Denial and Forgetting at the Hunter Biden Trial

Consider the levels of denial and forgetting that it takes to write this paragraph the week that Hunter Biden, charged by a Trump US Attorney turned Special Counsel using evidence significantly sourced from a laptop handed over by John Paul Mac Isaac, stood trial.

While president, Mr. Trump repeatedly told aides he wanted the Justice Department to indict his political enemies. The Justice Department opened various investigations of Mr. Trump’s adversaries but did not ultimately bring charges — infuriating Mr. Trump and contributing to a split in 2020 with his attorney general, William P. Barr. Last year, Mr. Trump promised that if elected again, he would appoint a “real special prosecutor” to “go after” Mr. Biden and his family.

Five years ago, Donald Trump was impeached for extorting Ukraine to announce an investigation into Hunter Biden. The press covered it — and the way Rudy Giuliani continued to solicit such dirt from known Russian spies as impeachment loomed — with seriousness.

The following year, when Rudy rolled out a “laptop” once associated with Hunter Biden’s Apple account days before the 2020 election, media outlets including WSJ and Fox exercised some skepticism about the story of Hunter Biden abandoning a laptop with a blind computer repairman who would then share it with the guy who had been seeking just such a laptop for almost two years. Even at the NYPost, some reporters withheld their byline.

Yet that caution, and the details disclosed by past diligent reporting, has disappeared. It seems that, over the course of the last five years, Hunter Biden has become icky, leading almost all interest in the source of this investigation that led to his conviction to disappear. And Hunter Biden has become icky precisely through the process of the unprecedented GOP hit job against him.

Even Judge Maryellen Noreika bought into the icky storyline, dismissing the claim that Rudy Giuliani had any impact on this prosecution by claiming that texts that only existed publicly thanks to Rudy Giuliani instead appeared in Hunter Biden’s memoir.

That process of making Hunter Biden icky enough that his due process didn’t matter simply got whitewashed in the trial.

WaPo described the guy who started snooping through Hunter Biden’s private data almost immediately, whose claims to the FBI about what he found have not borne fruit, and who then sought out Donald Trump’s personal lawyer and shared bootable hard drives of Hunter Biden’s laptop, “a sort of whistleblower.”

That John Paul Mac Isaac even shared the bootable hard drive with Rudy (who then shared it with Jack Maxey, who then shared it with WaPo) has disappeared from this narrative.

NBC’s biggest scoop of the week — one representative of their tabloid coverage of the trial — likewise laundered the hit job that led to this trial. In describing how Hunter’s spouse attacked the man who had spent years demanding criminal investigations into Hunter based on texts extracted from the bootable hard drive, Sarah Fitzpatrick described Garrett Ziegler as no more than a former Trump trade policy aide, not someone who played a key role in the Big Lie and the coup attempt.

In a tense moment outside the courtroom where Hunter Biden is on trial for gun charges, his wife, Melissa Cohen-Biden, confronted former Trump White House aide Garrett Ziegler, who has been in the courtroom.

Ziegler, who worked on trade policy in the White House, was part of an effort by Trump allies to make public the contents of a laptop to embarrass Joe Biden’s son in the final days of the 2020 election. Hunter Biden sued Ziegler and the company he founded, Marco Polo, in September of last year, claiming they broke state and federal laws in an effort to create a searchable online database with 128,000 emails.

And Fitzpatrick whitewashed the substance of the lawsuit, which focuses on Ziegler’s admission that he broke the encryption of a phone backup included on the hard drive. Hunter isn’t suing because Ziegler made the texts from that phone available (Ziegler also made Ashley Biden’s diary available). He’s suing because Ziegler took actions to access the content that go well beyond publication.

In his response to the lawsuit, Ziegler argued that because Hunter never owned the hard drive on which the phone backup had been transferred, cracking that password does not amount to hacking.

Finally, as noted, WSJ similarly laundered part of the campaign that brought Hunter Biden to the point of facing felony gun charges. As a story on Merrick Garland’s relationship with some Special Counsels (WSJ ignores John Durham), it describes that David Weiss asked for Special Counsel status so he could pursue a list of FBI tasks, specifically the Alexander Smirnov allegations.

By 2022, prosecutors and agents had already believed that Hunter Biden committed tax crimes, but Weiss still seemed no closer to charging him or resolving the case. FBI officials asked Garland’s office if he could help move Weiss along.

