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The Trump Investigation(s) Thread

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Re: The Trump Investigation(s) Thread

Post by Holman » Mon May 06, 2019 8:09 pm

Trump himself is untouchable (because DOJ rules), and he doesn't care whether his underlings get fined or jailed. He's encouraging them to reject congressional demands because Power. He'll dangle every pardon he needs to.

Trump is betting that Congress enforcing the law looks worse than him skirting it. Given how unprecedented this kind of constitutional crisis is, he might be right.
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Re: The Trump Investigation(s) Thread

Post by GreenGoo » Mon May 06, 2019 8:35 pm

milo wrote:
Mon May 06, 2019 7:56 pm
I assume he meant it as shorthand for "[This is true whether you] accept it or not."
The problem is that his shorthand means something else. I meant X but said y because X was too long just leaves the reader with y.

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Re: The Trump Investigation(s) Thread

Post by Kraken » Mon May 06, 2019 10:52 pm

I sure would like to know what terrible secret lurks in those tax returns. Trump has no shame about anything; why this?

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Re: The Trump Investigation(s) Thread

Post by GreenGoo » Mon May 06, 2019 11:31 pm

Kraken wrote:
Mon May 06, 2019 10:52 pm
I sure would like to know what terrible secret lurks in those tax returns. Trump has no shame about anything; why this?
Couple of guesses. It's official documentation that he is not worth what he says he's worth. That is embarrassing for his public image and that highlights the lies he has told people he has tried to borrow money from.

That's it. I doubt there is anything damning in them, only embarrassing, and only embarrassing if you have been lying your entire life.

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Re: The Trump Investigation(s) Thread

Post by Unagi » Mon May 06, 2019 11:43 pm

The amount to which he is indebted to Russia. I thought that was pretty clearly the idea.

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Re: The Trump Investigation(s) Thread

Post by GreenGoo » Tue May 07, 2019 12:01 am

Unagi wrote:
Mon May 06, 2019 11:43 pm
The amount to which he is indebted to Russia. I thought that was pretty clearly the idea.
How is that in his tax returns? These are his personal returns, yes?

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Re: The Trump Investigation(s) Thread

Post by Unagi » Tue May 07, 2019 12:31 am

My understanding is that Trump himself may be directly in debt to Russian banks, and his tax returns would/could reveal that.

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Re: The Trump Investigation(s) Thread

Post by GreenGoo » Tue May 07, 2019 2:37 am

How does that work? Personal tax returns are all income. The only thing that's not income are capital losses, I thought, and only when matched to capital gains. I'm missing something. Clearly Sanders is right, and I'm too stupid to understand his very complex and successful tax returns.

That's only slightly tongue in cheek. I am incredibly ignorant about tax law.

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Re: The Trump Investigation(s) Thread

Post by malchior » Tue May 07, 2019 7:25 am

The most important thing we'd likely find out from the tax returns is a few things:

1) amount of tax paid
2) stated income
3) some but limited insight into his ownership interests in the maze of LLCs that his organization maintains
4) might get some visibility into assets by analyzing depreciation schedules though this one is a stretch - probably buried deep in his LLCs
5) foreign tax credits which might be interesting
6) trust/estate structures <- this portion of tax law has been allegedly abused by his family in the past
7) past tax payment issues (e.g. an offer in compromise) that might indicate cash flow issues

We wouldn't be able to figure out net worth to high confidence most likely since many of his companies are privately held. The main thing is that getting his tax return is only the start of a journey. It'll open a very long, winding path into the paper maze. There will be layers of LLCs to walk through potentially. That is a big part of this game. They are delaying a potential investigation and this all part of Trump owning the clock.

The important thing in my mind is they are defending this through pure lawlessness now. We can't tolerate this erosion of our system. The dire situation demands that the House prevails here.

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Re: The Trump Investigation(s) Thread

Post by YellowKing » Tue May 07, 2019 8:53 am

It's particularly important in light of the fact that the 2016 elections even gave us a *chance* to look into this. If the Dems waste this opportunity, we should have just let the GOP keep control of the House. They were elected specifically to stop this crap.

