The Thinker: Rich Galen


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Mullings by Rich Galen ®
An American Cyber-Column By Rich Galen
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A Tweet Storm

Rich Galen

Monday August 6, 2018

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  • I am a devotee of Twitter. Part of my love affair with the site is, the bulk of the people I follow (589) are national political reporters. I like being aimed at articles and issues that they find interesting. It helps to guide my daily reading.

  • Twitter also allows me to indulge my natural snark. I can respond with blinding speed to something that needs responding, often with a laugh-out-loud comment that I just know my followers (7,140) will find as amusing as I did.

  • I have a nanosecond rule. If I type a reply and hesitate even a nanosecond, I don't hit the TWEET button. I accept that my unconscious brain has lit the DANGER WILL ROBINSON sign and has detected something wrong.

  • To that end, I also have a two glass of wine rule: If I order a second glass of wine, I close Twitter and leave it closed.

  • Donald Trump doesn't drink, so he doesn't have a two glass of wine rule. And, as we have seen, his DANGER WILL ROBINSON sign burned out many, many years ago.

  • Trump, like the Congress, is on a break.

  • Over the weekend, apparently bored with being fawned over by the guests at his Bedminster, NJ golf facility, took to Twitter to defend his son, Don, Jr:
    "Fake News reporting, a complete fabrication, that I am concerned about the meeting my wonderful son, Donald, had in Trump Tower. This was a meeting to get information on an opponent, totally legal and done all the time in politics - and it went nowhere. I did not know about it!"

  • This was spawned by an article in the Washington Post that described Trump as privately "brooding" of the state of his Presidency, the Mueller investigation, and the Manafort trial.
    "At rare moments of introspection for the famously self-centered president, Trump has also expressed to confidants lingering unease about how some in his orbit - including his eldest son, Donald Trump Jr. - are ensnared in the Russia probe, in his assessment simply because of their connection to him."

  • The infamous Trump Tower Meeting (on June 9, 2016) brought together the senior leadership of the campaign with Russians to discuss what information the Putin government might be able to provide to the Trump campaign on Hillary Clinton.

  • I wouldn't have done this. No one I know in politics would have done this - Republican or Democrat. I might have wanted to know what the Russkies had on Hillary, but I'm pretty certain that sitting in a meeting organized by a Russian music entrepreneur and with a Russian adoption lawyer was not an appropriate venue.

  • But, we've been over that before.

  • The news over the weekend was Trump's Tweeted admission that (a) the meeting took place and (b) it "was a meeting to get information on an opponent."

  • Remember, Donald Trump - while he was President, and aboard Air Force One - dictated the response he wanted put out. According to an article a month later in the Washington Post, Trump:
    "personally dictated a statement in which Trump Jr. said that he and the Russian lawyer had 'primarily discussed a program about the adoption of Russian children.'"

  • Trump knew that wasn't true. We knew that wasn't true, but it fit with the standard Trump Family Response Directive: Deny, deny, deny.

  • And if you get caught denying something that is later proven to have been true: Deflect, deflect, deflect.

  • I'm a dad and I understand Trump's strong impulse to protect Don, Jr. I don't know (and you don't know, either) what importance Robert Mueller is placing on that meeting in Trump Tower in terms of building a case for conspiring with the Russians to disrupt the 2016 election.

  • Maybe it's nothing - a bunch of rich kids (and a desperate Paul Manafort) playing at running a campaign for president.

  • Maybe it's something - a bunch of senior campaign officials specifically trying to pry out of the Russian government dirt it has collected no matter what means it used to get it.

  • Taking Trump's Tweet Machine away from him is not a viable option.

  • The White House staff and Trump's allies on the Hill have to hunker down in their individual political shelters, and wait out what will surely become known as the Great Bedminster Tweet Storm.

  • On the Secret Decoder Ring today: Links to the WaPo story, to the timeline, and to the Will Robinson reference.

    The Mullfoto is a pretty shot of Lake Buel - just outside Great Barrington, Mass - over the weekend.

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