Sidney Powell Gets Caught Lying in Hearing before Emmet Sullivan

The Mike Flynn status hearing just ended (I livetweeted it here). The outcome is that Flynn’s sealed Brady filing will be posted tomorrow, the government response will be in two weeks, Flynn’s reply will be on October 15. The Brady hearing will be October 31.

Emmet Sullivan tentatively set a sentencing hearing for December 18, the year anniversary for his aborted sentencing hearing last year.

The government said it will file a new sentencing memorandum, suggesting they likely will say he did not accept responsibility for his crimes. Those new filings are due on December 2.

Sidney Powell stated that she does not expect Flynn to withdraw his plea, though she did suggest the entire prosecution should be withdrawn because of egregious misconduct.

The hearing itself was less remarkable than Sidney Powell’s factually impaired briefing last week. But she did manage to get in at least one lie to Sullivan.

She claimed that Flynn had not been provided notice of the Lisa Page – Peter Strzok texts. Brandon Van Grack told the court that Flynn was told Strzok had a political preference before he signed his guilty plea. Van Grack also revealed that Flynn got texts that have not been otherwise publicly released. That means Senator Ron Johnson didn’t release texts that pertained to Flynn (and perhaps were derogatory to him) when he dumped all of them in December 2017.

Powell also complained that Flynn had not been provided notice that Jim Comey “set up the ambush interview” of Flynn. Van Grack made it clear that Flynn received it before sentencing and that Sullivan referenced it at the beginning of last year’s sentencing memo. Powell excused her outright lie about something Sullivan mentioned on the public record by saying the train was pretty far down the track by then.

Powell made much of the fact that the government had already decided that Flynn would not be charged as an Agent of Russia or with a Logan Act violation shortly after his FBI interview. Van Grack noted that that’s not the benefit that the government said Flynn had obtained with his guilty plea.

Finally, Powell suggested that there might have been a prior secret investigation into Mike Flynn based off the secret NSA database, attempting to reference the allegations in the Rosemary Collyer opinion that has to do with targeted surveillance of otherwise targeted US person subjects when they’re overseas. In short, it was rank nonsense based off of Sara Carter’s erroneous “reporting” on the opinion.

All in all, Sullivan took being lied to in pretty mellow fashion. We’ll see whether that continues after Van Grack lays out precisely how batshit some of Powell’s claims are.

113 replies
  1. Peterr says:

    All in all, Sullivan took being lied to in pretty mellow fashion.

    Shorter Sullivan: “Would you like some *more* rope, counselor?”

    I’ll really be curious to see what Powell puts down in writing. It’s one thing to say “I misspoke in the heat of a live hearing” and quite another to say “After spending weeks with my client and my staff in research and drafting, please accept these lies that I put on paper for you.”

    • viget says:

      Definitely agree with that. I’m sure Ms. Powell may be a bit more circumspect in her reply to Van Grack’s brief. Well… maybe, or she’ll go full rightwing frothy, you never can tell.

    • Rugger9 says:

      For those who have watched Judge Sullivan more than I have, does he have a pattern of semi-smugness when he’s about to put the hammer down like a cat playing with dinner? I know people who are most dangerous when they stop ranting since they’ve decided what to do and it will be sharp and preferably devastating.

      FWIW I cannot see Judge Sullivan tolerating any fibbery, whether in the heat of a hearing (and these fibs aren’t off-the-cuff mistakes) or in a brief, since he needs to make decisions based upon facts. After all, the prior Powell briefs were questionable with respect to the truth regarding the claims made and so I’m not expecting Powell will change her tune now. She’s laid too long a trail of bread crumbs.

      What does Kaiser Quisling and the Palace want to see? That is the real question here.

      • bmaz says:

        Is “Kaiser Quisling” President Trump?

        If so, use his damn name and do not make our comment section look like some crackpot Usenet forum.

        How often must we go through this stupid nonsense?? This bunk is getting really tiring.

        • Rugger9 says:

          Indeed he is. It is a reference I have used for literally months now and the name fits precisely, so I’m wondering why this is an issue now. Trump is Putin’s quisling in office here and has all of the erratic behavior of Kaiser William II for many of the same reasons.

          His actions bring discredit upon the office of the President and so his name will not be associated with it, especially since I would expect that once all of the facts are in that the Russians engineered KQ’s “victory” in collaboration with Parscale and the GOP. Between the well-documented voter suppression, random purges to registered voter lists, vote flipping (you need to see Palast on this) and other hinkiness it’s far more than enough to have flipped the election.

          The giveaway is that MMMcT (Moscow Mitch McTurtle, which refers to the Senate Majority Leader) and the rest of the GOP won’t even look to see how far the FSB penetrated into the registrars’ records, and we know already that some were accessed.

          There are better fights to go after here than civility litmus testing.

          • bmaz says:

            Nope. I have said this to more than a few others, and that is the rule. Don’t make us look like dopes because you want to use some dump stand in for Trump’s name. That rule is going to stand. We get read by people that think this type of nonsense is, well, nonsense and discount your comments and our work. Stop.

            • Mooser says:

              “you want to use some dump stand in for Trump’s name.”
              Tempting, I admit, but I looked, and it’s not on my emoji selection.

            • Bay State Librul says:

              I have to chime in.
              I agree with Rugger, plus it is more fun when we use nicknames.
              There is joy in monikers!

              • Rayne says:

                I’ve called the subject in question an orange shitgibbon on several occasions here as well as a mangled apricot hellbeast and a ferret-headed fuckweasel (Scots’ insults are superb, I’ll say again). I’m not going to stop because I have zero respect for that person occupying the White House. I only hope I can respect the office of the presidency when he’s gone.

