Fahrenthold plays Hardball concerning Scotland!


Refuses to dumb liberals down:
During Campaign 2016, the Washington Post's David Fahrenthold broke every rule in the book.

He spent his time developing actual information about Candidate Donald J. Trump. More specifically, he developed detailed information about Trump's charitable giving—or rather, about his lack of same.

Modern press culture more typically involves a flight from detailed information. In April 2017, the Pulitzer committee described Fahrenthold's conduct as they awarded the scribe their National Reporting prize:
The 2017 Pulitzer Prize Winner in National Reporting

David A. Fahrenthold of The Washington Post

For persistent reporting that created a model for transparent journalism in political campaign coverage while casting doubt on Donald Trump’s assertions of generosity toward charities.
Truth to tell, few voters seemed to care about the voluminous information Fahrenthold developed. Still, it was quite a throwback to see an upper-end reporter developing detailed information at all.

Fahrenthold has developed a reputation for dealing in information and facts. That helps explain the awkwardness which seemed to prevail when he played some Hardball last Friday evening.

We wanted to show you what he told Chris Matthews about those Air Force stopovers in Scotland. But MSNBC being what it is, the channel hasn't managed to transcribe last Friday's program yet.

None of this matters all that such, except as a cautionary tale. On September 6, then again on September 9, MSNBC's viewers were handed a tremendous amount of bull about this matter, principally on the programs hosted by Brian Williams and Rachel Maddow.

For our previous report, click here.

By last Friday, it was clear that Brian and Rachel had transmitted major volumes of bull about that pitiful little airport and about th stop-overs there. You'd almost think that Brian and Rachel would have wanted to correct the record.

Who's being naive now, Kay? Homey doesn't play it that way, not even on "liberal" cable!

On the brighter side, those wildly misleading/erroneous reports constitute a good object lesson for liberals. Until you've managed to check them yourself, you really can't believe the things you hear on The One True Channel. It's a corporate "cable news" channel, one which is devoted to entertainment, tribal excess and good solid prime-time fun.

At any rate, why have Air Force crews been stopping over at the rinky little pathetic airport Rachel kept misdescribing? In last Friday's Washington Post, Fahrenthold joined Colby Itkowitz in filing a new report.

Why were Air Force crews stopping at the Scottish airport? And why had some of those crews stayed overnight at Trump's Scottish resort?

As recounted in our previous post, the Times presented a fuller report. The Times was almost funny, so thoroughly did it contradict the various things Brian and Rachel had said.

The Times report went all the way back to stopovers by Elvis and Ike at that supposedly rinky little unauthorized Scottish airport, the one with the extra-long runway. But here's part of what the Post reporters wrote:
ITKOWITZ AND FAHRENTHOLD (9/13/19): The stays result from two separate agreements that both predate Trump’s presidency. Before Trump ran for president, the airport agreed to send visiting crews to Trump’s course. And while President Barack Obama was still in office, the Air Force agreed to send refueling aircraft to the airport.

Now that Trump is president, those two arrangements mean that the Air Force has paid the commander in chief to rent rooms. The Oversight Committee is investigating, but so far no evidence has emerged showing that Trump has done anything to alter the existing arrangements.
As Fahrenthold demonstrated in 2016, Donald J. Trump is an inveterate grifter. That said, Rachel and Brian have been known to con the public too.

We wanted to show you how Fahrenthold explained those awkward facts about the Scottish stop-overs to Matthews. As you can see, the facts seem to be nothing like the manifest bullshit Brian and Rachel had so pleasingly served.

At some point, last Friday's Hardball transcript will likely be posted here. If you're interested, you can look to see what Matthews was told.

To our eye and ear, Fahrenthold may have felt a tiny bit sheepish as he explained the facts to Chris. Our reading?

He knew what his cable host wanted to hear. He wasn't willing to say it.


  1. "As Fahrenthold demonstrated in 2016, Donald J. Trump is an inveterate grifter."

    How, by 'casting doubt' on some irrelevant shit?

    But even if that was true, dear Bob, an "inveterate grifter" would've been a great, great progress - compared to all of your cult's zombie clowns serving global finance.

    1. Relax. Trump is working to help the Establishment grift, not steal from them.

    2. The important thing is that Donald J Chickenshit, Acting President< keeps the House of Saud happy and content as they pour gobs of cash into tRump properties.

      Earlier this summer, according to a staffer, a group of Saudi royals stayed at the resort for about a week at the tail end of extended travel, bringing a party of 25 people and more than a hundred pieces of luggage.

    3. Do you think it clears more than one Barry's clowning session in front of a bunch of banksters?

      I certainly hope so...

