing that Danchenko had gone back to Russia.

In fact, he had begun working with Steele. Danchenko was introduced to Steele in 2010 by Fiona Hill, another Brookings Russia scholar.

The Brookings Institution is essentially the foreign policy cover organisation for the Clinton Foundation. And Fiona Hill? Where have you heard that name before? Oh right, she was a key witness during Trump’s first impeachment. No bias there. It gets better.

In 2016, she introduced Danchenko to Charles Dolan, a Russia-focused businessman and Democratic Party activist.

Dolan is identified in the indictment as “PR Executive-1” because he helped run a public-relations firm. He is a longtime Clinton insider, having worked on Bill Clinton’s successful 1992 and 1996 presidential campaigns, as well as Hillary’s failed 2008 and 2016 bids. In the interim, he was appointed by President Clinton to a State Department advisory committee. From 2006 until 2014, the Kremlin retained Dolan to be its global public-relations agent. For much of that time, conveniently, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was the Obama administration point-person on the “Russia Reset,” in which the State Department promoted Russian economic development.

So far from being “inside Russia” it would be more accurate to say that Danchenko was inside the Clinton orbit. Information from Russian sources was actually from the Clinton campaign, with key player Dolan as – literally – a Kremlin agent. If you read that article (from none other than the Trump-loathing team at National Review) you’ll see that the information flow ran from Dolan to Danchenko to Steele to the FBI.

By the way, Clinton’s opposition research firm FusionGPS was also simultaneously working directly for Vladimir Putin, attempting to drum up media and government support for overturning the US Global Magnitsky Act, which Putin did not like.

And these people had the chutzpah to say Trump was tied to the Russians. There is no better deflection than to accuse your opponent of what you’re doing.

I’ve no doubt that Danchenko will be convicted of lying to the FBI and since he is not a precious worker for any of the three-letter Federal agencies he might see some jail time, but not much.

Michael Sussman

Which brings us to the latest in Durhams work: the prosecution of former Hillary Clinton and Democrat National Commitee (DNC) lawyer, Michael Sussman, for the same crime of lying to the FBI.

In Sussman’s case he approached the FBI directly, claiming that he had damaging information about Trump – specifically that he was colluding with the Russian Alfa Bank via a secret server hotline – and claimed that he was doing so out of his concern as an American citizen – when in fact he was acting as the Clinton campaign lawyer and billing them for the time he spent with the FBI.

That last fact caused some fun when Durham subpoenaed key people from Hillary Clinton’s 2016 campaign – the DNC, Fusion GPS, and liberal law firm Perkins Coie – and demanded to see all of Sussman’s communications with them. His lawyers claimed attorney-client privilege that meant they would not disclose them, but Durham already had the text messages:

“Jim – it’s Michael Sussmann. I have something time-sensitive (and sensitive) I need to discuss. Do you have availability for a short meeting tomorrow? I’m coming on my own – not on behalf of a client or company – want to help the Bureau. Thanks.”

Durham had painted him into a corner. He got the comms. He’s also got some star witnesses who are singing in the dock, likely to save their own hides.

Former FBI General Counsel James Baker, who Sussman met, testified that he was “100% confident” about the following, which confirmed Sussman’s own text.

Sussmann claimed no client was behind the Alfa-Bank disinfo, a claim represented in a subsequent meeting with “Bill Priestap, who was the assistant director of the FBI’s Counterintelligence Division, and Trisha Anderson, the FBI’s deputy general counsel, right after his Sussmann meeting.” Both wrote down that there was no connection to a client in their meeting notes.

In other words, not just a dumb process lie (like “lying” about the date of a meeting) but a material lie; one that directly affected the FBI investigation of Trump and his team.

Then it was the turn of longtime Clinton lawyer, Mark Elias:

Sussmann’s partner at the time, also testified that they were representing the Clinton team and had hired the Fusion GPS to help dig up dirt on the Trump team. Durham also got in other records during Elias’ testimony showing that they were meeting on the Alfa Bank, and Elias said that he considered his work with Sussmann and Joffe to be part of his Clinton campaign work.

Durham then played a crucial card by getting the testimony of two former CIA agents who testified that Sussman had told the same lies to them, which shows a pattern of deliberate lying.

