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General Category => General Comments => Topic started by: DonaldD on December 12, 2016, 06:18:00 PM

Title: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: DonaldD on December 12, 2016, 06:18:00 PM
I don't see this topic being discussed anywhere - does everybody here believe that Russia interfering in US elections, to the point of possibly affecting the outcome, is really not worthy of discussion?

And if not that, what about the president-elect getting into public, 140-character fisticuffs with the CIA in its official capacity of informing the incoming administration?

From the Washington Post: Secret CIA assessment says Russia was trying to help Trump win White House

https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/obama-orders-review-of-russian-hacking-during-presidential-campaign/2016/12/09/31d6b300-be2a-11e6-94ac-3d324840106c_story.html?utm_term=.26488fc7bfd5 (https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/obama-orders-review-of-russian-hacking-during-presidential-campaign/2016/12/09/31d6b300-be2a-11e6-94ac-3d324840106c_story.html?utm_term=.26488fc7bfd5)
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Wayward Son on December 12, 2016, 06:41:57 PM
Or how about Trump asking why this wasn't brought up before the election, when Hillary mentioned it in all three debates. (http://www.msnbc.com/rachel-maddow-show/trump-falsely-claims-russia-scandal-wasnt-brought-election) :)

The worst part is that, by trying to stop any investigation into Russian hacking, it makes it look like he is afraid of what they will find. ;)
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: TheDeamon on December 12, 2016, 10:06:50 PM
Or how about Trump asking why this wasn't brought up before the election, when Hillary mentioned it in all three debates. (http://www.msnbc.com/rachel-maddow-show/trump-falsely-claims-russia-scandal-wasnt-brought-election) :)

The worst part is that, by trying to stop any investigation into Russian hacking, it makes it look like he is afraid of what they will find. ;)

Based on the Wisconsin recount results, odds are, they'll find: Nothing.

If Russia did get involved, it was on the propaganda/disinformation side of things. Which isn't the same thing as tampering directly with the ballot box.

Unless they're saying the Russians had a "ground game" on the order of things some of the pro-Voter ID people have been shouting alarms about? In which case, once again, strong odds they'll find nothing as the Voting system isn't really geared towards identifying or preventing such "attacks" even in Voter ID states if someone is determined enough.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: DonaldD on December 12, 2016, 10:36:20 PM
TheDeamon - the contention is not that Russians connected to the government hacked the voting process itself, but that they were involved in targeted propaganda with the aim of affecting the election outcome.

That all the US intelligence agencies basically agree on the actions that took place, but seemingly only disagree on the degree of certainty with which they can link the actions directly to the Kremlin, is pretty convincing.

It's no longer a question of what they will find - they have already found sufficient evidence to characterize the conclusions with the term "high confidence", which is spook speak for "pretty darned sure", supposedly.

From Reuters:
Quote
A senior U.S. intelligence official told Reuters intelligence agencies have concluded with “high confidence” that not only did their Russian counterparts direct the hacking of Democratic Party organizations and leaders, but they did so to undermine Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton.

So, US intelligence agencies as a group confidently believe that an adversarial foreign power at the very least attempted to negatively affect the electoral chances of a major party candidate for president (not to mention the downstream effects) yet strangely, almost no US citizens on this board give this more than a passing yawn..?  Your electoral system was just attacked by a foreign power - basically, the underpinning of your whole democracy has been attacked - and nobody can muster even a peep of resistance?
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: cherrypoptart on December 12, 2016, 11:00:17 PM
What if the extent of their interference was that they were involved with the DNC hacks but ultimately all they revealed was the real emails?

Should we be mad that we learned the truth about the Democrats, how they think and operate?

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

And why didn't the Democrats get mad when Ted Kennedy asked the Russians to interfere in Reagan's reelection campaign?

http://www.forbes.com/2009/08/27/ted-kennedy-soviet-union-ronald-reagan-opinions-columnists-peter-robinson.html

8/28/2009 @ 12:01AM

Ted Kennedy's Soviet Gambit
      
"Picking his way through the Soviet archives that Boris Yeltsin had just thrown open, in 1991 Tim Sebastian, a reporter for the London Times, came across an arresting memorandum. Composed in 1983 by Victor Chebrikov, the top man at the KGB, the memorandum was addressed to Yuri Andropov, the top man in the entire USSR. The subject: Sen. Edward Kennedy.

“On 9-10 May of this year,” the May 14 memorandum explained, “Sen. Edward Kennedy’s close friend and trusted confidant [John] Tunney was in Moscow.” (Tunney was Kennedy’s law school roommate and a former Democratic senator from California.) “The senator charged Tunney to convey the following message, through confidential contacts, to the General Secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, Y. Andropov.”

Kennedy’s message was simple. He proposed an unabashed quid pro quo. Kennedy would lend Andropov a hand in dealing with President Reagan. In return, the Soviet leader would lend the Democratic Party a hand in challenging Reagan in the 1984 presidential election. “The only real potential threats to Reagan are problems of war and peace and Soviet-American relations,” the memorandum stated. “These issues, according to the senator, will without a doubt become the most important of the election campaign.”

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Would I be more upset about it all if the Russians had helped Hillary get elected instead of Trump?

Probably.

Would Democrats not care so much, or not care at all, and indeed be charging that these are all just conspiracy theories and sour grapes coming from sore losers if the Russians had helped Hillary get elected instead of Trump?

From the way what Ted Kennedy did hasn't made the news to give some balance to the current accusations, absolutely.

Do I believe the Russians interfered in our election? Yes, certainly. Do I believe they do it all the time as do many other countries and as we do in many other countries as well? Yes, this goes on all the time, in almost every election almost everywhere in the world.

Yes, it's something to get upset about. It's something to be aware of, and the public should definitely understand that this is going on so they can factor it into their decisions. But is it something that started with Trump and is he to blame for it? No way. It's been going on for a long time now and it's never going to stop. Attempting to mitigate the effects is fine. Calling it out is fine too. But blaming Trump is a bit over the top.

Editing to add: Not saying anyone here is blaming Trump, but that is definitely the way things in the media often slant, as if Trump was in cahoots with the Russians. Like Ted Kennedy. It's funny how Republicans keep getting blamed for things Democrats have already actually done.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Fenring on December 12, 2016, 11:50:05 PM
I don't see this topic being discussed anywhere - does everybody here believe that Russia interfering in US elections, to the point of possibly affecting the outcome, is really not worthy of discussion?

I do not believe it's worthy of discussion, no. Even if forces within Russia wanted Trump to win - so what? Another country can have whatever opinion it wants, and if it releases true facts that sway the vote then so be it. Other countries may have opinions and print material stating that opinion. The U.S. interferes with foreign elections more than anything Russia ever dreamt of, so this accusation is rather rich. As cherry pointed out, they'd be singing a different tune had Russia helped Hillary instead of allegedly helping Trump.

By the way, there are potentially valid reasons for a country like Russia to actively promote one candidate over another, which can include them legitimately thinking it will advantage both sides to have that candidate in power. If Russia believed Hillary would only take actions to their detriment and harm relations, while Trump would cooperate with them and improve relations, then duh, they'd want Trump. It doesn't have to be nefarious, and in fact the only reason it even sounds nefarious is because of the anti-Russia propaganda that's been spewed out for the past few years trying to make it look like they're taking over the world.

Quote
From the Washington Post: Secret CIA assessment says Russia was trying to help Trump win White House

Whatever respect I may lack for Trump, I have less than zero respect for anything the CIA says.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: D.W. on December 13, 2016, 12:06:27 AM
White I agree with most of what you said Fenring, my worry, is that Russia feels Trump will be a weak or easily manipulated leader in comparison.  I hope your version, that they just prefer someone more open minded / amicable turns out to be true.

If the Russians made stuff up, I'll get more upset.   If they just aired dirty laundry, I don't blame them.   I gained more information.  I got to see which Russia favored.  I've got a good idea why they do.  I got to see how "my party" handles embarrassing reveals.

While I wouldn't say they did us a favor,  after all we got Trump instead, (though we can't give them all or even most of the credit) they did make it harder to delude ourselves.

I voted for my choice despite my candidates flaws.  If others didn't then the fault lies in the candidates and the voters.  Saying they/we got manipulated by the wrong people doesn't breed sympathy.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Fenring on December 13, 2016, 12:21:44 AM
D.W., I didn't just like your post because you liked mine, but rather I do share your concern that they may have wanted Trump because they thought he'd be easy to mess with. It's worth keeping in mind, but my main objection is to the automatic conclusion that anything to do with Russia must be a James Bond villain plot. Whether Russia helped or not, the DNC got exactly what it deserved this election cycle.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Greg Davidson on December 13, 2016, 01:52:52 AM
Quote
What if the extent of their interference was that they were involved with the DNC hacks but ultimately all they revealed was the real emails?

That's all the Watergate burglary was - just breaking in to a campaign headquarters to get real documents out there.

There is also the question of why an authoritarian regime that is no friend to the US or American values might strongly prefer a President Trump to a President Clinton.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: TheDeamon on December 13, 2016, 04:12:57 AM
TheDeamon - the contention is not that Russians connected to the government hacked the voting process itself, but that they were involved in targeted propaganda with the aim of affecting the election outcome.

That foreign governments seek out, and sometimes find ways to insert themselves into the electoral process of other nations is hardly shocking. That other governments would be attempting to do so with what arguably still remains the singularly most powerful nation on the planet is almost a given.

So it's about on par with the yawn I gave in response to many, if not most, of the Snowden leaks regarding the U.S. performing intelligence gathering on foreign nationals and our own allies. Officially, everyone involved had to denounce the practice. Unofficially they were being a bit smug over the U.S. getting caught with its pants down, but otherwise unsurprised. What happened isn't anything different from operations they have underway themselves, just with varying degrees of success, due to resource disparities. If you don't think the French, Brits, and Germans are spying on the United States, and also trying to influence our internal politics, you're incredibly naive. 

Also unofficially, it probably triggered some "thank yous" in screwed up international terms, as it is a high-order compliment within that realm to discover someone considers you to be "worth spying on." So call it a "reverse stalker effect" in this case. In the international scene, you WANT a legion of "stalkers," however at the same time, you don't want to see them either, so obviously, when ones gets caught out, you naturally denounce them and call them creepy in public. You then send them a gift card later.  ;)

The only difference is this time the Russians were "nearly" caught in the act, and we're seeing a more overt display of their involvement as a consequence. So yes, the apathetic response is generally because for anyone who bothers to pay much attention to the realm of government spooks it basically is literally "business as usual."

Quote
That all the US intelligence agencies basically agree on the actions that took place, but seemingly only disagree on the degree of certainty with which they can link the actions directly to the Kremlin, is pretty convincing.

It's no longer a question of what they will find - they have already found sufficient evidence to characterize the conclusions with the term "high confidence", which is spook speak for "pretty darned sure", supposedly.

Because U.S. Intelligence has such a sterling record on getting things right. Like Bill Clinton going on record in 1998 convinced there were WMD's in Iraq? An intelligence position that remained in place clear through the 2003 invasion, even though the Intel community was starting to question the veracity of their long held estimates by then? It wasn't that the Bush(43) Admin was "cherry picking" data, they were working off of over 12 years worth of Intel Data built up during the Clinton and Bush(41) Administrations. Both prior administration had "high confidence" that there were WMD's in Iraq. It's the entire justification for Iraq having been under sanctions and subject to UN led inspections.

Quote
So, US intelligence agencies as a group confidently believe that an adversarial foreign power at the very least attempted to negatively affect the electoral chances of a major party candidate for president (not to mention the downstream effects) yet strangely, almost no US citizens on this board give this more than a passing yawn..?  Your electoral system was just attacked by a foreign power - basically, the underpinning of your whole democracy has been attacked - and nobody can muster even a peep of resistance?

See above, the Intel Community having "high confidence" in something still doesn't mean something is true. And even if it is, it isn't news to the informed, so it doesn't really change anything other than knowing that the person Russia wanted to win seems to have won the election.

But Russia providing shadowy assistance still isn't the same thing as claiming the Trump Campaign was knowingly coordinating with the Russians.

And even going back to the infamous Trump quote where he "spoke to the Russians" his request was for an "after the fact" thing, regarding emails that we've been told no longer existed as of the time Trump made the statement. Meaning that if the Russians did produce them(they didn't), that they had hacked the servers in question months/years before... Not because Donald Trump asked them to.

...unless of course you're going to claim that those e-mails do still exist and that the Clinton's are holding them back, in defiance of court orders to produce them, because of (insert reason here). In which case I think ANOTHER discussion is perhaps in order?
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: TheDeamon on December 13, 2016, 04:26:03 AM
Quote
What if the extent of their interference was that they were involved with the DNC hacks but ultimately all they revealed was the real emails?

That's all the Watergate burglary was - just breaking in to a campaign headquarters to get real documents out there.

Watergate was "just news" until it was tied to President Nixon, at which point it became "NEWS." Likewise, Russian involvement in the electoral process is boring routine stuff until/unless someone can demonstrate that Donald Trump was actively and knowingly working with the Russians in order to get elected.

Quote
There is also the question of why an authoritarian regime that is no friend to the US or American values might strongly prefer a President Trump to a President Clinton.

Hillary isn't Autoritarian?

Oh wait, she's authoritarian in ways you approve of, which makes it perfectly acceptable right?

Glad we cleared that up.  Yes, Trump seems to be authoritarian, and in ways that even concern me. But I also think the Constitution, if used properly, should do a decent job of curb-stomping most of the things Trump may try to get up to, and I think the Democrats are going to (ironically given the past 8 years) be very happy to start using those levers, with (hopefully) enough principled Republicans in congress to put the brakes on things.

Whereas the Hillary option had the Train continuing to roll on down the track without anyone going for the brakes in any meaningful way. As the status quo from the past 8 years would have continued.

Then again, looking at how some aspects of the left are doubling down on Pizza Gate, I'm not so sure the Democrats are going to turn to Constitutional principles as their preferred means of recourse, looks like they're fine with going authoritarian instead, the more they can let Trump get away with, the more they can potentially do once he leaves office and they get a Democrat in there.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: cherrypoptart on December 13, 2016, 05:35:47 AM
I think when Trump starts enforcing the laws as written, if he does that, it's going to LOOK authoritarian.  But it's not actually going to BE authoritarian. It's just going to feel that way in comparison to a President who decided to ignore so many laws along with, as decided by many unanimous decisions of the Supreme Court against him, the Constitution itself.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: rightleft22 on December 13, 2016, 09:50:14 AM
Quote
What if the extent of their interference was that they were involved with the DNC hacks but ultimately all they revealed was the real emails?
Should we be mad that we learned the truth about the Democrats, how they think and operate?
What might we have learned if republican emails were hacked and leaked?  Should we be mad that they were not hacked?

Personally I view hacking someone’s emails no different than someone breaking into a home or company and stealing files.
Yes I know that the Hillary situation is different as her emails should have been part of the government archive and had she done that likely protected... in that case would hacking them have been a act of espionage???

I am surprised by the lack of concern there appears to be about the issue of hacking in general and hope a precedence hasn’t been created.

If someone hacked into your email account and used them to embarrass you or some such do you have legal recourse or is this fair game now?   
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: D.W. on December 13, 2016, 09:51:38 AM
Psssst.  They didn't get HER email.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: D.W. on December 13, 2016, 09:58:46 AM
For me, cyber security is not a trivial matter.  However, when something like this DOES get out; and "my side" decides to respond by ONLY pointing fingers at the perpetrator instead of addressing the info that got out, I get upset.

Had the Clinton campaign and the DNC owned up to the info that got out, explained it, apologized where appropriate and taken steps to reassure the public this would not happen again, then I would have focused on Russia.

But they didn't.  They stonewalled (predictable) and somehow thought that the shock that a foreign government may try to put their thumb on the scales of power could be leveraged into a tool to promote turnout or suppress those on the fence regarding Trump.  That "tactic" was so ridiculously out of touch with the public that I would tend to agree with Fenring.  That is if it wasn't for the boobie prize we got as a communal punishment for the DNC and HRC treating us like idiots.  I suppose, in a way, they got their wish.  When taken together as a nation, we apparently are.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Seriati on December 13, 2016, 10:04:42 AM
I don't see this topic being discussed anywhere - does everybody here believe that Russia interfering in US elections, to the point of possibly affecting the outcome, is really not worthy of discussion?

I do think you inadvertently identified a topic worthy of discussion.  Why is the constant spin to write this up as Russian interference in the US election?  Is there any evidence that Russians voted illegally?  That they hacked any voting machines?  That directly modified any votes?  Or did they hack and release apparently true statements made by senior DNC officials that were incompatible with what the voters actually want in government?  Is the complaint really that the Russian's interfered in an election by telling the truth?  Doesn't that sound like a very dangerous version of propaganda or even bordering on the fake news that I'm hearing so many concerns about?

Honestly, this "story" could be spun a thousand ways, why the uniform misleading angle?

I also find it interesting that every national Democratic campaign in recent memory has been connected to illegal campaign donations from China and other foreign parties, in some cases directly and in others through shady bundlers but that this is somehow a larger issue.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: rightleft22 on December 13, 2016, 10:07:40 AM
Quote
For me, cyber security is not a trivial matter.  However, when something like this DOES get out; and "my side" decides to respond by ONLY pointing fingers at the perpetrator instead of addressing the info that got out, I get upset.
Just curious but if someone stole you emails and then use them against you would you attempt to explain them or would you go after those that stole them?

My suspension is that the email communication would likely be taken out of context to make you look as bad as possible and  that the more you tried to explain them the deeper the hole you dig for your self. I think its a no win.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Seriati on December 13, 2016, 10:12:54 AM
Rightleft22, how do you think that's any different than what happens in every litigation?  Email records are specifically discoverable (other than those with an immunity like attorney client communications) and any reasonable sized litigation thousands upon thousands of emails are in fact turned over to the other side.  There's no reasonable expectation of privacy on email for most of us.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Greg Davidson on December 13, 2016, 10:13:40 AM
Quote
Hillary isn't Autoritarian?

Oh wait, she's authoritarian in ways you approve of, which makes it perfectly acceptable right?

I don't think that word means what you think it does. Authoritarian statements are like saying that you are going to direct prosecutors to investigate an opposition candidate and then you will lock her up because you know she is guilty. That is what Trump said.  For any other country in the world, we would not be having a debate over whether or not that was authoritarian. 

Can you show me an example of Hillary Clinton being similarly authoritarian?

The most concerning aspect of the support for Trump is the extremes to which his supporters could go. As the President-elect himself has said, he could shoot somebody in the street and still be supported. At what point do you start to get concerned? Would it take someone actually getting shot in the street? or even then, would that be okay if the person was characterized as a thug or an extremist?

Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: rightleft22 on December 13, 2016, 10:15:05 AM
Quote
Honestly, this "story" could be spun a thousand ways, why the uniform misleading angel?

I also find it interesting that every national Democratic campaign in recent memory has been connected to illegal campaign donations from China and other foreign parties, in some cases directly and in others through shady bundlers but that this is somehow a larger issue.

Why is this type of argument a defense and justification of other criminal activity? This type of argument seems to be the go to of late when trying to discuss serious matters.  Are you saying you can't hold someone accountable because someone else did something wrong?


Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Seriati on December 13, 2016, 10:17:01 AM
Greg, an authoritarian statement is saying you don't need to involve the only legitimate law making authority in government because you have a pen and phone, or choosing to act unilaterally through executive orders.  How can anyone in good faith disagree that when a President acts like a King its not authoritarian?

Were going to have to disagree on the prosecution angle.  I don't think he was claiming that he was going to abuse any discretion in saying he'd prosecute her, because I don't there is any question that if she was someone other than Hillary Clinton she would have been prosecuted.  She only avoided prosecution because apparently some people are above the law. 
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Seriati on December 13, 2016, 10:19:31 AM
Quote
Honestly, this "story" could be spun a thousand ways, why the uniform misleading angel?

I also find it interesting that every national Democratic campaign in recent memory has been connected to illegal campaign donations from China and other foreign parties, in some cases directly and in others through shady bundlers but that this is somehow a larger issue.

Why is this type of argument a defense and justification of other criminal activity? This type of argument seems to be the go to of late when trying to discuss serious matters.  Are you saying you can't hold someone accountable because someone else did something wrong?

And you want to hold Trump "accountable" because someone else the "Russians" did something wrong?  How would that work exactly.  Connect the dots for me, show what specifically they did and specifically how it manipulated the election.  Changing people's minds about who to vote for is not a legitimate harm, particularly not when they changed their minds because they were exposed to more truth than you think they should have seen.

My point was simple, people who live in glass houses shouldn't throw stones.  Kids learn that but apparently Democrats don't.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: rightleft22 on December 13, 2016, 10:21:09 AM
Quote
Rightleft22, how do you think that's any different than what happens in every litigation?  Email records are specifically discoverable (other than those with an immunity like attorney client communications) and any reasonable sized litigation thousands upon thousands of emails are in fact turned over to the other side.  There's no reasonable expectation of privacy on email for most of us.

The difference is in litigation emails are handed over.  The question wasn’t about litigation it was about hacking

The question was what you would do if you were hacked and the emails used to damage you.
If I broke into your home and stole personal papers would that be different then if I hacked them?

What is it ok to hack someone? Is our acceptance the reason there is not reasonable expectation of privacy?
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: D.W. on December 13, 2016, 10:25:29 AM
Quote
I do think you inadvertently identified a topic worthy of discussion.  Why is the constant spin to write this up as Russian interference in the US election?  Is there any evidence that Russians voted illegally?  That they hacked any voting machines?  That directly modified any votes?  Or did they hack and release apparently true statements made by senior DNC officials that were incompatible with what the voters actually want in government?  Is the complaint really that the Russian's interfered in an election by telling the truth?  Doesn't that sound like a very dangerous version of propaganda or even bordering on the fake news that I'm hearing so many concerns about?
They DID interfere Seriati.  AFAIK they did no tampering with actual votes.  That is not the point, nor is it the allegation.

It IS a dangerous form of propaganda, but it’s one we’ve been manufacturing and spoon feeding to each other for ages.  Now MAYBE you believe they did us a favor and that particular flavor of BS will be taken off the menu.  I wouldn’t hold my breath.  (well, other than when saying Ahh for the next spoonful.)  Now maybe you believe the Russian hackers ONLY got into Democrat info.  Or maybe you believe that the Republicans that got hacked had nothing worth revealing.  I may laugh at you, but it’s at least a theory that is consistent with the events.  So yes, the complaint really is that the Russians interfered by telling the truth.

Write them a thank you note if you want, but don’t try to pretend for an instant that it wasn’t interference.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Fenring on December 13, 2016, 10:27:32 AM
Can you show me an example of Hillary Clinton being similarly authoritarian?

She was very clever to avoid ever stating the authoritarian intent herself, but rather tended to couch her language in "I support President Obama's policies and will continue them." We can include in this list domestic mass surveillance, metadata collection, drone strikes, and regime change. We can add to this list an item that Hillary was arguing for, the 'no-fly zone' in Syria. Perhaps you'd prefer to distinguish between domestically authoritarian and hawkish/aggressive in foreign affairs, in which case I would argue that the domestic side of foreign affairs is using fear to get the people behind foreign policy. It has been argued at length how Trump does this with regard to the Muslim people, but not mentioned nearly enough that Hillary does this with regard to Russia, and also the ruler of any regime she would like to topple. I would count the politics of fear as being high up on the checklist of authoritarian tactics.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: D.W. on December 13, 2016, 10:34:36 AM
Quote
For me, cyber security is not a trivial matter.  However, when something like this DOES get out; and "my side" decides to respond by ONLY pointing fingers at the perpetrator instead of addressing the info that got out, I get upset.
Just curious but if someone stole you emails and then use them against you would you attempt to explain them or would you go after those that stole them?

My suspension is that the email communication would likely be taken out of context to make you look as bad as possible and  that the more you tried to explain them the deeper the hole you dig for your self. I think its a no win.
I would absolutely be doing damage control.  I'd likely ALSO, let others go after the perpetrator.   I mean, it would make a fun "Taken" style revenge movie.  But whining about who exposed all the things they revealed is childish. 

"You were fine being my friend when you didn't KNOW all the weird *censored* I was into.  It's SoAndSo's fault you dont' want to talk to me now!"

"Umm, no dude, it's because A:  You are into that weird *censored*. B:  You hid it and specifically said you were against that weird *censored*.  And C:  You still refuse to explain why, or apologize about lying to us."

"But you obviously didn't WANT to know!  I was doing you a favor!  Waaaaaah"

And sometimes you can't win.  But you CAN appologize and say, "Yes, I'm not perfect.  Even taking these flaws into account, (blah blah blah)."
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: rightleft22 on December 13, 2016, 10:38:44 AM
Quote
And you want to hold Trump "accountable" because someone else the "Russians" did something wrong?  How would that work exactly.  Connect the dots for me, show what specifically they did and specifically how it manipulated the election.  Changing people's minds about who to vote for is not a legitimate harm, particularly not when they changed their minds because they were exposed to more truth than you think they should have seen.

I didn’t say anything about Trump or holding him accountable.
I was talking about the tactic of excusing behavior because of someone else’s bad behavior.  Something most of us try a children to do which most parents put an end to pretty quick. john bad behavior does not excuse mine.

Quote
My point was simple, people who live in glass houses shouldn't throw stones.  Kids learn that but apparently Democrats don't.

If you are excusing past or future wrong doing because of past and future wrong doing of others i'm saying such justification and arguments are empty and keep us from dealing with the issues at hand.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: rightleft22 on December 13, 2016, 10:40:51 AM
Times have really changed. It really is fascinating that such allegations don’t appear to bother the American people enough to do anything about them.

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The US intelligence community has officially pinned recent cybersecurity attacks on Russia. It also claimed that whistleblower sites that published the emails like DCLeaks.com and WikiLeaks were also connected to Russia. The report concluded that only, “Russia’s senior most officials could have authorized these activities.”

The recent disclosures of alleged hacked e-mails on sites like DCLeaks.com and WikiLeaks and by the Guccifer 2.0 online persona are consistent with the methods and motivations of Russian-directed efforts…These thefts and disclosures are intended to interfere with the US election process,” according to the joint statement from the Department of Homeland Security and Office of the Director of National Intelligence on Election Security
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: D.W. on December 13, 2016, 10:43:33 AM
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And you want to hold Trump "accountable" because someone else the "Russians" did something wrong? 
Has ANYONE (credible or anyone here) suggested this? 
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Fenring on December 13, 2016, 10:44:30 AM
If you are excusing past or future wrong doing because of past and future wrong doing of others i'm saying such justification and arguments are empty and keep us from dealing with the issues at hand.

This is the opposite of what's helpful. Over-focus on present ills without a sight to the general pattern is the trap laid out for you to occupy your attention perpetually. "Look at this! Hey, look what he did! Over there, a scandal!" Noting a pattern of wrongs done by all parties involved is the first step in recognizing that one's "side" is no more righteous than the other, and that people on both sides are just being played. Maybe one side might be marginally less wrong than the other, but that's not of great relevance. Both sides benefit from being able to truthfully claim the other side is doing wrong things. "My side is in the wrong too" is far more helpful to society than "but let's not lose focus on what the other guys just did!" Even better would be to stop being on either side. Better yet would be to recognize that the sides are mostly fake in the first place. Orwell is ever our teacher.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: TheDrake on December 13, 2016, 10:46:32 AM
I haven't read the whole thread, but has anyone addressed the source of this information? WaPo cites "unnamed senior officials", IIRC. I'm personally ignoring anything attributed to unnamed sources, whether it comes from WaPo, NYT, or Breitbart.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: TheDeamon on December 13, 2016, 11:04:07 AM
Times have really changed. It really is fascinating that such allegations don’t appear to bother the American people enough to do anything about them.

Quote
The US intelligence community has officially pinned recent cybersecurity attacks on Russia. It also claimed that whistleblower sites that published the emails like DCLeaks.com and WikiLeaks were also connected to Russia. The report concluded that only, “Russia’s senior most officials could have authorized these activities.”

The recent disclosures of alleged hacked e-mails on sites like DCLeaks.com and WikiLeaks and by the Guccifer 2.0 online persona are consistent with the methods and motivations of Russian-directed efforts…These thefts and disclosures are intended to interfere with the US election process,” according to the joint statement from the Department of Homeland Security and Office of the Director of National Intelligence on Election Security

Says the likely political appointees/high level government bureaucrat currently beholden to Democrat political appointees. The claim may be valid, or it may be politically motivated. Intelligence getting manipulated for political gains is hardly new.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: D.W. on December 13, 2016, 11:16:17 AM
Just as a rejection of facts and data can be politically advantageous.   ::)
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: TheDeamon on December 13, 2016, 11:17:49 AM
I haven't read the whole thread, but has anyone addressed the source of this information? WaPo cites "unnamed senior officials", IIRC. I'm personally ignoring anything attributed to unnamed sources, whether it comes from WaPo, NYT, or Breitbart.

Any more, you have to be careful even when it does name a source. "Source laundering" is now a popular pass time in the press, which makes the "Fake news" furor even more hilarious in very pathetic ways.

Paper or Website A cites "unnamed sources" which in many cases may turn out to be a trending post in social media by some random person who may cite an "anonymous source" of their own. Then Paper or Website B comes along and cites Paper/Website A as a source. At which point you often start seeing the big boys start citing Paper/Website B. Sometimes at this point, you'll also sometimes see Paper/Website A and/or their social media source then cite the people at Step C or later as "further proof" of their claim.

Sad thing is you can see academia doing comparable things in some fields, where you have certain people pushing out peer reviewed literature where they self-cite, or tend to only cite other people in the field who incidentally, also happen to (frequently) cite them. So when Person A cites Person B citing Person A, it isn't technically "a self-citation," although for all practical purposes, it is. Luckily, the academic field tends to require at least some degree of rigor, so they can't get too outrageous in their mutual self-referential marathons, but they still happen all the same.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: NobleHunter on December 13, 2016, 11:21:23 AM
Times have really changed. It really is fascinating that such allegations don’t appear to bother the American people enough to do anything about them.

