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Bigger than Vindman: Trump scrubs 70 Obama holdovers from NSC

Madonis

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Ahh, the younger brother of "if he truly cared about corruption he would..."

Still an empty criticism. If you detailed what rooting out corruption in a "meaningful, non-partisan sense" would be, maybe we'd have more to discuss, but alas.
Simple. Proposing anti-corruption reforms and carrying out more investigations even against people who have donated to him or to the GOP, if applicable, not just Democrats.

Not appointing lobbyists to departments where they are pulling back on regulations and, at best, trusting that corporations will do the right thing without oversight (hint: they won't).

By the way...what's your position then, regarding the possibility of letting U.S. companies bribe people abroad more openly?

First off, I haven't been following that aspect much at all due to school, but neither you or I know what he is attempting behind the scenes. And he wouldn't make any of that public by it's nature so as not to alert anyone.
Technically possible, but that means we can't really say anything with 100% certainty. Not even in the direction you're suggesting.

Secondly, he has been going at the corrupt media and pointing out those he thinks are corrupt for all to see for, like, ages. Putting a public eye on those larger entities that he doesn't have time for or know how to get to yet because his focus is elsewhere, puts a stumbling block in their way for the time being.
Unfortunately, that seems to come down to him claiming pro-Trump media is all good and not corrupt. Which is both pretty self-serving and not necessarily true.

Thirdly, if people stopped standing in his way, maybe he could get more done. As I see it though, he has nearly the entire democratic party, media AND big tech companies and their algorithms standing in his path as well as some at the top of the FBI. If corruption really is a thing and infecting all these places, and I believe it is, it's not going to be easy to root it out when everyone is acting like they are on a frigging team and have to have each others backs at all costs.
Problem is, the implication seems to be "if you're not standing in my way but actually supporting me, then you're obviously doing everything well, so I'll praise you. But if you're criticizing me, then obviously you must be the corrupt ones here!" . That's...a bad idea, at least as far as serious prosecution of corruption is concerned, because the truth is that partisan sympathies don't automatically correlate to those offenses. There's plenty of corruption to go around, not just within those entities that happen to be on the other side of his administration. Besides, as a rule, you're rarely going to have liberal people praising conservative policy, nor vice versa. So it's logical that they will oppose his policies even on those grounds and want to obstruct his efforts to implement them. We've already seen that dance number before, in the opposite direction, more than once.

And then there's stuff like this:

"If my father travels, they stay at our properties for free — meaning like, cost for housekeeping," Eric Trump said at the time. "If they were to go to a hotel across the street, they'd be charging them $500 a night, whereas, you know, we charge them like 50 bucks."

But Secret Service records obtained by The Washington Post reveal that was statement was false.
Trump's Mar-a-Lago resort in Palm Beach charged Secret Service a rate of $650 per night "dozens of times" in 2017 before charging them $396 "dozens more times" in 2018, according to the report. The initial cost was more than three times the $182 nightly limit for federal employees in the area and was even higher than what State Department staff were charged to stay at Mar-a-Lago around the same time.

I think it's pretty corrupt to claim you're saving money by...overcharging U.S. government officials to stay at your hotels.

And lastly, with all of that going against him there's just no way he is going to be able to root it ALL out on his own. Especially when that can't be his sole focus. So it's no surprise that it's been a long hard fight. All I really care about is that he is trying and hopefully inspiring others that come after him to try as well. Because this crap is something all of us should be worried about.
We'll see. But so far, I think he's already inspired a lot of people to run....in opposition to the things they believe he is doing wrong in this field and others.
 
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DunDunDunpachi

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Simple. Proposing anti-corruption reforms and carrying out more investigations even against people who have donated to him or to the GOP, if applicable, not just Democrats.
So he doesn't care about the right kind of corruption, got it. That's a funny standard to hold over the head of your political opponent. Trump has fired and reassigned plenty of Republicans in his cabinet. The media was constantly talking about it nonstop during the first two years of his presidency. It was taken as a sign that Trump couldn't even get along with his own party. The headliner was that Trump was losing control over his own team.

But this resulted in GOP members getting removed or reassigned, members that the Democrats would surely consider "corrupt". So I don't comprehend this new narrative. It clashes with reality.

Not appointing lobbyists to departments where they are pulling back on regulations and, at best, trusting that corporations will do the right thing without oversight (hint: they won't).
I don't think lobbyists are bad, out of hand. They serve a function, just like unions do. Does this mean I approve all of Trump's appointments? No. However, pulling back on regulations is part of why the economy is surging forward.

You are assuming that appointing a lobbyist is a sign of corruption. You are assuming that pulling back on regulations is because of corruption. I don't hold that same viewpoint, but I'm open to being shown specific cases of what you're taking about.

When you say "corruption", are you talking about things like Trump meeting with someone from a gas company and then a few days later Donald Jr has a job on their board? Oh wait, that was Biden, I'm getting my old racist white men mixed up.

But seriously, the definition of "corporate corruption" is a moving target for Democrats. Where on the spectrum of "corruption" does your definition fall?

By the way...what's your position then, regarding the possibility of letting U.S. companies bribe people abroad more openly?
What do you mean by "bribe people"? It sounds like you have something specific in mind but I can't guess it.
 
