(FORTRESS OF SOLITUDE, THE WEEKEND EDITION MARCH 1-3, 2019) — THE PLANET watched enthralled as two unprecedented demonstrations of high political theater played out on the global stage. We refer to the second meeting between President Donald Trump and North Korean Chairman Kim Jung Un, as well as the testimony by Michael Cohen, Trump’s former personal attorney, before the House Oversight Committee.

We could write prose tomes on either or each, but we shall be brief on both so that we may present a guest editorial on the Cohen hearing.


In terms of results, it wasn’t the Thrilla in Manila or even the Ploy in Hanoi. Those quick to point out the failure of the meeting to produce a signed agreement forget the unprecedented nature of the President’s visit. As a foreign policy initiative, Trump’s dialogues with Kim rival Richard Nixon’s overtures to Mao in China. That these two men are even talking stands as remarkable progress toward the goal of a unified, peaceful, and prosperous Korean peninsula. Given the hostilities that have existed between the two nations for so long, any expectation for a quick solution belongs in Disney’s Fantasyland.

Kim wanted full removal of the U.S. sanctions. Trump wanted complete denuclearization by the DPRNK. The two sides were unable to reach middle ground. In actuality, major agreements of this type typically happen well in advance. Teams of negotiators first hammer out the terms, and the leaders swoop in at the end to shake hands, smile, sign documents, toast each other, and depart. Stephen Biegun, Trump’s special envoy to the DPRNK and his counterpart did not have enough time for the advance work. Therefore, it’s a big deal that the two men each risked talks without certainties safely in place.

This was a win for both sides. Trump didn’t fold. As he said, “Sometimes, you have to walk.” North Korea views that as strength. Trump has earned Kim’s respect. That could pay off big time down the road. Kim, likewise, has a much better sense of the person with whom he is dealing. He knows know what he didn’t know the first time they met in Singapore: He has a serious negotiator partner.

The summit did achieve a few notables:

  1. Kim agreed to a moratorium on nuclear testing.
  2. Kim also agreed to freeze production of nuclear fuel at the Yongbyon plant.
  3. The two leaders built upon the goodwill sown last June in Singapore.
  4. The talks remain open.

Given the state of tensions not that long ago, these are remarkable achievements.

———- 000 ———-


Michael Cohen’s testimony before the House Oversight Committee providing a riveting marathon of political drama. THE PLANET watched the hearing in its entirety. The two sides of the aisle performed as predicted. Democrats thanked Cohen for his remarks and accepted his remorse as genuine. Republicans painted him as a convicted felon and liar who will in May be going to prison for three years, a man who could not be believed.

Cohen struck us as truthful and cooperative. It’s rare in these types of hearings to hear direct answers, the kind Cohen delivered all day. As he admitted to the committee, as the “fixer” for Trump in his personal dealings, he acted unethically and illegally out of loyalty to the man who was his employer for 10 years. He got caught and has paid a heavy price. Cohen’s going to jail, his reputation is in tatters, he lost his law license, his family has been put under intense stress, he lost a vast amount of money, and friends have left him. He had nothing more to lose after getting assurances from the committee of protection for his family. He’s a man who knows Trump plays to win at all costs, and he knows what that could mean.

No one knows what’s in a man’s soul. Cohen could have been lying once more. Based on what we saw at the hearing, this looks like a man who has owned his crimes, regrets his mistakes, and wants reparation. As chairman Elijah Cummings noted in his brilliant closing remarks, what kind of a country would we be, what kind of a people would we be, if you don’t allow second chances to those who sincerely want to make amends?

———- 000 ———-

With that, THE PLANET presents this guest editorial by Michael A. Cohen (no relation).

Michael A. Cohen (

During the lunch break of Michael Cohen’s (the other one) testimony to the House Oversight Committee on Wednesday, I reached out to an old friend, who is a Democratic political consultant, to get his reaction.

His sense, like mine, was that while Cohen’s litany of Trumpian abuses was compelling and disturbing, it probably hadn’t done much to move the political needle. Both of us were momentarily in awe at our cynical, yet realistic response to the day’s proceedings.

It laid bare the fundamental dilemma of the Trump era: the normalization of his brazen criminality and the complicity of Republicans who refuse to hold the president accountable for his actions.

To quote Cohen, President Trump’s former personal attorney, there resides at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue a “racist, a con man and a cheat.” This isn’t news, but to hear it out of the mouth of a man who had worked intimately with Trump for a decade made it even more disturbing.

During the testimony, we heard that the president may have been alerted to the Wikileaks dump of DNC e-mails by Roger Stone. Cohen made clear that the president was an active participant in a criminal conspiracy to cover-up the payment of hush money to Stormy Daniels — a conspiracy that continued even after he took office. Moreover, Cohen suggested that Trump, along with potentially his lawyers, may have suborned perjury in encouraging Cohen to lie to Congress about the status of a Trump real estate project in Russia.