Quote
The US intelligence community has officially pinned recent cybersecurity attacks on Russia. It also claimed that whistleblower sites that published the emails like DCLeaks.com and WikiLeaks were also connected to Russia. The report concluded that only, “Russia’s senior most officials could have authorized these activities.”

The recent disclosures of alleged hacked e-mails on sites like DCLeaks.com and WikiLeaks and by the Guccifer 2.0 online persona are consistent with the methods and motivations of Russian-directed efforts…These thefts and disclosures are intended to interfere with the US election process,” according to the joint statement from the Department of Homeland Security and Office of the Director of National Intelligence on Election Security

Says the likely political appointees/high level government bureaucrat currently beholden to Democrat political appointees. The claim may be valid, or it may be politically motivated. Intelligence getting manipulated for political gains is hardly new.
So they set themselves up to lose their jobs when the new administration comes in? The time to drop politically sensitive bombshells is before the election, not after. That these allegations could stop Trump from becoming President is too much of a longshot for anyone to blatantly fabricate evidence.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: TheDeamon on December 13, 2016, 11:21:35 AM
Just as a rejection of facts and data can be politically advantageous.   ::)

Exactly, so when Trump enters office, if they suddenly go quiet, or reverse their estimate of what was going on. You'll be left wondering which take was the correct one.

Although I'm more generally operating on the theory that from everything I'm seeing, I don't think the Russians really WANTED a Republican in Office. I think they'd prefer a Democrat, or even better, Bernie Sanders. The "problem" they had was the Democrats nominated Hillary Clinton, and they REALLY DID NOT WANT her as President.

So now, does the context of things change if it turns out many of their electoral manipulations were intended to help Bernie rather than Trump?
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: TheDeamon on December 13, 2016, 11:30:41 AM
Says the likely political appointees/high level government bureaucrat currently beholden to Democrat political appointees. The claim may be valid, or it may be politically motivated. Intelligence getting manipulated for political gains is hardly new.
So they set themselves up to lose their jobs when the new administration comes in? The time to drop politically sensitive bombshells is before the election, not after. That these allegations could stop Trump from becoming President is too much of a longshot for anyone to blatantly fabricate evidence.

The political appointees, of which I'm sure a number were involved, likely don't care. If they served with/under Obama they're virtually guaranteed to be gone once Trump comes in anyway.

The government bureaucrat can simply plead their case that they were operating under orders, and plea for mercy. Not that much mercy would be necessary, as they enjoy a great deal of protection under Federal Law, so they probably couldn't get fired for that anyhow. Of course, that then creates a circular reasoning loop, since that in turn applies to their present situation under Obama too.

I'm expecting a Bernie Sanders//Anti-Hillary angle is going to start playing out on the Russian Activities as time goes on, and I'm inclined to think they're the more likely explanations.

Russia knew Hillary was a serious candidate this cycle, and they also knew they didn't want her in Office. Which runs in line with some of their hacking starting as early as 2015(if not sooner). It also ties into many of the information they obtained dating to prior to Bernie dropping from the race as a viable candidate.

Wikileaks and DCLeaks are different critters, although with WikiLeaks we know Assange shares a very stron Anti-Hillary bend just like the Russians do, although he may be apolitical enough to care less about Trump or Bernie, which is why he waited until later to release much of it. Although he may have been coordinating with people in Russia as to timing on that.

But it goes back to being Anti-Hillary rather than Pro-Trump.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: TheDeamon on December 13, 2016, 11:36:17 AM
The government bureaucrat can simply plead their case that they were operating under orders, and plea for mercy. Not that much mercy would be necessary, as they enjoy a great deal of protection under Federal Law, so they probably couldn't get fired for that anyhow. Of course, that then creates a circular reasoning loop, since that in turn applies to their present situation under Obama too.

As I deliberately self-cite here, and make a new post, rather than edit as I know at least two of you are likely to be reading/responding as I type this.

It should also be pointed that the "Anti-Hillary" and possibly "Pro-Bernie" efforts also are in line with the very generic leaks we've heard about so far regarding "Russian Interference" "that helped Trump win." The sources being cited just say that the Intelligence services agree the Russians interfered, they say nothing as to what their assessment was as to the intent of their involvement was.

Which goes back to spin and counter-spin. While Obama remains in office, he's going to downplay anything that deflects attention away from Trump. While the moment Trump enters office, his Administration will play up anything that deflects it away from him, and towards the Democrats instead.

Edit: Which isn't even touching on how odd it is to claim that the Russians were hacking Hillary's servers in 2015 to help Donald Trump win the election in 2016 when practically nobody believed he was going to survive the 2016 Primaries during 2015.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: NobleHunter on December 13, 2016, 11:38:57 AM
But why wait? If nothing else, it might have driven the emails back out of the news.

From an a-partisan position, anti-Clinton instead of pro-Trump doesn't matter much. It's that the Russians may have had a strong influence on the election.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: TheDeamon on December 13, 2016, 11:43:30 AM
But why wait? If nothing else, it might have driven the emails back out of the news.

From an a-partisan position, anti-Clinton instead of pro-Trump doesn't matter much. It's that the Russians may have had a strong influence on the election.

They were released/timed for effect. There were releases in the run up the DNC convention this year as well, which resulted in some scandals and resignations as well. Events that Pro-Bernie crowd were more than happy to jump on, just as Trump has done. Events that were, once again, instigated by Russian hackers. So the Bernie people need to look long and hard at what they were saying/doing this past summer too.

They failed to release enough in time to change the DNC Convention outcome(which they had to know was a long-shot at best anyhow), but they kept enough in reserve to help influence the final result in November, as can obviously be attested to now.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: D.W. on December 13, 2016, 12:15:00 PM
Quote
Although I'm more generally operating on the theory that from everything I'm seeing, I don't think the Russians really WANTED a Republican in Office. I think they'd prefer a Democrat, or even better, Bernie Sanders. The "problem" they had was the Democrats nominated Hillary Clinton, and they REALLY DID NOT WANT her as President.
What they wanted was a weaker America.  One not united in a common cause with a government that runs smoothly towards a shared purpose.  So in that regard, I guess I agree they didn’t want a single party to control it all.  They wanted to make a mess.  Making us doubt the whole election system?  That’s the gift that keeps on giving…  I don’t think they wanted Trump specifically beyond the optics that he may be seen as a pawn.  Not that he IS a pawn, but that some will believe that.  It sows more chaos.  Lets them worry less about us, and do their own thing.

We’ll be that judgmental scolding acquaintance who everyone know has a home life that is a total train wreck so they are ignored by all.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Fenring on December 13, 2016, 12:18:53 PM
What they wanted was a weaker America.  One not united in a common cause with a government that runs smoothly towards a shared purpose.

This "they" is the Russians? That's some nefarious scheme, since that's exactly the same goal America's own political parties have. Another reason to send Russia a thank-you note for solidarity with American principles?
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: D.W. on December 13, 2016, 12:26:19 PM
Yes Fenring
It's different when WE do it!    :)

Again, I'm OK with people thinking we should thank Russia for shining a light on what should have been obvious to everyone all along.  I won't, but I get it.

And despite utilizing the exact same tactics.  I don't believe either party is trying to weaken our nation.  They try to weaken each other's party so that they can (in their opinion) strengthen the nation by getting the opposition out of the way.

If the tactics can change because of outside tampering, I guess that's cool?  The goal of that tampering however is not the same.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Fenring on December 13, 2016, 12:32:09 PM
And despite utilizing the exact same tactics.  I don't believe either party is trying to weaken our nation.  They try to weaken each other's party so that they can (in their opinion) strengthen the nation by getting the opposition out of the way.

Stonewalling each other in policy while privately both sides condone the same illicit foreign activities? Yeah, I'd call that weakening the nation. At least, it's weakened as a republic. Maybe it's strengthened by some other criteria that favor certain private interests.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: D.W. on December 13, 2016, 01:07:14 PM
Yes but our own internal propaganda doesn't see it that way.  Neither side believes they are TRYING to weaken the nation.  They can comfortably blame the other side's opposition for any negative effects.

When it's an outsider... we don't have that lie to fall back on.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: TheDrake on December 13, 2016, 02:01:46 PM
Let's not forget, WaPo also published a "story" about hundreds of sites claiming they were Russian pawns or collaborators propagating false news. They had a single source, more or less, and they failed to contact anyone at the outlets on the list for comment, from what it seems. They cited this one group in particular as an authority from their tone, despite the fact that everyone involved was anonymous.

http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/features/washington-post-blacklist-story-is-shameful-disgusting-w452543
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Seriati on December 13, 2016, 02:28:58 PM
Quote
I do think you inadvertently identified a topic worthy of discussion.  Why is the constant spin to write this up as Russian interference in the US election?  Is there any evidence that Russians voted illegally?  That they hacked any voting machines?  That directly modified any votes?  Or did they hack and release apparently true statements made by senior DNC officials that were incompatible with what the voters actually want in government?  Is the complaint really that the Russian's interfered in an election by telling the truth?  Doesn't that sound like a very dangerous version of propaganda or even bordering on the fake news that I'm hearing so many concerns about?
They DID interfere Seriati.  AFAIK they did no tampering with actual votes.  That is not the point, nor is it the allegation.

Then honestly, what is the point?  Why bring it up as manipulation of the election if you are not trying to delegitimize the election itself.  If you believe we had an illegitimate election then explain the exact vector.  How did Russian hacking that revealed true statements create an illegitimate election?

If you want to hold the Russians accountable for hacking, I'm with you.  Go after them, file a diplomatic protest, instigate sanctions treat them like they were caught spying.  But if you want to have a local consequence of claiming that we didn't have a legitimate election then you have to explain how.

Quote
It IS a dangerous form of propaganda, but it’s one we’ve been manufacturing and spoon feeding to each other for ages.  Now MAYBE you believe they did us a favor and that particular flavor of BS will be taken off the menu.  I wouldn’t hold my breath.  (well, other than when saying Ahh for the next spoonful.)  Now maybe you believe the Russian hackers ONLY got into Democrat info.  Or maybe you believe that the Republicans that got hacked had nothing worth revealing.  I may laugh at you, but it’s at least a theory that is consistent with the events.  So yes, the complaint really is that the Russians interfered by telling the truth.

What's interesting to me is the reaction you are having to the specific underlying facts here.  You are literally complaining because the DNC wasn't able to sell lies and confusion because their internal communications were leaked showing what they really were doing.  Normally, it connection with an election impacting hack, we'd be talking about a blackmail, or an illegal activity exposed, or direct voting manipulation, here, all we really got was a peak under the hood of Hillary's campaign.

I object to the connection you're trying to draw.  The media is being deliberately vague about HOW the Russians influenced the election, because when you get down to it, all they did was show us who the people on Hillary's campaign really are.

Quote
Write them a thank you note if you want, but don’t try to pretend for an instant that it wasn’t interference.

Won't pretend it wasn't interference.  Don't understand why you think revealing the truth is more damaging than letting deception continue.

Also fascinating that you've foregone even trying to show there was a connection between "Russia" and say Wikileaks who did the releases.  Do you have some inside source that we are not privy too, or is it okay to just waive your hands at it and say "its obvious"?

As a separate matter, go after them for illegal hacking.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: D.W. on December 13, 2016, 02:31:10 PM
Quote
Won't pretend it wasn't interference.  Don't understand why you think revealing the truth is more damaging than letting deception continue.
I haven't made that claim.

If you read a defense of the DNC in my post, all I can say is read it again.  Add in a little more nihilism and disgust for flavor.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: D.W. on December 13, 2016, 02:54:27 PM
Quote
Then honestly, what is the point?  Why bring it up as manipulation of the election if you are not trying to delegitimize the election itself.  If you believe we had an illegitimate election then explain the exact vector.  How did Russian hacking that revealed true statements create an illegitimate election?
You would just ignore this issue?  I find that more than a little out of character for you. 

Also, I don't believe we had an illegitimate election.  I believe we had someone influencing naive voters (or non-voters) who didn't already know this stuff was going on.  That someone happened to be outside of our system.  Now, I've got A LOT of problems with our system.  But it is OURS.  We've set the rules and we get the results based on those rules.

I don't see Russia as doing us a favor by helping nudge our voters in the direction most advantageous to them.  Maybe that (us looking within and making changes) will be a side effect?  I'd doubt it though.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Fenring on December 13, 2016, 03:05:55 PM
I don't see Russia as doing us a favor by helping nudge our voters in the direction most advantageous to them.  Maybe that (us looking within and making changes) will be a side effect?  I'd doubt it though.

The problem in question is, to cite programmer logic, actually a 'feature', which is that people can be swayed by all sorts of things, which may include Russia, pharmaceutical companies, the weather, the job market, viral memes, and maybe truth on occasion. If the issue is to help the people vet how to process information then Russia has nothing whatsoever to do with the problem, which is that information in the U.S. has become corrupted to the point of being white noise. And this has nothing to do with "fake news" sites but rather was a process that long preceded it. If people are swayed by things Russia puts into print then the best defence against that would be to create a landscape of honesty within America that could withstand pew pew attempts at disinformation. It is because the media landscape is so mired in sludge that various X factors can come to have weight in people's decision-making process. Right now there is ample incentive for groups like the DNC and media outlets to spread disinfo and lies, and so they will continue to do that. The problem is the system and mechanism for encouraging behaviors. If the result is bad the game rules are broken and need a patch. If Russia has actually made gains for themselves amidst all this chaos then bully for them. It's no different than parties within America do as well, whose motives are no more noble.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Seriati on December 13, 2016, 03:15:57 PM
Quote
Then honestly, what is the point?  Why bring it up as manipulation of the election if you are not trying to delegitimize the election itself.  If you believe we had an illegitimate election then explain the exact vector.  How did Russian hacking that revealed true statements create an illegitimate election?
You would just ignore this issue?  I find that more than a little out of character for you.

I didn't say ignore the issue.  Maybe we are talking past each.

What I said is bringing it up as an election issue is  suspect.

Quote
Also, I don't believe we had an illegitimate election.  I believe we had someone influencing naive voters (or non-voters) who didn't already know this stuff was going on.

Really?  Isn't the entire premise of modern election campaigning reliant on influencing naïve voters?  I'm not seeing this as a conflict between a baseline of informed voters versus uninformed voters.  It's uninformed voters versus slightly more informed voters.

Quote
That someone happened to be outside of our system.  Now, I've got A LOT of problems with our system.  But it is OURS.  We've set the rules and we get the results based on those rules.

Yes we do, yet there is blatant cheating in every election.  Every recent election has had illegal foreign contributions in it.  Every recent election has had deliberate propaganda produced and distributed by both parts and even the "neutral" media.  Why is this a bridge too far?  Would it be different if it had been US hackers?  Honestly, would your opinion completely change if it were US hackers?

Quote
I don't see Russia as doing us a favor by helping nudge our voters in the direction most advantageous to them.  Maybe that (us looking within and making changes) will be a side effect?  I'd doubt it though.

I don't see any basis to believe that in a binary choice between two candidates that because one is better for country x it is automatically worse for us.  There are 300 countries in the world, some prefer Hillary some Trump, under your logic that'd pretty much ensure that no matter what its "worse" for us if any of them get their way.

Again, make an argument that references on what issues its worse, and drop the innuendo.  That's all this is, argument by innuendo.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: D.W. on December 13, 2016, 03:31:15 PM
Quote
Would it be different if it had been US hackers?  Honestly, would your opinion completely change if it were US hackers?
Would it change?  Yes.  Completely?  No.  I’d still be upset about the hacking. 
If my son reads my daughter’s diary and teases her about it, that’s a rotten thing to do and I punish him.  If my neighbor breaks into my house, steals my child’s diary and seeks to embarrass her by posting it on line that’s a whole different ball game.
Quote
I don't see any basis to believe that in a binary choice between two candidates that because one is better for country x it is automatically worse for us.
Agreed.  I do think it’s worth asking ourselves WHY do they feel it’s better for them.  That should be part of the weighing of factors when making a decision.

We are talking past each other.  You are searching for a partisan explanation for my statements and filling in the blanks with what a partisan Hillary defender blind to the flaws of their own side would say.  I’ve explained what I see as a problem.  You are assuming I am implying other things in addition to that.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: D.W. on December 13, 2016, 03:36:04 PM
I guess I'm just the odd duck who is disgusted with our politics but MORE disgusted with blatant external and extralegal interference in our system.

If it somehow does lead to change Fenring, maybe I will send Putin a Thank You card.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Wayward Son on December 13, 2016, 03:41:33 PM
Quote
Then honestly, what is the point?  Why bring it up as manipulation of the election if you are not trying to delegitimize the election itself.

We have laws that make it illegal for foreigners to give money to campaigns.  Are you saying that if they skip that step and just make material contributions to a campaign that it makes it all better?

If foreigners, or worse, foreign governments, have a significant influence on an election, then the winning candidate will have a "debt" to that foreign government, especially if he wants to run for re-election.  After all, maybe he or his party won't win next time if that foreign government withholds its support...

Which means he won't want to upset that foreign government while in office.  Which means he might make decisions that are not in the best interest of this country.

That's why we don't allow foreigners to contribute to campaigns, isn't it?

So, yes, we should investigate and try to minimize the influence of foreign governments in our campaigns even if we are not trying to "delegitimize" the last election.  Because we want to make sure that the next election is legitimate.

Now, in this election, I don't think the Russian influence made that big of a difference, and I would be surprised that it would delegitimize it.  Even if they broadcast disinformation (and, BTW, if that is shown, would it change anyone's mind? ;) ), as Fenring points out, we do plenty of that ourselves.  If we're stupid enough to buy what another country wants us to believe, we deserve the outcome of the election.

OTOH, if there is something that they did that would be so bad as to delegitimize it, I want to know about it.  Wouldn't you? ;)

So it truly disturbs me that Trump is trying to quell the bipartisan Senators, the CIA and the FBI from looking further into this matter.  What is he afraid of?  That it will weaken his administration?  That's pretty selfish and petty.  Does he believe that loosing a little bit of status as the President "who won in a landslide" is worth making future elections and Presidencies weaker due to foreign influence?  That's not in the best interest of our country.  Only himself.

Or is he worried that they will uncover something that really does delegitimize his Presidency.  That he won only because the Russians did something that put him over the top?  Would he still want to be President knowing the Russians gave him that position?  Do you want him to be President if he knew he owed it all to the Russians, or Chinese, or the Saudis?  Do you want a President beholden to another country.

I see no major downside to investigating and analyzing how the Russians influenced this election, and to try to prevent it in the future, even if it delegitimizes Trump's presidency somewhat.  (After all, to me, the only thing legitimate about his Presidency is that he won it and he will be the next President. :) )  But not investigating leads up open to being manipulated in the future, and makes me believe that Trump is more concerned with keeping power than in ensuring a proper democracy in this country.

And that would make Trump a illegitimate President in my eyes.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Fenring on December 13, 2016, 03:48:22 PM
I guess I'm just the odd duck who is disgusted with our politics but MORE disgusted with blatant external and extralegal interference in our system.

If it somehow does lead to change Fenring, maybe I will send Putin a Thank You card.

FWIW both Assange and Snowden have insisted that the DNC leaks did not originate from Russia hackers but rather from a DNC insider. The option at present seems to be choosing between believing them, and therefore assuming that political "sources" are wrong or lying about Russia's involvement, or between asserting that both Snowden and Assange are deliberately covering for Russia and therefore in collusion with them in some sense. Neither option is impossible, and yet while it's not much of a stretch to infer that 'political sources' may lie about more or less anything, it seems at present unsubstantiated to infer that Assange was in collusion with Russia. I would put my bet down that it was an insider, but of course it's only a guess.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: rightleft22 on December 13, 2016, 03:54:44 PM
It’s become more difficult to discuss issues without someone bring in or assuming partisan explanations.
Hacking, espionage and foreign manipulation are real issues regardless of who benefits or is hurt.

Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: D.W. on December 13, 2016, 03:55:50 PM
I'd bet on the CIA and FBI who seem to only be arguing about the motive rather than the "if".  If they are honestly making up the Russian perpetrator thing, then I guess our problems are even more serious than I thought. 

To have a president elect actively trying to undermine their credibility is blowing my mind to be honest.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Fenring on December 13, 2016, 03:57:53 PM
That's why we don't allow foreigners to contribute to campaigns, isn't it?

So, yes, we should investigate and try to minimize the influence of foreign governments in our campaigns even if we are not trying to "delegitimize" the last election.  Because we want to make sure that the next election is legitimate.

Are you aware of the fact that you jumped right from direct contributions being illegal to needing to investigate influence by other nations? Other nations should have influence in America. The U.S. isn't North Korea, closed to outside information. And then you jumped from influence to delegitimize. This is very much a linguistic slippery slope where the connection between each point is at best 'truthy.'

If you had wanted to speak about direct interference in the voting system, you should address that. Seriati mentioned that just before and no one replied on that topic. If you had wanted to talk about foreign media, that would be another issue. Both are these are worth talking about but should be kept separate from each other. The issue of foreign contributions is an interesting one and the place to investigate this issue would be in potential loopholes for foreign governments such as non-campaign institutions that can receive donations and launder them. Maybe this isn't an issue, but if it is this is potentially how it would be done.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: rightleft22 on December 13, 2016, 04:03:29 PM
I think we would have seen more effective and immediate action is the GOP was hacked.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: rightleft22 on December 13, 2016, 04:05:38 PM
http://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-election-cyber-russia-idUSKBN1352P9

"A Russian hacking group began attacking U.S.-based policy think tanks within hours of Donald Trump's presidential election victory, according to cyber experts who suspect Moscow is seeking information on the incoming administration.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: D.W. on December 13, 2016, 04:07:06 PM
I think we would have seen more effective and immediate action is the GOP was hacked.
I believe they almost certainly were.  No gain in releasing that info now. 
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: TheDeamon on December 13, 2016, 04:21:33 PM
Quote
I don't see any basis to believe that in a binary choice between two candidates that because one is better for country x it is automatically worse for us.
Agreed.  I do think it’s worth asking ourselves WHY do they feel it’s better for them.  That should be part of the weighing of factors when making a decision.

I still stand by their motive being anti-Hillary vs being Pro-Trump. Also of note in all this in case you missed it: John McCain has also commented that the Russians hacked his e-mail servers back in 2008. So it isn't a new thing in that respect, and it seems our political organizations need better network security.

But going back to Russia's aims: I think they'd prefer another Obama or Bernie Sanders all things considered. Someone who is more likely to be largely hands-off and not intervene militarily unless actively forced to by allies and domestic politics alike. (As pretty much happened with Obama with ISIS/ISIL, or in Libya.)

Hillary Clinton is a Clinton. Bill Clinton was a big time interventionist, that's stirke one. Strike two is that Hillary was known to advocate for a far more militaristic/interventionist foreign policy than the Obama Admin pursued. Strike 3 was that she continued to campaign for that stronger foreign policy stance, while Trump was advocating a more hands off approach.

Which made the choice easy for Russia. While they're leary of Republicans, because they love to spend money on the military.  Trump is in something of Reagan-like position, so he's unlikely to much, just like Reagan. If he gets into a shooting war somewhere, that means less money to spend on expanding it. So he'll be more inclined to stay out and expand it rather than go fishing like Clinton and Bush 43 did.

They'll worry about Trump's successor when they get there, but hope they can get a Democrat in by then, and have them undo much of Trump's military rebuild.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: DonaldD on December 13, 2016, 04:52:25 PM
It’s become more difficult to discuss issues without someone bring in or assuming partisan explanations.
Hacking, espionage and foreign manipulation are real issues regardless of who benefits or is hurt.
I was and am still honestly shocked that the fact that a foreign power broke your country's laws to acquire information, and then used that information in a transparent attempt to undermine your whole democratic process, is not being panned universally on this board.

This is not a partisan issue. It doesn't matter who benefitted domestically. This is a real sickness being displayed within your polity.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Seriati on December 13, 2016, 05:27:20 PM
Quote
Then honestly, what is the point?  Why bring it up as manipulation of the election if you are not trying to delegitimize the election itself.

We have laws that make it illegal for foreigners to give money to campaigns.  Are you saying that if they skip that step and just make material contributions to a campaign that it makes it all better?

Not sure how you could think that I was saying that.  I've already been on record stating that I think contributions of time ought to have to be accounted for in the same way as contributions of money, granted it's mostly because I don't think its particularly fair to discount the value of unions paying their own members to campaign and it not counting as a cash contribution. 

What I don't get is why we have campaign finance laws that can not be enforced.  What's the remedy for a foreign government making a contribution?  To my knowledge, we've never set aside any result in an election where such violations have been found.  Hardly any politician, if any, has gone to jail over it.

Quote
That's why we don't allow foreigners to contribute to campaigns, isn't it?

Pretty much, it's also why we have laws limiting the amount US people can donate to campaigns.  Now why are all those laws easily avoidable and toothless?  Talk about a mixed message.

Quote
OTOH, if there is something that they did that would be so bad as to delegitimize it, I want to know about it.  Wouldn't you? ;)

Sure.  What would that look like?  Cause what I see is an attempt to create an implication that its delegitimized without actually proving the case.  Literally, this appears to be someone setting up a smoke machine to draw attention to what may or may not be a fire.  Tough to say if there's really a fire, or if you should be concerned, after you flood the area with excess smoke.

Quote
So it truly disturbs me that Trump is trying to quell the bipartisan Senators, the CIA and the FBI from looking further into this matter.

Why?  It won't and can't stop them from investigating.  Exactly how are his words more or less dangerous than those from the current administration (or your own) decrying congressional investigations into Benghazi?

Honestly, if there was anyway he could prevent an investigation, I'd have your back.

Quote
What is he afraid of?

This is at least the third attempt to delegitimize his election (attack based on popular vote/electoral college, demands for recounting because hacking "could" have occurred (without evidence it did), Russians "influenced" election (though the actual links to and explanation of are in fact missing or never laid out)).  He's afraid that this is effort to undermine his ability to govern.  Given you guys were convinced that the Republicans have been undermining Obama from before Day 1, not getting how you wouldn't understand this potential.  Whether you agree it should be done is a different issue. 

He doesn't have a mandate, but then neither did Obama, yet it didn't stop the Dems from being incredibly arrogant and forcing through major legislation in the first few years of his presidency. 

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Or is he worried that they will uncover something that really does delegitimize his Presidency.  That he won only because the Russians did something that put him over the top?

Like what.  Specifically what would that be?  Absent some evidence that Comey was being blackmailed to act irrationally its hard to see what would even meet this potential in theory.  What exactly is this non-direct vote manipulating thing that they could have done?

Quote
Would he still want to be President knowing the Russians gave him that position?

He seems like one of the biggest narcissists in history, hard to see how he wouldn't.

Quote
Do you want him to be President if he knew he owed it all to the Russians, or Chinese, or the Saudis?  Do you want a President beholden to another country.

I'm pretty confident that his ego would never let him believe that he "owes it all" to any of them.  Not clear how it could be true either, based on facts in evidence.  But yes if you had some kind of proof that he was being controlled (or any other President was) I'd be concerned about it, and deem that to be an incapacity to hold office.  Just showing he holds a favorable opinion of a country, not so much.

Also pretty certain that I raised this exact set of issues about the donations to the Clinton foundation and you didn't friggin care about it then, even though there is an actual trail of money involved and decisions in real time on issues the same foreign powers cared about.  Also, it's not like we didn't already have a Chinagate scandal with Bill in the first place either.

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I see no major downside to investigating and analyzing how the Russians influenced this election, and to try to prevent it in the future, even if it delegitimizes Trump's presidency somewhat.

I see no major downside to investigating and analyzing any criminal hacking of the DNC's servers, or anyone elses, and bringing appropriate actions against those who did it.  I do have an issue with trying to force this into a specific narrative primarily for the purpose of delegitimizing Trump's Presidency. 

I don't have an issue with the consequences of people looking at Trump's stolen tax return page either in making their decision on who to vote for.  Nothing out there where I say people shouldn't look at it.  Did say the media speculation on top of it made false claims, which is true, and consistently with what I said above, this also in favor of punishing the person who released it (assuming they violated a duty of privacy).  I specifically object to labeling exposes by the left as "journalism" and exposes by the right as criminal acts.  One law for all.

I'm also all for taking measures to ensure we can be confident that our elections are not directly manipulated.

However, I'm not going to get outraged that a political party didn't get to manipulate voters because they got smacked in the face with their own ugly truths.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: TheDeamon on December 14, 2016, 09:13:27 AM
Quote
Then honestly, what is the point?  Why bring it up as manipulation of the election if you are not trying to delegitimize the election itself.

We have laws that make it illegal for foreigners to give money to campaigns.  Are you saying that if they skip that step and just make material contributions to a campaign that it makes it all better?

If foreigners, or worse, foreign governments, have a significant influence on an election, then the winning candidate will have a "debt" to that foreign government, especially if he wants to run for re-election.  After all, maybe he or his party won't win next time if that foreign government withholds its support...

So, your stance in regards to Russia being involved in the Election this past year seems clear.

Now tell us, what is your stance in regards to illegal immigrants volunteering as campaign workers for a particular candidate?

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That's why we don't allow foreigners to contribute to campaigns, isn't it?

So, yes, we should investigate and try to minimize the influence of foreign governments in our campaigns even if we are not trying to "delegitimize" the last election.  Because we want to make sure that the next election is legitimate.

Same question as above regarding Illegal immigrants involving themselves in the electoral process. Although to make it even more ironic, the Democrats were deliberately and knowingly seeking their attention, support, and assistance.

Quote
Do you want him to be President if he knew he owed it all to the Russians, or Chinese, or the Saudis?  Do you want a President beholden to another country.

