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US Air Force (retired)
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Discussion Starter #1
The forum has been silent for a few days. Let's discuss the pros and cons of Trump's cabinet picks. I'm assuming that we will all be on the same sides as before but it won't be boring and we might learn something from each other (doubtful but hopeful).
 

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Pawsitively sexy
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Two words... "Mad Dog"
Well, let's start there.

There's a book titled "The Only Thing Worth Dying For" by Eric Blehm that casts what I would imagine would be a dark shadow over Mattis for his failure to send help to a group of Green Berets on December 5th, 2001. Given the massive **** storm that was Benghazi, I can't see how anyone who was on that bandwagon could reconcile his decision to leave those men for dead by keeping his marines at base. That base was 45 minutes away. Instead, it was the Air Force who ended up sending help from a position 3 hours away. Some would argue that difference cost people their lives.

On a whole, he's picking a lot of people who are successful folk in the current economic landscape, the very landscape Trump says is not adequately working for the average American. I just don't see any of these people fixing the problem of stagnant wages or bringing jobs back or "making America great again", among other issues.

And then there's Scott Pruitt... but we've been down that road before. I could go on a long rant, but I'm going to defer here. I'll just say that I don't think a man with deep ties to the fossil fuel industry really gives a **** about the environment. It's in his interest to not give a ****. And he's got way more skin in the game than any lone scientists who's apparently rigging the results to keep working a job that doesn't actually pay as much as most people seem to think.
 

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We all heard the talk about draining the swamp and going in a new direction while he was campaigning and quite a few yelled and cheered but it seems as if he is do a same old rain dance in that swamp and filling it right back up. It really comes as no surprise. I just wanna sit back and watch him govern based off of the things he said and promised over time. I guess we are already catching a small glimpse of his so called draining of the swamp or filling of it depending on ones veiw.
 

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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
Bad Reporting:

I saw Bolton's interview live on FoxNews. Here is the Washington Post's take on that interview.
https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/morning-mix/wp/2016/12/12/bolton-suggests-russian-election-hacks-were-false-flag-by-obama-administration/?utm_term=.8f54dc95474d

Bolton did not say that. The reporter wanted him to but Bolton went out of his way to explain what a false flag is. Since Bolton is on the short list for Secretary of State I think this was just an attack by the Post to try to discredit Bolton and Trump's election.

What are the facts? When the DNC was hacked some code was left behind by the hackers. It was reported at the time that it was a older well-known hacker code originating from Russia. Any hacker could have saved it in their tool box and used it.

But the hack was done in an environment of Russian/American adversity over Syria. Russia is supporting the government. The US is supporting the rebels. Clinton supports the rebels and wants to create "no fly zones" over Syria. That would cause a direct confrontation between the world's two most powerful nuclear nations.

Trump said Putin was a stronger leader than Obama. There is little doubt about that. Obama started his Presidency with world-wide apology tour. He drew a red line in the sand in Syria (which he should not have done) and when the line was crossed did nothing. Putin has Russian warplanes and troops go into an area where US troops were already operating supporting a US enemy. Putin has no respect for Obama at all. Since Clinton was going to follow the failed Obama policy making it worse its little wonder that Russian leaders preferred Trump over Clinton. But that is not proof of hacking.

Bolton was saying that Russia is capable of hacking a server and leaving no evidence that they had ever been there. He said it was somewhat suspicious that the code was left behind. He did not say that it was left behind by the Obama administration. But he did say that the Obama administration is politicalizing the issue. And that is true.

Democrats are trying everything to say that Trump did not win the election. That the election was rigged. That the election was influenced by a foreign power. Trump did win the election. It was not rigged. But it may have been influenced indirectly by a foreign power. The hack itself did not influence the election but the release of Clinton campaign correspondence which brought to light things that Clinton would have preferred to keep secret might have influenced a few votes.

This needs to be investigated. Evidence still need to be uncovered. And politicalizing the issue supported by completely biased reporting isn't helping.
 

