Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Bulwark Report: When All You Have Is an Anti-Trump Hammer…

 

I think Jonathan V. Last is a very funny fellow, in a dark and sardonic way. I enjoy him on the Sub-Beacon podcast and wherever else I hear him. He’s an amusing, irreverent, nebbish fellow, and I don’t like saying bad things about him.

But his latest piece at The Bulwark, entitled Donald and Jussie, Birds of a Feather, is trying too hard to fulfill The Bulwark’s mission, which is to spare no expense, grace, or integrity in its effort to besmirch the all-too-readily besmirchable President Trump.

JVL writes:

First, here’s President Donald Trump claiming “complete and total exoneration” of all charges in the Mueller investigation.

[ video clipped ]

And now here’s actor Jussie Smollett claiming that he’d been “truthful and consistent” in the face of charges that he’d committed a hate-crime hoax.

[ video clipped ]

The symmetry here is perfect. Absolutely perfect. The only thing we really know from Bob Mueller’s lips is that on the subject of obstruction: “while this report does not conclude that the president committed a crime, it also does not exonerate him.” That’s eerily similar to the words said by the prosecutor who dismissed the charges against Smollett, saying that he “does not believe [Smollett] is innocent.”

Now you can believe that both of these men have been judged as innocent because the legal system has declined to prosecute them. Or you can believe that both of them can be viewed with suspicion because the official verdict of the legal system is not the last word in actual culpability.

But you cannot claim that one of them must now be treated as totally and completely innocent but that the other is clearly guilty. Which is what most of America seems to be doing.

Do you see what he did there? It’s true that President Trump overstated the case with his “complete and total exoneration” comment. But is it true, as JVL claims, that the “symmetry here is perfect?”

On the one hand, we have a man who has just been definitively cleared of a charge that has hounded him for two years, who knew he was innocent the day the investigation started, who has professed his innocence all along, who could have stopped the investigation at any point but chose not to, and who almost certainly has not obstructed justice and, if he hasn’t, is fully aware that he hasn’t and that the justice department will now agree with him.

On the other hand, we have a man who has just been mysteriously absolved of responsibility for a crime he certainly committed, who has lied since the first moments of his case, and who continues to lie about his innocence now.

What Trump is saying, in essence, is “I didn’t collude with the Russians, and I didn’t obstruct justice in the investigation of a crime I know I didn’t commit. I allowed the investigation to run to its conclusion. I am exonerated.” His mistake was in his failure to add “… or I will be in a few days when the justice department acknowledges that I didn’t obstruct justice,” as it undoubtedly will.

What Smollett is saying is “I am innocent,” when in fact the little fraud is guilty as sin and everyone knows it.

That’s only “symmetric” if you’re tilted as far to one side as the good folks at The Bulwark appear to be.

There are 249 comments.

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  1. Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patrio… Member

    Henry, it’s your call, but I don’t think that giving the Bulwark folks greater exposure and publicity is a good tactic for dealing with them. As I suggested when they opened, everyone writing for the Bulwark should be ostracized and ignored.

    This is not because am opposed to free discourse. This is their chosen tactic and stated goal.

    One of President Trump’s best lessons to conservatives is the futility of asymmetric warfare, literal or figurative.

    • #1
    • March 28, 2019, at 5:21 PM PDT
    • 15 likes
  2. Henry Racette Contributor
    Henry Racette

    Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patrio… (View Comment):

    Henry, it’s your call, but I don’t think that giving the Bulwark folks greater exposure and publicity is a good tactic for dealing with them. As I suggested when they opened, everyone writing for the Bulwark should be ostracized and ignored.

    This is not because I am opposed to free discourse. This is their chosen tactic and stated goal.

    One of President Trump’s best lessons to conservatives is the futility of asymmetric warfare, literal or figurative.

    Jerry, you could be right: I won’t pretend to be a strategic genius. But I think, as a general principle, we on the right ignore too much, and I’m of a mind to push back.

    Having said that, I’ll give it some thought, because you really might be right.

    • #2
    • March 28, 2019, at 5:28 PM PDT
    • 6 likes
  3. JosePluma Thatcher

    An affront to us Feathers.

    • #3
    • March 28, 2019, at 5:44 PM PDT
    • 2 likes
  4. Vance Richards Member
    Vance RichardsJoined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Henry Racette: Donald and Jussie, Birds of a Feather,

    So, does that mean Trump is guilty but he got off because he is friends with the Obamas?

    • #4
    • March 28, 2019, at 5:45 PM PDT
    • 14 likes
  5. Barfly Member

    JosePluma (View Comment):

    An affront to us Feathers.

    Nice, I had to search the OP for the reference. Better than calling ourselves The Ilk, I guess.

    • #5
    • March 28, 2019, at 5:47 PM PDT
    • 2 likes
  6. GrannyDude Member

    Henry Racette: But is it true, as JVL claims, that the “symmetry here is perfect?”

    No. Not even remotely. How can otherwise intelligent people allow Trump to wad their panties so thoroughly for them? (Sorry for the very unattractive image…) 

    • #6
    • March 28, 2019, at 6:10 PM PDT
    • 7 likes
  7. Gary Robbins Reagan

    Well, I listened to Trump’s statements and Jussie Smollett’s statements and I find a whole bunch in common between them.

