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Comey and Trump: Pining for J. Edgar Hoover

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Fired FBI Director James Comey confirmed what many of us know about President Trump. He expects total loyalty by everyone in his “org chart.” He says whatever he feels will get him his way. He rewards personal loyalty. He brooks no independence.

This whole fiasco makes me pine for J. Edgar Hoover, who would have told President Trump to go to hell.

Trump is oil and good governance is water. Decorum and indirect messages don’t reach him or move him.

But Donald Trump is not the first, or the only, person to test and break the limits of executive power in a checks and balances government. But he’s the most obvious about it. The Clintons did everything behind veils and doors and buddy systems that existed for decades. The Bushes relied on family connections and long relationships. Barack Obama used public pressure, organizing activists, and his extensive knowledge of the Constitution and government nooks and crannies to get his way.

Where Obama used his knowledge of the Constitution and our government checks and balances to work within the loom against those very limits, Trump tears at them with garden shears.

Comey said Trump (and by extension, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein) lied about the reasons he was fired. (That may have been a bit of self-serving face-saving, as Comey did plenty of things to place himself in jeopardy.)

The reason Comey gave why he didn’t confront Trump during their multiple personal meetings on the impropriety of his requests is he isn’t “Captain Courageous” (his words). Trump is completely unqualified to navigate the legal and ethical waters surrounding an investigation. Any meeting after the first one between the two (when Trump was president-elect) should have brought a strong “no, sir, do not ask me this because I can’t” from Comey.

Maybe a stronger FBI chief (like Hoover) could have dealt more squarely with Trump, who hates pulled punches. But this just shows how bad governing has become.

Bill Clinton met with Loretta Lynch on a private jet before Comey detailed Hillary’s crimes and announced he would not recommend prosecution. This was after Lynch said she would abide by whatever the FBI recommended. It was all improper, but Comey didn’t have to deal with the awkwardness of meeting with Obama. We don’t know what went on between Comey and Lynch, but apparently he didn’t stand up to her either.

The FBI must remain independent, and not under patronage to the president. But for a long time, the Justice Department was suborned to the president’s wishes. Jack Kennedy appointed his own brother Attorney General. They both would have loved to get rid of Hoover.

Trump has appointed another lifetime lawyer in Christopher Wray to lead the FBI. But I’m beginning to think that position should go to someone with the biggest cajones, not the best lawyer. Hoover may have had his faults, but failing to stand up to presidents wasn’t one of them.

We don’t need an FBI director who owes anything to anyone. Just like Trump ran as the main plank of his campaign–he should require this complete independence from Wray.

It’s not enough to give Trump “loyal honesty,” give him what he needs–someone who won’t pull punches.

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The cover up begins: 18 Saudis arrested in death of Jamal Khashoggi

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The cover up begins 18 Saudis arrested in death of Jamal Khashoggi

The cover up has begun. Saudi Arabia has arrested 18 people in connection to the death of Jamal Khashoggi at the Saudi consulate in Istanbul, Turkey. This is the first step in an alleged plan to separate the top levels of Saudi government, particularly Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, from any involvement in the journalist’s murder.

Soon, we will hear that “rogue killers” were responsible for the death. It will be positioned as a simple argument that escalated until Khashoggi was “inadvertently” killed. Once dead, the people responsible reacted by trying to cover up the incident, choosing to dismember his body for easier transport from the consulate.

This has been the dominant story in the West and Middle East since his disappearance on October 2nd. He went to the consulate with his fiancee to finalize his divorce. He went in and hasn’t been seen since.

The Turkish government obtained a plethora of circumstantial evidence against the Saudis to the point that any flat denial was no longer tenable. This is the best course of action in their opinion, to cover up an obvious hit against a Saudi dissident and harsh critic of the Crown Prince. It will be interesting to see how those charged with the crime treat their situation.

The story doesn’t end here. America and the world must watch closely as this perversion of justice unfolds.

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News

Jim Renacci pulls from leftist playbook, releases anonymous accusation against Sherrod Brown

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Jim Renacci pulls from leftist playbook releases anonymous accusation against Sherrod Brown

Dear Republicans: Don’t do this. Don’t do what leftists do. We cannot call them out for pushing uncorroborated sexual misconduct allegations when we’re pushing uncorroborated sexual misconduct allegations.

The bad news is, that’s what’s happening with Jim Renacci as he fights an uphill battle against Sherrod Brown:

Jim Renacci issues statement from lawyer describing unsubstantiated allegations from unnamed woman against Sherrod Brown

https://www.cleveland.com/open/index.ssf/2018/10/jim_renacci_issues_anonymous_s.htmlThe release includes a lengthy statement from Laura Mills, a Canton attorney and former Renacci business partner and political donor. In the statement, Mills says the woman told her friend about the encounter as the MeToo movement unfolded. It occurred while the woman was alone with Brown, who was divorced at the time, through her work, Mills said. The friend then contacted the Renacci campaign, which referred the woman to Mills, the statement says.

The statement does not provide a date, a location, supporting evidence or identify the woman, but describes her as “a very credible source and a professional woman.” It comes a day after Renacci told reporters and editors with the Cincinnati Enquirer that he’d heard from “multiple women” with abuse allegations against Brown, while providing no additional details or supporting evidence.

