Witness Admits To Filing Presumed False Tax Returns For Manafort

1531416683549In a major building block for the prosecution of former Trump campaign head Paul Manafort, prosecutors put on the stand his accountant who demanded a grant of immunity because he admitted to filing returns for Manafort that he believed to be fraudulent.  All however did not go as well for the prosecutors after the judge again lashed out at prosecutors of their effort to use Manafort’s opulent lifestyle to poison the jury.

Cindy Laporta, an accountant with Kositzka Wicks & Co.,  admitted that she doubted the truth of the tax filings but filed them anyway.  She was suspicious of money transferred into the international political consulting business that Manafort and his aide Rich Gates.  She specifically treated the money as $2.4 million loans from offshore businesses. Neither Manafort nor Gates would give her proof that these were actual loans.  She also was allegedly told by Gates to reduce Manafort’s income so he could pay his taxes by not counting his loans.

The push back on prosecutors came with the testimony of another accountant, J. Philip Ayliff, also Kositzka, Wicks and Co.  Surprisingly, this was reportedly an unnoticed expert witness who was then asked to given expert testimony.  Judge T.S. Ellis caught off the questioning.  After a long discussed at the bench, it was decided the question would wait to be addressed later.  However, U.S. Attorney Uzo Asonye asked about another term of art contained on federal tax forms. That is another question that would normally go to an expert witness.  Ellis promptly declared that the court would recess early. Ellis explained that there was prior agreement on the meaning of the term and again this was not a properly noticed witness.

Even with the tension between the prosecutors and the court, it was still a bad day for Manafort.

386 thoughts on “Witness Admits To Filing Presumed False Tax Returns For Manafort”



    As Mr. Manafort ascended to one of the premier jobs in American politics, prosecutors now say, his career was privately in shambles. In early 2016, his accountant testified, he worked to mortgage some of his seven or eight homes. Prosecutors said he had become accustomed to a lavish lifestyle and was preoccupied with clinging to it.

    At the helm of Mr. Trump’s candidacy, Mr. Manafort knew from experience that he was well positioned to bounce back. In the early 1980s, Mr. Manafort used his experience as a midlevel campaign aide for Reagan to build the pre-eminent lobbying and consulting shop of Reagan-era Washington. He helped major corporations broker access to the president’s inner circle — and he was paid handsomely for his services.

    A Trump victory would have positioned him for a triumphant and lucrative return to Washington lobbying.

    At the F.B.I., agents began to wonder whether Mr. Manafort had something else in the works. In late July 2016, agents learned that Russian operatives had offered help to a Trump campaign aide, George Papadopoulos. A second campaign adviser, Carter Page, traveled that month to Russia and met with a suspected Russian intelligence officer.

    The F.B.I. began investigating whether Mr. Manafort, with his deep ties to the pro-Russia political movement in Ukraine, was involved in the Russian operation to interfere in the election. The Justice Department never brought charges accusing him of any involvement, but the investigation helped unravel whatever career plans Mr. Manafort plotted for himself.

    The news media attention that he once saw as so valuable ultimately helped knock him from his powerful post. Journalists revealed confidential details about his work in Ukraine, including a ledger showing millions of dollars in secret payments — revelations that forced his departure in August 2016.

    Prosecutors, who had scrutinized Mr. Manafort’s foreign lobbying for years, began investigating that area in earnest. By the time Mr. Trump was sworn into office, Mr. Manafort was under scrutiny in at least two investigations. If convicted of the charges against him, he faces years in prison and millions of dollars in fines.

    Mr. Manafort’s lawyers say he almost certainly would not have faced charges if not for his brief, unpaid stint with the Trump campaign.

    Edited from: “Paul Manafort Was Deep In Debt. He Saw Opportunity In Trump”

    Today’s NEW YORK TIMES

    1. SO !!!!

      Manafort was broke. Got that. It has been self evident from this trial so far that Manafort hit on for him hard times, and was having difficulty supporting his lavish life style.

      That is not a crime. Often people in financial stress commit crimes. Often they do not. All poor people are not criminals either.

      There is no amount Trump could have paid Manafort that would have fixed his financial troubles.
      BUT successfully managing Trump’s campaign would with certainty bring him myriads of the lucrative clients that assured his oppulent lifestyle.

      Manafort most certainly has a good reason to find a candidate that most think can not win, but that likely will and champion them.
      And that is what he did.

      Manafort’s move to the Trump campaign was brilliance on his part.
      And demonstrates exactly why he got those lucrative clients in the past.

      BTW Manafort’s wealth did not mostly come from lobbying. It mostly came from political consulting.
      Manafort does not have much of a reputation as a lobbiest.
      He has a reputation for winning elections.

    2. “At the F.B.I., agents began to wonder whether Mr. Manafort had something else in the works.”

      And therin lies the problem – the seeds of corruption.

      Speculation by FBI agents is NOT a basis for anything.

      We do not investigate people because we ‘wonder” about them.

      That is also why this entire mess from end to end is really a polittically corrupt witch hunt.

      PLEASE, PLEASE explain to me how this is any different from watergate ?

      The IRS/DOJ/FBI/CIA said NO!!! To Nixon’s entreaties to investigate his political enemies.

      Under Obama they did not – and THAT is where the political corruption starts and that is why this is worse than watergate, and that is why this is a witch hunt.

      Do you have the slightest doubt that if we unleashed a special prosecutor on Clinton that we could come up with tax evasion and payoffs and collusion.
      In fact we KNOW all these occurred. We KNOW that Clinton was working with Russians to get dirt on Trump.
      You seem to think Putin is omniscient – involved in everything nefarious done in Russia. So was he ignorant of the FSB and GRU agents feeding dirt on Trump to Steele ?
      Do you think he could not have shut that down in a second ?
      If you think natalia was sent by Putin – was the massive amount of time she spent with Glenn Simpson and Fusion GPS all secret from Putin ?
      If so why is she still alive ?

      Put simply you can not have Putin directing the Russian encounters with Trump, without also directing everything involving Clinton.

      There is MORE russian entanglement with Clinton than Trump. Podesta is on the board of major Russian companies and own tens of millions in Russian stocks.
      Virtually every Russian linked to Trump is linked to Clinton too.

      The Russians actually provided Clinton with Dirt on Trump (though all bogus), they provided Trump with nothing.
      Seems to me that Putin favored Clinton not Trump. Otherwise why were so many russians feeding Clinton ?

      Nor have we touched on Clinton’s extensive ties to the Ukraine.

      The point is that Clinton could not survive the investigation that Trump has endured.
      If she did not end up in jail – everyone she knows would have.

      This is PART of why we do not investigate merely because we “wonder” about something.
      The DOJ/FBI have guidelines – these were not followed.

      Wonder and speculation substituted for probable cause.

      1. I believe that Trump asked the Justice Department to open a Clinton investigation. It hasn’t gone anywhere.

        Christopher Steele was engaged by Fushion because of his expert Russian contacts. It was known that Trump’s company was heavily involved with Russian investors. That is widely detailed on of the two articles above.

        Had Trump not had not been defendant on Russian investors, Christopher Steele would never have been engaged. So this ‘defense’ that Russia was helping Clinton too is highly misleading.

        1. ‘I believe that Trump asked the Justice Department to open a Clinton investigation. It hasn’t gone anywhere.”
          And that would surprise anyone why ?
          Is there anyone who beleives that Trump has any control at all over DOJ/FBI ? and Any of consequence over CIA/NSA/DHS ?

          Many of the same people who exhonerated clinton the last time arround are still there.
          Those who would have pushed agressively still in the dog house.

          Mueller and Rosenstien have become the unelected kings of the DOJ

          “Christopher Steele was engaged by Fushion because of his expert Russian contacts.”

          There are only TWO things I care about regarding Steele, Fusion, Clinton.

          1). There is nothing that Trump actually did with the Russians that is not tiny compared to Clinton.
          BOTH could legally do everything they did. But if you beleive that anything Trump did was illegal – you have the enormous logic problem that Clinton’s involvement with the Russians was worse.

          2). The use of the Steele Dossier by the FBI. Clinton, Fusion, Steele were all free to gather dirt on Trump from where ever they could.
          They were even free to try to push it to the FBI. But the FBI was absolutely required to validate the information before using it. It did not. That is misconduct – probably criminal.
          Anyone who signed the FISA Warrant applications is quilty of sworn falsification – read the 4th amendment. Warrants must be sworn.
          With respect to Steele’s credibiillty – it is completely irrelevant. If an “informant” comes to the police and says I know somebody who knows somebody who saw X.
          That is NOT probable cause. The reliability of the “informant’ is irrelevant. They were not a witness, in fact Steeles sources were not witnesses,. There are two layers of informants between the FBI and the actual sources whose credibility it is that the FBI must attest to to get a warrant.
          Rod Rosenstien is not some backwoods sherriff. He knows the law. He knows the requirements for a warrant. It is the credibility of the purported WITNESS that matters.
          You can not enhance garbage from an unverified source by fitlering it through someone whose credibility you prefer. The entire Steele Dossier is tripple hearsay.
          Fine for use as OPO research. Useless for law enforcement.

          “It was known that Trump’s company was heavily involved with Russian investors.”
          To some extent True – but not nearly so much as Clinton.

          Regardless irrelevant.

          Hillary got lots of money from Goldman Sachs – does that mean she is a tool of Obama ?

          You are presuming that every wealthy russian is a Putin surrogate.

          If you want an improper conspiracy with Russia – any Russian will not do. You need to explicitly connect to the Russian Government.
          Trump had a good relationship with a Russian pop singer. That was how the Natalia meeting came to pass.
          Are you claiming he was a russian agent ?
          And If Natalia is a Russian agent – why doesn’t she implicate Fusion and HRC ?
          She met with Fusion many many times, she worker with Fusion, and Fusion worked for HRC.

          Natalia was REJECTED by the Trump campaign – EVERYONE agrees on that.
          How is rejecting the overatures of a purported Russian spy worse than accepting them ?

          Personally I think Natalia was a honey Trap (as was Mifsud and Halper) – they were planted by the CIA or Fusion for the purpose of entrapping Trump.
          The actual evidence is that HRC or surrogates – including Brennan and the FBI made multiple attempts to set Trump up and all failed.

          One part of the evidence of that is that Natalia had nothing useful on HRC.
          Do you honestly think that Hillary would bait a Trump trap with something that would actually damage her ?

          “That is widely detailed on of the two articles above.” So ?

          “Had Trump not had not been defendant on Russian investors, Christopher Steele would never have been engaged.”

          Again I do not care about Steele, or Fusion. I care about the FBI. HRC can dig for dirt on Trump however she pleases.
          She can try to get the FBI to byte,

          But the FBI is responsible to VERIFY what it uses to start and investigation and worse to get a warrant.
          It quite obviousely did not.

          “So this ‘defense’ that Russia was helping Clinton too is highly misleading.”
          How so ? Steeles sources were still GRU and FSB operatives. That is actual russian intelligence.

          You have very few choices:
          Putin was unaware that his own operatives were helping Clinton – you expect me to beleive that ?
          Regardless it does not change the FACT that Clinton was working through cuttouts (that makes he look guilty) with Russian Intelligence.

          There is no “trump had russian investors” justification to working with Russian spies.
          Either it is legal – in which case absolutely every claim against Trump goes out the window.
          Or it was not, in which case the best you can hope for it Trump in a cell adjacent to Clinton’s.
          There is not a third option.
          There is no “ends justifies the means” option – particularly when what you got was garbage, so you did not even get the ends you hoped for.

          Which brings us to option 3. Putin was deliberately feeding Clinton.
          That has two permutations – he was doing so to help clinton.
          or he was feeding her garbage in the hope of harming her.

          The choice does nto matter. Either way you have HRC working with Putin through cuttouts – and likely knowing it.

          Which brings us to the last issue.

          Purportedly “Russians” – that would be Mifsud, Halper, and Natalia, made contact with Trump to interject themselves int he Trump campaign.
          Every one of those attempts FAILED. Trump was not interested. Certainly he HOPED for good dirt on clinton. But he reffused to bite on garbage.

          Conversely HRC has many many contacts with Russians (and ukrainians) and USED those during th campaign.
          Drek or not Clinton got much of the Steele Dossier info from REAL Russian intelligence agents.
          If Natalia is a Russian Agent – Trump shot her down BUT Clinton worked with her.

          In every way – whatever you think you have regarding Trump – you have far worse regarding Clinton.

          Define the Trump campaign conduct as a crime if that floats your boat.
          But then you MUST apply your interpretation of the law equally,
          And without a doubt Clinton and lots of cronies are headed to Jail. Trump not so much.

        1. Do you have an argument ?

          “Horseshit” is not an argument.

          An intelligent person can point out the actual flaws in another persons logic or facts – if there are any.

          Invective is not argument. It is a sign of a dull mind.

    3. “In late July 2016, agents learned that Russian operatives had offered help to a Trump campaign aide, George Papadopoulos.”

      BZZT wrong. Mifsud has no consequential ties to Russia.
      He has far more significant ties to the FBI, CIA and primarily to MI6.

      If Mifsud should actually prove to be a Russian Spy – then the intelligence communities of the entire west have been very severaly penatrated by him
      Papadoulis was small fish compared to the western intellence people Mifsud associated.

      Mifsud himself claimed to be part of the “Clinton Foundation”.

      It is very near certain that Mifsud was an MI6 operative being run against the Trump campaign, probably as a consequence of off books operations orchestrated by Brennan(CIA) and Dearlove(MI6).

      It is very near certain that Mifsud is NOT a russian agent.

      Papadoulis was being setup by the very people investigating him.

      1. dhlii – I want to know why it is just now that we are finding out that Diane Feinstein had a Chinese spy on her Congressional payroll for 20 years?

        1. Because the CIA/FBI/DOJ only care about Trump minions contacts with fake spy bait set out by the CIA/FBI/HFA.

          Don’t you understand – Democrats can do no wrong. Republcians can do nothing right. It is a law of nature.

          I would BTW note that this is the same Obama administration that was spying on Congress and got caught – by Feinstein.

          Is it that hard to beleive that if the Obama administration would illegally spy on democrats in the Senate, that they would illegally spy on Trump ?

          1. dhlii – would that be the same Feinstein who had a Chinese spy on her Congressional staff for 20 years?

    4. “A second campaign adviser, Carter Page, traveled that month to Russia and met with a suspected Russian intelligence officer.”
      No he did not.

      Page met with Russian Deputy Prime Minister Arkady Dvorkovich for 5-10 seconds. Enough to say hello nothing more.

      I am pretty sure that the Deputy Prime Minister is not a “suspected Russian Intelligence Officer”.

      Page has been anally probed by Mueller, the Media and the house and senate.

      Mueller indicts people at the drop of a hat – if there was the slightest hint of a problem with Page’s testimony or statments he would have been indicted long ago.

      Finally regarding Both Page and Papadoulis – not only must you exagerate their ties to Russia – but you must exagerate their ties to the Trump campaign.

      There is ZERO evidence that anyone in the Trump campaign even read their emails.

      You have russian connections that are dead on both ends. And this is your idea of collusion ?

      Not only that but to get that you had to break the law.

    5. Peter Shill, this investigation was opened on 31 July 2016. Manafort was dismissed as campaign director 19 days later.

      He only owned ‘seven or eight’ homes (and a $15,000 ostrich garment). Sounds broke.

      1. Spastic, it was there in yesterday’s testimony, that bookkeeper testified that Manafort was having cash flow issues.

        1. “Spastic, it was there in yesterday’s testimony, that bookkeeper testified that Manafort was having cash flow issues.”

          I have had “cash flow” issues – does that mean I colluded with Russians ?

          BTW “cashflow” does not mean insolvenance.

          Cashflow issues mean the real time flow of money is net negative, you are spending more than you are collecting.

          It does NOT mean your revenue is less than your expenses.
          Cashflow is solved by short term loans – exactly what the bookkeeper testified to.

          1. dhlii – cash flow issues are something farmers have all the time. Every year they sell their crop, pay off their loans from last year and by Jan are in a cash flow problem, so they are borrowing money again so they can live and buy seed. When the sell the next crop they will pay those loans off.

          1. When you can’t pay the mortgages and have to resort to money laundering and evading taxes and not reporting offshore monies, that’s a big problem.

            1. Hollywood, your logic is near non-existent. Being heavily mortgaged is not a crime and can be good or bad though generally the latter. There are remedies to the problem if it exists and those remedies don’t have to include criminality. However, in this case, you see a connection to Trump and suddenly criminality linked to Trump is all that can exist. That is part of your cognitive dissonance.

              1. No, your logic fails to pass the smell test. Clearly, the solution Manafort chose was to commit bank fraud and tax evasion to support a lavish lifestyle he could not otherwise afford.
                Yes, he could have had a fire sale and downsized his lifestyle, but he chose the criminal solution. That’s the logic here.
                The connection to Trump is in development but it seems to include agreeing to be Trump’s campaign manager for gratis, amending the GOP platform on the Ukraine, trying to get Deripaska to relieve his debt in exchange for inside info about Trump and his plans, promising a Chicago bank president who fraudulently lent him $16 million that he’d be Secy. of the Army, possibly working on Russian sanctions relief (sanctions which resulted in part from Manafort’s work in the Ukraine), etc.
                And all you have is your ongoing CD denial. Sad!

