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Old 2019-01-18, 06:23   #958
ewmayer
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Ha, ha, I love a good-n-dirty bout of mudwrasslin'. Note the "you and your precious political junket are grounded" response quoted a few comments down from that one.
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Old 2019-01-18, 16:12   #959
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ewmayer View Post
Ha, ha, I love a good-n-dirty bout of mudwrasslin'. Note the "you and your precious political junket are grounded" response quoted a few comments down from that one.
Il Duce's opponents keep forgetting the adage Never Wrestle with a Pig. You Both Get Dirty and the Pig Likes It

Quote:
<snip> The earliest strong match for the modern saying located by QI appeared in the January 3, 1948 issue of “The Saturday Evening Post” within a profile of Cyrus Stuart Ching who was the head of the U.S. Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service. The ellipsis is in the original text:

A man in the audience began heckling him with a long series of nasty and irrelevant questions. For a while Ching answered patiently. Finally he held up his big paw and waggled it gently.

“My friend,” he said, “I’m not going to answer any more of your questions. I hope you won’t take this personally, but I am reminded of something my old uncle told me, long ago, back on the farm. He said. ‘What’s the sense of wrestling with a pig? You both get all over muddy . . . and the pig likes it.'”

Ching did not claim coinage; instead, he credited an unnamed uncle who may have been relaying a pre-existing item of folk wisdom. Oddly, another later citation shows Ching crediting his grandfather. Whatever the source, Ching did help to popularize the expression. <snip>
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Old 2019-01-18, 17:04   #960
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https://www.buzzfeednews.com/article...-investigation

Quote:
Now the two sources have told BuzzFeed News that Cohen also told the special counsel that after the election, the president personally instructed him to lie — by claiming that negotiations ended months earlier than they actually did — in order to obscure Trump’s involvement.

The special counsel’s office learned about Trump’s directive for Cohen to lie to Congress through interviews with multiple witnesses from the Trump Organization and internal company emails, text messages, and a cache of other documents. Cohen then acknowledged those instructions during his interviews with that office.
Looks like things might get a little more interesting. The instruction to lie, BTW, was to lie to Congress.

Last fiddled with by wombatman on 2019-01-18 at 17:05
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Old 2019-01-18, 20:00   #961
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For your weekend-reading pleasure, a blast from the past in form of the Reagan administration, from blacklisted-in-the-U.S. investigative reporter Sy Hersh:

The Vice President’s Men | London Review of Books -- The NC reader who provided the link adds: "Hersh at his best. A long, weekend read about VP Poppy Bush’s secret covert action group during the first 2/3 of the Reagan administration. Frightening how out of touch the Gipper was from the get go, plus surprising revelations about Iran-Contra."
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Old 2019-01-19, 01:01   #962
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wombatman View Post
https://www.buzzfeednews.com/article...-investigation

Looks like things might get a little more interesting. The instruction to lie, BTW, was to lie to Congress.
And, under oath. It sounds like Mueller's office has a wealth of corroborating evidence. The legal term for instructing someone to lie under oath is "subornation of perjury." The federal offense carries the possible penalty of up to five years in prison plus a fine. That would appear to make it a felony.

The question may be asked -- why was the thing being lied about considered worth having someone lie about under oath?

EDIT: In a rare move, Mueller’s office denies BuzzFeed report that Trump told Cohen to lie about Moscow project

Last fiddled with by Dr Sardonicus on 2019-01-19 at 01:24 Reason: New info
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Old 2019-01-19, 02:01   #963
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Alternative to WaPo:
USA Today "Robert Mueller disputes....."
https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/...ie/2620598002/
Quote:
"BuzzFeed’s description of specific statements to the Special Counsel’s Office, and characterization of documents and testimony obtained by this office, regarding Michael Cohen’s Congressional testimony are not accurate," said Peter Carr, a spokesman for Mueller's office.
"...are not accurate." That phasing amuses me to no end. It does not specify a degree of inaccuracy. It rings differently than "...are wrong (you lying sack of scuzz.")

