The Big Con

Michael Cohen

b. traven

The well-planned. “hail Mary” rescue of Michael Cohen crafted by former federal prosecutor Giuliani for Donald Trump is now being played out on live TV while the pundits are still calling it a mistake by big mouthed Giuliani. No this is not a mistake. It is a well planned and clever ruse to defuse the potential case of federal prosecutors that Cohen evaded elections laws by making an illegal contribution to hush up Stormy Daniels.

So the narrative they have devised is that Cohen just used Trump’s “retainer” payments of $35.000/ month to pay off Daniels and therefore it could not be considered a specific TIMED payment made to hush her up before the election. Very clever. The fact that both Trump and Cohen lied about where the money came from is just accepted as irrelevant facts in their narrative.

This elaborate spate of revelations shows how desperate Trump is to keep his consiglieri, Cohen, out of harms way. Let’s see how the federal prosecutors react? The future of our democracy may rest on their reaction

9 thoughts on “The Big Con

  1. These guys lie so much and so often that they can’t keep their own lies straight, traven. As the liar-in-chief might say, “sad.”

  2. traven–Events are already outstripping the contents of this post! The Liar-in-Chief now says Giuliani was “confused,” but fear not, he’s going to “get the facts straight” soon. Of course, “the facts” shift hourly in a desperate attempt to keep the lid on this scandal. All the legal experts consulted on CNN last night (i.e. May 3) agree that this means of raising and paying the hush money constitutes violations of campaign fundraising regulations. No wonder Trump is so “anti-regulation”! I admire the lawyer representing ‘Stormy Daniels,’ and I think he’s right that Trump will not serve out this term. Trump thinks his suit of teflon is thicker than Reagan’s, but that is just another of his dangerous self-delusions. President Pence? Coming soon to a so-called democracy/republic near us.

    • “All the legal experts consulted on CNN last night (i.e. May 3) agree that this means of raising and paying the hush money constitutes violations of campaign fundraising regulations.”

      Seriously, Gregg? Do you mean for us to believe that CNN couldn’t find a legal expert to argue the other side of the case: namely, that a sex-film-performer and her lawyer tried successfully to extort money from Donald Trump precisely at a time when he might feel obliged to pay them off so as to avoid public embarrassment? How does caving in to “sex scandal” extortion qualify as a “campaign contribution”? You can easily find any number of lawyers who will argue anything for a dollar and then argue the opposite for another dollar the next day. They do that sort of thing for a living, depending on the interests of their clients. If CNN had wanted a legal rebuttal, just to have a real debate, they could have easily found a legal expert to offer it.

      traven responds:
      Mike.. Your bile has undermined your usual logic. You wax eloquently as usual about a subject that you have insufficient information about. We, in this country, are daily inundated with truth and lies about the Trump-Stormy affair.
      Stormy Daniels did NOT seek out Trump to “extort” money from him just prior to the election.

      “This all started in about 2011 when, as you will see below in this clip from an article below from a prominent newspaper, when Daniels gave the story to In Touch magazine and after they ran the story Trump-Cohen threatened the magazine with a lawsuit and they pulled the story. At the same time the incident threatening Daniels and her baby in Las Vegas took place.

      Daniels was on Ttrump’s radar screen so as the election came near in 2016, five years later, and he was “cleaning up” all of his predatory sexual escapades with NDA’s they approached Daniels to shut her up.Trump sought out Daniels to pressure her to sign an NDA with him which he did not end up signing.

      “For those struggling to keep up, here’s a brief recap: Daniels, a prominent adult film star, has maintained that she and Trump had an affair in 2006, mere months after Melania gave birth to their son, Barron. In 2011, after she gave a detailed interview to In Touch magazine about the purported extramarital tryst, Daniels alleges that a man approached her in a Las Vegas parking lot, warning her to “leave Trump alone” and threatening her life. (Daniels has since released a sketch of the suspect.) During the final months of the presidential election, Daniels was in talks with numerous reporters—including yours truly—about coming forward with her Trump story, only to instead opt for a $130,000 payout from Michael Cohen, replete with an NDA. Daniels has since sued both Cohen and Trump, arguing that they broke the terms of the NDA when they denied that the affair took place.”

      I say this because the apologists for You-Know-Her and her vastly incompetent, failed presidential election campaign have collaborated with any number of shady characters to dredge up salacious tales of Donald Trump in a Moscow hotel letting Russian prostitutes piss all over him, the notorious “golden showers” bullshit of the pure-crap-on-demand “Steele Dossier” which forms practically the entire basis for charging that “the Russians” control Donald Trump and made him invincible vs poor You-Know-Her (and her billions of dollars in campaign funding) because they have all this sordid sex stuff with which to blackmail him.

      traven responds:
      First of all you drew the same conclusion I did fro the Steele Dossier that the gals pissed on Trump. Well we were wrong. Trump may have all of them afterwards but first he had them do the “golden shower” of the bed that Obama had slept in when he visited Moscow. Now that is more consistent with this Narcissistic Sociopath;s psychology based on his demonstrated obsessive need to demonize Obama on any and all occasions. Below is a recent article that lends more credence to the Steele Dossier.
      I might add that I agree fully with your disdain of the Clintons but that is no excuse for making Trump a victim. They are both dangers to our country.