                1. “No, your logic fails to pass the smell test. Clearly, the solution Manafort chose was to commit bank fraud and tax evasion ”

                  That is a conclusion presently without proof. He may or may not be found guilty, but you are dealing in a fantasy world of cognitive dissonance.

                  Example: I provided proof that Trump donated millions and that proof is in the IRS forms filed and available. You deny that despite the facts that exist.

                  All you are demonstrating is stupidity caused by your ego and your cognitive dissonance.

                  You constantly use an achronym CD which I assume is your shorthand for cognitive dissonance but I am not sure DC is a regularly used achronym for that problem. In any event you probably have little understanding of what it means in the psychiatric or medical world. That you may have had some courses related to the subject in a community college or God Forbid in a university doesn’t make you knowledgeable on the subject matter.

                2. Logic has actual rules. You do not check logic with your nose. There is a formal process for verifying logic.

                  “Clearly, the solution Manafort chose was to commit bank fraud and tax evasion to support a lavish lifestyle he could not otherwise afford.”

                  A perfect example of illogic,
                  No it is not clear.
                  In fact it is clear that your supposition is just that – a guess, and an improbable one at that.
                  Just as your atlernative – though possible is not the only alternative available.

                  I would further note – cashflow problems are not insolvency.
                  I do not think Manafort has had work since 2016.
                  If the Prosecutions thesis was correct he should be destitute.
                  But he is engaged in a very expensive legal battle with Mueller.
                  Further he is clearly playing the long game.
                  He is unlikely to beat all charges at these trials. But he is likely to eliminate many,
                  and then some on appeal, and more on further appeals.
                  It seems apparent that Manafort is prepared to spend millions – money that Mueller and you are claiming he does not have, to win this.

                  Flynn was run out of money by Mueller quite quickly. He has openly admitted that he plead to prevent losing everything and to protect his soun who Mueller threatened to prosecute too.

                  Allan has noted that you clearly have little knowledge of science.
                  You also have less of engineering.

                  It is self evident that you have never actually had to keep a set of books, manage a business of any consequence, or engage in any of the tasks that actual professionals end up doing in life.

                  You are completely clueless about what it actually takes to function on your own – without the support of an employer, with the obligation to actually produce something of value that actually works.

                3. Have you bothered to read your own list of purported crimes of Manafort ?

                  If those are crimes – Manafort is going to have the Cell next to Hillary.

                  Most of us understand the difference between something we would not do ourselves and actual crimes.

                  Bill Clinton got 500K for a speach in Russia – not a crime.
                  HRC got 250K for a speach to Goldman Sachs – not a crime.

                  Both acts are disturbing, they are reasons not to vote for Clinton.
                  They MIGHT be reason to wonder if there is a crime somewhere.
                  But they are not crimes without evidence of much more.

                  “Yes, he could have had a fire sale and downsized his lifestyle, but he chose the criminal solution. That’s the logic here. ”
                  Not logic, your remarks are speculation. and pretty bad speculation at that. Regardless they are not logic.
                  You clearly do not know what logic is.

                  “The connection to Trump is in development”
                  No it is not – Manafort was Trump’s campaign manager – briefly.

                  “but it seems to include agreeing to be Trump’s campaign manager for gratis”
                  Likely because that would guarantee getting the job and if Trump won, Manafort would be set for life.
                  That is perfectly legal.

                  “amending the GOP platform on the Ukraine”
                  There is no way in the world that can ever be a crime – and that is in the unlikely event you tie it to Manafort.
                  Platforms are the sales pitch a candidate makes to voters to get elected.
                  If someone was up to something nefarious the last thing they would do is incorporate it into a political platform.

                  “trying to get Deripaska to relieve his debt in exchange for inside info about Trump and his plans”
                  Again we have no idea whether that occured you are speculating.
                  It is also NOT A CRIME. Though it would be a very good reason for Trump to be pissed at him.

                  “promising a Chicago bank president who fraudulently lent him $16 million that he’d be Secy. of the Army”

                  What is a fraudulent loan ? If Manafort received 16M – then the loan was real.
                  If Manafort misrepresented something to get the loan – that is a reason for the bank to call the loan ?
                  Have they ? If not then it is not your business or Mueller’s and it is certainly not fraud.

                  Manafort never had the power to promise Sec of anything, and I would be shocked if he did or anyone beleived him.
                  Regardless, lying is not a crime. Or HRC would be in leavenworth.

                  “possibly working on Russian sanctions relief (sanctions which resulted in part from Manafort’s work in the Ukraine), etc.”
                  Again – not a crime. Someone trying to change policy in a way you do not like is not a crime.

                  “And all you have is your ongoing CD denial. Sad!”
                  All you have is a lot of speculation about things that are not crimes.

            2. “When you can’t pay the mortgages”
              Not a crime.

              “and have to resort to money laundering and evading taxes and not reporting offshore monies, that’s a big problem.”

              Typical left wing nut – you are actually playing the victim card for Manafort.

              Just because life does not go as well as you expect does not mean that you “have to” resort to crime.
              Most people do not.

              I really do not like Paul Manafort.
              I do not like the way he makes his money.

              But my dislike of him or his work does not make him a criminal.

              I have heard lots of evidence that Paul Manafort lives his life in a way I would not.
              He works for people I would not.

              But I have heard no evidence that he is a criminal.

              Most of the people I do not like, are not criminals.

              I do not like you much – does that mean you are a criminal ?

              I will bet you have a tiny fraction of the wealth Paul Manafort has.
              Are you engaged in tax evasion and money laundering ?

              1. dhlii – I think hollywood gives all his extra money directly to the US Treasury.

            3. You do not owe taxes on foreign earned income until you bring it to the US.

              There is no legitimate reason that anyone should ever have to report foreign earnings or foreign bank accounts.

              This is stupid nonsense that has arisen from the idiocy of the left, the war on drugs and the stupid idea that the US has global jurisdiction.

              The US government does not. Any law covering the actions of US citizens outside of the US should have been found unconstitutional long ago.

              But god forbid we should read the constitution as written.

              What I do in a foreign country is the business of that country. The US is the only country that taxes foreign income – which is economic idiocy. It keeps trillions from returning to the US.

              But god forbid a left wing nut should ponder the unintended consequences of anything before legislating.

              Try to digest this if you can.

    6. “The F.B.I. began investigating whether Mr. Manafort, with his deep ties to the pro-Russia political movement in Ukraine, was involved in the Russian operation to interfere in the election. ”

      We continue to hear of this great Russian operation to “interfere” with the election.
      To this date there is no evidence, just claims.
      According to the very same 3 letter organizations that missed the collapse of the USSR. were years behind on both Iran and North Korea, but were certain that Iraq had WMD’s.

      These are the people you wish to trust without evidence ?

      What we actually know regarding Russia, amounts to next to nothing, and is not even slightly unusual, they have been doing those things for decades.
      And NONE of it ties to the Trump campaign.

      Aside from Wonder – what probable cause do you have for spying on the Trump campaign at all ? And what have you actually found ?
      We do not today have the evidence to justify the FISA warrant on Page.

      The only campaign that was fed information by the Russians was the Clinton campaign.
      The only campaign with contact with Russian intelligence – was the Clinton campaign.

      The Clinton’s got hundreds of millions from Russian Oligarchs.

      What knowledge did CIA/FBI have in 2015/2016 of Russian entanglement with the Trump campaign ?
      Whatever FBI/CIA purportedly had – why were they not similarly investigating the far more connected Clinton campaign ?

    7. “The Justice Department never brought charges accusing him of any involvement, but the investigation helped unravel whatever career plans Mr. Manafort plotted for himself.”

      Another way of saying what you wrote is that DOJ ruined Manafort without any evidence of anything.

    8. “The news media attention that he once saw as so valuable ultimately helped knock him from his powerful post. Journalists revealed confidential details about his work in Ukraine, including a ledger showing millions of dollars in secret payments — revelations that forced his departure in August 2016.”

      The only problem I have with the media – is that their investigations are so one sided.

      To be clear Manafort’s payments were not illegal – and were outside of US jurisdiction regardless.
      The press investigations made him unemployeable in the former USSR.

      I have zero problems with the Press digging into whatever they can.

      I would note you bath your writing in adjectives like confidential and secret intended to create the presumption of guilt.

      I would imagine you think your sex life is confidential and secret – is that also evidence that it is criminal ?

      Privacy in our lives and interactions with others is our right and the norm.
      A meeting or payment is not criminal because it was not advertised in the NYT

    9. “Prosecutors, who had scrutinized Mr. Manafort’s foreign lobbying for years, began investigating that area in earnest. By the time Mr. Trump was sworn into office, Mr. Manafort was under scrutiny in at least two investigations.”

      And yet aftr all this investigation, of which we have little justification, what Mueller is leading with is tax evasion ?
      And doing badly at that.

      I do not have alot of sympathy for Manafort. He does not come accross as someone who has had a hard life.

      But as of yet I have heard no basis for the charges against him, and nothing at all to support the actions of the CIA/FBI/.DOJ in 2015/2016.



    “We’ve long suspected that Donald Trump’s businesses were a front for money laundering and our research suggests it could be true,” said Harrell Kirstein, communicators director for the Trump War Room at American Bridge. “The millions of dollars in previously unreported, all-cash real estate deals we discovered raise troubling questions about who is funding his businesses, why, and what they’re getting in return.”

    The group looked at real estate records at 2,769 condo units at 10 luxury buildings that the Trump Organization either develops or licenses in Miami-Dade and Broward counties in South Florida and New York City; three Trump Towers, Trump Palace and Trump Royale, all in Sunny Isles Beach, Fla., Trump Hollywood in Hollywood, Fla. and Trump Soho, Trump Place, Trump World Tower and Trump International Hotel & Tower in New York — offering a snapshot into the buyers of Trump properties.

    In New York, deeds explicitly state if purchases lack a mortgage. But in Florida, sales were deemed all cash if the property deed lacked a corresponding mortgage document. The group did not document how many total purchases were all cash.

    Some of the buyers appeared to spend above market value — one of the signs, along with a lack of information about where the money comes from and properties sitting empty — that raises suspicion, said Elise Bean, former staff director of a Senate subcommittee that investigated money laundering.

    In one case, a Florida-registered LLC, Unit 1101 Holdings, tied to Vadim Sachkov, paid $1.4 million for a unit in Trump Tower I in 2016 though the assessed market value was $1.2 million, according to the Miami-Dade Property Appraiser. In another case, Natalia Sivokozova spent $1.3 million for a unit in Trump Royale in 2016, though the assessed market value was $923,803, according to the Miami-Dade Property Appraiser.

    The group looked at the 69 buyers or shell companies who indicated they were from Russia or a former Soviet republic, previously lived or studied in Russia or a former Soviet republic; had done extensive business in Russia or a former Soviet republic; or purchased a unit using a shell company whose registered agent or officer was from Russia or a former Soviet republic.

    Edited from: “Buyers Tied To Russia, Former Soviet Republics, Paid $109 Million Cash For Trump Properties”



      1. Follow the money and the truth is that these were not very bright guys and things got out of hand are attributed to Deep Throat in the movie. Wonder if he actually said them to Woodward?

        Real or apocryphal, they are certainly relevant right now!

    1. Can we end this nonsense.

      Money laundering is the conversion of the profits from illegal activities into legally usable and reportable funds.

      Absent proof of a crime and profits from that crime there is no money laundering.

      Thus far everything regarding Manafort has been about tax evasion.

      Absent proof that Manafort deceived the IRS in his 2014 settlement with them those charges should be barred by double jeopardy.

      It has been self evident from before there were charges that Manafort aggressively sought to limit his tax liability.
      That BTW is NOT illegal. There have been strong hints that he went pretty deeply into the grey areas to do so.

      At the same time the very fact that all these accountants who now claim to be sceptical of the choices, participated is itself evidence he was int he grey areas, NOT the black.

      This is quite simple, as a professional, your testimony that you were uncomfortable about something is dubious and self serving.
      If you beleived something was wrong and participated you are guilty too.
      If you were uncomfortable but did it anyway – either you have no ethics, or you accepted that is might be legal which is all that is required for it to NOT be a crime.

    2. Your cites demonstrates lots of realestate transactions that you are personally unhappy about.

      But otherwise it shows nothing.

      The price of anything is what a willing buyer and a willing seller agree to. That is the ONLY price.

      Whether there were or were not mortgages is not your business. Nor is it particularly relevant.

      People buy and sell things all the time. Again – not your business.

      Your article above has alot of facts, and some inuendo, but no actual evidence of anything wrong.

      With the mess in the Clinton foundation we have clear evidence of an openly admitted pay for play scheme.

      Are you claiming that Russians overpaid for FL condo’s from Trump in the hope he would in the future become president ?
      If so – even that is not illegal.

      1. Overpaying for a condo is not illegal. But that’s not what money laundering is.

        1. “Overpaying for a condo is not illegal. But that’s not what money laundering is.”

          Absolutely correct. You have evidence that rich Russian Oligarchs paid more than you would have for FL condo’s .

          You have ZERO evidence of any underlying crime. And Money laundering REQUIRES that the money is the proceeds of a crime, and that the “launderer” is away of that.

          You are making allegations with NOTHING to support them.

          1. Oligarchs get money through illegal acts. Overpaying for properties with those monies is money laundering.

            1. “Oligarchs get money through illegal acts. Overpaying for properties with those monies is money laundering.”

              Hollywood, think carefully. Why does overpaying make it money laundering? If they negotiated a better price would that mean it wasn’t money laundering? I don’t think you understand what the crime is.

              1. Did it occur to you that money could be kicked back?
                Or just putting the money in another asset in the name of some shell corporation helps disturb the trail?

                1. “Did it occur to you that money could be kicked back?”

                  There are better ways of kicking back a couple of dollars than buying a multimillion dollar house. I don’t think any of the purchases from Trump were any different price wise than the purchases from any other developer. I don’t think you know anything about the real estate market or understand what money laundering is.

                  A lot of rich Russians, Chinese and other rich persons from all over the world seek investments in the United States as a hedge against a change in government where they might lose everything. Some of those folk may have stolen from their own countries but they are not laundering money. They are taking, in some cases, stolen money and placing it for safekeeping in the United States.

                  Do you know why they choose the US? Because supposedly we are a nation of laws and freedom. A bit more of the Mueller type of action and they might choose to place their money elsewhere.

                    1. Where is the laundering? I don’t see it. People are paying enormous prices all over the eastern coast of Florida Foreign nationals are or were buying homes for their children in NYC and the children weren’t even born. These people are looking for safe havens to place their money. They boosted high-end property values in NYC precisely because they paid more than expected. There is a piece of property in the hills of LA that is listed at around one billion dollars. These wild variations in prices can create localized real estate bubbles.

                      Here are some listing prices in Palm Beach at the end of 2015.

                      1485 S. Ocean Blvd., Palm Beach, $67.5 million.
                      1071 N. Ocean Blvd., Palm Beach, $79.5 million.

                      Here is one from California:

                      • 9505 Lania Lane, Beverly Hills, Calif., $149 million.

                      There are plenty more. I was at a charity function in the Palm Beaches before the crash and it was held on the location where the builder was going to build a spec house for $125 million. He had already sold a number of homes ranging in prices in the tens of millions.

                    2. Do you have a problem with english or simple law ?

                      I guess I can not blame you as Mueller does.

                      Money laundering requires that the money being “laundered” is the proceeds of a crime.
                      Further to engage in money laundering you have to know that.

                      The fact that people spent more money that you can understand on something you do not understand does not make it money laundering.

                      Any price that a willing buyer and a willing seller agree to is the price, and is a legitimate price.

                      I do not understand why people by Lamborghini Hurican’s rather than Ford Focus’s
                      But they do and it is not money laundering.

                2. “Did it occur to you that money could be kicked back?
                  Or just putting the money in another asset in the name of some shell corporation helps disturb the trail?”

                  Pigs could fly. But the possibility is not the same as a fact.

                  BTW WHY would there be a “kickback” ?

                  Are you saying Trump “kicked back” money to the oligarchs ?
                  That BTW woudl have been legal.
                  Though it doesn’t make a lot of sense.
                  Just sell the place at a slightly lower price.

                  BTW why do you presume that you, or the government are entitled to know what others do with THEIR money ?

                  Am I entitled to know everything you do with yours ?

                  Outside of actually infringing on the rights of others by force, failing to keep agreements you make as acting to cause actual harm to others, you are free to do as you please, and you owe no one an explanation. In fact you are free to do as you please with what is yours with as much or little privacy is you wish.

              2. Hollywood like most of the left presumes that anyone who is better off than they are is by defintion a criminal

                That Trump sold properties in Florida at a profit must make him a criminal – right ?

                I am bothered because we are seeing this stupidity in the Manafort trial.

                Even Turley seems to think this is not going well for Manafort.

                Based on facts and evidence presented thus far – Mueller is shooting blanks.

                At thge same time I think Manafort will be convicted – for reasons similar to Martha Stewert – for being rich and unappealing.
                For the left, that is a crime.

                1. dhlii,..
                  I think we’re once again back to discussing the same 2008 sale of the Trump property to a Russian.
                  And that gets back to the question of what a 2008 real estate transaction has to do with an election that was held 8 years later.
                  I last sold a house in the 1990s, and then I sold a small piece of land in 2015.
                  I’m glad that that neither sales were to a Russian😧😖, because both transactions would probably seem suspicious and invite scrutiny had that been the case.

