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Monday Open Thread

Trump continues his mismanagement of national and international affairs. Turnover continues, as does his war of words with James Comey.

I'm back to writing about El Chapo -- as soon as I finish the Government's 107 page outline of evidence it intends to introduce at his trial.

This is an open thread, all topics welcome.

< Trump Granted Permission to "Intervene" in Cohen's Request for Restraining Order | Hannity and Cohen >
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    Holy crap. Cohen's third client is (5.00 / 2) (#2)
    by Anne on Mon Apr 16, 2018 at 01:34:14 PM EST
    Sean Hannity!  

    This is some kind of hilarious.

    Twitter (none / 0) (#3)
    by Ga6thDem on Mon Apr 16, 2018 at 01:51:24 PM EST
    is exploding with laughter over that one.

    Parent
    Oh yes, we tweeters (none / 0) (#5)
    by Towanda on Mon Apr 16, 2018 at 02:27:14 PM EST
    are having fun today.

    One tweeter did the dirty work for us and tuned into Hannity's radio show.  Only music and a couple of clips filled fully the first ten minutes, followed by Hannity finally coming on to say he would conintue to play clips while he figured out what to say.

    He certainly has had plenty to say about the FBI raid on Cohen, without saying a word on the clear conflict of interest.

    Parent

    I think this is my (5.00 / 2) (#4)
    by Anne on Mon Apr 16, 2018 at 02:22:08 PM EST
    favorite so far.

    Caption:  And then the judge said, "It's Sean Hannity!"

    hilarious (none / 0) (#21)
    by Jeralyn on Mon Apr 16, 2018 at 05:44:29 PM EST
    I love it

    Parent
    Contradiction (5.00 / 1) (#7)
    by Repack Rider on Mon Apr 16, 2018 at 02:59:42 PM EST
    Hannity says definitively that he is not a client of Cohen's, despite what Mr. Cohen claims.

    Seems to me that voids any claim of privilege.

    I loved his description (5.00 / 1) (#9)
    by CaptHowdy on Mon Apr 16, 2018 at 03:21:06 PM EST
    Of their relationship.  He never paid him as a lawyer but "consulted" him on some legal "issues".

    Ya, that's called "fixer".

    Parent

    I'm not a client (5.00 / 1) (#19)
    by Repack Rider on Mon Apr 16, 2018 at 04:44:57 PM EST
    ...of Mr. Cohen's any more than Sean Hannity claims to be, but it never occurred to me to tell Mr. Cohen not to say I was.

    Parent
    Hannity says (none / 0) (#22)
    by jondee on Mon Apr 16, 2018 at 05:52:38 PM EST
    he "might've handed Cohen ten bucks" at some point. Apparently he can't remember..

    There's no way around it, somebody's lying here. My guess is it's a certain right wing bullet-head who's liable to hang himself the milisecond he deviates from the script.

    Parent

    Was (5.00 / 2) (#24)
    by FlJoe on Mon Apr 16, 2018 at 06:58:53 PM EST
    he getting a lap dance?

    Parent
    Seriously! (none / 0) (#25)
    by vml68 on Mon Apr 16, 2018 at 07:13:56 PM EST
    I've read that Cohen's net worth is $100 million.
    And, he took Hannity's $10? Hilarious!!!!

    Parent
    Nick Ackerman (none / 0) (#26)
    by CaptHowdy on Mon Apr 16, 2018 at 07:26:29 PM EST
    Just said for privilege to be used in NY state there has to be something called "an engagement letter"

    Watching this unfold you have to be impressed with the strategic skills of Mueller and Rosenstein in putting this in the SDNY.  It seems clear this could have been done under Mueller.  But now it's state level.  No pardons no dismissals no exit

    Parent

    Judge Wood's court (SDNY) is a federal court (5.00 / 1) (#31)
    by Peter G on Mon Apr 16, 2018 at 08:25:11 PM EST
    and is not governed by NY law, but rather by federal law. And I'm not so sure it would be true under NY law that there would be no atty-client privilege without an engagement letter. Does not sound right to me, although I see the NY state statute says, "in the course of professional employment." Admittedly, I am not a NY lawyer.

    Parent
    Nick Ackerman (none / 0) (#35)
    by CaptHowdy on Mon Apr 16, 2018 at 08:35:49 PM EST
    Is a pretty smart guy. And a lawyer.  I would not expect him to say something on national tv that was so obviously incorrect.

    Actually I've heard that more than once from lawyers today

    Parent

    Doesn't sound right (5.00 / 2) (#32)
    by MKS on Mon Apr 16, 2018 at 08:25:34 PM EST
    The privilege attaches when a client seeks legal advice from a lawyer.  

    Retainer agreements and payments are helpful evidence but not necessarily required.

    Parent

    VOX (none / 0) (#33)
    by CaptHowdy on Mon Apr 16, 2018 at 08:30:38 PM EST
    In the Cohen case, it appears that he's currently under investigation for violations of federal law -- specifically, bank fraud, wire fraud, and campaign finance violations. But bank fraud is also a state crime, meaning that Cohen could be prosecuted on that charge by a New York district attorney, though it's not currently clear what the theory behind the bank fraud allegations is.

    (While the Constitution prohibits double jeopardy, or prosecuting someone twice for the same crime, there is nothing stopping state and federal agencies from bringing similar criminal charges against someone based on the same criminal act -- the "separate sovereigns" doctrine.)

    I asked Keith Whittington, a politics professor at Princeton University, whether Cohen could be pardoned by President Trump for any federal charges but still brought to trial on state charges.

    "It could easily happen if there are several different actions that were legally problematic," Whittington told me, "but it could also happen even if the same action (or related set of actions) violated both federal and state law. Just to take a high-profile, but very different, case -- Dylann Roof was charged with both federal and state crimes resulting from his shootings at the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston."



