Near Unanimity: Trump Flops in Helsinki

It's virtually unanimous: Donald Trump pooped on himself and the United States today at his big Helsinki summit. The adjectives for his pitiful performance are boundless, and coming from both sides.

The New York Times:

Senator John McCain, Republican of Arizona, called it “one of the most disgraceful performances by an American president in memory.”

The cover of tomorrow's NY Daily News shows Trump shooting Uncle Sam, with a caption "Open Treason".

Former CIA Director John Brennan:

Donald Trump’s press conference performance in Helsinki rises to & exceeds the threshold of “high crimes & misdemeanors.” It was nothing short of treasonous. Not only were Trump’s comments imbecilic, he is wholly in the pocket of Putin. Republican Patriots: Where are you???


Fox News' reporter John Roberts:

there is a growing consensus across the land that tonight the president threw the United States under the bus."

Republican Senator Ben Sasse speaking to the Senate:

Everyone in this body should be disgusted by what happened in Helsinki,

And then there's Dem. Senator Jeff Merkley:

Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-OR) said that “something close” to the long-rumored “pee tape” exists, saying he “think[s] it’s likely” that Vladimir Putin has something on President Donald Trump.

Arnold Schwarzenegger:

Trump looked like a 'little wet noodle' during Putin press conference

New York Magazine: Trump the Toady

Trump looked weak and submissive, incapable of expressing any sort of righteous indignation at even the most blatant bad behavior by Russia. His soon-to-be-infamous suggestion that he thought Putin might be more credible than U.S. intelligence agencies on the subject of Russia’s election interference is obviously disturbing in itself. But delivered in Putin’s own presence it came across as the act of a toady or at least someone who is extremely conflict-averse — which is exactly 180 degrees away from the persona Trump has worked so hard to present.

The federal and congressional intelligence groups that have stated that Russia interfered in the election:

1. Central Intelligence Agency
2. Office of the Director of National Intelligence
3. F.B.I.
4. National Security Agency
5. Justice Department
6. House Intelligence Committee
7. Senate Intelligence Committee

Does the man not know the entire world sees him as a buffoon?

As to his motive for today's pitiful performance, some say treason, others say egotism. Either way, he seems absolutely clueless how he is perceived by others.

In my view, he has always lacked talent. He over-delegates so he doesn't have to work hard, or at anything but self-promotion. Since the election, his businesses have been under-performing, in large part due to the untalented offspring who are in charge of running them. I think Trump is completely and selfishly focused on how he's going to make money once he is separated from his desk in the oval office. He has never cared about the welfare of the United States. Wasn't one of Michael Cohen's last tasks to get him a property in Moscow? Which failed? I suspect it's as simple as Trump believing that by buttering up Putin, Putin will reward him with lucrative business deals in Russia once he's back in the private sector.

Come on, America. It's time to wake up and smell the soles of your shoes. And then scrape Trump's sh*t right off them.

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  • Display: Sort:
    The people who could actually do (5.00 / 1) (#4)
    by caseyOR on Mon Jul 16, 2018 at 10:11:16 PM EST
    something, Republicans in Congress, are not willing to take action.

    Talk is cheap. Let's see some Republicans announce that from now on they are caucusing and voting with the Democrats. Let's see Ryan start impeachment proceedings in the House.

    So far they are all talk, no action.

    Sassy Flake and the rest (5.00 / 2) (#12)
    by smott on Tue Jul 17, 2018 at 09:45:42 AM EST
    Can just STFU.
    It's 50-49 right now because McCain is ill.
    Any one of these self-righteous preaching azzholes could tip the Senate right NOW.
    Protect Mueller, ham string McConnell.

    Stop talking and start walking.

    Ha (none / 0) (#1)
    by CaptHowdy on Mon Jul 16, 2018 at 09:01:46 PM EST
    Well said.  I was most shocked by the thrashing on FOX news.  By multiple hosts.

    As far as property in Russia, I think he may be thinking of joining Snowden as a permanent resident.

    Starting to be serious calls (none / 0) (#2)
    by CaptHowdy on Mon Jul 16, 2018 at 09:21:48 PM EST
    For Coats to resign.  At first I did not agree but I'm coming around.  A high profile resignation might help focus this.

