Thursday, July 25, 2019

Mueller's Dementia

Maybe his mind is gone, but they had to put him front and center anyway:

"Mueller sticks to script but shows flashes of indignation" by Julie Hirschfeld Davisand Mark Mazzetti New York Times, July 24, 2019

Had to go on a bit of a ‘witch hunt’ because the web version carried the Associated Press account while my printed paper led with this:

WASHINGTON — Former special counsel Robert Mueller offered no new revelations Wednesday into Russia’s interference in the 2016 elections or President Trump’s attempts to derail his investigation, but Mueller offered a stark warning on Russian election tampering — “They’re doing it as we sit here” — and a sober assessment of where politics are after the Trump campaign welcomed foreign interference in 2016.

“I hope this is not the new normal,” he told Representative Peter D. Welch, Democrat of Vermont, “but I fear it is.”

In seven hours of highly anticipated back-to-back hearings before the House Judiciary and Intelligence committees, Mueller, the special counsel who led the inquiry into Russia’s interference and whether Trump associates participated in it, hewed tightly to his script — the 448-page report he and his team produced in April. He declined repeatedly to offer his opinion on key questions or even to read directly from the document.

Democrats did get him to confirm the most damaging elements of his findings. Under intense questioning, Mueller said the president had not been cleared of obstructing justice, nor had he been completely exonerated, as Trump has so often declared; he said that the president had been untruthful in some of his responses during the investigation; and he called Trump’s encouragement of WikiLeaks “problematic,” to say the least.

WikiLeaks published e-mails stolen by Russian agents during the 2016 campaign, first from the Democratic National Committee, then from Hillary Clinton’s campaign chairman, John Podesta, but the former special counsel sometimes appeared confused or at a loss for words.....

That came immediately after the turn-in, and was a nice way of saying he looked like a doddering old fool! He didn't even know his own report! I'm thinking he was now just a feeble figurehead that would show up and putter around in his office with the crackers in his briefcase while the report was written by all the Clinton and Obama subversives. 

Btw, the Times even tells us that the performance drew concern from Democrats, with David Axelrod, the strategist who served as a senior adviser in Barack Obama’s White House, gently suggesting that Mueller wasn't up to his task and while it's “delicate to say, but he does not appear as sharp as he was in 2013.”


After all the hype, too. 

The Globe does some analysis to try and clean Mueller up some more:

"In refusing to join the partisan fray, Mueller may have intensified it" by Jess Bidgood Globe Staff, July 24, 2019

WASHINGTON — His first and only appearance in front of Congress to testify about his findings was seen as a make-or-break moment for the restive group of Democrats demanding President Trump’s impeachment and a potential turning point for Republicans seeking to put the intrigue of the Russia investigation behind them. It put the understated prosecutor and a three-ring binder containing his 448-page report center stage in the partisan theatrics he has worked fastidiously to avoid, but as he spoke to two House committees in the middle of a wreath of cameras over six and a half hours, Mueller gave his questioners little to work with on partisan footballs like impeachment or the conspiracy theories about the origins of his investigation.

There they go again, protecting the Clintons and Obama and helping to obfuscate their criminality.


"Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Calif.), one of Trump’s closest allies on Capitol Hill, said he was alarmed after seeing intelligence reports disseminated after the Nov. 8 election that made references to U.S. citizens affiliated with Trump, and possibly the president-elect himself. He appeared to be referring to relatively routine cases of surveillance on foreign individuals in which they communicated with or mentioned Americans, but Nunes’s refusal to disclose how he had obtained the documents and his unusual handling of the material — which he withheld from other committee members even while rushing to present it to the White House — were interpreted by some as a sign that his discovery was engineered to help the White House. Trump said he regarded Nunes’s disclosures as validation of his widely discredited claim that he was the illegal target of a wiretapping operation last fall ordered by President Barack Obama."

What they did was use a phony dossier contracted for by the Clinton campaign and compiled by a British intel asset with Russian and Ukranian contacts in order to get the surveillance warrant, then used that power in an attempt to infiltrate spies in the campaign. After loosing, they used the information to unmask transition team officials.

Nunes was backpedaling the very next day:

"The White House claimed vindication while the House intelligence committee chairman privately apologized in the wake of his decision to brief President Donald Trump on secret intelligence intercepts. Rep. Devin Nunes, a California Republican and member of President Donald Trump’s transition team, told reporters after his committee’s closed-door meeting Thursday that he had seen new information showing that the communications of Trump transition officials were scooped up through monitoring of other targets and improperly spread through intelligence agencies during the final days of the Obama administration. Nunes said the intercepted communications appeared to be legally obtained and were not related to the FBI’s Russia investigation. He said his concern was that the identities of the Trump officials were improperly revealed and the contents of their communications were “widely disseminated” in intelligence reports. It’s common for Americans to get caught up in U.S. surveillance of foreigners, such as foreign diplomats in the U.S. talking to an American. Typically, the American’s name would not be revealed in a report about the intercepted communications. However, if there is foreign intelligence value to revealing the American’s name, it is “unmasked” and shared with other intelligence analysts who are working on related foreign intelligence surveillance. Rep. Adam Schiff, the panel’s top Democrat, disputed Nunes’ suggestions that there was improper “unmasking.” He said that after speaking with Nunes, it appeared that the names of Americans were still guarded in the intercepts though their identities could be gleaned from the materials. Nunes said the information on the Trump team was collected in November, December and January, the period after the election when Trump was holding calls with foreign leaders, interviewing potential Cabinet secretaries and beginning to sketch out administration policy."

The revealers were none other than Susan Rice and Samantha Power.

Also see:

"In an interview on Fox News, when the host, Tucker Carlson, pressed him about why he had made his statements without offering evidence, Trump cited news reports that he said supported his assertion, including a Fox News segment on March 3 that discussed months-old reports that there had been a Trump-related surveillance order in October; reporters from The New York Times have been unable to corroborate the existence of such an order. Trump also brought up a January article in The Times about surveillance data being used in an investigation into possible links between his aides and Russian officials. “I’ve been reading about things,” Trump said. “I think it was a Jan. 20 article in The New York Times — they were talking about wiretapping.”

