The further to the left or the right you move, the more your lens on life distorts.

Tuesday, June 26, 2018

Shock the Conscience

In the aftermath of a devastating Inspector General Report delineating case after case of extreme anti-Trump bias by senior members of the FBI and DoJ, and by implication, senior members of the broader intelligence community, what do the Democrats do? Instead of joining the GOP to get the bottom of this unprecedented and dangerous situation, they tell us there is no problem.

The Dems hope that this scandal will somehow evaporate and are doing every possible to make that happen. I don't think it will.

After noting the most egregious evidence of bias contained in the IG report, David B. Rivkin Jr. and Elizabeth Price Foley write:
What does this have to do with [special counsel] Mr. Mueller, who was appointed in May 2017 after President Trump fired Mr. Comey? The inspector general concludes that the pervasive bias “cast a cloud over the FBI investigations to which these employees were assigned,” including Crossfire. And if Crossfire was politically motivated, then its culmination, the appointment of a special counsel, inherited the taint. All special-counsel activities—investigations, plea deals, subpoenas, reports, indictments and convictions—are fruit of a poisonous tree, byproducts of a violation of due process. That Mr. Mueller and his staff had nothing to do with Crossfire’s origin offers no cure.

When the government deprives a person of life, liberty or property, it is required to use fundamentally fair processes. The Supreme Court has made clear that when governmental action “shocks the conscience,” it violates due process. Such conduct includes investigative or prosecutorial efforts that appear, under the totality of the circumstances, to be motivated by corruption, bias or entrapment.
If the IG report and its implications doesn't "shock the conscience" of progressives, that may be because they are blinded by Trump Derangement Syndrome. If the IG report and its implication doesn't spur Democrats to join the GOP and demand a full accounting (like the GOP did with Democrats during Watergate), then they view partisan politics as more important than uncovering and correcting a clear threat to democratic processes. And if the trained hamsters in the main stream media continue to ignore or de-emphasize the implication of this entire scandal, then their characterization as "Democratic Party operatives with bylines" is tragically accurate.

Mueller's investigation was predicated on "evidence" that was pro-offered by DoJ officials who were influenced by biased FBI officials (e.g., Peter Strzok). That's NOT an opinion—it's statement of fact backed up by copious written evidence in the officials' own words. Even if Mueller is squeaky clean (and I do not believe he is), the entire investigation is tainted by (as lawyers call it) the "fruit of a poisonous tree."

To quote Instapundit's Glen Reynolds, a law professor at the University of Tennessee, "It seems pretty clear that this is a case of investigating a man [Trump] in the hopes of finding a crime, rather than investigating a crime and hoping to find the man behind it.


The Democrats are trying desperately to ignore the IG report They say concern about the report smacks of conspiracy theory and that the Obama administration knew nothing about this. With the help of their trained hamsters in the media, they're using the ongoing hysteria over the southern border to bury yet another scandal that is far bigger than Watergate. They're succeeding ... for now.

The Dems assiduously avoid any discussion of key players and key facts, deny that there is any bias, and reject the notion that senior officials in the nation's intelligence and law enforcement agencies colluded (hmmm, finally a place where that term is accurate) to defeat Donald Trump. Some Dems have gone so far as praising Assistant FBI Director Peter Strzok as a "patriot" after the IG report was released.

Sharyl Attkisson comments [read her entire documented timeline] on Peter Strzok:
Strzok isn’t just any rank-and-file guy spouting off in one ill-advised email. His fingerprints were on every FBI investigation that stood to impact Clinton’s presidential candidacy or to hurt Trump before and after the 2016 election.

He was chief of the FBI’s Counterespionage Section and number two in the FBI’s Counterintelligence Division. He led the team of investigators in the Clinton classified email probe and led the FBI investigation into alleged Russian interference in the election. He was involved in the controversial anti-Trump “Steele dossier” used, in part, to obtain multiple secret wiretaps. He was the one who interviewed Trump adviser Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, who pled guilty to lying to the FBI only to later learn that agents reportedly didn’t think he’d lied. And Strzok was the “top” FBI agent appointed to work on the team of special counsel Robert Mueller to investigate alleged Trump-Russia collusion.

The earth-shattering finding on Strzok by the inspector general (IG) confirms a citizenry’s worst fears: A high-ranking government intel official allegedly conspired to affect the outcome of a U.S. presidential election.

