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The Shearing of Hair Trompf (6)

June 7, 2017

Well, the storm that was gathering at the end of page (5) of this episode is quickly intensifying.  A lot happened while I was out of town, 6/1-5.  I’m going to pick up the narrative with today’s release of FBI Director Comey’s opening statement for tomorrow’s meeting of the Senate Intelligence Committee.  Here’s Jennifer Rubin’s WaPo analysis of the statement, and Paul Waldman’s comparison with Watergate, at this point.

(Literary suggestion:  Read it as if you are reading a novel, maybe these are the opening pages, with a first-person narrator, like, say, Nick in The Great Gatsby; you are hearing his voice as he tells you his story.  In what sense might C be a “reliable” or an “unreliable” narrator?)

What makes the matter of Michael Flynn so remarkably important to T?  Surely its magnitude of importance to him suggests something very interesting.  And surely we will, in the fullness of political time, know what that is.

And btw, at the least, T was trying to obstruct justice.  That’s an impeachable offense.  Next he’ll be saying, “I did not have sex with that woman.”

Below, I’ll make a running list of links to excellent analyses and commentaries on the opening statement [*].

6-8  Budowsky on what the committee should ask Comey, about Trump, Kushner, and Putin.  6-9  AG Sessions likely had additional meeting with Russian Amb. Kysliak.  Here’s a terrific survey of R responses to Comey, and where we are now in the investigative process.

[*] Some excellent analyses and commentaries on Comey’s opening statement, and his public testimony:

6-7:  Scroll-down text, with Josh Marshall annotations.  /  Benjamin Wittes in Lawfare.  6-8  Watergate lawyer, Lacovara, on evidence of obstruction of justice.  / Nicole Serratori (NYT) on parallels to sexual predation, “the psychology of coercive seduction;” and Susan Chira (NYT) on those same parallels. / Emily Bazelon and Elizabeth Goitein (NYT) on the immediate and long-range contexts of America trying to continue to be a society ruled by law.  / Briefly, two points (Think Progress writers):  there might be truth in some parts of the January, Steele dossier on T, and it is likely that Special Counsel is investigating possibility that T obstructed justice. / NYT “primer” on “obstruction of justice.” / (See above, 6-9, for survey of Republican responses.)  6-10 Contextual reminder of what this is about:  The Russians were/are/will be coming, and it’s not just a movie.  6-11 Pres fired US Attorney (whom he had signaled would be asked to stay on) 22 hrs after A refused to return a call from Pres. /  Trump lawyer:  with a “unitary executive” we cannot “speculate” about whether the Rule of Law will prevail. / T says he was so totally vindicated by the lying Comey that he is willing to testify under oath; Shumer says, Please do.  6-12  So who is that lawyer?  6-13  T in the sights of a litigation shotgun. / Comey, Sessions, and the Russian Connection; and some questions for/about Sessions, when he testifies [6-14 lots of Qs, but S ain’t talking.  But oops!]. / Special Counsel appointing strong team; conservatives beginning their assault on him.  6-14  Senate votes to limit T’s ability to ease sanctions on Russia.  6-15 And yep, it’s “follow the money time!”  Looking at you, Donald, Jared, Paul, Michael, and so many more.  Hard to imagine international business without a banking system, or international crime without a money laundering system.

[Pages (1) and (5) and (7) of this episode.]


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