Showing posts with label Hunter Biden. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Hunter Biden. Show all posts

September 12, 2023

Split screen: Impeachment is all about counter-programming against Georgia trial


By Hal Brown

With House Republicans it's all about egos and eyes.

The clamor to hold impeachment hearings against President Joe Biden is a deafening cacaphony of caca. 

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It's quite a task for people like James Comer and Matt Gaetz to outdo Marjorie Taylor Greene who called for red state succession on the 22nd anniversary of 9/11 for mooning for the media. You may accuse the likes of these Republicans for lots of things but you can't say they are camera shy. You get between them and a camera at your own peril.

Now that Kevin McCarthy has bypassed a House vote (which would go down in defeat) and initiated a House impeachment inquiry (story) it is amusing to watch Greene erupt spewing molten lava like Mt. Kilauea claiming she was pressing for a Biden impeachment inquiry immediately upon taking office: see

Feud erupts between Marjorie Taylor Greene and Matt Gaetz over Biden impeachment.

Still, try as they might media hogs like GOP members of the House Gaetz, Comer, Jim Jordan, Nancy Mace, Lauren Boebert et al, and Tommy Tuberville in the Senate, don't stand a chance of being immortalized in stone. It is Marjorie Taylor Greene who is vying to be sculpted on the Mt. Rushmore of GOP gigantism.

In the coming weeks thanks to Georgia courts allowing live video coverage we can expect compelling, perhaps dramatic, reality TV. The show will be starring well known "celebrities" whose faces are well known like Mark Meadows and Sidney Powell and Kenneth Cheesbro, whose name not his face are familiar. If Trump doesn't get his case removed to federal court, the mega MAGA star Donald Trump, the only defendant who actually has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, will be must-see TV if he's in court, especially if he decides against his lawyers' advice to testify.

He has the star, once defaced and replaced, there, and it is the most prominent attraction:


Ironically, in order to pry eyes away from the trial if Trump is a featured celebrity House Republicans will have to put on a Ringling Brothers Barnum and Bailey circus extravganza.

This will be a challenge if their center ring attraction is only Hunter Biden. If President Biden testifies (the last president to appear before Congress was Gerald Ford) depending on what's happening in Georgia I can see the GOP winning the ratings rounds for a period of time. MAGAs want to see their GOP heroes make Joe Biden squirm under their barrage of goofball gotcha questions. Lots-a-luck with that. The president doesn't do squirm.

One crazy place to be will be in the control rooms of the major television  networks where directors will have to decide what to feature on the biggest portion of their split screen when interesting things are happening simultaneously. TV hosts and panelists will have to go back and forth as they talk about the House impeachment and the Georgia trial. Complicating all of this will be any other trial involving Trump which may be occurring at the same time but doesn't have live TV coverage.

The only thing that might wipe the political news off the media is a catergory nine earthquake along the San Andreas fault (aka The Big One) which literally wipes out large portions of coastal California, Oregon, and Washington.




July 14, 2023

Double Take on seeing that the House Ethics Committee reaching out to witnesses in revived Matt Gaetz probe. Did I read this right?

 

Middle: Rep. Michael Guest


By Hal Brown

This news came after Matt Gaetz's attempt to make FBI Director Christopher Wray look like a ciminal who is trying to protect a nefarious crime family: see 

Rep. Matt Gaetz Grills FBI Director About Hunter "Shakedown" Message: "Are You Protecting The Bidens?"

Links to article, not to Twitter

I did a double take when I saw that the House, the GOP House and home not only to Gaetz but the Freedom (to be Conspicacy Spinning Lunatics) Caucus which he's a member of, was reviving the ethics probe of Gaetz which began when the Democrats were in control.

From the CNN article:

Now chaired by Republican Rep. Michael Guest of Mississippi, the panel quietly restarted its investigation earlier this year without publicly laying out its targets anew. The decision to begin reaching out to witnesses, made by Guest and ranking Democratic member, Rep. Susan Wild of Pennsylvania, is the first formal step the committee has taken since the ethics investigation resumed. 