There were other allegations of insurance fraud, tax evasion, and false statements to the special counsel by the president. Cohen even intimated that Trump knew about the infamous Trump Tower meeting between Russian officals, his son, Don Jr., son-in-law, Jared Kushner, and former campaign manager Paul Manafort.

In short, Cohen’s testimony laid out a pattern of criminality and law-breaking by the president — both before and after his election — that is practically unprecedented in the more than two century history of the American presidency.

And Republican members of Congress could have cared less.

Not one expressed even the slightest concern about the overwhelming evidence that the president has broken the law. Tellingly, few bothered to defend his actions, instead spending their five minutes of questions hurling invectives at Cohen. Ranking Republican member Jim Jordan was particularly hysterical, calling Cohen a “fraudster, cheat, convicted felon and, in two months, a federal inmate.”

Others repeatedly suggested that Cohen is angling for a book or movie deal; that he was lashing out at Trump over bitterness at not being given a plum White House job and, above all, that Cohen cannot be trusted because he’s already pleaded guilty to lying to Congress.

Yet, for all of Cohen’s obvious vulnerabilities as a witness (and his unsympathetic nature), he came across as oddly credible. After all, he was practically the sole person in the hearing room actually willing to defend the president. Indeed, there was something quite strange about listening to Republican after Republican attack Cohen’s credibility, at the same time that he was playing down allegations of Russian collusion against Trump and dismissing the most outlandish and salacious accusations made about the president. Repeatedly, he shot down Democratic conspiracy theories and narrowly focused his allegations against Trump to what he knew, not what he might have suspected.

All of this is more disconcerting when one considers that the attacks on Cohen’s honesty were in defense of a president who lies incessantly. Such is the morally and ethically diminished public careers of Republican politicians who are more focused on maintaining the loyalty of Trump’s cult-like following than upholding their oath of office to support and defend the Constitution.

At the end of the day, truth is the least of the GOP’s concerns. All that matters, it seemed, is carrying water for a president, described by a man who knows him far better than any member of Congress, as ungenerous, unkind, disloyal, and ultimately corrupting.

Indeed, the most telling moment of the hearing came when Cohen turned to the Republican side of the committee room and said, “I’m responsible for your silliness because I did the same thing that you’re doing now for 10 years. I protected Mr. Trump for 10 years. The more people that follow Mr. Trump as I did blindly are going to suffer the same consequences that I’m suffering.”

After watching the appalling performance of complicit Republicans one not only imagines that Cohen is correct — one also hopes so.

———- ooo ———-

Have a great weekend, everybody.


“Art is your loudest voice”Charlie Sam



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  1. dusty
    March 1, 2019 at 1:07 am #

    Cohen also mentioned that Trump told him to send letters to his high school and every other school he attended and threaten them not to release any of his records. Fordham University has already confirmed that they did receive a threat.

    High achievers would not want to bury their achievements.

  2. GMHeller
    March 1, 2019 at 2:51 am #

    ‘Fruit of the Poisonous Tree’
    “A doctrine that extends the exclusionary rule to make evidence inadmissible in court if it was derived from evidence that was illegally obtained. As the metaphor suggests, if the evidential “tree” is tainted, so is its “fruit.” The doctrine was established in 1920 by the decision in Silverthorne Lumber Co. v. United States, and the phrase “fruit of the poisonous tree” was coined by Justice Frankfurter in his 1939 opinion in Nardone v. United States.”

    • Truthsayer
      March 1, 2019 at 6:37 am #

      If one cannot atone for one’s failings. then there is no such thing as redemption, and all of mankind is doomed.

      To err is human. To forgive is divine. Apparently, there is not a spark of divinity left in our hearts these days.

      • danvalenti
        March 1, 2019 at 9:40 am #

        Yes. If all of us do not have the opportunity for redemption, we lose a strong basis for hope. We must offer that chance to everyone. That is all we can do. The rest is up to the individual.

    • GMHeller
      March 1, 2019 at 10:01 am #

      ‘The Attorney-Client Privilege’

      Most, but not necessarily all, of what you tell your lawyer is privileged.

      The attorney-client privilege is a rule that preserves the confidentiality of communications between lawyers and clients. Under that rule, attorneys may not divulge their clients’ secrets, nor may others force them to. The purpose of the privilege is to encourage clients to openly share information with their lawyers and to let lawyers provide effective representation.
      ‘Attorney-Client Privilege’

      Attorney-client privilege refers to a legal privilege that works to keep confidential communications between an attorney and his or her client secret.