Would making it a country(or collection of countries) south of our border make it better?
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Fenring on December 14, 2016, 10:15:52 AM
http://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-trump-intelligence-idUSKBN14204E

Quote
While the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) does not dispute the CIA's analysis of Russian hacking operations, it has not endorsed their assessment because of a lack of conclusive evidence that Moscow intended to boost Trump over Democratic opponent Hillary Clinton, said the officials, who declined to be named.

...

The CIA conclusion was a "judgment based on the fact that Russian entities hacked both Democrats and Republicans and only the Democratic information was leaked," one of the three officials said on Monday.

"(It was) a thin reed upon which to base an analytical judgment," the official added.

Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Seriati on December 14, 2016, 10:52:27 AM
Interestingly, Judge Napolitano just put out an opinion piece based on his contacts inside the CIA and FBI where he passes on that there isn't evidence of a hack only evidence of a leak.  If that's the case, and I can't say it is, why do you think it's consistently described as a hack?  Anyone's opinion change if this is in fact a leak from insiders rather than a hack from outsiders?  Or if it is a hack, it's not an international hack but a local one shared internationally?
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: D.W. on December 14, 2016, 11:07:00 AM
Didn't you already ask this?
Yes.  My "concern" would downgrade to the illegality of the act rather than foreign interference.

I suppose your last bit does make a point.  If Russia came by it through a leak rather than a hack, then used it to influence the election...  Does my opinion change?  (is that your question?)

In that case, No.  But it may lower cyber-security panic levels a little...
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: yossarian22c on December 14, 2016, 11:34:55 AM
If it was senior political operatives leaking things to the Russians instead of the NYT (or even the Trump campaign) it would worry me just as much as a Russian hack.  Since it wasn't national security info it may not technically be espionage but it comes pretty darn close.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: rightleft22 on December 14, 2016, 01:16:04 PM
Russia/Putin has been becoming more aggressive over the last few years and don’t expect Trump to push back much.

It looks to me that the Trump administration will be focused on economic (short term) growth to care much, which seems to be what the people want.

I can envision the day when the US no longer has much influence in Europe and the Middle East if that day has not already come. Even Israel is looking more and more to Russia.


Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: TheDeamon on December 14, 2016, 02:32:14 PM
Russia/Putin has been becoming more aggressive over the last few years and don’t expect Trump to push back much.

It looks to me that the Trump administration will be focused on economic (short term) growth to care much, which seems to be what the people want.

I can envision the day when the US no longer has much influence in Europe and the Middle East if that day has not already come. Even Israel is looking more and more to Russia.

Unless things go truly FUBAR, Russia is only a short to possibly middle-term concern. They're not likely to relevant to much of anyone in another couple of decades. For that matter, Western Europe probably won't be very relevant in another few decades. They've reached their apex, and are now in essentially a managed decline. Demographics and just about everything else is arrayed against them. The biggest thing propping up Russia is its oil and natural gas reserves and Western Europes dependence on Russia's supplies.

The easiest way to break Russia is to get Western Europe off their dependency on Russian fossil fuels. That can happen through technology, or by means of expanding oil/natural gas exploration in North America in particular, putting us on an export footing rather than importing it.

At this point, the long-term interests of the United States are best served by getting its own house back in order, while keeping an eye on China and other emerging nations. They're the ones to watch in the decades to come.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: rightleft22 on December 14, 2016, 02:36:58 PM
My feeling is that Putin won't want let happen what you predict and won't leave without trying something
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: NobleHunter on December 14, 2016, 02:48:03 PM
Europe, except maybe France, seems to have come to terms with the idea that they're no longer top dog. I don't think a lack of serious influence in the world is going to bother them over much.

Russia will probably take a while longer to get to that point. Any leader that wants to keep power is going to need to act like a major player, regardless of Russia's actual status. So more decline on Russia's part makes them more dangerous rather than less.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Fenring on December 14, 2016, 02:49:03 PM
If it was senior political operatives leaking things to the Russians instead of the NYT (or even the Trump campaign) it would worry me just as much as a Russian hack.  Since it wasn't national security info it may not technically be espionage but it comes pretty darn close.

I don't know why you assume senior political operatives would have leaked the emails (for instance) to Russia who then handed them to Wikileaks who then leaked them to the world. How is this the simplest or even likeliest explanation? It sounds like a pulp novel plot. It would seem to be far more straightforward to assume that said operatives just gave everything directly to Wikileaks, which is incidentally exactly what Wikileaks said happened.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Fenring on December 14, 2016, 02:49:29 PM
Russia/Putin has been becoming more aggressive over the last few years

How so?
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: TheDrake on December 14, 2016, 02:55:38 PM
Russia/Putin has been becoming more aggressive over the last few years

How so?

Um, invading Ukraine comes to mind.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Fenring on December 14, 2016, 03:06:04 PM
Um, invading Ukraine comes to mind.

Aside from the obligatory mention that this isn't a "fact" but rather an interpretation (and one that I think is dubious), the phrasing "becoming more aggressive" suggests a trend rather than a single data point. Are there any other data points? And I'll jump right ahead and request that "interfering with the election" not be counted as one because, again, not a fact.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: yossarian22c on December 14, 2016, 03:25:08 PM
Russia moving troops into Crimea and then annexing it isn't a fact?
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Fenring on December 14, 2016, 03:42:06 PM
Russia moving troops into Crimea and then annexing it isn't a fact?

Invasion =/= murky change of allegiance =/= Russia preventing a territory important to them strategically being suddenly cut off from them due to a Ukrainian coup =/= the people there preferring to join Russia. It may be a blend of these, and other factors, that was really the case. But "Russia invaded the Ukraine" is not a meaningful description of what happened. There is enough disinfo about that event, no less about the coup that preceded it, that I find it difficult to make a concrete determination about what I think of it. It was a bizarre event either way, and certainly concerning enough to wonder what it was really about.

That being said, it's only one data point even if we gladly accept it. I can offer a second data point, which is Russia's assistance to Syria against ISIS. But does it count as "becoming aggressive" when Russia is fighting against the bad guys? If so, doesn't that mean the U.S. is "aggressive" as well in exactly the same way?
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: rightleft22 on December 14, 2016, 03:49:31 PM
FINLAND is growing wary of Russia as it flexes its political muscle over the country’s nuclear power, a new report has revealed.
It said: "Russia's foreign policy goals have remained the same for a long period of time, but in recent years its means to achieve those goals have become more aggressive.

Syria – “Kremlin’s military intervention in Syria was tailored to achieve a multiplier effect, yielding returns both in that war-ravaged, devastated land and in international diplomacy”. 
Middle East countries turning to Russia

“Chief of Naval Operations Adm. John Richardson said Monday he is convinced that Russia “is not trying to provoke an incident” with its recent aggressive harassment of U.S. aircraft and warships operating in the Baltic Sea, including a much-discussed buzzing of a U.S. destroyer in the Baltic Sea by a pair of Russian fighter jets.”

That was just a quick google but just checkout Russia state run media rhetoric. 

To clarify this is not an attack on Trump so no need to defend the Russia based on that bias.


Quote
If so, doesn't that mean the U.S. is "aggressive" as well in exactly the same way?
I think it does and with Russia getting back into the game making the situation more volatile.


My feeling is that Trump is going to 'give' Putin the Middle East and Eastern Europe
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Wayward Son on December 14, 2016, 03:59:16 PM
I came across this article (http://warontherocks.com/2016/11/trolling-for-trump-how-russia-is-trying-to-destroy-our-democracy/) (dated a few days before the election) that gives quite a bit more detail about how the Russians may be influencing our elections.

Quote
Russia’s social media campaigns seek five complementary objectives to strengthen Russia’s position over Western democracies:
•Undermine citizen confidence in democratic governance;
•Foment and exacerbate divisive political fractures;
•Erode trust between citizens and elected officials and democratic institutions;
•Popularize Russian policy agendas within foreign populations;
•Create general distrust or confusion over information sources by blurring the lines between fact and fiction

In sum, these influence efforts weaken Russia’s enemies without the use of force.  Russian social media propaganda pushes four general themes to advance Moscow’s influence objectives and connect with foreign populations they target.

Political messages are designed to tarnish democratic leaders or undermine institutions. Examples include allegations of voter fraud, election rigging, and political corruption. Leaders can be specifically targeted, for instance by promoting unsubstantiated claims about Hillary Clinton’s health, or more obviously by leaking hacked emails.

Financial propaganda weakens citizen and investor confidence in foreign markets and posits the failure of capitalist economies. Stoking fears over the national debt, attacking institutions such as the Federal Reserve, and attempts to discredit Western financial experts and business leaders are all part of this arsenal...

Social issues currently provide a useful window for Russian messaging. Police brutality, racial tensions, protests, anti-government standoffs, online privacy concerns, and alleged government misconduct are all emphasized to magnify their scale and leveraged to undermine the fabric of society.

Finally, wide-ranging conspiracy theories promote fear of global calamity while questioning the expertise of anyone who might calm those fears. Russian propaganda operations since 2014 have stoked fears of martial law in the United States, for instance, by promoting chemtrails and Jade Helm conspiracy theories. More recently, Moscow turned to stoking fears of nuclear war between the United States and Russia.

You can see memes promoted by both the Left and the Right.  None of them directly affect Trump's election (other than Russia apparently siding with him).  But all are weaken our country.

With both Republican and Democratic Senators calling for investigation, this really isn't a partisan issue.  It will probably not even have a direct effect on the last vote.  But it is something that needs to be investigated and brought to light.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Fenring on December 14, 2016, 04:01:11 PM
rightleft22, I don't even know what those Google quotes are supposed to tell me about Russia being aggressive. Note that I'm not arguing that they're some kind of Mr. Nice Guy. I'm specifically asking you to back up the claim that they have been increasingly aggressive over the last several years, of which I personally see no evidence at all other than the single data point of Crimea.

As far as giving away Europe and the Mid-East, it already sounds problematic to me that you should imply it is the President's territory to give away in the first place.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Pete at Home on December 14, 2016, 04:09:37 PM
Putin's refusal to allow International observers during the Crimean election suggests a scheme for future aggression rather than a single datum. 
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Pete at Home on December 14, 2016, 04:11:24 PM
I came across this article (http://warontherocks.com/2016/11/trolling-for-trump-how-russia-is-trying-to-destroy-our-democracy/) (dated a few days before the election) that gives quite a bit more detail about how the Russians may be influencing our elections.

Quote
Russia’s social media campaigns seek five complementary objectives to strengthen Russia’s position over Western democracies:
•Undermine citizen confidence in democratic governance;
•Foment and exacerbate divisive political fractures;
•Erode trust between citizens and elected officials and democratic institutions;
•Popularize Russian policy agendas within foreign populations;
•Create general distrust or confusion over information sources by blurring the lines between fact and fiction

In sum, these influence efforts weaken Russia’s enemies without the use of force.  Russian social media propaganda pushes four general themes to advance Moscow’s influence objectives and connect with foreign populations they target.

Political messages are designed to tarnish democratic leaders or undermine institutions. Examples include allegations of voter fraud, election rigging, and political corruption. Leaders can be specifically targeted, for instance by promoting unsubstantiated claims about Hillary Clinton’s health, or more obviously by leaking hacked emails.

Financial propaganda weakens citizen and investor confidence in foreign markets and posits the failure of capitalist economies. Stoking fears over the national debt, attacking institutions such as the Federal Reserve, and attempts to discredit Western financial experts and business leaders are all part of this arsenal...

Social issues currently provide a useful window for Russian messaging. Police brutality, racial tensions, protests, anti-government standoffs, online privacy concerns, and alleged government misconduct are all emphasized to magnify their scale and leveraged to undermine the fabric of society.

Finally, wide-ranging conspiracy theories promote fear of global calamity while questioning the expertise of anyone who might calm those fears. Russian propaganda operations since 2014 have stoked fears of martial law in the United States, for instance, by promoting chemtrails and Jade Helm conspiracy theories. More recently, Moscow turned to stoking fears of nuclear war between the United States and Russia.

You can see memes promoted by both the Left and the Right.  None of them directly affect Trump's election (other than Russia apparently siding with him).  But all are weaken our country.

With both Republican and Democratic Senators calling for investigation, this really isn't a partisan issue.  It will probably not even have a direct effect on the last vote.  But it is something that needs to be investigated and brought to light.

It's just a different sort of partisan issue. The Democrats are once again being useful idiots for the tea party's coup d'etat. I predict that in 9 months you will be pretending that you didn't support this
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: rightleft22 on December 14, 2016, 04:20:56 PM
Quote
As far as giving away Europe and the Mid-East, it already sounds problematic to me that you should imply it is the President's territory to give away in the first place.

I didn't know how to word what I wanted to say which is why given was typed as ‘given’. I assumed anyone reading the post would know I didn’t’ mean the US had a right to give away other nations territory.

My general feeling is that the US has taken a lead in Mid-East affairs since the end of the cold war to which Russia is now reasserting itself. It’s an observation, not a judgment of good or bad.

If I were to make a judgment I’m starting to lean towards the US pulling back and letting Russia or China deal with it. 

Actually my feeling (not thinking) is that for the next four or eight years nations should avoid dealing with the US whenever possible.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Wayward Son on December 14, 2016, 04:35:38 PM
RealClearPolitics seems to have a good article summarizing the issue, too. (http://www.realclearpolitics.com/articles/2016/12/13/a_brief_guide_to_russian_hacking_of_the_us_election_132556.html)

Quote
It's just a different sort of partisan issue. The Democrats are once again being useful idiots for the tea party's coup d'etat. I predict that in 9 months you will be pretending that you didn't support this.

I am not clear on what you think I'm supporting, since the article I quoted was on what we already know about Russian hacking and their possible intentions.  There is nothing to "support" in that.  ???

What I do support is the bipartisan investigation into Russian influences on our elections, and finding out ways we can minimize that.  And I very much doubt I will change my support of that in 9 months.

I don't see how this could support "the tea party's coup d'état."  At best, I would think such Russian propaganda helps the tea party at this time.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: rightleft22 on December 14, 2016, 04:41:12 PM
Quote
It's just a different sort of partisan issue. The Democrats are once again being useful idiots for the tea party's coup d'etat.

I am gob smacked at how weak and foolish the left can be.

Psychologically I don’t think the left has access to ‘energy' that the right does.  What I mean is that for the left to really act on something they need to engage 70% plus of the people where the right only needs to engage the base.

I wonder if it’s because the left persona needs to see itself as compassionate and respecting all points of views before it can act while the right is more certain in its certainties.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: rightleft22 on December 14, 2016, 04:43:11 PM
Quote
I don't see how this could support "the tea party's coup d'état."  At best, I would think such Russian propaganda helps the tea party at this time.
I’m a reading that wrong. Aren’t you making Pete's point?
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: D.W. on December 14, 2016, 04:56:05 PM
Quote
I wonder if it’s because the left persona needs to see itself as compassionate and respecting all points of views before it can act while the right is more certain in its certainties.
There are very few (none?) single issue voters on "the left".  It is more like hearding cats. 

But not like on the right, where you've got a laser pointers labeled "pro-life" or "SSM opposition" or "they're coming to take your guns".  We wish it was that easy to instill "energy".  :)
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Wayward Son on December 14, 2016, 05:55:20 PM
Quote
I don't see how this could support "the tea party's coup d'état."  At best, I would think such Russian propaganda helps the tea party at this time.
I’m a reading that wrong. Aren’t you making Pete's point?

OK, I'm totally confused.  What's Pete's point?  ???
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Pete at Home on December 15, 2016, 12:18:19 AM
RealClearPolitics seems to have a good article summarizing the issue, too. (http://www.realclearpolitics.com/articles/2016/12/13/a_brief_guide_to_russian_hacking_of_the_us_election_132556.html)

Quote
It's just a different sort of partisan issue. The Democrats are once again being useful idiots for the tea party's coup d'etat. I predict that in 9 months you will be pretending that you didn't support this.

I am not clear on what you think I'm supporting, since the article I quoted was on what we already know about Russian hacking and their possible intentions.  There is nothing to "support" in that.  ???

What I do support is the bipartisan investigation into Russian influences on our elections, and finding out ways we can minimize that.  And I very much doubt I will change my support of that in 9 months.

I don't see how this could support "the tea party's coup d'état."  At best, I would think such Russian propaganda helps the tea party at this time.

You don't get that you are being duped into laying groundwork for a Trump impeachment that leaves Pence in power?  Or you don't get that getting rid of Trump is the Tea Party's next step to consolidating power?
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Fenring on December 15, 2016, 08:35:17 AM
http://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/u-s-officials-putin-personally-involved-u-s-election-hack-n696146

Quote
U.S. intelligence officials now believe with "a high level of confidence" that Russian President Vladimir Putin became personally involved in the covert Russian campaign to interfere in the U.S. presidential election, senior U.S. intelligence officials told NBC News.

I'll save you the trouble of reading the entire article and get right to the point: no new information has been made available, no new investigations have been done, and no new sources other than the same "sources within the CIA" are cited. And yet, probably due to the reports the other day of the Director of National Intelligence saying they had no proof for saying so, now the response is for them to up the ante and make even more detailed claims despite having no new information. That is how propaganda works: when a story isn't believed you make up more stories, and add to them. "Russia probably responsible" wasn't enough for the public to swallow? Ok, let's go with "Putin personally responsible!" then. Why not. After all, if they only have suspicions it was Russia at all, it makes sense to assume that only high-level Russians could have done it, which therefore must be controlled by Putin directly; ergo Putin hacked the American election...and must be removed from office! Wait, maybe I went too far on that one, perhaps that last point is due to be made in the future.

Networks like NBC aren't just bad sources of information - they aren't sources. They'll just repeat whatever they're told and they'll print it. It's kind of like the Ron Burgundy of print news. "They'll print a-ny-thing!"
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: TheDeamon on December 15, 2016, 09:34:54 AM
http://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/u-s-officials-putin-personally-involved-u-s-election-hack-n696146

Quote
U.S. intelligence officials now believe with "a high level of confidence" that Russian President Vladimir Putin became personally involved in the covert Russian campaign to interfere in the U.S. presidential election, senior U.S. intelligence officials told NBC News.

I'll save you the trouble of reading the entire article and get right to the point: no new information has been made available, no new investigations have been done, and no new sources other than the same "sources within the CIA" are cited. And yet, probably due to the reports the other day of the Director of National Intelligence saying they had no proof for saying so, now the response is for them to up the ante and make even more detailed claims despite having no new information. That is how propaganda works: when a story isn't believed you make up more stories, and add to them. "Russia probably responsible" wasn't enough for the public to swallow? Ok, let's go with "Putin personally responsible!" then. Why not. After all, if they only have suspicions it was Russia at all, it makes sense to assume that only high-level Russians could have done it, which therefore must be controlled by Putin directly; ergo Putin hacked the American election...and must be removed from office! Wait, maybe I went too far on that one, perhaps that last point is due to be made in the future.

Networks like NBC aren't just bad sources of information - they aren't sources. They'll just repeat whatever they're told and they'll print it. It's kind of like the Ron Burgundy of print news. "They'll print a-ny-thing!"

Oh, the CIA might have "Russian Sources" that are spoon feeding them such information at this point, intentionally. If your objective is to de-legitimize Trump's Presidency, and you know "the powers that be" within the Obama Administration will happily grasp at straws for anything to make Trump look bad, you then start feeding them information that will help them draw incorrect conclusions.

Getting the United States to make the Russian intelligence services seem even more effective than they may actually be would just be an added bonus. As it also signals to them that the US Intel Community isn't as clever as it thinks it is.  8)

We can run round and round and round in circles on this all day long in regards to which kind of spook-war game is being played out at this point.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Fenring on December 15, 2016, 09:56:33 AM
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4034038/Ex-British-ambassador-WikiLeaks-operative-claims-Russia-did-NOT-provide-Clinton-emails-handed-D-C-park-intermediary-disgusted-Democratic-insiders.html

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A Wikileaks envoy today claims he personally received Clinton campaign emails in Washington D.C. after they were leaked by 'disgusted' whisteblowers - and not hacked by Russia.
Craig Murray, former British ambassador to Uzbekistan and a close associate of Wikileaks founder Julian Assange, told Dailymail.com that he flew to Washington, D.C. for a clandestine hand-off with one of the email sources in September.

...

'Neither of [the leaks] came from the Russians,'  Murray said. 'The source had legal access to the information. The documents came from inside leaks, not hacks.'
He said the leakers were motivated by 'disgust at the corruption of the Clinton Foundation and the tilting of the primary election playing field against Bernie Sanders.'

Granted, this account should be taken with a grain of salt since there would be various reasons to lie about this, but here we have someone admitting to have been directly involved in receiving the leaked information, and yet "sources in the CIA" are making more headlines. Hmmm...

Maybe this guy is full of it, but you'd think there would be a big deal about this claim either way, if at least for no other reason than "Whoa! The guy who physically took the briefcase full of leaked emails! Like a spy movie!" But that doesn't feed into the Russia narrative, so I guess it's not a "useful" story.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: TheDrake on December 15, 2016, 10:59:15 AM
I don't really trust the CIA to be able to accurately differentiate between servers in Russia and actions taken by the Russian State. They deal in shadowy maybes, by their own admission. They don't prove things, they conjure up confidence percentages. That is exceedingly vulnerable to personal or institutional bias.

The reason they protect their sources and methods is that they don't want anyone to know about their dartboard and magic 8-ball.

Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Fenring on December 15, 2016, 11:05:23 AM
I don't really trust the CIA to be able to accurately differentiate between servers in Russia and actions taken by the Russian State. They deal in shadowy maybes, by their own admission. They don't prove things, they conjure up confidence percentages. That is exceedingly vulnerable to personal or institutional bias.

The reason they protect their sources and methods is that they don't want anyone to know about their dartboard and magic 8-ball.

And this is actually quite a charitable read of their intentions, because it attributes to them a desire to do their best to tell the truth. I would personally not assume this premise at all.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: TheDrake on December 15, 2016, 11:24:47 AM
And this is actually quite a charitable read of their intentions, because it attributes to them a desire to do their best to tell the truth. I would personally not assume this premise at all.

I don't consider the entire agency to have gone rogue. Now, what they release to the public sure. But I believe, in general, when they brief the President they wouldn't consider themselves to be lying.

Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Seriati on December 15, 2016, 11:32:40 AM
Quote
I wonder if it’s because the left persona needs to see itself as compassionate and respecting all points of views before it can act while the right is more certain in its certainties.
There are very few (none?) single issue voters on "the left".  It is more like hearding cats.

Wow, that's a whopper.  The left is filled with single issue voters.  I'll forgive you if you think that the typical 90-10 ratio of black voters in favor of Democrats is not relevant to this discussion if you can explain, why Hillary Clinton lost the black vote to Barack Obama 9:1, without a single issue voter explanation.

Not to mention, I know an endless stream of women who single issue vote on abortion rights, or birth control access, or in this election who voted to elect the first woman (without regard to individual quality of that woman).

Or the voters who single issue voted to try and prevent immigration enforcement.

Or because they are pro gun control.

The problem isn't really energy or lack of single issue focus, its that the parts of the Democratic party have nothing in common.  Blue collar union workers?  How do they fit with an ultra progressive platform? 
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Fenring on December 15, 2016, 11:58:37 AM
I don't consider the entire agency to have gone rogue. Now, what they release to the public sure. But I believe, in general, when they brief the President they wouldn't consider themselves to be lying.

My current theory is that much of the CIA is set up roughly like independent cells, with little connection between them and no knowledge of each others' activities and agendas. Maximum deniability and also safety from security breaches that way. Politically this makes it so that since there is no "the CIA" that works as a whole, a particular branch can therefore make statements that are more or less unilateral without consulting with other branches. I imagine that operating as head of the CIA is like herding cats and that even finding out all the crap going on is a full-time job unto itself. In this context, I suspect that some cells within the CIA are almost completely autonomous and therefore rogue, while other ones are kept closer to the management structure and their activities would be more accountable to the executive. I think of it as less like an organization and more like a society, with all the niches, subcultures, and varying agendas that that entails.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: D.W. on December 15, 2016, 12:38:09 PM
Ya, Seriati.  It is a whopper.  But A:  I was reaching for the herding cats / laser pointer joke.  And B:  Unless your single issue is "I hate the conservative platform" I really haven't met anyone who is motivated by just one of them.

I will say that "jobs" can be a single issue for many.  If you can't get a decent paying job to provide for yourself and your family, all the other issues don't mean much.  :(
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Wayward Son on December 15, 2016, 12:55:30 PM
RealClearPolitics seems to have a good article summarizing the issue, too. (http://www.realclearpolitics.com/articles/2016/12/13/a_brief_guide_to_russian_hacking_of_the_us_election_132556.html)

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It's just a different sort of partisan issue. The Democrats are once again being useful idiots for the tea party's coup d'etat. I predict that in 9 months you will be pretending that you didn't support this.

I am not clear on what you think I'm supporting, since the article I quoted was on what we already know about Russian hacking and their possible intentions.  There is nothing to "support" in that.  ???

What I do support is the bipartisan investigation into Russian influences on our elections, and finding out ways we can minimize that.  And I very much doubt I will change my support of that in 9 months.

I don't see how this could support "the tea party's coup d'état."  At best, I would think such Russian propaganda helps the tea party at this time.

You don't get that you are being duped into laying groundwork for a Trump impeachment that leaves Pence in power?  Or you don't get that getting rid of Trump is the Tea Party's next step to consolidating power?

Don't I get that getting rid of Trump is the Tea Party's next step in consolidating power?  Why, no, I don't. :)

Pence, from what I've heard, is far more a "traditional" Republican than Trump.  Sure, he's harder line on abortion and such, but he's not for eliminating the government and all the other crazy ideas that the Tea Party espouses.  Pence was the bone Trump threw to non-Tea Party Conservative Republicans.

So I see no advantage for the Tea Party to have Trump impeached.

Furthermore, it is likely that Pence will be running the government anyway, with Trump only making the "important" decisions and writing tweets at 3 AM.  If the Tea Party wanted to exert power, why not do it in the background with plausible deniability?  ("Hey, Trump made that bad decision, not Pence! ;) )

Not to mention that impeaching Trump would require getting a sizable number of Republican votes, which, regardless of the reason, would piss off most of Trump's supporters.  And we know some of them are bat-s**t crazy.  A dangerous move for the Republican Party and for the individual Republicans who would vote for it.

And just how many Tea Partiers dislike Putin, anyway?  I have seen a lot of praise for Putin coming from the far Right for at least a year or two.  Having Trump working for Putin could make some far Right conservatives quite happy right now.  ::)

So, no, I don't see the impeachment of Trump as helping "consolidate power" of the Tea Party.  They could do it in any number of easier ways.  Assuming, of course, that Trump isn't actually the embodiment of the Tea Party right now.

And Trump is laying the groundwork for his own impeachment quite well, without anyone's help. (Can anyone say "conflict of interest?"  I knew you could. :) )   
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: rightleft22 on December 15, 2016, 02:14:56 PM
Quote
Trump is laying the groundwork for his own impeachment quite well, without anyone's help. (Can anyone say "conflict of interest?" )

Coming across a lot of chatter about how conflict of interest is going to be Trumps Achilles heel however the arguments are coming for the same place as "Trump will never get elected" came from.

I think Trump and his base support (whoever that includes) are still being underestimated and would not be surprised if once again the rules end up not applying or being applied to Trump
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: D.W. on December 15, 2016, 02:32:32 PM
It's even a little more far fetched.  The president isn't bound by the same rules.  They have voluntarily complied in the past.

As to those crossing their fingers in hopes that the electoral college will not vote him into office...  I find it disturbing to cheer for an outcome that would almost certainly tare our country apart.  If there's something I can imagine that will be more damaging than a Trump presidency it's somehow refusing to allow him to take office.

He may drop trou on the nation/office, but I doubt he'll break laws and get thrown out.  :)
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Wayward Son on December 15, 2016, 02:42:06 PM
That's assuming he knows the laws well enough to not cross too far over the line.

Nixon thought he did, and he was more knowledgeable about politics than Trump... :)
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: D.W. on December 15, 2016, 03:19:37 PM
Fair point.  I just assume any more there is a team of people around going.  "Sir!  No, you can't DO that!"  But... I suppose you need to listen to them for that to work.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: TheDrake on December 15, 2016, 03:35:34 PM
How long before Trump reveals something classified on Twitter. ;)
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Fenring on December 15, 2016, 03:44:08 PM
How long before Trump reveals something classified on Twitter. ;)

At least it will be available for FOIA requests  :P
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Wayward Son on December 15, 2016, 03:48:25 PM
Until he classifies Twitter.  ::)
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: TheDeamon on December 15, 2016, 03:55:50 PM
And Trump is laying the groundwork for his own impeachment quite well, without anyone's help. (Can anyone say "conflict of interest?"  I knew you could. :) )

Trump is generally correct in regards to the PotUS and "conflict of interest" however. It has never been "tested in court" as to whether it is possible for the PotUS to have one. The Constitution says nothing on the matter, and it can be argued that Congress doesn't have the authority to restrict the activities of the PotUS (in his personal life) unless it actively endangers the nation.

And whose definition of "conflict of interest" are going by anyway? If you want to be strict about it, then nobody serving in Congress or certain tiers within the Executive Branch should ever own Treasury Bonds, lest they try to enact legislation or rule findings that benefit the performance of said bonds.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: NobleHunter on December 15, 2016, 04:04:53 PM
Trump is generally correct in regards to the PotUS and "conflict of interest" however. It has never been "tested in court" as to whether it is possible for the PotUS to have one. The Constitution says nothing on the matter, and it can be argued that Congress doesn't have the authority to restrict the activities of the PotUS (in his personal life) unless it actively endangers the nation.

And whose definition of "conflict of interest" are going by anyway? If you want to be strict about it, then nobody serving in Congress or certain tiers within the Executive Branch should ever own Treasury Bonds, lest they try to enact legislation or rule findings that benefit the performance of said bonds.
If they go for him, it'll probably be through the Emoluments clause of the Constitution. Though apparently the Democrats are going to introduce a Bill specifically applicable to the President.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: TheDeamon on December 15, 2016, 04:16:22 PM
If they go for him, it'll probably be through the Emoluments clause of the Constitution. Though apparently the Democrats are going to introduce a Bill specifically applicable to the President.