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Madonis

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So he doesn't care about the right kind of corruption, got it. That's a funny standard to hold over the head of your political opponent. Trump has fired and reassigned plenty of Republicans in his cabinet. The media was constantly talking about it nonstop during the first two years of his presidency. It was taken as a sign that Trump couldn't even get along with his own party. The headliner was that Trump was losing control over his own team.
The ideal standard should be blindness to party affiliation, but he screams very loudly about (D)-related corruption but is a tiny mouse when it comes to (R)-related corruption. He fires a few Republicans who, curiously, happen to be critical of him beforehand. But those cases aren't always about corruption either. Heck, It would be partisan as hell to assume that disagreement with Trump with the GOP is inherently a sign of corruption (or vice versa), but you'd be forgiven for thinking that...if you take Trump's ramblings literally.

I don't think lobbyists are bad, out of hand. They serve a function, just like unions do. Does this mean I approve all of Trump's appointments? No. However, pulling back on regulations is part of why the economy is surging forward.
The thing is, lobbyists are being paid to obtain a favorable treatment for particular special interests. Naming more of them in relevant government positions compared to previous administrations means there's a higher chance that they'll actively try to benefit their previous (and perhaps also future) bosses or specific industries, not necessarily the public at large. I don't believe they're all bad people, but I do not trust they're all "the best" choices for those positions

Pulling back on regulations leads to increasing the medium-to-long term risks in exchange for potentially boosting short term growth. It is based on trusting that the market will operate better and regulate itself without external intervention...but we know, from both past global experience and recent U.S. history in particular, that all market agents don't automatically work like that in practice. They're not perfectly rational, emotionless entities. Corporations can and do seek more risk in irresponsible ways while board members will engage in insider trading, bad investments, etc.

Btw, March 2019 job figures were revised downwards (-500k or so), meaning the economic impact of the tax cuts and removal of regulations isn't as big as previously thought. That's not saying the economy is terrible, but it's less prosperous than initially believed.

When you say "corruption", are you talking about things like Trump meeting with someone from a gas company and then a few days later Donald Jr has a job on their board? Oh wait, that was Biden, I'm getting my old racist white men mixed up.

But seriously, the definition of "corporate corruption" is a moving target for Democrats. Where on the spectrum of "corruption" does your definition fall?
It would be a definition that includes conflict of interest as a potential corruption issue. Not always, but it opens the door for it.

That conflict of interest may apply to the Bidens, I don't deny it, but also to the Trump family.

Jared Kushner's appointment in particular is an interesting example, but there's others available below, in light of various business deals.

When news of Jared and Ivanka’s White House employment broke, observers noted the hirings appeared to be clear violations of federal anti-nepotism laws. Kushner, the heir to a mid-Atlantic real estate empire, had no experience that would qualify him for the many tasks to which his father-in-law would assign him: solving the opioid crisis, handling Middle East peace negotiations, modernizing the federal government, and reforming America’s criminal justice system.

On Inauguration Day, however, the Department of Justice released an opinion concluding that the statute does not apply to White House staff, allowing Kushner’s employment to go forward. When intelligence officials held up his application for a top-secret security clearance—a delay due in part, the New York Times reported, to concerns about Kushner’s foreign business interests—his place in the administration, theoretically, was in jeopardy. His father-in-law stepped in, though, overruling the officials and ordering then-chief of staff John Kelly to issue Kushner a clearance anyway.

What do you mean by "bribe people"? It sounds like you have something specific in mind but I can't guess it.
I was referring to this:


I have had to sit through training so many times on this crap. The law should be changed. It is far too strict, and also too vague.
It's possible there are valid changes you, for example, could propose to improve the law. Yet here we are, hearing Trump claim he cares so much about corruption in Ukraine. If you're talking about reforming a "horrible" law to make it more loose and flexible, thus giving U.S. companies more room to bribe people abroad without facing consequences internally, it seems...contradictory. You'd think such a powerful anti-corruption struggle would warrant being more strict, for the sake of "draining the swamp", rather than giving up and saying there's actually no need to police that behavior so firmly after all.

I also don't think a company that bribes someone in the Middle East or Asia, for instance, would be all that unwilling to do the same within the U.S.
 
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Joe T.

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Neither Trump nor current Republicans have ever really compromised about much of anything else, in practice, so what gives you the idea that only the Dems are to blame?

Of course both parties have used investigations in order to fire up their base. That's part of my point too. Honestly, you could argue both sides used their positions during the impeachment as part of their political campaign too. There's a lot of viable advertising material for the two parties that you can take from the hearings and the trial.
You're not seeing the glaring difference - Trump was never given the same opportunities as previous presidents. The election was just over 3 years ago, I'm sure you remember the 2.5 months between the result and Trump's inauguration, but some reminders:





PolitiFact's ruling:
Castro said that millions more people are uninsured as a result of Trump’s policies. One poll did estimate a jump of 7 million people without health insurance. But the most trusted government survey found a smaller increase of 1.3 million.
Fearmongering? Juuuuust a bit, but the more fear you place into the minds of the people the more likely they'll be to march in the streets to support you. And that's just Pelosi.

"Here Are the [52] Democrats Boycotting Donald Trump’s Inauguration" -Time

"Democrats prepare for Trump with one of the earliest resistance movements ever to greet a new president" -Washington Post

"Democrats begin fight against Trump: his election 'does not feel like America'" -The Guardian

From Quartz, Dec. 28, 2016:
Democratic members of Congress received a letter today calling on them to join the Vermont senator in organizing rallies across the country on January 15. The goal is to galvanize resistance to Donald Trump as Congress returns to work, just a week ahead of the next president’s inauguration.