    Parent
    Forgot the link (none / 0) (#36)
    by CaptHowdy on Mon Apr 16, 2018 at 08:38:02 PM EST
    MKS (none / 0) (#37)
    by CaptHowdy on Mon Apr 16, 2018 at 08:46:31 PM EST
    This was just discussed at some length on Chris Hayes show.  By two lawyers Ackerman being one.  I suggest watching it.  It should be up soon.

    They agreed that money exchanged means nothing really.  But there has to be a relationship.  An official agreement.

    Not a lawyer and I definitely don't play one here.  God knows there is enough of that

    I recommend you watch the discussion.

    Parent

    Not sure about that (none / 0) (#39)
    by MKS on Mon Apr 16, 2018 at 08:58:42 PM EST
    Here is a blurb from Witkin, considered an authoritative source on California law:

     

    And the relationship may arise from a preliminary consultation by a prospective client seeking and receiving legal advice, even though no formal contract of employment or representation in litigation results from the meeting. (Miller v. Metzinger (1979) 91 C.A.3d 31, 39, 40, 154 C.R. 22.) (See Pound v. DeMera DeMera Cameron (2005) 135 C.A.4th 70, 76, 36 C.R.3d 922, infra, § 114 [attorney-client relationship was formed when attorney being interviewed for possible representation of controlling shareholders was given confidential information by corporate counsel conducting interview]; Rest.3d, The Law Governing Lawyers § 14; 7 Am.Jur.2d (2007 ed.), Attorneys at Law § 137.)

    1 Witkin, California Procedure (5th ed. 2018) Attorney § 42

    No "formal" agreement needed; maybe New York is different.

    Parent

    "Witkin. considered an authoritative (none / 0) (#47)
    by oculus on Tue Apr 17, 2018 at 08:25:59 AM EST
    source on California law,...".

    Has Bernie been superseded?

    Parent

    I suppose (5.00 / 1) (#51)
    by MKS on Tue Apr 17, 2018 at 10:52:44 AM EST
    one could still call him "the" authoritative source...

    Parent
    I think there's a difference between a (none / 0) (#40)
    by Anne on Mon Apr 16, 2018 at 08:59:02 PM EST
    retainer agreement and an engagement letter.

    My familiarity is with engagement letters, which do speak to fees and costs, but also define what the engagement is - estate planning, estate/trust administration (the other areas of law have their own version, but these are the ones I know best).  I can't tell you how many meetings I've sat in on where attorneys discuss what does and doesn't need to be in an engagement letter...

    Some of this is driven by liability issues and what our malpractice carrier wants to see in these letters - because when disputes arise, being able to point to the EL goes a long way to settling them.  Files aren't even supposed to be open for billing without one.  Not that people don't find ways around that for a time, but it can be a problem when, months down the road, the client's complaining about the bill, doesn't want to pay and no one can find anywhere in the system the EL that spells it out - or can't prove the client ever got it.

    I imagine this is pretty SOP in most firms, but I think what may be going on in the Cohen case is that there's some question as to when he's acting as someone's attorney, and when he's just being the fixer.  Are these the same thing?  I guess they could be, but I don't know that they have to be.

    One question I'd like the answer to is, does Michael Cohen have a list of people he's fixed things for where he wasn't providing legal advice?  

    I'm thinking it's a much longer list.

    Parent

    Sure (none / 0) (#41)
    by MKS on Mon Apr 16, 2018 at 09:04:48 PM EST
    Attorneys try to limit their liability by expressly stating the scope of the representation--in a "retainer agreement" or "engagement letter."

    I think the term "engagement letter" is the more modern, sophisticated term. Also, probably more accurate.  An agreement between a lawyer and client need not provide for a "retainer" payment.

    Oy, I am going to put myself to sleep writing this stuff.  

    Parent

    A point Rachel made (none / 0) (#42)
    by CaptHowdy on Mon Apr 16, 2018 at 09:05:11 PM EST
    Over and over, as she does, was the goal of the prosecutors was to establish that Cohen wasn't really much of a lawyer.  And just because you have a law degree doesn't mean every conversation you have is privileged  

    Parent
    Yessiree, Batman (5.00 / 1) (#43)
    by MKS on Mon Apr 16, 2018 at 09:15:36 PM EST
    State level? (none / 0) (#29)
    by linea on Mon Apr 16, 2018 at 08:21:57 PM EST
    The United States District Court for the Southern District of New York (in case citations, S.D.N.Y.) is a federal district court.

    Parent
    I think this case is still federal, Howdy. (none / 0) (#30)
    by caseyOR on Mon Apr 16, 2018 at 08:24:03 PM EST
    The SDNY is a federal district court. The prosecutor is a U.S. attorney, not a district attorney or a state's attorney. Cases brought in the SDNY are federal cases, not state cases.

    So, I believe the President can issue pardons in cases brought in the SDNY.

    Parent

    No 5 for you Casey (5.00 / 1) (#38)
    by CaptHowdy on Mon Apr 16, 2018 at 08:48:03 PM EST
    Go figure

    Parent
    Totally non-political: Greek recipe time (5.00 / 3) (#52)
    by Zorba on Tue Apr 17, 2018 at 11:49:28 AM EST
    I am making Greek Avgolemono (egg-lemon) soup.  My brother calls this "chicken soup for the Greek soul."  It's a cold and miserable day here (in mid-April, for pity's sake!) so soup is totally appropriate.

