The horizon is not so far as we can see, but as far as we can imagine

The Mueller Report: Who Cares?

I’m running a little late on this one as I found out Friday night that I had to be out of my place Tuesday. My landlord was not up to fire code, and the city was (is) going to shut the place down on Tuesday. So, a scramble to find a new place, though in the end I found something nicer in a better location.

Right then, Mueller. I haven’t written much about “RussiaGate.” There are other people who have done a better job, taken a closer look.

The Barr letter (pdf) summarizes the finding. Mueller found that the Trump campaign was not engaged in a conspiracy with Russia to steal the election, although the Russians did try to effect the election. He punted on whether Trump was guilty of obstruction of justice, and Barr, as one would expect, decided that obstruction had not occurred.

I’m not going to go into the weeds on this. Trump is clearly corrupt and clearly meets the emoluments bar for impeachment.

I never liked RussiaGate, for a number of reasons:

The DNC Hack Information Was Correct

I think that for ordinary people the fact that the DNC was trying to fix the primary for Clinton over Sanders is actually more important that the fact that the scuzzy behavior was discovered by hacking.

Mueller Is a Republican

I really don’t understand this fetish for thinking Daddy Republicans will take down other Republicans. I’m not saying Mueller is corrupt or looked the other way, but why keep expecting Republicans to do your job for you?

It Distracted from Real Problems

Clinton just ran a bad campaign. She didn’t campaign in the key post-industrial battleground states which cost her the election and she ceded the populist economic argument to Trump, among a number of errors. She just isn’t a good campaigner. She lost a Primary to Obama which was hers to win, she lost against Trump, the Presidential candidate with the highest negatives of any candidate since polling. She was just a bad candidate.

But more to the point, acting as if Trump was more important than bad campaigning, gerrymandering and voter suppression puts attention away from issues that Democrats could actually learn from and do something about onto a spooky “evil” foreigner. The demonic Putin, who despite leading a state which is much smaller than the US, the EU, or China in terms of population and GDP, is apparently the Dark Lord reborn and from whom all bad things follow.

If Russian interference made the difference it made the difference because the election was so close that everything made the difference, and because there were real American problems (and wrongdoing at the DNC) to exploit.

Russiaphobia Is Baaadddd

Russia may be a declining great power, but it is still a great power with a LOT of nuclear weapons and one into whose sphere of influence the US has been aggressively pushing. A lot of Russians genuinely think America wants war with them. They’re scared.

And, yeah, a scared declining great power with a lot of nukes is… baaaaddddd.

Concluding Remarks

Trump is corrupt and has engaged in illegal activity. Mueller was never needed to prove that, because he does much of it openly. He never did get rid of the Magnitsky sanctions, which is mostly what Russia wants (and which I think should be gotten rid of), and when you look at substantive actions has done little that is good for Russia. I actually would like better relations between the US and Russia, to avoid war and possibly nuclear war and so on, so I think this is bad, but it’s all a sideshow.

If Democrats want to impeach Trump, you can do it now. Can’t convict in the Senate, but he’s clearly guilty and they can drag him through the mud any time they want: He’s corrupt and rotten to the core. (In ways that are more obvious than Obama’s terrible corruption, because Obama waited to be paid off until after he was out of office, just like Bill Clinton.)

Russiagate, whatever validity it has, was always bad politics and a way of avoiding real problems. Democrats need to stop expecting Daddy Republicans and the FBI to save them and take steps to win and defeat Trump themselves.

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Week-end Wrap – Political Economy – March 24, 2019


Placing the Precautionary Principle Before Profit


  1. Adam Eran

    I heard a comedian say (of the 2016 presidential campaign) that the Democrats were like a football team facing an opponent who threw 20 interceptions. … and still lost. The problem isn’t the other team.

  2. Tc

    Right, I don’t care about the so called election interference per se, either. Even though he asked for it right on the floor of the Republican convention. But you neglect the part about how it compromised trump, who is obviously a Russian asset based on the collusion/conspiracy/cooperion part, but also trump tower Moscow etc, Manafort, Flynn, Stone etc..
    So obvious, it shouldn’t have needed more than a two week investigation, much less two years. From the attempt at sanctions relief to that crazy meeting with Russians in the White House and blabbing classified info on Israel, it’s not like he’s making much effort to hide it. But both parties are to different degrees making huge efforts not to see it so they don t have to do anything about it.
    So America’s public debasement continues uninterrupted.

