Thursday, May 30, 2019

Do Your Homework

I thought of the phrase before Big Cuter posted this link to Alexandra Petri's column, the one entitled It Is Increasingly Clear That None of You Read My Report.

I'm on page 92 of The Mueller Report, and I've been outraged for 90 pages. 

Elizabeth Warren came to that conclusion right after the report was issued.  Congressman Amash read it on a plane ride home, came out for impeachment, and was greeted by a standing ovation at a Town Hall a week later. 

If I could, I'd vote to open hearings on obstruction of justice by the President of the United States.  But I can't.  Instead, I called my MoC and left a message - TBG and I have moved from let the voters decide in 2020 to if not for these misdeeds, then for what?

I've spent the week carrying the big, fat, white book around town, exhorting people to read it.  Consider this post my exhortation to you.

It reads like a denser Harlan Coben thriller.  Lots of players, lots of connections, more lies and underhanded behaviors than you think are possible ... until you realize that you're spending an inordinate amount of time reading the footnotes.  Legal citations, interviews, and tweets underpin nearly every sentence.  Director Mueller is right - every one of his words is carefully chosen. 

You should read them.  Read them and make your own decision, without a filter.
As for me, after the first 100 pages or so, yes, I'm sure the CIA has done similar things to other countries but that's not the issue.  Russia did this to us and the President doesn't seem to care.  His campaign didn't seem to care.  It would be nice if Congress wondered why.

I'll keep you posted on my reactions as I keep reading.  It may take a while.  I have to break it up with the treats I brought home from the library; there's only so much slime I can stomach at one time.

In the meantime, if you're reading the original (always better than the Cliff's Notes ... which are now called Sparks for some reason) feel free to chime in in the comments. 


  1. I don't intend to read it but did watch Mueller yesterday with his 'press conference' that had no questions involved. I have heard those who are from the left and the right who did read it; they all saw it, as one would expect— based on how they went in.

    One thing to remember, from the clips I have read from it, is that it was written by those who didn't like Trump and there were plenty of zingers thrown in. Mueller chose all donors and lawyers who were behind Clinton. Not one single Trump person in those investigators. Then there is Mueller, who his friend, Comey, made sure got to do the investigation and who sees firing Comey as obstruction. I figure the slant of the report would apparently lean those who think one way or the other to read in it what they already thought. (Also, if you read Mueller’s record, it’s not as pure as the left claims regarding how he handled cases).

    Given how rabid the loudest dems are, I expect the House to go for impeachment (from the time most got elected in November) and have no idea what will happen in the Senate. I also heard Hillary lay into Trump again with hate in her eyes. I think, every time I see her, how glad I am that she didn't get the Presidency despite my voting for her (holding my nose).

    I just hope that if it's a Dem in '20 that it'll be someone without that level of hate. When I hear the dems talk, I listen for reasonable proposals; and if it's all hate Trump, they're out for me. Of course, I won’t get to vote in Oregon’s primary due to being unaffiliated. Actually at this point, I am not sorry as I am not happy at all with the leadership from either party.

    One last thing, despite Russia trying what they did, it didn’t impact the result. Most of us, who voted for her, did it no matter what based on issues and not wanting him. Some Russians tried to use social media but who gets their news there? Well maybe some given what I’ve seen this week, but I sure do not.

    We start for Oregon on Friday and my mind is not on politics but rather freeways and RV parks. Like so many of my friends, I don't hate Trump. I don't know what to make of him since I never watched his shows and don't listen to his speeches or get his Tweets. If they impeach him, I likely won't pay much attention to it as I am not thrilled with pontificating. I think I'll stick to nature this summer-- although I'll try to watch the dem debates to see if one of them offers something I think will be good for the country... I won't be holding my breath given what I've been hearing so far.

    I know most who read your blog will probably be mad at what I've said here. Being a right leaning moderate is not popular with the left or the right ;). Everybody needs a bubble. I wish I had one. Yours is probably the only blog left where I'll say what I think. Mostly I might read but I stay off commenting given how i know others there will see it. I never had any right leaning blogs and now don't have any left leaning ;)

    1. Safe travels! Enjoy the scenery and let the rest of the world go on its merry way :-)

      I hope that no one is mad at what you say - The Burrow is a comfortable place to disagree... at least that's my intention. I knew that you would be the first to respond; I've been thinking about what to reply all day.

      I hate that you wont' read the report. It's scholarly and factual and reflects the man TBG and I met and admired. He's precise, not prone to hyperbole, and he really loves America. He felt responsible for the assasination/attempt/murders here in Tucson - "on my watch" - and no one can argue that he is not a patriot.

      The report takes an unbiased approach. In the first quarter (what I have read so far) he states again and again that other material might have made a difference in their decisions, but the administration lied or did not provide the documentation.

      So, I ask - what is he hiding.

      I do think the extensive Russian meddling combined with the polling data Manafort gave the Kremlin (thru the Ukranian oligarch who owns him) made a difference in voter turn out. Had I not been so vehemently anti-Trump, I'd have written in Big Cuter's name. If I were another person, I would have stayed home. The anti-Hilary FB posts were enough to keep me riled up. How much of the slim margin with which he took those states' electoral college vote can be attributed to those who hated her more than they cared, one way or the other, about him?

      As to obstruction, we can disagree about Comey (whose statement in the Fall thru the election to Trump, imho) and still find fault with page after page of mendacity and coercion.

      My bottom line is - if we let this behavior stand, what does it say about us as a country? This is NOT my America.

