Flynn Flam: I really doubt it’s Trump’s Watergate

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/02/14/us/politics/russia-intelligence-communications-trump.html

I think for this to not be just the typical, dissonant noise that is going to be the ambiance of the Trump years, there needs to be a quid pro quo not just proven, but articulated… and I’m not seeing it.  Flynn’s conversations with the Russians about the sanctions could very well be just a bunch of shit talk by a guy (Flynn) who didn’t have authority to pro quo anything…

Flynn is pro quo-ing in December right, when he says the Wikileaks / FSB sanctions will go away…. Pro quo-ing for what?  It assumes that Trump asked the Russians for the whole DNC Wikileaks thing, and were thus obligated to make a payback.  I just don’t think that’s the explanation for DNC Wikileaks.  And… it actually doesn’t stand that Trump would pay the Russkies or anyone else back for anything it was implied he owed, if he didn’t want to pay them back…  That’s how he rolls, he feels entitled, he doesn’t pay people back, doesn’t reciprocate.  So the fallback for people who think Trump owes them, the collateral, its supposed to be blackmail right.  Ya know, KOMPROMAT…  The man can not be embarrassed, it doesn’t work.

It is a great curiosity to me that there’s all this wiretapping and cable intercepting going on at various points since the election.  Ya know, I know the government is way beyond having to actually have warrants, but usually a mitigating explanation is required.  In the absence of probable cause, the potential for terrorism.  That would all seem to be completely absent.

So, say there is a quid pro quo proven.  And I’m amenable to the notion, sure.  He’s not being impeached, alright.  You’re not getting the Republican congress to do that, deserve-d or not.

Updated to add:

OK, the assumption is, all correspondence between Americans and Russian diplomats is monitored to the extent it can be.  So, the CIA et al picked up the Flynn conversations and someone is leaking a rough outline of them to damage Flynn and Trump.

https://reason.com/blog/2017/02/14/pro-snooping-gop-rep-claims-shock-at-fed

Which is totally fine.  But the ambiguity is sending lefties to the conclusion of “it’s worse than Watergate!” when it may very well fall short of that.

I need a gig, 2017 edition, day 15: Funemplyoment

I didn’t have a job to go to yesterday, I’m on funemployment furlough.  If my recent personal history is to be a guide, I’ll get a job this week or next, at which point it will have been really cool to have been off for a week or two, just doing stuff that has languished.

We’re in good shape, I got another paycheck coming and I have my tax refund money coming.  Gig workers like me are eligible for unemployment, but it’s a max of $512 a week or something.  Not as if that isn’t a useful amount, but if you can only draw for a week, which I expect to be the case with me…. It just adds complexity to my tax return in ways that I’d rather not bother with.  So I haven’t looked at it and may not.

EHG continues to have open reqs on the vendor systems out there, and I am submitted, but have not been called.  I’m weak in a desirable skill set common to a lot of job reqs, and one EHG seeks in particular.  I have a lot of vendors trying to submit for the same jobs at EHG, it has some appearance of being the only game in town at the moment.

There is a “test score processor” in town that has contract needs.  I had a sit down with some people to discuss that.  Its fine, but they aren’t starting their project until end of March.  I expect to be able to take a gig by then.

One of my old vendors will straight up call me and give me a job at a “mining and manufacturing company” here in town if he gets a signature on a bid for work… which he seems likely to get.  It’s just a matter of timing.

Gig economy article, about the white collar sector in particular.  Reporter expresses this all as if it’s a new thing, which it isn’t.  https://www.minnpost.com/good-jobs/2017/02/minnesotas-gig-economy-not-just-artists-and-uber-drivers-anymore

 

FFS: Nordstrom’s and Ivanka

FFS = For Fxxxx Sake

Nordstrom’s is right to drop the Ivanka trade. Has nothing to do with them being a right or left company or who’s pressuring them. They are a store operation; they don’t need the distraction of politics.

This seems clear cut, Conway is across a line. http://nymag.com/thecut/2017/02/kellyanne-conway-says-to-go-buy-ivankas-stuff.html

Is anyone going to prosecute her? I doubt it.

As far as one might say “all administrations break the small laws and don’t get prosecuted”, I suggest this is kind of analogous: http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2016/jul/19/obama-wont-punish-castro-violating-hatch-act/

Merchandising, celebrity merchandising…. Jordan Kushner has like a $1m w2 job at the family REIT and gets a profit distribution from the family REIT, Ivanka, same from the Trump REIT. That’s how they live, that’s how their rich people household expenses are met. The merchandising money from Nordstrom’s, it may be in the low 6 figures a year say (and I think that’s a generous guess, probably too high), but its mad money nonetheless… it’s an afterthought, they could give it up and should.

