April 13, 2018 6:14 AM HomeMorning ReadsMorning Reads for Friday, April 13, 2018 Morning Reads for Friday, April 13, 2018 By Ginny Morning Reads 62 Comments Spring may finally be here. GRRRRRRRRR. At least it’s not purple. Yep, he really said that. It must be the all the drugs that preserved them so well. Will he stay or will he go? Yep, he really said that. Yay! Uber for planes! Soon you’ll have to wear the panties of the person behind you on your head. Which one is Victoria Ewing again? You knew it was coming. The creepy is strong in this one. Share this:TwitterFacebookTumblrRedditEmailPrint Related About Author Ginny Get off my lawn. 62 Comments Noway2016 Better late than never. Trump just loosening up his “pardoning” hand! http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/president-trump-poised-pardon-scooter-libby-dick-cheneys/story?id=54433032 April 13, 2018 7:16 AM Log in to Reply Andrew C. Pope Serious reply: I don’t think Trump should pardon Manafort, Gates, Cohen, etc. Here’s why: 1. Cohen and Manafort are facing state charges in addition to federal charges. A Trump pardon doesn’t save them from the very real possibility of state prison. 2. George W. Bush commuted Scooter Libby’s sentence because he recognized, correctly, that pardoning Libby in the middle of an investigation would constitute obstruction of justice. Pardoning Manafort or Cohen won’t end the Special Counsel’s investigation. If anything, it will strengthen Mueller’s obstruction case against the President. 3. Bush’s lawyers also, correctly, pointed out that pardoning Libby meant Libby lost the 5th Amendment protection and could be forced to testify against Bush or Cheney. So not only would Mueller have a stronger obstruction case, he could force Manafort, Cohen, etc. to testify and they’d be unable to plead the 5th Amendment. (I recognize that they could perjure themselves, but then that opens up an entirely new pardon situation). 4. The other massive difference is that Libby was a bottleneck witness: without him, the investigation went nowhere. As we’ve seen, that isn’t the case with Trump. There are so many folks who had roles to play and have pertinent information: Manafort, Gates, Page, Papadopoulos, Kushner, Cohen, Pence, Don Jr., Hicks, Stone, Prince, Clovis, Corallo, and so on. I don’t think Trump’s attorneys know the full scope of folks who Trump would have to pardon. 5. Bush had much better lawyers than Trump does. Which is why he didn’t pardon Libby the first time around. The idea of dangling pardons is the kind of idea that only comes from bad lawyers. April 13, 2018 7:54 AM Log in to Reply Benevolus Prince? Is there a Raspberry Beret scandal I haven’t heard about? April 13, 2018 8:20 AM Log in to Reply Andrew C. Pope Eric Prince of Blackwater fame. Betsy DeVos’ brother. Held a meeting in the Seychelles between a Trump associate and Kirill Dmitriev, a close friend of Putin’s in January 2017. The purported purpose was to establish a back channel between the Trump team and Russian officials. Prince appears to have lied to Congress about the meeting and Mueller purportedly has a cooperating witness testifying the Seychelles meeting was preplanned to set up communication between Trump and Moscow. The real Prince would never dream of betraying his country. RIP April 13, 2018 9:10 AM Log in to Reply Benevolus He’s the kind of guy that would have a Red Corvette. April 13, 2018 11:26 AM bethebalance I’d also guess that the pardon power is retrospective only, and couldn’t exonerate future crimes. So I wonder if prosecutors- hearing the possibility of pardons- might hold back on some charges, and wait and see how things go. It’s possible that the President gets fired before all charges play out, so it’s like a game of timed chess. I think Mueller is sitting on so much now, with new indictments ready to be filed. But can you even pardon allegations? Could be a while before any convictions. April 13, 2018 12:57 PM Andrew C. Pope The pardon power “extends to every offence known to the law, and may be exercised at any time after its commission, either before legal proceedings are taken, or during their pendency, or after conviction and judgment.” In other words, once an offense is committed, the President can issue a pardon. It doesn’t matter if charges haven’t been brought or a conviction hasn’t been obtained. So there’s no point for Mueller to “hold back” on some indictments as Trump could just