Garland refused to prod Weiss, saying he had promised him broad independence to pursue the inquiry as he saw fit.

FBI agents drafted a list of final steps to push the probe forward—including to follow up on allegations from an FBI source that tied Hunter Biden’s financial misdeeds directly to his father.

Weiss’s office reached a tentative plea deal with Hunter Biden in June 2023, in an agreement that would likely include no jail time. Republicans in Congress alleged that Hunter Biden was getting a sweetheart deal, which fell apart a month later. In August, Weiss asked Garland to make him a special counsel, pointing to the FBI’s list and asking for independence. Garland agreed, recognizing that he had earlier promised Weiss autonomy and any resources he sought. [my emphasis]

There’s so much that any story about the Smirnov allegation might include: the way in which Bill Barr effectively immunized Rudy’s dalliance with Russian spies and set up a side channel targeting Joe Biden’s kid, FBI’s failures to respond when Smirnov shared recycled Murdoch dirt, the pressure brought to bear by Bill Barr’s public comments last summer, Smirnov’s self-proclaimed ties to Russian spooks, Weiss’ own conflicts as a witness to the side channel.

But at the very least, describe that David Weiss sought Special Counsel status to chase an effort to frame Joe Biden, one he had had in hand since 2020, one identified because Barr set up a way to look for it.

The felony gun charges against Hunter Biden might never have happened without the Special Counsel status. And the Special Counsel status arose out of a foolish effort to pursue a transparently false effort to frame Joe Biden.

The jurors did their job Tuesday. They looked at the evidence provided to them, and judged that Hunter Biden had knowingly lied when he purchased a gun over five years ago.

It is not their place to measure whether the process by which Trump partisans relentlessly campaigned to demand the criminal investigation into Joe Biden’s kid — and with the Smirnov hoax, into Joe Biden himself — amounts to due process or justice.

But it is the job of journalists to remember how we got here, to convey the role that Trump’s effort to investigate Joe Biden and his kid has had in this process.

This prosecution happened because of stupid things Hunter did five years ago, during the depths of his addiction.

But it would never have happened without the partisan interventions of John Paul Mac Isaac, Rudy Giuliani, and Bill Barr (to say nothing of the House GOP chasing the files they all made available). It likely would never have happened if David Weiss hadn’t credulously chased a hoax from a snitch with ties to Russian intelligence. It might never have happened without the gun shop owner — the same guy who admitted selling a gun without proper paperwork because he wanted to get Joe Biden’s kid out of his store — making a stink about the gun purchase just in time for the election.

It is true that almost nobody else would have been charged based on the facts of this case.

It is also true that almost nobody else (with the possible exception of Hillary Clinton) has faced such an unrelenting partisan campaign demanding criminal prosecution.

48 replies
  1. Patient Observer says:

    Thank you for presenting this context.

    It is important that fair-minded people become aware of this. That the Washington Post has obscured it is deeply frustrating..and worse.

  2. greengiant says:

    Last week talked to a relative who did not know the name Smirnov or his lies the GOP used to impeach Joe Biden.
    Seems like an opportunity to affect voters one on one.

  3. zscoreUSA says:

    At the NY Post, even Miranda Devine left her name off the byline. Then in her book bragged that she was instrumental, without her intervention from Rudy to her editor to approve the story, the story would never have printed.

    She also brought the eventual author, former Hannity producer, in April 2020, around the time she deleted her own tweets for the prior 5 years.

    She claims Rudy reached out to her because he just liked the way she covered Trump getting covid.

    In later interviews, she implies that she left her name of the byline because of “trepidations within the newsroom” and that the deep state was monitoring her comms with Rudy.

  4. PeaceRme says:

    The amount of power being exerted by an unelected criminal over the USA is terrifying. The pot is boiling. Everyday I pray this is the peak of this illegitimate power grab.

    The way the republicans are working to twist the truth and conceal their betrayal of American values should be terrifying. There are too many twisted by this power. It is also a mental illness. Trump supporters literally cannot see truth.

    The essence of addiction is to be constitutionally incapable of telling the truth. An addict in the disease cannot tell the truth about the disease. It is the most invariable symptom of the disease. Asking the question on a form is in violation of the reality of the disease.