    Here is our family's recipe, for those who don't have it:

    One large chicken, cut up
    One onion, quartered
    Two celery stalks, quartered
    Two carrots, quartered
    Two cloves garlic
    Two-four chicken boullion cubes
    One cup rice
    Four eggs, separated
    Juice of two lemons

    Simmer chicken parts in water, adding chicken bullion cubes, onion, carrots, celery, and garlic. When done, skim out the veggies, set the chicken aside, and skim the fat from the stock. (make sure you have about 8 cups--add canned stock or water plus boullion cubes to make 8 cups, if necessary). Bring the stock to a boil. Add 1/2 to 1 cup rice (depending on how "ricey" you like it). Reduce heat and simmer until rice is done. You can add some of the chicken meat, diced, if you want. Remove the pot from the heat. Separate 4 eggs. Beat egg whites until they peak.  Beat the yolks.  Stir in the beaten yolks, then slowly add the juice of two lemons, beating the whole time. Slowly add the stock, a little at a time, while beating, until you have added about two cups worth. Then pour the mixture slowly back into the pot, stirring gently all the while.
    (Take the skin off of the chicken pieces and brown the chicken in butter to serve alongside, or save the meat that you haven't added to the soup for another use.)

    NB:  You really have to be slow and careful adding the lemon juice, and especially the chicken stock.  Otherwise, you wind up with egg drop soup, which is not the result called for in this recipe.
    We serve this with crusty bread.  And a small Greek salad on the side.

    at it's best! (1.00 / 1) (#98)
    by thietbinhabeproyal on Fri Apr 20, 2018 at 09:55:47 PM EST
    at it's best!

    Site Violator. (none / 0) (#99)
    by MileHi Hawkeye on Fri Apr 20, 2018 at 10:55:05 PM EST
    I'm starting to warm up (none / 0) (#1)
    by jondee on Mon Apr 16, 2018 at 12:28:39 PM EST
    to the name El Trumpo, if that wouldn't be some sort of trademark infringement..

    Got to see a couple of Howdy's TV (none / 0) (#6)
    by McBain on Mon Apr 16, 2018 at 02:33:31 PM EST
    recommendations...

    I enjoyed the first two episodes of AMC's The Terror.  I like the casting of the actors who played King George from The Crown and Julius Ceaser and Brutus from HBO's Rome.

    I didn't really get into the first episode of Lost In Space on Netflix.  Too much kid stuff.  I might give it another try to see what they do with Parker Posey .

    I finished the first season of Seth McFarland's Star Trek parody The Orville.  It's a crazy show that no one was asking for but I'm looking forward to season 2.  

    Lost in Space - a review (none / 0) (#8)
    by linea on Mon Apr 16, 2018 at 03:04:43 PM EST
    The previous film was horrible. Matt LeBlanc is as horrible an actor as the animated space monkey in that film. The comic relief was supposed to be Penny's vlogs and while they aren't actually amusing, her character is the only entertaining thing in the film.

    The new reboot on Netflix (season 1 with 10 episodes) spends considerable time on character development and, like the previous film, the show is meant to be serious not campy. The female Dr. Smith is entertaining and the series has a new take on the robot which is interesting.

    But other than Dr. Smith, the characters are uninteresting despite the time they spend to develop them. Don West is initially a believable character but they turn him into a caricature. Will is especially uninteresting as a character though at random moments he is a boy-genius who saves the day.

    The entire first season is about being stranded on a planet rather than being Lost in Space and provides the backstory for future seasons (i.e., the season ends with the equivalent of `to be continued'). Some dialog is tedious, there are pointless scenes, and some situations seem to have no purpose other than to present an unrealistic science-y solution. I felt they really stretched the story to make 10 episodes from what should have been five.

    Still, I did watch all 10 episodes, though I confess I fast-forwarded through some boring dialog, so I suppose it's worth watching. I might watch the second season (April 2020?) if the show is renewed to see if the writing and pace of the plot has improved. Maybe.

    Parent

    I realize you believe (none / 0) (#13)
    by Chuck0 on Mon Apr 16, 2018 at 04:02:53 PM EST
    that anything created in movies or television before you were born is just cr*p, but for context, in the original Lost in Space television series, they were marooned on a planet as well, not "lost in space."


    Parent
    My (none / 0) (#15)
    by FlJoe on Mon Apr 16, 2018 at 04:12:29 PM EST
    recollection is that they traveled to a different planet every week, where they played out the same trite plot.

    FTR: I despised that show, but have definitely used the catch phrase, "Danger, Will Robison" a time or two.

    Parent

    I loved the show (none / 0) (#16)
    by CaptHowdy on Mon Apr 16, 2018 at 04:19:41 PM EST
    at least in the B&W years.  later when it went to color it got to dumb even for me in the early 60s.  This series is definitely not that series.

    Parent
    BTW (none / 0) (#18)
    by CaptHowdy on Mon Apr 16, 2018 at 04:35:15 PM EST
    I agree with what you said in the closed thread about Comey being asked the right questions.  Even if I can see the logic in what he says about both investigations.  Which I thought was the most interesting part of that interview.

    To be clear, I think Comey is a bit of a tool.

    One thing that made me laugh was after throwing shade at Trump for his tanning bed goggles, he shows up for his "big interview" with tanning bed goggles.

    Parent

    Yes (5.00 / 1) (#20)
    by FlJoe on Mon Apr 16, 2018 at 04:59:53 PM EST
    Mr. Comey, if you had thought that tRump was going to win, would you have disclosed the investigation of tRump? What about if you thought it was a dead heat? There are no good to that if you ask me.

    He put his thumb on the scales of our Democracy and he will spend the rest of his life trying to weasel out of it.

    Parent

    A Quiet Place - a film review (none / 0) (#10)
    by linea on Mon Apr 16, 2018 at 03:23:23 PM EST
    When the film ended I thought, `It's a good story.' When the film started I was somewhat irritated with the zombie TV show device of adults irresponsibly and repeatedly allowing a child to wander unattended.

    Later in the film I was STARTLED several times. I also CRINGED during several scenes.  But most things in this film are predictable perhaps even formulaic. The monsters are never frightening and for me it was more about being occasionally startled or cringing or wincing in discomfort at other's pain or distress.