  3. Rich

    “…blabbing classified info on Israel.”

  4. Willy

    Summary: Trump wasn’t smart enough to collude with the Russians but seems to have stumbled into being an asset for them. And Hillary still lost.

  5. NR

    Gerrymandering has no effect on a presidential election, but other than that I mostly agree with your points.

  6. Eric Anderson

    Taibbi smacks it out of the park with this:

  7. Karl Kolchak

    The Democrats CAN’T defeat Trump, because they stand for nothing (except identity politics, which is actually worse than nothing in the way it divides people, including their own base). There is no way that horribly corrupt party is going to turn its back on its donors, and it’s going to do everything it can to sabotage the only candidate who might actually have a chance to win.

    The only way Trump loses in 2020 is if there is another major economic crash before then, but if that happens we’ll have much worse problems to worry about since fraud corruption and debt has exploded in the last 10 years, and when this bubble pops they aren’t going to be able to “save” the economy with bailouts.

  8. Chiron

    @Karl Kolchak

    I agree with everything you said, anyone who thinks the DNC will endorse Bernie is deluding themselves, is gonna be crazy uncle Joe Biden or Kamala Harris who literally f**** her way into politics.

  9. jeff wegerson

    NR: The fact that state boundaries over-represent rural populations and two senators per any population state effects a kind of Gerrymandering that is replicated int the Electoral College.

    Ian: I see Russia as having hit bottom in the 90s and has been recovering since. The U.S. empire on the other hand is an empire in decline with nukes.

    “…Russians did try to effect the election.” Personally I would have used “affect” here. Google has 3.4 million “effect the election” and 11 million “affect the election”.

  10. Joan

    Ian, I’m glad you’re in a new place with a better location, and thank you for the post on options for hope last week.

    @Karl and Chiron, agreed. I was working in an office leading up to the 2016 election with coworkers who ended up voting for Trump, but didn’t like him. They would have voted for Bernie, not because they agreed with democratic socialism, but because Bernie comes off as genuine/not a liar or political sleaze. The DNC sounds like it is dumb enough to sabotage its only chance once more. My coworkers will vote for Trump again, and my friends will be Bernie or Bust again.

  11. Off – topic:

    In the recent past, Ian reported that he was in the hospital. For those recovering from hospital stays, as well as everybody else, please check out earthing (in youtube, e.g.) . Earthing means either maintaining a direct connection with the earth; or else maintaining the same electrical potential via conductive intermediaries. The pain relief and anti-inflammation properties are remarkable. Other benefits include reversing allergies and arthritic pain and it’s associated inflammation.

    The earth is at a slight negative potential, and the atmosphere is at positive potential. Standing on the earth causes electrons to flow into your body through your feet. Within less than a second, your surface potential will equilibrate to that of the earth. Those electrons ultimately damp down the inflammation.

    It’s completely free to practice if you stand or sit barefoot on lawns and such. More practically, you want to buy inexpensive products and connect to the ground socket of your electrical outlet, and remain connected/touching to those products as much as you can, especially when sleeping. See,, and for products.

    Good intro info @ “Earthing: The Most Important Health Discovery Ever!” is an excellent book on the subject.

    I first heard about this years ago. I didn’t think there was much to it; probably just new age type appropriating science-y concepts to sound more authoritative. Boy, was I wrong. There’s now many scientific studies supporting it.

  12. Yesterday’s Democracy Now program had 2 Pulitzer Prize winners discussing and debating the Mueller report, that was very good. Especially the always awesome Glenn Greenwald.

  13. Tom

    Wow, and London’s planning commission didn’t even catch wind of it. The damage done to the children is the worst part.

  14. Hugh

    I think that Willy says it best: “Trump wasn’t smart enough to collude with the Russians but seems to have stumbled into being an asset for them. And Hillary still lost.”

    It wasn’t just that almost everyone in the inner circle of the Trump campaign met with Russians–such meetings really are extraordinary–but they lied repeatedly about them. And in the Don Jr. Trump Tower meeting, the Donald himself oversaw the lie and coverup of it.

