Thursday Open Thread | MSNBC analyst: Robert Mueller already has Donald Trump’s tax returns

Palmer Report

Today we all learned that Special Counsel Robert Mueller had the FBI launch a pre-dawn raid on Paul Manafort’s home in order to seize evidence in Donald Trump’s Russia scandal – while Manafort was asleep in the bedroom. This points to Mueller taking the most aggressive approach possible in the Trump-Russia probe. Now one MSNBC analyst is asserting that Mueller already has Trump’s tax returns.

Matthew Miller, a frequent on-air Justice and Security Analyst on MSNBC, put it this way after the details surfaced of the Manafort raid: “Every sign we’ve seen to date shows Mueller moving very aggressively. Think it’s safe to assume he’s already gotten Trump’s tax returns”. And it’s easy to agree with his assertion. Today’s news, combined with the recent news that Mueller has had a Trump-Russia grand jury underway for weeks and it’s already issuing subpoenas, makes clear that he’s pulling no punches. It also points to another crucial aspect of Mueller’s strategy.

News of the Trump-Russia grand jury didn’t leak out until after the first round of subpoenas had gone out, which was weeks after the grand jury had first been impaneled. The FBI raid on Paul Manafort’s home, which was overseen by Mueller, involved the agents getting as far as Manafort’s bedroom door before waking him up. And so Mueller is quietly taking aggressive action, while also using the element of surprise to catch everyone involved in the Trump-Russia scandal off guard.

This means that these leaks to the media about Robert Mueller’s actions are going to be days or weeks behind what’s playing out under the surface. So based on his aggression, it is in fact safe to assume that Mueller long ago pulled Trump’s tax returns. And based on Mueller’s discretion, it’s equally safe to assume that official confirmation of it won’t leak to the media until after it’s too late for Trump to do anything about it.

About SouthernGirl2

A Native Texan who adores baby kittens, loves horses, rodeos, pomegranates, & collect Eagles. Enjoys politics, games shows, & dancing to all types of music. Loves discussing and learning about different cultures. A Phi Theta Kappa lifetime member with a passion for Social & Civil Justice.
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110 Responses to Thursday Open Thread | MSNBC analyst: Robert Mueller already has Donald Trump’s tax returns

  1. rikyrah says:

    Paul Manafort has dropped his lawyers on Russia, and has new representation.

    • eliihass says:

      “…Add longtime Donald Trump confidant Roger Stone to the inquiring minds who want to know why and how the Trump-friendly National Enquirer came to splash a sordid story headlined “TRUMP ADVISOR SEX SCANDAL—PAUL MANAFORT’S SICK AFFAIR.”

      “It’s very disturbing. I felt very badly for him last night. And of course, I’m trying to figure out the source,” Stone told The Daily Beast on Thursday, the morning after the president’s favorite supermarket tabloid exposed the alleged extramarital shenanigans of Stone’s close friend and former business associate Manafort.

      Stone, who co-founded a powerhouse Washington lobbying firm with Manafort in the 1980s and was instrumental in Trump hiring him for several months to run his presidential campaign last year, is—like Manafort—facing congressional and special counsel scrutiny for his possible role in allegedly colluding with Russian operatives to help elect Trump.

      “On motive—the motive would be what? Antagonize the guy? It makes no sense. Why would he want to do that?” Stone said, responding to widespread speculation in the media that Trump—good friends with top Enquirer executive David Pecker, who has basically put the tabloid at the president’s service—would have suggested or even tacitly approved of the take-down of his former campaign chairman.

      “The president doesn’t do things that aren’t logical and have no motive,” said Stone..
      …Manafort had nothing to do with the Russians and he’s not going to come forward and say that he did and that Trump knew about it—because it never happened.”

      That, of course, is a highly debatable assertion. Manafort, for one thing, was, along with Jared Kushner and Donald Trump Jr., one of the top campaign officials who attended a June 2016 meeting in Trump Tower with a well-connected Russian lawyer who they hoped would provide dirt on Hillary Clinton.

      Several weeks ago as the investigation heated up, Manafort belatedly—and retroactively–filed as a foreign agent, as federal law requires, after acknowledging that his firm had received $17.1 million in payments from the pro-Vladimir Putin party of ousted Ukrainian president Viktor Yanukovych, whom Manafort had advised for a decade.
      Bloomberg News reported on Thursday that Mueller, in his investigation of Russian meddling in the election, has also subpoenaed the global bank records of Manafort and of his various companies and business associates.

      The Enquirer’s Manafort exposé, which was actually published in the tabloid’s print edition eight days ago but went unnoticed by the media-political complex until it was posted online on Wednesday, claimed that “the career lobbyist has been rocked by a sleazy sex scandal in which he was caught cheating on his wife—with a hottie younger than his own daughters!”

      The story quoted an alleged “White House insider” as saying: “President Trump has been focused on draining the swamp in Washington, D.C…Meanwhile, one of his trusted advisers was bedding another woman behind his wife’s back.”

      Claiming to have seen “hacked and leaked” text messages from the 68-year-old Manafort’s 32-year-old daughter Andrea, the story quoted her: “He’s been taking this W—RE on trips instead of my mom,” and “He has taken her on his playlist of places…As in like the restaurant he celebrates my mom’s bday every year w(sic) her. The place they went on their honeymoon too. All their restaurants they go to when they go to Paris for decades.”
      Stone, who frequently appears on Trump-supporting conspiracy theorist Alex Jones’s InfoWars radio program, told The Daily Beast that after he read the Enquirer story around 7 o’clock last night, he began phoning contacts in Trump World in an attempt to learn the motivations behind the hit job, but still hasn’t spoken to Manafort.

      “First of all I don’t know if anything in the story is true—I assume it is because of the quotations from his daughters,” Stone said. “I only began making inquiries about this late last night…I know my way around the swamp. I have have made some calls and I imagine I’ll get to the bottom of it.”

      Trump’s influence with the Enquirer, and especially with Pecker, who broke with the tabloid’s non-political tradition and formally endorsed his presidential candidacy last year, has been well-documented.