    However, I did enjoy watching this film. But maybe some of that was because my friend snuck a banana milkshake topped with whipped cream into the theatre for me so I was in a pretty good mood. I recommend this film because overall it's a good story. Bring a banana milkshake.

    Parent

    It's not easy to make a monster movie (5.00 / 1) (#28)
    by McBain on Mon Apr 16, 2018 at 08:14:06 PM EST
    I'm getting tired of the super-fast moving creature.  It's sloppy film making that takes some of the tension away.  

    I give Jim from the Office credit for making an above average sci-fi horror film.  I hope he continues as a write/director.
     

    Parent

    Those ones from the 50s (none / 0) (#34)
    by jondee on Mon Apr 16, 2018 at 08:31:22 PM EST
    seemed to always have slow-moving monsters, moving relentlessly forward at glacial speed in pursuit of the young woman in a tight skirt who trips over a tree root and twists her ankle. And then the leading man shows up and empties his revolver into the monster and throws his gun at it after he's out of bullets..

    Parent
    There is an old joke (none / 0) (#53)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Apr 17, 2018 at 12:28:18 PM EST
    About what word happen in a showdown between the Stormtroopers from STAR WARS and the Red Shirts from STAR TREK.

    The Stormtroopers would miss every shot and the Red Shirts would die anyway.


    Parent

    I think I was flashing on (5.00 / 1) (#73)
    by jondee on Tue Apr 17, 2018 at 08:12:41 PM EST
    "Cheapness" and It Conquered The World for a minute there..

    Parent
    I have always said that (none / 0) (#44)
    by Repack Rider on Mon Apr 16, 2018 at 09:32:48 PM EST
    ... the only people who have never seen a "slasher" movie are the people in them.

    First girl who takes her shirt off dies en flagrante.

    Villain is dispatched, then everyone turns their back and walks ten feet away, leaving the weapon next to the prone body.

    Surprise, he isn't dead.

    Parent

    The only time that scenario (5.00 / 1) (#61)
    by jondee on Tue Apr 17, 2018 at 05:00:29 PM EST
    was pulled off really effectively, imo, was in Wait Until Dark, when you think the beleaguered Audrey Hepburn has finally dispatched Alan Arkin with a kitchen knife and then he suddenly leaps across the room.

    I think that scene was the original template for all the later you-think-he's-dead-but-he-isn't scenes in suspense thrillers.

    Parent

    There are so many examples of stupid/unrealistic (none / 0) (#49)
    by McBain on Tue Apr 17, 2018 at 09:50:38 AM EST
    movie character behavior in horror or action movies.  

    • Thinking the bad guy is dead when he isn't
    • Two or more people pointing guys at each other yet no one shoots
    • The hero taking the time to say a cool one-liner before killing the bad guy
    • The hero can easily knock out a security guard with a blow to the head so he can sneak into somewhere. This renders the guard unconscious for exactly the amount of time needed.  When he wakes up, just a little groggy, no serious injury.  


    Parent
    So much good tv (none / 0) (#11)
    by CaptHowdy on Mon Apr 16, 2018 at 03:29:51 PM EST
    So little time.

    Just watched the first episode of RELLIK, the new crime drama on MAX.  It's very good.  It's being told in an interesting backwards way.  It's British.  Speaking of BBC, KILLING EVE is a new series on BBC that's also very good.  It's about a female hitperson and the female LE person, Eve, seeking her.

    I am almost through LOST IN SPACE.  It's excellent.
    Ruffian, one thing you will notice is the robot is the Hodor of the series.

    The new season of WESTWORLD starts next Sunday.  Can't wait.  Last night in that time slot was the season finale of one of the oddest things on the small screen so far this year, HERE AND NOW.  I doubt it's for everyone but I loved it.  It was much like a stranger version of SIX FEET UNDER which was one of the show runners last efforts.

    The PBS documentary I worked on in 2004, ... (5.00 / 1) (#45)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Tue Apr 17, 2018 at 05:44:12 AM EST
    ... which originally aired in April 2005 on American Experience under the title "The Massie Affair," is airing once again tonight (April 17) on PBS American Experience, only it's now been inexplicably retitled as "The Island Murder."

    I wonder if Congressman Thomas Massie (R-KY) had anything to do with the film's name change? He is, after all, a direct relative and namesake of the late Lt. Thomas Massie, USN, who was a central figure in this sordid and tragic story, which had a profound influence upon the people of 1930s-era Honolulu.

    The Massie Affair was a major scandal both locally and nationally, one which rocked the ruling white territorial oligarchy, the local community and the dominant U.S. military establishment in the islands to their very cores and foundations. A classic tale of U.S. colonialism's effect upon America's Pacific territories, it still figures prominently in any retelling of modern Hawaii history post-annexation.

    But that said, it has always been known locally as either the Massie Affair or the Massie Case. The lynch murder of 20-year-old Joseph Kahahawai on January 8, 1932 by Lt. Massie and his mother-in-law Grace Bell Fortescue (a Washington, D.C. socialite and an heiress to the Bell Telephone fortune) comprised only one portion of the entire story.

    That's why I don't understand the film's name change. The only logical rationale I can fathom is that Congressman Massie resents the fact that his forebear is implicated front and center in the scandal, and he pressured PBS to change the name and perhaps minimize the association back in the Massie family's home state of Kentucky. (His base of voters likely doesn't watch PBS anyway.)

    Anyway, if any of you get the opportunity tonight, the film is well worth watching, regardless of its title. For TL's resident attorneys and legal beagles, it's worth noting that the second Massie trial -- which is covered in the film's second half -- marked the final appearance by the celebrated defense counsel Clarence Darrow in an American courtroom. Only this time, the iconic liberal lion was on the wrong side.