Ya know, I like Gorsuch, I like the war on fake global warming, I think Devos is okay…. But I am properly embarrassed by the Trumps. They are very small people. Lucky for them I guess, quite a lot of people are not embarrassed.

Jots w/ dots 2/8/17

Cooper http://www.startribune.com/bill-cooper-builder-of-tcf-and-minnesota-s-republican-party-dies-at-73/413166943/ I learned about a week ago his boat on Minnetonka is named ‘Overdraft’. I thought that was pretty douche-y. He’s well regarded though.

This is the thing: not fascism, but a time killer http://theweek.com/articles/678650/president-trump-wasting-time

Trump may very well be right on this though http://www.startribune.com/trump-says-he-would-have-won-minnesota-with-1-more-visit/413077033/ Would have fit neatly and proximately among newly red IA, WI, and MI.

Because darn it, he’s good enough. http://www.businessinsider.com/media-pundits-think-al-franken-is-democrat-to-take-on-trump-2017-2 He strikes me as a credible candidate, a guy who’d have a shot at winning. Because of his celebrity and because he’s got enough gravitas generally. Not that I’d vote for him.

Bannon

The left thinks he’s Rasputin amirite. That’s the analog, Rasputin. Whatever he is, the right found identical Rasputins around Obama in 2009 (Valerie Jarrett, Van Jones). Same, identical phenomena. The party out of the WH sees Rasputins.

http://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2017/2/8/14525228/president-bannon-steve

I discern:

Bannon is superficially qualified enough to be a “Presidential advisor”, has done enough things in life.

Bannon is superficially qualified to be on NSC, has done enough things in life.

Bannon is a bomb-thrower, not temperamentally qualified to be either.

Him and this cabal he comes from are not anti-Semites in the standard way people think of anti-Semites. They are mawkishly philo-Semitic actually, but have a bent about liberal Jews and Jews & liberalism. Which is a thing, its a spot on the creep/bigot conspiracy theory continuum no doubt.

You look at Bannon’s biography and it’s noted that formatively he was a Navy officer. These people, these guys, the military officers… there is an automatic high-regard in this country for their character, astuteness, and decisiveness….. ummm, that’s just never been a notion reinforced by the ones I’ve met. The ones I’ve met have been consistently jerky and prone to foibles we’ll say. They talk about Mattis as kind of a Samurai right… well maybe you do need people like that on the wall, as Nicholson said in “A Few Good Men”, but… these guys are often a bit kooky.

I need a gig, 2017 edition: Day 8

Last week in this space I mulled the curiosity of being a rare-ish middle aged white guy technical practitioner in the world of IT consulting, where the wages are not low to the point it’s a ‘job Americans won’t do’. Then days ago in this space I lamented that the rates on requisitions presented to me were kind of low. Well, there’s a macro intersection of these phenomena….

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/trump-h-1b_us_5890d86ce4b0522c7d3d84af Pullquote: “Another dirty little secret in all this is that the H-1B program is an enabler of rampant age discrimination in the tech industry. Age is actually one of the core issues in H-1B. Mind you, we are talking about age 35 as being “old” here, not 55. Almost all the H-1Bs are young, and younger is cheaper. And young H-1Bs are even cheaper than young Americans.”

Now, I’m not bitter about the basic phenomena…. At all. I think it’s kind of always been thus, someone is always undermining someone else’s rate. One would best just keep getting more skilled to be in demand, etc. And I don’t contemplate the proposition of ‘fairness’ etc, I’m not owed anything. But there is this irritation I have in observing that companies will keep a requisition open for months at say $48/hr rather than fill it at $55/hr. And also an irritation at the absurdity of the skill sets they think they can procure at $48/hr, IE, programming engineers with a basket of niche, expert abilities. With both things, the companies are enabled by the wealth of well-educated technologists coming in from India on H1-B.

Is what it is though.

I need a gig, 2017 edition: Day 4

Agile is a software development process / method. Very, very broadly, it’s supposed to be nimble, iterative, and absent the documentation regimens of the prior software era… that which was mostly done under a starched shirt and pocket protector methodology called “waterfall”.

I started working under the agile development process about 5-6 years ago. And it was fine, so fine that I didn’t even contemplate it at first. But then hiring managers really explicitly started asking for people who had worked under Agile. So I revamped my resume about two gigs ago to express that very thing, that I’m accustomed to working in contemporary development environments with contemporary tools (Agile and Java, not waterfall and green screens).

So my resume literally says, I work under Agile, and have in every project I’ve been on since 2010. It was Agile here, and it was Agile there, and then it was Agile there…. PCC, Greentree, Ecolab, 3M, Carlson….

Well my resume got looked at by someone at EHG and they claim they don’t see the Agile, and that thus I’m not qualified…..

That along with it being kind of slow… I’m seeing all the same requisitions from different people… is making me have a minor anxiety attack right now.

…its going to be fine.