    Trump claims full and total exoneration over collusion. I think that that may well overstate it. We, of course, do not have the 300 page Mueller Report. But Charlie Sykes quotes David Frum to point out that we did have the following information that were facts not just theories:

    “It’s not a theory but a matter of historical record that Vladimir Putin’s Russia hacked American emails and used them to help elect Trump to the presidency.

    “It’s not a theory but a matter of historical record that agents purporting to represent Putin’s Russia approached the Trump campaign to ask whether help would be welcome, to which Donald Trump Jr. replied, ‘If it’s what you say I love it…’

    “It’s not a theory but a matter of historical record that Donald Trump publicly welcomed this help: ‘I love WikiLeaks!’” 

    Charlie Sykes quoting David Frum. See https://thebulwark.com/no-collusion-no-exoneration/

    The problem is that while this is circumstantial evidence of collusion, it is not proof of it, certainly not beyond a reasonable doubt. I am comfortable with Mueller apparently saying that he could not prove collusion and/or conspiracy beyond a reasonable doubt.

    The other issue is obstruction of justice. Again, Barr states that “while [the Mueller] report does not conclude that the President committed a crime, it also does not exonerate him.” For Trump to say that he was fully exonerated of obstruction is a fall out lie. He wasn’t. Any person who will take the time to read the Barr letter can see that on its face. 

    Likewise, Jussie Smollett is claiming that he did not lie to the police. Just like Trump claiming full exoneration, Smollett is lying. Why the State’s Attorney did not insist on an admission of guilt by Smollett is beyond me. 

    But the fact remains that Trump is lying when he claims that Mueller exonerated him just as Smollett is lying when he claims that he was truthful with the police.

    One other point. The website is called “The Bulwark” not “Bul****.” I no longer call people who support Trump as “Tr*mpk*ns.” I don’t like it when Pro Choice people call Pro Life people “Anti-Choice” and I don’t like when Pro-Life people call Pro-Choice people “Baby Killers.” I would appreciate that authors call The Bulwark by its given name. It is only basic courtesy.

    I thank Henry for the hyperlink to the article he is citing. Here it is again. https://thebulwark.com/donald-and-jussie-birds-of-a-feather/

    • #7
    • March 28, 2019, at 6:53 PM PDT
    • 1 like
  8. Gary Robbins Reagan

    The Bullwark deals with far more than everything Trump. An example are three recent articles about Democrats who are running for office.

    Beto O’Rourke is absolutely skewered in “Beto O’Rourke is Genuinely Inauthentic: Not having an act is his act.” The article begins:

    “The 1992 movie Singles is a Gen-X touchstone. In it, the character of Steve (played by Campbell Scott) approaches Linda (Kyra Sedgwick) at a loud, crowded bar. Steve tells Linda he would like to talk to her, but he doesn’t ‘have an act.’ Linda responds that not only does he have an act, she tells him ‘not having an act is your act.'”

    Perfect. https://thebulwark.com/beto-orourke-is-genuinely-inauthentic/

    The second article takes Joe Biden in “The Tao of Joe.” (The title reminds me of an excellent indy movie, “The Tao of Steve.” https://thebulwark.com/the-tao-of-joe/

    You may agree or disagree with the articles about Beto and Biden, but my point is that The Bulwark is far from being a one trick pony. I encourage you to read the articles yourself and come to your own conclusions.

    The third article is titled “Why I Don’t ‘Believe’ in ‘Science’: Science isn’t about ‘belief.’ It’s about facts, evidence, theories, experiments.” The article goes on to skewer Elizabeth Warren and Andrew Yang, both of whom want to give away money. https://thebulwark.com/why-i-dont-believe-in-science/

    .
    • #8
    • March 28, 2019, at 7:01 PM PDT
    • Like
  9. Henry Racette Contributor
    Henry Racette

    Gary Robbins (View Comment):

    Well, I listened to Trump’s statements and Jussie Smollett’s statements and I find a whole bunch in common between them.

    Trump claims full and total exoneration over collusion. I think that that may well overstate it. We, of course, do not have the 300 page Mueller Report. But Charlie Sykes quotes David Frum to point out that we did have the following information that were facts not just theories:

    “It’s not a theory but a matter of historical record that Vladimir Putin’s Russia hacked American emails and used them to help elect Trump to the presidency.

    “It’s not a theory but a matter of historical record that agents purporting to represent Putin’s Russia approached the Trump campaign to ask whether help would be welcome, to which Donald Trump Jr. replied, ‘If it’s what you say I love it…’

    “It’s not a theory but a matter of historical record that Donald Trump publicly welcomed this help: ‘I love WikiLeaks!’”

    Charlie Sykes quoting David Frum. See https://thebulwark.com/no-collusion-no-exoneration/

    The problem is that while this is circumstantial evidence of collusion, it is not proof of it, certainly not beyond a reasonable doubt. I am comfortable with Mueller apparently saying that he could not prove collusion and/or conspiracy beyond a reasonable doubt.

    The other issue is obstruction of justice. Again, Barr states that “while [the Mueller] report does not conclude that the President committed a crime, it also does not exonerate him.” For Trump to say that he was fully exonerated of obstruction is a fall out lie. He wasn’t. Any person who will take the time to read the Barr letter can see that on its face.

    Likewise, Jussie Smollett is claiming that he did not lie to the police. Just like Trump claiming full exoneration, Smollett is lying. Why the State’s Attorney did not insist on an admission of guilt by Smollett is beyond me.

    But the fact remains that Trump is lying when he claims that Mueller exonerated him just as Smollett is lying when he claims that he was truthful with the police.