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Re: The Trump Investigation(s) Thread

Post by hepcat » Tue May 07, 2019 9:24 am

malchior wrote:
Tue May 07, 2019 7:25 am
The most important thing we'd likely find out from the tax returns is a few things:

1) amount of tax paid
2) stated income
3) some but limited insight into his ownership interests in the maze of LLCs that his organization maintains
4) might get some visibility into assets by analyzing depreciation schedules though this one is a stretch - probably buried deep in his LLCs
5) foreign tax credits which might be interesting
6) trust/estate structures <- this portion of tax law has been allegedly abused by his family in the past
7) past tax payment issues (e.g. an offer in compromise) that might indicate cash flow issues

We wouldn't be able to figure out net worth to high confidence most likely since many of his companies are privately held. The main thing is that getting his tax return is only the start of a journey. It'll open a very long, winding path into the paper maze. There will be layers of LLCs to walk through potentially. That is a big part of this game. They are delaying a potential investigation and this all part of Trump owning the clock.

The important thing in my mind is they are defending this through pure lawlessness now. We can't tolerate this erosion of our system. The dire situation demands that the House prevails here.
#6 is the biggest worry for Trump. His entire sense of self worth is predicated on the lie that he built himself up to billionaire status from a small loan from his father. The Times exposed this as a blatant lie last October in a piece on the inheritance shell game his father used to make his children millionaires by the time they were 8. All performed for the purpose of avoiding taxes. By their calculations, he's enjoyed over 400 million dollars in inheritance from his father over the years. His taxes could very well show that he's a demonstrably BAD businessman in that he's lost much of that money due to his stupidity.
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Re: The Trump Investigation(s) Thread

Post by Unagi » Tue May 07, 2019 9:45 am

GreenGoo wrote:
Tue May 07, 2019 2:37 am
How does that work? Personal tax returns are all income. The only thing that's not income are capital losses, I thought, and only when matched to capital gains. I'm missing something. Clearly Sanders is right, and I'm too stupid to understand his very complex and successful tax returns.

That's only slightly tongue in cheek. I am incredibly ignorant about tax law.
Honestly, I think ages ago the idea was just to show that Trump got himself out of paying hardly any taxes. So that was what he didn't want to talk about. (even though "that just makes him smart").

But I also am not clear on what Russia things could be revealed, or more to the point 'what likelyhood' would there be that it exposes something. From what I've read, there are so many layers to Trump's financial world, the chances of there being something with liablity attached to Trump personally would be pretty unlikely. It could be something a kin to: "Well I made this much money, but then I needed to pay This Bank this much money to help pay back a loan, so really my Income is zero." /shrug (but there is where the loan could come up in personal taxes)

However, it would be nice to get it out there that Trump doesn't put a single dime into this country.


edit: what malchior said

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Re: The Trump Investigation(s) Thread

Post by Unagi » Tue May 07, 2019 11:52 am

Can the WH compel McGahn to not testify if he wants to testify?

He's a private citizen now, right? While the WH can 'protect him' if he doesn't want to testify, they cannot order/instruct him not to.... Right ?!

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Re: The Trump Investigation(s) Thread

Post by Zarathud » Tue May 07, 2019 2:28 pm

Now the White House knows overt obstruction gets a free pass, they're going big-ly.
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Re: The Trump Investigation(s) Thread

Post by Remus West » Tue May 07, 2019 2:41 pm

We may not be a dictatorship yet but it is time to admit we have ceased to be a democratic republic. As long as one party routinely refuses to abide by the laws and is not only not held accountable but repeatedly protected while doing so we can stop with the falisy that we still are a nation of laws. The republican party has ceased to care long ago so we need to stop teasing ourselves.
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Re: The Trump Investigation(s) Thread

Post by YellowKing » Tue May 07, 2019 2:44 pm

My only (small) consolation is that a party who was on the right side of history and had the support of the majority wouldn't need to resort to lying, cheating, and stealing to hold on to power.

I fervently hope we are living through a speed bump on the way to a more progressive nation.