Time to turn to Page:

"The counterintelligence investigation into Russian efforts to influence US elections began in July, based on a dossier compiled by a former British intelligence officer and cited at a congressional hearing by Representative Adam Schiff, the ranking Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, as verified by US intelligence agencies." 

The Senate then asked for the records of Russian contacts, including Halper, Mifsud, Strzok, and Ohr.

Maybe Putin sarcastically offered Comey political asylum in Russia as Trump’s allies melted away on the wiretapping claims because he didn't offer any evidence or provide the source of his information as he still promotes the baseless claim.

Even the moment that seemed like the clearest victory for Democrats provided only fleeting, false hope. Mueller appeared to tell Representative Ted Lieu of California that he did not charge President Trump with obstruction because of a Justice Department rule that prevents the indictment of a sitting president, but Mueller later clarified that he meant that the rule was the reason he decided not to make any determination.

Republicans gleefully described the hearing as a death knell for impeachment that opened the door to the reelection of President Trump. “The American people are seeing that the entire origin of this investigation is so corrupt and so rotten, that even Robert Mueller wouldn’t answer questions about it,” said Matt Gaetz of Florida.

Mueller was much more willing, however, to answer questions about the threats posed by Russia and other countries to the nation’s election system, and he could barely veil his disdain for the way the Trump campaign handled entreaties from Russia in 2016.

Peter Welch, a Democrat from Vermont, asked Mueller if he thought future candidates would fail to tell the authorities if foreign powers reach out to them with compromising information on their opponents — as the Trump campaign apparently failed to do when Russians reached out to them in 2016.

“I hope this is not the new normal,” Mueller responded, “but I fear it is.”

Yeah, I saw that.


Now, on the morning after:

(besides the Russian ambassador, Flynn, at the request of the president’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner, contacted several other foreign officials to urge them to delay or block a UN resolution condemning Israel over its building of settlements, says evidence from e-mails which were obtained from someone who had access to transition team communications -- meaning the Obama administration was spying on the opposition worse than Nixon ever did

.... but facilitating Israeli interference in the during the 2016 transition:

(According to prosecutors, he discussed with Kislyak an upcoming UN Security Council vote on whether to condemn Israel’s building of settlements. At the time, the Obama administration was preparing to allow a Security Council vote on the matter. Mueller’s investigators have learned through witnesses and documents that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel asked the Trump transition team to lobby other countries to help Israel, according to two people briefed on the inquiry. Investigators have learned that Flynn and Kushner took the lead in those efforts. Mueller’s team has e-mails that show Flynn saying he would work to kill the vote, the people briefed on the matter said. According to the filings, Flynn consulted with multiple senior Trump officials during the transition. One adviser, described in court documents as a “very senior member” of the transition team, directed Flynn in December to reach out to Kislyak and lobby him about a United Nations resolution on Israeli settlements. People familiar with the investigation identified the adviser as Trump’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner. Kushner lawyer Abbe Lowell declined to comment.)

You know, Flynn sidestepped disclosure rules even after he was warned not to accept foreign government payments.

Then there are the chosen untouchables:

"Hope, and skepticism, as Kushner shapes Mideast policy He has strong ties to Israel, but little experience" by Jodi Kantor, New York Times  February 12, 2017

When Jared Kushner was 17 years old, he stood where 1 million Jews had been murdered and listened to Israel’s prime minister stress the country’s importance.

“The Holocaust could have been prevented. We know it could not have taken place had the Jewish state been established a few years earlier,’’ the prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, said in 1998, standing amid the ruins of an Auschwitz-Birkenau crematory.

Netanyahu had just led Kushner and thousands of other teenagers waving Israeli flags in a procession through the camp’s gates and past the barracks. As part of the commemoration, the group would soon leave Poland and fly to Israel, to complete the journey from slaughter to Zionist rebirth.

Back then, Kushner was a high school basketball player, a Billy Joel fan, a quiz team manager, and no one’s guess to become a negotiating partner with Netanyahu, but unlike other students on the trip, he knew the prime minister, who was friendly with his father, a real estate developer and donor to Israeli causes. Netanyahu had even stayed at the Kushners’ home in New Jersey.

Jared gave up his bed for him.

Even though Kushner has visited Israel since childhood, and more recently to do business, he is little known there. Though he holds strong views about the state of Israel, he has not been outspoken about them, save for editorials in The New York Observer, the newspaper he owns. His thinking on sensitive matters like settlements is not well understood.

Well, it is now after the Bahrain presentation.

“Israel wasn’t a political discussion for him; it was his family, his life, his people,’’ said Hirschy Zarchi, rabbi at the Chabad House at Harvard, where Kushner was an undergraduate.

Says he was never late for class.

Kushner has ties to Israel that are personal and religious. His grandmother survived the Holocaust by crawling through a homemade tunnel in Poland. His grandfather escaped the massacres by hiding in a hole for years. An Orthodox Jew, Kushner, who was educated at Jewish schools, was instructed to protect Israel, remember the genocide, and assure the survival of the Jewish people, those close to him say.

I don't know about those fables that I'm sure get embellished to the point of belief in the tellers. It's like the hoax book on Oprah or the lady who said she lived with wolves in the record-cold winter of 1941. Such things feed into the persecution and victimhood narrative that keeps Jews afraid and in line.

His family used its real estate fortune to donate millions of dollars to American Jewish and Israeli hospitals, schools, and other institutions, including a few in settlements, according to public records. In his classes, Palestinians were regarded at a distance, in part as security threats who committed acts of terrorism — including one that killed a sister of a classmate.

