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About Jack

Jack is really a storyteller, international explorer, and humanitarian and everything else rolls out from there. As a writer, its what he does. As a international human rights lawyer and trial skills teacher around the world, its his most important tool. As a former CIA officer, the only way to truly motivate people is to connect and to tell them a story that they can feel viscerally. As a media analyst, what better way to make a point.  In the end, he tries to captivate his audience about the world and its people as much as he himself is captivated.

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Entries in trump (133)

Monday
Jun172019

Trump Willingness to Accept Foreign Help with Opposition Dirt is a Crime

Wednesday
May222019

Congress Needs to Learn: Use it or Lose It.

The United States Legislative Branch is an equal partner in government. They have the right to oversee investigations and therefore to subpoena possible witnesses including those who work for the President.  While the President does have some protection from this including executive privilege, it is not an unlimited privilege. However, the President has been arguing that, and claiming that, it is unlimited. This is certainly reminiscent of President Nixon and the arguments he attempted to make in the early 1970's. 

One hears the term Constitutional crisis and this certainly has all of the hallmarks. What is interesting is that the Republicans seem to be treating this as if there is no tomorrow. Simply put, there is an old maxim in the law and life: use it or lose it.  In this case, the Republicans' willingness to provide a sitting President without almost unlimited capability to stonewall Congress sets a precedent that future Presidents, bad Presidents, criminal Presidents will use to do almost anything they want and Congress may just have to sit there and watch.  

This is where we are right now.  I appear on Voice of American Interantional E#dition to discuss.  This is going to be fun. 

Sunday
May052019

Trump Objects to Mueller Testifying Before Congress

President Trump has objected to Robert Mueller testifying before Congress about his report about about Attorney General Barr's 4 page report, his press conference and Mueller's letter to Barr regarding his handling of the report. This is an extraordinary development considering the number of questions that exist along with many questions that people continue to have about the investigation itself.

The President's response has only driven this frenzy. His recent conversation with Vladimir Putin about this issue has only added gasoline to to the fire. Of course, the election, while set for November, 2020, continues to have an impossibly significant impact on this entire process.

I will appear on Voice of America International Edition to discuss what comes next.

Friday
Apr192019

The Mueller Report (Redacted) is Released and Nobody is Really Happy

The Mueller report was released inside the Beltway and nobody is really happy.  AG Barr has tried to spin it in a way that seems uttlerly shocking. He is not the President's private attorney but rather the Attorney for the U.S. However, he certainly isn't acting like it. His conclusions do not seem to reflect the report.  This is an objective fact. Also, the language he is using parrots the President's language even though "collusion" is not what this case was ever about nor is even a term of law.  Further, the report specifically rejects the usage.  Strange.  

The two issued the Report looks at are Conspiracy and Obstruction.  The conspiracy piece seems pretty clean, meaning that Mueller simply didn't find enough to go after Trump.  The obstruction piece actually is much much different. In that case, the Report says it can't exonerate the President and seems to leave it in the hands of Congress. Barr, on the other hand, tries to exonerate Trump on this issue.

There will be a fight.  I appear on VOA to discuss. 

Monday
Apr152019

Will The Country Ever See an Un-redacted Mueller Report?

Attorney General Barr released a four page summary of the 400 page Mueller Report.  Further, Barr decided there was insufficient grounds for an obstruction charge against President Trump.  As a result, Trump claimed complete vindication.  The Democrats don't seem to agree.  

On April 18, Barr is scheduled to release a redacted version of the report.  He was heavily pressured by the Dems to do so who have already threatened extensive subpoenas to get a complete version of the report without redactions.  Barr claims redactions for grand jury info, classified info, material about ongoing info and material affecting peripheral third parties.  We will see. . . 

I appear on Voice of America, International Edition to talk about what it means.  Should get interesting.

Monday
Mar252019

Does the Mueller Report Exonerate the President? Not Exactly.

After 22 months, 25 millions dollars, and 500 interviews, Special Counsel Robert Mueller finally gave his final reports to U.S. Attorney General Barr.  Barr then released a 4 page memo outlining the findings. And, drum roll please, Mueller concluded that there was no conspiracy between Trump and the Russians.  As one might imagine, Trump and the GOP jumped on this, claimed complete vindication and exoneration.  They then turned on the Democrats. The problem is, while Trump is apparently correct about the conspiracy piece with the Russians, we still haven't seen the Muller report, just the Barr report.  The problem is that the obstruction question, frequently the one that people get hung up on, think Martha Stewart, is still up in the air.  Barr said it was insufficient, but Mueller didn't say that.  As you might imagine, this where the Democrats are hanging their hats. 

I appear on Voice of America International Ediiton to discuss.  After so long, the country is tired and surly and wondering what comes next.

Saturday
Jan262019

Is Roger Stone's Indictment the Missing Link between Trump and the Russians?

So where exactly is the Russia/Trump Mueller investigation going?  With half a dozen convictions and dozens of indictments, is there enough to go after a sitting President? Can they go after Donald Trump?  This is the question that many continue to ask and the Administration is resting their argument behind that same question and claiming that the answer is no.  Well, Roger Stone may provide the answer. However, at this point, Stone was essentially indicted for lying to Congress and the Mueller team, not for "helping the Trump campaign conspire with the Russians."  

Simply put, during a the campaign in July, 2016, Trump asked the Russians to release more Clinton emails during a stump speech.  Were the Russians listening? Of course they were.  Is that enough? Nope.  You really need an unbroke chain. This is what Mueller is trying to build as we speak.

Not long thereafter, Wikileaks released those emails.  What we seem to know now is that Russian intelligence provided those emails to Wikileaks.  We also seem to know that Roger Stone, a long time, Trump advisor, was having direct contact with Wikileaks about those emails.  We also seem to know that Steve Bannon, the Trump campaign senior advisor, was pushing Stone to do exactly that.  How close was Kushner, Trump Jr. and even the President himself?

Now, it is important to remember one point: it is illegal for a campaign the benefit from the efforts of a foreign government.  If the Trump campaign sought the help of the Russians, that is a crime and anybody involved is equally guilty. The question now is whether Stone, Bannon and other knew that the Wikileaks emails were from the Russians and sought their help. If so, it is a crime.  Further, if Trump himself also knew, he is equally culpable. This is where we sit right now.  

I appear on MSNBC today to discuss.  

Monday
Jan142019

Will the Govt Shutdown and Russia Probe be the One Two Knock out For Trump

Monday
Jan142019

Little is Private in the Presidency and There is a Reason For That.

Stories have come out and seem, to have been confirmed been confirmed by the President, Trump has met on at least one or more occasions where there are no notes, tapes and/or confirmation of the contents of the conversations. While that might be just fine if this or any President were a private citizen, as President, this simply shouldn't happen.  

A sitting President is the proverbial leader of the free world. What he or she says matters. As importantly, when the President says something, it impacts how the Country responds and can impact everything that happens thereafter. However, if nobody else knows what is said, that institutional knowledge simply breaks down.  There is nothing to establish what was said, what it meant and what happens next.  

I'm purposely excluding anything nefarious from this conversation.  Of course, records help keep everybody honest and anonymity encourage it.

I appear on Voice of America International Edition to discuss.  Should be interesting.