    One other point. The website is called “The Bulwark” not “Bul****.” I no longer call people who support Trump as “Tr*mpk*ns.” I don’t like it when Pro Choice people call Pro Life people “Anti-Choice” and I don’t like when Pro-Life people call Pro-Choice people “Baby Killers.” I would appreciate that authors call The Bulwark by its given name. It is only basic courtesy.

    I thank Henry for the hyperlink to the article he is citing. Here it is again. https://thebulwark.com/donald-and-jussie-birds-of-a-feather/

    Gary, Trump “lied” in much the same manner that Jonathan Last “lied” when he described the symmetry between Trump’s comment and Smollett’s as, in his words, “Absolutely perfect.” Both are exaggerations. Trump exaggerates out of, I suspect, an understandable sense of vindication; Last is doing it because he has an ox to gore.

    I’m not sure either is lying, per se. I think Trump is more close to correct than is Last.

    But tell me, honestly: do you think that Trump’s overstatement of the Mueller results is even vaguely similar in kind to Smollett’s bizarre fiction and continuing dishonesty? Are you willing to say that?

    And as regards my mocking misspelling of The Bulwark’s name, you’re absolutely right. I’ve expressed displeasure at that sort of thing before, and I shouldn’t be doing it. How imperfect we all are, right? I’ll stop.

    • #9
    • March 28, 2019, at 7:02 PM PDT
    • 6 likes
  10. Gary Robbins Reagan

    Henry Racette (View Comment):

    Gary Robbins (View Comment):

    Well, I listened to Trump’s statements and Jussie Smollett’s statements and I find a whole bunch in common between them.

    Trump claims full and total exoneration over collusion. I think that that may well overstate it. We, of course, do not have the 300 page Mueller Report. But Charlie Sykes quotes David Frum to point out that we did have the following information that were facts not just theories:

    “It’s not a theory but a matter of historical record that Vladimir Putin’s Russia hacked American emails and used them to help elect Trump to the presidency.

    “It’s not a theory but a matter of historical record that agents purporting to represent Putin’s Russia approached the Trump campaign to ask whether help would be welcome, to which Donald Trump Jr. replied, ‘If it’s what you say I love it…’

    “It’s not a theory but a matter of historical record that Donald Trump publicly welcomed this help: ‘I love WikiLeaks!’”

    Charlie Sykes quoting David Frum. See https://thebulwark.com/no-collusion-no-exoneration/

    The problem is that while this is circumstantial evidence of collusion, it is not proof of it, certainly not beyond a reasonable doubt. I am comfortable with Mueller apparently saying that he could not prove collusion and/or conspiracy beyond a reasonable doubt.

    The other issue is obstruction of justice. Again, Barr states that “while [the Mueller] report does not conclude that the President committed a crime, it also does not exonerate him.” For Trump to say that he was fully exonerated of obstruction is a fall out lie. He wasn’t. Any person who will take the time to read the Barr letter can see that on its face.

    Likewise, Jussie Smollett is claiming that he did not lie to the police. Just like Trump claiming full exoneration, Smollett is lying. Why the State’s Attorney did not insist on an admission of guilt by Smollett is beyond me.

    But the fact remains that Trump is lying when he claims that Mueller exonerated him just as Smollett is lying when he claims that he was truthful with the police.

    One other point. The website is called “The Bulwark” not “Bul****.” I no longer call people who support Trump as “Tr*mpk*ns.” I don’t like it when Pro Choice people call Pro Life people “Anti-Choice” and I don’t like when Pro-Life people call Pro-Choice people “Baby Killers.” I would appreciate that authors call The Bulwark by its given name. It is only basic courtesy.

    I thank Henry for the hyperlink to the article he is citing. Here it is again. https://thebulwark.com/donald-and-jussie-birds-of-a-feather/

    Gary, Trump “lied” in much the same manner that Jonathan Last “lied” when he described the symmetry between Trump’s comment and Smollett’s as, in his words, “Absolutely perfect.” Both are exaggerations. Trump exaggerates out of, I suspect, an understandable sense of vindication; Last is doing it because he has an ox to gore.

    I’m not sure either is lying, per se. I think Trump is more close to correct than is Last.

    But tell me, honestly: do you think that Trump’s overstatement of the Mueller results is even vaguely similar in kind to Smollett’s bizarre fiction and continuing dishonesty? Are you willing to say that?

    And as regards my mocking misspelling of The Bulwark’s name, you’re absolutely right. I’ve expressed displeasure at that sort of thing before, and I shouldn’t be doing it. How imperfect we all are, right? I’ll stop.

    I think that it was a bit of license and that the symmerty was perfect, albeit not identical. Smollett is a terrible scoundrel. Trump is the duly elected President. But both of them lied like crazy.

    In light of the articles I cited from the Bulwark in Comment #8, will you grant me that the Bulwark talks about more than all Trump, all the Time, and that they take on the crazy Democrats?

    • #10
    • March 28, 2019, at 7:10 PM PDT
    • Like
  11. Jon1979 Lincoln

    The problem with making your mission statement damning Trump and annoying his supporters is some weeks Trump doesn’t do anything that makes a very ripe target, and you end up grasping at straws. That’s the problem the 24/7/365 news channels and online outlets who’ve made attacking Trump the driving passion of their existence also have run into. Combined with immediate gratification syndrome, it means if whatever they’re attacking Trump on today doesn’t show signs of going viral within 48-72 hours, they find something else to obsess about, whether it’s real or imagined.