Last fiddled with by kladner on 2019-01-19 at 02:21
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Old 2019-01-19, 14:26   #964
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kladner View Post
Alternative to WaPo:
USA Today "Robert Mueller disputes....."
https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/...ie/2620598002/

"...are not accurate." That phasing amuses me to no end. It does not specify a degree of inaccuracy. It rings differently than "...are wrong (you lying sack of scuzz.")
OTOH, it does say (my emphasis)
Quote:
Inside the Justice Department, the statement was viewed as a huge step, and one that would have been taken only if the special counsel’s office viewed the story as almost entirely incorrect. The special counsel’s office seemed to be disputing every aspect of the story that addressed comments or evidence given to its investigators.

Last fiddled with by kladner on 2019-01-19 at 17:38 Reason: Edited instead of replied. Oops.
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Old 2019-01-19, 17:38   #965
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr Sardonicus View Post
OTOH, it does say (my emphasis)
Which article is that quote from? WaPo?
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Old 2019-01-19, 17:53   #966
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https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-46895634

No comment from me just yet.
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Old 2019-01-19, 20:20   #967
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xilman View Post
Crucially, no serious discussion of the various trends - 4 decades of neoliberal economic looting, endless bipartisan global warmongering and 'democratic regime changing' - which brought Trump to power (no it wasn't the deplorable Rooskies and their fiendishly effective brain-hacking and social-media trolling). Those trends and the antiglobalist backlash they have given rise to are not just limited to the US. In that light, it it interesting that the article opens with the odd phrase 'hostile historians...' - perhaps said historians would do themselves, and us, a favor by being less partisan (hostile) and more, well, historical.

Article also invokes the establishment-beloved "norms fairy" - as one NC reader put it nicely this past week, "Trump doesn't have norms, Trump has interests." Again, much as it's fun and easy to obsess about the man, I find it much more *useful* to view Trump as the particular USian face of a global political phenomenon. It is a phenomenon which one - and this is especially true of the insular elites and their paid stenography corps, the corporate-owned MSM - cannot begin to understand until one has spent some time seriously grappling with the question, "have the world and the lot of its non-elite peoples been made better by many decades of having been run by what amounts to norms-respecting sociopaths, or not?"

In other news, I see several others have posted links re. the fake-newsiness of the latest BuzzFeed "this will end Trump's presidency for sure!!" piece. Another outlet whose scribblers are apparently instructed to cease all use of the word 'alleged' when they go to work there. Of course if you're in the business of simply making sh*t up out of whole cloth, or breathlessly publishing 'dirt' from anonymous 'insider sources' without even a pretense of fact-checking, such niggling details like the difference between 'alleged' and 'proven' aren't going to bother you much.

Last fiddled with by ewmayer on 2019-01-19 at 20:28
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Old 2019-01-20, 15:03   #968
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ewmayer View Post
Again, much as it's fun and easy to obsess about the man, I find it much more *useful* to view Trump as the particular USian face of a global political phenomenon.
It does not require "obsession" to view the actions of a man in the light of his being the man he is. I am quite sure that foreign powers, be they friend or foe, have Il Duce's personality and character in mind when dealing with him.

On the other hand, viewing people as abstractions or symbols rather than as individuals is, all to often, the herald of mass slaughter.

Failing to keep in mind Il Duce's obvious narcissism leads to unbelievably asinine statements such as the following from the BBC piece, which I place in context:

Quote:
Indeed, a further reason for the disdain of historians is because, historically speaking, his administration has been like no other.
<snip>
The Russia collusion investigation, which has raised questions, so far unsettled, about his true allegiance.
"So far unsettled?" At the risk of being arrested for criminal belaboring of the obvious, being a narcissist, Il Duce's sole allegiance is to himself, and to whatever he views as being in his own immediate interest. He may be protective of his offspring, whom he likely views as extensions of himself, and may show at least temporary favor to anyone who strokes his ego, but they are just as likely to be cast off for the offense of not being sufficiently sycophantic "fair" to him. As a narcissist, the concept of loyalty to country is utterly alien to him. He is simply incapable of it.

