Drudge Retort: The Other Side of the News
Friday, January 26, 2018

Jonathan Chait: [I]f hostile actors are allowed to peek into a vast trove of their target's private thoughts, they can usually find something that sounds shady. This is exactly the method Republicans are now using to discredit the FBI. ... When they hacked Democratic emails, Russians were counting on a gullible mainstream news media and an unprincipled right-wing echo chamber to transform a bunch of trivial internal communications into a pseudo-scandal by wrenching them from all context. It is ironic that the current Republican effort to dismiss the very real scandal that arose from those hacks is using the exact same method.

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Note that a Strzok text expressing his view that Trump would not be charged over Russia became evidence of a nefarious plot against Trump, and another Strzok text expressing a view that Clinton would not be charged over the emails became evidence of a nefarious plot to help Clinton. If Strzok had expressed a belief that Clinton or Trump were guilty, those messages would become scandals, too. This is the way the game works. When you begin with a suspicious of nefarious intent, a captured expression of candid thought can be turned into devastating evidence.

#1 | Posted by Gal_Tuesday at 2018-01-25 12:12 PM | Reply

Let's see all the texts between the Benghazi investigation folks, and see if there were any partisans among them, shall we?

#2 | Posted by Danforth at 2018-01-25 12:15 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 6

#2 I want to see the text messages and emails between Giuliani and the current FBI agents who tipped him off about Weiner's laptop.

Danforth, you've hit upon what the GOP is really saying: Hillary can't be investigated by anyone they accuse of being a Democratic partisan hack, and Trump can only be investigated by people they deem as Republican partisan hacks, preferably ones who have taken a loyalty oath to him.

#3 | Posted by Gal_Tuesday at 2018-01-25 12:29 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 5

Here's an informative piece on this issue:

www.nationalreview.com

#4 | Posted by JeffJ at 2018-01-25 02:13 PM | Reply | Funny: 1

This why we need to educate our nation, first that we ARE under attack by hostile adversaries, and second, how to deal effectively with cyber warfare and it's various forms, most of which we have still done nothing about. But, this needs to come from the top.

Because right now we are losing this battle badly as chaos and division grips us.

And the right wing echo chamber appears to be our weakest link at this stage of the battle.

#5 | Posted by donnerboy at 2018-01-25 02:15 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 2

Now the truth starts to come out about the "secret society" comment:

John Schindler‏
@20committee
#FBI anti-Trump #SecretSociety was SO SECRET that Bureau people texted about it on open UNCLAS phones.

That's not how any of this works.

Manu Raju‏ @mkraju
"Sources familiar with the text exchange on the ‘secret society' say the calendars Page mentioned are a reference to gag gift of Putin-themed calendars that Strzok purchased for those working on the early stage of the Russia investigation," @jeremyherb and @LauraAJarrett report

Manu Raju‏ @mkraju
Ron Johnson, who raised alarms this week about the FBI agents' "secret society" text, just told me: "It's a real possibility" the text was written in jest.

#6 | Posted by Gal_Tuesday at 2018-01-25 02:42 PM | Reply

"Ron Johnson, who raised alarms this week about the FBI agents' "secret society" text, just told me: "It's a real possibility" the text was written in jest."

Deplorable.

#7 | Posted by Danforth at 2018-01-25 02:57 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 2

#4 From Jeff's link:

The Republican script is that this was "Watergate on steroids." The Democratic counter is that the memo is a one-sided partisan summary that takes investigative actions out of context in order to make mountains out of molehills. Unless and until we can read the document, we cannot make a judgment about which of these assessments is true, or at least closer to the truth. We can, however, make some observations about the controversy.

The truth is we won't be any closer to the truth if the memo is released because the memo is based on classified info that no one will be able to cite to refute the memo's cherry-picked claims. Why should Devin Nunes, who was removed from the Russian investigation, be trusted to put forth a memo on the very subject he had to be recused from due to his conflict of interest (he was on Trump's transition team) and to his earlier shenanigans (the midnight run of Devin Nunes as some like to call it)? He shouldn't be trusted, and Paul Ryan should tell him to cease and desist. He won't, of course, and so:

"It's looking more and more like there is a coordinated GOP effort to discredit the Trump-Russia investigation"

www.washingtonpost.com

#8 | Posted by Gal_Tuesday at 2018-01-25 03:03 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 6

The truth is we won't be any closer to the truth if the memo is released because the memo is based on classified info

That problem is addressed in the link I provided.