                  • bmaz says:

                    Rayne can do as she pleases, as she is a principal here. Everybody else needs to stop making us look like idiots to the judges, clerks, congresspeople and staff that read us.

                    I will not give up on this. And if commenters insist on pulling this jackassery, their comments may start disappearing. This is not a joke.

                    • PieIsDamnGood says:

                      Perhaps the comment section could be hidden by default? Then users that want to participate could simply expand them and the judges wouldn’t be exposed to the idiocy?

                      I appreciate how much work moderation is, thanks.

                • orionATL says:

                  ferret-headed fuck-weasel !

                  ho boy. with such great alliteration that little insult could travel far in life. what a waste to keep in confined in Scotland. I’m available to manage it’s career if rayne declines.

                  as for usage at ew: “as rayne has written, he’s a “ferret-headed fuck-weasel”.

            • J R in WV says:

              If I recall correctly, Donald J Trump’s grandfather Fredrick’s real family name back in the Old Country was Drumpf. So I’m personally OK with nyms similar to that being used to refer to Donald J. YMMV, and that’s OK with me as well.

              When I have insomnia, and try to type comments with my fingers off the home keys. often I produce gibberish more unintelligible than Drumpf’s speeches… don’t hold that against me at 5 am. Tnakx

        • Robert says:

          I use the terms Drumph and Dotard the Dump. If you have a problem with this, I do not care. I use these pseudonyms for T-rump because spelling out his real name or saying it causes me to throw up in the back of my throat. Saying or spelling someone’s name humanizes them. Drumph is not human but a collection of everything evil in this world. Therefore I do not feel he deserves to have his real name spoke or spelled out

          • bmaz says:

            Hi there “Robert”. I DO have a problem with it. And if you cannot abide by that rule, you will not be commenting here again.

            Two things: First, that is a hell of an arrogant way to enter commentary here. It is not appreciated. Secondly, if you choose to abide by our rules and not be a petty jerk, please pick a less generic name than Robert, so that everybody knows who you are. Yes, that is another one of our rules.

            • OldTulsaDude says:

              I have been guilty of using Individual-1 but I will abide by the rules and suggest a compromise that all use “this president” or “the current president” if the actual name is too much.

              • oldoilfieldhand says:

                The reputation and honor of the office the President of the United States has been seriously tarnished. It will take years to restore its former respect and prestige on the world stage, and yet some say the Presindebt deserves our respect? Respect is earned, not inherited or bestowed.

                • P J Evans says:

                  I respect the office, but the current occupant has neither earned nor deserves it. I also have little respect for people who treat “commander-in-chief” as requiring obedience from civilians.

                  • bmaz says:

                    We ask that you honor our protocols and rules, not give “obedience” to Trump. I guess we have simply not earned enough to have such a minor request honored so as to not make us look like a forum of idiots.

                    I am so sick of this stupid and petty crap I could puke.

                    • Hops says:

                      Regarding, “our protocols and rules” are they documented? Perhaps a post on that topic is in order?

                      I’d like to see comments limited to errors, omissions, novel insights, serious questions, and references to additional information, unless on an open thread for venting.

                    • bmaz says:

                      Hops – No, there will be no post on that, and we do not need a formal rule page. If we make a reasonable request, try to understand. That’s the “rule”.

                      And, no, we will not be limiting our comment section “to errors, omissions, novel insights, serious questions, and references to additional information, unless on an open thread for venting.”

                      We need neither your help nor advice in this regard. We have done quite well for over 12 years now. If you want to impose conditions on thought and expression, there are other blogs, or you can start your own. We very much do appreciate and desire your participation here though.

              • Ruth Crosby says:

                Personally, I like Charlie Pierce’s take, which is to simply add an asterisk to the end of his name literally every time he writes it. I absolutely understand the temptation to hurl abuse at him (the President, not Pierce), but I have to agree with bmaz that it lessens the impact of otherwise searing and insightful commentary. It’s too easily dismissed as partisanship by those predisposed to seeing it everywhere.

                • Rayne says:

                  You’re entitle to your opinion but I’m of the mind that the person occupying the White House who has
                  – obstructed justice repeatedly
                  – been credibly accused of sexual assault by at least two dozen women
                  – authorized a ban of visitors based on their religion, in violation of the First Amendment
                  – undermined the rights of entire classes of Americans based on their sex/gender/sexual orientation, ethnicity/race/religion, and their relative poverty or health
                  – is a racist, choosing illegal acts based on race/ethnicity, and taints the presidency with his racist behaviors
                  – authorized DHS to violate civil rights and treaties, including separation of children from parents, caging and trafficking them
                  – gave unlawful orders
                  – dangled pardons
                  – abused the office of the presidency daily if not hourly, in many cases to his financial benefit
                  – placed the country’s national security at risk repeatedly, including unwarranted releases of classified information in a manner that damaged the country’s means and methods
                  – insulted long-term allies and trading partners
                  merits colorful colloquial insults.

                  I could write this list for the remainder of the morning and not finish. These failings aren’t just Trump’s because his party (save for one now-independent Congressperson) has uniformly avoided criticizing him and holding him accountable, making the issue partisan without Democrats’ help.

                  And all these failings merit far more than a goddamned asterisk after his name. Pierce writes for a corporate outlet. I do not; I receive no compensation and am beholden to no one, have no such burden yoking me to a mere punctuation mark. My personal values require me to label the execrable baby-cager on par with spoor stuck on my shoes.

                  This site doesn’t have just one potty-mouthed contributor; well-deserved insults are part of the “searing and insightful commentary” here. Puts me at odds with bmaz but the man is perfectly capable of ignoring highly-barbed epithets, being a lawyer.