    Aloha.

    Parent

    Oh (none / 0) (#12)
    by CaptHowdy on Mon Apr 16, 2018 at 03:36:02 PM EST
    And THE EXPANSE just started a new season on SyFy.

    Very very good series.

    Parent

    IGN LOST IN SPACE review (none / 0) (#14)
    by CaptHowdy on Mon Apr 16, 2018 at 04:09:06 PM EST
    The Robinsons are back and better than ever.

    The Verdict
    Lost in Space is a stellar sci-fi adventure series that the whole family can enjoy. The Robinsons are a fascinating bunch that are fighting for their own survival as well as that of the human race. Over the course of its 10 episodes, you will be introduced to some other colorful characters like the roguish Don Smith, played by a charismatic Ignacio Serricchio and Victor Dhar, the political-type you just love to hate. If you take Smith out of the equation, the series is worth getting lost in

    FWIW

    I totally disagree about Dr Smith.  I think she is great.  So much better than the cartoonist guy in the series or Oldmans demented spider in the film.

    She is a true villain.  Evil smart and manipulative and a step ahead of everyone else  just like we like our villans

    Parent

    I got through (none / 0) (#54)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Apr 17, 2018 at 01:05:16 PM EST
    Season 1
    Freaking excellent.

    This is a much more interesting story than Leave it to Beaver on an uncharted planet.

    I can't tell you why without major spoilers.   But if you make it to the finale you will understand.

    Granted, you might need to NOT fast forward throughout all the "boring dialog"

    Parent

    Meanwhile (none / 0) (#17)
    by FlJoe on Mon Apr 16, 2018 at 04:30:43 PM EST
    from the pucker up for Putin files
    President Trump on Monday put the brakes on a preliminary plan to impose additional economic sanctions on Russia, walking back a Sunday announcement by U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley that the Kremlin had swiftly denounced as "international economic raiding."

    snip
    But Trump conferred with his national security advisers later Sunday and told them he was upset the sanctions were being officially rolled out because he was not yet comfortable executing them, according to several people familiar with the plan.
    Not comfortable?
    Anyway its good old Nikki under the bus
    The Trump team decided to publicly characterize Haley's announcement as a misstatement. White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said in a statement Monday: "We are considering additional sanctions on Russia and a decision will be made in the near future."


    New Yorker (none / 0) (#23)
    by CaptHowdy on Mon Apr 16, 2018 at 06:54:32 PM EST
    Michael Cohen and the End Stage of the Trump Presidency

    This is the week we know, with increasing certainty, that we are entering the last phase of the Trump Presidency. This doesn't feel like a prophecy; it feels like a simple statement of the apparent truth. I know dozens of reporters and other investigators who have studied Donald Trump and his business and political ties. Some have been skeptical of the idea that President Trump himself knowingly colluded with Russian officials. It seems not at all Trumpian to participate in a complex plan with a long-term, uncertain payoff.

    There is no longer one major investigation into Donald Trump, focussed solely on collusion with Russia. There are now at least two, including a thorough review of Cohen's correspondence. The information in his office and hotel room will likely make clear precisely how much the Trump family knew. What we already know is disturbing, and it is hard to imagine that the information prosecutors will soon learn will do anything but worsen the picture.

    Of course Trump is raging and furious and terrified. Prosecutors are now looking at his core. Cohen was the key intermediary between the Trump family and its partners around the world; he was chief consigliere and dealmaker throughout its period of expansion into global partnerships with sketchy oligarchs. He wasn't a slick politico who showed up for a few months. He knows everything, he recorded much of it, and now prosecutors will know it, too. It seems inevitable that much will be made public. We don't know when. We don't know the precise path the next few months will take. There will be resistance and denial and counterattacks. But it seems likely that, when we look back on this week, we will see it as a turning point. We are now in the end stages of the Trump Presidency.



    I honestly think (none / 0) (#27)
    by Chuck0 on Mon Apr 16, 2018 at 07:55:00 PM EST
    he's too stupid to be terrified.

    Parent
    WaPo wins a pair o Pulitzers (none / 0) (#46)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Apr 17, 2018 at 08:21:41 AM EST
    RIP Harry Anderson (none / 0) (#48)
    by Chuck0 on Tue Apr 17, 2018 at 09:00:33 AM EST
    He played Judge Harry Stone on Night Court and played  writer Dave Barry on Dave's World. I saw his standup a couple of times. Very funny guy. Kind of a mix of standup and grifter magic.

    I think he got his acting start on Cheers? (none / 0) (#50)
    by McBain on Tue Apr 17, 2018 at 09:52:24 AM EST
    as a con man

    Parent
    Anderson didn't get his start on 'Cheers.' (none / 0) (#56)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Tue Apr 17, 2018 at 02:31:18 PM EST
    He actually had built up a pretty thriving career doing stand-up in clubs like L.A.'s Comedy Store and in Las Vegas, which is how he first got noticed by "Cheers" producers. His subsequent guest appearances on that sitcom caught the eye of programming executives at NBC, who then cast him as the lead in "Night Court."

    And on a related note, rest in peace, Mitzi Shore, the legendary owner of L.A.'s Comedy Store. She mentored and nurtured then-young talent like Harry Anderson, David Letterman, Jay Leno and Robin Williams in the 1970s, '80s and '90s, and further served as the inspiration for the character of Goldie (played by Melissa Leo) on the Showtime series "I'm Dying Up Here." She's also the mother of comic and actor Pauly Shore, whom she pointedly refused to allow to play the Comedy Store until he had first made a name for himself elsewhere, because she didn't want him to be accused by others of capitalizing on his mother's influence and connections. Ms. Shore passed away last week at age 87, after a life well lived.  

    Aloha.

    Parent

    on Cheers.

