Saturday, June 29, 2019

UPDATED: The Kama Sutra Harris Platform

1. Abortion--whenever!

2. Bus the kids!

3. Like your Health Insurance? Can't have it!

Wait, did I mention abortion?

4. Open borders--to replace the kids from #1!

5. Free healthcare for the kids in #4!

Any questions? Whaddaya mean 'yes'? You rasiss!

UPDATE: Will Chamberlain has proposed a slightly different platform for the Dems generally:

Will Chamberlain ‏

The 2020 Democrat platform:
- Orange Man Bad
- Open borders
- Universal health care for illegal immigrants
- Universal, free abortion at 39 weeks
- Free Antifa beatings for being conservative in public
- Deplatforming if you question any of the above
I'll pass, thanks. #MAGA
10:49 AM - 30 Jun 2019

The Complexities Of The Russia Hoax Investigation

OK, so what's taking so long? Why aren't we seeing some indictments in the Russia Hoax? What could possibly be causing the delay, except the blindingly obvious reason--for some: Bill Barr is a Deep State plant intent on protecting the DoJ and FBI and undermining President Trump?

Actually, there are a lot of reasons for the delay, and the number one reason is the sheer complexity of the Russia Hoax--the number of moving parts, if you will. As I've remarked in the past, we're used to thinking of the Russia Hoax largely from a US-centric perspective, with our focus on the CIA and FBI, with a somewhat lower awareness of what was going on at DoJ and the Department of State. Coordination of the Russia Hoax at the White House, as it seems to me, comes in last place.

That isn't to say that those of us who have been following the unraveling of the Russia Hoax haven't given a thought to the foreign angle. We know about Christopher Steele's important role--although we usually think of that in terms of his interactions with US players: Bruce Ohr, Glenn Simpson, and other US government functionaries and media figures. We know, too, about George Papadopoulos' escapades with UK based figures, such as Stefan Halper, Joseph Mifsud and the Aussie "diplomat" Alexander Downer. Carter Page? For the most part he figures in the phrases "the Carter Page FISA application," rather than his interaction with Halper and other UK figures.

Nevertheless, as we attempted to show a bit over a month ago in The Shape Of The Coup Plot: Obama And The Brits, that overseas connection looms increasingly large in the Russia Hoax investigation. One sign of that is the announcement of the agreement by the UK government to allow Christopher Steele to be interviewed by US government investigators. Well, officially, that was Christopher Steele who said he was willing to be interviewed, but in the real world we all know that that doesn't happen without UK government approval--if you need to have that explained, follow the first link in this paragraph. The point is that without a thorough understanding the foreign angle--and especially the UK angle--Barr will never truly "get his arms around" the real scope of the Russia Hoax. And that will take time--time to identify the players, time to do thorough background investigations not only on known players but also their connections, time to develop investigative and interview strategies.

Friday, June 28, 2019

BEAUTIFUL: Nadler's Jerry-mander

David Marcus has a nice article at The Federalist today: Jerry Nadler Represents A District Gerrymandered To Capture White Voters.  For anyone who knows New York, the map alone tells the story. But, here's the explanation:

In the map below you can see [the] circuitous pattern [Nadler's district forms], but only New Yorkers will understand why it takes the path that it does. One hint is that his district is 72 percent white.

It starts in Southern Brooklyn, in a mostly white Democratic neighborhood called Bensonhurst, then  dances a slender line through more conservative Bay Ridge, then up the mostly white Democrat Brooklyn coast of the East River, skips Chinatown to capture the Financial District, Chelsea, and the Upper West Side — all enclaves of, you guessed it, mostly white Democrats.

And yet Dems will tell you they're against racial gerrymanders.

Thursday, June 27, 2019

Mueller Before Congress: The Emerging Consensus

I've already presented my view that the Robert Mueller testimony scheduled for July 17 was a strategic decision born of desperation. That desperation is a product of the Deep State's realization that AG Barr and John Durham are seriously focusing on the ICA "assessment"--the core of the continuing Russia Hoax narrative of "collusion"--and the origins of the Steele "dossier." Steele and all involved CIA and FBI officials will be questioned, up to and including Gina Haspel, CIA Director. Thus, with the Deep State under prosecutorial pressure, Schiff and Nadler, desperate to protect the Deep State and somehow keep the "collusion" narrative alive, had nowhere else to turn but to try to showcase Mueller for a bit of impeachment theater. Or maybe impeachment cabaret, or standup.

The emerging consensus appears to be that the Democrats are making a serious mistake--it's a bridge too far, expecting Mueller to make a difference in public opinion and somehow stop the Barr Express that's barreling down the tracks toward the Deep State. As always, the problem with acting out of desperation is that, when you have no really good alternatives, serious blowback becomes a near certainty. In this case, the snag for Democrats is that at a Congressional hearing the minority gets to ask questions, too. You can jigger the rules to try to protect the witness or minimize the potential for damage, but there's only so much that can be done in that regard.

Sean Hannity spoke with Gregg Jarrett and Alan Dershowitz last night, and they delved into these issues. We all have our list of questions that we hope the GOPers are preparing for Mueller, some of which we've already alluded to. Hannity spoke first with Jarrett. Jarrett's wish list of questions--riffing off Hannity's list of nine questions--focused on two areas:

First, Jarrett wants Mueller to be questioned regarding the circumstances of his appointment as Special Counsel. Recall that Rod Rosenstein brought Mueller to the Oval Office to have Trump interview Mueller as a replacement for FBI Director the very day before Mueller was appointed as Special Counsel. It's very obvious that something was up. Thus, Jarrett wants the GOP to ask Mueller whether he discussed the President's reasons for firing Comey. If Mueller's answer is, Yes, then under the Special Counsel regulations Mueller was required to disqualify himself because he was a witness to the offense he was investigating. Mueller will be under oath, and there were a minimum of two other witnesses present, and likely more. That could be dicey line of questioning for Mueller.

Tuesday, June 25, 2019

UPDATED: Mueller To Testify Now That ICA Is In Play

Robert Mueller has agreed to testify before a “joint panel” of the House Intelligence and Judiciary Committees, on July 17th. As CTH points out, this will be carefully rehearsed theater. What's it about? Adam Schiff gives it away in a tweet. We've all been hearing for the past two weeks that Barr and Durham are focusing on the ICA, the intelligence "assessment" that has controlled the Russia Hoax overall narrative. It's as phony as the Steele "dossier", but its evidence free "finding" that Putin "attacked our democracy to help Trump win" has been the Good News and the Creed of the Russia Hoaxers. Schiff tweets:

Robert Mueller has agreed to testify before Congress pursuant to subpoena.
Russia attacked our democracy to help Trump win. Trump welcomed and used that help. As Mueller said, that should concern every American.
And now, every American will get to hear directly from Mueller.