    2. Just remember that the report was created by partisans. If righties had written it, it'd be different. It's the world in which we live. I vote issues. I did it when I voted for Hillary, but if all the left offers is a renewed draft, ignoring China's rise and questions about their intentions. a Green New Deal that sounds more socialist than concerned with climate change, will I have anybody on the left who voices my issues, concern for the environment and parks, doing something about cities that have become magnets for homelessness and probably breeding ground for diseases? I am an old woman who believes in law and order, which right now I hear those on the left ignoring with their saying we should open the border. Why not change the law first?

      What I find interesting with the report (but not enough to read it) is how a right winger and left winger can read the same words and come up with a different interpretation. I guess it's the nature of humans. We see what suits us and it's a rare one of us who can look past our preconceived opinions to what words might mean to someone from the 'other' side.

      Fortunately, it is a year and a half before the election will be held and I am still hopeful a white knight will ride up. It own't be Biden with his own China secrets and questions of whether he's laying low to avoid answering questions like Hillary did. It won't be Mayor Pete who wants a new draft. I don't know about the rest but will be watching the debates with interest for what they say on immigration and law and order for the cities... if anything.

  2. Is the report available as a library book? I downloaded it but won't print so many pages andI don't like to do so much reading on my computer screen.

  3. As for impeachment versus waiting for the cases to work their way through the courts versus letting the voters decide in 2020, there are pros and cons to all of the options, in my view.
    Impeachment is definitely warranted. That is clear even if you have only read Mueller's executive summaries or redacted versions in the NYT and Washington Post. Mueller's comments, besides expressing frustration that no one except Suzi has read the report, boil down to this: there is probable cause to believe that Trump committed obstruction in violation of criminal statutes, I would have charged him with that criminal offense, but I could not do so under DOJ rules.
    BUT while an impeachment inquiry is justified, my fear is that it would only increase the chances of Trump's reelection, and in view of the fact that the Republican Senate will never impeach him, that risk is too large to take.
    We are in a horrible situation, with only unpalatable alternatives.

    As to how to read the Mueller report on paper without printing out 400 pages, there are several paperback versions of the Mueller Report available on Amazon for under $10. Your local library might have one since it has been out for months.

    1. We are in a horrible situation, with only unpalatable alternatives.

  4. I have also moved from "wait for the election" to begin impeachment hearings". It's our duty, and the duty of Congress, to expose all of the misdeeds of this administration.

    1. He lies in front of the cameras, misleading those who listen to the verbiage he's spilling, and Congress does nothing but shout into the wind. Why didn't DJTjr testify? What is behind those redactions? America needs to know.

    2. DJTjr did testify.. just not again. As for the redactions, I imagine you'll know better but they said it didn't relate to the collusion and was Grand Jury or protecting spy sources. There weren't supposed to be many of them. I think some of the fear of not redacting, even for Congress, is how they leak to friends in the press. If they stopped leaking, there'd be less need for redactions. Since the Mueller team knows what was there, if anything 'protected' Trump, I would guess it'll leak ;).

      Anyway, if they are going to impeach, I hope they get on with it. In the meantime, everything else is being ignored. Time to --- (a few less than printable sayings fit there). I am not averse to them impeaching if they do it with honest questions and not constant pontificating. I watched a recent hearing and they spent more time making speeches than trying to get information (and both parties do it).

    3. I am sick of the pontificating, too. That's why I loved watching Kamala Harris - her prosecutorial zeal, her impatience with obfuscation, her ability to hone in on the right questions --- she's my #2 Presidential Choice, and that's just one of the reasons.

      Honest questions without speechifying --- we are living in a fantasy world if we expect that from everyone. But I do have hope. My concerns are 1) that POTUS sides with autocrats more than his intelligence community and denies the existence of what really did happen, and 2) his obstruction (not collusion - which is not something the SC dealt with since it's not a legal term) is so blatant, so destructive to the process, and so self serving rather than oath-fulfilling, that he really has risen to the level of high crimes and misdemeanors. Reading the history of "high crimes and misdemeanors" helped to clarify that for me.

      And, after all, if getting a blow job in the Oval Office and lying about it was enough for impeachment, why isn't Trump's behavior similarly treated? THAT is my question for the Republicans right now.

      ps. Look at us having a conversation instead of an argument. There may be hope for our country yet!

    4. i have very few people where a conversation is possible. Whether what Trump did is high crimes etc., will depend on what actually was found. Since Mueller didn't come up with an opinion (despite saying he could not indict), he left to to Barr and Rosenstein, who the left finds suspicious for assorted reasons.

      Why would Trump trust the intelligence community based on who was leading them lying to Congress as well as what they said about Iraq having weapons they did not have. I am not sure we can assume the intelligence community doesn't also have a partisan prejudice for what should be done.

      As you can tell maybe, I don't trust any of them. I don't know what to think about Harris but they say she slept her way to the position she got in CA and now is backtracking on a lot of what she earlier said. I am waiting for the debates frankly to see what they all come across like.

    5. I downloaded the Mueller Report on my Kindle last night. :-)

  5. I've moved to impeach. Going through the courts will take too long. We won't survive (literally) another four years of him doing away with clean and and clean water, starting wars, losing our allies and buddying up with dictators. If one looks at the wide spread acceptance on the right of the doctored video of Pelosi, which alleged that she was impaired, it's not a leap to suspect that many people have truncated critical thinking skills and will be swayed by Russian propaganda.

    1. The FB ads were clever; I'm sure I saw my fair share of them. How we deal with TRUTH and what that means...well, that's a series of posts I may take up some time.

      Where's Walter Cronkite when we need him?


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