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Voted for Trump, looking forward to his " team " fixing the mis-steps of the last 7 + years.
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Pawsitively sexy
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This needs to be investigated. Evidence still need to be uncovered. And politicalizing the issue supported by completely biased reporting isn't helping.
It was okay a few weeks ago to politicize Comey's letter on the Clinton e-mail scandal, but not this? Interesting...

And just to point it out, this issue has already been investigated. More work clearly needs to be done, but both the FBI and CIA are very confident that there was Russian involvement in the DNC leaks and that they also hacked GOP groups yet released none of that information.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
The RNC said they weren't hacked. Various agencies disagree on the details. Even the CIA said there was no direct link to the Russian government but that it could be independent Russian operatives at work.

The Democrats say this invalidates the election but it doesn't. Even if every word of the accusation is true all that was done is that information that the DNC would rather have kept secret was released. And as pointed out by one newscaster, Podesta's emails were not part of the DNC hack. The DNC hack was more about its effort against Sanders than anything else.

But this needs to be investigated and defenses to cyber attacks created. I realize that Democrats are unhappy about the DNC hack. But a much greater threat to our country was the OPM hack where China got access to all of the background checks for anyone who has had a Top Secret clearance. If I remember correctly that hack was permitted because the OPM hired a South American company to write code who hired Chinese subcontractors. They are suspected to having access to the OPM databases for over a year before the hack was detected.

My personal information was hacked three times that year. The OPM hack. My insurance company was hacked. And, my hospital was hacked. It's not just government doing the hacking but criminal organizations and individuals. There is a constant daily attack on personal information and I think we need new tools to protect ourselves.
 

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Pawsitively sexy
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The RNC said they weren't hacked. Various agencies disagree on the details.
There were attacks on the RNC, but they weren't successful. Both the FBI and CIA though have agreed that GOP individuals and related groups have been successfully hacked, but none of that information was ever released. That's the whole issue between the FBI and CIA. The CIA isn't a law enforcement agency. They find this plethora of circumstantial evidence to be enough. The FBI doesn't dispute their conclusions, just that they have yet to amass enough evidence to make the same conclusion.

Even the CIA said there was no direct link to the Russian government but that it could be independent Russian operatives at work.
Can I get a link to that quote? Everything I've read on the issue has said that they have identified individuals and these individuals have known government ties as well as the hacking groups involved in these attacks have known ties to Russian intelligence agencies. Jump through whatever mental hoops you need to to dismiss the idea the Russian government was in any way involved, but it seems pretty clear that they were involved. The bigger question is what was the purpose of their involvement. It's no secret that Putin hates Hillary and blamed her for political protests over in Russia.

The Democrats say this invalidates the election but it doesn't. Even if every word of the accusation is true all that was done is that information that the DNC would rather have kept secret was released. And as pointed out by one newscaster, Podesta's emails were not part of the DNC hack. The DNC hack was more about its effort against Sanders than anything else.
Well, we can agree here. It's settled, and I doubt they'd ever be able to compile enough evidence to lay a very specific, substantiated narrative that the Russian government purposefully released hacked information to get Donald Trump elected
 

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Discussion Starter #10
You are correct. Spies listen to whispers. Law enforcement needs hard facts. Below is a Washington Post article. You have to dig down into the article a bit to where it says the presentation between the 17 intelligence agencies fell short.

For example, intelligence agencies do not have specific intelligence showing officials in the Kremlin “directing” the identified individuals to pass the Democratic emails to WikiLeaks, a second senior U.S. official said. Those actors, according to the official, were “one step” removed from the Russian government, rather than government employees. Moscow has in the past used middlemen to participate in sensitive intelligence operations so it has plausible deniability.

Julian Assange, the founder of WikiLeaks, has said in a television interview that the “Russian government is not the source.”

