Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: The remarkable rise of Michael Avenatti

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  • Bart Janssen, in reply to Russell Brown,

    I’m fully expecting pictures of Trump naked, TBH. The guy is stupid enough for that.

    Avenattii and Stormy have both broadly hinted as to the existence of dick pics. Ew.

    I've said from the beginning this all ends with a Trump sex tape ... and you all thought the worst outcome was nuclear holocaust.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4426 posts Report Reply

  • nzlemming,

    Waikanae • Since Nov 2006 • 2897 posts Report Reply

  • Bart Janssen, in reply to Rich of Observationz,

    Impeachment by a simple majority (possible, maybe likely if the Democrats have a House majority after the mid-terms) but then conviction by a 2/3 majority in the Senate. Highly unlikely.

    Agreed. But the key is that The GOP will cut him off when senators and congressmen lose their seats because of him. Essentially he becomes a president without any party.

    He then either resigns or stands his ground.

    At that point the GOP implodes because of the internal divisions.

    There is some possibility that he becomes attached to one of the remnants of the GOP but probably not enough to win a third of votes in senate.

    My bet is a resignation not long after the mid-terms, if as people expect, they are a blood bath for the GOP. By that time the GOP will see no value in him as president and the investigations will have progressed easily far enough for impeachment to pass in the house.

    And then the sex tape is released.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4426 posts Report Reply

  • Dennis Frank, in reply to Bart Janssen,

    Seems a feasible thesis but I'd be surprised. Normally when a leader is weakening the fact is signalled loud & clear by the body language. None yet.

    I suspect he's weathering the storm comfortably. Republican establishment attacks on him seem to have muted noticeably since election. I see the shuffling of staffers as an exercise in social darwinism. Looks like playing tough with China worked for him - obviously little fat rocket man scurrying toward denuclearisation talks is due to China giving him a private warning of a significant withdrawal of their support. Which lessens his need to buddy up to Putin to form an axis against China. The top influencers in the US political establishment keep any president who shows they can do geopolitics successfully.

    New Zealand • Since Jun 2016 • 214 posts Report Reply

  • Rich Lock, in reply to Russell Brown,

    As Avenatti predicted, Cohen is pleading the 5th in the Stormy Daniels case.

    I'll just leave this here:

    back in the mother countr… • Since Feb 2007 • 2727 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel, in reply to Moz,

    the dude in that video looks uncannily like Gerry Brownlee

    Robbie Coltrane innit?
    he made a Cracker Hagrid!

    see:
    http://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/news/8341871/When-talent-quest-found-Brownlee

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 7704 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson, in reply to Dennis Frank,

    Normally when a leader is weakening the fact is signalled loud & clear by the body language. None yet.

    I think he honestly does not understand a lot of what is going on. He doesn't know if he's weak or strong because he does not have any real infrastructure in place to keep him advised. He discards advisors like they're contestants on his stupid show, on which it was noted by the editors that they often completely failed to understand his rationales and had to work really, really hard to edit the shows to make him seem rational at all. The only time I ever watched it, he fired the highest performing contestant who had won immunity because they got cocky and waived their immunity. Whether they were any good at whatever stupid task they had been put to, selling buttons on the street or something, was beside the point. He was infuriated by someone being cocky on his show. His actions and decisions are emotional and narcissistic, not rational, and he doesn't have any clear direction or policy. So I don't expect him to change his behaviour even if he gets impeached. For him, it's all Mission Accomplished every day that he gets a ton of attention.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10559 posts Report Reply

  • Tom Semmens, in reply to Dennis Frank,

    I suspect he’s weathering the storm comfortably. Republican establishment attacks on him seem to have muted noticeably since election.

    IMHO, none of the mud slinging over Trump’s private life adds up to anything remotely impeachable. Sure, Trump is clearly an unspeakable cad and a banal philanderer that no woman in her right mind will vote for if he runs again. But being an asshole who cheats on his wife with a porn actress even as she is giving birth to his child only barely falls on the wrong side of the moral line for the entitled class of monied wide boys Trump belongs to. And anyway, If the electoral reaction to Berlusconi’s bunga bunga parties are any guide a significant number of male voters actually admire and envy the way a porky middle aged billionaire can still be banging the hotties. History tells us that if Ted Kennedy could survive Chappaquiddick then paying off hookers should be a political walk in the park for Trump. As for the Russia probe – I am willing to bet that Mueller won’t find a smoking gun that implicates the president. He might take down some of his family (presidential pardons all round, thank you very much) but Trump will survive.

