The Morning Briefing: Wow, Russian Collusion Shows Up in the Weirdest Places


Top O’ the Briefing

Happy Tuesday, dear Kruiser Morning Briefing friends. Conway knew that his days as a ptarmigan wrangler were numbered after attending his first Bonsai class.

One of my favorite things that Donald Trump did during his presidency happened very early on. He was barely out of the gate when he gave James Comey his walking papers. It appeared as if the Grand Draining of the Swamp was under way and that it was going to be glorious.

Well, we know how that turned out.

Getting rid of the eternally smarmy Comey was a good sign because he had failed so miserably in dealing with the criminal Mrs. Clinton during the election. He was horrible at his job, as were his top lieutenants in the Bureau.

His pet pit bull who was in charge of the Trump-Russia collusion sham investigation has gotten himself into a spot of trouble, which Kevin wrote about:

Cue the James Bond theme.

Charles McGonigal — the former FBI agent who led the Trump-Russia investigation — has been arrested for “agreeing to provide services” to the billionaire Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska.

Sergey Shestakov, a former Soviet, then Russian diplomat, now an American citizen, was arrested as well.

This is just too rich. It’s almost as if Trump is scripting the story now.

It’s not surprising that a former FBI agent who reached his greatest heights in the Bureau thanks to James Comey is a scumbag, but his area of scumbaggery raises an eyebrow or two. One wonders how many Russian pals the Chuckster picked up during the Trump-Russia dog and pony show investigation. McGonigal no doubt knew that it was a sky-high pile of horse dung from the beginning but, hey, maybe there were new friends to make.
Lemonade out of lemons, or something.

It’s going to be difficult for McGonigal to play dumb about all of this. More from Kevin:

“Both previously worked with Deripaska to attempt to have his sanctions removed, and, as public servants, they should have known better,” Damian Williams, U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York, claimed in a statement. “This Office will continue to prosecute those who violate U.S. sanctions enacted in response to Russian belligerence in Ukraine in order to line their own pockets.”

Most people who retire from high-level law enforcement usually opt for cushy consultant gigs with big name security firms. It’s rare to see someone go straight into illegal influence peddling like this.

Again, though, he’s a Comey guy.

I have no idea what McGonigal’s politics are. There’s a good chance he’s one of those bureaucrat Republicans like Comey used to be. They’re practically indistinguishable from Democrats. And when he was investigating Trump, he wasn’t doing any serious, evidence-based investigating; he was doing the Democrats’ bidding.

Until 2016, the Democrats loved Russians. They behaved like swooning schoolgirls over the Soviets during much of the Cold War. We all remember how dismissive of Mitt Romney’s assertion that Russia was a threat to the United States His High Holiness the Lightbringer Barack H. Obama was in 2012.

It’s far more likely that the major players who ran around screaming “TRUMP-RUSSIA COLLUSION!” will end up in bed with the bad guys. Heck, at this time it isn’t far-fetched to think that it all may have been a smokescreen for backdoor deals that were already going on. I bet Hunter Biden has done more than a few rails of cocaine off of Russian hookers while partying with oligarchs.

Faith in so many of our institutions is difficult to muster these days because there is so much rot at the top. Charles McGonigal wasn’t some mid-level rando at the Federal Bureau of Investigation, he was the “Special Agent in Charge of the Counterintelligence Division for the New York Field Office.” James Comey gave him that gig.

It’s like peeling layers of an onion that’s been sitting in an unplugged fridge for a year.

As I wrote earlier this month, I would love to see Trump back in office to preside over a real swamp-draining.

Just dreaming about that is enough to get me through the longer days.

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