Monday, February 26, 2018

Blind Item #10 - Another Chapter - Mr. Hedge

Very recently, this almost-television network released an original, big budget film.  In recent years, the director had a couple big box office successes in the same genre.

Hollywood directors say 1 or 2 things about this almost-television network.  Either the company bought their film when nobody else would, or gave them the kind of money and freedom that nobody else would.  This very recent film falls into the latter category.

The almost-television network paid very, very dearly for the services of this director.  The director called this very recent film a “spiritual sequel” to his 1st film.  The 1st film was critically acclaimed, and turned a small profit on a limited budget.

Almost everyone who has seen this very recent film seems to agree on one thing:  that it’s terrible.  Basically, nobody understood the movie.

It stars a B+ list actor / writer who recently separated from his permanent A list wife.   It also stars an A- list, foreign-born mostly television actor who always seems to save his best work for one channel. 

You all know the drill by now.  The almost television network will tell its investors that another terrible film was a success.  The company will carry the value of the film on its books, for much more than the film is worth, for many years. 

The almost-television network is burning cash at an extremely alarming rate.  Later this year, they are due to borrow even more money.  My prediction is that this will cost them very dearly.


Almost Television Network -
Director -
Director’s 1st Film -
Very Recent Film -
B+ list actor /  writer -
A- list actor - 

96 comments:

sandybrook said...

Netflix
Theroux\Aniston

sandybrook said...

ASkars
Duncan Jones

Mute
Warcraft?

MontanaMarriott said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
FrenchGirl said...

Netfix with Mute by David Bowie's son

Lexi said...

Netflix
Duncan Jones
Moon
Mute
Justin Theroux
Alexander Skarsgard

Dena said...

Moon is a very underrated movie.

filmfanb said...

Mute

Sal Salington said...

Mute is in the Moon-verse, so that pretty much settles this one.

Brayson87 said...

Mute is the shit on Altered Carbon's shoe.

Brayson87 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Brayson87 said...

SyFy has better production value than that movie, and I was pretty sure half the actors/actresses had couched their way there until I realized it was actually the shit script and dialogue. You can see some of them dying inside as they try to make the scenes good.

Joshua said...

Really bummed this was received so poorly. Moon was one of my all-time favorite films and even Source Code was a lot of fun. No interest in Warcraft or this.

tami jane said...

I watched it last night. It really wasn’t that hard to understand.

Geeljire said...

Q predicted this

Kayla Fake said...

Lexi +1

Spider Rico said...

Dena - Moon is okay but it's a remake of Silent Running '72 written by Cimino.

Raging Bunnies said...

Hahahaha

Phelps said...

@Geeljire

I lold.

Geeljire said...

Does anyone else hate superhero movies?
What a bleak worldview.
A bunch of powerful lunatics doing whatever they desire at any time so the everyman better be happy there's other powerful lunatics willing to 'protect' them.

one_eyed_bob said...

Mute was terrible. Only watched it because I read Sam Rockwell was in it, never saw him in the movie and then I read it was an uncredited role after I watched it.

Brayson87 said...

@Geel, in The Reckoners series the heroes are the normal people forced to fight supervillains. There are no superheroes because, just like in reality, when you give people unlimited power they usually become monsters.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Reckoners

Of course the movie is in development hell because nobody hates to make movies more than Hollywood.

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt4892820/

Kendrick Schroder said...

I'm generally a little skeptical of movies/tv/almost tv written around some acting school exercise trope. I only saw part of that Tom Hanks one on the island because there was nothing else on tv, and none of that Redford one (although isn't there a twist? love those...). Granted, those are a different trope, but a not-talking actor seems liable to bore or annoy eventually.

Geeljire said...

The Last Jedi was a vile movie.
Kylo Ren begs Rey to join him to bring peace, to break the cycle of abuse.
She says no because it isn't under her terms.
The very end of the movie shows the next generation of child soldiers damned to the Star War.
What themes are shown here and what do they mean?

fustian said...

@Geeljire

"Does anyone else hate superhero movies?
What a bleak worldview."


Well, I often like them.

The appeal is that someone out there really has their shit together. In a world of instability and danger it would be lovely to be largely immune. People want to believe in heroes.