When Trump ran for president, his son-in-law’s stances on Israel helped shape the campaign. Kushner helped script a speech to the American Israel Public Affairs Committee and consulted with Netanyahu officials behind the scenes. When he brought the candidate and the prime minister together for a meeting, he invited his father, Charles Kushner, to join them.

Sometimes I get the feeling it is the father working through the son.

Though he had been raised a Democrat, Kushner endorsed Mitt Romney in the 2012 presidential race, in part because of disappointment with President Obama on Israel.

I would really miss him more if he hadn't given Israel everything they wanted before standing up as a lame duck while initiating regime change in Libya and Ukraine, attempted regime change in Syria, and collaborating in the mass-murdering slaughter that is Yemen.

Some observers see Kushner as a welcome counter to an unpredictable president and to firebrands like Stephen Bannon, the White House strategist, and David M. Friedman, the ambassador designate to Israel.

Well, Bannon is gone -- as is anyone and everyone who opposes Jared -- and Friedman flipped him off.

Kushner “could be a moderate voice,’’ said Dan Gillerman, Israel’s former ambassador to the United Nations, who got to know Kushner in New York. “The strange thing is, that 36-year-old kid may end up being the grown-up in the room.’’

Or not after two-and-a-half years.


Afterward, Kushner was named senior adviser and played a key role in coordinating Trump’s contacts with foreign leaders and talking with foreign government officials himself while growing close to Ron Dermer, the Israeli ambassador and a close confidant of Netanyahu.

Also see:

Kushner’s sister withdraws from presentation to Chinese investors

The deal went Anbang and she had to find a new partner.

"The information collected last summer was considered credible enough for intelligence agencies to pass to the FBI, which during that period opened a counterintelligence investigation that is ongoing. It is unclear, however, whether Russian officials actually tried to directly influence Paul Manafort and Michael Flynn. Both have denied any collusion with the Russian government on the campaign to disrupt the election. John Brennan, the former director of the CIA, testified Tuesday about a tense period last year when he came to believe that President Vladimir Putin of Russia was trying to steer the outcome of the election. He said he saw intelligence suggesting that Russia wanted to use Trump campaign officials, wittingly or not, to help in that effort. He spoke vaguely about contacts between Trump associates and Russian officials, without giving names, saying they “raised questions in my mind about whether Russia was able to gain the cooperation of those individuals.”

Brennan pedaled the Steele dossier to McCain and Reid so they could send it up through channels.

I was told Kushner was a focus in Russia investigation because he wanted a secret communications channel with Kremlin, but it is common for senior advisers of a newly elected president to be in contact with foreign leaders and officialsit is common and not improper for transition officials to meet with foreign officials, and “Jared has had meetings with many other foreign countries and representatives — as many as two dozen other foreign countries’ leaders and representatives.”

Besides, the Kennedys did it.

Then there is the question of why Mueller was probing Kushner's finances, but his private attorney, Clinton lawyer and 9/11 commissioner Jamie Gorelick downplayed the news as Jared proclaimed that he did not collude with Russians (how about that grin, huh? He knows he is untouchable).


"Three months before the 2016 election, a small group gathered at Trump Tower to meet with Donald Trump Jr., the president's eldest son. One was an Israeli specialist in social media manipulation. Another was an emissary for two wealthy Arab princes. The third was a Republican donor with a controversial past in the Middle East as a private security contractor. At the time, the emissary was also promoting a secret plan to use private contractors to destabilize Iran. The meetings, which have not been reported previously, are the first indication that countries other than Russia may have offered assistance to the Trump campaign....." 

I'm sorry, NYT, SAY AGAIN?

The contractor is Erik Prince (brother of Betsy DeVos, and did you know she is 14th in line of succession to the president) of Blackwater fame, the specialist is Joel Zamel, whose company employs several Israeli former intelligence officers specializing in collecting information and shaping opinion through social media and was paid up to $2 million, and the emissary would be the infamous Israeli fixer and interventionist George Nader, a convicted pedophile with a shadowy past, who frequently met with Jared Kushner and Michael Flynn. 

"A crackdown on working from home is pushing the EPA’s workforce in Boston to the brink" by Katie Johnston Globe Staff, July 24, 2019

The Trump administration’s disregard for the Environmental Protection Agency’s mission has riled many agency veterans, particularly when it comes to sustainability and climate change, but a new crackdown on working from home is pushing the already beleaguered workforce in Boston to the brink.

“There’s a lot of things this administration has done that makes it difficult to work here, but this is the first thing that’s really hit staff on a personal level,” said a public liaison for superfund site cleanups who moved to Exeter, N.H. — a nearly two-hour train ride from Boston — in part because of her ability to work from home two days a week, which allows her to pick up her 2-year-old from day care.

Like other EPA employees who talked to the Globe, she asked that her name not be used.

The directive has left some staff members scrambling to find last-minute help with child care, the employee said. Others are looking for new jobs.

“This could be the last straw,” she said.

The limits on remote work, which was previously allowed two days a week, are part of a new contract that management refers to as a collective bargaining agreement and the union, which was not involved in any bargaining, calls an illegal “unilateral edict.”

EPA employees are well aware of Trump’s disdain for their agency. In the Boston office, union president Steve Calder, noting that some workers are blaming the union for the loss of remote work days because it refused to negotiate, said, “Morale is in the toilet. The Trump administration loves chaos. . . . That’s part of their MO: chaos, infighting, fear.”

Great, just as Baker is asking for federal disaster relief after the Cape tornado.

Anyone who has scientific evidence showing that climate change is caused by humans and is capable of causing significant harm, for instance, is a threat to Trump’s beliefs, said David Madland, senior fellow at the left-leaning Center for American Progress.

The founding principle of the Center for American Progress, established a decade ago by former Clinton administration officials, was to use policy studies to press a liberal agenda.

It's what is now known as advocacy journali$m, and the Globe is full of it.

