There is a reason the US president does not want people reading evidence

There have been new developments in the impeachment case against Donald Trump, and our friend Keith has summed them up nicely for us. It is to be hoped that the testimony of Lev Parnas will be heard in the trial and that perhaps it will open the eyes of some of those republicans who have been wearing blinders. Thank you, Keith!


In an editorial by Neal Katyal and Joshua Geltzer yesterday in The Washington Post called “Lev Parnas and Rudy Giuliani have demolished Trump’s claims of innocence” (see link below), it lays bare false reasons of the US president using strong-arm tactics in Ukraine. Per the editorial:

“Americans who have been wondering why President Trump has taken the extraordinary step of trying to block every document from being released to Congress in his impeachment inquiry need wonder no longer. The new documents released Tuesday evening by the House Intelligence Committee were devastating to Trump’s continuing — if shifting — defense of his Ukraine extortion scandal, just days before his impeachment trial is likely to begin in the Senate. These new documents demolish at least three key defenses to which Trump and his allies have been clinging: that he was really fighting corruption when he pressured Ukraine on matters related to the…

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Impeachment Inquiry-Day Five

There is so much to write about that I simply cannot keep up … I need more than 24 hours in a day! Thankfully, our friend Jeff over at On the Fence Voters has written about yesterday’s testimony in the impeachment hearings by Gordon Sondland. I would only add that somebody needs to take Devin Nunes and Jim Jordan back to pre-school and let the adults get on with the business at hand! Thank you, Jeff, for this great summary of yesterday’s events!

On The Fence Voters

Another tough day for the POTUS

We’re now on day five of the impeachment inquiry, and once again, the current President of the United States is having another tough day. His million-dollar donor, Ambassador Gordon Sondland, not only through him under the bus, but also just about anyone else who’s involved in this fiasco.

I guess when a few years in prison might await, the generous donation to the President for an Ambassadorship doesn’t seem all that important. In the end, instead of pleading the fifth as many in the media had speculated he might do, Sondland decided to come clean–kind of.

After his first deposition Sondland came to the realization that based on testimony from others such as Ambassador William Taylor, his recollection was a bit hazy, which led him to amend some of his original statements. Then today, the Ambassador decided that the President, Secretary of State Mike…

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Questions … And More Questions

As most of you know, one of my favourite journalists is Nicholas Kristof of the New York Times.  Kristof has received two Pulitzer Prizes, for his coverage of China and of the genocide in Darfur.  He is often out and about covering humanitarian crises around the globe.  But, his political views back here at home are typically spot-on … his is the voice of calm, of reason amidst all the chaos.  His OpEd yesterday is no exception, as he weighs in on … what else?  Impeachment and Trump’s abuse of power.  His words are sound and well worth the read.

Mr. President, a Few Questions

nicholas-kristof-thumblargeBy Nicholas Kristof
Opinion Columnist
SEPT. 27, 2019

“Shall any man be above justice?” George Mason asked in 1787 at the Constitutional Convention. “Above all, shall that man be above it, who can commit the most extensive injustice?”

That was a central question for the framers of the Constitution — to what extent should impeachment be a check on a president? — and it’s the central question for our political system today.

President Trump’s bullying of Ukraine to target Joe Biden is parallel to the kinds of abuse that the framers discussed when they adopted the impeachment clause. What they fretted about was a leader who abused power — by colluding with a foreign country, James Madison suggested — and threatened the integrity of our system.

So, guided by those concerns of abuse of power, let’s see what the impeachment inquiry turns up. Among the areas that merit further investigation:

What was Russia’s role? Did Trump discuss Ukraine with Vladimir Putin in their June meeting in Osaka, in their Paris or Helsinki meetings last year, or in their July 31 phone call? Did Putin plant misinformation that Trump acted on?