      While Trump is said to have planted stories in the tabloid over a decades’-long relationship, and frequently touted the Enquirer’s attacks on his opponents during last year’s primary campaign—notably hit pieces claiming Texas Sen. Ted Cruz had affairs with female staffers and that his Cuban-born father had been somehow connected to the assassination of John F. Kennedy—Stone said he’s baffled that Pecker would publish a squalid attack on Manafort’s personal life.

      “There’s another guy who has no motives,” he said about Pecker. “Pecker’s coverage on the whole Russian collusion and delusion and its falsity has been complete.”


      • eliihass says:

        “…Roger Stone, a longtime confidant and adviser to Trump whose dealings with the New York real estate mogul stretch back almost 40 years, has written a new book that gives fascinating insights into the mindset of the man now nominally leading the free world.

        The Making of the President is billed as an in-depth examination of how Trump, whom Stone calls the “greatest salesman in US history”, came to defeat Hillary Clinton in 2016. Stone played a hand in that – he was there at the birth of Trump’s campaign as a senior adviser but was forced out, having clashed with other key members of the team.

        Among the revelations in the book is the fact that Trump quietly trademarked his catchphrase “Make America great again” within days of Mitt Romney being defeated by Barack Obama in the 2012 race. But its most enlightening quality is what it tells us about the contorted, volatile psyche of its author – and by extension, of his friend Donald Trump.

        It’s fair to connect the mindsets of the duo because Trump and Stone have for so long had so much in common: they both have an obsession with presidential politics that goes back to Richard Nixon, for whom Stone worked in the White House; they both have an intense fondness for conspiracy theories, most notably the “birther” lie that Barack Obama was born in Africa, of which they were leading proponents; and they both, as we shall see, have a very loose attachment to the truth.

        In an interview with the Guardian around the publication of his book, Stone gave a peek into his thinking that in turn goes some way to explain the baffling worldview of the 45th president of the United States. The lobbyist revealed the dystopian universe he inhabits in which people can choose the truth to which they subscribe.

        Stone began by discussing how Trump courted a plethora of new rightwing websites such as Breitbart and Infowars during the election campaign as a way of bypassing mainstream media and reaching out to a previously untapped audience of disgruntled white working-class voters. “This is the election in which the tipping point was reached,” he said. “The pendulum swung away from the mainstream media, which lost their hammer-lock monopoly on the dissemination of political information.”

        He went on: “Now you have a whole constituency of alternative media out there for Trump to appeal to. He very skillfully worked with that alternative media.”

        “At least people now have a choice. They can believe one outlet or the other outlet. Under the old system, they are only fed one truth, there was no alternative presented. When you have NBC, ABC and CBS moving in lockstep, then if they said something didn’t happen, it didn’t happen.”

        So there can be a choice over the truth? Yes, he said.

        Stone’s own complicated relationship with the truth stretches back decades, running parallel to his friendship with Trump. In the 1970s he was part of a group of advisers around Nixon, his lifetime hero whose face he has tattooed across his back. The Nixon acolytes called themselves “ratfuckers” in a self-congratulatory reference to their proficiency at the darker arts of politics.

        Stone said he had never applied that label to himself, implying that he dislikes the expression. “Ted Cruz called me that, but that motherfucker should just look in the mirror. If you want to see sleaze, just look in the mirror.”

        He also bridles slightly at the mention of the other phrase that is frequently applied to him – dirty trickster. “One man’s dirty trick is another man’s civic participation,” he quips, before launching into a defense of his notion of politics as a tough, violent affair.

        But it would be hard not to conclude that “dirty trickster” is a fair label to pin on a man who firmed up his reputation for hardball tactics working on Ronald Reagan’s presidential campaigns, had a hand in the prostitute-laden downfall of the former New York governor Eliot Spitzer and consulted for a number of controversial foreign clients, including the president of the Philippines, Ferdinand Marcos. Toward the end of the 2016 presidential race, he launched an initiative to protect against voter fraud that was widely denounced as a form of voter intimidation. In his book, he also boasts of having conceived the idea of campaign T-shirts to be sold at Trump rallies modeled on the legendary Obama “Hope” design, with the image of Obama replaced by Bill Clinton and the word “Hope” exchanged for “Rape”.

        When he issues the Guardian with a resounding denial that he had anything to do with links with the Russian government at a time when the Kremlin was busy meddling in the election race in favor of Trump, is that true, his choice of truth, or a convenient spin? Or all three? How are we meant to distinguish between them, having been drawn into his dystopian world of competing realities?

        He goes on, warming to his theme: “Breitbart News is doing better investigative reporting than the Washington Post. Just because a news outlet has a blue-chip name does not mean they are still doing exemplary journalism.”

        The Washington Post, of course, is the paper that brought down his hero by exposing Watergate. Now it is at the forefront of exposing the Russian contacts, conflicts of interest and taxpayer expense of Trump’s White House.

        But there’s a difference between the Post of the 1970s and the Post of today, at least in the strange worldview of Roger Stone and Donald Trump. There was no resisting the truth of Watergate. But this time around, truth is a matter of choice…”

  2. rikyrah says:

    Nina Turner’s Inferior Donuts

    Her tone-deaf remarks are an insult to the United States’ legacy of civil disobedience

    Jeremy Fassler

    Perhaps you’ve heard of Nina Turner, one of the few notable women of color to endorse Bernie Sanders, and one of the only women in politics the alt-left doesn’t have a problem with. Find something in Kamala Harris’s record that they don’t like and they’ll gleefully try to tear her down, but they’ll never say a bad word about Turner, as in this fawning profile by resident Paste Magazine BernieBro Shane Ryan.

    Turner is a former Ohio State Senator who was appointed to her position in 2008 and won re-election running unopposed in her district. In 2014, she ran for Ohio’s Secretary of State, the first time her name was on a statewide ballot, and she lost by twenty-five points.