It’s also directly relevant to the FBI investigations of Trump-Russia collusion, which the IG did not examine in this report. There are multiple allegations of FBI misbehavior in that inquiry, including conspiracies to frame Trump, and improper spying on Trump associates. Investigating those allegations takes on an added sense of urgency with news that the FBI’s top counterespionage official expressed willingness to use his official position against a political enemy.
Something is very wrong here. It should "shock the conscience" of every American, including every Democrat. If it could happen to Trump, it could happen to some rising start in the Dem party. To think that it couldn't is just another example of magical thinking.


RealClear Investigations reports:
The Federal Bureau of Investigation formally opened its Trump investigation after Western intelligence assets and Clinton-affiliated political operatives repeatedly approached the Trump campaign and tried but failed to damage it through associations with Russia, a growing body of evidence suggests.

Before the FBI began investigating the Trump campaign in an operation code-named “Crossfire Hurricane,” there were at least seven different instances when campaign advisers were approached with Russia-related offers. Most of those contacts -- including Donald Trump Jr.’s much-publicized meeting with a Russian lawyer and others in June 2016 — offered the prospect of information damaging to Donald Trump’s Democratic opponent, Hillary Clinton.

Two of these approaches were made by one U.S. government informant already publicly identified as such, Stefan Halper. Another was made by a man who swore in court that he had worked as an FBI informant. Two others were made by figures associated with Western intelligence agencies. Another two approaches included political operatives, one foreign, with ties to the Clintons.

President Obama’s director of national intelligence, James Clapper, has asserted that dispatching Halper to follow the Trump campaign "protected" it from the Russians.

But Mark Wauck, a former FBI agent with experience in such tactics, sees an effort at entrapment. “What appear to have been repeated attempts to implicate the Trump campaign, in some sort of quid pro quo arrangement with Russians who claimed to have ‘dirt’ on Hillary,” Wauck told RealClearInvestigations, “look like efforts to manufacture evidence against members of the Trump campaign or create pretexts to investigate it.”
As time passes and more revelations occur, it looks increasingly like members of the FBI and intelligence agencies under Barack Obama attempted to set up the Trump campaign—sort of as an "insurance policy" (sound familiar?) in case he threatened Hillary. Gosh, there actually was collusion ... it's just that it was directed against Trump by government agencies.


And then there's this, again from RealClear Investigations:
The FBI had little problem leaking “unverified" dirt from Russian sources on Donald Trump and his campaign aides – and even basing FISA wiretaps on it. But according to the Justice Department’s inspector general, the bureau is refusing to allow even members of Congress with top security clearance to see intercepted material alleging political interference by President Obama’s attorney general, Loretta Lynch.

That material – which has been outlined in press reports – consists of unverified accounts intercepted from putative Russian sources in which the head of the Democratic National Committee allegedly implicates the Hillary Clinton campaign and Lynch in a secret deal to fix the Clinton email investigation.

“It is remarkable how this Justice Department is protecting the corruption of the Obama Justice Department,” said Tom Fitton, president of Washington-based watchdog Judicial Watch, which is suing for the material.

Lynch and Clinton officials as well as the DNC chairman at the time, Debbie Wasserman Schultz, have denied the allegations and characterized them as Russian disinformation.

True or false, the material is consequential because it appears to have influenced former FBI Director James B. Comey’s decision to break with bureau protocols because he didn’t trust Lynch. In his recent book, Comey said he took the reins in the Clinton email probe, announcing Clinton should not be indicted, because of a “development still unknown to the American public” that “cast serious doubt” on Lynch’s credibility – clearly the intercepted material.

If the material documents an authentic exchange between Lynch and a Clinton aide, it would appear to be strong evidence that the Obama administration put partisan political considerations ahead of its duty to enforce the law.

If the material is a fabrication, it may constitute the most fruitful effort by the Russians to influence the 2016 U.S. presidential election. For if Comey had not gone around Lynch and given his July 2016 press conference clearing Clinton, he almost certainly would not have publicly announced the reopening for the case just prior to the election – an event Clinton and her allies blame for her surprising loss to Trump.

The information remains so secret that Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz had to censor it from his recently released 500-plus-page report on the FBI’s investigation of Clinton, and even withhold it from Congress.

The contents of the secret intelligence document — which purport to show that Lynch informed the Clinton campaign she’d make sure the FBI didn't push too hard — were included in the inspector general’s original draft. But in the official IG report issued June 14, the information was tucked into a classified appendix to the report and entirely blanked out.
But if it's all false, why all the secrecy? After all, it's just made-up stuff, right? Hmmmm. Betcha it's true.

The stink is getting stronger and stronger, and yet, no one among the Dems or their trained hamsters in the media seems to smell it.