In his July 25 call with Ukraine’s president, Volodymyr Zelensky, Trump raised the bizarre conspiracy theory that it had been Ukraine rather than Russia that had hacked Democratic emails. Doesn’t that sound as if it was translated from the original Russian?

Likewise, Trump’s distrust of his ambassador to Ukraine, Marie Yovanovitch, and his faith that a trove of dirt about Biden corruption was sitting in Ukraine waiting to be dug up — why, all this resembles what a skilled K.G.B. officer might say to manipulate a naïve American acolyte.

Certainly Putin benefited from Trump’s hold on nearly $400 million in military aid to Ukraine, from the American coolness toward Zelensky and from the sidelining of Ukraine experts such as Ambassador Yovanovitch.

There are whispers of this in the intelligence community, but let’s be clear that these are questions rather than allegations. Unfortunately, the Kremlin came out on Friday against releasing phone transcripts, and Trump has generally concealed details of his conversations with Putin — even taking away notes from an interpreter after one meeting.

Was there a substantial cover-up? The whistle-blower alleges a cover-up, in a complaint that the administration then tried to cover up. Hmm.

The rough transcript of Trump’s call with Zelensky was placed in an unusually secure system. Why?

Ukraine is a longtime Trump fixation, with the president tweeting as early as July 2017 about “Ukrainian efforts to sabotage Trump campaign.” Rudy Giuliani rode roughshod over policymakers in an attempt to hijack foreign policy formation, and the White House has never convincingly explained its hold on military assistance.

Did administration officials try to hide all of this? Did they impede Congress from providing oversight? Was there a cover-up of not just a call, but of a long-term pattern of abuse?

What were the roles of Vice President Mike Pence, Attorney General William Barr and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo? Pence dropped out of the delegation that attended Zelensky’s inauguration, seemingly as a way to pressure Zelensky to investigate the Bidens. Did Pence agree to this?

As for Barr, why did Trump repeatedly suggest him as a contact for Zelensky? And why did the Justice Department try to quash the whistle-blower complaint? Why does Barr regularly act as Trump’s cleanup man rather than as the nation’s lawyer?

Was Pompeo complicit in Trump’s efforts to shunt aside the State Department so that Giuliani could oversee relations with Ukraine? What role did Pompeo play in the recall of Ambassador Yovanovitch?

There’s much debate about whether Trump should or shouldn’t be impeached, but for now that seems to me to be premature. Before any impeachment vote, we need a substantial inquiry to determine facts.

Cass Sunstein, a Harvard Law School professor, has a smart book, “Impeachment: A Citizen’s Guide,” in which he advises people to think about whether they would favor or oppose impeachment if they felt the opposite about this president. In that spirit, I approach it this way: How would I feel about impeachment if these Ukraine revelations were about Barack Obama?

There’s a danger that Democrats rush this process in ways that antagonize swing voters, particularly when polls show that a majority of the public both disapproves of Trump’s conduct and does not favor impeachment.

In the end, Mitch McConnell may not even permit a Senate trial after an impeachment. Or if McConnell convenes a trial, he could immediately have the Republican majority vote to dismiss the case.

That makes it all the more important that the House impeachment inquiry meticulously gather information by a process that — to the extent possible in our polarized age — is perceived by the public as fair, deliberate and legitimate. The backdrop must be the question that George Mason properly posed more than two centuries ago: “Shall any man be above justice?”

Snarky Impeachment Snippets!

Y’know … I really wanted to write about almost anything except impeachment, Ukraine, Trump, Biden … the whole wacky mess.  Yes, it is probably the single most important thing happening in the U.S. today, and yes, I will continue writing about it, but I had hoped for a break tonight.  I was working on something else, but … it wasn’t going well, and the news of the moment kept distracting me and breaking into my beam of focus.  So, here I am with a couple of “Impeachment Snippets”!

Score one for the media …

I am not a fan of MSNBC, they are not among my lengthy list of ‘go-to’ resources, and I’ve never actually watched the network except for an occasional clip relevant to my topic at hand.  But, I must give them a thumbs-up for what they did yesterday afternoon.

