Laying out the timeline

UPDATE: (Feb 8, 2018) – It seems Forbes took down the timeline after a couple of days.  No explanation I’m aware of as to why.  Nevertheless, the Internet is forever, and a copy of it remains available here.

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ORIGINAL POST:  One of the challenges for the American public right now is keeping up with the drip, drip, drip of scandalous information coming out of Washington.  The pieces of the puzzles are being slowly dribbled out, and thus it’s difficult for the average citizen to piece together a picture of just how bad the malfeasance of the Department of Justice and Federal Bureau of Investigation is.

So Forbes has done the nation a great service by assembling the known pieces at this point.  The Epoch Times produced a visual summary in January, but Forbes’ product brings the chronology up to date and provides disturbing clarity.  Keep in mind while reading it there is considerable information that remains redacted or unreleased, and the parties involved will clearly go to great lengths to keep it that way.  The magazine rightly concludes (emphasis added):

It is right to say that this episode is the worst abuse of political power in American history related to elections. Watergate is nothing by comparison. That involved people not employed by the government.  Later it involved a cover-up in which Nixon participated.

Watergate did not involve the DOJ and the FBI – two institutions which must be non-partisans for this Republic of ours.

This case does involve the FBI and DOJ.  It also is foolish not to assume that Loretta Lynch and President Obama were ignorant of the goings on – if not involved in them.

Finally, the dishonest investigation of Hillary who committed actual crimes should not be acceptable. Nor should FBI or DOJ officials be allowed to alter events and Court proceedings for political purposes.

If we let this go, and people are not brought to justice, we will have forever damaged our Republic and the World’s view of us as a nation of laws.

Not to mention that in the eyes of those of us paying close attention, the credibility of our government has taken a body blow from which it may never recover.  Only seeing the key figures in this melodrama in handcuffs and behind bars will suffice to start the process of restoration.  Nothing short of that will matter.

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Losing things

First, it was the Infernal Internal Revenue Service destroying files related to the investigation of partisan bias against conservative advocacy groups.

Then it was the loss of thousands of deleted emails and the industrial-strength wiping of a hard drive during the investigation into Her Hillariness’ unauthorized homebrew email server during her tenure as U.S. Secretary of State.

Now, after intense Congressional scrutiny, the FBI “lost” thousands of text messages between two key agents who were both having an affair and talking about their mutual opposition to Donald Trump during the end of the election and the beginning of the transition period in 2016.

As they say: once is an accident, twice is a coincidence, three or more times is a pattern.  Fortunately some grownups at the Justice Department stepped in after yesterday’s declaration by the FBI of “we can’t find the texts.”  Seems DOJ’s technical support is a bit more adept motivated to actually retrieve the information in question.  Maybe now the taxpayers can find out what it is the FBI would rather not be publicized (you don’t really believe they just couldn’t retrieve the data themselves, do you?).

The biggest loss, however, has nothing to do with emails, electronic files or text messages.  Rather, it’s the loss of both respect and trust in our Federal agencies.  No objective person can fail to note the many ways in which our government has acted in recent years to shield itself from criticism or potential prosecution.  We clearly have a two-tiered legal system in this nation now: one for the well-connected Beltway insiders (including Presidents), and one for everyone else.  Don’t believe me?  Try telling the IRS you “lost” your W-2 or other standard tax paperwork.  I bet you don’t get the mulligan our “public servants” get on such things.

Every American should be outraged at the brazen chicanery of our legal institutions.  What we’re seeing is more appropriate to a banana republic than to the would-be leader of the “free world.”  I have never thought the charges of collusion between Trump and Russia had any merit (one typically does not sell weapons to the enemies of the one you collude with).  There’s plenty of evidence, however, of collusion between Federal agencies to cover their own tracks.  A lot of housecleaning and swamp draining needs to be done.  It has to include robust punishment of the guilty, too, lest our self-professed bureaucratic betters continue to believe they can do whatever they want with impunity.

The depth of the swamp

A few items for your reading attention today, each of which illustrate how deeply the rot goes in our current system:

1)Just How Corrupt is the FBI?”