    Until mid-2015, she supported Hillary Clinton, but then switched to
    Bernie Sanders and became one of his most outspoken supporters. From there, she burned a lot of bridges with the Democratic Party at large: she was not allowed to speak at the Democratic National Convention (most likely for not endorsing Hillary Clinton), then considered running on the Green Party ticket with Jill Stein. Now she’s the head of Our Revolution, the far left SuperPAC that she took over from Jeff “Comic Book Guy from The Simpsons” Weaver (“Worst – SuperPAC head – ever!”), and has actually said she would endorse Republicans and third-party candidates if they support single payer.

    Drunk on a thin ration of power, Turner symbolizes the worst aspects of the Bernie Sanders movement, harboring an attitudes towards the “establishment” base of the party that is alarmingly similar to the DudeBros of Chapo Traphouse, who infamously demanded on their podcast that the Party “bend the knee” to them. In an interview with The Nation, when asked how she would seek help from the DNC, DCCC and other fundraising bases
    affiliated with the party, she replied, “I don’t think it is our job nor
    our obligation to fit in. It’s their job to fit in with us.” This may
    appeal to the Bernie-or-Bust crowd, but it is extremely alienating to
    the rest of us who understand that the ideological divide within the
    Democratic Party is not Democrats vs. Democrats, but Democrats and fringe crazies who thrive on any and all attention, even when it is overwhelmingly negative.

  3. rikyrah says:

    Watched Hardball, and the look on Bill Richardson’s face was priceless. He’s been dealing with North Korea for years, and is horrified by Dolt45.

  4. rikyrah says:

    Dear Mr. Mueller,

    Please hurry up. We don’t want to witness another Hiroshima or Nagasaki.



  5. Liza says:

    Truth simply stated…

    If this is not a time for regime change in the United States, when might that time be? Real question.— Kiese (@KieseLaymon) August 10, 2017


    • Liza says:

      I never imagined Trump would be elected.

      I never imagined things could get this bad.

      I know it will get worse, but I can’t imagine that either.

    • majiir says:

      Excellent move! Lord added nothing to any discussion except hot air in support of Trump. Dude always displayed a total absence of critical thinking skills. On CNN, he was like a wind-up doll that was only capable of repeating the same old Trump-supporting BS.

  6. Ametia says:

    Scene from Last week’s Queen Sugar

  7. rikyrah says:

    Trump barks orders, expects McConnell to do the real work
    08/10/17 04:15 PM
    By Steve Benen

    Donald Trump and his allies have expressed quite a bit of dissatisfaction this week with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), and this afternoon, the president sent his third shot across his ostensible ally’s bow.

    “Mitch, get back to work and put Repeal & Replace, Tax Reform & Cuts and a great Infrastructure Bill on my desk for signing. You can do it!”

    It’s hard not to appreciate the irony of the circumstances: Trump is in the early stages of a 17-day vacation at a golf resort he owns in New Jersey. For the president to urge McConnell to “get back to work,” while Trump continues his lengthy break, is kind of hilarious.

    Regardless, the president soon after made related comments to the press.

    When asked if McConnell should step down from his leadership position, Trump told reporters, “If he doesn’t get repeal and replace done, and he doesn’t get taxes done and…infrastructure…then you can ask me that question.”

    Whether he understands this or not, this tells us quite a bit about how Trump views his role in governing.

    Even as a candidate, Trump made clear he didn’t intend to do much real work. In May 2016, his then-campaign chairman, Paul Manafort, said there were parts of the presidency Trump “doesn’t want to do.” He added that Trump “sees himself more as the chairman of the board, than even the CEO, let alone the COO.”

    As we discussed at the time, it seemed obvious that Trump wasn’t especially interested in rolling up his sleeves and doing actual, mundane, unglamorous work. He’s the kind of guy who hires others to do heavy lifting.

    And nearly seven months into his term, the president still thinks this way. As Trump put it this afternoon, he wants to sign legislation on health care, taxes, and infrastructure, but he doesn’t expect to play any meaningful role in the policymaking process. Trump much prefers to simply place an order, and wait for underlings to bring him what he requested.

    Note, for example, that in today’s tweet, the president didn’t tell Mitch McConnell, “We can do it”; he said, “You can do it.”

    This reflects a familiar and unmistakable dynamic: a boss telling a subordinate what to do, while the boss wraps up the back nine at the country club he owns.

    The problem, of course, is that members of Congress aren’t Trump’s employees, and the legislative branch doesn’t exist to satisfy the whims of the executive. Indeed, Mitch McConnell said this week that the president doesn’t seem to appreciate the “reality” of the legislative process, the Trump today is effectively proving the Senate leader’s point.

  8. rikyrah says:

    shauna @goldengateblond
    If the photo of an iconic symbol of freedom feels like an affront to your sensibilities, maybe the problem isn’t the photo. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

  9. Liza says:


    Trumpvangelicals say God authorizes the fire & fury POTUS threatens. Where were these extremists radicalized?— Rev. Dr. Barber (@RevDrBarber) August 10, 2017


  10. Did you hear his statement on the opioid crisis? “If they don’t start, they won’t have a problem”. Such lunacy. He has no clue about what to do….

  11. What is this? Do he think he’s speaking to kids? My God! The man is a buffoon.

  12. Black👏🏼 people👏🏼are 👏🏼so 👏🏼creative👏🏼‼️

  13. rikyrah says:

    I thought it was interesting what Heilemann said about Bobby Three Sticks – that he’s a Prosecutor’s Prosecutor, and everything else should be looked at through that lense.

    How the FBI raid on Paul Manafort’s home went down
    Ret. ATF Special Agent Jim Cavanaugh, who worked with Robert Mueller when he was FBI Director, gives a riveting look at the raid on Paul Manafort’s home and the likely state of the special counsel’s legal case. John Heilemann & Mieke Eoyang join Lawrence O’Donnell.

  14. rikyrah says:

    Testing the limits of Trump’s ‘obsession’ with Obama
    08/10/17 12:50 PM—UPDATED 08/10/17 01:05 PM
    By Steve Benen
    BuzzFeed published an interesting piece yesterday based on interviews with “six top European government officials who’ve had firsthand dealings on the international stage with [Donald Trump] and his administration.” Not surprisingly, the foreign officials characterized the American president as erratic, ignorant, and “something of a laughing stock among Europeans at international gatherings.”