      Not to put too fine a point on it: Why do those attacking Donald Trump for beating You-Know-Her assert the “possibility” of sexual blackmail by “the Russians” when that might harm Trump’s case while completely disregarding “the same possibility” when it might undercut their case against him? Answer: “professional” hypocrisy and journalistic malfeasance. I know hardly anything about “the law” but even I could use simple logic and a bit of common sense to destroy those “legal experts” on CNN, a.k.a., the Clinton Nausea Network.

      Finally, as the obligatory disclaimer which one must offer when defending truth and reality, which might seem like defending Donald Trump on occasion, I offer two comments that I heard recently on the Jimmy Dore youtube show:

      Norm MacDonald: “You don’t have a world view just by saying that you don’t like Trump. You can’t just say ‘I don’t like Trump’ and that makes you a good person. The Democrats can’t just say ‘I hate Trump,’ and that means that they have a position. That’s no position.”

      Steph Zamorano: “I’m not a fan of Donald Trump. But Donald Trump is like the puss of the problem. The real problem is what got us here.”

      The Democratic party, as presently infested with bought-and-paid-for corporate stooges, bears the responsibility for bringing us down to this political and economic nadir. That now-discredited institution has no world-view and espouses no positions which might entice anti-war and working-class Americans into voting for them. Until that changes, all talk about “the Russians” and whichever porno-film performer Donald Trump may have screwed — and vice versa — constitutes nothing but a pathetic smoke screen, postponing the day when a true and thorough autopsy of the Democratic-party corpse can occur: a necessary precondition for constructing an authentic “socialist” alternative to predatory corporate oligarchy with its two, barely distinguishable right-wing factions posing as “parties.”

      In other words: Don’t confuse a little con for an enormous one.

      traven says:
      I may also add that from now on TPC will only run articles in which the formal names of countries and individuals are used . Trump talk like “Little Mario” or “Crooked Hillary” or ” you-know-her” is not be acceptable. You can accuse individuals and countries of the the misdeeds they are known for but we don’t want TPC discussion reduced to the level of Trumpean invective.

      • My, this sure generated a lot of verbiage! To return to the original (non-) issue: most of my evening video viewing consists of watching movies–no, not for “escapist entertainment,” trying to flee current events, I just happen to love movies. I tune in segments of CNN’s evening discussion shows (Anderson Cooper and Don Lemon) from time to time. Almost every panel DOES have former or current members of the GOP struggling desperately to defend Trump’s conduct, past/present/future. You know, the old “fair and balanced coverage” gambit! On the particular segment I referenced, however, there was no one available to defend the mechanism by which Attorney Cohen paid off ‘Stormy Daniels.’ This was straightforward, objective “reporting” by yours truly. Now, of course, The Donald’s new knight in shining armor (more tarnished every time he opens his mouth) is Rudy Giuliani. When he’s not impersonating the Secretary of State, ripping up a make-believe copy of the “Iran Nuclear Deal,” he is arguing furiously that the payoff did not have anything to do with campaign contributions. Nothing to see here, folks, move along. It remains to be seen how much longer the Rudy circus can go on before fairly sensible Trump advisors persuade the boss he’s better off giving Giuliani his walking papers. Stay tuned!

      • Second point at issue:

        I consider warmongers beneath contempt — like the woman who ran for President on the Democratic party ticket two years ago — and I take special pains in my writing to make sure that I do not fail to communicate my loathing. You may call this “invective” if you wish. So what? Anyone who fails to heap invective upon warmongering “Goldwater Girls” like the woman of whom I speak only serves to implicitly legitimize their inherent evil. You may recall the idiomatic phrase, “to damn with faint praise,” well that works the other way around, too: namely, “to praise with faint damnation.” I wish for no one to accuse me of failing to damn the damnable when they deserve it, as the woman in question most assuredly does, and I do not exempt from my informed invective the warmongering wives of former U.S. presidents. Why should I? I don’t give a shit about the gender of “desk murderers,” as Hannah Arendt called these miscreant monsters. I want to see them all thrown into a single jail cell with one orange jump suit, one bed, and one toilet between them — for whatever remains of their miserable lives. They have killed, maimed, and made destitute millions of innocent persons. I think I have a fairly extensive vocabulary and command of the English language, and even I can barely find words profane enough to express my loathing of these motherless cretins. You would probably consider that kind of attitude impolite. Your choice. Not mine.

      • Third point at issue:

        I do not consider Mrs William Jefferson Clinton a friend, colleague, confidant, or acquaintance. No one has introduced us. We do not move in the same circles. She does not call me by my given name, “Michael,” and I do not call her by her given name, either. She chose to use her given name as her campaign persona, implying a familiarity with the common people that she has no right to claim, in my opinion. So I do not go along. I do not wish in the slightest to have people think that she and I might either know or approve of each other. We don’t. So I take pains in everything I write to keep our distance from each other as explicit as possible. If others consider that rude, then I don’t care. I don’t tell other people what and how to write and I don’t require anyone else to lecture me on invective, bile, or obsequious toadying before the canons of “polite” society.