House Speaker Kevin McCarthy told CNN this week he doesn’t “know anything about” the investigation, noting that he’s barred by House rules from discussing it with committee members. The Republican-led investigation into Gaetz comes as the Florida congressman finds himself repeatedly at odds with his party’s leadership. 

“I never know anything on (the) Ethics Committee,” McCarthy told CNN. “I don’t know what investigations they have. I don’t know anything about it.” 

Asked to comment on whether he thinks the investigation should move forward, McCarthy declined to do so and referred questions to the committee.

I'd never heard of Rep. Michael Guest so, of course, I checked him out on Wikipedia (here).

He was born in the Woodbury, New Jersey which is in the southern part of the state and a suburb of Philadelphia. I don't know how he ended up living in Mississippi although his official website tells us that he graduated from high school there and went to college and law school in the state:

Congressman Guest is a Rankin County resident and a graduate of Brandon High School. He and his family are members of Brandon Baptist Church, where Congressman Guest serves as a Sunday school teacher for young men in high school. He received a degree in accounting from Mississippi State University and his law degree from The University of Mississippi. Congressman Guest is a member of the Rankin County Bar Association and the Mississippi Bar Association. He is married to the former Haley Kennedy of Brandon, and they have two sons, Kennedy and Patton. The Guests' newest family addition is their dog, Winston Churchill.

What may be the most relevant aspect of his chairing this committee as it investigates Gaetz may be in the second paragraph (highlighted) about his tenure in the House (below from Wikipedia):



In December 2020, Guest was one of 126 Republican members of the House of Representatives to sign an amicus brief in support of Texas v. Pennsylvania, a lawsuit filed at the United States Supreme Court contesting the results of the 2020 presidential election, in which Joe Biden defeated[9] Trump. The Supreme Court declined to hear the case on the basis that Texas lacked standing under Article III of the Constitution to challenge the results of an election held by another state.[10][11][12]

On May 19, 2021, Guest was one of 35 Republicans who joined all Democrats in voting to approve legislation to establish the January 6, 2021 commission meant to investigate the storming of the U.S. Capitol.[13]

In June 2022, after a leaked decision by the Supreme Court of the United States to revoke the right to abortion in the case of Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health Organization, Guest wrote to the Department of Homeland Security to demand action in the wake of attacks by Jane's Revenge, which Guest called an "anarchist extremist group" that targets crisis pregnancy centers and other anti-abortionorganizations.[14]

In August 2022, Guest was named ranking member of the House Ethics Committee upon the death of former ranking member Jackie Walorski.[15]

Guest was among the 71 Republicans who voted against final passage of the Fiscal Responsibility Act of 2023 in the House.[16]

Considering that there are 222 GOP members of the House being one of 35 crossing the aisle in this controversial vote may prove to be an indication he is will to put poltics aside and risk retribrition from hard right members of the House GOP who consider Gaetz to be one of their own.

As far as justice prevailing, Trump is a giant orange rockfish and Gaetz is a baby shrimp. 

Even so, frying him with a finding that he violated House ethics would barely whet the appetite for holding people accountable, but it would be satisfying to see that something came of it. 



May 12, 2023

Some thoughts about Tucker Carlson, Joe and Hunter Biden, George Santos, and Kaitlan Collins

 



On Tucker Carlson trying to build an audience on Twitter

I just don't think this will make much of a splash, more of a ripple. Fox is the only venue that could give him the kind of audience he wants. Not only this, but he needs to be on television not on a computer screen. Even if Newsmax payed him more than Fox did, thus enabling him to get on a TV screen, I doubt people will break their Fox News habit to tune into another station. A lot depends on Fox's programming during whatever time Tucker is on Newsmax.  

Bottom line, Musk needs Tucker more than Tucker needs Musk. I think Tucker is toast, stale, burnt toast and Musk is a moldy melon. Both will end up in a compost heap.

On the GOP quest to implicate President Biden in some kind of criminal activity involving his supposed consiglieri master spy Hunter Biden:

Hmmm... who are you going to believe really bad things about? Donald Trump who lived all his adult, or I should put this is George Santos fashion as his "adultish" life, as a sadistic sociopath out only for himself, or Joe Biden who possibly once transgressed by wearing mismatched socks.

