March 13th, 2017

The news cycle: FISAgate so far

By Andrew C. McCarthy:

So, we will never have resolution on whether there should have been an investigation. And in any event, the suspicion that was under investigation — namely, the “Russia election-hacking” plot, in which Trump allegedly conspired — was not reality…

In effect, it is entirely possible to conduct a “counterintelligence” investigation that quite intentionally accesses intercepted communications of an American without obtaining a FISA warrant that singles out that American for wiretapping. Consequently, the question is not merely whether Trump or his associates (or both) were the targets of FISA applications or warrants. It is whether the intelligence agencies took active steps to access and analyze their intercepted communications — whether through targeted FISA warrants, non-particularized FISA authorizations, or other foreign-intelligence-gathering streams.

Assuming that there are such intercepted conversations, as the New York Times has reported, the question is whether people in the Trump camp just happened to be incidentally monitored because they were dealing with some Russians of interest to the intelligence community, or whether they were targeted to have their communications monitored or at least analyzed after the fact.

It is a fascinating question. And as with the other fascinating questions, we will probably never get a definitive answer. What you’ll get is this: The Russians tried to meddle in the election, but the Russians did not “hack the election” or affect its outcome. As for the rest of it, nothing to see here, move along.

Please read the whole thing.

It’s that final sentence of McCarthy’s that has me nodding. I’ve noticed—how can a person fail to notice?—that with Trump, both before his election and after, there have been a succession of Big Stories that break like waves upon a beach. Did you ever watch waves? They come in a certain rhythm, one after the other. And on any given day at a certain time of day, they all have a similar magnitude. Oh, there’s a bit of variation—one wave might be somewhat higher or lower than another wave. But they generally resemble each other, and all tend to break harmlessly on the shore.

It’s a rare rare day that brings a tsunami. Fortunately for shore-dwellers.

The Trump-accusation waves have been somewhat like that: a day at the beach. We see them crest, and then the wave breaks, and then the next one forms.

Each wave is touted by the MSM as being The Wave of the Century. This is indicated in part by the suffix “-Gate” that’s often hopefully added. I say “hopefully,” because, although Watergate took a while to fully reveal itself, it ended up washing away the presidency of a Republican man the MSM hated.

It was their moment of greatest glory, when reporters were heroes and had movies made about them with the main characters played by the likes of Redford and Hoffman. The MSM is eager for a repeat, with themselves in the roles and the hated Trump the new target. But the public has outrage fatigue, there are too many other competing sources of news and opinion, and the MSM’s reputation has suffered so much in the ensuing years that the public no longer trusts them, either.

12 Responses to “The news cycle: FISAgate so far”

  1. y81 Says:

    The waves tend to have a soothing effect in the end. US Attorney-gate reminds me of ambassador-gate (anyone else remember that one?), and my eyelids start to droop.

  2. Geoffrey Britain Says:

    It certainly looks like nothing substantial will emerge from this imbroglio. Nothing that is but the political reality we now face; Democrats routinely break the law and then use their political unity to obstruct justice. While establishment Republicans insist that the right act strictly in accordance with the law, arguing that to do otherwise is to fully abandon the rule of law. Which while obviously true, ignores that societal cohesion cannot survive in the face of irreconcilable differences.

    “A nation divided cannot stand” Abraham Lincoln

  3. Vanderleun Says:

    “the public no longer trusts them” is too mild. It is more accurate to say that the public is revolted by them. And this revulsion has significant overlap between parties.

  4. The Other Gary Says:

    But the public has outrage fatigue, there are too many other competing sources of news and opinion, and the MSM’s reputation has suffered so much in the ensuing years that the public no longer trusts them, either.

    Good. Maybe this will further erode what remains of public trust in the MSM. As long as they persist in heavily distorting the news to support their lefty agenda, the less public the believes them, the better.

    Each wave is touted by the MSM as being The Wave of the Century. This is indicated in part by the suffix “-Gate” that’s often hopefully added.

    OMG, this stupid “-Gate” thing is so old and stale it’s downright rancid at this point — and should have been trashed decades ago. Can’t one of these creative-writing geniuses called “journalists” devise some new shorthand to denote “scandal”? God knows they can’t report the news accurately.

  5. parker Says:

    Personally,

    I do not trust anyone beyond my family, well known friends and neighbors of many years, perhaps neoneocon, our dogs, and our cats. And, the cats are questionable when it comes to house plants.

  6. huxley Says:

    Nonetheless.

    After Trump’s Pussygate I figured there was more audiotape to come, and then there wasn’t.

    However, I don’t think that means there was no more such material on Trump. I think the Trump team got in there and did their job to hold the line.

    Just like Obama.

    There remain a fierce number of questions about Obama’s past. Those questions don’t lack answers, they lack people with the power and fearlessness to punch through.

    Obama’s first executive order #13489 was to seal his own records.

  7. n.n Says:

    So, Deep Plunger was a ghost.

    A ghost that overflowed Water Closet and forced JournoLists of the Fourth Estate to clean-up the Democratic mess.

    Followed by a Nigerian Phishing Expedition that hooked a live one in the campaign.

    In their embarrassment, they blamed dead Soviets. Typical juvenile reaction.