Then, last Friday, Clinton campaign manager Robby Mook directly implicated Hillary Clinton herself by testifying that she approved the plan to spread the lie. Some people, like Liberal Democrat law professor Jonathan Turley, seem to think this is a big deal, and perhaps if the MSM put it on the front-pages (Yes, yes, I know) it might become a big deal for the general public. But as the boys at Powerline point out, if you didn’t follow the MSM then you already knew about this ages ago:

More broadly, we have long known that Hillary personally directed the Russia collusion hoax. Indeed, the Obama administration knew this virtually from the hoax’s inception. We wrote about this a year and a half ago, based on handwritten notes by John Brennan, then CIA Director, dated July 28,2016.

According to these documents, Hillary approved the plan to smear Donald Trump with the Russia collusion hoax on July 26, 2016. (The Fusion GPS/Christopher Steele “dossier” fabrication was under way by this time.) Her action was immediately picked up by Russian intelligence. At almost the same time, U.S. intelligence, spying on the Russians, got the story. On July 28, just two days after Hillary allegedly green-lighted the smear, Barack Obama, James Comey, Susan Rice and Denis McDonough assembled to be briefed by John Brennan on the situation.

Hillary Clinton – and friends

Closer and closer Durham comes to the heart of the scandal. I think Sussman is a dead duck, but even in his case there is a glimmer of hope in that it’s a jury trial set in Washington D.C where 92% of voters went for Biden in 2020:

Many of the members of the broader jury pool, as well as some selected for the jury itself, expressed strong disdain for former President Donald Trump and/or support for Clinton. Most said they hadn’t heard of the Sussmann case until the judge told them about it last week.

“I remembered that the 2016 election was kind of a mess and that there were a lot of shenanigans,” one of the selected jurors told the court.

Heh. A perfect example of the general public and this entire scandal. Maybe that sort of ignorance will help the prosecution: maybe it will help the defence. Sussman has probably bet on the latter, otherwise he’d have pled guilty by now in the face of all this evidence.

But as I said at the start of this post, I can’t believe that any of these senior people will ever suffer any legal penalties for all this, especially Hillary Clinton. A lot of minor figures in the Clintons world have gone to jail over the years, all the way back to the Whitewater scandal, but never the main players. As just one current example, Hillary’s original Tweet about the Alfa Bank mentions one Jake Sullivan releasing the statement as the Hillary for America Senior Policy Advisor: Sullivan is now Biden’s National Security Adviser FFS. As professor Turley says:

Hillary Clinton has always had a sort of Voldemort-like status of she who must not be named in a scandal. The Clintons have really been able to avoid direct responsibility in a series of scandals. And here was her campaign manager effectively dropping the dime on his former boss and saying, “Look, she approved it. She knew about it.”

But the thing to keep in mind is that President Obama was briefed when he was president, that Hillary Clinton was planning to make a Russian collusion claim against Donald Trump to try to sort of get out of her own email issues during the campaign.

And we now have someone saying, “Yeah, she green-lighted the Alfa Bank claims,” which were completely without foundation. The Clintons are really quite adept at avoiding direct responsibility on some of these scandals, and I expect that will be the case here.

With the exception of false statements made to federal investigators, there’s not a lot that can be brought for charges against a wide array of individuals.

UPDATE:

Courtesy of RealClearPolitics:

The Sussmann trial indicates how the media and federal agencies play into the Democrats’ scandal-industrial process. Take Mook’s testimony last Friday. It was a huge story because, for the first time, a Clinton insider directly tied Hillary to the smear campaign. That campaign was the biggest political dirty trick in modern American politics, one the media had actively promoted. Yet, when the bombshell exploded, the mainstream media went silent, both about the news and about their own culpability. On Friday, when the news broke, ABC, CBS, NBC, CNN, and MSNBC did not mention the Mook bombshell or even the Sussmann trial. Not a peep. Saturday’s New York Times was equally silent. The Washington Post did cover the story but buried the lede – Hillary Clinton’s direct involvement – well down in their report. A Post national correspondent actually ran an “analysis” piece entitled “Again: There’s No Evidence Hillary Clinton Triggered the Russian Probe.”