pardon Manafort, Cohen, whoever for any and all activities related to the Trump campaign or their interactions with foreign agents. Now there’s a catch. If you’ve been pardoned, you can’t plead the 5th (one can’t self-incriminate when you’ve been pardoned from all criminal liability). So a pardoned individual could be forced to testify against Trump and placed in the position of offering testimony against him or perjuring themselves. If they go the perjury route, Trump would have to pardon them again for the perjury. April 13, 2018 1:15 PM Will Durant So you condone this President pardoning a guy who leaked an active CIA agents ID to the press, lied about it to the FBI, and was convicted by a jury for obstruction of justice, etc. In light of your recent comments on McCabe I have to paraphrase Val Kilmer’s Doc Holiday; it appears your hypocrisy knows no bounds. April 13, 2018 8:35 AM Log in to Reply Noway2016 Yep. He didn’t leak sh-t. Deputy Secstate Richard Armitage did. Convicted of process crime. Big whoop! April 13, 2018 8:41 AM Log in to Reply Andrew C. Pope It’s true that Armitage shared Plame’s name without knowing she was a covert CIA officer. It’s also true from evidence collected in the case that Dick Cheney ordered Libby to out Plame, who he knew was covert, and make sure she was “good and burned.” April 13, 2018 9:07 AM Log in to Reply Noway2016 Anddddddd…it’s official. Truly MAGA! April 13, 2018 1:28 PM Log in to Reply Ellynn When Mr. Libby’s lawyers are also the same husband and wife lawyers who almost became Trump’s lawyers, things happen. It does hurt that one of those lawyers trashes Rosenstein on Fox News almost daily either. April 13, 2018 2:39 PM Log in to Reply Will Durant There is no winning “strategy” to be had in Syria. But one certainty is that shooting another $100 million dollar load of cruise missiles that don’t even disable an airstrip for a full day is even worse strategy than previous administrations’ “no strategy at all”. April 13, 2018 7:28 AM Log in to Reply xdog But blowing holes in runways is good enough for some people and a lot easier than having a coherent policy, not that the administration gives a rat about any policy. At any rate the main US fleet just sailed from Norfolk Wednesday so UK and France might get licks in first. Here’s a look at sea forces in the area and Syrian/Russian bases. https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/apr/12/trump-bellicose-tweets-run-far-ahead-us-military-readiness-hit-syria April 13, 2018 7:49 AM Log in to Reply Will Durant Speak loudly and imply you have a big stick? April 13, 2018 8:27 AM Log in to Reply Andrew C. Pope I’m going to get hosed for this, but here goes: Obama made the right call in not attacking Syria after they crossed the “red line” re: chemical weapons. (This is a position that is shared by Netanyahu, btw, before you fully jump on me as a pearl-clutching dove). Doing so would have needlessly escalated the conflict in Syria into an all-out quagmire and placed American troops into another Middle Eastern conflict with no good exit options and no clear definition of “victory.” While it’s easy to use hindsight to criticize the chemical weapons deal Obama ultimately brokered with Putin, the move kept us out of another needless war. There is no good plan in Syria… something I’ve detailed here a number of times. By virtue of Russia’s veto on the UNSC, there’s no way to coordinate UN efforts against the Assad regime. By virtue of the military assistance Russia has provided to Assad and the nature of the revolution itself, there isn’t one clearly defined rebel group with a chance of actually overthrowing Assad, even with US/UK/French support. Airstrikes run the risk of exacerbating tensions between the US and Russia, since Russian air support is working closely with Assad’s air forces and would be at any facility the US would seek to blow up (it’s why we tipped Russia off to the last bombing, lest we accidentally kill some member of the Russian air force). At the same time, you can’t simply ignore the wholesale slaughter of women and children through chemical weapons. This isn’t going to end well for anyone and I’d be just as pessimistic about the outcome if Obama, Clinton, Romney, or Rubio was in office. April 13, 2018 9:23 AM Log in to Reply bethebalance I think the U.S. could be very well-served with an established physical presence in Syria, even if territory is formally occupied- because there is so much potential good it could do there- keep a close check on the Syrian regime, keep ISIS and others from building power, protect some Kurds, be able to interrupt links between Iran and Hezbollah, etc. I think all this outweighs costs and risks because of the great potential to – if nothing else- gain a new level of protection against terrorism. We got our toes in the water, but have an opportunity to step up and lead. April 13, 2018 1:15 PM Log in to Reply Andrew C. Pope 1) Who is going to authorize our presence in Syria? That’s not covered under the current AUMF, so you’d need Congressional approval. 