WSJ Asks: Why Is The Media Ignoring The Real Bombshell FISA Memo?

Authored by Guy Benson via,

We'll bring you Wall Street Journal columnist Kimberly Strassel's tweetstorm in a moment, but I'll take a stab at answering her question about the media right out of the gate.  

Three possibilities:

(1) The GOP hyped the Nunes memo, which quickly became the center of this whole firestorm -- replete with counter-memos, FBI objections, etc.  The press followed the spotlight.

(2) As we've been saying, there are so many complex pieces of this larger puzzle, following the plot is difficult.  It's not just news consumers wondering, "which memo is this now?" -- it's many of the people trying to cover this drama, too.  The document in question here is a second, less redacted, version of a Senate memo that few people have even heard of. 

(3) The Senate memo, produced by non-bomb-throwers Chuck Grassley and Lindsey Graham, is substantially more disruptive to the Democrats' narrative than the Nunes document.  And the press generally prefers Democratic narratives to Republican ones because most journalists are liberals. 

My guess is that some blend of all three factors helps explain why the Grassley/Graham memo has barely registered on the national radar, even after we've endured multiple high-octane news cycles starring Nunes and Schiff.  But on the substance, does Strassel have a point, or is this just the latest shiny object the right-wing is waving around to distract from "the real story," now that the Nunes memo was arguably a bit of a dud?  Here's her case:

Does that all of check out?  Allahpundit digs into the document (a much more redacted version had been released previously) and seems to agree that Grassley/Graham is a significantly bigger deal than Nunes.  In our analysis of the latter document last week, we wrote that a major question was how much the DOJ relied on the Steele dossier itself to gain a FISA warrant against former Trump adviser Carter Page.  According to Grassley/Graham, the answer is a lot.  I posited that if investigators had used the unverified dossier as a starting point from which to chase down leads and produce more solid evidence to present to a FISA judge, that'd be one thing.  But if they leaned heavily on Steele's file itself as the "evidence," that would be sketchier.  According to the two GOP Senators, the FBI did the latter.  From AP's excellent summary (the relevant bits of the memo itself are here and here):

...“The bulk of the application” against Page was dossier material...

“The application appears to contain no additional information corroborating the dossier allegations against Mr. Page.”

In other words, they seem to have treated the dossier as evidence, not as a lead. That’s big news.

But that's not all. Grassley/Graham allege, based on intelligence, that the man behind the anti-Trump dossier was known to be unreliable by the FBI (they eventually severed ties with him) because he was caught lying either to US law enforcement or to British courts, telling each entity different stories about a key fact. Either way, FISA judges who approved and renewed the Page warrants weren't told about the proven unreliability of the foreign agent whose work product was (apparently) the central basis for said warrants. The FBI might counter that Steele seemed credible at first, then they dumped him when he burned them, but that doesn't mean their hands are clean, Allahpundit writes:

(a) that doesn’t solve the problem that the original FISA application against Page evidently relied “heavily” on information passed from a not-very-credible foreign agent and

(b) that doesn’t explain why the Bureau allegedly failed to tell the FISA Court in later applications to renew their surveillance of Page that Steele’s info maybe hadn’t been so credible...Grassley and Graham make another good point about Steele’s chattering to the press while his investigation was still ongoing: Once bad actors were aware that he was digging for dirt on Trump, they could have sought him out and fed him any amount of BS in hopes of it trickling through to the FBI and deepening the official suspicion surrounding Team Trump. That’s how Clinton cronies — maybe even Sid Blumenthal — got involved in this clusterfark. Because Steele was supposedly willing to accept even unsolicited tips about Trump, the Clinton team may have fed him rumors to help fill a dossier for which their boss was paying.

Two big points there:

Even after the FBI recognized Steele was an established liar, his dishonesty was not disclosed to judges deciding whether to keep the warrants active during renewal applications, which were largely predicated on Steele's credibility.

And the topic about which he apparently lied was whether he blabbed to folks in the media about his work, which could have opened up the floodgates for disinformation from shady characters eager to make the anti-Trump case as juicy and brimming with salaciousness as possible.

That's where Blumenthal and company, whom I wrote about here, may have come in. What a mess. Also, speaking of not revealing pertinent information to the courts, it looks like Nunes was technically incorrect that the judges weren't made aware that the Steele dossier was paid political oppo research. But he was more broadly correct that the judges didn't have even close to the full picture of who was behind the unverified partisan document upon which they were primarily basing the surveillance of a US citizen -- who happened to be a former aide to a major presidential campaign from the out-of-power party.

