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Ep 842[Ep 843] Early Maypril [2:07:39]
Recorded: Sat, 2023-Aug-05 UTC
Published: Mon, 2023-Aug-07 16:51 UTC
Ep 844

This week on Curmudgeon's Corner, Ivan was supposed to be back. But his computer exploded or something, so he wasn't. So Sam toughed it out to do a mostly solo show. The solo part was 100% on Trump's latest set of indictments in DC and looking at that from a variety of angles. For the last segment though, Alex joins in to talk about one of his latest projects via a broken microphone.

  • (0:01:48-0:05:14) Intro
  • (0:08:04-0:43:32) Indictment Part 1
  • (0:45:02-1:14:58) Indictment Part 2
  • (1:18:18-1:42:14) Indictment Part 3
  • (1:43:55-2:07:05) Tea- uh... CapsulePlayground!

Automated Transcript

Okay, welcome to this corner. I've got the audio going from both places, which is confusing.

So let me, uh, I'm going to mute me over there and turn off my volume over there. This is just a test.

I am going to, you know, okay. So here is me as the host and I am saying, hello, hello, hello. I just want to see how the output comes out of this.

And then I didn't have, I haven't uploaded the curmudgeon's corner intro or anything yet.

Uh, cause, uh, it, it only wants MP3s apparently.

Um, okay. So now I'm going to mute myself on this computer and start myself on the guest computer.

And here I am from the guest side. Woo, woo, woo, woo, woo, woo, woo.

I'm going to make this stop.

Okay, um, that's good enough for now. I'm going to hit stop, and we will test what the editing's...

Wait, let me switch back to the other me.

Okay, I'm back as host, and I'm going to shut up now. Okay, bye.

We're going to test this. Oh, what's this do? Uh, okay.

Here we go. Thank you.

Welcome to curmudgeon's corner for Saturday, August 5th, 2023.

It is 1924 UTC as I'm starting to record and I'm Sam Mentor and there is no Yvonne Bow.

Yvonne, Yvonne, Ivan, Ivan, Yvonne Bow. There is no Yvonne Bow.

Uh, you know, we had guest hosts the last two weeks. Yvonne was supposed to be back this week, but his computer exploded or something. And he ordered a new computer, but it has not arrived yet.

And, you know, we had Bruce and then we had Ed and I sent out another email to everybody else, essentially besides Bruce and Ed saying, you know, does anybody else want to co-host? And I did not get any response this time.

So rather than pull in Bruce and that again, because they just had a thing, um, or Alex, who was the third person of the most recent three people other than Yvonne to co-host with me.

Uh, so I didn't include him in the email either.

Um, uh, rather than post rather than pull any of them in, uh, I'm going to do a do a solo show because, you know, Bruce and I just did it, you know, they'll do it again soon.

I'm sure, but it's just going to be me. Also, we had big breaking news.

Uh, we of course had the Donald Trump indictment for, uh, his attempts to undo the 2020 election.

And I figured...

That's something, uh, you know, yeah, I don't know. I, this, this show is going to be all that. That's the plan.

Um, I did attempt a couple of times to try to convince Yvonne to do it anyway, without his computer. Like I am trying out a brand new recording solution.

This time I'm looking at Riverside instead of Zencastr because Riverside has the advantage that, you know, you can, it's got mobile apps too.

So if your computer's screwed up, you can, you can use your phone or whatever.

But Yvonne was like, no, you know, also my wife's out of town.

I'm taking care of the kid by myself. It's kind of crazy here.

So what, whatever. Okay. We forgive you Yvonne.

Um, so the plan is I'm going to talk about the indictment.

Um, and I will probably have several different aspects of it.

We talk about and I may break that into, into parts, if it seems like it makes sense, um, but before we get started for real, I had a little note on my notes.

I guess that's what I should say. Uh, that the first break this time needs to be Apple dream 27.

So, because I had rolled that it should be Apple dream 27 in last week's show, but I didn't have time to get it ready to go before I started recording with that.

So before I do anything else, and I know it's only been a couple of minutes, but.

I'm sure you enjoy these Apple dreams. So here is Apple dream 27.

Okay. So this dream picked up right from the other one except really I just woke up from a dream where I was dreaming about doing the video of Describing the dreams that left off right from the other one.

So I'm hoping that I'll be able to remember the actual dream and Not just Describing it anyway It picked off from the other dream, which I hope was actually the last dream here and not something else entirely I think it might have been something else entirely.

Anyway, it was other people at first but now it was me and someone I knew named Heather.

