Mueller, Manafort and Gates: where’s the beef?

So: where is the beef?

First, from the BBC.com:

Ex-Trump aide Manafort charged with US tax fraud over Ukraine work

Donald Trump’s former presidential campaign manager, Paul Manafort, has been charged with conspiring to defraud the US in his dealings with Ukraine.

The 12 charges brought against Mr Manafort and one of his business associates, Rick Gates, include conspiracy to launder money.

They stem from an inquiry into alleged Russian meddling in the US election.

It has emerged that another adviser to Mr Trump admitted this month to lying about his links to Russia.

George Papadopoulos pleaded guilty to making false statements to FBI agents about his dealings with an unnamed overseas academic who allegedly informed him that the Russians possessed “dirt” on Mr Trump’s presidential opponent, Hillary Clinton.

Even the BBC admits:

The charges against Mr Manafort and Mr Gates do not relate to Mr Trump’s campaign but to the alleged concealment of payments from the pair’s Ukrainian business dealings up to 2016.

The BBC also states:

The good news for Mr Trump is these charges stem from Mr Manafort’s past business dealings, not his campaign efforts. He is being accused of working for years for pro-Russian Ukrainian politicians and laundering millions in subsequent payments.

It certainly makes Mr Trump’s decision to cut Mr Manafort loose last August after details emerged of his Ukrainian ties seem a wise one.

Perhaps at this point I should have Captain Obvious step in and say: “Russia is not Ukraine. They are two separate countries, not particularly in love with each other.”

Odd how the American Media Maggots neglect that aspect of the charges.

Some NewsWeasels have declared the charges involving Manafort and Gates as an “opening salvo” by Special Prosecutor Mueller — he of the spic-and-span background.

Oh wait. Perhaps not so spic-and-span? From the WashingtonExaminer.com:

Peter King wants Robert Mueller to answer Congress’ questions about 2009 uranium deal

by Kyle Feldscher

New York Rep. Peter King wants special counsel Robert Mueller to come to Congress to explain why the FBI didn’t sound the alarm louder about a deal to sell a company in control of uranium reserves to a Russian company.

King said Sunday on Fox News that Mueller, who was FBI director from 2001-2013, has some questions to answer about the deal that saw a Russian state-controlled company buy Uranium One, a company that controlled 20 percent of American uranium reserves.

The deal had to be approved by nine American government agencies, including Hillary Clinton’s State Department, and went through in 2009.

Uh-oh. That was under Mr Spic-and-Span’s tenure. What did he know and when did he know it? Was he complicit in that approval?

“Bob Mueller should come forward to the Congress and explain how he addresses [the deal] because it’s not only a question whether or not the Clintons, what involvement they had with uranium,” King said, “but it’s also the fact he was head of the FBI at a time we’ve been told an investigation is being conducted by the FBI as to bribery and collusion involving the Russians and yet, this was approved the Cabinet and the treasury secretary, secretary of state and the president.”

“Did the FBI notify the administration the Obama administration at the time this investigation was ongoing and all of the allegations are being made and, if so what was done and if they didn’t, why not?”

Unpaid advisor to the Trump campaign, George Popdopoulos, was arrested in July, we now find, for lying to the FBI.

WASHINGTON (AP) — A former campaign adviser to President Donald Trump has pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI about his contacts with Russians, special counsel Robert Mueller said Monday, while Trump’s former campaign manager and that official’s business partner pleaded not guilty to felony charges of conspiracy against the United States and other counts.

We are told that Popadopoulos pleaded guilty and is “cooperating.” My first two thoughts? 1. Leverage, and 2. Wire.

During the daily press briefing, White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders downplayed Papadopoulos’ role in the campaign, saying it was “extremely limited.”

“He was not paid by the campaign,” Sanders said, adding later: “Any actions that he took would have been on his own.”

Allahpundit of HotAir.com concurred with some of my thoughts.

According to the plea agreement, Papadopoulos was arrested on July 27 and signed his deal with the feds on October 5, although not until this morning was that publicly known. The court had sealed the files related to the case. How come?