"As Nunes himself later admitted, the Bureau apparently did disclose in a footnote that the material was paid political research. It just didn’t mention who, precisely, had paid for it," AP writes.  The memo reads, "in footnote 8, the FBI stated that the dossier information was compiled pursuant to the direction of a law firm that had hired an "identified US person" -- now known as Glenn Simpson of Fusion GPS...the application failed to disclose that the identities of Mr. Simpson's ultimate clients were the Clinton campaign and the DNC."  

So the disclosure came in a footnote and didn't mention that the parties who paid for the unverified dossier were the Trump campaign's explicit opposition.  Maybe there was no misconduct in any of this, but even as someone who believes neither that suspicion of Carter Page was unreasonable, nor that this is all part of a grand anti-Trump conspiracy (remember, the Trump angle of the Russia probe started earlier, for an unrelated reason), there's enough in the Grassley/Graham memo to make me uncomfortable with the standards by which Page was surveilled by the US government.


Dilluminati SilverDOG Fri, 02/09/2018 - 11:10 Permalink

The corporate media doesn't care about people, countries, rights, quality of life, morals, national security, or have any human values.  These cocksuckers are sycophants pandering to the Uber wealthy globalist who own private islands, have bodyguards, can molest and abuse and evade the law, in short behave like the Clinton Crime Family.


In reply to by SilverDOG

D503 JimmyJones Fri, 02/09/2018 - 12:22 Permalink

Stop living on the plantation. The MSM is not "democrat" or "republican," it is the mouthpiece of whoever pays for it; as are most politicians. 

Just because some prefer the blue koolaid to the red koolaid, doesn't make either color better. You're still drinking the fucking koolaid retards.

There is a new party forming. No RINOs, no race and gender baiting Democrats. No elephants, no donkeys. Lions only.

Wake up or get swept away in your soap opera left right paradigm. 

In reply to by JimmyJones

D503 Dr. Acula Fri, 02/09/2018 - 13:34 Permalink

Whites who hate (((jews))) are as pathetic as blacks who hate the"white devils."

If whites are so great, then how does the jew outsmart you? If blacks are so great, then how does the white man keep you down?

Caledonia fears no jew, wears no collar, prays to no Abraham religion. You go to churches because you are too weak to know "God" directly. You're a dog of your master, and your master tells you to fear the jew. 

Keep trying to goosestep in laces and braces though, stormfront. Christians and catholics still pray to their jewish savior and won't follow you back to futhark no matter how much you explain your inferiority complex.

In reply to by Dr. Acula

D503 grizfish Fri, 02/09/2018 - 15:00 Permalink

 I'd argue there is no difference between a religion that prays to a bible or a religion that prays to a group of people in a self appointed argument to authority over other men.  

If you actually read my post you'll see I decimated the racist argument made by "Dr Acula" above,  not asserted one of my own. 

In reply to by grizfish

Yogapith D503 Fri, 02/09/2018 - 16:45 Permalink

Oh you hint in your comment that you know God directly? Well arrogance is not a divine quality. Im hindu and my lineage originates from Brahma whose wife s name is Sara-Swati, the goddess of learning...funny isnt call it Brahmanic religion (Vedas)....Sara-Swati is always competing with the goddess of fortune. (((J.))) worship the owl, the shadow of the goddess of fortune which brings inauspicious results to societies and not permanent happiness. This is why they.are despised because they promote immoral things, are greedy materialists and power hungry to a high degree. Individually they can be great people collectively they really suck. And they use other groups for their own benefits.

In reply to by D503

D503 Yogapith Fri, 02/09/2018 - 18:10 Permalink

 So did you learn your religion from books written by men, or from the mouth of them? Who is Brahma? You know this directly, or did someone else explain it to you? Full faith in the claims of others. 

Why do I need those degrees of separation?