    As for Russia, sure it interfered in the 2016 election. Israel, of course, interfered far more, but the interference of both would have been irrelevant if the Democratic Establishment had not been hellbent on rigging the primary process and forcing down the throats of the party and the country a monumentally bad candidate. Parenthetically, I think that Poppy Bush completely blew the aftermath of the breakup of the USSR and I do not see any improvement in US-Russia until Putin dies or is offed by one of his own.

    I agree with Ian that Mueller was enormously oversold as some eleven dimensional chess playing savior of the Establishment. But Mueller is Republican and Establishment and he was never going to do the job of the Congress to hold Trump accountable. The tells were everywhere. If Mueller was serious about investigating Trump, he would have had, at some point, to depose Trump or bring him before the grand jury. He didn’t. I think Mueller viewed Trump’s Russian ties in terms of corruption and not betraying the country. And that if such betrayal did occur, it did so after Trump became President, and therefore became a Congressional (impeachment) matter and not a Mueller matter. It always seemed like Mueller was looking at his investigation as a white collar one with both charges and sentences at the low end of things. If he had gone the national security route, he would have really upped the ante and been in a position to play hardball. The one exception was Manafort and that was only because he Manafort reneged on his cooperation agreement. But the reality was that the judges were still going to sentence Manafort as a white collar criminal, not a national security case, and that meant the lower end of the sentencing guidelines.

    I do think that Manafort’s failure to cooperate effectively spelled the end of Mueller’s investigation, and who knows maybe that will earn him a pardon, either way, after the 2020 election. I think it says a lot about how limited Mueller took the scope of his probe to be that he didn’t go after Kushner and Don Jr. for lying to authorities. Or that he went after Stone but not Corsi.

    Mueller did spin prosecutions off, especially to SDNY, and these may have more teeth. And the investigation has sparked state probes that could tie up Trump, his family, and his companies for years after he has left office. And while Barr may well resist the release of the Mueller report, Mueller’s failure to indict could allow grand jury testimony to be unsealed in the public interest and be a faster means of access to information Mueller did develop.

  15. Z


    “Trump wasn’t smart enough to collude with the Russians but seems to have stumbled into being an asset for them.”

    C’mon, what has Trump done to become an asset for the Russians? Maybe by pulling out of Syria, if you want to really reach, but our relations with Russia have gotten worse overall during his presidency. Nuclear treaties have been renounced. The Russians are currently advising the Venezuelan military.

    “I do not see any improvement in US-Russia until Putin dies or is offed by one of his own.”

    I do. I see plenty of room for improvement.

    I’d also add that shading the Mueller report because Mueller is a republican, like Trump, is off target. Mueller is as establishment as they get, a courier for the powerful … he sold the Iraqi weapons of mass destruction garbage for goodness’ sake. Our ruling class and our intelligence services wanted Trump gone for the most part. I don’t believe Mueller would’ve been willing to betray them because he and Trump are both republicans. He is much more beholden to them than he is to the republican party. He worked for every presidential administration from Pappy Bush to Obama, republicans and democrats alike.


  16. nihil obstet

    If Putin didn’t try to influence American elections, he should be impeached by his own people. U.S. actions have an enormous effect on most parts of the world. It is a matter of the national interest of most countries to try to get the friendliest faction elected. If we think that it is in our national interest to minimize foreign influence, then we need to make our elections more open and democratic, addressing such issues as ability to campaign (i.e., campaign finance, access to the ballot for potential candidates) and transparency of government (end the classification of everything including Christmas cards!). We can’t maintain corruption for the favored and stop it for every other factor.

    And while Henry Kissinger is walking around free after his discussions with the Viet Cong leading up to the 1968 presidential election and George H.W. Bush is regarded as a patriotic American after his dealing with the Iranians leading up to the 1980 elections, charges of treason against Trump are laughable.

    Trump is a crook. He’s been a crook for decades. Everyone knows he’s a crook. But to send him to jail would be to revoke the rich man’s immunity from the law which has become a treasured upper class perk.

    Do we need a respectable Republican like Mueller? Nope. Time for pitchforks and guillotines.

  17. Willy

    Is Z assuming that the PTBs first priority is to always make rational, ethical decisions on behalf of their people? Do Russian assets or an American assets benefit most Russians or most Americans, or just the powerful few?

  18. Z


    You wrote this:
    “Trump wasn’t smart enough to collude with the Russians but seems to have stumbled into being an asset for them.”