At least three members of the Russia probe: Robert Mueller himself, attorney Andrew Weissmann and Agent Peter Strzok all have very clear conflicts of interest in this matter and/or histories of abuse of power.  One of the latest examples:

As reported by Fox News, FBI counterintelligence agent Peter Strzok changed Director Comey’s earlier draft of the announcement that exonerated Ms. Clinton. He switched it from “grossly negligent,” which is the language in the criminal statute pertaining to the mishandling of classified material, to simply “extremely careless,” essentially getting Ms. Clinton out of criminal jeopardy. Agent Strzok also interviewed Ms. Clinton without recording the session after Mr. Comey was apparently planning to exonerate her. He was fired by Mueller presumably when Mr. Strzok’s anti-Trump emails to a fellow FBI colleague, lawyer, and lover, Lisa Page, came to his attention. Are we having fun yet? It only gets better…

2) Obama’s email involvement tanked the Clinton investigation

I noticed it when this first became public more than a year ago, but perhaps unsurprisingly very little attention has been focused on it: President Obama sent and received emails with Hillary Clinton via the insecure private server over which she demonstrably conducted classified business.  Obama did so using a pseudonym, which seems to indicate he knew this system was likely not on the up and up.

Bottom line: no conviction of Clinton and Huma Abedin for willful mishandling national security information could have been obtained without implicating the president himself.  This likely explains why the Clinton “investigation” and subsequent Russia probe were assigned to some of the most partisan members of what should be a politically neutral FBI.

3) Andrew Weissmann, as noted in some of the links above, heaped praise on then-Attorney General Sally Yates, who early in the Trump administration publicly refused to defend the administration’s new travel restrictions intended to enhance border security. (Trump rightfully fired her.)  Weissmann is now one of Robert Mueller’s senior advisors on the “Russia probe.”  (But I’m sure he’s objective…)  Additionally, it’s been learned that while the courts correctly ruled Trump had the authority to appoint the new head of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, a number of employees at said agency consider themselves “resistors,” taking the childish name “Dumbledore’s Army.”  Their intent, it seems, is to thwart the new leadership any way they can.  Were I Mick Mulvaney, I would try to identify every employee who considered themselves part of this group — and fire them immediately.

The entrenched bureaucracy is determined there will be no deep and lasting changes under Trump.  How that struggle goes will define his presidency.  The stakes? Powerline’s John Hinderaker put it best:

The most powerful branch of today’s government is the Fourth: the permanent federal bureaucracy that is nowhere mentioned in the Constitution. The Trump administration can best be viewed, perhaps, as a struggle to the death between American voters and the federal employees who are paid to serve them.

 

Pretty much says it all

russia hunters

From the New York Post:

Lefty cheers for Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russian meddling in US politics may soon fade now that he’s reportedly looking into a top Democratic lobbyist.
NBC reports that Tony Podesta (the brother of Hillary Clinton’s campaign chairman, John Podesta) and his firm are the subjects of a criminal investigation by the special prosecutor.

And this comes amid new reports that the FBI gathered evidence for two years as Russian agents — including a major sleeper cell — worked to gain access to then-Secretary of State Clinton, husband Bill and members of their inner circle…

…All this, of course, follows reports the Obama administration knew Russia was engaged in a campaign of bribery and extortion — yet allowed a deal to go through giving Moscow control of one-fifth of America’s uranium.

Yes, there’s something to investigate here. But it goes way beyond Donald Trump.

Meanwhile, Trump should be asking his State Department exactly why they’ve only managed to release less than half of the content of the emails Hillary bothered to turn over to them (32,000 pages out of 72,000) — not to mention the additional 2,800 emails found on Huma Abedin’s laptop that were NOT turned over.  The election — and with it, Obama’s corrupt administration — has been over for nearly a year… why is State still covering for Her Hillariness?

Well, well, well…

The mainstream press are frothing over remarks Trump made to the annual Boy Scout Jamboree (even going so far as to compare the Scouts to the Hitler Youth).  All the vapors over Trump making political remarks at the venue don’t mean much coming from the Left, which has politicized absolutely everything already.

Meanwhile, someone intimately involved with the Democratic National Committee’s information technology management has just been arrested:

A House IT aide working for Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (Fla.), the former Democratic National Committee chairwoman, was arrested this week on bank fraud charges while trying to leave the country.

Fox News reported that Imran Awan was arrested Monday night at Dulles International Airport in Virginia about 30 miles outside Washington, D.C.

Awan was charged with bank fraud, and it appears there are reasons to believe he overcharged House members for IT management (What? contractors overcharging?  I’m shocked — shocked I tell you!).  But there’s much more to this story:

FBI agents seized smashed computer hard drives from the home of Florida Democratic Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz’s information technology (IT) administrator, according to an individual who was interviewed by Bureau investigators in the case and a high level congressional source.

