FISA Abuse?

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johno
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FISA Abuse?

Post by johno » Wed Sep 19, 2018 3:18 pm

Trump has ordered declassification of the origins of the Mueller investigation. Some of the origins, at least.

One take on the use of FISA to investigate Trump & Co. is that a politically motivated FBI & DOJ knowingly used a discredited source, Christopher Steele, and an unreliable document, the Steele-sourced dossier, to mislead a FISA court into issuing warrants to investigate US citizens.

In short, FISA was weaponized to play politics. Fourth Amendment, anyone? Or is this just Alt-Right hysteria?
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Re: FISA Abuse?

Post by Grandpa's Spells » Wed Sep 19, 2018 3:51 pm

johno wrote:
Wed Sep 19, 2018 3:18 pm
Trump has ordered declassification of the origins of the Mueller investigation. Some of the origins, at least.

One take on the use of FISA to investigate Trump & Co. is that a politically motivated FBI & DOJ knowingly used a discredited source, Christopher Steele, and an unreliable document, the Steele-sourced dossier, to mislead a FISA court into issuing warrants to investigate US citizens.

In short, FISA was weaponized to play politics. Fourth Amendment, anyone? Or is this just Alt-Right hysteria?
Alt-Right hysteria.

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Re: FISA Abuse?

Post by Yes I Have Balls » Wed Sep 19, 2018 7:02 pm

Steele memos started being sent in June 2016. Page had been under FISA collection off and on since at least 2014. Tough to use a dossier from the future to get a FISA warrant today.

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Re: FISA Abuse?

Post by johno » Wed Sep 19, 2018 11:52 pm

Every time a FISA warrant is renewed, it requires justification. A single FISA investigation does not surrender a US citizen's Fourth Amendment rights for eternity. And in 2016, the Steele Dossier was used to justify, at least in part, the FISA warrant on Page.

If the Steele Dossier was unreliable and the FBI knew it but used it to support a FISA warrant, that's a huge problem. If you care about the Fourth Amendment and are skeptical of near-unlimited power.
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Re: FISA Abuse?

Post by JimZipCode » Thu Sep 20, 2018 5:27 pm

johno wrote:
Wed Sep 19, 2018 11:52 pm
Every time a FISA warrant is renewed, it requires justification. A single FISA investigation does not surrender a US citizen's Fourth Amendment rights for eternity. And in 2016, the Steele Dossier was used to justify, at least in part, the FISA warrant on Page.

If the Steele Dossier was unreliable and the FBI knew it but used it to support a FISA warrant, that's a huge problem. If you care about the Fourth Amendment and are skeptical of near-unlimited power.
Nice try.
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Re: FISA Abuse?

Post by johno » Thu Sep 20, 2018 10:57 pm

JimZipCode wrote:
Thu Sep 20, 2018 5:27 pm
Nice try.

Thanks for your reasoned contribution.

I get uneasy when bureaucrats are granted nearly unaccountable power. And I get suspicious when those bureaucrats appear to be partisan.

Power corrupts....
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Re: FISA Abuse?

Post by JimZipCode » Fri Sep 21, 2018 6:48 am

johno wrote:
Thu Sep 20, 2018 10:57 pm
I get uneasy when bureaucrats are granted nearly unaccountable power. And I get suspicious when those bureaucrats appear to be partisan.

Power corrupts....
That's very high-minded and non-partison of you. What else does Sean Hannity say?

We know the Steele Dossier didn't exist when the first warrant was authorized in 2014. We know that previous warrants from 2014 to whenever yielded info that the Oct '16 application described as useful intel. The actual information is redacted, but some tantalizing phrases remain in clear, like "repeatedly contacted" and "contradict his sworn testimony". The unredacted parts of the warrant application also detail Page’s interactions years ago with agents of Russian intelligence. The standard for the FISA warrant is "probable cause"; not a trial standard of "beyond a reasonable doubt". Was there probable cause to believe that Carter Page was an agent of a foreign power, and was engaged in activities that involved or were about to involve violations of criminal law? That standard was clearly met. The warrant is justified on its face.

So your claim here is that any reference to Steele Dossier info would automatically be enough to invalidate the FISA warrant application. That seems like nonsense. First of all, the FBI was able to corroborate at least some of the contents of the Steele Dossier. Probably not the juicy stuff, unfortunately; but confirming some of the conversations or meetings or travel reported in the Dossier. When info is corroborated, no use of the corroborated info can invalidate the warrant.

You're also claiming (implicitly) that the four separate federal judges who approved the FISA warrants fell off the turnip truck. The application includes a multi-page footnote that describes how Steele was hired and details the origins of the dossier. (Actually two footnotes. One starts on p17 and describes the origins of the report; a second footnote starts on p29 and details who Steele provided the report to.) The court wasn't "misled" as to the origins of the dossier; the court was fully informed of the origins of the dossier, including the potential for bias on the part of the author. But the court was also informed that the FBI had used previous reports from Steele, that they'd been corroborated and even used in criminal proceedings.

So: yeah, nice try.


johno wrote:
Wed Sep 19, 2018 3:18 pm
One take on the use of FISA to investigate Trump & Co. is that a politically motivated FBI & DOJ knowingly used a discredited source, Christopher Steele, and an unreliable document, the Steele-sourced dossier, to mislead a FISA court into issuing warrants to investigate US citizens.
Yes, that is one take on it. An inaccurate and misinformed and slanted one, but definitely a take.