    Then you wrote:
    “Is Z assuming that the PTBs first priority is to always make rational, ethical decisions on behalf of their people? Do Russian assets or an American assets benefit most Russians or most Americans, or just the powerful few?”

    I’m confused, and quite possibly it is on me, but it seems to me that you are using two slightly different meanings of asset and two much more different definitions of Russians and trying to splice these four strands together into some sort of coherence. In the first asset you are referring to Trump’s value, the value of his actions, to some unnamed, undefined group of Russians that I assumed was the Russian government. Later you seem to be referring to assets as property and now defining the Russians that benefit only the powerful few and the ones that benefit don’t even seem to be necessarily confined to only the Russian rich or the Russian government.

    Is this what you mean?

    Trump wasn’t smart enough to collude with the Russian oligarchs but seems to have stumbled into being an asset for them.

    If so, how?


  19. Willy

    I don’t get the impression that Trump or Putin care very much about the people they claim to be serving. This is based on results, not rhetoric. Trump never locked her up, drained any swamps, replaced ACA with something better, or left Medicare alone. There is a bit of funding for a wall, although it’s not coming from Mexico. His dreaded MS-13 is a mostly Salvadoran “plague” spread by bad American policies. Is that ever even discussed? Some sources claim that Putin is wealthier than Bezos. Not bad for a former spy. Apparently it’s good to be the King of Russia, which seems to be his real ‘business’.

    Remember back when presidents were elected as public servants? Remember the old battle of ideologies? It seems that now “asset” may have a different meaning than it did back in cold war days. Putin is more intelligent and far more self aware and self controlled than Trump is. When two sociopaths deal, although both may benefit usually one becomes more the player, the other more played. It should be obvious who’s who here. Maybe that’s what I’m trying to say.

  20. Willy

    I once wondered what sociopaths do when they meet. Do they enjoy each other’s company? Or would they rather avoid each other? What do they do if they must deal with each other? After some study the answer became clear. They respect an animal pecking order (or, biting order if you’re a wolf). They know their place on the power totem. This might explain Trumps behavior around despots. For example Trump has probably calculated that Kim Jong-un can strike at him personally, more effectively than vice versa.

  21. Ché Pasa

    Ian, I agree with most of your observations about the Russia Thing and the as yet to be seen Mueller Report. I thought it was largely a crock and deliberate distraction from the beginning, and I think it’s been remarkably successful in keeping public and media attention away from the real destructiveness of the Trump regime as well as the many failures of our institutions — including of course those dastardly Democrats.

    That said, it appears that Trump and his confederates have launched a revenge campaign against anyone who has participated in any way in promoting the Russia Thing or any peripheral accusations against Trump and his family and enterprises. Gangland style.

    Some of his fans are very sympathetic and eager to participate themselves in exacting revenge against any and all of their so-called enemies. It could be a flash in the pan, but it could be a prelude to something truly horrifying. This isn’t just political comeuppance. Once vengeance fantasies are unleashed in meat-space, there is no way to control what happens.

    Most certainly, it won’t be pretty.

  22. someofparts

    It crossed my mind to consider where we would be if Hillary had won.

    The courts wouldn’t be getting packed with reactionary extremists.
    The treaty with Iran would still be in place and the State Dept would not be gutted.
    We would be trying to take Crimea back from Russia.
    No Me Too “movement”

    The TPP would have been concluded and put in place.
    No talk at all of Medicare for All, Green New Deal, or free tuition at state schools.

    Awful as Trump is, something has to rid us of the Vichy Democrats. If Trump is what it takes to do that, so be it.

  23. Z

    Awful as Trump is I believe he is the best human being and least damaging president of at least our past four.

    Clinton did a great deal of work selling out the American people to Wall Street and setting up the financial conduits between big business (with Wall Street the biggest part of that) and the democratic party that rewards politicians for putting the rich and powerful’s wishes over their constituents via the backdoor bribe once they leave office. The long-term damage of how he corrupted the democratic party, and helped corrupt the media as well, is long-standing and we face that as an obstacle every day as we strive for true representation from our government.

    Bush … I don’t think I have to say much there.