Sheer desperation. Mueller's appearance will be staged to defend the ICA narrative of the Russia Hoax, to stave off the looming disaster just a bit longer. But this isn't going to stop Barr and Durham. Mueller better mind how he goes.

UPDATE 1: You never know what might come up in Mueller's testimony, so this may be a good spot to recommend Jeff Carlson's new blog, Tracing the Origins of Congressional Democrats’ ‘Obstruction’ Strategy. Back in December, 2018, in A Message Of Hope, I made a big deal about Bill Barr's 19 page legal memo to Rod Rosenstein, which Barr wrote in June of 2018. The title of that memo was "Mueller's Theory Of Obstruction."

Carlson goes into detail regarding the development of the Democrat obstruction strategy, drawing on Mueller's (actually Weissmann's) theory, but his closing section is titled "William Barr’s Foresight". His point is simply that, at a time when nobody else--including Trump's lawyers--saw where Mueller was headed--Bill Barr did. This was a major reason that Barr took the AG gig when he could have been retired in comfort. Count on it--Barr is all over this. But look for the Dems to play that theory up. They don't need a straight opinion from Mueller to try to use the theory.

UPDATE 2: We all have a list of questions we'd like to see put to Mueller, but President Trump reopened what would be a fascinating line of inquiry in an interview with Maria Bartiromo (via Zerohedge). To put what follows in perspective, recall that Strzok and Page were dismissed from Team Mueller--and ultimately from the FBI--for cause for matters having to do with their emails and texts:

President Trump on Wednesday claimed that special counsel Robert Mueller 'illegally terminated' texts between ... Peter Strzok and Lisa Page.  

[Trump] was likely referring to a December report by the DOJ's Office of the Inspector General (OIG) which found that after [Strzok] was fired from the Mueller probe, the special counsel's office allowed Strzok's phone to be wiped clean by the FBI before it was reassigned to another agent.  
It strains credulity to imagine that the special counsel's office would 'accidentally' allow Strzok's iPhone to be reformatted after he was fired for exchanging biased text messages on it. 

Jordan Schachtel

 So Mueller's team wiped ALL of the data off of Peter Strzok's iPhone after determining "it contained no substantive text messages." Given what we know about Strzok, this smells like quite the coverup. Time for Congress to step in? …
11:16 AM - Dec 13, 2018 
Page's phone was similarly scrubbed.  
Jordan Schachtel

Replying to @JordanSchachtel 
I'm sure you're all super shocked to find out that Lisa Page's phone was also scrubbed 
12:56 PM - Dec 13, 2018 
[Description of the content of their communications] 
No wonder Strzok's iPhone was allowed to be scrubbed!

What The Russia Hoax Reveals About America's Elites

I've finished Stephen Cohen's War With Russia? It's impressive, in that Cohen repeatedly beat other observers to very pointed conclusions. Two examples:

As early as August, 2016, Cohen was dismissing any notion of Paul Manafort "colluding" with Russia and very pointedly questioning the reliability of the Ukrainianian "anti-corruption" sources who provided the information about Manafort. We're seeing Cohen's questions coming to the fore, nearly three years later.

On May 10, 2017, a week before Mueller was appointed Special Counsel, Cohen wrote:

... on May 8 and 9 in Washington, today's Russia was being portrayed at Senate hearings as an existential threat, as having committed an "act of war against America" by "hijacking" the 2016 presidential election on behalf of President Trump." ... 
After nearly a year, no actual facts have yet been presented to support the allegation. On the other hand, evidence has appeared that for more than a year elements of the US Intelligence Community--almost certainly the CIA and FBI--have been engaged in shadowy operations designed to link Trump to Putin's Kremlin. I've called this "Intelgate" and urged it be investigated first and foremost. Intel leaks and "reports," in evident "collusion" with the failed Clinton campaign, have driven the Russiagate narrative from the outset, amplified almost daily by a mainstream media that shows no interest at all in Intelgate.

That's about as clearsighted as anyone at the time could have claimed to be--far more so than most.

Since Bill Barr's DoJ is short on leaks, I decided that it might be worthwhile to present Cohen's essay from February 21, 2018. My title modifies his slightly. Cohen's perspective is always that of the all pervasive "Russia hysteria" the Dems and their media allies have plunged us into, so he prefers "Russiagate". Be that as it may, in his essay Cohen identifies "six ... barely concealed truths", "profoundly disturbing characteristics of people who play a very large role in governing our country." Admittedly, none of this should come as a surprise to anyone, but Cohen's six point indictment of America's elite is persuasively presented.

Monday, June 24, 2019

UPDATED: Flynn Update: Status Hearing 6/24/19

First the formalities. Due to Flynn's dismissal of his original legal team and hiring of Sidney Powell to represent him in his false statement case before Judge Sullivan, Sullivan set a date for another status hearing--the last day of August. That gives Powell a little over two months to spend getting a handle on the documentation in the case. However, Powell told the judge that she'd need a good three months, and buttressed that estimate with a description of the extent of the documentation she has received to date.

The real news, however, was confirmation that Flynn and his previous legal team never had access to classified documentation relating to the case. This confirmation arose when Powell informed the judge that she might need a security clearance to review some of the documents she might want to see.

Several observers on Twitter had essentially identical accounts of this aspect. Here's how it went:

Powell raised the possibility of needing a security clearance and said she may need to review classified information. But prosecutors say they did not turn over any classified info as part of discovery. Prosecutors & the judge seemed confused about what the info might be. 
The judge ultimately decided that the defense team, prosecutors and the court’s classified information security officer should be in touch and figure out if the judge needs to step in.

Obviously, the classified information that Powell might want to see will depend on where she wants to go in representing Flynn. Most commentators focused on the clear implication in this that Flynn had never been allowed to see the transcript of the conversation with Russian Ambassador Kislyak that he's charged with lying about. Instead, he pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI based on the FBI's FD-302. Further, Team Mueller, in response to Judge Sullivan's demand to see that transcript responded that it wasn't relevant--Flynn had plead guilty and that was all that mattered. Sullivan caved to that.