#9 | Posted by JeffJ at 2018-01-25 03:12 PM | Reply

"It's looking more and more like there is a coordinated GOP effort to discredit the Trump-Russia investigation"

If the memo isn't that, The National Review doesn't advance much in the way of an alternate narrative.

Apparently it's acceptable for the GOP to claim the FBI is systemically corrupt these days.

That's quite the game changer.

The Executive Branch and the Congressional Branch are intent on discrediting the Judicial Branch.

And JeffJ cheers it on.

#10 | Posted by snoofy at 2018-01-25 03:15 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

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The Executive Branch and the Congressional Branch are intent on discrediting the Judicial Branch.

The Judicial branch isn't even involved in this.

#11 | Posted by JeffJ at 2018-01-25 03:16 PM | Reply | Funny: 1 | Newsworthy 2

More from Jeff's link:

"There are extremely good reasons for Nunes and his staff to create a summary"

No, there are none. Nunes was forced to recuse himself from the Russia investigation.

"That problem is addressed in the link I provided."

The GOP didn't even vote to let all members of the House read the intel behind the memo, so it's not likely they would take any steps to clarify what's behind it to the public at large, after the fact. So far, they won't even show the memo to the Senate Intel Committee or to the FBI or DOJ. With Nunes and his staff behind the memo, and until it can be reviewed by others in the govt, the memo should be viewed as nothing more than a GOP-generated and Russian-sanctioned hit piece on Mueller's Russian investigation.

#12 | Posted by Gal_Tuesday at 2018-01-25 03:28 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 4

"The Judicial branch isn't even involved in this."

I though FISA warrants got approved by the judicial branch? Anyway, the DOJ has warned Nunes not to release the memo without their review, saying it would be reckless to do so.

#13 | Posted by Gal_Tuesday at 2018-01-25 03:34 PM | Reply

Congress is required by law to provide a memo of this nature the the Executive branch 5 days prior to making it public. At that time the FBI and DOJ would see the memo. Democrats on this committee have seen the memo and have the power to issue one of their own adding clarity to items that appear to be taken out of context, etc.

Also, this has nothing to do with Mueller's investigation. It's completely different.

#14 | Posted by JeffJ at 2018-01-25 03:36 PM | Reply

I though FISA warrants got approved by the judicial branch?

It does. It's not being asserted that the FISA judges did anything wrong. That's why I said the judicial branch isn't involved in this.

#15 | Posted by JeffJ at 2018-01-25 03:37 PM | Reply

"Also, this has nothing to do with Mueller's investigation. It's completely different."

Of course it has to do with the Mueller investigation. He took over from Comey and is looking into and potentially building on Comey's initial findings.

#16 | Posted by Gal_Tuesday at 2018-01-25 03:55 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

And if Comey's initial findings/methods are suspect, then whole case is called into question.

#17 | Posted by Gal_Tuesday at 2018-01-25 04:01 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

The GOP's attack on the FBI only goes to prove that they'll dismantle anything necessary to maintain power, whether it be the preeminent law enforcement agency or the sanctity of our Constitutional government through their no holds barred propping up of Trump.

As with so much else they've espoused far too loudly, their patriotism is hollow and self serving.

#18 | Posted by jpw at 2018-01-25 04:01 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 6

Also, this has nothing to do with Mueller's investigation. It's completely different.

LOL sure.

#19 | Posted by jpw at 2018-01-25 04:05 PM | Reply

And if Comey's initial findings/methods are suspect, then whole case is called into question.

It's not even that complicated. Right wing talk radio was already spinning a guilt by association thread this morning regarding Mueller. He was once head of the FBI and seeing how "corrupt" it is now they can logically conclude that Mueller is too and is, therefore, unfit to lead the investigation.

They're going for a clean sweep of the entire thing, the people, the findings, all of it, even if it means destroying the reputation of the FBI.

#20 | Posted by jpw at 2018-01-25 04:09 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 3

Of course it has to do with the Mueller investigation. He took over from Comey and is looking into and potentially building on Comey's initial findings.