Here's another take. Surveillance was initiated on Carter Page in 2014, on a warrant application that was enough to establish probable cause then. The surveillance had yielded additional info, redacted but suspicious, that established the surveillance as fruitful and established probably cause itself. And then in addition to that, we have new and serious allegations from a source who has previously provided solid, actionable info. That source has some potential for bias, as described in a huge footnote, but has a good enough track record that they take him seriously. (Also US and UK intelligence services take him seriously.) Of course the surveillance was approved. On the basis of what we know, unredacted, it'd be ridiculous not to approve it.

BTW, how is Steele a "discredited source"? Obviously he's an attacked source, a smeared source. Nunes & Trump & co have certainly been attempting to discredit him. But to the best of my knowledge no single element of the Dossier has been disproven, and much of it has since been established as true. So, what do you mean?

(Here's a piece on Steele from a year-&-a-half ago, more than I knew about him before.)

So from your first post:
  • a politically motivated FBI & DOJ
  • used a discredited source, Christopher Steele
  • and an unreliable document, the Steele-sourced dossier
  • to mislead a FISA court

Literally none of that is accurate.
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Re: FISA Abuse?

Post by johno » Sat Sep 22, 2018 4:18 pm

https://www.wsj.com/articles/what-bruce ... 1535668660

Color me lazy and busy. So I'll refer you to a recent Kim Strassel article^ challenging the Steele Dossier and the FBI's indifference to Ohr's warnings about it. We don't yet know how important the Steele Dossier was in the FBI warrant applications, but it's important to know. And it raises important questions, as I've said above.

As to the politically motivated FBI/DOJ. The Strzok-Page memos reflect palpable hostility and opposition to Trump and favoritism toward Hillary. As to whether his hostility to Trump could impact his investigation, I see indications of that in Strzok's approval of Sally Yates' insubordination that led to her firing. The FBI found Strzok's emails sufficiently embarrassing to demote and then fire him. Is this dispositive of bias? No, but it's a clue.

To the extent possible, I'd like to see the origins of the Mueller investigation declassified. The latest I've heard, there may be information "embarrassing to some of our allies," so we might see less than I had expected.
Last edited by johno on Sun Sep 23, 2018 5:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: FISA Abuse?

Post by Turdacious » Sat Sep 22, 2018 5:03 pm

This is the fault of the Dalai Lama, this is clearly.
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Re: FISA Abuse?

Post by Blaidd Drwg » Thu Sep 27, 2018 9:00 pm

johno wrote:
Sat Sep 22, 2018 4:18 pm
https://www.wsj.com/articles/what-bruce ... 1535668660

Color me lazy and busy. So I'll refer you to a recent Kim Strassel article^ challenging the Steele Dossier and the FBI's indifference to Ohr's warnings about it. We don't yet know how important the Steele Dossier was in the FBI warrant applications, but it's important to know.
That's not an "article". It is an Opinion piece, so labeled and published as such.
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Re: FISA Abuse?

Post by powerlifter54 » Thu Sep 27, 2018 9:33 pm

The amazing thing is how rubber stamped FISA warrants have become.

Carter Paige is a Navy Intel Officer with a clearance. He worked with the FBI to nail Russians.

He was a conduit to getting what the Obamas wanted, an ability to spy on Trump.

But we can wait until it all comes out.

My take is McCabe, Ohr, Comey, or Strzok goes to jail before Flynn.

But still a long way from the end.
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Re: FISA Abuse?

Post by johno » Thu Sep 27, 2018 9:44 pm

Blaidd Drwg wrote:
Thu Sep 27, 2018 9:00 pm

That's not an "article". It is an Opinion piece, so labeled and published as such.

An opinion piece is an article.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Opinion_piece
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Re: FISA Abuse?

Post by johno » Thu Sep 27, 2018 9:49 pm

powerlifter54 wrote:
Thu Sep 27, 2018 9:33 pm
The amazing thing is how rubber stamped FISA warrants have become.

This is a big concern. Coupled with an investigator's apparent political bias, it's a dangerous end around Constitutional Due Process.
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Re: FISA Abuse?

Post by Blaidd Drwg » Fri Sep 28, 2018 4:38 pm

johno wrote:
Thu Sep 27, 2018 9:44 pm
Blaidd Drwg wrote:
Thu Sep 27, 2018 9:00 pm

That's not an "article". It is an Opinion piece, so labeled and published as such.

An opinion piece is an article.

What's problematic here is that you'd offer Opinion as the equivalent to a sourced piece. If you think fancy dancing with nomenclature gets you around this, kudos...but it does not.

keep reading..."that mainly reflects the author's opinion about the subject."

If she had the research, she could craft something worth illuminating,
"He who knows only his own side of the case knows little of that." JS Mill

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Re: FISA Abuse?

Post by johno » Fri Sep 28, 2018 4:51 pm

I substituted her opinion piece for my opinion.

And I'm done with quibbling about this. Anyone who looked at the link would immediately know it was an editorial.
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Re: FISA Abuse?

Post by Blaidd Drwg » Fri Sep 28, 2018 8:08 pm

'll wager a great many people don;t weigh the difference and that somewhat tangentially other people rely on ignorance of that when spreading "news" about. You wouldn't want to be one of those people who relies on puffery to support a claim would you?
"He who knows only his own side of the case knows little of that." JS Mill

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