                  1. Of course – everyone who is russian – to the 4th generation, or speaks with a russian accent, or an accent I do not recognize, or might know a russian or know someone who knows a russian is an agent of Putin – get with the program!

                    Trump knows actual Russians, He has met with actual russians.
                    Though far less than Clinton.

                    Though oddly almost all the “Russian’s” in this farce are either fake, tied to Clinton, or tied to the FBI/CIA or completely mythical.

            2. “Oligarchs get money through illegal acts.”
              US law is not global. If the activities of Russian Oligarchs are illegal it is Russia’s job to prosecute them.

              Even if as you say this Oligarchs had made their money committing crimes in Russia.
              Absent that being obvious to the sellor of the condo – still not a crime – atleast not for the sellor.

              If you sell your iPhone on Craigslist – and unbeknownst to you the buyer made their cash through prostitution,
              Are you criminally culpable for accepting that money ?

              Money laundering laws never should have been passed. This is more legal corruption as a consequence of the stupid war on drugs.

              Money is legally neutral. Buyers and sellers are (or should) not obligated to inquire as to the source of the money in a transaction.
              But even if you accept money launder as a legitimate crime – it can not logically be prosecuted until the buyer is successfully prosecuted for the crime that made the money.

              You can not be guilty of money laundering beyond a reasonable doubt, if the buyer is not guilty of making the money criminally – beyond a reasonable doubt.

    3. The Shill is at it again. Let me quote from the periodical:

      “Buyers connected to Russia or former Soviet republics made 86 all-cash sales — totaling nearly $109 million — at 10 Trump-branded properties in South Florida and New York City, according to a new analysis shared with McClatchy. Many of them made purchases using shell companies designed to obscure their identities.”

      I have news for the Shill and any other Shills out there, A lot of cash sales were made to Chinese and Russian nationals for high-end property all over NYC and a few other areas of the country. They didn’t just buy Trump properties. They bought from almost every high-end developer, paid top dollar and paid in cash. They boosted NYC tremendously.

      The tiny minds like that of Peter Shill think that means corruption of the sellers of these properties. What a fool. The buyers were trying to get their money out of Russia and China quietly and invest it in secure properties. They were buying properties for their “children” that weren’t even born yet. These foreign nationals were dumping money.

      To continue with more from the article: ““The size and scope of these cash purchases are deeply troubling as they can often signal money laundering activity,” said Rep. Adam Schiff of California”

      Yes, this was a type of money laundering by foreign nationals not American developers. but the stupid like to think they can extend the criminal activity of foreign nationals to American citizens to push a political point. How much dumber can anyone get?

      1. This same activity caused the housing market in Vancouver to go insane during the last several years.

        1. I would expect so. Canada is another secure nation. Now, these pod people with cognitive dissonance are going to claim that Trump was a big investor in Vancouver.

      2. Criminals conduct their business in secret.
        But so do people rich and poor who value their privacy.

        If I were paying $10M for a condo – I would go to alot of trouble to protect my privacy.

      3. It is reasonable to assume that the activities of wealthy Russians are not on the up and up.

        It is also reasonable to assume that the Russian government is aware of their actions.

        The US is NOT the policemen of the world.

        If Russia has no problem with how these buyers made their money – why should we ?

        BTW there were also purchases like this from families from all over south america.
        Maybe some drug dealers, but mostly wealthy families looking to cover their asses should their own country go to hell.
        A very real possibility.
        I would immagine that many wealthy Russians hedge their bets too.

      4. Allan,
        I think you have missed the point. No one says money laundering is exclusive to Russians and Manafort. Yes, there is a lot of “black money” coming out of Asia and spent on high end properties in the US. That is money laundering as well.

        1. That is not the point. The Shill was trying to say Trump was guilty of money laundering. He, his agents, his partners, or employees of the corporation were selling properties to people that might have stolen money or simply wanted to diversify their assets. It is the buyer that could possibly be called a money launderer though I don’t think that in general would be the correct term. The seller of the property is not involved in the crime unless there are other things happening.

          Peter Shill and perhaps you as well don’t realize that what Shill wished to accuse Trump of was happening with many sellers of high-end property.

            1. “Uhhh, I think he’s a co-conspirator. Or at best an accessory.”

              Take note, you **think** but you do not know or have any proof. All you know is that Trump should not be President and now your brain is trying to adapt to the fact that he is so all sorts of thoughts run through your mind to justify and satisfy your needs that Trump shouldn’t be President. He is and you have cognitive dissonance.

                1. Hollywood, you are the one making accusations but unable to show the proof. The best you can do is paste an http that either doesn’t show what you think it shows or one that is making an argument absent proof. You aren’t even able to summarize what was said.

                  My arguments are well explained and supported by experts. You are simply unaware of the world around you.

                  1. Right and you just say the same sh-t over and over without any support by link or otherwise. Just makin’ sh-t up. Good job, Allan!

                    1. “Right and you just say the same sh-t over and over without any support by link or otherwise.”

                      But I have given you information and where to get it. For instance, you can look at the IRS records for the Donald J Trump Foundation to see if what I say is true. You can check the records about the donation to the park just south of Central Park’s entrance. You can check the newspapers to check on the skating rink Trump rebuilt. You can check on the open spaces in Trump Tower and other spaces open to the public. What you can’t do is provide proof that Trump committed a crime.

                      That is cognitive dissonance staring up right at you.

            2. “Uhhh, I think he’s a co-conspirator. Or at best an accessory.”

              To a non-crime

        2. You can not have money laundering without a crime from which the money was illegally made.

          Logic requires that you can not be guilty of money laundering – beyond a reasonable doubt, until there is a conviction for the crime from which the money was made – beyond a reasonable doubt.

          You do not get to manufacture crimes by innuendo.

          You can speculate about “dark money” all you want.
          There is no duty of sellors to verify the source of buyers money.

          When you sell your time to your boss – do you verify that the company you work for has done nothing illegal ?
          If not – you too could be guilty of “money laundering”.

          Nor does US law cover the globe, nor does our jurisdiction.
          Whether from China or South america or Russia or ….
          Absent a conviction claims that money from another country is proceeds of a crime are speculation.
          That can never meet “the beyond a reasonable doubt” standard.

    4. “In another case, Natalia Sivokozova spent $1.3 million for a unit in Trump Royale in 2016, though the assessed market value was $923,803, according to the Miami-Dade Property Appraiser.”


      What a frigging dumba$$! Nearly ALL properties have an “assessed” property tax value which is LESS than the real or appraised value of the property. That is why people hire appraisers to appraise property.

      Criminy, I can’t believe Democrats are stupid and uneducated enough to fall for idiocies like this. And I can’t believe others are shill enough to try to put this over on a website populated with lawyers and other professionals. Because the McClatchy folks certainly know better.

      Good Grief!

      Squeeky Fromm
      Girl Reporter

        1. Absolutely hilarious link! Fang the Farcical!!! FWIW, I reduced something you wrote yesterday(?) to a copy and paste thingy, for shills.I thought it was really good, and succinct. Here is you a copy, in case you missed my earlier posting:

          Shill Indicia
          by Teaching Spastics To Dance

          1. Don’t present glossed Bezos Birdcage Liner oppo as if it were something anyone should take seriously.

          2. Demonstrate you have a personal perspective. Do this without contrivance. It’s easy to spot an Olly post and differentiate it from one of Allan’s or Paul’s.or Mespo’s.

          3. Don’t say blatantly false things.

          4. Don’t invest in the day’s disinformation.

          5. Don’t cut / paste text from peddlers of the day’s disinformation.

          And people will stop calling you ‘Shill’.

          Squeeky Fromm
          Girl Reporter

      1. Squeeky, did you notice that in an earlier post, Peter Shill said he has closely followed the news for 40 years? After 40 years you would think he would have learned something, but he doesn’t even have the basics down.

        1. Well, assume for a moment that Peter Shill is NOT a shill, but just a dedicated Democrat. If so, then he would have been drinking MSM Kool Aid for 40+ years of his life. It is possible that he has never owned any residential or commercial real property, and thus is completely ignorant of how that system works.

          Here is a blurb which explains the typical system:

          When performing the estimate, assessors are supposed to note things that would affect the assessed value of the home such as being too close to a noisy highway, or any additions or improvements made to the home. These are things that will affect the assessed value.

          Once the value is determined, a multiplier, usually somewhere between 60 and 80 percent is used to then determine the assessed value.

          For example: Let’s say an assessor uses an 80% multiplier. If he values a home at $100,000 then assessed value used for tax reasons would be $80,000.



          Like I said, Peter Shill may have rented all his life, and thus unaware of this. I doubt McClatchy is unless their reporter is a nincompoop. The real issue for Peter is, now that he has been set straight on how it works, will he continue to spread the lie, or will he admit that he has been taken in by Fake/Deceptive News from McClatchy.

          Squeeky Fromm
          Girl Reporter

  3. I’m not surprised that PM had an ostrich jacket. Most of Trump’s supporters, enablers, co-conspirators and toadies bury their heads in the sand pretending that Mueller has no evidence.

    Books to watch for:

    Rick Wilson – Everything Trump Touches Dies – out next week
    Omarosa’s tell all – I wouldn’t buy it but she was there for a year. Should be dishy. Out in a few weeks
    Bob Woodward – Fear – apparently everybody talked to him. His books on presidents are always well-regarded, well and openly sourced, and not gossipy. Out on 9/11

      1. Yup. And although I probably don’t agree with most of Wilson’s policy positions, he’s a hilarious writer and I do find his never Trump articles in the Daily Beast marvelous. So I’m going to buy it as a thank you to him for how much he has made me laugh.

              1. Thank you, George! I am glad you liked it! I almost used a foaming at the mouth picture for him, but since I believe he actually does foam at the mouth, it would be making fun of a disability.


                Squeeky Fromm
                Girl Reporter

        1. Yeah, we know, Squeeky, it’s wrong to be curious. If only we could all be as disinterested as you.

            1. Cognitive Dissonance applies to Trumpers who refuse to believe the mainstream media!

              1. You don’t know what you are talking about. Scott Adams explains why Trumpers do NOT experience CD under the current situation. It is because our World View has not been upset by Trump’s election. So, there is nothing that we have to mentally compensate for.

                Which, you would know if you actually watched the video. It’s the “watch for the trigger” part. Try it. It’s only 24 minutes of your life.

                Squeeky Fromm
                Girl Reporter

                1. Regardless of what Adams says, and I don’t think he is a trained psychologist, CD can apply in any situation in which one has made a commitment (buying a car, voting for Trump) and having made the commitment does not want to receive dissonant information (reading negative car reviews, reading of Trump’s bad behavior) because that can undermine one’s commitment and self-worth. Sorry, Dilbert, you are wrong.

                  1. No, you do not understand whereof you speak. What you describe is more typical of a confirmation bias error. Cognitive Dissonance is a different sort of thing.

                    It occurs where one believes a certain thing is true about reality, and then an act of disconfirmation occurs. For example, the MIllerites in the 19th century, who predicted the world would end on a date certain, and when it didn’t, moved the date, again and again. There is a good book you can read on this, where in the 1950s a professor inserted some of his students into a UFO cult that thought an earthquake would create an inland sea in the United States, but that the aliens would come and rescue their little group.

                    See: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/When_Prophecy_Fails

                    I have this book, and have read it. There are some important nuances that you miss, particularly the part about where the existence/influence of other “believers” in the false thing, helps the subject to continue to believe the false thing.

                    Scott Adams explains the subject very well, and you would do yourself a favor if you examined the issue more thoroughly. Adams does state that cognitive dissonance can happen to everybody, including Republicans, and that most people are affected at some point.

                    Squeeky Fromm
                    Girl Reporter

                    1. I studied cognitive dissonance in undergrad and read about When Prophecy Fails there. So what? Not wanting to process anti-Trump info is an illustration of cognitive dissonance.

                    2. Nasim Taleeb has a name for you IYI – intellection yet idiot.

                      Though based on your posts, it may be only YI

                  2. Ignoring a bad car review is not Cognitive dissonance. – Ignoring the fact that your car is costing a small fortune to repair is.

                    With respect to Trump – I am primarly concerned about his ACTS, not his words.

                    Yes, I find his remarks – particularly some of his tweets offensive.
                    But I find most of what I hear from the media offensive too.

                    I did not vote for Trump. But alot of those who did, did so specifically because he pissed all over the PC media and the PC left.

                    I doubt they have changed their mind. They have no reason to. No real world evidence is at odds with their world view.
                    The expected the confrontational rhetoric they are getting from Trump, they may even revel in it sometimes.

                    I did not vote for him and I am perfectly happy to see him give the left and the media their comeuppance.
                    Nor do I care about the lack of precision in his remarks.

                    Only left wing nuts care about this “deny that you are now or ever were a member of the communist party garbage”.

                    When you attempt to force Trump to say what you want him to – he digs in.
                    Most of us do not care.

                    With respect to his actions – I am bothered by his handling of immigration – but Obama was worse.
                    And the left is unprepared to be honest about the problem, and until they are they will only score points within their own tribe.
                    Most americans – over 80% – want the dreamers to stay, want to see families kept together, want a wall, want tougher border security and want some fixed limits to immigration, and AFTER that to make choices as to who gets to stay based on the american peoples best interests. Most americans do not think of this country as a lifeboat for the world.
                    Anyway that deal has been available since day one. Trump would jump at it.
                    The left is more interested in depriving Trump of some chimeral victory than doing what is in the interests of the country.

                    I am bothered by the sabre rattling on Trade – I am an avowed free trader. The US should unilaterally drop ALL tarrifs.
                    The country with the lowest barriors to trade ALWAYS “wins”.
                    But despite the rhetoric, Trump’s actual goals seem to be free trade.
                    And again – despite the rhetoric, Trump’s actual trade policies though sub optimate are orders of magnitude better than Obama.

                    One most everything else – not perfect, but tolerable.

                    Obama was a D+ president, with the possiblity of getting dropped to an F if as seems likely it turns out he was spying on his political enemies. He was using DOJ/FBI/CIA for political purposes.

                    It is early but Trump is running a B- right now – with the odds favoring upward revisions.

                    So I see Trum

                1. Social Psychology has continued beyond When Prophecy Fails. Hence, you and the Dunning-Kruger Effect. Now, if yyou are Irish, say five Hail Marys and make a good limerick.

                  1. Take note Hollywood, how when you have no response you resort to insulting a person who just gave you a short course in poetry. You try to act intelligently by insinuating that the Dunning-Kruger Effect has something to do with Squeeky which only shows you don’t know what that effect is.

                    I think you should reboot and restart at square one.

                    1. Who asked you? You are in denial. You are suffering CD, confirmation bias and Dunning-Kruger Effect. You ask for information. I supply it and you won’t deign to read it. I think you need to go away for a nice long rest.

                    2. “You ask for information. I supply it”

                      You supplied no information. You provided an ample supply of rhetoric that didn’t prove what you thought it proved and you couldn’t even summarize it because you didn’t understand it.

                      I took numerous issues and provided the source of proof. Example: IRS forms for the Donald J Trump Foundation. You never bothered to look it up but say it doesn’t exist. Some people on this blog have the ability to actually look at the primary sources of proof that are available to anyone. You don’t seem to have that ability yet you continue to argue as if things like filed IRS forms don’t exist. That is just another sign of cognitive dissonance.

                    3. hollywood – you are misusing Dunnig-Krueger Effect. It requires the person to be of low ability, Allan is NOT of low ability. Actually, of the two of you, you appear to be the lower of ability. So, the effect is on you. 😉

                  2. There is very little new in Psychology since the 70’s and not much since Freud.
                    most of the recent findings of “social psychology” have turned out to be fraudulent.

                    Psychology and sociology are the fields of science with by far the highest rates of papers and work that fails to reproduce.

                    The averages across all sciences is 1/3 of all scientific papers are not reproducable at all – attempts to verify them produce results that falsify the hypothesis.
                    1/3 of all papers produce results that have no statistical significance when attempts are made to reproduce them.
                    And only about 1/3 are reproducable with statistical significance.

              2. Cognitive Dissonance applies to the media who refuse to believe the facts


            2. Squeeky, you are the embodiment of Dunning-Kruger Effect. Go to your room.

              1. Hollywood, the problem with what you say is that Squeeky is quite bright. She even showed you how to write poetry.

                    1. “Even Mensans can make a mistake.”

                      Yes, that is true, but she thinks not. How many times have you been divorced?

                    2. Paul, I don’t think Hollywood is at risk of ever being sought after by Mensa. He fits somewhere slightly to the right of the IQ curve. There is nothing wrong with being average.

                    3. Anyone can make a mistake. but it is not all that hard to avoid mistakes – particularly in internet posts.

                      Do not post something that you can not bank up.

                      While I do not owe you or anyone else cites for my information, and you are not going to learn anything if you are spoon fed.

                      I and many other posters her are fairly careful not to make claims that they do not know before they post are correct.

                      I would also suggest that you read things without the adjectives.
                      If you read the NYT or Manaforts bookkeepers testimony with spin removed – removing the adjectives will get you much of the way there
                      they read quite different.

                      “The secret foreign bank account” and “the foreign bank account”
                      carry the same information.

                      the fact that you do not know something that you want to but are not otherwise entitled to does not mean anything.

                    4. dhlii – normally I would let this go but it appears you have been hoist on your own petard.

