Mueller's top cable translator: Robert J. Mueller—"Mueller the Royal"—made an eight-minute statement on Wednesday. We refer to him as "Mueller the Royal" because of his absurd request that he not have to testify to Congress.
In this request, Mueller the Royal joins Comey the God, helping us see what tends to happen when Establishment Washington spends years insisting that some revered individual is "the most upright person now living."
Luckily, no one is above the law in the United States! For that reason, we can still hope that Mueller will be required to testify—not just about his investigation, but also about his interactions with Attorney General Barr.
On the other hand, why bother? Cable news now offers an array of self-brainwashed "Mueller translators"—robots who can tell us exactly what Mueller thinks and believes. They're especially common on MSNBC, most strikingly on the astonishing show, Deadline: White House.
The top such "Mueller translator" is Nicolle Wallace, the former gay-baiting/war-affirming Bush 43 hand who now propagandizes liberals for a healthy corporate pay check. (Despite everyone's love of transparency, you aren't allowed to know how big that pay check is.)
Through gifts which have been bestowed by the gods, Wallace is able to translate every word Mueller says. On Thursday's show, she signed on to an embarrassing bit of interpretation which her "favorite reporters and friends" had been developing ever since Mueller spoke the day before.
The translation involves Mueller's use of a common word—"when." Below, we highlight his crucial use of that word, exactly as the word was used early in Wednesday's statement:
MUELLER (5/29/19): These indictments contain allegations and we are not commenting on the guilt or the innocence of any specific defendant. Every defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.As you probably know if you watch "cable news," the Mueller translators have found great meaning in his use of the key word "when." Here's what these interpretive giants have deduced:
The indictments allege, and the other activities in our report describe, efforts to interfere in our political system. They needed to be investigated and understood. And that is among the reasons why the Department of Justice established our office.
That is also a reason we investigated efforts to obstruct the investigation. The matters we investigated were of paramount importance. It was critical for us to obtain full and accurate information from every person we questioned. When a subject of an investigation obstructs that investigation or lies to investigators, it strikes at the core of their government's effort to find the truth and hold wrongdoers accountable.
What Mueller translators have deduced:As typically happens with pundit corps mobs, everyone has been standing in line, awaiting his or her chance to repeat this ridiculous statement. These mobs have now made two great deductions during their decades of service:
1) Mueller said "when" when he could have said "if!"
2) This was Mueller's way of saying that Donald J. Trump did, in fact, commit obstruction of justice!
What pundit mobs have deduced:It's almost amusing to see these flyweights make this assertion about Mueller's statement.
1) Al Gore said he invented the Internet!
2) When Mueller said "when" instead of "if," he was saying that Donald J. Trump committed obstruction of justice!
It's almost amusing because these same ridiculous people are constantly praising Mueller, perhaps appropriately, for his vast integrity—and because Mueller has explicitly said that he and his team didn't reach, or even attempt to reach, a judgment about Trump's possible guilt.
Here's more of what Mueller said in Wednesday's statement. How does this square with the pundit corps' rolling assertion that this upright figure has now said that Trump did commit a crime?
MUELLER: And in the second volume, the report describes the results and analysis of our obstruction of justice investigation involving the president. The order appointing me special counsel authorized us to investigate actions that could obstruct the investigation. We conducted that investigation and we kept the office of the acting attorney general apprised of the progress of our work.You can read the fuller passage yourself. To our ear, the second highlighted statement suggests that Mueller and his team didn't even attempt to "make a determination as to whether the president did commit a crime"—that they decided, at the start of their probe, that they wouldn't attempt to do that.
And as set forth in the report, after that investigation, if we had had confidence that the president clearly did not commit a crime, we would have said so. We did not, however, make a determination as to whether the president did commit a crime.
And beyond department policy, we were guided by principles of fairness. It would be unfair to potentially—it would be unfair to potentially accuse somebody of a crime when there can be no court resolution of the actual charge.
So that was Justice Department policy. Those were the principles under which we operated. And from them, we concluded that we would not reach a determination, one way or the other, about whether the president committed a crime. That is the office's final position and we will not comment on any other conclusions or hypotheticals about the president.
Unlike the corporate Mueller translators, we won't pretend that we can settle such interpretive matters with certainty. That said, Mueller himself plainly said that he and his team "did not make a determination as to whether" Trump committed a crime.
That's what Mueller explicitly said—but along came Wallace and her glassy-eyed gang of droogs! She, and they, are willing to say, as always in unison, 1) that Mueller is the world's most upright person; 2) that he did determine that Trump obstructed justice; and 3) that he communicated that through his use of the word "when" where he could have said "if" instead.
You have to be a glassy-eyed zombie to offer such an interpretation. Wallace, the Bush-era baby-killer, is just such a true believer.
