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Know Anyone Who Thinks Racial Profiling Is Exaggerated? Watch This, And Tell Me When Your Jaw Drops.


This video clearly demonstrates how racist America is as a country and how far we have to go to become a country that is civilized and actually values equal justice. We must not rest until this goal is achieved. I do not want my great grandchildren to live in a country like we have today. I wish for them to live in a country where differences of race and culture are not ignored but valued as a part of what makes America great.

What To Do When You're Stopped By Police - The ACLU & Elon James White

What To Do When You're Stopped By Police - The ACLU & Elon James White

Sunday, April 22, 2018

How Mueller Can Protect the Investigation—Even if He Is Fired - POLITICO Magazine

Robert Mueller is pictured. | Getty
"Fortunately, while he retains his position, Mueller has a powerful tool at his disposal: The ‘sealed’ or secret indictment. If Mueller indeed determines that he has a strong case against Trump, a secret indictment returned by a grand jury will help protect the integrity of his investigation even if he is fired, while also avoiding the risk of provoking Trump to try to further impede the probe.
Sealed indictments are routinely employed by federal prosecutors in sensitive investigations, particularly when a public indictment might have a negative effect on an ongoing investigation. To carry out this strategy, Mueller would a request that the already empaneled grand jury—the one considering matters related to Russian interference in the election—issue criminal charges against Trump himself. If the grand jury were to find probable cause for the charges to proceed, whatever they may be, a magistrate judge would then decide whether the indictment could remain secret. If the judge were to determine that it can, the charges would then remain hidden from public view until the criminal defendant is taken into custody or released on bail.
If Trump were to fire Mueller, an already filed sealed indictment would outlast Mueller’s tenure. A sealed indictment can only be dismissed by a judge, meaning Trump cannot rid himself of a legal headache simply by terminating the special counsel. A sealed indictment would also ensure that the statute of limitations for crimes Trump might be charged with will not expire. This leaves open the possibility of Trump being tried in the future."

Friday, April 20, 2018

6 Takeaways From the Comey Memos - The New York Times

"The Dossier’s Allegations Were Corroborated Mr. Comey’s decision to brief Mr. Trump on the dossier was based, at least in part, on the fact that American intelligence agencies had corroborated parts of the dossier, according to the memos.

‘I explained that the analysts from all three agencies agreed it was relevant and that portions of the material were corroborated by other intelligence,’ Mr. Comey wrote in a memo in February 2017, describing how he responded to a question from Mr. Priebus about why he told the president-elected about the dossier.

Parts of the memo are redacted but appear to say that information in the dossier ‘was consistent with and corroborated by other intelligence, and that the incoming president needed to know the rest of it was out there.’"

(Via.)  6 Takeaways From the Comey Memos - The New York Times:

Thursday, April 19, 2018

In Rural Tennessee, a Big ICE Raid Makes Some Conservative Voters Rethink Trump’s Immigration Agenda | The New Yorker

"April 5th began in the usual way at the Southeastern Provision meat-processing plant, in Bean Station, Tennessee—some workers were breaking down carcasses on the production line, while others cleaned the floors—until, around 9 A.M., a helicopter began circling above the plant. Moments later, a fleet of cars pulled up outside. Agents from the I.R.S., Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), and the Tennessee Highway Patrol emerged, and proceeded to arrest ninety-seven people, most of them originally from Mexico or Guatemala, for working without legal papers. It was the largest workplace roundup of immigrants in a decade.

Bean Station is a sleepy lakeside town of three thousand people in eastern Tennessee. The Southeastern Provision plant—located just off the main roadway, past cattle farms and clapboard churches—is made up of a string of dilapidated barn buildings, but it is the third-largest business in Grainger County. Two hundred and fifty head of cattle pass through the plant each day, which translates to roughly thirty million dollars of business every year. After the raid, the I.R.S. said in a court filing that many workers there typically make less than minimum wage, and that the agency believes the owners of the plant, headed by a man named James Brantley, owe the government millions of dollars in back taxes. But neither Brantley nor any of the other owners of the business were arrested on April 5th. (Lawyers for the plant owners could not be reached for comment.) Of the ninety-seven people taken into custody, ten are facing federal criminal charges relating to past immigration violations, and one is facing state criminal charges. The remaining eighty-six people were placed in deportation proceedings. Thirty-two of these people were released on the day of the raid—allowed to return to their families and sleep at home as their cases work through the system—but fifty-four were kept in detention, and many were soon moved to facilities out of state.