    In Last’s case here, the analogy is particularly unfortunate, because Smollett wasn’t simply trying to claim victimhood, he was trying (in the wake of the Covington kids’ fiasco) to claim that MAGA hat-wearing Trump supporters were so virulently racist, they went out at 2 in the morning on the coldest night in Chicago in a quarter century to attack a gay black guy. Smollett and his supporters, in the wake of his get-out-of-prosecution free card from Kim Foxx, is still trying to make that claim, which Last seems to equate with Trump claiming victory in the wake of Mueller’s report.

    Does Last think Robert Mueller and Kim Foxx did the same thing? Does he think Trump’s as guilty as Jussie Smollett? I’d certainly hope for his own personal sanity he doesn’t, but that’s by inference the analogy he’s seemingly making here, because he’s irked that the Russia-collusion story is fake (and in this one, Jonah Goldberg on his podcast said the same thing basically that I wrote last week — if Trump had won the biggest upset election in U.S. history with Vladamir Putin’s help, he never would have had the self control not to tell the world what he did for almost 2 1/2 years. If Trump’s not giving the Bulwark any good material this week, they just need to find something else to write about for a while).

    • #11
    • March 28, 2019, at 7:12 PM PDT
    • 8 likes
  12. Russ Schnitzer Inactive

    The Dems accused Trump of Russian collusion/treason. After a two year investigation by Trump haters and Hillary supporters, Muller and his team of lawyers concluded that there was no evidence that Trump and his election team colluded with Russia. If anyone ever expected Muller to say anything positive about Trump, they don’t understand human nature.

    As far as I’m concerned, Trump was exonerated.

     

     

    • #12
    • March 28, 2019, at 7:12 PM PDT
    • 8 likes
  13. Henry Racette Contributor
    Henry Racette

    Gary Robbins (View Comment):

    Henry Racette (View Comment):

    Gary Robbins (View Comment):

    Well, I listened to Trump’s statements and Jussie Smollett’s statements and I find a whole bunch in common between them.

    Trump claims full and total exoneration over collusion. I think that that may well overstate it. We, of course, do not have the 300 page Mueller Report. But Charlie Sykes quotes David Frum to point out that we did have the following information that were facts not just theories:

    “It’s not a theory but a matter of historical record that Vladimir Putin’s Russia hacked American emails and used them to help elect Trump to the presidency.

    “It’s not a theory but a matter of historical record that agents purporting to represent Putin’s Russia approached the Trump campaign to ask whether help would be welcome, to which Donald Trump Jr. replied, ‘If it’s what you say I love it…’

    “It’s not a theory but a matter of historical record that Donald Trump publicly welcomed this help: ‘I love WikiLeaks!’”

    Charlie Sykes quoting David Frum. See https://thebulwark.com/no-collusion-no-exoneration/

    The problem is that while this is circumstantial evidence of collusion, it is not proof of it, certainly not beyond a reasonable doubt. I am comfortable with Mueller apparently saying that he could not prove collusion and/or conspiracy beyond a reasonable doubt.

    The other issue is obstruction of justice. Again, Barr states that “while [the Mueller] report does not conclude that the President committed a crime, it also does not exonerate him.” For Trump to say that he was fully exonerated of obstruction is a fall out lie. He wasn’t. Any person who will take the time to read the Barr letter can see that on its face.

    Likewise, Jussie Smollett is claiming that he did not lie to the police. Just like Trump claiming full exoneration, Smollett is lying. Why the State’s Attorney did not insist on an admission of guilt by Smollett is beyond me.

    But the fact remains that Trump is lying when he claims that Mueller exonerated him just as Smollett is lying when he claims that he was truthful with the police.

    One other point. The website is called “The Bulwark” not “Bul****.” I no longer call people who support Trump as “Tr*mpk*ns.” I don’t like it when Pro Choice people call Pro Life people “Anti-Choice” and I don’t like when Pro-Life people call Pro-Choice people “Baby Killers.” I would appreciate that authors call The Bulwark by its given name. It is only basic courtesy.

    I thank Henry for the hyperlink to the article he is citing. Here it is again. https://thebulwark.com/donald-and-jussie-birds-of-a-feather/

    Gary, Trump “lied” in much the same manner that Jonathan Last “lied” when he described the symmetry between Trump’s comment and Smollett’s as, in his words, “Absolutely perfect.” Both are exaggerations. Trump exaggerates out of, I suspect, an understandable sense of vindication; Last is doing it because he has an ox to gore.

    I’m not sure either is lying, per se. I think Trump is more close to correct than is Last.

    But tell me, honestly: do you think that Trump’s overstatement of the Mueller results is even vaguely similar in kind to Smollett’s bizarre fiction and continuing dishonesty? Are you willing to say that?

    And as regards my mocking misspelling of The Bulwark’s name, you’re absolutely right. I’ve expressed displeasure at that sort of thing before, and I shouldn’t be doing it. How imperfect we all are, right? I’ll stop.

    I think that it was a bit of license and that the symmety was perfect, albeit not identical. Smollett is a terrible scoundrel. Trump is the duly elected President. But both of them lied like crazy.

    In light of the articles I cited from the Bulwark in Comment #8, will you grant me that the Bulwark talks about more than all Trump, all the Time, and that they take on the crazy Democrats?