Then Trump can claim a legal defense on the basis of being "Grandfathered" under the old laws, it was legal at the time he assumed office, so any "business relationships" he had with the government at that time(and possibly up to the time such a law was enacted as law, which is highly unlikely during his presidency). Which isn't to mention the Pinkerton stuff and whatnot.

But the odds of any such bill getting anywhere are between slim and none. Not only would they need Republicans to sign onto it in order to get a majority, but they'd have to likely overcome a Presidential Veto on top of that, so they'd need a 2/3rds majority to enact the law. But in that case, the writing is probably on the proverbial wall for Trump(in regards to impeachment), and he'll either generate a media !$%^storm, or simply resign, if not both. He could certainly threaten to do so if they over-ride his veto. Depending on how popular he is at that time, that could be good or bad for Congress as a whole.

But we also still go back to the "is it constitutional for Congress to enact such a law in regards to the President?" Which would mean it needing to be "tested" in court. It would be interesting to see how THAT process would work out. Because of Grandfather provisions and everything else. So even if Congress did pass such a law, and overcame a Trump Veto, so it became law, would they then be (legally) capable of immediately impeaching Trump on grounds of being in violation, or would they need to wait for the Judicial Branch to make a decision on the matter?

What happens if Congress decides not to wait and impeaches Trump anyway? Even more hilarious: What happens if they did impeach him, only for SCotUS to come back later and say the Law wasn't legally binding on the PotUS? Does that mean the impeachment is overturned?
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Pete at Home on December 15, 2016, 04:28:56 PM
Scotia can't overturn impeachment on substantive grounds
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: NobleHunter on December 15, 2016, 04:31:03 PM
While I suspect the Bill is just being contemplated (at this time) to embarrass the GOP, if it gets anywhere it would be a bi-partisan effort. In that case, I don't think 2/3rds would be that hard to come by.

If it got far enough to serve as the basis for impeachment, I think the only defense worth trying is that Trump had no conflicts. It's too political a process for anything but actual innocence to be a defense. Not to mention it's likely that the Court will decline to place strict limits on the grounds for impeachment. Congress probably just needs a fig leaf.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Seriati on December 15, 2016, 05:04:00 PM
You guys are getting confused.  Congress doesn't have to pass a law to impeach or remove the President. 

It's incredibly bizarre to me, to be debating impeachment before he's even taken office.  Especially, when many of you didn't see any grounds to impeach the current President when he ignored laws, changed laws without Congressional approval, entered into "treaties" over known objections in the Senate, and tried to create his own laws with excesses of executive authority. 

How about you start with describing the criminal act you think requires impeachment?
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: NobleHunter on December 15, 2016, 05:08:58 PM
I think making a law he's clearly in violation of would make it more palatable to impeach him.

I think it's inevitable to be in violation of the Emoluments clause. He seems to be making no effort to avoid it. I think it's reasonable grounds for impeachment.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Seriati on December 15, 2016, 05:17:38 PM
I think making a law he's clearly in violation of would make it more palatable to impeach him.

Really?  Cause it violates a foundation principal of our legal system to make past conduct illegal and punish it.  Did you guys really get upset at the idea that he would pursue Clinton's acts that were illegal when she did it, and turn around and want new laws made to make his legal actions illegal?

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I think it's inevitable to be in violation of the Emoluments clause. He seems to be making no effort to avoid it. I think it's reasonable grounds for impeachment.

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No title of nobility shall be granted by the United States: and no person holding any office of profit or trust under them, shall, without the consent of the Congress, accept of any present, emolument, office, or title, of any kind whatever, from any king, prince, or foreign state.

This one?  In what way?

Sounds like a stretch to me.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: NobleHunter on December 15, 2016, 05:45:53 PM
I think the argument would be that he'd be in violation for ongoing actions. Properly formulated, it would have provisions for a time frame to get into compliance.

I'm pretty sure a multi-million dollar contract from a foreign government could be considered a present.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Wayward Son on December 15, 2016, 06:27:15 PM
Quote
It's incredibly bizarre to me, to be debating impeachment before he's even taken office.  Especially, when many of you didn't see any grounds to impeach the current President when he ignored laws, changed laws without Congressional approval, entered into "treaties" over known objections in the Senate, and tried to create his own laws with excesses of executive authority.

Well, Seriati, you ain't seen nothing yet. :)

Obama was a constitutional lawyer, who had a pretty good idea how far he could push the limits of Presidential authority.  Donald Trump is a businessman who has no idea of what is considered proper as far as the Constitution is concerned, and is used to being a dictator in his own companies.

Since he hasn't actually done anything yet, it is certainly premature to talk about impeachment.  But the potential is there.  Boy, is it there...
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: yossarian22c on December 15, 2016, 09:09:45 PM
Part of the reason that Trump is vulnerable to impeachment is that the Republican establishment hates him almost as much as the Democrats.  So if he steps over the line in a way where he looses a big group of his supporters I don't see Paul Ryan and the other Republicans fighting any head winds to keep him in office.  I think they would be perfectly happy with Pence.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: yossarian22c on December 15, 2016, 09:16:38 PM
There are lots of issues that could creep up and bite Trump in the ass.  Some of his companies have large loans with foreign banks (including the Bank of China).  Let's say Trump makes a trade agreement with China (or officially recognizes the one China policy) and six months later the his companies loans get refinanced at a lower interest rate.  It could just be a standard business deal but it will look a lot like a quid pro quo.  Combine that with something that would drop his popularity in the USA and bye bye Trump, hello Pence.  The key here is republican leaders can go against Trump without directly benefiting the democrats.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: TheDeamon on December 15, 2016, 11:21:14 PM
You guys are getting confused.  Congress doesn't have to pass a law to impeach or remove the President.

Indeed, SCotUS has been pretty clear in their view that Impeachment is not a criminal or any other kind of legal/judicial process, but rather, that it is a political one, and as such tends to keep clear of getting involved.

However, the Constitution makes it clear that Impeachment is only supposed to happen in the event of "High Crimes and Misdemeanors" which tends to indicate that first an office holder would need to be found to be in violation of a law. Whatever that law may be. Which is where things get weird if it is later determined that the law they were found to be in violation of, was itself struck down for being in violation of the Constitution.

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It's incredibly bizarre to me, to be debating impeachment before he's even taken office.  Especially, when many of you didn't see any grounds to impeach the current President when he ignored laws, changed laws without Congressional approval, entered into "treaties" over known objections in the Senate, and tried to create his own laws with excesses of executive authority.

As already largely alluded to, the Republicans don't really care for Trump, and would likely try to dump him as soon as he becomes a liability, which being Trump, will likely be sooner rather than later.

The Democrats currently hate him. So getting a 2/3rds majority to rule in favor of impeachment on Donald Trump could become a very easy undertaking if Trump botches things up enough.

This is unlike the scenario with Obama where the Democrats were almost whole-hog supporters for virtually everything that he was doing, even if it wasn't actually legal. There was no way in hell that the Republicans would have managed to succeed in impeaching Obama, as they would have needed a dozen or more Democratic Senators to vote in favor of doing so. Since that wasn't going to happen, making the attempt wasn't worthwhile.

Further, the Republicans remember what happened with Clinton, and knew the press would rake them over the coals if they even discussed going the motions of making an attempt to do so against Obama.

With Trump, the media loves to hate him, and if he's truly making a cluster out of things, the Media isn't going to cover his back, they'll be there as cheerleaders in favor of the impeachment proceedings.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Seriati on December 16, 2016, 09:30:36 AM
I think the argument would be that he'd be in violation for ongoing actions. Properly formulated, it would have provisions for a time frame to get into compliance.

I'm pretty sure a multi-million dollar contract from a foreign government could be considered a present.

What you are actually alluding to?  Multi-million dollar business deals are not presents, and they are already subject to restrictions on the gift portion (pay to play, foreign corrupt practices act).  Where is the gift to Trump that you think raises this concern?  I still think its incredibly funny to try and construe business deals as a gift, but to think that enormous contributions to a charity controlled by a politician as something else.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Seriati on December 16, 2016, 09:52:50 AM
Quote
It's incredibly bizarre to me, to be debating impeachment before he's even taken office.  Especially, when many of you didn't see any grounds to impeach the current President when he ignored laws, changed laws without Congressional approval, entered into "treaties" over known objections in the Senate, and tried to create his own laws with excesses of executive authority.

Well, Seriati, you ain't seen nothing yet. :)

Obama was a constitutional lawyer, who had a pretty good idea how far he could push the limits of Presidential authority.

I've never seen anything in his actions that show me that he respected the Constitution.  Its not clear to me that what the President taught was really focused on the Constitution, rather than on activism under the Constitution.  People who hate something are often well versed in its details after all.

In any event, a claim that he has special knowledge (which isn't that special, since tens of thousands, if not hundreds of thousands of lawyers are equally qualified) is meaningless if there is no  evidence that its used.  What kept him in office is not a "special" Constitutional knowledge that allowed him to cleverly stay within Constitutional constraints (which is something he routinely failed to do, which is why his SC record isn't so hot), but rather that he had an impeachment proof minority in the Senate who would never have agreed to impeach him no matter what he did.

Quote
Since he hasn't actually done anything yet, it is certainly premature to talk about impeachment.  But the potential is there.  Boy, is it there...

Lol, well glad you at least acknowledge that we shouldn't impeach someone before they actually do something impeachable.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: NobleHunter on December 16, 2016, 11:11:06 AM
What you are actually alluding to?  Multi-million dollar business deals are not presents, and they are already subject to restrictions on the gift portion (pay to play, foreign corrupt practices act).  Where is the gift to Trump that you think raises this concern?  I still think its incredibly funny to try and construe business deals as a gift, but to think that enormous contributions to a charity controlled by a politician as something else.
You keep acting like impeachment is a legal process, so the facts need to fit a legal framework. It's a political process, so they don't need to prove that any given deal was an outright gift but simply advantageous enough to Trump to count as an attempt to influence. And just make the suggestion strongly enough that enough congress-critters feel comfortable with supporting an impeachment.

And you're still playing "but, Clinton..."
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: TheDeamon on December 16, 2016, 11:21:31 AM
You keep acting like impeachment is a legal process, so the facts need to fit a legal framework. It's a political process, so they don't need to prove that any given deal was an outright gift but simply advantageous enough to Trump to count as an attempt to influence. And just make the suggestion strongly enough that enough congress-critters feel comfortable with supporting an impeachment.

And you're still playing "but, Clinton..."

That being said, and fully agreed upon. It still doesn't mean people can't rightfully call others out as being hypocrites when they exercise the political option on something like that.

Edit to add: As a political process, rather than a legal one, normal rules of evidence don't apply, also "proof beyond a reasonable doubt" isn't needed. The list goes on and on beyond that. However, for the politicians to at least give the appearance of the impeachment proceeding "being legitimate," they at least need to pay lip service to such things.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: DonaldD on March 27, 2017, 10:55:56 PM
When even Darth Vader thinks emperor Palputin went too far - Dick Cheney decries the Russian influence (or attempted influence) on the US election: http://www.cnn.com/2017/03/27/politics/dick-cheney-russia/index.html (http://www.cnn.com/2017/03/27/politics/dick-cheney-russia/index.html)
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Fenring on March 28, 2017, 12:30:53 AM
When even Darth Vader thinks emperor Palputin went too far - Dick Cheney decries the Russian influence (or attempted influence) on the US election: http://www.cnn.com/2017/03/27/politics/dick-cheney-russia/index.html (http://www.cnn.com/2017/03/27/politics/dick-cheney-russia/index.html)

Cheney's statement is hardly out of left field. He comes out of the same cracker jacks box as McCain and other warmongers-for-profit do. 
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: DonaldD on March 28, 2017, 07:10:14 AM
You think Cheney wants war with Russia, and that's the only reason why he pretends to think that possible Russian interference in the USA election is important?  Wow, it's getting so that everybody must have nefarious reasons for thinking that Russian interference in western elections is an evolving problem.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Fenring on March 28, 2017, 10:00:57 AM
You think Cheney wants war with Russia, and that's the only reason why he pretends to think that possible Russian interference in the USA election is important?  Wow, it's getting so that everybody must have nefarious reasons for thinking that Russian interference in western elections is an evolving problem.

Everyone? No, just the same old gang that work together to get things done. It's as if three different Madison avenue ad men came to tell you that each thought you should buy Cheerios. Well, if all of these different people are saying the same thing, one would have to be pretty paranoid to suggest that they don't earnestly believe it! What are the odds they work for the same company? Conspiracy theory!

It's seriously not rocket science. Doesn't mean I'm indisputably right, but the line of argument is quite clear.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Fenring on April 05, 2017, 10:45:03 AM
Here's a good article about sabre rattling and conducting irrelevant, corrupt wars:

http://www.unz.com/pgiraldi/by-jingo-an-act-of-war/

The article is distinctly anti-war, and so may stick in the craw of any fans of Iraq 2.0 and subsequent wars, but you may at least be relieved to note that it's a non-partisan piece. Here's a passage I especially liked:

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Almost everyone I know who follows such matters is also critical of U.S. (hypocritical) efforts to promote democracy, a formulation wildly popular among Hillary Clinton style Democrats to enable attacking Muslim countries that have somehow offended either Israel or the Washington Establishment. But what is particularly disturbing about the constant denigration of Russia and Vladimir Putin in the media and among the political class is the regular invocation of war doctrine, that hacking a server by a foreign power, if it took place, is in the same category as the attack on Pearl Harbor. That World War 3 would be a nuclear holocaust does not seem to have occurred to politicians seeking a punchy line so they can get cited in The Washington Post. It leads one to the inevitable conclusion that war is far too serious a business to be left to politicians.

But what particularly offends me personally about those eager to go toe to toe with the Russians is their complete venality and fundamental cowardice. As a Vietnam era vet, I understand full well how it feels to have your life disrupted to go off and possibly die to fight a war that was totally meaningless. Our crowd of politicians is fond of talking about war as if it were some kind of diversion being featured on a monopoly board and that is precisely because they have no skin in the game. They somehow fancy that a shooting war will somehow not happen, that Russia will back down in a confrontation with force majeur, and they deep down feel completely immune to the consequences that might result from their ill-advised actions. And they are unfortunately in large part correct to feel so, as no one was ever held accountable for Iraq. Consequences that apply to the “little people” in the U.S. do not apply to them.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: DonaldD on May 30, 2017, 09:20:46 AM
http://www.cnn.com/2017/05/30/politics/russians-trump-campaign-information/index.html (http://www.cnn.com/2017/05/30/politics/russians-trump-campaign-information/index.html)
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(CNN) Russian government officials discussed having potentially "derogatory" information about then-presidential candidate Donald Trump and some of his top aides in conversations intercepted by US intelligence during the 2016 election, according to two former intelligence officials and a congressional source.
The article does go on to say that it was at least possible that this intercepted information was actually disinformation, but there is no real way to know.

So, in addition to releasing potentially damaging information about Clinton staffers and associates, Russia seems to have had (or at least pretended to have had) access to damaging information about Trump and his associates - but chose NOT to release that information in order to keep its leverage over a possible future Trump administration.

If true, this puts into perspective the naïve claim that Russia releasing 'factual' information concerning Clinton associates was actually a good thing, since, as expected, Russia was able to choose which damaging information the US public got access to prior to the election.

Clearly, Russian actions had no effect on the election, those non-existent actions were actually beneficial anyway, and there is no need to investigate anything concerning Russian attempts to subvert US democracy.

Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Fenring on May 30, 2017, 10:06:11 AM
Clearly, Russian actions had no effect on the election, those non-existent actions were actually beneficial anyway, and there is no need to investigate anything concerning Russian attempts to subvert US democracy.

This is a strawman, isn't it? Who claimed that Russian actions had NO effect on the election? In fact, who would even try to argue that they should have no effect? The idea that nations should have no effect on each other is perverse. That is a separate matter from whether they subverted the election, which is the claim people are actually making. You enter into strange territory when you claim that releasing true information about corruption is 'damaging' to America, on the grounds that they had other true information that they supposedly withheld. I'm sure Russia has lots of information they keep to themselves for various reasons. Your direct short circuit from "they didn't play all their cards" to "Trump is their patsy" is a huge exercise in confirmation bias. But again, let's say for instance Putin really did prefer Trump to win (and who could blame him): so what? So Russia releases accurate news stories that will hurt Clinton? How is that foul play? So really it comes back to the leak/hack, and whether Russia was behind it.

Funny thing, I've heard that the Clinton team was prepping the "Russia interfered" meme from the moment she lost the election; this is from that book that came out about her imploding campaign called "Shattered" (I think this story is from the book, I haven't read it). I find it interesting that the 'DNC hack' is being pinned on Russia after a corrupt election campaign imploded in itself, while previously no one ever pointed at Russia when Wikileaks would release information. I don't recall anyone calling Edward Snowden a Russian plant. Hey, maybe he is one, but no one saw fit to push that narrative. But mysteriously the same camp that was pushing the "Putin is the devil' campaign during the election continued to push it after the election. What a surprise. Like I said in the other thread, Donald, when an interested party is pushing a narrative that's a pretty good reason to view it with suspicion.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Pete at Home on May 30, 2017, 11:42:10 AM
http://www.cnn.com/2017/05/30/politics/russians-trump-campaign-information/index.html (http://www.cnn.com/2017/05/30/politics/russians-trump-campaign-information/index.html)
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(CNN) Russian government officials discussed having potentially "derogatory" information about then-presidential candidate Donald Trump and some of his top aides in conversations intercepted by US intelligence during the 2016 election, according to two former intelligence officials and a congressional source.
The article does go on to say that it was at least possible that this intercepted information was actually disinformation, but there is no real way to know.

So, in addition to releasing potentially damaging information about Clinton staffers and associates, Russia seems to have had (or at least pretended to have had) access to damaging information about Trump and his associates - but chose NOT to release that information in order to keep its leverage over a possible future Trump administration.

If true, this puts into perspective the naïve claim that Russia releasing 'factual' information concerning Clinton associates was actually a good thing, since, as expected, Russia was able to choose which damaging information the US public got access to prior to the election.

Clearly, Russian actions had no effect on the election, those non-existent actions were actually beneficial anyway, and there is no need to investigate anything concerning Russian attempts to subvert US democracy.

False equivalency.  The information released on HRC demonstrated perjury before Congress.  There's no possibility that the stuff on Donald Trump contained anything like that, since he has never testified before Congress.  The information suggested as "leverage" involved salacious garbage, basically slut-shaming Trump, which is kind of funny when you think about it, since the man's affairs are public matters before he ever became the champion of the family values crowd.  The idea that professional water sports are the equivalent of, say, HRC perjuring herself before Congress, or her brilliant plan to bring Iran to its knees with a 100% air war, is a classic example of the sort of lopsided wishful thinking that led to Trump's election in the first place.

Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Pete at Home on May 30, 2017, 11:49:09 AM
You think Cheney wants war with Russia, and that's the only reason why he pretends to think that possible Russian interference in the USA election is important? 
:o ??? ::) :'( :D ;D

Just to be clear, "possible Russian interference in the USA election" references Wikileaks disclosing stuff that HRC swore before Congress wasn't out there?
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Wow, it's getting so that everybody must have nefarious reasons for thinking that Russian interference in western elections is an evolving problem.

Right.  Because when you bend the facts to obfuscate who did what to whom, we should all assume that you're being completely straightforward.  And when you turn your former Darth Vader/Great Satan Dick Cheney into a paragon of civic virtue in order to go after a Darther Vader/Greater Satan/Bigger Dick, we aren't supposed to laugh helplessly.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Pete at Home on May 30, 2017, 11:55:20 AM
What you are actually alluding to?  Multi-million dollar business deals are not presents, and they are already subject to restrictions on the gift portion (pay to play, foreign corrupt practices act).  Where is the gift to Trump that you think raises this concern?  I still think its incredibly funny to try and construe business deals as a gift, but to think that enormous contributions to a charity controlled by a politician as something else.
You keep acting like impeachment is a legal process, so the facts need to fit a legal framework. It's a political process, so they don't need to prove that any given deal was an outright gift but simply advantageous enough to Trump to count as an attempt to influence. And just make the suggestion strongly enough that enough congress-critters feel comfortable with supporting an impeachment.

It's a political process, but we're all supposed to act like we believe that it was a purely legal process.  This is what Yeats called "the ceremony of innocence."  It sounds silly, until you consider that the alternative is "the blood-rimmed tide."
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Pete at Home on May 30, 2017, 12:15:42 PM
Here's how the Clinton Admin "investigated" evidence that its own campaign had been funded with money from the People's Republic of China: they handed it over to Janet Reno. [chortle]

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In addition to partisan complaints from Republicans, columnists Charles Krauthammer, William Safire, and Morton Kondracke, as well as a number of FBI agents, suggested the investigations into the fund-raising controversies (which some[who?] dubbed Chinagate) were willfully impeded.[53][54][55]
FBI agent Ivian Smith wrote a letter to FBI Director Freeh that expressed "a lack of confidence" in the Justice Department's attorneys regarding the fund-raising investigation. He wrote: "I am convinced the team at... [the Department of Justice] leading this investigation is, at best, simply not up to the task... The impression left is the emphasis on how not to prosecute matters, not how to aggressively conduct investigations leading to prosecutions." Smith and three other FBI agents later testified before Congress in late 1999 that Justice Department prosecutors impeded their inquiry. FBI agent Daniel Wehr told Congress that the first head U.S. attorney in the investigation, Laura Ingersoll, told the agents they should "not pursue any matter related to solicitation of funds for access to the president. The reason given was, 'That's the way the American political process works.' I was scandalized by that," Wehr said. The four FBI agents also said that Ingersoll prevented them from executing search warrants to stop destruction of evidence and micromanaged the case beyond all reason.[56]
FBI agents were also denied the opportunity to ask President Clinton and Vice President Gore questions during Justice Department interviews in 1997 and 1998 and were only allowed to take notes. During the interviews, neither Clinton nor Gore were asked any questions about fund-raisers John Huang, James Riady, nor the Hsi Lai Buddhist Temple fund-raising event led by Maria Hsia and attended by John Huang and Ted Sioeng.

I respectfully submit that having the PRC actually fund a presidential campaign is more serious than claim that Russia disclosed embarrassing facts about one candidate.

Same could be said with Reagan's back-channels with revolutionary Iran.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: DonaldD on May 30, 2017, 12:41:50 PM
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This is a strawman, isn't it?
No, it was sarcasm.
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Who claimed that Russian actions had NO effect on the election?
Ignoring that the internet provides voice to people with basically every opinion even barely conceivable, you could start with the president and members of his administration and work your way down. You would have to have been hiding under a rock for 6 months NOT to have been subjected to people very forcefully making that claim.

I see, however, that you didn't take issue with the second part of the sarcastic sentence...
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Fenring on May 30, 2017, 12:46:27 PM
No, it was sarcasm.

Well it was sarcasm with the intent to take the piss out of the view that Russia had no influence at all on the election, which itself is a strawman position. The defences being offered tend to be of the "Russia didn't hack the election" variety, not the "no particle from any Russian touched any particle affiliated with the election" variety. It's a strawman to assert that the case to be made is that Russia had some sort of effect on the election. The only relevant case is whether they subverted it, or a candidate colluded with them to subvert it.

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I see, however, that you didn't take issue with the second part of the sarcastic sentence...

I have no objection to investigations when there's suspicion of wrongdoing.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Pete at Home on May 30, 2017, 12:59:50 PM
When since 1945 has Russia *not* had some effect on a US election?

Given that the US intelligence services almost certainly used a Russian-tainted patsy to distract from their assassination of a US president, it's difficult to believe their "Russian connection" allegations against a US president that they have openly declared war on.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: DonaldD on May 30, 2017, 02:48:32 PM
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Well it was sarcasm with the intent to take the piss out of the view that Russia had no influence at all on the election, which itself is a strawman position.
No, it isn't actually - since the election was decided by a margin of a few hundred thousand votes over 3 states, just about any interference that had a negative effect on Clinton's votes could very possibly have swayed the election.

Yet there are many people, even people on this board, who pooh-poohed the claim that the Russian intervention could possibly have led to the Trump victory.  Because the margin was so thin, it's really, really hard to argue that although the Russian interference had an appreciable effect on vote totals, it was insufficient to sway the election.

That you have this information but still think the point was a straw man just means your blinders are on or you haven't done the math (or both).
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Fenring on May 30, 2017, 02:54:03 PM
Yet there are many people, even people on this board, who pooh-poohed the claim that the Russian intervention could possibly have led to the Trump victory.  Because the margin was so thin, it's really, really hard to argue that although the Russian interference had an appreciable effect on vote totals, it was insufficient to sway the election.

That you have this information but still think the point was a straw man just means your blinders are on or you haven't done the math (or both).

This is a real shifting goalpost. Now you're saying that even if Russia's contribution to Clinton's defeat was minor it may still have been enough to push it over the edge to allow Trump to win. Well in that case I'm sure you can cite to a thousand and one causes and contributors to her losing votes, and claim that each of them "subverted" the election because they made her lost. Yes, indeed, each and every factor contributes to whatever degrees that it does. Singling out one of them from many and saying "it was the cause!" even though it may have only had a minor effect is, if I recall correctly, the fallacy of division (that a property of a complete system can be attributed to a single part of that system).

If you were to forward the simple claim that Russia may have contributed to her defeat, there's really no contest there. Sure, maybe they did. That's neither illegal nor does it require an investigation. What you really want to claim, though, is that something untoward was going on involving Trump and colluding with the enemy, and that's a completely different kettle of fish.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Seriati on May 30, 2017, 03:17:40 PM
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Well it was sarcasm with the intent to take the piss out of the view that Russia had no influence at all on the election, which itself is a strawman position.
No, it isn't actually - since the election was decided by a margin of a few hundred thousand votes over 3 states, just about any interference that had a negative effect on Clinton's votes could very possibly have swayed the election.

Lol.  That's a real cherry pick.  Any influence that could move a "few hundred thousand votes over 3 states" when extrapolated would move what, at least 5 million votes across the country (300k for 3 states = 5 million for fifty)?  That's not a small amount that's like a 1 in 25 voter shift.  Of course, the elections in those states were much smaller totals.  What percentage is attributable to illegal influence?  I'm guessing zero by the way.

If Clinton's campaign hadn't had contempt for the average voters, cheated and manipulated there wouldn't really have been anything damaging to release.  It's not like there were not deliberate real and fake releases about Trump that tried to be damaging.  Were they manipulations as well?   In your analysis how many voters did they sway?

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Yet there are many people, even people on this board, who pooh-poohed the claim that the Russian intervention could possibly have led to the Trump victory.

The Clinton campaign's stupidity led to a Trump victory.  Blaming the "Russians" for releasing the campaign's own damaging and stupid emails (by the way there's still almost no actual released evidence showing the Russians did it) is kind of rich.  Why not put the blame where it really belongs?  On an arrogant campaign, or a party that subverted the will of its own voters?

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Because the margin was so thin, it's really, really hard to argue that although the Russian interference had an appreciable effect on vote totals, it was insufficient to sway the election.

Well the truth had an impact.  Which part of the truth is the "Russian interference"? 

What was the impact of the CNN interference?  You know where they manipulated their role as a neutral arbiter in a debate to try and tip the scales - which is an actual abuse of trust in a duty they owe to the American people and the two parties.  I guess you'd only care about that if they had been supporting a Republican (and don't lie, it would be the biggest scandal in electoral history if the parties were reversed). 

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That you have this information but still think the point was a straw man just means your blinders are on or you haven't done the math (or both).

Or it still means that you're arguing by implication and refusing to actually acknowledge what the real causes were. 

What was the statistical impact of Clinton refusing to hold a press conference for nine months with a fawning media?  What was the statistical impact of Clinton not running on any identifiable issues?  What was the statistical impact of Clinton never once putting forward any plausible explanation for her server?
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Fenring on May 30, 2017, 03:33:23 PM
What was the impact of the CNN interference?  You know where they manipulated their role as a neutral arbiter in a debate to try and tip the scales - which is an actual abuse of trust in a duty they owe to the American people and the two parties. 

Not only that, but in addition to networks colluding with Hillary and the DNC to defeat Sanders, they also conspired against Trump. And not just 'lefty' networks, but even FOX and his own party. They were all trying to humiliate and sink him as a unit. And yet despite all this and all the advantages Hillary had going in, she lost, and it's to be blamed on whatever influence Russia may allegedly have had? Give me a break.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Pete at Home on May 30, 2017, 04:16:56 PM
Donald, while you're at it, I think that the insinuation of "the Russians are tampering with our election" may well have had more of an effect on the electorate than the actual information released.   I'll bet that more than four times as many Americans know of the claim that "the Russians hacked our elections" than can name any of the specific bits of "damaging information" from Wikileaks that you're trying to attribute to the elecction.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: DonaldD on May 30, 2017, 08:27:59 PM
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This is a real shifting goalpost
I can't imagine why you would think so. You took exception with my sarcasm, and now you seem to be imbuing my sarcastic statement with a level of meaning nowhere in evidence in my posts.

Ask yourself what, specifically, I wrote, instead of what you now think I must have meant.

BTW, for clear evidence that some people don't think the Russian propaganda and the release of emails had any effect on the election whatsoever, look no further than Seriati's post below. "What percentage is attributable to illegal influence?  I'm guessing zero by the way."
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Pete at Home on May 30, 2017, 08:40:03 PM
BTW, for clear evidence that some people don't think the Russian propaganda and the release of emails had any effect on the election whatsoever, look no further than Seriati's post below. "What percentage is attributable to illegal influence?  I'm guessing zero by the way."

Is "Russian propaganda" illegal?

As for the release of the emails, Seriati seems to be assuming that this was wikileaks, not Russia.  And you've introduced nothing AFAIK that puts that into question.  Yes, Putin had motive to hate Clinton (Kosovo and the Ukraine), but Wikileaks had even more hatred of the Clinton-Obama-international surveillance syndicate, and the whole operation is the logical next step in Wikileaks history.