EDIT: I append a description from a link I've given before, for ease of reference. Keep in mind, this is from early December 2016, before Il Duce took office. Coping with narcissistic personality disorder in the White House

Quote:
I want to talk a little about narcissistic personality disorder. I’ve unfortunately had a great deal of experience with it, and I’m feeling badly for those of you who are trying to grapple with it for the first time because of our president-elect, who almost certainly suffers from it or a similar disorder. If I am correct, it has some very particular implications for the office. Here are a few things to keep in mind:

1) It’s not curable and it’s barely treatable. He is who he is. There is no getting better, or learning, or adapting. He’s not going to “rise to the occasion” for more than maybe a couple hours. So just put that out of your mind.

2) He will say whatever feels most comfortable or good to him at any given time. He will lie a lot, and say totally different things to different people. Stop being surprised by this. While it’s important to pretend “good faith” and remind him of promises, as Bernie Sanders and others are doing, that’s for his supporters, so they can see the inconsistency as it comes. He won’t care. So if you’re trying to reconcile or analyze his words, don’t. It’s 100% not worth your time. Only pay attention to and address his actions.

3) You can influence him by making him feel good. There are already people like Steve Bannon who appear ready to use him for their own ends. The GOP is excited to try. Watch them, not him. President Obama, in his wisdom, may be treating him well in hopes of influencing him and averting the worst. But don’t count on it.

4) Entitlement is a key aspect of the disorder. As we are already seeing, he will likely not observe traditional boundaries of the office. He has already stated that rules don’t apply to him. This particular attribute has huge implications for the presidency and it will be important for everyone who can to hold him to the same standards as previous presidents.

5) We should expect that he only cares about himself and those he views as extensions of himself, like his children. (People with NPD often can’t understand others as fully human or distinct.) He desires accumulation of wealth and power because it fills a hole. (Melania is probably an acquired item, not an extension.) He will have no qualms at all about stealing everything he can from the country, and he’ll be happy to help others do so, if they make him feel good. He won’t view it as stealing but rather as something he’s entitled to do. This is likely the only thing he will intentionally accomplish.

6) It’s very, very confusing for non-disordered people to experience a disordered person with NPD. While often intelligent, charismatic, and charming, they do not reliably observe social conventions or demonstrate basic human empathy. It’s very common for non-disordered people to lower their own expectations and try to normalize the behavior. Do not do this and do not allow others, especially the media, to do this. If you start to feel foggy or unclear about why, step away until you recalibrate.

7) People with NPD often recruit helpers. These are referred to as “enablers” in the literature when they allow or cover for bad behavior, and “flying monkeys” when they perpetrate bad behavior on behalf of the narcissist. Although it’s easiest to prey on malicious people, good and vulnerable people can be unwittingly recruited. It will be important to support the good people around him if and when they attempt to stay clear or break away.

8) People with NPD often foster competition in people they control. Expect lots of chaos, firings, and recriminations. He will probably behave worst toward those closest to him, but that doesn’t mean (obviously) that his actions won’t have consequences for the rest of us. He will punish enemies. He may start out, as he has with the New York Times, with a confusing combination of punishment and reward, which is a classic abuse tactic for control. If you see your media cooperating or facilitating this behavior in order to r rewards, call them on it.

9) Gaslighting—where someone tries to convince you that the reality you’ve experienced isn’t true—is real and torturous. He will gaslight, his followers will gaslight. Many of our politicians and media figures already gaslight, so it will be hard to distinguish his amplified version from what has already been normalized. Learn the signs and find ways to stay focused on what you know to be true. Note: it is typically not helpful to argue with people who are attempting to gaslight. You will only confuse yourself. Just walk away.

10) Whenever possible, do not focus on the narcissist or give him attention. Unfortunately we can’t and shouldn’t ignore the president, but don’t circulate his tweets or laugh at him—you are enabling him and getting his word out. (I’ve done this, of course, we all have… just try to be aware.) Pay attention to your own emotions: Do you sort of enjoy his clowning? Do you enjoy the outrage? Is this kind of fun and dramatic, in a sick way? You are adding to his energy. Focus on what you can change and how you can resist, where you are. We are all called to be leaders now, in the absence of leadership.

Last fiddled with by Dr Sardonicus on 2019-01-20 at 15:21 Reason: Adding more info
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