    But what stood out for me was the description of Trump’s obsession with his predecessor. “It’s his only real position,” one European diplomat said. “He will ask: ‘Did Obama approve this?’ And if the answer is affirmative, he will say: ‘We don’t.’ He won’t even want to listen to the arguments or have a debate. He is obsessed with Obama.”

    And while that’s plainly pathetic, it’s consistent with everything we’ve seen from this president – who seems to think about Barack Obama far more than he should, accusing him of all sorts of weird things, including secretly tapping his phones. Just this morning, Trump highlighted an unscientific poll of sympathetic Twitter users who said they like him better than his predecessor, which the Republican apparently considered important for reasons he didn’t explain.

    In fact, the burgeoning crisis in North Korea seems to have brought these festering attitudes to the fore. The Washington Post reported this morning, “Starting on Wednesday night, the Republican president retweeted a series of Twitter posts related to his Democratic predecessor, starting with one by John Bolton, a former U.S. ambassador to the United Nations and Fox News contributor, who said the United States is at risk because of Obama.”

  15. rikyrah says:

    Manafort knows a ton. He returned to the campaign 10 days before election and told them to focus on PA/WI/MI. WHY? What did he know?
    — A L Katz (@boyndog) August 10, 2017

  16. yahtzeebutterfly says:

    I am just now learning about dancer, choreographer and anthropologist Ms. Pearl Primus. I wish I could have seen on of her performances.

  17. This is the way he has ordered people around & insulted them his whole life and thinks it’ll work here. He’s about to get his wake up call.

  18. rikyrah says:

    Republicans limiting early voting in Marion County, letting it bloom in suburbs
    Fatima Hussein,
    Published 6:00 a.m. ET Aug. 10, 2017

    State and local Republicans have expanded early voting in GOP-dominated areas and restricted it in Democratic areas, an IndyStar investigation has found, prompting a significant change in Central Indiana voting patterns.

    From 2008 to 2016, GOP officials expanded early voting stations in Republican dominated Hamilton County, IndyStar’s analysis found, and decreased them in the state’s biggest Democratic hotbed, Marion County.

    That made voting more convenient in GOP areas for people with transportation issues or busy schedules. And the results were immediate.

    Most telling, Hamilton County saw a 63 percent increase in absentee voting from 2008 to 2016, while Marion County saw a 26 percent decline. Absentee ballots are used at early voting stations.

    Population growth and other factors may have played a role, but Hamilton County Clerk Kathy Richardson, a Republican, told IndyStar the rise in absentee voting in Hamilton County was largely a result of the addition of two early voting stations, which brought the total to three.

    “It was a great concept to open those (voting stations),” Richardson said, adding that the turnout might have increased with the addition of even more voting machines.

    Other Central Indiana Republican strongholds, including Boone, Johnson and Hendricks counties, also have added early voting sites — and enjoyed corresponding increases in absentee voter turnout.

    But not Marion County, which tends to vote Democratic, and has a large African-American population.

    During that same 2008-16 period, the number of early voting stations declined from three to one in Marion County, as Republican officials blocked expansion.

    Some Republicans blame the dearth of early voting in Marion County on a lack of local funding. “I have never received any type of message that the individuals in charge of Marion County have any interest in spending the money (to expand satellite locations),” said Jim Merritt, chairman of the Marion County Republican Party.

    But Indianapolis Mayor Joseph Hogsett, a Democrat, told IndyStar he is in favor of adding additional early voting stations to the county’s 2018 budget. And four attempts to expand early voting in Marion County have been approved by Democrats, but blocked by the county’s lone GOP representative on the elections board.

    • eliihass says:

      “….When the Trump administration was being put together there were a whole lot of questions raised about the competency of certain nominees. In some cases there has already been evidence that those concerns were legitimate.

      For those looking sadly or angrily at appointments, there was some hope that there were at least a handful of adults in the room who would temper Donald Trump and keep things on an even keel. That means settling for less than a team composed of the best and brightest, but it was something. But now one might think that when it comes to adult supervision, there is no there, there.

      The tempering adults, at least in January, were supposed to be the generals plus the family – a total of five people, or six if you include the Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson. So how is that working out? Let’s start with the generals.

      Secretary of Defense James “Mad Dog” Mattis. Sold as an experienced leader who is intelligent and not afraid to speak truth to power. Mattis’ public visibility has been limited. He has reportedly had battles with White House staff about the appointment of DOD administrative staff. Does his lack of visibility indicate lack of influence in the administration or just a “nose-to-the-grindstone” approach to his work?

      Secretary of Homeland Security John Kelly. Kelly also arrived with the pedigree of a tough military man who knew the government, how administrations function, and where he could contribute to honest policy dialogue. But after the Kushner-Russia-related eruption occurred this past weekend, who was the only person the administration offered up as a spokesperson?

      There was Secretary Kelly on the Sunday talk shows telling us that he knows Jared (what an honor), and that Jared is a “good guy.” Kelly suggested that there is nothing wrong or unusual about a new administration using “back channels” to communicate with foreign governments.

      National Security Advisor H.R. McMaster. Of all the three generals, McMaster was supposed to stand out more than the others because he even wrote a book about how the military failed to speak truth to power during the Vietnam War. I quoted a passage from his book in a previous post: “The failings were many and reinforcing; arrogance, weakness, lying in the pursuit of self-interest, and above all, the abdication of responsibility to the American people.”

      McMaster was trotted out first to try to explain away Trump’s leak of classified information to Russian officials/spies. More recently he also came to Kushner’s defense, choosing his words carefully like Kelly did to discuss “back channels” while ignoring the impropriety or the illegality of using Russian communications equipment in Russian facilities to communicate with the Russians.

      Kelly and McMaster were not pushed out as administration spokesmen because Sean Spicer and Kellyanne Conway were off for the day or just hiding in the bushes. They were used as flacks because someone in the White House decided that they had more credibility than Trump or his regular PR minions. They did have that credibility. They don’t anymore.