Occam's razor points to Wikileaks.  Wikileaks points to Wikileaks.  Putin points to Wikileaks.  The only people pointing to Russia are either trying to cover Clinton's ass, or trying to bring down Trump by any means necessary, or (like Cheney) trying to protect America's international surveillance apparatus.  Snapshot of the latter: https://www.facebook.com/urbrax/posts/10213387551473699?pnref=story

How can you not see that  the Obama-Clinton-US intelligence-World Press tetrarchy was and remains Wikileaks' principal antagonist and target?

Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Fenring on May 31, 2017, 12:16:43 AM
I can't imagine why you would think so. You took exception with my sarcasm, and now you seem to be imbuing my sarcastic statement with a level of meaning nowhere in evidence in my posts.

Ask yourself what, specifically, I wrote, instead of what you now think I must have meant.

Uh, generally sarcasm is when you say a thing and imply its opposite. If I say "Yeah, I believe you" it would mean "I do not believe you" in real terms. I guess if you're using some kind of unconventional sarcasm then maybe that isn't the best method for clarity. Here, I'll feed you back your statement and how I interpret you real view that you seem to be pointing to with the sarcasm:

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Clearly,

You believe those who make such claims are mistaken about the clarity of the matter -

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Russian actions had no effect on the election,

You believe Russian actions had an effect on the election -

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those non-existent actions were actually beneficial anyway,

You believe those actions did exist, and their results were not beneficial -

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and there is no need to investigate anything concerning Russian attempts to subvert US democracy.

You believe there is a need to investigate Russian attempts to subvert US democracy.

Are any of these points things you do not believe? These are the statements I assumed you were making with your sarcasm, which are each the opposite of what you sarcastically wrote. So what level of meaning do you think I was imbuing your comment with other than these?

Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Pete at Home on May 31, 2017, 12:48:39 AM
What was the impact of the CNN interference?  You know where they manipulated their role as a neutral arbiter in a debate to try and tip the scales - which is an actual abuse of trust in a duty they owe to the American people and the two parties. 

Not only that, but in addition to networks colluding with Hillary and the DNC to defeat Sanders, they also conspired against Trump. And not just 'lefty' networks, but even FOX and his own party. They were all trying to humiliate and sink him as a unit. And yet despite all this and all the advantages Hillary had going in, she lost, and it's to be blamed on whatever influence Russia may allegedly have had? Give me a break.

Not to mention the biggest opponent of all to the Trump campaign -- Trump himself.  Good gravy, what an anti-candidate.  Didn't even try to fundraise, much less to actually plan his campaign.  Spewed random twitters.   There's literally no political position or policy that he ever advocated that he did not contradict at some other point.

When I heard he'd actually been elected, I lay in bed sick for a day.  But the news and facebook, like a big brainwashing machine just kept spinning faster and faster, I couldn't help seeing what all those people were voting against when they put in for Trump.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Seriati on May 31, 2017, 09:26:10 AM
BTW, for clear evidence that some people don't think the Russian propaganda and the release of emails had any effect on the election whatsoever, look no further than Seriati's post below. "What percentage is attributable to illegal influence?  I'm guessing zero by the way."

Is "Russian propaganda" illegal?

Pete caught the significant piece on his first go through.  What law do you think prevents the Russians (or anyone else) from producing propaganda?  Or just straight up stating their opinions about who we should elect?  Do you think there is a law against a country threatening to go to war or to murder our citizens if we elect a certain person?  There was no illegal Russian propaganda.

We had a crime in the breach of the DNC's and Podesta's security.  It's been widely acknowledged that Podesta fell for, pardon me borrowing President Obama's term a "junior varsity" level phishing scam.  There's every evidence that the DNC was penetrated more than once, by more than one actor and also was the subject of deliberate leakers.  Against that background, the fact that their own words - and be honest its the true emails, especially Podesta's, not any "fake" propaganda -  damaged them is hardly surprising or even troubling.  Wow, we should all be upset that the "Russians" "manipulated" the election by showing how the DNC and the Clinton campaign were manipulating the election.  There is no evidence that would convince a non-partisan that the Russians were the only people to have the emails.  There is no evidence AT ALL that establishes a Russian Wikileaks distribution (other than vague implication).  Wikileaks released the data, and they've implied they got it from a leak.

I got no beef with prosecuting the hackers.  Go at it.

I have a right to protest treating this an event worthy of war level rhetoric by  members of the Democratic Party against the worlds second greatest military power, without something real in the proof department being released.  I have every right to protest undermining the elected government of the US with a political investigation mascarading as a legitimate investigation, how quickly the left has forgotten the perils of McCarthyism. 

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As for the release of the emails, Seriati seems to be assuming that this was wikileaks, not Russia.

Two things.  First, I have no assumption as to who gave Wikileaks the information.  They've implied it was a leaker, but it could have been Russian or other hackers directly or indirectly.

Second, I honestly don't care.  I'm not a fan of secrecy in government, or even really inside political parties.  We need to be able to keep secrets related to national security secure, but the urge to over-classify should be resisted.  In this case, quite frankly, even if the Clinton campaign insiders really had that high a level of contempt for their own voters, let alone the other sides', there is no excuse for them to put it in writing.  It's practically the first rule of communication, assume what ever you write will be broadcast globally.  The fact that knowing what the Clinton campaign really thought about its voters could be so decisive is directly related to a certain delusional attitude that voters have, where they are the "good guys" therefore they don't have to justify everything they believe in cause everyone knows their side is "good" and the other is "evil," revealing the evil at the core opened some eyes.  Well at least until the media did damage control and forced the issue back out of sight.

I had a specific conversation with several of my friends pre-leaks about why they were voting for Clinton and what issues she was campaigning on, and without exception not a one of them could name five issues related to her campaign.  It was all some iteration of they believed she was a good person, who would "do the right thing" and was highly qualified.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: DonaldD on May 31, 2017, 10:56:31 PM
Fenring, let me point you in the right direction:
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Now you're saying that even if Russia's contribution to Clinton's defeat was minor
This characterization of what I wrote is where you are going wrong - the Russian involvement was not minor, in that it likely did lead to Clinton's defeat.  We can also really not know the full extent of the effect of Russian involvement both in leaks and in propaganda efforts, as it was on-going for several months, but the effect of the email leaks so close to the election, in conjunction with the concurrent announcement of Comey's reopening of the FBI investigation in the week leading up to the election, was coincident with a shift of several percentage points in the national polls.

Now, Seriati attempted to waffle his position by limiting his statement to "illegal influence" - of course, whether there is a law against Russian attempts to subvert the US electoral process is beside the point - just as impeachment is political, so are most interactions between sovereign powers. But my point was not that the Russian actions were illegal - just that they existed, and had an effect.  Bringing up "illegal" is just a distraction.

So, people not believing that the Russian intervention had an effect - check.
People believing that a one-sided release of prejudicial information by a foreign power is actually good for democracy - check.
There's no need to investigate - check.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Fenring on May 31, 2017, 11:16:44 PM
This characterization of what I wrote is where you are going wrong - the Russian involvement was not minor, in that it likely did lead to Clinton's defeat.

It's counterfactual so in a way it's not fair to ask you this, but are you asserting that in your opinion had Russia not interfered (assuming it did) Hillary would have won staight-up? On what do you base this - or is it a hunch? And my follow-up is, do you think she ought to have won? From the sound of it I get the sense you think she was cheated of her deserved victory or something like that. Do you really believe she deserved it? Never mind for the moment how much worse you may think Trump is than she would have been; just on her own credits or demerits, you think she earned and deserved to become President? Please note that although in this hypothetical Russia didn't get involved, the facts released by Wikileaks would still be true, you just wouldn't know about them.

As a semi-tangent to my questions above, have you seen the series 24? (SPOILER) In season two or three (I forget which) the President is up for re-election and has the opportunity to get a copy of his opponent's playbook for the debates. His brother and chief of staff tries vehemently to get him to accept the advantage, but the President is a man of honor and outright refuses to cheat in the debate and undermine his campaign's reputation for honesty. Now jump to the real world, where, instead of the opponent's playbook the advantage up for grabs was very similar, which was an advanced copy of the debate questions. Well, you get the picture. If the guy from 24 was running I'd vote for him in a second. What America got instead was people being called conspiracy theorists when it got out what happened.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Pete at Home on May 31, 2017, 11:57:57 PM

So, people not believing that the Russian intervention had an effect - check.


No one questions that it had an effect.  It's put the party fanatics into Russian scare mode like they weren't even during the Cold War.  The party of "the 80s called, they want their cold war back" turned into insult Russians in public.

"People believing that a one-sided release of prejudicial information by a foreign power is actually good for democracy - check."

When is information release not one-sided?  when one party controls most of the intelligence services and the media, a little one-sided info in the other direction means in the net, there's more of a two-sided release of information.  Look, if the Clintons want to ask their friends in the People's Republic of CHina, you know the ones who paid for his 1996 election, they can probably dig up Trump's tax return.  And that too would be a good thing -- one-sided information, from different sources, ends up being multi-sided information. 

Most everything is a good thing and a bad thing for Democracy all at the same time.  Do you really not see any silver lining on the DNC getting wikileaked?

"There's no need to investigate - check."

Who said that?  The primary block to the investigation from the onset have been the DNC.  They refused the FBI's initial request to look at their servers, and Wasserman-Schultz is actually threatening police to prevent them from doing a full investigation.  Blaming that on people on Ornery is really some chutzpah.

But humor me and explain the difference from the investigation you're asking for, and a "one sided release of information" which is, according to you, never good for Democracy. :D


There's no need to investigate - check.

Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: DonaldD on October 19, 2017, 12:26:21 PM
Nikki Haley claims Russian interference in US elections is "warfare": http://www.cnn.com/2017/10/19/politics/nikki-haley-russia-warfare/index.html (http://www.cnn.com/2017/10/19/politics/nikki-haley-russia-warfare/index.html)
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: DonaldD on October 19, 2017, 12:36:52 PM
I hadn't noticed this before:
Quote
What you really want to claim, though, is that something untoward was going on involving Trump and colluding with the enemy, and that's a completely different kettle of fish.
No.  I very carefully stayed away from insinuating anything of the sort.  That the Russian efforts seemed to be supporting Trump was clear, but the issue is not which side the Russians supported this go-around, but rather that they had effectively waged a war against your electoral system.

I understand that separating partisanship from position is difficult for you, so you tend to project that same tendency on others... :P
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: DonaldD on October 31, 2017, 04:26:28 PM
More details - not really surprising, as this has been coming out in dribs and drabs already from the different platforms.

http://money.cnn.com/2017/10/31/media/facebook-twitter-google-congress/index.html
 (http://money.cnn.com/2017/10/31/media/facebook-twitter-google-congress/index.html)
Quote
Facebook informed lawmakers that roughly 126 million Americans may have been exposed to content generated on its platform by a Russian government-linked troll farm known as the Internet Research Agency between June 2015 and August 2017.

Twitter disclosed that it has identified 2,752 accounts linked to the Internet Research Agency. It found a total of 36,746 accounts that appeared to be associated with Russia, though not necessarily with the Internet Research Agency, which generated automated, election-related content.

Colin Stretch, Facebook's general counsel, called the content of the Russian-bought ads "deeply disturbing" in his prepared remarks. He said it was "seemingly intended to amplify societal divisions and pit groups of people against each other."
Still, nothing to see here... no worries.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Fenring on October 31, 2017, 05:42:45 PM
More details - not really surprising, as this has been coming out in dribs and drabs already from the different platforms.

http://money.cnn.com/2017/10/31/media/facebook-twitter-google-congress/index.html
 (http://money.cnn.com/2017/10/31/media/facebook-twitter-google-congress/index.html)
Quote
Facebook informed lawmakers that roughly 126 million Americans may have been exposed to content generated on its platform by a Russian government-linked troll farm known as the Internet Research Agency between June 2015 and August 2017.

Twitter disclosed that it has identified 2,752 accounts linked to the Internet Research Agency. It found a total of 36,746 accounts that appeared to be associated with Russia, though not necessarily with the Internet Research Agency, which generated automated, election-related content.

Colin Stretch, Facebook's general counsel, called the content of the Russian-bought ads "deeply disturbing" in his prepared remarks. He said it was "seemingly intended to amplify societal divisions and pit groups of people against each other."
Still, nothing to see here... no worries.

Hey, if you're going to accuse Russia of something with this kind of reveal then I think the right target would be conspiring with the two major parties to do all of the things you bolded. Every one of those things (misleading people, turning people against each other, being exposed to paid internet troll farms) is done by all three parties and all for the purpose of furthering some political objective. Why shouldn't Russia do what Americans do to themselves? Now I say this a bit tongue in cheek, but I'd seriously question someone's priorities who raises a fuss over a foreign government doing the same hijinx that their own government is doing to them. Clean up your own house and then look to your neighbors', I think.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Wayward Son on October 31, 2017, 06:38:44 PM
The difference, of course, is that the Russians don't have to live in our dirty house.  So why should they be able to dump their dirt in ours? ;)
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: DonaldD on October 31, 2017, 10:39:43 PM
There's no blindness quite like partisan blindness, is there?

An enemy nation has just perpetrated the largest propaganda attack on your country in its history, and your rationalization for supporting the attack is that national political entities play dirty?

Notwithstanding that this really isn't the same hijinx as the Democratic and Republican parties have gotten up to in the past, if you really believe that foreign powers should have unfettered access to sow divisions within your society, why don't you also support the federal vote for every resident of the planet?

It seems ridiculously obvious that the Russians, if allowed to continue destabilizing western democracies in this fashion (and they have also perpetrated these attacks in France, the UK and Greece in the past few years) are going to succeed in irrevocably damaging the western world as a whole, certainly for decades to come.  And since Russia is effectively a dictatorship, there is no possible quid pro quo in the market of ideas. So sure, you can continue to ignore what is effectively a war on your country, and on all western countries. The question is why you seem to welcome it.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: TheDeamon on November 01, 2017, 12:30:36 AM
There's no blindness quite like partisan blindness, is there?

An enemy nation has just perpetrated the largest propaganda attack on your country in its history, and your rationalization for supporting the attack is that national political entities play dirty?

Please quantify how "hand waving" or otherwise being indifferent about the Russian Propaganda campaigns of 2016 in the United States constitutes support?

Quote
Notwithstanding that this really isn't the same hijinx as the Democratic and Republican parties have gotten up to in the past, if you really believe that foreign powers should have unfettered access to sow divisions within your society, why don't you also support the federal vote for every resident of the planet?

Get a bit of perspective on this, we have "meddled" in foreign elections for decades, some of our own foreign meddling went well beyond anything the Russians did to us last year. So with the whole hypocrisy angle to consider, exactly what are going to do about it? To be clear, as I would prefer to continue to reserve the ability of the US to "meddle" in foreign elections when "it (clearly) suits our national interests" please DO describe a path to resolution where we can "punish Russia" and not tie our own hands in the future?

Quote
It seems ridiculously obvious that the Russians, if allowed to continue destabilizing western democracies in this fashion (and they have also perpetrated these attacks in France, the UK and Greece in the past few years) are going to succeed in irrevocably damaging the western world as a whole, certainly for decades to come.  And since Russia is effectively a dictatorship, there is no possible quid pro quo in the market of ideas. So sure, you can continue to ignore what is effectively a war on your country, and on all western countries. The question is why you seem to welcome it.

In light of the "Recent discoveries" regarding Hillary and Russia, I think 2016 was a unique confluence of events. Russia already had the objective of chaos, with Hillary's Uranium One dealings, Russia had levers they could pull on Hillary to destabilize her should she have won. Which meant that Trump was targeted, and even openly supported, to ensure they could likewise undermine him. This has already been covered previously, regardless of if either candidate won, both of them were tainted, quite successfully no less. The Hillary scandal is a "non-issue" for her backers because well, she's Hillary Clinton, and she's also their only (current) option against Trump in some weird alternate world scenario where such a resolution is somehow possible.

Aside from the byzantine and highly bizarre option of Trump being impeached, Pence likewise being removed from office by some means, and Paul Ryan ends up President where he for some reason then decides to name Hillary as his VP(and get it approved in Congress) so he can promptly resign.  I simply don't see that happening, it would be political suicide for Ryan to consider such an act, the Republicans would never trust him with anything ever again and as for the Democrats, well...

Both major candidates sucked in 2016. 2016 gave Russia an already compromised Democratic candidate, and a Republican Candidate that is an ongoing train-wreck. Which provided them ready made opportunity to likewise compromise his campaign. (Although it should be noted, there still is nothing linking back to Trump himself)

If Hillary Clinton had not been the 2016 Democratic Candidate, chances are good that "Russian meddling"  would have been less pronounced than it was. Even without her being compromised (to whatever degree; if she was President, the Republicans would never let it die, much like the Dems are attempting with Trump), her rhetoric regarding Russia just added further fuel to that proverbial fire(by provoking the Russians).  So yes, in essence, I blame a very large part of the Russian interference in 2016 on Hillary Clinton herself, and the Obama Admin(/Democratic Party) as they created a large part of the environment which enabled what happened.

Get back to me in 2020 if Russia goes for an encore, but I doubt they will.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: DonaldD on November 01, 2017, 08:37:33 AM
TheDaemon, your view is unfortunately quite representative of too many of those living in the USA - completely blinkered to the outside world.

Russia has been attacking western democratic institutions aggressively over the past few years with unprecedented success.  Not just in the USA.  And if left unchecked, it very likely will change those countries in ways beneficial to Russia and likely not to the benefit of those countries' interests.

Yes, the USA has been a bad actor in its actions towards many foreign countries.  I'm just surprised that you would use that as an argument to allow Russia to attack your country without response. "Well, we sent troops to Vietnam, so I guess we should ignore the troops Russia has sent into Washington, London and Paris - fair's fair, after all"   ::)
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: D.W. on November 01, 2017, 09:29:50 AM
Quote
I'm just surprised that you would use that as an argument to allow Russia to attack your country without response
  If the “attack” stays at this level of propaganda and disinformation, I think we’ll manage.  It seems painfully obvious to me this “attack” illustrates the problem is not with Russia at all.  It’s that our country is dumber than it’s ever been.  Sure from a technical standpoint we’re doing fairly well.  From a gullibility standpoint though, we are a sad disappointment.  I expect there are full blown theocracies out there with better critical thinking skills than our average.
 
This warning shot should not result in cries of, “What do we do about the Russians?”, but rather, “What do we do about OUR gullibility problem?”  I can say for certain the proper response is not to be found in this administration.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: TheDeamon on November 01, 2017, 09:33:51 AM
Yes, the USA has been a bad actor in its actions towards many foreign countries.  I'm just surprised that you would use that as an argument to allow Russia to attack your country without response. "Well, we sent troops to Vietnam, so I guess we should ignore the troops Russia has sent into Washington, London and Paris - fair's fair, after all"   ::)

Vietnam is a lousy equivalence. Our "meddling" in electoral activities there, to my knowledge, was largely in the form of saying we'd ignore election fraud. Now as to playing king maker in the subsequent military coups within South Vietnam, which by definition are not a democratic process, that's another matter.
 
The better equivalence would be, "Well, we actively engaged in funding candidates in most EU Nations(and elsewhere, in particular within the Americas). We've also engaged in numerous intelligence operations to undermine, by hook or crook(fake evidence included), candidates in various nations not to our tastes." The list goes on and on. Other than the specifics of the means employed(the Internet), Russia did nothing in this past election cycle that we either haven't done to several of our own present/former Allies in the past, or otherwise attempted to do.

Without the Internet, our watchdogs have historically been pretty good at preventing such efforts from getting very far within our borders. The internet certainly adds a new dimension to things, and that does need addressed. As to the outcome of this last election, we have legal processes for that, and the investigation still has yet to actually tie anything to Trump himself, and even then, we have a legal process for what follows from there.

Just because you don't like the restrictions imposed by the US Constitution doesn't mean you get to ignore the flipping thing. If evidence comes forward that shows Trump is (very likely to be) guilty, he will be impeached(if he doesn't resign first). Mike Pence will then become President, until/unless someone manages to demonstrate he was likewise similarly guilty to Trump. Pence will likewise then be given a chance to name a VP(subject to confirmation), which may or may not be the ranking Republican in the House(Paul Ryan).

Anything beyond that legal process is political masturbation, public or otherwise, and has no legal bearing on what is going on. Either Trump (and Pence) committed Treason(/"High crimes and misdemeanors"), or he/(they) did not, and it will resolve accordingly. There currently is no legal process for invalidating a Presidential election process after the results are confirmed by Congress, and that happened nearly a year ago. Either get over it, or start gathering support for a Constitutional Amendment to address this specific issue.

In the mean time, Trump getting impeached or not doesn't really change anything until the following election cycles occur.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Seriati on November 01, 2017, 11:01:08 AM
I hadn't noticed this before:
Quote
What you really want to claim, though, is that something untoward was going on involving Trump and colluding with the enemy, and that's a completely different kettle of fish.
No.  I very carefully stayed away from insinuating anything of the sort.  That the Russian efforts seemed to be supporting Trump was clear, but the issue is not which side the Russians supported this go-around, but rather that they had effectively waged a war against your electoral system.

I think what you think is "clear" is not so clear.  The Russian efforts seem to be targeted at two things, 1. undermining confidence in our democratic system and 2. undermining confidence in Hillary Clinton.  The second point, however, is not the same thing as "supporting Trump."  I don't believe for one second that the Russian's thought Trump's victory was any more likely than the rest of us.  They expected Hillary to win, and it was as much a shock to them as to everyone else.

The Russian propaganda wasn't there to get Trump elected, it was there to taint President Hillary Clinton's administration.  Their goal was to show that a flawed and manipulated process put a corrupt individual in the driver's seat of the United States illegitimately.  They've been in salvage mode since the unanticipated election result to try and emphasize their first goal, and maybe still pivot on their second goal in reference to Trump. 

Their campaign was targeted at a different result, the only reason it's worked at all is because of the Democratic unwillingness to believe the election results, which assumption colors every single thing they see in relation to the election.  In effect, they believe the result impossible, therefore any explanation, no matter how unlikely that remains must be the truth.  It's a misquote of Sherlock Holmes, and blatantly ignores Occam's Razor, but it's the only way to resolve the cognitive dissonance of Trump's election being impossible and yet having occurred. 

Quote
I understand that separating partisanship from position is difficult for you, so you tend to project that same tendency on others... :P

Everyone has difficulty separating "partisanship" from positions, specifically because we tend to be partisan because we have reached certain conclusions on certain things that align with a partisan group.  I don't particularly feel like I'm lock-step with any group, there plenty of places I diverge from party orthodox.  Accordingly, I don't find "dog whistles" swaying my position very often.

But in this case, there are far too many people that have buried assumptions that are not proven that they won't even think through when new information becomes available.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: TheDrake on November 01, 2017, 11:16:20 AM
Quote
Vietnam is a lousy equivalence. Our "meddling" in electoral activities there, to my knowledge, was largely in the form of saying we'd ignore election fraud. Now as to playing king maker in the subsequent military coups within South Vietnam, which by definition are not a democratic process, that's another matter.

I believe you miss the larger point. I believe what Donald was pointing out was the similarity of your reasoning to:

Russia did X to us.
We do X to ourselves.
We do X to other countries.
Therefore, Russia gets a pass on X
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: D.W. on November 01, 2017, 11:21:14 AM
Maybe future presidents will think twice about "doing X to someone else" now that we've had a taste of it.  Some lessons are important to learn even if painful.  That assumes we still teach and learn lessons and don't just recite dogma together until a sufficient level of patriotic obedience is reached. 
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Seriati on November 01, 2017, 11:33:12 AM
The difference, of course, is that the Russians don't have to live in our dirty house.  So why should they be able to dump their dirt in ours? ;)

Because we live in a free and open society where we are entitled to hear from any one, even the Russian's on any topic without censorship?  Or did I mistake how the first amendment works?

The impact of propaganda is a material issue to me, propaganda works even on smart people who should know better, it's impact is gradual and sly.  But the cure can't be to suppress speech, cause I guarantee that "cure" will be used to suppress more than just propaganda, as unpopular or opposition speech increasing gets labelled as such.

We need to be able to evaluate the claims themselves, without relying on a poisoned well fallacy to claim all Russian bad all American good.  How about, just propaganda bad.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Seriati on November 01, 2017, 11:48:38 AM
An enemy nation has just perpetrated the largest propaganda attack on your country in its history, and your rationalization for supporting the attack is that national political entities play dirty?

Biggest in what way?  I doubt this is objectively true in any meaningful sense.  I also doubt that even in the modern age our own propaganda attacks are smaller in scale or impact.

Not a free pass by the way, just a call for a little objectivity.  This doesn't have to be the "hugest" ever to be concerning. 

In fact, I don't see any real evidence that the "propaganda attack" was even effective.  The biggest impacts on the election still remain Comey's actions - not propaganda - and the release of the DNC server and Hillary campaign information - not propaganda.  You can't just role everything into a claim without laying a foundation.  Might as well claim it was butterfly attack as a butterfly certainly wiggled its wings towards the US during the time period.

Quote
Notwithstanding that this really isn't the same hijinx as the Democratic and Republican parties have gotten up to in the past, if you really believe that foreign powers should have unfettered access to sow divisions within your society, why don't you also support the federal vote for every resident of the planet?

So you think because we have a first amendment guarantying free speech in our society, we can't restrict the vote to citizens?  Is your argument really that we should or could suppress information from non-US citizens?  How do you see this playing out?  Can Trump raid the NY Times and arrest reports with foreign sources?  Can the government black out CNN when it gets materials from non-US citizens that could represent non-US government manipulation?

Honestly, it sounds nice to want to end "foreign influence" but only a true fascist could do it.

Quote
It seems ridiculously obvious that the Russians, if allowed to continue destabilizing western democracies in this fashion (and they have also perpetrated these attacks in France, the UK and Greece in the past few years) are going to succeed in irrevocably damaging the western world as a whole, certainly for decades to come.

Why does this seem obvious to you?  The Russian propaganda impact (and all propaganda impact) could almost be completely eliminated by teaching the American citizens to seek facts in forming their opinions, to study logic.  Why exactly do we have a K to 12 system that produces citizens who can't use even rudimentary logic and research skills? 

The fact is, we've deliberately mis-educated people to leave them susceptible to our own home grown propaganda and that leaves them susceptible to all forms of it.  I mean look at the tax "debate" it's literally nothing but dog whistles by each side.  Everyone "supports" reform but instead of talking through the hard issues they immediately grandstand and throw scare tactics around.  We're as guilty as anyone else.  Every time someone calls it a death tax we skip the debate over whether its good or bad that wealth transfers generationally.  When any calls out tax breaks for the rich, we skip over legitimate policy reasons that the rich should pay less taxes.  Heck, re-labelling taxes as "revenue" was done for no reason other than to make it more palatable in propaganda.

We can't debate anything on a factual basis anymore.  That was intentional.

Quote
And since Russia is effectively a dictatorship, there is no possible quid pro quo in the market of ideas. So sure, you can continue to ignore what is effectively a war on your country, and on all western countries. The question is why you seem to welcome it.

So expose their lies.  That's the cure for bad ideas and bad information.

Complaining about Russian manipulation that amounts to less than a millioneth of a percent of the total manipulation in our society as if its the ONLY RELEVANT MANIPULATION is kind of a joke. 
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: TheDrake on November 01, 2017, 12:16:49 PM
Maybe future presidents will think twice about "doing X to someone else" now that we've had a taste of it.  Some lessons are important to learn even if painful.  That assumes we still teach and learn lessons and don't just recite dogma together until a sufficient level of patriotic obedience is reached.

Americans aren't very good at introspection and saying "hey maybe we shouldn't use that tactic, it hurts when it is used on us". We are great at labeling the other teams immoral and outrageous, not so much about curtailing our team's behaviour. Look at the Dems! Look at the Russians! Look at Trump!

They all get to have blame on political shenanigans, and they should all be mentioned in the same paragraph. Instead articles, op-eds, tweets and blogs all focus on one or two at a time. If they do mention the third, it is only to point out how trivial or innocent their involvement.



Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: DonaldD on November 01, 2017, 12:40:47 PM
Quote
Because we live in a free and open society where we are entitled to hear from any one, even the Russian's on any topic without censorship?  Or did I mistake how the first amendment works?
Yes, you misunderstand what the first amendment means.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: D.W. on November 01, 2017, 12:44:28 PM
Quote
Because we live in a free and open society where we are entitled to hear from any one, even the Russian's on any topic without censorship?  Or did I mistake how the first amendment works?
Yes, you misunderstand what the first amendment means.
This statement may be accurate, but I think it misrepresents our cultural identity.  (or suggests misrepresentation?)
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Seriati on November 01, 2017, 12:50:35 PM
Quote
Because we live in a free and open society where we are entitled to hear from any one, even the Russian's on any topic without censorship?  Or did I mistake how the first amendment works?
Yes, you misunderstand what the first amendment means.

Well, I specifically referenced how it works.  But I doubt I misunderstand what it means.  Maybe you could enlighten us on the intent of the first amendment and how I'm misconstruing it but you aren't.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: DonaldD on November 01, 2017, 12:57:00 PM
Quote
Why does this seem obvious to you?  The Russian propaganda impact (and all propaganda impact) could almost be completely eliminated by teaching the American citizens to seek facts in forming their opinions, to study logic.  Why exactly do we have a K to 12 system that produces citizens who can't use even rudimentary logic and research skills?
This seems more than a little naive.

There are people posting on this site - educated, intelligent people - who have diametrically opposed views of the importance of, for instance, the Uranium One deal. And it's not even a close thing, shades of ambiguity, an "I can see your point", type of thing.  Diametrically opposed to the point of thinking that the interlocutor cannot possibly be arguing in good faith.  Without getting into who is right, there is clearly a challenge even among the educated and informed to get past their subconscious biases.