                  • bmaz says:

                    And I am still going to start bouncing comments from anybody that pulls this shit who is not a principal here. I have had it with this stupid crap.

                    • Rayne says:

                      Then publish a rule. Love you, man, but I find it really hypocritical that you’re a free speech absolutist yet “Drumpf” does you in.

                      I personally think community members could put more effort into style. Carefully select a nom insultant with a little esprit d’escalier behind it, then stick to it. That seems to be the real sticking point, though I’m not certain how one dresses up pussy-grabber-in-chief.

                    • bmaz says:

                      I have repeatedly said this. If people want to jerk us off with this petty nonsense, it will be addressed. This is not some asinine reddit forum. And it is not going to be.

                      If people think this idiotic bunk is more important than the message, so be it. If you want to engender this embarrassing jackassery, so be it. I am not going to.

                    • Mooser says:

                      I can see the moderation problem involved. That’s certainly reasonable.
                      I will refer to him either as Pres. Trump, or ‘He Who Must Not Be Flamed’.

                    • bmaz says:

                      And I am replying to myself solely because this idiotic horse manure has now prattled on so long as to bust the margins for nested commentary: The insistence on some god given right to make us look like morons to the voices we are truly trying to reach (and, no, it is not this internal chat log) in the face of what those claiming that voice purport to desire ultimately, is not only nuts but baffling.

                      You care more about the sound of your own voice blathering crap like “Drumpf”, tRump”, “Tangerine whatever” and the like, or actually making a difference? If it is the former, then we have an issue. If it is the latter, then let us get on with it.

                      I have spent over a decade of my life on this blog. That is real time and money. If you think your petty craptastic desire to butcherize Trump’s name is somehow more important, then say how that idiotic and petty horse manure is more important. If not, fucking stop.

        • Mulder says:

          I have taken to calling him Donald President. It saves time and words.

          I have often wondered how widely read this site is. Bmaz has given me some insight.

          Mulder will abide.

    • margaretwalker says:

      Sidney Powell and Emmet Sullivan share a common contempt for prosecutors who twist defendants into knots to make them cop to a plea. In this case, part of the scope memo, by Rosenstein, allowed Mueller to investigate Flynn’s son. The timing of this was used to get Flynn to plead guilty to something he was not guilty of doing and the case against his son vanished. You will further see, that Andrew Weissman, who was behind this ploy, is a ruthless and dishonest man and he has been in trouble with Emmett Sullivan before, in the Ted Stevens case, for..withholding exculpatory evidence. Great to have this guy on the Federal payroll.
      I am looking forward to Flynn’s exoneration. Sidney Powell is a seasoned and brilliant lawyer. You all might learn from her.

      [Please use the same identical username each time you comment. Using different usernames or variations is sockpuppeting and not permitted. Your first comment used “Margeretwalker” as a username. Pick one and stick to it. /~Rayne]

      • skua says:

        “Sidney Powell is a seasoned and brilliant lawyer. You all might learn from her.”

        I’m thinking rosemary and garlic marinade overnight, 3 hours at 320 degrees and then apply gold dust and peach glaze before carving?

      • bmaz says:

        Hi there Margaret. I am not quite sure how you slipped in here, but thesis not a Fox News chat forum. There are few, if any, similarities between the Flynn and Stevens cases, and Judge Sullivan has already dispatched with Powell’s crazed insistence that there is such a link when he summarily applied the Yunis standard. Sullivan and Powell have nothing in common; he is a seasoned federal judge and she is a gadabout kook.

        And you are flat out lying when you say Andrew Weismann was involved in the Stevens case, he was not, and certainly not from Judge Sullivan in that case. Flynn is not going to be exonerated. In fact even Sid Powell admitted that he had no intention to seek withdrawal of his plea, which is a dead giveaway that even she realizes it is the best deal he could ever hope get. There is zero chance Sullivan would ever allow withdrawal even if it was requested.

        This is the wrong place to jump in and start regurgitating Fox News lies and bullshit, especially when you do not even have enough of a grasp on the facts to do so competently. I am also going post this response on your comment on the other thread so that our readers understand what nonsense and bullshit you have dumped here.

  2. Rugger9 says:

    This case still fascinates me that Flynn is being given such a kid-glove treatment, because it’s not like he’s MacArthur with war hero cred. Then again, we are talking about the political side of the Army which seems to value influence above all else. While Petraeus only engaged (as far as we know) in unauthorized pillow talk with his gal on the side (unpunished by the Army), Flynn was arranging the kidnapping of an US resident for what would likely be the Khashoggi treatment at Tayyip’s hands. UCMJ Article 80 refers to attempts, Article 81 to conspiracy, Article 82a) for solicitation, Article 107 for false official statements, Article 125 for kidnapping, Article 131 for perjury, Article 131a for subornation of perjury, Article 131b for obstructing justice, Article 131c for misprision, Article 133 for conduct unbecoming of an officer and the general Article 134. All of these violations exist in the various court records.

    • viget says:

      THIS is a good point. See this Guardian article that suggests DOJ had evidence that Flynn and Flynn Jr. conspired to kidnap and extraordinarily render Gulen to Turkey. This is likely the leverage Mueller had with regards to the plea deal for Flynn and non-prosecution of Flynn’s son. Note that the meeting when the details were fleshed out including the money for the deed was mid-December.

      If the FBI had intelligence that Flynn and/or his son was either conspiring with the Turks or aiding and abetting their illegal kidnapping of Gulen, would that not make him an “agent of foreign power” under FISA? And couldn’t he then be targeted under 50 USC 1805?