The problem is that these things are tough to sustain. To create drama, you end up taking away the mystique of the hero and transform him into just another schmuck with faults and vulnerabilities that must be overcome.

This is hard to do while keeping the hero heroic and I think it's why generally the first one of each series is the best.

Alana Smithee said...

This blind seems pretty obvious. But I'm not sure what its purpose is.
Is it bashing on Netflix? Or on Duncan Jones? Or loosing money?

Don't get me wrong, but I come from a country where you have NO POSSIBILITY to make anything SCI-Fi or fantasy. They say it's not in our culture.
Most of our movies involve people looking out of a window in silence, inner conflicts...that type of movies.

We get bashed if our characters talks too much. Oh well..

Jean Grey said...

Mulholland Drive... Justin Theroux as the writer/newly divorce

timebob said...

did Netflix fire Mr. Hedge?

Joshua said...

@Kendrick, Moon has a bit of a twist about 1/3 in that makes it less of a bore than other "single actor" films. I can't recommend it enough.

plot said...

Moon is a terrific sci-fi movie. Count me in as one of those who can forgo all the CGI special effects for a well acted, well scripted movie.

@Geeljire

You are not alone. Throw in all the serials like Planet of the Apes, too. Half the movie is spent attacking the eyeballs with CGI chaos and the rest is first year, English-as-a-second-language, dialogue.

I just don't get the love for them, particularly Iron Man (what a hyperactive, silly, mess those movies are.)

Drama said...

I like these Netflix blinds because they're easy.

With that said, can someone walk me through why they're valuing films so high, and how that works for them? I know this was sort-of-a-blind last week, but I didn't really understand the mechanics of it, and was hoping for a plain english explanation.

Neil said...

Drama,

valuing the films too highly makes the company look more valuable than it really is. It over-values the 'inventory' which in turns make the company's assets higher than they are. Assets - liabilities = Owner Equity....so the Equity of the company is inflated which in turn will either inflate the stock price or maintain it at a high level.

Shawn McGuire said...

At least with Netflix you can just change the app, or turn the damn thing off. It’s not like going to the movies where it takes a lot to walk out. I fail to see the big deal about Netflix and the way they handle their finances. I get that it’s probably wrong, and ultimately it will affect the quality of entertainment, it already has. But there are so many things to watch, I don’t care.

Jayne said...

Netflix has taken away all the good stuff and filled my suggestions up with garbage. I'm really close to dumping it.

Drama said...

Thanks Neil - got it. Although to my mind, with the insane money they're handing over for content, doesn't that negate perceived value? Or is it a shell game, where they're saying these products retain their value over time instead of depreciate? Apologies if I'm being dim here. This is why I stick to the creative side.

HH314 said...

I don't see why this Mr. Hedge is so concerned with Netflix's financials. If they borrow or spend too much, they go bankrupt. Simple as that

plot said...

@Neil

So it's kinda like a Ponzi scheme where the overvaluing of assets brings in new investment, which is used to buy more overvalued properties to claim an inflated value (again for more investment.) Have I got that right? Otherwise, where is the new money coming from? Subscribers only?

Sal Salington said...

The way I took it is they buy (or finance) a movie for say $50 million. Now they've spent that $50 million, but they also have an asset (the movie) "valued" at $50 million on their books. And then from what I gather, they depreciate that asset a lot slower than a traditional studio would, justifying it with their totally new business model.

So they can spend a billion dollars but still say they have a billion in assets as a result. It's just slowing down whatever the inevitable truth is, but it lets them keep playing the game longer.

At least that's how I understand what Hedge has said in past blinds. I don't actually know what their accounting looks like.

Sal Salington said...

As I commented before, traditional studios play a somewhat different game. They often channel a lot of the budget into studio lot rental and various studio services, basically moving a lot of the budget from subsidiary A to subsidiary B. Since the often comes from outside sources, it's a win for the studio parent, however the film performs.

SmithSmith said...

Going to take a wild guess here and claim that Mr. Hedge (Gabe Hoffman) has shorted stock in Netflix, which means that he'll make every effort to paint the studio in a poor light. Seems like CDaN is being used merely for financial gain. Hedge funds love rumor mills, especially when the shared information isn't held to any standard whatsoever.