You think somehow the vast majority of people are going to be able, in the future, through some kind of underfunded educational system, to become better able to cut through their own partisan blindness than the average Ornery poster?  I guess it's possible we are already the bottom of the barrel here, but I haven't seen evidence of it, honestly.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: D.W. on November 01, 2017, 01:15:52 PM
Why would one assume the solution is possible in even maintaining, let alone decreasing funding for public education?  I think out of all of our infrastructure needs, this requires the largest overhaul. 

The real challenge is to educate people to be resistant to propaganda without raising a whole generation of anarchists who, seeing behind at least some of the curtain, aren't disgusted and prompted to act in ways we are not prepared to handle. 

Reform is nice, but as someone at least relatively comfortable, I'm not itching for full blown chaotic revolution.  ;)
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Fenring on November 01, 2017, 01:29:57 PM
There are people posting on this site - educated, intelligent people - who have diametrically opposed views of the importance of, for instance, the Uranium One deal. And it's not even a close thing, shades of ambiguity, an "I can see your point", type of thing.  Diametrically opposed to the point of thinking that the interlocutor cannot possibly be arguing in good faith.  Without getting into who is right, there is clearly a challenge even among the educated and informed to get past their subconscious biases.

You think somehow the vast majority of people are going to be able, in the future, through some kind of underfunded educational system, to become better able to cut through their own partisan blindness than the average Ornery poster?  I guess it's possible we are already the bottom of the barrel here, but I haven't seen evidence of it, honestly.

Yes, this is a strong point. On the one hand we could argue that uniformity of opinion oughtn't be a goal to try to reach in a pluralistic society. It's true that willingness to hear alternate views should be encouraged, however it's also a difficulty when trying to convince someone of one's assessment that if one don't convince them one sees it as a failure, as if they've continued to believe the nonsense. So when presented with a narrative contrary to one's established opinion, the listener is already on guard that they're being targeted for conversion in some sense, and I think that can cause automatic digging in of heels. It's what comes of a very partisan political system: people assume by default that the other side (of any argument, in effect) is out to defeat them and gain from their defeat. This zero-sum mentality can probably explain a lot of the reason people are intractable in their positions.

However you are right that there's no doubt something else in play as well, which is that aside from political 'sides' there are also two ends of a spectrum of 'openness' we can observe. Some people are quite open to having their views changed - would even welcome to adoption of 'superior' understanding, while others are very opposed to having their positions challenged and become agitated when anyone tries. I think these positions may have some biological component but overall will mostly be a result of how they're educated. At present I feel like the vast majority of people have somehow come to understand that whatever it is they've heard or been taught so far is ipso facto correct, and that people who say contrary things are wrong. As Seriati above points out, I think it's intentional and it's to make them gullible. I attribute this mostly to commercial culture more so than a government conspiracy, and the general idea is to make people very quickly snatch up factoids as a world view and to never let them go. So it's a specific variety of gullibility where, when they have a void of knowledge in an area, they'll grab the first thing they believe some unseen authority says is the truth, but after that they'll never let it go. There's a term for this but I can't remember it right now. And yes, I think this is a very damaging way to accept new information. Whoever sneaks their worldview into a person's mind first seems to get that view cemented in and a deflector shield erected to prevent new information dislodging it. I believe this area is exactly the sort of thing the education system should be dealing with, but it seems instead to do the opposite, training people that there is only one right answer to everything and that if you didn't put it then you are "wrong". This system ends up reinforcing the corporate indoctrination towards effectively branding knowledge and creating customer loyalty. The two parties have been milking this system for a while but I don't think they originated it.

Blaming Russia for people getting messed up by disinformation (assuming they were) is really missing the point, I think. Yes, there may be some reason to be displeased at Russia for wanting to do that in the first place, but the information infrastructure in America is the reason it can work in the first place. People are so confused and divided that pretty much any party can mess with them at this point. Propaganda education is what opens the door for third party propagandists to get in on the action. I think the USSR was trying crap like this through the cold war, setting up disinformation agents, getting Americans to spread their message, etc. It's been happening, but only matters because politics in America fertilizes the soil for it.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: D.W. on November 01, 2017, 01:40:48 PM
Also, baring some resurgent dark age, the ONLY solution, will be an internal one.  We cannot shut out new data, even if it's garbage data.  At least without some serious advancement in machine learning and a total surrender to the gatekeepers of such technology in allowing them to "protect us" from bad data (or speech if you would prefer).

A very large portion of our education curriculum should be logic and research related.  Then (and as uninteresting as I found it myself at the time) history.  Lots and lots of history.  Keeping this interesting while simultaneously making it more raw data driven rather than editorialized to fit into... well propaganda, will be a challenge.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: TheDrake on November 01, 2017, 01:46:45 PM
Quote
There are people posting on this site - educated, intelligent people - who have diametrically opposed views of the importance of, for instance, the Uranium One deal. And it's not even a close thing, shades of ambiguity, an "I can see your point", type of thing.  Diametrically opposed to the point of thinking that the interlocutor cannot possibly be arguing in good faith.  Without getting into who is right, there is clearly a challenge even among the educated and informed to get past their subconscious biases.

As a member of MENSA who reads their comments sections and submitted letters, there is no inoculation of intelligence or formal education that stops people from being vehemently partisan. In fact, my observation of that group suggests that it is counter-productive. That your level of intelligence and training makes you more set on your convictions - especially in an area you've studied.

Keynesian vs Austrian economics. Each side knows plenty of math, economic theory, and other fine things. Many could be considered skeptics or open-minded in other areas. But this one area becomes a furious battleground where each side is convinced they are 100% right. Their immediate reaction will be to howl in dismay at any policy that goes against those core beliefs and predict the doom of humanity as a result.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: DonaldD on November 01, 2017, 01:48:12 PM
Something else I've noticed is that people conflate a problem with its solution... to the extent that even allowing oneself to think about a problem must be  constrained as the obvious solutions are anathema to their worldview.  This has been the case for so many topics, and this one is no different: it isn't an important issue, because there is no obvious solution (that is not unpalatable).

But of course, without allowing yourself to think about the problem, you won't allow yourself to identify possible responses.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: TheDeamon on November 01, 2017, 02:12:36 PM
Quote
Vietnam is a lousy equivalence. Our "meddling" in electoral activities there, to my knowledge, was largely in the form of saying we'd ignore election fraud. Now as to playing king maker in the subsequent military coups within South Vietnam, which by definition are not a democratic process, that's another matter.

I believe you miss the larger point. I believe what Donald was pointing out was the similarity of your reasoning to:

Russia did X to us.
We do X to ourselves.
We do X to other countries.
Therefore, Russia gets a pass on X

Only that isn't quite what I'm saying. Sure "something" should be done. But I think we're at a parting of ways as to what that "something" is that is to be done, or even what impact Russia's efforts had on things. Outside of the occasions where the US tacitly allowed "our side" to actively cheat the election ballot box itself, the intelligence services seemed to agree that the difference between helping and not helping in various other ways was typically only likely to swing the vote by a couple percentage points.

Of course, that then leads us back to this election cycle, where as Nate Silver demonstrated, a 1% vote shift in certain regions of the US meant a LOT for the Presidential race outcome. So it is entirely possible that "Russian meddling" contributed to a swing in voter behavior which made Hillary Clinton lose the race.  However, I think Seriati made a very relevant point in regards to that, and I actually think that was more generally the Russian end game. While I do agree that Russia preferred a Trump win over a Hillary one, I don't think they actually expected Trump to win.

But before I move in Serati's post, I think a good to summarize it: Due to "Russian Meddling" I'm fine with the idea of this past election having been "tainted" but that's a far cry from saying that it should be invalidated. It also continues to ignore that there are legal processes involved in the election of the President, and ultimately it is the Electoral College that matters, not the average voter. After the Electoral College was formed, cast its votes, and subsequently had their votes ratified by Congress, the chance for "A Mulligan" on the election was over. The Constitution is very clear about what the options are from here, outside of the Constitutionally provisioned means of action, you're now waiting for either 2018(if you want a Congress that might impeach Trump) or 2020(where you can try to just vote him out instead). 

I hadn't noticed this before:
Quote
What you really want to claim, though, is that something untoward was going on involving Trump and colluding with the enemy, and that's a completely different kettle of fish.
No.  I very carefully stayed away from insinuating anything of the sort.  That the Russian efforts seemed to be supporting Trump was clear, but the issue is not which side the Russians supported this go-around, but rather that they had effectively waged a war against your electoral system.

I think what you think is "clear" is not so clear.  The Russian efforts seem to be targeted at two things, 1. undermining confidence in our democratic system and 2. undermining confidence in Hillary Clinton.  The second point, however, is not the same thing as "supporting Trump."  I don't believe for one second that the Russian's thought Trump's victory was any more likely than the rest of us.  They expected Hillary to win, and it was as much a shock to them as to everyone else.

The Russian propaganda wasn't there to get Trump elected, it was there to taint President Hillary Clinton's administration.  Their goal was to show that a flawed and manipulated process put a corrupt individual in the driver's seat of the United States illegitimately.  They've been in salvage mode since the unanticipated election result to try and emphasize their first goal, and maybe still pivot on their second goal in reference to Trump. 

Their campaign was targeted at a different result, the only reason it's worked at all is because of the Democratic unwillingness to believe the election results, which assumption colors every single thing they see in relation to the election.  In effect, they believe the result impossible, therefore any explanation, no matter how unlikely that remains must be the truth.  It's a misquote of Sherlock Holmes, and blatantly ignores Occam's Razor, but it's the only way to resolve the cognitive dissonance of Trump's election being impossible and yet having occurred.


Those previous two paragraphs warrant extra attention, but it does cycle back to 2016 was a very unique confluence of circumstances(and was more to do with Hillary herself than anything else). I had to re-read the final (quoted) one twice before I figured out what was being said. Changing emphasis around, and adding a bit:

Quote
Their(Russia's) campaign was targeted at a different result, the only reason it's worked at all is because of the Democratic unwillingness to believe the election results, which assumption colors every single thing they(Democrats) see in relation to the election.  In effect, they(the Democrats) believe the result impossible, therefore any explanation, no matter how unlikely that remains must be the truth.  It's a misquote of Sherlock Holmes, and blatantly ignores Occam's Razor, but it's the only way (for many Democrats) to resolve the cognitive dissonance of Trump's election being impossible and yet having occurred.

But getting back to the concession that it is entirely within reason to say that Russia's efforts resulted in a 1 point swing in Trump's favor. This goes back to the indifference side of things which you and others keep raging against.

For those that voted for, or otherwise are OK with Trump having won(against Hillary at least), it doesn't really change anything to learn that Russia preferred Trump. It is totally and completely irrelevant to their criteria for why they personally supported or otherwise accepted Trump's win. It's tantamount to wanting to toss Bill Clinton out of office in 1996 purely on the grounds that China very clearly preferred that he remain in the White House. (There certainly were plenty of other reasons to want Clinton out, but even then, the Republicans certainly weren't going full out crazy like the Dems are over Trump)

The only thing that "matters" is the question of if Trump was actively working and collaborating with the Russian Government in an effort to either undermine the electoral system in the United States, or otherwise employ "dirty tricks" against Hillary Clinton (either at Trump's request, or with his knowledge). Also obviously in play is if Trump received direct material support, which would be a no-no even if it came from Coca-Cola, never mind a foreign government.

But short of proof that Trump himself was working with the Russians in some direct way, there isn't really anything to do. Much like Coca-Cola can provide all the indirect support it wants to a candidate(thanks to the SCotUS), the Russians acting independently of Donald Trump to support Donald Trump is not Donald Trump's "problem."

Unless you're going to say that candidates should be rendered ineligible should they be endorsed or otherwise supported by a foreign head of State. But if that is position, where were you in 2012? I don't remember you screaming about the press reports talking about the "international support" for President Obama from numerous foreign heads of state.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: DonaldD on November 01, 2017, 02:49:08 PM
Quote
The only thing that "matters" is the question of if Trump was actively working and collaborating with the Russian Government in an effort to either undermine the electoral system in the United States, or otherwise employ "dirty tricks" against Hillary Clinton (either at Trump's request, or with his knowledge). Also obviously in play is if Trump received direct material support, which would be a no-no even if it came from Coca-Cola, never mind a foreign government.
I of course disagree - that Russia intervened so directly in its hacking and propaganda efforts is as or more important than whether Trump assisted in the effort.

Sure, that would also be important, but it is something with which the existing government (and possibly legal) structures can deal.

This attack by an enemy nation, however, is an order of magnitude more important - and I cannot stress this too much, this enemy nation has been systematically attacking allies of the USA in much the same fashion for years, and is getting better at it.  It is no longer an option to simply bury your heads in the sand and hope, when the damage being done has become so costly.

"But, but, but - freedom of speech!" one might respond.  Foreign governments are not protected by the bill of rights, and the USA is not constrained by the first amendment in how it deals with them.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: DonaldD on November 01, 2017, 02:58:40 PM
Quote
Much like Coca-Cola can provide all the indirect support it wants to a candidate(thanks to the SCotUS), the Russians acting independently of Donald Trump to support Donald Trump is not Donald Trump's "problem."
These are two completely separate points: that it is not Donald Trump's problem is obvious.  But whether a foreign government and a corporation subject to the laws of the USA are equivalent, or at least should be treated as such from the perspective of legal protections under the constitution is certainly debatable (at the very least).

It's weird that this keeps coming back to Donald Trump - he is completely secondary to this whole affair.  Yes, Yes, CNN, MSNBC, the DNC are all hyperventilating over the Trump campaign, but that is simply burying the lead - your country is at war, but instead of fighting the aggressor, you instead eat your own children.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: TheDeamon on November 01, 2017, 03:09:54 PM
Quote
The only thing that "matters" is the question of if Trump was actively working and collaborating with the Russian Government in an effort to either undermine the electoral system in the United States, or otherwise employ "dirty tricks" against Hillary Clinton (either at Trump's request, or with his knowledge). Also obviously in play is if Trump received direct material support, which would be a no-no even if it came from Coca-Cola, never mind a foreign government.
I of course disagree - that Russia intervened so directly in its hacking and propaganda efforts is as or more important than whether Trump assisted in the effort.

At this point, just to ensure we're not talking past each other. Most of the people pushing "The Russian Intervention" into the election of 2016 as a vehicle by which they hope to impeach Donald Trump and in the case of some, somehow put Hillary in his place.

So I must ask, is you fixation on the Russians over the fact they interfered, or that you want Trump out of office?

I think you'll find a LOT of the blowback you're getting on here is people assuming you're in the Impeachment camp, so that's what is coming forward when we're discussing it. The interference is "an issue" that does need to be addressed, but it isn't anything close to being "THE issue" for most of us.

Quote
This attack by an enemy nation, however, is an order of magnitude more important - and I cannot stress this too much, this enemy nation has been systematically attacking allies of the USA in much the same fashion for years, and is getting better at it.  It is no longer an option to simply bury your heads in the sand and hope, when the damage being done has become so costly.

I still think that 2016 was a unique confluence of events in that:
1) You had a Clinton running for office, and there certainly is plenty of smoke around them in regards to government corruption. Making them a "easy target" for the Russians to pursue.
2) You the Donald Trump Campaign making like they're the Keystone Cops.

I highly doubt 2020 is going to be quite so dysfunctional as 2016 was, unless of course it turns into a rematch in which case I'm not making bets as to what happens. (Although I'd expect the campaign itself could potentially kill Hillary on its own by then)

Quote
"But, but, but - freedom of speech!" one might respond.  Foreign governments are not protected by the bill of rights, and the USA is not constrained by the first amendment in how it deals with them.

However you are actually contending with the Internet specifically in regards to just about everything related to the "intervention" on the part of Russia. As the Internet was initiated in the United States, it has a history of operating under that particular Aegis. Various governments have obviously fire-walled their own respective corners of the Internet, but the US has managed to generally retain stewardship of it throughout it becoming a global phenomena.  This has also been a major contributor to the tech-sector within the US.

What you're talking about is potentially putting the US itself behind a (national) firewall. At which point our ability to influence what happens outside that wall drops considerably, and likely to be at great cost to numerous tech-sector companies as well, as that means they'd have to shift many of their assets to be outside of that same firewall.

Could it be done? Sure.
The problem is how it would be done, and what the consequences would be. At present, I'm inclined to think the cure is worse than the disease, and there are other ways to go about addressing the issue rather than simply building The Great American Firewall rather than The Great American Border Wall With Mexico.

Generally speaking, I think the white and grey hat hackers within the US, as well as the US Tech Sector are going to be placing mechanisms in place by 2020 to help inform people as to the veracity of the various sites they're going to. Of course, how effective/reliable those services are may be another matter. (And there is the matter of foreign entities also involving themselves in that market. Is Canada OK? What about Britain? China? Japan? Germany? The Czech Republic?)
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Wayward Son on November 01, 2017, 03:32:47 PM
The difference, of course, is that the Russians don't have to live in our dirty house.  So why should they be able to dump their dirt in ours? ;)

Because we live in a free and open society where we are entitled to hear from any one, even the Russian's on any topic without censorship?  Or did I mistake how the first amendment works?

The impact of propaganda is a material issue to me, propaganda works even on smart people who should know better, it's impact is gradual and sly.  But the cure can't be to suppress speech, cause I guarantee that "cure" will be used to suppress more than just propaganda, as unpopular or opposition speech increasing gets labelled as such.

We need to be able to evaluate the claims themselves, without relying on a poisoned well fallacy to claim all Russian bad all American good.  How about, just propaganda bad.

You know, I don't think I'd have had such a problem with it if they had just been honest about it. :)  If they had come out and said, "We in Russia believe that Hillary is against blacks," I would have accepted it as part of free speech.  (And ignored it, since, after all, what do Russians know about race relations in the U.S.? ;) )

Instead, the Russians said, "We blacks in Tennessee believe that Hillary is against blacks."   ???  From that alone, you can tell it was propaganda intended to influence the election through devious means.  Ain't right when Americans do it (pretend they're someone else who might have better standing in the argument); ain't right when Russians do it.  And it's especially ain't right when Russians do it, because they don't have to share in the consequences.

So, no, it's not primarily a free speech issue.  It's a propaganda issue, and whether we will allow Russians or any other country to freely try to deceive us to change our government.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Fenring on November 01, 2017, 03:37:09 PM
"But, but, but - freedom of speech!" one might respond.  Foreign governments are not protected by the bill of rights, and the USA is not constrained by the first amendment in how it deals with them.

Donald, you're mixing apples and oranges. This isn't about Putin shouting from across the Pacific and insisting he has the right to free speech in America. This is about whether the U.S. ought to be in the business that the Chinese government is in, which is the selective censorship of which information is acceptable to the state. And it goes further than that, into the international trade system itself. Because even if Russian media/agents aren't directly purchasing advertising space in America or using foreign resources to propagate their information here, they could always find Americans who would be willing to publish the material for a price. So now we get into whether it's legal for a foreign party (government or otherwise) to employ someone protected by the bill of rights to publish select material. Would this be banned on account of who's paying for it? Does that mean that any foreign person is debarred from employing Americans or purchasing resources in America? Does that mean they can't invest in real-estate, stocks, or the money market as well? Or does that only go for 'bad guys'?

I don't think you realize how insane it would be to try to ban 'Russian interference' in the form of information. Stopping hacking attempts is one thing, that's already illegal. Stopping spies from committing espionage is already taken seriously. But stopping...information? Wow, what a project that would be. Would you like the country you'd be living in if this was employed with full force?
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: D.W. on November 01, 2017, 03:38:50 PM
Quote
I of course disagree - that Russia intervened so directly in its hacking and propaganda efforts is as or more important than whether Trump assisted in the effort.
Just to be clear, my tepid response to “Russian influence” is separate from saying that we should just ignore hacking.  Hardening our cyber-security is all but mandatory in response.

Quote
Most of the people pushing "The Russian Intervention" into the election of 2016 as a vehicle by which they hope to impeach Donald Trump and in the case of some, somehow put Hillary in his place.
Gotta ask, is anyone considered even remotely credible suggesting that Hillary would magically become president under ANY circumstance no matter how egregious any hypothetical collusion was revealed?  Hell, even if actual hacking of ballot machines was shown to have taken place I find this preposterous.  The way I see it we would have an impotent president (after we march down the line of succession however far…) who keeps the seat warm until the next election, totally unable to govern.  Which, I must say would be the same position Hillary would find herself in now if somehow magically finding herself dropped into the POTUS job.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: DonaldD on November 01, 2017, 03:55:00 PM
Quote
So I must ask, is you fixation on the Russians over the fact they interfered, or that you want Trump out of office?
Ummm... since I've answered or addressed this multiple times already, even in the very last post that you just quoted from, I have to assume you are somehow unable to process my statement. The issue of Russian interference is completely separate from whether Trump was also involved.

From a purely selfish perspective, I don't care who your president is.  But Russian meddling in the electoral process and in the basic public sphere is now affecting all democracies, although not all equally.
Quote
Just to be clear, my tepid response to “Russian influence” is separate from saying that we should just ignore hacking.  Hardening our cyber-security is all but mandatory in response
Hardening your cyber security, especially on its own, would likely have little effect; whereas having the EU, USA, and other western democratic nations agreeing on a package of targeted embargoes, visa restrictions, account freezes, import tariffs... that might actually do something.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: D.W. on November 01, 2017, 04:05:25 PM
Quote
Hardening your cyber security, especially on its own, would likely have little effect; whereas having the EU, USA, and other western democratic nations agreeing on a package of targeted embargoes, visa restrictions, account freezes, import tariffs... that might actually do something.
Depends on your goals.  Changing Russia's behavior?  Your right. 

That wasn't my objective in making the suggestion / stating what must be done. 
After all, there are more actors out there than Russia who would gleefully exploit the same lack of (effective) security.

While we do need to respond to actions of state sponsored meddling, it’s a messy subject.  One with far more gray area than discussions about what WE need to do to mitigate or avoid being meddled with.  As pointed out in this thread, our own hands aren’t clean on this count by any stretch of imagination. 
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: TheDrake on November 01, 2017, 05:05:15 PM
Quote
Gotta ask, is anyone considered even remotely credible suggesting that Hillary would magically become president under ANY circumstance no matter how egregious any hypothetical collusion was revealed?

Not credible to me to even suggest that the influence was sufficient to sway the outcome. But probably about the same number of people who think Trump would have won the popular vote if it weren't for fraud.

As far as the succession, we know how that goes under collusion. Unless Pence is implicated, he becomes President if collusion evidence (or more likely false statements under oath) led to impeachment and conviction. If not, Ryan.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: D.W. on November 01, 2017, 05:12:22 PM
Well to those cheering for and delighting in potential impeachment, that Pence may also be wrapped up is probably common.  That was my point rather than any ambiguity on what the line actually was.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Wayward Son on November 01, 2017, 06:25:28 PM
Here are a sample of some of the Russian-sponsored ads, (http://talkingpointsmemo.com/muckraker/russia-ads-house-intel-release) so we can actually see some of the free speech in action.

I especially like the one that starts, "Fellow Texans!"  ;D
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: D.W. on November 01, 2017, 06:58:27 PM
Well at least the "buff Bernie" was obvious Russian influence.  Hahaha
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: TheDrake on November 01, 2017, 07:40:16 PM
The Fellow Texans ones are an uncanny reproduction of many thoughts I have seen expressed by my fellow Texans. Including the clumsy grammar.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: DonaldD on November 01, 2017, 09:08:16 PM
I can't imagine how anyone might object to this:
Quote
At a Wednesday US Senate Intelligence Committee hearing, Chairman Richard Burr released several Facebook ads allegedly purchased by Russia-linked organizations. None from Burr's office mentioned Clinton or Donald Trump; instead, they touched on immigration-related issues in order to widen divisions among the US electorate.


Among them was an attempt to get pro-Texas Facebook users and Muslims to clash at competing events in Houston on May 21, 2016. The pro-Texas page—called Heart of Texas—encouraged its 253,000 followers to gather at an Islamic Center in the city on that day to stop the "Islamization of Texas," while a "United Muslims of America" page, which had 328,000 followers, pushed an event at the same time and place, calling on supporters to "Save Islamic Knowledge."
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Fenring on November 02, 2017, 12:18:30 AM
I can't imagine how anyone might object to this:
Quote
At a Wednesday US Senate Intelligence Committee hearing, Chairman Richard Burr released several Facebook ads allegedly purchased by Russia-linked organizations. None from Burr's office mentioned Clinton or Donald Trump; instead, they touched on immigration-related issues in order to widen divisions among the US electorate.


Among them was an attempt to get pro-Texas Facebook users and Muslims to clash at competing events in Houston on May 21, 2016. The pro-Texas page—called Heart of Texas—encouraged its 253,000 followers to gather at an Islamic Center in the city on that day to stop the "Islamization of Texas," while a "United Muslims of America" page, which had 328,000 followers, pushed an event at the same time and place, calling on supporters to "Save Islamic Knowledge."

I can! As above, could Russia credibly get Americans to have such animosity if their own government hadn't already fostered it first? What they've been tending to do is to observe weakness and exploit it; to notice a festering sore and poke at it. Sure, that's annoying, and we could have a geo-political discussion about Russia's role in competition. We could talk about America/Saudi vs Russia/Syria, and Russia/Eastern Europe vs USA/Western Europe, and etc etc. So Russia ends up on the other side in many of these scenarios, often simply because they're the competition rather than the bad guys. But let's leave off what we think about foreign competitors and talk strictly about information wars. Russia didn't initiate the narratives that they are exploiting, and whoever did should be put to blame for opening Americans up to manipulation. Who is it, exactly, who began an era of mistrust towards government? It wasn't Russia! But you can be sure they'll use it to their advantage, and I don't blame them for trying. You can try to stop them all you like, but how about beginning by stopping the source of their ammunition? All they do is pick up the stray bullets and throw them around.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: D.W. on November 02, 2017, 09:43:58 AM
Quote
Who is it, exactly, who began an era of mistrust towards government?
Probably those poor saps who got on a boat and colonized this joint...
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Fenring on November 02, 2017, 09:50:38 AM
Quote
Who is it, exactly, who began an era of mistrust towards government?
Probably those poor saps who got on a boat and colonized this joint...

Well...yes, but...
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: DonaldD on November 03, 2017, 01:26:47 PM
I'm trying to think of a situation where the "US government" pretended to be both a white supremacist group and a Muslim religious organization, and organized concurrent, co-located demonstrations with the intent to create a riot.

I see a lot of hand waving what-aboutism recently - "oooh, our government does it too" but generally, there is little equivalence when you dig down onto the details.

But if it makes it easier to rationalize Russian state aggression, why not?
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: NobleHunter on November 03, 2017, 01:39:32 PM
I'm trying to think of a situation where the "US government" pretended to be both a white supremacist group and a Muslim religious organization, and organized concurrent, co-located demonstrations with the intent to create a riot.

I see a lot of hand waving what-aboutism recently - "oooh, our government does it too" but generally, there is little equivalence when you dig down onto the details.

But if it makes it easier to rationalize Russian state aggression, why not?

I would not be surprised if they did that to the Black Panthers.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: TheDrake on November 03, 2017, 02:12:11 PM
I see a lot of hand waving what-aboutism recently - "oooh, our government does it too" but generally, there is little equivalence when you dig down onto the details.

I'm assuming you mean to our own country. Other countries? Well, we've backed full on coups in Guatemala and Chile, spent millions to influence Italian elections, and subtly influenced others. Drew up the rules for how Iraqis were going to govern. More recently, thumb on the scale in Ukraine. And I don't imagine that we ever stand by and watch as Muslim Brotherhood or Hamas stand for election.

As for recent events domestically, it becomes difficult to see Charlottesville as anything but an attempt to allow a riot to occur through inaction. If you think there aren't RNC and DNC trolls out there whipping people into a frenzy by one outrageous lie after another, then I don't know how to convince you. Push polling to smear candidates. And no shortage of White house tweets undermining the political process.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: DonaldD on February 16, 2018, 06:12:49 PM
... and more of Russia's ongoing attacks against US society:

https://www.cnn.com/2018/02/16/us/russian-bots-florida-shooting-intl/index.html (https://www.cnn.com/2018/02/16/us/russian-bots-florida-shooting-intl/index.html)
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Gaoics79 on February 18, 2018, 06:08:27 PM
So bottom line Donald, if you (and others) are convinced purchasing fake Facebook ads is some unprecedented "attack" by Russia, what exactly are you proposing as the solution? Should there be a military response? Should the US go full on PRC and build a massive firewall to block foreign content (assuming such is technically feasible)?

I mean practically speaking, I see nobody on your side proposing anything as a solution to this problem. You say that there should be an investigation - to what end? You say you're not hoping to overturn the results of the election - but in a way that makes it worse. Not only do you have 0 practical solutions to this "attack", but you don't even demand action against it, other than just somehow acknowledging it with no practical outcome. So it sounds like your solution is just to cast a vague shadow of doubt and division over the result of the 2016 election.

In effect, your position amounts to doing to Trump what Russia (apparently) hoped to do to Clinton, which was undermine her presidency and likely the institution of the presidency.

When Trump declared that the election was "rigged" shortly before the election (apparently assuming he was going to lose, as virtually everyone did at that time), the whole political establishment was aghast at this undermining of the democratic process. What happened? Why are you so eager to accomplish Putin's work for him?
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Gaoics79 on February 18, 2018, 06:13:33 PM
Quote
I see a lot of hand waving what-aboutism recently - "oooh, our government does it too" but generally, there is little equivalence when you dig down onto the details.

Since you propose nothing concrete, have 0 idea how to prevent it in the future and 0 indication of what you want to do about the "attack", yeah, it's easy to hand-wave it away. The Russians lately called it "blabber" - that's as good a description as any.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Wayward Son on February 19, 2018, 02:22:33 AM
Well, jasonr, how about at the very least doing what Congress and the President have already signed into law?  Sanctioning certain Russians for this attack on our democracy?