      Furthermore, as I read sec 705(c) ( 50 USC 1881d(c) ), if the 1805 targeting was based on an emergency determination by the AG (for which impending kidnapping and bodily harm to a US national would seem to qualify), then sec 705(b) authority could also have been jointly approved by the AG for a period of up to 7 days, or until the FISA order was ruled on. If that happened during the last week of 2016 (when Flynn was on vacation in the DR), then perhaps his conversation with Kislyak (where he might have been less circumspect about what he was saying, thinking he wasn’t subject to 702, and probably was using an encrypted line) actually provided a bunch of actionable intelligence that we haven’t heard about yet.

      It might explain why Flynn’s attorneys are so eager to get the classified info they’re asking for as it would explain how the government knows so much. And it would reveal that Flynn was targeted under FISA.

      I think Comey told Priebus not “yes” or “no” to the question of a FISA order on Flynn, but rather “it’s classified.” At that time in February, the FISC may not yet have ruled on the order given the enormity of the issues in front of it.

  3. Rugger9 says:

    Breaking – Kaiser Quisling has asked for John Bolton’s resignation which was tendered and accepted. While it’s good to get Bolton out of there, Pompeo is still there and not an improvement. We’ll miss the ‘stache, though, as will every cartoonist that needed a good caricature. Let’s remember and remind the MAGA trolls that KQ picked these people as the best for the job, and maybe KQ’s not so good at reading talent after all. Maddow’s going to need to update her board (have we hit 20 senior level officials yet?) and that’s before the acting USCIS director gets canned by Steven (Goebbels) Miller for actually being a human.

    “Only the best people” will remain funny to Charlie Pierce, and I am looking forward to his column on the topic.

    • P J Evans says:

      His idea of “the best people” seems to be bootlickers who will lie for him, even under oath, and never speak truth to him. Bolton reportedly wasn’t happy about that proposed Camp David meeting with the Taliban, and neither was Pence.

      • Rugger9 says:

        Fundamentally this was a meeting intended to fail as far as the Palace was concerned. Pompeo (as I’ve said) is no improvement on that score. If one believes the rumors this was all about Individual-1 (as referred to in court filings) wanting to parachute in and seize credit (and a Nobel Peace Prize, so take that President Obama!) from his chief negotiator. That’s frequently done in business but not in statecraft, since the signing ceremony is where a finished deal is presented. Thus, an opportunity to one-up his predecessor was missed.

        Also, the current Afghan government is not invited to this, which is basically a surrender to the Taliban. Of course Faux News won’t mention that detail, and the Taliban for their part understood an early meeting (pre-deal) to be political suicide.

        Some good background:

        • P J Evans says:

          I fell like maybe we should give him a candy-wrapped-in-gold-foil “Nobel Peace Prize medallion” and a fancy cake with ice cream, all at a big party, just to make him shut up about it.

          • Rayne says:

            Print fake newspapers covering it, create a faux Fox News feed using deep fake technology praising him. This would all be cheaper than letting him get ever closer to blowing up countries and kicking off new wars.

            • P J Evans says:

              One suggestion I saw elseweb is a “participation prize” – a fancy-looking trophy labeled something like “Noble Piece Price” (or, as I suggested there, “Noble Piece Fries” – find out if he reads at all). Awarded at a party with cake and ice cream and all his favorite people.

          • Frank Probst says:

            In all fairness to Pompeo, I don’t think he’s getting enough credit for doing the Full Ginsburg on Sunday.

            • Mooser says:

              So I listen to NPR, and it tells me it’s all about Trump’s ‘Team of Rivals’ (OMFG!) advising him on foreign ‘policy’ and the Taliban ‘peace talks’. Then he fires Bolton, most probably because Trump suspects Bolton ratted him out to the media about ‘nuking a hurricane’.

                • Mooser says:

                  Yes, “Ugh” NPR was positing what goes on in the Oval Office (concerning the Camp David Taliban Summit) between Trump , Pompeo and Bolton, as some rational kind of policy discussion by knowledgeable and effective people. I had to turn it off at that point, I was driving and my hands were shaking.

                  • BobCon says:

                    I only listen to their news in snatches, but I caught a piece on Russian election interference and they bent over backwards to avoid talking about how it benefitted Trump in 2016 and how McConnell blocked a response. Likewise their discussion about 2020 studiously avoided talking about how the GOP is blocking efforts to secure elections now.

                    They operate on a basic postulate of GOP good faith, which is bad enough, but they won’t ever admit it, which makes it far worse.

  4. Jockobadger says:

    Been on a project itmonw just recently so haven’t been keeping up. Thanks to EW, I’ll soon be back up to real speed.

    I hate to do it, but simply can’t help myself: What in goddess’ name was Sidney Powell thinking of with that blue/white dress she wore to court? It looked like a crappy riff on the GB Packers Helmet only not in the beloved colors and stretched a bit.

    I know, I KNOW! Lots bigger stuff to worry about – for instance the formal notice of Impeachment Inquiry! I think/hope that bmaz is finally vindicated bc he was right all along (as we all know.)

    So glad to be back to civilization.

    • Peterr says:

      Fear not, Jockbadger!

      The discussion of sartorial choices made by those in the courtroom have a long history here at EW. Once upon a time, James Risen of the New York Times happened to get under the skin of our own bmaz, with a few ad-hominem comments about bloggers who made him look bad. Per bmaz, “Risen decided to lash out with an unnecessary, undeserved and mean spirited frontal assault on bloggers,” referring to them as “pajama-clad layabouts with no reporting chops.”