    You’re a good sport. I think your take on the Trump/Smollett parallel is as absurd as Last’s. And yes, of course The Bulwark runs other stuff — and some of it’s undoubtedly pretty good. But I’m not giving them my attention — except to criticize them — because I think their core mission is petty and destructive, and I find the principals insufferable.

    • #13
    • March 28, 2019, at 7:15 PM PDT
    • 13 likes
  14. DonG (Biden is compromised) Coolidge

    Gary Robbins (View Comment):

    “It’s not a theory but a matter of historical record that Vladimir Putin’s Russia hacked American emails and used them to help elect Trump to the presidency.

    “It’s not a theory but a matter of historical record that agents purporting to represent Putin’s Russia approached the Trump campaign to ask whether help would be welcome, to which Donald Trump Jr. replied, ‘If it’s what you say I love it…’

    “It’s not a theory but a matter of historical record that Donald Trump publicly welcomed this help: ‘I love WikiLeaks!’” 

    (1) It is not a “fact” that Russia hacked any emails. There was an accusation put forth by the HRC team that was promoted by Lying John Brennan. I’ll claim expertise in the area and claim a <5% probably.

    (2) Don Jr. had a patriotic duty to accept evidence of Clinton crimes and pass that on to the FBI. 

    (3) so what? I loved those DNC emails. The showed that HRC totally corrupted the party operations.

    • #14
    • March 28, 2019, at 7:27 PM PDT
    • 6 likes
  15. DonG (Biden is compromised) Coolidge

    Here’s an appropriate logo for the Bulwark turncoats. Their business model is Trolling Trump, so why not a Trump Troll doll??

    • #15
    • March 28, 2019, at 7:28 PM PDT
    • 5 likes
  16. EDISONPARKS Member
    EDISONPARKSJoined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Bulwark appears to be driving their train wreck of a magazine from irrelevance to inanity.

    They wanted to create a new political movement and all they got is a very exclusive members only coffee clutch.

    • #16
    • March 28, 2019, at 7:37 PM PDT
    • 8 likes
  17. DonG (Biden is compromised) Coolidge

    Henry Racette: It’s true that President Trump overstated the case with his “complete and total exoneration” comment.

    It’s all relative. Considering the loudness of the accusations, it is pretty close to a complete exoneration. But that was inevitable, given there was no crime to find. The important thing is that Trump has said he has waited until after the report to start releasing information and that he would do so, when the timing was right. That means he is going to time things, so that Brennan and Comey are perp-walked for treason during the election season. Comey is a big guy. If a little guy like Roger Stone needed a platoon of SWAT guys to roust him, it is going to look amazing to see a battalion of SWAT guys taking down Comey. Justice is coming and it will be a great moment for America.

    • #17
    • March 28, 2019, at 7:41 PM PDT
    • 6 likes
  18. Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patrio… Member

    Henry Racette (View Comment):

    Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patrio&hellip; (View Comment):

    Henry, it’s your call, but I don’t think that giving the Bulwark folks greater exposure and publicity is a good tactic for dealing with them. As I suggested when they opened, everyone writing for the Bulwark should be ostracized and ignored.

    This is not because I am opposed to free discourse. This is their chosen tactic and stated goal.

    One of President Trump’s best lessons to conservatives is the futility of asymmetric warfare, literal or figurative.

    Jerry, you could be right: I won’t pretend to be a strategic genius. But I think, as a general principle, we on the right ignore too much, and I’m of a mind to push back.

    Having said that, I’ll give it some thought, because you really might be right.

    It’s also easier on our blood pressure.

    • #18
    • March 28, 2019, at 7:44 PM PDT
    • 2 likes
  19. Jack Hendrix Inactive

    People are still talking about the mueller report?

    • #19
    • March 28, 2019, at 7:48 PM PDT
    • 2 likes
  20. Henry Racette Contributor
    Henry Racette

    Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patrio&hellip; (View Comment):

    Henry Racette (View Comment):

    Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patrio&hellip; (View Comment):

    Henry, it’s your call, but I don’t think that giving the Bulwark folks greater exposure and publicity is a good tactic for dealing with them. As I suggested when they opened, everyone writing for the Bulwark should be ostracized and ignored.

    This is not because I am opposed to free discourse. This is their chosen tactic and stated goal.

    One of President Trump’s best lessons to conservatives is the futility of asymmetric warfare, literal or figurative.

    Jerry, you could be right: I won’t pretend to be a strategic genius. But I think, as a general principle, we on the right ignore too much, and I’m of a mind to push back.

    Having said that, I’ll give it some thought, because you really might be right.

    It’s also easier on our blood pressure.

    Yeah, and I should probably be more sensitive to that.

    But these guys really bug me. I don’t know. I’ll try to dial it back, but, seriously….

    • #20
    • March 28, 2019, at 7:48 PM PDT
    • 3 likes
  21. JosePluma Thatcher

    Gary Robbins (View Comment):

    “It’s not a theory but a matter of historical record that Vladimir Putin’s Russia hacked American emails and used them help elect Trump to the presidency in an attempt to sow discord in the United States during the election and succeeded with the help of the anti-Trump media.

    FIFY

    Gary Robbins (View Comment):
    “while [the Mueller] report does not conclude that the President committed a crime, it also does not exonerate him.”

    Since it is impossible to prove a negative, how is that not exoneration?