    " `Cheers' was my first acting job, but it was basically the character I had developed on the street," he said. "That's how I made my living, hustling drinks in bars and quarters on the street."


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    I thought Night Court was a decent sitcom (none / 0) (#59)
    by McBain on Tue Apr 17, 2018 at 03:02:17 PM EST
    but I would have preferred him in a different, more edgy role.  Can't blame Harry for taking a steady pay check.

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    Second heads up (none / 0) (#55)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Apr 17, 2018 at 01:21:53 PM EST
    For THE CROSSING on ABC.

    The hype could be true.  This could be the next LOST.

    Which I did not get around to until last year.

    Jus sayin  

    Interested (none / 0) (#57)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Apr 17, 2018 at 02:49:15 PM EST
    And I'm chapped I didn't catch on to The Terror sooner because now I have to pay for episodes 1, 2, and 3.  

    I don't watch network TV. You gotta give me heads up sooner.

    Parent

    Do you have a library card (none / 0) (#60)
    by MO Blue on Tue Apr 17, 2018 at 04:59:02 PM EST
    You may be able to get DVDs of Seasons 1-3 from the library for free.

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    There have been 3 episodes (none / 0) (#63)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Apr 17, 2018 at 05:13:13 PM EST
    This season that Fios wants me to pay for now. So not old seasons, and really not old episodes either. I have noticed that AMC has moved to this pay format since we got to DC, and that may be a Fios thang. I have not checked if I can watch the earlier episodes on the AMC website.

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    Turns out if I download the AMC app (none / 0) (#65)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Apr 17, 2018 at 05:21:53 PM EST
    I can watch the earlier episodes. I stopped downloading apps on a whim. But I think it's worth downloading this one.

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    You can do this (none / 0) (#66)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Apr 17, 2018 at 05:24:40 PM EST
    For most cable channels

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    Also (none / 0) (#67)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Apr 17, 2018 at 05:27:10 PM EST
    There have been three episodes (before yesterday) but the premier is really 2 episodes.

    So they could be numbered 1,3,4

    Parent

    You can also get free trial subscriptions to (none / 0) (#68)
    by McBain on Tue Apr 17, 2018 at 05:29:27 PM EST
    Sling and other services that might have shows you want to see.  That's how I watched the Waco miniseries without paying for the Paramount Channel.

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    You would like (none / 0) (#62)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Apr 17, 2018 at 05:08:19 PM EST
    KILLING EVE

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    I will try that too (none / 0) (#64)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Apr 17, 2018 at 05:13:33 PM EST
    In this weeks episode (none / 0) (#69)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Apr 17, 2018 at 05:37:28 PM EST
    The hit woman is taking a "psychopath test" to see if the work is getting to her.

    She aces it.  In a prom dress.

    Parent

    Oh yes, I will like that :) (none / 0) (#70)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Apr 17, 2018 at 05:46:44 PM EST
    I have avoided networks (none / 0) (#74)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Apr 17, 2018 at 08:37:36 PM EST
    But clearly they are starting to understand they either pick up their game or they become reality shows and talent shows.

    The first network show that hooked me was Hannibal.

    I missed LOST entirely till years later

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    Watched All The Money In The World (none / 0) (#71)
    by McBain on Tue Apr 17, 2018 at 07:31:02 PM EST
    last night.  Thought it was so so.  

    Sometimes Mark Wahlberg does a good job, sometimes he doesn't.  This was more of the latter.  I think he's one of those well paid stars who has limited acting range. When he plays a small town, blue collar character like a cop, athlete or solider, he usually pulls it off.  But when he plays the smart guy or someone in a nice suit, his limitations are on display.

    Christopher Plummer was solid as always, except in the flashback scenes where they tried to make him look younger.  It made we wonder what the film would have been like had they kept the younger (by 30 years) Kevin Spacey.

    I generally enjoy kidnapping/hostage/ransom movies.  Do rich and/or famous people still get kidnapped and held for ransom?  I don't recall a super high profile case like John Paul Getty recently.  

    I think 88-year-old Christopher Plummer ... (none / 0) (#77)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Tue Apr 17, 2018 at 09:46:31 PM EST
    ... made a much more convincing bitter and cantankerous octogenarian than the 58-year-old Kevin Spacey. If you look at the old trailer released in theaters before Spacey became enveloped in scandal, he had so much make-up piled on his face that he looked like he had just emerged from a vat of molten Silly Putty.

    Plummer was also director Ridley Scott's first choice to play J. Paul Getty before studio execs overruled him because they considered Spacey to be more bankable of the two. It's hardly a surprise that Scott turned back to Plummer in his late-hour effort to salvage his film after the Spacey scandal broke just prior to its release. And Plummer's Oscar-nominated performance proved him to be the right casting decision all along.

    Aloha.

    Parent

    WashingtonTimes (none / 0) (#72)
    by linea on Tue Apr 17, 2018 at 08:00:34 PM EST
    Robert Mueller's warning: `Many' news stories on Trump-Russia probe are wrong

    Special counsel Robert Mueller's office is warning that "many" news articles on the Trump-Russia probe have been wrong.

    The statement from a spokesperson did not single out particular stories. But the warning did come after media inquiries about a McClatchy News story on Friday that said Mr. Mueller has evidence that President Trump's personal attorney, Michael Cohen, did in fact travel to Prague in 2016 as alleged by the Christopher Steele dossier.

    "What I have been telling all reporters is that many stories about our investigation have been inaccurate," the Mueller spokesperson said. "Be very cautious about any source that claims to have knowledge about our investigation and dig deep into what they claim before reporting on it. If another outlet reports something, don't run with it unless you have your own sourcing to back it up."