    Trump may have a loud base of disgruntled aging whites, but his behaviour in office has alienated and mobilised practically everyone else. Trump’s women problems extend to massive gender gap in his support, and the mid-terms are likely to be a disaster for the GOP as more motivated Democrats get out and vote in bigger numbers. The question then turns on how the radicals who now run the Republican insurgency react. Most likely they will try and double down on stacking judicaries, gerrymandering districts, passing Jim Crow laws, and all the rest of it while supporting Trump. The craven GOP “moderates” will cave like they always do.

    Trump is a shyster and confidence trickster who lives on bluster and bluff and he probably isn’t worth a dime. His primary goal as president seems to have been to enrich himself as fast as possible. I think that if he can get a guarantee that any new GOP president will give him a pardon he won’t run again. he’ll want to scuttle off and enjoy his new wealth and prestige of forever being addressed as “President Trump”. The question then is – could Trump – or a new GOP candidate – defeat the Democrats in 2020?

    The establishment Democrats are a bunch of useless skunks. Having complacently picked the wrong candidate and run on all the wrong policies they’ve managed to blame everyone but themselves for Clinton’s defeat. It was Saunders fault. Even better, they’ve got Robert Mueller’s probe that gives them their very own Dolchstoßlegende myth as an excuse for pretending they need not change their own corrupt practices. It is highly likely the schism in the Democrats over Saunders will do them great damage. The corrupt establishment Democrats hate him. Rather than Saunders, they may go for Kamala Harris for a second round of identity politics dominated elections. If they do, then they could easily lose again if their civil war damages their turnout too much.

    Sevilla, Espana • Since Nov 2006 • 2197 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    Trump has handed Avenatti a big ol’ present by going on Fox News and specifically associating himself with the Stormy case. The dumbest thing he could do would be to confirm that Cohen was acting for him on the matter of paying off the porn star. And he did it.

    Oh the other hand, Avenatti didn’t have a great day in court:

    Stormy Daniels‘ attorney Michael Avenatti filed a motion to intervene in the government’s case against Michael Cohen today. But that request didn’t go as well as Avenatti had hoped or expected.

    It was supposed to be so easy.

    The requesting, granting and receiving of intervenor status is typically a pro forma affair if there’s any tangible connection to the case at hand. Avenatti basically said as much when pleading his case. But it actually wasn’t enough in the Southern District of New York on Thursday.

    To be clear: Judge Kimba Wood initially granted Avenatti’s request, but later she reversed that prior ruling. So, what made her change her mind?

    It seemed like nobody else wanted Avenatti and Daniels involved.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22537 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Dennis Frank,

    Looks like playing tough with China worked for him – obviously little fat rocket man scurrying toward denuclearisation talks is due to China giving him a private warning of a significant withdrawal of their support.

    North Korea has no intention of denuclearisation. Trump is talking up a nuclear pact that doesn't exist even as he prepares to wreck one, with Iran, that does.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22537 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel, in reply to Russell Brown,

    Trump is talking up a nuclear pact that doesn’t exist even as he prepares to wreck one, with Iran, that does.

    Someone should ask Trump when his pals in Israel last allowed IAEA inspectors in to their nuclear sites - Iran has complied and honoured their side of the deal.

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 7704 posts Report Reply

  • nzlemming, in reply to Russell Brown,

    Trump has handed Avenatti a big ol’ present by going on Fox News and specifically associating himself with the Stormy case. The dumbest thing he could do would be to confirm that Cohen was acting for him on the matter of paying off the porn star. And he did it.

    Even the Fox hosts were cringing. Monumentally stupid. But he wasn't saying that Cohen was acting as a lawyer, just that he was working on "the deal" and he went out of his way to say that Cohen was more of a businessman than a lawyer. Avenatti called it "manna from Heaven" and he's not wrong.

    I don't think Avenatti lost too much with not being granted intervenor status except dignity. NY is looking at a criminal case and his is only civil. As I understand it, intervenor status would let him see some discovery materials, but I'm not sure on that. He'll have to wait and see that stuff when it gets to open court.

