Yes, loyal readers, you all know Raymond Chandler’s mantra by now: All secret police forces come to the same end.
But the means are pretty predictable too. In Democracies, one common feature is dredging up some doddering figurehead who has been kept sufficiently respectable for public consumption and isn’t quite so far gone as to need a bib at feeding time. Such was Robert Mueller presumed to be until the geniuses who run the Democratic side of Congress compelled today’s testimony, likely to be his last major public appearance.
Alas, good ol’ Bob has passed the point where he can be cleaned up and presented for the cameras. Just following both sides on Twitter today, it became pretty clear by early afternoon that Mueller was insufficiently familiar with the investigation he led, or the report issued under his name, to be held liable for any actions taken or not taken. To the extent the comings and goings of the last two-and-a-half years had any coherence at all, it is now being laid at the feet of Mueller’s top aide, Andrew Weissmann, a man with a history of corruption that–pardon the expression–swamps Mueller’s own.
Can’t wait until they drag him into the light.
Of course, if we had a functioning government and a real country, men like Mueller and Weissmann would never have come anywhere near the levers of power. They would have been shunted off to small towns, the tender care of Ryker’s Island, or a handy electric chair, decades ago and an antidote like Donald Trump–a rat big enough and mean enough to tear the throats out of all the other rats–would never have become necessary in the first place.
Try catching anyone emerging from their carefully constructed delusions long enough to take responsibility for that tonight.
Hey Bob….She’s winking at you. I promise. And there’s no way she’ll be slipping some Intelligence Community-approved powder in your warm milk that will cause your convenient death to be reported as a sudden attack of natural causes. Drink up, buddy!
All secret police forces come to the same end.
Yes, Robert Mueller’s real job was to take over the Bring-Trump-Down-By-Any-Means-Necessary investigation from an already severely compromised FBI and muck about until it could be handed off to someone else (likely some House committee headed by the likes of Adam Schiff or Elijah Cummings or Jerry Nadler, next to whom Mueller looks like the love child of Albert Einstein and Marie Curie) .
But Donald Trump knows, even if his enemies don’t, that Mueller’s investigation was the last that had any chance of being sold as “bipartisan” or “objective” or “credible” or “strictly professional” or whatever euphemism for fake honesty his media handlers were pushing in a given week. And that’s why there’s only one record that fully captures the Swamp State’s gift to their sworn enemy, the one man on the face of the earth they’ve spent three years proving they hate even worse than they hate you…
(I’ll have my late-night dedication to Robert Mueller up one of these late nights. For now….)
After a day-and-a-half of monitoring my usual social-media feeds and assembling all the Mainstream Media takes, I was beginning to think I would have to do the heavy lifting on the essential meaning of Team Trump’s resounding victory over Team Mueller myself.
Lucky me, fervid anti-Trumper Matt Taibbi has stumbled around and, blind-squirrel style, at least assembled the outline.
Taibbi is still stuck on stupid in the manner of Trump’s intelligence. He seems to think his own initial reading of Trump as some sort of idiot-savant whose lucky streak is bound to end sometime (and probably soon) has somehow held up in the face of everything else he tells us here. But that only demonstrates how much counter-evidence our preferred narratives can withstand.
By all means, read the whole thing. I don’t agree with all of it but he’s got the gist right and suffice it to say that dozens, if not hundreds, of key members of the Swamp State (which I’m still thinking maybe we should call the Rump-Swab State–ya’ll feel free to weigh in on this), are now lying awake nights praying to the God they do not believe in (but who believes very much in them), that Donald Trump is not a vindictive man or at least Ivanka and Jared, the only people who would likely be entrusted with the execution of his response, will make less-than-able consiglieres should he bother to sweep his feckless opposition from the board.
The real message, as always, is that Trump is where he is because he is opposed by people whose depths of corruption, arrogance, and sense of entitlement are built on fifty-plus years of misgovernance and thirty-five of mal-governance and exceeded only by their rank stupidity.
Hey Eddie. It’s been a while. Think maybe you can help a brother out and remind ’em how it is?
Although my favorite comment on the IG report is likely to remain Scott Adams’ “When I saw the report was 500 pages I knew everyone would be able to read anything into it they wanted,” the best of the numerous actual summaries I scanned/read was from Mollie Hemingway at the Federalist.
Hemingway still has a far more sanguine view of the FBI than I do…she seems to think all this is somehow abnormal. I say things like “massive leaking” and taking bribes are police state features, not bugs.
The real news is that the exposure of the FBI’s massive corruption and incompetence have left Team Trump with a strong hand. Unless Team Mueller pulls the sort of rabbit out of its hat that creates a massive backlash at the polls come November (its already clear Trump’s policies won’t provide the impetus–rather the opposite), then, come the end of the year, that strong hand will be a whip hand.