  19. Betty Shelby profits from killing unarmed black man. She gets back pay 💵 and a promotion. #WhitePrivilege

  20. #StepInFetchIt ass clowns. All that buffoonery for a few nickels. I can’t stand them! They’re so disgusting.

  21. Liza says:

    Sessions’ DOJ just took a major stand against voting rights. It’s now up to the Supreme Court to protect the rolls.— Lawyers' Committee (@LawyersComm) August 9, 2017


  22. rikyrah says:

    Trump’s political antics push consumers’ health care costs higher
    08/10/17 11:00 AM
    By Steve Benen

    At a press briefing a few weeks ago, White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said there’s all kinds of evidence that the Affordable Care Act is facing a “collapse.” To prove her point, Donald Trump’s principal spokesperson told reporters, “Premiums continue to skyrocket.”

    And while it’s true that many consumers are having to pay more for coverage, what Team Trump doesn’t like to talk about is its role in creating the problem the president and his aides like to complain about. The Associated Press reported this morning:

    The Trump administration’s own actions are triggering double-digit premium increases on individual health insurance policies purchased by many consumers, a nonpartisan study has found.

    The analysis released Thursday by the Kaiser Family Foundation found that mixed signals from President Donald Trump have created uncertainty “far outside the norm,” leading insurers to seek higher premium increases for 2018 than would otherwise have been the case.

  23. rikyrah says:

    Guilt By Omission: Why the Mainstream Media Continues to Ignore Hillary Clinton Supporters

    Trevor LaFauci
    August 7, 2017

    We were right.

    In the time leading up to the 2016 presidential election, 65,844,610 Americans saw through the bullshit. We saw through a man running on a supposed business acumen who accrued a total of 6 bankruptcies. We saw through an Islamophobe who purchased property from Middle Eastern sheiks. We saw through a xenophobe who benefitted from the labor of undocumented immigrants at his properties. We saw through a man who openly discriminated against African-Americans and claimed to be their savior. And we saw through a man whose open misogyny, sexism, and sexual assaults were simply brushed off as “locker room talk.”

    Since the media clearly had a role in helping to elect Donald Trump, they now must attempt to absolve themselves from any and all culpability. In order to do this, they have to continue to book guests who instill a sense of doubt as to how and why the election unfolded the way that it did. It’s why the media continues to interview Trump supporters in deep-red areas, as if the fact that these people still support him is somehow an unsolved mystery. It’s why the media continues to interview former Trump supporters, as if the fact that these people regret their vote would have somehow changed the outcome of the 2016 election. And it’s why the media continues to interview members of the White working class, as if the fact that these people bought into fake news and false accusations would somehow excuse their vote against their own self-interests.

    But one group the media won’t talk to is Hillary Clinton supporters. Because we know that part of the mystery as to how and why Donald Trump was elected is the media itself. In their twenty-five year quest to bring down a strong, independent woman, the media has continuously done whatever it could to make life difficult for her. Within the media exists a world of Andrea Mitchells who simply love to see the Clinton family fail. A world of Robert Reichs who still hold grudges to this day. A world of HA Goodmans who hate Hillary Clinton because they can’t think for themselves. A world of Cenk Uygurs who would love to destroy the Democratic Party from within. And a world of Susan Sarandons who would love to watch the world burn from the comfort of their very own mansions.

    We Clinton supporters know all this and we would not let the media off the hook. For they are as complicit as anyone in what has happened to our country. Our media sold out our democracy in order to make a quick buck. They intentionally shirked their responsibilities and distorted the presentation of the news in order to manifest a closer-than-it-should-have-been election. They refused to vet Bernie Sanders or Donald Trump. They provided false equivalencies to make Hillary Clinton appear corrupt where she was, in fact, trustworthy. And they insisted on pursuing a non-existent email scandal while simultaneously ignoring the dozens of real scandals that they knowingly had access to via Donald Trump.

    We were right while our media was wrong. And our media was wrong because they intentionally deceived the American public for personal gain. That is more than just bad business; that is an affront to everything a free press can and should stand for. While 65 million of us stood up to tyranny, our mainstream media openly cowered and gave rise to a candidate who embodies 21st-century fascism. The warning signs were there and our media intentionally chose to discard them to protect their own personal interests. They were complicit in the election of Donald Trump and they will continue to deny their role in his ascension because they know it is true.

  24. rikyrah says:

    Trump’s favorite tabloid takes aim at Manafort at a key moment
    08/10/17 10:09 AM
    By Steve Benen

    The more federal investigators turn their attention to Paul Manafort, Donald Trump’s former campaign chairman, the more Team Trump would love to put some distance between the president and his former top aide. In the spring, for example, then-White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer twice tried to downplay the significance of Manafort’s role in Trump’s political operation.

    Just how far would Trump World go to throw Manafort under the bus? The question took a curious turn yesterday.

    The National Enquirer, the president’s favorite supermarket tabloid, announced its latest scoop yesterday, insisting that Manafort has been caught up in some kind of sex scandal – a story that ran just hours after we learned the FBI raided the former campaign chairman’s home last month. The National Enquirer’s piece went on to quote a “White House adviser” who said Manafort was guilty of “betraying … his country.”

    This comes about a month after the president publicly suggested he has some influence over the tabloid’s editorial decisions.

    Slate summarized the larger context nicely:

    So, six weeks after Trump seemingly admitted that he can use National Enquirer stories as leverage in personal disputes, the Enquirer has published a sensational attack on an individual who may (may!) possess incriminating information about Trump-Russia collusion.

  25. Liza says:

    Excellent article…

    Aug 8
    Colin Kaepernick Isn’t Being Blackballed Because He Knelt for the Anthem
    andré carlisle associate editor • inconsistent writer…

    Some time ago the NFL made a conscious decision to do what is necessary to circle the wagons, embrace and reinforce traditional White American leanings. With the appointment of current NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, those linkage points have been exploited more deeply.

    In order to escape accountability for the injuries of its players, Goodell has turned to an oft-used trope: the offering of an outlet for faux-sympathy to avoid the consequence of genuine empathy. The aim — as with most institutions designed to inflate the value of the White Male American — is to posit the White male as arbiters of causes by transforming their sympathy into (literal and figurative) currency.

