After spending Wednesday afternoon becoming increasingly angry from reading Byron York’s story on the entrapment of retired Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, I happened to go out to see a special showing of the classic movie musical WHITE CHRISTMAS on a big screen. The movie, with music by Irving Berlin, was made in 1954, so it reflects that period of time when World War II was still close in people’s memories. (Irving Berlin had such a long life and career, he wrote music inspired by both world wars.)
To set the scene, it’s been ten years since a beloved general’s retirement, and his men pull off a surprise celebration for him, complete with a big show. One of the songs opens like this:
What can you do with a general...when he stops being a general?
Oh, what can you do with a general who retires?
They fill his chest with medals while he’s across the foam And they spread the crimson carpet when he comes marching home The next day someone hollers when he comes into view, “Here comes the general,” and they all say, “General who?”
As I heard this, I couldn’t help thinking, “What can you do with a general? Well, if it’s 2016, and you have the power of the government behind you, you can do just about anything you want with him, even if he’s a three-star general with 33 years of service, including 5 years in combat. You can wiretap him, unmask his name, illegally leak it to the Washington Post, set him up in ways we’ve just learned so he doesn’t suspect a thing and doesn’t bother with a lawyer, pretend you’re an ally to “relax” him, offer him no chance to clear up any discrepancies at the time, write up your report on him almost seven months later, indict him for lying when even his questioners don’t think he did, cause him to lose his job, ruin his career, bankrupt him, force him to sell his house to pay lawyers, and threaten him with prison. Maybe in the end, you put him on probation for a few years.
THAT’S what you can do with a general.
And by the way, when the Clinton email “investigation” was going on, there were plenty of false statements from her aides and supporters (and HRC herself), but none of those interviewed were charged with making false statements. On the contrary, promises of immunity were passed around like sticks of gum. And with the variety of illegal behavior she apparently got away with, Hillary may as well have been given immunity herself. She and her cronies seem to have been issued lifetime “Get Out Of Jail Free” cards, when they really should go directly to jail (after due process, of course) without passing ‘GO’ or collecting $200.
The Flynn story is a shameful and downright tragic example of the judicial double standard that is destroying America. Suddenly I see the power of the slogan “Make America Great Again” in a way I never have before. America really has lost something, and we have to get it back.
But if House Democrats have anything to do with it, we won’t. Rep. Jerry Nadler has already said that all investigations into the mishandling of cases by the FBI will be shut down as soon as they take over in January. Of course they will; this was Obama's FBI. And all along, the special counsel has completely ignored the FBI’s kid-glove treatment of Hillary as well as their prosecutorial overreach, even though these other cases involve Russia, too. Senate Republicans, together with one prosecutor out in Salt Lake City, the judge in the Flynn case (see update below), and, of course, the new attorney general have their work cut out for them.
As for Flynn, Sebastian Gorka, speaking on Wednesday’s HANNITY show, had a great idea for what you can do with a general, at least Gen. Flynn, and it likely will catch fire. “The President could pardon Gen. Flynn,” Gorka said, “And he’d make a great chief of staff, don’t you think?”
Yes, that’s exactly what I think! Do it, Mr. President. Gen. Flynn definitely deserves a pardon, and the job offer makes a lot of sense, too. No doubt Flynn has what it takes to make an outstanding chief of staff --- though we’d certainly understand if he chooses now to stay as far away from Washington as he can possibly get. The White House would be fortunate to have him back.
IMPORTANT UPDATES: Regarding the 302 that, mysteriously, wasn’t finalized until seven months after the interview with Flynn, Rep. Devin Nunes said Wednesday that he and other members of the House Intelligence Committee were briefed –- I believe he meant by then-FBI Director Comey –- “a month or two” after that conversation. There would have been memos written right after the interview with Flynn, as well as a transcript from the briefing. So, was anything different from the original notes in the much-later finalized version? Was anything left out or reworded? What would be the reason for the change? Nunes said the judge in the Flynn case should request that transcript (there was probably one from the Senate Intel Committee as well), as well as any original notes. And they’re going to have to be extremely insistent; Sen. Grassley, Intel Committee chairman, has been asking for the 302s for a year.
Sure enough, late Wednesday evening, the judge in the Flynn case, U.S. District Court Judge Emmet G. Sullivan (love him), filed a demand for all the formal records and all other relevant documents detailing Flynn’s interview with FBI agents, agreeing to review them under seal. These documents must be turned over by 3 p.m. on Friday and may delay Flynn’s sentencing, which at last look was scheduled for this coming Tuesday. None of the lawyers are commenting.
I’ll link to the Washington Post because they broke the story, but be advised it’s a frustrating read, as it glosses over most of the seriously troubling aspects of the case. But that's to be expected; we know that where the mainstream media are concerned, this is par for the course. Besides, we already know the troubling aspects, as we do not rely on the Washington Post to keep us informed. There will no doubt be some good analyses coming later Thursday.