But, of course, Putin's puppet has refused to enforce the very law he signed.  ::)

So I guess, as always, it's up to the Democrats to try to figure out some way to prevent this illegal influence from happening in the future.  Because after all, not only will Trump's Republican party will not help, but are actively trying to prevent anything to stop them.  :P
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Gaoics79 on February 19, 2018, 07:57:27 AM
Quote
Well, jasonr, how about at the very least doing what Congress and the President have already signed into law?  Sanctioning certain Russians for this attack on our democracy?

You mean economic sanctions? Political sanctions?

What are you talking about, specifically?

What do you want to *do* other than talk about the attack? Be specific please.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: DonaldD on February 19, 2018, 11:29:22 AM
Jason, I see what I would consider the proper responses taking place now already - a special counsel investigation, and legislative body investigations. I see no value in putting the cart before the horse and deciding on sanctions now before the extent of what was done is actually known (and why military is always the first straw man I will not hazard a guess).  I will say that the focus of the special counsel investigation on whether there was domestic (specifically Trump campaign)  assistance was unfortunate, though possibly necessary.

When the thread was opened, however, there was resistance in certain quarters from even considering any investigations into Russia's actions ("I do not believe it's worthy of discussion, no") which is why I periodically update the thread.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Fenring on February 19, 2018, 12:02:21 PM
But Donald, the point is this: let's say Russia pays for FB ads to promote themselves, or to create subversion within the U.S. We are asserting this is the case by hypothesis. Jason's question is: what do you propose to do? Ban anyone outside the U.S. using FB? Ban foreign persons from speaking with or interacting with Americans on the internet? What kind of firewall do you think you'll ever set up to prevent interactions through media? And more to the point, do you think that it's the government's place to block certain kinds of messages, regardless of who they come from? Since when was it the case that subversive ideas should be blocked or opposed? And what does it matter who introduces them? So you ban a Russian from posting them from Russia based on IP, and then someone within U.S. borders does it for them. So is that banned now too, people in America posting things for reasons of their own choosing?

Note again we're talking about 'meddling' which is a euphemism for participating in the marketplace of ideas (regardless of motive), and not talking about the previous shibboleth, which was 'hacking' the election or altering actual voter results. The latter would be a serious security matter requiring action, but that's not what we're talking about.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Ronald Lambert on February 19, 2018, 12:30:02 PM
Posting on Facebook a cartoon that shows Christ and Satan competing with each other and says a vote for Hillary is a vote for Satan, is not a very weighty effort at sabotaging the election. (It is claimed that this was posted by a Russian.) While I personally agree with the sentiment, since the facts are that Hillary is a crime lord, such a cartoon would not have moved me one way or the other, beyond giving me a laugh.

Now, more telling was the disclosure of private emails from the Hillary campaign, that it is claimed Russians had a hand in hacking and making public. But the thing is, the Hillary people really did say those things. So by revealing them, the Russians actually did us all a favor, and improved our election by letting us know the truth. So that did not sabotage our election--quite the opposite. It actually interfered with Democrat attempts to sabotage the election.

If the Russians actually did attempt to skew the 2016 election against Hillary, that would seem to be a rather misguided strategy--since Hillary would have been easy for them to walk over (after all, she was part of an administration that gave 150 billion dollars to Russian ally Iran, and as Secretary of State did nothing when terrorists were killing American diplomats in Benghazi), while Trump is proving to be tougher on the Russians and Iran than any previous president since Reagan.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: DonaldD on February 19, 2018, 01:10:52 PM
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let's say Russia pays for FB ads to promote themselves, or to create subversion within the U.S. We are asserting this is the case by hypothesis
Again, this is putting the cart before the horse.  What else might be involved, and might any of those activities rise to the level of political interference that requires a response?

For instance, maybe some individuals might misrepresent who they are while posting information - possibly rising to the level of identity theft; or maybe certain individuals would fail to disclose, as foreigners, their involvement in funding or even partaking in actions aimed at affecting the outcome of a federal election; or maybe being involved in a conspiracy to facilitate the aforementioned activities. Certainly, such activities could, if they occurred, trigger criminal prosecution.

Politically, maybe those aforementioned actors could eventually be linked to the actual government of Russia, in which case a broad set of political options come into play, especially if Russia can be tied to similar activities aimed at affecting other countries' polities and elections.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Wayward Son on February 19, 2018, 01:14:45 PM
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Well, jasonr, how about at the very least doing what Congress and the President have already signed into law?  Sanctioning certain Russians for this attack on our democracy?

You mean economic sanctions? Political sanctions?

What are you talking about, specifically?

What do you want to *do* other than talk about the attack? Be specific please.

I was thinking specifically about the Countering America's Adversaries Through Sanctions Act and the Trump administration's refusal to impose these sanctions on Russians. (https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2018/01/30/the-trump-administrations-weird-explanation-for-withholding-russia-sanctions/?utm_term=.7084bfc628f1)  If the Russians get punished for the attacks, they might reconsider the cost/benefit analysis for continuing such behavior and inviting even further sanctions. 

But if they don't get punished for past behavior...

As for suggestions, here's one from Electoral-vote.com (http://www.electoral-vote.com/evp2018/Senate/Maps/Feb19.html#item-5).

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It is not impossible to combat troll farms, but it would take a change of mindset. As a starter, the social media companies could require anyone opening an account (or keeping an existing account) to upload an image of their drivers' license, passport, or other ID. Then they would have to weed out duplicate accounts. Finally, they would have to verify the name and number of the uploaded documents with the issuing authority to catch forgeries. Postings could still be anonymous, but the companies could make it much more difficult for trolls to open accounts. If the social media companies have no interest in something like this, Congress could require it by law and impose heavy penalties for noncompliance.

And seriously, jasonr, are you saying we can do nothing about foreign governments influencing our elections, and we should just give up?  Let anyone sow discord and disinformation from fraudulent accounts without restraint or resistance?  Just pretend it really doesn't matter, even though Russia is paying premium salaries to these guys to influence our elections?  Rely on the belief that Russian intelligence is silly and ineffective?

Or have Republicans simply ceded the responsibility of protecting our national institutions to the Democrats? :P
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Fenring on February 19, 2018, 01:37:28 PM
What else might be involved, and might any of those activities rise to the level of political interference that requires a response?

Your use of the word "else" sounds to me like a handwaive dismissal of Jason's question. It is exactly that "else" that you, yourself, have to assert factually before you can claim that 'something' should be done. If you don't have evidence you can bring to bear other than the claim made by interested parties about "meddling" then I don't even see why you have an opinion on this. What, exactly, is it you think Russia did? I proposed accepting the premise that they employed shills and internet trolls, but it seems you meant something else?

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For instance, maybe some individuals might misrepresent who they are while posting information - possibly rising to the level of identity theft; or maybe certain individuals would fail to disclose, as foreigners, their involvement in funding or even partaking in actions aimed at affecting the outcome of a federal election; or maybe being involved in a conspiracy to facilitate the aforementioned activities. Certainly, such activities could, if they occurred, trigger criminal prosecution.

Why is this some particular issue with Russia? Shouldn't identity theft always be pursued? I don't see the relevance to this topic. And what do you mean "fail to disclose as foreigners"? Fail to disclose what, to whom? Who is this person they're supposed to disclose to? You mean when making a Reddit post the poster should add a footnote saying "Btw I'm a paid Russian troll"?

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Politically, maybe those aforementioned actors could eventually be linked to the actual government of Russia, in which case a broad set of political options come into play, especially if Russia can be tied to similar activities aimed at affecting other countries' polities and elections.

Actors? Having done what, make posts online? I still don't know what you think was done that needs to be stopped, or how you intend to stop it. I'm not even sure I understand why you think it should be stopped, other than, again, the vague non-committal 'we have to stop Russian interference.'

are you saying we can do nothing about foreign governments influencing our elections,

What do you mean by "influencing"? This is the kind of weird generalization that I think Jason was addressing.

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Let anyone sow discord and disinformation from fraudulent accounts without restraint or resistance?  Just pretend it really doesn't matter, even though Russia is paying premium salaries to these guys to influence our elections?  Rely on the belief that Russian intelligence is silly and ineffective?

Still have no idea what your point is. People from Russia should be banned from...the internet? I have the same problem, by the way, with propaganda issued locally by paid shills and trolls within America pursuing special interests, and yet I recognize that we can't just ban people vocally supporting a cause - even if they're only saying that because they're paid for it. In order to ban paid speech you'd have to revolutionize how media interaction works and somehow establish a system of 'proof' that a person really believes what they say as opposed to they're saying it because they're paid. Dunno how you'll accomplish that! But I fail to see why some people focus so much on Russian meddling when local propaganda dissemination dwarfs anything Russia could ever hope to do. You think it's better when coming from local special interests rather than foreign special interests? I'm not even sure what "restraint or resistance" means. How do you "resist" people saying things on topics that you think are damaging to America? I think Americans say things that damage America all the time, so should they be banned too?

Offhand I can think of one good thing that would help the situation, and doesn't at all involve worrying about Russia: create a focus within America on speaking the truth and removing special interests from positions of influence in both government and social life. How to do this would involve many steps, but if America cleaned its own house first then it would be much easier to spot trolling, regardless of where it's from. But since at present most information being propagated is basically the equivalent of trolling anyhow what Russia adds to mix strikes me as being a drop in the bucket. And they know it, too, by the way. The Russian strategy in sowing discord in America is to pick at the sores created locally, not to invent new ones. It's weakness they prey on, and so the proper answer to that should be to address those weaknesses rather than complain about how they expose the weaknesses.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Gaoics79 on February 19, 2018, 02:25:13 PM
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And seriously, jasonr, are you saying we can do nothing about foreign governments influencing our elections, and we should just give up?  Let anyone sow discord and disinformation from fraudulent accounts without restraint or resistance?  Just pretend it really doesn't matter, even though Russia is paying premium salaries to these guys to influence our elections?  Rely on the belief that Russian intelligence is silly and ineffective?

Or have Republicans simply ceded the responsibility of protecting our national institutions to the Democrats? :P

Let's break this down:

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are you saying we can do nothing about foreign governments influencing our elections

I am saying that thus far, you have proposed nothing as far as actually preventing this sort of thing happening in the future. Others have suggested that the "cure" in this case would be vastly worse than the disease, which I agree with. But if that's wrong, then put up or shut up - what kind of "sanctions" do you actually propose that would effectively prevent this behaviour in the future? No more vagueries about investigations and sanctions. How do you actually STOP this from happening again? Please be specific.

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and we should just give up?

If nothing effective can be done without going down the China path (and even that strikes me as being unlikely to significantly alter the situation - any real digital solution would require North Korea level intervention) then yes, we should "give up" trying to stop what cannot be stopped.

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Let anyone sow discord and disinformation from fraudulent accounts without restraint or resistance?

Acknowledge the fact that foreigners, both state and non state actors, can and will seek to influence things to their benefit and that you cannot prevent this from happening. Maybe Facebook can crack down on fake news, or colluding politicians can be prosecuted, but actually stop this? Again, through what means? If someone wants to troll Facebook and newspaper forums with pro Kremlin propaganda, you're going to do what, execute them for treason? Good luck with that bucko.

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Just pretend it really doesn't matter, even though Russia is paying premium salaries to these guys to influence our elections?  Rely on the belief that Russian intelligence is silly and ineffective?

I don't really know how to respond to this, because as of right now, there isn't even any evidence that this "attack" actually changed the outcome of the election. Nor is it evident to me that such manipulation will ever significantly move the needle. I know the DNC is desperate to believe that it did, for reasons that should be obvious - it makes them look so much less incompetent to believe that dastardly Russian propagandists sabotaged Clinton's campaign than to believe that she just suck as a candidate and ran a *censored* campaign.

You seem to be of the view that the fact of them spending the money is proof a priori that such propaganda "works", that the mere fact of diverting resources to something is proof that this something is powerful and effective. One thing is certain, I don't for a second believe that the Russians expected Donald Trump to win, unless they were smarter than every pollster in America. I think they were just as shocked at the outcome as the rest of the world.

If Russia's plan all along was to hand the white house to Donald Trump, they are either geniuses or they were very lucky idiots.

Personally, I don't for a second believe that this was their plan. I think their plan was to undermine Clinton, who they assumed was going to win, and to undermine the integrity and the public's faith in the electoral system - which you and and the DNC have been happily helping them accomplish since the day after the election.

Actually, this has to be the ultimate home run scenario for Russia. Not only did Clinton miraculously lose (mostly due to her own incompetence I'll add) but now the DNC is helping subvert the electoral process just like they hoped to do. Why pay Facebook trolls to do it when the DNC is willing to do it for free?
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: NobleHunter on February 19, 2018, 03:53:46 PM
One the one hand, the election was close enough that if the meddling had any effect, then they could have easily affected the outcome. The result was determined by a few tens of thousand of votes in a few states. On the other hand, if the Russians didn't have much influence in the relevant states then they could have had a tremendous effect on how votes were cast nationally without affecting the outcome of the election at all. Figuring out where the "truth" lies between both extremes will probably take really fancy math if it's possible at all.

I'd like to suggest that the point of sanctions aren't to directly prevent future actions but to increase the perceived cost. They probably won't interfere with the Russian's ability to interfere in 2018 but, if they are implemented, the Russian may choose not interfere again.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Fenring on February 19, 2018, 03:57:10 PM
the point of sanctions aren't to directly prevent future actions but to increase the perceived cost.

What is "sanctions"? You mean make economic attacks on the entire country? And you would do this in response to Twitter trolls and Facebook ads, which aren't illegal under the laws of any country?
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: NobleHunter on February 19, 2018, 04:09:58 PM
The sanctions that Congress passed and maybe others.

Also, something the Russians allegedly did was illegal, hence the indictments.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Fenring on February 19, 2018, 04:23:48 PM
The sanctions that Congress passed and maybe others.

Also, something the Russians allegedly did was illegal, hence the indictments.

Here's a quote from CNN about what the 2017 sanction bill says:

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What's in the bill?
The bill refers to sanctions on Russia, Iran and North Korea, and it substantially reduces the President's power to waive or ease certain sanctions without Congressional approval.
The Russian sanctions will target people and entities that:
-- undermine US cybersecurity on behalf of the Russia government
-- invest certain amounts in Russia's energy export pipelines
-- conduct "significant" transactions with Russian defense and intelligence agencies (though this will come into effect six months from now)
-- commit, or assist in, serious human rights abuses
-- commit acts of "significant" corruption
-- provide support to the Syrian government to acquire arms
-- invest, or facilitate the investment of, $10 million or more in the Russian government's privatization of any state-owned asset in a one-year period that could unfairly benefit government officials or their associates.
The bill lists 12 types of sanctions that can be imposed and obliges the President to use at least five in many cases against those affected. They can include freezing assets, such as property, revoking US visas and banning exports from the United States to those sanctioned.

It says it will target "people and entities" that do these things. So if a corporation is doing business with Russia they could be hit with sanctions; that's clear enough. If a Russian diplomat or leader is materially contributing to these things they may freeze accounts, cancel visas, etc. Clear enough. So please tell me how this bill (which you say comprises the sorts of actions you'd like to see as a response to 'meddling' {which remains undefined}) should be implemented in response to Twitter trolls and FB posts? How do you 'sanction' someone who created a FB account to post stuff about the U.S. election? You cancel the 'visa' they used to get on the internet? Or what?

It's the same question all over again: what would you actually do if you could have your way? What response are you actually advocating for to either (a) prevent these actions, or (b) discourage them? Bonus points if you can identify why said activities shouldn't be allowed in the first place, regardless of much you dislike their theorized effect. I know, NH, you were just wading into a question originally posed to Donald, but as I'm doing the same let the crossfire continue :)
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: NobleHunter on February 19, 2018, 04:34:32 PM
The sanctions are listed in the bit you quoted "freezing assets, such as property, revoking US visas and banning exports from the United States to those sanctioned." It probably won't affect the person paid to go trolling but might complicate things for the people who ran the company or members of the Russian government.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Fenring on February 19, 2018, 04:40:40 PM
The sanctions are listed in the bit you quoted "freezing assets, such as property, revoking US visas and banning exports from the United States to those sanctioned." It probably won't affect the person paid to go trolling but might complicate things for the people who ran the company or members of the Russian government.

So you believe that the property of foreign people should be seized for either posting content that has an opinion about U.S. elections (for instance pro or anti a candidate) or for paying someone to do so? Do you believe that such posting is illegal under U.S. law? If not, do you believe that economics attacks against persons who haven't broken U.S. law is itself permissible under U.S. law?
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: NobleHunter on February 19, 2018, 04:50:54 PM
Someone is believed to have done something illegal or there wouldn't be indictments. If those foreign people are part of a concerted to interfere with an election by a foreign state or non-state actor, then sure. We aren't talking about Russian 4chan screwing with the election for the lulz but a deliberate attempt to weaken and undermine the US. Suggesting we respond to the latter as if it were the former is an invitation to further attacks.

It's permissible under US law if Congress says it is unless it's unconstitutional.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: DonaldD on February 19, 2018, 05:14:27 PM
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Your use of the word "else" sounds to me like a handwaive dismissal of Jason's question.
I guess I could have been clearer, when I answered my rhetorical in the very next sentence.  Or are you really not understanding that Jason artificially limited the prospective breaches of law to things that are not actually against the law?

Why would I respond to such a pointless question?
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Fenring on February 19, 2018, 05:15:26 PM
Someone is believed to have done something illegal or there wouldn't be indictments.

The bill is about many things, including Iran, Korea, and Russia. The first entire section, for instance, is only about Russia. As for Russia, it's a cumulative 'screw you' bill which sanctions in reaction to the Crimea affair, among other things. Your claim of indictments should only apply to the election to be on topic; what are those indictments related to that and only that?

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Suggesting we respond to the latter as if it were the former is an invitation to further attacks.


Begging the question here as I've never seen evidence of 'attacks' unless you mean propaganda posts.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: NobleHunter on February 19, 2018, 05:27:22 PM
Those would be the indictments issued by Mueller. The ones accusing assorted Russian with illegal activity during the election?
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: DonaldD on February 19, 2018, 05:35:28 PM
I've just realized that Fenring probably hasn't read the text of the actual indictments...http://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-43091945 (http://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-43091945)
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Wayward Son on February 19, 2018, 06:54:46 PM
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But if that's wrong, then put up or shut up - what kind of "sanctions" do you actually propose that would  effectively prevent this behaviour in the future?  No more vagueries about investigations and sanctions. How do you actually STOP this from happening again? Please be specific.

You're right.  I can't STOP this from happening again.  It's impossible.

Neither can I STOP all murder from happening again.  Therefore, we should close all prisons, shouldn't we?  Because we don't have any effective way of preventing murders and crime, we should just give up and accept it, shouldn't we?  Because the alternative is too terrible to contemplate...  ::)

Well, guess what?  We don't have to STOP it.  We don't have to make sure it can't never, ever happen again.  But we can make it harder and costlier.  We can discourage the behavior.  That's what we need to focus on.

And, yes, we can do things that won't inevitably lead us to a totalitarian state!  You're creating a Fool's Choice.  We can curtail our rights some to discourage abuse of them.  We've done it before.  We do it all the time.  We do it now.  So don't tell me we can't do it.

And I did post an idea that would help curtail this behavior.  The idea from Electorial-Vote.com.  Read it again.  Why wouldn't that help?  Would it be 100 percent effective?  Of course not.  But it could help.

Frankly, I don't care if Russia told us on the internet to vote for Hillary, vote for Trump, or whatever.  They can say everything they have said in the last election, on one condition--they identify themselves.  If Russians want to call for a rally against Hillary in New York, let them.  Just don't make us think it is Americans that are doing so.

It is this deceit, specifically aimed at destroying our democracy, that we must fight against.  Making us think we are more against each other than we are.  Spreading lies and making us blame ourselves.  In other words, the dirty tricks.

But don't lie down and take it because you think it might be abused in the future.  That's a coward's way.  Figure out how we can reduce these cold war attacks, and make sure it isn't abused in the future.  That's what an American would do!
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Gaoics79 on February 19, 2018, 07:35:10 PM
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You're right.  I can't STOP this from happening again.  It's impossible.

Neither can I STOP all murder from happening again.  Therefore, we should close all prisons, shouldn't we?  Because we don't have any effective way of preventing murders and crime, we should just give up and accept it, shouldn't we?  Because the alternative is too terrible to contemplate...  ::)

Assuming, for argument's sake, you believe that trolling Facebook and posting fake articles is some awesome propaganda - the propagandist's equivalent to *murder* in its effectiveness, what pray tell do you propose to do to deter such an act? What punishment or sanction do you think can be imposed on Russians that would deter them from employing a form of propaganda so mighty that it can sway elections to the candidate of their choice?

Again, please be specific.

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But we can make it harder and costlier. 

Yes because apparently they can mess with our democratic elections, even sway entire nations to their will, but I'm sure if you freeze some bank accounts or wag your finger at them they'll just give up all that power. Sure.

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It is this deceit, specifically aimed at destroying our democracy, that we must fight against.  Making us think we are more against each other than we are.  Spreading lies and making us blame ourselves.  In other words, the dirty tricks.

But don't lie down and take it because you think it might be abused in the future.  That's a coward's way.  Figure out how we can reduce these cold war attacks, and make sure it isn't abused in the future.  That's what an American would do!

Funny you mentioned the cold war. Joe McCarthy was very much concerned about the very thing you seem to have gone hysterical over. The difference is, he was probably concerned about actual spies and saboteurs, whereas you seem mostly concerned about some stupid Facebook ads and internet trolls. He was fighting the influence of the actual evil empire.

Sorry, I just think it's kind of funny and ironic that red peril is back in vogue, and that left-wing liberals are leading the charge.
 
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Gaoics79 on February 19, 2018, 07:43:32 PM
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I've just realized that Fenring probably hasn't read the text of the actual indictments...http://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-43091945

Uhh huh. Let's see some convictions and then we can talk about how "deterred" the Russians are.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: DonaldD on February 19, 2018, 08:03:56 PM
Is your point just that convicting foreigners of crimes won't change Russia's actions, so there is no point in the USA enforcing its laws?
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: TheDrake on February 20, 2018, 09:18:07 AM
There's another way to look at this. The indictments probably won't deter foreign entities from trying again. Just like capturing a spy and putting them in jail won't stop a state actor from trying to recruit more spies. It might make it harder to recruit either, however. It is also possible that the awareness raised from the publicity just might help some portion of the public to think more critically and suspiciously about outrageous calls to action propagated on social media.

I do not believe that the Russian influence came close to really moving the needle in a material way for this election cycle. But a completely laissez-faire approach leaves the door wide open to perfecting those techniques, and possibly applying them to more regional races. Got a senator or representative who is particularly vocal about supporting the Magnitsky Act? Maybe Russian influence tips a scale.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Seriati on February 20, 2018, 10:04:18 AM
Jason, I see what I would consider the proper responses taking place now already - a special counsel investigation,...

Can you walk through the logic here.  If we're talking about a Russian attack, rather than a Trump collusion, why would we need a special counsel?  Shouldn't it be the Trump justice department - as a whole - managing that investigation?

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...and legislative body investigations. I see no value in putting the cart before the horse and deciding on sanctions now before the extent of what was done is actually known (and why military is always the first straw man I will not hazard a guess).

Like say the Obama administration expelling Russian diplomats and imposing sanctions between Trump's election and his inaugeration?

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I will say that the focus of the special counsel investigation on whether there was domestic (specifically Trump campaign)  assistance was unfortunate, though possibly necessary.

Actually, if there is no real evidence of collusion, having a special counsel harmed the process.  It turned what should have been a bipartisan response into the worst kind of political gamesmanship.  It literally did the Russian's work for them.

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When the thread was opened, however, there was resistance in certain quarters from even considering any investigations into Russia's actions ("I do not believe it's worthy of discussion, no") which is why I periodically update the thread.

Which is literally the result of trying to use it as a partisan tool to delegitimize a President.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: yossarian22c on February 20, 2018, 10:46:09 AM
I do not believe that the Russian influence came close to really moving the needle in a material way for this election cycle. But a completely laissez-faire approach leaves the door wide open to perfecting those techniques, and possibly applying them to more regional races. Got a senator or representative who is particularly vocal about supporting the Magnitsky Act? Maybe Russian influence tips a scale.

Considering the election was basically decided by about 50,000 votes in Penn, 10,000 votes in Michigan, and 20,000 votes in Wisconsin you didn't need to tip the scales very far. With those margins I'm more inclined to say that it is unknowable weather Russian actions had any impact on the outcome of the election.

Other things certainly had larger impacts, Clinton being entirely uninspiring (apart from the potential for the first women president), Weiner's laptop re-opening the Clinton investigation for 3 days a week before the election, and people's general tendency to vote for the opposite party after a two term president.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: yossarian22c on February 20, 2018, 10:59:41 AM
Jason, I see what I would consider the proper responses taking place now already - a special counsel investigation,...

Can you walk through the logic here.  If we're talking about a Russian attack, rather than a Trump collusion, why would we need a special counsel?  Shouldn't it be the Trump justice department - as a whole - managing that investigation?

Which is what we had until Trump fired the FBI director over this "Russia thing."
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Seriati on February 20, 2018, 11:16:42 AM
I hope you aren't serious yossarian22c.  Show me the proof Comey was fired over this "Russia thing."  The Comey firing should also have been bipartisan, his choices - very public choices - have done more to discredit the FBI than any one could imagine.  And if you want to talk about influencing the election, Comey's impact, was quite literally a 1000x bigger than anything the Russians could have ever done. 
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: yossarian22c on February 20, 2018, 11:53:42 AM
I hope you aren't serious yossarian22c.  Show me the proof Comey was fired over this "Russia thing." 
Trump:
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He had made a recommendation. But regardless of recommendation, I was going to fire Comey knowing there was no good time to do it

And in fact, when I decided to just do it, I said to myself -- I said, you know, this Russia thing with Trump and Russia is a made-up story.

Trump says to himself when deciding to fire Comey that this Russia thing is a made-up story. I can't climb inside Trump's mind and know the real reason but he directly connected Comey's firing to the "Russia thing."

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The Comey firing should also have been bipartisan, his choices - very public choices - have done more to discredit the FBI than any one could imagine.  And if you want to talk about influencing the election, Comey's impact, was quite literally a 1000x bigger than anything the Russians could have ever done.

I already stated this had a larger impact on the election than anything the Russians did.

The timing of the Comey firing is important. Firing him after he refused to "let Flynn go" is different that firing him in early Feb right after Trump took office.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Fenring on February 20, 2018, 11:58:02 AM
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I've just realized that Fenring probably hasn't read the text of the actual indictments...http://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-43091945

Uhh huh. Let's see some convictions and then we can talk about how "deterred" the Russians are.

I had previously read bits and scraps of the indictments but never the whole document. As it is I skimmed it last night but didn't have the patience to read through and parse every detail. That being said, I already mentioned above that actually illegal activities, such as hacking peoples' accounts and employing identity theft should definitely be pursued, but not as some kind of fancy anti-Russian defence but just as normal crime prevention and investigation. These acts are illegal and should be pursued, as I'm sure they are anyhow regardless of the 2016 election. I doubt that going after identity thieves is something that was invented by this list of indictments, it's just that these guys maybe did so here. But those alleged crimes are a separate matter from the general concept of Russians (or other people) speaking to Americans via social media. Maybe some Russians did so in a manner that was actually illegal, but assuming the wisen up in future and use legal methods of doing so, then what?

And as Jason put it, I'll be curious to see whether these indictments stick. Some of them seem to suggest that masquerading as an American entity is against the law when in fact they should have been registered as foreign interests (which Donald brought up), but that's easy to say when it's an actual company doing the posting and we can easily identify a company as being foreign. And actually I don't even know if it's that easy. For instance, for a multinational can we plausibly say what country that company is "from"? The head office of Coca-Cola may be in the U.S. for instance, but if they have regional offices in various countries is it incorrect for them to claim to be local there and make statements about that country's well-being? So I'm a little fuzzy on who does or doesn't qualify as being a foreign interest. I think the implication being made is that these companies can maybe be linked to the Russian government and that the issue is that it's the government doing these things rather than private citizens or companies. But to make that distinction we'd have to be able to define what is or isn't strictly government or non-government. Are we sure this kind of definition can be coherent? I would suggest that within American itself it's already impossible to draw a line between what is or isn't a private/public activity. Is Google, for instance, a "government entity" since it works closely with the government in some areas? If Google, which has a presence in France for example, made statements about the well-being of the French economy in the interests of Google France (I don't know if there's literally a branch of that name), could that credibly be called "interference by the U.S. government" on account of the company's home office having government ties? This whole thing seems to me incredibly muddy, and I really worry, as Seriati does, that the entire thing is an excuse to find scapegoats to blame for Hillary's loss and to delegitimize President Trump.

That being said, I do agree fully that cyber-security is a very important area in which to be strong and I would totally support initiatives to strengthen defences against hacking, identity theft, and sabotage. But this sort of action should be bipartisan rather than geared towards proving malfeasance on behalf of a particular party.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Fenring on February 20, 2018, 12:02:15 PM
I hope you aren't serious yossarian22c.  Show me the proof Comey was fired over this "Russia thing." 
Trump:
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He had made a recommendation. But regardless of recommendation, I was going to fire Comey knowing there was no good time to do it

And in fact, when I decided to just do it, I said to myself -- I said, you know, this Russia thing with Trump and Russia is a made-up story.

Trump says to himself when deciding to fire Comey that this Russia thing is a made-up story. I can't climb inside Trump's mind and know the real reason but he directly connected Comey's firing to the "Russia thing."