Earlier this month, a State Department intelligence analyst resigned after the White House blocked parts of his written testimony to Congress citing evidence that climate change is a threat to national security.

Then shut down the war machine because that is by far the largest polluter.

“By weakening unions and undermining expertise, it gives Trump greater power to do what he wants without anyone having the ability to challenge him on it,” Madland said.....

He can already do whatever he wants, and based on the Mueller fiasco yesterday, we no longer have an opposition with the ability to challenge.


RelatedBattery Wharf hotel workers poised to strike

Whatever happened with the Vineyard bus drivers that went on strike!?

Out of a job, huh?

Hey, it's not the company's fault.

"Not guilty pleas entered in theft from Boston Center for Adult Education" by Gal Tziperman Lotan Globe Staff, July 24, 2019

Bit by bit, check after check, $1.7 million vanished from the Boston Center for Adult Education over eight years. More than $565,000 went to the executive director’s partner, for marketing services that did not exist, prosecutors say. Almost $900,000 in checks allegedly were written by the comptroller to himself, and more than $300,000 to groups for his personal benefit, including a youth baseball team in Saugus that he managed.

It was a brazen job, prosecutors say, carried out by a pair of executives at the Bay Village nonprofit who allegedly falsified financial entries and lied to the board of directors, leaving them in the dark.

Being run more like corporations all the time.

Just blocks from the Public Garden, the center is an institution in the neighborhood, said Meg Mainzer-Cohen, president of the Back Bay Association. It gives residents the chance to transcend the day-to-day, to learn new things, and become closer to others, she said.

“It serves a very important service for the community. It brings people together, people meet each other, friendships grow out of it,” she said.....

I wish I could find that kind of friend$hip.



Court declines to block new Trump administration rule barring most Central American asylum petitions

Another win for Trump!

ICE releases 18-year-old US citizen wrongfully detained near border

Yellowstone bison launches girl, 9, into the air

The alarming scene was captured in a 12-second video that was first shared Monday to Twitter and has since gone viral, serving as the latest reminder of the danger that can arise when people venture too close to wild animals.

Pennsylvania high court declines to review Sandusky decision

They don't want to open that can of worms. A couple of them might even be in there somewhere.

Officials abandon idea of demolishing Columbine High School

Confederate statue vandalized with profanity against Trump

They profaned the patriot General Robert E. Lee.

Worldwide recall launched for textured breast implants linked to rare cancer

Federal judge blocks Arkansas antiabortion laws for now

At least you won that one at the eleventh-hour, ladies, although the repeal of the Affordable Care Act is nigh!

"Wanda Vázquez, in line to become Puerto Rico’s next governor, faces pushback" by Jose A. Del Real New York Times, July 24, 2019

SAN JUAN — After more than a week of political turmoil in Puerto Rico, calls are escalating for Governor Ricardo A. Rosselló to resign. In line to succeed him is Wanda Vázquez, the secretary of justice, but Vázquez has a number of powerful political opponents, complicating any succession, and the island was enmeshed in intense political machinations on Wednesday to determine who would lead it.

What does the Constitution say?

Vázquez worked as an attorney specializing in domestic and sexual violence before her appointment to the top post at the commonwealth’s Department of Justice. She was appointed to lead the office of women’s affairs in 2010. Some women’s groups opposed Vázquez during her seven years as the head of the island’s women’s affairs office.

“A lot of feminist groups were very critical of Wanda Vázquez,” said Saadi Rosado of the Feminist Collective, an advocacy group. “She failed to address gender violence issues and was another piece of government bureaucracy.”

Her relationship with the legislative branch is fraught, to say the least. Her time as secretary of justice has been punctuated by criticism that she has dragged her feet on investigating controversies involving members of her own party.....

Lot of bad blood down there, or so I am told.


Demonstrators waved Puerto Rican national flags in front of the governor's mansion in San Juan on Wednesday as part of a protest calling for Governor Ricardo Rosselló to resign.
Demonstrators waved Puerto Rican national flags in front of the governor's mansion in San Juan on Wednesday as part of a protest calling for Governor Ricardo Rosselló to resign. (Dennis M. Rivera Pichardo/Associated Press)

Did you know that on this day in 1952, Puerto Rico became a self-governing commonwealth of the United States, and based on the photo above they no longer want to stay.

Their leaders might consider making an appeal to Trump like this guy:

"Madoff asks Trump to commute his 150-year sentence" by Michael Gold New York Times, July 24, 2019

Years before he became president, President Trump expressed contempt for Bernie Madoff in an interview with The New York Times Magazine in 2009.

Trump told the Times that he had met the notorious financier several times, both at Mar-a-Lago, the president’s private, members-only resort in Palm Beach, Fla., and at Trump’s nearby golf course.

At one point, Madoff, who once owned a waterfront mansion in Palm Beach, asked Trump to invest in his fund, Trump said.

“I said jokingly, ‘No thanks, I can lose my own money,’ ” Trump said.

In 2008, in an interview with CNN, Trump referred to Madoff as a “sleazebag” and “a total crook.”

It's at times like these that I think Trump is the perfect president. If anyone can see through these Zionist Jew scoundrels, he can. He's been around them all his life and knows exactly how to play them.

Believe me, I'm just as alarmed as you that he could be a peacemaker and Christ-like figure.



Slighting RMV oversight hearing a losing strategy

The ticket’s in the mail, or did you not get the memo.

‘Conrad’s Law’ would criminalize suicide coercion

It's a newly filed bill inspired by the Michelle Carter case, and you will need to walk on eggshells around them while avoiding the horses**t.

State House clears $1.3B for towns to address climate change

Man arrested in N.H. killing of girlfriend with piece of furniture

Off-duty police officer spots car linked to Roxbury shooting scene

The driver was arrested on a gun charge.

Boston man pleads guilty to trafficking underage girl, two women

They are federal charges and he could serve more than 12 years in prison.