While on George Santos:

While as someone with actual expertise in making psychiatric diagnoses I've concluded at Donald Trump is a malignant (sociopathic) sadistic grandiose narcissist and Hershel Walker most likely still suffers from dissociative identity disorder. I can't come up with what, if any, psychiatric disorder George Santos suffers from. He has managed to put the word "fabulist" associated with his lying into discussions about him. Thus I do give him credit for improving the vocabulary of lots of people.

Fabulist: a liar, especially a person who invents elaborate, dishonest storiesa born fabulist, with an imagination unfettered by the laws of logic and probability.

On CNN's Kaitlan Collins, dice, and the Mafia

As someone who watches MSNBC and doesn't ever tune into CNN I wasn't familiar with this so-called rising CNN star. I was talking about her with my partner and said that she could have made her bones if she'd managed to hold Trump's feet to the fire when she interviewed him. I had to explain where the idiom "make your bones" came from. For those who aren't fans of The Godfather and the Sopranos where the phase is used to describe establishing one's reputation by killing someone. 

If Collins had killed it by nailing Trump she would have made her bones. There are so many gotcha follow-up questions she could have insisted he answer. I would have liked him to explain exactly what he meant when he said E. Jean Carroll was a wack job this this often means someone is mentally ill.

While the bones derivation might come from establishing one's bona fides, I think it comes from the game of craps.Dice were originally made from actual bones. Thus making your bones would mean winning at a game once played with bones.



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April 24, 2023

Rudy and GOP MAGA maniacs in the House want to turn Hunter Biden into a master spy...

 

Hal Brown's Blog

This is a blog with my opinions on politics, psychology, and other subjects. My posts are sometimes serious and sometimes snarky. I'm a retired MSW clinical social worker/psychotherapist and mental health center director who was also a cranberry farmer. Scroll archives on bottom of page to see previous blog stories. There are new ones added almost every day, although if I don't have anything original to say I try not to say anything at all.

There was no there there with Benghazi so at least there is a there there with the GOP's apoplectic reaction to Bud Lite commercials. There is a there there if you believe that anything related to accepting LGBTQ+ people as regular folks is akin, if not worse than, fattening up your baby and eating it's liver with some fava beans and a nice Chianti.

There is a there that's actually there with Hunter Biden. This "there" is that he actually did have a laptop. What is on it is not known is what's on it, well, if you believe Rudy Giuliani, he knows what's on it. 


Last night when I read the article Giuliani hints he could use Hunter Biden's laptop as defense in Dominion case initially I had nothing particular to write about. I did think of an illustration (above) which basically conveyed my reaction.

Excerpt:

Instead of blaming Trump's election loss on voting machines, Giuliani focused on the theory that suppression of a story about Hunter Biden caused Trump to lose. 

Attorney Robert Costello spoke as a guest on Giuliani's Sunday radio program.

"Well, they knew it was going to involve Hunter Biden because they knew that once I gave the laptop to you and you were going to various media organizations to see whether they would publish this material they were concerned," Costello said. 

According to the statistics," the attorney added, "17% of the people that voted for Biden said that they would not have voted for Biden they would have voted for Trump if they knew what was on the laptop."

Giuliani declared Costello's statistics to be "proven facts."

"So you could say the election was the election was stolen before it was stolen," Giuliani declared. "I mean before you get to counting."

That was last night. This morning I decided to expand on my thoughts and republish a blog (bottom of page) which I wrote about Hunter Biden in February.

What, pray tell, is supposed to be on the laptop that would have been so damaging to Hunter Biden, that could possibly lead people not to vote for his father? I'll get to that.

Forget the jiggered voting machines programmed to change Trump votes to Biden votes. It was Hunter's Mac laptop that led to the illegitimate election of Joe Biden.