                      “Anyone can make a mistake. but it is not all that hard to avoid mistakes – particularly in internet posts.
                      Do not post something that you can not bank up.”

                      Is there something that I am missing?

                  1. “With friends like you she doesn’t need enemies.”

                    Why would you say that? I’m good and I am loyal to my friends. Is your cognitive dissonance expanding from Trump to me? What your fantasy embraces is that anyone who likes Trump suddenly becomes a bad person. That is crazy or you are just lashing out to satisfy your need for a retort because of an associated inferiority complex? Your main problem is you just can’t handle Trump being elected President. Trump Derangement Syndrome seems to have taken you over.

    1. And what EVIDENCE do you have.

      An Ostrich jacket is evidence of an oppulent lifestyle. Not crime.

      I know that those of you on the left think that it is a crime to do well or to flaunt wealth.
      IT might be offensive – Manafort is certainly offensive.
      But as of this point the only Evidence I have heard is that he aggressively sought to minimuze his taxes – again NOT A CRIME,
      and that he went deep into grey areas to do so – with the support of lots of financial advisors. Again NOT A CRIME,

      Rhus far the Manafort Trial smacks of the French revolution – Manafort was wealthy and flaunted it – Off with his head!!

        1. “LOL. Your head’s in the sand”

          No I expect actual evidence before I convict someone and send them to jail for effectively the rest of their lives.

          I am predisposed to dislike Manafort. HE is pretty much everything I am against.
          I do not like how he ran his life and how he made his living.
          I do not think he has much integrity.

          But thus far I have heard no evidence of a crime.
          Just more reasons to not like him.

          We are not supposed to jail people for being revolting.
          We are supposed to jail them for committing actual crimes.

          As I asked before – EVIDENCE ?

          1. DHLII,…
            I think Fishwings, Red, and Anonymous are working “up to” their very limited potential.
            Unfortunately, there is not a distinct section in this thread for “dull normal” to play in.

        2. That does not answer the question, Red.
          Since you chose to involve yourself in this
          discussion, either do so or sit at the children/ troll table.

      1. The only evidence You have heard? Really? So, you believe that the government has to convince YOU beyond a reasonable doubt? Unless you’re on the jury, I regret to inform you that your opinion, thought, desire or whimsy doesn’t mean a tinker’s damn. So sorry for you introduction to criminal law 101.

        this is to “but hannity agrees with me!” dhili

        1. As someone who claims to be a lawyer, you should have someone explain to you what evidence is, and why it is important.
          If you are in fact a troll hanging out in your Mom’s basement, maybe she can explain it to you.

          1. You are completely off the relevant point. Criminal jury trials take place in a courtroom, Evidence is presented to the jury–in that courtroom. That evidence comes from the witness stand, and only from the witness stand. In other words, what your cronies on reddit believe, what hannity believes, what the day glo bozo believes, are all completely and utterly irrelevant. Because you see, none of these persons are on the jury. Only the jury hears all of the evidence. Which means, all of the blather presented here by you, your ilk, and other denizens of bedlam is nothing more than flim-flammery and poppycock, signifying nothing. But by all means keep up the circle-jerk of tomfoolery, that way you can all get a head start on the “Deep State” nonsense you”ll be instructed to spout by hannity once the guilty verdicts start coming.

            this is to “most of the time, I just make up sh*t for the hell of it” tommie

            1. The comment that Mark M. originally posted to me was in reference to my post to Red, as far as I could tell.
              Red claimed that Mueller had evidence against Trump, and I said Mueller has presented no such evidence.
              This is not that conplex, even for a drunken lawyer, or a drunk who claims to be a lawyer who is actually a troll in his Mom’s basement.
              I don’t really carewhich it is, nor do I care if you are drunk, stupid, or both.
              And it has nothing to di with Hannity , but good for you for bringing that up hundreds of times.
              You , Natacha, and a few others here are the biggest whiners I’ve ever seen following a disappointing election result.
              It is pathetic and humorous at the same time to see you crybabies still at it over a year and a half later.
              Impeachment was never intended to be used to overturn the results of an election by the butt-hurt like you and Natacha.
              You can believe/ hope/ pray that legimate grounds for impeachment exist, but that’s about as effective as what Maxine Waters has been doing.
              And for those legitimate grounds, you need something called evidence.
              Now if Red’s ( and others’) speculation about the supposed evidence that Mueller has reflects their hope that Trump will be convicted of a criminal offense, then let’s see the evidence.
              That evidence that Mueller is claimed to possess needs to actually exist, and be presented, whether it us to be used for inpeachment/ removal or a criminal investigation.
              What got the ball rolling on the exchange you staggered into were the claims that Mueller has evidence against Trump, and that Trump is going down because of that evidence.
              Before making those kinds of claims, those making those claims should be prepared to answer an obvious question;” what evidence?”
              Do you understand that, Matkypoo?

              1. That’s all you’ve got? A weak-ass and pathetic pivot? The relevant conversation–which you’re weak attempt to squirm out of fails–is the Manafort trial. I can only post the facts, I can’t make you understand them. Pro tip: try tweeting for help from hannity.

                this is to “damn, I can’t even move the goal posts anymore” tommie

                1. Marky Mark Mark – you said you were going to give us facts but then you give us none. Pro tip: Never lie to the people. They do not like it!!!

                  1. Alzheimer’s check in order? Find where I ever once claimed I was in the possession of any facts or evidence regarding any of the transgressions of the day glo bozo or his crew of incompetent grifters.

                    this is to “okay, I sometimes get confused when the world moves too fast” paulie

                2. I made the mistake some time of thinking that Markypoo could keep a train of thought and maybe stay on topic.
                  Given the results, I don’t waste time expecting anything mirs than a sleazy troll who has either a scatterbrain,or a wet brain.
                  When a fool like Markypoo posts on non-sequitur after another,then accuses me of pivoting, he becomes an even bigger laughing stock than he already is.
                  Oh, and this is about the disjointed, obnoxious, slimy troll Markypoo.

            2. Marky Mark Mark – you still getting sloppy seconds from the Federal Public Defenders Office? Some of us have been on juries, some have been on grand juries, some on mock juries, some are attorneys who actually get their clients off. We know how it works. The real question is, do you?

              1. PC Schulte,…
                If that fool pulls even a fraction of the obnoxious stunts that he does here, it’s difficult to see him functioning in any workplace environment.
                I’ve never seen an ad for “A****** wanted” in the job classified section, and from what he exhibits here, that is his only real “skill”.

        2. “The only evidence You have heard? Really?”

          If there is such obvious evidence you would be able to quickly note it.

          “So, you believe that the government has to convince YOU beyond a reasonable doubt? Unless you’re on the jury, I regret to inform you that your opinion, thought, desire or whimsy doesn’t mean a tinker’s damn. So sorry for you introduction to criminal law 101.”

          My standards of proof are whatever I want them to be,.
          And yes, the government must convince me.
          While this jury can convict Manaforte based on any standard they choose – they are obligated to use the beyond a reasonable doubt standard.
          If they convict without meeting that standard – they are morally bankrupt.

          “this is to “but hannity agrees with me!” dhili”

          I have absolutely no idea what Hannity thinks or says.
          I make my mind up on my own.
          I do not watch fox, or almost any talking heads, but rarely on youtube when they do an actually interesting interview.
          And pretty much never Hannity.

          How about you ? You do not sound at all like someone capable of thinking for themselves.

          Tell us some way in which your thought diverges from your “tribe”.
          Provide some evidence that you are capable of thinking for yourself, not following the crowd.

          Even Fox viewers show more evidence of personal independance than you.

      2. dhlii,
        When you minimize your taxes by falsely minimizing your income, voila! criminality. Manafort has done that in spades.

        1. “When you minimize your taxes by falsely minimizing your income, voila! criminality. Manafort has done that in spades.”

          Nope. You must LIE about your income. You must understate your income specifically with respect to the IRS rules for income reporting.

          Nothing testified thus far indicates that.

          Manafort made alot of money outside the US.
          That money is not “income” in the US until it returns to the US.

          What appears to be the case is that Manafort was “loaning” himself money that he made outside the US,
          That is actually legal. There are requirements for properly documenting the loan, and for charging yourself fair market rates and for making timely payments – ortherwise the loan is re-evaluated as a gift. But failure to do so is rarely if ever prosecuted as a crime. It is quite stupid for the IRS to make criminal something that would be legal if you just dotted your I’s and crossed your T’s. Failure to properly document a loan almost always results in fines, interest, penalties and additional taxes – nothing more.

          There is also another serious logical error in this prosecution.

          Mueller and witnesses are claiming Manafort was nearly bankrupt. Mueller is trying to claim that as a motive.
          If so – where did the money that he “loaned” himself come from ?

          If Manafort has money outside the US to loan himself – then he is not bankrupt and the motive goes away.
          If he is nearly bankrupt then he does nto have money outside the US to loan himself.

      3. “Rhus far the Manafort Trial smacks of the French revolution – Manafort was wealthy and flaunted it – Off with his head!!”
        Is that why Trump is having an O-face over the chocolate cake?

    2. Red,.,,
      The FBI investigation into the issue of coordination between Russia and the Trump campaign began in July, 2016.
      Robert Mueller, as Special Counsel appointee, took over that investigation in May 2017.
      As a long-serving FBI Director who left that post about 3 1/2 years earlier, Mueller knows his way around the FBI and knows how to access investigative material going back to the initiation of the FBI July 2016 “collusion”investigation.
      (Manafort and others had been under FBI investigation prior to July 2016; so in some cases, Mueller had investigative material going back for years)
      But the main purpose, the central question of the July 2016 investigation and later the the Special Counsel investigation was and is to see if Trump, or members of his campaign, conspired with Russia to impact the course of the 2016 election.
      If in fact Mueller has evidence to that effect, he has done a superb job of concealing it after an investigation that’s a bit over 2 years old.
      This is a matter of evidence that you claim is ignored by Trump supporters.
      Evidence is evidence, whether one is pro-Trump, anti-Trump, or indifferent to Trump.
      An individual’s “belief”, or “hope”, that Mueller has evidence of “collusion” between the Trump campaign and Russia is not a substitute for evidence itself.
      That is why Mueller has opened himself up to the attacks by the Trump camp, esp. by Guiliania.
      To a large degree, those attacks are resonating with the public, and Mueller himself has become a polarizing figure.
      Not to the degree that Trump is a polarizing figure; but people watching the Special Counsel team di**ing around with charges unrelated to the “collusion”issue, there is no communication to the public from the Special Counsel about where they are at, or where they are heading, with this two year old investigation, and there is rising impatience with and/ or indifference to the lack of any indication that Mueller is secretly harboring evidence re the cental question of “collusion”.
      As I said, if he has that evidence, he’s doing a great job in hiding it for an extended period if time.
      As entertaining as these sideshow issues and trials might be, related to income tax evasion and money laundering, they have nothing to do with the “collusion” issue.
      Since Mueller himself has not revealed the “collusion” evidence, maybe you can take this opportunity to do it for him.
      Again, what you “believe”, or “suspect”, or “hope” for is not a substitute for evidence.
      What Maxine Waters believe/hopes for/ suspects is not evidence; that’s why only a fringe group in Congress is even talking about impeachment.
      So again, if you, or Maxine Waters, or Al. “Wolfman” Green have evidence of a criminal conspiracy between the Trump campaign and Russia, lay it out.

      1. Tom – it is worse than that.

        Mueller’s willingness to indict people on the flimsiest of evidence – particularly for lying to the FBI pretty much means that he has NOTHING on those he has NOT indicted.

        If Trump Jr., Carter Page, Roger Stone, Caputo, or any of the myriads of people who have already been questioned by the FBI, and/or testified to congress had slipped even a little – they would be indicted right now. Some of these – such as Trump Jr. or Stone have HUGE targets. If there is any “collusion” they would know it. If anyone can be flipped – it would be them. If anyone can be made to compose – it would be some of them.

        I suspect Mueller will “get” Manafort – he is far too unsympathetic and juries are completely clueless about reasonable doubt or issues like business taxes, cashflow, and bridge loans. They do not have the knowledge to listen to the testimony thus far and grasp – nothing actually unusual is occuring. All that is happening is Manafort’s financial advisors under threat from Mueller are telling a story of innocence with the most negative spin possible.

        But we can grasp Mueller from the pile on indictment for “witness tampering”

        That has meaning. Manafort did NOT contact a person identified by Mueller as a witness – though he could have done so legally.
        He sought out what he hoped might be a friendly witness for himself, and placed a very simple query designed to determine whether that might be the case.
        He did so mostly by soliciting an oppinion of a published article.

        All those facts are generally accepted. They are not under dispute.

        Getting witness tampering from that requires believing that a defendant is not permitted to defend themselves.

        I would further note – though Mueller has not been under the type of public scrutiny he is now.
        He has been in the spotlight before and his past conduct is pretty damning.
        He has MULTIPLE lost lawsuits for relentlessly prosecuting innocent people.
        Not maybe innocent, but ultimately completely exonerated.

        As prosecutors go – he is a bully with a one track mind who is incapable of discerning when he might be wrong.
        He pounds at defendants to get what he wants without considering that there is any possibility he is wrong.

        From the begining he was just about the worst possible choice for this.
        Intentionally or otherwise Rosenstein did Trump a favor.

        This will mark the end of his carreer for Mueller.
        He is attempting to go out on a high note.
        But his own personality pretty much guarantees he will blow this.

        He could have come in investigated aggressively – refered the unrelated charges out, and announced there was nothing there.
        Instead he is trying to make new law at every turn.

        Lying to a federal agent requires that the agent is actually deceived and the investigation misdirected.
        Mis-statements to federal agents when they know the answers ahead of time – even if blatant lies are not crimes.
        Unless a lie is under oath it is only a crime if it actually misleads.
        That does not apply in any of Muellers pleas.
        The please he has gotten thus far are from people who could not afford to go to court.
        When the government compels someone to plea because it is threatening to bankrupt them,
        that is EVIL.

        The indictments against manafort against manafort make one wonder whether Mueller got his law degree from a cereal box.

        Money Laundering requires money obtained illegally.
        Manafort’s may have been playing shell games with his money – not automatically a crime.
        He may have been keeping offshore to avoid taxes – also not a crime.
        But there is no allegations that he made money from a criminal act and then tried to make that money appear to be the profits of a legal act.
        That is money laundering.

        The libertarian in me requires saying that Money laundering should never be a crime.
        If you made money from a criminal act – the criminal act is the crime – not what you subsequently did with the money.
        But even if you make money laundering a crime – you should NEVER be able to convict for money laundering without FIRST convicting for the crime that resulted in the laundered profits. nIf you can not prove the initial crime beyond a reasonable doubt, then there is automatically reasonable doubt about the money laundering.

    3. Red – Omarosa book should be good. She was dragged out of the WH kicking and screaming. She is hardly in a position to throw rocks.

      1. She’s just a self-aggrandizing loonie. What she did to Michael Clarke Duncan was criminal.

  4. Obergruppenfuhrer Mueller is not investigating “Russian collusion.” There is none.

    Obergruppenfuhrer Mueller has been conducting “opposition research” for the Democrat Party for 2 1/2 years.

    Case closed after 10 months:

    “Las Vegas Shooting Investigation Closed. No Motive Found”

    “Police investigating the October 2017 deadly mass shooting in Las Vegas said they’ve been able to answer the “who, what, when, where and how” of the massacre, but as the end of the probe was announced on Friday, officials still could not explain the “why.”

  5. I suspect that whatever Manafort did is pretty common among the “elites” and well-connected swamp critters. I would bet that a prosecutor could pick out the Manafort Podesta Blumenthal types at random, and find crimes out the wazoo.

    Squeeky Fromm
    Girl Reporter

      1. No. I am resorting to “I bet a LOT OF the other kids do it.”

        Luckily, I am not a DNC dumba$$ cult member/shill, sooo I am free to have an opinion about Manafort that doesn’t require me to defend him because “he’s on our side.” Or, overlook anything he did that was wrong. That kind of silliness is more of a Democratic Party/Liberal thing.

        Like, for example, the whole Sarah Jeong/New York Times thingy.

        Squeeky Fromm
        Girl Reporter

        1. Congrats! This is a great deflection. “Like, for example, the whole Sarah Jeong/New York Times thingy.”
          It has nothing to do with Trump. And it requires nuance to understand the issues. So tie the opposition up in knots. Great job.

      2. “Anyone may arrange his affairs so that his taxes shall be as low as
        possible; he is not bound to choose that pattern which best pays the
        treasury. There is not even a patriotic duty to increase one’s taxes.
        Over and over again the Courts have said that there is nothing sinister
        in so arranging affairs as to keep taxes as low as possible. Everyone
        does it, rich and poor alike and all do right, for nobody owes any
        public duty to pay more than the law demands.”
        Judge Learned Hand Gregory v. Helvering

        Thus far all the “evidence” against Manafort is that he aggressively sought to minimize taxes.
        That is not a crime.

          1. Hollywood, Trumps personal tax forms are personal and not meant to be opened by the IRS to the world though one did escape. His charitable foundation tax return is a public record but while asking for one you never bother to look at the other which shows where his donations went. This sort of demonstrates your shallowness.

          2. The Trump foundation tax returns are avaiable online. It will take you about 4s to find them.

  6. The evidence presented so far is a pretty solid foundation that Manafort was committing fraud. It’ll be gravy if they find evidence that Manafort conspired with one of Putin’s pet oligarchs or agents.

