Trump Times Entry 272 – Leaks Spring Eternal

Leaks Spring Eternal

August 8, 2017

A little hopeful

The Donald loved leaks, especially WikiLeaks, during the election. He cited them all the time during those last few weeks of his Russian enhanced marketing campaign. Legal or illegal, indelicate or irrelevant, didn’t matter. The public’s need to know (and Trump’s need to speak) was the thing, not Clinton’s or the government’s privacy. And the media covered it double time – splashed the leaks themselves, then featured Trump swinging them like bludgeons.

Quite the spectacle, the old guy outraged over the girl’s inside story. The whole thing felt kind of lewd, but without the necessity of viewing skin. A small, but important, kindness for sure.

Of course, now the Donald is outraged about the leaks gushing from his sieve-like White House. Funny how leaks persist, regardless of who’s in charge. And when the boss is an asshole, employees tend to talk about him – not at work, of course, but after-hours in dark watering holes and parking lots.  Satisfaction will be taken in private, if not allowed in public.

People talk and with a subject as big, seedy and controversial as the Donald they talk a lot.

They talk about Trump playing golf when he should be working. They talk about the Donald cheating at said golf. They talk about meetings with Russian operatives. They talk about the Donald yelling at the TV. They talk about the intelligence community withholding information from the Donald. They talk about Trump’s shitty telephone manners. They talk about Trump attempting to open black site prisons. They talk about how much Putin pays the Donald.

It’s ironic how the thing that got him elected, Trump’s talent for compelling people to talk about him, will eventually get him hung. Fitting and worth discussion.

I’ve been talking about the Donald and his band of cartoon characters for two-hundred-seventy-three days now and that election seems a distant past. Much has changed, but our drive to communicate has not. If anything the drive grows stronger.

The Donald and his boy, Jeff Sessions, cannot prevent those around them from forming opinions and acting on them. And regardless of a person’s ideology, we are all compelled to speak about what concerns us. It can’t be helped or prevented, even by the fascist pretender.

The republic finds all the chatter, even that which offends, hopeful.

Still the romantic,
osv

Trump Times Entry 210 – Leaks Like a Pipeline

Leaks Like a Pipeline

June 6, 2017

The news writers called it a crackdown – a one arrest crackdown. (We could really use new reporters who favor clarity of message over drama.) In that crackdown, a contractor, Reality Leigh Winner, was arrested for leaking a classified NSA report that further implicated Russia in tampering with the November election.

The report indicated that the Russians hacked election software – not emails or social media stuff, but actual election related software. The software in question provided polling place registration verification. Got that? They hacked polling place software. This, of course, begs questions like, how far into the polling place did the Russians hackers get? Up till now, we (the in the dark public) were led to believe hacking never reached into the election itself, but was limited to email intercepts, fake news feeds and social media. But, never the polling place. Hmm…

After reading the leaked report, I’m left with other questions. But, the one overriding, burning question is: why the fuck was this classified? There aren’t any national secrets in it – no launch codes, no IDs of covert operatives, no exposure of sleeper cells. It did, however, describe how the software provider and government were easily scammed by mediocre hackers with childish technique.

And that’s likely why it’s classified – cause, it makes the election software vendor and our government look like the idiots they are. (These geniuses, fell victim to spearfishing attacks; they clicked on infected links in emails. Dumb fucks, this is what passes for professional in the election software environment!)

So now we can expect the assholes, who don’t know not to click emailed links, to throw a twenty-five-year-old contractor under the bus for revealing what assholes they are. Is American great yet?

Oh, and speaking of leaks, the Dakota Access pipeline, the project Obama stopped, but the Donald restarted in January, is already leaking. The pipeline owners claim all contamination was contained the environment remains safe. If you believe that, I have some slightly used election software I’d like to sell you.

Over the last two-hundred-ten days since the stolen election, the most helpful information has come from leaks – and will continue to come from leaks. Complex high-pressure systems invariably fail to some degree. It doesn’t matter if the system is plumbing or intelligence gathering – leaks always occur. The republic can count on it.

In Peace and Justice,
osv

Trump Times Entry 197 – Leakiest President Ever

Leakiest President Ever

May 24, 2017

So, one more time, we’ve leaked another country’s confidential information. This time, outed details about the Manchester attack, before our British allies were ready to make those details public – thus, impeding the investigation.

Oops!

Well, could be worse. It’s not like anyone spilled intelligence to known Russian agents while giving those very agents a White House tour or, as if, anyone confirmed that information as Israeli, during a press conference with the Israeli Prime Minister.

But, my goodness, the Trump administration sure has been riddled with leaks. Though, since the press secretary is such an ineffective liar (and so unpleasant to work with), White House staff leaks have become our go to source for insider news. And Justice Department leaks have driven the Russian-Trump investigation. There have even been CIA leaks through one of the Donald’s favorite news sources, WikiLeaks.

Park Service leaks, Dakota Access pipeline leaks, inner circle leaks – hell, I bet his fucking gold toilet leaks.

Yup, leadership defines culture. And Trump is a loud cantankerous fellow, given to running off at the mouth. So, it should come as no surprise when his government similarly runs off at the mouth. Leaky president, leaky administration.