If, in fact, Mr. Hedge is Hoffman, I really have to question someone whose "follows" on Twitter include Cernovich, Posobiec, and Fairbanks. Hoffman may seem like a white knight with An Open Secret, but... boy... he has absolutely no qualms about being chummy with a guy (Cernovich) who has repeatedly "joked" about raping women. Shame on you, Gabe.

Juliaph said...

OH NO PLOT...

Not my Iron Man!!! You leave my Iron Man alone. He is super cool...

DotDotDot said...

Since Netflix is a public company they are audited by an independent CPA firm. I don't see how this alleged ruse would escape the CPA firm's notice during the annual audits. And there's always the SEC.

Geeljire said...

Wait til you guys figure out what the Church is!

Sadie Slays said...

I suggest people reread the first Mr. Hedge blind about Netflix because it answers a lot of questions about in the comment section:

Original blind: http://www.crazydaysandnights.net/2018/02/blind-item-8-mr-hedge-old-hollywood-con.html

Here's a quote from that blind about how Netflix legally cooks the books:

"This almost-TV network is the 1st to deliver its content in a unique way, using relatively new technology – they were the first company to do it this way on a large scale. This means the Feds presently have no basis to challenge the almost TV-network on its suspect accounting, because the new “definition” has not been proven wrong. Only the ultimate financial collapse of the company will do that. In the meantime, the accountants and auditors go along for the ride and happily collect their fees, as they always do."

Phelps said...

@DotDotDot:

Two words: Arthur Andersen.

TruthSayer said...

@SmithSmith, gotta agree with you. We all know Mr. Hedge is Gabe Hoffman at this point. I find it strange that this is his second blind basically trying to paint Netflix in a terrible light (it doesn't really say anything about the movie except that it is bad). I really don't like the idea of the site being used as a channel for people to settle their personal agendas.

I also am leery of Hoffman's associations with the likes of Cernovich. And that he has called into Alex Jones' radio show. And that he is an ardent Trump supporter. I appreciate his Open Secret mission, but wish Enty didn't give such a big microphone to someone whose values apparently conflict with his in so many areas (at least when it comes to supporting racists and misogynists).

Ah, well. I can just avoid reading Mr. Hedge blinds.

plot said...

@ Juliaph

I KNOW! Everyone told me Iron Man was different. So I gave it a shot. It's me, more than likely, but I moved to the rear of the theater because the visuals were so overwhelming. And then there was the dialogue problem that so many Big Movies seem to suffer from these days where they have to shake the seats with the Crash! Bang! audio then mute the dialogue. Just not my kind of aesthetic experience. It happens on my home TV, too. I lose patience with it. Same thing with Thor and the Apes movies, my husband has to watch all those alone.

I do like that old crazy Terrence Howard in movies though. Don Cheadle, too, but Howard was better, I thought.

plot said...

+1 TruthSayer

Not to say I understand much about accounting but the if a stock is overvalued by design it shows up pretty quickly. In this instance, even with some sort of funny numbers, Netflix can't invent money out of nothing.

Netflix is following down an unusual road, that's true. Their hit shows are pretty mediocre fare and not exactly the kinds of shows people watch over and over again. Their movies aren't all that great. It's curious where they are getting the money for these sweet deals with people like Ryan Murphy or why they would spend their money they way they do.

TruthSayer said...

+1 plot

Feel like a lotta people would've known if the emperor had no clothes by now.

Geeljire said...

+1 I think it's time for more Church blinds

Geeljire said...

Have you noticed the planetary alignment for Purim?

KittensRUs said...

Can't say I agree with plot. Most of what I am excited to watch these days is a Netflix show. Ten years ago I would have said that about HBO. Having a whole season come out at once is brilliant - I don't have to remember to watch or remember to set a DVR. I just click and there it is, right where I left off.

Han Niam said...

They’ve always been an odd company with their own approach to things. Admittedly, I’ve been a subscriber in one form or another since the beginning, and I’ve never felt like I was being ripped off by them as a subscriber.*

I don’t have much behind the scenes info about them as a traded entity or much cause to follow that aspect of the business model other than mild curiosity.

But then, aside from my unapologetic love of Marvel, Disney, and Star Wars, my viewing tastes are on the weird and poorly funded side of traditional television.**

*Dont get me started on my feelings about cable
packages.
**Which explains my positive relationship with Netflix even if their original programming isn’t my cuppa.

plot said...