    The NFL has done it well. While charging the Department of Defense for displays of military might and adulation, the NFL taps into the segment of America that expresses patriotism through merely performative support for the troops. Another model which helped the NFL add to its coffers, while providing an outlet for men to pat themselves on the back, has been the embrace of the cause of Breast Cancer Awareness…

    A person so pained by the awareness of his and his people’s existence in America that he cried out — first silently, then financially, now via his organization. He should be, now, impossible to separate from his activism. Roger Goodell’s NFL is unprepared to deal with such a figure, let alone validate its existence on merit, or otherwise. To acknowledge Kaepernick beyond his kneeling is to legitimize Black struggle.

    For this reason, last year’s anthem protest remains the focal point of ire with which to cast Kaepernick a pariah. Despite saying, months ago, that he would no longer kneel during the anthem, the gesture remains central to his unemployment. To reinforce the way in which the NFL suggests that you view its players, it has to. If it becomes about anything else — his message, his goals, and his work with/in disadvantaged communities — a humanity is added that the NFL has not yet approved, and doesn’t know how to deal with.

    By evolving — by learning and progressing in his beliefs, understanding of causes, and how he can help — Kaepernick has shown how devolved the NFL, and its fans, have become.

  26. Ametia says:


  27. rikyrah says:



    @Omnes Omnibus: This. A tragic figure has much to admire about them, but also an Achilles heel, sometimes an overdose of one of those admirable qualities, that leads to a downfall. Drumpf (a) has not had his comeuppance yet, and may never, and (b) is a parasite with no apparent redeeming personal qualities. He’s a pathologically lying, degenerate fraud. He has coped with his massive emotional deficits and neuroses by weaponizing them, bullying his way through life, basically cheating and getting away with it through his sheer brazenness and bluster and monied safety net, inflicting his bottomless narcissism on the rest of society. He has never done a single thing with the interests of another in mind. He breaks contracts, both legal and moral, constantly. He does not pay what he’s bargained to pay. He thrives by preying on the ethical and moral structures that constrain the rest of us, and he’s never been punished for it. He’s a walking repudiation of every single thing we’re supposed to stand for and hold dear in this country, and an argument that none of them matter anymore. Honesty. Hard work. Dignity. Compassion. Focus. Knowledge. Honor.

    That’s not tragedy. Travesty, maybe.

  28. Liza says:

    6 European officials who've had interactions with Trump say he's unstable and obsessed with Barack Obama— meta (@metaquest) August 9, 2017


  29. rikyrah says:

    From Silverman at BJ:

    Adam L Silverman says:
    August 9, 2017 at 11:51 pm
    MSNBC reported earlier this evening that the rest of the US Intel Community is now pushing back on the leaked DIA report info on the DPRK miniaturization yesterday. Apparently they’re living up to the unflattering nickname of Do It Again for getting to far ahead of themselves and the rest of the IC.

  30. Liza says:

    I suspect that Robert Mueller feels the same sense of urgency as we do only more so. He carries a heavy burden.

  31. rikyrah says:

    Kay at BJ continuing to drop the truths about Medicaid and the ‘lefties’. Kay lives in a rural county where the expansion of Medicaid in Ohio has meant pretty much EVERYTHING, for the lives of those on the ground. She always writes about Obamacare from her on the ground experience. She’s an attorney and had to deal with a lot of the legal problems that medical bills brought on pre-Obamacare. She has written extensively on how she’s been able to SEE the changes in the lives of the people that used to come to her for legal advice about medical bills.

    In my opinion, Lefties dropped the ball in a huge way. They had Republicans on the ropes on a real single payer program. Republicans could not get rid of Medicaid expansion. They couldn’t do it because so many of their people were on it.

    Yet the people opposing the roll back weren’t Lefties- they were mainstream Democratic activists. The Establishment.

    This should have been the realization of a dream for them- low income working people GOT a government program and they liked it and wouldn’t let go of it. But they couldn’t admit that because they all opposed Obamacare and they opposed Obamacare because they focused on the smallest part of Obamacare- the part that might affect THEM. The biggest expansion of publicly-funded health care since 1967 and the Left not only didn’t support it, they opposed it!

    You know what it is? It’s elitist. Medicaid doesn’t count because it’s for poor people and real poor people don’t fit their 1930’s idea of the “working class”. One big reason people on Medicaid love Medicaid is because they had nothing else. They never had private insurance. It’s not “lesser” to them. It’s “the only”. I see 50 year olds who got the Medicaid expansion who hadn’t seen a doctor since their high school sports physical, which is free. Of course they love it. They’re not comparing it to a private policy they had in 1996. They’re comparing it to “nothing, ever”.

  32. rikyrah says:

    Trump’s Legal Team Is No Match for Mueller’s
    The president could learn from Bill and Hillary Clinton’s years of litigation.
    By Tom Schoenberg

    When news broke on Aug. 3 that Special Counsel Robert Mueller had begun using a grand jury in Washington to gather evidence related to his Russia probe, it appeared to catch the White House off guard. Although many news outlets were reporting the story, Ty Cobb, just four days on the job as the president’s lawyer, issued a statement saying he didn’t know about it, even as Jay Sekulow, another member of Trump’s legal staff, went on Fox News to say once again that the president himself wasn’t under investigation.

    As Mueller adds experienced prosecutors and broadens his investigation, Trump’s legal team still appears disorganized and understaffed. An army of well-paid lawyers would help the president get in front of the investigation: preparing responses to allegations before hearing about them from prosecutors or reporters, anticipating where Mueller is going, and developing a counternarrative to stymie him. Junior staffers could spend all night researching case law or obstruction of justice and conspiracy statutes; they could be available at a moment’s notice to draft pleadings challenging Mueller’s requests to interview witnesses or gather documents.

  33. rikyrah says:

    From Kay at BJ:

    This Buzzfeed piece is amazing-not because it reveals Trump is “obsessed” with Obama– that was clear when Trump launched his birther campaign, but because it shows how weak other countries think Trump is.