The letter came from the party’s two top officials, Senator Chuck Schumer and Representative Nancy Pelosi, as well as Sanders, who joined the Democrat’s leadership committee for the first time ever this year.
He was, and still is, criticized for being divisive while suffering an overwhelming amount of attacks by Democrats and the media that made it impossible for an incoming president to unite the country after an election. The Democrats amped up that divisiveness on the way to the 2018 midterms, to their benefit, and they hoped to do it again this year with impeachment.

70 year old Trump never stood a chance, not without somehow drastically improving his speaking skills.
 

DunDunDunpachi

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The ideal standard should be blindness to party affiliation, but he screams very loudly about (D)-related corruption but is a tiny mouse when it comes to (R)-related corruption.
Who cares? Seriously, this is an absurd standard that you wouldn't even apply to your own party.

Does it occur to you...

...and I know this might blow your mind...

...that Trump doesn't see corruption in his own party the same way that you do?

Furthermore, do you think it is plausible that handling corruption in one's own party might be different than handling it in the opponent's party? This is Politicking 101.

He fires a few Republicans who, curiously, happen to be critical of him beforehand. But those cases aren't always about corruption either. Heck, It would be partisan as hell to assume that disagreement with Trump with the GOP is inherently a sign of corruption (or vice versa), but you'd be forgiven for thinking that...if you take Trump's ramblings literally.
So we are in agreement, Trump has in fact been bipartisan with his cutting out of corruption, you just personally feel that he hasn't been harsh enough against Republicans and he's been too harsh (screaming too loudly) on Democrats.

That's a great personal preference to have, but really I don't see why you should expect any different. It's a miracle that he's going after corruption at all. And since Republicans are getting caught in the crossfire, I thought Democrats would be intelligent enough to keep their mouths shut on those particular targets.

The thing is, lobbyists are being paid to obtain a favorable treatment for particular special interests.
Lobbyists represent corporate interests. To say they are paid to obtain a favorable treatment is technically correct, in the same way saying that worker unions reps are paid to obtain a favorable treatment for particular special interests. This is factually true, but the reason why you might approve of one or disapprove of the other has to do with your personal opinions, not the inherent role of those positions.

Lobbyists ensure that sectors of the market are represented in government. This practice goes all the way back to before the founding and the constitution. Our founding fathers were merchants and businessmen who didn't want to be taxed without representation in the government. They wanted to conduct business without the government poking their nose into it. This conflict has always existed and it has always resulted in tug and pull between business interests, the gov't, and the people. It doesn't mean that lobbyists are inherently bad no more than House Reps are bad or governors are bad or tax auditors are bad.

Lobbyists can be corrupt and they certainly want to get the best deal for their interests, but it's not an either/or situation. To suggest any involvement with lobbyists infers corruption is naive.

Naming more of them in relevant government positions compared to previous administrations means there's a higher chance that they'll actively try to benefit their previous (and perhaps also future) bosses or specific industries, not necessarily the public at large. I don't believe they're all bad people, but I do not trust they're all "the best" choices for those positions
A hypothetical "best choice" is worse than an actual "okay choice". Once again you are letting your imagination and your unrealistic standards run wild so that you can hold them over your opponent's heads, a standard you would never apply to your own candidate. I don't care if you personally don't trust they're the "best", judge by their outcomes.

Pulling back on regulations leads to increasing the medium-to-long term risks in exchange for potentially boosting short term growth. It is based on trusting that the market will operate better and regulate itself without external intervention...but we know, from both past global experience and recent U.S. history in particular, that all market agents don't automatically work like that in practice. They're not perfectly rational, emotionless entities. Corporations can and do seek more risk in irresponsible ways while board members will engage in insider trading, bad investments, etc.
This is not true out of hand. Many regulations are lobbied for by corporations in order to keep competition from the lower down in the market from creeping up. See: anything automotive or anything energy related. All regulations are a mixed bag, sometimes with good intentions but bad implementations, sometimes with corruption intentions, sometimes with good implementations that need to be modernized.

As with the lobbyists, you seem to have a simplistic -- almost binary -- opinion toward regulations.

Btw, March 2019 job figures were revised downwards (-500k or so), meaning the economic impact of the tax cuts and removal of regulations isn't as big as previously thought. That's not saying the economy is terrible, but it's less prosperous than initially believed.
Okay cool.

It would be a definition that includes conflict of interest as a potential corruption issue. Not always, but it opens the door for it.

That conflict of interest may apply to the Bidens, I don't deny it, but also to the Trump family.

Jared Kushner's appointment in particular is an interesting example, but there's others available below, in light of various business deals.


I was referring to this:

So is that corruption or not in your view? The constant dodging to "potential" and "not always" and "may apply" makes these comparisons meaningless.
 