....
In October 2020, a controversy emerged involving data from a laptop that belonged to Hunter Bidenthat was abandoned at a Delaware computer shop in 2019. Three weeks before the 2020 United States presidential election, the New York Post published a front page story that presented emails from the laptop, alleging they showed corruption by Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden. The story was based on information provided to Rudy Giuliani, the personal attorney of incumbent president and candidate Donald Trump by the computer shop's owner, John Paul Mac Isaac. Forensic analysis later authenticated some of the data on the laptop, including one of two key emails used by the Post in their initial reporting.[1][2]

Trump attempted to turn the story into an October surprise to hurt Joe Biden's campaign, saying he had acted corruptly regarding Ukraine while in office.[3][4][5] The hard drive data had been shared with the FBI and Republican operatives such as Trump advisor Steve Bannon before it became publicly known.[6]

PolitiFact wrote in June 2021 that, while "over time, there has been less doubt that the laptop did in fact belong to Hunter Biden", the laptop "was real in the sense that it exists, but it didn't prove much", as "[n]othing from the laptop has revealed illegal or unethical behavior by Joe Biden as vice president with regard to his son's tenure as a director for Burisma".[7]


The computer repairman who ended up with Hunter's Mac, by sheer chance, was named Mac.

I'm rewatching "Designated Survivor" now with my partner who never saw it. If you haven't watched it I'm not giving you a major spoiler to write that in it a member of the US House who is a spy ends up becoming vice president (lower right below). Perhaps Rudy watched the series and from the fevered recesses of his mind this percolated up and became his own delusion.

Does Rudy think that the laptop contains proof that Hunter and his father were in cahoots in a conspiracy to make him president along with co-conspirators Volodymyr Zelensky and (who knows what the deranged Rudy believes) the evil Ernst Stavro Blofeld and his white pussycat?

The best spies never get caught. We may never discover they even existed. They certainly would never leave traces of their nefarious machinations on a laptop, let alone send it to a repair shop. Then again, Hunter made some bad choices in his life so perhaps there's a remote, however minuscule, possibility that Hunter is a spy. Maybe he managed to cover up the highest of high treason committed by his vice president father which thus enabled him to become president.

If Trump was Putin's puppet, maybe Joe Biden was working for the ultimate puppet master George Soros.

Soros or, for James Bond fans, Smersh, it doesn't really matter who one believes Hunter, and Joe's, overlord was. After all, who are you going to believe, Rudy Giuliani, America's mayor or hapless Hunter?


Update: 

Hunter Biden's lawyer fires shot at 'unhinged' Marjorie Taylor Greene


This is what I wrote on Feb. 2, 2024:


Left, DonkeyHotey caricature, right my adaptation 


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February 2, 2023

Hunter Biden tells House GOP I'm going lower when you go low

Hunter Biden tells House GOP I'm going lower when you go low
By Hal Brown

Left, DonkeyHotey caricature, right my adaptation

It was was impossible to miss this article on The Washington Post website this morning:  It has since moved further down the opening page.


When I looked it was just below articles about Ukraine:

As often happens an article featured prominently either on the New York Times or the Post isn't on the other papers main page at all. The Times main page had nothing about Hunter Biden today.

When Michelle Obama first used the phrase "when they go low, we go high" it garnered a lot of publicity. During her speech supporting Hillary Clinton at  the 2016 Democratic National Convention she said:

 “When someone is cruel or acts like a bully, you don’t stoop to their level. No, our motto is: ‘When they go low, we go high’. 

Her  subsequent explanation went deeper than just a catchy meme. This is how she described it shortly thereafter: 

In a new interview with Stephen Colbert that aired on Monday night (14 November), the author and attorney was asked if people “really have to go ‘high’” when politicians “go low”.

The Late Show host said: “I totally understand going high when somebody goes low, but the bar is so low that staying at your own altitude still means higher. Do I actually have to go up here or can I just be normal? Do I have to be a saint? Because down here, I’m pissed off!”

Obama replied: “For me, going high is not losing the urgency or the passion or the rage, especially when you are justified in it.

“Going high means finding the purpose in your rage. Rage without reason, without a plan, without direction is just more rage. And we’ve been living in a lot of rage.”

