Looking back: FBI director nominee James Comey

The Trump presidency has had its share of controversy. If anything, it has gone from one upheaval to another. Each incident, whether minor or significant, has been amplified, even distorted, for page clicks and profit by the American news media.

Trump’s favorite fake news

I used to read the online New York Times. I often commented on articles. New York Times provides a persistent URL, called a permalink, for each online reader comment. It’s a nice feature!

Too bad the paper’s content isn’t so great. I can do without The 1619 Project, 1oo pages of historical revisionism crammed into an August 2019 New York Times Magazine issue that reveals

a new version of American history in which slavery and white supremacy become the dominant organizing themes.

Former FBI director James Comey

James Comey was nominated as FBI director by President Obama in June 2013 and promptly confirmed by the US Senate.  Given the drama surrounding his role in the 2016 election (i.e. not recommending a Department of Justice investigation of Democrat candidate Hillary Clinton for her use of a private email server while Secretary of State, then reopening the inquiry a month prior to the general election), followed by President Trump’s controversial dismissal of Comey, I think the Times article covering Comey’s nomination remains of interest.

James B. Comey, President Obama’s reported choice for F.B.I. director, may be able to offer insight into the culture at Bridgewater Associates.

via FBI Nominee Could Offer a Peek Into the World of Ray Dalio

Bridgewater is a well-known, successful hedge fund founded by Ray Dalio.

The revolving door accelerates

I shared my thoughts as a comment: James Comey worked for Lockheed Martin, where some actual value is created. But he left, was general counsel for a hedge fund after that. His approval as FBI director would continue the revolving door standard for political appointees. Conflicts of interest will be inevitable.”  The New York Times censor, uh, comment screener approved. That isn’t always the case. I have about a 50% success rate.

Cults and mind control

At the time of his nomination by President Obama to FBI director, James Comey said this, referring to his recent work at Bridgewater:

The mind control is working. I’ve come to believe that all the probing actually reduces inefficiencies over the long run, because it prevents bad decisions from being made.

Bridgewater seems like a cult! Hedge funds and private equity partnerships are often known for their eccentric cultures. It is difficult to know with certainty, as secrecy is the rule. In contrast, Ray Dalio chooses to publish the Bridgewater company Manifesto.

Two years after Comey’s nomination and appointment, the FBI had an extraordinary level of involvement in the 2016 election. The text messages between Larry Strok and Lisa Page implicated FBI Assistant Director Andrew McCabe.  The omitted details in the FISA request to secretly monitor then-candidate Trump implicated Comey. Those people are well-documented as having close, long-term relationships.

In a RICO case, they would be considered to have demonstrated a pattern of behavior, along with already-public evidence, that suggests a conspiracy.  It easily passes the standard to justify an investigation by a Special Counsel, with all that entails: being questioned under oath, having all their communications reviewed, etc. What did we get instead? The Mueller investigation.