Tweets from the wilderness

Very quick free pattern I stitched last night on a scrap piece of 14-count Aida cloth. I stitched this while watching the FOX News gloat fest over Avenatti’s indictment. Yes, I made a mistake in the middle row in the blue field of the flag and left it. I was probably distracted by Hannity’s sanctimony… This pattern is available at https://www.tinymodernist.com/pages/free-cross-stitch-patterns

Redundancy Warning, lol: This blog post is thoughts that I’ve already posted on Twitter this morning and it’s the same message, I’ve repeated many times, even though I doubt the combatants on both sides of America’s SPIN information war will ever admit they are part of the problem

libertybelle‏ @october601More

Both sides, Trump & FOX News vs. the entire Left & mainstream media remain deeply entrenched in a take no prisoners scorched earth SPIN information war, but each side pretends only the other side is engaged in vicious character assassinations and orchestrated spin attacks.7:57 AM – 23 May 2019

The reality check on this constant back and forth about who is the victim feeds the respective spin on each side. The Clintons have been using this “poor, pitiful me” spin tactic (victim of a Witch Hunt) since the 90s and Trump borrowed that spin tactic from Hillary, just like everything else about his spin effort.

The Clintons were under investigation throughout Bill Clinton’s presidency, some of it was justified, some was excessive and yes, the Clintons were extremely corrupt.

Trump has been under investigation even during the 2016 campaign, which in itself is under investigation presently. He remains under investigation by Dems and some is excessive, and yes, Trump is extremely corrupt too.

The Clintons lied constantly. Trump lies constantly. Lying constantly makes you a corrupt person, no matter how much parsing of words and spin you try to gloss over this character question. Of course, being corrupt is not necessarily “criminal”, which seems to be the theme both Clinton and Trump apologists use, but being corrupt should be a flashing warning light to sensible people that this person is not trustworthy or someone you should follow.

Corrupt leaders invariably corrupt their followers. This is just common sense. Character matters and it especially matters in leaders, who are people of great “influence”. The President holds the highest elected office in the land and with that office comes not only the presidential duties and powers laid out in the The Constitution, but also the role of “influencer-in-chief”. The President of the United States can also use the office to set the tone for our country simply by how he/she acts.

A lot of Trump supporters see the Clinton and Dem corruption in their scorched earth spin efforts to destroy Trump, like the Trump-Russia spin/investigation spin hysteria and the orchestrated character assassination spin effort waged against Judge Brett Kavanaugh and they refuse to see anything wrong in Trump’s “fighting back”. Trump sinks into the gutter like the Dems in “fighting back” against Dem smear efforts, but Senate Republicans and Kavanaugh took a high road approach to countering the Dem smear onslaught and managed to win over, even moderate, Susan Collins. Eureka! Perhaps, Trump should consider some other ways to counter the Dems spin attacks (he won’t).

  1. libertybelle‏ @october601 3h3 hours agoMoreTrump broke through the Left & mainstream media control of spin war in America by mimicking the Clinton spin model. He has far less media, but he relies on his own stage presence and hijacking the Left’s spin. In military terms, he owns the OODA loops:1 reply0 retweets0 likesReply 1 Retweet  Like  View Tweet activity

libertybelle‏ @october601More

Trump broke through the Left & mainstream media control of spin war in America by mimicking the Clinton spin model. He has far less media, but he relies on his own stage presence and hijacking the Left’s spin. In military terms, he owns the OODA loops:8:50 AM – 23 May 2019

libertybelle‏ @october601More

Neither side will win this scorched earth SPIN information war. The only outcome will be an America that is totally factionalized & ungovernable. SPIN information war corrupts everyone who engages in it – it’s orchestrated propaganda warfare to control public opinion in America 8:50 AM – 23 May 2019

I’ve said all of this before. There are no winners in scorched earth information warfare, just escalating corruption of our government processes, the media and most of all our culture. There’s absolutely no threads of common ground left to sew together to unite our country at the end of the road – only rabid factions, who distrust and despise each other.

Trump was not just being “reactive” to the media, he was reacting to Nancy Pelosi launching another Dem spin attack, with her “Trump cover-up” hit, before heading to the White House yesterday. Haberman and the mainstream media sell the Dem spin constantly. The mainstream media loyally ran with the Schumer/Pelosi version of the White House meeting and Trump’s behavior and they repeated Pelosi’s spin “Trump covered-up” over and over and over last night. The “mainstream media” is really the Dem’s spin chorus. They attack Fox News as Trump’s “state TV”, but they don’t see that they do the same thing with running the Dems spin talking points. Just like FOX News peeps see only the mainstream media “bias” against Trump. Both sides are engaged in waging spin attacks.

I finished stitching this a couple days ago and haven’t washed and pressed it yet. It’s from a Leisure Arts leaflet, Scriptures of Thanksgiving. This design, with no fractional stitches, worked well on 14-count Aida cloth, which I have a lot of and am trying to use up.