    • #21
    • March 28, 2019, at 8:06 PM PDT
    • 6 likes
  22. Jack Hendrix Inactive

    I’m not partisan enough to have strong feelings about the Bulwark or any other news/opinion site really. Some stuff on American Greatness is interesting, the same is true of Jezebel. Both are usually silly but I don’t care, partisans gonna partisan. And I do think this whole nonsense about Trump and Russia is just an exercise in partisan politics.

    I have zero doubt, zero! that if Trump were some basic Dem, 99.9% of the people yammering about presidential harassment and exoneration or whatever would be undistinguishable from the Maddows, Boots and liberals generally.

    I never cared that much about the whole investigation and after the 131st 10,000 word piece by Andy McCarthy I called it quits. Besides, every other presidential admin gets popped with some investigation or other. We all get over it after a while.

    Just the other day I caught myself trying to figure out what all the fuss was about Hilary and her emails. Talk about a giant nothingburger. Lying to the feds about bad security, meh. Which is strange since I distinctly remember being mildly upset when the HRC was “exonerated” a few years ago.

    But I’m not mad. It’s just politics.

    • #22
    • March 28, 2019, at 9:16 PM PDT
    • 1 like
  23. Taras Coolidge

    DonG (View Comment):

    Gary Robbins (View Comment):

    “It’s not a theory but a matter of historical record that Vladimir Putin’s Russia hacked American emails and used them to help elect Trump to the presidency.

    “It’s not a theory but a matter of historical record that agents purporting to represent Putin’s Russia approached the Trump campaign to ask whether help would be welcome, to which Donald Trump Jr. replied, ‘If it’s what you say I love it…’

    “It’s not a theory but a matter of historical record that Donald Trump publicly welcomed this help: ‘I love WikiLeaks!’”

    (1) It is not a “fact” that Russia hacked any emails. There was an accusation put forth by the HRC team that was promoted by Lying John Brennan. I’ll claim expertise in the area and claim a <5% probably.

    (2) Don Jr. had a patriotic duty to accept evidence of Clinton crimes and pass that on to the FBI.

    (3) so what? I loved those DNC emails. The showed that HRC totally corrupted the party operations.

     The idea that the Russians thought Trump was even electable, when nobody in the US did, is preposterous. In fact, if they had Hillary’s 30,000 deleted emails, they would have been rooting for her to win the election, so they could (discreetly, obliquely) blackmail her.

     Another reason Putin would have been rooting for Hillary is that he remembers very well that it was the Republican Party that defeated his beloved Soviet Union in the Cold War. Even in that brief period from about 1948 to 1968, when the Democrats at least went through the motions of being anti-Soviet and anti-communist, they were so inept (the Bay of Pigs, Vietnam), they could easily be suspected of actually working for the other side. 

    • #23
    • March 28, 2019, at 9:29 PM PDT
    • 5 likes
  24. Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patrio… Member

    Henry Racette (View Comment):

    Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patrio&hellip; (View Comment):

    Henry Racette (View Comment):

    Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patrio&hellip; (View Comment):

    Henry, it’s your call, but I don’t think that giving the Bulwark folks greater exposure and publicity is a good tactic for dealing with them. As I suggested when they opened, everyone writing for the Bulwark should be ostracized and ignored.

    This is not because I am opposed to free discourse. This is their chosen tactic and stated goal.

    One of President Trump’s best lessons to conservatives is the futility of asymmetric warfare, literal or figurative.

    Jerry, you could be right: I won’t pretend to be a strategic genius. But I think, as a general principle, we on the right ignore too much, and I’m of a mind to push back.

    Having said that, I’ll give it some thought, because you really might be right.

    It’s also easier on our blood pressure.

    Yeah, and I should probably be more sensitive to that.

    But these guys really bug me. I don’t know. I’ll try to dial it back, but, seriously….

    You see, they don’t bug me at all. No more than some annoying bees buzzing around on the other side of the Mississippi.

    • #24
    • March 28, 2019, at 9:46 PM PDT
    • 1 like
  25. Hang On Member
    Hang OnJoined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Moderator Note:

    The Ricochet style for obscuring profanity is to write [Redacted], not use symbols.

    Peddling crazy [Redacted] is what neocons like Kristol et al have done their entire careers. 

    • #25
    • March 28, 2019, at 10:49 PM PDT
    • 3 likes
  26. Gary Robbins Reagan

    Henry Racette (View Comment):

    Gary Robbins (View Comment):

    Well, I listened to Trump’s statements and Jussie Smollett’s statements and I find a whole bunch in common between them.

    Trump claims full and total exoneration over collusion. I think that that may well overstate it. We, of course, do not have the 300 page Mueller Report. But Charlie Sykes quotes David Frum to point out that we did have the following information that were facts not just theories:

    “It’s not a theory but a matter of historical record that Vladimir Putin’s Russia hacked American emails and used them to help elect Trump to the presidency.

    “It’s not a theory but a matter of historical record that agents purporting to represent Putin’s Russia approached the Trump campaign to ask whether help would be welcome, to which Donald Trump Jr. replied, ‘If it’s what you say I love it…’

    “It’s not a theory but a matter of historical record that Donald Trump publicly welcomed this help: ‘I love WikiLeaks!’”

    Charlie Sykes quoting David Frum. See https://thebulwark.com/no-collusion-no-exoneration/

    The problem is that while this is circumstantial evidence of collusion, it is not proof of it, certainly not beyond a reasonable doubt. I am comfortable with Mueller apparently saying that he could not prove collusion and/or conspiracy beyond a reasonable doubt.