Wallace "truly believes" in herself—that is to say, in whatever thought has just flitted into her brain. Wallace and her gang of favorite acolytes and friends have hypnotized themselves to the point where she actually went on the TV machine, one day after Mueller spoke, and voiced this strange assessment:
WALLACE (5/30/19): And Harry Litman, as Nick— Everything Nick said is spot-on, but especially this idea that Robert Mueller chose every word so carefully, he really adhered pretty closely to a written statement, and watching him, I watched him a second time last night, he kept going back to it.To watch this prime bullshit, just click here, then advance to the seven-minute mark.
One of the things he says is, "When you obstruct an investigation," leaving no doubt in the viewer or the watcher's mind that he found that Donald Trump had obstructed the investigation, because he referenced when as individual obstructs an investigation, making very clear, I think, today to the public, perhaps for the first time because of all the fog that Attorney General Barr blew into the situation before during and after the Mueller report's release, making it very clear that Donald Trump, if he were anyone else, would have been charged with criminal obstruction of justice.
LITMAN: It's really true...
We should mention one more part of the translator's creed: Robert Mueller chooses his words with tremendous care! For that reason, you can tell he was trying to tell us something when he employed the word "when," not "if!"
Wallace has been aggressively peddling this ridiculous home-made joy juice. According to Wallace, Mueller's use of "when" (instead of "if") "leav[es] no doubt in the viewer or the watcher's mind that he found that Donald Trump had obstructed the investigation."
His use of "when" (instead of "if") makes it "very clear to the public" that Mueller believes that Trump had committed obstruction of justice. We know this because he chooses words carefully, and because he kept reading from his written text!
On its own, that would be an astoundingly silly piece of interpretation. But that glassy-eyed recitation doesn't stand on its own. It exists in a world where Mueller has explicitly said that he and his team didn't reach any such judgment.
I didn't reach a judgment, Mueller has said. But our zombies can see right through that!
Such considerations don't stop our "walking dead" pundits from voicing their favorite claims. Litman proceeded to swear that it was completely obvious that Mueller had in fact reached that judgment about Trump. Wallace then turned to child star Alexi McCammond and offered this:
WALLACE: So Alexi, Mueller, making clear that Donald Trump committed the crime of obstruction, that he was adhering to the DOJ policy that you couldn't indict him...Despite his explicit statement to the contrary, Mueller had been making it clear!
McCammond recited for the elders, as she reliably does. Amazingly, Wallace then played the actual tape of the part of Mueller's statement where he explicitly said that he and his team didn't reach a judgment concerning Trump's possible criminality.
Yes, you read that right. She played the actual tape!
"So that was Justice Department policy," Mueller was shown saying. "Those were the principles under which we operated. And from them, we concluded that we would not reach a determination one way or the other about whether the president committed a crime."
Wallace played that very piece of videotape! But as soon as the tape was done, she proceeded to offer this:
WALLACE: So I'm going to so some parsing here, because that seems to what the Attorney General is engaged in...Barr had been parsing, so Wallace would too! So it goes with these life-forms.
[Mueller] clearly found that it was criminal, and Mueller uses the word "would." We decided that we would not pursue that line of arguing that it was criminal because we were adhering to the Office of Legal Counsel policy memo that says you can't indict a sitting president...
You can watch the fuller statement by Wallace yourself. But even after playing the tape of Mueller's explicit statement, Wallace continued to say that Mueller had in fact reached a determination.
This time, she based her translation on the fact that Mueller said "would" in that piece of tape, while Barr had used the word "could" at one point in his subsequent CBS interview.
No, it didn't make any sense. But these are encounters with glassy-eyed zombies of the cable news kind.
Wallace's interpretive work most closely resembles that of a conventionally attractive android with major wiring problems. She's HAL near the end of 2001. She a glassy-eyed, self-hypnotized droog with the blood of Iraq on her wardrobe.
Having said that, so what? Wallace's favorite reporters and friends crowd around her every day, agreeing with every word she says and thereby earning more air time. Anthropologists tell us that this is what the species was like all along!
On yesterday's Deadline show, Wallace continued to say that Mueller's use of "when" instead of "if" shows that he did determine that Trump committed a crime. Even as she did so, she and her favorites kept portraying Mueller as the world's most upright man, even though he has explicitly made the opposite statement.
Mueller has explicitly said that he didn't reach any such judgment. This doesn't atop MSNBC's Stepford droogs from dumbnifying the liberal world, led by the true-believing baby-killer of greater Iraq.
Major anthropologists keep telling us that this is the way the world ended. At this point, we can't swear that their claim is correct, but these are major future experts and their future despair is apparent as they huddle in caves.
Monday: A puzzling statement by Mueller