This is a major problem for Flynn. Flynn has repeatedly maintained to the court, under oath and under questioning by the judge, that he lied to the FBI and wants to be punished for his crime. He has consistently maintained--again, under oath--that he has full knowledge of what he's doing, was satisfied with the representation he had received from his lawyers, and was making this decision voluntarily. On what grounds can he now, while awaiting sentencing, ask to examine the evidence that underlies the false statements that he claims he made to the FBI?

In my view, the answer to this lies in two related matters. The first derives from the statement we quoted above: "Prosecutors & the judge seemed confused about what the [classified information that Powell wants to see] might be."

Sunday, June 23, 2019

Trump: My Biggest Mistake

Well, this one's a no-brainer. Bill Barr won't say it, but Trump will. From an interview with Chuck Todd:


If you could have one do over as president, what would it be?


Well, it would be personnel.


Who is it?


I would say if I had one do over, it would be, I would not have appointed Jeff Sessions to be attorney general. That would be my one --


That’s your, in your mind, that's your worst mistake?


Yeah, that was the biggest mistake.


Is Bill Barr your Roy Cohn?

Saturday, June 22, 2019

Iran And Impeachment

Did the impeachment question play into Trump's decision not to launch an attack on Iranian assets? The obvious answer is: Maybe yes, maybe no. However, there's a second question: Did impeachment play into Democrat calculations? While the answer remains the same--maybe yes, maybe no--my inclination is to believe that it was a significant factor. Consider this--it's a video that purports to show Chuck and Nancy in a celebratory after the meeting at the White House:

Well now we know why Chuck and Nancy were celebrating last night. They thought the Deep State had goaded Trump into war, exactly as they planned with their FF. Trump outsmarts them again!


Now, it's entirely possible that Chuck and Nancy were in a celebratory mood because they agree with the likes of Pat Buchanan and Carlson Tucker that war with Iran would guarantee Trump as a one-term president. That would be understandable. However, depending on how such a war proceeded, as well as other political factors, I believe that the Dems may have believed that war with Iran could have put them in a stronger position to impeach Trump for exceeding his war powers--and to make the impeachment stick.

Friday, June 21, 2019

Wisdom From Dennis Kucinich

And he said it in a lot fewer words than I did:

"The same deep state actors who have tried to put [Trump] out of office will succeed if they get him into war with Iran."

And how about this from Cliff Sims, a former communications aide?

"Trump's gut instincts on foreign policy are spot on. It takes a lot of backbone to remain clear-eyed when the foreign policy establishment, even inside his own White House, starts banging the drums of war. He showed real strength by refusing to buckle to pressure to immediately strike Iran."

My guess? Americans like a president who shows strength under pressure.

UPDATED: The War Party, The Russia Hoax, And The Deep State War On Trump

Trump never ceases to amaze. With the War Party almost openly gloating that Iran (at who's prodding?) had boxed Trump into a foolish war, with his supporters near despair ... Trump proceeds to pull the plug (for now) and schools the post-Christian world on classical Just War Theory, invoking "proportionality." As if to say, Here's for you voters out there who want a balanced, grounded, America First president. This guy is simply deeper than most people will grant.

Look, I can't tell you what's really behind this. Was the tanker attack a false flag, or was Iran responsible? Did Iran down the drone in international airspace in an attempt to box Trump into war with the long term in view? On balance, I suspect that's what it's about. Perhaps just as important is the big picture, extending back many decades. There definitely appears to be a deja vu element to this and, as it happens, I have at hand some materials to offer a bit of perspective on the War Party's total war against Trump--in the overall context of the Russia Hoax.

One feature of the Russia Hoax struggle, drawn out over the past three years or so, has been that prominent liberals have found themselves, seemingly against all odds, defending Trump. Think of the likes of Alan Dershowitz, Stephen Cohen, Jonathan Turley, Mark Penn, and others. I've cited their views on a semi-regular basis, because they happen to be authorities in their fields with informed opinions to offer. In common with one another, these public intellectuals share a commitment to constitutional order and the distressing perception that this commitment--once common to liberals as well as conservatives--has been abandoned by the ascendant "progressive" movement within the Democrat party and its low information followers.

Another common feature is that, while these intellectuals have been associated with liberalism and even leftism, they usually have niche concerns that have been central to their public and academic lives. For example, Dershowitz is known first and foremost as a "civil libertarian". Stephen Cohen, who has for decades been associated with the far left The Nation magazine, is a Russia expert who is particularly known for his lifelong advocacy of detente with Russia. Both men see these core concerns being trampled underfoot by "progressives."

Wednesday, June 19, 2019

BREAKING: Rosenstein Wrote THREE Scope Memos--And Counting?

We all recall the famous "scope memo" that Rod Rosenstein wrote for Team Mueller, which apparently authorized more or less retroactively the jihad against Paul Manafort. Now it turns out there was another scope memo. Or maybe, yet another. A third and counting?

Per Byron York:

Until now, it was widely understood that there had been two "scope memos" from the DOJ to Mueller. Now, it turns out there was a third, as well. 
Rosenstein apparently went on to list several assignments, but only one was not blacked out. In that section, Rosenstein authorized Mueller to investigate allegations that Manafort "committed a crime or crimes by colluding with Russian government officials with respect to the Russian government's efforts to interfere with the 2016 election for President of the United States, in violation of United States law," as well as allegations that Manafort "committed a crime or crimes arising out of payments he received from the Ukrainian government before and during the tenure of President Viktor Yanukovych." 

Yeah, right--more collusion fantasies. Didn't work out, did it?

Now there is more. The Justice Department has recently allowed members of some congressional committees to view the scope memos, and out of that has come the news that there was a third scope memo to Mueller. Dated Oct. 20, 2017, its contents remain a secret. But its very existence suggests something was going on behind the scenes in the relationship of Mueller and his supervisors at the Justice Department. 
Was Mueller heading off in new directions, with Rosenstein belatedly giving him authorization to proceed? Was Mueller proposing to investigate people or events not known when he was originally appointed? Was there something else?
At the moment, the third scope memo, like most of the second scope memo, remains a secret. It is unclear whether all that secrecy is warranted. Perhaps the memos concern matters that are still ongoing that need to remain under wraps. ...

I'll bet Rosenstein had some interesting conversations with Barr! And, no, I very much doubt that there's anything ongoing.

UPDATED: DoJ Seeks Major Jail Time For Former Dem Aide

No time to write much about this. You may recall--this jerk was doxxing GOP senators during the Kavanaugh confirmation hearing: ‘SELF-RIGHTEOUS’: DEM STAFFER HEADED TO PRISON AS PROSECUTORS LOOK TO MAKE EXAMPLE OF HIM FOR POLITICALLY-MOTIVATED CRIMES.