Written by Tom Hunter

May 23, 2022 at 6:00 am

An amazing interview

with 19 comments

Now that even the NYT and Washington Post, plus reef fish like CNN and MSNBC, have acknowledged that Hunter Biden’s laptop and contents are the real deal and not “Russian Disinformation”, it’s interesting to go back to the source of the story, the Mac repair guy, and see what he has to say about it.

The following lengthy Breitbart interview of the man is both fascinating and horrifying. There are several portions that I think need to be quoted. First up, his dealings with the FBI about the laptop:

JM: I don’t look at it that way. My ‘What if?’ is ‘What if the FBI had done its job?’ What if they had taken the drive in October of 2019 and done something with it instead of doing nothing with it?’ I count four times, including the time Rudy handed it to them, that the FBI had the opportunity to do something and chose not to. If they had done something two-and-a-half years ago, maybe now I would have a job and I wouldn’t have had to have gone to Giuliani and Giuliani wouldn’t have had to go to the Post to get the truth out.

Then there is that Washington Post contact by Giuliani:

JM: I remember, the day after the story broke, it was October 15 [2019],  and I had CNN, the New York Times, and the Washington Post in my store. It was immediately obvious they were only there to catch me in a lie. They were not there for the truth. They wanted to catch me revealing their narrative. I told them everything. I offered to show them a photo of Hunter’s signed authorization. They weren’t interested. They were only interested in their narrative. They were only interested in what their trusted government sources were feeding them. So they published nothing I said because it wasn’t what they wanted to hear— that this was a valid, factual, and consequential story.

Yesterday, I left a comment with the Washington Post and they probably won’t publish that.

BNN: CNN, the New York Times, and the Washington Post didn’t use anything you said back when the story first broke?

JM: They were only interested in discrediting me. If not, they would have told the public what I told them. The thing that messed me up is that I wasn’t ready for this. No one coached me. I didn’t even know what I could or could not say. I’m cornered in my shop by five members of the press. It was a very awkward interview. I was as uncomfortable as I have ever been. My main concern was protecting my family. I didn’t want my dad harassed so it was awkward.

I find it amazing that Giuliani could have been naive enough to think that the WaPo would treat the story as evidence of Hunter Biden’s corruption and then follow-up with hard questions for Joe Biden and further investigation: that he never thought they’d run the opposite angle. It’s a key lesson for every single GOP politician and activist: never, ever trust the NYT, WaPo or any of the MSM again. They’re actively working for the Democrat Party and they will destroy you, even if you’re a nobody, in order to get Democrats elected. As the journalist who interviewed him, John Nolte says:

You can’t go to the media anymore. It used to be that if you could just get the truth to the media, the media would publish the truth and the truth would protect you. There are all kinds of movies about this, about how the goal is to find a heroic journalist who will tell the truth and save you… The Three Days of the Condor, The Pelican Brief, The China Syndrome… The idea was always this: if the government and big business were about to crush and destroy you — you, the individual, the brave truth-teller, the lonely whistleblower —  there was always a safe place to run. 

No more. They’re all in on it.

In this case “JM” had to abandon his business and get out of Biden’s state, Delaware, for a year. Even now he’s still getting harassed as a “Putin stooge” and a “criminal hacker”, despite having jumped through every legal hoop to do it right, including with the FBI. He did at least get good protection from the local cops in the face of multiple death threats from Biden supporters. But there’s still damage:

JM: Bankruptcy is possible. I could lose my house. I’m not there yet and I hope not to lose my house. A friend finally convinced me to let her open a GiveSendGo account to help me out. That’s helping some. I’m also doing odd jobs, like going to people’s homes and picking up trash for twenty dollars an hour. It’s not like fixing computers like I used to. I’m reluctant to go back into that business because I have no control over who will show up.

