Author Topic: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign  (Read 2533 times)

NobleHunter

  • Member
  • All Members
    • View Profile
Re: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign
« Reply #50 on: June 13, 2018, 04:56:23 PM »
The reason to call for this one to end is that it's damaging the country and may have been illegitimate in the first place.  Whether you think Mueller has the goods on Trump or not, the continuing secrecy is damaging.  If the goods are there it's leaving Trump in power when he could have been impeached and removed (he really can't be convicted and trying to do so will cause a constitutional crisis).  If the goods aren't there the entire failure to clear him is absolutely illegitimate and not being done for any proper purpose by law enforcement.

Or there's some proof but not yet enough to spur impeachment. Premature release of that proof could make it impossible to obtain the rest or make it harder to impeach Trump. A half-finished argument is usually less convincing that a complete one, even if the argument is eventually completed.

D.W.

  • Member
  • All Members
    • View Profile
Re: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign
« Reply #51 on: June 13, 2018, 04:57:47 PM »
Quote
Whether you like it or not, I'm concerned about abuses of the Rule of Law regardless of which party is in power.
I do like that.  I just hate that more often than not as of late, it strikes me as an implied defense of alleged law breaking. 

I'm all for taking any politician to task for breaking the law or failing to uphold the constitution.  But for *censored*'s sake, there is a matter of priorities here.  One is a figure-head at best party mascot and fund raiser now.  The other is our God damned president!  We can put Hillary on pause for a few months. 

Like it or not, she is good at this game.  Trump-and-friends?  They suck at it.  (Innocent or guilty, we'll find out)  If people just got out of the investigation's way for a bit, we'd get our Rule of Law, then you can keep dragging your favorite chew toy through the mud. 

That's the only part I don't like...
« Last Edit: June 13, 2018, 05:04:10 PM by D.W. »

Seriati

  • Member
  • All Members
    • View Profile
Re: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign
« Reply #52 on: June 13, 2018, 05:03:50 PM »
Doubtful, Occam's Razor would say that there were a few bad apples and move on, rather than a conspiracy in the campaign that goes to the top.  It's hard to say how it would parse the motives of those at the top of the DOJ and FBI, is it truly simpler that they are trying to do their jobs and come up with extraneous explanations in the face of the irregularities, or that they had a much more self interested goal, in which case the irregularities are perfectly consistent?

In any event, rules of assumption have no place in a legal system.  There should be no assumptions here, other than innocence until proven otherwise.  The real truth is, we've never seen the actual justification for the investigation.  It's either good and convincing or its not.  If the point of Mueller's probe is to prove itself valid after the fact then there should be actual jail time for those that started it.  Again, the really travesty is that anyone is convinced in either direction at this point.

I disagree NobleHunter.  Much like with #metoo there's little chance that exposure hear would do anything but multiply the people coming forward.  Trump's really not in enough control of the executive branch to bury anything if there's a will by the populace to uncover it.

Seriati

  • Member
  • All Members
    • View Profile
Re: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign
« Reply #53 on: June 13, 2018, 05:07:14 PM »
Quote
Whether you like it or not, I'm concerned about abuses of the Rule of Law regardless of which party is in power.
I do like that.  I just hate that more often than not as of late, it strikes me as an implied defense of alleged law breaking.

The Rule of Law requires proof of law breaking, not proving a defense against an allegation.

We haven't seen such proof or even good facts indicating a case, only the effects of someone claiming they exist (ie we've only seen people acting like they saw smoke or a fire).

Quote
I'm all for taking any politician to task for breaking the law or failing to uphold the constitution.  But for *censored*'s sake, there is a matter of priorities here.  One is a figure-head at best party mascot and fund raiser now.  The other is our God damned president!  We can put Hillary on pause for a few months.

Of course the difference to me is that the FACTS in evidence dictated that Hillary be charged and probably convicted, which she was not, and that there are no FACTS in evidence on this point that show the same goes to Trump. 

NobleHunter

  • Member
  • All Members
    • View Profile
Re: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign
« Reply #54 on: June 13, 2018, 05:13:55 PM »
I disagree NobleHunter.  Much like with #metoo there's little chance that exposure hear would do anything but multiply the people coming forward.  Trump's really not in enough control of the executive branch to bury anything if there's a will by the populace to uncover it.

If the current level of proof is on the balance of the probabilities, then Congress will waffle and do nothing and Trump's partisan will declare the matter closed and decided. It would give them a much better rhetorical position to argue against the relevance of further evidence, even if that evidence would raise the level of proof to something, if Congress had seen it all at once, would have spurred them to act. There's also the fact that it'd provide Trump a pretty handy excuse to throw pardons around for people charged and convicted during the "baseless witch hunt." That'd pretty much kill any chance of a follow-up investigation.

D.W.

  • Member
  • All Members
    • View Profile
Re: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign
« Reply #55 on: June 13, 2018, 05:35:09 PM »
As one mostly interested in the investigation “doing its job” rather than wasting time speculating about what Trump, his team and those attempting to influence that team may or may not have done, I’ll probably make a mess of this, but here we go.

It goes almost without question that Russia wanted to screw with our election.  Most seem to agree that if they wanted to pick a winner, that winner would be Trump.  Trump’s business background raises a lot of red flags for some people.  For many this issue is a political tool, but some are genuinely concerned.  He is seen as (by some) far more vulnerable than most politicians from foreign influence.  It MAY be bull *censored*, but it is a concern that the country deserves (IMO) to have assuaged.  As “outsiders” there is a higher probability that his team would both be targeted, and find themselves in situations more seasoned politicians know to avoid.  As a shady business man known for shady quasi-legal or at least unethical (again, IMO) dealings, I think Trump (and team) has a distorted risk assessment line of reasoning.  Again, this MAY be a false perception, but it is significant enough that the country deserves to have it assuaged.

Then you need to look at what he tries to accomplish.  Priority number one seems to be tearing down the legacy of his predecessor.  This can mostly be chalked up to partisan differences.  BUT…  With the specter that he’s working against our nation’s interests on behalf of foreign powers looming, it can be seen as more dangerous. 

Now maybe your (general “your”) politics lead you to believe that ACA was awful.  Maybe you believe our trade deals are terrible.  Maybe you believe we have made an unmitigated disaster of our boarder security situation.  Maybe you believe in trickle-down economics.  Maybe you believe we shouldn’t have to bankroll as much of the world’s defense spending as we do.  All of those are legitimate positions.  Trump’s behavior can be seen to be serving some of these, or at least paying lip service to them.  But most can ALSO be viewed as being done in intentionally disruptive ways.  Ways which weaken us as a nation.  Ways that are advantageous to several foreign powers.

Is Trump in the pocket of Russia?  This SHOULD BE, a ridiculous B-movie plot of a question.  But it’s not.  It is in fact, the most serious, most important question we’ve had to answer as a country in a long time.

If I had to lay out a point by point plan on how to sabotage our country (not just Republican instead of my preferred Democratic version of our country), without forcing a Congress controlled by “my party” to step in and stop me?  It would look a hell of a lot like this.

If he gets a clean bill of health and even, “nothing glaringly illegal” and “not a threat to our whole *censored*ing country”, then so be it.  The more I see attempts to discredit the investigation, the more I see potential or “soft obstruction”, the less crazy it sounds that Trump is, not an agent of Russia, but an opportunists who doesn’t care who’s pockets his hands are in when he tries to personally profit off any situation.  We needed a shakeup of the system.  I just don’t want an earth quake that reduces the empire to rubble and dust.

Wayward Son

  • Member
  • All Members
    • View Profile
Re: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign
« Reply #56 on: June 13, 2018, 06:36:01 PM »
What you're neglecting is plea bargaining.

Not neglecting it, recognizing it for the highly abusive practice it is.  Threaten someone with 20 to Life for a crime they didn't do but that it'd cost them millions to defend and offer them a one year suspended sentence to lie and say they did it.  What happens? 

