Hey… Focus Here, People… It’s NOT About Comey!

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Making America great again??

Given his testimony was the big TV viewing event of the season there will be a lot of folks like myself (and unlike myself) who are going to present an opinion… and we all know opinions are a dime a dozen (assuming anyone wants to pay that much).

With this blog my “thing” has always been about Trump’s inability and inexperience… and lifelong inflexibility in adapting positively to social relationships… and just plain lack of mental prowess to serve as president.  So, while pundits and bloggers and prognosticators everywhere are positioning opinions to run the gamut of pro-Trump/anti-Comey or anti-Trump/pro-Comey, I am contending the focus is all wrong here.  Comey’s testimony is NOT about Comey one bit… and it’s not about Comey dissing Trump.

 So.. let me try and explain MY observations.

Observation #1:  Some are saying Comey is lying because of sour grapes for having been fired or some other personal agenda; he should be discredited.

At the end of day.. if you include all the characters telling their respective stories… whether it’s Comey, Sessions, Trump, Lynch, whomever… Comey was the only one under oath.  If he’s found out to be lying later, he goes to jail.  That’s a lot to lose if you ask me.   On the other hand, Trump has been known to lie.. or spread “untruths”, if you prefer the softer term, to the press, to the American people, to our allies.  Comey comes with credentials of high honesty and integrity.  Trump does not.   I will believe Comey’s testimony as being accurate from his vantage point.  No brainer there.

 

Observation #2:  The argument that Comey has violated some document confidentiality in releasing everything to the press, and is a damn leaker.

Two parts here.

The first, the President did not exercise executive privilege hence Comey’s “notes & recollections” are not  subject to this scrutiny, are his property, and he is now a civilian.

The second, who cares?  This isn’t about Comey.

 

Observation #2:   Based on Trump’s response to Comey’s testimony, the President is out of touch with a bit of reality.

Trump and friends were said to be breaking out the cigars to celebrate Comey’s “admission” that he did indeed tell the President that the President was not under investigation at the time.  I have NO idea the importance of that.. given that was back then.. and what’s important is what is now… and that is, Trump and company are indeed being scrutinized under the current investigation.  Another “who cares”.

 

Observation #3:  Comey should have told the President at the dinner meeting that he was unable to make the loyalty pledge?

It’s a judgment call.  Who cares.

 

Observation #4:  Is Comey himself walking away better or worse in the eyes of the public?

Who cares.  Also, I firmly believe Comey doesn’t care that much either.

 

Observation #5:  And what about the other players in the testimony?

All this peripheral talk about Sessions doing one thing or another, Lynch doing one thing or another, anyone else mentioned as having been somehow a subject inside Comey’s testimony….  who cares.

 

Observation #6:  Does all this prove Trump’s obstruction of the Russian hacking/Flynn investigation?

You know, that’s important from the standpoint that if someone is doing something illegal they should pay for their crime… be it Flynn, Trump, whomever.  People wanting to see Trump having a reason to fall from office would enjoy this… but still… there’s a much higher focus here.

This is the meat of the issue… the Russian hacking.

The Comey testimony has resulted in a beehive of political posturing across the board when the real issue, stated by Comey himself, is the Russian hacking of our election.  A foreign power has attempted to influence our election process.  As of now, no effort is being made to avoid this from happening again in the next election.. and certainly no condemnation or political response toward Russia.

Trump is in his Wonderland thinking that all this Russian election hacking is simply his “enemies” trying to invalidate his election win.  In fact, if you talk to your average Conservative Trumpster they are still living in the world believing that liberals want to invalidate or disqualify Trump’s win.  He’s president.. live with it (hell, us anti-Trumpsters have to).  The problem is the man himself is a gross incompetent.

Attached to this hacking investigation is the suspected involvement of Flynn and either Trump surrogates or Trump himself having contact/connections with the Russians that helped/encouraged the hacking.

 

Today’s testimony was great for making the political plot(s) thicken but does NOTHING toward addressing the Russian hacking.

To those wishing to have had Trump impeached an out of office by the weekend are going to be disappointed.  The Special Prosecutor will determine who violated the law.  But impeachment requires no reason at all.  This process in our government assures that the President of the United States serves at the pleasure of the people.   One also has to remember… this entire investigation process.. Comey testifying… all of this, could not have happened without Republican support because they have the majority.

 

It’s been said that the real political patriots during the Watergate hearings were the republicans who put the nation before partisan politics.  Either that has to happen here.. or… the mid-term elections next year changes the Congressional balance of power, which is rather what I think may happen.  If Trump ends up being guilty of a crime… I suppose that makes removing him more palatable to the GOP.

But can we take care of this Russian hacking of our most valued democratic process, PLEASE?