Most of the people who were arrested lived not in Bean Station but in a town called Morristown, part of Hamblen County, about ten miles to the south. In Morristown, a larger town of thirty thousand people, the raid was catastrophic news. Families’ worst fear had come true: husbands, fathers, wives, mothers—gone. The following day, more than five hundred students were reported absent from area schools, kept home out of a combination of fear, anxiety, and confusion. The raid also set off a whirl of activity, as relatives of those arrested gathered each day at a church in the center of town to meet with advocacy groups and discuss their legal options….

In Rural Tennessee, a Big ICE Raid Makes Some Conservative Voters Rethink Trump’s Immigration Agenda | The New Yorker

Why the Starbucks racial bias training is more than just good PR.

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"Starbucks is going to close all of its 8,000 company-owned stores on the afternoon of May 29, with the aim of giving a ‘racial bias education’ to some 175,000 employees. It’s easy to dismiss the action as a PR stunt, a way of throwing a bone to the protesters who were rightly infuriated by the company’s treatment of two black men in Philadelphia. But in fact, this education is critical to the continued future of Starbucks as a company.

Starbucks isn’t really in the coffee business. We’ve known that for over a decade. McDonald’s coffee is better and cheaper than Starbucks, but that hasn’t done any harm to the coffee shop’s bottom line. That’s because what people are paying for when they hang out at a Starbucks, isn’t the coffee. Instead, it’s the ‘third space’—that place, neither home nor office, where you can sit down, meet people, work, rest a minute, recharge. And it turns out to be much easier to give that space away ‘for free’ with expensive coffee than it would be to try to charge for that space and time directly."

In order for Starbucks’ business model to work, then, it needs to rely strongly on shared social norms. The company can absolutely cope with some people just coming in to wait for a friend or go to the bathroom, even if they don’t buy anything; it doesn’t need rules to prevent that. It just needs that behavior to not be too common.

That’s where social cues come in—the same cues that make it difficult to enter an austere high-end art gallery or keep posh hotel lobbies surprisingly empty, even in very crowded districts. We humans want to feel that it’s OK for us walk in somewhere and make ourselves comfortable, to sit down, hang out, wait, do nothing in particular. And Starbucks’ entire business model is predicated on getting those cues exactly right: to make people feel welcome, but also to make the same people feel social pressure to buy something.

Those cues are very subtle and, perforce, vary enormously from location to location. I’ve spent a bunch of time working in various branches of the New York Public Library recently, observing how relatively small differences in architecture, demographics, and staff behavior can have an enormous effect on the perceived acceptability of things like talking to other people, or taking a phone call, or just sitting in a chair and not reading anything.

The job of a Starbucks manager, then, is to constantly be aware of social interactions in the store, and to try to keep it as welcoming as possible to as many people as possible, while at the same time not being too welcoming to people who aren’t going to spend any money.

The manager will inevitably, sometimes, become the de facto enforcer of social norms. If everybody else in the store is angry and resentful at the person who has taken up a huge table for hours, without ordering anything, talking loudly on the phone the whole time, then ultimately it’s up to the manager to talk to that person and resolve the situation to general satisfaction. That’s not an easy job, and the wide range of discretion that the manager has in such situations is exactly the kind of place where racism can fester.

In Philadelphia, the store manager’s actions were so unjustifiable and obviously racist that, far from resolving a bad situation to make customers happier, she created a bad situation which made her customers furious, to the point that they took out their phones and vocally objected to what was going on. If any manager feels empowered to act in such a manner, that’s reason alone for a CEO to call an all-hands and try to right the ship.

But for Starbucks, the crisis is even more urgent than that. Once you become a multibillion-dollar household name, norms change: While people instinctively know the polite way to behave in a locally owned coffee shop, there are fewer social norms for how to deal with multibillion-dollar corporations. The men arrested in Philadelphia were keeping up their side of the social contract, behaving politely and respectfully.

But once we see the police being called on such people, there’s an understandable tendency to move away from a mindset of being polite, and to move instead toward a more aggressive mindset of demanding certain rights. Few people are going to feel guilty when the only harmed party is a faceless corporation with vast power and wealth. Go too far down that path, and it doesn’t take long before you end up in the kind of antagonistic stance that, say, United Airlines has with its passengers...