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Re: The Trump Investigation(s) Thread

Post by Kraken » Tue May 07, 2019 11:51 pm

hepcat wrote:
Tue May 07, 2019 9:24 am
malchior wrote:
Tue May 07, 2019 7:25 am
The most important thing we'd likely find out from the tax returns is a few things:

1) amount of tax paid
2) stated income
3) some but limited insight into his ownership interests in the maze of LLCs that his organization maintains
4) might get some visibility into assets by analyzing depreciation schedules though this one is a stretch - probably buried deep in his LLCs
5) foreign tax credits which might be interesting
6) trust/estate structures <- this portion of tax law has been allegedly abused by his family in the past
7) past tax payment issues (e.g. an offer in compromise) that might indicate cash flow issues

We wouldn't be able to figure out net worth to high confidence most likely since many of his companies are privately held. The main thing is that getting his tax return is only the start of a journey. It'll open a very long, winding path into the paper maze. There will be layers of LLCs to walk through potentially. That is a big part of this game. They are delaying a potential investigation and this all part of Trump owning the clock.

The important thing in my mind is they are defending this through pure lawlessness now. We can't tolerate this erosion of our system. The dire situation demands that the House prevails here.
#6 is the biggest worry for Trump. His entire sense of self worth is predicated on the lie that he built himself up to billionaire status from a small loan from his father. The Times exposed this as a blatant lie last October in a piece on the inheritance shell game his father used to make his children millionaires by the time they were 8. All performed for the purpose of avoiding taxes. By their calculations, he's enjoyed over 400 million dollars in inheritance from his father over the years. His taxes could very well show that he's a demonstrably BAD businessman in that he's lost much of that money due to his stupidity.
Speaking of the Times...they got his tax returns. From 1985-94. Sort of.
While The Times did not obtain the president’s actual tax returns, it received the information contained in the returns from someone who had legal access to it. The Times was then able to find matching results in the I.R.S. information on top earners — a publicly available database that each year comprises a one-third sampling of those taxpayers, with identifying details removed. It also confirmed significant findings using other public documents, along with confidential Trump family tax and financial records from the newspaper’s 2018 investigation into the origin of the president’s wealth.
OK, so not THE tax returns, but they're illuminating nonetheless.
The numbers show that in 1985, Mr. Trump reported losses of $46.1 million from his core businesses — largely casinos, hotels and retail space in apartment buildings. They continued to lose money every year, totaling $1.17 billion in losses for the decade.

In fact, year after year, Mr. Trump appears to have lost more money than nearly any other individual American taxpayer, The Times found when it compared his results with detailed information the I.R.S. compiles on an annual sampling of high-income earners. His core business losses in 1990 and 1991 — more than $250 million each year — were more than double those of the nearest taxpayers in the I.R.S. information for those years.

Over all, Mr. Trump lost so much money that he was able to avoid paying income taxes for eight of the 10 years.
The details are entertaining. We can assume that his recent returns tell a similar story of failure and deception.

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Re: The Trump Investigation(s) Thread

Post by pr0ner » Wed May 08, 2019 8:23 am


NEWS: DOJ has threatened to ask the White House to claim executive privilege over the entire Mueller report if @HouseJudiciary Democrats do not call off a vote planned for Wednesday morning to hold AG Barr in contempt. The vote is still on.
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Re: The Trump Investigation(s) Thread

Post by pr0ner » Wed May 08, 2019 8:27 am

Kraken wrote:
Tue May 07, 2019 11:51 pm
hepcat wrote:
Tue May 07, 2019 9:24 am
malchior wrote:
Tue May 07, 2019 7:25 am
The most important thing we'd likely find out from the tax returns is a few things:

1) amount of tax paid
2) stated income
3) some but limited insight into his ownership interests in the maze of LLCs that his organization maintains
4) might get some visibility into assets by analyzing depreciation schedules though this one is a stretch - probably buried deep in his LLCs
5) foreign tax credits which might be interesting
6) trust/estate structures <- this portion of tax law has been allegedly abused by his family in the past
7) past tax payment issues (e.g. an offer in compromise) that might indicate cash flow issues

We wouldn't be able to figure out net worth to high confidence most likely since many of his companies are privately held. The main thing is that getting his tax return is only the start of a journey. It'll open a very long, winding path into the paper maze. There will be layers of LLCs to walk through potentially. That is a big part of this game. They are delaying a potential investigation and this all part of Trump owning the clock.