2) Is Assad just going to magically consent to the United States maintaining military presence in his territory? 3) Speaking as someone with experience in the field… military occupations do more to create terrorism than they do to protect against it. The only thing we’d gain would be a third prolonged military engagement in a Middle Eastern country with no viable exit strategy. April 13, 2018 1:58 PM Log in to Reply bethebalance Occupation by its nature doesn’t require consent. There’s just a void that is going to get filled one way or the other, so why not take charge, take space, and manage? It’s admittedly optimistic, but I think occupation can be done in a way that leads by its example, and while nation-building is costly, there could be collaborative support from other nations to help institute democratic self-determination within the territory. April 13, 2018 7:32 PM Will Durant NYT book review on Comey’s A HIGHER LOYALTY, Truth, Lies, and Leadership: https://www.nytimes.com/2018/04/12/books/review/james-comey-a-higher-loyalty.html In his absorbing new book, “A Higher Loyalty,” the former F.B.I. director James B. Comey calls the Trump presidency a “forest fire” that is doing serious damage to the country’s norms and traditions. “This president is unethical, and untethered to truth and institutional values,” Comey writes. “His leadership is transactional, ego driven and about personal loyalty.” April 13, 2018 8:40 AM Log in to Reply chamblee54 Last night, I received a *survey* on the phone from “victory processing”. They asked me who I was likely to vote for in the Republican primary. Then the robovoice read a biographic sketch of Clay Tippins, one of candidates. I had never heard of Mr. Tippins before this robocall. The robovoice then asked me if the Tippins talk was persuasive, and asked, one more time, who I was likely to vote for in the Republican primary. This is probably the worst robocall ever. April 13, 2018 8:56 AM Log in to Reply Andrew C. Pope Clay Tippins’ wife has never even heard of Clay Tippins. April 13, 2018 9:11 AM Log in to Reply Andrew C. Pope Another maggot goes down! http://www.fox2detroit.com/news/local-news/black-teen-misses-bus-gets-shot-at-after-asking-for-directions-in-rochester-hills Noway, am I doing this right? I’m supposed to post links about a teenager getting shot at for asking his neighbors for directions after missing the school bus, right? I should be celebrating that this kid – whose dad is currently deployed to Syria – nearly got murdered by a law-abiding, gun-wielding homeowner? April 13, 2018 10:57 AM Log in to Reply Dave Bearse Taking a pot shot or two at kids hasn’t seemed to have hurt Tex McIver. April 13, 2018 11:04 AM Log in to Reply Noway2016 No, no, no…it’s like this: Homeowner protects family WITH his gun FROM robbing maggot!! https://www.google.com/amp/www.statesville.com/news/i-would-have-taken-the-shot-iredell-man-holds-would/article_9bb99316-3db6-11e8-b1c7-ebc49b8ebfa6.amp.html April 13, 2018 11:57 AM Log in to Reply Andrew C. Pope Oh, so I should only celebrate if the guy hits his target? April 13, 2018 12:14 PM Log in to Reply Noway2016 No, only if the maggot has engaged in criminal-threatening behaviir and deserves to have been shot. April 13, 2018 1:21 PM Log in to Reply Andrew C. Pope Absent a conviction by a jury, how are we to know that someone is engaged in criminal behavior? It sounds like the young man in your story was under the influence of drugs/alcohol, which would negate any “intent” to commit a burglary or robbery. Intent is a necessary element of those crimes. Are you saying that we should allow gun owners the ability to determine guilt/innocence in the heat of the moment and administer the death penalty for a crime as simple as misdemeanor trespass? Again, what’s the difference