The worse news is that many on the political right are cheering him on. Here’s one from Conservative Review:

Sexual assault claims against Dem Sen. Sherrod Brown put his post-Kavanaugh hypocrisy on display

https://www.conservativereview.com/news/sexual-assault-claims-against-dem-sen-sherrod-brown-put-his-post-kavanaugh-hypocrisy-on-display/It’s amazing how putting a shoe on the other foot can change a man.

Let’s take Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, as an example. He’s running for re-election in a state President Trump won in 2016. The campaign of his GOP opponent, Jim Renacci, claims that he’s recently been accused of sexual misconduct by an unnamed woman.

Now let’s take a look at how this has changed Brown’s reactions to uncorroborated allegations of sexual misconduct.

Here’s another from HotAir:

Uh oh: Woman claims “unwanted” sexual advance by Senate Dem in “late 1980s”

https://hotair.com/archives/2018/10/19/uh-oh-woman-claims-unwanted-sexual-advance-senate-dem-late-1980s/Quite frankly, I prefer the old rules. They not only did a better job of getting to the truth, they discouraged last-minute smear attacks rather than incentivizing them. I’m happy to apply the old rules to Sherrod Brown in this case as well — and to argue that Brown has disqualified himself for office by abandoning due process and fair play.

I suspect that Brown won’t be the last Democrat to get torched by the fire they set to those values in attempting to intimidate Kavanaugh into withdrawing. But I will welcome the strange new respect we get for due process out of it and the end to the neo-McCarthyism that they have immeasurably boosted. We warned them about the Kavanaughnsequences.

To be fair, both Ed Morrissey and Nate Madden posted their stories to highlight the hypocrisy of this new sensibility towards sexual misconduct accusation. If it weren’t for the treatment Brett Kavanaugh received, neither respected conservative writer would have touched this story. They did so more to speak out against the mess the left has created and not to add credibility to the accusation.

Nevertheless, we’re stuck in a societal state that feels obligated to go after the opposing side regardless of how credible an allegation is. It’s a partisan, divided world we live in now and the sexual misconduct game has made the situation even worse.

Sherrod Brown is an awful Senator. He deserves to lose, but chances of that are slim. If he were to lose because of these anonymous allegations, then our arguments for confirming Kavanaugh are moot.

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Conspiracy Theory

Russian meddling is about dividing us, not helping Trump

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Russian meddling is about dividing us not helping Trump

Russia is meddling with our elections. They’re meddling with our entire political system. They’re meddling in our culture, freedoms, and methods of communication. I once believed they were trying to help Donald Trump become President. Now I realize they are simply elements of chaos.

Today’s report of charges filed against a Russian agent working against American interests is striking for two reasons. First, the details they’ve been able to uncover about “Project Lakhta” are astounding. Second, their strategic goal was NOT to get one person or one party into office but to sow division among the American people regardless of their political ideology.

First charge filed against Russian for interfering with elections

http://noqreport.com/2018/10/19/first-charge-filed-russian-interfering-elections/“The strategic goal of this alleged conspiracy, which continues to this day, is to sow discord in the U.S. political system and to undermine faith in our democratic institutions,” said G. Zachary Terwilliger, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia. “This case demonstrates that federal law enforcement authorities will work aggressively to investigate and prosecute the perpetrators of unlawful foreign influence activities whenever feasible, and that we will not stand by idly while foreign actors obstruct the lawful functions of our government. I want to thank the agents and prosecutors for their determined work on this case.”

Russia didn’t want Trump or Clinton to be President. They didn’t really care who won. All they wanted and continue to want is that no matter who wins any given election, the opposition will be so hateful about the loss that they’re willing to act out more aggressively than they otherwise would have normally.

It’s finally becoming clear that Russia’s plan is much more subverted and, frankly, ingenious than anything mainstream media or the Democrats could have ever fathomed.

They are taking advantage of our freedom of speech and the technology that allows that speech to reach the masses. They’re theory is that if they can get people on both sides of the political spectrum to voice their opinions with hate rather than understanding, it will spread. Those who have practiced thoughtful debate are now becoming raving ranters. Those who once argued their points thoughtfully are now becoming trolls.

Russia is not the only negative actor in this and the trends were already pointing to this divisiveness taking hold and spreading like a virus well before Project Lakhta was conceived, but they have definitely added to the cacophony and harnessed our vilest emotional responses to be used against us.

Their goal is to push as many people towards the fringes as possible. They want the far-left and the far-right to grow. They want debates to turn into arguments, then arguments to turn into blind rage. From there, they speculated that we would be the initiators of our own destruction.

They may be right.

From the Brett Kavanaugh confirmation debacle to the illegal immigration debate to anything that has to do with gun rights, Americans on both sides of the aisle are becoming more passionate. That’s leading many to become unhinged. When enough people are unhinged, any hopes of civil discourse can be forgotten. We are getting to the point where we no longer discuss our differences. We simply try to shout our perspectives louder than those opposed to us.

The left is the easier target. I’m not just saying that as a conservative. I say that because their position on issues make it easier for them to be emotional when news breaks about an event important to them. This is why those who blame racism for everything are not only seeing racism in every aspect of American life but are feeling justified in practicing their own versions of racism.

We now see that Russia’s goal wasn’t to get Trump elected. It was to make one side or the other absolutely hate the outcome regardless of who won. They aren’t pushing a political agenda. They’re pushing a cultural apocalypse.

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