Trump conducted his version of what passes for a press conference, scheduled at 4:00 p.m. yesterday.  The usual television media crowd was dancing attendance, and the major networks broke into their regularly scheduled programming to carry the event.

In the first seven minutes of his speech, without evidence, he alleged that former Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. and his son had profited from dealings in Ukraine (it should be noted that this has been investigated and debunked ad nauseam). He insulted journalists and accused The Washington Post of publishing a “fake article.” He asserted without evidence that Senator Chris Murphy of Connecticut had “threatened” Ukrainian officials and claimed that Democrats had timed their impeachment inquiry to disrupt his trip to the United Nations.  Not a single fact to be found amongst all the lies.

It was at this point that MSNBC made the decision to tune out and turn off.

“We hate to do this, really, but the president isn’t telling the truth.”

Those were the words of anchor Nicole Wallace as MSNBC cut the video as Trump was mid-sentence.  Now, you might argue that the public has a right to know what Trump is saying, that this was censorship in some form.  Another time, I might agree with you.  But, Trump thrives on the attention of the very media he calls the “enemy of the people”, and frankly, if he cannot tell the truth, then I don’t wish to hear what he says anyway.  And, there is no doubt that his words will be repeated ad nauseam on every other network and in the print media.  The public has a right to know … truth and facts.  When all we hear is lies … of what value is it?  None, it is merely a waste of our time.

Other networks handled the lies in different ways.  Wolf Blitzer of CNN told viewers at the end that “The president leveled several distortions, falsehoods in the course of that 45 minutes.”  His colleague, Jeffrey Toobin, was more direct, saying it was a “torrent of lies”.  ABC anchor George Stephanopoulos appeared onscreen halfway through the event, informing viewers that there was “no evidence” to support Mr. Trump’s claims about the Bidens. Andrea Mitchell, on NBC, said the accusations against Mr. Murphy were “contrary to any information we have.”

The networks are, each in its own way, trying to inform viewers of the facts, and I applaud them for that.  I still think MSNBC has the right idea, if for no other reason than … can you imagine Trump if he suddenly realized that the cameras had all stopped rolling?  He needs to be held to account for his words, and if the media gives him a free pass, they are pandering to him and doing We the People a great disservice.  So, in my book, MSNBC gets a thumbs-up for this one.  👍

A man of honour?  Maybe — the jury is still out.

Today, acting Director of National Intelligence (DNI), Joseph Maguire, will testify in both open and closed hearings before Congress about the report filed with his office by the unnamed whistleblower who provided the information about Trump’s phone call with Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky, among other things to which we are not yet privy.  Now, Maguire was somewhat unexpectedly thrust into this position last month when former DNI Dan Coats resigned.  You may remember that it was rumoured in White House circles that Coats was about to be fired because he was taking the matter of election security a little too seriously to suit Trump.

Knowing that in the past, those who testified before Congress were given strict guidance by the White House, i.e. Trump & Co., regarding what they could and could not discuss.  Maguire, it was reported by The Washington Post, threatened to resign over concerns that the White House might attempt to force him to stonewall Congress when he testifies.  Since that report yesterday, Maguire has denied that he threatened to resign, but after consideration, the Post stands by its story, which indicates a high probability of veracity.

It is said that Maguire pushed the White House to make an explicit legal decision on whether it would assert executive privilege over the whistleblower complaint.  My opinion?  If he cannot speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, then why waste time and money?  Thus far, every single person with the possible exception of Michael Cohen, who has testified before Congress as regards investigations into Trump’s likely crimes, has been stifled by Trump’s lawyers.  Is there any reason to believe that this time will be different?  I doubt it.