 

Carry On, America

 

 

 

10 thoughts on “Hey… Focus Here, People… It’s NOT About Comey!

  1. You have made me think of something and I am not sure of the importance of significance of the thought that occurred to me as I was reading your article here: We know that the Russians are said to have hacked into our election process with their electronics. What I want to know is what has The United States Government — with all their money — all their expertise — done to make sure no country can ever hack into our election process again? I am not hearing anybody talking about the measures … the steps the government has taken to make sure this kind of hacking can never happen again. Have they done something? Is what they have done a big secret? Have they done nothing? Will they do something?

    • Here is the story on the Russian hack. Doesn’t seem to amount to much. What a coincidence! Senator Mark Warner (D) holds a press conference and there is this leak.
      https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2017/06/06/mark-warner-more-state-election-systems-targeted-by-russians-nsa-senate-intelligence/102549928/

      Warner is one of my two senators. I wish he wasn’t.

      Running our election systems is the responsibly of state and local governments. Unless the state and/local people are doing something illegal, there is not much reason for the Feds to get involved.

      The threat of actually hacking election results (changing the vote) depends upon state and local officials actually being STUPID enough to put their election systems on the Internet. There is no good reason to do that. Convenience? With all the security risks?

      I serve as one many election officers (a volunteer) in Virginia. Just like a great many others I work in this capacity for my local government (Prince William County, Virginia). It is all day job. Election officials have to be there before the polls open, and they have to stay to tally the vote.

      None of our systems are on the Internet, and there is no reason for them to be. What matters — what makes the system work — is public spirited citizens volunteering to make certain the process is honest. Since the result of honest elections — a government we choose — is priceless, I am honored to have the opportunity to serve as an election officer. I just wish more people appreciated what the people who founded this nation passed on to us.

      Doug, I would not take the Comey hearing too seriously. Think about your own words.

      But impeachment requires no reason at all.

      That is not true. Where did you get that idea?

      Article 2, Section. 4.

      The President, Vice President and all civil Officers of the United States, shall be removed from Office on Impeachment for, and Conviction of, Treason, Bribery, or other high Crimes and Misdemeanors.

      After the House of Representatives impeaches a president, the Senate holds a trial with the Chief Justice presiding. So there has to be a charge. Without a charge, how do you try someone to establish their guilt? You think Trump incompetent? Well, if incompetence is a crime who doesn’t belong in jail?
      😆

      At this point in time there is no evidence that Trump is guilty of breaking a law. If the Democrat Liberal news media was not half crazy with TDS, there would not even be a special prosecutor.

      • Ok.. semantics here, I suppose… and you are correct to call me out on it. When I said impeachment technically requires no reason I meant along the lines of your employer’s HR department and being an “at will” employer. There obviously has to be a formal charge developed in the House and subsequently a trial to prove those charges in the Senate. If a single party is solid in both houses you could theoretically get together and impeach him for lousy hair, then bury it in some label under “high crimes and misdemeanors”… which is not defined and has been broadly interpreted. Point being… while no one is going to find some wimpy thing on Trump for impeachment.. Trump himself is setting himself up for any number of situations where impeachment charges can be addressed. The more serious those “triggers” the more GOP members will cross over and support, thusly affecting house voting majorities, or, GOP seats will be lost in the mid-terms and they will lose the majority.

        The Russian hacking… my mother also served as a precinct voting judge in Chicago (well AFTER the dead started voting in Chicago), so I understand the volunteer service commitment. I agree with you.. the states themselves are making themselves vulnerable when they use automation linked to the Internet. There seems nothing revealed as yet that the hackings actually changed voting history. But my contention is that Russia, North Korea, whomever, is TRYING.. and that’s the rub. Along with hackings into systems where they can introduce fake documents in an attempt to foster some level of chaos or change… as being alleged in Qatar.

        Good reply.

        • @Doug

          I understand you don’t like Trump. Since you strike me as a reasonable guy, I will concede you are trying to deal with facts, not speculation. So I have a question. Why don’t you think the impeachment stuff is a bunch of nonsense? Consider.

          1. The whole idea of appointing a special prosecutor just to find something to investigate is both immoral and impractical. If we don’t like mudslinging politicians (or “reporters”), we should not reward them with our attention.

          2. As civic mind individuals, we should be focused on what we can do to make both ourselves and our fellow citizens better. Worrying over baseless charges is an unneeded distraction, and so far there is no fire, no smoke, and certainly no smoking gun.

          Just like the rest of the cattle being urged into a stampede, we just have dust in our eyes , the stirrings of bellowing bulls.

          3. News is entertainment. The object of “journalism” is to provide an audience for advertisers. If we don’t hold them accountable and refuse to watch character assassination as entertainment, the news networks will continue their descent into the sewers and take us with them.