So that’s why Mueller wanted to keep Papadopoulos’s arrest a secret. Papadopoulos may have been secretly working for the feds for the past three months, since his arrest, to gather evidence on suspects in related Russiagate matters in hopes of leniency. He was a perfect guy to try to recruit for that — young, in over his head, outside the Trump inner circle and therefore owing little loyalty to the administration. Mueller may have scared him senseless with threats of a long prison sentence for lying to the FBI and the promise of much reduced charges if he played ball. Possibly he enlisted Papadopoulos to reach out to some of the major players in Russiagate and get them on record confessing to … what, exactly? The problem with using Papadopoulos is that presumably he wasn’t a big enough cheese to make a guy like Manafort comfortable with discussing campaign secrets with him in the course of a “normal” conversation between them. He was a low-level guy.

As I said, 1. Leverage, and 2. Wire.

Monday’s revelations weren’t just of concern to Republicans. Demorats are hustling as well. Tony Podesta, brother of Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta (complicit in the Hillary email scandal) was shitting Twinkies on Monday. From FoxNews.com:

Brother of Clinton campaign chair steps down from lobbying firm amid reports of scrutiny from special counsel

Tony Podesta, founder of the Podesta Group and brother of former Hillary Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta, is resigning from his lobbying company.

Podesta and his lobbying firm were subjects of a federal investigation led by Special Counsel Robert Mueller.

The Podesta Group was one of several firms that worked on a campaign called the European Centre for a Modern Ukraine. The campaign was led by Paul Manafort and promoted Ukraine’s image in the West.

Uh-oh.

That said, all of this may be moot if a certain “fruit of the poisonous tree” doctrine is found to apply. Jerome Corsi writes:

FBI RELIANCE ON DISCREDITED FUSION GPS “RUSSIA DOSSIER” THREATENS MANAFORT PROSECUTION

by Jerome Corsi

FBI illegally obtained FISA wiretapping of Manafort based on dossier

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Special Counselor Robert Mueller’s case is in danger of being thrown out of court when the FBI is forced to admit FISA court authority to conduct electronic surveillance on former Trump campaign Paul Manafort was based on the fraudulent Fusion GPS “Russia dossier” that the FBI, the Clinton campaign, and the Democratic National Committee paid to be produced.

On Sept. 19, 2017, CNN reported that U.S. investigators conducted electronic surveillance on Manafort both before and after the election under a FISA court warrant.

The CNN article cites only unnamed sources, strongly suggesting the leak was based on an illegal leak to the press that could end up being traced back to the FBI, to Mueller’s Special Counselor office, or to both.

In other words, a case based on bullshite becomes bullshite.

The FBI and/or Mueller may have compromised their entire investigation of Paul Manafort by either using the fraudulent “Russia dossier” paid for in part by the FBI, or by illegally leaking information derived from the FISA-authorized electronic surveillance to CNN and other mainstream media publications known to be partisan “Never Trump” mouthpieces.

CNN reported the secret FISA warrant was obtained after Manafort became the subject of the FBI investigation that began as early as 2014 under then FBI Director James Comey, and centered upon work Manafort conducted consulting with Ukraine.

Further, will Mueller focus any aspect of his investigation on the clear felony charges that could be applied to those persons who leaked grand jury material?

From TheGatewayPundit.com:

Trey Gowdy: Mueller Team ‘Violated the Law’ Leaking Charges in Trump-Russia Investigation

by Joshua Caplan

Congressman and House Oversight Committee chair Trey Gowdy (R-SC) told “Fox News Sunday,” that Mueller’s team broke the law by leaking news of upcoming charges to CNN. Gowdy warned Mueller about leaking details of the investigation to the press.

Republican Rep. Trey Gowdy, the leader of the House’s top investigative committee, slammed special counsel Robert Mueller  on Sunday for allowing the news media to learn that he and his legal team now have charges in their Russia investigation.

“In the only conversation I’ve had with Robert Mueller, I stressed to him the importance of cutting out the leaks,” Gowdy, chairman of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, told “Fox News Sunday.” “It’s kind of ironic that the people charged with investigating the law and the violations of the law would violate the law.”

On Friday night, CNN reported that Mueller’s team has filed the first charges in the case with a federal grand jury.