I mean heck, talk to BLM if you really think plea bargains lead to justice.

But there are other types of plea bargaining.  Like the one where the guy is guilty as sin, but to save everyone the time and trouble of a trial, he pleas to a lesser charge.  And the one where the guy has info on worse people, and the prosecutor gives him a lesser sentence for cooperating.

Right now, we don't know which one it is.  You keep assuming it is your first one.  I'm fairly sure, since the investigation is being run by a Republican who was the head of the FBI for over a decade and is respected by just about everyone who knows him, that you're completely wrong.  But until the details come out, we won't really know.

But you shouldn't assume you're right.

Quote
Quote
And because calling for an end to the investigation is precisely what guilty people would want you to do. ;)

Any accused person, guilty or innocent would want an investigation to end.

The reason to call for this one to end is that it's damaging the country and may have been illegitimate in the first place.  Whether you think Mueller has the goods on Trump or not, the continuing secrecy is damaging.  If the goods are there it's leaving Trump in power when he could have been impeached and removed (he really can't be convicted and trying to do so will cause a constitutional crisis).  If the goods aren't there the entire failure to clear him is absolutely illegitimate and not being done for any proper purpose by law enforcement.

Of course, my suspicion is that there is no convincing evidence, and barely anything circumstantial and that the purpose of continuing the investigation is to help the Dems in the midterms, nothing more or less.   To that end, we will get either leaks or allegations from the team but only once the campaign season is going full swing.

The problem is, as the House Committee investigation has shown, is that politics can distort the results of congressional investigations.  So in order to establish the facts, we need an independent investigation to see if any "high crimes or misdemeanors" occurred.  And the investigation is not over yet, so no conclusion can be made about whether "the goods" are there or not (regardless of what Nunes might say :) ).

And my suspicion is that your suspicion is based on the fact that he is guilty of plenty of stuff, and desperately wants the investigation to end before Mueller uncovers it.  So how do you suggest we find out whose suspicions are correct? ;)

And I wouldn't worry about leaks and allegations coming from Mueller's investigation.  Review all the leaks and allegations that have come out so far.  How many have come from Mueller and his team, vs. Congress and the White House?  It's not Mueller you have to worry about (or doubt)...

Seriati

  • Member
  • All Members
    • View Profile
Re: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign
« Reply #57 on: June 13, 2018, 07:47:54 PM »
Right now, we don't know which one it is.  You keep assuming it is your first one.

I always find claims like this interesting.  How did you reach that conclusion from my statements about not having seen the facts, or about how the oddest thing is that people have reached conclusions without seeing the facts?

I think Trump is doing a good job on a lot of issues.  I haven't seen actual evidence that justifies this investigation.  I haven't seen actual evidence that Trump has committed a crime.  That kind of leaves me in a position where I'm left with supporting him.  If he's innocent (and he's entitled to that presumption) then this is a good thing.  If he's not, then it's a risky thing (him being a bad guy doesn't undermine objective good things he does, but it does open the risk that he's done other less visible things).  I don't see enough value in Mueller keeping us in the dark, to overwhelm the enormous harm his "secret" investigation is doing, as I laid out before the investigation seems an objectively bad thing whichever way it turns out.

Quote
I'm fairly sure, since the investigation is being run by a Republican who was the head of the FBI for over a decade and is respected by just about everyone who knows him, that you're completely wrong.  But until the details come out, we won't really know.

It also seems like it's being run by two guys, Rosenstein and Mueller that have blatant and obvious conflicts, particularly if Comey's firing is part of it (they are more conflicted than Sessions, by way of example).  Not to mention if Trump is not the target, then he's not conflicted either and his Presidential authority should be respected.

I'm also very wary of anyone with a history at the DOJ/FBI in a circumstance where their own conduct is questionable (and it definitely is here).  If they're rejecting Presidential oversight, Attorney General Oversight, and Congressional Oversight it becomes impossible for anyone to determine from the outside if they are acting on a legitimate basis or to protect themselves or the DOJ.  Does it not disturb you to realize how many politically connected investigations - in an FBI of 10's of thousands of employees - seem to track through the same short list of names? 

Even good people have incentives to hide potentially bad facts when they are solely in their own control.  I mean honestly, the FISA warrant process totally highlights this risk.

This is not an area where a secret investigation is doing it "the right way".

Quote
But you shouldn't assume you're right.

I'm not assuming it, I'm making an educated guess.  Even still I can't parse whether the goods are there, or not, other than if they are there they aren't decisive.  If they were decisive they'd have acted already.  I can't parse if Mueller hired all Dems, including some with actual ties to the Clinton Foundation because only such a team could credibly exonerate the President, or because he wanted to eliminate any risk that a whistleblower would reveal that they have no interest in playing fair.

I don't find Mueller's oft cited "Republican credentials" to have much meaning.  Trump's a political outsider that most of the Republican establishment can't stand.  He's literally a populist that draws his power directly from the polity.  Never Trumpers are everywhere in the political class, and Washington's bureacrats are heavily connected to the politicians.

Quote
The problem is, as the House Committee investigation has shown, is that politics can distort the results of congressional investigations.  So in order to establish the facts, we need an independent investigation to see if any "high crimes or misdemeanors" occurred.  And the investigation is not over yet, so no conclusion can be made about whether "the goods" are there or not (regardless of what Nunes might say :) ).

You mostly right here.  We did need an independent investigation.  What you're wrong about is the format.  We never needed a prosecutor to investigate Russian interference.  Mueller's probe is absolutely the wrong format for that.  We needed a bipartisan commission (these are not Congressional committees, and have pretty good history and track record).  Charges could have come out of that and been delivered to the DOJ for pursuit.

The only caveat, is that if there was probable cause to believe Trump committed a crime, then Mueller's probe would be justifiable (just not as the exclusive investigation of "Russian interference") as an investigation of Trump.  That literally can not be justified with anything, no matter how "Russian" other than direct evidence that ties it to Trump.  It can't be justified after the fact, it literally has to be something that they knew that started the prosecution.

I said it before, but no one seemed to notice.  We don't have an independent counsel law anymore.  Investigations like Ken Starr's are NO LONGER LEGAL.  Mueller is a special prosecutor and the scope of what he can do is intentionally far less.

Quote
And my suspicion is that your suspicion is based on the fact that he is guilty of plenty of stuff, and desperately wants the investigation to end before Mueller uncovers it.  So how do you suggest we find out whose suspicions are correct? ;)

Honestly, it's an abuse of power to create an investigation to find out if he's "guilty of a bunch of stuff."  It's an abuse of the power of the state.  The investigation has to be justifiable from what they knew at the start.  If that justification is missing, and they attempt to justify it solely with information that arose during the course of the investigation, then they too should be going to jail.  They may even be guilty of treason.

"Knowing" that someone is guilty, without evidence or reason other than that you dislike them is not what is justice is about.

Quote
And I wouldn't worry about leaks and allegations coming from Mueller's investigation.  Review all the leaks and allegations that have come out so far.  How many have come from Mueller and his team, vs. Congress and the White House?  It's not Mueller you have to worry about (or doubt)...

Unless you are working at the NYT's or CNN kind of impossible to know who is responsible for what leak.  That you think you do know, is again something that reflects a deeply troubling misinterpretation of the factual record.

I do worry, cause I think there's a real possibility that the sole goal of the investigation is to effect a political shift from the Republicans to the Democrats.  I expect that any charges or leaks are going to be done with an eye to influence the midterms.  How hard is it to comprehend that an investigation that is unjustifiable, could find political cover in a Congress that doesn't care so long as it hurts the President?  Shouldn't be hard to imagine, since it's literally the inverse of what you believe about certain Republicans.