between the guy in your story and the guy who shot at a kid that was just trying to ask directions to school? That’s a serious question, I really want to know what you think the difference is other than hindsight. April 13, 2018 1:54 PM Noway2016 If the drug addled maggot is breaking in the home and uou have fear of your life or your family members, you aren’t gonna stop and give said maggot a drug test in the “heat of the noment” , as you whiningly utter. Your gonna shoot the piece of sh-t. You know, you’re sounding surprisingly like Bernie Shaw who asked Dukakis if he wouldn’t shoot someone who was trying to rape Kitty. April 13, 2018 2:26 PM Log in to Reply Noway2016 You know, Drew, show your family members this very question. Tell your family you’d take no offensive action to protect them if someone was trying to break into y’alls house because you had no definitive knowledge of his “intent”. You are a blithering idiot. April 13, 2018 2:37 PM Log in to Reply Andrew C. Pope He’s not trying to break into anything, the guy doesn’t have the requisite intent necessary to commit the crime of burglary. You really want to kill a guy because he was high? The 14-year-old kid in my story knocked on a neighbor’s door to ask directions to school. The homeowner thought that he was getting robbed. If his shot connected and that kid died, the only person relaying the story to the police would have been the homeowner and you would have been gleefully posting about another “maggot” getting his comeuppance. So it appears to me, that your reaction to these stories is directly dependent upon the narrative provided by the shooter, as the “maggot” is rarely around to tell their version of events. Tell your family you’d take no offensive action to protect them if someone was trying to break into y’alls house because you had no definitive knowledge of his “intent”. I never said that. I asked the question because I’m legitimately curious where you draw the line between “this guy was justified” and “this guy wasn’t justified.” It’s pretty clear from your response that you don’t actually give it any thought, it’s just a visceral response. Celebrate the shooting of innocent kids to own the libz! April 13, 2018 3:19 PM Log in to Reply Noway2016 Are you still talking about the school kid asking for directions. I am not. I’m talking about a person trying to break into your home. You have no knowledge of his state of mind. You just see his actions of forceably trying to enter your home. Your “viceral” reaction, hopefully, is to do everything in your power to protect your family. If part of that reaction is not, repeat not, to consider the use of deadly force to protect your family, please let your family know. Today. Now. April 13, 2018 4:12 PM Andrew C. Pope Deadly force should only be used when threatened with imminent risk of death or serious bodily injury. Nothing about a drugged out guy jiggling a door knob constitutes an imminent risk of death. Nothing about a kid just standing on my front porch constitutes an imminent risk of serious bodily harm. I take the responsibility of owning a firearm seriously and don’t use stories of people getting shot in lieu of Viagra. I wish you would do the same. I’m still talking about the kid asking for directions because you haven’t answered my question: was the homeowner justified in shooting at him? If not, why not? Would he have been justified if we never heard the kid’s version of events, just the homeowner’s narrative of “he was trying to rob us?” April 13, 2018 4:23 PM Noway2016 To make this easy on you. Pretend I’m Bernie and you’re Dukakis. Paraphrasing: “Andrew, if a person broke into your home and was brutalizing and threatening to rape and kill Mrs. Pope, and you had access to your guns, would you use deadly force to stop him?” Drew:________________________________________ April 13, 2018 4:24 PM Noway2016 Of course the guy wasn’t justified in shooting at the directions asking kid. April 13, 2018 4:25 PM Andrew C. Pope You clearly don’t read anything that I write. Go back through my posts, you’ll get your answer. As for the kid asking directions. Let’s say you only heard the homeowner’s version. Is the homeowner justified now? Or is it maybe important to consider all sides and all the information before passing judgement and treating a shooting like something to be happy about. April 13, 2018 4:34 PM Dave Bearse The City of Atlanta paid a particular law firm $89,000 for Open Records legal advice in 2017. The GBI is investigating the City with respect to an ORR in 2017. The city has engaged the same law firm for assistance with respect to the GBI investigation, including $855 and $920 an hour attorneys. The good news is the firm is providing the city a 10% discount, so the city will only pay $770 and $828 an hour. The engagement of the law firm was negotiated by a city employee that may be a target of the GBI investigation. It’s co-incidental that Mayor Reed is a former partner of the firm, that the lead attorney that will be billing $770 an hour represented Reed in a private legal matter, represented the Reed campaign in the 2009 runoff election, served as chairman and treasurer for political committees associated with Reed, and is the city’s lobbyist. Nothing to be concerned about there, Mayor Bottoms. https://www.myajc.com/news/local-govt–politics/atlanta-hires-pricey-outside-lawyers-for-public-records-case/PVonjIQqw8EarhxmEwFLvM/ April 13, 2018 11:03 AM Log in to Reply Andrew C. Pope Eh, this isn’t that big of a deal. Highsmith is a good attorney and the folks at Holland & Knight are better situated to handle the unique issues of the GBI investigation when compared to folks working in-house for the City. #lawyersdefendinglawyers April 13, 2018 11:12 AM Log in to Reply Dave Bearse The comment wasn’t intended to disparage Mr. Highsmith. It’s my opinion that ” her own woman” Mayor Bottoms’ administration out of the gate followed one mistake with another in selecting Holland & Knight to represent the city in the GBI investigation. I’m not at all saying that selecting Holland & Knight doesn’t pass the smell test, but appearances matter. The Bottoms administration took two months (when it likely would only take only two hours) to provide former Mayor Reed’s city credit card statements to the AJC (co-incidentally just after Reed had reimbursed the city for some expenses). Then it engaged an ostensible confidant of Mayor Reed to represent the city in a GBI investigation involving the Reed administration stonewalling a different records request (with the GBI investigation probably going to extend into the Bottoms administration). Neither stonewalling on Reed’s credit card statements or selection of Holland & Knight may have had Bottoms personal attention. It being only three months in, the comment isn’t meant to be a condemnation of her either, but this is her watch now. April 14, 2018 4:24 PM Log in to Reply Andrew C. Pope #MAGA https://deadspin.com/boxer-wears-anti-immigrant-trunks-gets-soundly-beaten-1825241614 April 13, 2018 1:18 PM Log in to Reply Ellynn This is well written https://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/students-are-being-prepared-jobs-no-longer-exist-here-s-n865096 April 13, 2018 2:41 PM Log in to Reply Andrew C. Pope So the former RNC finance chair is facing multiple allegations of sexual assault and rape. The RNC deputy finance chair paid hush money to a mistress and former Playboy model after he got her pregnant. That hush money payment was facilitated by another RNC deputy finance chair and the personal attorney to the President of the United States. The President has also used this attorney to facilitate hush money payments to a porn star with whom the President had an affair, a Playboy model with whom the President had an affair, and a housekeeper with whom the President had a love child. The Republican Party is really killing it lately. April 13, 2018 4:43 PM Log in to Reply Andrew C. Pope Forgot to add, the RNC deputy finance chair facilitating all those hush money payments is currently under criminal investigation. April 13, 2018 4:50 PM Log in to Reply Noway2016 Regarding your Eric Prince comment, he was already living overseas to avoid another indictment of of some sorts. April 13, 2018 5:01 PM Log in to Reply Andrew C. Pope Yeah, dude is real class act. Was (still is) under federal investigation for money laundering and attempting to broker military services to foreign governments. He’s also got purported ties to Chinese intelligence who helped set up an account for his mercenary operations in Lybia through the Bank of China. This in addition to the long string of civilian deaths and potential war crimes linked to Blackwater’s activities in Iraq and Afghanistan. His defense counsel in that investigation: Victoria Toensing. Toensing is Scooter Libby’s defense attorney, wife and law partner