    Alcoholics in the disease suffer from a clinical term called denial. It’s cunning and baffling because the brain literally blinds them to the truth. The desire for alcohol over rides the brains ability to tell the truth. Its physiological. MRI’s literally show that the part of the brain that would provide analysis of the behavior shuts down. I have worked with brilliant minds who could not face the reality of addiction because their brain with all the IQ of a nuero surgeon could not tell the truth.

    This argument should have and could have been made. Perhaps it’s too clinical to understand. But an addict in the disease cannot tell the truth about their drinking. It’s an invariant, if they could tell the truth they would be able to stop a disease that will ultimately kill them if left untreated.

    Addiction is not about substances. It’s a trauma response. Born of the need to avoid the truth. Usually a truth too painful to bear. Add substance or compulsion and voila!!! the trauma response is hijacked by the substance numbing agent and the brain is no longer able to face the truth about using. Which will literally lead an addict to death if left untreated.

    Our country is in such denial about mental illness.

    • klynn says:


      This paired with the “…process of making Hunter Biden icky enough that his due process didn’t matter simply got whitewashed in the trial.”

      These elements are vital, and Hunter was denied a chance to address them.

    • gmokegmoke says:

      When my best friend was an active alcoholic, I read Anne Wilson Schaef’s books When Society Becomes an Addict and The Addictive Organization. They explained quite a lot to me about how USAmerican society (and late stage capitalism) work.

      Some other symptoms of an addictive system are living in constant crisis and reducing everything to strict binaries. Addicts live in constant crisis, it seems, to amp up their adrenoline and feel something, anything. Clear yes/no delineations allow for no subtlety or nuance. It’s either all in or all out, a way to generate crisis. They are both good excuses to indulge in the addiction, be it alcohol, drugs, food, sex, or shopping (an extra-special feature of late-stage capitalism).

      • Ginevra diBenci says:

        Crisis itself can be its own addiction. Life on its own terms is almost unbearably hard for many of us; responding to our own apocalypti provides shots of adrenaline and excitement which serve as drugs–or the excuse to abuse drugs/alcohol/whatever.

        Dysfunctional families tend to operate in perpetual crisis. Our country is such a family. Hunter Biden knows this, but so do most of us addicts struggling to protect our fragile recoveries in a world actually menaced by strongmen.

        • Rayne says:

          Crisis-as-addiction is one of the reasons Fox News has poisoned so many Americans’ minds. Their fauxtrage cycle relies on manufactured crises which suck in persons who are armchair adrenaline addicts — GOP partisans who aren’t likely to go skydiving, but want and need to feel a rush. When the cycle of one crisis begins to breakdown, Fox News coughs up a new crisis. Phil Bump at WaPo said it best: “This is a particular skill of Fox News: When reality intrudes, the network quickly neutralizes it.”

          IMO this is why it’s difficult for some of us to break our families and friends away from Fox News’ bullshit. They’re addicted and we’re not prepared to deal with addictive behavior.

      • Ben_15JUN2024_1525h says:

        Yes, Anne Wilson Schaef’s writing on addiction is tremendously timely now. We are living in an Addictive System

        [Welcome to emptywheel. Please choose and use a unique username with a minimum of 8 letters. We have adopted this minimum standard to support community security. Because your username is far too short and too common (there are number of Ben/Benjamin/Bennett in this community) it will be temporarily changed to match the date/time of your first known comment until you have a new compliant username. Thanks. /~Rayne]

  5. Upisdown says:

    Whatever became of the “Sportsman” investigation that was billed as a major probe of overseas porn money transfers? That was supposedly the origin of the tax probe into Hunter Biden which Barr conveniently used to dump the investigatory kitchen sink on Weiss’ office.

    Why can’t some “journalist” begin pulling at that thread and detail all of the DOJ abuses of a private citizen for nakedly partisan advantage? Compared to Crossfire Hurricane the Sportsman investigation is nearly a criminal example of weaponization. Start a Durham style investigation while there is still time.

  6. Fred Zimmerman says:

    While I admire your fractal research skills and tenacity for your cause, your valiant defense of convicted felon Biden is an exercise in PhD-squared motivated reasoning. I read his autobiography in full and came away with some respect for his writing skills (or his ghost-author’s) but also a strong factual basis for the belief that he has a florid, highly self-indulgent, externalized addictiveness whose exercise has been extremely destructive to everyone around him, but especially the women and children in his life: the most vulnerable. It amazes me when consciously tolerant people choose to overlook this totally regressive aspect of addiction. Two things can be true at the same time. Addiction is not just sad, tragic, and medical; it can also be wicked and harmful, or, if you will, “icky”.

