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Thorner/Ingold: Inspector General report reveals scary times for Liberty


By Nancy Thorner & Ed Ingold - 

It’s all coming together with the release Thursday of the Inspector's General Report on the Clinton investigation, A Review of Various Actions by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and Department Justice in Advance of the 2016 Election.  Read it for yourself here

Among other things, it confirms that there is a political wing in the FBI which feels it has the right to act as kingmaker in national elections. From other reports, similar functions exist in the DOJ, the CIA and NSA. If this sounds familiar, look back at the old Soviet Union, which took political action to extreme in the KGB (internal security) and GRU (foreign intelligence), and to a great extent, their current versions under Putin. 

The FBI as a political entity is nothing new. J. Edgar Hoover headed the FBI since its inception in 1935, and its predecessor since 1924 – a total of nearly 50 years, ending only in his death in 1972. According to Harry Truman in 1948, " … [W]e want no Gestapo or secret police. The FBI is tending in that direction. They are dabbling in sex-life scandals and plain blackmail. J. Edgar Hoover would give his right eye to take over, and all congressmen and senators are afraid of him." Hoover owes his longevity in that capacity precisely because he held “dirt” on nearly all politicians, including Presidents.

It is becoming clear that President Obama weaponized the DOJ and intelligence agencies against his political foes, especially the Republicans once Donald Trump gained the nomination. Eric Holder, AG, took the point at every opportunity to blame police actions on racism, swell as attempts to reform the election system and immigration. His successor, Loretta Lynch, mostly stood back and watched.

The idea that the director of the FBI would have a 10-year term, was to shield the director from influence of the patronage system, while keeping the term short enough to forestall another Hoover-like dynasty. It’s not working out that way. The real dynasty exists in the top-level executives in the layers immediately below the Director.

These are scary times, and our liberty is at risk. According to the Republicans, the IG report confirms their greatest fears, while the Democrats dismiss it as irrelevant. The difference is that Republicans cite page and paragraph, while the Democrats assume their followers will never read beyond the headlines. We can change that once there is time to digest the real content.


  1. This is absurd. The core finding of the IGs report is that there was no bias on the part of prosecutors. And you’ve distorted that into an admission of the weaponization of the FBI against Trump. When, the biggest wrongdoing was Comey’s inappropriate, anti-Hillary press conference.

  2. To start, it’s important to read the exact text of the IG’s report, not rely on headlines or some other version.
    “While we did not find documentary or testimonial evidence that improper considerations, including political bias, directly affected the specific investigative actions we reviewed in Chapter Five, the conduct by these employees cast a cloud over the entire FBI investigation and sowed doubt about the FBI’s work on, and its handling of, the Midyear investigation” – page 496
    Prior to this “conclusion” there are 495 pages detailing the lapses and political bias derived from millions of documents and hundreds of interviews. While there are no signed confessions, the evidence of wrong doing is overwhelming. These are not lapses of judgement, but constitute (probably) criminal actions.
    Based on the flood of leaks in the Summer and Fall of 2016, continuing into the Trump presidency, there are clear instances of a similar nature in the NSA, CIA, and close associates of President Obama. There is written documentation that POTUS was well inside the loop.
    Absurd indeed!

  3. An email was revealed last week in which Asst. FBI Dir., Rob Rosenstein, threatened members of Congress with investigation of their personal records and emails, should they proceed to impeach him for withholding subpoenaed information. The email was written in January, 2018, and not surprisingly, withheld until now.
    Perhaps overshadowed by the IG’s report, this email is a clear indication of the cutture which exists within the top levels of theagency. It is the kind of threat to which Harry Truman alluded.

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