    1. Closeness counts in a game of horseshoes but not in deciding innocence or guilt. The prosecutor makes his case and then we have to hear the other side. So far the prosecutor hasn’t made its case. If you think differently, provide the proof. The accountant didn’t provide it.

      1. Absolutely.

        Fundamentally the accountant alibied Manafort.

        Every business person seeks to keep their taxes to a minimum – nearly all of us do.

        I have spent many many hours with accountants and lawyers discussing ways to keep taxes low.
        I have discussed arrangements to avoid taxes that involved loans.

        I have expected those lawyers and accountants to find every means to reduce taxes.
        I have also expected them to speak out when something was proposed or worse done that was actually illegal

        If the trstimony of Manaforts lawyers and accountants is actually truthful – then they were ethical failures.
        If what he was doing was actually illegal – they were obligated to speak out and to quit if Manafort proceded anyway.

        Honestly I do not beleive them. It is more likely that they are the source of the methods for reducing taxes, not reluctant participants.

        Anytime an accountant or lawyer testifies that they were uncomfortable with the actions of their client but did not speak out and quit.
        I think it is near certain they are lying.

        I have had lawyers and accounts express their reservations – they are not shy about doing so.
        And when they do, we do not do what they oppose.

        I do not know of a single business or wealthy person that would file a tax return that their lawyers and accountants would not stand behind.

        Manafort had a near 100% probability of getting audited. He was not going to survive any audit without the support of his professional advisors.

        Mueller has a gun to these guys head and they are lying.

        1. “Mueller has a gun to these guys head and they are lying.”

          In my initial statement, I think I pointed that out. Turley’s words demonstrated ambiguity and it sounded to me as if the accountant shifted words a bit to satisfy Mueller’s desire for blood since many times things can be looked at in more than one way. I took a tax deduction once where a whole bunch of people told me I was crazy and refused to take a similar tax deduction. I put the money in a bank account and left it there. The reason I took the deduction was that there was a case in federal court involving that type of deduction. If I remember it took a good number of years before the case was resolved in the defendant’s favor. If it had turned out the other way the money was in the bank for the IRS. There is a difference between civil (a fine) and criminal (jail) violations of the tax code. One can stretch the line on the former but might want not to on the latter.

          1. Absolutely. One of the problems with this case is it is unlikely than many of the commenters here or any of the juries have ever had to deal with a tax return that required an accountant.

            I have a very complex tax return. I used to use an accountant, but he cost me more than any benefits I got. Further TurboTax found far more deductions for me.
            I take a huge number of deductions. But do to the way taxes work most of them have no effect – deductions often effectively overlap.
            I am unwilling to take “dark grey” deductions, at the same time I expect that if I am audited some of my deductions will get rejected.

            But it will not matter – that will just uncover one of the other deductions that previously had no effect.
            The IRS would have to invalidate more than 1/3 of my deductions to alter my taxes. It is just not happening.

            But lets say that was not the case.

            In Mueller’s case he purportedly loaned himself money.

            I am having a bit of trouble making sense of the prosecutions case.
            On one hand they are claiming that he sheltered income from foreign sources – pretending it was loans.
            One the other they are claiming his income dried up and he was borrowing money to hide that.

            Which is it ? It can not be both.

            Regardless, to get Manafort on Tax Fraud you would have to prove that the loans were not loans, that they were income.
            Even reaching a criminal level on that is going to be difficult.

            Lets say Manafort earned $1M from the Ukraine, and he put that into a foreign bank account.
            According to our laws that money is not taxable – until it returns to the US.
            According to most countries it is not taxable at all. Taxes are paid on money earned where earned. That would be Ukraine.

            Anyway, now Manafort has $1M in say the Cayman’s.. Instead of xfering 1M to the US and paying taxes on it,
            He writes himself a loan for $1M and transfers the money from the Caymans.
            Guess what that is almost certainly legal, But Manafort would have to have the approriate loan documents as well as demonstrate that
            the loan had a fair interest rate and was being repaid according to its terms.
            Absent those – it would almost certainly be civil tax fraud. But it would be hard to reach criminal.

            With respect to those testifying – I do not beleive they are “lying” so much as spinning.

            They were either aware of what Manafort was doing or really did not care.
            I highly doubt they were “suspicious” or raising flags.
            There job is to get Manafort every legal deduction they can.
            I doubt they blinked at this.
            What they claim not to know is not things they were required to know.

            Had I been one of these I would have said “Paul, make sure you draw up loan documentation, set a reasonable interest rate, and make regular payments”
            And nothing more. Nothing here sounds unusual or troubling to me.
            Which is why the IRS never did anything, and why Mueller had a hard time getting them to support this.

            At the same time if Mueller came to me and said – I am either sending Manafort to Jail or you.
            I would be testifying exactly as these people are. I would be telling the truth, but I would be manufacturing past skepticism and concern for something I likely encouraged at the time.

        2. “If the trstimony of Manaforts lawyers and accountants is actually truthful…”
          A Manafort lawyer testified? Who? About what?

      2. The accountant testified under oath that she never saw Manafort’s foreign holdings, so he not only defrauded banks, he defrauded his own staff. Sure, the defense will mount their case, but I’m guessing all they’ll be able to do is throw up some reasonable doubt and see if it sticks.

        1. “The accountant testified under oath that she never saw Manafort’s foreign holdings”

          That the accountant never saw them doesn’t mean Manafort did something illegal. If your accountant reads to much into your personal returns fire him. You want someone working for you, not the government.

          1. That she did not see them means that much of her testimony is speculation and never should have been admitted.

          2. I want someone who will help me keep as much of my money as I possibly can.
            But I also want somebody who will stand by my side when the government is after me.

            But it is unreasonable to expect any but those with incredible integrity to stand by your side when a federal prosecutor wants your ass.

          3. Right and if the cookie jar is empty and you have cookie crumbs all over your hands and mouth, you didn’t eat the cookies?

            1. Maybe someone else stuffed the cookies down your mouth just like some idiots stuffed a load of garbage into your head.

            2. hollywood – don’t believe your lying eyes or these cookie crumbs, my brother did it!!!!

              1. Paul C. Schulte wrote “Johnny ran through the screen door, etc” is my guess? (P.S. No place to reply on the other post)

                  1. The best beat poet IMO was Paul Carroll….then Ferlinghetti …I have first editions (not that we’re that old..ha!) of Carroll’s “Odes” and Ferlinghetti’s ” A Coney Island of the Mind”
                    but Carroll was my favorite..His poem structures and content were so off the wall, which was really “cool” to a 22 yr old…..Did he write the Johnny phrase??Even though that group were viewed as sexist, looking back, I much prefer them in many ways to the Hippie movement.

                    1. Cindy Bragg – it was Ferlinghetti who made a return when all of who read him became full professors. 🙂 He owned a beautiful little bookshop in SF which I tracked and visited. He was not in town at the time, but I did visit the shrine and read a poem (silently) at the altar of greatness. 🙂

            3. If you did not see into the cookie jar – how do you know it was empty ?

              What I have read of her testimony all “sounds” damning – based on spin and adjectives and the effort of prosecutors to try to make things that are ordinary in the world of the 1% into something nefarious.

              My accountant does not get to see my onshore bank accounts.
              If I had offshore ones why would I share those ?

              There are even rules that insurance companies expect businesses to comply with which require things like,
              that the person who reconciles the bank accounts and the person who posts the receipts can not be the same person.
              That is done because we have had 500 years to learn all the ways that your bookkeeper can defraud you.
              By controling what they have access to you can make fraud much easier to detect and much harder to do.

              Yet almost every week there is a story about some bookkeeper at some non-profit ripping them off for lots of money.

              Nothing I have heard of the testimony thus far sounds particularly unusual for someone with the resources of Manafort.

              But again lefties always conflate privacy with criminality.

            1. No. There are clearly things that are illegal that can land the filer and possibly the accountant in jail. In general that would be tax fraud and those laws, for the most part, are clear and spelled out. Don’t fraudulently report less than you actually earned. That is dangerous. However, deductions are frequently based on opinion though there are laws set out about deductions. Deductions can lead to fines but generally not to jail unless they were clearly violating the law.

              Probably most tax filers that are able to take deductions and use a long form could be found to be in some violation of the law. That is a problem. There are so many laws we face in our everyday life can interfere with normal activity that if one looks hard enough one is likely to find a violation. That is one of the reasons we shouldn’t be investigating to look for a crime to attach to a person we don’t like.

              1. Elision. Two of his accountants testified under oath that they asked if he had foreign income and accounts, and he said “no”, despite the fact he did in fact have foreign income and accounts. There was also an email trail. This goes beyond tax avoidance, which is legal, to tax evasion, which is a felony.

                1. Paulm, it all depends on how the question was asked and under what circumstances. It also depends on their exact answers and whether or not they are believable, but in the end it matters a lot less than you think since the forensics have to prove it to have a valid judgement.

                2. You seem to think that accountants and bookkeepers are the IRS.

                  Manafort is not legally obligated to share anything with his accountants.
                  He is not obligated to use accountants.

                  There is no crime in not telling anything to your bookkeeper or accountant.

                3. Just to be clear – the US taxes INCOME – not ASSETS.

                  Manaforts foreign income is taxable in the US – the US is the only country that is true of.
                  But it is not taxable until it returns to the US as income.

                  It appears that Mueller’s theory is that Manafort loaned himself money form his foreign bank accounts to avoid paying taxes.
                  That is legal. That said there is atleast some indication that Manafort did not properly document the loans, and possibly did not make payments against them.
                  That would subject him to further taxes and penalties, and interest – but would generally not be a crime.
                  Failure to do properly something you can legally do is not a crime.

            2. What is it you think is illegal when filing a tax return ?

              There is no obligation to share your foriegn holdings with your bookkeeper.

              There is no obligation to share your entire tax return with your bookkeeper.

        2. “The accountant testified under oath that she never saw Manafort’s foreign holdings, ”

          In otherwords she does not know anything about the very thing she was testifying about and her testimony was meaningless.

          “so he not only defrauded banks”
          Is there a bank here claiming they were defrauded ?

          “he defrauded his own staff. ”
          How so ? Did Manafort steal from his staff ?

          Do you know what fraud actually is ?

          You through terms arround, but they have meaning.

          Thus far we have two accountants who have testified – with Mueller holding a gun to their head.

          As best as I can tell their testimony is that they are not sure that the Money Manafort claimed to loan himself was actually a loan.
          But as you just noted, they also testified they had no knowledge of his foreign holdings.

          So they also do not know that it was not.

          This is your idea of evidence ?

          You are aware that the burden of proof is beyond a reasonable doubt and it lies with the prosecution.

          If Manafort claimed this money as a loan on his taxes then Mueller must prove it was not a loan – to establish a crime.

          Manafort already settled with the IRS in 2014 – their the burden of proof was much lower.

          Further to get a crime, you would need to prove Manafort lied to the IRS in 2014.

      3. Allan,
        I am getting a weird feeling about the defense. This is a paper case and the government so far seems to have all the paper. The defense can nibble away at a few things during the prosecution’s case, but they have to be very careful. Maybe Gates’ testimony will present some opportunities, but again that could backfire.
        I get the sense that the defense’s case is going to consist of some expert witnesses (whose credentials may be suspect) trying to rationalize Manafort’s laughable finances and somehow trying to blame Gates. At best, I think they are going to ask the experts hypotheticals that ask them to assume “facts” that will either not be proven or highly suspect. I wonder how much of this Judge Ellis will permit under Daubert v. Merrell Dow and FRE 702.

        1. Hollywood, as I said a while back I find following this case closely is a waste of time. What I want to see is the report from the forensic accountants and the rebuttals. In the end that will make or break the case. Have you seen the results of a forensic accountant? Have you seen that included in “This is a paper case and the government so far seems to have all the paper.”? If not, then you know very little.

          We can not even be sure if Manafort is in control over a lot of money or none at all. Yet we here conclusions based on the fact that he is rich or on the fact that he is poor. It sounds like a lot of people here have very little financial experience.

          1. I have not seen any forensic accountant’s report in this case. But I have perused the government’s extensive exhibit list.

            1. “I have not seen any forensic accountant’s report in this case. But I have perused the government’s extensive exhibit list.”

              Then you know very little and can draw no conclusions of guilt. This case involves tracing the money back to its origins and that is what forensic accountants do.

    2. How so ?

      The evidence I have heard is that he agressively sought to minimize his taxes.
      And that lots of accountants and lawyers who are now testifying against him with a gun to their head approved those efforts.

      This is not “fraud” – nor is it “money laundering”. It is MAYBE tax evasion.

      But to reach tax evasion Mueller has got to demonstrate that Manafort lied to the IRS when he settled with them in 2014.
      Otherwise the entire set of tax evasion charges goes out the window.

      I would further note that even if there was criminal tax evasion – what we have thus far is a criminal conspiracy to evade taxes – with lawyers and accountants participating.

      What is the difference between an accountant telling Manafort to reduce taxes by loaning himself untaxable money earned outside the US
      and the same accountant being told to do so, and doing it with deep concerns ?

      The difference is entirely in how they testify. And those testifying have Mueller holding a gun to their heads saying you can testify that this was Manaforts idea or you can go to jail yourself. How do you think they are going to testify ?

  7. “accountant who demanded a grant of immunity because he admitted to filing returns for Manafort that he believed to be fraudulent. “

    With Mueller pulling out all the stops of a legitimate investigation one has to wonder what the accountant actually did. We really don’t know other than the accountant was probably scared to death and willing to use verbiage that could help the prosecutor’s side. Professor Turley used the words “believed to be fraudulent” and those words are very weak. We don’t have the details but for all we know the so-called “fraudulent” act was not depositing the check in the year it was written rather depositing it for the following year which is legal to a point but could be stretched to “believed to be fraudulent”

    There are other claims that ‘may or may not be’ but that type of statement proves absolutely nothing. Everything will depend on the forensic accounting reports.

    I take note of: “Ellis explained that there was prior agreement on the meaning of the term and again this was not a properly noticed witness”.

    If this were one of the other Hillary Clinton judges that seem to have no concern over the law, it is likely that that type of judge would have done nothing. A lot of judges that pledge to uphold the law seem to be hypocrites.

    1. Allan

      Your nonsense is sort of a double edged sword. One edge cuts through one’s fears that Trump and his damage will be short-lived; as short-lived as your nonsense contains any rational thought whatsoever. The other edge cuts through the hope that Trump and the idiots associated will be soon gone by illustrating just how far a Trump supporter will stray from logic, the truth, and common sense. Hopefully your ranks are shrinking.

      1. What did you just say, Issac? Exactly what is it that you are calling nonsense? Once again you have constructed a building of multiple stories without any stairs or elevators to go up or down. Architects don’t usually do that but you seem to do it all the time.

        By the way, the ranks supporting Trump are swelling.

                1. You again fail to make sense. You made a claim about Trump’s popularity and provided no facts to back it up. Very scientific!

                  1. Yes, I can see you weren’t a science major. I told you earlier that I thought Rasmusen was the only major reporter to follow the ratings on a regular basis. Gallop to my knowledge stopped. You don’t understand the various levels of proof. Averaging a variety of studies where the quality varies doesn’t provide accuracy.

                    You don’t seem to have a reasonable competence in this area of debate.

                    1. No, Hollywood, it shows how you able to search in Google but not able to absorb the information you find.

                    2. 538 is a site that aggrates polls,

                      I can not think of much that you could prove by citing it.
                      Further the completely blew 2016 and Brexit and that seriously damages their credibility.

                    3. dhlii – if it helps any, 538 gave Trump a 15% chance of winning the Presidency on the morning of the election.

                    4. My recollection is it was lower than that.
                      In fact I think they still had Clinton’s probability of victory at 65% after PA and OH were called.

                      While I think 538 is partisan – everyone is.

                      I think that Nate tries hard and I respect him.
                      But he blew it.

                      I would also note he is a better statistician and Baseball pundit, than he is Political Pundit.

                    5. dhlii – I was watching a documentary called The Power of Numbers or something and Nate Silver was on there trying to explain how he got it so wrong.

                    6. I have not seen that – I would be interested.

                      I respect Nate and what he is trying to do.

                      I do think that he allows his partisanship to influence his work – but that is very hard to escape.
                      But I would still be very interested in hearing his analysis of what he got wrong.

                    7. dhlii – Nate waffled a lot and I mean a lot. 😉 I lost respect for Nate. What happened, according to Nate’s crystal ball is that they over sampled Democrats and Trump supporters refused to talk to them. 😉

                    8. “What happened, according to Nate’s crystal ball is that they over sampled Democrats and Trump supporters refused to talk to them. ”

                      I think that is an entirely plausible explanation.

                      So what has changed today ?

                      When we are looking at other polls – why should we beleive they are not oversampling one party, and that Trump supporters are not continuing to refuse to talk to polsters ?

                      Slowly over many decades the left has increased its menacing of those who express views outside the scope the left tolerates.

                      We know that people of all persuasions are increasingly fearful of some form of ostracism – even violence it they speak their minds.
                      And we know that fear is greatest on the right.

                      Silencing someone is not converting them.

                      Voting remains anonymous.

                      I firmly beleive that the most significant factor in Trump’s election was anti-PC backlash.

                      We elected Trump BECAUSE he has the balls to say outrageous things and no one is able to do anything about it.
                      BECAUSE he gets in the face of the PC crowd.