#16 | POSTED BY GAL_TUESDAY

This investigation is about whether or not the Obama FBI and DOJ acted inappropriately or illegally with their spying on the Trump campaign. That's what this is about. It's about a period of time that occurred before Mueller was tapped to investigate Russia meddling in our elections.

Right-wing pundit hacks may try to blur the lines, but it doesn't change reality.

#21 | Posted by JeffJ at 2018-01-25 04:48 PM | Reply | Funny: 1 | Newsworthy 1

"Democrats on this committee have seen the memo and have the power to issue one of their own adding clarity to items that appear to be taken out of context, etc."

As if you could unring a bell.

For example, Vince Foster, anyone? That "stupid bell" is STILL ringing. At least three investigations--at least two of them led by Republicans-- concluded VF committed suicide, and Foster's sister is on record saying the first time she heard, she knew it was a suicide.

If only the Democrats had released a memo of their own....

#22 | Posted by Danforth at 2018-01-25 05:04 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

And if Comey's initial findings/methods are suspect, then whole case is called into question.

#17 | POSTED BY GAL_TUESDAY

Nope. Comey's actions have nothing to do with Mueller.

You may have noticed that elected Republicans have been rather quiet about Mueller. That's because, at least so far, he hasn't done anything to suggest that is investigation is biased or is being handled improperly.

#23 | Posted by JeffJ at 2018-01-25 05:05 PM | Reply | Funny: 1

For example, Vince Foster, anyone? That "stupid bell" is STILL ringing. At least three investigations--at least two of them led by Republicans-- concluded VF committed suicide, and Foster's sister is on record saying the first time she heard, she knew it was a suicide.

If you go back to that thread you'll see that I clarified my Vince Foster comment was a joke.

The serious (I'm not talking about a joke) suggestion that the Clintons had him killed was beyond disgusting. He was a good friend of Hillary and she was undoubtedly devastated when she heard he had died.

#24 | Posted by JeffJ at 2018-01-25 05:07 PM | Reply

"I clarified my Vince Foster comment was a joke."

I wasn't referring to you, really. I'm talking about the dyed-in-the-wool, facts-be-damned Republicans.

#25 | Posted by Danforth at 2018-01-25 05:08 PM | Reply

You quoted me in your post so I thought that your comment was directed at me. No biggie.

#26 | Posted by JeffJ at 2018-01-25 05:10 PM | Reply

Nope. Comey's actions have nothing to do with Mueller.
You may have noticed that elected Republicans have been rather quiet about Mueller. That's because, at least so far, he hasn't done anything to suggest that is investigation is biased or is being handled improperly.

I just saw a clip on MSNBC of Rep. Matt Gaetz (FL) on Fox News saying that the Mueller investigation is a lie "built on a corrupt foundation". I can't find the clip just yet, but I have found clips of him calling the Mueller investigation "a cesspool of corruption".

#27 | Posted by Gal_Tuesday at 2018-01-25 08:07 PM | Reply

I just saw a clip on MSNBC of Rep. Matt Gaetz (FL) on Fox News saying that the Mueller investigation is a lie "built on a corrupt foundation". I can't find the clip just yet, but I have found clips of him calling the Mueller investigation "a cesspool of corruption".

#27 | POSTED BY GAL_TUESDAY

He needs to be ------------ then. That is a horribly irresponsible thing to say.

#28 | Posted by JeffJ at 2018-01-25 08:08 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 2

"He needs to be ------------ then. That is a horribly irresponsible thing to say." - #28 | Posted by JeffJ at 2018-01-25 08:08 PM

He'll get reelected as long as he wants the job.

In other words, he'll suffer zero consequences for what he's said.

Welcome to the gerrymandered Florida.

#29 | Posted by Hans at 2018-01-25 08:29 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

The whole Republican Party are Putin Puppets.

#30 | Posted by aborted_monson at 2018-01-27 04:27 PM | Reply

I wrote a secret memo too. And boy is it explosive. I'd let you read it but it's classified.

It is just as valid as the Nunes memo. I did not read the underlying classified documents either to create the memo.

Just like Nunes.

#31 | Posted by donnerboy at 2018-01-27 06:38 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 2

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