    • emptywheel says:


      Thanks for making precisely the point of this post!!!

      You may find Hunter self-indulgent and destructive. This post actually doesn’t comment on that one way or another.

      What it comments on is people who have decided that “icky” people aren’t entitled to the same due process others are, and therefore are fair targets for the combined efforts of five years of public and private payback.

      • Fred Zimmerman says:

        I don’t think Hunter is a fair target for lack of due process because he is an addict. I think he *has* received due process (by definition) and you are highly motivated to defend him for reasons external to his actual character and behavior.

        • emptywheel says:

          Yes, Fred.

          It is due process to have the President extorting a foreign country for dirt on you.
          It is due process to have the President’s lawyer and the AG set up a special way to mainstream Russian spy dirt on you, immunizing the lawyer for FARA crimes in the process.
          It is due process to have most GOP members of Congress to demand prosecutions of you and use the power of Congress to shield Privacy Act violations.


          You’ve made your values clear.

          Again, I thank you for exemplifying the entire point of this post.

        • earlofhuntingdon says:

          Your politics are clear. Your knowledge of the law and the machinations the DoJ used in HB’s case, not so much.

    • Upisdown says:

      I’ve seen Hunter Biden’s level of addiction first-hand in my family. Too often it carries with it stealing and physical violence. Too often it ends up in death. Fortunately this wasn’t the case here. The addicts who seek help on their own tend to fair better, in my observation, than the ones who are forced into treatment by the justice system.

      I hate all of the destructive things Hunter Biden did to himself and his family, but I am very pleased that he has built himself a path to recovery. It’s important to separate the addict from the past addictive behaviors. Hunter Biden is not the same person he was five years ago. Retribution isn’t going to help him or the people he hurt along way. Make the punishment fit the crime, but we shouldn’t lose sight of what we want enforcement to accomplish. Hunter was never a threat to anyone but himself.

      • timbozone says:

        Re: “Hunter was never a threat to anyone but himself.”

        That’s not at all clear. People who are addicts can do lots of criminal and abusive acts while trying to get their next fix or maintain access to whatever methods they use to get their drugs. Hunter Biden would be unlikely to mention in his autobiographical book the worst things he may have done or thought about doing during his lowest moments. Further, his family may not be inclined to dwell upon any really low moments that they are aware of and the DOJ and other LEOs are not aware of. Just the fact that he went and got a gun and had it in his possession (where he ultimately lost control of said gun, etc) shows the danger inherent to possession of firearms when you are dealing with addiction, etc. (I don’t doubt that he might have felt like he needed a firearm to defend himself, just that the chance of that going wrong was greatly increased by simply having a firearm about.)

    • Just Some Guy says:

      If you’re gonna indict and convict all the addicts in America for doing harmful, nay “icky,” things, you’d better do more than just the President’s son, as there are a lot out there.

      Or we could as a society start looking at more productive ways of dealing with addiction than just feeding our already-overfed carceral state (which does very little to solve or otherwise assuage the root cause).

      Whatever Hunter Biden’s outcome in our criminal justice system is, it still will be far better than what the majority of Americans who either are addicted or are the victims of addiction will receive. What’s galling to me — aside from the purely political nonsense that has motivated this conviction — is that there seems to be no acknowledgement whatsoever that resources aren’t remotely equal nor equitable.

    • earlofhuntingdon says:

      LMFAO. Classic, after-the-fact armchair quarterbacking, with a large dollop of misogyny and anti-intellectualism on top.

      Your comment reflects Weiss and Wise’s propaganda campaign to convict HB for his “character,” more than his conduct. This case would never have seen a courtroom, and it’s peers never have, were the defendant not named Hunter Biden. It would have been dealt with in the manner Noreika and the Special Counsel belatedly rejected – because his name was Hunter Biden.

    • Twaspawarednot says:

      People are capable of recovery. To continue to demonize them for past behavior is of no purpose. The “icky” behavior does not excuse weaponized prosecution for political purposes.