That's a really good point, Kittens.

I still record a lot of stuff though.

Drama said...

@ Stacie Slays - thanks for the patronising comment. I was asking for elaboration about that comment thread as I didn't fully understand it. I guess if you'd read the thread properly you would have seen that though, and understood how the conversation came about.

totaji said...

Mulholland Drive is considered one of the best movies this new millennia. Check out Sight and Sound.

totaji said...

They can also play with funny money because of this huge reason: brand name. Netflix is in practically every home and the first name in streaming services. If shit hits the fan, Disney will buy them and make it work.

totaji said...

They can play around, your Europe and find themselves. They know there is a trust fund waiting for them.

plot said...

totaji,

Yeah, Netflix has a huge subscriber base, no doubt in that area. The growth they are seeking though involves new sources of cash, probably from investors. It seems that rather than continuing to grow subscribers in new areas, outside the USA, they are trying to become a major studio. They aren't picking up additions to their catalogue for peanuts either. It's a little weird. Rather than follow the new ways which they have used to saturate the market, they are reverting to old big studio behavior without the savvy of Louis Mayer or Jack Warner. We as customers will probably benefit from all the shenanigans, as Netflix vacuums up tons of foreign titles, but it's really odd.

AnneT said...

GEELJIRE now that’s a hilarious comment, LOL

Whineaux said...

@TruthSayer and @SmithSmith

Mr. Hedge is supposedly Gabe Hoffman? Interesting.

I first noticed pro-conservative bias creeping into another site (blindgossip), in the blinds themselves and in the comments. It took longer to show up over here, but it's arrived - blinds and comments.

The tone and content changes happened over the last year. No surprise. I wonder who's actually funding both these sites and supplying blinds.

Doesn't it seem odd that neither site had anything on the Stormy Daniels "problem" even though that is classic celeb/political gossip?

If you're right wing, and especially aligned with the current administration, you're protected. If you're thought of as a "turncoat" however, all bets are off. Just ask Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski, or Megyn Kelly.

TruthSayer said...

@Whineaux, yes -- Hoffman is a hedge fund manager (hence his blinds involving the financials of companies like Netflix and Snapchat) and also a producer of "An Open Secret" (hence all of his blinds involving child abuse).

I don't know if I see a pro-conservative bias in the blinds (though there are definitely a lot of new trolls from InfoWars and the like showing up in the comments). But you're right -- it is strange there haven't been any blinds involving Stormy Daniels. It would be a shame if this site turned in a politically-biased direction; it's one of my favorites right now but I couldn't stomach supporting a mouthpiece for the current heinous administration.

plot said...

I noticed a change right around the time Trump announced his candidacy and I left, partially because of that and partially because I became very busy elsewhere.

It's not just Stormy Daniels. It's the Marc Rubio Chippendales-like video. It's the tons of GOP political wives which are running amuck. It's the salacious details of the Steele dossier. There is Hope Hicks. There is Stephen Miller. The current administration is awash in oddballs and con artists, shit, I could even write some BIs from what I've read and heard.

But Enty is silent on them all. Yet, he was one of the first to bash John Edwards, cast aspersions on Huma Abedin (which he continues to do in BIs), insinuate constantly about a certain politico bestie of Jeffrey Epstein while ignoring JE's deep connection with another...it really does seem like a bias is creeping in here.

BTW, over half of the comments on Blind Gossip are manufactured.

TruthSayer said...

@plot Hmm. Bothersome, to say the least. I hope he takes his audience into account moving forward.

chillip said...

Only Enty, The National Enquirer, and few others were on Johnny E. I'm in JE country and he pinged my sleazeball radar early. MSM and others dragged to report on JE.

The NYT, WaPo, and others have hired a legion of reporters to track Trump and his admin. How or why would Enty and others try and compete unless something amazing falls in their lap?

plot said...

Sleazy or not, Edwards was a true progressive and it's unfortunate he fucked up his political career. The same could be said for Carlos Danger.

There is gossip, in the form of BIs, that WaPo and the NYTs won't cover. As you know, some of Enty's BIs are complete twaddle. There is enough gossip going on right now, about Trump and the GOP, where both true and speculative BIs could result. It's being talked about on the same boards where Enty or the Enterns get a lot of their BIs...yet those they, for some reason, refuse.