In any event, we're left where we were.  There's no public evidence that justifies the way this probe has been set up.  Yet, a bunch of people are "convinced" about the facts.
« Last Edit: June 13, 2018, 07:50:33 PM by Seriati »

Fenring

  • Member
  • All Members
    • View Profile
Re: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign
« Reply #58 on: June 13, 2018, 08:06:49 PM »
Is Trump in the pocket of Russia?  This SHOULD BE, a ridiculous B-movie plot of a question.  But it’s not.  It is in fact, the most serious, most important question we’ve had to answer as a country in a long time.

Could you briefly explain to me what "in the pocket of" means? I know what it's 'basically' saying, but what exactly do you think might be going on? As you put it, it sounds like you're outlining a B-movie plot that didn't have expert script editing and assumes it will be enough to mention who is "in the pocket of" whom. In the case of Trump, what specific mechanism do you think may be in place such that he's 'in the pocket of' Russia?

D.W.

  • Member
  • All Members
    • View Profile
Re: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign
« Reply #59 on: June 13, 2018, 10:56:59 PM »
Quote
Could you briefly explain to me what "in the pocket of" means? 
I could try, but as I pointed out, there's an investigation looking into that.  I don't have to speculate...

Sorry if you don't like the cop out.  I have zero interest in dueling speculation and why it's bad to speculate at all. 

My choices seem to be a willingness to believe that the Obama administration, several judges and investigative branches are all aligned against Trump for purely partisan reasons... Or that a business man with questionable tactics and background was played by, and played with foreign powers to a degree that is criminal. 

Or, at a minimum the swamp he chose to plop himself down in the middle of is getting drained around him, with or without his consent or help. 

This whole investigation goes way beyond partisan politics, or attempts to politically neuter a lost election by one party.  This is something that should be a bipartisan desire to reassure the entire nation (not just half of it) that either the accusations are baseless or our government is built well enough to handle such a dangerous, if crazy sounding, situation.

Fenring

  • Member
  • All Members
    • View Profile
Re: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign
« Reply #60 on: June 13, 2018, 11:50:48 PM »
My choices seem to be a willingness to believe that the Obama administration, several judges and investigative branches are all aligned against Trump for purely partisan reasons... Or that a business man with questionable tactics and background was played by, and played with foreign powers to a degree that is criminal. 

I'm not trying to debate you about this. It was an honest question. I legitimately don't know what you (or anyone) may mean when you suggest he was "played" or was "playing with". My question is what may be behind those euphemisms. My imagination - having read a few books and seen a few movies - can conjure up what I imagine wily, crafty characters can accomplish, but I don't materially know what it is people think Trump has literally done. It is just the 'he must have done something' that Seriati suspects is behind the investigation? I'll submit parenthetically that I'm not for or against the investigation as such, principally because I honestly know nothing of relevance regarding it.

I remember back when the 'Trump and Putin bromance' meme came about being annoyed at it, but one thing I noted was that it created the impression of collusion while not specifically saying anything at all. It's the sort of soft attribution ripe for the motte and bailey game, where on the surface it looks like an accusation but when pressed the answer would be that it's just a joke meme. But even then I wasn't sure when even the soft collusion implication was on about. What, exactly, were they supposedly conspiring about? Since then I've heard much talk of Trump helping Russia and that sort of thing. I heard a funny joke on Reddit which went something like "Trump is doing what's in the best interests of the nation. And that nation is Russia." That's all well and good, but I've been having a tough time nailing down what Trump is supposed to have been doing that helps Russia. Whether the claim (which shifts around) is collusion, or 'being a patsy' (in what way?), or being 'generally shady' (as you sort of put it), what is this shady/patsy/collusive behavior? I know you don't know and answered rightly in declining to say specifically, but if you don't even have a specific hunch then why do you think there's anything at all there? Just a gut feeling?

I'll throw in one more thing, which is that I love conspiracy theories and would be totally game to learn that foul play has been afoot. Even better if it can be proven (which almost never happens). So as I ask these questions it's within the context of being someone who actually likes thinking along these lines and even then can't pinpoint some smoking gun. The fact of Putin enjoying when America sweats is not news, but generally that obvious fact seems to have been enough to conclude that Putin messed up the election, the President is compromised, and...what? 

D.W.

  • Member
  • All Members
    • View Profile
Re: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign
« Reply #61 on: June 14, 2018, 12:38:00 AM »
The honest answer, is I don't know. 

For "shady" comment, see Trump's legal history and bankruptcy history.  He's not in jail, so I didn't use the word "criminal".

As for being in the pocket, I expect 'atypical' real estate deals or other business dealings with people who have ties to Russia.  Again, probably (hopefully?) not illegal, but highly inappropriate when you are talking about a sitting president.

I kinda understand that trying act tough on Russia is, in his mind, admitting they get some of the credit for his win.  I get that is a very non-Trump thing to admit to.  But his seeming meekness or outreach towards Russia and appearances of admiration towards Putin sends a terrible message. 

Maybe Trump is a mastermind.  Maybe he's trying to get all his opponents to overplay their hand by feeding their suspicions on the whole 'Russia witch hunt', and he's having a laugh at them and believes he will eventually be vindicated and his opponents will all look like fools. 

It's not what others speculate and imply about Trump that scares me.  It's what Trump says and does that has me worried.  When a large part of the country needs reassured, he instead chose to take actions that look even more suspicious and tease the public that he could totally obstruct the process meant to settle the issue... if he wanted; and it would be totally within his power to do so.

Fenring

  • Member
  • All Members
    • View Profile
Re: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign
« Reply #62 on: June 14, 2018, 12:53:18 AM »
I kinda understand that trying act tough on Russia is, in his mind, admitting they get some of the credit for his win.  I get that is a very non-Trump thing to admit to.  But his seeming meekness or outreach towards Russia and appearances of admiration towards Putin sends a terrible message. 

I know people view this as suspicious. The amazing thing is he campaigned on this right from the start, surely way before there was any sign he might come out a victor. There is ultimately something bizarre about keeping a campaign promise made before any collusion was plausible, following through on it, and then accusing him of doing because of corruption. That's basically all but saying that doing what you say you'll do is corrupt. Maybe that's why no one does it! You didn't specifically make that claim and may only be reflecting what you perceive others think, but I still find it startling that peaceful gestures towards a country in almost any context can be viewed with suspicion. The same thing is baffling me on the NK thread, where the very fact of offering an olive branch to a sometime enemy is taken as a sign of weakness or foolishness.

TheDrake

  • All Members
    • View Profile
Re: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign
« Reply #63 on: June 14, 2018, 08:35:59 AM »
Quote
The same thing is baffling me on the NK thread, where the very fact of offering an olive branch to a sometime enemy is taken as a sign of weakness or foolishness.

That is certainly a factor. Nixon faced this heavily when he accepted communist China wasn't going anywhere. Carter accepting Arafat as an equal partner was massively controversial.

The appearance of giving in is something that makes it easy to go after the person seeking to put differences aside and make meaningful steps forward.

Of course, Trump himself criticized Obama for rapproachment, his words:

Quote
For nearly six decades, the Cuban people have suffered under communist domination.  To this day, Cuba is ruled by the same people who killed tens of thousands of their own citizens, who sought to spread their repressive and failed ideology throughout our hemisphere, and who once tried to host enemy nuclear weapons 90 miles from our shores.

Swap out Cuba for North Korea and except for the hemisphere, these are similar arguments as those being used against Trump.

As he warns:

Quote
The previous administration’s easing of restrictions on travel and trade does not help the Cuban people — they only enrich the Cuban regime.  (Applause.)  The profits from investment and tourism flow directly to the military.  The regime takes the money and owns the industry.  The outcome of the last administration’s executive action has been only more repression and a move to crush the peaceful, democratic movement.

Isn't that the same concern that people have about the North Korean regime?

D.W.