A former aide to Sen. Maggie Hassan and Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee is headed to prison Wednesday for what prosecutors said was the largest known data theft in Senate history. 
The former aide, Jackson Cosko, pleaded guilty in April to crimes related to an unparalleled effort to ransack a Senate office, extorting a Democratic senator, illegally harming Republicans for their political views, and blackmailing a witness.
Prosecutors asked for nearly five years in prison for Cosko, a onetime congressional IT aide to Hassan. Cosko admitted he stole the New Hampshire Democrat’s data out of revenge for being fired, then used it to doxx Republicans during the Brett Kavanaugh hearings. 
“The government believes that a significant sentence would help to make clear that difference of political opinion do not entitle people to engage in politically motivated, criminal attacks threatening elected officials with whom he disagrees, and would thereby encourage respect for the law, and deter future criminal conduct,” prosecutors wrote. 
New details emerged in their sentencing memo that made the case of Cosko — the Bernie Sanders-supporting son of a millionaire San Francisco developer with ties to California Sen. Dianne Feinstein and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi — even more shocking. 

There's quite a bit more. The Barr DoJ took a dim view of it all, after initial rumors he'd only get a wrist slap.

UPDATE: Per Politico he got four years. Judge Thomas Hogan: “We have…a society that has become very vicious.” Yeah, like, yeah. Talk to Kavanaugh, or Pat Shanahan, or any number of other GOP nominees about that.

Cosko's accomplice has been charged:

Samantha Deforest-Davis, was charged with two misdemeanors stemming from the same scheme: aiding a computer fraud and evidence tampering.

UPDATED: John Solomon Blockbuster: Ukraine Ledger As Bad As Steele Dossier?

This morning I was bemoaning the fact that we've had little true news for some weeks, now. The heady days of document and testimony revelations appeared to be over. However, this afternoon John Solomon has come out with another blockbuster report. Right up front I want to make two quick points:

1. Solomon's report reflects and supports Rudy Giuliani's advice back in mid April of this year--going forward, we need to Pay Attention To Ukraine.
2. At the same time Solomon's report explains why patience is required, as I explained in Barr And Durham Are Focused On The CIA. The need to secure cooperation from foreign governments and their intelligence services means that Barr and Durham will need the active assistance of other persons and agencies within the US government, beginning with the POTUS himself. And their efforts will be resisted by the FBI and the CIA--the two agencies with the most to lose by the truth coming out.

That said, the opening paragraphs of Solomon's article, FBI, warned early and often that Manafort file might be fake, used it anyway, contains some of the most trenchant reporting I've seen in many months. Bear in mind, the "black cash ledger" is supposed to have been a record of payments to Paul Manafort:

When the final chapter of the Russia collusion caper is written, it is likely two seminal documents the FBI used to justify investigating Donald Trump’s 2016 campaign will turn out to be bunk. 
And the behavior of FBI agents and federal prosecutors who promoted that faulty evidence may disturb us more than we now know.

Briefly Noted: The Stone, The Hopester, The Barr

Here we are, we got what we wanted--Barr and Durham are conducting a real investigation the way it's supposed to be done--and the result is pretty much no leaking, no revelations. Tough on us.

In the meantime ...

The Roger Stone Case

Roger Stone is doing a good job demonstrating that the entire Russia Hoax narrative--importantly including the Russia-hacked-the-DNC part of it--is ... a hoax. This is an important, and public, supplement to the Barr/Durham investigation of the ICA.

Stone's argument in pre-trial motions is simply this: The Team Mueller search warrant affidavits against Stone simply assumed that Russians hacked the DNC--that's part of their probable cause narrative. Problem: Probable cause is normally based on independently verifiable information or testimony. In this case the FBI, which is behind the search warrant, did essentially NO investigation to justify the Russia-hacked-the-DNC narrative. They did not examine the DNC server, having been refused access to the physical evidence by the lawyers for the purported victim, the DNC. What they did was to rely on a redacted report by a private company, Crowdstrike, hired by the DNC--which very arguably has an interest in smearing Stone and Trump. Further, Crowdstrike appears not to have followed standard protocols for handling the physical evidence, protocols that the FBI would have been held to had they obtained the physical evidence. And now, having relied on that narrative for purposes of the search warrant Team Mueller wants to say that they can't be held to prove the underlying narrative. Stone says the evidence should all be thrown out and, IMO, that's reasonable. However, all bets are off with Judge Amy Berman Jackson. My understanding, subject to correction, is that if Jackson rules against Stone an interlocutory appeal should be allowed. We shall see.

Hope Hicks v. Dem Impeachment Theater

Monday, June 17, 2019

Excellent New Dem Hearing Strategy

Darren Samuelsohn at Politico is reporting on an excellent new Dem strategy to get witnesses to talk to them. They say they plan to call witnesses who were never part of the Trump administration and who, therefore can't assert executive privilege:

Darren Samuelsohn


House Democrats hope to make an end run around Trump’s executive privilege by calling witnesses like Corey Lewandowski and Chris Christie.  @politico

12:47 PM - 17 Jun 2019

Read all about it here. Not everyone thinks it's such a great idea, although they say they'd look forward to it. Joe DiGenova is one of those, and he offers the example of a previous attempt to browbeat Corey Lewandowski. Follow the embedded link below for the unexpurgated version of Lewandowski's, um, remarks to House Dems on that previous occasion:

But Democrats may regret calling witnesses who remain loyal to Trump and are willing to push back on lawmakers, said Joe diGenova, a former federal prosecutor who represented two witnesses in the Mueller probe: Mark Corallo, a former spokesman for the president’s legal team, and Trump campaign aide Sam Clovis. 
“You know what happens in a hearing like that, the witness says, ‘You know what, Mr. Nadler, go to hell. I’m sick of you. I’m sick of what you’ve done to my family,’” added diGenova, who nearly joined the president’s team of personal attorneys in March 2018 and continues to give Trump informal legal advice. 
“If they want to do that, I’d be there with a camera to watch that. How stupid. They think people are going to roll over and play dead for these morons? They may accept just to have the opportunity to spit in the face of Elijah Cummings, Schiff and Nadler, and I would recommend that they do it,” diGenova said. 
“If they want to call Corey [Lewandowski], that’d be their biggest mistake,” diGenova added. “Ooohoo! I hope they do it. They’re going to regret it.” 
Lewandowski reportedly had that exact experience when he testified to the House Intelligence Committee behind closed doors last year, telling Democrats he no longer intended to answer their “f---ing” questions.