Man accused of trying to sexually assault Northeastern student held without bail

Neither one is an Epstein.

Whistleblower VA doctor who reported Manchester facility dies in car crash


I guess they finally caught up to him.


Necco dispute clears hurdle in bankruptcy court

There is a $weet $10 million at $take.

Sage Therapeutics to pursue high-risk, high-reward plan for experimental depression pill

Patients, backed by ‘dark money’ group, get ready to debate Duchenne drug prices

$hould be exciting.

Dunkin’ jumps on the faux-meat bandwagon

The dash is on to deliver it.

"Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said Wednesday he supported the Justice Department’s efforts to look into Amazon because the tech giant has ‘‘destroyed the retail industry.’’ ‘‘I think if you look at Amazon, although there are certain benefits to it, they’ve destroyed the retail industry across the United States, so there’s no question they’ve limited competition,’’ Mnuchin said during an interview on CNBC. ‘‘There’s areas where they’ve really hurt small businesses.’’ Mnuchin made the comments one day after the Justice Department announced it was opening a wide-ranging antitrust review of ‘‘market-leading online platforms,’’ an unprecedented inquiry that could heighten calls for Amazon, Facebook, and Google to be broken up....."

That must be music to Liz Warren's ears!

Facebook agrees to extensive new oversight as part of $5b settlement

Dish agrees to $5 billion deal for wireless assets, setting up mobile service merger

Vineyard Wind CEO confident that federal review will wrap up shortly

Former Delta executive confirmed to become head of FAA

After quite a fight.

Boeing says it may halt 737 Max production

Boston Fed executive to retire

His last name is Fuhrer, and I'm not kidding.


Time to bid a final adieu to a pair who will live forever in film:

Who could ever forget the murderous android replicant Roy Batty on a desperate quest to prolong his artificially shortened life in post-apocalyptic, 21st-century Los Angeles in ‘‘Blade Runner’’ opposite Harrison Ford?

David Hedison, actor who found fame in a submarine, dies at 92

He was the doomed scientist in the original version of the horror movie “The Fly” and rose to fame as the by-the-book submarine captain on the prime-time series “Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea,” but he is best remembered by me for his appearances on “The Love Boat” and “Fantasy Island.”

Speaking of which, they are making a reboot of Fantasy Island with Faye Dunaway as Mrs. Roarke and Adam Sandler as Tattoo. The new theme music is to be written by Meek Mill, and the first episode guest stars Casey Affleck and Elizabeth Banks as a married couple invited to dinner at the Fringe Festival.


It's the Globe with the dementia today, and the word impeachment appears below the fold:

"4 more House Democrats — 2 from Mass. — now back impeachment" by Jazmine Ulloa Globe Staff, July 25, 2019

WASHINGTON — The day after former special counsel Robert Mueller’s long-awaited testimony, four more House members — including Massachusetts Representatives Katherine Clark and Lori Trahan — came out in favor of launching an impeachment inquiry into President Trump, despite resistance from party leaders.

I'm sure they were hoping for more than and handful.

Their announcements brought to nearly 100 the number of House Democrats who want to start impeachment proceedings, but that is still a minority of the 235 House Democrats.

The math means that, as lawmakers left Washington Thursday for a six-week recess, Mueller’s underwhelming performance had changed some lawmakers’ minds but had yet to produce the surge in support that many liberals hoped it would.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and many of her deputies have been resisting calls for impeachment out of fear that it will backfire politically given lukewarm public support and near solid Republican opposition.

“We do need to be realistic, and that is, the only way he’s leaving office, at least at this point, is by being voted out, and I think our efforts need to be made in every respect to make sure we turn out our people,” House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam B. Schiff, a close Pelosi ally, told CNN on Thursday. “Should we put the country through an impeachment? I haven’t been convinced yet that we should.”

The last hope for House Democrats pushing impeachment could be a groundswell of support from voters back home.

Which isn't out there on this particular issue, although I'm sure the activists will be activated and the narrative-provided pre$$ will cover the protests.

Representative Eric Swalwell of California predicted more House lawmakers would join him in favor of impeachment after taking the temperature of their constituents during the long summer break. “The way I see it is you’re not going to see fewer people calling for impeachment,” he said. “And no one who called for impeachment and then watched the hearing is going to say, ‘You know what — I made the wrong call.’ ”


Go ahead then.

Appearing before two committees Wednesday, Mueller confirmed he did not exonerate Trump of obstruction of justice after a two-year investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election, but Mueller did not deliver any new bombshellor viral moments — and as promised, he did not stray from the 448-page report he issued in April.

Still, Mueller’s testimony was enough for Trahan.

The Westford Democrat had already read the report, but she said Mueller’s testimony persuaded her to call for impeachment because he had made enough of a case to the public about potential obstruction of justice and confirmed that Trump had not been exonerated, countering the narrative from the president and administration officials.

“Delivering that message, which people just hadn’t received before, was important because you want impeachment proceedings to be self evident,” she said. “You want it to be where people understand what you’re doing is not partisan thing.”

She expects us to believe that, or is she just singing to the choir?

Trahan, who is in her first term, was a congressional staffer when President Bill Clinton was impeached in 1998, so she knows the disruption, distraction, and divisiveness that process can cause.

“There is a tremendous burden of history when you make decisions like this,” Trahan said in her Capitol Hill office Thursday. “But at the end of the day, we need to send a very clear and strong message that no president — not this one, not the next one — is above the law.”

There she goes again, with not the $lightest hint of $hame for the hypocri$y.

Clark’s move was surprising because she serves in the House Democratic leadership, but while she said the ongoing investigations are laying the necessary groundwork to start an impeachment inquiry, she felt compelled to do more in the face of the Trump administration’s “unprecedented stonewalling and obstruction.”

All this hyperbole is making them look ridiculous, but I guess that is what Globe readers need to see and hear; otherwise, they melt like a snowflake.