  • Member
  • All Members
    • View Profile
Re: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign
« Reply #64 on: June 14, 2018, 09:34:39 AM »
Quote
The amazing thing is he campaigned on this right from the start, surely way before there was any sign he might come out a victor. There is ultimately something bizarre about keeping a campaign promise made before any collusion was plausible, following through on it, and then accusing him of doing because of corruption.
I don’t really believe Russian agents ‘cold-called’ him and BOOM, collusion!  I expect he had extensive business ties already to their government before he put his hat in the ring.  He was predisposed to, at a minimum, open a path for more lucrative personal business opportunities.  More likely for “shady” business opportunities which at heart are attempts to buy his favor.  I expect MOST of what Trump did, other than perhaps going to lengths to hide and deny it, are “legal” but politically toxic.  Things that make him a terrible person to do business with and IMO no friend of our country, but as a private citizen and global business man, nothing too shocking.  The problem for me, is when that person is sitting in the Oval Office.  I want to be SURE that person prioritizes the best interest of the country.  I don’t need them to go about it how I would wish.  But I like to be convinced THEY believe in their own plan.  Or that they have a plan.

As far as NK goes, other than him making more of a first step meeting than there was, I don’t have a big problem with him.  The only risk in giving away too much was in terms of prestige and propaganda.  I think Trump is so far outside the lines on those that it was hardly a risk at all.  I expect this to go nowhere, but a failed attempt is no worse than continued inaction, and better than increasing rhetoric and bluster until shots are fired.  I was serious when I said not being at war exceeds my expectations.  Contrasting it to the Iran thing makes things a bit more wacky, but he went there, came back and didn’t *censored* it up.  Congrats Trump.  Set the bar low enough and you can claim a win.

This (NK) is mostly an issue of timing than an issue of Trump.  They made it to the nuke finish line.  What they are doing now was the predictable next step.  We didn’t go full military intervention before, I don’t see us doing it now.  These are just the next steps in the dance.  Trump may be following Kim’s lead, but the music was playing regardless.

velcro

  • Member
  • All Members
    • View Profile
Re: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign
« Reply #65 on: June 14, 2018, 12:55:04 PM »
Quote
[Flynn]who was appointed by  Obama to head the defense intelligence agency, and who was Trump's NSA head for what 23 days?  Not even a month.

An honest description would include the fact that Obama fired Flynn, before Trump hired him.

There was definitely a plea bargain.  There were definitely other charges against Flynn and his son for a variety of criminal offenses.  Those charges were dropped, at least against Flynn, in exchange for a guilty plea.

So if you think that everything Flynn ever did was perfectly legal, and all the other charges were made up, and you also think that it is not a crime to lie as long as it doesn't look like you are lying, then yup, Flynn was just framed.


Quote
Occam's Razor would say that there were a few bad apples and move on, rather than a conspiracy in the campaign that goes to the top.

Occam's Razor has nothing to do with it.  Russia interfered with our election, and favored Trump.  The intelligence community is highly confident about this.  The investigation is looking from top to bottom.  If they find nothing at the top, so be it.   But I can't imagine any rational investigator thinking it is best to stop before looking everywhere because that is the simplest answer.

Crunch

  • All Members
    • View Profile
Re: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign
« Reply #66 on: June 15, 2018, 07:57:03 AM »
Quote
Russia interfered with our election, and favored Trump.  The intelligence community is highly confident about this

And yet no proof of this. Coming up at on 2 years of investigation, calculated leaks, and hyper-biased persecution and “he only evidence came from an intelligence operation (Crossfire Hurricane) designed to create the impression of Russian interference. So far the proof is indictments of some foreign companies - one that Mueller is fighting tooth and nail to avoid actually prosecuting.

Keep in mind, Crossfire Hurricane is what Strzok was referring to as how they’d stop Trump.  He called it an insurance policy.

There is vastly more evidence that the FBI planned and carried out an attempted coup of an elected President.
« Last Edit: June 15, 2018, 08:01:05 AM by Crunch »

velcro

  • Member
  • All Members
    • View Profile
Re: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign
« Reply #67 on: June 15, 2018, 01:00:17 PM »
Quote
Russia interfered with our election, and favored Trump.  The intelligence community is highly confident about this

And yet no proof of this. Coming up at on 2 years of investigation, calculated leaks, and hyper-biased persecution and “he only evidence came from an intelligence operation (Crossfire Hurricane) designed to create the impression of Russian interference. So far the proof is indictments of some foreign companies - one that Mueller is fighting tooth and nail to avoid actually prosecuting.

Keep in mind, Crossfire Hurricane is what Strzok was referring to as how they’d stop Trump.  He called it an insurance policy.

There is vastly more evidence that the FBI planned and carried out an attempted coup of an elected President.


Huh.  You may want to let Trump's National Security Adviser know that there is no proof.
President Donald Trump’s national security adviser said Saturday there was ‘‘incontrovertible’’ evidence of a Russian plot to disrupt the 2016 U.S. election,

Quote
‘‘As you can see with the FBI indictment, the evidence is now really incontrovertible and available in the public domain,’’ McMaster told a Russian delegate to the conference....Just minutes before, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov had dismissed the indictment as ‘‘just blabber.’’

Do you really want to be rooting for that team?

From the indictment:
Quote
Defendant ORGANIZATION had a strategic goal to sow discord in the U.S. political
system, including the 2016 U.S. presidential election. Defendants posted derogatory information
about a number of candidates, and by early to mid-2016, Defendants’ operations included
supporting the presidential campaign of then-candidate Donald J. Trump (“Trump Campaign”) and
disparaging Hillary Clinton.

And lots more like that in the link.

Quote
There is vastly more evidence that the FBI planned and carried out an attempted coup of an elected President.

Please provide the evidence.  With sources, of course.  And while you're at it please provide your definition of "coup"  Hint: I do not think it means what you think it means.

Fenring

  • Member
  • All Members
    • View Profile
Re: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign
« Reply #68 on: June 15, 2018, 01:18:18 PM »
And while you're at it please provide your definition of "coup"  Hint: I do not think it means what you think it means.

To be fair, I think it can be interpreted as meaning a change in government coming from a source other than: (a) a proper election, (b) the voting public in rebellion, or (c) the elected representatives removing the President. In theory if the FBI was trying to undermine the President for private purposes that would qualify as a coup.

velcro

  • Member
  • All Members
    • View Profile
Re: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign
« Reply #69 on: June 16, 2018, 03:03:41 PM »
And while you're at it please provide your definition of "coup"  Hint: I do not think it means what you think it means.

To be fair, I think it can be interpreted as meaning a change in government coming from a source other than: (a) a proper election, (b) the voting public in rebellion, or (c) the elected representatives removing the President. In theory if the FBI was trying to undermine the President for private purposes that would qualify as a coup.

Let's go with your supposition that the FBI was trying to undermine the President, despite copious evidence to the contrary.  And lets also go with your weakened definition of coup.

Please explain how the FBI "trying to undermine" the President creates a change in government.  At worst, it inspires Congress to impeach him.  By your definition, any speech or action opposing the President outside of elections or impeachment is an attempted coup.

Fenring

  • Member
  • All Members
    • View Profile
Re: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign
« Reply #70 on: June 16, 2018, 05:48:28 PM »
Please explain how the FBI "trying to undermine" the President creates a change in government.  At worst, it inspires Congress to impeach him.  By your definition, any speech or action opposing the President outside of elections or impeachment is an attempted coup.

It depends on the kind of "speech or action", doesn't it? Certain kinds of speech and actions are considered to be inciting to riot, for instance, and are not protected. Similarly, similar kinds of undermining could be viewed as inciting the public to lose confidence in a leader.

velcro

  • Member
  • All Members
    • View Profile
Re: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign
« Reply #71 on: June 16, 2018, 08:10:09 PM »
You didn't explain how "trying to undermine" rises to the level of coup.

And while you are right about certain kinds of speech not being protected, that has nothing to do with what I asked.

By your definition, anything I might do to "try to undermine" the President, outside of elections or impeachment, is considered an attempted coup.
If I put a "Trump Lied" sign on my lawn, it is certainly protected speech.  But I am trying to undermine the President.  Just like the mythical FBI agents who were attempting a coup.  Therefore, I am attempting a coup.