      The privilege is asserted in the face of a legal demand for the communications, such as a discovery request or a demand that the lawyer testify under oath.

    • GMHeller
      March 1, 2019 at 10:10 am #

      ‘Attorney-Client Privilege’

      Attorney-client privilege refers to a legal privilege that works to keep confidential communications between an attorney and his or her client secret.

      The privilege is asserted in the face of a legal demand for the communications, such as a discovery request or a demand that the lawyer testify under oath.

      • Mr. Fritz
        March 1, 2019 at 6:57 pm #

        How does this apply in the FBI raid on Cohen’s office?

  3. The school committee
    March 1, 2019 at 4:44 am #

    Trump has no allegiance to anything except his brand,ego,greed marveling in those in countries like China,Russia,North Korea.And the former financially conservative cautious to move forward republican party has sold its soul to a rich punk spoiled bully who will win re-election because of lemmings led by Glenn,Sean,Rush,and Fox News,people so blind there may be trouble in the streets defending a liar superstar.Trump has a hold on people as Cohen stated he would have given his life for this guy .Cohen is just one of 60 million plus.Trump will lead America and the former Republican party in 2020 and a 2nd term.

  4. Ron Kitterman
    March 1, 2019 at 5:59 am #

    These hearings are a great opportunity to call people racists, walk it back and double down, in front of a live audience. Makes great theater.

    • dusty
      March 1, 2019 at 6:23 am #

      Also making great theater is taking money from a charity and using it for your own personal use. I do not know anyone besides Donald Trump who would stoop that low. But he does have followers who have no problem with that.

      • LW
        March 1, 2019 at 8:49 am #

        The Clintons take money from the Clinton Foundation for their own personal use. It’s just a front to make them millions of dollars via pay to play. So know you do know someone else who stoops that low.
        They are all corrupt, Dems, Republicans, all of them. You all act like Trump is the first person to ever do underhanded things.

        • danvalenti
          March 1, 2019 at 9:28 am #

          Good points, LW. Politics, from the backwaters to the Big Time, reeks of vitiation and a type of depravity.

    • danvalenti
      March 1, 2019 at 9:50 am #

      Thanks for the remarks. The brand “racist,” we agree, gets wielded in such hasty and cavalier fashion as to be dismissible. In fact, one could easily argue that a person who casually wields this brand is often the most “racist” of all. You’re middle aged, white, and have a few dollars to your name because of hard work and savings? “Racist.” You disagree with my politics? “Racist.” You challenge my assertions with debate? “Racist.” Pathetics may be the next new brach of social psychology.

  5. LW
    March 1, 2019 at 6:20 am #

    I watched the hearing. Cohen came off as a dishonest, unreliable witness coached on what to say by the Dems. Some of the things he said about Trump are likely true, but he’s such a pathological liar that you can’t tell what’s truth and what’s fiction.
    And to say his life has been destroyed is a reach at best. He’ll do less than the 3 years, and in a white collar prison no less, and will walk away with millions in book and TV deals. He and his family are set for life. He will also pay no legal fees. He was represented by Clinton’s legal team and we all know who pays them.
    And anyone who says only the GOP isn’t interested in the truth is full of it. Dems have no interest in it either. That’s how politics works in this country.

    • dusty
      March 1, 2019 at 6:28 am #

      The GOP clearly has no interest in anything Donald Trump may have done wrong. They do not want to hear about it or investigate anything that even has strong evidence. And these people are traitors and have no interest in their own children’s future.

      This tribal cult like loyalty is mind boggling and has psychiatrists everywhere studying just what part of the brain gets so easily compromised.

      • LW
        March 1, 2019 at 8:23 am #

        And the Dems have no interest in the crimes committed by the Clintons, except to cover them up.
        Your second paragraph describes the Democrats and their followers perfectly.

      • danvalenti
        March 1, 2019 at 9:45 am #

        To broadly brand an entire party makes overgeneralization look like modesty. The GOP are not “traitors.” They DO care about their kids’ futures. There may be “tribal, cult-like loyalty,” and if so, it runs deeply on both extremes of left and right.

        • LW
          March 1, 2019 at 9:59 am #

          Well said, Dan. To add to what you said I believe Dems are not traitors and also care about our kids futures. But I strongly disagree with the tactics they’ve been using for the last 3 years.

    • Truthsayer
      March 1, 2019 at 6:34 am #

      I disagree. Republicans have a double standard giving Trump a walk even on criminal acts far more serious than anything Clinton or even Nixon did. They have zero moral standing at this point in time.

      Trump lies. Period. He spouts BS and total fabrications with nothing to back him up other than a blurb from Fox News which in itself has nothing in hand to back up their opinions.