    I understand that he would probably be replaced by a former waiter or dog walker that flattered Trump once but Im losing sight of why that matters.  

    Clearly he is making no difference in the job in spite of doing the right thing.

    Maybe a high profile resignation in protest is what is needed.

    They've had so many high profile resignations (5.00 / 1) (#7)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Jul 17, 2018 at 09:20:08 AM EST
    It won't matter if Coates resigns. Trump will just do or say something crazy and all focus will flock to that. Coates needs to be fired, a slightly larger bang. But it will still be muffled.

    He isn't the only one making no difference. But he's a witness. And the people under him are no doubt very distressed daily right now. They need him. I've already seen one cyber boss kicked to the curb and I saw what it did to his people. It was devastating for all of them. And their daily work is very serious stuff.


    There has not been one (none / 0) (#8)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Jul 17, 2018 at 09:32:43 AM EST
    High profile resignation openly and specifically in protest.  Followed by open resistance to policies.

    Coats is a mild mannered guy.  The fact he released a second statement after the clown show without white house approval means he is freaked.

    Will he do it?  Who knows.  Probably not.  But it would be interesting


    Well (none / 0) (#9)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Jul 17, 2018 at 09:34:22 AM EST
    I suppose the ethics guy.  Not exactly high profile and definitely not cabinet level.

    James Clapper resigned Captain (none / 0) (#11)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Jul 17, 2018 at 09:43:35 AM EST
    Rather than consider serving Trump. He made the loudest noise he could. And that man knows SH*T. Please note how little he can say. Please note everyone already forgot.

    And he has made a huge difference (none / 0) (#13)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Jul 17, 2018 at 09:49:16 AM EST
    As far as Coats and others, we might find out what they can say

    Intel Chiefs Won't Say if They'll Resign Over Trump's Betrayal


    No he hasn't (none / 0) (#15)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Jul 17, 2018 at 09:55:13 AM EST
    Clapper has made zero difference in us getting here.

    Remember Mike Rogers and all that? Bet you don't.


    Seriously? (none / 0) (#16)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Jul 17, 2018 at 09:57:57 AM EST
    Clapper has made no difference?  

    We will agree to disagree.

    And yeah I remember Mike Rodgers


    What do you remember about him? (none / 0) (#17)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Jul 17, 2018 at 10:00:48 AM EST
    Look (none / 0) (#18)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Jul 17, 2018 at 10:03:21 AM EST
    We are in uncharted territory

    This has never happened.   The standard hand wringing a expressions of being shocked stunned and deeply saddened is not going to do squat.

    Make no mistake, we are deeply into a national security crisis

    Time for desperate measures.

    Coats is eminently credible.  He is the right wing.  History is watching.  Personally I think he understands this

    I don't know what he will do but I think resignation, he was NAMED, is a clear possibility.


    Clapper Was Going to Retire Regardless (none / 0) (#32)
    by RickyJim on Tue Jul 17, 2018 at 11:36:27 AM EST
    From his book "Fear and Facts",
    Considering that struggle, not surprisingly, technology was a sharp point of focus for the threat hearings during the first few months of 2016--which I happily noted for each congressional committee would be the final time they would hear from me about the "most diverse set of threats I've seen in my more than fifty years in the intelligence profession." I started each hearing by giving a countdown of days until I retired--by then under a year--and then launched into discussing how the same technology advances that were "central to our economic prosperity" would create new security vulnerabilities that we were just beginning to grasp. I talked about artificial intelligence making autonomous decisions and about the ways in which everyday machines were being connected to the internet. "The Internet of Things," I explained, "will connect tens of billions of new physical devices that could be exploited."

    The book is a pretty good overview of his activities (including plenty of failures) in his 55 years in US Intelligence, plus a scathing denunciation of Trump.  He doesn't question US interventionism as a policy.

    Everything they do is classified (none / 0) (#10)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Jul 17, 2018 at 09:40:43 AM EST
    That is why there will be no energy for this fire. What he can say, even after a resignation, is very limited. Teo days after his resignation nobody will even remember him.