          Your mother must have had an interesting time serving as a precinct voting judge in Chicago.

          One more question. Why does it require a special prosecutor to investigate the hacking threat posed by foreign nations?

          • Regarding mother being a precinct judge in Chicago for a few years… when I was in the Air Force back in 1972-73 I was stationed in Iceland, of all places. This was my first election… and the first one after the voting age had been lowered to 18. I had an absentee ballot. I have a photo of me on duty filling out the ballot. In the upper left corner I wrote a little “x”.. thinking maybe mother might find it. And she did. Just a personal reflection. 🙂

            Anyway.. I suspect my response to your questions likely will not be simply a short reply to fit in here. And thanks for the acknowledgment.
            Want to share an email addy or would you prefer a public reply?

            • That is quite a story about your mother finding your “secret” ballot. Absentee ballots use to be much more unusual. So I guess she did not have to look through too many.

              A public reply is okay with me. May as well share it, make it part of the public debate. I assume you would make a post of it, but a comment is okay too.

              I think the animosity between the different politician factions is getting out of hand. When I debate people, I try not to make it personal. Unfortunately, we confuse ourselves. We forget that a disagreement over politics does not have to mean we dislike each other. It just means one of, or perhaps even both of us, is mistaken.

              So if we can show others how to discuss this matter without temper tantrum, that would be a good thing.

  2. #1 and 4 are spot on…..this will be a long process and most of the stuff will be behind closed doors and we may never know all the facts…..good post chuq

  3. A very good point there, John. Being an old computer business guy I know that technology can be tough to keep up with and the algorithms to thwart hackers simply ends up being another challenge for hackers to navigate. I know the huge challenge to hackers everywhere is trying to hide or disguise their footprint trail. It’s more like… “I know you can see and detect me but you don’t know where I am coming from.” kinda thing. Having said all that, I have a feeling our country is far more sophisticated than most folks might think. The detecting part.. knowing when someone is trying to knock on your door undetected.. is one thing. It’s also being able to identify once detected… and have reasonable assurance where it’s originating from in order to take action.
    Since state-sanctioned hacking of other states is now the craze the international community needs to form real world political (military?) responses and also constantly push for technology “one upmanship”,

    One thought I had that I may post on at a later date is an international cyber detection organization.. PERHAPS set up as a kind of cyber-NATO.. constantly monitoring cyber attacks in signatory nation members. Maybe even have it port of the UN… or off by itself. The point being, everyone is involved rather than this world hodge-podge of nations doing their own cyber protection.

    Anyway.. as of right now… we truly need to focus on Russia.. and N. Korea regarding this hacking. We have another election coming up and it’s very obvious we don’t seem to be able to directly detect cyber incursions into our election process until after it’s happened. So for now our best bet is real world responses to this threat. Forget Comey’s testimony. That will all turn out however it does following the legal investigation. The country is too wrapped up with pointing political fingers on lesser issues.

  4. I’m not being notified of your posts, so I have tried to subscribe by email AGAIN. I hope it works now.

    I watched a bit of the hearing on the BBC. I thought Comey came across as relaxed, convincing, and professional. Then again, I should really expect nothing less from someone who was the head of the FBI. It did make big news here eventually, but we were mostly somewhat bewildered by the relevance, I confess. It came across as a lot of “I said/He said” with little evidence, either way.
    Best wishes, Pete.

  5. To Tom…

    To preface, Tom… I highly suspect we are both wondering something here. I feel my perceptions and opinions are formed by sound use of critical thinking, logic, and conclusions regarding my interpretation of the performance of the President, using true facts. Hence, I wonder how the hell do right wingers reach such obvious misconceptions in spite of the obvious. The paradox is that Conservative right wingers think the same about liberals.. or anti-Trumpsters like myself. Never the twain shall meet. Frankly I am awed at the difference and being a humanist of sorts I am searching to understand what the hell is going on.  For me it’s far less about getting into some name-calling tirade. You, and fellow blogger-replier on your site, Tony, are very articulate… although I’m not overly fond of injecting religious concepts into reality politics, you guys are certainly theologically knowledgeable. While you have said that I seem to be trying to deal with facts and not speculation I am sure we totally differ in what those facts are, and most certainly the speculation.

    Ok.. on to your questions/observations… as they relate to my facts and speculation. 

    “I understand you don’t like Trump. Since you strike me as a reasonable guy, I will concede you are trying to deal with facts, not speculation. So I have a question. Why don’t you think the impeachment stuff is a bunch of nonsense?”

    I don’t consider the Congressional investigations, or any resulting indictments from the SP that may lead to impeachment as a bunch of nonsense. Trump has placed himself in this position with not being forthcoming about anything. But all this is originating from the investigation into Russian hacking, which to me is the biggest threat to the country right now. There’s smoke, Tom. Lots of it. Hence the investigation, and Trump’s lack of cooperation just making it all worse and giving him a bad image, thus causing impeachment speculation.