(Via.) Why the Starbucks racial bias training is more than just good PR.:

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Pittsburgh police to bring riot gear in case Trump fires Mueller - NY Daily News

"Pittsburgh police detectives will report for duty with riot gear Thursday, in anticipation of a potential large scale protest should President Trump decide to fire Special Counsel Robert Mueller.

Major Crimes Commander Victor Joseph instructed his unit to bring “a full uniform and any issued protective equipment (riot gear) with them to work until further notice,” WPXI.com reported.
 
“There is a belief that President Trump will soon move to fire Special Prosecutor Mueller. This would result in a large protest within 24 hours of the firing. The protest would be semi-spontaneous and more than likely happen on short notice,” the missive read.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell blocked bipartisan legislation that would make it harder for Trump to fire Mueller, calling it unnecessary because he doesn’t believe Trump will axe Mueller, who is investigating possible collusion between Russia and the Trump campaign."
 

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Justice Neil Gorsuch Gives Immigrants Big Win Against Trump’s Deportation Machine



"Under the Immigration and Naturalization Act (INA), any non-citizen who commits a “crime of violence” forfeits their right to remain in the country, regardless of their immigration status, how long they’ve lived here, and whether they have family here as well. Indeed, the INA makes their deportation mandatory. Such immigrants were often considered low-priority by the Bush and Obama administrations. Yes, they were technically supposed to be deported, but if they were here legally and didn’t have a serious criminal record, they’d be de-prioritized by the INS (now ICE).



Since January, 2017, however, thousands have been caught up in ICE’s dragnet, with millions more at risk. The examples have been heart-rending. Thousands of Vietnamese refugees who came here in 1975 after helping America in the Vietnam War, are now set to be deported for relatively minor criminal infractions. An HIV-positive asylee is being deported to Venezuela, where HIV medication is unavailable, because of a minor drug infraction—effectively a death sentence. A father and grandfather who has lived in the United States for 40 years is arrested because of a 1996 marijuana offense, and is now rotting in detention. These are all people who came here legally, but whose criminal acts have triggered mandatory deportation.



Today, that ends.



In a 5-4 decision, with Justice Gorsuch joining the Court’s liberals, the Supreme Court held that this part of the INA is unconstitutionally vague. Because it never defined what a “crime of violence” is, courts had to figure out how to do so themselves. And, the Court said today, the way they did so – grouping crimes into categories and determining which categories were typically violent – is so vague that it violates the Due Process Clause of the Fifth Amendment.



Nor can courts decide on a case-by-case basis, the Court noted, because that, too, deprives defendants of due process. Part of due process means having an orderly system of justice, with penalties clear in advance."



Justice Neil Gorsuch Gives Immigrants Big Win Against Trump’s Deportation Machine

Diante Yarber: Police kill black father with barrage of bullets in Walmart parking lot | US news | The Guardian

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"California police fired what sounded like more than 30 bullets at a packed car in a shopping store parking lot, killing a black father of three and injuring a young woman in the latest US law enforcement shooting to spark backlash.

Police in Barstow, two hours outside of Los Angeles, killed 26-year-old Diante Yarber, who was believed to be unarmed and was driving his cousin and friends to a local Walmart on the morning of 5 April. Police have alleged that Yarber was “wanted for questioning” in a stolen vehicle case and that he “accelerated” the car towards officers when they tried to stop him, but his family and their attorney argued that the young father posed no threat and should not have been treated as a suspect in the first place…"

Diante Yarber: Police kill black father with barrage of bullets in Walmart parking lot | US news | The Guardian: ""

It is hard to be aware and an African American. I feel like I felt when Reagan passed. Barbara Bush Calls Evacuees Better Off - The New York Times

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It is hard to be aware and an African American.  I feel like I felt when Reagan passed  

"What I'm hearing, which is sort of scary, is they all want to stay in Texas," Barbara Bush said in an interview on Monday with the radio program "Marketplace." "Everyone is so overwhelmed by the hospitality.”  "And so many of the people in the arena here, you know, were underprivileged anyway," she said, "so this is working very well for them."

Mrs. Bush toured the Astrodome complex with her husband, former President George Bush, as part of an administration campaign throughout the Gulf Coast region to counter criticism of the response to the storm. Former President Bush and former President Bill Clinton are helping raise money for the rebuilding effort.
White House officials did not respond on Tuesday to calls for comment on Mrs. Bush's remarks."