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Thank you DunDunDunpachi DunDunDunpachi and friends for taking the ball on this one. I recently found out that I have 3+ years of financial aid left that I thought I had lost after the accident. So I have been dipping my toes into coding to see if I have the aptitude for it. I know it's not very complex yet but I've been taking HTML CSS and java. Some free courses for now but I am actually loving it and keep finding myself excited to come back to it every day. Then someone pointed me toward this site, https://www.sitepoint.com/ and I found a deal for 3 months for 3 dollars so I figured I'd go ahead and do that just to see but I don't know what point would be a good time to delve into that. Was secretly wondering what people here suggest about this stuff but kinda too shy to make a thread about it lol.

Anyway, TLDR: I'm busy having fun learnin new stuff so it's hard to shift my focus back and forth atm.
 

Cybrwzrd

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It's possible there are valid changes you, for example, could propose to improve the law. Yet here we are, hearing Trump claim he cares so much about corruption in Ukraine. If you're talking about reforming a "horrible" law to make it more loose and flexible, thus giving U.S. companies more room to bribe people abroad without facing consequences internally, it seems...contradictory. You'd think such a powerful anti-corruption struggle would warrant being more strict, rather than giving up and saying there's actually no need to police that after all.
A salesman taking a prospective client out to dinner or a golf game shouldn't put your company at risk for fines. The law is one of the strictest in the world, and it is very vaguely defined.

The problem is that it doesn’t differentiate between kicking back a portion of sales to a politician and taking him out golfing to build a relationship so he won’t put you at the bottom of processing your permits so you can get your factory built, for example. Both are illegal under the current law.
 

Madonis

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You're not seeing the glaring difference - Trump was never given the same opportunities as previous presidents. The election was just over 3 years ago, I'm sure you remember the 2.5 months between the result and Trump's inauguration, but some reminders:
Yes, a lot of people disliked Trump as a person and/or resisted his policies. After all, most of the voters supported Hillary and what she was proposing.

a) Russia did in fact carry out hacking and related online activities during the campaign worth investigating. Trump and Republicans downplay it, but that's a proven fact.

b) Opposing Trump's highly unpopular plan (not even *his* own plan, okay, but the GOP one he ultimately endorsed) to repeal and replace the ACA makes sense. Did he expect or even attempt to gain any Democratic support for such a thing without even trying to be open to a less radical approach?

Estimates did show a lot of people would lose or worsen their access to healthcare under the GOP plan. Republicans have never been able to convince people that this was a lie (especially when the numbers included non-partisan or bipartisan sources), nor did they try to improve the text of the plan in order to avoid this (among other things). Again, were the Democrats just supposed to let that happen in silence? That would be both foolish and politically insane. Making this an electoral issue for 2018 was entirely justified.

Ironically enough, Trump could have actually deactivated and isolated a lot of the resistance movement early on by reaching deals. Such as trying to craft a bipartisan healthcare plan. It would actually fit his populist promises during the campaign, but he never did that. Instead, the GOP gave him a very conservative-oriented plan, to put it lightly, and he decided it was perfect. And he still endorsed it all the way, even when the polls showed it was quickly becoming super unpopular. A smarter, more reasonable man would have decided to shift gears and open the table for changes. Then there were the negotiations over the wall, which could have been achieved with a simple "wall for DACA" exchange at one point. It seemed like an obvious win-win. Trump gets a big campaign promise fulfilled, right away, and the DACA people would look at him with more sympathy. But nope, Trump wanted (or Stephen Miller gave him) a list of hardline immigration restrictions and backtracked from his initial stance.

I won't deny Trump has been the target of a lot of hate and protests. But all the same, the man didn't help his own case by finding some common ground in these areas.

Who cares? Seriously, this is an absurd standard that you wouldn't even apply to your own party.

Does it occur to you...

...and I know this might blow your mind...

...that Trump doesn't see corruption in his own party the same way that you do?

Furthermore, do you think it is plausible that handling corruption in one's own party might be different than handling it in the opponent's party? This is Politicking 101.
I did say it was the ideal standard. I don't judge people for not achieving an ideal, but if they don't even try to make progress...that's not a good thing.

Yes, Trump sees the situation differently. Not in a good way, however. Republican and pro-Trump? You must be the best! Republican and critical of Trump? You must suck.

So we are in agreement, Trump has in fact been bipartisan with his cutting out of corruption, you just personally feel that he hasn't been harsh enough against Republicans and he's been too harsh (screaming too loudly) on Democrats.
Not exactly, because he equates corruption with lack of love for himself or his administration. He makes it all look so self-centered. In other words...if I were to be an incredibly corrupt businessman, right now my best tactic for getting a better treatment from the DOJ (or at least hope for it) would be to become a huge fan of Trump and publicly defend him. If I'm still ultimately prosecuted, then perhaps I'll at least get Trump's attention and see him make noise on Twitter in my favor and so get (R) folks to sympathize with me.

There's a saying, if I remember correctly, about a so-called "duty of disloyalty" in these matters. Just because someone likes you, or helps you get elected or appointed, doesn't mean you shouldn't be critical towards them if necessary. But the way things are going, congressional Republicans declare their love for Trump in public and only talk shit about him in private, because they've already seen how he treats the few Republicans who have openly broken with him. Is that "corruption"?

Lobbyists represent corporate interests. To say they are paid to obtain a favorable treatment is technically correct, in the same way saying that worker unions reps are paid to obtain a favorable treatment for particular special interests. This is factually true, but the reason why you might approve of one or disapprove of the other has to do with your personal opinions, not the inherent role of those positions.
I wouldn't dispute the point about unions, because you're right.