    I'm (5.00 / 1) (#96)
    by FlJoe on Wed Apr 18, 2018 at 03:40:20 PM EST
    actually a bit skeptical about the original McClatchy, it seemed thinly sourced, oddly timed and too good to be true. I could imagine a planted story to divert from Cohen's very real problems with the SDNY back to the "dodgy dossier".

    That being said the Times story is bs. There is there no spokesperson(such a person would be named), there was no "statement" but merely a bog standard response by whomever Mueller has designated to take calls from the press.

    From the original Daily Caller story

    What I have been telling all reporters is that many stories about our investigation have been inaccurate.
    Fair enough, Info Wars probably calls several times a day, but the rest of the "statement" is straight out of journalism 101
    Be very cautious about any source that claims to have knowledge about our investigation and dig deep into what they claim before reporting on it," the spokesperson said. "If another outlet reports something, don't run with it unless you have your own sourcing to back it up.
    They should be embarrassed to publish such tripe, trying to bolster their fake news narrative.

    Parent
    Trying to connect ... (none / 0) (#78)
    by Yman on Wed Apr 18, 2018 at 07:41:12 AM EST
    ... imaginary dots.  Citing the Washington Times as a source, no less.

    Heh.

    Parent

    Okay (none / 0) (#80)
    by linea on Wed Apr 18, 2018 at 10:22:53 AM EST
    I was not aware that the Washington Times is broadly considered to be illegitimate and disreputable fake news.

    Checking Wikipedia, the Washington Post endorsed Clinton and the Washington Times endorsed Trump.

    Looking over the Washington Times article, I note that an unnamed `spokesperson' is cited which I suppose makes the article as questionable as the McClatchy News claims attributed to `anonymous sources.' Thus, they are both unverified.

    Parent

    The Washington Times comment section (5.00 / 1) (#81)
    by jondee on Wed Apr 18, 2018 at 10:45:40 AM EST
    is enough to make you hurl. Worse than Breitbart. Racist dog whistling, nutjob conspiracy theorizing, red-baiting..looney tunes stuff.

    By letting that sh*t stand, the WT is mainstreaming it.

    You don't need any more confirmation that a stake has been driven through the heart of Barbara Bush conservatism.

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    How is that even possible? (5.00 / 1) (#82)
    by Yman on Wed Apr 18, 2018 at 10:56:23 AM EST
    How is someone unaware of the Washington Times' history?  Seriously.  Have you heard of Fix News, yet?

    I have no idea whether Cohen's been to Prague, but McClatchy is an actual, reputable new source.  The fact that you're so desperately trying to discredit the McClatchy article (and the Steele dossier in general) is just funny.

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    It must be the Washington Times (none / 0) (#85)
    by jondee on Wed Apr 18, 2018 at 11:18:59 AM EST
    too much black-and-white..

    Is it still affiliated with the Unification Chuch?

    Parent

    I remember the days when (none / 0) (#89)
    by Chuck0 on Wed Apr 18, 2018 at 12:11:08 PM EST
    the Washington Times was "the Moonie paper." I believe it has been sold by them.

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    To some people (none / 0) (#91)
    by jondee on Wed Apr 18, 2018 at 12:23:51 PM EST
    who thought it was getting too liberal.

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    Has it? (none / 0) (#94)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Wed Apr 18, 2018 at 02:49:12 PM EST
    Gee, I'd have never even guessed that, judging by all the right-wing extremist nonsense it continues to print and post.

    Parent
    I believe that the Washington Times ... (none / 0) (#93)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Wed Apr 18, 2018 at 02:45:43 PM EST
    ... is still owned by the late Rev. Sun Myung Moon's Unification Church. Suffice to say that the Moonies are to GOP politics as Lyndon LaRouche and his followers are to Democrats. That is, they are unbridled crackpots and total kooks, espousing the crazy-scary sort of nutball extremism that has long existed on the port and starboard fringes of our society's politics.

    Rev. Moon founded the Washington Times, which should tell you all you need to know about the veracity of that particular source. Hence, this is why you're receiving such a dismissive pushback. So, please do yourself and everyone here a big favor, and don't go there any more.

    Aloha.

    Parent

    Okay (none / 0) (#95)
    by linea on Wed Apr 18, 2018 at 03:25:03 PM EST
    I already said `okay' and I already said that I `was not aware' and I already noted that the article cited an unnamed spokesperson which means it's not a legitimate announcement.

    It was my impression the Post and Times were legitimate print publications with a long rivalry but apparently I confused the Washington Times with the New York Times. My mistake.
     

    Parent

    Nikkei Haley today (none / 0) (#75)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Apr 17, 2018 at 08:40:16 PM EST
    With all due respect, I don't get "confused".

    SNAP

    Sheriff Joe back in the news (none / 0) (#76)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Apr 17, 2018 at 09:36:10 PM EST
    On Tuesday, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit ruled it would appoint a special prosecutor to argue that Arpaio's guilty verdict should remain on the books. Since the Justice Department under Jeff Sessions has refused to defend Arpaio's conviction for contempt of court, the new a special prosecutor will.

    Arpaio has called the court's ruling "totally improper" and said it the court would be put in an "accusatory role." In July 2017, Arpaio was convicted of criminal contempt after he refused to obey an order from a judge to stop violating the fourth amendment rights of Latinos. Arpaio's attorney told Buzzfeed that the decision "raises a lot of disturbing questions about the neutrality of the court."

    Salon

    Airbnb (none / 0) (#79)
    by CST on Wed Apr 18, 2018 at 08:10:11 AM EST
    Overplaying their hand in Boston.

    "The home-sharing giant Tuesday e-mailed a broad swath of its Boston customers urging them to e-mail City Hall to oppose "unreasonable restrictions" it said Wu has proposed on short-term rentals, including a 30-day cap on stays when the unit's owner is not home. And it accused Wu of being "aligned with big hotel interests against the interests of regular Bostonians.""