    The other issue is obstruction of justice. Again, Barr states that “while [the Mueller] report does not conclude that the President committed a crime, it also does not exonerate him.” For Trump to say that he was fully exonerated of obstruction is a fall out lie. He wasn’t. Any person who will take the time to read the Barr letter can see that on its face.

    Likewise, Jussie Smollett is claiming that he did not lie to the police. Just like Trump claiming full exoneration, Smollett is lying. Why the State’s Attorney did not insist on an admission of guilt by Smollett is beyond me.

    But the fact remains that Trump is lying when he claims that Mueller exonerated him just as Smollett is lying when he claims that he was truthful with the police.

    One other point. The website is called “The Bulwark” not “Bul****.” I no longer call people who support Trump as “Tr*mpk*ns.” I don’t like it when Pro Choice people call Pro Life people “Anti-Choice” and I don’t like when Pro-Life people call Pro-Choice people “Baby Killers.” I would appreciate that authors call The Bulwark by its given name. It is only basic courtesy.

    I thank Henry for the hyperlink to the article he is citing. Here it is again. https://thebulwark.com/donald-and-jussie-birds-of-a-feather/

    Gary, Trump “lied” in much the same manner that Jonathan Last “lied” when he described the symmetry between Trump’s comment and Smollett’s as, in his words, “Absolutely perfect.” Both are exaggerations. Trump exaggerates out of, I suspect, an understandable sense of vindication; Last is doing it because he has an ox to gore.

    I’m not sure either is lying, per se. I think Trump is more close to correct than is Last.

    But tell me, honestly: do you think that Trump’s overstatement of the Mueller results is even vaguely similar in kind to Smollett’s bizarre fiction and continuing dishonesty? Are you willing to say that?

    And as regards my mocking misspelling of The Bulwark’s name, you’re absolutely right. I’ve expressed displeasure at that sort of thing before, and I shouldn’t be doing it. How imperfect we all are, right? I’ll stop.

    Both Trump and Smollett lied and are liars. Smollett’s one lie is much worse than any of Trump’s. On the other hand, Trump has lied so consistently and frequently, and the impact of the Birther stuff has really had a deleterious effect on race relations. Smollett should be incarcerated. Trump just should never have been nominated, and I think that most of his supporters recognize the badness in him like a guilty pleasure.

    I was so pleased to see that you had edited your title to the “Bulwark” from the “Bul****.” You realize that I can never go back to the cheap shot use of “Tr*mpk*ns” anymore, I know too much. That is a guilty pleasure I have had to give up.

    I don’t have an issue with JVL. Both Trump and Smollett are liars. Trump his whole life long. Smollett with one issue which terribly harmed the City of Chicago’s reputation and cost hundreds of man hours which the $10,000 bail doesn’t come close to addressing. JVL saw two liars, and wrote about the coincidence.

    • #26
    • March 28, 2019, at 11:09 PM PDT
    • Like
  27. Gary Robbins Reagan

    Jon1979 (View Comment):

    The problem with making your mission statement damning Trump and annoying his supporters is some weeks Trump doesn’t do anything that makes a very ripe target, and you end up grasping at straws. That’s the problem the 24/7/365 news channels and online outlets who’ve made attacking Trump the driving passion of their existence also have run into. Combined with immediate gratification syndrome, it means if whatever they’re attacking Trump on today doesn’t show signs of going viral within 48-72 hours, they find something else to obsess about, whether it’s real or imagined.

    In Last’s case here, the analogy is particularly unfortunate, because Smollett wasn’t simply trying to claim victimhood, he was trying (in the wake of the Covington kids’ fiasco) to claim that MAGA hat-wearing Trump supporters were so virulently racist, they went out at 2 in the morning on the coldest night in Chicago in a quarter century to attack a gay black guy. Smollett and his supporters, in the wake of his get-out-of-prosecution free card from Kim Foxx, is still trying to make that claim, which Last seems to equate with Trump claiming victory in the wake of Mueller’s report.

    Does Last think Robert Mueller and Kim Foxx did the same thing? Does he think Trump’s as guilty as Jussie Smollett? I’d certainly hope for his own personal sanity he doesn’t, but that’s by inference the analogy he’s seemingly making here, because he’s irked that the Russia-collusion story is fake (and in this one, Jonah Goldberg on his podcast said the same thing basically that I wrote last week — if Trump had won the biggest upset election in U.S. history with Vladamir Putin’s help, he never would have had the self control not to tell the world what he did for almost 2 1/2 years. If Trump’s not giving the Bulwark any good material this week, they just need to find something else to write about for a while).

    I think that both Trump and Smollett are liars. Smollett’s single lie was much worse. But Trump has a lifetime of lying and has taken over a political party in service of his ego.

    The analogy wouldn’t be between Robert Mueller and Kim Foxx. Mueller is an investigator, and Foxx is the prosecutor. Mueller is parallel to the Chicago Chief of Police. AG Barr is parallel to SA Foxx.

    • #27
    • March 28, 2019, at 11:15 PM PDT
    • Like
  28. Gary Robbins Reagan

    Russ Schnitzer (View Comment):

    The Dems accused Trump of Russian collusion/treason. After a two year investigation by Trump haters and Hillary supporters, Muller and his team of lawyers concluded that there was no evidence that Trump and his election team colluded with Russia. If anyone ever expected Muller to say anything positive about Trump, they don’t understand human nature.

    As far as I’m concerned, Trump was exonerated.