Flying through space trying to escape something and Then Somehow I was somewhere at like a fairground outside of or in the area behind a mall or something and Then suddenly I was explaining the fact that I was trying, now I think I'm talking about explaining the dream that was the other dream but not the dream because I was explaining to somebody how I had two phones and I had the one phone for work and the one phone for home and I needed to text somebody from the one at home but it wasn't I didn't have the numbers because it was work and I was telling people that something I was not gonna be at work but now it's all falling apart I don't know like and I remember explaining that I didn't have the numbers but then I was gonna I ended up texting people for my personal phone and then I got some flurry of texts because I'd been trying to separate these things it didn't all make sense but this was all in the context of describing how the dream followed on.

From a previous dream but apparently.

Now nothing's about those previous dreams anymore.

It's only about me recording the video about that because yeah this whole time.

As I'm at the fair or whatever it is and I had to keep moving because other people were talking and recording their own videos and I wanted to not have of their video and my video.

Anyway, and I was walking around like this.

Recording my dream description, but then I woke up and it turned out that was a dream. Okay, bye.

Well, well, well, we are back. I am here.

Yeah, I did the thing where I'd started the show in time on the week, so it's actually later. It's now Sunday.

Yes, well, you know, that happens. When I'm doing these solo shows, I tend to spread them out over an entire weekend rather than, uh, just power right through.

Cause you know, I'll do a little bit, then I'll take a break.

And I know that the part I've done so far is a very little bit, but anyway, also Alex, uh, heard me do that little intro and was like, ah, and so he wants to add at the very end of the show, a little bit about what he's currently working on and some of the things he's doing.

So I said, yes, sure. Okay. So after we are done with all of the Trump indictment stuff and blah, blah, blah, we'll talk to Alex a little bit.

But yeah, so indictment. I actually took advantage of the break we had just then to actually read the whole 45 page thing.

When it first came out on Tuesday or whatever, I attempted to, I started to read it, but it was like, okay, it came out in the afternoon here on, in the West coast.

It was a little, I forget like two o'clock something. Anyway, I was at work.

It was, it was kind of a slow work day. Anyway, I'd done the critical things of the day already. I was trying to get some writing done, But then this hit and...

That was no way. That was no way I was going to get anything further productive done whatsoever.

So I had news on my headphones. I was listening to the various pundits trying to rapidly read the document and then talk about it and all of this kind of stuff.

And I was watching very carefully on Mastodon for like somebody to post the link to the whole thing. And finally somebody did. And so I had it up and I was trying to read it, but I was trying to read it at the same time as I was listening to people talk about it. And that just wasn't working.

And, and so I'm just like, there is no point. I know work is going to happen the rest of the day.

This is a day I'd actually gone into the office.

And I was already pissed because it took me like nearly two hours just to get into the office that day because there was some sort of accident or something.

So it took, and so I'm like, I'm going home.

So I stopped trying to read the doc and I went home and I was just listening to, you know, random TV pundits chat about it the rest of the day.

So let's talk about it. First of all, four accounts, they were the ones that were in the target letter.

So they weren't surprises, a conspiracy to defraud the United States, conspiracy to obstruct an official proceeding, obstruction of and attempt to obstruct an official proceeding, and conspiracy against rights.

Those were the charges and let's talk a little bit about each of them and what's in the stock.

First of all, the 45 pages, it's an easy read. I mean, first of all, it's 45 pages, but it's double-spaced, so it's not really 45 pages.

Like, if you actually, like, sit down to read it, uh, you can, I mean, I mean, obviously different people read at different speeds.

I didn't sit down and read it all at once. I read a little bit, and then I did other things, and then I read a little bit, and I did other things.

But this is not, like, heavy legal language.

It is written as what they call a speaking indictment, which means it's really for the general public to know what's going on.

Cause like all they actually have to put in the indictment are here are the counts, like all the evidence and stuff and the story and that can all wait for trial.

They don't have to present that all now. Uh, but they chose to. you next time.

You do not have to be a lawyer to read this stuff. Do not be intimidated.

Just jump in, read it. It's all very straightforward.

If you don't want to actually read it, there are actually several podcasts out there that have just read the whole stupid thing out loud.

I am not going to do that. I may read excerpts, but I'm not going to read the whole thing. Um, the, almost all of it is about count one.

Um, and then the other counts are pretty short, uh, and refer to count one.

Um, and we'll, we'll go through each of them. Uh, and, but first it's important.