      This, as you might imagine, did not sit well with bmaz. Especially when this happened:

      You see, Marcy and I had the privilege of covering closing arguments in United States Federal Court in San Francisco on the groundbreaking Perry v. Schwarzenegger case. As luck would have it, so too one of the tenured star of stars from the New York Times was present with us covering the critical closing arguments. None other than the high doyenne herself, Maureen Dowd! Exciting!

      Oh my! MoDo herself, right there in the courtroom! Bmaz continues:

      But while I, a lowly blogger, was clad in a Brooks Brothers suit, Canali tie and well polished Cole Haans, the star representative from the venerable Gray Lady New York Times, home of uptight sartorial snobs like Jim Risen, came dressed quite in a different and interesting fashion. Take a look and judge for yourself whether the haughty boys and girls at the New York Times ought to be blowing dung out their posteriors at other reporters over fashion sense and choice. Go ahead clotheshorses of the Gray Lady, make my day.

      Click through for a photo of the outfit in question, and be sure to enjoy the suggested captions in the comments.

      • Geoff says:

        I’d have gone with :

        “Heeeeeeeeeeeey Barrister, Barrister, Barrister, Barrister, swiiiiiiiing, Barrister

        He can’t hit, he can’t hit, he can’t hit, he can’t hit, swiiiiing, Barrister”

        My compliments to Cameron ;-)

      • Rayne says:

        Ah, those were the days, back when we were “pajama-clad layabouts.” Now we’re accused of being “smarmy, cynical D.C. lawyers.” How we have fallen.

        • P J Evans says:

          I can’t dress as well as bmaz, but I’d be wearing a white shirt and a below-the-knee gray skirt with a discreet herringbone pattern. Shoes might be a problem: I have to shop in the kiddy section to find anything that fits, so heels are out. (I wore white athletic shoes to work, with black or navy slack and white shirts.)

          • bmaz says:

            The only reason I dressed as such is that I had to substantially deal with the court as to our access, and they, including Judge Walker, knew that I was the one who set it up, and knew I was a lawyer. So I, unfortunately, kind of had to look like one. I won’t dump on Dowd more than I did back long ago, but will say it was an ….. interesting look. The impetus for that post, however, was Risen being a holier than thou prick, not Dowd. She was, as the Bush Administration liked to say back in the day, collateral damage.

            • P J Evans says:

              On the occasions when I’ve had to show up for jury duty, I’ve dressed like I was going to work. (However, work had “casual Fridays”, when jeans were okay.) I was usually a little to the dressy side of “business casual”, but for the first several years I worked at that company, we’d have visitors show up every so often, and the project manager wanted us to look business-like. (Not everyone got the idea.)

      • earlofhuntingdon says:

        Slippery Cole Haans, no doubt sans tassels, rather than Cheaneys or Allen Edmonds? My have standards fallen.

      • earlofhuntingdon says:

        That 2010 trip down memory lane was fun: freepatriot, bobschacht, skdadl, JohnLopresti, Teddy Patridge, watertiger, fatster, Phoenix Woman, Scarecrow.

        I’d forgotten this comment I made about MoDo then. It fits today’s NYT even better:

        From her writing, Ms. Dowd doesn’t agree with the theme, “A woman without a man is like a fish without a bicycle”. MoDo seems to despair of having only herself for company, which may be why she has only herself for company.

        As for her picture and handbag, it reminds me of Ms. Dowd’s biting description of Catherine Deneuve in 2007. Dowd spied Deneueve, elegant, many-friended and 64 (Dowd was 55), at a Left Bank Parisian hotel, “having fun, smoking and drinking wine with girlfriends surrounded by Chanel bags full of Chanel bags.”

        The construction allowed her readers to wonder whether Dowd was talking about Ms. Deneuve and her friends (the Chanel bag surrounded by Chanel bags), or their recent purchases. What was clear was that the joie de vivre that Ms. Dowd envied had left her as abruptly as Michael Douglas.

        • bmaz says:

          Teddy, Watertiger and PhoenixWoman I can absolutely assure are still alive and well. I am not sure of John Lopresti, just do not know, but have no reason to suspect not still around somewhere.

          The others are all, sadly, gone. And that includes Suzanne and Mary too. Man, we have been doing this a long time…..

          • punaise says:

            There’s a blast from the past. I do miss Dependable Renegade (Watertiger’s old haunt).

            Teddy and Suzanne were among the few blogging buddies I ever met in person, at a FireDogLake gathering at Suzanne’s little cabin in Boulder Creek, CA. Freeway Blogger was there, and others I regret to say I’m forgetting. I think I also met MaryMcMurrin (sp?) in Oakland once…

            I didn’t know about those we’ve lost…

            • bmaz says:

              Yes, as Punaise noted it was the The Next Hurrah. It was mostly Marcy, but there were collaborators. KagroX (David Waldman) and Sister Sara primarily. And a lot of people still around, and, again, some we have mentioned being gone, were key commenters. That is where Marcy and I met. It is amazing really that so many of us are all still basically around one place. It is a testament to why this joint is still here and vibrant. But the personality and intellect of all the friends lost is hard to quantify.

              • posaune says:

                Thanks for this, bmaz. What a trip to the past.
                I’m in awe as I read the old names from 2010 and before, (I remember Next Hurrah, too). What quality of thought and writing — what a testament to a talented and wonderful group of thinkers. It’s an honor to be here with you all. You’ve made me think better, do better, act better. Thank you.

                • JohnJ says:

                  I always used to say Marcy saved my mental health when she accidentally showed up on google news.
                  I found out I wasn’t alone.
                  The comments are as informative as the articles themselves.

      • rosalind says:

        LOL!! and now i’m flashing back to the First Yearly Kos in Vegas, where all the DC/NY media cool kidz came out in force to mock the dirty hippie bloggers. MoDo finally graced the main hall w/her presence as she skittered across the floor w/her head on a swivel looking like she was about to be jumped. The crowd just ignored her.