The White House and CIA officials declined to comment.
https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/obama-orders-review-of-russian-hacking-during-presidential-campaign/2016/12/09/31d6b300-be2a-11e6-94ac-3d324840106c_story.html?hpid=hp_hp-top-table-main_russiahack-1215p:homepage/story&utm_term=.641f78a66da6

The article goes on to say that the briefing to the Gang of 12 in Congress was because they feared there would be an attempt to hack voting-registration and balloting machines. U.S. Intelligence was skeptical that they could systematically manipulate the results but the White House was afraid it would sow doubt about the mechanisms of Democracy. Please note, there is absolutely no evidence that any voting-registration or balloting machine was hacked. Stein inferred that there was but Wisconsin proved there wasn't any in that state.

And then today we hear that our top intelligence office, The Office of the Director of National Intelligence, does not fully embrace the CIA findings.
One official also told Reuters that the CIA’s judgment was based on the fact that only Democratic information was leaked. The official called this a “thin reed upon which to base an analytical judgment.”
http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2016/12/13/top-intel-office-not-on-same-page-as-cia-regarding-russia-hack-assessment.html

Democrats are pushing the CIA story. Their blogs are going way beyond actual facts. It is all in an attempt to undermine the results of the election. They are hoping to create "faithless electors." Ones that will vote for Clinton instead of Trump. That is a stretch. Electors are party affiliates. Trump's lead is 306 to 232. They would need 38 Republicans to switch their vote to one of the most disliked Democratic nominees in recent history. I don't think that is going to happen.

I am just absolutely amazed at how politicians can flip-flop so easily. A couple of weeks ago Democrats said the electoral college was an obsolete entity that needed to go away. Today, they say it is working as our founding fathers intended. A safeguard to protect us from the unwashed masses and that binding an elector is wrong.

The enlightened elite just cannot accept that their message, their agenda and their politics was rejected by rural America. Actually, O'Reilly has made an interesting case. He says it is the welfare dependent in the cities that are keeping them Democratic strongholds, not so much Democratic ideals. He had a lot of data about New York City, his home, to support it.
 

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missippi roolz
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I am just absolutely amazed at how politicians can flip-flop so easily. A couple of weeks ago Democrats said the electoral college was an obsolete entity that needed to go away. Today, they say it is working as our founding fathers intended. A safeguard to protect us from the unwashed masses and that binding an elector is wrong.
 

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hearing about donald trump's cabinet picks is literally like watching pro wrestling. linda mcmahon as the head of the SBA is just the cherry on top
 

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But you have to look at the date and understand that was then and this is now. Hell you can even change that date to about 5 months ago and the statements and new defenses would stand. Like some say people know he is a hypocrite and will defend his his hypocrisy and mystery that comes along with him. Makes one want to chug beers back to back like someone who isn't fully aware of what the next day has in store with doing something like that. Smh...
 

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missippi roolz
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But you have to look at the date and understand that was then and this is now. Hell you can even change that date to about 5 months ago and the statements and new defenses would stand. Like some say people know he is a hypocrite and will defend his his hypocrisy and mystery that comes along with him. Makes one want to chug beers back to back like someone who isn't fully aware of what the next day has in store with doing something like that. Smh...
Haha, I'm aware of the inevitable responses. Just trying to make sure we remain Fair & Balanced™ in here.
 

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It was okay a few weeks ago to politicize Comey's letter on the Clinton e-mail scandal, but not this? Interesting...

And just to point it out, this issue has already been investigated. More work clearly needs to be done, but both the FBI and CIA are very confident that there was Russian involvement in the DNC leaks and that they also hacked GOP groups yet released none of that information.
Bear in mind, I am not defending hackers here, nor am I defending Russia, nor advocating "hactivism".

That said, the "hacks" whoever perpetrated them, be they from Russia, or an internal issue with the DNC, demonstrated without any real argument that the DNC was cheating from the get go. They demonstrated that the DNC refused to acknowledge Bernie Sanders as an option, that they took votes from him, etc. They demonstrated that the DNC will not and can not play by the rules.

So how exactly do these hacks "invalidate" the election? Because they got caught trying to rig the election, so now they're blaming someone else for stealing it?

