Tuesday, 26 March 2019 17:40

Desperately seeking the truth within the Trump-Barr, Mueller report

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Over the past few days, social media has been on fire with discussion about the Mueller report, or what I label the Barr report. There have been accusations made coming from the Trump camp and his ardent supporters in Congress and elsewhere that “Mueller has spoken”, it is time to move on and that people in the media, Congress and elsewhere, who have doubted the president should apologize. Trump and his new “chief of staff” or is it, “Head of Propaganda”, Sean Hannity, appears to go further stating that there should be blood. The president is even throwing around the word treason for some and making veiled threats of retribution.

 

I make no pretense that I absolutely do not like Trump’s lies, his paying hush money to win an election of which he has essentially been labeled a co-conspirator, as Individual One, in court pleadings.  The list is long of grievances I have about Trump as a person, many of which some of the most avid supporters admit to being legitimate concerns privately, not won’t share in public.

I also feel that he should be praised for improving upon Obama’s turnaround from a near depression to render the best economy in decades. His decisions in the middle east, once again piggybacking on Obama’s successes and infrastructure defenses have made an amazing if not spectacular result. Right now, I believe his leading the charge to beat ISIS is exactly what he said he was going to do. My issue with him is less about policy and more about personality which I believe absolutely can be more important than policy.

Yet, it appears that if I or anyone criticizes the Barr report, we are labeled in a way that is not only unfair but repugnant. Here are some of the comments I have read by various people online or heard from others on broadcast media when questions are asked or comments made:

“You just want to destroy Trump, you hate him”; “Mueller spoke and you don’t want to listen”. “You can’t accept the Mueller verdict and will look for anything to bring him down”. “There is no collusion, it has been a witch hunt, a hoax, FAKE NEWS--you guys have manufactured charges against him and others”. I can go on. The latter claim appears to be the one chosen by Trump himself and echoed by his party leaders and downstream. This is the one I would like to address because it suggests, if not directly claims, that there has been evil intent to destroy Trump and to leverage anything possible to brand him as a criminal.

PROBE SKELETON

Right now, all we have is a skeleton from the two-year investigation, no meat. By comparison, the Clinton investigations were substantially more expensive, longer and the results barren. Yet, right now, we are being told by many of my Trump friends that we don’t need any. We are being lectured that the Barr report is enough, that two years and millions of dollars of our valued money can be compressed into four pages, so accept it or you are a Trump hater.

We have no facts, only conclusions and even those are dubious at worse or curious as best as it relates to collusion or criminal conspiracy. I personally have never said there was collusion, I have said there was attempted collusion with Trump Tower meeting. I have also expressed my concerns as to whether the president has been compromised which perhaps explains what I believe to be very strange behaviors coming from Trump, his campaign and administration.

While we have a partial verdict so to speak, we don’t have the facts. What we don’t know is this—exactly what does Mueller’s “no collusion” declaration encompass? Does it mean that under no circumstance and for no reason should the American people be concerned that Donald Trump has not been compromised and that the Russians do not have Kompramant or compromising material on Mr. Trump?  There must be some explanation for the incredible and almost loyal devotion Trump has displayed towards Putin. The images of Trump claiming to the world that despite what his Intelligence is saying, he has no reason to think it was Russia who was orchestrating this digital invasion during our 2016 campaign.

So, it hurts to the core when I see Hannity, Trump, and others claim that all of this was a witch hunt, a hoax, perpetrated by those who were angry that they lost an election. True, people were upset as was I but it is also very true that I was very concerned that the president was not being truthful about Russia.

When I hear team Trump (and so many of his supporters) claim the worse in the motives of people, like me, who have expressed our concerns about the Trump Russia issue, I must ask them, please explain to me why shouldn’t we have been very worried?  Now, worse, why should we feel comfortable with the outcome. The fact that Bill Barr, our AG, auditioned for the job by writing a memo for the eyes of Trump backers. He completely condemned the investigation in his pre-hiring memo.  Add to our concerns is the fact his son-win-law is now a House Counsel for the White House. If the press reports are correct, he is working on the same case, but for his dad’s boss, Donald Trump.  Keep in mind that Robert Mueller did not conclude there was no obstruction of justice, he presented the pros and cons, which so far, we have no clue what any of them were and what evidence he was relying upon in support of each. Instead, Barr gave his own opinion. He did not turn the information over to Congress free of his opinion. At best, given the circumstances, his actions are suspect.