Lobbyists ensure that sectors of the market are represented in government. This practice goes all the way back to before the founding and the constitution. Our founding fathers were merchants and businessmen who didn't want to be taxed without representation in the government. They wanted to conduct business without the government poking their nose into it. This conflict has always existed and it has always resulted in tug and pull between business interests, the gov't, and the people. It doesn't mean that lobbyists are inherently bad no more than House Reps are bad or governors are bad or tax auditors are bad.
I am not calling for, say, the prohibition of lobbying. I don't think they are inherently bad, but that tug and pull does have consequences. Not all of them are good. If you trust them too much, then you're exposing yourself to potential corruption or at least seeing them pick winners and losers. I would reduce their appointments as public officials, not increase them.

This is not true out of hand. Many regulations are lobbied for by corporations in order to keep competition from the lower down in the market from creeping up. See: anything automotive or anything energy related. All regulations are a mixed bag, sometimes with good intentions but bad implementations, sometimes with corruption intentions, sometimes with good implementations that need to be modernized.
Not all regulations are good, but cutting a huge amount of them all across the board is not necessarily great either. The recent past shows us that less regulation isn't an inherent positive for the economy, nor for society as a whole. At least not under each and every circumstance.

Frankly, I think regulations need be updated, more than asking them to be cut, and gradually made more strict in certain fields (especially concerning health and the environment), rather than made more loose and flexible just for the sake of money. Not everything in this world comes down to profit.

But here comes Trump and he counts the total number of regulations cut as an inherent positive...even when it involves stuff that probably shouldn't be cut. Or where you shouldn't be lowering the standards.

For example:

“During the Obama administration, they were at least trying to look at cumulative impacts, though they didn’t always get it right. Under Trump, they’re not even trying,” said Gerrard. CEQ scrapped the Obama guidance in 2017, and in June, floated a new draft guidance that gave agencies broader discretion (Greenwire, June 21, 2019).

A Sabin Center survey released in November showed that federally permitted fossil fuel projects reviewed in the first two years of the Trump administration often assessed the direct and indirect greenhouse gas emissions of those projects. But land management agencies like the Forest Service or the Department of the Interior in 2017 and 2018 did not include indirect emissions from fossil fuel leasing—namely, production and combustion of fossil fuels

That meant that all leasing programs in Sabin’s survey were determined to have greenhouse gas footprints that were not “significant” and thus did not require a full EIS. The Sabin survey studied 10 projects that were deemed insignificant. Together, they could be responsible for 654 million to 683 million metric tons of CO2 over their lifetimes—an amount roughly equivalent to Saudi Arabia’s CO2 emissions from fossil fuels in the year 2017.

As with the lobbyists, you seem to have a simplistic -- almost binary -- opinion toward regulations.
Conversely, the Republican view seems to be that regulations are inherently bad. But I suppose you don't see that as simplistic, do you ?

So is that corruption or not in your view? The constant dodging to "potential" and "not always" and "may apply" makes these comparisons meaningless.
I'd rather bore you with those terms rather than pretending there aren't nuances.

Let me put it this way: are you only bothered by Biden's conflicts of interest...yet find Jared and the Trump family to be above criticism in those respects?

A salesman taking a prospective client out to dinner or a golf game shouldn't put your company at risk for fines. The law is one of the strictest in the world, and it is very vaguely defined.

The problem is that it doesn’t differentiate between kicking back a portion of sales to a politician and taking him out golfing to build a relationship so he won’t put you at the bottom of processing your permits so you can get your factory built, for example. Both are illegal under the current law.
Interesting. I would think that making reforms in this regard might be a good idea. It just so happens that you're better at explaining this than, say, the Trump administration.
 
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DunDunDunpachi

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I did say it was the ideal standard. I don't judge people for not achieving an ideal, but if they don't even try to make progress...that's not a good thing.

Yes, Trump sees the situation differently. Not in a good way, however. Republican and pro-Trump? You must be the best! Republican and critical of Trump? You must suck.
But we're getting off target. The topic is corruption.


Not exactly, because he equates corruption with lack of love for himself or his administration. He makes it all look so self-centered. In other words...if I were to be an incredibly corrupt businessman, right now my best tactic for getting a better treatment from the DOJ (or at least hope for it) would be to become a huge fan of Trump and publicly defend him. If I'm still ultimately prosecuted, then perhaps I'll at least get Trump's attention and see him make noise on Twitter in my favor and so get (R) folks to sympathize with me.

There's a saying, if I remember correctly, about a so-called "duty of disloyalty" in these matters. Just because someone likes you, or helps you get elected or appointed, doesn't mean you shouldn't be critical towards them if necessary. But the way things are going, congressional Republicans declare their love for Trump in public and only talk shit about him in private, because they've already seen how he treats the few Republicans who have openly broken with him.
Seriously, what does this have to do with corruption? You seem to be inferring that because he takes loyalty seriously that he misunderstands what true corruption is, while at the same time being guilty of corruption.


I wouldn't dispute the point about unions, because you're right.

I am not calling for, say, the prohibition of lobbying. I don't think they are inherently bad, but that tug and pull does have consequences. Not all of them are good. if you trust them too much, then you're exposing yourself to potential corruption or at least seeing them pick winners and losers. I would reduce their appointments as public officials, not increase them.
But is it corruption? You keep making declarative statements about Trump's corruption and his bad appointments, but then when asked directly to explain you retreat to things like "you're exposing yourself to potential corruption".