    • Jenny says:

      Looks like a mod fashion from the 60’s without the mini shirt. Perhaps the bold pattern and color was to dazzle the judge.

    • Jockobadger says:

      This is perfect because ever since I got home I’ve been a pajama-clad layabout (sans pajamas.) Do boxers and Gonzaga t-shirt count as pajama-clad?

      Whatever – I’m just glad the “inquiry” has been formalized per our beloved bmaz and is moving forward – in its ponderous way. I guess slow but steady wins the race….

      • bmaz says:

        This race has been lost for a while now, that is why I do not scream as loudly as I used to. It is still a matter of principle though. And, yes it would still make a difference, even if a waning one. That said, today’s vote is a joke.

  5. Pdaly says:

    I followed the link to the photo.
    I remember that pic— emptywheel’s brilliant thought bubble lighting up the room and Maureen Dowd’s needing sunglasses.

  6. earlofhuntingdon says:

    Another outrageous move by Herrn Stephen Miller and Donald Trump.

    President Trump is pushing for a major crackdown on homeless camps in California, with aides discussing moving residents to government-backed facilities. Unclear what legal authority admin has.

    Legal authority? Usually none, he just makes shit up as he goes along. The optics are so Third Reich, though. Has this administration nothing new to offer?

    Even were it legal, the cost would be prohibitive. Trump’s border concentration camps cost something like $550-750/day/person, paid to private contractor donors of el Presidente. Pay each homeless person a weekly stipend about the same as a two-day stay at Camp Trump and they would not be homeless. Or put it into a serious effort to alleviate the sources of homelessness – but that would be socialistic. Bad.

    Money does not seem to be the point, though. Nor is recycling it into the hands of Trump’s donors, although that’s useful. It’s the cruelty and the infamy.

    • earlofhuntingdon says:

      Plus there’s Herr Miller’s crackdown on legal immigrants who use public assistance.

      He would deport a US green card holder who was between jobs, for using public assistance to temporarily feed his children.

      Miller is demented, a dangerous sociopath. He rationalizes as good any act that cuts down the number of people he thinks might vote for a Democrat. But I think he really does it for fun, and that his secret wish is to be the chief American Lagerkommandant.

      • P J Evans says:

        he’s willing to deport people who came in legally, and to deny passports to people who were born here but aren’t the correct color (in his opinion), even when they have documents, including previous passports.

        • Mooser says:

          “But I think he really does it for fun, and that his secret wish is to be the chief American Lagerkommandant.”

          That’s the way the matzoh crumbles, sometimes; into a half-baked cracker.

    • Eureka says:

      Yeah, this is a big deal that they feel free to even float such notions– worse, should they be able to pull it off– and entirely consistent with all of the other ‘signals’ coming down the pike wrt chipping at resident- and citizenship-based rights and entitlements as well.

      The mix of people who could be rounded up under the rubric of ‘homeless’ would diversify the grift basis for an expanding camp structure as well. Ignoring cross-categorical complexities (as Trump admin would do), the addicts could be forced to work camps — work, often menial, being an inherent part of ‘recovery’ (this is an unstated plot, tho one I have suspected)– the plain poor might end up there as well; the “mentally ill” and their signed-over SSD checks go, eventually, to new institutions; and immigrants to Kelly et al.’s places per usual.

      As you note, community-based social work would alleviate many human miseries at a fraction of the cost. If concern for human welfare was the point.

      The Trump admin official’s reference to things like “rampant diseases” in the WaPo piece brings to mind more dehumanization, though.

      • P J Evans says:

        Most of what illness is rampant in the homeless camps is mental; some is from being too poor to eat well or get medical treatment beyond the bare minimum from County-USC (the only one convenient for the many homeless in downtown L.A). And some is because housing is so very very expensive, so that most of us are about one paycheck (or SS check) away from being homeless as well as too poor for food and medical care.

        • Eureka says:

          It’s pretty terrifying, there but for the grace of a single check or so goes most of America.

          It’s worse still with a recession coming, by all accounts one being manufactured by Trump’s policies.

          It’s almost like he is trying to create an economy like the one he said he liked so much after the crash, for when he leaves office.

          Except there’s less of a gasket for the Fed to release this time, owing at least in part to Trump’s pressure, and my guess is that if that makes a difference it will be in the form of more families falling off the edge of household sustainability.

          • Eureka says:

            At 642am Eastern Time, on 9-11-19, Trump tweets these (immediately beforehand was a 9-11 remembrance photo of his and Melanie’s backsides; right before that something on the China tariffs) apropos of ?????:

            Donald J. Trump: “The Federal Reserve should get our interest rates down to ZERO, or less, and we should then start to refinance our debt. INTEREST COST COULD BE BROUGHT WAY DOWN, while at the same time substantially lengthening the term. We have the great currency, power, and balance sheet…..”

            “….The USA should always be paying the the lowest rate. No Inflation! It is only the naïveté of Jay Powell and the Federal Reserve that doesn’t allow us to do what other countries are already doing. A once in a lifetime opportunity that we are missing because of “Boneheads.””

        • SelfAbsorbed says:

          I live in LA County and there is a housing crisis without a doubt. I moved out here to work in non-profits & a couple of years ago when I was working for a woman who did a lot of work writing grant applications I had to research stats for her about it. The rent/income ratio was ~30% for LA CO. So on average, in LA county, 30% of your income is rent (or a mortgage but buying a home is a whole different can of worms) which is INSANE compared to other parts of the country! I’m from northwest Indiana, it’s part of the Chicago Metro area but across state lines, my brother and sister in-law recently bought a house, they both have great jobs and make relatively good money, there is no way a bank would have approved their mortgage if their rent/income was 30% because it’s to risky, if something happens and one of them looses their job they wouldn’t be able to make the payments. But in LA county that unstable situation is the norm, with the added twist that paying rent isn’t creating an asset. Sorry if this is long and rambling, my main point is the housing crisis in LA is a super complex issue and but for the grace of God, go I.