of Joe diGenova, and informal member of Trump’s legal team. April 13, 2018 5:08 PM Log in to Reply Ellynn Lets not forget rince had an affair and a child with his house keeper while his wife was in the house slowly dying of cancer. April 13, 2018 6:15 PM bethebalance So that’s why Scooter Libby was pardoned now? Joe diGenova made the request back when he was interviewing for counsel job? Because I was looking for the why now. April 13, 2018 7:26 PM Noway2016 Well, Balance, they say Justice Delayed is Justice Denied. Time to fix that. The most pure of motives. MAGA! April 13, 2018 7:31 PM bethebalance Sometimes justice is a dish best served delayed. April 13, 2018 7:39 PM Noway2016 IG said McCabe lied 3 times under oath. Indictment follows forthwith. Lol! April 13, 2018 4:53 PM Log in to Reply Ellynn To paraphrase a prior comment made this morning “Accused of process crime. Big whoop!” (MaCabe still has a in house appeal of the IG report I believe). Worse case he is convicted and the next Democratic president gives him a “scooter” pardon. April 13, 2018 7:41 PM Log in to Reply Noway2016 The Great Man taking a stand against bad guys in Syria! But, according to Lurch, Russia had seized all those chemical weapons? I’m shocked at that misinformation! Yall wanna see how the Ninnies would have handled this situation? Behold… http://foreignpolicy.com/2015/01/16/awkward_john_kerry_brings_james_taylor_to_paris_sings_youve_got_a_friend/ April 14, 2018 8:40 AM Log in to Reply Andrew C. Pope Is he “taking a stand against bad guys” or simply trying to shift the narrative after DOJ announced that Trump’s personal lawyer had been under criminal investigation for months and that DOJ had obtained recordings Cohen had made of all his conversations. Maybe it was the second Cohen-related report: that Mueller has evidence corroborating the Steele Dossier’s allegation that Cohen traveled to Prague in summer 2016 for a meeting with Russian officials regarding coordinating efforts against Hillary Clinton. If my “fixer” was about to go to prison, I’d want to bomb the heck out of some brown people, too. April 14, 2018 2:34 PM Log in to Reply Noway2016 Like Clinton’s “aspirin factory?” April 14, 2018 3:44 PM Log in to Reply Andrew C. Pope If Trump really cared about the people of Syria, then we would have admitted more than 11 Syrian refugees this year. I’ll believe the argument this isn’t a blatant case of “wag the dog” when I see a well-articulated strategy on what our goals are in Syria. April 14, 2018 4:00 PM Log in to Reply Noway2016 Drew, please tell me you wore gloves and a mask! http://dailycaller.com/2018/04/13/uva-thomas-jefferson-statue-vandalized/ April 14, 2018 10:37 AM Log in to Reply Dave Bearse Remember when serial liar, and man of general low character and intelligence had tweeted these things in late August 2013 from the peanut gallery prior to the GOP fully embraced those traits: “No, dopey, I would not go into Syria, but if I did it would be by surprise and not blurted all over the media like fools.” “If Obama attacks Syria and innocent civilians are hurt and killed, he and the U.S. will look very bad!” “What will we get for bombing Syria besides more debt and a possible long term conflict? Obama needs Congressional approval.” April 14, 2018 3:38 PM Log in to Reply Noway2016 Weenies apoplectic! Lol!! Perfectly legal action. My kinda gal!! Real American Sweetheart!! https://www.google.com/amp/www.foxnews.com/us/2018/04/10/tennessee-college-senior-defends-posing-for-graduation-picture-with-gun-in-her-waistband.amp.html April 16, 2018 7:16 AM Log in to Reply Andrew C. Pope Lol. She works for the same group that wore diapers in public to “own the Libs.” I guess the new thing is “shooting ourselves in the thigh to own the Libs.” April 16, 2018 7:48 AM Log in to Reply Noway2016 Lol! Predictable as a starving carp! Haters Gonna-Gotta Hate…So, Sniv, turned in your guns yet? You know, in support of Hogg. April 16, 2018 8:00 AM Log in to Reply Andrew C. Pope Given your love and support for Roy Moore, I find it a little creepy that you’re so obsessed with the comings and goings of a 17-year old kid. By the way, you’re up to $280. April 16, 2018 8:10 AM Log in to Reply Noway2016 Your personal contributions have already paid for over half of an abortion of a minority baby. You feeling good about yourself? April 16, 2018 8:14 AM Add a Comment Cancel replyYou must be logged in to post a comment.