So which is it? Is he corrupt or are you saying Trump is above board but is perhaps being a bit unwise by potentially opening himself up to corruption?


Not all regulations are good, but cutting a huge amount of them all across the board is not necessarily great either.
HOLY SHIT, conversation with you is mind numbing. These are empty truisms. Do you actually have an opinion or does your entire schtick consist of variations of "maybe you're right, but it's also possible you're completely wrong"?

The recent past shows us that less regulation isn't an inherent positive for the economy, nor for society as a whole. At least not under each and every circumstance. Frankly, I think regulations need be updated, more than asking them to be cut, and gradually made more strict in certain fields (health and the environment), rather than more loose and flexible (.
See above,

Conversely, the Republican view seems to be that regulations are inherently bad. But I suppose you don't see that as simplistic, do you ?
I am not talking about the Republican view nor the Democrat view, I am talking about your view. You seem to view it in binary terms. I am not a Republican.

Am I talking to an NPC or an actual thinking person?

I'd rather bore you with those terms than pretending there aren't nuances.
Those are called "caveats" and when your argument is crammed with them, then you aren't really saying anything of substance.

"Nuance" would be adding details and explaining yourself further, something that seems impossible to get you to do, considering the topic is corruption in the Trump administration.

Let me put it this way: are you only bothered by Biden's conflicts of interest...yet find Jared and the Trump family to be above criticism in those respects?
Relevant how? Another non sequitur. My opinion on this doesn't establish whether Trump's administration is corrupt or not.
 

Madonis

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But we're getting off target. The topic is corruption.
It's related, because the premise implies that Trump (or his administration) firing or criticizing someone and calling them corrupt....means that they're, in fact, corrupt.

My objection is that he includes among the "corrupt" and the "swamp" or the "deep state"...a lot of folks who spoke up and/or weren't part of his group of friends and allies.

Therefore, I find it difficult to give the administration a whole lot of leeway in terms of judging corruption, because it seemingly comes down to Trump's opinion.

Seriously, what does this have to do with corruption? You seem to be inferring that because he takes loyalty seriously that he misunderstands what true corruption is, while at the same time being guilty of corruption.
We wouldn't have this argument over the terms and their use if Trump himself didn't bring up corruption (or the "swamp", the "deep state", etc) in many of these cases.

But is it corruption? You keep making declarative statements about Trump's corruption and his bad appointments, but then when asked directly to explain you retreat to things like "you're exposing yourself to potential corruption".

So which is it? Is he corrupt or are you saying Trump is above board but is perhaps being a bit unwise by potentially opening himself up to corruption?
Right now, I think he's being unwise. I don't think he's corrupt for that per se, but is taking on a greater level of risk.

I am calling it "potential corruption" because nobody has a crystal ball to predict what will happen with each and every one of these individuals.

HOLY SHIT, conversation with you is mind numbing. These are empty truisms. Do you actually have an opinion or does your entire schtick consist of variations of "maybe you're right, but it's also possible you're completely wrong"?
I was responding to that specific statement. My opinion, as already expressed previously, is that Trump has cut way too many regulations and/or lowered their standards. I don't think that's good for, say, the environment nor for fighting corruption even if it can provide short term growth. He's too trigger-happy.

I am not talking about the Republican view nor the Democrat view, I am talking about your view. You seem to view it in binary terms. I am not a Republican.
Oh come on, I am being critical of the positions adopted by the Trump administration in this area....because they increases the risk of corruption.

Your position is more sympathetic towards what the administration is doing. Which is, essentially, a very conservative/Republican view.

I've already said that if he approached things differently, it would probably be better for everyone....even for his electoral campaign.

Those are called "caveats" and when your argument is crammed with them, then you aren't really saying anything of substance.

"Nuance" would be adding details and explaining yourself further, something that seems impossible to get you to do, considering the topic is corruption in the Trump administration.
I believe I've provided several details and expanded on the explanations. Of course, you're free to read only certain parts of my response and not consider others, but they're still there.

Relevant how? Another non sequitur. My opinion on this doesn't establish whether Trump's administration is corrupt or not.
No, but it establishes whether you think there's any room for criticism of the administration or only for praising its actions in this field.
 

Teletraan1

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I guess only Republicans are allowed to carry out multi-year investigations that turn up with nothing, huh?

If he has proof that these specific people were leaking, I'd be fine with firing them. But I am not fine with blanket purges. Impeachment (or public criticism, or even leaking) is not a coup attempt.

Heaven help us if a real coup attempt actually does take place, sooner or later, so that people can learn the true meaning of the word.
Anyone can run multi year investigations if they are predicated on more than unverified information and people willfully withholding exculpatory evidence. Any investigator worth anything would have figured out that there was nothing to this case in maybe a month. Dragging on the investigation for years was an obvious obstruction trap based on what was actually in the Mueller report. Trying to equate just the length of the investigation just exposes your dishonesty. Nothing new for you.

For someone giving lectures on the meaning of coup you seem to not know the meaning of public criticism. Public criticism does not involve offering no criticism but only just jumping to "coup has started" "first of many steps" #impeachment.