Phelps said...

Did you ever consider that they get all the BIs from original reporting from their friends? Perhaps they don't have many conservative friends, and the ones that they do have aren't gossips.

But then, if you don't get what you want, it's always a conspiracy, right?

plot said...

That's a fair point, Phelps, and would speak more to the bias of their friends rather than Enty and the Enterns if true.

No, it's not always a conspiracy. I tend to like simple explanations myself.

But let's take one example - Huma Abedin. Enty can't get enough of her, has been posting slanderous BIs about her for years now. In the last I remember, he accused her of money laundering without any understanding of what money laundering entails. What Enty leaves out is that Abedin works as a consultant for high end foreigners who are unfamiliar with the US government and legal system. But nope, any foreigner visiting Abedin's office is laundering money. My eyes - they roll.

That's a pretty "out there" BI based on an office visit. Do you really think that no one has something similar on the White Pride House on any of the gossip boards? They do. Enty is ignoring those while continuing to dog Abedin without cease.

I find that curious.

Phelps said...

That's a pretty "out there" BI based on an office visit.

Right, and a similarly "out there" story based on an office visit was that because a Russian lawyer set up a meeting about an adoption charity with the Trump campaign, that the Russians conspired with the campaign to rig the election.

The difference is, there's no need for Enty to publish ridiculous BIs like that, because the NYT and CNN do it for them.

plot said...

You are comparing testimony delivered under oath to a fucking Blind Item??????????????????

Jesus fucking Christ how low will your Hillary Derangement Syndrome allow you to go??????????????

There is RIGHT NOW testimony before Congress and Mueller that has wiped that adoption theory off the map. People at the Trump Tower meeting have NOW ADMITTED the adoption angle was a ruse. Even Don Don Jr isn't claiming that anymore.

The investigations about collusion and obstruction have gone way beyond the adoption fiction now. WAAAAY beyond. You should try to keep up.

Enty publishes all kinds of ridiculous BIS. You know that. I know that. Let's not pretend this is real journalism going on here, 'k?

Phelps said...

The "dirt on Hillary" angle was the ruse. All she would talk about was the adoption charity.

Please try to keep up -- I know that it's hard for you to keep all the voices in your head straight.

plot said...

What?

Hillary wasn't at the Trump Tower meeting where Don Don Jr discussed the emails and sanctions with a Russian lawyer and 2 Russian officials. Don Don claimed they were discussing adoptions which is a code word for Russian sanctions. That is all out in the open now and no longer a theory.

What are you talking about?

Phelps said...

It's actually kind of fun to argue with you. You can keep up levels of cognitive dissonance that even actual psychotics can't manage. It's like you're some kind of google AI expert system on arguing, but the poor data entry guy got the causation and effect columns reversed.

plot said...

What is my "cognitive dissonance"?

Would you like links to what is now going on in the investigation of collusion and obstruction in the Donny Moscow investigation? Would you open them? Would you read them?

Or would you stick to your confirmation bias and Alex Jones conspiracy theories?

You aren't even arguing Phelps. You aren't even raising facts for us to hash over. I can do that for you if you like.

Phelps said...

Things that you have cognitive dissonance about:

That the Trump team is smart enough to use codes, but not smart enough to have the meeting through lawyers where everything is privileged

That a lawyer (Enty) doesn't understand what money laundering entails, but you do, even though you admit in the same thread that you don't understand how depreciation works in accounting (or accounting in general)

That there is some unfairness in what Enty reports, because Enty picks up the stories others won't touch, but isn't reporting stories that you yourself claim are widely reported.

And that's just in this thread.

plot said...

The Trump team didn't invent the code. It has long been a code of Russians to refer to the Magnitsky Act sanctions. Don Don just picked up the code.

"not smart enough to have the meeting through lawyers where everything is privileged"

There have been many lawyers now who have quit the Trump White Pride House because they know what obstruction of justice is. They also know that privilege does not extend to the committing of criminal acts in their presence. Guess those lawyers are smarter than you?