I agree, the hacks do need to be looked into, among many other things. I really don't have a problem politicizing the hacks, but I think they're being misdirected in the wrong direction. As far as I can tell, the Trump campaign, the RNC in general, and Trump personally haven't done any wrong here. They didn't steal elections, they didn't tamper with votes, and the hack was about as effective in demoralizing the DNC base as Hillary's emails were, as in not very. Yes, it amped up those of us who are against corruption by a major political party, but the left wing of the country poo pooed it all as inconsequential, when the truth is that Clinton's deleted emails were and are a MUCH bigger deal than made out to be by the media.

So yes, investigate it. Politicize it. But really, what have the Republicans done wrong here?

---------- Post added at 03:06 PM ---------- Previous post was at 02:59 PM ----------

PHP:
I've never been one to say that the Electoral College is a bad thing. I've understood for a VERY long time that it is designed to balance things so that places like California, New York, and Chicago don't get to choose the president every election.

Look at the sheer number of people in California, and how a huge portion of them (in the large, heavily populated cities) voted Clinton, yet almost every single rural area in the entire nation voted Trump. Yet, Clinton STILL won the "popular" vote based on numbers alone.
That kind of win isn't the "will of the nation". It's the will of very heavily populated pockets of the nation, where the vast majority of the map voted Trump.

That's why we NEED the electoral college.

Is the electoral college flawed? Yes. I wouldn't be opposed to every state splitting it up like Maine and Nebraska do, where it's not a winner take all state, but the electoral college can be split between the groups depending on what areas get won. Is that perfect? No, but again, as it sits the electoral college does a pretty fair job of seeing the will of the nation get put forward vs the will of the big cities.
 

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Pawsitively sexy
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You are correct. Spies listen to whispers. Law enforcement needs hard facts. Below is a Washington Post article. You have to dig down into the article a bit to where it says the presentation between the 17 intelligence agencies fell short.


https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/obama-orders-review-of-russian-hacking-during-presidential-campaign/2016/12/09/31d6b300-be2a-11e6-94ac-3d324840106c_story.html?hpid=hp_hp-top-table-main_russiahack-1215p:homepage/story&utm_term=.641f78a66da6

The article goes on to say that the briefing to the Gang of 12 in Congress was because they feared there would be an attempt to hack voting-registration and balloting machines. U.S. Intelligence was skeptical that they could systematically manipulate the results but the White House was afraid it would sow doubt about the mechanisms of Democracy. Please note, there is absolutely no evidence that any voting-registration or balloting machine was hacked. Stein inferred that there was but Wisconsin proved there wasn't any in that state.

And then today we hear that our top intelligence office, The Office of the Director of National Intelligence, does not fully embrace the CIA findings.

Top intel office not on same page as CIA regarding Russia hack assessment | Fox News

Democrats are pushing the CIA story. Their blogs are going way beyond actual facts. It is all in an attempt to undermine the results of the election. They are hoping to create "faithless electors." Ones that will vote for Clinton instead of Trump. That is a stretch. Electors are party affiliates. Trump's lead is 306 to 232. They would need 38 Republicans to switch their vote to one of the most disliked Democratic nominees in recent history. I don't think that is going to happen.
Maybe it's got something to do with the fact that the CIA has itself been in the business of manipulating other countries. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

I think we have one side that is definitely eager to blow this up and make it more than it currently is, but we have another side that's trying to set the bar higher than reasonably attainable. There's an extremely unlikely chance of a smoking gun type finding in situations like this.

el oh el...

Bear in mind, I am not defending hackers here, nor am I defending Russia, nor advocating "hactivism".

That said, the "hacks" whoever perpetrated them, be they from Russia, or an internal issue with the DNC, demonstrated without any real argument that the DNC was cheating from the get go. They demonstrated that the DNC refused to acknowledge Bernie Sanders as an option, that they took votes from him, etc. They demonstrated that the DNC will not and can not play by the rules.