And about William Barr …

The Attorney General of the United States has proven time and time again that there are no boundaries to his corruption, no lengths to which he will not go to protect Trump from … well, Trump!  But this latest might well become his undoing, and frankly I hope it does, for he has proven he has no conscience, no dedication to right vs wrong, and no respect for the law of the land.

Among the recent eyebrow-raising issues …

  • Per the transcript of Trump’s call with the Ukraine president, he indicated that Barr was involved, or would be, with the attempt to dig up dirt on Joe Biden, saying “I would like to have the Attorney General call you or your people and I would like you to get to the bottom of it. I will ask [Rudolph Giuliani] to call you along with the Attorney General.”
  • The Justice Department, i.e. AG William Barr, gave the DNI a written legal opinion demanding his refusal to turn over the whistleblower’s complaint, as the DNI was required by law, to do.

At this point we should remind ourselves that the entire reason Barr is Attorney General is that he made clear that, unlike his predecessor Jeff Sessions, he would make protecting Trump his highest priority.  Think about that one for a bit, my friends.

Well, I have exceeded my self-imposed word limit, and I need to get busy on my music post, so I will now return you to your regularly scheduled activities … that is, if I haven’t already put you to sleep.

A Good Deal!!!

I don’t know about you guys, but I could use a little humour at Trump’s expense today.  Andy Borowitz is always good for a few laughs.  This column of his is from 24 January, six days ago, but it’s still funny.

borowitz-andyWASHINGTON (The Borowitz Report)—In a bold initiative aimed at ending the shutdown, congressional Democrats on Thursday agreed to fund a border wall and reopen the government if Donald Trump leaves the country forever.

Calling the deal “a huge win for America,” the Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi, said that Trump would get the wall he wanted plus the opportunity to do something “incredibly patriotic” for his country.

Pelosi brushed aside criticism of the offer’s 5.7-billion-dollar price tag, telling reporters, “When you consider what we are getting in return, nine trillion dollars would be a bargain.”

But, even as Pelosi touted the offer, some details remained unresolved, such as finding a country willing to accept Trump.

Although Russia has a practice of providing country houses to former leaders such as Nikita Khrushchev and Boris Yeltsin, it is unclear whether Trump’s two years of service to the Kremlin qualify him for such accommodations.

The White House offered no official response to the Democrats’ offer, but Trump’s lawyer Rudy Giuliani gave it a full-throated endorsement during an appearance on CNN.

“He should absolutely take this deal,” Giuliani said. “I mean, if he stays in the country, he’s probably going to prison.”

And in case that didn’t quite bring a smile to your face … try this!  I call it “My Dream”

From Hero To Laughingstock …

I am quite certain that I’ve mentioned this before, but it bears repeating.  I once had tremendous respect for New York’s former mayor, Rudy Giuliani.  Nothing can or should take away from the fact that he, more than any other single person in the U.S., brought calm in a stormy sea, brought reason into chaos, and earned the respect of New Yorkers in the days after the 9/11 terrorist attacks.  His was the voice of reason, he was the one who said, “Calm down … BREATHE … we can do this … we can get through this.  Yes, we have been hurt, but … we are NEW YORKERS and we will be okay.” Nothing can take that away.  However, at some point between September 11th 2001 and August 19th 2018, the man lost his bloody marbles!!!

Giuliani frequently appears on the Sunday morning news shows to lie for defend Donald Trump, and yesterday was no exception.  Appearing on Meet the Press with Chuck Todd, Giuliani proved once again that “Yes, I am an idiot”. After a question from Todd regarding the Mueller investigation …

“No, it isn’t truth! Truth isn’t truth!”