The Melrose Democrat also said she was “stunned” when Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell, a Republican, blocked a vote on an election security bill Thursday after Mueller had warned Russia was still trying to interfere with US elections.

Related: Election security divides Congress after Mueller’s testimony

My print copy was some NYT pos.

“We can’t allow Republican inaction to prop the door open for thieves to steal an election,” Clark said. “We must be relentless in exposing the truth, act to protect our national security, and ensure that every eligible American can vote without foreign interference.”

Democratic Representatives Peter DeFazio of Oregon and Lisa Blunt Rochester of Delaware also came out for impeachment after Mueller’s testimony. The nine-member Massachusetts congressional delegation had been split on the issue. Massachusetts Senator Ed Markey also came out in favor of impeachment Thursday.

Markey is obviously crapping his pants at the latest poll numbers.

Impeachment must start in the House, though, and there’s not even yet a majority of Democrats there who support it. A Washington Post/ABC News poll released this month showed 37 percent of adults wanted the House to start impeachment proceedings, while an NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll also released this month found 21 percent support from registered voters.

Political experts did not expect the Mueller testimony to move the needle much in terms of public opinion, pointing to polling data that show previous revelations from the Mueller investigation have not had an impact on Trump’s approval ratings.

“I think Democrats are trying to use the Mueller report to keep it in the public’s mind,” said Kyle Kondik, communications director for the Center for Politics at the University of Virginia.

The reaction came after House Democrats and Republicans on Wednesday painted opposing realities of Mueller and his testimony. Republicans characterized Mueller as unprepared and lacking a “firm grasp on the issues,” with House Intelligence member Devin Nunes referring to the second hearing as “the last gasp of the Russia collusion conspiracy theory.”

Which reality would you like to believe? 

(Blog editor then heaves a huge sigh of despair at the journali$m, if you can even call it that)

In her office on Thursday, Trahan said she felt relief in calling for impeachment — a decision she said was reinforced by the calls from constituents she has received.

“You want to work on all the things you campaigned on,” she said, as she rushed out for votes on the House floor. “At the same time, you are balancing that with protecting our democracy and standing up for what’s right. When they said that the job is not supposed to be easy, they are right.”


I don't know how you make sense of that, and now what?

Better be careful if you lose, for it could mean the death penalty:

"Justice Department plans to restart capital punishment after long hiatus" by Devlin Barrett and Mark Berman Washington Post, July 25, 2019

WASHINGTON — The Justice Department announced Thursday that it plans to resume executing prisoners awaiting the death penalty, ending almost two decades in which the federal government had not imposed capital punishment on prisoners.

Attorney General William Barr ordered the Bureau of Prisons to schedule executions for five inmates currently on death row. The prisoners were convicted of murdering children.

Yeah, they always wave kids at you when they really want something.

The Trump administration’s push to resume capital punishment in the federal system, while not surprising, goes against the recent trend of declining executions across the country.

The last federal execution was in 2003. In the years since, there has been an informal moratorium on executions of federal prisoners, as Justice Department officials reviewed its lethal injection procedures. That practice was underscored during the Obama administration by then-Attorney General Eric Holder’s personal opposition to the death penalty, even while he approved prosecutors’ decisions to seek the death penalty in specific trials.

Barr said it was time for convicted killers sentenced to death by juries to receive that ultimate punishment. ‘‘The Justice Department upholds the rule of law — and we owe it to the victims and their families to carry forward the sentence imposed by our justice system,’’ Barr said in a statement.

We are reaching the point of absurdity when a Deep State creature that is a guardian of the secrets and arbiter of ju$tu$ is citing the rule of law.

The number of executions nationwide has plummeted over the last two decades, falling to 25 executions last year, down from 98 carried out in 1999. The number of states carrying out death sentences has also declined as some have abolished capital punishment, announced moratoriums, or struggled to obtain the drugs sought for executions.

New Hampshire abolished the death penalty earlier this year, making it the 21st state to formally abandon capital punishment. In some of the other states where it remains the law, the death penalty is effectively frozen, including by governor-issued moratoriums in California and Pennsylvania and a court order in North Carolina.

Supporters of capital punishment, who argue that it should be applied for heinous crimes, have said that delays in carrying out death sentences are unfair to the relatives of victims. Opponents of the practice have argued that the system is dangerously flawed, pointing to cases of people who have been exonerated after being sentenced to death.

Ruth Friedman, head of the Federal Capital Habeas Project, which seeks to improve legal representation for people on federal death row, said there were ‘‘troubling questions about the new execution protocol’’ announced Thursday.

‘‘A pervasive myth is that the federal death penalty is ‘the gold standard’ of capital punishment systems, applied only to the worst offenders for a narrow class of especially heinous crimes involving unique federal interests, with highly skilled and well-resourced lawyers on both sides,’’ she said in a statement. ‘‘This is false. In fact, the federal death penalty is arbitrary, racially-biased, and rife with poor lawyering and junk science.’’

Friedman called for ‘‘additional court review before the federal government can proceed with any execution.’’

This may surprise, but I'm totally opposed to the death penalty. The state does enough sanctioned killing by its self-appointed authority and we have enough mass-murdering exercises called wars. What you do with the war criminals and incorrigible looters and ruling cla$$ pedophiles is look 'em up for life in a black site. It's the dose of your own medicine solution.

Nationwide, most Americans support the practice, though the amount has declined significantly since the mid-1990s. At that time, when crime rates were far higher, four in five Americans backed capital punishment, while a Pew Research Center poll last year found that 54 percent of people supported it.

That doesn't surprise me. This country has been steeped in Zionist values and thought for so long they have us bloodthirsty.

According to Pew, most Republicans still back it, while Democrats oppose the death penalty. President Trump has been an outspoken supporter of capital punishment for decades, while Democratic candidates running against him have argued that it should be abolished.