Tell me, given your logic so far, where I am in error.

Fenring

  • Member
  • All Members
    • View Profile
Re: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign
« Reply #72 on: June 17, 2018, 12:51:27 AM »
By your definition, anything I might do to "try to undermine" the President, outside of elections or impeachment, is considered an attempted coup.
If I put a "Trump Lied" sign on my lawn, it is certainly protected speech.  But I am trying to undermine the President.  Just like the mythical FBI agents who were attempting a coup.  Therefore, I am attempting a coup.

As I said, it depends on the kind of speech and action. If I go on the street and try to get a bunch of people violent I would be "inciting to riot". If a drill sergeant does so on a battlefield that's called "giving orders." So it also matters who's doing it and in what context. If I make up lies and say I won't support the President that's an "editorial". If the Secretary of the Navy does it that's "treason." My point is that is the institution responsible for law enforcement within the U.S. has a different standing than a private citizen does. If the institution directly responsible for security in the U.S. is (hypothetically) against the President and is trying to have him removed one way or another, you don't see how that's effectively a regime change plan? Not saying that's what's happening, but the reality of what actually is happening hinges on whether they have real evidence of wrongdoing. I'm still with the camp that believes that if there's wrongdoing it would be good to find out, mind you.

Crunch

  • All Members
    • View Profile
Re: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign
« Reply #73 on: June 17, 2018, 08:50:37 AM »
You didn't explain how "trying to undermine" rises to the level of coup.

And while you are right about certain kinds of speech not being protected, that has nothing to do with what I asked.

By your definition, anything I might do to "try to undermine" the President, outside of elections or impeachment, is considered an attempted coup.
If I put a "Trump Lied" sign on my lawn, it is certainly protected speech.  But I am trying to undermine the President.  Just like the mythical FBI agents who were attempting a coup.  Therefore, I am attempting a coup.
Do you have the power to indict and prosecute? Are you in charge of multi-million dollar budgets with an army of law enforcement and intelligence agents capable of running operations against elected officials? Do you know the difference between the FBI and your lawn? :o

Tell me, given your logic so far, where I am in error.
It’s pretty obvious that you’re going to simply repeat this (or some variation of it) over and over.

Seriati

  • Member
  • All Members
    • View Profile
Re: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign
« Reply #74 on: June 18, 2018, 01:03:48 PM »
My choices seem to be a willingness to believe that the Obama administration, several judges and investigative branches are all aligned against Trump for purely partisan reasons... Or that a business man with questionable tactics and background was played by, and played with foreign powers to a degree that is criminal.

There are actually alot more choices than this.  I mean, you've actually skipped over something important.  There is no crime involved in a politician having a favorable view of a foreign country.  We've had plenty of politicians that favored some foreign countries over others.   There's also no crime in a foreign country preferring one politician over another.  Most of the EU leaders have weighed in on our candidates before, China has certainly done so and been caught more than once with direct campaign contributions. 

The problem here is one of discretion, when does a legal conversation become an illegal over of something of value?  Do you think there is an objective standard that controls that?  Can you explain rationally, why hiring an English spy, indirectly, to provide opposition research to your campaign should not be considered a violation, but meeting with a Russian agent who talks about the Magnitsky act should be?

This whole thing is largely in the eye of the beholder.  They haven't provided the smoking gun.  The IG's report demonstrates that there was a massive bias problem, even if it didn't find that anyone expressly documented bias as a basis for action (which would have been shocking if they had).  The best analogy I've seen so far, is the IG's report is like a jury report finding that there was no documented finding of bias in the verdict of the all KKK jury that found the black defendant guilty.  It's literally possible that such a jury would not actually say or document any thing racist, yet no one rational would believe that their verdict should be considered free from such a taint.

I really can't see a non-partisan reason to believe this isn't a politically biased investigation.  Of course, that's subject to change when they release the actual facts that "justified" the Mueller probe - assuming they ever do.


D.W.

  • Member
  • All Members
    • View Profile
Re: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign
« Reply #75 on: June 18, 2018, 01:28:35 PM »
I was going to try and go point by point but I think I can some it all up pretty quickly.
You see a lot of gray area and no “smoking gun” and are willing to believe the explanations given by the Trump campaign.  Because of this, you see no reason to investigate.
I see a lot of gray area (but no smoking gun) and am not willing to just take the Trump campaign at their word.  Because of this, I see reason to investigate.

I’m not a lawyer or constitutional scholar.  My belief that the campaign and Trump SHOULD be investigated has zero to do with an understanding of law.  I BELIEVE the American people DESERVE to either have Trump cleared of wrong doing, or see to it that he’s not going to intentionally or unintentionally do lasting harm to this country, on behalf of, or as a pawn of foreign powers.

Quote
The IG's report demonstrates that there was a massive bias problem,…
I’ve not read it all, but from what I’ve seen reported there were a few instances of people who crossed lines that should never be crossed by the FBI.  Calling that “massive” seems to imply wide-spread as opposed to a descriptor of the level the limited culprits spoke of.

Seriati

  • Member
  • All Members
    • View Profile
Re: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign
« Reply #76 on: June 18, 2018, 01:47:03 PM »
I was going to try and go point by point but I think I can some it all up pretty quickly.
You see a lot of gray area and no “smoking gun” and are willing to believe the explanations given by the Trump campaign.  Because of this, you see no reason to investigate.

This is too vague.  There was plenty to investigate, particularly around foreign influence, I just don't see the tie in to the Trump campaign.  They specifically haven't released what they believe supports that connection.

I'm not aware that there are "explanations" by the Trump campaign to believe.  We literally don't know the conduct that triggered this probe.  That makes it impossible to evaluate whether the scope is appropriate or not.

Quote
I see a lot of gray area (but no smoking gun) and am not willing to just take the Trump campaign at their word.  Because of this, I see reason to investigate.

And do you see a distinction between using a special prosecutor to do so, and doing so in another manner?  Using Mueller required a finding of probable cause.  Grey area doesn't justify this type of investigation.

Honestly, focusing the anti-interference investigation on Trump has undermined any ability of the US to react as a country to Russian (or any other countries) investigation.  It has done specific harm by making a national security issue into a partisan fight.

Quote
Quote
The IG's report demonstrates that there was a massive bias problem,…
I’ve not read it all, but from what I’ve seen reported there were a few instances of people who crossed lines that should never be crossed by the FBI.  Calling that “massive” seems to imply wide-spread as opposed to a descriptor of the level the limited culprits spoke of.

Bias and crossing the lines are specifically not the same thing.  The evidence of bias in the report is damning.  Other than with respect to media interaction, I'm not seeing the proof of lines crossed as so clear.  How does one evaluate a course of action that is within the realm of broad discretion for bias?  We have a giant history with racial discrimination litigation that shows how hard it is to do that.  All the IG said, effectively, was an unbiased prosecutor could have done x or y, what happened was between x and y, therefore I can't conclude the fact that it was y instead of x was because of bias.  This is very different than how Mueller is operating (e.g. on Comey's firing), which could be interpreted, as I think y was the choice because of bias even though y was justifiable on other grounds that were actually referenced at the time.  Do you see how that could seem unfair, when the benefit of the doubt or lack thereof, is being systematically applied in the same direction?

D.W.

  • Member
  • All Members
    • View Profile
Re: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign
« Reply #77 on: June 18, 2018, 02:12:38 PM »
Quote
This is too vague. 
As in, “I don’t understand how you can believe that.” Or as in, “that does not meet the legal criteria to initiate an investigation”?  As I said, I’m not particularly well informed on the latter.

