Editor’s Note: for readers who may be curious I have “updated the update” about being locked out of my Twitter account (and principle method of advertising this site) due to targeted reporting of my links as spam yesterday, but the short version of the story is “my account is now unlocked but this could all happen again at almost any time.” I have also been closely watching the fallout from both the Grenfell Tower tragedy and the shooting spree at GOP congressional baseball practice just outside of DC with an usettling mixture of repulsion, anger and outrage at the largely disparate coverage being given to each incident and I’m hoping to have some thoughts on that very soon. Finally, I’m still tinkering with Part 2 of my full examination of James Comey’s testimony before the Senate Intelligence Committee on July 8th, so it’s safe to say that it’s a busy time in my writing laboratory – I certainly didn’t need yesterday’s social media distraction.
In the meantime however, I’d like to take an opportunity to share a short Info Meme of the Week about the absurd exercise in futility that was the testimony by Attorney General Jeff Sessions during a June 13th, 2017 hearing in front of the Senate Intelligence Committee as part of their ongoing (and now seemingly irrelevant) investigation into “Russiagate” – a hearing that sharp-eyed readers will undoubtedly notice bears a striking resemblance to the proceedings discussed in our previous Info Meme of the Week:
Note: Please be reminded that if you’re having trouble reading this Info Meme, you can right click on the picture and select “view this image” to pop out a larger version. Additionally, don’t forget to check out my very brief comments after the sources section of this article.
Personally I am of the opinion that the vast majority of public oversight hearings in modern US politics are a dog and pony show, but it can nonetheless be highly instructive to actually watch our politicians in action while they lie under oath; anyone who watched Sessions spend three hours trying to put the toothpaste back in the tube after Trump essentially admitted that he fired James Comey over the “Russiagate” investigation, certainly got a lesson in precisely why government oversight is a complete fucking joke in the United States. Furthermore, it isn’t hard to see why the Democratic Party is choking on it’s own vomit after watching clueless Democrat Senators waste precious question time desperately trying to salvage a Russian collusion narrative that is going precisely nowhere; especially when it was obvious to anyone watching that Sessions is a greasy little liar who was more than happy to provide rehearsed answers about Russia, but extremely uncomfortable discussing the firing of James Comey and a possible obstruction of justice investigation.
While Sessions’ simple southern solicitor act probably didn’t fool anyone left of Reagan on the political spectrum, I am surprised that more attention hasn’t been given to the Attorney General’s highly revealing confession that he never talked with Comey about any of his concerns at any time before Trump fired the then FBI Director. Assuming one takes Session at his word that he always wanted to fire Comey because of his performance in the Clinton investigation it is only reasonable to then assume that the decision to keep James Comey on as FBI Director came from President Trump himself. In light of that fact that he was now faced with overseeing the performance of someone he purportedly believed had usurped the Attorney General’s role in an ongoing criminal proceeding, I find it highly curious that Sessions never even once discussed Comey’s “poor performance” with the employee he would have been “stuck with” under this scenario.
Astoundingly, Sessions simply wants us to take his word for it that he had a conversation about it with Assistant Deputy General Rod Rosenstein despite there being literally no written record of the Attorney General’s displeasure with Comey to be found anywhere and indeed, Sessions own public comments that Comey had done the right thing at various points during the Clinton email investigation saga. In the private sector a similar distinct lack of intervention and disciplinary documentation has been used to prove wrongful dismissal in literally hundreds of thousands of labor law disagreements but because Sessions spent a couple decades in the US Senate, there is simply no burden of proof required here? You’ll have to forgive me if I’m having a little bit of trouble swallowing that particular line of bullshit; it’s because of my lifelong affliction with “common sense.”
In the final analysis it’s actually very hard to qualify the Attorney General’s testimony as even a draw for swine emperor Trump’s embattled anti-administration; while Sessions appears to have managed not to actually fucking perjure himself, the questions he refused to answer shed far more light on President Trump’s possible obstruction of Comey’s FBI investigation into disgraced former National Security Advisor Mike Flynn than simply refusing to testify behind the cover of executive privilege ever could have. As previously mentioned, this behavior matches an emerging pattern in the Trump administration (and indeed the Department of Justice before Herr Donald was ever elected) that has served past presidents with the ability to play stupid quite well. Somehow however, I don’t think that’s going to help Trump very much at all.
- Nina Illingworth
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