“Make no mistake, disclosing grand jury material is a violation of the law. Somebody violated their oath of secrecy,” Gowdy, a South Carolina lawmaker and former federal prosecutor, also told Fox News on Sunday.

Is the real story everything but the charges so far?

Let’s be honest. Mueller doesn’t give one shite about Manafort and Ukraine. He wants one thing: he wants Manafort and Gates and Papadopoulos to sing like birds. To me, it’s clear that Mueller got a tune out of Papadopoulos.

I don’t think he got much more than a goldfinch fart out of Manafort or Gates. Hence the charges.

Unfortunately for Mueller, their days of wearing wires are over. But perhaps this will encourage any number of individuals in DC to suck it up like buttercups and take massive gulps of STFU.

That rhymes.

“Round and round and round it goes; where it stops, nobody knows.”

BZ

 

What Mueller and Leftists will ignore

Because it serves their clear agenda.

Leaking grand jury information is a felony.

From TheGatewayPundit.com:

Trey Gowdy: Mueller Team ‘Violated the Law’ Leaking Charges in Trump-Russia Investigation

by Joshua Caplan

Congressman and House Oversight Committee chair Trey Gowdy (R-SC) told “Fox News Sunday,” that Mueller’s team broke the law by leaking news of upcoming charges to CNN. Gowdy warned Mueller about leaking details of the investigation to the press.

Republican Rep. Trey Gowdy, the leader of the House’s top investigative committee, slammed special counsel Robert Mueller  on Sunday for allowing the news media to learn that he and his legal team now have charges in their Russia investigation.

“In the only conversation I’ve had with Robert Mueller, I stressed to him the importance of cutting out the leaks,” Gowdy, chairman of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, told “Fox News Sunday.” “It’s kind of ironic that the people charged with investigating the law and the violations of the law would violate the law.”

On Friday night, CNN reported that Mueller’s team has filed the first charges in the case with a federal grand jury.

“Make no mistake, disclosing grand jury material is a violation of the law. Somebody violated their oath of secrecy,” Gowdy, a South Carolina lawmaker and former federal prosecutor, also told Fox News on Sunday.

A concept to be completely ignored.

Let us not forget that Mueller sat on the CFIUS committee that approved the sale of 20% of US uranium reserves to Russia despite knowing Russia had bribed the Clintons for the illicit sale.

Simple as that. In both cases. And yet.  .  .

Will anyone be investigated? The situation? Indictments handed down?

Of course not. Don’t be silly.

Republicans don’t have the balls to object.

BZ

 

Mueller’s Manic Monday

Here’s what happened.

Things were not going well for the DNC, the Demorats, Hillary, Bill, Obama, Holder, Lynch, DWS, Geithner, et al, so a few panicky phone calls were made. They went something like this:

“Bobby Three Sticks, dude, can’t you kick this shit into high gear? We’re getting killed by the dossier thing and the Uranium One thing. How about some charges? The threat of some charges? We don’t care if you really do indict a ham sandwich as long as it’s a Republican ham sandwich. Hell, indict a Republican hamster. You just gotta help us out here; we need a diversion and we need it now.”

With that in mind, Mueller’s first overt act was on Friday when this was leaked to CNN.

A federal grand jury in Washington, DC, on Friday approved the first charges in the investigation led by special counsel Robert Mueller, according to sources briefed on the matter.

The charges are still sealed under orders from a federal judge. Plans were prepared Friday for anyone charged to be taken into custody as soon as Monday, the sources said. It is unclear what the charges are.

A spokesman for the special counsel’s office declined to comment.

Pure coincidence. “Leaked to CNN”? Pure coincidence as well. Not like it’s branding or anything.

Five names have been thrown out, meat for the political wolves. Manafort, Flynn, Page, Kushner or Trump Jr.

Guesses as to which one?

Whatever charges are leveled will prove to be peripheral and not directly linked to Russian collusion influencing Trump or the election. Likely, I’m guessing — as with most anyone and everyone in DC — charges will be on the order of attempting some kind of coverup/lying or cash for personal gain. In Manafort’s case, wire transfers.