Say … huh???  Truth isn’t truth?  Kellyanne warned us some 19 months ago that there would be alternative facts, and later she even proved there is an alternative history, when she spoke of the “Bowling Green Massacre” that never happened.  So, it follows that if there are alternative facts, and alternative history, there must also be an alternative language, right?  Up is down.  Black is white.  Left is right.  Candy is healthy, and broccoli will cause your teeth to rot.  Truth is lies and lies are truth.  Donald Trump is wonderful, and Barack Obama was a lying, dirty scoundrel who was born in Kenya.  Applause, applause, applause …

They had fun with this on Twitter, of course …Tweettweet-2


And then, naturally, Andy Borowitz writing for the New Yorker got in on the act …

Putin Reportedly Close to Firing Giuliani

MOSCOW (The Borowitz Report)—Vladimir Putin is reportedly “very close” to firing Rudolph Giuliani as Donald J. Trump’s attorney, a source close to the Russian President confirmed on Monday.

According to the source, Putin allowed Trump to hire Giuliani in the first place because “it’s important to let Trump think that he has some autonomy from time to time,” but now the Russian President has apparently determined that “enough is enough.”

Over the next few days, the source indicated, Putin is likely to replace Giuliani with a handpicked successor, Arkady Lubetkin, a criminal-defense attorney who has represented several prominent Russian Mob figures.

After hearing anecdotal reports of Giuliani’s appearance on NBC’s “Meet the Press” on Sunday, Putin initially theorized that the nonsensical nature of Giuliani’s utterances had to be chalked up to “an error in translation,” the source said.

After reading an official transcript of Giuliani’s statements, however, the Russian President was apparently “flabbergasted.”

“Pravda is not pravda?” Putin reportedly said. “What is this bullshit?”

Today, Giuliani attempted to extricate himself from his own words …

“My statement was not meant as a pontification on moral theology but one referring to the situation where two people make precisely contradictory statements, the classic “he said,she said” puzzle. Sometimes further inquiry can reveal the truth other times it doesn’t.”

Sometimes it is best just to learn when to keep one’s mouth shut, Rudy.

It is rather a sad statement on our present situation that 99.5% of our humour comes from our own government.  Equally sad when a man who was once a hero is now a laughingstock.


Please bear with me today … I’m having one of those rare snarky moments …

It’s an age-old tactic:  the best defense is a good offense.  And folks, nobody … nobody … knows how to be more offensive than Donald Trump!  His latest tactic is funny, if you think about it.  Consider the little boy who stole a cookie from the cookie jar, and when his mother confronts him, with crumbs still on his little face, he says, “Me???  I didn’t take no cookie, mama.”  And for good measure, he bats his big brown eyes in feigned innocence. hand in cookie jar But mama has evidence, so she persists, and then the little boy changes tactics.  “Well, if I did take the cookie, it wasn’t a bad thing, ‘cause I was hungry.”  See what he did there?  He denied, but then once he realized he was caught dead-to-rights, he swerved to saying that even if he did, it wasn’t a crime.  Hmmmm … sound familiar?

First, Trump has been swearing loudly that he didn’t obstruct justice and that there was no collusion between his campaign (more likely himself) and the Russians (his buddy Vlad).  Loudly and obnoxiously.  For a loooonnnggg time.  Then, all of a sudden, there is his mouthpiece Rudy G on television saying that even if there was collusion, it’s not a crime.

Say what???  I thought you said there was no collusion???

who meThen, there’s that infamous Trump Tower meeting between Don Trump, Jr., Paul Manafort, Jared Kushner, and at least five other people, including Russian lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya that took place on June 9th 2016.  First, Trump denied all knowledge and claimed that the meeting, of which he ‘knew nothing’, was about adoptions of Russian children by Americans.  Then Junior admitted that the intent of the meeting was to gather damaging information to use against Hillary Clinton in the presidential campaign.  Dirty pool?  Oh yeah … big time.  Then it came out that Trump (Senior) actually drafted Junior’s initial false statement!  Trump, who cannot string 10 words together into a coherent sentence???  And the meeting took place one floor above Trump’s own office and he knew nothing?