The Justice Department’s decision to shift to a single drug for lethal injections — which remain the primary method of executions nationwide — mirrors a move that has taken place in states facing difficulties in obtaining the drugs officials have sought.

States still seeking to schedule executions have scrambled to obtain lethal injection drugs in recent years in the face of opposition from pharmaceutical firms that do not want their products used in carrying out death sentences.

This is after an executive at one of the nation’s largest drug distribution companies said under questioning recently that the business has no obligation to the public when it comes to the amount of prescription opioid painkillers it ships.

Nothing like pharmaceutical hypocri$y, huh?

In some states, authorities have moved to rewrite their execution protocols to rely on different drug combinations — in some cases, doing so multiple times — or expanded their ability to use other execution methods such as the firing squad, electric chair, and nitrogen gas. Nebraska last year became the first state to use the powerful opioid fentanyl in an execution.

Texas, Georgia, and Missouri — three of the 11 states that have carried out executions since 2017, and all among the country’s most active death-penalty states — have shifted their protocols from three-drug combinations to relying only on pentobarbital, according to the Death Penalty Information Center.

The Justice Department has sought and won death sentences in two high-profile cases in recent years, sending both the Boston Marathon bomber and the Charleston, S.C., church gunman to death row.

When Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, the surviving Boston Marathon bomber, was sentenced to death in 2015, the Justice Department was operating under a de facto moratorium on executions due to an ongoing review of its federal death penalty policy..... 

Oh, so that is what this is about. Execute the patsy before someone gets to him.

Btw, the Marathon Bombing was on Mueller's beat, and no one asked him about it.


That's the guy who protects war criminal presidents and the office of the presidency, and he does look like one tough sob.

One who is not:

"A week after being denied bail, Jeffrey E. Epstein was found unconscious in his cell Tuesday at a federal jail in Manhattan with marks on his neck, and prison officials were treating the incident as a possible suicide attempt, a law enforcement official who had been briefed on the matter said. Epstein’s injuries were not serious, said the official, who requested his name not be published because he was not authorized to speak on the matter. A second law enforcement official, also speaking on the condition of anonymity, confirmed that Epstein had been discovered in his cell with “bruising around the neck.” The Bureau of Prisons, in an e-mail Thursday morning, would give no details about the incident, citing “privacy and security reasons.” The bureau said Epstein, 66, was not in a hospital but still at the jail, the Metropolitan Correctional Center in Lower Manhattan. Epstein’s lawyers did not immediately respond to requests for comment. Epstein, the financier who is accused of abusing underage girls, has been housed in a special unit at the jail along with a man facing murder charges named Nicholas Tartaglione, according to Tartaglione’s lawyer, Bruce Barket. Federal prisons use the special units with strict security measures to separate some inmates from the general population."

This is either a pathetic attempt at gaining sympathy, or Epstein is in real danger. You have to remember that the Feds moved Whitey Bulger just before he met with misfortune. We could be seeing them laying the groundwork for some ill to befall Epstein.

"A mystery was afoot in Washington this week after an apparent audiovisual mix-up made for an unexpected jab at President Trump. The venue: a Washington hotel where Turning Point USA, the conservative youth organization, was hosting a conference for high school students, where Trump spoke Tuesday. The décor: a presidential seal on the onstage screen, a fitting background for a speech by the president of the United States. The problem: The presidential seal was not, in fact, the presidential seal at all. Instead of the customary bald eagle, the image showed a double-headed eagle, similar to that featured in Russia’s national emblem. Instead of arrows, the eagle clutches a set of golf clubs. Turning Point USA initially said it had no idea how it ended up there. Was it a prank or a political statement? Or was it a simple mistake by the audiovisual team, who perhaps pulled the wrong image off the internet? By Thursday, that seemed to be the explanation. In the hours after the image was circulated online, an aide at the organization was fired, a person with knowledge of the matter confirmed Thursday....."

I'm so glad they solved that mystery, aren't you?

" A divided House on Thursday passed a two-year budget deal that would raise spending by hundreds of billions of dollars over existing caps and allow the government to keep borrowing to cover its debts, amid grumbling from fiscal conservatives over the measure’s effect on the federal deficit. Republicans defected by the dozens, despite President Trump’s endorsement and pressure from key outside groups, including the Chamber of Commerce, to avoid a potentially catastrophic default on the government’s debt. Democrats were left to get the deal passed. The Senate is expected to approve the measure next week, and Steven Mnuchin, the Treasury secretary, said he would ensure that the department had money through the next two weeks. With spending levels set, the bare-bones budget deal will allow lawmakers to begin filling in the details of spending bills that would fund the government agency by agency and program by program beyond Oct. 1, when the new fiscal year begins."

It's demented to continue to read this slop every morning.

Major automakers strike climate deal with California

They rebuffed Trump, so at least someone did.

In Puerto Rico, uncertainty about who will be the new governor

It's a New York Times rewrite, so f*** it.

Aborted embryo suit rests on Alabama ‘unborn rights’ policy

The unborn have no rights, for they are not yet a citizen.

90,000 in Mass. could be affected by Trump’s callous food-stamp cuts

Including children with disabilities and the elderly in hospice.


"Governor Baker calls for $18b boost in transit, road funding" by Aidan Ryan Globe Correspondent, July 25, 2019

The so-called transportation bond bill would allow the state to borrow money for years of improvements to both the roads and rails, and includes many projects the Baker administration had already identified as priorities before the latest troubles.

In previous years, these measures rarely attracted much attention outside of Beacon Hill, but the recent crisis surrounding the T over the June derailment on the Red Line, as well as the seemingly worsening traffic congestion, has injected a sense of urgency to fix problems that have been building for decades.

Meaning the Globe's recent focus on the routine delays and derailments was nothing more than an agenda-pushing money and grab with a side slice of politics.

Baker has come under fire for his oversight of the T in particular and his refusal to entertain a tax increase or other new revenues to improve transit service.....