      • timbozone says:

        And most certainly not to the extent that Trump and his supporters went about it. In a just society, the folks who decided to make an addict’s life this much worse would not still be in an election.

    • John Paul Jones says:


      “It amazes me when consciously tolerant people choose to overlook this totally regressive aspect of addiction. Two things can be true at the same time. Addiction is not just sad, tragic, and medical; it can also be wicked and harmful, or, if you will, ‘icky’.”

      While you are careful to use the word “addiction” – and congrats; the whole post is extremely carefully written, edited down to almost perfection – it seems clear you’re confusing the addict with the addiction. You find Biden “icky” with or without his addiction, and the careful phrasing doesn’t hide that. But as C.S. Lewis once said, where we actively dislike something, we should refrain from criticizing it; our emotions being too closely engaged, our judgement is likely to be flawed.

      Also, what on earth is “conscious” tolerance? It implies that some are unconsciously tolerant; except – how would that work? Since toleration is a choice, it must always be conscious, so the adverb adds nothing.

      PS: Never did like “High Noon.” I thought you did better with “Day of the Jackel.”

      • Ginevra diBenci says:

        I personally take issue with the word “wicked” in the context of addiction. I would never refer to a diabetic as wicked, or a person with lung cancer. Or a person with mental illness.

        This smacks too much of the religious viewpoint that addiction is a sin. In fact addiction is an illness, as those of us who battle it will tell you. Our brains don’t work like those of non-addicts; for whatever reason (in my own and many cases childhood trauma), normal joy just lies unsparked, leaving reality a dull sludge.

        Call us wicked for trying to find ways to keep up with the rest of you, or simply to escape pain. The pain of knowing the harm we cause just adds to it.

  7. synergies says:

    Just my opinion. I was stunned at how fast a verdict was achieved. I think the general population of people are tired of the gun massacres in all numbers single to multiple. I think us common folk are not reflected in the oligarch owned news. I think that a group of us regular people in a jury reflected that someone in the cycles of addiction shouldn’t have a gun. I repeat I was stunned at how fast the verdict came in. I hadn’t even mentally reached that simple thought, that could happen because of the mental, news media as it is today. I.e. I admit I’m “pavlov…ed,” conditioned.
    It’s cool Marcy has shown us all the machinations that went into this IMO basically the far right 2A wing taking a celebrity named Hunter down this fetid road. I think the jury stood up to the absurdity of not being able to outlaw the machine guns of the insane. So may the 2A’s stuff that powder, round bullet and wad. Just my opinion.

    • emptywheel says:

      One of the things one of the jurors said made me think that the 7-Eleven texts presented right before closing arguments sealed the deal. I think one of them said he was trying to buy the day before buying the gun.

      Those texts really did strengthen the case signficantly.

      • Error Prone says:

        Out of a rehab. Quickly trying to buy. Seeing a gun shop while at ATT store getting new devices.

        Entering the gun shop, not stepping to the counter and saying, “What gun might be best for me,” but there, being approached and willing then to buy.

        Blowing Hallie off in texting, the console intact when the truck was returned, broken lock on console and gun box, two loose shells when Hallie checked. Signs he’d been doing crack overnight.

        All that can be read as if he contemplated and came close to suicide that overnight. Not having the keys, he broke the locks. Never chambered a round but two loose. We don’t know, we guess, it could have been that close to post rehab depression because it did not work. If so, he’s damned lucky to still be alive, more so since he ended up clean for half a decade, and stable now.

        It is only guesswork. But a fact pattern guessing that way hangs together with things in evidence.

        I think some of us, if not many, have had a close to the brink moment.

        • Magnet48 says:

          I had thought suicide as well. The chaser to that though was him & Hallie since 2 bullets. But I find him courageous to face a trial & hope he can navigate the consequences. I wish him nothing but strength.

  8. zscoreUSA says:

    As far as whether the Rudy-Mac Isaac story was immediately believed by everyone, including on the right, here’s a really interesting interview of Rudy, by the Daily Caller. From 10/16/20, in the wake of the NY Post story.

    The reporter does push back on Rudy’s story, which causes him to melt down a couple of times and threaten to end the interview.

    Rudy says he is dealing with 4 “confidential informants”, including 2 who who doesn’t even want to tell about, that reveal FARA violations.