Pakistani-born Imran Awan, long-time right-hand IT aide to the former Democratic National Committee (DNC) Chairwoman, has since desperately tried to get the hard drives back, the individual told The Daily Caller News Foundation’s Investigative Group.

Awan first came to notice during the so-called “hacking” of the DNC’s computers, and the simultaneous revelations of Her Hillariness’ personal computer server to avoid official documentation requirements:

The laptop was taken by police following a report into data breaches inside congressional offices in Washington. Politico first reported that one staffer under investigation for the theft had worked for multiple Democrats in Washington, but had been fired after the alleged IT breaches. . . . The Capitol Police and other agencies are investigating Imran Awan, who has run technology for Wasserman Schultz since 2005. He was banned from the House network in February on suspicion of data breaches and theft.

And for some reason, Rep. Schultz was pretty aggressive in trying to get that laptop back from investigators:

Instead of following the “leaks du jour,” which are essentially quibbles and diversions meant to defend the Bifactional Ruling Party from Trump and the Deplorable Outsiders, it’s time the Justice Department and the media take a good hard look at all the smoking guns laying around Hillary and her hacks over the last year. I suspect that lack of focus is the main ingredient in Trump’s alleged dissatisfaction with Attorney General Jeff Sessions.  As an aside, someone really needs to explain why FIVE Pakistani nationals were working on Congressional IT systems!  I happen to know a few Pakistanis, and as individuals they can be lovely people.  But hiring computer support from that nation — known to be inseparable from many radical Islamic groups and very good in the intelligence business — seems highly irresponsible.

It really is time to drain the swamp in D.C. and see who’s exposed when the sewage recedes.

Everything goes, nothing matters

Ever marvel at how little followup occurs in the coverage of the various headlines that briefly grab our attention each day?  Is nobody interested anymore in getting past first impressions and discovering the truth behind this constant chatter?

All of these stories have something in common: tons of unanswered questions, which the news media shows no interest whatsoever in following up on. And no consequences. People die, nations rise and fall, money disappears, and everybody forgets. This can’t just be about the diminishing returns of the grotesquely over-hyped “information age” — though the blowback from computers and all they have wrought may be tremendous. No, the memory hole is the truest signifier of the times we live in: the Age of Anything Goes and Nothing Matters.

The list at the link above doesn’t even touch on the seemingly endless flood of U.S. domestic political questions: Fast and Furious, Benghazi, the IRS suppression of political groups in a campaign year, and so on, and so on.

Short Attention Span Theater: there are many in this world counting on that effect to cover their guilty hides.  Expect more from your information sources.

There are some of us paying long-term attention, though.  And I’ll say this: when the day comes we decide enough’s enough and take the gloves off, watch out.  Those who’ve spent their days monitoring the Kardashians instead of the real world will have a hard time figuring out where the “sudden” whirlwind came from.

None of this is coincidence

The war on potentially incriminating electronic records continues in this Administration:

The Federal Election Commission recycled the computer hard drive of April Sands — a former co-worker of Lois Lerner’s — hindering an investigation into Sands’ partisan political activities, according to the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform.

Sands resigned from the Federal Election Commission in April after she admitted to violating the Hatch Act, which bars executive branch employees from engaging in partisan political activities on federal time and at federal facilities.

The twist is that Sands also worked under Lois Lerner when the ex-IRS agent — who is currently embroiled in a scandal over the targeting of conservative political groups — worked at the FEC’s enforcement division.

Seems like those who are ‘recycling hard drives’ and otherwise conveniently losing records ought to be held to account — as in: fired from their job and barred from any further Federal employment.  Maybe that would make it more difficult to find enablers to help the other, bigger, fish cover their tracks.  And yes — they are actively covering their tracks and impeding justice on multiple fronts:

The committee investigators were directed to a workspace at the regional office which was outfitted with cameras and microphones. Upon discovering they were being monitored, the aides requested to be moved.

“Am I surprised? No, I’m shocked,” Miller said. “The VA may ignore everybody, but I stress you will not ignore this committee anymore.”

The Under Secretary for Benefits apologized to the committee, clearly embarrassed.

“What occurred was not acceptable and not indicative in normal ways of which Ms. Ruben would behave,” Allison Hickey, the VA’s Undersecretary for Benefits, said. “I offer my sincere apologies to your staff and my commitment that it will not happen again. You’ll receive anything you need.”  ((Promises, promises…  — Jemison))

This will only stop if the American people loudly, consistently, and forcefully demand that it does.   Any wonder why the Administration is in such a rush to dilute said people with a massive influx of new arrivals?