Besides my daily housework/ caregiver chores and my blogging and tweeting today, I want to work on stitching another Christmas pattern. Sometime soon I need to start working on turning some of these stitched pieces into actual Christmas ornaments… Following the spin war or needlework… Needlework is the winner in my book, lol.

Have a nice day!

Blog note: I apologize for the twitter repeats, but WordPress has a new editing program called “blocks” and I am just learning how to use it.

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A few bits of politics

There’s currently a deluge of reports and other information pertaining to the endless Trump-Russia mess, the Steele dossier mess, and assorted other matters in Washington. It’s hard to even keep track of all of these reports and the information, let alone find time to read through all of it.

There are various audio versions of the Mueller report available to purchase and this week Congressional Dems are doing a public reading of the Mueller report. However, I located a free version of the Mueller report on Stitcher, that’s broken down into chapters and you can pick and choose what parts you want to listen to or slowly work your way through the entire report. Here’s the link: https://www.stitcher.com/podcast/mueller-report-audio. I’ll listen to some of some of this, but after reading a bit of it, the part that interests me the most is Volume I – the Russian activities and national security aspect of this. The Volume II obstruction part will end up being both a #Resist political and spin hyped melodrama and I’m sick to death of the 2016 spin reruns.

A couple days ago, Congressman Doug Collins released 9 more transcripts of House Oversight interviews of Obama officials, including interview of Loretta Lynch, Andrew McCabe and James Rybicki. Here’s the link to those transcripts: https://dougcollins.house.gov/transparency?utm_source=Collins+Judiciary+Press+List&utm_campaign=7040e314eb-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_2019_05_17_03_29&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_ff92df788e-7040e314eb-169041553

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Trying audiobooks for the first time

Finished the In-the-Pink Zinnias tissue box cover

When our kids were growing up we spent a lot of time utilizing the Army post library wherever we lived.  When we lived stateside, we often frequented the local public library too.

After the kids left home and I was busy with a full-time job, I drifted away from going to the library.  Of course I still bought books and I have hundreds of books on my kindle, many of them free e-books, that I haven’t read yet.   I have piles of books, paperbacks and hardcovers, many that I haven’t read too.  For quite a while making time to read more has been another one of my goals, so I had been thinking about trying audiobooks, as a way to get through more books.

I suppose like many people, I have become wary of devices and subscribing to digital services, that I doubt I’ll use enough to warrant the cost.  I have an Amazon Prime membership that I truly don’t utilize nearly as much as I could, but I’ve looked at Audible many times… and hesitated.  

Somehow, my sister, telling my son about an app called Hoopla, that offers free e-books and audiobooks, available through many public libraries, motivated me to go to my public library recently.

I can’t remember the last time I had been to my local library. So, I got a new library card, since my old library card has been replaced with a newer card system.  My local library has a nice selection of audiobooks, so I signed out my first audiobook.  In a comment, I mentioned my first audiobook to try was a Brad Thor novel, Code of Conduct.  I enjoy thriller/spy novels (along with many other genres… not just historical romance novels).

 

Finished this Christmas Santa for another ornament

As I was stitching away and listening to this Thor novel, very quickly the dead bodies were piling up, as the main character, Scot Harvath, dealt with some unfriendly rebels in the Congo.  When I mentioned the dead bodies and vivid descriptions of  “head shots” and weaponry mumbo-jumbo to one of my sons (the one who is a gun-enthusiast), he asked me, “Did they deserve killing?”  And I said, “Well they were violent rebels trying to kill him.”  My son smiled and said, “Then it’s all good.”  Men are weird.

By the second CD of this Thor novel, I decided to check out the Hoopla thing, I signed up on my home PC, but there’s a Hoopla app for other devices too.  All I needed to sign up was my library card.  It was very simple to sign up and use. 

I quickly found a story more suited to working on needlework, A Fall of Marigolds, by Susan Meissner.  I also downloaded the Hoopla app to my tablet, so I can read e-books or listen to audiobooks on that too.

My library also offers RB digital, another free digital service of e-books and audiobooks . If technologically-challenged me could manage the sign-up, downloading the app and using these free digital media services, anyone can.

I’m on the 4th CD (out of 10 CDs total) in the Thor audiobook, which I’ve relegated to listening to as I scroll through Twitter and somehow the blood and guts action in this story goes much better with reading Twitter politics than it does with needlework, lol.

I’ve also started a second audiobook on Hoopla, Becoming Mrs. Lewis: The Improbable Love Story of Joy Davidman and C.S. Lewis, a novel by Patti Callahan and the title adequately describes the plot.

The world of books has certainly changed dramatically from my childhood of being thrilled with hand-me-down books to present day life awash in so many options to access books through my public library and that’s not even touching the many free e-books available online via just a bit of online searching. The ease of using these free digital services at home with my library card amazed me.  By all means, check out your local public library and you might be amazed too.

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Lots more questions about the Hillary email investigation & Crowdstrike too

I am wondering if the FBI’s Clinton email investigation was stage-managed by Clinton lawyers from the start?