                      Many of us – myself included, who do not like Trump and did not vote for him, still take secret pleasure in his confronting those who want to dictate to us what we can and can not say.

                      I find Jim Acosta’s whining because he can not get Sanders to say that the press is not the enemy of the people wonderful.

                      Sanders and Trump are quite clearly standing up to Acosta, and saying – you can not make me say what you want.

                    9. Paul, thanks for that 15% prediction to demonstrate how foolish and ignorant Hollowood is. When it comes to intellect Hollowood stands out among the pre-teens reading comic strips.

    2. If the accountant filed a return he/she believed to be fraudulent, all the Mueller immunity in the world will not prevent that accountant from having their professional license revoked, and be unable to continue to practice their profession.

      1. Foxtrot, I’ll bet the accountant couched the words said and I’ll also bet that the testimony was discussed at length so that an agreeable word would be used. The end product is that for the most part, the testimony as Professor Turley stated it was BS and IMO meaningless without some type of forensic testimony.

    1. I wish I could see the facts that prove whatever you wish to prove. Do you wish to copy a sentence or two? If not then one has to believe you don’t see the big fact proving guilt in what you sent us to.

      1. The term “collusion” may be useful shorthand for describing an illicit political alliance between the Trump campaign and the Russian government, but it has been far less productive as a framework for understanding possible illegal conduct committed as a result of that association. Alan Dershowitz has seized on the point there is no election law “crime” of collusion and thinks that settles matters: no crime, and therefore no grounds for impeachment. Now Rudy Giuliani has embraced this theory of the case, apparently motivated by the renewed attention to the Trump campaign meeting with a Kremlin delegation in 2016 and the reports that Michael Cohen is ready to testify that Donald Trump knew in advance of and approved the meeting. President Trump, meanwhile, keeps pounding away on this claim that the legal issue is “collusion”—and that there is no such thing.

        This defense is vintage “straw person” reasoning. It is correct that federal campaign finance laws, which prohibit activity undertaken by foreign nationals to influence elections, do not refer to collusion. That does not mean, of course, that they do not directly address activities of the kind in which the Trump campaign reportedly engaged in encouraging and supporting the Russian electoral intervention of 2016. It is perhaps precisely because of the sweep of the ban on foreign national campaign activity—and American collaboration with it—that Trump and his lawyers are eager to direct attention elsewhere.

        When Giuliani states “I have been sitting here looking in the federal code trying to find collusion as a crime,” the disingenuousness of his position is plain. He is looking for what does not exist to enable him to skip over what he is eager to ignore and avoid discussing.

        The untenable position Giuliani is staking out is well illustrated by the following questions: Did the Trump campaign ever consult lawyers on the legal implications of planned or proposed Russian contacts? If not, why not? And had the campaign done so, what would a lawyer have advised about the legal risks? Any reasonably experienced, competent campaign counsel would say that he or she would never have advised the campaign management that it was legal to take up the Russian offer and hold the meeting. Nor would any such lawyer have given a green light to other points of contacts between the campaign and Russia, or to dodgy maneuvers like the president’s public appeal to the Russians to locate deleted Clinton emails.

        A presidential campaign normally talks to lawyers about complex, unusual or obviously sensitive plans or projects. The campaign’s goal is typically to seek counsel’s blessing or advice on how to work ingeniously around legal obstacles to safely accomplish the desired objective. In the best of all worlds, the campaign management identifies a course of action that it can pursue with the confidence that, if challenged, its lawyers can provide a defense.

        What hope did the Trump campaign have of help from its lawyers in maximizing political support from a foreign government? In the case of the Russian travel to New York in the summer of 2016 to provide derogatory information about Secretary Clinton, the issue would have been clear and the legal path closed.

        The ban on foreign national involvement in federal elections is exceptionally broad. It applies to any spending to affect an election: The prohibition applies to “contributions,” “expenditures,” “donations,” and “disbursements.” A “contribution” for this purpose includes any “thing of value.” The rules reach “promises” of such spending whether express or “implied,” and to campaign spending provided either directly or “indirectly.”

        This basic prohibition extends even to foreign national “participation” in the decisions that a U.S. national makes about election-related spending. It is stringent enough that it has shaped the legal requirements that the American subsidiary of a foreign corporation must satisfy in setting up a political action committee. The American management of the subsidiary can establish a political-action committee to make contributions to U.S. candidates, but only with U.S. national funding—and without any involvement from the foreign nationals a the parent company. A foreign national cannot so much as advise on how the PAC money would be spent. For foreign management to suggest that the U.S. PAC consider a contribution for candidate X is a violation of the law. A U.S. national who solicits this guidance is providing illegal substantial assistance to unlawful foreign national activity.

        The Federal Election Commission for some time even equivocated on the question of whether a foreign national could volunteer personal services to a campaign. It eventually held that because the law exempts volunteer personal services from the scope of regulated contributions, foreign nationals could provide them. The standard example is the foreign national entertainer performing at a fundraising event: He or she cannot spend any money to support the event, including funding the transportation of equipment, travel or lodging expenses for personal staff or other band members.

        Congress has enacted and reenacted the foreign-national prohibition in 1966, 1974 and 2002, seeking on each occasion to strengthen it. So the lawyer reviewing a contact between the campaign and a foreign national—particularly a foreign national with apparent ties to a foreign government—would understand that the rules in question are not among the backwater provisions of the law, under-enforced relics of the aged and discredited regulations. The lawyer would also be familiar with the congressional investigations and criminal investigations that arose out of allegations that China developed and implemented a plan to influence the course of the 1996 presidential election. And, finally, he or she would keep in mind that the Supreme Court recently affirmed in Bluman v. Federal Election Commission the constitutionality of these draconian legal controls.

        Federal election law pairs the these prohibitions on foreign national electoral activity with restrictions on the behavior of the would-be U.S. beneficiaries. U.S. nationals, including campaigns, cannot “substantially assist” a foreign national in any of these activities, and Americans cannot solicit, accept or receive any such illegal foreign-national support. Viewed together, these prohibited activities— assistance, solicitation, acceptance, or receipt—certainly capture the essence of what some might understand by references to “collusion.”

        From the standpoint of a competent lawyer, the 2016 Trump Tower meeting with Kremlin emissaries directly implicates these rules. The Russians did not merely offer information, plucked from the sky: In the first place, they had to have procured it. To have done so would normally require the expenditure of funds “in connection with” a federal election: opposition material assembled on a U.S. presidential candidate. Certainly the Russian traveling party spent money to travel to the United States for the meeting. Both the material they proposed to provide and the expenses associated with creating and arranging to deliver it raise the serious question of in-kind contributions to the campaign. Moreover, the hypothetical campaign lawyer would have to be concerned that urging the campaign to invest its own resources in a specific line of attack on Hillary Clinton would constitute illegal “participation” in the campaign’s decision-making on its own spending.

        In addition, the lawyer would consider that any meeting with a foreign government to discuss mutual goals in winning an election could constitute an illegal “solicitation” of unlawful foreign national spending.. The “acceptance” of the meeting could be such a solicitation if the foreign national dangled the possibility of a benefit and the U. S. campaign, in pursuing the discussion, made clear that it was in the market and open for business. The willingness to discuss Russian government support on this one occasion could be an additional ground for exposure under the solicitation ban. By taking the meeting, the campaign would be signaling an interest in whatever the foreign government might have to offer in the future. How much exposure the campaign incurred on this score could depend in part on what was said at the meeting. But it is yet another issue the lawyer would identify in the Russian offer and the American openness to entertaining it.

        The campaign counsel would know well that in this area, there is little room for maneuver, and for the standard exploration of “loopholes.” Foreign nationals have no constitutional rights to influence U.S. elections, and so the U.S. national supporting an illegal Russian national scheme would have limited First Amendment rights to claim in its own defense. To take one example, it would not help the American manager of a PAC to appeal to “freedom of speech” in defending a conversation with a foreign national colleague about the choice of candidates for PAC support. It is highly unlikely that a lawyer would conclude that, after all this effort over the years, Congress had designed a statute somehow reasonably interpreted to prevent an individual foreign national from giving a $25 contribution to a campaign but failing, despite all these detailed legal restrictions, prohibit a relationship like the one that the Trump campaign seems to have fashioned with the Putin regime.

        All these questions would compel the lawyer to advise in strongest terms against campaign representatives agreeing to meet with a Russian government delegation to hear the “dirt” it claimed to have. And this is the outcome even without bringing into the discussion the lawyer’s option under Rule 2.1 of the American Bar Association’s Model Rules of Professional Conduct to advise on the “political” or “moral” implications of agreeing to the meeting. It is the legal judgment that the lawyer would be virtually required to reach and convey to the client. What does or does not constitute “collusion” would have nothing to do with the legal analysis.

        These are only the campaign finance law issues raised by the Trump Tower meeting. There are others presented by the campaign’s course of conduct with the Russians, such as the signaling to the Russians through WikiLeaks—or directly from the candidate—that their hacking and carefully timed distribution of stolen material was welcome and valuable to the Trump candidacy. Evidence of this encouragement and guidance could support a case of illegal “substantial assistance” to the Russian electoral intervention. This assistance was, by any measure, substantial: The Russians were operating with the advantage of direct discussion with the campaign, such as the one at Trump Tower, and other channels of communication that could have guided their understanding of how the campaign might benefit from Russia’s use of online political messaging and the release of stolen materials. A lawyer consulted on actions like these would not have to strain to spot the campaign finance issues in this political alliance.

        Of course, the campaign counsel lawyers could know only what the campaign understood of the extent of the Russian electoral activity. They would not have had the benefit of the detailed picture that the Mueller indictments have drawn of the wide-ranging political program directed from the Kremlin and managed by Russian intelligence agencies. But what they would have known would have been more than enough to detect the serious legal issues under federal campaign finance law. Some lawyers in that position might even have responsibly advised that the campaign report the Russian offer to U.S. legal authorities. Even those who rejected that option would have appreciated that the campaign needed to reject the overture from Moscow and create at least an internal record that it had done so.

        But then again, Trump and his senior campaign team may not have asked the lawyers for their opinion. They could well have had their reasons: The most obvious and troubling of the possible explanations is that, anticipating a negative response, they may have chosen to proceed without the advice of counsel to pursue victory with Russian help. Then the lawyers would have been consulted only after the fact, to come up with whatever public defense they could devise. This is the road that may have brought the Trump team to this moment—that is, to Rudy Giuliani and the absurd “collusion is not a crime” theory of the president’s case.

        1. They had a meeting with a Russian national who promised dirt on Hillary Clinton. She did not have any dirt and yammered on about other things.

          1. No above board campaign would have taken the meeting without conferring with counsel. Any ethical counsel would have advised strongly against taking the meeting. No above board campaign would have ignored counsel’s advice. It will be interesting to see if counsel was consulted about the meeting.
            As for what was or wasn’t delivered, you don’t know. Moreover, even if there was nothing, material was solicited by the campaign. As for what she talked about, accounts vary but most likely she talked about relieving Magnitsky sanctions which would be a campaign finance violation.
            Ergo, campaign finance violations.
            It will be interesting to see your attempts to brush the facts aside as the walls close in. Let’s see? Attack Justice. Attack the FBI. Attack Obama. Attack Clinton. That stuff is tired and unfounded. And, it does not eliminate any guilt on the part of the Trump campaign.

            1. hollywood……Have you ever actually worked in a political campaign?
              I have……worked for 40 yrs with Democrat heavy hitters, I’ve seen a lot.
              It doesn’t sound as if you know what it’s like……..but Hollywood, I’m sure, is different,

              1. OK, Cindy, you’re right. That settles it. Manafort is innocent. So are Trump, Don Jr., Kushner, Stone, Butina and all the rest. Gosh, now what will we talk about?

                1. hollywood….in a campaign, especially a major one, month after month you get no sleep, no time for family, not many hot meals.
                  I felt that Hillary was going to lose when I found out that some of her top staffers, crucial to the campaign, were taking family vacations and days off as late as September 2016. That was one incredibly over-confident campaign, to put it mildly.. But thank the Good Lord they were that complacent.

          2. Was that cut and paste yammer, or original, organic yammer?
            If anyone wants to try to wade through that pile of manure and decide, have at it.

            1. Well, Tom, original at Allan’s specific request.
              Typical righty B.S. Demand evidence for a point and claim there is none. Get the evidence and say it’s too much to read or contemplate and call it “manure.” Ad hominem yet again.

              1. Hollywood, when one makes a claim that someone is a crook others expect proof. One could say they heard it from another, but that is not proof. Proof: Jon Jones is suspected of stealing Mr. Smith’s wallet. He was identified by Mr. Smith or witnesses or filmed and when Jones was apprehended he was found with Mr. Smith’s wallet in his possession. He was accused of theft or pickpocketing…

                Let us here the crime you are accusing Trump of committing and what your proof is.

                  1. I assume that since you couldn’t put in your own words the crime that you don’t know what the article said. You don’t even seem to recognize some of the bull cr-p in the executive summary.

                    A man is found holding another man’s wallet. According to some of the logic early in the executive summary is that the man could be found guilty of a crime. You only look at the first sentence and draw conclusions. If you are a teenager that type of thinking might be acceptable but I believe you are a bit older.

                    One has to think further than the tip of one’s nose. Maybe after emptying the wallet of valuables the thief threw it to the ground and the man in question picked it up thinking someone dropped it.

                    From the summary:
                    “evidence that President Trump attempted to impede the
                    investigations of Michael Flynn and Russian interference
                    in the 2016 presidential election, including by firing FBI
                    Director James Comey.”

                    Maybe the President fired the Comey because Comey needed to be fired and that is the President’s job. One can’t jump to quick conclusions about the man with the wallet or the President. One has to think about the circumstances but to you the firing of Comey means obstruction of justice which is a ludicrous conclusion from the facts available and is not criminal because it is part of the President’s job description.

                    Your comments are demonstrations of cognitive dissonance but you don’t realize it. You cannot get over the fact that your brain is telling you that Trump should not be President. Get over it. Trump is President and will be President until his term is over. You have to face reality and stop creating ridiculous conclusions so you don’t have to face the facts.

                    1. I think you are talking to yourself. I may not like that Trump is POTUS but I admit that he is everyday. As for assuming, you know what they say about “assume.”

                    2. ” I may not like that Trump is POTUS but I admit that he is everyday.”

                      You may admit it, Hollywood, but your brain hasn’t adjusted to it. Gradually it most likely will and then when you read your statements over you will have learned what cognitive dissonance really is.

                  2. “There are significant questions as to whether President Trump obstructed justice. We do
                    not yet know all the relevant facts,”

                    First sentence and we are done.

                    We KNOW all the relevant facts.

                    We KNOW that there is no act That Trump took that was outside his powers as president.
                    We KNOW from the constitution that ALL powers of the executive vest with the president.
                    Put simply the president is not just the commander in chief, he is the prosecutor in chief.
                    He could literally constitutionally order this investigation ended.

                    While congress could impeach for doing so – impeachment is fundimentally political not criminal.
                    He could not be convicted.

                    The Obstruction charges against Clinton and Nixon were based on acts outside their roles as president that were not authorized by the constitution.
                    In nixon’s case facilitating the payment of hush money to the watergate burglars.
                    In Clinton’s the use of AZ State Troopers to intimidate witnesses.

                    Jefferson litterally directed the criminal prosecution of Burr from the whitehouse, giving the AG instructions each day.

                    Get a clue – the president is the highest prosecutor in the nation.
                    He has the power and authority to direct any federal prosecution in anyway.
                    The oversight and punishment for “abuse” of that power – is impeachment.
                    You may not criminally prosecute a president for actions he may constitutionally perform as president.

                    BTW that is not unique. You may not prosecute an AG for the acts he may constitutionally perform as AG.

                    No legal action can become illegal – because or your personal guess as to why that act was done.
                    Why does not matter – atleast not from a criminal perspective.

                    But this is typical – the left fixates on intentions and then goes on a mind reading expedition.
                    You can speculate about why someone did something.
                    You can impeach or vote them out of office based on that speculation.
                    But you can not convert legal conduct to a crime because of your speculation into someones reasons.

          1. Let’s see. Overwhelming one’s opponent. If the shoe fits. With as many arguments as possible. Yes, the many arguments are all about the Tower meeting. Too much for you? Without regard for accuracy or strength of the arguments. Again, too much? There are texts (Don Jr. et al.) and statements and admissions (by Rudy and Trump). You don’t believe the Trump campaign?
            And circumstantially, there were many emails released after hacking by Russians after Trump asked for them and Stone predicted them. The phrase hoist by their own petard comes to mind.

            1. You said, “Trump and his senior campaign team may not have asked the lawyers for their opinion. They could well have had their reasons: The most obvious and troubling of the possible explanations is that, anticipating a negative response, they may have chosen to proceed without the advice of counsel to pursue victory with Russian help.”

              I don’t see “overwhelming”. In fact, I am tremendously underwhelmed. You have just pulled various fantasies out of your a$$, and presented your personal conclusions and imaginings as arguments.

              Like Teaching Spastics said, he met with somebody who supposedly had dirt, but didn’t. End of story for RATIONAL people. For the less than sane, it’s Alex Jones Time

              Squeeky Fromm
              Girl Reporter

            2. Hollywood, I think Squeeky was trying to tell you something and was not trying to cause pain. Duane Gish was referred to as a creationist shill because of his overlong statements that couldn’t be answered without great effort. He was considered a shill a term I am NOT placing on your head.