    Obama. There has never been a politician who delights in deceit as much as this jerk. Trump being president is a sign of how insane this country has become. The fact that Obama has 95%!!! approval rating among democrats (or even anything above 25%) shows you how vapid this country is. The two biggest tells on what a piece of garbage this man is is that he did his damndest to cut social security and to try to create a crisis that made the whole thing palatable. It was his administration, and that never got reported by the corporate media, that created the whole sequester nonsense. After bailing out the rich and powerful after promising real change and leaving the corrupt, undeserving power structure in place and doing little for homeowners, after all the economic gains went to our richest, he tried to sell the whole thing as “shared sacrifice”. Yep, I’ll shave a little from the money the rich don’t need and take food off the table of seniors … shared sacrifice. You can make excuses for not pushing for a radical change in our health care and leaving the current corrupt one in place, I wouldn’t accept them, but at least there is some logic to it, that with the economy the way it was he shouldn’t have disrupted such a huge industry. You can even make the case, and again I wouldn’t accept it, that he inherited so much criminality in Wall Street, it was so widespread, that if you started jailing the Wall Street criminals there was no place to stop short of jailing thousands of people. Again, I don’t accept that this should be accepted as a deterrent to justice, but you could. But after all that courier service for the powerful, the head pr man of the establishment still had blood in his heart for the working class and wanted to take food from their tables.

    The other Obama example of what a complete charlatan he was was trying to stuff TPP down our gullet on his way out the door. He also made the trade treaty a campaign issue by trying to get in one more big win for his sponsors before he left office and does not get enough blame for giving Trump a big issue to run on that most American people thought that Trump was right about. He gave Trump some moral capital with that issue and without it it is very doubtful that Trump would have became president. TPP and Obamacare gave Trump something to run against.


  24. Hugh

    If you want to see what a Rusian asset looks like, go to Trump’s performance at the Helsinki summit with Putin. After having trashed America’s European allies, Trump arrived in Helsinki. He then had a private two-hour meeting with Putin where the only other American was his interpreter, (whose notes he seized). He then held a joint press conference with Putin where, when asked about Russian interference in the 2016 election replied, ““I don’t see any reason why it would be Russia.” He also called the Mueller probe a disaster for the country and repeatedly stated, No collusion, like it was some kind of mantra.

    And while new sanctions have been put on Russia during his time in office, this has been not because of him but in spite of him. Wherever he could, he has tried to backtrack, delay, or reduce them.

    Anyone else in any other circumstances doing a tenth of these things and it would be a no-brainer to see that person as an asset of a foreign power. But Trump is so over the top, that he could wear a placard saying, “I am a Russian asset,” and his base and many here would insist that we should not believe our lying eyes.

  25. ponderer

    Russia isn’t in decline, quite the opposite. They prevented regime change in Syria, and now they are preventing it in Venezuela. For such a small state they are having a huge impact on world affairs.

    I also think your analysis on Trump is off. He is in much better shape because of the democrats. Impeachment would play right into his hands. You keep forgetting, along with most of congress, he is the executive branch. He’s not the ceo, his *is* the Executive. That’s what he was elected for. The Russiagate scandal was the biggest civil rights debacle in at least a hundred years. It would be the same if it were done to any previous president mind you (Clinton was guilty). There was no crime and no evidence of crime, yet the establishment subverted the will of the people through fake charges and obvious lies to handicap the POTUS. Everyone involved should be charged with felonies fined into paupery and imprisoned. That would be justice. Anything Trump has done pales in comparison. I don’t expect to see the D party disown their leadership any more than the R under Bush. That makes impeachment very risky. When they start investigating who in the Dems, DOJ, and FBI knew what, and when, it would be a heck of a media spectacle running next to impeachment proceedings. Then we get to start pondering who the military will side with. Either way, forget any Left policies for a generation or more. If Sanders and clones don’t start denouncing Russiagate, but continue to back it, there’s no way Trump won’t win in 2020 assuming a best case scenario where they have at least plausible deniability and aren’t investigated for participation in Russigate.

  26. Z


    OK, so he “held a joint press conference with Putin where, when asked about Russian interference in the 2016 election replied, ““I don’t see any reason why it would be Russia.””

    What would you expect him to do, turn around and say, “Yeah, I believe Russia influenced the elections and the man sitting besides me is responsible for it.”

    I don’t readily accept that Trump has worked behind the scenes to decrease the Russian sanctions, but I’m not behind the scenes, so it could be true. I’d say though that he’s openly waffled on Syria as far as pulling out and that is something that Russia doesn’t want. Russia doesn’t want us pushing around Venezuela either and Trump is rustling things up there … quite brazenly.


