What was learned from the Mueller Report?

Today was the big exciting day for the Mueller Report. I don’t have the patience to read 400 pages. The nytimes coverage of the report fails to distinguish between stuff that was previously known and stuff (if any) that was newly uncovered by this crack team of investigators working for two years.

From the NYT:

While the report does not find that the president or his campaign aides had committed any crimes in their contacts with Russians, it lays bare how Mr. Trump was elected with the help of a foreign power.

What did the Russians do? Reveal to Americans that Hillary Clinton was secretly planning to raise taxes and government spending?

[The same newspaper previously attributed Hillary’s failure to defeat a political amateur to “misogyny” among the unwashed masses of Republican voters. So maybe the Russians revealed to the American people that Hillary, contrary to outward appearances, identified as a woman?]

Also from the article:

At the very least, in the face of repeated Russian efforts to make contact with Mr. Trump’s advisers, none of them thought to contact the F.B.I.

Are they talking about during the campaign? So they’re surprised that the Republican candidate wouldn’t want to call up a government agency controlled by an incumbent Democrat? Or are these Russian contacts that happened after Trump’s election?

And the NYT is also trumpeting that Donald Trump tried to thwart an investigation whose primary purpose was to find criminal fault with either him or his close associates? Wasn’t that previously reported?

Readers: Please help me and others out! What was in this eagerly-awaited (at least among my Facebook friends!) report that wasn’t previously known and/or obvious?

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36 thoughts on “What was learned from the Mueller Report?

  1. If I felt I was being railroaded over false charges of collusion, I’d be interfering every chance I got!

  2. What did Hillary’s loss have to do with misogyny? Was she female? any other repressed gender or a combination thereof? I don’t recall her self-identify as such.
    IIRC, Twitter claimed back in 2016 that Hillary was an alien AI bot.

    I think NYT is similar to what I quoted above. But… but that post was free while the Times is $2.50.

    • Well, sticking to the topic I would like to point out that NYT is an unreliable source of information on any political topic, and that includes the Muller report. In fact, they are as reliable as any Twitter troll (a real-life example of a political tweet was given). Therefore one learns nothing from an article in the NYT.
      Am I being clear, dear Mr/Ms Anonymous? I am so sorry I had to parse it and spoiled all the fun.
      Thank you for letting me know what I should do in the future.

    • What’s in the NYT can be independently confirmed by reading the source material yourself in this case. In your post-truth “fake news” worldview though I suppose anyone questioning your god-king is self-evidently an enemy of the people.

    • Thank you for telling me that I have a “god-king”. How else would I know that I have one?

      Actually, that is exactly what I dislike about the mainstream media. They have become a source of opinions not news., propaganda not analysis. They even stopped apologizing for factual errors: they are like, screw the facts, the narrative is true. They are in the advocacy business now, not the information business .

      Of course, I could (and did) read the report, so there was no point wasting time on an extra opinion peace, but then again, what IS the point of reading the Times? They carry few facts but mostly opinions, and opinions are available on Twitter for free. I personally found the US media of no use and switched to the BBC and the FT. And the Pravda of course: it’s time to learn some Russian to better understand my overlords.

  3. Something about Manafort receiving $40k worth of caviar as a gift from a former Ukrainian President. So even crimes against fish made it into the report.

    • Maybe fish self-identified as voter and voted? You know Ukraine does not have its own caviar. It must be coming illegally from Iran or Russia who control Caspian caviar market.

    • They don’t have a pee tape of her? Trump has already proven he won’t stand up to Putin or other “strong men.” I think it’s more likely they favored him, and the failed republican economic policies that came with. Plus, he’s made a fool of America, and you can’t put a price on that.

    • Do you really have to ask? Hillary is a war hawk. Thank god she didn’t get elected – we would be in another war.

    • With all due respect, Senorpablo, I must disagree with the statement that Trump didn’t stand up to Putin. He did a few things here and there, but more importantly, what would you suggest?

      How do we put more pressure on Russia, a large nation with a thriving oil/gas industry and a world-class military, a nation whose leader’s popularity hinges on standing up to “the imperialist USA”? With a war or an economic embargo not an option, what would you do?