This is a con these are, well, I guess three of the four are conspiracy charges, but it actually only indicts Donald Trump.

And this is one of the things that the talking heads talked quite a lot about, is why didn't they indict the six co-conspirators?

And the bottom line, everybody seems to agree, is speed, speed, speed, speed.

They want this thing to go fast. they want it to have a decent chance of going to trial prior to the presidential election, even after all the delays get added to it.

And indicting the co-conspirators now would just slow it down.

You'd have more people and their lawyers getting involved in every single thing.

It would be a mess. Now, also, people seem to think that doesn't mean these six co-conspirators are getting off.

Consensus? What does that even mean? Who knows? The special prosecutor is going to do what the special prosecutor is going to do, and the people who know aren't talking, as usual.

But everybody seems to think the co-conspirators will eventually get indicted, too, unless they cooperate, unless they are cooperating and do a guilty plea or something.

Everybody talking about this is saying that the charges against the co-conspirators are strong enough that they can't imagine them getting off scot-free, even if they cooperate, they'd still have to plead guilty to something, blah, blah, blah.

We shall see. So first of all, who are the co-conspirators?

They are six of them. The indictment does not name them, however, there are enough details in the indictment to figure out who they are.

And people have done it.

Even I, as soon as I read the descriptions on Tuesday, I identified several of them. Myself, like, just, oh, okay, that's obviously Rudy Giuliani.

You know, that's obviously John Eastman, et cetera.

So, let's go through them real quick. Number one is Rudy Giuliani, co-conspirator number one, who is described as an attorney who was willing to spread knowingly false claims and pursue strategies that Trump's 2020 re-election campaign wouldn't pursue.

Number two, John Eastman, co-conspirator number two, was an attorney who devised and attempted to implement a strategy to leverage the vice president's ceremonial role overseeing the certification proceeding to obstruct the certification of the presidential election.

Number three, and when I read this one, I just said, oh, okay, that's one of the crazy lawyers, but indictment describes co-conspirator three, oh, Sidney Powell is the person it turned out to be.

The indictment describes co-conspirator three as an attorney whose baseless accusations Trump embraced and publicly amplified, even though he privately acknowledged to others that the unfounded claims of election fraud sounded crazy.

Number four, Jeffrey Clark.

Co-conspirator four is described in the indictment as a Justice Department official who focused on civil matters and worked with Trump to use the Justice Department open sham election crime investigations and influence state legislators with knowingly false claims of election fraud.

Number five, Kenneth Cheseborough, or no, it's Chesborough, Chesborough, uh, Kenneth Chesborough.

Um, this is the first of these folks that I was like, I couldn't immediately, um...

Even say, oh, I know that name. It sounded familiar, but I couldn't like, if somebody had said Kenneth Chesborough, I would be like, who?

Whereas the first four, I'd be like, oh, okay, I know who they are.

I know how they fit into this equation.

But for this one, the indictment states that co-conspirator five was an attorney who assisted in devising and attempting to implement a plan to submit fraudulent states of presidential electors to obstruct the certification proceeding.

And then finally, number six is the one that remained a mystery the longest, and lots of places aren't even saying now who exactly it is.

It's identified as a political consultant.

Co-conspirator number six is described in the indictment as a political consultant who helped implement a plan to submit fraudulent slates of presidential electors to obstruct the certification proceedings.

Most places were saying, we're not sure, so we're not even going to say a name.

I saw a couple of places that were giving two names, but the New York Times has actually gone and identified number six as Boris Epstein, who's an advisor to the Trump campaign and matches the description.

There's an email that the indictment mentions that's attributed and it matches Boris Epstein, so they figured out. We now know all six.

Some other places are still hedging on who number six is, but the New York Times makes a good case for Boris.

Let's assume we know all six, but they're not indicted right now.

Maybe they will be at some point in the future. I heard on one of the legal podcasts I listened to that talks about this case.

There are two or three out there that just have like former prosecutors and folks like talk about the Trump cases and the legal implications and stuff like that.

And I've been listening to a couple of them. I forget which one was which, but they, um...

They were saying one of the concerns, like the prosecutors want to go fast.

So they want to keep these other folks out. They want to just concentrate on Trump.

If they indict the other folks, they will do it later. One of the things they mentioned is if they indict the others too soon, the judge could say, I know you want to keep these separate, but I don't care.

I'm merging them all together. That would be up to the judge to consolidate the cases if if they wanted to.

And so they probably will hold off on charges against any of these co-conspirators for a while until at least the Trump case is well underway.