To be fair, if I were to grade the major religions, Hindi and its derivative Buddhism receive my highest marks. But saying so just pissed you off more I'm afraid.  Lol

Project your ego here:

In reply to by Yogapith

D503 afronaut Fri, 02/09/2018 - 18:18 Permalink

 Exactly. Why would I fear another man based on race, religion, or creed? What one can do to benefit me,  or harm me is the truth; if he disguises his intent, and I never discover it, than according to Natural Law,  I got my just due. Now if I discover it, and possess the power to correct the injustice, then he will suffer his trespass.  Should I lack the power, then we are not equals to begin with.  

All of this is clearly explained in the Second Treatise on Government by John Locke. Don't you people read? 

In reply to by afronaut

nevertheless D503 Sat, 02/10/2018 - 12:21 Permalink

White don't hate Jews, Jews hate whites...Even though we are slaves for them, fight their wars, they still loath us.


Jews dominate the western media, and entertainment, and use that domination to poison our children's minds.Jews tell our stories, and use that privilege to write history that paints us as evil, while painting them as saints...


Seen the latest Star Wars movie, love how they make men out to be wimps, and how Luke Sky-walker, a hero to many growing up, is portrayed as a weak man, ineffectual and spineless...

And on and on, who do you think weaponized feminism, racism, abortion, "global warming", they wish to destroy US





In reply to by D503

Al Gophilia D503 Fri, 02/09/2018 - 12:41 Permalink

Come, children. Gather round and sit in front of me on the Story Mat. I have a story about a Republic and its Constitution. "Once upon a time, Long, long ago, there lived a country where people were unchained from the tyranny of government and its armies.

"Everyone was equal under the law because, well, under the law, everyone is treated as equal".

"One day a group of naughty, nasty men, with evil and greed in their hearts, stole the Constitution from the people and convinced them that democracy was necessary so that everyone could have a say."

"The People fell for the ruse and forgot about the Constitution and its wisdom. Instead, they learned to vote for their champions and have been divided and unequal ever since."

(Look at the division on this board. We're being played and the division must stop before we can get our republic back).

Just sayin.

In reply to by D503

Expendable Container D503 Fri, 02/09/2018 - 13:17 Permalink

Best comment yet! They are just 2 cheeks on the same Bum, the Rothschild Dynasty Backside. There is so much more evil going on against we, the people (Black, White, Yellow and Brown). Its all distraction and fake 'democracy' while far worse cometh.

Find out about this Big Picture Hell that is being rolled out for you and your family. ALL ROADS LEAD TO THE ROTHSCHILDS: This affects YOU and your family wherever you are, whoever you are. Know Thy Enemy (or how can you defend yourselves). Listen right through for Forewarned Is Forearmed.

In reply to by D503

optimator GunnyHerd Fri, 02/09/2018 - 17:31 Permalink

14K a month, and you're bragging about it?  Well, my wife's Grandfather, who came from Italy with out a penny and only spoke three words of English, made ten times that amount a month.  And he only put in a few minutes a day unlike yourself.  And he never gave away what he did to anyone.  His only three words of English were, "Stick 'em Up".

In reply to by GunnyHerd

Endgame Napoleon DosZap Sat, 02/10/2018 - 13:07 Permalink

S/he is probably just one of the millions of underemployed Americans, turning to stuff like that to cover things like rent and food. All Americans cannot rely on pay-per-birth monthly welfare, child-tax-credit welfare that topped out at $6,444 before doubled by the oh-so-conservative RepubliCONs and part-time work that keeps them below the earned-income limit for monthly welfare and the cut off for the refundable [EITC] child tax credit. The poster might not have the option to “work the system,” relying on governent-subsidized sex and reproduction to fill the gap between low wages from part-time work and the cost of major monthly bills. Most citizens lack the option to be paid by the US government to copulate and reproduce, whether or not they are citizens of this country.

In reply to by DosZap

pods Ghost of PartysOver Fri, 02/09/2018 - 11:37 Permalink

If there was an actual watchdog media, this would be (properly) classified as bigger than Watergate. It would shake DC to the core. Frog marches everywhere.

As it is, it is being treated like a political issue. In reality, it is a criminal abuse of power.

OTOH, why is the TRUMP Just-us department not frog marching the perps at this moment?  We can blame the press all we want, but in reality, this is a criminal issue.  They have ALL the information, why not sling some indictments?  Why is this being prosecuted in a rep/dem he said/she said affair?  There is no need for any public approval for enforcing the law. If we have reached that level of government, then spying on the opposing party really isn't that big of a deal.

So which is it?


In reply to by Ghost of PartysOver