      • OldTulsaDude says:

        When you own a Justice Department that argues in court that the executive lies outside the laws of the land and only impeachment and removal can be used to hinder that power, then where is the end of the madness?

        • Eureka says:

          …While said DOJ refuses to turn over evidence or otherwise helps POTUS skirt oversight and that very remedy of impeachment…

          Good question.

      • Eureka says:

        Relevant to the discussion from a few angles, including rights of citizens, all humans, and historical precedent (whether American or Third Reich, and including attitudes towards natural resources– to be pillaged), I am reminded of Pompeo’s recent stump speech, part of an ongoing “theme:”

        Pompeo Decries Proliferation of ‘Human Rights’ Claims in Speech

        Politicians have “from time to time have framed pet causes as fights for rights to bypass the normal process by which political ends are achieved,” Pompeo said Friday at Kansas State University. “This is an imperfect analogy, but the thirteenth ice cream cone isn’t as good as the first one was. And with respect to unalienable rights, more, per se, is not always better.”

        State Department officials have repeatedly declined to spell out publicly which rights Pompeo believes are superfluous, denying claims by critics that his focus is an attempt to curtail rights that Pompeo has spoken out against before, such as same-sex marriage and abortion.

        But they have suggested that in a government with limited resources, officials ought to spend less time on issues such as biodiversity or clean water and more on core rights enshrined in the U.S. Constitution.

        As is standard, there are not enough mirrors to hold up to the hypocrisies of Pompeo’s & GOP’s own “personal preferences” as “unalienable* rights” (* sic, signifying so-called “originalism” as opposed to using “inalienable”).

        From the same speech:

        Pompeo struck out at the media, saying it tries to rewrite history as an “unrelenting tale of racism and misogyny” instead of a bold experiment in freedom. And he said there isn’t enough agreement on what constitutes an unalienable right — opening the door to other countries to “corrupt the understandings” of these rights.

        Mike Pompeo promotes ‘unalienable rights’ in Kansas talk

        • P J Evans says:

          The government would have more resources if it didn’t give money to people who are already obscenely rich. Or spend it on prison camps for refugees, especially children, or on a wall that won’t stop anyone. Or on near-weekly golf trips for the WH occupant, with the money going into his own pocket.

  7. Skilly says:

    Even the ancient Greeks knew you could tell much about a person by the shoes, (or Feet, when applicable). When I want to look like a lawyer, I wear Johnson & Murphy.

    • bmaz says:

      Johnston & Murphy’s are fine shoes. But I do not wear laced shoes, and their slip on/loafers are not as appealing to me as the Cole Hahn’s. Also, like Allen Edmonds, they take an annoying while to break in.

    • AndTheSlithyToves says:

      I owned a couple of pairs of Bruno Magli shoes before OJ murdered Nicole–it must’ve killed him to have to toss those!

        • AndTheSlithyToves says:

          Just rare/unheard of (all before the insanity of “branding” broke out here) and expen$ive–but extremely well-made and very comfortable. I still have one original pair on display in the shoe museum portion of my closet. ; ^ )

          • Eureka says:

            (I think my 90s brain also slid the descriptor of ‘handmade’ to ~ ‘custom,’ too. I haven’t had a pair of those, but ones like them were part of my ‘exceptions list’ to the overrated comment above. Too many with thin, friably rigid, or oddly-shaped lasts, even if they look pretty.)

            Sigh, I wish I’d gone the mini muse de moi route: there’s a couple pair of shoes I wish I had never ditched. The problem is when people like Marie Kondo catch you in a certain mood…

            • P J Evans says:

              I’ve had some very comfortable shoes that simply wore out. There was a pair of “loafer” type shoes – “Jumping Jacks” was the brand – that got re-heeled twice and resoled once, over about 10 or so years. (As I said – I have to go to kiddy shoes to find my size.)

              • Eureka says:

                I’m sensing a loafers trend: my beloveds, with many miles, that I periodically covet from the trash, were loafers, too. Black velvet and blue suede.

                • bmaz says:

                  Yes! I have never been crazy about lace up shoes except tennis and basketball shoes. Penny loafers, tassel loafers, whatever, but loafers!

  8. Vicks says:

    I re-read Flynn’s plea agreement and his statement of offense.
    What am I missing?
    It seems like Flynn is screwed.
    From my limited understanding of what I have read, it seems by breaking the agreement any crime Flynn has committed is now fair game and they can now use any info he has provided, anyway they choose, including against him.
    His plea deal clearly states he lost his right to” future discovery or further disclosure of further information”
    If “vacated” means the same as “pardon” it’s a bone-headed move as well, it appears if there is a pardon they can then go after him for anything that was included in his Statement of Offense (which again I noticed is a very wordy document) which includes descriptions of Flynn lying on his FARA docs, his role in manipulating the vote on israeli settlements at Russia’s request and that the discussions Flynn lied about impeded the investigation and were about Russian sanctions.
    I really think that someone has convinced Flynn that the truth of the deep-state-secret- society- will soon be uncovered and the truth will set him free.
    All of the team Trump celebrities seemed to be playing along as well.
    What the heck is the real angle?