Barr: No Rikers Island For Manafort

This is a signal that Barr is on top of every aspect of the Russia Hoax, including Team Mueller's actions and those of allied locals. 

The NYT is reporting that DoJ has stepped in and nixed the Manhanttan District Attorney's sadistic plans for Paul Manafort:

Paul Manafort Seemed Headed to Rikers. Then the Justice Department Intervened.
The decision came after Attorney General William Barr’s top deputy sent a letter to state prosecutors. Mr. Manafort will now be held in a federal lockup while he faces state charges.
Manhattan prosecutors were surprised to receive a letter from the second-highest law enforcement official in the country inquiring about Mr. Manafort’s case. The letter, from Jeffrey A. Rosen, Attorney General William P. Barr’s new top deputy, indicated that he was monitoring where Mr. Manafort would be held in New York. 
And then, on Monday, federal prison officials weighed in, telling the Manhattan district attorney’s office that Mr. Manafort, 70, would not be going to Rikers. 

UPDATED: Barr And Durham Are Focused On The CIA

At this point in the Russia Hoax investigation it has become increasingly apparent that former CIA Director John Brennan was at the very heart of the whole Russia Hoax. For that reason I've tried to focus on the significance of the Task Force that Brennan--in cooperation with Obama and his top staff--assembled in summer of 2016. The Task Force was ostensibly to focus on Russian "meddling" in the election, but there is little to no doubt that the Task Force was driven by what is known as the "Steele dossier". We won't quibble over the authorship--the main point is simply the made-up character of the dossier, that it was a false narrative put together for political purposes and then weaponized through the US Intelligence Community (IC) against candidate Trump and, later, against President Trump by Team Mueller. In that sense Team Mueller can be viewed as an extension of the Task Force, both in an offensive sense (targeting the POTUS) and in an defensive sense (attempting to ward of investigation of Obama administration and IC criminality).

I've been a champion of AG Bill Barr and his avowed purpose of getting to the bottom of the Russia Hoax. However, in recent weeks commenters have expressed frustration that there has not been massive declassification and publication of relevant documents and that there have been no indictments. I believe the reason for this is relatively straightforward.

Hitherto, attention has largely focused on the FBI criminality, and in particular on the fraudulent FISA that was opened and renewed three times against Carter Page. Of course, that FISA followed upon the dossier-driven opening of the Crossfire Hurricane Full Investigation, and the FISA itself was therefore undoubtedly dossier-driven as well. Given that background, the Team Mueller operation could only have been also dossier-driven--as I've argued at great length over the months. That view has, I think, been totally vindicated. In a sense, therefore, the focus on the FBI has been the easy part of the Russia Hoax investigation, simply because the opening of investigations, the applications for FISA coverage, all involve the creation of extensive paper trails. There can be no doubt whatsoever that, if Barr wished to, he could indict a fair number of former FBI officials today.

However, that would not insure getting to the "origins" of the Russia Hoax, as Barr is determined to do. FBI involvement in the Russia Hoax was necessary because the FBI, as our lead counterintelligence (CI) agency, must be the agency to open investigations and apply for electronic surveillance of US persons via FISA. But, as we have seen, the FBI wasn't the true originating and driving force behind the Russia Hoax. That honor goes to John Brennan of the CIA and the inner circle of the Obama Administration and its State Department. To get to that level Barr will need to work up from the level of the FBI.

Stephen Cohen: The Most Dangerous Moment in U.S.-Russian Relations

For those of you not really familiar with Stephen F. Cohen, he was a big name back in the Cold War days. He was part of the dueling Russia narratives then current, and still current in changed form. Cohen, a professor (now emeritus) of Russian studies at Princeton and New York University, was considered on the right to be an outright apologist for the then Soviet Union. His opposite Neocon number was the late Richard Pipes, a professor of history at Harvard for nearly four decades and an influential adviser to President Reagan.

Cohen's wife is revered by Progressives and notorious (reviled?) among conservatives--Katrina vanden Heuvel, New York heiress and editor, publisher, and part-owner of the progressive magazine The Nation. Cohen himself has long written regularly for The Nation. But times change and roles have changed to some degree. Cohen has taken up the cudgels against the Russia Hoax and appears regularly with the likes of Tucker Carlson--to the sputtering dismay of the Left in much the same way Alan Dershowitz has been denounced. Cohen's particular angle is the danger that the reckless--and false--Leftist collusion narrative raises for US-Russian relations. He has come out with a book which expresses his fears: War with Russia: From Putin & Ukraine to Trump & Russiagate. Here's the blurb from Amazon, to give you a flavor for Cohen's angle:

America is in a new Cold War with Russia even more dangerous than the one the world barely survived in the twentieth century. The Soviet Union is gone, but the two nuclear superpowers are again locked in political and military confrontations, now from Ukraine to Syria. All of this is exacerbated by Washington’s war-like demonizing of the Kremlin leadership and by Russiagate’s unprecedented allegations. US mainstream media accounts are highly selective and seriously misleading. American “disinformation,” not only Russian, is a growing peril. 
In War With Russia?, Stephen F. Cohen—the widely acclaimed historian of Soviet and post-Soviet Russia—gives readers a very different, dissenting narrative of this more dangerous new Cold War from its origins in the 1990s, the actual role of Vladimir Putin, and the 2014 Ukrainian crisis to Donald Trump’s election and today’s unprecedented Russiagate allegations. 
Cohen’s views have made him, it is said, “America’s most controversial Russia expert.” Some say this to denounce him, others to laud him as a bold, highly informed critic of US policies and the dangers they have helped to create.

With that introduction, back in April, 2017, Cohen gave an interview to Democracy Now--an interview which, in my view, has stood the test of time, or at least of the succeeding two years, quite well. Note that to Cohen's credit he came out against the Russia Hoax in the very early days of the Trump administration, before Team Mueller came into being, and his views have remained consistent. He's saying the same things to Democracy Now that he says to Tucker Carlson. The whole interview can be found here, Stephen Cohen: This is Most Dangerous Moment in U.S.-Russian Relations Since Cuban Missile Crisis, but I've excerpted a large portion of Cohen's comments, which appear to be particularly relevant in light of the recent provocative NYT article and my own recent comments with regard to Trump's national security team (to include Pompeo). So, ...

Sunday, June 16, 2019

MULTIPLE UPDATES: Is This One Of Unknown's Black Swan Events?