The important thing in my mind is they are defending this through pure lawlessness now. We can't tolerate this erosion of our system. The dire situation demands that the House prevails here.
#6 is the biggest worry for Trump. His entire sense of self worth is predicated on the lie that he built himself up to billionaire status from a small loan from his father. The Times exposed this as a blatant lie last October in a piece on the inheritance shell game his father used to make his children millionaires by the time they were 8. All performed for the purpose of avoiding taxes. By their calculations, he's enjoyed over 400 million dollars in inheritance from his father over the years. His taxes could very well show that he's a demonstrably BAD businessman in that he's lost much of that money due to his stupidity.
Speaking of the Times...they got his tax returns. From 1985-94. Sort of.
While The Times did not obtain the president’s actual tax returns, it received the information contained in the returns from someone who had legal access to it. The Times was then able to find matching results in the I.R.S. information on top earners — a publicly available database that each year comprises a one-third sampling of those taxpayers, with identifying details removed. It also confirmed significant findings using other public documents, along with confidential Trump family tax and financial records from the newspaper’s 2018 investigation into the origin of the president’s wealth.
OK, so not THE tax returns, but they're illuminating nonetheless.
The numbers show that in 1985, Mr. Trump reported losses of $46.1 million from his core businesses — largely casinos, hotels and retail space in apartment buildings. They continued to lose money every year, totaling $1.17 billion in losses for the decade.

In fact, year after year, Mr. Trump appears to have lost more money than nearly any other individual American taxpayer, The Times found when it compared his results with detailed information the I.R.S. compiles on an annual sampling of high-income earners. His core business losses in 1990 and 1991 — more than $250 million each year — were more than double those of the nearest taxpayers in the I.R.S. information for those years.

Over all, Mr. Trump lost so much money that he was able to avoid paying income taxes for eight of the 10 years.
The details are entertaining. We can assume that his recent returns tell a similar story of failure and deception.
Trump calls it a "Fake News hit job" today.

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Re: The Trump Investigation(s) Thread

Post by msteelers » Wed May 08, 2019 8:32 am

"...it was sport"

Every day he says or does something that makes my blood boil.

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Re: The Trump Investigation(s) Thread

Post by Paingod » Wed May 08, 2019 8:33 am

So he says he did dodgy shit because everyone does it, but it's all fake news.

Good work, man. Good work.
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Re: The Trump Investigation(s) Thread

Post by Max Peck » Wed May 08, 2019 9:04 am

Strictly speaking, it wasn't Trump that gamed the tax code. One of the things that came out in the lead-up to the election was that he just used his father's accountant to do his taxes. All Trump did was sign the papers.
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Re: The Trump Investigation(s) Thread

Post by GreenGoo » Wed May 08, 2019 9:30 am

I don't really understand your point. I can't imagine anyone with significant and/or diverse business and investment dealings not having an accountant, so of course all he did was sign papers. I thought that would have been understood from the start, but doesn't absolve him of responsibility or alter the discussion in any tangible way, imo.

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Re: The Trump Investigation(s) Thread

Post by malchior » Wed May 08, 2019 9:48 am

At that level accountants provide strategy and operational feedback to the business to make financial decisions in all things including taxes. Ultimately his name was on the line - the buck stops with him. A concept he has never accepted because he is at heart a cheat.

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Re: The Trump Investigation(s) Thread

Post by Holman » Wed May 08, 2019 10:58 am

Kraken wrote:
Tue May 07, 2019 11:51 pm
The details are entertaining. We can assume that his recent returns tell a similar story of failure and deception.
The NYT returns are from the period before American banks stopped lending to him. Eventually they all did, and eventually he was down just to Deutsche Bank (the sophisticated oligarchs' choice for money laundering).

I suspect his recent returns are even more entertaining.
Last edited by Holman on Wed May 08, 2019 11:03 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: The Trump Investigation(s) Thread

Post by msteelers » Wed May 08, 2019 10:59 am



TOTALLY EXONERATED!!!

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Re: The Trump Investigation(s) Thread

Post by Kraken » Wed May 08, 2019 11:04 am

Most of Trump's ventures were structured as partnerships, in which a business' profit or loss goes onto one's individual tax returns. As an S Corp owner, I appreciate the value of making a profit disappear, or even transforming it into a nice loss -- it makes a big difference on my 1040. It's more about cash flow than profit. Over the long run, of course, a business that consistently loses money can't generate positive cash flow, so losses are only valuable as long as profits from elsewhere need to be offset.