      It’s easy to criticize Trump, but I’d guess, given the situation, his strategy may be right. Never stop negotiating, stay in close contact, be opportunistic, co-operate in common areas of interest, try to avoid situations where all you hear in response is “Nyet!” followed by a heavy breathing. That’s what police negotiators are trained to do. 🙂

    • M, a good start would be to not turn a blind eye to election meddling, while undermining your own intelligence agencies and their conclusions! But “Putin strongly denied it”… Trump made a fool of himself and America at that press conference. Why does trump stand up to and insult our allies while bowing down to tyrants? How do you explain that behavior? What exactly has he done “here and there?” He hasn’t even said “stop, or I’ll say stop again.” As far as I’m aware, Trump tried to dial back sanctions, and delayed as long as possible the sanctions passed almost unanimously by congress. Russia isn’t the economic powerhouse they’d like you to believe they are. Ranked 12th just above Spain but less than Italy or Brazil.

    • Senrpablo-
      Not sure I fully understand your argument re: the Russian economy. Is it really all that relevant? Russia has the world’s largest nuclear arsenal, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Russia_and_weapons_of_mass_destruction
      war is not really an option; even Kim Jong Un understands that. Let me restate my question. Suppose Putin says No to everything, just for the heck of it. Now what? Would you seriously argue for a nuclear war, with or without allies?

      If the Administration stated that Russia meddled, the Russians might score a few propaganda points by simply asking to either prove it in the international courts or to STFU. We don’t have a good legal case. Asserting the meddling might appeal to the US public but will be shrugged off abroad and it won’t stop the meddling. Just ask the UK’s May how the Novichok story went.

      A sad truth is that most people (both public and politicians) overseas don’t give a rat’s ass about the US sensitivities, and if we threaten them, they are eager to ask Putin for the military help (both Assad and Maduro pulled it off successfully.) I know this hurts our pride as a nation. A childhood friend who’d moved to Oz twenty years ago came visiting, and I was shocked to find out how the ordinary Australians love to loathe and despise the US–as a state, not just Trump.

    • M, that’s what sanctions are for. To curb unwanted behavior without starting a war. Trump and his lack of integrity with NATO and other allies isn’t helping matters with respect to Russian posturing. He’s given zero credible indication he’ll stand up to Putin if need be. That should be alarming. Also, how can the government internally put forth any credible effort mount a defense against election meddling when our own leader won’t admit it? As far as Russian economics, militaries are expensive to build, maintain an operate. I can’t imagine their R&D is what is used to be despite a great legacy under communism of weapons builders. I expect they know they’re overpowered conventionally and in nuclear though the margins are much more forgiving in the latter. I don’t doubt for a second that other countries loathe us–I loathe what the US has become. Trump, and the bewildering number of idiots that voted for him, are the embodiment of everything wrong with the US and our culture of ignorance, greed, religious hypocrisy and shallow celebrity.

    • Senorpablo, what you state exists in virtual reality only, or in a parallel universe. In reality as soon as Trump got elected his administration transferred advance anti-tank Javelin missiles that are kept under American control to Ukraine and has already kept more than one joint military exercises with Ukraine, last one airforce. Military aggression of Ukraine by Russia all but stopped.

  4. Looks like Trump was right and Sessions wrong — that the story of Trump conspiring with the Ruskies was concocted out of whole cloth and never worthy of an independent prosecutor. Hope the DOJ now investigates who planted these phony stories to undermine the Trump presidency and played the American public for chumps for almost three years.

    • A reverse witch-hunt is also a witch-hunt. Our politics is falling apart because everyone jumps at the chance to do all the things they were complaining about being done to them.

      An eye for an eye makes the whole world blind.

    • There is hardly moral equivalent between investigating obvious false accusations and investigating how false accusations were echoed around and presented as independent source evidence to secret judge to issue subpoena. We should do second to protect our society.

    • Then, if the opposing party takes power in the next cycle they can investigate the need for an “obviously” prejudiced investigation of the previous investigation? This is the cycle you invite – ultimately it ends with the group in power not even bothering to provide a pretext before locking up their enemies because we’ve all gotten so used to it.

    • Except for all the Russian interference documented in the report you mean?

      Russians were straight up planning Republican rallies. I guess this is one type of immigrant you support, the ones that come here to campaign for your leader.

  5. I learned what I already know:

    1) That our elected politician look for blood onto each other and will stab anyone standing in their way be it from the same party of opposite party.

    2) That our elected politician look for clueless citizens to elect them and want to keep those clueless citizens, clueless so the politician keep their jobs working only some 3 to 4 months a year doing nothing but give dump-down speeches to clueless citizens.

    3) That we have a lot of clueless citizens who are shortsighted and have short attention span and cannot think logically.

    4) That this country has lost its sense of patriotism and no longer want “America First”, its “Me First” but the “Me First” are living in a La-La dream dream with no concept of reality because most cannot think logically.

    5) That our current president is not the first paranoid president. Sadly, I learned this not from the Mueller report directly, but from a BBC report [1].