              You made a lot of statements about the laws involved and tangential people (Rudy). What I think you should have focused on was proof a law was broken and then the law itself and whether or not that type of law was prosecuted in other circumstances.

              1. True. If I was trying to cause pain, I would have written he/she/it a very wry and sardonic and insulting Irish Poem, so that the ignorance would be remembered forever in annals of poetry.


                Squeeky Fromm
                Girl Reporter

                1. Apparently, you couldn’t hold back. Now, the world is poorer for it.

                    1. STONE FRUIT

                      A maiden so fair and so merry,
                      Squeeky loved to give the raspberry.
                      I love the fresh fruit.
                      It gives me a hoot.
                      Legs up while I pop your sweet cherry.

              2. Allan, you should print out your comments on this thread. Put them in your safe until January, 2020 (unless Trump has resigned by then). Take them out and read them as letters to future Allan from past Allan and see if you have learned anything about yourself, the sureness of your knowledge, life, Trump, cognitive dissonance, etc. You may surprise yourself, or you may continue in hunkered down denial mode.

                1. Hollywood, I have no delusions about who Trump is or who Clinton is. That is where we differ. You have delusions and were disappointed. I don’t get disappointed because I believe things when I see the evidence. You believe these things based on your desires and illusions. Proof is not a requirement for you. If Trump had lost I would have accepted it because I recognized that he was likely to lose. You are still trying to adjust to his win. I recognize that he may not even run in 2020 but you are already preparing your brain for Trump’s disappearance. That hope helps you get through the problems of today although that hope doesn’t help your ability to reason in a better fashion.

                  1. Where do you get this nonsense? Is this some sort of mind control thing? I think you need to be de-programmed.

                    1. What are you talking about? Did you expect Trump to win? No. That is when your present problem began.

                    2. Allan – truthfully, I did not expect him to win. However, I did notice there was something funny going on when they refused to call FL. I don’t know what they were hoping for, maybe the magic Electoral College Bunny to sprinkle extra votes for Hillary in Broward Co.? Even I could see that Trump had won the state. But they kept not calling it and not calling it and not calling it. It was like watching a hung man whose neck has not been snapped so is now just strangling by the noose, slowly dying before your eyes.

                    3. “Where do you get this nonsense? Is this some sort of mind control thing? I think you need to be de-programmed.”

                      Do you have an argument ?

                      When a person resorts exclusively to ad hominem it usually means they do not have an argument.

        2. Despite an extremely verbose interpretation of the law(s) pertaining to foreign involvement in U.S. elections, there is more than one interpretation of those laws.
          I read as much of that “War and Peace” -length BS from one of our resident trolls as I could put up with.
          When there is a British businessman paid by Democrats (through intermediaries) to use Russian contacts, who in turn glean opposition research from their sources, that set of circumstances would seem to qualify as “foreign involvement” in a U.S. election.
          Now if someone wants to argue that this is merely a “campaign expense”, as L4D did earlier, we might as well drop all restrictions on foreign involvement in our elections.
          I don’t think there is a precedent for level of alleged, and actual, foreign involvement in American campaigns/ elections.
          The closest thing to it that I know of would be the illegal Chinese 1996 campaign contribitions….that was barely mentioned in the press.
          The Chinese also successfully hacked into the FEC computers in 2013; that was barely mentioned in the press as well.
          If every suspicious , and possibly illegal, activity that happened in connection with the 2016 campaigns is “put on the table” for review, then we have a shot at better defining boundaries, the “DOs and DON’Ts ” of allowable campaign avtivity.
          If 90% or 99% of the review is focused solely on one campaign, then whatever violations there might be are naturally going to be found in that ONE campaign.

          1. No troll. No troll. You’re the troll!
            The reason the evidence is focused on one campaign is that that is the campaign that violated the laws. Sorry, hard for you to accept, I know. So, what to do? Attack the messenger. Argue off the point. Point the finger elsewhere. Why not consider the evidence and review it dispassionately and offer reasons why the case against the Trump campaign is lacking? Because you know it is a valid case. Hard for you to admit, but there you are, backing a loser.
            One case at a time.
            Then, if you worry about the other side, await the developments in the Tony Podesta brouhaha.

            1. How many trolls use their own names, stupid?
              And when there is an investigation that focuses on the possibke violations of one campaign, and not the other, then only the violations of one campaign will come to light.
              You either understand that, or you don”t understand it.
              That’s not my problem, and I don’t intend to spent half of my weekend helping you out with remedial reading comprehension.

        3. This whole screed has the same feel of all the attempted accusations of Trump, posing every little things as “If they did X, then wouldn’t Y result in a crime of criminality?”
          If a presidential candidate shouted to the world during a campaign speech,
          “I hope all foreign governments will do what they can to help me win!”, would that be a crime? Could you plausibly say this is some kind of conspiracy, or cooperation with foreign govts?
          I don’t think so, and that is the gist of your VERY long post.
          People are getting tired of hearing if this then that, when there simply is no beef to this sandwich.
          This is pathological wishful thinking driven by an immature hissy fit of simply not getting what you want, and trying change reality with word salad.

          1. There’s plenty of beef (you’re in denial, suffering from cognitive dissonance, confirmation bias and Dunning-Kruger Effect). Would you like fries with that?

        4. Hollywood, the entire Mueller investigation has turned out to be bogus where it concerns the President. Where it concerned other people, it didn’t require a special prosecutor. All it has done is rightfully tarnish the FBI and other security agencies along with some of their leaders. These agencies are supposed to be non-political but appear to have been weaponized against the new President. That doesn’t speak well for the nation or anyone involved.

          I don’t believe anything of significance will be found involving the President and his Presidential duties. I can understand how he might irritate and cause confusion among those of differing opinions but that is what we are basically dealing with, OPINION, not a crime.

          The problems people have with Trump should be taken up at the ballot box, the same ballot box that elected Obama which in turn helped get Trump elected. If people don’t believe in democracy and free speech along with our Constitutional Republic they should move elsewhere instead of fomenting violence and weaponizing the bureaucracy.

          The meetings that took place have little meaning in the world of politics. If we wish to criminalize all these actions I would bet that all the party leaders and all the members of Congress would end up in jail, or at least almost all.

          You have spent a good deal of time criticizing Guiliani. That is your prerogative but the only thing that counts is what Trump did or didn’t do and what proof exists. Trump is probably one of the cleaner politicians and certainly more transparent than the rest. I don’t care very much about what Guiliani says today because it doesn’t impact any outcomes though I will say he was a brilliant mayor of NYC.

          As far as lawyers go that you believe should be striving for the truth I think money went through Hillary’s lawyers regarding all sorts of things including the Steele Dossier. Lawyers can be dirty and very frequently attempt to bend the law to an unfair advantage. Fortunately or unfortunately we are a nation of law so to prosecute bending the law is not enough. One has to prosecute an actual crime.

          You have mentioned a lot of interesting topics and things but what you need to deal with is not the verbiage that represents our law rather “the facts that prove whatever you wish to prove. ” which was requested in my prior response.

          1. Good talking points. These will be a source of comfort for you as the indictments, pleas and verdicts come in.
            But really, you can’t seriously believe this one: “Trump is probably one of the cleaner politicians and certainly more transparent than the rest.”
            Just see what happens in the Trump Foundation case for any evidence of his cleanliness and transparency. Remember Trump U?

            1. Hollywood, you seem to throw a lot of sh-t out to see what sticks instead of making an argument that makes sense.

              “Remember Trump U?”

              What do you want to remember? I think the case went south and didn’t reappear until he decided to run for President. That led to a settlement but the question is why did the case end and then reappear? Politics not a good case.

              Trump Foundation: What about the Trump Foundation. Donated money that went to charities. Provide the details of your problem? Make sure there is significance and it doesn’t only show one side which was debunked in an earlier discussion.

              You either understand what is proof and what is not or you don’t. Right now you have difficulty distinguishing criminal action from a difference in opinion and certainly haven’t been able to provide proof. I am beginning to wonder if you understand what proof actually is.

              1. Trump U.
                Trump used no force.
                A very large portion of the participants were paying for the idea of being affiliated with Trump and his golden touch.
                They got what they paid for.
                I would not have got within a mile of Trump U.
                But those who did were free to do so.

                If there were actual false promises made – identify then and there may be a breach of contract claim.

                Trump foundation.

                This was ENTIRELY a familiy or close friend institution.
                There was nothing going on that had anything to do with uninformed contributors.
                No one associated with TF took a salary.

                If only the Clinton Foundation was half as clean as the Trump Foundation.

                The most that exists here is very tiny tax claims.

              2. In the Trump U fraud cases, Trump (after insulting one of the judges) paid $25 million to settle.
                In the Trump Foundation case, it appears the Foundation did no charitable work and spent money paying off judgments against Trump and his properties and bought Trump paintings of himself, etc. It’s illegal for a “charitable” foundation to conduct itself like that.

                1. “In the Trump U fraud cases, Trump (after insulting one of the judges) paid $25 million to settle.”

                  Of course, and he wouldn’t have paid anything but for the fact that the case was a distraction and a nuisance suit that had been abandoned before he started to run for the Presidency.

                  “In the Trump Foundation case, it appears the Foundation did no charitable work”

                  This demonstrates your lack of factual basis for the things you say. I can actually list to whom all the money went to and anyone that knows about these things can do the same. He donated millions to charities. Unless you wish to say all these charities were phony and run by crooked people then you are wrong. What you will do now is look things up in left-wing hit sites or say nothing. If you do the former you will find he enriched himself by building a park in front of the Plaza Hotel that he owned at the time. That is what your left wing wants you to think but that isn’t true. He built a small park opposite to the entrance of Central Park that people utilize for free and makes the entrance to Central Park that much nicer. The Plaza is across the street and the Plaza itself enhances the entrance to Central Park.

                  You really have to cure that cognitive dissonance that affects you so much that you make outlandish and ignorant statements.

              3. Sadly, Allan, you are projecting. You are the one putting sh-t out there, wherever “there” is.
                On Trump U, you falsely state that the case went south and then mystically reappeared. No, what happened was there was some initial back and forth between the State of New York and Trump over whether he could call his scam a University. He finally agreed to backtrack. Per Wiki, in 2005, the New York State Department of Education sent Trump, Sexton, and Trump University a letter saying that they were violating state law by using the word “university” when in fact Trump University was not actually chartered as one and did not have the required license to offer live instruction or training.[6] Although Sexton promised that the organization would stop instructing students in New York State, the New York Attorney General alleged that such instruction continued.[6]

                A March 2010 letter sent by the Deputy Commissioner for Higher Education, Joseph Frey, to Trump stated: “Use of the word ‘university’ by your corporation is misleading and violates New York Education Law and the Rules of the Board of Regents.”[6][22] In June 2010, “Trump University” changed its name to “The Trump Entrepreneur Initiative.”

                The lawsuits began later and were ultimately settled for the $25 million although some issues still remain.

                Now, as for the Foundation. That’s a fraud of over a decade. Here, read the complaint which seeks over $2.8 million plus penalties and dissolution of the Foundation. https://www.vox.com/2018/6/14/17464010/trump-foundation-new-york-lawsuit
                It appears that the “charities” the money went to were Trump and his various Trump entities.
                Time to look in the mirror and face the facts, man. And if you can’t do that, quit lying to the rest of us.

                1. Trump U: The case was settled with those that paid for enrollment. NY is not really a part of that suit and yes it did go south until it became a nuisance suit.

                  Foundation: That is a suit by NY State. Not unusual for NY State to try and get revenue through suits. NY State has yet to prove its case (in case you don’t know it NY is suing loads of its citizens as they flee the state and NY State doesn’t necessarily win but they do frequently settle because they are a nuisance.). If you wish to know where the money went and see where the vast majority was spent it is available in the IRS records for non-profits and open to everyone. Look it up and tell us how those charities were involved in a fraud.

                  1. I’m not doing your phony research for you. In the absence of facts you are again stretching the truth (I know, it’s a stranger to you, because of your CD).
                    $25 million is a helluva “nuisance.”

                    1. “I’m not doing your phony research for you.”

                      I’m not asking you to. That is the difference between you and I. I have already reviewed the Donald J. Trump Foundation IRS records. You rely on those that share your problems and satisfy your preconceptions…. and the cognitive dissonance continues. The only question is do you have to wait until Donald Trump is out of office before you get better?

                    2. $25 million is a helluva “nuisance.”
                      Not for Trump.

                      Everything is relative.

                      Besides he can pay it by “money laundering” a couple of Condo’s in FL to Russian. LOL

                2. Hollywood.

                  I have no idea whether you exegis is correct – but if it is, it beautifully demonstrates what is wrong with the left.

                  What business is it of the state of NY whether Trump U is calling itself a university or not ?
                  What business is it whether Trump U is providing online course to students ?

                  There is some absolutely incredible educational material on Youtube.

                  Must that be taken down, because they have not sought the appropriate blessings from the State of NY ?

                  The constitution contains a contracts clause that applies to the states forbidding government interference in voluntary private agreements.

                  For over 150 years that stopped this kind of nonsense.
                  Now kids can not sell lemonade or cookies without running afoul of the left.

                  If Trump U offered students something it failed to deliver – that is a breach of contract, and the other party is free to demand the state direct specific performance or compensation.

                  It is entirely irrelevant how the State of NY thinks people should be educated.

                  I have no idea whether Trump U was a good deal or a fraud.
                  But that judgement belongs to the students. Trump U is obligated to live up to whatever agreement it made with them.

                  That is the only thing that matters.

                3. TF was a pretty typical private family trust.
                  You are getting absolutely nowhere on this as you would destroy just about ever private trust in the country.

                  TF is not the same as CF – it does not sollicit donations. Its money comes from a small pool of family and friends.

                  Outside of tax implications no one else has standing to challenge it.
                  If it has failed to properly handle taxes – then it owes taxes interest and penalities.

                  All of the allegations of relatd to taxes I have heard in total are small beans – in fact tiny beans.
                  Are you really bent out of shape that TF paid for Baron Trump’s scout dues ?

                  Grow up.

                  If you applied the same standards to the Clinton Foundation – which is a public charity, and subject to far stricter rules,.
                  Clinton would be in jail. CF pays to jet the Clinton’s all over the world privately and wine and dine them daily to standards all but the most wealthy never experience, and to lodge then in rooms that cost for 1 night more than my mortgage for a year.
                  All that on contributors dime.

                  1. “Are you really bent out of shape that TF paid for Baron Trump’s scout dues ?”

                    Typically private foundations will give a large gift to places that may have dues etc. The donation is so much greater than the dues which might actually be tax deductible for the scouts that the one making these crazy comments has left the real world and has become absolutely absurd. Trump saved no money by donating to the scouts. If he wanted such money he would pay himself to manage the trust and such payment is officially recognized by the IRS.

    2. Hollywood, thanks for the link to the Lawfare article entitled “Trump’s Preposterous Collusion Is Not A Crime Defense.”

      It is an obvious straw-man fallacy. It also takes an act of willful blindness to read that Lawfare article and still grasp at the straws of that straw-man fallacy as though they could save Trump, Trump Jr., Kushner or Manafort. Something else needs to be said about that willful blindness. But I’m drawing a blank at the moment. It’s too astounding.

  8. How many months have gone by since the Trump lemmings first started saying “the probe is going to end in a couple of weeks and, boy, are you guys going to be surprised when nothing happens”?

    1. No one here said that. I think a retrospective review of junk Late4Yoga and Peter Shill have been uttering might be amusing, but who has time?

      1. “…but who has time?”

        This said by the frequent poster TSTD”: “…but who has time?”

        Given the amount of time you spend on this blog, the answer is clear.

  9. I’m not sure how many total posts L4D put on her website here today.
    I know with my morning coffee I glanced at “recent comments”, and saw:
    Late 4Dinner
    etc. pretty much down the line. I can’t tell for sure if this is an assembly effort manufactured with the help of assistant or apprentice trolls, or the ravings of one obsessed individual “energized” by more than caffeine.😯

    1. My guess would be retired schoolteacher on psychotropics.

      1. TSTD often has trouble connecting the dots.

        (Isn’t about time for another name change, TSTD?)

        1. “anonymous” is too damn lazy to even figure out where the dots are.

          1. Tom Nash – even though I have my computer up to 125%, sometimes I cannot see the dots. 🙂 In his defense, that could be his problem as well.

            1. PC Schulte,…
              If you think that is the primary problem that Anonymous has, you have not been paying attention to the comments of Anonatroll.

      1. I see that “anonymous” is working up to his/her/it’s capacity again.
        Don’t attempt anything substantive in these exchanges….the strain would be entirely too much for you.

            1. I think I’m typing in the same scale as you, Tom. Does that make you LSOL?

              1. I provided evidence that our “newcomer” Hollywood is a whining, lying sack ** ****.
                An accusation, backed by evidence, that Hollywood chose not to dispute, but deflected by immediately changing the subject.
                But I did acknowledge that he “saved time” by making it clear what he/ she/it was right from the start.
                As other sites close down their websites do to the activities of anonymous , it may be inevitable that they migrate to sites other sites where they can pursue their hobby.
                That doesn’t eliminate the opportunity for actual, legitimate exchanges; it’s just a matter of side-stepping ( or scrolling though) the clutter and garbage that’s been showing up here.