The news that Attorney General, William Barr, appointed a U.S. prosecutor, John Durham, to investigate the origins of the Russia investigation has set off a media and spin firestorm.  The general media consensus about Durham’s reputation seems to be that he is an apolitical, by-the-book, hard-nosed prosecutor with extensive experience investigating organized crime and high-level government corruption.  We can be sure that no matter what he finds or doesn’t find America’s rabid partisans will continue to foam and froth at the mouth and our endless spin war over 2016 will grind on.

With so much spin to sift through, my most trusted source of information and analysis on this ongoing 2016 mess, remains Andrew C. McCarthy.  Here’s a link to a Byron York podcast  from last week, where his guest is Andrew McCarthy,  that covers the latest happenings.

In various comments on my blog last week,  JK and I tossed a lot of theories, suspicions and links back and forth, so I’ll include some of them here:

May 17, 2019 – The McCarthy Report podcast hosted by Rich Lowry, where Andrew McCarthy covers the latest.  After minute 28:30, JK thought this information was rather a bombshell: https://www.nationalreview.com/podcasts/the-mccarthy-report/episode-46-the-dossier-durham-and-disagreements/

May 18, 2019: The John Batchelor Show, with Thaddeus McCotter and Andrew McCarthy as guests, is a podcast offering insights and works to connect the dots into the origins of the Steele dossier and investigation of the Trump campaign:  https://audioboom.com/posts/7264660-the-unconnected-dots-of-steele-trubnikov-surkov-halper-page-pappadopolos-andrewcmccarthy

May 18, 2019: In a comment, JK posted this link to a McCarthy NR piece, The Steele Dossier and the ‘VERIFIED APPLICATION’ That Wasn’t.

May 18, 2019: JK posted this link to another John Batchelor Show podcast, titled, Why did Christopher Steele name Russian names to the State Department October 11, 2016? @ChuckRoss, where Batchelor interviews Chuck Ross, a reporter at The Daily Caller, a right-leaning news site, that, unlike the mainstream media, actually covered the Awan Brothers scandal (see the many investigative reports by Luke Rosiak – if you go to this link, scroll down and there’s a long list of other Rosiak reporting on the Awans).

Since I veered into the Awan “scandal”, which the mainstream media blew past in another “nothing to see here” Dem spin cover-up effort, JK mentioned this Awan scandal, so here’s our exchange, which gets to the real problem for America with this endless scorched earth SPIN information war  – AMERICA’S NATIONAL SECURITY TAKES A BACKSEAT TO PARTISAN POLITICS:

JK

Thanks for that link – yeah I’d seen that but hadn’t gotten to the ‘bright idea part’ of clicking on the guy’s tweet to open the whole thread. Remember LB, I’m Twitter-Ignorant.

***

Sometime/Somehow I expect we’ll see (maybe not in our lifetimes though maybe our kids will) But anyway I’ve long thought, in at least the Podesta emails hack specifically, “the unrung bell” has the fingerprints of the Awan Crime Family Syndicate all over it. Nobody it sometimes seems to me even remembers those Pakis having access to virtually all the D-Team’s stuff, computerspeakingwise.

I believe you are right there, JK. I found it hilarious with the Dem outrage spin cycles about various Trump administration security clearances, like Kushner’s, yet they all turned a blind-eye to the having a Sec of State running the State Department from an unsecured, makeshift server that two flunkies (with no computer-expertise) put together in the Clinton’s basement and then add in the Awan brothers, who were providing IT services for not just the DNC, but for several Congressional Dems. And add in that the, tens of thousands (one estimate was around 49,000) State Dept emails on the Weiner laptop. Abedin’s family is Muslim Brotherhood-connected, so how she got a security clearance is a mystery to me. The Awan brothers had financial disasters in their background, fraud too, I think, so how they were cleared to be handling computer IT services in Congress baffles me. They stole computer equipment too, I believe…

The mainstream media threw a lid on all of that.

The Dems are total frauds and have zero credibility when it comes to national security.

With the unfolding Steele dossier and “at the beginning” queries into how the investigation of Trump/Russian collusion began, another source I trust is Trey Gowdy, former SC Congressman.  On May 14, 2019, Gowdy made a comment in an interview with Sean Hannity, that instigated a “rats scurrying effect” of finger-pointing between James Comey and John Brennan.  I avoid watching Sean Hannity, because I place him in the same category as Rachel Maddow – pathetic partisan shills, who will say anything to prop up their own partisans.  That said, here’s the link and here’s the Gowdy comment that led to media spin efforts between Saint Comey of Mount Extremely Careless and John Brennan, Our Lord of Unassailable Intelligence Professionalism:

HANNITY: Last question —

GOWDY: So, whoever is investigating this, tell them to look for emails between Brennan and Comey in December of 2016.

https://www.realclearpolitics.com/video/2019/05/14/gowdy_look_for_emails_between_brennan_and_comey_in_december_2016.html

May 15, 2019, Streiff at RedState wrote a piece, Brennan And Comey Start Pointing At Each Other As Barr’s Prosecutor Closes In, which explains the divergent versions of how the unverified Steele dossier got included in the intelligence report in 2016.