Mark Corallo quit immediately after the Air Force One conversation between Hope Hicks and Donny Moscow about hiding emails and evidence of the Trump Tower meeting. He has turned everything over to Mueller now.

"That a lawyer (Enty) doesn't understand what money laundering entails, but you do"

Sadly, it looks like that is the case. Enty *might* know what money laundering is but the Enterns certainly do not.

"That there is some unfairness in what Enty reports, because Enty picks up the stories others won't touch, but isn't reporting stories that you yourself claim are widely reported."

What?

Take a breath. What are you trying to say?



MrDarkDC said...

People saying "Mute" aren't thinking.

He's had Moon, Source Code, and Warcraft.

Moon fits.

Source Code I believe did okay. Definitely not a major success.

Warcraft was a BOMB. Major, huge, epic, articles written about it bomb that killed a potential franchise based off one of the most lucrative licenses ever.

Box office successes??? Um, no. And no way did Netflix give him a ton of cash to attain his services.

TruthSayer said...

Phelps, you're just upset because the FBI's noose is tightening around Trump. Pappadoulous indictment. Manafort indictment. Gates indictment. Hicks resignation. Anyone with half a brain can tell that Mueller's already got evidence of crimes. That he already has something big. Even firing him won't be enough to stop the investigation, because Trump can't fire grand juries. It's okay though, I know ignorance is bliss and living in a dream world keeps you Trumpsters happy.

Phelps said...

I can't take your legal opinion seriously when you imply that a grand jury has jurisdiction over the President.

plot said...

Grand juries have no jurisdiction over anyone, you jackass!

They don't bring charges.

They don't render judgements. They are an internal process of justice departments for the weighing of the merits of cases, that is all.

OMFG, this is a brain on Fox News. Dude, do you know how wrong your sources are? Consistently?

Phelps said...

https://fas.org/sgp/crs/misc/RS20214.pdf

"As an arm of the U.S. District Court which summons it, upon whose process it relies, and which will receive any indictments it returns, the grand jury’s subject matter and geographical jurisdiction is that of the court to which it is attached."

"There are four possible outcomes of convening a grand jury—(1) indictment, (2) a vote not to indict, to find “no bill” or “no true bill,” or to endorse the indictment “ignoramus,” (3) discharge or expiration without any action, (4) submission of a report to the court.

"In an indictment the grand jury accuses a designated person with a specific crime."

Grand Juries bring charges. They are not an internal process. They have the jurisdictional restriction of the court to which they are attached. As no federal court has jurisdiction to charge the president with any crimes (a power that lies with the impeachment power of the House) no grand jury has jurisdiction over the president.

My source is the law. Do you believe in the rule of law?

plot said...

Oh you poor dear.

The DA brings charges on the recommendation of Grand Juries...or not...it's up to the DA in question.

The purpose of a Grand Jury is to test the evidence presented by the DA. It is not a court of law which decides innocence or guilt or has the power to indict anyone.

It is a tool, as I said, of the office of the District Attorney or the DoJ. It has no independence to indict or convict or charge or excuse anyone.

TruthSayer said...

@Phelps, some clarification for both of us:

"The New York Times last July obtained a memo from Starr’s independent counsel investigation into former President Bill Clinton, considered the most thorough government-commissioned analysis rejecting the general view that presidents cannot be prosecuted while serving their terms.

“It is proper, constitutional, and legal for a federal grand jury to indict a sitting president for serious criminal acts that are not part of, and are contrary to, the president’s official duties,” the Starr office memo stated. “In this country, no one, even President Clinton, is above the law.”

http://www.newsweek.com/can-trump-be-indicted-obstruction-justice-id-bet-against-president-attorney-798568

So, a grand jury can indeed indict Trump. However, it needs a prosecutor's signature to do so. Mueller can do this, unless he is fired by Trump. If he is fired by Trump, a different federal prosecutor (say, any of the nation’s 93 United States attorneys can sign and file an indictment prepared by the grand jury.

https://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2018/02/14/trump-can-fire-mueller-but-not-a-grand-jury-216975

Of course, it is possible for Trump to fire such a prosecutor. But if he does so, he will look exceedingly guilty and will lose a ton of political capital. He is very unlikely to want to risk the blowback that would come from firing both Mueller and another prosecutor.