Barbara Bush Calls Evacuees Better Off - The New York Times

Sunday, April 15, 2018

Two decades after WWII, Japanese runners ruled the Boston Marathon. A war bride's son recalls the slurs. - The Washington Post

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"April 19, 1966: An 11-year-old boy was excitedly awaiting the outcome of the Boston Marathon, with a special interest in the Japanese runners. His father, who, as a young GI, had married a Japanese woman and brought her home to East Boston, had found them a spot near the finish line.
Angelo Amato wanted his son, Joseph, to feel proud of his Japanese heritage. And what better place and time to instill such pride, with the strong possibility of a repeat of the 1965 marathon? That year, Japanese runners took first, second and third place.

And coming toward the finish line were runners about to best that showing. The four in top places were all Japanese, led by Kenji Kimihara, who finished first with a time of 2:17:11.

What Joseph remembers most sharply about that day, however, is what he heard nearby.
“So we’re standing there near the finish line,’’ he recalled more than 50 years later. “Right near us, within earshot, was another father and son about my age. And the father would look and talk to his son, looking at us. And I can hear them saying derogatory things, ‘Japs.’ … I looked at my father. He didn’t say anything, and I didn’t say anything...”

Two decades after WWII, Japanese runners ruled the Boston Marathon. A war bride's son recalls the slurs. - The Washington Post: ""

Saturday, April 14, 2018

Trump Sees Inquiry Into Cohen as Greater Threat Than Mueller - The New York Times





"The documents seized by prosecutors could shed light on the president’s relationship with a lawyer who has helped navigate some of Mr. Trump’s thorniest personal and business dilemmas. Mr. Cohen served for more than a decade as a trusted fixer and, during the campaign, helped tamp down brewing scandals about women who claimed to have carried on affairs with Mr. Trump.



Mr. Trump, Mr. Cohen and their teams were still scrambling on Friday to assess the damage from the raid early Monday morning. They remained unsure what had been taken, an uncertainty that has heightened the unease around Mr. Trump.



Although his lawyers had projected confidence in their dealings with the special counsel, Robert S. Mueller III, they were caught flat-footed by the New York raids. The lawyers fear that Mr. Cohen will not be forthcoming with them about what was in his files, leaving them girding for the unknown.



Mr. Cohen and Mr. Trump, through their lawyers, argued in federal court on Friday that many of the seized records were protected by attorney-client privilege. They asked for an order temporarily prohibiting prosecutors from reading the documents until the matter could be litigated. Mr. Cohen argued that he or an independent lawyer should be allowed to review the documents first.



“Those searches have been executed, and the evidence is locked down,” Joanna C. Hendon, a lawyer for Mr. Trump, said in court. “I’m not trying to delay. I’m just trying to ensure that it’s done scrupulously.”



Mr. Cohen’s lawyer, Stephen Ryan, wrote in a court filing that the search “creates constitutional concerns regarding officers of the executive branch rummaging through the private and privileged papers of the president.”



Prosecutors argued that the previously seized emails revealed that Mr. Cohen was “performing little to no legal work, and that zero emails were exchanged with President Trump.” They said their investigation was focused on Mr. Cohen’s business dealings, not his work as a lawyer.



But it is difficult to extract Mr. Cohen from his work for Mr. Trump. For more than a decade, Mr. Trump has unleashed Mr. Cohen on his foes — investigative journalists, business rivals and potential litigants. And the New York search warrant makes clear that the authorities are interested in his unofficial role in the campaign.



Prosecutors demanded all communication with the campaign — and in particular two advisers, Corey Lewandowski and Hope Hicks, according to two people briefed on the warrants.



Prosecutors also seized recordings of conversations that Mr. Cohen had secretly made, but he told people in recent days that he did not tape his conversations with Mr. Trump. Mr. Cohen frequently taped conversations with adversaries and opposing lawyers, according to the two people briefed.



The raids on Mr. Cohen surprised and angered the president, who has been frustrated with the special counsel investigation into Russia’s 2016 election interference, the Kremlin’s possible coordination with Trump associates and whether the president has tried to obstruct those inquiries.



In response to the raids, Mr. Trump has considered firing Mr. Mueller, Attorney General Jeff Sessions and the deputy attorney general, Rod J. Rosenstein. On Friday, Mr. Trump’s spirits were frayed in the morning as his lawyer battled in the Manhattan courtroom. But he grew cheerier as the day went on, an adviser said, buoyed by a report by the Justice Department’s inspector general that was damning about a former F.B.I. official, Andrew G. McCabe, who he believed had tried to undermine him.