Often I come across information from sources, whom I have no idea who they are , if their information is reliable, verified or corroborated, but it’s still fascinating and raises more questions in my mind.

Andrew McCarthy mentioned a Twitter account, Undercover Huber, which is an unverified account, although that doesn’t mean much of anything really, just no blue checkmark seal of approval from Twitter as a person who is worthy of notice.  I’m both an unverified account and also a total failure in the “influencing” world of social media. Undercover Huber has almost 70.000 followers and Andrew McCarthy mentioned him, so I pay attention to Undercover Huber tweets.  I have an unverified account on Twitter, down to 50 followers and I feel certain Andrew McCarthy is never going to mention me, lol.  Anyhow, reading Undercover Huber tweets are very interesting.

McCarthy retweeted another unverified Twitter account thread, from an account, brennan’sorangejumpsuit, who has posted some tweet threads using government documents available through FOIA and news reports, where he pieces together and highlights intriguing bits of information, like this: https://twitter.com/15poundstogo/status/1110736622029549573 and this: https://twitter.com/15poundstogo/status/1130065451906666496

The tweet thread that McCarthy retweeted is this one: https://twitter.com/15poundstogo/status/1127666411143401474.   The thread is long and leads to questions veering in several different directions, but since I am a timeline person and I prefer to understand matters from a  “let’s start at the beginning” approach, here’s what caught my attention:

One question I have is whether Crowdstrike participated in the FBI’s investigation (cough, cover-up) of whether Hillary’s private server was hacked by foreign powers. That would undermine Crowdstrike’s credibility/objectivity.

The FBI’s investigation of HRC’s private server began with an IC IG referral on 7/6/15. The formal investigation opened 7/10/15.

Exactly in between those two dates, on 7/8/15, Crowdstrike was awarded an emergency, no-bid, 364-day contract with the FBI:

The FBI is in no big hurry to disclose what that contract was for.

I found this Crowdstrike information very interesting.  If the FBI signed an emergency, no-bids contract with Crowdstrike as soon the Hillary email server investigation started, what on earth was Crowdstrike contracted to investigate?  Who at the FBI approved this emergency contract?  Was the DOJ involved in this emergency contract with Crowdstrike?  Did the FBI ever independently analyze the Clinton homebrew server or devices turned over to the FBI or did Crowdstrike, which is also on the payroll of Perkins Coie handle all the computer forensics work in the FBI’s Clinton email investigation?

It seems to me, that answering these Crowdstrike questions will explain a lot about why the Hillary email investigation was handled totally unlike other FBI investigations.  James Comey being publicly cornered by Loretta Lynch, to make the call on whether to prosecute Hillary Clinton, after her infamous tarmac meeting with Bill Clinton, may have been par for the course in bending all the rules to accommodate the Clintons special treatment rule at the Lynch DOJ.  The special rule may have started at the beginning, with Clinton lawyers working through the Lynch DOJ to make sure FBI  computer forensic experts never laid hands on the Clinton server or the devices Hillary deigned to turn over (2 ipads out of 5 and none of her 13 blackberries per the FBI Notes released in 2016).

I am wondering that if the Clinton lawyers made sure that Crowdstrike, a firm also on the Perkins Coie payroll, handled all of the Clinton email computer forensic investigations, did Crowdstrike also do the quickie Weiner laptop investigation in October 2016, when Comey reopened the Hillary email investigation???  And, if  Crowdstrike was tasked with that Weiner laptop investigation, who all was involved in orchestrating that?  Comey takes all the heat about the Hillary email investigation, but perhaps, the Lynch DOJ or even higher, President Obama, himself, may have been directing the Hillary kid-glove treatment from the get-go.

Finding out who was calling the shots in the Hillary email investigation is important, because James Comey will be the one to take the fall as the Clinton cronies close ranks, imo, even if he was just a man caught in the middle with Clinton loyalists and Obama higher-ups (some overlap there) directing this investigation and FBI investigators who wanted to do their job.  Comey is someone whom both sides of rabid partisans love to hate, which makes him the perfect candidate to become the Clinton’s spin patsy, if they want someone to take the hit, so they can declare “There’s been accountability, so for the good of the country, it’s time to move on.”  Saint Comey doesn’t realize that the Clinton/Dem machine will throw him over the cliff as the fall guy in a heartbeat, while protecting Loretta Lynch and the other DOJ rats.

Exposing the full scope of the corruption, all the way to the top, will expose too many powerful Dems, not just the Clintons, so I doubt that will happen.

Alas, it’s always more questions and zero accountability in the Clinton public corruption maze…

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A blog post from 2016

Well, it’s Mother’s Day, so I’ll skip the politics today.  I’m going to rerun a blog post from a few years ago, but  if some writing inspiration strikes after a couple more cups of coffee, perhaps write something new too.  Here’s Hand-me-downs:

Hand-me-downs

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A hand-me-down book from my childhood

Fair warning, this is going to be another backwoods PA story from my childhood.  Escape while you can:-)

I was born in 1960 and grew-up in a small village in the Pocono Mountains.  Our end of the county was and still is called the West End (which is synonymous with hicks).  Most of our neighbors were of PA German ancestry, although even in the 1960s, the urban exodus to the Poconos had begun.   The Poconos had been a vacation spot for city dwellers since the Civil War era, but during my childhood many of these urban visitors began building homes in the Poconos and staying year-round.  Many of the locals hold the urban dwellers moving into their peaceful country neighborhood as loud, boorish, pushy, stupid and very rude.

