4 thoughts on “Exclusive look at one of those Comey memos

  1. First, my subconscious read it as “hannity” instead of hanging. This picture is great!

    I’ve just read Misha Glenny’s book McMafia: A Journey through the Global Criminal Underworld, which came out in 2008 so ten years old already, and it was fascinating/terrifying. Tromp had a couple of mentions in it but what was disturbing was to see the degree of geographic specialization of illegal activities (ex: Albania = cigarettes). Ukraine was (is?) the linchpin in human trafficking, sex trafficking, and online porn — which makes me pretty sure that, given the Tromp circle’s close connections with Ukraine, that there are more horrific revelations about the nature of their criminal activity still coming. I was a juror on a child pornography case and learned some about that world. Turns out one can order bespoke child abuse scenarios on the Ukrainian “dark web.”

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    1. Tromp loved to walk in on scantily clad teenagers in his beauty pageant days, and bragged about it openly. So whatever the Ukrainian mafia is doing with children isn’t so far off what passes for his moral compass that it’s going to bother him. Hell, he sexualizes his own daughter and has since before she was grown.

      Poor Albania, at the bottom of the league tables even in criminality. I mean, cigarettes are awful, but they aren’t slavery and child abuse. Let me explain…

      Back when there was still a Yugoslavia, its citizens told “Albanian jokes”, which had the same set up and punchlines as the 70’s American “Polack jokes”. They probably still do, even with all the inter-Yugoslav wars. Apparently life in Albania was even more communist dictator-y and the economy was worse. I bet those jokes haven’t changed much in thousands of years, worldwide. Anyway, I heard HOURS of these one night, partying with Bosnian Yugoslavs.


      1. Back when I used to listen to shortwave radio for entertainment, I heard the hosts on Radio Moscow answering reader questions, and one was about what jokes they told in Russia that were similar to the USA’s ‘Polack’ or ‘Aggie’ jokes. The host confidently explained that Russia had nothing at all like that. Ah. Well, then.

        One of the books I was lucky to happen upon is Whispered Anecdotes: Humor From Behind The Iron Curtain, collected and edited by Petr Beckmann, a professor at the University of Colorado (who turns out to have been known by my friend Harry, who has met everybody but Jon Singer). They’re mostly political jokes, but I like to mention the book whenever I can anyway.

        SCTV did one show where their satellite was taken over by the USSR’s top station (“Three-C-P-One”), which had great programs like “What Fits In Russia?” where the host stuck other countries inside the enormous confines of Mother Russia and laughed about how small they were, and “Hey, Gyorgy!” which is just some guy everybody likes. (Except ‘stinking Uzbeks,’ which the show returned to from time to time, to insult gratuitously.)

        Anyway, I know you want me to tell you the last joke in the book, so:

        St. Peter offered to grant one wish each to Brezhnev, Mao Tse Tung and Dubcek.
        ‘Let floods loose on China, such as China has never seen, until the Chinese are wiped off the face of the earth!’ wishes Brezhnev.
        ‘Grant that an earthquake shakes Russia until not a brick remains on top of another and Russia lies for ever in ruins!’ wishes Mao.
        ‘Well, if you are going to grant the other two gentlemen’s wishes,’ says Dubcek, ‘you might bring me a cup of coffee.’

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      2. It’s one of the great, overlooked aspects of the Cold War — that the various Communists hated each other as much (or more) than they hated the West. They didn’t really have much interest in workers of the world uniting and couldn’t agree on even the most basic doctrine (ie: who is the revolutionary class – urban proletariat or rural peasants? can we skip steps on the road to communism? what role is there for the nation-state? leadership via vanguard party or the masses?)


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