Mr. Cohen’s lawyers have called the raids of his offices and hotel room an overreach of the law. Prosecutors said on Friday that they had used a search warrant, rather than a subpoena, because they had evidence that Mr. Cohen’s files might be permanently deleted — by whom, the documents did not say. Many details in the documents were redacted, but prosecutors said they had found evidence of fraud and a “lack of truthfulness” on his part.



Mr. Cohen wants his lawyers to be able to review the files and withhold privileged material before prosecutors can see them. As an alternative, he asked that an independent lawyer be allowed to review the files first. A judge scheduled a follow-up hearing for Monday and ordered Mr. Cohen to attend. The judge, Kimba M. Wood, was upset that he was not in court Friday.



Federal agents seized documents that dated back years, some of which are related to payments to two women who have said they had affairs with Mr. Trump. Other documents seized included information about the role of The National Enquirer in silencing one of the women, people briefed on the investigation have said.



Communications between lawyers and their clients are normally off limits to prosecutors, but there are exceptions, including when the materials are considered part of a continuing crime.



Mr. Trump has viewed any investigation of his business and private life to be off limits to prosecutors, but the search warrants make clear that investigators consider those topics part of their case.



Agents sought information about Karen McDougal, a former Playboy model who claims she had a nearly yearlong affair with Mr. Trump shortly after the birth of his youngest son in 2006. American Media Inc., which owns The Enquirer, paid Ms. McDougal $150,000. The company’s chief executive is a friend of Mr. Trump’s.



Agents also demanded information related to Stephanie Clifford, better known as Stormy Daniels, a pornographic film actress. Ms. Clifford has said she had sex with Mr. Trump while he was married. Mr. Cohen has acknowledged paying Ms. Clifford $130,000 as part of a nondisclosure agreement to secure her silence days before Election Day."



Trump Sees Inquiry Into Cohen as Greater Threat Than Mueller - The New York Times

Opinion | Trump Pardoned Libby to Protect Himself From Mueller - The New York Times

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"There is a cloud over the White House as to what happened. Don’t you think the F.B.I., the grand jury, the American people are entitled to a straight answer?”

With those words, uttered over a decade ago, Patrick Fitzgerald, a prosecutor appointed as special counsel to investigate whether the president and his closest aides had broken the rules of espionage for their own political gain, sealed the conviction of I. Lewis Libby Jr., known as Scooter, for obstructing his investigation into the White House.

Even with that conviction, we never learned the real story about whether Vice President Dick Cheney had ordered Mr. Libby, his chief of staff, to leak the identity of Valerie Plame to the press in retaliation for a Times Op-Ed by her husband, Joseph Wilson, calling out the president’s lies. We never learned whether Mr. Cheney gave those orders with the approval of the president or on his own. That’s because President George W. Bush added to the obstruction by commuting Mr. Libby’s sentence, ensuring that nothing would happen to the firewall that protected his own White House. Mr. Libby wouldn’t go to prison, but neither would he lose his Fifth Amendment privilege, which could make it easy to compel further testimony about his bosses.

On Friday another president with a special counsel investigation raging around him pardoned Mr. Libby. “I don’t know Mr. Libby,” President Trump said in the pardon announcement. “But for years I have heard that he has been treated unfairly. Hopefully, this full pardon will help rectify a very sad portion of his life.”

Opinion | Trump Pardoned Libby to Protect Himself From Mueller - The New York Times

Friday, April 13, 2018

Leading Australian Muslim activist barred from entering the US | The Independent





"Yassmin Abdel-Magied, the award-winning author and one Australia’s leading female Muslim activists, was barred from entering the US immediately after she landed in the country.



The 27-year-old was set to speak at the PEN World Voices Festival in New York next week.



But after touching down in Minneapolis on Wednesday afternoon, the author who is a fierce critic of Australia's immigration policies said she was detained by border agents.



“I’m currently at the border and they’ve said I’m being deported," the Australian-Sudanese author tweeted. "This should be fun. What are my rights?



"Interesting facts: within a few minutes  of looking at my case the border security person - Officer Herberg looking at my case she announces: ‘we’re sending you back!’”