Of course, there is also the strong possibility that Democrats will take over Congress this fall, given their strong early voting patterns. In that case, you can bet that impeachment will be the first order of business. Either way, you Trumpsters better buckle up; it's going to be a very stressful ride for you this year.

Phelps said...

Starr's self-serving memo was never tested in court, because even Starr didn't have the poor sense to believe his own BS. He instead pushed for impeachment, which was a terrible political mistake for Congress.

Two presidents have been impeached, and both left the proceedings stronger than they went in. By all means, keep trying to take the "Stupid Party" title from the GOP. I mean, it's not like Trump gets stronger every time the left tries some shenanigans against him, right?

TruthSayer said...

I don't think it's smart to compare Trump with Clinton.

Clinton's approval ratings were much higher than Trump's prior to his impeachment. He had the support of Democrats and many Independents (unlike Trump, who is pretty much just holding onto his base). He also was accused of a far less serious crime. Every new indictment makes Trump look worse in the eyes of the majority of the public.

Most Americans already think Trump engaged in some illegal behavior and is trying to obstruct justice:
http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/nationworld/politics/ct-ap-poll-trump-russia-20171215-story.html

Given that, it wouldn't be too hard for Democrats to gain support for his impeachment.

plot said...

Phelps,

I'm not going to read your tidal wave of words there. What is your point?

Clinton....somethingsomethingsomething....?

No, we're discussing Trump and Grand Juries, a subject YOU brought up, no one else.

So tell us what your conclusion is about the above?

Phelps said...

Truthsayer brought up Grand Juries. He's on your team. It's a subject TRUTHSAYER brought up, no one else.

So tell us what your conclusion is about the above?

(p.s. we already know that you don't read anyone else's post, no need to point it out that you are illiterate)

plot said...

Did you not claim that Grand Juries can indict?

Did you not claim that Trump was not subject to Grand Juries?

So what do you have to say?

Phelps said...

Grand juries can indict.

Trump is not subject to grand juries.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grand_juries_in_the_United_States#Federal_law

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/05/29/us/politics/a-constitutional-puzzle-can-the-president-be-indicted.html

"The prevailing view among most legal experts is no. They say the president is immune from prosecution so long as he is in office."

To quote Ambassador Kissoff, "Our source was the New York Times."

TruthSayer said...

You are right Phelps, in saying that most legal experts do not believe that a sitting president can be indicted.

However, just because most legal experts (and the DOJ) believe so, does not mean that all do. There are several very respected experts who very much believe it is possible. From the same New York Times article you posted:

“Neither the text nor the history of the Constitution ultimately provided dispositive guidance in determining whether a president is amenable to indictment or criminal prosecution while in office,” a 2000 memo said, summarizing an earlier one. “It therefore based its analysis on more general considerations of constitutional structure.”

The Justice Department’s regulations require Mr. Mueller, the special counsel, to follow the department’s “rules, regulations, procedures, practices and policies.” If the memos bind Mr. Mueller, it would seem he could not indict Mr. Trump, no matter what he uncovered.

But Andrew Manuel Crespo, a law professor at Harvard, has questioned whether the special-counsel regulations should be read that broadly. The regulations, he wrote on Take Care, a law blog, “focus more on administrative protocols and procedures than on legal analyses, arguments or judgments.”

And from a Politico article:

"Lacovara dismissed the Clinton Justice Department memo’s contention that an indictment would interfere with the president’s official duties.

“When an incumbent president, whether it’s Bush or Obama or Trump, spends an enormous amount of time on the golf course, it’s a little bit fanciful to say the president can’t be called to account for alleged criminality because he’s got to be available 24 hours a day to be president,” he said.

https://www.politico.com/story/2018/02/02/trump-russia-indictment-mueller-probe-384969

Thus, the question of whether Trump can be indicted is far from settled. It is very much an option that Mueller may pursue, even while knowing it will provoke a fierce legal challenge from Trump. This is a unique case and we are about to learn a lot.

Even if Mueller does not indict Trump, he can try something else. From the Politico article:

"One of the Russia defense attorneys also suggested what he called a “jujitsu move”: naming Trump as an unindicted co-conspirator in a larger obstruction of justice case that targets one or more associates."

https://www.politico.com/story/2018/02/02/trump-russia-indictment-mueller-probe-384969

He can also recommend to Congress that Trump be prosecuted after leaving office. From an article:

"Internal DOJ policy precludes prosecuting a president while he is in office. It does not claim that presidents cannot be prosecuted...At a minimum, this means that a president may be indicted after he leaves office.