    I would just ask (none / 0) (#14)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Jul 17, 2018 at 09:53:28 AM EST
    What good is a witness if they won't BEAR WITNESS?

    Before it's too late.


    What's too late when we have few facts? (none / 0) (#19)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Jul 17, 2018 at 10:06:39 AM EST
    Everything they do is classified. With a compromised President nobody is going to stop anything this classified. Coats can't tell us what is really happening. Fox News will throw out counterpoints to anything he can say, CNN will gather a panel with two Foxy pundits on it to parse it all up, then it will be swept up and thrown in the dustbin.

    Nobody is going to do anything until something terrible happens.


    Poor Donald is being unfairly misunderstood (none / 0) (#3)
    by Peter G on Mon Jul 16, 2018 at 09:51:47 PM EST
    He was just standing up for the presumption of innocence, as any criminal defense lawyer or civil libertarian would. The Russians are accused in an indictment of criminally conspiring to interfere in our election. Their spokesman says, "Not Guilty." It would be wrong, unAmerican, to declare them guilty before trial. Another example of Tr*mp's sensitive and insightful understanding of our Constitution, and his respect for the courts.

    PeterG is not allowed to do satire (5.00 / 3) (#21)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Jul 17, 2018 at 10:19:11 AM EST
    It breaks me

    Ok, I promise. No more (5.00 / 2) (#33)
    by Peter G on Tue Jul 17, 2018 at 01:02:30 PM EST
    I leave that to the competent professionals, such as Alexandra Petri of the Washington Post ("Petri Dishes" in the "ComPost" section of WaPo. Can you tell I'm a fan?)

    Must be hard for (none / 0) (#5)
    by Chuck0 on Tue Jul 17, 2018 at 05:40:28 AM EST
    Hannity to do his radio show with Bone Spurs' c**k in his mouth.

    Putin told Fox News (none / 0) (#6)
    by fishcamp on Tue Jul 17, 2018 at 07:07:47 AM EST
    that Trump was too insignificant to collect dirt on.

    Some military folks are losing it (none / 0) (#20)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Jul 17, 2018 at 10:17:20 AM EST
    Stonekettle Station may have a heart attack

    And soonergrunt from DKos pointed me to a few others on Twitter. Whew! Pi$$ed off people.

    The Angry Naval Officer's tweet:

    Article II Section 4: If the president is impeached for treason, the vice president and all civil officers shall be removed

    Yeah (none / 0) (#22)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Jul 17, 2018 at 10:20:02 AM EST
    Uncharted territory

    Rosenstein was summoned to the (none / 0) (#23)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Jul 17, 2018 at 10:50:07 AM EST
    White House this morning. It is being reported he was seen leaving the White House at 11:28 am.

    They are asking for protesters again tonight at the White House to meet at 7:00 PM

    Occupy Lafayette Park I am told is also underway.


    NPR reporting that a regular (none / 0) (#24)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Jul 17, 2018 at 10:55:02 AM EST
    Meeting was scheduled.

    Neera and Avenatti will be protesting tonight


    IMO (none / 0) (#25)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Jul 17, 2018 at 10:57:04 AM EST
    What Mueller, Rosenstein and the DOJ does could affect what Coats and possibly others do.

    This is coming to a head.  Trump is about to burst into pardons and/or trying to change the DOJ.

    Let's be clear, I SHARE you fear and trepidation.

    But one way or another, we will know by September.


    I hear ya (none / 0) (#26)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Jul 17, 2018 at 11:01:15 AM EST
    You know me though, if I can protest I will. Keeps me sane, I don't have to pace the floor.

    Got any sign ideas for tonight?


    Ha (none / 0) (#27)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Jul 17, 2018 at 11:03:44 AM EST

    Not bad (5.00 / 1) (#28)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Jul 17, 2018 at 11:05:36 AM EST
    Not bad at all

    Sorry, but Angry Naval Officer has (none / 0) (#29)
    by Peter G on Tue Jul 17, 2018 at 11:07:17 AM EST
    misread, that is, misunderstood the meaning of, section 4 of Article II.