Barrack Obama’s Inspector General, Michael Horowitz (retained by the Trump Administration), is releasing a mammoth report today. It’s been anticipated for months and culminates a year-and-a-half long investigation of something or other (I think it was originally supposed to be about Hilary Clinton’s emails but I wouldn’t swear that’s still the case).
Whatever else it says, here’s the first tidbit from the initial news reports–and it’s all that matters.
From the Page-Strzock Files:
Lisa Page: “(Trump’s) not ever going to become president, right? Right?!”
Peter Strzok: “No. No he’s not. We’ll stop it.”
By “we” Strzok meant the FBI, where both he and Page were high-ranking officials during the 2016 election cycle. You can Google their names if you haven’t been following along and want to know more.
Meanwhile, at least we know who was really trying to rig the 2016 election.
Perhaps we can take cold comfort in discovering, at last, their startling degree of incompetence.
And don’t worry. Page (resigned) and Strzok (demoted) are gone. But the people who took their place (think Team Mueller) are no brighter and no more principled.
The message, as always, is that Donald Trump is opposed by a Clown Show: They clown. He laughs.
Though, I admit, this is almost as funny as it is frightening in a banality-of-evil sort of way:
Here’s a quote from an opinion piece provided by one of the major news outlets today (doesn’t matter which one…or even that it’s from today):
There is nothing more dangerous to the welfare of our republic than operatives from our three-letter agencies taking sides for ideological or personal reasons and then using the vast resources at their disposal to damage and delegitimize those they oppose.
We’ll be making progress when opinion makers at major mews outlets learn to cut that sentence off after “agencies.”
Meanwhile the Fun Fact of the Week:
I tried to tickle a few funny bones and chill a few spines by pointing out the savvy ways Donald Trump used (or, if you like, misused) the Rolling Stones’ “You Can’t Always Get What You Want” as his campaign rally theme (and I left off after the election, but he didn’t–he still does rallies and still closes with “You Can’t Always Get What You Want”–and it’s still hilarious and still chilling).
Now it comes out that the operation the FBI (with possible assistance from the CIA and/or the DNC and/or British and/or Russian Intelligence and/or Sir Mick Jagger) ran on the /Trump Campaign was called Crossfire Hurricane.
Of course it was.
And right wing radio used “Jumpin’ Jack Flash” for bumper music all day today.
Of course they did.
This makes it convenient for those of us trying to spot theme songs for the future but aren’t sure whether Team Trump (who seem to hold the high cards this week) or Team Mueller (who may still have an ace or two hidden up a Brooks’ Brothers sleeve) will emerge victorious before the leaves turn this fall.
At least now we know what the loser–who will now lose everything–will be singing:
I still say Mick and Keith will play Trump’s Second Inaugural. But the set list does keep changing…
There are no true oldies stations in my market anymore. The last one changed formats more than a decade ago. What’s left is the Hank format and a Classic Rock Formula which has been reshaped from hard-rock-all-the-time (white except for Jimi Hendrix) to a mix of hard rock (white….except for Jimi Hendrix), hard pop rock (all white), a little easy listening (ditto), plus, for the sake of diversity, “Superstition” and “Low Rider.”
It’s not exactly a true re-creation of how hit-oriented radio worked in the sixties and seventies, but it is an accurate reflection of these focus-grouped times.
Usually, I just listen to the gasbags on talk radio who at least keep me up with the news. (And represent the last, best hope Never Trumpers have of taking their nemesis down, even if they don’t know it and would never admit it if they did. Believe me, when you’re in the Byzantine spot Robert Mueller’s in, a place where so many corrupt riddles are wrapped inside so many diseased enigmas your own best hope of staying out of jail is the pubic’s inability to keep up, you couldn’t hope for better than to have Sean Hannity and Mark Levin representing the other side).
But, now and again, when the gasbags either overwhelm me or go to commercial once too often, I still pull up the Classic Hits station in my car.
I had missed a promo-promised Go-Go’s/Queen segue earlier in the day, but now I hit the button just as this one started…and, once it starts, I never change the station…
Strange thing, though. This time, all I could think about while the song was playing (and I was shouting every word–have I ever mentioned that I harmonize with Christine McVie and Lindsey Buckingham like a long lost sibling who shared a mother with one and a father with the other?…Or that I can’t be the first person to have considered the possibility that everyone can do this?)–was how, when the 1992 Bill Clinton campaign adopted “Don’t Stop” as the theme song and wanted Fleetwood Mac to re-unite and play it for some big occasion (the Convention? Election Night? the Inaugural?…the memory hazes, but, for my purposes here, it only matters that they said yes), Buckingham at first refused.