    1. “The whole idea of appointing a special prosecutor just to find something to investigate is both immoral and impractical. If we don’t like mudslinging politicians (or “reporters”), we should not reward them with our attention.”

    It’s not about a special prosecutor, Tom. It’s all about what many feel needs investigating and finding a common, seemingly impartial person to do it. Also, the SP is not part of the impeachment process. Remember, the SP could very possibly find the President and the entire administration totally not guilty of anything. But Congress can still impeach for a variety of reasons. I don’t see this as being an application of morality. Maybe you need to help me here what the moral issue is.

    2. “As civic mind individuals, we should be focused on what we can do to make both ourselves and our fellow citizens better. Worrying over baseless charges is an unneeded distraction, and so far there is no fire, no smoke, and certainly no smoking gun.”

    Well, Tom… that begs the “Where have you been?” exclamation. There’s smoke everywhere and Trump has created it all by not being forthcoming… and acting “strange” regarding all this Comey stuff. Apparently the Republican-held Congress finds enough smoke to back all the Congressional investigations and the special prosecutor. Who has decided any charges (I didn’t know there were any at this point) are baseless or not? That’s the whole idea of the investigation. Right?

    “Just like the rest of the cattle being urged into a stampede, we just have dust in our eyes , the stirrings of bellowing bulls.”

    Maybe so in one context. But again… if Trump had been forthcoming in many venues this all could have been stopped long ago. But he himself makes things worse.

    3. “News is entertainment. The object of “journalism” is to provide an audience for advertisers. If we don’t hold them accountable and refuse to watch character assassination as entertainment, the news networks will continue their descent into the sewers and take us with them.”

    I know it’s popular with Conservatives (and even many Liberals) to condemn the mainstream press for being biased toward one thing or another… and thusly thinking that this biased press is simply preaching to a bunch of lemmings marching to the cliff. Whatever happened to critical thinking? Are you suggesting only Conservatives can reach intelligent conclusions regarding what they hear or watch on TV? When I am on duty the only radio station in the area is a Conservative station that features Rush Limbaugh. I listen by default, but I am wary enough to take away the necessary highlights of his reporting and analysis using my own set of standards. A lot of what he says is unsubstantiated nonsense.. BUT.. some of what he says bears some level of consideration that I may follow up with later. He’s not brainwashing me nor is the mainstream media. I am sure there are millions like me out there. The press is NOT some deep state organized conspiracy… unless that’s all you want to believe because you don’t have critical thinking skills… and I honestly think you do,somewhere. 🙂

    “One more question. Why does it require a special prosecutor to investigate the hacking threat posed by foreign nations?”

    The intel services and the FBI have already established Russian hacking, although nothing tawdry was done when they hacked. The government has to determine a response, if any. Congress seems in the process of attaching sanctions to some bill regarding Iraq. Domestically the FBI, or special prosecutor when confidence in the FBI is questioned, is required to determine if there’s complicity by Americans. Given all the “smoke” caused by the Flynn debacle, Administration contacts with Russians within the campaign that are unclear, Trump and his family’s various business ties that are unclear, evidence emerging to suggest Trump has been trying to stonewall the investigation. Why do Conservatives all seem to believe, “If Trump says it’s all fake then I believe him!”? Trump is the biggest presidential spawner of untruths in modern history. The fact checking has all shown that. He’s got zero credibility. That’s why he’s getting so much negative attention.

    So, Tom…I am sure pretty much everything I have said here in answering your questions you find totally foreign and unthinkable… which is what you expected. Now.. it would be nice if you might share actual facts regarding Trump rather than this consistent and irrelevant reflection about what Obama did or didn’t do and allegedly got away with.. and what the Clintons did or didn’t do and allegedly got away with, as some justification for what Trump is doing. This juvenile defense “Why are you picking on Trump when the Obamas and Clintons did much worse and nobody did nuthin about it!” is what my kids said when they were six years old.

    Consider this… Conservative populists wanted a political maverick to completely upset the apple cart.. throw out the elites, drain the swamp… do things his own way. Ok.. your 46% won the election. Did you honestly think the remaining 64% was just going to sit back and watch their entire political world change overnight according to some inexperienced maverick? Common sense suggests that even if Trump were wonderful and not a general jerk that there would need to be a lot of adjustment time. For me the truer measure of his incompetence… never in my life have I witnessed a president who spends so much time catering to one segment of America.. his political base. He’s not a president for all Americans by any stretch. The man himself is his own greatest elitist.

    By the way.. good for you that you were considering elected office! Don’t stop! 

    Back to you.

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