      Cohen had Justice Department approval for what he said and for the evidence that he brought in hand. It’s an ice cube of evidence from what you’re going to find is an iceberg of evidence of a history of Trump’s illegal acts.

      Sadly, this is not the country that I was raised in nearly 70 years ago. It’s a dumpster fire of left and right wing politics with neither side having a lick of morality. There are no grey areas. There is only truth.

      Until we start putting aside our nonsensical opinions based upon information that we’ve selectively pulled from the toilet that is social media and start standing up for the truth and demanding that those that lie, cheat, steal, or commit illegal acts for their own gain be held accountable, there is no other direction for this country other than down.

      BTW, I am a registered Republican and have been my entire life. I am deeply ashamed of what the party has become in its foolish support of this conman Trump.

      • danvalenti
        March 1, 2019 at 9:43 am #

        “Sadly, this is not the country that I was raised in nearly 70 years ago. It’s a dumpster fire of left and right wing politics with neither side having a lick of morality. There are no grey areas. There is only truth.” These are incredible words. Folks, that’s what we’re talking about when we hold up this board as a model of free speech.

      • Spagirl
        March 1, 2019 at 3:41 pm #

        You have put into words exactly how many of us feel. Democracy as we know it is in real jeopardy.

  6. LW
    March 1, 2019 at 8:41 am #

    So what crimes has Trump committed that is worse than the Watergate scandal, Hillary’s illegal private email server and good old Bill committing perjury and obstruction of justice and raping women? You don’t consider rape worse?
    Did Cohen pay off women to keep quiet? I believe so. Did he do it under Trumps instruction? Not directly but he certainly thought so. Did Trump commit campaign finance violations? Probably but Obama did too.
    I’ve got news for you – all these politicians and rich powerful people are dirty to the core. Trump is no exception, and neither was Obama, the Clintons, Bush 2. There is more focus on Trump because that’s the entire agenda of the Dems.
    And you mention social media info being selectively pulled – that’s exactly what the Democrats and their blind followers do ad nauseum and to a far greater extent because most of the media is liberal. Whether it’s fake hate crimes, or fake racism, they just jump all over it like it’s true. Just today there’s another fake news story about Jared Kushner’s security clearance.
    If you don’t believe Trump that’s fine because he’s not an honest person.But to claim Cohen is telling the truth is laughable at best.

    • danvalenti
      March 1, 2019 at 9:38 am #

      THE PLANET agrees with much of what you say. I tried to listen to Cohen from as neutral a position as possible. Going into the hearings, I felt he would be lying through his gums to get a lighter sentence and for other selfish reasons. After nearly seven hours of public testimony, I had a different view from his words, conduct, body language, and a multiple of other, hard-to-define factors. He’s still trying to help himself. He admitted that. He will be getting rich eventually from various movie, book deals. But none of that precludes being honest. With all that, as I pointed out in my column, I can’t know, Congress can’t know, no one can know what’s in his heart, soul, and intent.

      • LW
        March 1, 2019 at 9:56 am #

        Dan, I thought Cohen’s biggest lie was when he was asked to provide proof that Trump is racist his only response was that there are no blacks high up in Trump’s organization. That’s not proof of racism and never will be. Calling Trump a racist is right out of the Democrats play book and shows that the Dems were coaching him on at least some of what he said if not most.
        Like I said, some of what Cohen said is likely true but he’s so tainted it was turned into a circus. What our gov’t has turned into is appalling.

    • Spider
      March 1, 2019 at 9:40 am #

      Said so well, LW!

      I like to sit back and watch the left wing Democrats slowly destroy their party.


      • Mr. G
        March 1, 2019 at 10:26 am #

        Hey LW, I have become inured to the apparent perpetual use of the Clinton Straw Man argument in defense of Herr Drumpf. The crimes you have mentioned have all been tirelessly investigated, and prosecuted (Obama campaign paid a fine for their “paperwork” violations of campaign finance law) and if they haven’t, they SHOULD be investigated and, where warranted, prosecuted. So should Trump. End of argument.

        • LW
          March 1, 2019 at 11:23 am #

          Your last statement is fair. If Trump committed crimes he should be prosecuted. But Hillary committed a serious felony that put national security at risk, it was covered up, and no one was charged with anything. There’s no straw man, or woman there.
          And by the way, Hillary’s felony was never tirelessly investigated as you state. It was a joke of an investigation from the get go. So that part of your post is untrue.
          And to show some balance here, Reagan was up to his neck in Iran-Contra. Yet got off scott free. Ollie was the fall guy and took the bullet.
          Politics as usual.

          • Johnny Absurd
            March 1, 2019 at 12:55 pm #

            Trey Gowdy rode Hillary’s ass for three years doing investigation after investigation. Stop blowing smoke and lets talk about the problem at hand instead of deflecting. Hannity, Limbaugh and Fox news deflect away from Trump because they cannot defend him.