Back in the 90s, a phone conversation with my mother railing about some “stupid New Yorker” about sums up the sentiment and the disconnect.  My mother was complaining about some woman from New York who wanted the township to pay for street lights in her little residential area in the Poconos.  The woman also apparently had thought sidewalks would be a good idea.  My mother, like most locals, ended her complaints with a statement that went pretty much like, “I wish these damned city people would go back to the city and leave us alone!”

However, that unknown woman from New York got a very different reaction than my mother dealing with our pastor’s wife, who was not only New York City born and bred, but also Jewish.  The parsonage was right across the road from our home, so our pastor’s wife was also our neighbor.  My mother adored our pastor’s wife, my mother adored her elderly mother too, who would come and visit for several weeks at a time when I was a child.

It’s often interesting how many people will prejudge an entire group of people, but when they are in a situation where they are dealing with an individual from that group and getting to know him or her, all of sudden common ground can be found and friendships blossom.

Spending my adult life around Army communities, I’ve always been very grateful for the experience of being able to meet so many people from so many different countries, backgrounds, and experiences.  The thing that binds Army communities is soldiers with a common mission.  Their wives, no matter if they are foreign-born or American invariably become friends, share recipes, share in the worries when their spouses deploy, and share in a sense of community.

Finding that common ground in America is an existential crisis, not media hysteria about “fake news” or “Russian influence”.

The partisan political divides, listening to political pundits, reading news from various political stripes and observing comments on Twitter, facebook, etc., make me feel like these groups live on different planets, not in the same country.

So, back to my childhood, in a family with six kids, with widely different opinions.  For instance, conservative me, has a far-left brother, who was really into zero population growth as a cause.  When he lectured me when I was pregnant with my third child, asking if my husband and I thought our genes were so good that we had to spread them around with so many children, well, I didn’t get angry.  I smiled at him and replied, “Well, now that you mention it, yes, we do.”  I also told him I wanted 5 or 7 kids, because I like odd numbers (although we stopped “spreading our genes around”, overpopulating the world, at 4 kids).

No matter how angry we were at each other or how vehemently we disagreed, when it was dinner time, we all had to sit at the table and behave civilly.  My parents didn’t want to hear how mad we were or how much we disagreed or whether we had been fighting all day about something – we had to sit at the table and eat our dinner.  There was no taking your plate to another room or screaming at each other at the table allowed.

Especially with the advent of the internet, the splintering of America has escalated, where there’s really very little discussion in online political discussion forums, only hyper-charged partisan attacks.  Each side generates talking points, which the political combatants hurl back and forth non-stop.  Poll numbers get tossed in to validate positions, although really polls are meaningless – they’re the opinions of a few people extrapolated to represent the opinions of very large groups of people.

I’ve met many wonderful people from New York City and other urban areas.  I’ve also met some total assholes right where I grew up, who were locals.  And it shouldn’t even have to be said in America, but we’ve got to start talking to each other and move beyond our own little cocoon of people who think just like we do or hold the same political views.

We need to start embracing getting to know people as individuals.

The same goes for considering political viewpoints and here again, my mother taught me that you can’t make anyone believe anything.  My oldest sister is 8 years older than me and she had friends in high school, who like her, read a lot.  Along with wearing hand-me-down clothes, I became a proud collector of hand-me-down books.  Anything my sister or her friends were ready to discard, I was ready to add it to my “collection” of books.  I read the entire Warren Commission Report in paperback, I got a copy of To Kill A Mockingbird.  I still have the Watchwords of Liberty, filled with great American quotes.  I also ended up with paperback histories like:

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Then somehow I ended up with:

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So, while you might expect my conservative, staunch Republican mother to want this book out of her house, you’d be wrong.  She told me she didn’t believe in Marxism, but to decide for myself.  She gave me a copy of a little booklet (which I gave to someone), called, Good Citizen and she told me this booklet had a lot of interesting information on America.  So, I read Marx’s Concept of Man and then I read her Good Citizen booklet and many other books too.

In 1976, the American Bicentennial fueled a bunch of books on the American Revolution and my American love affair with The Constitution and our republic bloomed like cherry blossoms in Washington springtime.  I was hooked on American ideals.  I had started adding to my hand-me-down book “collection” with books I bought with babysitting money – books like:

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I also got enthralled by The Kent Family Chronicles, that John Jakes series commemorating the 200 year anniversary of America.  By that point, I was sold on The Constitution, sold on American ideals and Marx sounded like depressing whining about “unfairness”, where there’s never any hope for individuals to aspire to anything… just endless reliance on imposition of command economy enforcers to decide on what’s fair and relentless fueling class warfare. The American Bicentennial fueled a life-long love of reading American history.  My short time in the Army expanded that to loving to read military history too.