This doesn't look like good textual reading to me. In context of Trump saying there was no good time to do a thing he already wanted to do, and that this seemed like as good a time as any, following that up with saying that the Russia story was made-up would be a way of indicating that, in addition to the fact of there being no good time, this time isn't especially bad because since the Russia thing is phony there isn't a real conflict of interest in getting rid of him now. Consider the alternative, where Comey was investigating something quite serious, in which case there could be visibility problems in firing him at just that moment. One might well assert that it actually was something quite serious and that therefore it looks bad, but that assumption would seem to be begging the question, whereas if Trump legitimately (with no BS) believed that the Russia thing was made-up then he'd believe that there was no real reason not to fire him then and there rather than wait.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Seriati on February 20, 2018, 01:11:56 PM
What fascinated me about the indictment is how much of it is actually not illegal - if you change one fact.  If you make it US nationals instead of Russian nationals, 90% of it drops away.  In fact, the activities that were being engaged in are expressly activities that every political campaign and every interest group was already engaging in, most with budgets hundreds or thousands of times larger.

Why exactly is this Russian propaganda campaign, deemed more effective, that the Clinton or Trump campaign propaganda campaigns, or any of the  political advocacy groups?  There's literally no reason to think it was - other than it fits a narrative.

I hope you aren't serious yossarian22c.  Show me the proof Comey was fired over this "Russia thing." 
Trump:
Quote
He had made a recommendation. But regardless of recommendation, I was going to fire Comey knowing there was no good time to do it

And in fact, when I decided to just do it, I said to myself -- I said, you know, this Russia thing with Trump and Russia is a made-up story.

Trump says to himself when deciding to fire Comey that this Russia thing is a made-up story. I can't climb inside Trump's mind and know the real reason but he directly connected Comey's firing to the "Russia thing."

That's the Lester Holt interview, which by the way if you read the transcript, clearly shows the Comey reference was an after thought.  Flipping that around to being the primary or sole reason as you implied is a bad faith misrepresentation. 

In my view, this is one of those memes that the left has repeated to itself so many times, that they stopped actually presenting evidence and have forgotten that they haven't actually proved it.  It's barely even plausible as - we all know - that firing Comey doesn't stop a "Russian investigation".

And I want to double down on something Fenring said.  If Trump knows there was no collusion, then his comment makes perfect sense, Comey's wasting time and resources.

Quote
The timing of the Comey firing is important. Firing him after he refused to "let Flynn go" is different that firing him in early Feb right after Trump took office.

Now that's the second time you've pulled a partial quote out of context to make it say what you want instead of what it actually said.  To my knowledge, no one in the know has seriously asserted that Flynn was a bad guy.  Asking for leniency if the breaches were unintentional isn't terrible unreasonable, heck Comey had just made up an intent requirement to keep Hillary out of jail and there was little question she intentionally created her server to keep her communications out of the public view.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: scifibum on February 20, 2018, 02:59:28 PM
Quote
That's the Lester Holt interview, which by the way if you read the transcript, clearly shows the Comey reference was an after thought.  Flipping that around to being the primary or sole reason as you implied is a bad faith misrepresentation. 

In my view, this is one of those memes that the left has repeated to itself so many times, that they stopped actually presenting evidence and have forgotten that they haven't actually proved it.  It's barely even plausible as - we all know - that firing Comey doesn't stop a "Russian investigation".

1) You're not making sense, what do you mean by "the Comey reference"?  The question is why did Trump fire Comey, so how can a reference to Comey be an after thought? 

2) Trump can't know that there's no collusion between members of his campaign and Russia.  Even if that's his opinion, what you are suggesting here undermines the narrative that you're trying to sell.  He wasn't trying to interfere with the investigation, except maybe he knows it was a waste of time, so in that case he knows it was a waste of resources anyway so it would be fine to try to interfere with it? 
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: scifibum on February 20, 2018, 03:01:09 PM
Quote
Asking for leniency if the breaches were unintentional isn't terrible unreasonable, heck Comey had just made up an intent requirement to keep Hillary out of jail and there was little question she intentionally created her server to keep her communications out of the public view.

How would you feel if Obama had pulled Comey aside to ask for leniency? 

Of course it was horribly improper.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Seriati on February 20, 2018, 03:23:29 PM
Quote
Asking for leniency if the breaches were unintentional isn't terrible unreasonable, heck Comey had just made up an intent requirement to keep Hillary out of jail and there was little question she intentionally created her server to keep her communications out of the public view.

How would you feel if Obama had pulled Comey aside to ask for leniency?

It's my literal belief that Holder ignored actual crimes on orders of the President.  It never would have occurred to me  that it wasn't within Obama's authority to direct Comey and the entire FBI on his enforcement priorities.

Quote
Of course it was horribly improper.

On what basis?  Unless he is charged with Treason, it's completely within Trump's authority to pardon any crime he committed.  The President is the literal head of the executive branch, which the FBI is a part of, with the full power to declare that his priorities do not include the prosecution of people for innocent transgressions of technical statutes, which would again eliminate this case.

It's also literally within the power of the President to drop an investigation. 

The remedy here is political not legal.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Seriati on February 20, 2018, 03:27:42 PM
Quote
That's the Lester Holt interview, which by the way if you read the transcript, clearly shows the Comey reference was an after thought.  Flipping that around to being the primary or sole reason as you implied is a bad faith misrepresentation. 

In my view, this is one of those memes that the left has repeated to itself so many times, that they stopped actually presenting evidence and have forgotten that they haven't actually proved it.  It's barely even plausible as - we all know - that firing Comey doesn't stop a "Russian investigation".

1) You're not making sense, what do you mean by "the Comey reference"?  The question is why did Trump fire Comey, so how can a reference to Comey be an after thought? 

Because I've read the transcript and have watched the interview, and it's never stated as the reason he fired Comey.  Do the same, and unless you're a complete partisan you'll have to acknowledge the plausibility of it being an afterthought.

Quote
2) Trump can't know that there's no collusion between members of his campaign and Russia.

But he literally can know if he was involved, ordered it or was aware of it.

Quote
Even if that's his opinion, what you are suggesting here undermines the narrative that you're trying to sell.  He wasn't trying to interfere with the investigation, except maybe he knows it was a waste of time, so in that case he knows it was a waste of resources anyway so it would be fine to try to interfere with it?

No he wasn't trying to interfere with an investigation.  He was firing Comey, for a bunch of reasons, not to mention his fixation on a "fake news" story.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: yossarian22c on February 20, 2018, 03:33:34 PM
On what basis?  Unless he is charged with Treason, it's completely within Trump's authority to pardon any crime he committed.  The President is the literal head of the executive branch, which the FBI is a part of, with the full power to declare that his priorities do not include the prosecution of people for innocent transgressions of technical statutes, which would again eliminate this case.

Flynn "innocently" lied to the FBI, the vice-president, and the rest of the administration about the extent and content of his discussions with the Russian ambassador? Seriously something is wrong there. The national security adviser lying about contacts with Russia isn't something to look the other way about because he's a "good guy."
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: scifibum on February 20, 2018, 03:46:52 PM
The Holt interview is far from the only evidence there is about why he fired Comey. 

The Rosenstein memo has some reasoning that Trump, interestingly, has failed to repeat or reinforce. 

He has, however, made up some things about the FBI being in turmoil. 
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Seriati on February 20, 2018, 04:11:19 PM
Well Yoss, at the time Trump made the comment, it did look in fact like Flynn was a good guy that foot faulted.  Whether later information has changed that view is neither here nor there.

And again, since when have we gotten so legalistic that we think the FBI should be sending people to jail for "lies" where there is no underlying crime based on complicated fact patterns and bad memories?  Want to know why Flynn is pleading guilty, and Hillary has never been charged?  One simple phrase, "I don't recall."
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Fenring on February 20, 2018, 04:17:38 PM
He has, however, made up some things about the FBI being in turmoil.

I'm not aware of the specific things you're referencing, but from what I've read there was indeed significant turmoil in the FBI around the time of the election. Sources in the FBI were saying that Comey was being given the cold shoulder by the entire Bureau, with people walking past him in the hallway declining to even greet him. I've read accounts from at least a few agents saying that in their opinion he disgraced the Bureau.

Of course I don't work there so I can only go by what I've read, but if these accounts are accurate then his firing was an utter necessity.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Seriati on February 21, 2018, 09:08:04 AM
Well Yoss, at the time Trump made the comment, it did look in fact like Flynn was a good guy that foot faulted.  Whether later information has changed that view is neither here nor there.

And again, since when have we gotten so legalistic that we think the FBI should be sending people to jail for "lies" where there is no underlying crime based on complicated fact patterns and bad memories?  Want to know why Flynn is pleading guilty, and Hillary has never been charged?  One simple phrase, "I don't recall."

By the way of odd coincidences, have you looked at today's news?  Apparently the FBI didn't even think Flynn intended lied to them.  That was a reevaluation that Mueller imposed after he took over, and now there are questions about whether the guilty plea was entered as part of a deal to protect his son from charges (which would be prosecutorial abuse). 

I still would like you to confirm that you think its the "right thing" to compel people to talk to the government on non-illegal matters, then put them into jail if anything they said can be proven inconsistent.  And just to be clear, I doubt that anyone here has ever had a conversation about something that happened in the past that is 100% accurate in every detail, so keep in mind we're talking about jail time, cause you said Uncle Bob got drunk and yelled at Aunt Sharon, but really, it was Uncle Max.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: yossarian22c on February 21, 2018, 12:55:27 PM
By the way of odd coincidences, have you looked at today's news?  Apparently the FBI didn't even think Flynn intended lied to them.  That was a reevaluation that Mueller imposed after he took over, and now there are questions about whether the guilty plea was entered as part of a deal to protect his son from charges (which would be prosecutorial abuse). 

I still would like you to confirm that you think its the "right thing" to compel people to talk to the government on non-illegal matters, then put them into jail if anything they said can be proven inconsistent.  And just to be clear, I doubt that anyone here has ever had a conversation about something that happened in the past that is 100% accurate in every detail, so keep in mind we're talking about jail time, cause you said Uncle Bob got drunk and yelled at Aunt Sharon, but really, it was Uncle Max.

I haven’t seen the news.

As to the second point I would say it depends. Did you mistakenly say you had red wine with dinner when you actually had white. In that case no the fbi shouldn’t prosecute. On the other hand did you lie to everyone about conversations about Russian sanctions with the Russian ambassador that potentially has national security implications so I think that lie is worth investigating and potentially prosecuting.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Seriati on February 21, 2018, 01:47:00 PM
Yoss, the most recent understanding is that Flynn's communication wasn't even illegal, and if the account that the FBI didn't think he intentionally lied is accurate, what exactly is the justification for putting him in prison?  Do we really jail people for accidental lies about non-criminal activity?
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: scifibum on February 21, 2018, 01:56:27 PM
If by "most recent understanding" you mean "most recent right wing talking point", I guess.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Seriati on February 21, 2018, 04:23:55 PM
So educate me, scifibum, what law do you think he violated?
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: yossarian22c on February 21, 2018, 04:57:41 PM
So educate me, scifibum, what law do you think he violated?

The Logan act.

If everything was so innocent, why did he lie about the nature of their conversation?
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: scifibum on February 22, 2018, 12:57:57 PM
My understanding is that the Logan act has never resulted in a conviction, but that it is still a law that could be used to prosecute someone, and might be used if someone was to deliberately and secretly undermine the foreign policy of the sitting executive.  I think Flynn's conversations with the Russian ambassador - if they included any pressure to take acts or refrain from acts, in ways that conflicted with Obama's foreign policy - appear to be that kind of violation of the Logan act. 

I understand that many people have offered opinions to the contrary.  However, there is no unanimity of opinion on this topic, and I think there are credible arguments that the Logan act can be enforced constitutionally, and is applicable in this situation.  It has yet to be fully tested in court.

As for the "lying" charge, I think Mueller is probably depending on a difference between what happened, what Flynn knew, and what Flynn told the FBI, rather than an impression the interviewing agents had at that time.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: TheDrake on February 22, 2018, 01:07:11 PM
I could see how it would totally slip his mind that he talked to the Russian ambassador.  :o

It's not like they asked him what color the chairs were in the hotel lobby or if he had Russian dressing on his salad during the transition.

Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Greg Davidson on February 24, 2018, 01:19:32 AM
Quote
Sources in the FBI were saying that Comey was being given the cold shoulder by the entire Bureau, with people walking past him in the hallway declining to even greet him. I've read accounts from at least a few agents saying that in their opinion he disgraced the Bureau.

Of course I don't work there so I can only go by what I've read, but if these accounts are accurate then his firing was an utter necessity.

Think about those sources - and then look at some actual data.

At the bottom of this article are all 100+ pages of FOIA'd emails showing exactly how those in the FBI reacted to the firing of Comey https://lawfareblog.com/i-hope-instance-fake-news-fbi-messages-show-bureaus-real-reaction-trump-firing-james-comey (https://lawfareblog.com/i-hope-instance-fake-news-fbi-messages-show-bureaus-real-reaction-trump-firing-james-comey)

You can either believe that there is an incredible conspiracy going on at every level, or that the President and his Republican shills told some outrageous lies that your sources have picked up and presented as if it were the truth
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Greg Davidson on February 24, 2018, 01:35:16 AM
With many fewer investigations and much less time than was spent investigating the Obama Administration, we now have far more examples of criminal behavior in the Trump Administration being so obvious that multiple people are confessing their guilt.

My question: what are all the ways that Republican apologists will try to dodge the clear reality that their conspiracy theories about crime in the Obama Administration were bogus and that their votes have brought in a far more corrupt and law-breaking Administration?
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: AnonymousMaus on February 28, 2018, 06:39:48 PM
https://www.c-span.org/video/?441677-1/nsa-chief-testifies-fiscal-year-2019-budget
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: rightleft22 on March 01, 2018, 11:56:02 AM
Quote
It is because the media landscape is so mired in sludge that various X factors can come to have weight in people's decision-making…
I think you need to better define media landscape so we might better understand how we are being manipulated. My opinion is that we do not yet understand how the newer communication technologies are shaping society.  Because we don’t understand it we are easily manipulated by it.

Within the hour after the Florida school shooting Russian social media boots came started disseminating commissary theories.  Where is the movement to stop such bots – should we make it a criminal offence to use such bots which only purpose can be to artificially manipulate a narrative? 

We are becoming more and more dependent on technology acting as our memory and memory is a trickster     
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: TheDeamon on March 01, 2018, 06:43:48 PM
... and more of Russia's ongoing attacks against US society:

https://www.cnn.com/2018/02/16/us/russian-bots-florida-shooting-intl/index.html (https://www.cnn.com/2018/02/16/us/russian-bots-florida-shooting-intl/index.html)

That CNN Article is mildly confusing, in one part they seem to be talking about Russian Bots targeting american issues, in another they're evidently talking about Bots in general(could be anybody), and then they cycle back to Russian Bots being suspected in issues involving other nations.

But it seems that the Russian bots targeting a US audience seem to be "well targeted" in that their favored topics seem to play into the tinfoil-hat crowd, as it promotes further distrust of the government and "the deep state." While it also tries to stir up the gun-control crowd at the same time, I guess to get them to further agitate the tinfoil group?

I'm more amused that they think the tinfoil-hat crowd has that much influence on politics in the United States, or that they're likely to vote for either major party to start with.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: TheDeamon on March 01, 2018, 06:56:13 PM
As for suggestions, here's one from Electoral-vote.com (http://www.electoral-vote.com/evp2018/Senate/Maps/Feb19.html#item-5).

Quote
It is not impossible to combat troll farms, but it would take a change of mindset. As a starter, the social media companies could require anyone opening an account (or keeping an existing account) to upload an image of their drivers' license, passport, or other ID. Then they would have to weed out duplicate accounts. Finally, they would have to verify the name and number of the uploaded documents with the issuing authority to catch forgeries. Postings could still be anonymous, but the companies could make it much more difficult for trolls to open accounts. If the social media companies have no interest in something like this, Congress could require it by law and impose heavy penalties for noncompliance.

While the idea is laudable, it has one major problem. Doing that is high on the list of things you are told not to do with your government issued IDentification because once that copy leaves your control, you have zero control over where it goes from there. (That isn't to say businesses and people don't "do it all the time" but it is something they're not supposed to be doing.)

Quote
And seriously, jasonr, are you saying we can do nothing about foreign governments influencing our elections, and we should just give up?  Let anyone sow discord and disinformation from fraudulent accounts without restraint or resistance?  Just pretend it really doesn't matter, even though Russia is paying premium salaries to these guys to influence our elections?  Rely on the belief that Russian intelligence is silly and ineffective?

Daylight seems to be a good first step. For most of those activities, that is probably more than sufficient. Now depending on how extreme the efforts are, escalation may be warranted. But most of the examples given here, simply giving them public exposure is probably more than enough.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: TheDeamon on March 01, 2018, 07:10:23 PM
One the one hand, the election was close enough that if the meddling had any effect, then they could have easily affected the outcome. The result was determined by a few tens of thousand of votes in a few states. On the other hand, if the Russians didn't have much influence in the relevant states then they could have had a tremendous effect on how votes were cast nationally without affecting the outcome of the election at all. Figuring out where the "truth" lies between both extremes will probably take really fancy math if it's possible at all.

I'd like to suggest that the point of sanctions aren't to directly prevent future actions but to increase the perceived cost. They probably won't interfere with the Russian's ability to interfere in 2018 but, if they are implemented, the Russian may choose not interfere again.

With the result they obtained, you'd have to impose absolutely crippling sanctions against Russia in order to achieve your desired goal.

And imposing those sanctions would be likely to harm American interests in both the short and long term than benefit them, which would then just help the Russians even further.

Sorry, but the 2016 electoral outcome, once paired with the Democratic response to it, has resulted in a "No matter what the United States does in response, Russia wins" outcome.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: TheDeamon on March 01, 2018, 07:13:58 PM
The sanctions are listed in the bit you quoted "freezing assets, such as property, revoking US visas and banning exports from the United States to those sanctioned." It probably won't affect the person paid to go trolling but might complicate things for the people who ran the company or members of the Russian government.

So you believe that the property of foreign people should be seized for either posting content that has an opinion about U.S. elections (for instance pro or anti a candidate) or for paying someone to do so? Do you believe that such posting is illegal under U.S. law? If not, do you believe that economics attacks against persons who haven't broken U.S. law is itself permissible under U.S. law?

Hey this might have merit, we could seize the rights J.K. Rowling has to the Harry Potter franchise in the United States given her posts on our domestic issues. That might be able to fund a couple tanks. =P
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: TheDeamon on March 01, 2018, 07:19:04 PM
Quote
You're right.  I can't STOP this from happening again.  It's impossible.

Neither can I STOP all murder from happening again.  Therefore, we should close all prisons, shouldn't we?  Because we don't have any effective way of preventing murders and crime, we should just give up and accept it, shouldn't we?  Because the alternative is too terrible to contemplate...  ::)

Assuming, for argument's sake, you believe that trolling Facebook and posting fake articles is some awesome propaganda - the propagandist's equivalent to *murder* in its effectiveness, what pray tell do you propose to do to deter such an act? What punishment or sanction do you think can be imposed on Russians that would deter them from employing a form of propaganda so mighty that it can sway elections to the candidate of their choice?

The even better question is how he's going to impose the penalty upon said persons when they're nice and safe at home in Russia, where we have no jurisdiction, and as they're (alleged) to be operating under a Russian Government Aegis, the Russians are highly unlikely to extradite.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: TheDeamon on March 01, 2018, 07:37:05 PM
With many fewer investigations and much less time than was spent investigating the Obama Administration, we now have far more examples of criminal behavior in the Trump Administration being so obvious that multiple people are confessing their guilt.

My question: what are all the ways that Republican apologists will try to dodge the clear reality that their conspiracy theories about crime in the Obama Administration were bogus and that their votes have brought in a far more corrupt and law-breaking Administration?

I believe I've commented more than a few times I expected "a Keystone Cops" routine from the Trump Admin, particularly early on. That some of their bumbling and fumbling crossed into the realm of criminality due to sometimes obscure, and other times not quite obscure reasons is hardly shocking. Of course, I didn't vote for the guy either.

That the Obama Admin otherwise seemed to get away scott-free is likewise not shocking. They were a highly sophisticated political organization with roots extending deeply into Chicago's Political Machine, with further ties into the Clinton Machine(via Hillary) which had to deal with intense Republican Scrutiny for 8 years. Additionally, adding in the adoring MSM coverage that Obama enjoyed and an very unusually tight political ship(virtually no leaks, at all, period), and is hardly shocking.

That people were extraordinarily tight-lipped about what want on in the Obama Whitehouse is perhaps one of the more disturbing aspects of his tenure.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: TheDeamon on March 01, 2018, 07:45:09 PM
Quote
It is because the media landscape is so mired in sludge that various X factors can come to have weight in people's decision-making…
I think you need to better define media landscape so we might better understand how we are being manipulated. My opinion is that we do not yet understand how the newer communication technologies are shaping society.  Because we don’t understand it we are easily manipulated by it.

Within the hour after the Florida school shooting Russian social media boots came started disseminating commissary theories.  Where is the movement to stop such bots – should we make it a criminal offence to use such bots which only purpose can be to artificially manipulate a narrative?

I think a big part of this is the decline of Newspaper subscriptions and the resultant loss of ad revenues. This also is impacting the major Television Networks as the DVR, and declining ratings in general(as people turn online for their news) is also sapping them of Advertising revenue as well.

News rooms are shrinking everywhere, and their ability to pay for talent to do actual investigative journalism has pretty much been reduced to the point of being almost non-existent. So instead you get a bunch of poorly paid field reporters, who may actually be "freelancers" with little actual freedom, who have little time to actually investigate before they report(because the 24 hour news cycles wants it naow!), and are typically more than satisfied with being on the scene and simply echoing back whatever the people they talk to(or find on social media/wiki) provide for them.

News isn't news anymore, it isn't coming from journalists who are trying to objectively report on what they find. It is now entertainment involving current events.

In that kind of environment, a Social Media Troll, of any origin, can cause all kinds of potential mayhem.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Gaoics79 on April 06, 2018, 08:34:47 PM
 https://www.thestar.com/opinion/star-columnists/2018/04/05/why-did-canada-expel-four-russian-diplomats-because-they-told-the-truth.html  (https://www.thestar.com/opinion/star-columnists/2018/04/05/why-did-canada-expel-four-russian-diplomats-because-they-told-the-truth.html)

This story is emblematic of the issue I have with this Russian angle. Here is another example of western politicians exploiting anti Russian animus to distract from their own political dirty laundry.

Quote
Then, on Wednesday,Trudeau spilled the beans. The Russians are being punished for saying that Freeland’s grandfather was a Nazi collaborator during the Second World War.

Trudeau called this an effort “by Russian propagandists” to smear Freeland, which perhaps it was.

The only trouble with all of this is that the Russians were telling the truth. Freeland’s maternal grandfather, Michael Chomiak, was a Nazi collaborator during the Second World War.

Now don't get me wrong, having a Nazi collaborator as a grandfather is no crime, nor should it be a scandal in any significant sense, unless the politician goes out of her way to draw attention to it in some fashion.

But facts are facts, and it's ludicrous for the Canadian government, and Freeland herself, to claim that telling the truth about this is some kind of dishonesty. I also find the self-serving suggestion that this is an attack on Canadian democracy too cute by half. The Liberal government is exploiting anti Trump animus to portray any attack on their political stars as some kind of "attack" on Canada. Nothing is more disingenuous.

I don't know the complete context of the comments against Freeland, but even if I give her the benefit of the doubt and accept that these comments were out of left field and designed to "smear" her by bringing up an irrelevant bit of family history, flat out lying and calling it "disinformation" is answering a lesser evil with a greater one.

At the end of the day, dismissing unambiguous fact as "disinformation" or suggesting that the truth is a lie can never be an appropriate response to propaganda. Censorship of truth for the purpose of fighting propaganda is a self-defeating proposition.

We either live in a free society where people (including foreigners) can say what they want, or we don't.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Gaoics79 on April 06, 2018, 08:47:06 PM
I'll add that I never even heard this Nazi allegation until the Liberals expelled Russian diplomats and started lying about it publicly. If the Liberal Party's plan was to spread this "propaganda" far and wide giving it the maximum exposure possible - kudos to them for their genius.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Fenring on April 06, 2018, 09:35:00 PM
The Russian tactic for the most part is to say true but irritating things; things that when released at certain times seem like an attack by Russia even though the 'attack' is in the form of true statements. I've seen this from Putin himself so many times that it's funny. The typical response is the kneejerk "we have to oppose this" response, whether that be in the form of denial, a counter-smear against Russia, calling it "propaganda" or other forms of disinformation. Basically Russia knows that the West is weak when it comes to admitting weakness (like many other countries) and will resort to fabrication to cover it up. China does the same thing all the time, but we expect it from them. Thus Russia is able in one swing to tell a painful truth and coax American into telling a lie, both of which serve to undermine America. And these politicians are so stupid and petty that they fall for it every time. Actually it's worse than that, because many are actively looking for excuses to levy sanctions to prevent Russia from competing in the oil market and to rattle sabers so that NATO can continue to be receive funding for bases and missiles on the Russian border.

To me the real question is who's playing whom. It seems that both Russia and the U.S. are satisfied to have a certain level of hostilities open at all times, maybe to each own's benefit. But if one side unilaterally ceased this behavior the tensions would evaporate, I think. I doubt Russia will stop taunting the U.S., and so it would be up to career politicians with skin in the game of profiting from hostile relations with Russia to make themselves stop it. So yeah, I don't know if that's going to happen. It would take a strong President to unilaterally tell the children it's enough, and to sit down with Russia and try to improve relations through serious measures. It can be done, but only if at least one side is willing to try.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: yossarian22c on April 07, 2018, 10:38:51 AM
The Russian tactic for the most part is to say true but irritating things; things that when released at certain times seem like an attack by Russia even though the 'attack' is in the form of true statements.

The other Russian tactics are:
1) invading their neighbors when they oust a corrupt president that was in Russia's pocket
2) assassinating Russian journalists that report negative things about the state
3) assassinating former agents or traitors to the Kremlin/Putin (often times outside of Russia)
4) jailing or barring from elections the leaders of the political opposition
5) engaging in cyber attacks designed to inflame tensions and animosity in other countries
6) dropping bombs on Syrian hospitals and civilians

but yeah everyone just hates on Russia b/c they tell inconvenient truths.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: NobleHunter on April 07, 2018, 01:25:31 PM
Don't forget blatantly lying about invading their neighbours.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Gaoics79 on April 08, 2018, 09:44:58 AM
The Russian tactic for the most part is to say true but irritating things; things that when released at certain times seem like an attack by Russia even though the 'attack' is in the form of true statements.

The other Russian tactics are:
1) invading their neighbors when they oust a corrupt president that was in Russia's pocket
2) assassinating Russian journalists that report negative things about the state
3) assassinating former agents or traitors to the Kremlin/Putin (often times outside of Russia)
4) jailing or barring from elections the leaders of the political opposition
5) engaging in cyber attacks designed to inflame tensions and animosity in other countries
6) dropping bombs on Syrian hospitals and civilians

but yeah everyone just hates on Russia b/c they tell inconvenient truths.

In the spirit of your comment, I'll respond by confirming your point that lying in response to Russian truthtelling is a legitimate response to Russia invading Ukraine etc...
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: yossarian22c on April 09, 2018, 08:08:28 AM
The Russian tactic for the most part is to say true but irritating things; things that when released at certain times seem like an attack by Russia even though the 'attack' is in the form of true statements.

The other Russian tactics are:
1) invading their neighbors when they oust a corrupt president that was in Russia's pocket
2) assassinating Russian journalists that report negative things about the state
3) assassinating former agents or traitors to the Kremlin/Putin (often times outside of Russia)
4) jailing or barring from elections the leaders of the political opposition
5) engaging in cyber attacks designed to inflame tensions and animosity in other countries
6) dropping bombs on Syrian hospitals and civilians

but yeah everyone just hates on Russia b/c they tell inconvenient truths.

In the spirit of your comment, I'll respond by confirming your point that lying in response to Russian truthtelling is a legitimate response to Russia invading Ukraine etc...

I was responding to the part that said "The Russian tactic for the most part" which is the RT propaganda line about how Russia is just misunderstood and unjustly maligned for exposing inconvenient truths about the west.

I honestly don't care much about whose great grandparents were Nazi sympathizers or if someone felt the need to reflexively deny that kind of claim. Things like that are sometimes glossed over when the family history gets passed down. Or maybe they denied out of shame, who cares really. It was an opportunity for Russia to make someone look foolish and they took it.

The reason I posted as I did is the increasing number of times I've seen claims like that or similar in response the other Russian tactics. We had people here make the claim that the Russian nerve agent attack was a false flag operation against Russia b/c Putin is really just all about getting good PR for Russia and occasionally pointing out true but inconvenient things about the west.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: TheDeamon on April 09, 2018, 12:07:00 PM
The other Russian tactics are:
5) engaging in cyber attacks designed to inflame tensions and animosity in other countries

but yeah everyone just hates on Russia b/c they tell inconvenient truths.

In the case of "_____ has a grandparent who was a Nazi collaborator."

Being used "to inflame tensions" that tends to say a lot about the political dynamics at play within the country/countries in question.

That the Russians even thought that might provoke a response, never mind that actually it did. Says more bad things about the political environment in the western world than any number of poli-sci essays or studies ever could.

It isn't even that I agree with the point they(Russia) was trying to make, or goal they were pursuing, whichever the case may be. But a LOT of the political system on our side is rotten in a variety of ways, and having light brought to bear on the rot is a good thing, but only so long as the rot is cleared away and repaired, rather than covered over with a thing veneer.

"Identity politics" is rot. Identity politics is what makes Nazi-Collaborator grandparents somehow "Directly relevant" in the politics of their descendants.
Title: Re: Comrade Trump and Russian insurgent hackers
Post by: Fenring on April 09, 2018, 12:32:04 PM
"Identity politics" is rot. Identity politics is what makes Nazi-Collaborator grandparents somehow "Directly relevant" in the politics of their descendants.

Unless the person in question works for the same business or does the same type of thing the grandparents did. Then it might be relevant.