Mueller will do what the feds do customarily: break one person in order to get to another higher up the food chain. Leverage.

What kind of leverage is there truly?

We’ll see.

In the meantime, just when the investigations into Republicans and Russia began, the guilty parties have turned out increasingly to be Demorats.

How sad.

BZ

 

Leftist Washington Post wrong AGAIN

I think I’m starting to see a pattern here.

The Washington Post is Fake News.

The Washington Post is biased news.

The Washington Post is aligned with and carries the water for Demorats and Leftists across the nation. Of that there is no doubt. They don’t mind attributing stories to completely anonymous sources which means that, essentially, unless challenged in court, an anonymous source could be no more than an artful but unauthenticated fart at lunch.

That is to say: the Russian narrative is dying. The Demorats are discovering the door they insisted be opened is leading primarily back to themselves.

That said, from FoxNews.com:

Embarrassment as Washington Post corrects its ‘scoop’ about Obama, Facebook and Russia

by Brian Flood

The Washington Post has made a correction to an explosive cover story that undermines the entire premise of Monday’s front-page article headlined, “Obama sought to prod Facebook on Russia role.”

The problem, according to a Facebook executive, is that when Obama reached out to the social media giant in 2016 to discuss political disinformation spreading on the site, he didn’t actually call out Russia – essentially making the Post’s headline misleading and inaccurate. Or, as President Trump would call it, “fake news.”

As first reported by Axios, the Post added significant information to the digital version of the story with the disclaimer, “This story has been updated with an additional response from Facebook.” The response from Facebook that didn’t make the paper’s print edition is vital and changed the story enough that the word “Russia” was removed from the updated headline.

The story detailed how then-President Obama gave Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg a “wake-up call” regarding fake news spreading on his social media platform. After reporting that Obama “made a personal appeal to Zuckerberg to take the threat of fake news and political disinformation seriously,” the paper has added that Obama “did not single out Russia specifically.”

There might be a problem with that.

Oh but wait; there’s more. And its buttery goodness is both simultaneously salacious and satisfying in terms of, well, schadenfreude.

From ZeroHedge.com:

Leaked Descriptions Of Infamous “Russia Ads” Derail Collusion Narrative “They Showed Support For Clinton”

by Tyler Durden

That was quick.

Less than a week after Facebook agreed to turn over to Congressional investigators copies of the 3,000-odd political advertisements that the company said it had inadvertently sold to a Russia-linked group intent on meddling in the 2016 presidential election, the contents of the ads have – unsurprisingly – leaked, just as we had expected them to.

Congressional investigators shared the information with Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s team, which has repeatedly allowed information about its investigation into whether members of the Trump campaign actively colluded with Russian operatives to leak to the press. Once this happened, we knew it was only a matter of time before the ads became part of the public record.

Uh-oh. Are we about to destroy a narrative? A Leftist narrative?

And, shockingly, descriptions of the ads provided to the Washington Post hardly fit the narrative that Democratic lawmakers have spun in recent weeks, claiming the ads – which didn’t advocate on behalf of a specific candidate, but rather hewed to political issues like abortion rights – were instrumental in securing Trump’s victory.

After initially denying the story this spring, Facebook came clean earlier this month, saying its investigators had discovered that the company sold at least $100,000 worth of ads – and possibly as much as $150,000 – to Russia-linked group that bought the ads through 470 phony Facebook pages and accounts.

WaPo reports that the ads represented issues on both sides of the ideological spectrum, which would suggest that the buyers didn’t intend to support a specific candidate, but rather their own unique agenda.

Oh damn. Kablooie. Narrative blown up. Insert your favorite sound effect here.

The batch of more than 3,000 Russian-bought ads that Facebook is preparing to turn over to Congress shows a deep understanding of social divides in American society, with some ads promoting African-American rights groups including Black Lives Matter and others suggesting that these same groups pose a rising political threat, say people familiar with the covert influence campaign.

 

The Russian campaign — taking advantage of Facebook’s ability to simultaneously send contrary messages to different groups of users based on their political and demographic characteristics – also sought to sow discord among religious groups. Other ads highlighted support for Democrat Hillary Clinton among Muslim women.