        My drill instructors asked me on my first day of U.S. Navy basic training: “What’s your name, lad?” When I answered, “Michael,” they said: “Fuck you, Michael. If the Navy wants to know what you think, the Navy will tell you what you think.” I got the message but I also got out of the Navy at the first opportunity almost six years later. I never stood at attention or saluted anyone or anything again. Neither former President Bill Clinton nor his “two for the price of one” wife ever had to endure what I did, so we have nothing in common. I have made it a special point to make that clear. And I know how to do that. My own way.

        Finally, and again, I write under my own name and not an alias or “fake persona”. Those demanding that others — especially Russians — use full given and family names before seeking to “influence” others by stating their opinions can use either myself or themselves as examples, as appropriate.

  3. The non-stop lavishing of “appalled,” “scandalized,” “horrified” corporate media attention on Agent Orange, a.k.a., Donald Trump, reminds me of that scene in the movie Love at First Bite when the communist government apparatchiks show up at Dracula’s castle and force him to move out so that the national gymnastics team can take over the premises. As he makes his way through the mob of peasants angrily waving pitchforks and burning torches, the aristocratic Count gets off a contemptuous parting shot: “Go ahead. Have your fun. But without me around, Transylvania will be as exciting as Bucharest — on a Monday night.”

    President Trump, a.k.a., “All About Him,” simply thrives on seeing and hearing nothing but “news” — the more “fake” the better — about his very own greatness such as the world has never seen, blah, blah, blah. The concentrated corporate media can’t get enough of the “click-bait,” tabloid-trash “ratings” that drive every ten-minute segment of their pathetic pandering to political/financial/military power. We already went through this sex-scandal, perjury-trap special-prosecutor travesty with Kenneth Starr, Paula Jones, Linda Tripp and Monica Lewinsky; so why does the United States have to go through this kind of crap again as if no one can remember the last time? With a Republican Congress scared shit-less of Trump’s rabid fundamentalist Christian base, no one will impeach President Trump. No one will remove him from office and then let the “justice” system criminally prosecute him for anything that he may or may not have done with a perfectly willing sex-worker who happily took the money that she and her lawyer extorted from him and/or his lawyer.

    Anyway, unless Donald Trump knows the meaning of the word “is” or at least how to differentiate the present, past, and present perfect tenses of the infinitive “to be” (is, was, has been), I seriously doubt that all the publicity-hungry lawyer-babbling on CNN and MSNBC and Fox will amount to anything of even passing interest. If Yale Law School graduate and Rhodes Scholar Bill Clinton couldn’t manage these semantic and grammatical challenges when it really counted — like in front of a grand jury — I seriously doubt that Donald Trump can. Although, with his monumental ego and rich-boy’s sense of entitlement, Trump could probably fuck everything up, pardon himself, and the “system” would just look the other way like it always does when someone with money finds “justice” something for other — and poorer — people to worry about.

    Finally, the so-called “Democrats” have completely disintegrated, thanks to sixteen years of Reagan acolytes like Bill Clinton and Barack Obama giving away the game. The corporate Democrats have nothing to offer anti-war, working-class Americans but empty slogans like “we ain’t them” and “I’m With Her” (an unintentionally ironic takeoff on the old joke about the two-for-the-price-of-one Clintons: “Always there when they need you.”) So now the United States has but a single reactionary corporate “war” party with two right wing factions. The United States desperately needs a second political party, at least.

    Sure looks and sounds like Bucharest on a Monday night to me, even with the erstwhile Count Dracula and his cockroach-eating sidekick Renfield still in their White-House/Trump-Tower/Mar-a-Lago resort castles. I liked the movie better.

    • I’ve been saying all along the Congress as presently constituted will not impeach this POTUS. But the makeup of Congress may change after the midterm elections. I seem to recall a report from a while back that Trump had made inquiries about “Can a POTUS issue a self-pardon?” I doubt this will fly. I think President Pence will be very busy early in his (partial) term signing a lot of pardons. I don’t think it’s necessary for Attorney Cohen to “flip” to bring Trump down. This whole sordid affair, by which I mean Trump’s rule thus far as a whole, makes the US a huge laughing stock before the eyes of the world. “The rule of law”!! Yeah, that’s what we’re all about here, huh? A story you probably missed in your locale, Mike: a cousin of Ethel Kennedy, convicted of beating a neighbor girl to death with a golf club when they were both 15 (many decades ago, but he wasn’t convicted until earlier this century), just won a favorable Connecticut Supreme Court ruling…on the basis of the DEFENSE doing an incompetent job!! Highly unusual. One or more of the judges actually issued a scathing minority opinion suggesting the “Kennedy magic” is what set this spoiled brat free. Also highly unusual. Yep, “justice” is for those who can afford to buy it.

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