    Because it really is competitive. Other countries vie for position (as they should) so weakness really does matter in negotiating. Part of the reason they believe (rightly) that he’s weak is because he’s poorly prepared- he doesn’t know what he’s negotiating. They will take advantage of that, again, as they should. Trump’s negotiating partners don’t care that Americans elected a dope. That’s an advantage for them. They’ll play that for all it’s worth.

    How funny is it that the big swaggering assholes on Team Trump are the weakest people in the room, and everyone else knows it. They are that special kind of ignorant, where they are the last people to know no one outside their base is buying this bullshit. So much for the supposed “savvy” of the real estate heir. They think he’s a chump.

  34. rikyrah says:

    Get THE ENTIRE PHUCK outta here!!!

    In a new poll, half of Republicans say they would support postponing the 2020 election if Trump proposed it
    By Ariel Malka and Yphtach Lelkes
    August 10 at 5:00 AM

    Critics of President Trump have repeatedly warned of his potential to undermine American democracy. Among the concerns are his repeated assertions that he would have won the popular vote had 3 to 5 million “illegals” not voted in the 2016 election, a claim echoed by the head of a White House advisory committee on voter fraud.

    Claims of large-scale voter fraud are not true, but that has not stopped a substantial number of Republicans from believing them. But how far would Republicans be willing to follow the president to stop what they perceive as rampant fraud? Our recent survey suggests that the answer is quite far: About half of Republicans say they would support postponing the 2020 presidential election until the country can fix this problem.

  35. rikyrah says:

    Kay at Balloon Juice, expressing her disgust at the purity ponies on the left and their dismissal of the importance of the expansion of Medicaid because of Obamacare.

    I will never get over them dismissing Medicaid. The MOST LIBERAL part of Obamacare, by far, and they dismissed it as something for poor people. Obamacare was a no-brainer for liberals. Why do you support it? Because it vastly expands health care for lower income people. You don’t even have to “decide”- the answer is “yes”.

    I heard about a study yesterday where they’re positing that the Medicaid expansion saves on the Social Security disability program for low income people- there are two disability programs- one is income-based. Apparently a lot of them were applying for disability not because they can’t work at all but because they needed health care. It’s HUGE. I think it’s the biggest expansion of an entitilement in my lifetime.

  36. rikyrah says:

    He was not called ‘No Drama Obama’ for nothing. Now we have a drama queen bleating like a donkey on Twitter every day with insane tweets

    — Sarah✨ (@Sarah_Alden83) August 9, 2017

  37. rikyrah says:

    From Senator Blumenthal.

    2/ Fed judge signing warrant would demand persuasive evidence of probable cause that a serious crime has been committed

    — Richard Blumenthal (@SenBlumenthal) August 9, 2017

    4/ Raid decimates Manafort’s claim of cooperation with law enforcement– it reflects evidence connecting Manafort to criminal wrongdoing

    — Richard Blumenthal (@SenBlumenthal) August 9, 2017

    Keep spreading the word, we have your back. 🔥🔥🔥

    — Propane Jane™ (@docrocktex26) August 9, 2017

  38. rikyrah says:

    ou don’t get a search warrant without probable cause.

    — Sheldon Whitehouse (@SenWhitehouse) August 9, 2017

  39. rikyrah says:

    A Rolling Catastrophe in the Making
    by Nancy LeTourneau
    August 10, 2017

    The title of Fred Kaplan’s piece here at the Washington Monthly about how the Bush administration allowed North Korea to get nuclear weapons could very easily be a description of Donald Trump’s presidency: “Rolling Blunder.” But it goes beyond the title. Here is Kaplan’s summary of what happened in the early 2000’s.

    The pattern of decision making that led to this debacle…will sound familiar to anyone who has watched Bush and his cabinet in action. It is a pattern of wishful thinking, blinding moral outrage, willful ignorance of foreign cultures, a naive faith in American triumphalism, a contempt for the messy compromises of diplomacy, and a knee-jerk refusal to do anything the way the Clinton administration did it.

    What we are dealing with now is delusional thinking, a hair-trigger temper, willful ignorance, triumphalism, a decimation of the apparatus of diplomacy and a knee-jerk reaction against anything the Obama administration accomplished. While the Bush administration took their eye off the ball of North Korea’s attempt to get nuclear weapons due to their obsession over whether Saddam Hussein had them, we are watching the Trump administration threaten nuclear war with North Korea and do everything possible to put Iran back on track to get them.

    If you haven’t already, I highly recommend that you read Kaplan’s piece on North Korea. It is important to know that the Clinton administration made use of both this country’s hard and soft power to develop what was called the “Agreed Framework” in 1994, which halted North Korea’s work on obtaining nuclear weapons. As commitments to the framework faltered (on both sides, apparently) the administration was on the cusp of a renewed agreement in 2000 when the election was finally decided in favor of Bush. That is when the descriptor above came into play and the rest…as they say, is history. Kaplan sums it up with this:

    What explains Bush’s inaction before North Korea crossed the red line–and its weak response afterward? Historians will surely debate that question for decades. Part of the answer probably lies in the administration’s all-consuming focus on Iraq. Military mobilization toward the Persian Gulf was in full swing; the invasion would start in March. It would have been a bit much–in money, matériel, and mental concentration–to start mobilizing for northeast Asia, too. In January, a senior administration official told The New York Times, “President Bush does not want to distract international attention from Iraq.”

    In short, Bush took no serious military action because, in a sense, he couldn’t. And he took no serious diplomatic action because he didn’t want to.

  40. rikyrah says:

    Donald Trump loves to bluff, despite being bad at it
    08/10/17 08:41 AM
    By Steve Benen

    When Donald Trump raised the specter of a nuclear confrontation with North Korea this week, he wasn’t just saber-rattling; he was issuing a specific kind of warning. As Rich Lowry put in a new Politico piece:

    North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un was on the receiving end of the alliteration heard around the world, when Trump promised “fire and fury” if Pyongyang continued to threaten the United States.

    It was classic Trump – a memorably pungent expression that dominated the news cycle and probably didn’t reflect more than about 30 seconds of thought.