Of course, support for Hillary Clinton among minority groups was less enthusiastic than it was for Barack Obama, suggesting that the ads perhaps weren’t as effective as some Democratic lawmakers would have voters believe. Despite the innocuous description, WaPo insisted on reporting that the ads were meant to “sow dischord” among different voting blocs that supported Clinton. The paper of record also reported that the targeted messages “highlight the sophistication of an influence campaign slickly crafted to mimic and infiltrate US political discourse”…again without explaining exactly how they accomplished this.

With little else to cling to, it appears that investigators – not to mention Trump’s critics – have invested so much in the Facebook interference narrative (not to mention Paul Manafort’s dealings with pro-Russian oligarchs), that admitting they were wrong would just be too damaging.

Thank you.

But wait; there’s more buttery political goodness.

From McClatchyDC.com:

Congress might not be able to protect Mueller from firing

by Brian Murphy

Congress may be unable to provide any job protection legislatively for special counsel Robert Mueller, whose wide-ranging investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 election continues to anger President Donald Trump.

While Trump confidant Roger Stone was defending himself in front of a separate committee elsewhere on Capitol Hill, legal scholars offered competing views on whether two Senate bills designed to protect Mueller from firing by Trump or someone in the Justice Department would pass constitutional muster during a hearing of the Senate Judiciary Committee.

I’ve said this before and I’ll repeat.

The Demorats will rue the day they ever began the “Russia” narrative.

They managed to open a door that led not necessarily to Republicans, but to the arcane, deceptive and corrupt machinations of Demorats themselves.

You and I both know that had Mueller found incredibly-damaging material about Donald Trump or associates showing clear and utter linkage with Russia in terms of, say, cash influence or — better yet, just like the Clintons and the Clinton Foundation — influence and decisions for cash or “donations” you know that leak would already have occurred.

Silence in and of itself can sometimes be a massive clue.

BZ

 

BZ’s Berserk Bobcat Saloon, “The Aftermath,” Thursday, May 18th, 2017

My thanks to the SHR Media Network for allowing me to broadcast in their studio and over their air twice weekly, Tuesdays and Thursdays, as well as appear on the Sack Heads Radio Show™ each Wednesday evening.

I learned a valuable lesson tonight: embrace the suck. Semper Gumby. Expect the unexpected and then have a Plan B and a Plan C. Sometimes a Plan D. Enough of “Inside Radio.”

Tonight in the Saloon:

  • Snowball is your bartender, the lava lamp is lighted;
  • The Sack Heads should be a complete triumvirate by next week;
  • I haven’t yet decided to activate the YouTube cam for the show; maybe next week?
  • BZ: the penultimate face made for radio;
  • Victor Davis Hanson’s article: “The Russian Farce”;
  • July 5th was the Turning Point for James Comey;
  • More than 60% of NSC employees were placed by Barack Hussein Obama;
  • What is a Fornicalia CEA? A political appointee whose “Career Ends Abruptly”;
  • American Media Maggots: where are your sources? One source? Reuters says “anonymous sources are the weakest sources”;
  • James Clapper on Meet The Press: there is NO evidence between Russia/Trump;
  • Obama: “I’m gonna be a lot more flexible with you Rooskies”; no shite;
  • Russian reset? Russian reset button via Hillary Clinton?
  • Special prosecutor? Special counsel? Impeachment? Is that the Demorat goal?
  • Loretta Lynch needs to be prosecuted: “no criminal charges against Hillary”;
  • Comey:’it calls for a classified response”;
  • And much more buttery goodness.

Listen to “BZ’s Berserk Bobcat Saloon, “The Aftermath,” Thursday, May 18th, 2017″ on Spreaker.

Please join me, the Bloviating Zeppelin (on Twitter @BZep and on Gab.ai @BZep), every Tuesday and Thursday night on the SHR Media Network from 11 PM to 1 AM Eastern and 8 PM to 10 PM Pacific, at the Berserk Bobcat Saloon — where the speech is free but the drinks are not.

As ever, thank you so kindly for listening, commenting, and interacting in the chat room or listening via podcast.

Want to listen to all the Berserk Bobcat Saloon archives in podcast? Go here.

BZ