But now … wait for it … it gets even better!  He just cannot let sleeping dogs lie or keep his mouth shut, so this morning he tweeted …

“Fake News reporting, a complete fabrication, that I am concerned about the meeting my wonderful son, Donald, had in Trump Tower. This was a meeting to get information on an opponent, totally legal and done all the time in politics – and it went nowhere. I did not know about it!” – 8:35 AM – Aug 5, 2018

Wait!!!  What happened to the adoption thing?  Does anybody believe a single word that comes from his mouth???  If you do, once again allow me to show you the bridge I have for sale.  I would bet every last dollar I have that Trump was well aware of the meeting beforehand and perhaps even had a hand in setting it up.

And why … can anybody explain why he has to do these weird contortions with his face?  I don’t typically put pictures of him on this blog, for I am offended by just the sight of him. And I do not usually resort to mocking people for their looks, either, but this morning I am like the lion with a thorn in her paw, and in the mood to let ‘er fly, so look …

President Trump Holds Make America Great Again Rally In Pennsylvania

Personally, I think he looks constipated most of the time.

And on that note, I shall leave off and try to make myself useful for the remains of the day.  Have a great Sunday evening, folks!

Above the Law?

The headline in the New York Times reads:

Trump Tweet Asserts an ‘Absolute Right’ to Pardon Himself

“Trump declared Monday that the appointment of the special counsel in the Russia investigation is “totally UNCONSTITUTIONAL!” and asserted that he has the power to pardon himself, raising the prospect that he might take extraordinary action to immunize himself from the ongoing probe.”

The first thing that comes to mind, of course, is that his very statement is an admission of guilt.  If he were not guilty, if he had nothing to hide, then why not sit down and shut up? Why even stir the already-muddy waters with such a foolish, bombastic statement?

Two things last week set the tone for this morning’s tweet and gave every indication that, no matter what evidence Robert Mueller’s investigation turns up that Donald Trump broke the law, that he knowingly and willingly colluded with the Russians to affect the outcome of the 2016 election, he will not be found guilty of a crime.  The first was a 20-page letter by Trump’s team of attorneys, the second an interview by Rudy Giuliani on This Week with George Stephanopoulos.

Both of these could be viewed as just more of the same rhetoric that we have been hearing for a year now, but I sense something more ominous.  If, as I believe, there is ample evidence that Trump and his campaign advisors did collude with Russia, did break the law, then Donald Trump ought to be removed from office.  But, if he isn’t, if Congress allows his team of lawyers to spin it in such a way that the president cannot be convicted of a crime because the president has unlimited power, then the United States will no longer in any sense of the word be a democratic republic.  If, as Giuliani suggests, the president can simply pardon himself of any and all crimes against the nation, then we will have become a dictatorship without recourse.

First, a bit about the letter.  Apparently lawyers are poor communicators, for it should not have required 20 pages to say what they had to say.  I actually did read the letter in its entirety on Sunday morning, and for some reason it took me a couple of hours, for I kept falling asleep.  I have included the link to the entire letter, if you’re interested, but there are a few salient points.  First, the position that the president cannot break the law, simply because he is the president – he IS the law …

“It remains our position that the President’s actions here, by virtue of his position as the chief law enforcement officer, could neither constitutionally nor legally constitute obstruction because that would amount to him obstructing himself, and that he could, if he wished, terminate the inquiry, or even exercise his power to pardon if he so desired.”

Then an attempt to delegitimize the investigation …

“This encumbrance has been only compounded by the astounding public revelations about the corruption within the FBI and Department of Justice which appears to have led to the alleged Russia collusion investigation and the establishment of the Office of Special Counsel in the first place.”

They place Trump above the law, hinting that he cannot be subpoenaed …

“As you know, under our system of government, the President is not readily available to be interviewed. The records and testimony we have, pursuant to the President’s directive, already voluntarily provided to your office allow you to delve into the conversations and actions that occurred in a significant and exhaustive manner, including but not limited to the testimony of the President’s interlocutors themselves. In light of these voluntary offerings, your office clearly lacks the requisite need to personally interview the President.”

