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Profile Information

Name: Don
Gender: Male
Hometown: Cleveland, Ohio
Home country: USA
Current location: Greenfield, MA
Member since: Sat Sep 1, 2012, 02:28 PM
Number of posts: 51,665

About Me

Since 1995, a year after I was forced into a very early retirement due to Multiple Sclerosis, I have owned and operated a daily newsgathering service out of my home, for a clientele comprised of TV newscasters, Op-Ed columnists, book authors, a national wire-service and some online publications. I post many of the news articles I gather, here on DU. I also post news articles and Op-Eds written/reported/authored by my list of subscribers/clientele.

Journal Archives

Tulsi Gabbard Is Moving Toward An Unconventional Presidential Campaign. Her Fans See "Bernie 2.0."

The Hawaii Democrat, who has bucked her party in Congress, may make an announcement about her 2020 decision as soon as this week.

Alexis Levinson
BuzzFeed News Reporter

Posted on December 17, 2018, at 3:30 p.m. ET

ulsi Gabbard, a Democratic member of Congress from Hawaii, is known — insofar as she is known — for bucking her party. She criticized President Barack Obama’s handling of ISIS. She was widely criticized for traveling to Syria to meet with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, who has been accused by the US government of using chemical weapons against his own people. She rebuked the way the Democratic National Committee handled the 2016 presidential primary, and then publicly resigned as vice chair to endorse Bernie Sanders.

Now, nearly three years later, she is poised to try to convince Democratic primary voters that they should turn the page not just on status quo politics, but on the Vermont senator whom she championed.

Gabbard has acknowledged that she is “seriously considering” a presidential bid. Her team is actively seeking to staff senior roles on a potential presidential campaign, according to a person briefed on the outreach, and has indicated that an announcement could come as soon as this week.

She’s in discussions with the Des Moines–based Asian and Latino Coalition about organizing an event with them sometime in the first two weeks of January. She did several events in New Hampshire earlier this month, on the heels of trips there before the 2018 election. She also made a trip to Nevada the week before the election to connect with “progressive” candidates and causes, and was set to hit early state bingo with a trip to South Carolina, but that trip was scotched due to plane trouble.

Even in a barely formed presidential field, Gabbard would enter the race as an underdog. She did not rate a mention in a Des Moines Register/CNN poll of the Democratic presidential field last week. House members have an inherently difficult time running for national office, as they are often little known outside their district. The last one to successfully do it was James Garfield — in 1880. In a field that could number more than two dozen candidates, Gabbard stands out as the only one to have met with President-elect Donald Trump while being considered for a cabinet post in his administration. And for all her Sanders campaign bona fides, she has a much more conservative political history, and she would hardly be the only one to claim the progressive mantle — with Sens. Elizabeth Warren, Sherrod Brown, Jeff Merkley, and Sanders himself considering bids.


Comey Confronts Fox News Reporter: People Watching Your Network Believe Trump's 'Lies' About FBI

by Josh Feldman | Dec 17th, 2018, 3:54 pm

Former FBI Director James Comey was clearly teed off at Fox News after his hearing with lawmakers today. After calling out Republicans’ “fear of Fox News,” he very directly told a Fox News reporter that people who watch her network believe “nonsense.”

Catherine Herridge, after Comey’s swipe at Fox News, made a point of saying, “I have a question, from Fox News, in fact.” She proceeded to confront him about his handling of Michael Flynn‘s interview, which he defended.

Herridge also asked him about the FBI’s reputation taking “a big hit,” asking him if he shares the responsibility for that.

Comey answered by saying this:

“No. The FBI’s reputation has taken a big hit because the President of the United States, with his acolytes, has lied about it constantly, and in the face of those lies, a whole lot of good people who watch your network believe that nonsense! That’s a tragedy. That will be undone eventually, but that damage has nothing to do with me.”


James Comey Unloads After Interview With Republicans: 'Stand Up' to Your Fear of Fox News

by Aidan McLaughlin | Dec 17th, 2018, 4:03 pm

Former FBI director James Comey was fired up after his latest meeting with lawmakers on Capital Hill, blasting them to reporters for wasting time with questions about the Russia probe and Steele dossier.

“Republicans used to understand that the actions of a president matter, the words of a president matter, the rule of law matters and the truth matters,” Comey told reporters. “Where are those Republicans today? At some point, someone has to stand up and in the face of fear of Fox News, fear of their base, fear of mean tweets, stand up for the values of this country and not slink away into retirement. I find it frustrating to be here answering questions about things that are far less important than the values that this country is built upon,” he added.