    4. In case of emergency, attack the former black president. WTF difference does it make what Obama is paid for speeches now, you ginormous hypocrite? Obama is not in any position to control our foreign policy, jackass.

    5. Meh. Sorry to disappoint you, dear jackass, but your habitual tics are as far from 'emergency' as Barry from controlling the US foreign policy (thank god).

    6. MMVFEWA:
      Make Mao Vote For Elizabeth Warren Again

    7. 2:38,
      So Barry is a real Indian?

    8. Trump gave control over U.S. foreign policy to Putin.
      In exchange Putin doesn't release Trump's tax returns.

    9. No, dear dembot, Barry is a fake "African American".

    10. We went from a fake African American as President to a real Russian asset as President.


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  2. It doesn't matter that the agreement with the airport and with Trump's hotel predate his presidency, nor does it matter that Elvis landed there back in the last century. What matters is that the number of flight crews staying there have increased dramatically since Trump took office. Tracing that back to Trump's influence or demand is not necessary. Because Trump has failed to divest, he benefits personally from these Air Force stays. That is inappropriate.

    Somerby keeps trying to focus on irrelevancies in order to make Maddow and Williams appear foolish and "tribal." The main concern isn't whether Farenthold has the time and backing from his paper to do in-depth research while Maddow does not, but whether our president is benefitting personally from government decisions made to curry favor with him. No military justification for the very large increase in stays at Trump's hotel has been presented by anyone.

    Somerby should care about the graft. Instead he cares only about embarrassing Maddow and Williams. Why? Because they are liberals and he wishes to portray liberals as venal. Somerby is another cog in the conservative wheel.

    1. Somerby is not political. He is bitter over losing what little influence he ever had, gaslighting liberals mollifies his resentment.

  3. There is an official investigation going on into Turnberry. In their letter to Secretary of Defense Esper, dated September 10, 2019, the House Oversight Committee says:

    “ The committee is writing regarding a request originally made several months ago for documents relating to the expenditure of US taxpayer funds at President Donald Trump’s Turnberry golf resort in Scotland to house military servicemembers in apparent violation of the Domestic Emoluments Clause of the US Constitution, as well as increased expenditures of US funds at a nearby commercial airport owned by the Scottish government.

    The committee made its request privately on June 21, 2019, but the Department of Defense has produced no documents since that time.”

    1. Violation of the emoluments clause
    2. No response for 3 months from the Defense Department

    Seems like a legitimate issue here.

    You could discuss its significance and how it fits in with the pattern of Trump’s grifting, or you can downplay it like Somerby and the right-wing media are trying to.

    The text of the letter is here:

  4. “The Oversight Committee is investigating, but so far no evidence has emerged showing that Trump has done anything to alter the existing arrangements.”

    Latching onto anon 3:24, no evidence has emerged *because the Dept of Defense is STONEWALLING the Committee.”

    You think Fahrenthold might have mentioned that fact?

  5. It seems most unlikely that Trump would order more US servicepeople to use his hotel. I don't doubt that Trump would do something immoral in order to make money. But, the amount he could make from having a few more US service[wo]men stay at his Scottish hotel is utterly negligible. And, the risk of discovery would be high, because several people would know what was going on.

    1. The actual figures were in a NY Times article and were posted here a couple of days ago. As I recall it was close to 1/2 million and represented 40 planes with their crews landing at Prestwick over the time since Trump's election.

      Trump doesn't have to order this to happen. The knowledge that it would please him, show loyalty, curry favor with him is sufficient for someone to direct the planes there. Someone did blow the whistle on this -- that's why it is an issue now. And yes, this is unethical and against the law. Trump's crime is his failure to divest.

      Note that Trump's office did suggest to Pence that he stay at Trump's Ireland property, which was 200 miles from his meetings in Dublin.

    2. “It seems most unlikely that Trump would order more US servicepeople to use his hotel.” says DinC.

      And thus he frames the issue as Fahrenthold and Somerby do, when Fahrenthold says “no evidence has emerged showing that Trump has done anything to alter the existing arrangements.”
      This puts the whole affair in a favorable light for Trump. Of course, one thing that did change since 2015: TRUMP BECAME PRESIDENT. The House Oversight Committee sees Trump’s profiting off of Turnberry from US stopovers as a violation of the emoluments clause of the constitution. If he ordered more stopovers, that is worse, but it isn’t the essential part of the story.

    3. Everyone seems to be missing the point. The goal is to keep the airport alive and prosperous. The hotel depends on it to remain viable. The room fees at the hotel paid by the service members are chickenfeed. It's the dramatic increase in refueling at the airport by the Air Force that keeps the airport in the black and thus keeps the trump hotel viable.

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