And they've already gone through all kinds of stuff, so that a judge would be reluctant to go back to the drawing board and start over on all kinds of things because you're adding indictments, you're adding co-conspirators, et cetera.

You know, we had that superseding indictment, uh, in Florida, uh, last week.

And that's one of the things that people were talking about.

It's going to add delay. It's going to add a week or two to the timelines.

And if you're trying to be fast, do you really want to add a week or two?

And it does prove that John Smith.

Jack Smith, Jack Smith, sorry, not John Smith, that Jack Smith is willing to do the superseding indictments and a bit of a delay if he feels it's really worth it.

But it also seems like this is the case he wants to move fast.

He recognizes that the Florida case is going to take a while, it's got all the classified documents stuff, it's complicated, it's blah blah blah.

He wants to simplify this one and make this one go quickly.

So I think it would take something relatively big, like one of the co-conspirators. I don't know.

I think they're going to try to avoid it.

And so this will be all Donald Trump. I was going to start talking about the judge and stuff like that.

Let's talk a little bit more about the case itself before we get into the judge he drew, and what are the next steps, and all that kind of stuff.

Okay, so from the introduction of the indictment, I'll read the first couple paragraphs.

The defendant, Donald J. Trump, blah, blah, blah, 45th president, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah.

The defendant lost the 2020 presidential election.

Yeah. Okay. Despite having lost, the defendant was determined to remain in power.

So for more than two months following Election Day on November 3rd, 2020, the defendant spread lies that there had been outcome-determinative fraud in the election and that he had actually won.

These claims were false, and the defendant knew they were false, but the defendant repeated and widely disseminated them anyway to make his knowingly false claims appear legitimate, create an intense national atmosphere of mistrust and anger and erode public faith in the administration of the election.

Now, I want to point out before I read more, the fact that he's lying.

Is part of the introduction here. It is not one of the charges.

And a lot of his defenders have been like, yeah, he can lie, blah, blah, blah.

And they address that right here. The defendant had a right, like every American, to speak publicly about the election and even to claim falsely that there had been outcome-determinative fraud during the election and that he had won.

He was also entitled to formally challenge the results of the election through lawful and appropriate means, such as by seeking recounts or audits of the popular vote in states or filing lawsuits challenging ballots and procedures.

Indeed, in many cases, the defendant did pursue these methods of contesting the election results.

His efforts to change the outcome in any state through recounts, audits, or legal challenges were uniformly unsuccessful.

Shortly after election day, the defendant also pursued unlawful means of discounting legitimate votes and subverting the election results.

In doing so, the defendant perpetrated three criminal conspiracies.

A. A conspiracy to defraud the United States by using dishonesty, fraud, and deceit to impair, obstruct, and defeat the lawful federal government function by which results of the presidential election are collected, counted, and certified by the federal government in violation of 18 U.S.C.

371, b, a conspiracy to corruptly obstruct and impede the January 6th Congressional proceeding at which the collected results of the presidential election are counted and certified, the certification proceeding, in violation of 18 U.S.C.

1512k, and c, a conspiracy against the right to vote and to have one's vote counted in violation of 18 U.S.C. 241.

Each of these conspiracies, which built on the widespread mistrust the defendant was creating through pervasive and destabilizing lies about election fraud, targeted a bedrock function of the United States federal government, the nation's process of collecting, counting, and certifying the results of the presidential election, the federal government function.

That's the end of the introduction. I basically, I read you the whole introduction, although I blah, blah, blah, a few, I blah, blah, blah, like the first sentence.

And I didn't really need to, I could have read the whole sentence at the time I did blah, blah, blah. I didn't really take much out of it.

In any case, the rest just goes into lots and lots of detail of the course of events, the specific acts in question, how they were interacting.

It goes through, you know, what was the purpose?

What were all the co-conspirators doing?

I'm reading some sections here. The federal government function, the manner and means they went through things.

Then they went through the defendant's knowledge of the falsity of his election fraud claims, we'll get into a bit later, whether or not that matters.

The agreement to do something, to make it a conspiracy, because you have to have like people agreeing to do something.

Then they start going through the States, you know, with the fraudulent elector things.

And there were seven States that they did this in. I think they go through six of them.

I think that Somebody mentioned they left out one of the states or something, but they go through each one and, in lots and lots of detail, like on such and such day, this person called this person and and ask them to do this thing, and blah, blah, blah, and you know.

Most of this, look, we've known most of the story for a while.