    There was good cause and lots of circumstantial evidence to justify the search for collusion. See Comment #7. But, in the end, the government could not make the case beyond a reasonable doubt. I frankly don’t think that Trump is innocent, just that he isn’t guilty beyond a reasonable doubt on the issue of collusion.

    Obstruction of Justice is another matter. I will await the Mueller Report.

    • #28
    • March 28, 2019, at 11:20 PM PDT
    • Like
  29. Gary Robbins Reagan

    Henry Racette (View Comment):

    Gary Robbins (View Comment):

    Henry Racette (View Comment):

    Gary Robbins (View Comment):

    Well, I listened to Trump’s statements and Jussie Smollett’s statements and I find a whole bunch in common between them.

    Trump claims full and total exoneration over collusion. I think that that may well overstate it. We, of course, do not have the 300 page Mueller Report. But Charlie Sykes quotes David Frum to point out that we did have the following information that were facts not just theories:

    “It’s not a theory but a matter of historical record that Vladimir Putin’s Russia hacked American emails and used them to help elect Trump to the presidency.

    “It’s not a theory but a matter of historical record that agents purporting to represent Putin’s Russia approached the Trump campaign to ask whether help would be welcome, to which Donald Trump Jr. replied, ‘If it’s what you say I love it…’

    “It’s not a theory but a matter of historical record that Donald Trump publicly welcomed this help: ‘I love WikiLeaks!’”

    Charlie Sykes quoting David Frum. See https://thebulwark.com/no-collusion-no-exoneration/

    The problem is that while this is circumstantial evidence of collusion, it is not proof of it, certainly not beyond a reasonable doubt. I am comfortable with Mueller apparently saying that he could not prove collusion and/or conspiracy beyond a reasonable doubt.

    The other issue is obstruction of justice. Again, Barr states that “while [the Mueller] report does not conclude that the President committed a crime, it also does not exonerate him.” For Trump to say that he was fully exonerated of obstruction is a fall out lie. He wasn’t. Any person who will take the time to read the Barr letter can see that on its face.

    Likewise, Jussie Smollett is claiming that he did not lie to the police. Just like Trump claiming full exoneration, Smollett is lying. Why the State’s Attorney did not insist on an admission of guilt by Smollett is beyond me.

    But the fact remains that Trump is lying when he claims that Mueller exonerated him just as Smollett is lying when he claims that he was truthful with the police.

    One other point. The website is called “The Bulwark” not “Bul****.” I no longer call people who support Trump as “Tr*mpk*ns.” I don’t like it when Pro Choice people call Pro Life people “Anti-Choice” and I don’t like when Pro-Life people call Pro-Choice people “Baby Killers.” I would appreciate that authors call The Bulwark by its given name. It is only basic courtesy.

    I thank Henry for the hyperlink to the article he is citing. Here it is again. https://thebulwark.com/donald-and-jussie-birds-of-a-feather/

    Gary, Trump “lied” in much the same manner that Jonathan Last “lied” when he described the symmetry between Trump’s comment and Smollett’s as, in his words, “Absolutely perfect.” Both are exaggerations. Trump exaggerates out of, I suspect, an understandable sense of vindication; Last is doing it because he has an ox to gore.

    I’m not sure either is lying, per se. I think Trump is more close to correct than is Last.

    But tell me, honestly: do you think that Trump’s overstatement of the Mueller results is even vaguely similar in kind to Smollett’s bizarre fiction and continuing dishonesty? Are you willing to say that?

    And as regards my mocking misspelling of The Bulwark’s name, you’re absolutely right. I’ve expressed displeasure at that sort of thing before, and I shouldn’t be doing it. How imperfect we all are, right? I’ll stop.

    I think that it was a bit of license and that the symmety was perfect, albeit not identical. Smollett is a terrible scoundrel. Trump is the duly elected President. But both of them lied like crazy.

    In light of the articles I cited from the Bulwark in Comment #8, will you grant me that the Bulwark talks about more than all Trump, all the Time, and that they take on the crazy Democrats?

    You’re a good sport. I think your take on the Trump/Smollett parallel is as absurd as Last’s. And yes, of course The Bulwark runs other stuff — and some of it’s undoubtedly pretty good. But I’m not giving them my attention — except to criticize them — because I think their core mission is petty and destructive, and I find the principals insufferable.

    I hear you. With their modified mission statement, they have moved on from attacking Trump, a positive maturation.

    I had to read your last sentence a second time. You find their “principals” to be insufferable, not their “principles.” I differ with you about that.

    I love Charlie Sykes, who stuck to his NT guns even though it cost him the radio show in Milwaukee that he had built over some dozen or more years, as his listeners left him for the Trump Piped Piper. A lesser man would have followed his audience.

    I like Bill Kristol. I am aware that lots of people don’t. But I like him, and admire and respect him.

    I really like the Bulwark staff, from JVL on down.

    But that’s me.

    • #29
    • March 28, 2019, at 11:30 PM PDT
    • 2 likes
  30. Gary Robbins Reagan

    DonG (View Comment):

    Here’s an appropriate logo for the Bulwark turncoats. Their business model is Trolling Trump, so why not a Trump Troll doll??

    We aren’t the Bulwark turncoats. We are the Reagan Republicans who are holding the high watch while the rest of the party has been swept away by Trump. Trump will fail. And after he does, we will be there to rebuild the party with Trump’s former followers.

    • #30
    • March 28, 2019, at 11:33 PM PDT
    • Like

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