    Waikanae • Since Nov 2006 • 2897 posts Report Reply

  • nzlemming,

    Waikanae • Since Nov 2006 • 2897 posts Report Reply

  • nzlemming,

    https://twitter.com/nycsouthpaw/status/989512203047911425
    SDNY has ALREADY used Trump’s Fox & Friends interview this morning against him in a court filing

    Waikanae • Since Nov 2006 • 2897 posts Report Reply

  • nzlemming,

    Special Master appointed in Cohen case

    NEW YORK — A federal judge on Thursday appointed a special master to review material seized from the office and residences of President Trump’s personal attorney Michael Cohen, acceding to his request that an independent party review the material before federal prosecutors can access it.

    The decision, a win for Cohen, came after prosecutors quickly pounced on comments Trump made Thursday morning that the lawyer performed little legal work for him, to undercut Cohen’s argument that much of the material was protected by attorney-client privilege.

    Waikanae • Since Nov 2006 • 2897 posts Report Reply

  • nzlemming,

    Attachment

    Yeah.

    Waikanae • Since Nov 2006 • 2897 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    So Avenatti's not all good. His dealings in the retail coffee business seem a bit questionable.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22537 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel,

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 7704 posts Report Reply

  • nzlemming, in reply to Russell Brown,

    So Avenatti's not all good. His dealings in the retail coffee business seem a bit questionable.

    There's a difference between being good and being a good lawyer...

    Waikanae • Since Nov 2006 • 2897 posts Report Reply

  • nzlemming,

    If you, like me, can't bear to listen to the Cheeto-in-Chief, here's a handy, annotated transcript, courtesy of the Washington Post.

    Waikanae • Since Nov 2006 • 2897 posts Report Reply

  • Dennis Frank, in reply to Tom Semmens,

    Nothing there I disagree with, Tom. Both main parties in the USA got a reputation for shady dealings in the 19th century, both became notably corrupt during the 20th. The Bush dynasty have been personal friends and business partners with the bin Ladens through three generations in the oil industry, Reagan ran the Contra operation and supported fascist dictators in central & south America, so for me Trump still seems benign, compared to them & Nixon. Crass etc ain't evil.

    Democrat regimes maintained CIA direction of coups in an entire spectrum of foreign countries just as enthusiastically as Republicans did, and that same method was used prior to the formation of the CIA, traceable back into the 19th century. Still, it does appear that the mafia has been rendered more marginal in recent years so maybe there's an overall trend toward credibility despite the left/right shambles.

    New Zealand • Since Jun 2016 • 214 posts Report Reply

  • Dennis Frank, in reply to Russell Brown,

    North Korea has no intention of denuclearisation. Trump is talking up a nuclear pact that doesn't exist even as he prepares to wreck one, with Iran, that does.

    Well, it would depend on the incentive, wouldn't it? But insofar as I don't recall any other nuclear state totally denuclearising, I agree. My point is that Trump's bluster actually worked. As we saw on the news tonight, the sabre-rattling has been displaced by smiles & hand-holding. In the court of public opinion, it makes Trump seem like a guy who gets the suitable result. I bet more people are impressed by that than by leftist moral outrage about his personal life & character.

    Yeah, his Iran stance is one to watch. Sounds like he has a problem with the devil in the detail of what was agreed & is keen eliminate whatever it is. Could be just a tweak required rather than ditching it - in which case they'll announce a trip to Iran by Tillerson sometime soon.

    New Zealand • Since Jun 2016 • 214 posts Report Reply

  • Joe Wylie, in reply to Dennis Frank,

    ...insofar as I don't recall any other nuclear state totally denuclearising...

    South Africa.

    flat earth • Since Jan 2007 • 4585 posts Report Reply

  • Rich Lock, in reply to Tom Semmens,

    presidential pardons all round, thank you very much

    My understanding is that presidential pardons are limited to Federal crimes, not state/local crimes. I don't pretend to understand all the legal ins and outs, but the informed consensus seems to be that this is one the reasons that Mueller is filing charges at local level in New York - specifically to close this potential loophole.

    back in the mother countr… • Since Feb 2007 • 2727 posts Report Reply

  • nzlemming,

    Given it's Friday, here's an|interesting analysis of Kanye West this week by Ari Melber

    Waikanae • Since Nov 2006 • 2897 posts Report Reply

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