Ironically, Trump has been claiming conflict of interest in describing the Muller probe. He has been lying about Mueller and Comey being best friends.   He has repeatedly stated the staff was conflicted Democrats, first claiming 11 or 12 and then raising that number to conspirator’s favorite number, 17. He has condemned Mueller pointing to the Independent Counsel with one of Trump’s golf courses. He and others on Fox News have labeled Mueller as a criminal

Let us assume that Trump’s claim has merit, that Mueller had some bias. If so, how biased would Barr be, given his unsolicited attempts to frame a narrative which ended up in his getting the AG job replacing the temporary acting AG who likewise went public condemning the investigation in no uncertain terms? It is impossible not to believe that the very obsessed Trump was not highly motivated to control the investigation by planting an ally at that helm. Thus, when you add on top of this the fact that Barr’s son-in-law works for the very person he is investigating, how can anyone possibly not have serious questions about the AG’s work product? Add to that mix is the reality that Barr did not need to render any decision whatsoever about the issue of obstruction of justice. He chose to do so which has allowed Trump and his supporters to create the narrative that it is over, if you have any further concerns, you are just a Trump hater.

To that, I ask were people who questioned the obvious prejudices of Loretta Lynch meeting with Bill Clinton (by chance, occasion, they say), Clinton haters? When they heard Comey state that no charges would be leveled and heard his reasons, were they satisfied with the result? Again, were they Clinton haters? No. They had legitimate reasons to be concerned but they also heard the reasons for the person making the call. We have not heard from Robert Mueller other than he did not find the evidence he would need to indict anybody associated with Trump for collusion. This does not mean he did not find evidence that would meet a lower standard of scrutiny, he simply did not find evidence that would indict.  Nor did he claim that there was no reason to investigate and most importantly, he did not state that Americans should not have asked questions or be concerned about Trump Russia activities.

BURNING PROBE QUESTIONS

So for those who are claiming that the investigation was corrupt, a hoax, a witch hunt, FAKE NEWS and that it never should have occurred, ever, please answer my own burning questions.  I, just like you after Comey rendered his verdict, had grave concerns and need answers before obtaining closure. Please tell me why we should not have asked questions and to probe further the facts were unfolding. So, if you think that we never should have investigated or covered these news stories, I ask you—WHY:

Why did George P, Flynn, Rick Gates, Roger Stone lie about Russia?

Why did Sessions forget about meetings with Russia?

Why did son-in-law Kushner not reveal his own Russian meetings?

Why did Roger Stone state he talked with Wikileaks and Bob Mueller indict him for covering up his Russia connections?  What happens if a jury finds that Roger Stone did communicate with Wikileaks and have actual knowledge about what that Russian agent was going to do with the email dump?  Would there not be a finding of coordination?  How can we claim there is no coordination with the Stone case still undetermined?

Why did Donald Trump cover up his attempts to build a mega tower in Moscow? Why did he not disclose his activities which needed Putin’s approval at the very time he was telling the American public that he had no deals, nothing to do with Russia or Putin?  Even assuming it was not legal and he was an international business person, as he claims in his defense, why did he not tell the American public and the Republican party during his debates?  Is there no relationship between Trump Tower Moscow project and his sudden Putin affection?

Why did  Michael Cohen'lie about Russia?

Why did Trump, Pence, Trump’s spokesperson all claim there were no meetings with Russians?

Why did Trump claim he had nothing to do with Russia yet his son Don Jr. said just the opposite claiming there was essentially a money flow coming from Russians?  Why did a reporter from a golfing publication claim that Eric Trump made the same claim about financing the golf courses?

Why did Trump hire a Putin stooge for Campaign Chairperson, Paul Manafort?  Why Manafort of all people?

Why did Trump and Manafort claim they had nothing to do with the change in the  Ukraine platform at the Republican convention to benefit pro-Putin regime?

How can the dossier be called false and fake when some parts have been proven true and accurate?

If there was nothing there as Trump contends, why did Lindsey Graham try to convince John McCain to turn the "dirty fake dossier over to the FBI?

Why did Don Jr. meet with Russians who he knew were allegedly on the mission from the Russian government to provide dirt on Clinton since the Russian government as he was told, favored his father?

Why did Don Jr. deceive the public with his explanations about that meeting?

Why did President Trump deceive the public and the New York Times about his role in the Trump Tower coverup letter? Why did he say he had nothing to do with it only later, we find out that he dictated it?  Was he simply try to fool the NY Times or did he know that there was an investigation going on at the same time and this might be of issue?

Why did the Gang of 8 reportedly not stop or complain about the FBI investigation into Donald Trump after the Comey firing?  Weren’t they concerned that there were issues over Trump Russia?

Why did the candidate Trump and then President Trump continuously insist that it was not Russia but it could be China or that fat guy in New Jersey who did the hacking? Why did he completely ignore the evidence from his Intel team about Russia interference?