Sorry if “explanations” was a charged word?  Should I have taken the time to include something like a “LOL, like they actually intended for a moment to discuss the Magnitsky act?”  To be more clear, I see red flags all over the place (you apparently don’t and that could be my bias showing, but I’m far from alone.) there are often “explanations” for those flagging items which are legal.  Just as there were “explanations” for things Hillary did that raised red flags for me. 
Quote
Using Mueller required a finding of probable cause.  Grey area doesn't justify this type of investigation.
And, they apparently found it.  Or they conspired to thwart a system with several checks across party lines, and convinced several people to give them the thumbs up after the fact, many others who are GOP aligned to state they have faith in the system as well. 
It’s not impossible that you are correct, but it seems a far more significant stretch to me than the alternative.  That there was cause, they are finding evidence of wrong doing and they are being painstakingly careful in building their case because it’s about the top office of this country.  It doesn’t get any more serious, or leave any less room for error.
Quote
Do you see how that could seem unfair, when the benefit of the doubt or lack thereof, is being systematically applied in the same direction?
About as unfair as how sometimes we are just suppose to trust Trump and other times ignore the words that come out of his mouth as meaningless and harmless nonsense?

DonaldD

  • Member
  • All Members
    • View Profile
Re: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign
« Reply #78 on: June 18, 2018, 02:44:19 PM »
Mueller's mandate is to investigate Russian interference in the 2016 election.  I hope that we can all agree, at this point, that doing so is not particularly controversial.

Seriati

  • Member
  • All Members
    • View Profile
Re: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign
« Reply #79 on: June 18, 2018, 03:04:01 PM »
Quote
This is too vague. 
As in, “I don’t understand how you can believe that.” Or as in, “that does not meet the legal criteria to initiate an investigation”?  As I said, I’m not particularly well informed on the latter.

As in "no reason to investigate" covers a ton of potential ground and a plethora of specific types of investigations. 

Quote
To be more clear, I see red flags all over the place (you apparently don’t and that could be my bias showing, but I’m far from alone.) there are often “explanations” for those flagging items which are legal.  Just as there were “explanations” for things Hillary did that raised red flags for me.

I think my point is that some red flags are specific to a person and disconnected from a "plan."  Manafort was involved with the campaign for a fairly short time (given campaigns are themselves shortlived), is it really reasonable to impute problems he had from years earlier to an investigation of whether the campaign itself was coordinating with Russia?  Where's the line between what Manafort is responsible for and what the campaign is?  Where's the line between Papadoplous and Trump?  Is there one?

Why was there such a "line" between Obama and Louis Lerner?  Seems to me that if we were applying a consistent treatment Lerner's acts would be far more easily impute to Obama, and far better documented, would they not?

This isn't whataboutism, just a question about whether the connectedness of these acts is being based in a partisan manner.  "Obama is a good guy" therefore these are the isolated acts of bad people, vs "Trump is a bad guy" there for these are evidence of a grand plan from the top. 

Hillary's a good example too in how her aides were treated during the investigation.  Plenty of immunity deals for zero testimony.  Those deals literally frustrate the kind of charge, guilty plea and flip strategy Mueller is using against Trump's associates.  Why the difference?  I've never heard of granting immunity without getting testimony, what was it for?
 
Quote
Quote
Using Mueller required a finding of probable cause.  Grey area doesn't justify this type of investigation.
And, they apparently found it.  Or they conspired to thwart a system with several checks across party lines, and convinced several people to give them the thumbs up after the fact, many others who are GOP aligned to state they have faith in the system as well.

Well again, they had to have it at the start.  My concern is that they did base this investigation on something illegitimate, but rather than end it when they realized that they are now out to investigate until they can prove something (even if its a stretch).  Again too, I expect that they believe that if they get a more favorable Congress the problems won't have to be dealt with at all.  This literally seems to be what happened in the last election, with the DOJ/FBI insiders figuring President Hillary would have no interest in investigating these kind of improprieties.

Quote
It’s not impossible that you are correct, but it seems a far more significant stretch to me than the alternative.  That there was cause, they are finding evidence of wrong doing and they are being painstakingly careful in building their case because it’s about the top office of this country.  It doesn’t get any more serious, or leave any less room for error.

I will say it one more time.  There is no case against Trump other than impeachment.  The only benefit of "delay" is to get a new Congress that might be willing to convict without proof.  That's not a just result, and it's only one a partisan could love.

Quote
Quote
Do you see how that could seem unfair, when the benefit of the doubt or lack thereof, is being systematically applied in the same direction?
About as unfair as how sometimes we are just suppose to trust Trump and other times ignore the words that come out of his mouth as meaningless and harmless nonsense?

So to answer whether justice should be neutrally applied you cite to a belief that Trump lies?  Honestly, is that really an answer?  Am I to take it that justice should be "neutrally applied" except against "bad people(political enemies)?   How about thinking through those unrelated points separately.

D.W.

  • Member
  • All Members
    • View Profile
Re: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign
« Reply #80 on: June 18, 2018, 03:57:50 PM »
Quote
So to answer whether justice should be neutrally applied you cite to a belief that Trump lies?  Honestly, is that really an answer?  Am I to take it that justice should be "neutrally applied" except against "bad people(political enemies)?   How about thinking through those unrelated points separately.
A:  This was to mock you for bringing up "fairness".
B:  it's not a belief, it's a (well) documented "fact" that he lies.  Also, I would say it is well established that this lying is habitually excused or ignored by the GOP.  I would say, his allies, but I don't think that's honest.  More like, his hostages at this point terrified that to call him out on those lies will cost them votes, if not their seats.
C:  See (A) it wasn't really an answer.
D:  I'm all for neutrally applied.  But, yes, I held my nose and voted for Hillary because I felt she would be (somewhat) less of a disaster than Trump.  I believe in voting of the lesser of two evils, and rest assured, I saw two evils.

TheDrake

  • All Members
    • View Profile
Re: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign
« Reply #81 on: June 18, 2018, 04:43:34 PM »
It is so clear that deep staters in the FBI pursued prosecution for political reasons... against Richard Nixon. His administration and supporters made most of these same arguments. Witch hunt, they have nothing, etc.

June 72 - breakin arrest
May 73 - Independent prosecutor appointed
Oct 73 - Succeeds in firing prosecutor
Jan/Feb 74 - aides and personal counsel plead guilty to perjury and illegal campaign activity
Mar 74 - Nixon named an unindicted co-conspirator as his aides get indicted
July 74 - Moves to impeach
Aug 74 - Resignation

This stuff doesn't happen quickly. Mueller started in May 17. We're close to on schedule with the aides and personal counsel starting to fall.

As late as May 74, the administration was still claiming that Nixon had done nothing wrong, even releasing transcripts of his tapes.

NY times, 1974

Or alternatively, the prosecution was dragged out in order to get all the way to August and maximize the backlash against Republicans at the polls as Democrats won in droves after the disgraced president and political party.

25% of the public continued to approve of his performance as President on the day of his resignation. Another 15% had no opinion.

Quote
As the rest of the nation followed the unfolding story of corruption and cover-ups, the Watergate-as-liberal-conspiracy narrative quickly took hold in conservative media. After listening to the Lyons interview, Paul Harvey, the radio personality, repeated the attack in his nationally syndicated broadcast. How, he wondered, could the American people accept an all-powerful media capable of turning “a prosecution into a persecution”? And when Sen. Jesse Helms appeared on Manion’s show, he railed against “the incredible New York Times-Washington Post syndicate, which controls to a large degree what the American people will read and learn.”

Quote
“Indeed,” the editors at National Review wrote, in July 1973 “the target is really not Nixon himself or this or that aide, but, rather, the ‘new majority’ threatening to break the liberal hold on political power. Sen. Helms echoed the charge. “Watergate,” he told Manion in the fall of 1974, “by a process of selective indignation, became the lever by which embittered liberal pundits have sought to reverse the 1972 conservative judgment of the people.”


velcro

  • Member
  • All Members
    • View Profile
Re: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign
« Reply #82 on: June 18, 2018, 08:54:01 PM »
You didn't explain how "trying to undermine" rises to the level of coup.