CNN’s Manu Raju asked Comey about President Donald Trump calling his former lawyer Michael Cohen a “rat.”

“It undermines the rule of law!” Comey replied. “This is the president of the United States calling a witness who is cooperating with his own Justice Department a rat. Say that again to yourself at home.”

“We have to stop being numb to it — whether you’re a Republican or a Democrat, you need to stand on your feet, overcome your shame and say something,” he added.

Trump went on to confront a Fox News reporter for promoting what he said were Trump’s “lies” about the FBI.


Border Patrol Tells Congressional Delegation It Can't Meet With Agents Who Detained 7-Year-Old

Source: BuzzFeed News

Members of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus are scheduled on Tuesday to visit the remote station where Jakelin Caal was held.

John Stanton
BuzzFeed News Reporter

Reporting From Lordsburg, New Mexico

Posted on December 17, 2018, at 2:23 p.m. ET

LORDSBURG, NEW MEXICO — The Department of Homeland Security has told members of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus that they will not be allowed to speak with Customs and Border Protection agents involved in the apprehension and detention of Jakelin Caal, the 7-year-old Guatemalan asylum seeker who died in CBP custody earlier this month, during their visit Tuesday to the remote station where her illness was first treated.

According to a source with CHC, DHS’s refusal to allow the lawmakers to interview the agents came during a conference call Monday. The refusal frustrated lawmakers, and the CHC source said at one point Rep. Joaquin Castro, a Texas Democrat, warned that if the agents are not made available during the Tuesday inspection, they can expect to be called before Congress as soon as Democrats take control of the House in January.

DHS and members of Congress were frequently at odds over access to DHS facilities during the summer as controversy raged around the administration’s family separation policy.

DHS has promised a full investigation of the events surrounding Caal’s death.

Read more: https://www.buzzfeednews.com/article/johnstanton/border-patrol-congress-guatemalan-girl?bftwnews&utm_term=4ldqpgc#4ldqpgc

Giuliani Sounds Less Confident of Trump's Denials

December 17, 2018 at 9:49 am EST By Taegan Goddard

Jonathan Chait: “In an interview yesterday, George Stephanopoulos asked President Trump’s lawyer Rudy Giuliani if Roger Stone ever gave Trump a ‘heads-up’ about forthcoming WikiLeaks email publications. ‘No, he didn’t, no,’ he replied. But then Giuliani seemed to reconsider his certitude almost immediately. He blinked, and then softened his denial — ‘I don’t believe so’ — before immediately transitioning into a conditional defense of the very charge he had been asked to deny: ‘But again, if Roger Stone gave anybody a heads-up about WikiLeaks’ leaks, that’s not a crime. It would be like giving him a heads-up that the Times is going to print something. One the — the crime, this is why this thing is so weird, strange. The crime is conspiracy to hack; collusion is not a crime; it doesn’t exist.'”

“If you understand the facts and the law in this case, this much should be clear: Trump is almost certainly guilty of both collusion and a crime. And Giuliani’s backpedalling defense reveals that he is no longer confident Trump’s denials will hold.”



Michael Flynn, the FBI and the far right's latest nutbar conspiracy theory

Paranoids and bloviators on the right have a new fantasy: Flynn will be cleared — and somehow so will Donald Trump!

DECEMBER 17, 2018 2:15PM (UTC)

I doubt that Robert Mueller and his staff spend much time worrying about what the right-wing fever swamp thinks about the job they are doing. But if they did pay attention to what the Trump fanatics say about them, they would likely be surprised to learn that they are currently being excoriated for giving Michael Flynn what amounts to a "get out of jail free" card. It's not because these Trump supporters think Flynn deserves to pay a higher price for lying to the feds or betraying the national trust. They think that Mueller's office should have withdrawn all charges and apologized to Flynn for ever indicting him the first place.

Some of these folks laboring under the misapprehension that Flynn's only crime was lying when it's perfectly obvious that the reason he was only charged with that crime is that he was implicated in something much more serious, and had the goods on others with whom he was involved. (You'd think they might have gotten a clue from the massive redactions in the government's sentencing memorandum.) Apparently, they are not aware of how any of this works.

Mueller's prosecutors asked the judge to give Flynn no prison time because they reported he had provided them "substantial" assistance and because his "early cooperation was particularly valuable." They reported that Flynn had participated in 19 interviews and provided documents and communications related to three separate investigations -- two of which nobody had known anything about until this sentencing memo was submitted to the court. It was extremely generous to Flynn, citing his military record and testifying to his devotion to public service.