There is an attempt to justify Trump’s firing of FBI Director James Comey, which Trump already admitted was an attempt to shut down the FBI investigation into collusion …

“As you know, and as Mr. Comey himself has acknowledged, a President can fire an FBI Director at any time and for any reason.  No President has ever faced charges of obstruction merely for exercising his constitutional authority.”

And then they come to the point, that Trump has the right to shut down any investigation at his own will (or whim) …

“A President can also order the termination of an investigation by the Justice Department or FBI at any time and for any reason.  We remind you of these facts simply because even assuming, arguendo, that the President did order the termination of an investigation (and the President, along with Mr. Comey in his testimony and in his actions, have made it clear that he did not) this could not constitute obstruction of justice.”

Discrediting Comey …

“The circumstance in which this memo arose — several months after the conversation and only after Mr. Comey was fired in disgrace — raises serious doubts about its veracity, if indeed it even exists.”

And finally, 20 pages later, these verbose lawyers conclude with …

“As recognized by the Framers in Article II and as articulated in jurisprudence, the President’s prime function as the Chief Executive ought not be hampered by requests for interview. Having him testify demeans the Office of the President before the world.”

Allow me to correct that last statement.  Having him IN the office demeans the Office of the President before the world.  (I’ve been trying to hold back the snarky … really I have!)

As you can see, the entire tone of the lawyers’ letter is that Mueller is wasting his time, Trump is too important to be bothered with such a silly little thing as testifying, and that if he chooses, he can call off the entire investigation and give himself a blanket pardon.  But then came Rudy Giuliani’s interview on This Week, and it became even more clear that the goal of the legal team is to discredit and disavow the investigation and the evidence.

If you wish to watch the segment, it is just over 14 minutes, or you can read the transcript.

Rudy’s answers were long-winded and sometimes confusing, but the gist of what he said was that he doesn’t think it’s right for Trump to have to testify before the Special Counsel, but if they promise to be fair and keep it short, to about 5-6 points, then maybe.  He also said he’s pretty sure that if push came to shove, Trump could simply pardon himself.  And there is one snippet I must include here, for it is mind-blowing:

“Look, for every one of these things he did, we can write out five reasons why he did it. If four of them are completely innocent and one of them is your assumption that it’s a guilty motive, which the president would deny, you can’t possibly prosecute him. Or recommend impeachment.”

To me, Rudy’s tone came off in two ways:  1) Heh heh heh … boys will be boys … heh heh heh.  2) Let’s hurry and get this over with so we can go back to subjugating the American people!

Giuliani said he wants Mueller to wrap up this investigation by September 1st so that it doesn’t interfere with the midterms and so “to get this long nightmare over for the American public”.  The American public is not the one having the nightmare … we support the investigation fully, for we want the truth, and we want all those, including Donald Trump, to pay for their crimes against us.  And I hope it does interfere with the midterms, for Congress has too long been protecting a criminal, licking his boots, at the expense of We The People, and we need to be reminded of that as we head to the polls on November 6th.

Legal experts appear to have no definitive answers for us either, for this entire fiasco is without precedent.  Neal Katyal, a former acting solicitor general, said, “The idea that a president can’t obstruct justice died with King George III, with a brief attempt at revival by Richard Nixon.”

Jed Shugerman, a Fordham University Law School professor, said, “There is a real practical consequence for the republic if Trump is able to win the silence of other defendants with the use of these pardons,” Shugerman said. “If he’s making an implicit threat that he could escalate this with pardons, there’s nothing in the letter to indicate that he’s not willing to pardon himself.”

I could go on, but this post already exceeds what I consider an appropriate length, so I leave you with one thought:  If Donald Trump is above the law, if he cannot be punished for crimes against the nation, for election-tampering, for collusion and obstruction of justice, then can we still call ourselves a ‘democracy’?  I think you all know the answer.