    Rudy comes across as being really familiar with Mac Isaac’s timeline but does make contradictions. Including that Costello went down to Mac Isaac to validate and spent a week, when the official story is email and phone contact then FedEx the hard drive in late August 2020. And that Mac Isaac reached out after the laptop was “abandoned at that point by about 6 months”, which would be October 2019, way off from official story.

    Rudy appears drunk, and his contradictory statements could be slip ups, letting out Information meant to stay private. Or if course, could just be ordinary misstatements.

    [Disclaimer: this is not an endorsement of the Daily Caller, this is intended for people interested in looking at disinformation and false narratives. If that doesn’t interest you, feel free to ignore my entire comment]

      • zscoreUSA says:

        On the day of the laptop there’s also some curious coincidences.

        All day per impeachment docs: flurry of calls between Rudy, Parnas, Toensing, Nunes, Harvey, White House, Mulvaney

        6:50pm: Hunter arrives at Mac Shop, straight from the cigar bar where he was recommended the Mac Shop,

        7:00 pm: Mac Shop closes

        7:45 pm ish : Mac Isaac exits Mac Shop, sees Hunter is his “big black Ford Raptor truck in front of my shop, with all of its fancy angles and lighting”, good observations by a blind man

        7:56 pm: Rudy 5:03 call to White House

        As far as I know, the public has not seen evidence Hunter was at that cigar shop, or even that it’s normal for him to go to cigar shops during that time. As he was usually going to liquor stores and being holed up in hotel rooms.

        Also, it seems kind of weird that anyone would go to that cigar bar, get back in their vehicle, then go park in front of the Mac Shop. Which is just across the street from the cigar bar, a 2 minute walk away.

        • Rayne says:

          Only three people I readily associate with cigar bars: Rudy Giuliani and Paul Manafort who frequented the Grand Havana Room in NYC and Jared Kushner who owned the building in which the Grand Havana was located.

          Convenient to mention a cigar bar to explain away odors which might be more obvious to someone who relies on their other senses more than their sight.

    • Upisdown says:

      From a NY Mag article…

      “By July 2019, news organizations, most notably the New York Times, had published investigations of Hunter’s dealings in Ukraine. Conservative outlets were trying to elevate the story into a major scandal. Rudy Giuliani and the investigative journalist John Solomon, among others, were holding regular meetings in an effort to advance the narrative. Mac Isaac was reading Solomon’s articles and watching Fox News. Every time he heard a new name, he would search for mentions of it on the hard drive. One particularly intriguing email Mac Isaac discovered suggested that an adviser to Burisma’s board named Vadym Pozharskyi had secured an audience with Joe Biden when he was overseeing diplomatic relations with Ukraine as VP. (“Dear Hunter,” read the alleged smoking-gun email from April 2015. “Thank you for inviting me to DC and giving an opportunity to meet your father and spent some time together …”) Mac Isaac claims that he ignored the laptop’s porn and concentrated on turning up evidence of what looked, at least to him, like political corruption. “I kept my blinders on,” Mac Isaac says. “All I cared about was Burisma.”

      “Then, in September 2019, word leaked of a CIA whistleblower’s complaint about the White House call with Volodymyr Zelenskyy on which President Trump pressured the newly elected Ukrainian leader to investigate the Bidens and Burisma. A counter-scandal erupted, and the Democrats convened impeachment hearings. Mac Isaac thought the laptop might aid Trump’s defense.”

      So, JPMI contacted the FBI, and eventually sold Hunter Biden’s personal data, all because he’s a MAGA cultist caught up in Fox News, Rudy, and John Solomon’s fabricated dirt that was obtained from D. Firtash.

  9. Yargelsnogger says:

    I hope you are compiling this into a book format. The only way to break through the media narrative is to reframe this whole thing into a full story that people can follow.

    • Rayne says:

      Except people aren’t following now when it’s being spooled out in digestible posts here.

      IMO there’s a need for something even more simple, because media has failed to break it down for the public. A good example is Marcy’s bullet-point delivery to another commenter of a few of the due process failures Hunter Biden has experienced.