  27. Hugh

    Reality to ponderer, reality to ponderer. No answer. I guess he’s just too far out there. And that’s the point. You could not make up such a reality-divorced tirade in defense of the Trumpenfuehrer without being accused of gross caricature, but ponderer delivers it to us for free.

    I will freely admit I do not understand Trump voters. He’s a crook, a conman, a coward, and a liar. He lies all the time, especially to them. He betrays them. He screws them over at every turn. Then he says, the Wall, No Collusion, MAGA, and they fall all over themselves to lick the spittle off his shoes. The amount of masochism and self-hate in all this is hard to fathom.

    z, the proper question is why was there a summit at all with no preparations, especially with the evidence that the Russians had meddled already out there. All Trump managed to do was look weak and a suck up to a dictator. Remind me again how that fits in with MAGA.

  28. bruce wilder

    I make the observation from time to time that most arguments are structured as hypnotic trance inductions rather than as logical proofs or some sort of systematic induction from empirical facts.

    The remarkable experience of Russiagate has been a demonstration of the power of hypnosis within a framework of propaganda saturation.

    Hours and pages of mindless speculation framed with emotionally laden language stimulated even intelligent people to imagine, but never think.

    It is quite disturbing.

    That the U.S. would suffer thru a legitimacy crisis on the way to imperial collapse was always obvious. That so many would cling to denial from the nominal left has been a bit of a surprise.

  29. bruce wilder

    The sniping about “norms” and decorum and “preparation” from the American foreign policy establishment has been absurd.

    The truth is that American foreign policy has been made and commented on by ignoramuses and hacks for decades. Trump has not failed the high standards of George W Bush by any means.

    Of course American Presidents should meet the leaders of Russia, China and other countries. Less commentary on Trump’s foibles and more attention on the policy of perpetual war that pre-dated him, please.

  30. Hugh

    So let me get this straight. When a President who doesn’t do policy, like President, holds substanceless summits legitimizing dictators, that’s good. It’s even better when he cringes before them. As for perpetual war, the people of Yemen should nominate Trump for a Nobel Peace Prize, or something. Good to know.

  31. Z


    “Legitimizing dictators”? I think Putin is pretty much legitimized. Everybody recognizing him as the President of Russia.

    But anyway, you are a smart person, but every time you talk about Trump and Putin you recede into talking points and bluster.

    I’ve been wondering this for a while now, and I ask this sincerely, do you get paid in any way for your commentary, for posting to websites such as this one? Not by Ian, of course, but by other entities. Do you get financial compensation for posting?


  32. Willy

    Trump’s base is made up of the same people who cheered on the start of these endless wars. Ignoramuses and hacks is what those people want. They prefer the flash of Jerry Jones or enthusiasm of Pete Carroll over the boring and dour analysis of a Bill Bellichick. They’ll cheer ‘their guy’ on until the franchise folds. It’s far too addicting. But do you ever hear them chanting “We Want A Bellichick”?

  33. ponderer

    If you can’t look at situations in an unbiased way, there is little chance of ever coming close to reality. If you can’t imagine Ian as President, and the unfolding drama of him being set up for collusion with Russia, you have no right to discuss statecraft. This is exactly how the establishment will go after leftest. You should thank Trump for putting that one bit of sabotage to bed. I’m assuming the temptation of associating a “socialist” with “communist” won’t override the failings of earlier attempts and public burnout on such wild speculation.

    Further, if you spend all your time on focusing how stupid someone is, it becomes harder and harder to remove that bias. You might forget that they are head of the most powerful country on the planet, something inconceivable from your world view. That’s the reality you have to deal with. You’ll never beat someone that you can’t appreciate or understand. Constant belittling of the choices of others only feeds one’s cognitive dissonance, it doesn’t prepare you for dealing with future reality. That’s the danger of treating politicians like people instead of tools.

  34. bruce wilder

    I wish you would get it straight, Hugh. You are a very smart, sometimes thoughtful guy, but . . .

    A lot of Trump Derangement Syndrome and Russiagate hysteria is built on fake standards of customary conduct, hypocritical ritual praising of empty ideals, and emotional touchstones taken from long obsolete historical narratives. You have taken up some of those substance free practices and adopt the tone of a bully to boot and it contributes nothing of value to the discussion.