Trump has never shown any inclination toward long-term viability. He just kites the cash from one losing business into the next; as long as you're perpetually growing, you always have enough new cashflow to cover the losses until you can unload yesterday's cash cows. If the expansion stops, so does the new cash, and all you have left is debt and expenses. At that point you declare bankruptcy and start again with money borrowed from suckers. Trump's not a serious businessman; he's a capitalist, and not a very good one. That's what those old tax returns tell me, anyway.

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Re: The Trump Investigation(s) Thread

Post by malchior » Wed May 08, 2019 11:04 am

Ways and Means is about to vote on Barr contempt. I'm listening to Gohmert talking Trumpaloo coup by the deep state nonsense. I am both impressed and somewhat despondent that no one challenges his bullshit.

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Re: The Trump Investigation(s) Thread

Post by Holman » Wed May 08, 2019 11:43 am



Was it just 48 hours ago that Mnuchin declared he wouldn't give over the returns because their request “lacks a legitimate legislative purpose”?
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Re: The Trump Investigation(s) Thread

Post by El Guapo » Wed May 08, 2019 11:54 am

Holman wrote:
Wed May 08, 2019 11:43 am


Was it just 48 hours ago that Mnuchin declared he wouldn't give over the returns because their request “lacks a legitimate legislative purpose”?
I just love how he manages to say simultaneously that:

(1) this is all fake news;
(2) but this was all legit and widely done;
(3) and also the tax fraud here is so old who even cares about this anymore?

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Re: The Trump Investigation(s) Thread

Post by Enough » Wed May 08, 2019 11:56 am

Holman wrote:
Wed May 08, 2019 11:43 am


Was it just 48 hours ago that Mnuchin declared he wouldn't give over the returns because their request “lacks a legitimate legislative purpose”?
Excellent point, let''s hope it works. Claiming nearly 2% of all losses in the country in one year though seems it could be even too much to make up for him, it's starting to look like his wealth from Fred may have been enough to sustain him, losses and all. I mean he even still uses dad's tax guy for his returns, just like other trust-funders living off of their familial wealth. There's nothing wrong with that, it's the psychotic need to puff that up that is such a bad look here.
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Re: The Trump Investigation(s) Thread

Post by malchior » Wed May 08, 2019 11:57 am

Also the cult has predictably started talking about how he was a genius businessman and just was minimizing taxes. <Insert 'Sure Jan.gif' here>.

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Re: The Trump Investigation(s) Thread

Post by Smoove_B » Wed May 08, 2019 12:01 pm

I continue to be impressed has there's just no attempt to hide anything anymore. I can't blame him there either - nothing matters. As long as the GOP en masse continues to shield him, he can truly do or say (or admit) anything he wants. The whole thing is surreal.

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Re: The Trump Investigation(s) Thread

Post by Jaymann » Wed May 08, 2019 12:46 pm

It's like the emperor with no clothes in pissing into the crowd, and the faithful are saying, "That's the best tasting piss ever."
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Re: The Trump Investigation(s) Thread

Post by Holman » Wed May 08, 2019 1:04 pm

Jaymann wrote:
Wed May 08, 2019 12:46 pm
It's like the emperor with no clothes in pissing into the crowd, and the faithful are saying, "That's the best tasting piss ever."
Yup.

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Re: The Trump Investigation(s) Thread

Post by malchior » Wed May 08, 2019 1:14 pm

The cult of personality (CoP) btw is one of the more frightening aspects to me. I get being partisan about some topics. That is how parties work. Sometimes you feel the need to protect the tribe from unfair attacks, etc.

However, this is so far beyond that it is obviously aligned to other dangerous CoPs in the past. Like said above this is out in the open. It is bizarrely apparent how they are operating. They have no reason to hide because despite all of history screaming 'THIS IS BAD' we have 30-40% of the population behind them. I just can't understand it.

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Re: The Trump Investigation(s) Thread

Post by Enough » Wed May 08, 2019 1:35 pm

malchior wrote:
Wed May 08, 2019 1:14 pm
The cult of personality (CoP) btw is one of the more frightening aspects to me. I get being partisan about some topics. That is how parties work. Sometimes you feel the need to protect the tribe from unfair attacks, etc.