          • X-Lachs Lounge
            March 2, 2019 at 2:31 pm #

            Trump isn’t perfect but he’s apointed two great judges so far and when Ruth Buzzie Ginsburg retires we will have another. He’s doing an all around great job despite what the deep staters tell you.

          • LW
            March 3, 2019 at 5:03 am #

            JA, what you say is patently untrue. The people who actually did the investigation did nothing even close to a real one, for fear of retribution or for their own personal gain. Strok, Page, Comey, McCabe, etc. made sure good ole Hillary would walk way unscathed.

  7. The school committee
    March 1, 2019 at 8:46 am #

    A few Republicans , a very small number have left the party and will join the majority of Americans in the conservativel middle where social spending is legitimate and accepted.The idea of national healthcare is a idea worth debate and tax cutting should never be at the top of the wealth pyramid.

    • danvalenti
      March 1, 2019 at 9:29 am #

      Yes, TSC. The conservative middle is where 2020 will be run. That rules out the extreme left of the Dems, who are determined to split the party right down the middle. These radical young’uns, if they persist, will had Trump his re-election.

      • X-Lachs Lounge
        March 1, 2019 at 4:54 pm #

        If a republican becomes a democrat the IQ average raises in both parties.

      • The school committee
        March 2, 2019 at 4:45 am #

        If extreme left is Banking regulations I’m a socialist,if it means regulating credit card companies I’m a socialist,if it means reinstalling EPA regulations,controlling prices on big pharmaceuticals I’m a socialist raising SS payments im a socialist,national healthcare im there….remember 1 thing retirements and healthcare cost are killing absolutely killing city and town budgets including well to do towns just at a slower rate.Tax cuts to corporations and wealthy are bankrupting our Country as they blame AS and Medicare.We have moved so far right these issues make me a radical socialist.If your a teacher retired on 60 k you don’t get it ,your good,firemen,police your good.But 300 a month is a failure.Retirements for state,federal,city are bankrupting every city and state.Min wage hike is bankrupting nobody.That money goes right back into our economy creating wealth.

        • X-Lachs Lounge
          March 2, 2019 at 8:45 am #

          Why don’t you google socialism ? You have no clue what it is.

  8. LW
    March 1, 2019 at 10:07 am #

    Let’s add a little perspective to this shall we? The Bush/Cheney administration and the intelligence agencies lied to the American people about WMD in order to start a war. Both Dems and Repubs lapped it all up and off to war we went.
    That was far worse than anything Obama and Trump have done. Not even close. No contest.
    How soon we all forget.

  9. Pat
    March 1, 2019 at 10:14 am #

    With the lack of morality coming from politics today, who wouldn’t be cynical?!? They all have an agenda of more power for themselves and the people are used as pawns. The young have been brainwashed for years in the colleges to think that it’s good to give a big government lots of power.

  10. Pat
    March 1, 2019 at 10:47 am #

    Ocasio Cortez is a dictator in the making. Can’t wait till she tells me she is the boss and I better toe the mark or I’ll be on her LIST. Yes, she is creating a LIST of Moderate Democrats who dare to vote against the far left. Sounds very Nazi Germany to me.

    • Johnny Absurd
      March 1, 2019 at 11:01 am #

      Trump believes the North Korean dictator did not know about the abhorrent abuse of Otto Warmbeir. He believes Putin over his own American military intelligence agency. He believes the King of Saudi Arabia when he says he knew nothing about the killing of journalist Jamal Kashoggi. He believes things no one else in the world believes and his base thinks that makes him a genius and that he is right and everyone else is wrong.

      That my friends is cult behavior.

      • Acute Angina
        March 1, 2019 at 8:01 pm #

        So let’s go to war with china, north korea and russia. That’s the best course of action. Praise the lord and pass the nukes.

    • LW
      March 1, 2019 at 11:25 am #

      Pat, I don’t think AOC is going to last past her 1st term. Even the Dems can’t stand her. If she gets re-elected then there is something seriously wrong with NYC. Oh wait, nevermind anything I just said.

      • Still wondering
        March 1, 2019 at 12:12 pm #

        AOC will be in congress no more than 2 terms. She will have a primary opponent in 2020 and if that fails, her district will be the one that NY will lose after the 2020 census.
        If you don’t believe the census prediction, just look at her district. It encompasses a part of the Bronx and a part of Long Island with Long Island Sound separating the two.
        Try finding any other district that is set up this way.

        • Johnny Absurd
          March 1, 2019 at 1:01 pm #

          AOC may very well not be reelected or even finish this term. But she sure has the republicans pulling their own hair out right now.