They’ve taken my phone, canceled my visa and are deporting me. Will follow up on messages once I understand what’s going on. "



Leading Australian Muslim activist barred from entering the US | The Independent

Thursday, April 12, 2018

James Comey book likens Trump to a Mob boss 'untethered to truth' | US news | The Guardian

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James Comey book likens Trump to a Mob boss 'untethered to truth' | US news | The Guardian:

James Comey’s memoir: Trump fixates on proving lewd dossier allegations false - The Washington Post

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"Trump did not stay quiet for long. Comey describes Trump as having been obsessed with the prostitutes portion of the infamous dossier compiled by former British intelligence officer Christopher Steele, raising it at least four times with the FBI head. The document claimed that Trump had watched the prostitutes urinate on themselves in the same Moscow suite that President Obama and first lady Michelle Obama stayed in previously ‘as a way of soiling the bed,’ Comey writes.

Comey writes that Trump asked him to have the FBI investigate the allegations to prove they were not true, and offered varying explanations to convince him why. ‘I’m a germaphobe,’ Trump told him in a follow-up call on Jan. 11, 2017, according to Comey’s account. ‘There’s no way I would let people pee on each other around me. No way.’ Later, the president asked what could be done to ‘lift the cloud’ because it was so painful for first lady Melania Trump.

Then, on May 9, 2017, Trump fired Comey, leading to the Justice Department special counsel’s Russia investigation."

James Comey Has a Story to Tell. It’s Very Persuasive. - The New York Times

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"In his absorbing new book, “A Higher Loyalty,” the former F.B.I. director James B. Comey calls the Trump presidency a “forest fire” that is doing serious damage to the country’s norms and traditions.

“This president is unethical, and untethered to truth and institutional values,” Comey writes. “His leadership is transactional, ego driven and about personal loyalty.”

Decades before he led the F.B.I.’s investigation into whether members of Trump’s campaign colluded with Russia to influence the 2016 election, Comey was a career prosecutor who helped dismantle the Gambino crime family; and he doesn’t hesitate in these pages to draw a direct analogy between the Mafia bosses he helped pack off to prison years ago and the current occupant of the Oval Office.

A February 2017 meeting in the White House with Trump and then chief of staff Reince Priebus left Comey recalling his days as a federal prosecutor facing off against the Mob: “The silent circle of assent. The boss in complete control. The loyalty oaths. The us-versus-them worldview. The lying about all things, large and small, in service to some code of loyalty that put the organization above morality and above the truth.” An earlier visit to Trump Tower in January made Comey think about the New York Mafia social clubs he knew as a Manhattan prosecutor in the 1980s and 1990s — “The Ravenite. The Palma Boys. Café Giardino.”

The central themes that Comey returns to throughout this impassioned book are the toxic consequences of lying; and the corrosive effects of choosing loyalty to an individual over truth and the rule of law. Dishonesty, he writes, was central “to the entire enterprise of organized crime on both sides of the Atlantic,” and so, too, were bullying, peer pressure and groupthink — repellent traits shared by Trump and company, he suggests, and now infecting our culture.

“We are experiencing a dangerous time in our country,” Comey writes, “with a political environment where basic facts are disputed, fundamental truth is questioned, lying is normalized and unethical behavior is ignored, excused or rewarded.”

“A Higher Loyalty” is the first big memoir by a key player in the alarming melodrama that is the Trump administration. Comey, who was abruptly fired by President Trump on May 9, 2017, has worked in three administrations, and his book underscores just how outside presidential norms Trump’s behavior has been — how ignorant he is about his basic duties as president, and how willfully he has flouted the checks and balances that safeguard our democracy, including the essential independence of the judiciary and law enforcement. Comey’s book fleshes out the testimony he gave before the Senate Intelligence Committee in June 2017 with considerable emotional detail, and it showcases its author’s gift for narrative — a skill he clearly honed during his days as United States attorney for the Southern District of New York.

The volume offers little in the way of hard news revelations about investigations by the F.B.I. or the special counsel Robert S. Mueller III (not unexpectedly, given that such investigations are ongoing and involve classified material), and it lacks the rigorous legal analysis that made Jack Goldsmith’s 2007 book “The Terror Presidency” so incisive about larger dynamics within the Bush administration.