And while you are right about certain kinds of speech not being protected, that has nothing to do with what I asked.

By your definition, anything I might do to "try to undermine" the President, outside of elections or impeachment, is considered an attempted coup.
If I put a "Trump Lied" sign on my lawn, it is certainly protected speech.  But I am trying to undermine the President.  Just like the mythical FBI agents who were attempting a coup.  Therefore, I am attempting a coup.
Do you have the power to indict and prosecute? Are you in charge of multi-million dollar budgets with an army of law enforcement and intelligence agents capable of running operations against elected officials? Do you know the difference between the FBI and your lawn? :o

Tell me, given your logic so far, where I am in error.
It’s pretty obvious that you’re going to simply repeat this (or some variation of it) over and over.

The FBI did not indict or prosecute.  The multi-million dollar budgets with an army of law enforcement and intelligence did not run any operations against elected officials.

I will not ask you for evidence to the contrary, or for you to tell me where I am in error.   You state your opinion, and provide nothing to back it up, so your lack of anything whatsoever to support your opinion says everything I need to know.

velcro

  • Member
  • All Members
    • View Profile
Re: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign
« Reply #83 on: June 18, 2018, 09:19:43 PM »
Quote
If the institution directly responsible for security in the U.S. is (hypothetically) against the President and is trying to have him removed one way or another, you don't see how that's effectively a regime change plan?

If the "trying to have him removed" consists of private texts criticizing him, then it is not effectively a regime change plan.

If there is an investigation into interference with elections, which the NSA for the President agrees happened, that may or may not lead to the President, that is not effectively a regime change plan.

Here's a scenario:
Quote
While Trump is being very publicly investigated by the FBI, the FBi leaks incriminating information about Trump to Democratic congressmen, who do not share it with Republicans.  That spurs FBI leadership to talk about the investigation against Trump, right before the election, to get ahead of the leak, so they don't appear to be withholding any evidence. Even though policy is against such a statement. Also the information is leaked to a Clinton campaign surrogate, who mentions that it is coming.

Meanwhile, a far more damaging investigation against Clinton is being kept quiet.

And also, the New York FBI have "a deep and visceral hatred" of Trump, known to many people.
That might rise to the level of almost sort of coup-like.  Except this all happened the other way around.  Everything Comey did, everything the FBI did, helped Trump, and hurt Clinton. The facts are not in dispute.  The NY FBI threat of leaks caused Comey to talk about reopening the investigation, which almost certainly tilted the election.  On the other hand, the IG report said that whatever anti-Trump bias there was in one or two FBI agents, it had no effect.

If the FBI incited anyone to anything, I will admit your point.  Show me the evidence.  If all they did was dislike the President, and investigate crimes that the President may or may not be involved in, sorry, not even close.

Am I being unreasonable?  I just want to see evidence of an attempted coup, not theoretical possibilities that the FBI could conceivably foment a coup if they wanted to.

Fenring

  • Member
  • All Members
    • View Profile
Re: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign
« Reply #84 on: June 18, 2018, 10:29:04 PM »
If the FBI incited anyone to anything, I will admit your point.  Show me the evidence.  If all they did was dislike the President, and investigate crimes that the President may or may not be involved in, sorry, not even close.

Am I being unreasonable?  I just want to see evidence of an attempted coup, not theoretical possibilities that the FBI could conceivably foment a coup if they wanted to.

I didn't personally suggest that a coup was taking place. I was defending the use of the word as being potentially applicable in this case, which it seems you agree with. Both of us also probably agree that for this criterion to be met some specific things need to have happened that it's unclear if they have. We may or may not agree on what those things are. And I'm not saying they actually happened, just that suggesting that if they happened it would be a coup.

Crunch

  • All Members
    • View Profile
Re: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign
« Reply #85 on: June 19, 2018, 08:13:46 AM »
The FBI did not indict or prosecute.  The multi-million dollar budgets with an army of law enforcement and intelligence did not run any operations against elected officials.

I will not ask you for evidence to the contrary, or for you to tell me where I am in error.   You state your opinion, and provide nothing to back it up, so your lack of anything whatsoever to support your opinion says everything I need to know.

Do you think indictments or prosecutions are completely unrelated to FBI actions? 

Google “Crossfire Hurricane timeline” and you’ll see that there were significant efforts made before any investigation. How are you so engaged and simultaneously uninformed?

I will not link up any evidence in the face of your overwhelming lack of curiosity about this and clear refusal to see it. You state talking points and provide only more talking points as proof.

TheDrake

  • All Members
    • View Profile
Re: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign
« Reply #86 on: June 19, 2018, 10:52:05 AM »
I don't think coup d'etat means what you think it means. The actual definition:

Quote
a sudden, violent, and illegal seizure of power from a government

Nothing happening here was sudden, or violent. It might eventually be shown that there were illegal shenanigans.

A quick list of coup attempts


velcro

  • Member
  • All Members
    • View Profile
Re: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign
« Reply #87 on: June 19, 2018, 01:00:06 PM »
The FBI did not indict or prosecute.  The multi-million dollar budgets with an army of law enforcement and intelligence did not run any operations against elected officials.

I will not ask you for evidence to the contrary, or for you to tell me where I am in error.   You state your opinion, and provide nothing to back it up, so your lack of anything whatsoever to support your opinion says everything I need to know.

Do you think indictments or prosecutions are completely unrelated to FBI actions? 

Google “Crossfire Hurricane timeline” and you’ll see that there were significant efforts made before any investigation. How are you so engaged and simultaneously uninformed?

I will not link up any evidence in the face of your overwhelming lack of curiosity about this and clear refusal to see it. You state talking points and provide only more talking points as proof.

I can Google “Crossfire Hurricane timeline” and read for years and not know what you specifically mean.  Just provide one link that makes your point.

On another note, you have absolutely no idea about my level of curiosity, so please refrain from commenting on it.
If you would like to maintain credibility,  please provide some sort of evidence about my "clear refusal to see" anything.  I refuse to agree with unfounded speculation, but that's about it.  And finally, my proof is not talking points, it is sourced information from the IG report. And quotes from Trump's NSA advisor, which you never responded to.  And excerpts from an indictment, and a plea bargain.  So please stop claiming that.


Fenring,

The use of the word coup is not remotely applicable.  i bent over backwards giving every benefit of the doubt, and stipulated things without proof, and still could not get the behavior you describe to rise to the level of coup. It's not "unclear" if the things happened.  It is clear there is not  a shred of evidence that they happened.

Fenring

  • Member
  • All Members
    • View Profile
Re: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign
« Reply #88 on: June 19, 2018, 03:03:39 PM »
It's not "unclear" if the things happened.  It is clear there is not  a shred of evidence that they happened.

It wouldn't be evident to you even if there was such evidence in existence, because that doesn't get out to the press. I think it's entirely plausible that a hit job got started on Trump from the moment he took office and from then on it was about fabricating reasons to undermine his Presidency, one way or another. I also think it's plausible that Trump was indeed engaged in illicit activities (as usual) and didn't realize how serious it would be to continue those while President. A third option could be that both are happening at once! I'm confident that there isn't sufficient information in the public sphere to make definitive statements either way although many people seem to be confident enough to somehow make strong declarative statements about it anyhow. I try to withhold judgement until I hear something definitive. There are occasions (such as Benghazi) where even after significant investigations there seemed to be nothing definitive in either direction and in such cases the option is either to suspend judgement indefinitely (which can rankle) or to throw in your lot with what is most plausible in the abstract. Well, there are other options of course, such as believing whatever you want, but let's leave that aside.

In any case I would take it *very* seriously if the FBI was somehow proven to be trying to remove the President using any means necessary, knowing full well that he didn't do anything criminal while President. I'm not saying it's happening, but it's totally believable that such things could happen. Much worse has happened in the past in various government departments. If you don't want to call that a 'coup' then it's not that big a deal, but don't let's quibble over words when the point under contention is how serious a matter it would be.

velcro

  • Member
  • All Members
    • View Profile
Re: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign
« Reply #89 on: June 20, 2018, 01:16:18 PM »
There is no evidence that aliens have taken over and replaced half of humanity with duplicates. It wouldn't be evident to you even if there was such evidence in existence, because that doesn't get out to the press.