          Hannity is frothing at the mouth. Rush is blabbering incoherently. (as usual) And Fox news likes to talk about her so that they don’t have to talk about Trumps latest failing.

          • X-Lachs Lounge
            March 1, 2019 at 4:57 pm #

            She’s a gift to the republicans. Dumbest democrat since Hank Johnson.

          • Gigi
            March 1, 2019 at 8:16 pm #

            The whole basket of Democratic presidential candidates is a gift to President Trump. He will easily be re-elected for a second term!

          • LW
            March 3, 2019 at 5:13 am #

            Not so sure he’ll be re-elected. He is disliked by alot of people, and at times for good reason. Americans tend to vote more for who they like rather than for the policies or changes a candidate brings about or proposes. Obama vs. Romney was a good example.
            This is where Trump keeps making mistakes. If he would focus on all his accomplishment rather than attacking people it would do him good.

  11. Exit Through the Maze Sun
    March 1, 2019 at 10:51 am #


    The first sentence of your column says it all:

    “— THE PLANET watched enthralled as two unprecedented demonstrations of high political THEATER played out on the global STAGE.”

    Theater / Stage. It’s all done with smoke and mirrors.

    Government = Govern – Control. Ment – The Mind
    Government = Control of the Mind!

  12. Trump 2020
    March 1, 2019 at 5:00 pm #

    Cohen is just a mouthpiece for intestinal Clinton parasite Lanny Davis.

  13. Gigi
    March 1, 2019 at 8:13 pm #

    I thought Cohen’s testimony was a joke.
    This man has;
    1. committed perjury
    2. filed false tax returns
    3. made false statements to financial institutions
    4. failed to report $4M in income

    • LW
      March 3, 2019 at 5:26 am #

      The part that got me was he brought up Democrat talking points many times, proof that he was coached by Schiff and Co.
      The Democrats also, quite craftily, asked him questions they knew he would answer a certain way, trying to show he was credible. One was the question on the existence of the Russia video tape on Trump. Everyone knows that tape never existed, so that question was only asked to try and make Cohen sound truthful. They also made sure he said he has no proof Trump colluded with Russia… because the Mueller report will be saying the same thing. They had to make sure he did not say anything the Mueller report would prove false.

  14. The school committee
    March 2, 2019 at 4:46 am #

    Censorship of ideas.

    • X-Lachs Lounge
      March 2, 2019 at 6:42 pm #

      exactly what you find on left wing campi.

      • LW
        March 3, 2019 at 5:16 am #

        The Left is certainly more guilty of censorship.

  15. dusty
    March 2, 2019 at 5:08 am #

    Tribal thinking equals close minded thinking and keeps the thinker in an alternate world where they feel safer

    Not so great for a country trying to survive by dealing with real life issues and solutions to real life problems

    • X-Lachs Lounge
      March 2, 2019 at 11:26 am #

      Who is thinking tribally? Sounds like left wing nonsense.

  16. Pat
    March 2, 2019 at 6:38 am #

    An alternate world where they feel safer sounds like the safe space that college students continue to create on college campuses. Also, Socialism is one great big safe space in which government will take care of you. Idealistic college students, however, haven’t been told the whole story about socialism which is that it promises paradise, but delivers corruption and violence. Just look at every socialist country that is currently imploding and please do not mention Sweden since Sweden is a CAPITALIST country with a large Welfare state.

  17. Pat
    March 2, 2019 at 6:43 am #

    The definition of tribal thinking is:

    “Tribal thinking. Humans find meaning in belonging to a group, adhering to an ideology, identifying with a religion, culture or merely a conviction.” This sounds just like what is driving the far left that has brainwashed so many young college students and have turned them into the Archie Bunkers of our day. Anybody with an idea different from you should be beat up, called names and made to go away.. College campuses today are VERY intolerant places. It’s the far left philosophy or they do not want to listen to you.

    • The school committee
      March 2, 2019 at 3:55 pm #

      Give me 3 Regressive ideas that aren’t take a ways from the American people?

      • X-Lachs Lounge
        March 2, 2019 at 6:41 pm #

        show me 1 person who identifies as regressive.

  18. Barbados
    March 2, 2019 at 9:40 am #

    Dan what stands out for me is how you kept an open mind about Mr. Cohen. Your politics lean right but you’re one the few who can judge people and politics with true independence…
    That’s why this site is so respected. Also opne other note. Since you’ve gotten tougher on weeding out trolls the tone of the comments has been great. People are agreeing, disagreeing, without all the bitterness, egomania, name calling etc.

    • danvalenti
      March 2, 2019 at 9:12 pm #

      Thanks for this, especially the comment on the better tone of the comments section.