Please don't drag out a vox article or anyone else trying to explain this away because their explanations doesn't make any sense. Mark Zaid claims he was saying that Trump was commiting a coup but Trump was already in power. You don't commit a coup on yourself. Maybe you should educate Mark Zaid on word definitions. Not the only example of #resistance types that have existed since Trump took office and prior. Strozk, Paige etc.

Spare me the posturing and false equivalence. He isn't a dictator, seriously speaking, but demanding resignations (and not just these) at this time isn't exactly normal. As opposed to when it's done after entering office, for example, or after a particular task has been accomplished and you need to rotate or reduce staff.
Again lecturing people about posturing and false equivalence while engaging in such things. So you are fine with change for arbitrary reasons that you deem normal but not when Trump does it. But then in your response to me you aren't fine with them. So make up your mind.
 

autoduelist

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True. I suppose that's is why the president could release documents and witness that show everything he was doing was above board and those 17 witnesses all got it wrong. It's been a normal practice in the past. Did Nixon and Clinton release documents and witnesses?
You do not need to prove innocence, especially of something that was not a crime in the first place. If Schiff had put 5 more random people who had never met Trump up, you would be using 22 instead of 17 as if that made your case stronger,
 
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Madonis

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Anyone can run multi year investigations if they are predicated on more than unverified information and people willfully withholding exculpatory evidence. Any investigator worth anything would have figured out that there was nothing to this case in maybe a month. Dragging on the investigation for years was an obvious obstruction trap based on what was actually in the Mueller report. Trying to equate just the length of the investigation just exposes your dishonesty. Nothing new for you.
Not the length alone, but the fact Republicans ended up with absolutely nothing despite swearing up and down that they had something.

Despite your incredibly misleading summary of events, there was more than just unverified information leading to the Mueller investigation in particular, regardless of the tired old Fox News narrative, so you're definitely arguing with one eye closed here. If that's not dishonest, then you're at least being foolish. Perhaps you should look into a mirror.

Multiple people did ultimately end up either going to jail or on trial as a result of the Mueller probe, so claiming there was "nothing" to the whole thing simply because Trump didn't engage in collusion with Russia is a highly selective point of view.

For someone giving lectures on the meaning of coup you seem to not know the meaning of public criticism. Public criticism does not involve offering no criticism but only just jumping to "coup has started" "first of many steps" #impeachment.


Please don't drag out a vox article or anyone else trying to explain this away because their explanations doesn't make any sense. Mark Zaid claims he was saying that Trump was commiting a coup but Trump was already in power. You don't commit a coup on yourself. Maybe you should educate Mark Zaid on word definitions. Not the only example of #resistance types that have existed since Trump took office and prior. Strozk, Paige etc.
That's an absolutely moronic argument and pathetically narrow-minded on your part.

If Mark Zaid had actually participated in a real coup, then he would be in jail by now. Not even the administration is seriously charging him with that. Says a lot.

The sloppy use of coup in that tweet is ambiguous, but it can just as easily (and also inaccurately) refer to Trump kicking people out for standing up to him. In other words, an alleged "coup" against the institutions and career officials. I don't agree with that language, but he's literally responding to Trump firing and replacing someone early on and calling it the "first of many steps", which means the incident openly reported in the statement he's quoting. It makes little or no sense to read the words as Zaid somehow announcing his own participation in a coup (playing what role, exactly?) and ignore what's written below his tweet.

Even if you say he wanted to see Trump removed through impeachment for replacing this official, which is plausible, that's not a coup either. Impeachment is an entirely legal process. Zaid could have hypothetically (because nobody bothers to prove it) spent every single one of his waking hours talking about seeking the impeachment of Trump and that isn't illegal. It might, however, be wrong or stupid on his part.

That's still not a coup, either way. But since you've already decided that only the out-of-context Fox News version of events is valid, then I won't waste any more time arguing with you.
 
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dionysus

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Does that change the facts? Trump had massive opposition and STILL acted corruptly. Democrats didn't make him use tax payer dollars to coerce a foreign country to investigate a US citizen. He brought it on himself. Still if he was innocent he could have provided documention and witnesses that showed he did nothing wrong.
Um, he did. He released the transcript of his call to the Ukraine president, the call that the whistleblower whistled about, and all witnesses, actual witnesses, not hearsay witnesses, said on the record that there was no quid pro quo. This included at least 2 senior aids, the President of the Ukraine, and the Democrats own star witness Sondland.

But you know, the gossip was that he Orange man bad so that Trump's people with actual knowledge of the situation.

And here is the kicker, it is actually in law that the President has the discretion to not release funds if he believes the foreign actor is corrupt, and it is also in treaty that the Ukraine and the US will cooperate on investigations into corruption. So if the President has even a shred of reasonable belief of corruption, he is ACTING IN ACCORDANCE with the LAW to withhold aid and ask for investigation to make sure there is no corruption. And there is more than just a shred of reasonable belief that Biden, through his immediate family, is one of the most corrupt politicians to grace the halls of the White House and Congress.
 
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Madonis

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Um, he did. He released the transcript of his call to the Ukraine president, the call that the whistleblower whistled about, and all witnesses, actual witnesses, not hearsay witnesses, said on the record that there was no quid pro quo. This included at least 2 senior aids, the President of the Ukraine, and the Democrats own star witness Sondland.
The document itself says it is not a verbatim transcript of the discussion, but is based on recollections and notes, acknowledging it can have errors.