By your logic, it is "unclear' whether that has happened.

There is a difference between remotely possible and likely.

If the FBI were trying to undermine Trump, why did they
-not mention his campaign was under investigation during the election?
-mention that Clinton was under investigation - all the time?
-have many people who literally hated Clinton in the NY FBI office, leaking information that was harmful to Clinton?

These are all reasons why it is not likely that the FBI is out to get Trump.  The only reason you have, AFAIK, is texts from two agents that the IG said did nothing to harm Trump.

Fenring

  • Member
  • All Members
    • View Profile
Re: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign
« Reply #90 on: June 20, 2018, 01:31:14 PM »
There is no evidence that aliens have taken over and replaced half of humanity with duplicates. It wouldn't be evident to you even if there was such evidence in existence, because that doesn't get out to the press.

I guess you're really trusting of powerful government agencies. Good thing they always have the best interests of the people in their hearts.

Quote
If the FBI were trying to undermine Trump, why did they
-not mention his campaign was under investigation during the election?
-mention that Clinton was under investigation - all the time?
-have many people who literally hated Clinton in the NY FBI office, leaking information that was harmful to Clinton?

Fair points. Recent history has certainly been confusing. Has it occurred to you that more than one faction can exist within the same organization? Or that certain people within an organization will do whatever's expedient at the time, regardless of what the broader implications are? I don't think it's always correct to suggest that a person is "on the side" of one party (like the DNC) when they appear to do something benefiting the DNC, and then wonder whether it's plausible that they've "switched sides" if they then do something favorable for the RNC. It doesn't always work like that.

Dunno if you've ever read the Illuminatus! Trilogy but there's a funny character in it who's the world's only "quintuple agent" which basically means he does all sorts of things that happen to be in service to various organizations, and he doesn't understand what any of it's about other than he does the tasks. It's an amusing spoof on the idea that "changing sides" isn't an easy binary where you either serve one party or the other.

D.W.

  • Member
  • All Members
    • View Profile
Re: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign
« Reply #91 on: June 20, 2018, 01:31:59 PM »
Quote
There is no evidence that aliens have taken over and replaced half of humanity with duplicates. It wouldn't be evident to you even if there was such evidence in existence, because that doesn't get out to the press.
Actually... this would explain A LOT!

Timing these camps with the announcement of the Space Force?  Straining relationships with some of our former allies?   :o

The invasion is already begun!  Not just "illegal aliens" but extra terrestrials are already inside our borders!

Fenring

  • Member
  • All Members
    • View Profile
Re: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign
« Reply #92 on: June 20, 2018, 01:33:16 PM »
The invasion is already begun!  Not just "illegal aliens" but extra terrestrials are already inside our borders!

We're going to build a wall around the planet and have Freeman Dyson pay for it.

TheDrake

  • All Members
    • View Profile
Re: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign
« Reply #93 on: June 20, 2018, 01:57:17 PM »
How many "extra" terrestrials are there?  :P


D.W.

  • Member
  • All Members
    • View Profile
Re: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign
« Reply #94 on: June 20, 2018, 02:03:22 PM »
Haha, 2

2 many.  :)

Seriati

  • Member
  • All Members
    • View Profile
Re: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign
« Reply #95 on: June 20, 2018, 02:36:43 PM »
If the FBI were trying to undermine Trump, why did they
-not mention his campaign was under investigation during the election?

Because they, like everyone living in the bubble, thought it was impossible Hillary would lose.  Giving Trump ammunition to "ignore the election results" or to imply the election was unfair based on their actions would undercut their philosophy. 

If they had known he would win, they would have leaked the damaging information.

Quote
-mention that Clinton was under investigation - all the time?

Cause they had no choice.  Deny the obvious, and it's proof of corruption.

Quote
-have many people who literally hated Clinton in the NY FBI office, leaking information that was harmful to Clinton?

These are all reasons why it is not likely that the FBI is out to get Trump. 

So having people that "hated Clinton" is relevant, but having people that "hate Trump" isn't?

Quote
The only reason you have, AFAIK, is texts from two agents that the IG said did nothing to harm Trump.

What we have is an IG report that can be deliberately or accidentally misread.  He didn't conclude that they did no harm, he concluded they didn't write down that they were misbehaving because they hated Trump.  They hated Trump.  They made decisions in one direction, and Trump hatred appears to have delayed the investigation into the Weiner emails.  It's fairly damning as a circumstantial case, it's just not express.

This brings us back to a problem from the Benghazi thread.  Nothing but a signed confession is proof that someone on the left is guilty, yet, someone on the right is guilty from the first accusation.  That's the essence of unequal treatment.

Wayward Son

  • Member
  • All Members
    • View Profile
Re: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign
« Reply #96 on: June 20, 2018, 06:06:44 PM »
If the FBI were trying to undermine Trump, why did they
-not mention his campaign was under investigation during the election?

Because they, like everyone living in the bubble, thought it was impossible Hillary would lose.  Giving Trump ammunition to "ignore the election results" or to imply the election was unfair based on their actions would undercut their philosophy. 

If they had known he would win, they would have leaked the damaging information.

Then why bother with the investigation at all?  If he wasn't going to win, you don't need any dirt on him.

And if they thought there was a possibility that he would win, then why not "leak" a bit to make sure?

Of course, we know they thought it was possible that Trump would win.  They (actually, one FBI agent) said they would stop him from becoming President.  And you don't try to stop someone who you know can't win.  So your premise in incorrect.

And why do you think that I, and every other reader of FiveThirtyEight, was smarter than the FBI, since we knew there was a 25% chance that he could win?  ???  You don't think the FBI reads the internet? ;)

TheDrake

  • All Members
    • View Profile
Re: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign
« Reply #97 on: June 20, 2018, 06:21:10 PM »
Quote
“[Trump’s] not ever going to become president, right? Right?!” Page wrote to Strzok in a text message set to be released Thursday as part of a Department of Justice inspector general’s report.

“No. No he won’t. We’ll stop it,” Strzok, who was dating Page at the time, responded.

Stop him how? Going door to door getting out the vote? Those two people, or the American public at large? Illegally wiretapping him? There's no more of a smoking gun here than the "I love it" email from Trump indicates collusion.

I haven't seen any hard evidence that suggests that this thought got translated into illegal action, or in fact any action.

velcro

  • Member
  • All Members
    • View Profile
Re: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign
« Reply #98 on: June 21, 2018, 07:54:03 AM »
Quote
If they had known he would win, they would have leaked the damaging information.

Please explain how you know this very internal decision.  Any actual evidence, other than pure speculation, will be considered.  Otherwise, this is just a story that fits your worldview.

Quote
He [IG]concluded they didn't write down that they were misbehaving because they hated Trump.  They hated Trump. 

Did he conclude that specifically, or did his conclusion have absolutely nothing to do with what they didn't write down?  I think it is the latter.  Please clarify.  If your statement is remotely true, you will be able to provide quotes from the report to support them.

velcro

  • Member
  • All Members
    • View Profile
Re: Obama administration conducted spying operations on Trump campaign
« Reply #99 on: June 21, 2018, 12:37:03 PM »
Quote
-mention that Clinton was under investigation - all the time?

Quote
Cause they had no choice.  Deny the obvious, and it's proof of corruption.

The truth is, FBI policy was to not mention investigations that might influence elections.  But Comey broke policy, helping Trump and hurting Clinton. That was the choice of the head of the FBI. Do not deny that it was a choice.

This policy of not mentioning investigations that might influence elections,  in fact is not proof of corruption.  That is pretty damn obvious to those who care about the truth.