Tag Archives: TrumpRussia

What a difference nine months make…

 

President-Elect Donald Tr**p, praising a “very smart” Vladimir Putin for not expelling US diplomats, December 30, 2016. 

President Donald Tr**p today thanking Vladimir Putin for expelling US Diplomats. “It cuts down our payroll,” he says of the 800 foreign service workers who, I guess, are now out of work. (What happened to “jobs, jobs, jobs”?)

But he’s totally not colluding.

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Ja-Rent?

In his written statement to the Senate Committee investigating Russian meddling in last year’s election, Mr. Ivanka, fresh from his stint doubling Michael Sera and recording high-pitched birdcalls,  explained that he couldn’t possibly be expected to remember all this meetings with foreign governments, much less file the necessary papers.

According to today’s Forward (a paper who might be expected to go easy on the Orthodox First-Son-In-Law) not filing papers seems to be habit.

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In 2013, his company bought a 46-unit apartment complex in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. (Let us pause here, and consider this purchase for a moment. By 2013, Williamsburg had  long passed from an undiscovered, low-rent neighborhood into the Far-East Village, so he was buying at the top of the market. Not exactly the business savvy you’d hope to find in the man charged with “American Innovation.”) As part of the deal, he put the building under New York City’s rent stabilization law, which netted him a healthy $1.2 million tax break.

Just one problem. More than three years after the sale, the Kushner Co. has yet to register any of the units on the city’s rent stabilization roles. A spokesman claimed this was just an oversight, just like his forgetting to include those meetings with the Russian Ambassador in his security filings. But they haven’t jacked up the rents, promise. Like his letter to the Senate Committee, he thinks that should put the matter to rest.

The building’s address is 50 N. First Street; according to this real estate listing, the average rent is over $4,000. Does anyone know someone who lives there? Would love to hear from them….

 


Jared’s No Jewel…

While Jared Kushner, the Carlo Rizzi of the Tr**p family, spoke to investigators from the Senate committee looking into TrumpRussia today, and while that meeting was behind closed doors, his written statement was published by the Washington Post. He does not come off well. If there was collusion, the Russians are not getting their money’s worth. Like students at Trump University, we’re discovering what happens when you make a deal with Donald Tr**p: shoddy workmanship, passed off to underlings not trained to deliver the work promised.

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Mr. Bluth will see you now…

As you’d expect, the document is padded with Presidential venerations—how Donald Tr**p didn’t need any help from the Russians,  the campaign nimbly responded to new challenges, and that his father-in-law “had the right vision for America, and delivered his message perfectly.” All of which should let you know that either he has lost his short-term memory (because my memory was of a campaign that lurched from crisis to crisis, including getting into a shouting match with a Gold Star family) is lying, or is stupid enough to believe it.

After reading the eleven-page document, I’m going with the latter two. Because while President Father-In-Law was piling up the portfolios in Mr. Ivanka’s inbox (the Middle East! Innovation! ) he plodded along, a walking conformation of the Peter Principle.

With each new task, he told the Committee, he would “reach out to contacts…find the right person to manage the specific challenge, and work with that person to develop and execute a plan of action.” Sounds like Business 101, right? But even at that, Mr. Ivanka was overwhelmed. Why, he received nearly 200 emails a day during the campaign! From (approximately) 15 countries! How could he be expected to remember all the contacts he had with foreign representatives?

Not only that, he didn’t even know the Russian Ambassador’s name! How could he collude with someone if he didn’t know their name? Or know how to get in contact with them, even if he did.  That form he submitted about his foreign contacts? Well, he didn’t just leave off the Russians, he left off meetings with Jordan’s King Abdullah II, “Bibi” Netanyahu, and Mexico’s foreign minister. Doesn’t that make you feel better?

And, as for the  June 2016 meeting the Junior Don set up with that Russian lawyer at Tr**p Tower….let’s just say he didn’t “love it!”  as much as his brother-in-law. He didn’t even read the email.  It was “calendared,” and if iCalendar says to be somewhere, Mr. Ivanka goes. How many people were there, who they were, what the agenda was…all blank spaces in Mr. I’s memory. The one thing he does remember was that he was bored, and eventually asked his assistant to call him, so he could get out of there. Nothing to see here…

At the end of this document, which should fear in the heart of anyone who thinks that, regardless of party affiliation, government requires competent, able individuals, he writes, in bold text to you know he’s serious:

I did not collude, nor know of anyone in the campaign who colluded, with any foreign government. I had no improper contacts. I have not relied on Russian funds to finance  my business activities in the private sector. I have tried to be fully transparent with regard to filing my FS-86 form, above and beyond what is required .

He concludes by hoping this “puts the matter to rest.” Can’t imagine that will be the case.

 


Obscene Paragraphs: Minimize the Moocher Edition

Anthony “The Mooch” Scaramucci, Il Douché’s newest hire, and understudy for the part of  Tight-Lips” Louie in the inevitable live action Simpsons musical, made his debutante’s run of the Sunday morning chat shows this morning. It did not go well.

 

 

His appearances did little to assuage the sense that the reason he got the job was his willingness to repeatedly declare his undying loyalty to his Don (twenty times, according to the NYTimes).  Sure, he outed his boss as an anonymous source, first telling Jake Tapper “Somebody said to me yesterday—I won’t tell you who—that if the Russians actually hacked this situation and spilled out those emails, you would have never seen it, you would have never had any evidence of them.” When pressed by Tapper, he reacted like a cornered bully in a playground fight: “How about it was the president, Jake?” Not exactly a compelling comeback.