Trump claimed there was no quid pro quo. Others, including the witnesses, had a variety of opinions on the subject.

And here is the kicker, it is actually in law that the President has the discretion to not release funds if he believes the foreign actor is corrupt, and it is also in treaty that the Ukraine and the US will cooperate on investigations into corruption. So if the President has even a shred of reasonable belief of corruption, he is ACTING IN ACCORDANCE with the LAW to withhold aid and ask for investigation to make sure there is no corruption. And there is more than just a shred of reasonable belief that Biden, through his immediate family, is one of the most corrupt politicians to grace the halls of the White House and Congress.
Does investigating the Bidens, in particular, make Ukraine as a country significantly less corrupt? He wasn't calling for a full-scale assault on Ukrainian corruption of all kinds.

The GAO also disagrees with your assessment of the law.

 
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cryptoadam

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Looks like Trump just saved some costs on the budget. One thing you always try to do when looking to maxamize profits is to cut costs and un needed employees are a great place to start.

Seems like Obama staffed the place to keep that gov't money flowing. Keep people depended on gov't jobs.
 

Teletraan1

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Not the length alone, but the fact Republicans ended up with absolutely nothing despite swearing up and down that they had something.

Despite your incredibly misleading summary of events, there was more than just unverified information leading to the Mueller investigation in particular, regardless of the tired old Fox News narrative, so you're definitely arguing with one eye closed here. If that's not dishonest, then you're at least being foolish. Perhaps you should look into a mirror.

Multiple people did ultimately end up either going to jail or on trial as a result of the Mueller probe, so claiming there was "nothing" to the whole thing simply because Trump didn't engage in collusion with Russia is a highly selective point of view.



That's an absolutely moronic argument and pathetically narrow-minded on your part.

If Mark Zaid had actually participated in a real coup, then he would be in jail by now. Not even the administration is seriously charging him with that. Says a lot.

The sloppy use of coup in that tweet is ambiguous, but it can just as easily (and also inaccurately) refer to Trump kicking people out for standing up to him. In other words, an alleged "coup" against the institutions and career officials. I don't agree with that language, but he's literally responding to Trump firing and replacing someone early on and calling it the "first of many steps", which means the incident openly reported in the statement he's quoting. It makes little or no sense to read the words as Zaid somehow announcing his own participation in a coup (playing what role, exactly?) and ignore what's written below his tweet.

Even if you say he wanted to see Trump removed through impeachment for replacing this official, which is plausible, that's not a coup either. Impeachment is an entirely legal process. Zaid could have hypothetically (because nobody bothers to prove it) spent every single one of his waking hours talking about seeking the impeachment of Trump and that isn't illegal. It might, however, be wrong or stupid on his part.

That's still not a coup, either way. But since you've already decided that only the out-of-context Fox News version of events is valid, then I won't waste any more time arguing with you.
The Steele Dossier was the bulk of information for the FISA and it was not verified but listed as verified on the FISA application. That has been verified by the IG Fisa abuse report. The Dossier was bullshit. That isn't a FOX news talking point. It is a fact. Sorry if I am not going to post a timeline of the entire Mueller investigation every time I talk to some condescending twat on the internet.

Multiple people were charged with process crimes and other crimes that had nothing to do with Russian Collusion. Some of them crimes that would not exist without an investigation predicated on false grounds. Congrats you got some people for Tax Evasion, Taxi Cab Medallions and a bunch of lying to the FBI and lying to congress on nitpicky garbage. Papa D went to jail for 14 days. Has any President ever had so many people he only met a few times or never go to jail? What a smoking gun. The walls are closing in.

Why would Mark Zaid be in jail before all of this is investigated? You are aware the Mark Zaid is the whistleblower lawyer? What role could he play? At minimum I would wager he actually formatted the content of the report. It was clearly written by a lawyer. Could he have worked with Adam Schiff to drum up a complaint based on sewing circle gossip they could corroborate with Vindman and others in the NSC, some of which were put on Schiff Staff just prior to this impeachment. How the rules for whistleblowers was changed to allow 3rd hand information just before he submitted the report. How the whistleblower had huge conflict of interest with the Bidens. Tune in when that gets investigated if it ever will. All I am saying is that when you have multiple people telling you that they are attempting a coup, that they have insurance policies in case he gets elected it is getting harder and harder to just dismiss it outright on fruitless investigation number 10 from the same people over and over.

You are really hung up on the usage of coup like it has to be some bloodbath. A coup can use a legal process and corrupt it. When you throw due process out the window during an impeachment investigation, hide exculpatory evidence in the ICIG testimony that is still in a skiff, vote down partisan lines on articles of impeachment that don't even warrant the removal of the president from office, show up with 18-1=17 witnesses demand more witnesses that should have been called during the investigation lest this trial be invalid. While nothing is illegal it reeks of an actual abuse of power. It is a clear attempt to unseat the president or attempt to destroy his chance at re-election. Too bad the democrats just suck at it. I don't really care about the use of coup. It kind of fits, it is more of a soft coup which is usually how it is described but you being pedantic about it is fucking hilarious.

Try arguing my points rather than some strawman version of what you perceive to be the Fox News version of events just because they don't line up with your headcanon. I have followed the entirety of all of these investigation and none of it came from Fox News.