However, this is so far beyond that it is obviously aligned to other dangerous CoPs in the past. Like said above this is out in the open. It is bizarrely apparent how they are operating. They have no reason to hide because despite all of history screaming 'THIS IS BAD' we have 30-40% of the population behind them. I just can't understand it.
538 concurs, his popularity is actually increasing a bit at the moment.
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Re: The Trump Investigation(s) Thread

Post by hepcat » Wed May 08, 2019 2:01 pm

Ah, I fondly remember some folks around OO back in the day proclaiming that Obama's cult of personality was dangerous/stupid.

They had no idea what that term really could be, did they...
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Re: The Trump Investigation(s) Thread

Post by Jeff V » Wed May 08, 2019 2:15 pm

hepcat wrote:
Wed May 08, 2019 2:01 pm
Ah, I fondly remember some folks around OO back in the day proclaiming that Obama's cult of personality was dangerous/stupid.

They had no idea what that term really could be, did they...
Spread the word. #Trumpiscomingforyourguns

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LordMortis
Posts: 60465
Joined: Tue Oct 12, 2004 11:26 pm

Re: The Trump Investigation(s) Thread

Post by LordMortis » Wed May 08, 2019 4:02 pm

Jeff V wrote:
Wed May 08, 2019 2:15 pm
#Trumpiscomingforyourguns
:?:

https://www.news-press.com/story/news/l ... 576427002/
Attorney General William P. Barr announced Lombardo's appointment April 24 and she was sworn-in as head of the agency on Wednesday, replacing retiring Deputy Director Thomas Brandon.
Like her predecessor, Lombardo started as a special agent, according to a news release. She served as a special agent since 1992 and rose through the ranks as a career employee, the release said.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_B ... 80%931993)
Iran-Contra

In late 1992, Independent Counsel Lawrence Walsh, who had been chosen to investigate the Iran–Contra affair, zeroed in on documents that were in the possession of Reagan's former defense secretary, Caspar Weinberger. Weinberger, trying to avoid possible jail time,[citation needed] was preparing to testify that President George H. W. Bush knew about, and even participated in the events leading up to the Iran-Contra scandal.[38]

On December 24, 1992, during his final month in office, Bush, on the advice of Barr, pardoned Weinberger,[39] who had not yet come to trial, along with five other administration officials, who had been found guilty on charges relating to the Iran–Contra affair.[40][41] Barr was consulted extensively regarding the pardons, and especially advocated for pardoning Weinberger.[42]

Walsh complained about the move insinuating that Bush on Barr's advice had used the pardons to avoid testifying and stating that: "The Iran-contra cover-up, which has continued for more than six years, has now been completed."[43] He later wrote an account of the investigation in his book, Firewall: The Iran-Contra Conspiracy and Cover-Up, in 2003.

Because of this and Barr's unwillingness to appoint an independent counsel to look into a second scandal known as Iraqgate, New York Times writer William Safire began to refer to Barr as "Coverup-General Barr."[44] Barr, however, responded that he believed Bush had made the right decision regarding that and he felt people in the case had been treated unfairly.[45]
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Randy_Weaver
On August 21, 1992, several U.S. Marshals went to the Weaver property to clandestinely survey it; they hoped to update their information about the property since it had last been surveyed in May 1992. The group had strict orders that they were to avoid all contact with the Weaver family. According to a Department of Justice report on the incident,[11] the marshals were detected by the Weavers' dogs and began to retreat.[12] Weaver's 14-year-old son Sammy and 24-year-old family friend Kevin Harris,[7] left the house to investigate, both carrying firearms. The DOJ report corroborates this with a statement dictated by Weaver to his daughter, in which he says that "Approximately 11:30 Friday morning....the dogs started barking like they always do when strangers walk up the driveway. Kevin, and Sam ran out to the rock with their weapons." Eventually the Marshals stopped retreating and took up defensive positions in the woods.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/David_Koresh
he siege began on February 28, 1993, when the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) raided Mount Carmel Center. The ensuing gun battle resulted in the deaths of four agents and six Branch Davidians. Shortly after the initial raid, the FBI Hostage Rescue Team took command of the federal operation, because the FBI has jurisdiction over incidents involving the deaths of federal agents. The negotiating team established contact with Koresh inside the compound. Communication over the next 51 days included telephone exchanges with various FBI negotiators.

Talk about Deep State and taking your guns.


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