The January 6th Commission Committee, the January 6th Committee outlined these plots.

And even before then, we had hints of them. But the January 6th Committee did a really good job in showing how all these things fit together.

And a lot of what this indictment does is just retell that story and put it all together in one place.

They add a few details in some places, like they were able to get Pence to testify to them and share his notes and things like that. So they have got a bit more detail on Pence's part of this than the January 6th committee did.

And in a few other places, they've got some details that January 6th did not have.

But the overall story was there when the January 6th committee presented their final results.

And if you watched those hearings or even heard or read the reporting on it, you know this story.

There's not a lot of new here, although there are a few.

And he's undoubtedly got more that isn't in this indictment.

But the main thing is that it buttons down all of these, this happened here, this person talked to that person, this person did that, this person tried to get this other person to do whatever.

And the multiple conspiracies just come at this and different angles in terms of like, but it's all the same underlying facts that apply to all of these things, to all of the counts.

Now the defenses that have been coming up, like I keep mentioning like, you know, does it matter that he noed, noed, does it matter whether or not Donald Trump knew he lost the election.

First of all, there's lots of documentation here that he damn well did know.

And he damn well did know he was lying.

But fundamentally, it doesn't matter, it doesn't matter. Like one of the defenses people have been talking about is just, well, Donald Trump actually did think he won.

So it's all fine, because he was just vigorously acting on that knowledge.

But here's the thing, the legal part of acting on that, like if you believe to the core of your being that you won, your legal recourse is to go through the court system and make those arguments and try to prove that you won.

And Donald Trump did that. His campaign did that. They went to court over and over and over again, and lost over and over and over again.

In all of the cases they brought after 2020, there was one that they won, and it was not anything to do with the results of the election.

They won the right to have election observers be six feet away from where the counting was supposed to be, instead of 10 feet.

Okay. I don't even object to that. Fine. Six feet.

I guess there was some argument that… Whatever.

It doesn't matter. I guess you could argue that six feet, they might be intimidating you in some way, whereas 10 feet, at least they're a little further away.

I don't know. I actually don't mind this. Six feet, fine. Whatever.

But that obviously has absolutely nothing to do with anything that would change the results of anything. That was the only one he won.

Everything else he lost. Some of them he lost outright because they, I mean, he lost outright on all of them, but some of them were dismissed out of hand because it just wasn't done properly.

Others were, it was just clearly frivolous.

Others actually did get to the merits. Um, but this is the opportunity he had, this is the opportunity he had to show fraud, overturn something, blah, blah, blah.

After all of those legal procedures are done, you can believe that you're right all you want.

But you've already exhausted the legal mechanisms to convince other people that you need to convince.

And then what starts happening here is all about actual acts that are done.

And there's also the defense that, okay, I mean, part of the does he really believe it is the whole Costanza defense of it's not a lie if you believe it.

And so, okay, let's prove that it's You, He knew it was a lie, and he didn't really believe it.

But that's not required for most of the actual accounts here, any of the actual accounts here.

Because you also have this, it's all about acts. Oh, which also, yeah, the people are talking free speech. This is just standard political speech.

He's got the right, he's got the right to lie.

He's got the right to mislead.

He's got the right to say whatever he wants. And that is absolutely true.

And that's why that paragraph in the introduction specifically spoke to, he has the right to do all that.

But where it crosses the line is when you are using the lies to try to get other people to do things under false pretenses.

That's when you get into the fraud.

And when you get into the disruption of the process that the other conspiracy is about.

Because it's not speech at that point. It's acts. It's you are doing stuff.

You are trying to actively disrupt the process that is going on to try to pick the next president.

And in the case of the denying denying people denial of rights.

He was actively trying to get some people's votes not to count.

You know, the other defense that's been going on is, um, he was doing it on the advice of lawyers.

And so he was given the advice that all of this was legal.

And so there'd be no problem doing it. The problem is, and this is shown over and over and over again in the indictment, is that maybe he got John Eastman to write a memo saying this was legal.

Maybe. But over and over and over again, he was getting advice from all sorts of lawyers that, no, this was illegal.

No, there was nothing to be done here. No, no, no, no, no.

And even the lawyers who were generating the plan, there's plenty of evidence here, they knew it was illegal too and they wanted to do it anyway.

And so, yeah, that falls apart too. It is, you know, you go through all this and And just like the documents one, when you read through the indictment and you read through all the stuff, there is no possible reaction to it other than, oh my god, he is so fucked.

Now obviously, you've got the defense.