She added that going low is “unsustainable” and explained: “If going low worked, we’d do it. It might be a ‘quick fix’ but it doesn’t fix anything over the long term.

“I’m trying to push us to think about solutions that will actually unite us and get us focused on the real problem. That’s what I mean when I say, ‘go high’. So yes, go high. America, please go high.” From YahooNews

Back to Hunter Biden...


This was the gist of my blog:

The Republicans are downright drooling over their plan to investigate Hunter Biden and try to tie him to then vice president Joe Biden and make the case that the vice president somehow colluded with his son in what amounted to treason against the United States.

The fly in this ointment is that all this all comes down to is that like with Benghazi there's no there there.

The more one looks at Hunter Biden's past behavior the more an objective observer with a modicum of empathy who is not blinded by a zealous quest to hurt President Biden the more they will feel sorry for the president.

The Washington Post article by Matt Viser begins:

Hunter Biden’s lawyers, in a newly aggressive strategy, sent a series of blistering letters Wednesday to state and federal prosecutors urging criminal investigations into those who accessed and disseminated his personal data — and sent a separate letter threatening Fox News host Tucker Carlson with a defamation lawsuit.

The string of letters, which included criminal referrals and cease-and-desist missives aimed at critics and detractors, marked the start of a new and far more hard-hitting phase for the president’s son just as House Republicans prepare their own investigations into him.
Hunter Biden isn't letting the out-for-blood House Republicans and their right-wing media cheerleaders flood the airwaves and take the lead unchallenged because Hunter Biden knows that if there's absolutely no there there, there's very little there.

The article details the moves Hunter Biden's lawyers  are taking, for example:

  • threatening Fox News host Tucker Carlson with a defamation lawsuit.
  • challenging the nonprofit status of Marco Polo, a group that is run by conservative activist Garrett M. Ziegler
  • asking state and federal law enforcement agencies to investigate individuals who came into possession of the (laptop) data
  • request investigations into former New York mayor Rudy Giuliani, who was given the material from Mac Isaac and later distributed it; Robert Costello, who is Giuliani’s lawyer and also received the material; and Stephen K. Bannon, who has also had the material and helped facilitate initial news stories about it.

The article notes the following:

Taken together, the actions represent the boldest and most aggressive moves to date from Biden, who has often heeded the advice of those who urged him not to make public waves. Those close to President Biden and the White House have preferred a more conservative approach, but some individuals around Hunter Biden have wanted to be more assertive in telling his side of the story and going more directly after his opponents.

“This marks a new approach by Hunter Biden and his team,” said one person familiar with his strategy, speaking on the condition of anonymity to discuss private plans. “He is not going to sit quietly by as questionable characters continue to violate his rights and media organizations peddling in lies try to defame him.”

The new strategy marks a calculated risk that it is better to forge a combative path and take on Biden’s longtime critics, even if it means inviting more news coverage of a dark chapter in his life and draws additional attention to the trove of personal and embarrassing material included on a laptop that has been disseminated by his detractors.

One could say that this approach isn't an example of going lower when your opponents themselves go low. You could say it is taking a page out of their playbook, but then analyzing their "plays" and not merely trying to devise defenses against them but to take an idiom which originated in sports and apply it here:

 The best defense is a good offense.

The idea is that if you attack them while they are attacking you it will distract them and cause them to mount their own defense and derail their strategy. 

More than distracting them all of these legal machinations are likely to shape the media coverage of the various hearings which the House GOP is hoping will cast Hunter Biden as a felon and somehow implicate the president as an enabler or worse.

The next, and as I see it, crucial decision Hunter Biden and his lawyers have to decide on is how he presents himself when facing Jim Jordan and other inquisitors in hearings. Should he let the lawyers be the aggressors and he take a more passive or measured approach trying to come across as a sympathetic figure?

I will have to do more thinking on this.

As I finish this blog this story was just being covered on MSNBC.

Click above to enlarge


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Bonus: (Scroll left to view in entirety)


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Amazing! Trump just got some bigots pissed off. By Hal Brown, MSW

  I had to read the RawStory article shown above three times to figure out what happened. Trump was showing his supposed support for law enf...