For some time now commenter Unknown has been asserting that "Black Swan" events have been planned by the Deep State to bring down Trump. Could the latest NYT leak--obviously a leak--be such an event? Note that it's headlined as an "escalation" rather than "retaliation," as one might expect from the article--U.S. Escalates Online Attacks on Russia’s Power Grid:

WASHINGTON — The United States is stepping up digital incursions into Russia’s electric power grid in a warning to President Vladimir V. Putin and a demonstration of how the Trump administration is using new authorities to deploy cybertools more aggressively, current and former government officials said. 
In interviews over the past three months, the officials described the previously unreported deployment of American computer code inside Russia’s grid and other targets as a classified companion to more publicly discussed action directed at Moscow’s disinformation and hacking units around the 2018 midterm elections.

It seems clear that any energy sector accident at all in Russia will now be suspected Trumpian sabotage. Suppose another Chernobyl accident should occur? Trump. He's a maniac, bringing us close to nuclear holocaust. He's "literally" Hitler, or worse--he's Trump!


Saturday, June 15, 2019

Briefly Noted: News Roundup

It's a bit of a slow newsday. Here are a few items worth noting, however.

Let's start with a couple of tweets from Paul Sperry that tend  to confirm earlier word:

Paul Sperry‏


BREAKING: House GOP leadership has soured on Comey replacement Wray. They r now convinced Wray's not part of the FBI cleanup & not cooperating w AG Barr & is in fact part of the cover-up of #SpyGate scandal after burying documents & refusing to make people available for interview
7:41 PM - 14 Jun 2019

It has been previously reported that IG Horowitz's wrapup is being delayed by Wray's stonewalling on document release. Difficult to say definitively at this distance, but I've made by view of Wray pretty clear. I'd like to see Barr muscle him. Publicly. Obviously there's politics involved here, but the situation seems unsatisfactory--the legacy Mueller FBI that Wray is running must be stopped in its tracks.

Paul Sperry


BREAKING: House Republicans r upset w what they call Sen Graham's showboating since taking over Senate Judiciary from Grassley, who they say was "serious" bout getting to bottom of #SpyGate. But Graham's just putting on "charade" on Fox for S.C. voters & "not doing a f*cking thing"
7:30 PM - 14 Jun 2019

We've seen these rumors before, too. Graham is talking a good game, but what action is he taking? I'm willing to assume that Graham doesn't want to step on Barr/Durham toes and that there's a need for a higher profile pol to do some "showboating" on TV. Could that be the coordination with Barr? Who are the "House GOPers?" We're not told. It's another situation worth watching.

OTOH, significant evidence that Barr hasn't lapsed into somnolence--even as he's threatened with contempt in one area Barr takes "aggressive" action in another. He's clearly not shying away from confrontation:

Friday, June 14, 2019

Why Is Bruce Ohr Still Working At DoJ

This morning commenter Cassander asked

Why is Bruce Ohr still an employee of the Department of Justice? 

I responded (slightly edited and expanded):

I think that comes down to IG Horowitz's FISA investigation--Ohr is key to that inquiry because he's the person who conveyed the dossier directly to the FBI and was Steele's handler. As long as Ohr remains employed at DoJ he's under Horowitz's thumb, so I think some sort of deal for his cooperation was made at a VERY early date. I'll provide a link to an article that points out that Ohr gets exactly ONE mention in the Mueller report. That one mention is simply a cite to a Trump tweet. In other words, Mueller probably never talked to Ohr, but Horowitz has probably been doing so on an ongoing basis. So here's that article:
Mueller 'Strzok Out' With His Whitewash Report:

"On page 323 of the report, the special counsel acknowledges that he is aware of the origin of the Russia hoax because he quotes the president's Aug. 24, 2018, tweet asking Attorney General Jeff Sessions to investigate FBI Director James Comey, Deputy Director Andrew McCabe, FBI agent Peter Strzok, Justice Department lawyer Lisa Page, DOJ official Bruce Ohr, and Christopher Steele and "his phony and corrupt Dossier." But somehow neither Sessions, nor Mueller, nor anyone else has been able to put 2 + 2 together and come up with the correct answer. 
"Indeed, if you want to gauge the complete inadequacy of the Mueller Report, consider this: President Trump’s tweet is the only mention in the report of Ohr, whose wife worked for Fusion GPS, the firm behind the dossier. It is the only mention of Strzok. It is the only mention of Page. Considering their central role in framing the president, that is the equivalent of the Warren Report somehow relegating Lee Harvey Oswald to a single footnote." 
I think that also means that when Horowitz is done, Ohr will be talking to Durham.

To that let me add something that's quite speculative but, so it seems to me, ultimately has to be relevant.

HUGE? Flynn's Full Legal Team Shows Up

I want to be clear right up front. I can't claim to expertise regarding defense tactics, and especially not at this level. The reason I added the question mark--HUGE?--is because the exact significance of this news is unclear. Sidney Powell is the only attorney for Flynn whose name appears on the filing that requests an extension of Flynn's sentencing in the case before Judge Sullivan. It appears at this stage that the three additional attorneys will represent Flynn in the separate case in the Eastern District of Virginia. That case is against Flynn's former partner, and Flynn will be a witness in that case as part of his cooperation with Team Mueller. OTOH, the cases are closely related and I would have to assume that there will be cooperation between all the attorneys representing Flynn. The fact that such a high profile legal ethics expert as Hodes is part of the team is, I think, suggestive.

That said ...

Politico's Darren Samuelsohn, in a series of tweets, reports that Sidney Powell is only one of Flynn's new attorneys. Per Gateway Pundit:

The team consists of new members — Jesse Binnall, Philip John Harvey & W. William Hodes, along with Sidney Powell — to represent him in his ongoing case. 
These attorneys have entered notices of appearance in the EDVA case against Flynn’s former business partner where Flynn is expected to testify.

W. William Hodes is the author of “Law and Lawyering” a nationally recognized treatise on legal ethics that is updated annually. Hodes was a member of the Advisory Council to the American Bar Association’s Ethics 2000 Commission.

This should keep Robert Mueller and his far left “pitbull” Andrew Weissmann up at night.

Per Samuelsohn at Politico:

Assessing The Assessment

A few days ago commenter Mike Sylwester noted in a comment to Brennan's Task Force--The Heart Of The Russia Hoax that the Brennan task force that was assembled to stop Trump appears to have excluded analysts from the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) and Department of State (DoS) from its work. This, despite the fact that DoD and DoS representatives with Democrat political connections played key roles in propagating the Russia Hoax. The task force's work, of course, included coming up with the Intelligence Community Assessment (ICA) that has been perhaps the fundamental driver of the whole Russia Hoax narrative. As a result, the ICA has been getting renewed scrutiny.