But, at heart, he’s just another one of Tr**p’s hedge fund buddies who thinks he knows how to “fix” government without knowing how it actually works. And while having a friendly coffee with the folks over on “Fox News Sunday,” After less then two days on the job, he already knows what the problem. It just happens to be his Don’s biggest concern: leaks. All those illegal leaks on “Fake News.” (Left unasked: if those leaks are illegal, then the information—and the reporting of it—can’t be fake. If someone tells you a fake story, they’re not a leaker—they’re a liar.)

And The Mooch knows just how to stop those “unprofessional” leaks. His solution:

Scaramucci on Sunday said he would “pare down the staff” to stop White House leaks, but made clear… that he wants to start anew. “As far as I’m concerned, there will be a new start for everybody on the team,” said Scaramucci, whose appointment as communications director forced the resignation of Sean Spicer, who had held that post.

 OK, the less people who have access to information, the less chance of it leaking (and it’s easier to find the leak). Only one problem: The Douché Administration is running with a historically small staff. Some of the agencies have only a single Tr**p appointee. And it’s not obstruction, at least not on the Democrat’s part. According to the Washington Post.

President Trump has a major staffing problem. He has been president for five months, and yet his agencies are severely understaffed at the highest levels. And, no, it’s not all Senate Democrats’ fault…Trump is way behind other Presidents in nominating people for the Senate to vote on.

Obscene Paragraphs: Tying One On Edition

Il Douché has joined forces with Ty Cobb. No, not that one, but a distant relation. Given the Georgia Peach’s love of sharp spikes and views on race, it’s amusing to entertain the thought that the connection appealed to Tr**p. But, if he was going to choose a new lawyer you’d think he might look to someone who doesn’t resemble a villainous Wilford Brimley.

But the facial hair of the Douché legal team (and if this Russia matter is a hoax, you have to ask why he needs real lawyers to manage it) is not the subject of today’s Obscene Paragraph, although it does come from today’s Times’ story on Cobb’s hiring. No, it’s the reason why  they need a new lawyer. The stress of being a Douché family consigliere has caused Marc Kasowitz to take on a hobby: threatening people who email him. That leaves him precious little time for actual legal work.

Not that if matters. If you believe Il Douché, being elected President has given him new, God-like, powers. As the Times puts it:

But Mr. Trump has flouted his own lawyer, bragging to people around him that no one can control his actions.

No one can control his actions. Let that sink in for a moment. This is a man who thought that simply being a “star ” gave him license to grope women— “they let you do it. You can do anything.” 

I’m beginning to think Il Douché is too kind. Maybe Kim Jong Il Douché is a better fit.

 

 


Obscene Paragraphs: Stairway to the Starrett Edition

While the Junior Don is digging himself deeper every time he opens his mouth, apparently believing he can deflect any problems by insisting it was just a casual meeting. It was set up by an “acquaintance,” and he invited Jared and Paul to “stop by.”  Besides, she didn’t have any good dirt on Hillary, so what’s the issue?

While the left hand’s getting slapped, the right one is still out there grifting. Today’s Times has a story about a conflict of interest arising out of Il Douché’s stake in Starrett City, a massive housing development in Brooklyn, and a reminder of a time when governments were actually interested in helping the middle class. As you might expect, the owners get Federal subsidies, to the tune of $490 million since May 2013.

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Tr**p’s stake in small, only 4%, but two Democratic Congressmen, Elijah Cummings of Maryland and Hakeem Jeffries of New York, have questions about it. They worry that Il Douché’s representatives, or his good friend Ben Carson, the Housing and Urban Development Secretary, could “put a thumb on the scales” regarding rent increases, a possible sale , or refinancing. But that’s not what’s truly obscene. It’s this:

The men added that they also worry that Mr. Trump’s proposed budget would make steep cuts to many housing programs but “would leave the type of federal aid that flows to the owners of Starrett City mostly intact.”

So if you live in Starrett City, you might have to dig deeper in your pocket to pay the rent, but rest assured,  the bank balance of Donald J. Tr**p, 45th President of the United States, and your landlord, will not be adversely affected.


Is That The Other Shoe I Hear…?

Russian Ambassador Told Moscow That Kushner Wanted A Secret Communications Channel With Moscow.

I’ll let that sink in for a second.

You read that correctly—Russian Ambassador Told Moscow That Kushner Wanted A Secret Communications Channel With Moscow. Now, before we start bringing out the Champaign to christen the good ship Impeachment,  let’s take a breath.

This could just be Russia toying with us, throwing yet another pailful of dezinformatsiya  to the mainstream media like so much chum, roiling the water just to show they can. Putin might have tired of Il Douché, and decided to throw a shot across his bow, stepping on the relatively good news of his foreign trip.  Who knew he’d be so high-maintenance? The constant preening, and having to be in the front row of every picture?  (The most Tr**piest part of that shove? The East/west nods and the tug on his jacket as he took his place, a bullying narcissist’s show of importance that wouldn’t look out of place on a mob boss.) And he just won’t shut up. Being an ally of Il Douché is like hooking up with every nightmare relationship you ever had. You couldn’t blame he if  Putin decided he’s not worth the trouble, and cut him loose.

Or it could just be they’re really that stupid. Right now, that option seems the most likely.

According to the story, Kislyak

was reportedly was taken aback by the suggestion of allowing an American to use Russian communications gear at its embassy or consulate — a proposal that would have carried security risks for Moscow as well as the Trump team.

 And that sounds like something Tr**p would demand. You can imagine him telling Jared to demand a secret office in the Russian Embassy. It’s the kind of Maxwell-Smart-meets- the-Sopranos style of governing coming from the White House.

Whatever the reason, this takes the story right to the heart of the Tr**p Administration. If true, you can’t imagine that Kushner, the most trusted man in the White House, made that demand without approval from the Boss. And it’s illegal, even if they’re going to claim this was some ninja-styled negotiating move. Can’t wait to hear Jeffrey Lord try to defend this steaming pile of crap.

 


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