Why did Trump refuse to sanction Russia before being forced by Congress to do so?

Why did Trump shock the world by engaging in repeated private discussions with Vladimir Putin, especially given the many existing questions and controversies and clouds surrounding their relationship? Wouldn’t he be aware of the optics? Why did he demand that the notes taken to be turned over to him?  

I can go on with more but my point is not that there was collusion. I certainly am not saying that Bob Mueller was wrong. I, for one, have great trust in Mueller. Yet right now, I have no information from him to satisfy my need for answers.

My overall point is this--How can Donald Trump, who loves to claim the media is the Enemy of the People, possibly claim in good faith, that the media and others should not have asked serious questions about these events during and after the elections or throughout the administration when more and more information became public? How can anybody say that we should just destroy our curiosities and concerns because Muller spoke and tainted Barr arguably intruded by opining and framing the end results?

How could anyone in nation condemn those who became more concerned after each public revelation, which to this very moment, we don’t have enough information to refute.  I can understand if there were one event. And yes, I know that there have been one explanation after another to defend Trump’s actions, such as he was concerned for his son and so he interjected himself into writing a letter after the New York Times broke the tower story. But why did Don Jr. and his father even feel the need to cover up?  

If only one suspicious event occurred, arguably, there would be a logical explanation and no reason for concern.  That certainly is not what happened. Instead, we witnessed day after day a dark ugly pattern of deceptions, a secretive litany of Trump-Russia connections. It would have been national security malpractice not to ask questions, serious ones and as soon as possible.

NOTHING BURGER

I know that many of those who claim the probe was a “nothing burger” see prime meat in pointing out the FBI-Clinton-Obama-DOJ activities that led to the dossier series of events. By all means, make your case and if there is a real need to probe, we must.  I understand your concerns as allegations are developing and want to know more.

But let us put all of this in perspective. The dossier was only a bit role in the entire tragedy. Had Trump not engaged in the most bizarre and frightening defenses of Putin and the hacking, had he not had the conflicting history about his business dealings, had he not hid his taxes, had our allies not communicated with us that we should have concerns about Trump’s campaign, there would not have been a rational basis for alarm. Had he not told the reporter “Why should I, I’m not going to tell Putin what to do” in response to if he would tell Putin not to interfere, there would be less concern that he wanted more interference.

There was every reason to be concerned because facts were emerging that even a top Republican cited Trump as getting contributions from Russia.

While there might have been some wrongdoing and illegalities coming from the FBI and DOJ and Hillary Clinton and that should be explored, if the events complained of have no relationship with the actual events that did occur, then you can’t just ignore real evidence and claim that the entire investigation has no value. That is absurd and wishful thinking and in my view irresponsible.

My personal needs for full disclosure of the report and underlying documentation is not to “get” Trump as some of my readers might contend just as I suspect your emotions are not to get Clinton or anybody associated with the FISA controversy. No. My need is to obtain truth and to ensure that our country is protected and our president is not conflicted and vulnerable.

There is one person responsible for this national nightmare. His name is Donald J. Trump. He allowed himself to be put into every one of these situations. When the reports became public about the lies and falsehoods coming from his campaign, did he stand up like a real leader and led the charge to obtain the truth?  No. Just the opposite. He hid. He defensively condemned.  His actions only fed the beast of curiosity and deep concern. He called names and made false accusations. Instead of completely clearing the air as he said he wanted to do, he reneged. He fought questions by the Special Counsel, just as he is now doing with his written answers which apparently he does not want to turn over to the public.

So, now we are left with an enigma inside of a quandary. If the intent is necessary to prove conspiracy and obstruction but the subject is refusing to allow questioning, it is literally impossible to get to the truth. Trump refused. Thus, despite Mueller’s efforts, we have and in my view, will always have a skeletal image of the facts. Even the most simple case requires deposing the witness or asking direct questions. In a civil matter, it would be wholly unacceptable to pursue a case without live questions and answers to test the truth.

Accepting the facts as being alleged without this is a virtual impossibility. That is a fact and just about any attorney knows it. Whether Trump had a defense or concerns or not, he did not allow himself to be questioned, thus, all we can do is speculate.  His lawyers won. The truth and the public did not.

Indeed, we must find closure to all of these issues whether it be the Trump probe or the FISA controversy or both. We must make as much information available as possible. Our nation is in tremendous conflict, suffering from a serious case of anger and hatred fueled by 24/7 cable media, information on demand online and of course, the scourge of social media.

There is one person who can answer so many of these questions. That is Donald Trump, not his attorney protecting him or Robert Mueller investigating him.

Do you think we will get them?

Think again.

Read 283 times Last modified on Tuesday, 26 March 2019 19:04
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