    It was a promise, however, that the American president had no intention of keeping. Trump vowed “fire and fury” in response to North Korean threats, which naturally led to more North Korean threats. The Republican, confronted with the provocation he’d just said would be unacceptable, responded quickly – by complaining about Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.).

    Kim Jong-un didn’t hesitate to cross Trump’s bright red line, just as Trump didn’t hesitate to back down from the “fire and fury” promise he’d made for all the world to see.

    The president, in other words, was bluffing – something Trump does often, despite being horrible at it.

  41. rikyrah says:

    Details of FBI raid on Manafort home raise new questions
    Joyce Vance, former U.S. attorney, talks with Rachel Maddow about what an be inferred from the details and the timing of the FBI raid on the home of former Donald Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort.

  42. rikyrah says:

    US still assessing North Korea nuclear capability
    Andrea Mitchell, NBC News chief foreign affairs correspondent, talks with Rachel Maddow about whether U.S. intelligence agencies are yet unified on their assessment of North Korea’s military capability.

  43. rikyrah says:

    State Dept evades on bizarre Cuba story’s ‘incidents,’ ‘symptoms’
    Rachel Maddow reports on the array of questions following a report that Cuban diplomats were expelled from the US in relation to Americans in Cuba suffering “symptoms” related to “incidents.”

  44. rikyrah says:

    FBI Manafort raid seen as ‘shock and awe’ moment in Trump-Russia
    Carol Leonnig, reporter for The Washington Post, talks with Rachel Maddow about a pre-dawn FBI raid on the house of former Donald Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort

  45. rikyrah says:

    Trump looks to friends to fill important US prosecutor positions
    Rachel Maddow notes that Donald Trump is looking at candidates from his own lawyer’s firm and Rudy Giuliani’s firm to fill prominent U.S. attorney positions that would likely have jurisdiction over investigations into Trump and his associates.

  46. rikyrah says:

    GOP food fight: Trump and McConnell take aim at each other
    08/10/17 08:00 AM
    By Steve Benen

    Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) spoke to a Rotary Group in Kentucky on Monday, expressing some frustrations about Donald Trump’s “excessive expectations about how quickly things happen in the democratic process.” The GOP’s Senate leader added that the president doesn’t yet understand the “reality” of the legislative process.

    The New York Times reports that the two Republicans spoke by phone yesterday, and Trump expressed “his disappointment” with McConnell’s comments. Soon after, the president’s private concerns became public concerns.

    “Senator Mitch McConnell said I had ‘excessive expectations,’ but I don’t think so,” Mr. Trump wrote on Twitter on Wednesday afternoon, as he and lawmakers took time away from Washington during the August recess. “After 7 years of hearing Repeal & Replace, why not done?”

  47. yahtzeebutterfly says:

    “Louisiana rehab linked to judge’s shady scheme to extort thousands by holding suspects ‘for ransom’: lawsuit”
    Excerpt from article:

    The Southern Poverty Law Center and the ACLU joined together in filing a federal lawsuit against Rehabilitation Home Incarceration, a company that allegedly extorted accused individuals before they were released from jail.

    According to an SPLC press release, more than 300 people were assigned to this company by 19th Judicial District Judge Trudy A. White for an indefinite amount of time. They were told to pay hundreds of dollars to the company before they were released but after they had paid their bail. During a bail hearing, she would determine whether or not people were a “flight risk” or if they posed a danger to society. She would then assign them to the company. However, the company mandated a $525 signup fee, monthly charges and other mandated fees. At no point did White assess whether an individual could afford to pay the charges.

    “This is a disturbing example of our justice system being twisted beyond recognition by a scheme to make money,” said Sam Brooke, SPLC deputy legal director. “People who had already paid their bail were held ransom and extorted out of hundreds and thousands of dollars. They simply wanted their freedom while they awaited their day in court. That desire was exploited by Rehabilitation Home Incarceration.”

    Kaiasha White, not related to the judge, was handed over to the company despite still being in jail. Her family was forced to pay the company’s signup fee as well as her bond. She was forced to stay in jail for a month because the jail wouldn’t release her until the family had paid the signup fee.

    “When you have to go to court, you shouldn’t have to worry about being held for ransom because a business wants to profit off of you,” she said.

    Another plaintiff in the case couldn’t afford to pay both fees, so the company forced him to pay $225 a month while waiting for his trial. He was threatened with arrest if he didn’t pay. His family ultimately was forced to pay approximately $1,000. The only “supervision” the company did was requiring phone calls, and most times those went unanswered, he said.

    “This is predatory and illegal. Rehabilitation Home Incarceration puts its own price on people’s liberty and forces them to pay up, over and over again,” ACLU senior staff attorney Brandon Buskey said in a release. “Worse, this could not happen without the court and the jail enabling this scam, and ignoring the rights of those charged and presumed innocent.”

  48. yahtzeebutterfly says:

    Era Bell Thompson was born on this day, August 10, in 1905 in Des Moines, Iowa.

    From Wikipedia:

    “In 1947, Thompson came to the attention of Ebony. She joined the magazine as associate editor. Two years after becoming co-managing editor, she began her foreign reporting in 1953. She was instrumental in shaping Ebony magazine’s vision and guiding its coverage for approximately forty years while serving in a variety of editorial capacities.

    “In 1954 she published a second book, Africa, Land of My Fathers, based on a tour of 18 countries in Africa. Thompson was still listed as an editor of Ebony in 1985, an indication of her longevity with the publication. She was praised for her efforts in promoting both racial and gender understanding. She died in Chicago in 1986.”

    Two books written by Ms. Thompson:,204,203,200_.jpg

  49. vitaminlover says:

    So this is why he ‘conveniently’ took a 17 day golfing trip. Why do his kind think that no one can see through him? There’s a woman on my job who is narcissistic like him. Everyone sees through her. She thinks she’s OK but she is so deluded.

  50. vitaminlover says:

    Now, I like this! He is getting after it, isn’t he?

  51. rikyrah says:

    Good Morning,Everyone 😄😄😄

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