Please don’t misunderstand, I think all this leakage is good. The “national security” cover is usually bullshit. Politicians use that rationale to mostly avoid taking about uncomfortable topics – to protect us from some hash truth. Fuck ‘em – they should be compelled to tell us about every little thing they’re up to. The risk in being uniformed is far greater than the risk in knowing something ugly.

So, with the shower of information, with the contradictions to Trump lies, with the intelligence community’s concern with Trump’s behavior and his self-confessed obstruction of justice, one would think Trump should be pretty easy to pick off. Lots of high crimes, take your pick; misdemeanors galore – this should be easy as lying to voters, but very few of the liars who matter dare use the “I” word. Wonder why.

Because they’re Republicans, that’s why. They’ve made it very clear, they would never move against a fellow Republican. That would be silly. Besides they’re busy right now hiding from voters and trying to replace Obamacare with something more insurance industry friendly.

Yeah, the republic knows it’s no secret, nothing happens until we deal with the leakers in congress.

In Peace and Justice,
osv

PS-
It’s been one-hundred-ninety-seven days since the Donald achieved election. Over that time, leaks have been our most valuable source of information.  (Plus they piss off the Donald.)

Trump Times Entry 133 – The Art of the Leak

The Art of the Leak

March 21, 2017

The FBI has been investigating the Trump crime family for collusion with the Russians since last July. They, of course, didn’t tell the voting public about their suspicions because it’s bad form to publicly comment on active investigations – unless you investigating a Democrat. Probably because they don’t fight back.

We know about the Trump-Russian affair because leaks forced congress to do their job.

The Intelligence community has the technical capability to listen in on pretty much anybody through common electronic devices, though the microwave oven is not one of the candidate devices.

We know about eBig Brother because of leaks. Though, I thought everyone assumed this already.

Michael Flynn, was forced to resign as national security adviser after reports exposed his lies about conversations with the Russian Ambassador. Oh, and he got $68K in payment from Russian companies, and worked for the Turkish government.
All from leaks.

Two factions are jockeying for position within the Donald’s White House: the New York moderates (Gary Cohn, Ivanka, Jared) and the Republican populists (Bannon). In this turf war, Bannon is killing it – probably due to his high-energy personality and winning smile.

We know about White House power struggles because of leaks. Though in this case, knowing the hyper-rich are losing to the bat-shit crazy is more depressing than informative.

We know aides have to keep Trump away from “bad” information because he gets cranky. From leaks.

Leaks everywhere.

So, of course, the House Intelligence Committee Republicans are focusing on leaks rather than on Russian interference in the election. Yeah, punishing those who expose crime is way more important than the actual crime – well, if the criminal is Republican. After all, leaks could compromise national security!

Yeah, fuck ‘em. Our boy and girls in Washington hide too much with that “National Security” cover. And frankly, since we already have Russian agents in the White House, national security seems a mote point.

The republic acknowledges that leaks are dangerous – the question is: to whom? Plus, over the last one-hundred-thirty-three days since Trump wikileaked his way into office, all news of value has been the result of leaks.  So, in context, leaks seem reasonable.

After all, the government holds the key to controlling leaks – stop lying to us. There wouldn’t be so many leaks if there wasn’t so much hidden.

In Peace and Justice,
osv

Trump Times Entry 112 – Leaks Like a Pipeline

Leaks Like a Pipeline

February 28, 2017developers-will-resist

Tonight, one-hundred-twelve days after proving any fool can be elected president, the Donald will address congress. The press, ever hopeful, expect him to talk about his agenda for America – concentrating on a wartime budget that spends more on the military and less on the State Department. They look forward to traditionally forward looking speech. Silly hey?

I don’t see Trump talking about anything other than himself; it’s gonna be an hour, maybe more, of self-praise and critic-bullying. You know, classic Trump.

The whitehouse.gov website says the Donald, “will continue to lay out his agenda to Make America Great Again”, but, offers no detail. Instead, it quickly moves on to listing accomplishments like reviving Keystone XL and Dakota Access pipelines and eliminating the “Stream Protection Rule.”

Great, but we already knew about the Donald’s undeclared war on the environment. I was hoping for some hint of what’s to come.

But apparently, neither mainstream media nor the government can provide any early insight into tonight’s monologue; I guess we’ll just have to wait for the speech. Unless, of course, something leaks.

After all, there have been lots of interesting leaks. They’ve been like melodies playing counterpoint to the monotonous drone of white noise we hear from the failing White House. Without leaks we wouldn’t know about the Putin, Trump, big oil love triangle. Without leaks we wouldn’t know about Trump’s taste for the exotic in the boudoir or about his crotch entitlement.

Without leaks we wouldn’t know that Sean Spicer, in a gestapo like maneuver, forced White House communication staff to dump their smart phone’s data to allow his goons to examine it for evidence of leaking. This story about leak prevention was leaked before Sean had a chance to leak an alternative story about how the leaks were now under control. (Whee! Like I’ve said before these guys are exhausting.)

I think it reasonable to expect the Donald to complain about leaks tonight. I suppose, like many of us, he struggles with the imperfection inherent in all complex systems – with the engineering principle that “plumbing leaks”. His bureaucracy will leak information, just as certainly as his pipelines will leak poison. It’s only a matter of when.

The republic expects the most dangerous leaks to occur outside of Washington.

In Peace and Justice,
osv