    They need Sessions to administer law and therapy.

  8. n.n Says:

    huxley:

    The Press’s “Pussygate” exposed a socially liberal culture, which was never meant for normal people. So, they responded in the typical juvenile fashion by shifting the blame and changing the topic. They believed that Trump was a candidate for a baby trial. They were wrong.

  9. huxley Says:

    n.n.: Not sure of your point.

  10. Sam L. Says:

    The media have taught me well to not believe them.

  11. AesopFan Says:

    The Other Gary Says:
    March 13th, 2017 at 4:26 pm

    OMG, this stupid “-Gate” thing is so old and stale it’s downright rancid at this point — and should have been trashed decades ago. Can’t one of these creative-writing geniuses called “journalists” devise some new shorthand to denote “scandal”? God knows they can’t report the news accurately.
    * * *
    I wonder how many of the young journalists that Ben Rhodes disparaged so cruelly even know what the -gate refers to?

    http://www.mediaite.com/online/obama-advisor-openly-brags-about-lying-to-public-media-yawns/

    A college friend of mine (now a foreign policy wonk) told me once about a journalism class he sat in on, sometime in the eighties, where the students were a decade or so younger than he, and the topic was “when do you leak a story and when do you sit on it for national security reasons?” — as the instructor recited the hypotheticals, Austin realized from the students’ reactions that very few of them recognized the outline of the Manhattan Project.

    Rhodes was right about at least one thing.

    Personally, as long as we have a nanny-state, I would license reporters only if they have a substantive degree in some useful field of knowledge (no “studies” majors) and have worked in the real world at least 5 years.

    Journalism they can learn on the job.

  12. Big Maq Says:

    “Obama’s first executive order #13489 was to seal his own records.” – huxley

    Easily undone by trump. Surprised bunion hadn’t jumped on that… maybe he has and it awaits release.

    Suspect there is much about trump butt there isn’t anything tangible like a video to substantiate his bad behavior.

    Following “pussygate” there were several women who claimed mistreatment by trump, but all we have is their word, in a world where people are willing to do most anything for their cause.
    .

    @Neo – Cannot / shouldn’t give msm too much imagined power.

    There also seemed to be “waves” wrt the news on clinton and co emails this election. What should we make of that?

    The news on the final week may well have made that small bit of difference to drive the <1% margin trump had in the mid-west swing states.

    Had their been a bad cycle for trump, the vote was so close, it might have been clinton in the WH now.

    If the msm had the power to formulate and coordinate these "waves" against trump, surely they could have ignored the news the last week or so of the campaign.

    They may be biased, but they have an audience. And, as we've learned all too well this election, sensation sells, and some things are too big to ignore.

    trump is happy to provide them fodder, when he thinks (wrongly, it seems) it serves HIS purpose.

Leave a Reply

XHTML: You can use these tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>



About Me

Previously a lifelong Democrat, born in New York and living in New England, surrounded by liberals on all sides, I've found myself slowly but surely leaving the fold and becoming that dread thing: a neocon.
Read More >>






Monthly Archives



Blogroll

Ace (bold)
AmericanDigest (writer’s digest)
AmericanThinker (thought full)
Anchoress (first things first)
AnnAlthouse (more than law)
AtlasShrugs (fearless)
AugeanStables (historian’s task)
Baldilocks (outspoken)
Barcepundit (theBrainInSpain)
Beldar (Texas lawman)
BelmontClub (deep thoughts)
Betsy’sPage (teach)
Bookworm (writingReader)
Breitbart (big)
ChicagoBoyz (boyz will be)
Contentions (CommentaryBlog)
DanielInVenezuela (against tyranny)
DeanEsmay (conservative liberal)
Donklephant (political chimera)
Dr.Helen (rights of man)
Dr.Sanity (thinking shrink)
DreamsToLightening (Asher)
EdDriscoll (market liberal)
Fausta’sBlog (opinionated)
GayPatriot (self-explanatory)
HadEnoughTherapy? (yep)
HotAir (a roomful)
InFromTheCold (once a spook)
InstaPundit (the hub)
JawaReport (the doctor is Rusty)
LegalInsurrection (law prof)
RedState (conservative)
Maggie’sFarm (centrist commune)
MelaniePhillips (formidable)
MerylYourish (centrist)
MichaelTotten (globetrotter)
MichaelYon (War Zones)
Michelle Malkin (clarion pen)
Michelle Obama's Mirror (reflections)
MudvilleGazette (milblog central)
NoPasaran! (behind French facade)
NormanGeras (principled leftist)
OneCosmos (Gagdad Bob’s blog)
PJMedia (comprehensive)
PointOfNoReturn (Jewish refugees)
Powerline (foursight)
ProteinWisdom (wiseguy)
QandO (neolibertarian)
RachelLucas (in Italy)
RogerL.Simon (PJ guy)
SecondDraft (be the judge)
SeekerBlog (inquiring minds)
SisterToldjah (she said)
Sisu (commentary plus cats)
Spengler (Goldman)
TheDoctorIsIn (indeed)
Tigerhawk (eclectic talk)
VictorDavisHanson (prof)
Vodkapundit (drinker-thinker)
Volokh (lawblog)
Zombie (alive)

Regent Badge