In life, we all have some really dumb ideas and beliefs.   That’s the truth!  No one gets through life being perfect and all-knowing.  For instance, I abhor violence and had this idea that all behavior is learned, so when I had kids, I didn’t want my kids to be violent.  I didn’t want my sons to have any toy guns, because I believed that would encourage violence.  I believed this despite the fact that I got into plenty of fistfights as a kid fighting bullies.

My mother and sisters laughed at me and told me I was stupid.  My husband just rolled his eyes.  My toddler sons, well, they turned everything into a weapon, to include their older sister’s Barbie dolls.  They were very destructive and liked to clobber each other, while there I was telling them in this prissy voice, “you’ve got to be nice!”  My daughter didn’t take to them wrecking her stuff and she smacked them when they touched her stuff.  So much for my toy guns make boys violent belief.

When I told my mother about my sons throwing everything and turning everything into a weapon, which my daughter had never done, my mother said, “welcome to the world of boys.”

Here’s another story on “boys” from a few years later.  We were living in Germany and I was throwing a birthday party for one of my sons.  My next-door neighbor had a lot of very colorful finches in a cage and she decided to let them fly loose that day.  They were getting ready to PCS back to the states.  My daughter came running in the house to tell me that all these little boys had sticks and were trying to kill these little finches that were sitting in the bushes around the house.  So, I walked outside and there was this group of little boys, bloodlust in their eyes, gleefully trying to kill these tiny birds with big sticks.   They were barbarians!  In that moment I realized that there is something about males and violence that is probably hard-wired.  And I realized that my “be nice” idea had been idiotic all along.

What people believe can’t be forced, so it’s best to try to find that common ground, I keep blabbing on about.  Here again, I think my mother had the right idea there too – get people to sit at the same table and share a meal, insisting that everyone be polite.

Simple as it may be, perhaps just getting people to share a meal and talk might work miracles, where all the social programs have failed.  Here’s an old LB blog post from 2014:

“I’m always amazed at how when people sit down to share a meal, the petty squabbles subside, conversations almost invariably turn to family and home.  A friendly dinner table is the world’s most under-tapped peacemaking tool.  The simple act of breaking bread together at a table of brotherhood doesn’t seem all that hard and once people can come together and peacefully share a meal and conversation, then all the other politicized barriers fall to the wayside.  Community potlucks could rebuild communities and not cost taxpayers a dime.  Believe it, because it’s true and with so much animosity and hatred in America, at the very least neighbors might make new friends, so there’s no downside to the endeavor.”

https://libertybellediaries.com/2014/11/29/another-home-truth/

I also quoted my mother’s least favorite poet, Maya Angelou in that post.  I’m not a fan of Angelou’s poetry either, but she sure nailed a home truth with this quote:

“Hate, it has caused a lot of problems in the world, but has not solved one yet.” –
http://www.goodreads.com/quotes/26244-hate-it-has-caused-a-lot-of-problems-in-the

Again, finding ways to heal the divides in America is an existential necessity.

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Timelines matter

For me, the most serious issue in the entire 2016 scorched earth SPIN information war remains the corruption of top official U.S. intelligence and FBI decision-making based on politicized, spun information being fed to them by partisan sources.   From following the 8 years of the Obama administration’s use and abuse of government information, from the IRS scandal weaponizing processes to target right-wing political groups to Clinton-connected lawyers feeding op dirt information into the DOJ, State Department, and FBI, there were many disturbing actions reeking of weaponizing government information for partisan purposes.

At the same time, negative Clinton campaign dirt on Trump was being fed into official Obama administration channels, the FBI, reportedly, had two open criminal investigation into the Clintons – one was Hillary’s email investigation and the other was multiple field office investigations into the Clinton Foundation on pay-to-play corruption.

At top levels of the Obama administration, it seems to me, they wanted to grasp at any wisps of dirt on Trump and build it into treasonous “Russian collusion” and at the same time, bury and dismiss real evidence of grossly negligent handling of highly classified information and Clinton Foundation corruption.  The seeming two separate standards of justice disturbs me.

James Comey, former FBI director, to this day remains sketchy on explaining what he knew about the Steele dossier’s provenance.  Likewise, his explanation of his decision making in recommending no charges in the Clinton email investigation, back in July 2016, makes no sense.  Later still, with the DOJ IG report’s findings regarding the email investigation, Comey’s answers about the FBI leaking, for which the IG found Andrew McCabe, lacked candor and found Comey’s version more credible, don’t sit right with me.

Those McCabe leaks to the media were unauthorized and designed to counter leaks about the FBI investigation of Clinton Foundation pay-to-play corruption.  McCabe leaking was initiated to silence leaks coming out of the FBI’s NY field office  Those field office leaks dealt with the tens of thousands of Hillary State Dept. emails the FBI found on the Weiner family laptop, while investigating the Anthony Weiner texting scandal.