      • NerdyCanuck says:

        writing a book *does* give the opportunity to do a book tour tho, and thus to get a series of interviews on tv, radio, and podcasts to explain the book and thus the real story of what happened…

        well theoretically at least, I know that Dr. Wheeler has said before that certain media outlets won’t book her anymore due to her inconvenient truth bombs and her legendary potty mouth haha. But most podcasts allow swearing these days!

        so who knows, it could be a good opportunity to expand the audience and reach of the story, and get the bigger picture out into the universe (assuming writing a book was the kind of thing she would even want to do, it’s a ton of extra work and she already works her ass off as it is!).

  10. zscoreUSA says:

    Re: Ziegler
    He describes himself as a small operation with 5 people in his group, including at least 1 lawyer, and acting completely independently.

    But I would not be surprised if he is being coached or mentored by people from the Heritage Foundation. Or if a lawyer associated with Heritage is volunteering their own time.

    Based on comments he makes in interviews and pet peeves he mentions and who he disses on the right.

    Someone here commented that the odd timezone on the laptop emails (UTC -3) is consistent with being on a device within Brazil. Ziegler has made odd references to Brazil, including about the the social and class structure, which is not something people use in everyday conversation. It wouldn’t shock me if he indeed had someone in Brazil on his team.

    Overall, based on his age and and how he talks about preparing reports and what district attorneys look for and to have evidence presented in a proper format, it comes across that he is definitely being coached or mentored by people with experience.

  11. Savage Librarian says:

    I’m starting to think the author of this article is on to something. Maybe the human brain really is evolving to be smaller and more like a Golden Retriever, “friendly and jolly, but maybe not that interesting.” That would explain some things about the decline in the quality of journalism.

    “Future evolution: from looks to brains and personality, how will humans change in the next 10,000 years?” – Nicholas R. Longrich, University of Bath, March 1, 2022

    • RipNoLonger says:

      Thanks for supplying an evening’s worth of reading. This looks fascinating. Glad I won’t be around to see how we finally end up!

  12. zscoreUSA says:

    Seems like a good time to mention something in the Mac Isaac v Hunter case:

    From Mac Isaac’s reply to interrogatories, which Hunter quotes in his Motion fo Summary Judgement filed 11/17/23.

    4. Identify every person with whom you have ever shared, whether by providing electronic copies, printed out documents, access to review, summaries, or an oral description, any of the data you claim originated from the device(s) or account(s) of Robert Hunter Biden.

    ANSWER: Chronologically:
    Mike Dzielak – FBI – 11/19/2019 – Oral and print
    Joshua Wilson – FBI – 11/19/2019 – Oral and print
    Col. Steve Mac Isaac – father – 02-05-2020 – electronic
    Bob Costello – Lawyer for Rudy – 08-26-2020 – oral and electronic
    Senator Ron Johnson’s office – Senator – 09-24-2020 – electronic
    Gabrielle Fonrouge – NY Post reporter – 10-11-2020 – oral
    Yaacov Apelbaum – computer forensics expert – 10-18-2020 – electronic

    [Emphasis from original]

    A couple of things standout:
    1) What happened to mailing the hard drive to his dad the hard drive in the Garfield stuffed animal 9/20/2019?

    2) Colloquial reference to both Costello and Rudy

    3) 11/19/2019 matches Mac Isaac’s book which differs from Shapley’s timeline

    4) what about the copy he gave to his friend because he feared for his life then later had the serendipitous opportunity to give that copy to Costello and Rudy?

  13. timbozone says:

    Thank you, Emptywheel for keeping the full story of what happened here alive and recorded for posterity. This whole Hunter Biden case has been a crazy ethical and moral morass, not helped by the inchoate main-stream journalism that has so inconsistently covered this entire scandal. The subsequent abuse of the powers of the DOJ under now Special Counsel Weiss, in concert with Judge Norieka’s rulings keeping Barr, Rudy’s, and Trump’s interference in Hunter Biden’s life, for political advantage against Hunter’s father’s seeking of the White House in the 2020 election, is something that should never be the norm.

  14. jakebob_CHANGE-REQD says:

    In reply to Dr Wheeler’s listing of Mr Biden’s due process rights violations, is there not a case to be made under Title 18, secs. 241-243, regarding conspiracy to deprive a citisen of civil rights under color of law?

    IaNaL, but am shocked at the amount of potential Brady material the judge allowed to be excluded.

    [Welcome to emptywheel. Please choose and use a unique username with a minimum of 8 letters. We have adopted this minimum standard to support community security. Thanks. /~Rayne]

Comments are closed.