  9. earlofhuntingdon says:

    One of Donald Trump’s judicial nominees exemplifies the crap the Federalist Society – which screens them all, itself a highly unusual arrangement – is offering up as judges for America.

    This nominee is for the 2nd Circuit in NY. Along with the DC Circuit, it is considered second in importance only to the Supreme Court. A suitably young white male, naturally, this nominee is even more unctuous than Brett Kavanaugh.

    His name is Steven Menashi. Born in 1979, he graduated from Dartmouth (2001) and Stanford Law (2008). For three years in between, he worked for the arch-conservative Hoover Institute, based on Stanford’s campus, and for a year at the New York Sun. After Stanford, Menashi held two one-year clerkships, for the DC Circuit and the Supremes (Alito). In between, he worked a year for the Federalist Society, naturally.

    His practice experience is a bare five years at white shoe powerhouse Kirkland & Ellis in NYC, where he miraculously made “partner.” That is ahead of schedule, but in keeping with K&E’s reputation as a greenhouse nurturing conservative lawyers destined to enter federal service.

    With his partnership in hand, Menashi promptly left K&E to teach for a year at arch-conservative George Mason. He then joined billionaire moron Betsy DeVos at the Education Department before joining the White House as a special assistant to the president.

    Mesnashi’s raw intelligence is as exceptional as his hard-right credentials. So, too, are Kris Kobach’s. His courtroom competence, however, is so poor that a federal judge in Kanasas sanctioned him by requiring that he attend a course on the basic rules of evidence. With so little work experience – wholly inadequate to sit on the federal appeals bench – and having represented a narrow a range of corporate and high-wealth clients who could afford K&E’s fees, would Menashi be any better?

    The answer is irrelevant to Trump and the FedSoc, because Menashi’s purpose is to be a paladin, protecting corporations and driving American law and society to the right. If confirmed, he could do that for four decades.

    • bmaz says:

      Yeah. And, akin to Kavanaugh, it is not that Menashi is educationally or experience unqualified per se so much as that he is incredibly inappropriate.

    • earlofhuntingdon says:

      My argument is that Menashi has too little experience for a district court appointment, let alone for the 2nd Circuit.

      The gaping hole in the confirmation process – ignoring the GOP majority in the Senate – is that political views are deemed off-limits.

      To me, academic qualifications are a threshold issue. Experience is highly relevant, in depth as well as kind. But it seems inescapable that political views are central to what kind of judge a nominee would be.

      Here, it is obvious Menashi has been a conservative prince-in-waiting since Dartmouth. He would be farther to the right than Kavanaugh or Gorsuch. To me, that’s highly relevant to any nomination to the federal bench.

      • Eureka says:

        I took a quick look at his long “ethnonationalism” paper, and I fail to see how it’s at base any different from the Amy Wax* stuff, besides that he argues generalities towards a Zionist specific (and circles round to conclude that Israel is in fact an exemplar of how liberal democracies are really ethnonational states, gathering their people at home and abroad). He is clever with the citations of source material snippets, I’ll give him that.

        Ethnonationalism and Liberal Democracy by Steven Menashi

        One salient passage, given not only Menashi’s arguments (and structure) in the paper, but its resonance with talk among Fox/RW-news-receivers that one problem with Mexican migrants is that they have not pledged allegiance to the US (at PDF pp 33-44 of 66):

        But, as noted above, it remains commonplace for countries to hold themselves out as a national and spiritual center for a particular people.
        [snip within paragraph]
        Upon being elected president of Mexico in 2000, Vicente Fox “said that he intends
        to be President to ‘all Mexicans’—at home and abroad.”155 Fox called for Mexican emigrants to vote in Mexican elections, and he “transformed the Office of Mexicans Abroad into a top-level
        presidential agency” to serve as an advocate for Mexican migrants in the United States.156 Indeed, the Palestine Liberation Organization has long held itself out as the “sole and legitimate representative of the Palestinian people” living in exile around the world.157

        The part where he dredges Wilsonian racialist/ eugenics-era proclamations in star dust is great (PDF 46-47) (but bipartisan, tho! Like I said, clever with the cites):

        Wilson’s principle of national self-determination drove American foreign policy. By 1918
        [… snip within paragraph]
        Wilson believed so strongly that nationalities were defined by ob-jective ethnic traits that he and other American delegates at Versailles even argued that “their team of experts could provide better
        evidence of the lines of national divisions and affiliations than could be obtained from plebiscites of the populations concerned.”217

        That’s not even getting into how his beliefs may or may not have been applied to US immigration policy at the side of Stephen Miller.

        *Wax via Chotiner interview:
        A Penn Law Professor Wants to Make America White Again

        • P J Evans says:

          Menashi must have missed that the PRC claims to speak for everyone of Chinese ancestry, regardless of how long they’ve lived out of the country. (In the US, that can mean back to the 1840s.) He may also not be entirely aware that dual citizenship exists.

        • earlofhuntingdon says:

          Prof. Wax from Penn is a throwback to 19th century Spencerian views. She shares the attitudes and priorities of Southern Reconstructionists, and those who passed the anti-immigrant Immigration Act of 1924, and the earlier 1882 Chinese Exclusion Act – conveniently after the principal railroads were built.

          Menashi is a conservative princeling, like Brett Kavanaugh and many of the inexperienced lawyers promoted by the BushCheney regime. Menashi has been careful to check his boxes: conservative wings at Dartmouth and Stanford, Hoover, FedSoc, Alito on the Supremes, George Mason, ad nauseum.

          There are two specific issue regarding his nomination to the 2nd Circuit. His legal experience is inadequate for even a district court slot. His social and political views are so extreme – like Wax’s – that he could not credibly set them aside when making any judicial decision. The Senate should reject his nomination.

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