Comey’s actions juxtaposed to his explanations smell of deceit.  He went along with the Clinton spin effort in July of 2016 to bury the email investigation and his clumsy effort of reopening that investigation and doing a quickie investigation of the Weiner laptop, was just an effort to quell the leaks coming out about the Clinton Foundation corruption and Weiner laptop.  That quickie Weiner laptop investigation was just cover dressing for him to bury both FBI criminal investigations of the Clintons, and hopefully secure his position and standing with whom he believed would be his next boss – Hillary Clinton.

When he was fired, Comey led the media SPIN charge, by leaking FBI memos of notes (some reportedly containing classified information) that he typed up on FBI equipment, after his private meetings with President Trump.  He sent these memos to a friend, who leaked them to the media.  Later, after negative press about these memos, Comey declared that the friend, Daniel Richman, a former federal prosecutor for the Southern District of New York, was his attorney.  This move seemed to be an attempt to tie a pretty bow on a stinking heap of corrupt Comey leaking, which was designed to create a media SPIN furor over Comey’s firing and create political pressure for the appointment of a special counsel to investigate President Trump and his campaign on “Russian collusion”.

However, it seems to me, that in understanding our domestic spin war timeline, we need to go back to its beginnings in the 90s,  and keep referring to notes from then to now.  Of course there’s Team Clinton vs Team GOP ( vast, right-wing conspiracy in Hillary’s view), but in the 2008 election Team Obama emerged too and while Team Obama and Team Clinton unite on most efforts to thwart Team GOP, on some others Team Obama tries to distance itself from Team Clinton.

In early 2016, it seems to me some of Team Obama at the top were all-in for Team Clinton, while others were less enthused and at various points with these two ongoing FBI criminal investigations of the Clintons, at the very top, President Obama and his inner-circle were debating whether to throw the Clintons to the FBI hands of justice and have Vice President, Joe Biden, enter the race or help the Clinton machine bury the FBI investigations.

I believe Bill Clinton directly pressured President Obama in 2015 to make the email scandal go away.  I believe that by the summer of 2016 and the email scandal still lingering, Bill Clinton was livid and I believe that is why he took matters into his own hands and orchestrated the tarmac meeting with Loretta Lynch directly, to set in motion the “for appearances sake only” 4th of July weekend FBI interview of Hillary and the orchestrated Clinton machine spin to be the end of the email investigation.

Comey decided to place his future in the hands of Team Clinton and he went along with Lynch’s corrupting the process, by refusing to recuse herself after the tarmac meeting with Bill Clinton, while abdicating her prosecutorial duties to Comey.  Nothing Comey said at that July press conference made sense – especially the part about how Hillary showed no intent to break the law.  He waxed on about “intent”.

Timelines matter to me, when trying to understand events.  Personal connections along those timelines help create a clearer picture, at least in my mind of the story.  James Comey plays clueless on what he knows about the provenance of the Steele dossier.  He also plays clueless on the provenance of the Clinton private server.

Bill Clinton had that server set up in their home in the summer of 2008, after Hillary suspended her 2008 campaign.

At the moment the Attorney General is putting together a team to look at the provenance of the Trump-Russia investigation.

I haven’t sorted out the Mueller report findings in my head yet and am still reading it and mulling over the information.

Andrew McCarthy can be relied on to give fact-based analysis of legal matters and he wrote another must-read piece, The FBI’s Trump-Russia Investigation Was Formally Opened on False Pretenses, at National Review today.

A line in McCarthy’s excellent piece stuck out at me, because it prodded something that’s been missing in the provenance of the Clinton email investigation too and it explains that “intent” issue James Comey says was absent.

I tweeted this tweet thread this morning:

Interesting: “Downer has a history with the Clintons that includes arranging a $25 million donation to the Clinton Foundation in 2006, when he was Australia’s foreign minister and then-senator Hillary Clinton was the favorite to become U.S. president in 2008.”

Here’s an interesting Clinton Foundation fact too, from the FBI Notes released in September of 2016. Justin Cooper, Bill Clinton’s aide/IT guy, told the FBI Bill Clinton’s personal email server was set up around June 2008.

10:07 AM – 6 May 2019

(Sorry the link didn’t copy – https://www.fbi.gov/news/pressrel/press-releases/fbi-releases-documents-in-hillary-clinton-e-mail-investigation)

Bill Clinton was having a personal Clinton Foundation server installed in their home, as Hillary suspended her presidential campaign. She left the race over $22 million in debt.

She couldn’t do political fundraising as Sec of State. She merged her State Dept business with the Clinton Foundation business on the family personal email server. 🤨

Never fear, Hillary always finds a way to “power through it” 🧘‍♀️:

Timelines matter, they really do.

 

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Filed under General Interest, Hillary's Email Scandal, Politics, Public Corruption, Twitter Tales

My Twitter/Stitching Multitasking

Today, President Trump took to Twitter retweeting some far-right loon, who was banned from facebook, tweeting out a message for Kim Jong Un and praising Putin. The Kim Jong Un tweet rightfully evoked outrage and is disgraceful coming from a U.S. president:

Anything in this very interesting world is possible, but I believe that Kim Jong Un fully realizes the great economic potential of North Korea, & will do nothing to interfere or end it. He also knows that I am with him & does not want to break his promise to me. Deal will happen!