Mueller’s appointment letter granting him prosecution authority does not require that he prosecute the crimes he discovers immediately. Accordingly, if the Mueller investigation yielded evidence that Trump committed a crime, Mueller would be entirely within his mandate to prepare a report setting out his findings and recommending that Trump be indicted as soon as he leaves office."

https://slate.com/news-and-politics/2018/01/how-robert-mueller-can-ensure-congress-sees-any-case-against-donald-trump.html

So even if Trump escapes prosecution while in office, Mueller can set things up so that Trump has a cloud hanging over his head for the rest of his presidency, which would make it that much harder for him to keep governing (due to presidents' typical lame duck status after two years and the very real possibility that Democrats will regain control of Congress).

Whatever Mueller decides, we are likely to find out before November (far before). He will want to avoid releasing a decision too close to the midterms and be accused of trying to influence the election, much like Comey was. It's gonna be exciting.

Phelps said...

You're still thinking 2015-2016 style. First, "clouds" don't matter to Trump. He's a had "clouds" over him since before he took office, and he's still passed his tax cut, appointed more judges than anyone in history, and has started the wall in California (and unless you really pay attention, you probably don't even know that, because no one wants to report about that.)

The special prosecutor is much, much weaker than it was when Starr was doing it. Since 1999, 28 CFR 600 regulates it after the Independent Counsel law expiring. Comparing Mueller to Starr isn't particularly useful.

Trump can't be prosecuted by anyone but the Senate. Democrats won't take the Senate, they mathematically can't take the super-majority they would require, and based on the generic ballot polls and Trump's approval ratings (higher than Obama at this point) they are going to have to fight like hell for the House.

It's not going to be exciting. It's going to be Nov 7, 2017, over and over and over.

plot said...

"First, "clouds" don't matter to Trump"

Your hero worship is showing.

They sure as fuck matter to Trump as shown on his Twits and his chaotic actions.

"Trump can't be prosecuted by anyone but the Senate"

House. Only the House can impeach. And the House is very likely to turn this year.

There are other options which TruthSayer has kindly laid out for you. READ.

Phelps said...

House. Only the House can impeach. And the House is very likely to turn this year.

The House impeaches. The Senate prosecutes.

This is literally middle school civics stuff. Why do you keep shouting to everyone how uniformed you are?

TruthSayer said...

"Clouds don't matter to Trump"?

HAHAHA. That comment is more hilarious than his hair.

First of all, you're giving him waaay too much credit. Any idiot Republican president can pass a massive tax cut (see George Bush). It's the main reason they run for office. As for appointing a lot of judges, of course that's going to be easier when you have Republicans controlling both branches of Congress. That doesn't exactly take any skill on his part. As for the "wall", allow me to quote from a popular conservative mouthpiece, the Wall Street Journal:

"The construction isn’t part of President Donald Trump’s long-promised wall with Mexico. Instead, the barrier is a replacement project first proposed by the U.S. Border Patrol in 2009 under the Obama administration, roughly a decade after the original fencing went up, according to David Kim, the Border Patrol’s assistant chief patrol agent in the area."

https://www.wsj.com/articles/new-barriers-to-replace-aging-border-wall-in-california-1520164800

So please, get your facts straight before acting like a cheerleader for President Blowhard. He actually had one of the least legislatively-accomplished (and lowest publicly-approved) first years in presidential history.

True, it won't be easy for Democrats to take back Congress. But it wasn't going to be easy in 2006 either, when Republicans were facing a lot of scandals. We did it then, and we are in a great position to do it now, given the enthusiasm shown in early voting activity and the many many seats that have already flipped red to blue this year.

I'm very excited about this year.

plot said...

Phelps

Give that a quick Google did we?

That seems to be your civics source for all things.

Phelps said...

Didn't, but don't begrudge those who do. You should try it. Or better, follow Lincoln's advice, and let people think you a fool instead of opening your mouth and removing all doubt.

plot said...

Like the butcher who feeds his family carrots there Phelps?

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