    [1] https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-47671986

  6. Trump “obstructed justice” by trying to shut down an investigation of a crime that never happened.

    • That’s still actual obstruction, no quotes. You’re not allowed to try to break the system just because it’s hard on you at the moment. If we allowed “I’m innocent, so breaking the rules is ok” as a defense where would it ever not apply?

    • Also lots of crimes were found, and prosecuted successfully. But you don’t care about those, because according to “George A” you can’t think logically.

    • Thanks for the link, John. It didn’t help me that much, though. The commenters say that Trump obstructed the investigation and that he was “corrupt”. But if the investigators had a fat budget for two years and an office right in downtown DC, what exactly did Trump “obstruct”? Were there people that the investigators wanted to talk to that they were unable to talk to? If not, how did Trump obstruct their work?

      Similarly on the “corrupt” front. If there was corruption, shouldn’t someone have gotten paid for doing something? Other than some young women who got paid to have sex with older men (perhaps not a new story in human history), what payments did the investigators discover?

  7. What I haven’t learned and don’t understand is this: How could Mueller and his team spend two years investigating this matter and then be allowed to produce a report that reach a definitive conclusion on such an important matter of law as the Obstruction of Justice question?

    Doesn’t that mean he really didn’t do his job? Shouldn’t he have said, “There either was obstruction or there wasn’t. Talking about things, being angry and asking for this and that means nothing. Either we bring charges or we drop it, case closed, point blank, that’s all, folks?!?” I thought the source of all his authority, his budget, the need to protect him, the amount of trust that was placed in him, and all the rest was supposed to exist so that ***he could settle these questions completely.*** Instead he vacillated on the obstruction, leaving it neither here nor there, in some kind of metaphysical and legal limbo, but with all the tantalizing tidbits so that the circus could switch ringmasters and keep the clown cars, dancing bears and the trapeze show going?

    I think the other thing we’ve learned is that the Russians are having a very good time watching the United States rip itself apart as they prepare their next move, at leisure and from a distance, with smiles on their faces. They took an already dirty well and dumped a river of mercury and arsenic into it.

    • The media is making a bigger deal out of the “does not exonerate” aspect than it should – the Justice department’s job is to prove people guilty, not innocent. (That’s why presumption of innocence is so important!). There’s no reason for the Justice department to spend resources pursuing evidence of innocence when the accused retains legal innocence by default.

  8. Wow. NY Times has a lot of analysis with fancy graphics for the timelines of alleged Russian contact for each Trump associate. Also graphical document overview of the redacted sections. I wonder why they didn’t commit so much effort when Hillary was investigated for using her own e-mail server. No fancy timeline graphics for the bleach bit and bashing of cellphones?

    • Yeah, why would they completely ignore the 448-page Mueller report on Hillary and bleach bit? It’s outrageous.

    • Vince,
      keep hope alive – now that conspiracy/collusion is gone.. focus on the obstruction! This is just like Clinton impeachment of the 1990s…with the republicans turning every stone to nail Clinton. Although in that case, Clinton had committed more wrongs that Trump with his own attempts at obstruction.

  9. Trump was unequivocally cleared of conspiring with Russia and obstruction of justice charges – he provided Mueller with unconstrained access to any resources he requested and not even single time used executive privilege to hid any document or person. Bill Clinton was fighting to SCOTUS access to his resources all the way. No obstruction charges were brought in against anyone close to Trump. Second political part of the report of course muddles water, as you expected from 12 Democrat H. Clinton donors (one of whom attended H Clinton election party) on the counsel but as someone said, Mueller not liking some Trump (legalistic of course, who in his/her sane mind would tell life stories in such circumstances) answers (because of his gut feeling?) and Trump public ironic statements do not constitute a crime or a moral deficiency. As Trump says, Cofveve or something like this. Code word for Putin? 🙂 Democrats should think of America and move on.

  10. Also worthy of noting and surprisingly no mention of it on any news network is that there is no mention of Steele’s dossier [1], [2] in Muller’s . Furthermore, based on [3],

    “Later, confronted with the evidence, Clinton and her campaign finally admitted that the dossier was a campaign-funded document that was pushed by Steele and others to the media.”

    You have to ask, why there wasn’t a criminal investigation into this?

    [1] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trump%E2%80%93Russia_dossier
    [2] https://www.documentcloud.org/documents/3259984-Trump-Intelligence-Allegations.html
    [3] https://thehill.com/opinion/criminal-justice/422592-steeles-curious-comments-suggest-dossier-was-insurance-plan

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