  19. Johnny99
    March 2, 2019 at 11:04 am #


    You’re guest editorialist, who claims he found Cohen “oddly credible” failed to mention a few facts, most specifically that not only was Cohen convicted of lying to congress recently, he told several lies to congress during the very hearing in which he was found “oddly credible”. If find that incredible and very odd.

    That a sitting congressional committee would even allow Cohen to testify again is nuts, let alone believe him. It is disgusting and dishonorable for any presidents’ personal lawyer to turn on him and testify, and just imagine if the republicans did such a thing to Obama or Clinton. Of course Trump is a fraud and a phony and anybody with half a brain knew that before they voted for him, but they also had the good sense not to vote for Clinton, who is not only a fraud and a phony, but also a crook and a predator’s protector. Ironically, with all the democratic moon bats running for president now, I would gladly take Clinton as president over any single one of them. The bottom line is even Cohen said he had no evidence of collusion and there were no imeachable offenses alleged. And why did Cohen turn on Trump? Because the deep state threatened to send his wife up the river if he didn’t sing. Just imagine if the deep state went after Obama like they did Trump. The main stream media would have been apoplectic. Just because Trump is an idiot who has failed to act presidential, or grow into the job, doesn’t give the deep state the right to conspire to have him removed from office.

    • Pat
      March 2, 2019 at 12:29 pm #

      I totally agree Johnny 99. Mueller was threatening Cohen’s wife with lots of time in prison unless he lied for the Democrats. Cohen said he never thought Trump could win the election, but is shown on tape fairly recently saying just the opposite. The same with many of his other so called facts.

    • LW
      March 3, 2019 at 5:34 am #

      Very well said. The deep state did everything it could to protect Obama, Clinton, and Bush2 yet go after Trump like there’s no tomorrow.
      Makes one lose any speck of faith they had in gov’t.

  20. Jonathan Melle
    March 2, 2019 at 11:55 am #

    Blogger Dan Valenti knows Pittsfield politics like the back of his hand. However, when it comes to Trump, he gives the current Prez too much credit. I like it when Dan Valenti comments on Pittsfield politics!

  21. The school committee
    March 2, 2019 at 8:21 pm #

    OK,give me 2 regressive ideas.

    • LW
      March 3, 2019 at 5:04 am #

      Here are 2 of the most blatant regressive ideas being bandied about.
      1. New Green deal.
      2. Abolishing Ice

  22. Johnny99
    March 2, 2019 at 11:29 pm #

    A weekend train from Pissfield to Da Big Apple and back, and at what cost and who pays and who benefits? Seriously?????

    What a colossal waste of time and money. Guaranteed to fail. And Tyer will provide parking for rental cars so the tourists can get outta Pittsfield as fast as they can. Or should I say so the crooks can steal and vandalize them cuz the tourists ain’t takin’ a train to da Pitts and gettin’ mugged leavin’ da inter modal. This is either a poorly investigated and written story or there is so much gobbly gook in this scamtrack proposal that it is not only unintelligible but doomed to failure. How many more tax dollars will be wasted so drug dealers can take a train to Pittsfield instead of a bus? God help us!

    • Johnny Absurd
      March 3, 2019 at 3:04 am #

      On the plus side, if you take the train in and use a rental car while here you won’t destroy the tires and front end of your personal vehicle bouncing along the mayors moonscaped roads. And based on what I am hearing the cost saving could be significant.

    • LW
      March 3, 2019 at 5:39 am #

      The stupid part is it’s for a trip to here from NYC and then a return trip back to NYC. It’s a gigantic middle finger to us who actually live here. I guess if we took the return trip to NYC on Sunday we’d be stuck there until the following weekend.

      • Johnny Absurd
        March 3, 2019 at 6:43 am #

        Amazon is rethinking moving to NYC. They may still do it. With a new train Pittsfield residents will be able to commute back and forth while working for Amazon. I think this is what the mayor was thinking all along. She may be smarter than we give her credit for.

        • danvalenti
          March 3, 2019 at 10:34 am #

          Gov. Cuomo said it’s all but over. Yeah, NYS has contacted Amazon for a “reconsider,” but it ain’t happening. NY officials doing it on the “ya never know” strategy, part of due diligence. Guv said the state’s economic development plan would be focused on other companies, using the city of Syracuse as an example of “It’s Happening” (remember that one?). Syracuse University is in the middle of a massive reinvestment on campus, including a $118 million renovation of the Carrier Dome. Many new startups have come in as an ancillary spinoff of the town-gown partnership. The War Memorial arena downtown just got a multimillion facelift. Destiny USA is still adding stores. After its expansion, it’s now one of the largest malls in the world, a place where you often can’t find a parking space in a parking area that would swallow the grand canyon. The State Tower, downtown’s signature building and the tallest building in the state outside of NYC, just received a $47 million overhaul. There’s a waiting list for apartments and office space. We would go on and on. The point is, Amazon’s decision didn’t help the NYC area, but that’s not the only part of the state that’s attracting action. Albany, Syracuse, Rochester, and Buffalo are moving ahead.