He gave in only when Stevie Nicks called him up and said If you take this away from me, I’ll never speak to you again.)
Don’t mind me. I get peculiar thoughts some times.
Because while all that was running through my head (without my thrush-like throat fluffing a note) I also started wondering if Oo-o-o-hh, don’t you look back might be a sentiment tantamount to civilizational suicide. Didn’t somebody say something once about those who don’t learn from the past being doomed to, etc., etc., etc.?
And wouldn’t not learning from the past you never look back to just about define Bill Clinton’s life and legacy? (Be sure you read Thomas Frank’s blind-squirrel-finds-a-nut article at the link, especially if you’ve forgotten, or never admitted, how much damage Clinton did to liberalism, damage that is likely to remain irreparable…..And, like I said, don’t mind me.)
Boy was I depressed.
Not even remembering how the ghost version of “Don’t Stop” had long since forced me to ponder whether Christine McVie having just possibly conceived the song as pure irony should be one of my heart-of-the-universe questions–how, with the slightest shift of timbre, she transformed don’t look back from the proverbial fear that something might be gaining on you to an anthem worthy of an American presidential campaign, where never a discouraging word must be heard–allowed me to shake the feeling the whole world has been had all over again every time this song plays on the radio and one of us sings along in perfect harmony without missing a note or a nuance.
Then the radio went straight into this…
…which was so much about nothing (a Curfew Riot–which sounds like the title of a Monty Python skit) it ended up being about everything. Including now.
Paranoia strikes deep….
And even though it had been too long since I heard it (and though nothing could ever match the impact of singing it, in perfect harmony–with five kids who weren’t conversant with English, or even born, when it was released–under the eaves of the library at Kent State in 1998) for me to get every note, or even every word, right, I thought…well this radio still speaks in mysterious ways some times, its wonders to perform.
After that, Tom Petty reminding me I don’t have the live like a refugee, usually the highlight of any paranoiac’s day, felt as comfortable as an old shoe.
Then “Do Ya Think I’m Sexy” came on and I remembered how talk radio came to be an option in the first place.
Because the Empire planned it that way….That’s how.
Now go back to bed and leave me alone you damned ol’ Politics.
On the occasion of more “resignations” at FBI (following “demotions” and “firings” that have bled the agency’s top management for months–most at the behest of Obama appointed Inspector General Michael Horowitz), and a Federal Judge rebuking former FBI head Robert Mueller’s team for “lying about the scope of the investigation” into Trump fixer Paul Manafort which, you will be shocked to learn, is not really about Manafort’s ten-year-old fraud cases (which couldn’t have been new news even to Robert Mueller).
The judge, who had previously deemed Manafort a serious flight risk, was also a bit perturbed to discover that Mueller is using a warrant obtained in an FBI counterintelligence operation to pursue criminal prosecutions.
Apparently, that’s a no-no. Abuse of power or something.
What? By a Special Prosecutor who used to head the FBI? Say it ain’t so.
I haven’t quite been able to credit it before–and there’s a long way to go–but the Security State is, for the moment, back on its heels. The Trump administration, boxing from the shadows for a year-and-a-half, has now surpassed Jimmy Carter’s mass firing at Langley in the late 70s, and become the most serious threat to the real government behind the shadow puppets we elect every 2 to 4 years since John Kennedy threatened to smash the CIA in the early 60s.
We all know how it worked out for Kennedy and Carter…And Donald Trump might not be bound by whatever moral or legal constraints those men would have recognized should he, unlike them, emerge victorious.
So I ‘m not dancing a jig. We must all be careful what we wish for and one thing thirty-five years of knowing who’s really in charge has taught me is to trust no one.
But I am watching the dread institutions who must be disbanded before any other progress can be made–CIA, FBI, NSA, DNI, etc.–circle the drain.
As a fan of Liberal Democracy, who does not accept that free people need spy services, secret police forces or star chambers, I’d take a final flushing over Peace in Our Time, 2 percent Real Unemployment, a Balanced Budget, or a 30,000 Dow Average every day of the week and twice on Sunday.
The FBI is a bunch of overpublicized characters, Hoover himself being a first rate publicity hound. All secret police forces come to the same end. I’ll bet the s.o.b. has a dossier on everybody who could do him damage. The FBI throws up such a smoke screen that they make the public forget all the tough ones they never broke. Sometimes I wonder if they ever did break a really tough one.
(Raymond Chandler, Letter to James Fox, Jan. 18, 1954, from Raymond Chandler: A Biography, Tom Hiney, Grove Press, 1997, p 181)