    A couple of examples: “It wasn’t just that almost everyone in the inner circle of the Trump campaign met with Russians–such meetings really are extraordinary–but they lied repeatedly about them. And in the Don Jr. Trump Tower meeting, the Donald himself oversaw the lie and coverup of it.” How would you know how ” extraordinary ” meetings with foreign representatives and diplomats are. (They are not unusual. What do you think diplomats and their business equivalents do all day, every day???) And, the “lies”!!! Oh, the humanity.

    Then there’s the latest bluster about Putin “the dictator” who needs legitimizing. Like Z, I wonder what motivates such you.

    Nice touch throwing in Yemen though. Packing peanuts?

  35. Willy

    Maybe Trump’s primary contribution will be showing what a farce The Blue Dress was.

    It’s a shame Charles Manson died. With him as POTUS it’d be nothing but Helter Skelter all day long, on the opposing “news” channel. Maybe bruce and pond wanna bring back the Fairness Doctrine already?

  36. Eric Anderson

    Just gonna put this out there — nothing more than anecdotal evidence to back it.
    Trump would snuggle up with Russia in a second if he thought he could get away with it. He wants to set up an us vs them world.

    Us, being white folks, them, being everyone else.

    With that axis the two of them could steamroll the world.

    Problem is, not enough folks in the U.S. buy into his white supremacy illness. I think early on he bet they would.

  37. @ bruce wilder
    ” Trump has not failed the high standards of George W Bush by any means.”

    Ha, ha, ha! Pretty funny!

  38. capelin

    this has got to be one of the sloppiest comments threads ever on this site.

    who was that great writer of yor who commented after visiting america that “americans don’t so much discuss as attempt to verbally bludgeon each other into submission”? i’m butchering it, but that’s the gist.

    @metamars –

    “More practically, you want to buy inexpensive products and connect to the ground socket of your electrical outlet, and remain connected/touching to those products as much as you can, especially when sleeping.”

    if you had any idea how much signal noise was present in electrical supply grounding, this would be the last thing you’d want to be doing, sick _or healthy!

    though in general i agree with the need for connection to earth field/nature, literally as well as figuratively. when the indigeonous speak of “the heartbeat of mother earth”, it’s not hyperbolic. around 2-4 hz if i’m not mistaken.

    ian – godspeed in all your healing, moves, and endevours.

  39. @capelin

    This is addressed in the earthing book, and elsewhere. If you’re particularly sensitive to dirty EMF, you may want to sink a dedicated ground to plug into your earthing device. Otherwise, the net/net is still very positive.
    Having said that, I haven’t actually read any of the scientific studies done to test earthing. My expectation is that, if they’d been done with a dedicated ground, this would have been noted in “Earthing: The Most Important Health Discovery Ever!”

  40. Plenue

    Some of the comments here just further reinforce my view that belief in ‘Russiagate’ literally makes you stupid. Despite the fact that the US keeps doing stuff Russia clearly doesn’t like (do you people miss that we’re now fully in Cold War 2? Is courting nuclear holocaust supposed to be part of Putin’s Bond-villain masterplan?), Trump is just asserted as ‘obviously’ be a Russian ‘asset’. To support this claim, ‘evidence’ such as when his son met a Russian lawyer is offered, or how Trump once made a typically Trumpian smartass joke at a live event and this is said to be a serious request for Russian assistance. Excuse me, but if the claim is that he is either literally a Manchurian candidate, or at least being blackmailed, surely they would have much better, covert avenues of contact that these. This just looks like nothing so much as presupposition; you’ve already assumed a conclusion and are desperately picking anything you can remotely point to as evidence, even if it doesn’t really make much sense in terms of the narrative.

    Also, while I agree that the information gotten from the DNC servers is more important thatbhow it was acquired, I disagree with the idea that it was a havk. There’s actual little evidence for this, and plenty to the contrary. I remain confident that it was an internal leak.

    I also disagree that Russia is declining power. It was declining 25+ years ago. I think it has largely stabilized and is even clawing back influence. It may resume sliding at some ppont, but for now I think it’s doing a pretty good job blocking the US at certain times and places.

  41. different clue


    I have thought of a possible other name for “Russiagate” . . . in the spirit of Iranamok Contragate.

    And that possible other name is: Hillaran Russiamok.

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