Speaking of trust there’s this from “JM”: he doesn’t blame the WaPo after they “failed” to protect his identity by not blurring out the name of his little shop from a photo in their article, which is when the trouble started:

JM: (laughs) With the New York Times finally coming out last week and admitting the laptop was real, that’s what I want to see more of. The more that news gets out that I’m not a hacker, not a Russian spy, not a traitor, the more quickly and efficiently I can rebuild my life. Once people realize ‘He’s not these things, He did the right things,’ then I feel I will have an opportunity to rebuild my life. Last week, with the New York Times’ admission, that was the first glimmer of hope I’ve had in over a year. It’s only one news source, but the Washington Post just reached out to me, so…

JM: You have to trust that system, that it’s going to work. Once you go outside the system, it has no purpose.

Oh dear. He also still believes in the system that largely destroyed him.

Written by Tom Hunter

April 3, 2022 at 2:00 pm

The Rittenhouse Judge loses it

with 8 comments

Strange things continue to happen in the USA, especially on the legal front with some startling developments in the case of what might as well now be called The Clinton Dossier and the rich connections between the Clinton Campaign and Russians.

But what’s probably getting more public attention is the trial of young Mr Rittenhouse, which has been underway for several days now.

As you may recall, during the Mostly Peaceful Protests of 2020 in Kenosha, Wisconsin, where many buildings were burned by BLM/Antifa gangs roaming the streets after a Black man was shot by local police, 17 year-old Rittenhouse joined a group of people trying to protect businesses from being trashed and was issued a rifle.

In the midst of this mayhem, Rittenhouse shot three Antifa protestors, killing two and injuring one. He claimed self-defence.

Against expectations the trial has not gone well for the prosecution.

Among other things the key takeaways from this are as follows.

First, FBI drone video showed Rittenhouse clearly been chased by all these people, not the reverse. One interesting question arising from this is that the defence only found out about this video as the trial started: the FBI sat on it for a year. Irrelevant to the trial but a fascinating question arising from this is how much surveillance of such protests is done by the FBI.

Second, the main police detective simply would not indulge the prosecution continually trying to say that Rosenbaum was “falling” towards Rittenhouse when the latter shot him. The detective insisted that every witness they interviewed, plus photos and video showed Rosenbaum “lunging” for Rittenhouse.

Third, a key prosecution witness, one of the three men shot by Rittenhouse who survived, admitted that he was shot only after he’d pointed his own handgun at Rittenhouse. He probably felt he had no choice but to admit this as photos clearly showed him aiming at Rittenhouse while the latter was on his back, having been kicked in the head and beaten with a skateboard by other “protestors”.

The three people seen on the left of this coverage are lawyers supplying legal commentary during live-streaming of the trail.

The reaction of one of the prosecution lawyers says it all. Funnily enough we just had a family movie night watching the old classic, A Few Good Men, and in one part of the movie Tom Cruise’s character tells his team that whether good or bad things happen in the courtroom they must not react in any way. I guess this guy never watched the movie, which shows the differences between book law and trial law.

Fourth, another prosecution witness directly confronted the prosecutors and told everybody that they had insisted on him changing his statement.

Given how well things were going for the defence I was still surprised when they decided to put Rittenhouse on the stand, which is always a risky move. But that brings me to the last point, and it really sums up how useless the prosecution team has been.

Of course this is a jury trial and the jurors were selected from a still frightened and traumatised population, some 60% of whom, according to polls taken before the trial, think that Rittenhouse is guilty of murder.

I would not bet on these people leading free lives back in their community should they declare Rittenhouse innocent of murder, but we will see.

UPDATE

Have just come across this analysis by the Legal Insurrection blog of what Assistant District Attorney Binger did and it’s even worse than I thought. No wonder the judge lost it:

If there’s a single most inviolate civil right in American criminal law, this is it—the right of a defendant to remain silent, and not have the exercise of that right be used against them.

To observe an experienced prosecutor breach this fundamental Constitutional right in open court, in the presence of a jury, was professionally shocking to me personally—and the defense and Judge Schroeder acted with the severity you might expect.

A short time later, Binger asked a lengthy series of questions about Kyle’s understanding that deadly force cannot be used in defense of mere property.  He asked the question in perhaps a dozen different ways, and then revealed that it was all a long build-up into asking Kyle about the CVS video.

This on top of repeatedly trying to introduce evidence that the judge had already ruled as inadmissible.

Written by Tom Hunter

November 11, 2021 at 12:44 pm

Posted in Law and Order, USA

Tagged with , , ,