This morning I was taking a look at an article by Ray McGovern, DoJ Bloodhounds on the Scent of John Brennan, which also focuses on reporting that Brennan's task force is being targeted by Barr and Durham. It happens that McGovern's article closes with a pointed reference to the Intelligence Community Assessment and its exclusion of any views that might have been, well, independent. Earlier, in About that IC Assessment: Paul Sperry Has Good News, we quoted Sperry's reporting that GOP Congressional investigators have been honing in on the production of that Assessment and, in particular, the growing likelihood that--like virtually all else Russia Hoax--it was essentially a byproduct of the Steele "dossier":

Staff investigators for GOP Rep. Devin Nunes’ intelligence committee, for one, are now going over “every word” of the ICA — including classified footnotes — to see if any of the analysis was pre-cooked based on the [Steele] dossier. On Tuesday, Nunes sent letters to Obama intel officials responsible for the report. He demanded former top spook John Brennan and intel czar James Clapper provide answers about how they used the dossier in intel reports and when they learned the Clinton camp paid for it. 
Under oath, Brennan has denied knowing the Clinton campaign commissioned the dossier. He also told the House intelligence panel the CIA didn’t rely on the dossier “in any way” for its reports on Russian interference. Committee staff are taking a second look at his May 2017 testimony. 
Clapper, for his part, conceded in a recent CNN interview that the ICA was based on “some of the substantive content of the dossier.” Without elaborating, he maintained that “we were able to corroborate” certain allegations.

In that light, here are the closing paragraphs of McGovern's article, in which McGovern highlights the exclusion of DIA and DoS from the task force and, therefore, from any voice in developing the ICA:

Thursday, June 13, 2019

A Snapshot Of The Mueller FBI

Yesterday at a House Intelligence Committee hearing two retired FBI agents were called by the Democrats as expert witnesses. Per Jeff Carlson:

Witnesses at the hearing—titled “Lessons from the Mueller Report: Counterintelligence Implications of Volume 1″—included Robert Anderson and Stephanie Douglas, described by House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) as former executives from the FBI’s counterintelligence division. Left out of Schiff’s description of Anderson and Douglas was that both witnesses had worked under former FBI Director Mueller prior to his role as special counsel.

Sean Hannity interviewed Devin Nunes and Mark Meadows afterwards. Here are some excerpts:

NUNES: What was amazing to me, ... is there were two retired FBI agents on the stand there, ... What I was amazed at is the lack of concern by these former FBI agents, one of whom Peter Strzok used to work for and, look, they served their country and I'm sure they did a great job, but when I brought up the fact that we probably shouldn't be using counterintelligence capabilities in this country to target a political campaign, they just sat there. ... I know we always say, oh, this happened at the very top of the FBI, but I will tell you, if that attitude permeated throughout the counterintelligence capabilities, and if retired FBI agents think its OK to use counterintelligence against political campaigns, I think we've gone a long way in this country, ...
MEADOWS: ... Even some of the witnesses here today on Capitol hill? They're supposed to be experts? They hadn't even read the Steele dossier!

So how unimpressive is that? Most Americans probably think being an FBI agent, working at the higher levels at FBIHQ, working CI, protecting against espionage and all that stuff--that's pretty impressive, requires smarts and dedication, a sharp, inquiring mind. Right? And here we are, talking about THE BIGGEST SCANDAL IN FBI HISTORY, even in US history, and it happened within a few years of them leaving the job. One of them even formerly supervised a major player in all this, Strzok.

So Nunes asks them, What do you think of the FBI using CI capabilities to spy on political campaigns? And "they just sat there." How intellectually unengaged do you have to be, given their background, to have no opinion on that, or none that you're willing to offer?

Wednesday, June 12, 2019

Durham Is Focusing On The Task Force And The ICA Assessment

Excellent. AG Bill Barr is on the same page we described earlier today: Brennan's Task Force--The Heart Of The Russia Hoax. Barr recognizes the Task Force and the ICA Assessment as twin lynchpins in the Russia Hoax.

The NYT has an article out that reports that AG Bill Barr's prosecutor of choice for the Russia Hoax "review", John Durham, "wants to better understand the intelligence that flowed from the C.I.A. to the F.B.I. in the summer of 2016." That means, the Task Force. And the NYT understands that:

In the summer of 2016, the intelligence community formed a task force housed at the C.I.A. to investigate Russian interference. The group shared intelligence with F.B.I. investigators who opened the bureau’s Russia inquiry ...

Further, Durham is focusing on the analytical process behind the production of the ICA Assessment.

Specifically, the article (Justice Dept. Seeks to Question C.I.A. Officers in Russia Inquiry Review) reports that Durham will soon seek to interview two CIA employees who were key to that CIA/FBI cooperation in 2016--and it should come as no surprise that the same personnel who were involved in the Task Force were also involved in the production of the ICA assessment (Peter Strzok, on the FBI side, was also involved in both):

One of the C.I.A. officers he wants to question works at the agency’s counterintelligence mission center that would have been one conduit for the C.I.A. to pass intelligence to the F.B.I. about Russian attempts to reach out to the Trump campaign, or information that the agency uncovered about Moscow’s interference campaign. C.I.A. officers at the center work closely with the F.B.I. on complex cases like hunting down traitors and helping validate the agency’s informants. 
The senior analyst whom the Justice Department wants to talk to was involved in the C.I.A. assessment of Russian activities in 2016, ...

The article makes two additional points:

Sperry Tweets Highlights Of HPSCI Hearing

Paul Sperry is tweeting highlights from today's HPSCI hearing, at which two FBI officials testified. Here are a few of his tweets:

Paul Sperry‏

4 hours ago
BREAKING: In (LIVE) hearing, Nunes just pronounced: "The counterintelligence department over at the FBI is in big trouble."  
40 minutes ago
BREAKING:Rep Stefanik asserted that Comey "circumvented" requirements to brief Gang of 8 about counterintelligence investigations of a federal campaign in March 2017 & instead broke the rules to publicly confirm for 1st time the FBI was investigating members of the Trump campaign

60 minutes ago
BREAKING: Rep. Ratcliffe suggested during line of questioning in today's HPSCI hearing that the FBI had "exculpatory" info (likely ref to alleged transcripts of recorded convos) re Papadopoulos & yet w/h it from FISA affidavit, which names him as part of alleged Russian conspiracy

1 hour ago
Nunes pointed out that "numerous" current government officials and former officials -- including anti-Trumper Gen. Hayden -- have appeared many times on RT and some have even taken RT money, and yet they were not put under counterintelligence investigation like Lt. Gen. Flynn.