What “A Higher Loyalty” does give readers are some near-cinematic accounts of what Comey was thinking when, as he’s previously said, Trump demanded loyalty from him during a one-on-one dinner at the White House; when Trump pressured him to let go of the investigation into his former national security adviser Michael T. Flynn; and when the president asked what Comey could do to “lift the cloud” of the Russia investigation.
There are some methodical explanations in these pages of the reasoning behind the momentous decisions Comey made regarding Hillary Clinton’s emails during the 2016 campaign — explanations that attest to his nonpartisan and well-intentioned efforts to protect the independence of the F.B.I., but that will leave at least some readers still questioning the judgment calls he made, including the different approaches he took in handling the bureau’s investigation into Clinton (which was made public) and its investigation into the Trump campaign (which was handled with traditional F.B.I. secrecy)….

James Comey Has a Story to Tell. It’s Very Persuasive. - The New York Times: ""

James Comey Has a Story to Tell. It’s Very Persuasive. - The New York Times

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"In his absorbing new book, “A Higher Loyalty,” the former F.B.I. director James B. Comey calls the Trump presidency a “forest fire” that is doing serious damage to the country’s norms and traditions.

“This president is unethical, and untethered to truth and institutional values,” Comey writes. “His leadership is transactional, ego driven and about personal loyalty.”

Decades before he led the F.B.I.’s investigation into whether members of Trump’s campaign colluded with Russia to influence the 2016 election, Comey was a career prosecutor who helped dismantle the Gambino crime family; and he doesn’t hesitate in these pages to draw a direct analogy between the Mafia bosses he helped pack off to prison years ago and the current occupant of the Oval Office.

A February 2017 meeting in the White House with Trump and then chief of staff Reince Priebus left Comey recalling his days as a federal prosecutor facing off against the Mob: “The silent circle of assent. The boss in complete control. The loyalty oaths. The us-versus-them worldview. The lying about all things, large and small, in service to some code of loyalty that put the organization above morality and above the truth.” An earlier visit to Trump Tower in January made Comey think about the New York Mafia social clubs he knew as a Manhattan prosecutor in the 1980s and 1990s — “The Ravenite. The Palma Boys. Café Giardino.”

The central themes that Comey returns to throughout this impassioned book are the toxic consequences of lying; and the corrosive effects of choosing loyalty to an individual over truth and the rule of law. Dishonesty, he writes, was central “to the entire enterprise of organized crime on both sides of the Atlantic,” and so, too, were bullying, peer pressure and groupthink — repellent traits shared by Trump and company, he suggests, and now infecting our culture.

“We are experiencing a dangerous time in our country,” Comey writes, “with a political environment where basic facts are disputed, fundamental truth is questioned, lying is normalized and unethical behavior is ignored, excused or rewarded.”

“A Higher Loyalty” is the first big memoir by a key player in the alarming melodrama that is the Trump administration. Comey, who was abruptly fired by President Trump on May 9, 2017, has worked in three administrations, and his book underscores just how outside presidential norms Trump’s behavior has been — how ignorant he is about his basic duties as president, and how willfully he has flouted the checks and balances that safeguard our democracy, including the essential independence of the judiciary and law enforcement. Comey’s book fleshes out the testimony he gave before the Senate Intelligence Committee in June 2017 with considerable emotional detail, and it showcases its author’s gift for narrative — a skill he clearly honed during his days as United States attorney for the Southern District of New York.

The volume offers little in the way of hard news revelations about investigations by the F.B.I. or the special counsel Robert S. Mueller III (not unexpectedly, given that such investigations are ongoing and involve classified material), and it lacks the rigorous legal analysis that made Jack Goldsmith’s 2007 book “The Terror Presidency” so incisive about larger dynamics within the Bush administration.

What “A Higher Loyalty” does give readers are some near-cinematic accounts of what Comey was thinking when, as he’s previously said, Trump demanded loyalty from him during a one-on-one dinner at the White House; when Trump pressured him to let go of the investigation into his former national security adviser Michael T. Flynn; and when the president asked what Comey could do to “lift the cloud” of the Russia investigation.
There are some methodical explanations in these pages of the reasoning behind the momentous decisions Comey made regarding Hillary Clinton’s emails during the 2016 campaign — explanations that attest to his nonpartisan and well-intentioned efforts to protect the independence of the F.B.I., but that will leave at least some readers still questioning the judgment calls he made, including the different approaches he took in handling the bureau’s investigation into Clinton (which was made public) and its investigation into the Trump campaign (which was handled with traditional F.B.I. secrecy)….

James Comey Has a Story to Tell. It’s Very Persuasive. - The New York Times: ""