    Most likely, he's pretty angry :) (none / 0) (#30)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Jul 17, 2018 at 11:21:50 AM EST
    2:00 PM eastern (none / 0) (#31)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Jul 17, 2018 at 11:36:14 AM EST
    Trump is meeting with Republican leaders and allowing the press in.

    By 4:30 he will be denying (5.00 / 2) (#37)
    by Peter G on Tue Jul 17, 2018 at 02:13:01 PM EST
    having said whatever he was recorded saying.

    Carl Bernstein keeps saying (none / 0) (#38)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Jul 17, 2018 at 02:18:01 PM EST
    "What the hell happened in Helsinki?"

    I was thinking maybe I need laminated protest signage for this whatever it's going to be


    Looks like I pretty much (none / 0) (#41)
    by Peter G on Tue Jul 17, 2018 at 04:05:32 PM EST
    nailed this one: Would/wouldn't. Whatever. Read the prepared retraction, then riff on the end of it to undermine the retraction.

    I finally got a chance to see the tape of him (none / 0) (#46)
    by ruffian on Tue Jul 17, 2018 at 08:48:13 PM EST
    reading that explanation. Never seen anyone seem less convincing.

    It is so stupid it must have been thought of by someone named Trump, Sr or Jr.

    But of course it is a big enough fig leaf for Little Marco, and Rob Portman.


    It looked (5.00 / 4) (#49)
    by Repack Rider on Wed Jul 18, 2018 at 09:55:16 PM EST
    ...like the kidnap victim reading the ransom note.

    LOL! (none / 0) (#50)
    by Chuck0 on Thu Jul 19, 2018 at 07:38:48 AM EST
    That was EXACTLY my impression. I said almost the exact words to my wife. Kudos sir.

    Benedict Donald (none / 0) (#34)
    by MileHi Hawkeye on Tue Jul 17, 2018 at 01:13:07 PM EST
    and his merry band of traitors.

    He is reading comments (none / 0) (#35)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Jul 17, 2018 at 01:25:49 PM EST
    He is doing it

    Can he finish without ripping his clothes off and steaking?


    Ew. (5.00 / 2) (#36)
    by MileHi Hawkeye on Tue Jul 17, 2018 at 01:46:47 PM EST
    Eww! EEEEEWWWWW!!!!

    There goes lunch.


    Again, a pathetic performance. (5.00 / 3) (#40)
    by desertswine on Tue Jul 17, 2018 at 03:24:29 PM EST
    I meant wouldn't but said would.  Pathetic and absurd, and he looks even stupider.

    Did Trump (none / 0) (#43)
    by KeysDan on Tue Jul 17, 2018 at 04:30:38 PM EST
    still say that Putin had an "incredible" offer---the one about Putin helping the US investigate his crimes.  Mr. Mueller was welcome to come to Russia and give all his sources, with a reciprocal deal by which Russian moles could be exposed and killed. Incredible, indeed.

    Putin wants (none / 0) (#44)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue Jul 17, 2018 at 04:39:43 PM EST
    Bill Browder in exchange for him letting us go there and "investigate". I guess he wants to publicly murder Browder to show everyone whose "boss" and what happens to people who expose his corruption

    Melania is saying (none / 0) (#45)
    by CaptHowdy on Tue Jul 17, 2018 at 05:13:20 PM EST
    The same thing

    Off the disgusting content... (none / 0) (#47)
    by ruffian on Tue Jul 17, 2018 at 08:50:03 PM EST
    What the hell color is his face?

    Close your eyes and imagine (none / 0) (#48)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Jul 18, 2018 at 05:37:27 AM EST
    A butt spanking over spray tan

    Calling our legal eagles! (none / 0) (#39)
    by smott on Tue Jul 17, 2018 at 03:18:47 PM EST
    Is this designed explicitly to help NRA members who've knowingly taken Russian money?

    https://www.bloomberg.com/amp/news/articles/2018-07-17/many-political-tax-exempts-no-longer-required -to-report-donors?__twitter_impression=true

    I think it's (none / 0) (#42)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue Jul 17, 2018 at 04:24:51 PM EST
    a little too late to help the ones that took the Russian money.