So how exactly do these hacks "invalidate" the election? Because they got caught trying to rig the election, so now they're blaming someone else for stealing it?
I don't support the DNC or what they did, but there's a pretty distinct difference between another country undermining our Presidential election and a US political party undermining it's own primaries. For one, primaries need not even exist. They were only introduced to let voters feel they had a part in the party nomination. There is no constitutional right to primary voting.

So to clear that last part of your post up, they(not I) feel it should invalidate the election results because they believe the Russian government purposefully manipulated the voting process by leaking dirt on the democrats while withholding any secrets they found among the GOP. Democrats did not (or at least the leaks do not show) that they manipulated the election, only their own primary. The only rules they may have broken were their own.

I agree, the hacks do need to be looked into, among many other things. I really don't have a problem politicizing the hacks, but I think they're being misdirected in the wrong direction. As far as I can tell, the Trump campaign, the RNC in general, and Trump personally haven't done any wrong here. They didn't steal elections, they didn't tamper with votes, and the hack was about as effective in demoralizing the DNC base as Hillary's emails were, as in not very. Yes, it amped up those of us who are against corruption by a major political party, but the left wing of the country poo pooed it all as inconsequential, when the truth is that Clinton's deleted emails were and are a MUCH bigger deal than made out to be by the media.
Do you have anything to substantiate that? For as much as I don't think the Democrats have a shred of evidence to prove the leaks cost them votes, there's also nothing to show it didn't cost them votes. Semantics here, I know, but I felt it was worth pointing out.

So yes, investigate it. Politicize it. But really, what have the Republicans done wrong here?
*cough*they nominated Trump*cough*
 

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US Air Force (retired)
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Discussion Starter #17
So to clear that last part of your post up, they(not I) feel it should invalidate the election results because they believe the Russian government purposefully manipulated the voting process by leaking dirt on the democrats while withholding any secrets they found among the GOP. Democrats did not (or at least the leaks do not show) that they manipulated the election, only their own primary. The only rules they may have broken were their own.
I think they are sore losers willing to use any lie or technique to stay in power. The RNC said they did not get hacked. You even said they tried but couldn't get in. Evidently the RNC had better security. Podesta was foolish enough to fall for a phishing scheme. That is how they got his emails. Other information was obtained from a freedom of information act request. If they didn't get anything from the RNC then they couldn't release anything. Everything is pure conjecture.

And even if it is true it doesn't invalidate the election. Yes, information that was illegally obtained was leaked to the general public. That may have changed a few minds but I doubt it. As some analyst were saying before the election when it appeared Clinton was winning, anything in the emails had already been considered by the public and those supporting Clinton didn't care. And nothing in that information was false. No one as questioned the accuracy of the information. They only say it was obtained illegally.

The hysteria surrounding the left is beyond belief. They have lied and used half-truths to try to win the election now they are believing their own lies.
 

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missippi roolz
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re: Russian Hacking

I like the idea that the right would not be absolutely losing their **** if the tables were turned.

---------- Post added at 09:29 AM ---------- Previous post was at 08:18 AM ----------

It's also interesting to see how the Russians were pretty much the arch-nemesis of Republican ideals, but for whatever reason this ****ed-up, convoluted, parallel universe we're living in now has made the Republicans brush off Trump's idolization of and connections with Russia and a select few of his cabinet members having direct ties and being buddy-buddy with Putin and other Russian politicians.

They were the ringleaders of McCarthyism, but somehow they've been convinced in the past six months that it's okay to be okay with Russia. The hypocrisy is mind boggling. Amazing that a New York billionaire, never-dealt-with-working-class-struggles, motherfucking elite of the elite, who continues to put the most elite motherfuckers possible on his cabinet, has convinced the working class that, not only is he going to make their lives better by completely not understanding anything that they're going through, but to also turn them completely against so many of their beliefs that have been held since the Cold War Era. Truly, truly hilarious.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
The alternative was Clinton.
 
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