2 hours ago
All Schiff & Dems & their witnesses have in terms of any "collusion" is Manafort sharing polling data to Kilimnik even tho Kilimnik was US asset (not Russian agent) & he was Manafort's partner in political consultancy & the polling data came from firm contracted by consultancy!

2 hours ago
BREAKING: Schiff's FBI witnesses -- both of whom worked for Mueller when he was FBI director -- claimed under oath they have never read the Steele dossier

No, I don't believe that last bit either.

Brennan's Task Force--The Heart Of The Russia Hoax

Mark Meadows is promising us indictments in the Russia Hoax "this month"--June, 2019. In the meantime, while Bill Barr plays his cards close to the vest and the Dems play at impeachment theater, it may be worth our while to review some matters that we haven't looked at for a while. Barr talks about getting to the "origins" of the Russia Hoax, which we know could go back well into 2015. However, in a compelling article dating back to March, 2018, J. E. Dyer makes the case that the period July - Mid-October of 2016 is crucial (The heart of Russiagate: Probes by Nunes, Grassley, and Graham will point to Obama task force).

To illustrate her point, Dyer constructs a timeline for that period. What develops from the timeline is that all the major players come together during this period, and the common element that ties them together is the Steele dossier. Additionally, Dyer draws attention to the Russia Hoax task force that Brennan formed toward the beginning of this period. Obviously Barr's and John Durham's prosecutors and investigators won't focus solely on this time period but, because of the way that the various players interact during these three months, thanks to our knowledge of the task force, a focus on this period has the advantage of pointing toward those exercised overall direction of the Russia Hoax. That knowledge, in turn, will help focus all other investigation.

We know that the first installment in what became known as the Steele dossier turned up dated June 20, 2016. How long the project had been in preparation is difficult to say, but once started events began in earnest--on both sides of the Atlantic. Let's run down a few of them:

UPDATED: Sidney Powell Is Flynn's New Lawyer

I've only read the news at Fox. My initial take is that this is a clear signal that Flynn will now challenge his own guilty plea. No other reading makes sense, given Powell's high profile as an appellate attorney, her vocal criticism of the entire Mueller Inquisition, and her past experience with and continued sharp criticism of Andrew Weissmann's tactics in particular. This from the Fox account will give you a flavor for Powell's profile in this current case and why I think Flynn could only be intending to put up a real fight:

Powell has repeatedly criticized Andrew Weissmann, a top lawyer involved in the prosecution of former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort. In a 2017 piece, Powell wrote: “Judging by Mueller's staffing choices, he may not be very interested in justice.” 
Powell accused Weissmann, once the director of the Enron Task Force, of “prosecutorial overreach” in past cases and said it could signal what was in store for President Trump and his associates in the Russia probe. 
Powell was so outraged after one case involving Weissmann that, in 2012, she filed a formal complaint of prosecutorial misconduct with the Texas bar and the DOJ’s Office of Professional Responsibility. She also wrote a book about the experience called “Licensed to Lie.” She has argued that Weissmann and his task force “made up a crime,” alleging the team gave the defendants “false and misleading summaries of what witnesses had told the government.”

Sound familiar?

This goes back to the Enron Task Force, in which Powell handled an appeal for a Merrill Lynch executive. Her experience led her to write Licensed To Lie--a remarkable book for a practicing attorney.  In that book she recounts the abusive techniques used by DoJ attorneys like Weissmann years ago, as recounted here in her interview with Mark Levin. I go into more detail on Weissmann's background with Mueller in Why Andrew Weissmann? Again, all this should ring bells:

Monday, June 10, 2019

What's Important In The DoJ Letter To Nadler

Stephen Boyd, Assistant AG, has written a letter to Jerrold Nadler in response to Nadler's request for information regarding the "review" that DoJ is conducting into "certain activities" with regard to the 2016 presidential election--"and related matters." You can read the letter here.

Boyd states that

"it is well established that, in 2016, the U.S. government and others undertook certain intelligence-gathering and investigative steps directed at persons associated with the Trump Campaign ... there remain open questions relating to the origins of this counter-intelligence investigation and the U.S. and foreign intelligence activities that took place prior to and during that investigation.”

Boyd goes on to note activities that have been undertaken thus far, mostly to coordinate with other agencies:

1. Preserve relevant records, 
2. Ensure the availability of witnesses, 
3. Identify and assemble relevant materials. 

For my money, however, the key is in the first paragraph. Boyd makes no bones about how broad the scope of the "review" is. The review includes not only the actions of the US intelligence services, it will also seek to illuminate the role of foreign intelligence services as well as non-governmental organizations and individuals:

UPDATED: Re Social Media As Public Accommodations

I think that's the way the debate is framed, right?

Anyway, John Zmirak tweets his new article, David French Versus … the Civil Rights Act? which demonstrates the bankruptcy of NeverTrumpism and DavidFrenchism:

John Zmirak‏

Anyone on the Right who tells you "Go found your own Facebook" ... would he have told black Americans "Go start your own chain of lunch counters and hotels!"?
8:39 AM - 10 Jun 2019

Here's how Zmirak begins:

Sunday, June 9, 2019

Who In The World Would Ever Cooperate With The FBI Or The CIA?

Carter Page was interviewed today by Maria Bartiromo. I found the interview to be generally unsatisfactory--Maria repeatedly set Page up to provide incisive commentary, and Page usually ducked those opportunities, preferring to talk about ancillary matters. However, beginning at about the 2 minute mark there is an interesting segment that runs as follows:

PAGE: I had a longstanding relationship with the CIA going back decades, essentially, ... and in this fake Mueller report they just refer to this as, Oh, he's "colluding", if you will, with these Russian intelligence officers.
I'm acting as a source, doing it for our government and, oh, by the way, doing it for free as opposed to these DNC consultants" [who were getting paid by both the DNC and Russian oligarchs, but were also receiving "eleven payments" "as Judicial Watch has revealed"]. 

That last is a clear reference to Christopher Steele, who received 11 payments from the FBI.

So, Page is essentially saying: I had a longstanding relationship with the CIA [as well as with the FBI], I was providing them with information, gratis, and this is how they pay me back--they accuse me publicly (through leaks) of being a Russian agent.

Who in their right mind would cooperate with US government agencies that treat cooperating witnesses/informants like that? AG Bill Barr speaks of restoring credibility to the DoJ and the Intelligence Community--after revelations like these, that's a long road.