    There was a proposed 90 day cap, it was never 30 days.  Michelle Wu is the president of the city council, very popular, and is widely viewed as a progressive - trying to pit her against "regular Bostonians" on behalf of big business is laughable.

    No one is trying to ban Airbnb in Boston.  If this is how they react to any attempt at regulation - they're only going to make things worse for themselves.  Housing costs are a massive problem, bypassing local zoning codes to run hotels in residential neighborhoods is not what residents of the city want.  That doesn't mean you can't still participate and make some extra money, it just means you have to be reasonable about it.  I think they just made it much more likely that this will pass the council.

    If the weather around here continues (none / 0) (#84)
    by jondee on Wed Apr 18, 2018 at 11:11:59 AM EST
    the way it has for the last month, I'm going to turn into a gloomy Dane, like that Kierkegaard fella, or Hamlet Prince of Denmark..

    Basically the same cold, dank, inhospitable day for weeks. No "in like a lion, out like a lamb" action around here. But, in the spirit of drawing on one's inner resources, I've been trying out some new things, like watching a hockey game with the sound off and using Edgar Varese's Deserts for a soundtrack. Kind of a neat experience.

    Parent

    It really is depressingly gloomy (none / 0) (#86)
    by CST on Wed Apr 18, 2018 at 11:38:13 AM EST
    For April.

    I was fortunate enough to spend the last week and a half in Brazil where the temperature never went below 70 or above 85.  That flight home was a bit of a shock to the system, and not just because of all the turbulence on the landing.

    At least we have daylight coming back.  When you can see it from behind all the clouds.

    Parent

    The closest I've come to Brazil (none / 0) (#87)
    by jondee on Wed Apr 18, 2018 at 11:51:09 AM EST
    lately is watching old World Cup highlights. From back in the day, when they were still good. Then I feel guilty for patronizing effin' youtube.

    Parent
    Cute (none / 0) (#83)
    by FlJoe on Wed Apr 18, 2018 at 10:58:27 AM EST
    in a fascist sort of way
    Nearly a dozen House Republicans have signed on to a letter calling for the Justice Department to prosecute eight of President Donald Trump's political enemies.
    I guess we should call them the Chiquita Caucus.

    your link doesn't work. (none / 0) (#88)
    by Chuck0 on Wed Apr 18, 2018 at 12:10:06 PM EST
    Here's another... (none / 0) (#90)
    by desertswine on Wed Apr 18, 2018 at 12:22:22 PM EST
    Tinpotism (none / 0) (#92)
    by Chuck0 on Wed Apr 18, 2018 at 01:23:51 PM EST
    at it's best!

    Parent
    These guys are intent on going (5.00 / 1) (#97)
    by jondee on Thu Apr 19, 2018 at 01:40:48 PM EST
    down with the ship. As in, the Heavan's Gate space ship.

    Parent
    Re: Avenatti (none / 0) (#100)
    by FlJoe on Sun Apr 22, 2018 at 07:52:50 AM EST
    How did I miss this
    At a LA-based litigation firm he oversaw high-profile cases... a successful idea theft lawsuit involving the reality show The Apprentice and its producer, Mark Burnett, as well as Donald Trump
    The suit was settled in 2016, right when Cohen got aboard the tRump train. Coincidence?

    There has always seemed to be something very personal about his participation in this case(it's positively bush league for him), he wears his animus toward Cohen on his sleeve. I wonder if Cohen had one of his "I'm gonna "fk you up talks" with Avenatti 12 years ago...it would explain a lot.


    Kellyanne loses it ... (none / 0) (#101)
    by Yman on Sun Apr 22, 2018 at 11:03:07 AM EST
    ... when asked about her husband's tweets critical of Trump.  In an interview on CNN with Dana Bash, she went off on a 5 minute rant with veiled references/threats about bringing spouses into the discussion:

    "You just brought him into this," she scolded Bash. "This ought to be fun moving forward, Dana. We're now going to talk about other people's spouses and significant others just because they either work at the White House or CNN? ... CNN just went there."

    Conway accused Bash of trying to "harass and embarrass" her before cryptically commenting on what constitutes a "difference of opinion" between spouses.

    "By definition, spouses have a difference of opinion when adultery is happening," Conway said. "By definition, spouses have a difference of opinion when one is, I don't know, draining the joint bank account to support things that maybe the other disagrees with. So this is a fascinating `cross the Rubicon' moment."

    No idea who she's trying to threaten at CNN, but bring it on, Kellyanne.

    Trouble in paradise, Kellyann? (5.00 / 2) (#102)
    by Anne on Sun Apr 22, 2018 at 11:13:13 AM EST
    Seriously, as someone who's been married almost 38 years, I can tell you that if someone brought up a "difference of opinion" I had with my husband, I could give you a list of things on which we disagree, but two things that would not come up, or even be on the list, are adultery and draining the joint bank account, lol.  

    So the question that's going to be asked now are why were those her examples of spousal differences of opinion?

    Karma's a b!tch, isn't she?  I hope that's only the beginning, given the nastiness with which Conway goes after people.

    Parent

    That was my first thought, ... (none / 0) (#103)
    by Yman on Sun Apr 22, 2018 at 11:29:47 AM EST
    ... but the way in which she was saying it (and the context) was like a not-so-veiled threat directed at someone at CNN.  It was really weird, although nowadays the spectrum on "weird" is pretty hard to define.

    Parent
    Good lord. (none / 0) (#104)
    by Ga6thDem on Sun Apr 22, 2018 at 12:58:41 PM EST
    She has brought up spouses and relationships innumerable times but like most Republicans she feels she can do it but no one had better turn it around on her. She's an idiotic meth head and I don't know why anybody even invites her on these shows. She literally adds nothing to the conversation.

    Parent