Wednesday, April 18, 2018

The Golden Bowl of Crap: Just Listened To Colbert's Comey Interview

Couldn't get through it to the end, the longer this book tour goes on the more disdain I have for Comey.  The only words I want to hear from him are under oath in a courtroom questioned by lawyers who want to hear just the facts and not his self-righteous self-exoneration.

For anyone who might wonder, Eric Holder was one of those who thought appointing Comey to head the FBI was a great idea.  Just to show you how unreliable his judgement can be. For anyone who wonders about why Obama appointed him to start with, this is what Zach Carter had to say about that in 2016:

Comey shares two of the Obama administration’s most consistent and unnerving legal leanings: a proclivity for mass surveillance and an aversion to Wall Street accountability. 

After the hospital showdown, Comey co-authored a legal memo modifying the Bush administration’s domestic spying program that authorized the wiretapping of millions of Americans without a search warrant. It was fine for the administration to directly violate a law passed by Congress, the memo reasoned, because as commander in chief after “a foreign attack on the United States,” the president has “inherent constitutional authority” that “Congress cannot curtail.” This inventive rationale not only allowed the program to proceed, it helped protect its architects and implementers from prosecution. Who could blame the intelligence community for doing something the top administration lawyers had assured them was legal?

Obama has consistently frustrated civil liberties advocates by following his own aggressive surveillance activities, based on an expansive view of executive power. Back in 2013, Attorney General Eric Holder came under fire after the Justice Department secretly seized the phone records of Associated Press reporters who, the administration maintained, had disclosed classified information in a story. 

That scandal raised major First Amendment questions, but it faded after The Guardian and The Washington Post reported that the government was collecting enormous amounts of data on the phone records of millions of Americans, not just journalists. When pressed about the collection effort by Congress, Director of National Intelligence James Clapper publicly lied ― and still kept his job. In 2015, ProPublica and The New York Times reported that Obama had significantly expanded upon the Bush administration’s warrantless surveillance of internet activity and email. 

If Obama wanted to invoke novel legal theories to pursue mass surveillance, then Comey was a pretty solid bet. But another aspect of Comey’s resume may also have comforted the Obama administration. In 2010, he took a job as the top lawyer at Bridgewater Associates, the largest hedge fund in the world, with over $150 billion in assets under management. In early 2013, he briefly accepted a post on the board of scandal-plagued British bank HSBC, which he gave up for the FBI job.

“It is not that surprising that a former hedge fund general counsel is more interested in dedicating the FBI’s scarce resources to scrutinizing Clinton’s emails than investigating whether there were crimes committed during the run up to the financial crisis,” Jeff Hauser, director of the Revolving Door Project at the Center for Economic and Policy Research, told The Huffington Post.

Only part of the reason that I don't want the even more billionaire friendly Holder to even try to get the nomination.   We will be paying for having Obama win over Hillary Clinton in 2008 for decades to come, part of that price was having those he appointed making it possible for Trump to get the presidency from her in 2016, despite her winning the election.   And I blame Comey and Holder's successor, Loretta Lynch in that as well as Bill Clinton who decided to go talk to her as he knew the investigation was going on.  She should have said no to that visit, I can't fathom why she agreed to it.  We're still paying for Clinton having been president, the biggest price being his selfish arrogance and lack of discipline which led to Comey being able to do what he did.

I thought Colbert asking Comey if he were Robert Mueller if he'd want to have James Comey peddling his book right now, it's the best question I've heard anyone put to the jerk on this book tour. Comey's answer was disgustingly self-serving.  I'll bet he ends up doing more damage to the investigation into Trump crimes that he claims to want to see exposed.  His declaration against the idea of impeachment with Stephanopoulos leads me to think he's mostly interested in his bubble reputation, not the country.

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