          • Pat
            March 3, 2019 at 11:09 am #

            I want that kind of mall in this area Dan V. I know it would never happen here where even a Walmart has to struggle to survive, but I can dream. I love large malls. They are lots of fun to walk around and explore.

          • danvalenti
            March 3, 2019 at 8:34 pm #

            You might consider making the 3-hr. drive. Well worth it. Destiny USA is, well, you have to experience it to believe it. All kinds of shopping, dining, entertainment, drinking, and clubbing options. It’s one of the world’s biggest. At the crossroads of two major interstates (81 N & S, 90 E & W).

  23. The school committee
    March 3, 2019 at 7:02 am #

    Ok ,just 1 republican idea for the American citizen making less than 100k

    • Pat
      March 3, 2019 at 7:53 am #

      Jobs, jobs and more jobs.

      • X-Lachs Lounge
        March 3, 2019 at 7:56 am #

        Lower income tax so you can hand over the difference to our Democrat mayor.

    • Trump 2020
      March 3, 2019 at 7:54 am #

      Lowest unemployment rate in 60 years.

  24. Pat
    March 3, 2019 at 7:53 am #

    I support President Trump’s idea that colleges should lose funding if they do not allow “free speech” on their campuses. It’s disgusting that we even have to have this happen since colleges used to be very open minded places of learning, but colleges have turned into such intolerant and hateful places where little learning takes place, but lots of indoctrination to the far left cause is what a modern college education is all about. Beating up people and banning people from speaking who disagree with your political ideas sounds a lot like Nazi Germany, but so many of the tactics used by the far left are like that.

    • Johnny Absurd
      March 3, 2019 at 8:42 am #

      It’s awful. and .Holy Cow!! Is Hannity saying the democrats are Nazis again Pat? And if so you do believe him, right?

      • X-Lachs Lounge
        March 3, 2019 at 10:40 am #

        When did Hannity say that?

      • Mr. Big
        March 3, 2019 at 7:24 pm #

        Hitler , AOC and Corey Booker , three vegetarians. I guess das furher was worried about cow farts as much as your average Democrat.

  25. Pat
    March 3, 2019 at 11:06 am #

    When I attended college, there were always weird groups around spouting different ideologies and trying to take advantage of idealistic young people and you had to be aware of their true motives, but there was never any danger of free speech being shut down on campus, but today there is that danger and it needs to be addressed. Young people should not be attacked or banished for expressing their opinions. We don’t do that in this country….the land of the free.

    • The school committee
      March 3, 2019 at 1:20 pm #

      What weird groups were successful on your campus Pat?

      • Pat
        March 3, 2019 at 8:17 pm #

        I don’t remember the names, but one was some sort of organization that was a local group that I later found out was taking advantage of the people they were supposed to be helping. There were some groups that were genuinely trying to help people, but it could be tricky to figure out which groups truly had good intentions.

    • Johnny Absurd
      March 3, 2019 at 1:57 pm #

      Young people should have free speech. Unless it is someone like AOC who is a democrat and therefore needs to zip it and toe the line. She does realize she is also female? and thusly should be further shuttered and show due respect to the rich white man in charge.

      Did I get that right Mr. Hannity?

      • X-Lachs Lounge
        March 3, 2019 at 4:31 pm #

        When did Hannity say that?

    • danvalenti
      March 3, 2019 at 8:36 pm #

      What you say about the censoring of free speech is, unfortunately, accurate. Campuses, which used to be places of scholarship and rousing debate, have been turned into ideologic factories where the far left preach and convert. For any different points of view, they have two strategies: Safe room for the delicate babies and censorship.

  26. The school committee
    March 3, 2019 at 1:17 pm #

    Trump did not run on ideas and did not expect tha o be elected.When he won hes did a take away of the subsidy of Affordable Care Act ax nd gave that money to the Corporations and the wealthy,2 trillion dollars.

  27. doomiedodger
    March 3, 2019 at 2:04 pm #

    Pittsfield may be getting a “dog park”? How awesome is that? But who pays for it? I have been paying taxes for schools for over 50 years even though I never had a kid in any school. Should I also be paying towards a dog park even though I never had or will have a dog? What I do have is a cat. Will my cat be getting some benefit from the communal tax pool? And if not why not?

    Just curious.

  28. The school committee
    March 3, 2019 at 5:16 pm #

    Turmoil at the My Greylock school being run by Superintendant Grady usually she leaves a school system just before they catch up with her bullying of persons in her charge.This should be a continuing drama in the future.