Oh, yeah, pu$hing the tax and fee increases now.


Don't stand too close to the railing.


"Governor Charlie Baker submitted a bond bill to the Legislature Thursday that would authorize $18 billion in transportation spending over 10 years. The package includes the usual Christmas list. Here’s a sampling of the items Baker wants under his tree....."

I can't take the eliti$t in$ults anymore, and the public-private partnerships they keep referring to have the whiff of pure fa$ci$m.

Also see: 

Baker encourages RMV officials to testify at legislative hearing

Baker activates National Guard to help Cape Cod after tornadoes hit

Mass. auto dealer caught in messy fight with N.Y. investor

Rosenberg accuses the New York investment firm GPB Capital Holdings of running a Ponzi-like scheme.

Running to Home Base got this Navy SEAL back home all the way

He says Home Base is the cutting-edge program operated by Massachusetts General Hospital and the Boston Red Sox that treats a very special corps of wounded warriors and the existential questions that the people we send to war face (I don't know if he meant that literally, but he is right when he says we, what with being part of the war-promoting advocacy journali$m and all).

At least it's for a worthy cause:

"The Red Sox had precious little to celebrate on the field in London over the weekend, but behind the scenes, team brass raised a toast to the arrival of baseball across the pond — and raised awareness about an important cause. Home Base — a Red Sox Foundation and Massachusetts General Hospital program — and the UK’s Walking With the Wounded hosted the Mission: Gratitude Gala at Kensington Palace, raising $1.3 million for veterans dealing with mental health issues, and their families. Aptly, the fund-raiser took place on June 27, which is National PTSD Awareness Day. The lavish bash drew a host of notables from Boston as well as some boldface Brits, including perennially youthful rocker Sting, who serenaded partygoers. On the guest list: Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker, his wife, Lauren, and daughter Caroline; Massachusetts General Hospital president Dr. Peter Slavin and his wife, Lori; VantEdge co-founder Paul Edgerley and his wife, Sandy; Bank of America vice chairman Anne Finucane; designer and diehard Sox fan Joseph Abboud; Member of Parliament Edward Miliband; Home Base executive director and retired Brigadier General Jack Hammond and his wife, Colleen; NESN host Tom Caron; and Major League Baseball commissioner Rob Manfred. Many members of the Red Sox leadership made the fancy fund-raiser, including principal owner John Henry and his wife, Boston Globe managing director Linda Pizzuti Henry; team chairman Tom Werner; manager Alex Cora; president and CEO Sam Kennedy; president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski; Red Sox Foundation executive director Rebekah Salwasser; and foundation honorary chairman Tim Wakefield." 

What, no trip to Idaho this year? 

Here’s the story of the Great Western Mass. Yak Escape of 2019

Zoe Greenberg tells you all about it.

Yankee Candle founder Michael Kittredge dies at 67

That's all the talk out here.

Boston Calling promoter describes encountering a knotty permit process

Until agreeing to hire union workers anyway.

UMass tuition likely to increase 2.5%, president says

Not only that, the women’s basketball team needs a coach.


"Score one for gender diversity in the male-dominated biotech industry. Reshma Kewalramani, 46, will be the first female CEO at a top-tier US biotech company, a watershed moment for Vertex Pharmaceuticals. Vertex said in a securities filing Thursday that as part of Kewalramani’s promotion, her base salary was boosted to $800,000 and will rise to $1.15 million when she becomes CEO. Her first grant of stock under her CEO pay package will be made during the first quarter of 2021, with an estimated value of $11 million....."

I'm told it is a “milestone” by Jody Rose, president of the New England Venture Capital Association, who is working with Massachusetts companies to recruit more women and people of color into high-skill tech jobs, and diver$ity is important to the ruling cla$$ in that it may facilitate the $tatu$ quo but with a fresh and different face.

At least she will be able to land an apartment:

Welcome to Crazytown, a.k.a. the Greater Boston real estate market

And the home of the $925,000 designer studio as sparks fly:

A fireball was spotted over Mass. on Wednesday night

The Globe’s experts tell you what you saw.

People urged to avoid contact with water in Charles River because of toxic algae

Maybe that is what killed her:

"The body of a 24-year-old homeless woman was discovered in the Spicket River in Lawrence on Tuesday, and a Lawrence man, Giovanni Lebron, 24, was arrested Wednesday night and charged him with murder, the Essex District Attorney’s office said....."

Do you hear any frogs?

Museum of Science cuts staff by 29 positions

Rowley man dies after fall in national park

"Two Massachusetts men are facing a total of 82 criminal charges for allegedly sexually molesting a male juvenile while working as counselors at New Hampshire’s Youth Development Center in 1997 and 1998, officials said Thursday. The men were identified by New Hampshire Attorney General Gordon J. MacDonald’s office as Jeffrey Buskey, a 52-year-old Dorchester resident, and Steven Murphy, a 50-year-old Danvers resident. Buskey faces 56 indictments and Murphy has been charged in 26 for their alleged actions while at the Youth Development Center, a juvenile detention facility in Manchester, N.H. The victim was between the ages of 13 and 18 at the time. The AG’s office is also expanding the scope of the investigation and will examine circumstances at the Manchester, N.H., facility between 1990 and 2000, prosecutors said....."

Do they know Epstein?

"A man and a juvenile male were arrested on gun charges Wednesday evening in Roxbury, police said. Jefferson Baez, 21, of Boston was charged with unlawful possession of a firearm, unlawful possession of ammunition, and unlawful possession of a loaded firearm, the Boston Police Department said in a statement Thursday. A 17-year-old male from Roxbury was charged with being a delinquent for unlawful possession of a firearm, unlawful possession of ammunition, unlawful possession of a loaded firearm, and possession of a high-capacity feeding device, police said....."

The kid is a suspect in a killing in Dorchester.

Arlington statistician wins $1 million lottery prize

We should all be so lucky as Felsher.