Proving once again that no good deed goes unpunished, when Flynn's defense lawyers submitted their sentencing memo they decided to imply that their client hadn't been adequately informed that lying to the FBI could be a crime. So the right wing went crazy, building up all kinds of conspiracy theories about how the former head of Intelligence for the Pentagon, who was briefly national security adviser to the president, had been duped by the corrupt Hillary lovers at the FBI. They've been wringing their hands and rending their garments for the last week about "perjury traps" and "witch hunts," portraying Flynn as a naive rube who couldn't possibly have known that lying to the FBI about Russia -- at a time when everyone in the country knew there was a counter-intelligence investigation into Russian interference in the election -- might not be a smart move.

The Wall Street Journal led the way with a fatuous op-ed called “The Flynn Entrapment,” which claimed that Flynn was a tragic figure who couldn't possibly have lied to the FBI because he was a "highly decorated officer" and that the whole thing "reeks of entrapment." They propose that Flynn may have simply "misremembered," implying that he was so intimidated by the G-men that he just stumbled and then pleaded guilty to crimes he didn't commit. They don't address all the further cooperation in the criminal cases cited by the Mueller team, but others on Fox News and elsewhere seem convinced that Flynn was somehow coerced into lying about all of it out of fear for his life and that of his family


A Recession is Imminent According to 67% of CEOs Interviewed Yale CEO Summit

by Caleb Ecarma | Dec 17th, 2018, 10:10 am

During this year’s Yale’s CEO Summit — an off-the-record gathering of 134 of business leaders held in New York last week — nearly half of attendees who responded to a conference survey said the U.S. could wind up in a recession as early as the end of 2018, per The New York Times.

Their fears, per 67 percent of respondents, are caused by uncertainty in the current state of American politics and concern over the Trump administration’s recent spats with other countries over trade deals. Additionally, 75 percent of CEOs who answered survey questions admitted to apologizing to business associates from other countries for Donald Trump’s comments and said he is not pursuing America’s national security interests effectively, while 87 percent told the summit that the president’s deal-making approach is hurting America’s reputation with its allies.

Attendees who weighed in on the Huawei issue said that, while they support Canada arresting the Chinese cell phone manufacture’s CFO on a US warrant, they do not endorse Trump stepping in and disrupting the case.

Trump-related questions aside, 90 percent of the CEOs questioned also called for more regulation of the tech industry.



Trump Claims 'Boarder Security' Without Wall Would Cost Billions

Source: Talking Points Memo

By Kate Riga

December 17, 2018 8:39 am

President Donald Trump took to Twitter Monday, claiming with creative spelling that “boarder security” without his $5 billion wall would actually cost the country more money.



Read more: https://talkingpointsmemo.com/livewire/trump-boarder-security-billions

Fox News Contributor Advises Trump: 'Stop' With The 'Mobster Lingo'

By Kate Riga
December 17, 2018 7:25 am

Fox News contributor Andrew McCarthy took issue with President Donald Trump’s word choice this weekend when he called his former fixer, Michael Cohen, a “rat.”


Trump tweeted incessantly about Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s probe, among other things, this weekend and has ramped up the attacks on Cohen who was sentenced to three years in jail last week.



Susan Collins on 2020 GOP primary: 'I see nothing wrong with challengers'

DECEMBER 17, 2018

Senator Susan Collins of Maine said Sunday she welcomes potential Republican primary challengers to President Trump while also declining to endorse the president’s 2020 reelection bid.

Collins, who helped defeat Republican attempts to repeal the Affordable Care Act through Congress in 2017, argued that primaries help shape policy by allowing ‘‘a lot of viewpoints to surface.’’ Several other Republican senators and elected officials have already endorsed Trump’s 2020 aspirations, including Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, Senator Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, and Senator Ted Cruz of Texas.

‘‘I see nothing wrong with challengers — that is part of our democratic system,’’ Collins said on CNN’s ‘‘State of the Union.’’ ‘‘It’s healthy for our democracy.’’

Collins’s comments come amid wide speculation about a Republican primary bid against Trump, who remains very popular among Republican voters. Ohio Governor John Kasich, who was defeated by Trump in 2016, has encouraged speculation he will challenge the president in 2020, traveling to New Hampshire this fall. Collins supported Kasich in the 2016 election and said in August 2016 that she would not be voting for Trump in that election.

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