Quite a Saturday morning for a president who should be studying serious US policy issues and actions.  Instead, he was on Twitter trying to be the center of the news cycle and generating negative reactions from the mainstream media and Left.  He never learns and he never actually bothers to focus on anything other than promoting himself on social media and TV.

With President Trump, it’s always about his “popularity” and promoting his reality TV show presidency.  Seriously, he brags about how many “followers” he has on Twitter and perhaps, in the future, looking back on this time in our history,  Trump’s ascent to the highest office in the land will serve as a cautionary tale on the dangers of social media and Reality TV fame.

For the record, my Twitter following was at 51 this morning, so I’m destined to be unpopular and a voice in the wilderness on social media… which suits me fine.  Likewise, this blog is my lost in woods place where I just sit and write my observations.  I thank everyone, who stops by. Comments, even critical ones, are welcome (no profanity and name-calling, please).

After tweeting too much myself last night and this morning about the Clinton corruption, I decided it’s time to actually sit down and read through more of the Mueller report and take notes, like I did when reading through all of the released FBI Notes in 2016 on the Clinton email investigation.

I have been reading about Soviet propaganda since 1980, when I first became interested in this topic.  I had developed an interest in all things Russian in high school, having the luck to have a high school German teacher, who was a retired Army translator. He convinced the school administration to add Russian to our school’s foreign language offerings.  I studied German for 4 years and Russian for two years, but  have no knack for foreign languages.  Spending my adult life around the Army and being a frequent Army post library patron, I often happened upon Soviet-themed books.  My education is piecemeal at best and I am not an expert on anything, but I do know how to bake some pretty good cookies, lol.

Volume I of the Mueller report is filled with fascinating bits of information, but every time I see a redacted box labeled “Investigative Technique”, I experience a sense of disappointment, like I am deprived of the most fascinating aspect of this investigation.  Although, truth be told, I am totally clueless on technology and most of the cyber lingo, so probably wouldn’t understand most of those details anyway.

Took a photo of this report sitting it on my kids’ old rocking chair, where I have other books stacked.  The book, Legionary, which shows in the photo above the 9/11 Commission Report is one of my favorites – a sort of tongue -in-cheek “unofficial” Roman Soldier’s manual, filled with an amazing array of trivia and historical tidbits.  Page 6 has the Roman phrase, “conscribe te militem in legionibus. pervagare orbem terrarum. inveni terras externas. cognosce miros peregrinos. eviscera eos.”  (hope I copied that correctly)  The translation is, “Join the legions, see the world, travel to foreign parts, meet interesting and exotic people, and disembowel them.  I laughed out loud when I read that and it brought home to me that there is nothing new in the world  As a young soldier in 1980, I saw a poster that had a similar sentiment that is typical soldiers’ dark humor.  When I read this line, well, I was hooked.

Another odd habit of mine started in my early teens when, in a stack of hand-me-down paperbacks from my oldest sister, I acquired a beat-up copy of the Warren Commission Report. At this point in my life, after decades of pouring through “government reports”, I face new reports with dread, not eagerness to learn some fascinating tidbits.  Reading through the Mueller report is going to take me some time, as I have only read a few pages at a time and am still in Volume I.

This much I have gleaned Trump and his son, Don Jr. are not merely innocent victims of the Clinton smear campaign (which was real).  They were active players, embracing the Clinton spin and smear techniques, while trying to build their own smear merchant network of connections and media friends.  Trump operated the same sort of sleazy gutter politics as the Clintons.  He was massively under resourced compared to the deep-pockets of big donors the Clintons have, but he benefited from the Clintons’ own sleazy primary strategy (here and here) to get their media friends to promote the most extreme GOP candidates, in hopes of being able to employ Bill Clinton’s famous triangulation strategy.  Trump received billions of dollars in free media during the GOP primary, which elevated his profile and created the myth that Trump was  a “winner”.

However, the Mueller report, even in Volume I, which the media and Dems, pushing fevered impeachment dreams, skipped over in their rush to push obstruction of justice, indicates that Don Jr. was openly encouraging contacts with Wikileaks.  He was not a victim.  Wikileaks direct messaged Don. Jr. (page 60) and Don Jr. avidly direct messaged Wikileaks back seeking dirt on Hillary.  I stick to my original assessment since 2015 – Trump and Hillary are the same corrupt, mendacious, ruthless animal.  They will say or do anything to acquire prestige and power.  Neither is morally fit to be president.

I regret tweeting so much last night and this morning, but at least my time on Twitter wasn’t a total waste.  I started another plastic canvas needlepoint tissue box cover and managed to get one side done (photo at the top) and started the 2nd side.  I stitched as I followed Twitter.   This pattern is called In-the-Pink Zinnias, from an old plastic canvas leaflet:

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Filed under General Interest, Politics, Twitter Tales