                1. Apparently, in Tom’s kangaroo court, evidence is anything he manufactures. You lack an understanding of evidence, Tom.

    2. Tom Nash – L4D gets her cup of corfeve and gets in front of her computer and goes nuts every morning. 4 am EDT is when the CIA talking points come out. She starts right after that.

    3. Krazy Kat Rambler said, “I can’t tell for sure if this is an assembly [-line] effort manufactured with the help of assistant or apprentice trolls, or the ravings of one obsessed individual “energized” by more than caffeine.”

      That’s because you refuse to listen. L4D is an ogress. Ogresses eat trolls for breakfast, lunch, dinner and light snacks along the way. Were it not for the ogress, L4D, poor Professor Turley and his kennel of blawg hounds would be up to their eyeballs in trolls before the end of business each and every last day.

      See: “The Trouble With Tribbles.”

  10. Opulent lifestyles are fine when one can easily show their sources of income. But when tax filings resemble a shell game, opulent lifestyles invite unwanted attention. And that’s what Manafort drew; ‘unwanted attention’.

    1. “Opulent lifestyles are fine when one can easily show their sources of income.”

      Peter shill is of the belief that one is guilty unless they prove themselves innocent.

    2. Peter Shill, the name of the game for the legal professionals should be to document his income and assets and compare that with what’s listed on tax returns and loan applications.

  11. Guys like Manafort are a dime a dozen. They think they are smart and crafty. They love money. They seduce a lot of victims. Lying is a way of life for them and they typically get away with their crimes. It’s good to see one get caught once in a while.

    1. Manafort’s mistake was parlaying one dicey action upon another, and then putting his head above the crowd and shouting LOOK AT ME, in a very contentious political environment.
      Politics runs into grudges about losing, and grudges turn into indictments when powerful people want to strike out at anything that even is remotely related to their loss.

        1. I didn’t comment of whether he was a crook, or a risky opportunist, or both.
          Notwithstanding that, you can be a crook, and at least try to fly under the radar.

          1. Mr. Trieste, you have been a truant from the blawg for well over a week, already. Do you truly have more important work to do? I’m not asking for juicy details. But Paul probably will.

  12. It is a bad day for America when Courts, and by that I mean Judges, allow prosecutors to throw so much dirt in a criminal case. The case should be dismissed with prejudice. Right now. Manafart can go back to farting.

    1. Dirt gets thrown in any high profile case–civil or criminal. That’s part of the game.

  13. Dear Mr. Manafort, if you help me trash Trump, I’ll take it easy on you.

  14. Darren, the blog proprietor’s third paragraph contains a series of typos and requires some editing.

  15. Also a bad day for the CPA. She’ll soon face charges by her state licensing board and the IRS. They’re either going to disbar her, or suspend her from practice. And she’ll protest; “but, but, but, I was given immunity by Mueller!” And the response will be, “sorry sucker, your immunity deal with Mueller doesn’t apply to us, we are entirely different entities.”

    1. It is a Hobbesian choice of going to jail and losing your occupation, or just losing your occupation.

      1. Such is the difference between use immunity and transactional immunity.

  16. Each side scored some points. You expect the defendant to have bad days when it is the prosecution’s turn at bat.

    1. ‘Each side scored some points.’

      Manafort has scored nada thus far, Paul. It has fairly well been established that he skipped on paying taxes, didn’t disclose stuff, etc. The only thing that has been done to his advantage is that the judge has told the prosecution to stop hitting him so hard on the ‘motive’ aspect. Manafort has been illustrated as an addict to a lifestyle he couldn’t afford by following the rules, so he broke them, many of them. All that is left for the jury to decide is how many. The judge has to come across to some degree as impartial; so in light of the evidence, he throws a bone to the defense by saying, “Hey, not so hard.”

      The judge’s actual bias, or absence thereof, will be determined at sentencing.

      1. I haven’t seen the defense present its case yet, Isaac.
        Do you go to our football games and note that the kicker has not made one PAT when there have been no touchdowns scored?

          1. That was my point, fool.
            Any type of “summary,” noting that the defense attorneys have been ineffective when they have not yet presented their case , is somewhat

            1. It’s just reportage about the ongoing saga. But obviously, not the final word. Unless you want Manafort to change his plea and jump to sentencing.

            2. Krazy Kat Rambler said, “Any type of ‘summary,’ noting that the defense attorneys have been ineffective when they have not yet presented their case is somewhat premature.”

              As I’m sure you know, Rambler, the most effective defense attorneys win their cases during pretrial motions to suppress evidence. That did not work for Downing [Manafort’s lawyer]. In fact, Downing’s motion to challenge the special counsel’s authority effectively ticked Judge Ellis off. And, when Manafort’s lawyers submitted a motion for change of venue, that was the absolute last straw for Judge Ellis.

              1. Very odd read ?

                Ellis does appear to be ticked – at Mueller.

                He did an excellent job of analyzing Muellers powers based on Manafort’s claim.

                If you bother to read his decision – while it ultimately allowed Mueller to proceed,
                He made it clear there was a huge gulf between what Mueller was allowed to do,
                and what he should do, and though Mueller is on the right side of the law,
                he is not on the right side of anything else.

                Though there were several factors, the core to the oppinion was:
                Even if Mueller does not have the authority to prosecute Manafort, and I stop him from doing so,
                Rosenstein can grant Mueller more authority and he can prosecute Manafort.

                Ellis pointed out lots of flaws in the SC law. Made clear he did not like it.
                but in the end followed it as bad as he thinks it is .

                That does not sound like “angry with manafort”

        1. tom

          Yup, hope that some of the several witnesses, who would know better than anyone: accountants, tax preparers, etc, do 180s. Or, it could all be fake something or other; fill in the blank. It works for Trump with his dupes; just call it fake, when they have you nailed. The defense has already laid out their argument: Manafort didn’t know what he was doing. Gates is guilty, Manafort is innocent. All the evidence pointing to Manafort’s guilt would not be there if Manafort was guilty. WTF?

          1. Isaac,
            If you are essentially declaring this trial over before the defense has presented its case, then there is not point in having a trial.
            I don’t know how they do things in Canada, but this trial is being held in the U.S.
            The prosecution’s evidence, left unchallenged, will always ( or almost always) gain a conviction.
            That’s why in American trials the defense is given an opportunity to present its case.
            I think Schulte’s offer to loan or give you a civics book is still open.

            1. Tom Nash – this would be unlike Tommy Robinson who went from arrest to trial to prison in 3 hours in Britain. He wasn’t even allowed to call his own attorney. I saw an interview with him, he has lost 40 lbs. in 2 months.

              1. PC Schulte,…
                Do you still have that civics book to loan/ give to our Northern neighbor?😆

                1. Tom Nash – it would be cheaper for him to get a used Civics for Dummies at his used bookstore. I am still willing to teach him civics.

          2. Rick Gates is likely to testify this week.
            One thing that I did not see mentioned by either Isaac or Loon4Breakfast was the importance of that upcoming testimony.
            He is a key part of the prosecutions case, and has probably been thoroughly prepped by prosecutors.
            Discrediting Gates is going to be a key part of the defense’s strategy, and they will go after Gates with everything they’ve got.
            I don’t know the specifics of the defense’s line of attack, or how Gates will perform as a witness.
            In following this trial, my focus will be on the events as they play out in the trial, and not on the speculation of airchair pundits.

            1. Tom, no matter what Gates says it likely becomes a ‘he said she said’ issue. That type of issue will require back up from a forensic accountant.

              Since it is a jury trial and the posters represent a mix of jurors he can be found guilty or innocent based on opinion lacking adequate facts. That is the danger with an overzealous prosecutor such as Mueller. People like Hollywood don’t understand how fragile our system is. It is that fragility that has prevented other nations from copying and enforcing our freedoms.

              1. Allan – this is going to be “What kind of deal did you get from the prosecution to testify?” And then it is going to go from there.

            2. Goven what we are told the defense has failed in their strategy.

              The argument was supposed to be that Manafort trusted others and was not involved.
              The strategy was to blame gates.

              Thus far though Mueller has successfully made Manafort look scurilous, he is not managed to make him look criminal.
              However there is not much room left for the manafort let others manage his affairs defense.
              Mueller shot down that defense but has failed to prove criminal conduct.

      1. Trump is making America great again ( I can be as profound as Marco, et al….ain’t empty slogans great?)

  17. Prosecutors doing what they do best, go for the brownie points. I wonder what the world would be like if we had moral and honest prosecutors.

      1. hollywood – what if we changed the adversarial system to the seeking the ultimate truth system?

        1. Paul,
          I wasn’t in England back when the adversarial system was adopted as the truth seeking framework for Anglo-American jurisprudence. But that and our jury system are some of the best things we have going for us (England has abandoned the jury system for many matters).

      2. Very few cases go to trial. In the federal system, defendants settle to avoid bankruptcy except when, like Bruce Ivins, they commit suicide.

        1. Ivins – one of the numerous other innocent people persecuted by Mueller.

  18. A bad day for manafort. Yup. But the members of the trump cult will never acknowledge that.

      1. And he left out the largest voting block again what is it with these leftists they not only lose but won’t admit they came in behind moderate constitutional centrists who are unaffiliated and independents.

        I’m waiting for the judge to order Mueller to quit fooling around padding his pay check and get the investigation on track where it needs to be and then explain how under the law the judge must throw out all the evidence as fruit of the poisoned tree t Mueller’s mishandling. Not sure if a second trial is then possible under double jeopardy. .

        That’s the view from the constitutionalist center.

      2. Ron

        Cult is more than appropriate. Watch a rally, if that’s not you in the third row. Trump’s supporters are rabid. When Trump said he could shoot someone on 5th avenue and get away with it; he was referring to his followers, his flock, his cult. Only someone who is substantially deluded could cheer this buffoon on, encourage him, hopefully further into his delusion. The alt right newspapers like Fox News don’t print that which makes Trump look bad and embellish everything that makes him look normal. That ain’t easy.

        1. issac – isn’t it funny that Trump’s rabid cult only yelled at Acosta and shook their finger at him. Oh, ya, they had signs. All that First Amendment s**t. And Acosta was afraid for his life. He is such a baby. A year as an embed in a forward post in some war zone will grow him a pair. And he will be out of the country for a year. We all win.

    1. Dom:
      Why would Trump care? These are allegations that have nothing to do with Trump. I’m amazed that anyone thinks Trump is affected by this.

      1. Trump still has a joint defense agreement with Manafort. That could be construed as a reason to think that Trump, himself, as well as Trump’s lawyers, think that Trump is affected by Manafort’s trial.

        Also, did you know that Howard Fineman reported roughly a year ago that Trump had been telling his friends that Trump was convinced that Manafort was not going to flip and incriminate Trump? It sort of implies that Trump was worried about Manafort flipping; which, in turn, implies that Manafort could incriminate Trump and that Trump knows it.

        Meanwhile, the joint defense agreement enables Trump’s efforts to a) discredit the special counsel’s investigation, b) to sneak a peek at Mueller’s cards and c) to try to figure out exactly what offenses against the United States NOT to pardon so that Manafort can retain his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination for any offenses that would also incriminate Trump Jr., Jared Kushner and possibly even Trump, himself.

        Other than all that, you could be right that Trump has no reason to care about Manafort.

        1. At the time of The SOTU Address. January of this year, 2018. So, less than a year ago.

        2. Trump still has a joint defense agreement with Manafort

          According to the talking-point meisters at ’emptywheel’. I’m sure they’ve got inside info.

          1. That’s one of the best tips I’ve ever been given. Thanks Don de Drain.

        1. Excerpted from the article linked above:

          Donald Trump is telling friends and aides in private that things are going great — for him.

          Some reasons: He’s decided that a key witness in the Russia probe, Paul Manafort, isn’t going to “flip” and sell him out, friends and aides say. He believes Robert Mueller, who heads the investigation, can be crushed, if necessary, without being fired.

          1. L4D still enables David Benson – Manafort told Gates not to cave. Trump has every right to think Manafort is not going to cave and compose.

            1. Maybe Gates’ wife didn’t get a $10 million dollar loan from who knows who to help Gates refrain from caving. Manafort’s wife did.

              1. hollywood – according to written reports, Manafort is saying he does not have anything Mueller wants so he would have to compose.

                1. Paul, IF that’s true, Manafort need not worry about having to lie. Mueller won’t use him.

                  1. ” need not worry” ??? Where have you been? No one knows for sure if Manafort knows anything of significance yet he has been placed in jail. Would you worry if someone who had the power threatened you with jail?

                    1. Non sequitur. Placed in jail in the DC case for witness tampering. Yes, I’d worry if I had done that.

                    2. He was initially sent to jail and was let out. That is when the alleged witness tampering occurred. The question remains.

                      “” need not worry” ??? Where have you been? No one knows for sure if Manafort knows anything of significance yet he has been placed in jail. Would you worry if someone who had the power threatened you with jail?”

                    3. Actually read the indictment for witness tampering.

                      Mueller is essentially making a naked asserion that defendants are barred by law from seeking their own witnesses.

                      This is the stupid garbage that results when you try to apply the law overbroadly.

                      Trad the actual law on witness tampering. There is no bar against contacting even a prosecution witness – which Manafort did not do.
                      There is no bar against trying to persuade a prosecution witness to change their testimony.
                      You are prohibited from threatening or offering inducements to a witness to change their testimony.

                      Mueller’s indictment does not allege that. The witness tampering indictment is a clear abuse of power.

                  2. “Paul, IF that’s true, Manafort need not worry about having to lie. Mueller won’t use him.”

                    There is almost no one left or right who does not grasp that the prosecution of Manafort is solely on the hope that Mueller can get him to flip on Trump.

                    Mueller would have unloaded this dog in a heartbeat if he was not looking to get to Trump through manafort.

                    There is a legitimate question as to whether Manafort has anything to give.
                    Given the actual facts we have today – there is no reason to beleive he does.

                    But Mueller either hopes he does, or expects that he will make something up when leveraged.
                    And the left hopes the same.

                    I do not know what manafort will do.
                    I do not know what Manafort knows.
                    But I do know that the probability based on the facts we do know, that manafort has anything useful are very very low.

          2. And then there’s this little gem from Giuliani’s interview with CNN earlier this week:

            “They’re putting Manafort in solitary confinement — which sounds more like Russian than the US — in order to get him to break. And maybe they’ve succeeded in cracking this guy, and getting him to lie. I don’t know. I’m not sure of that.”

            So Trump’s “lawyer” is still worried that Manafort may have already cracked under the strain of solitary confinement. Giuliani also launched an attack on the credibility of Rick Gates along the exact same lines as Manafort’s lawyer Downing–anybody who flips and cooperates with Mueller is supposedly a big fat lying liar. Gee. Maybe that’s why Manafort hasn’t flipped and cooperated with Mueller yet. Manafort is afraid of Trump and Giuliani call him a big fat lying liar on the public airwaves in a more emphatic and demonstrative manner than Giuliani’s statement to CNN that he’s not sure that Mueller hasn’t already broken Manafort and gotten him to lie.

          3. Don’t mess with the Marine. You won’t live log enough to regret it.

            In Mueller I trust.

              1. Dishonorably discharged. He blamed John Connolly for that.

                1. DDS – R. Lee has a great line about Oswalt in Full Metal Jacket.

              2. PC Schulte,.. Olly North was higher-ranking and more heavily decorated than Mueller.
                Therefore, Olly’s activities re Iran/ Contra should never have been questioned or criticized.
                Between the empty slogans and the infatuation with all things Marine, this just gets easier and easier.
                I’m thinking about switching sides in this debate, in order to utilize some of the “tools” I’ve seen presented here.
                I’d feel guilty😫😯 about using those tools without going “all in” to the other side of this debate.😉😆

    2. This analysis from the one who said that Bill Cosby “would not go to trial”, bet me a beer on that, and never paid up.
      Schulte, you think you got screwed when Benson welched on those citations he owes you?!
      I’m out A BEER😠😞, a tangible, useable,practical, necessary-in-sumner item.😉

        1. PC Schulte,…
          I originally thought the bet was with Olly; then I searched the archives and found it was made with DD drain, instead.
          I think Cosby will be going to trial again; if so, it should really be a two-beer payoff.

      1. Tom

        While I’ve been too busy with work to spend much time here, I don’t recall ever refusing to pay up. You never asked to collect. 😀 I owe you a beer, you won it fair and square. Let me know when you are coming to Orange County and we can work it out.

        You should acknowledge, however, that you will be collecting on the bet only because I reminded you about the bet. After you forgot about it.

        Also, I’m pissed at Tom Mesereau, who I know, for not persuading his client to plead guilty. (We made our bet before Mesereau joined Cosby’s defense team. )

        1. ddDrain,..
          I brought it up with Olly a few months ago because I thought I’d made the bet with him.
          Then I checked back and found that I’d made it with you.
          I didn’t see that you had posted anything reminding me of the bet, and I just assumed that your scarce presence here recently was to avoid paying off on the bet.😉😀
          Anyway, I haven’t made it to So. California much in recent years, but if and when I make it over that way, I’ll collect on the beer.
          I would rather have just “held it over you” that you failed to pay up, but now that you offer to pay, you took that fun away from me😊😃.

        2. Don de Drain – so no Xmas card for Tom Mersereau this year. Hope you are situated in a fire-free zone.

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