Tuesday, May 09, 2017

Deeper and Deeper

Sally Yates
"Logic would tell you that you don't want the national security adviser to be in a position where the Russians had leverage over him."
Sally Yates, 5/8/17

Gee, ya think???

Although I paid close attention to the unfolding Watergate scandal forty-five years ago, I really was too young to comprehensively take in the constitutional ramifications of what was happening. I was thirteen on the night of June 17, 1972, when several burglars were caught planting bugging devices in the Democratic headquarters in Washington, DC. Dick Nixon resigned in disgrace a week before my sixteenth birthday in August of 1974. Only decades of hindsight allowed me to truly understand how big a deal the entire affair was. In 1972, I was only a casual user with respect to politics. Watergate turned me into a full tilt political junkie.
I understand things a lot more clearly in 2017. The scandal involving the 2016 Trump campaign's collusion with Vladimir Putin is proving to be a tidal wave that will make Watergate look like a bottle of leaky Perrier. It is not only the Trump campaign that is suspect. The suspicions now extend to the Trump administration. As impossibly devious as Nixon was, no one - not even his most vigorous critics - ever suspected that the demented old freak held even so-much-as-a mildly treasonous thought.

Clapper and Yates
Watching the testimonies yesterday of formers acting Attorney General Sally Yates, and Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, one got the uneasy feeling that we've only hit the tip of the lice-berg. When both of them were asked if they were in possession of evidence that the administration was in cahoots somehow with the Putin government, neither of them would respond  to the question because the answer would hamper national security. For eighteen days after Yates informed White House counsel, Don McGahn, that National Security Advisor Mike Flynn had been having improper conversations with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyac, the Trump Mob did nothing. Yates, however, was fired. The official reason for her sacking was her failure to implement the Donald's Muslim ban. That might be one reason, but I've got a hunch that it's not the only one.

Trump has made a pathetic attempt to deflect all blame for the Michael Flynn fiasco onto - SURPRISE! - Barack Obama. He says that the former president failed to vet Flynn carefully when he went to work for the Obama White House. A case could be made for that argument. But don't overlook the fact that Flynn was discharged by Obama. Also, NBC News confirmed yesterday that, in their first face-to-face meeting after the election, the president specifically warned the president-elect that Mike Flynn was a danger to national security. Nice try. 
A few hours prior to the hearing, der Trumpster had another one of his amusing tantrums on Twitter:
"Ask Sally Yates under oath if she knows how classified information got into the newspapers soon after she explained it to W.H. counsel".
More than one Republican senator obliged the president by directing that question to both Yates and Clapper. Both of their answers were convincing. In fact, anyone bothering to pay attention to the events of the last four months knows exactly where the Washington Post obtained that information. As you might already have surmised, this is the leakiest White House in American history.

You have to wonder why Trump would appoint someone like Flynn (who, after all, was so tight with Putin) to be his national security advisor. Why would he appoint someone like Rex Tillerson (who, after all, was so tight with Putin) to be his secretary of state? Do you see a pattern here? Could it be that these two guys were picked for no other reason than the possibility that they may have been Putin's choices? If that is case, what I want know is simply: How many others in this disgusting administration were vetted by Vlad?

Crackpot theory on my part? Maybe. But by not making public his tax returns, Trump is quite obviously hiding something. How deep is he indebted to the Russians? His own son admitted to a reporter two years ago that more cash flows into the Trump organization from Russia than any other country on the planet - including the United States. If you weren't around for Watergate you didn't miss much. The sins of the Nixon administration are about to become a trivial footnote in the annals of political crime. As Al Jolson liked to say in his day, "Folks, you ain't seen nothing yet!"

Fasten your seatbelts. 

Tom Degan
Goshen, NY
Today would have been the twentieth birthday of my cherished little friend, Meghan Sager. Her sudden passing three-and-a-half years ago left everyone who was blessed to be in her orbit in a state of mourning that none of us who loved her (which was everyone who knew her) will ever completely recover from. I thought I knew what grief was. I hadn't even scratched the surface.
A few months after she stepped into eternity, her family established a scholarship in her memory. Its purpose is to help fund the educations of young people who, like Meghan, excel in scholastic achievement, artistic creativity, athletic prowess - or who merely possess in abundance the sweet milk of human kindness and decency. And although it's not a prerequisite, it would be appropriate if they were funny, too. Miss Meghan was a riot! Tonight the cherubs are beside themselves in giggles. Of this I  have no doubt.
Please, if you have any spare change lying around the house, make a donation to the Meghan Sager Memorial Scholarship Fund.
You’ll never know how much I adored this kid. I still do, you know. I still do.
Happy birthday, Miss Meghan.
Love and Peace,
Mr. Degan
Here is a link to donate:
Thanks, folks!


At 11:20 PM, Blogger Just the Facts! said...


What was the leverage?


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