Innocent until proven guilty has to go through the process. The defense is going to bring up all kinds of arguments.

But so far, the ones that are being made publicly are clearly aimed as a PR exercise, not a legal exercise.

They are the kinds of things where they can go on Fox News and yammer about First Amendment and witch hunt and unfair treatment and this being a political attack, blah, blah, blah.

None of that's going to fly in court. In many cases, like the lawyers have been on TV admitting to the actual crime.

Because one of the things that people have said all over the time, all over the time.

There, um, there was a good post.

Let me get a reference to it real quick.

Terry Canfield posted an analysis, it's on

By the way, Criminal Law 101 Trump's J6 indictment.

Uh, and it basically goes through each of these counts and what is required to prove it.

And how much do you need to care about intent?

Um, and, and things like that.

And one of the keys is for, cause people are like, well, what was, what was his, what was his intent? Now I think it's kind of obvious what his intent was.

He was intending a fucking coup, or an autoglopa, as they say, since it was attempting to use procedural means to improperly stay in place when you're already in power, as opposed to taking over for someone else. Anyway, and she goes through which of the general intent crimes versus specific intent crimes, et cetera.

The key is, for a lot of this stuff, it doesn't matter why he did it.

He can 100% believe that he was in the right and that he was defending himself from a stolen election.

It doesn't matter. He did the act.

He tried to obstruct the procedures of Congress.

He tried to insert electors who were not the valid electors. It doesn't matter why.

It is not the ends justify the means in terms of these laws.

It just matters that he did it.

And Trump himself and all the freakin' lawyers are on TV basically saying things that start with, he did it.

And then try to justify why he did it. But the why he did it does not matter in terms of these laws.

I think there's one of them where there's something about intent that does matter, but I think even there, they've got the evidence that Trump has the required level of intent.

And over and over, they're just sort of admitting the case. And again, what this comes down to to is playing public opinion as opposed to playing the legal case.

And as usual, with Trump's strategy, delay, delay, delay, delay, try to get this past the election.

If he wins the election, then he can make all this go away on January 20th, 2025.

Because as president, he'd be able to direct the department of justice to just drop it.

So there's, but the, even the public opinion part is like, if he can get, if he can rile up his folks and get them out to vote based on the, I am being persecuted type mode, then that's an opportunity to try to win the election, to try to make the stuff go away that way. that way.

And also to a degree, the public opinion stuff is also hoping for jury nullification.

You get one juror who buys all this and is willing to ignore the instructions that the judge gives about what the law says and how they're supposed to make this judgment and blah, blah, blah, who's willing to just say, No, not guilty, not guilty. You can get a hung jury.

I think it's, I think the idea of Trump getting an out and out acquittal.

Um, on even the documents case, let alone this one, um, is very, very low, close to zero, but a hung jury.

I've been saying this for years, hung jury. That's that could happen.

All you need is the one juror. All you need is the one juror.

You, you, you get lucky with the of Wadir process, you get that one juror who's going to do this.

Um, maybe you can get a hung jury and then that buys you more time.

Now they could retry it at that point. And the chance of you getting two hung juries in a row, probably low, but that buys you another year or something, you know? So, uh, yeah.

All of this is, all of what Trump world is doing, responding to this right now, is about talking to the base.

Talking to potential jurors, working the election, working the politics, it is not about the actual legal case.

Now, they'll have to deal with that at some point, but not yet.

Okay, with that, I think it's time for a break.

So, testing one, two, three, supposedly the sounds work now that was an exciting drumroll how about some laughing and maybe some.

Clapping And, as an appropriate test, here is the Election Graphs spot. Yay, Election Graphs!

Do you want to understand what is really going on with the presidential election cycle?

Then go to right away.

There you'll find charts and graphs covering the nomination processes in both parties and the general election race for electoral college votes.

For the delegate races, we track not just delegate totals, but also the ever important analysis of how each candidate has to do with the remaining delegates in order to actually win.

For the electoral college, we track state by state poll averages to categorize which states are actually in play and which are not in order to show you the range of likely electoral results and how that changes over time.

Sure, you can get some of this stuff elsewhere, but not in exactly the same way. And not from me, Sam, your prime curmudgeon.

I think my election trackers are better than the rest, so come look at mine,

Okay, we are back and, uh, yeah, this, you know, I was thinking originally I would have like the sections as like the indictment itself and then the politics and then the whatever, but I just paused when like, it seemed like a good place for a break and I'd already started mixing things up again.

So I guess it's just indictment part one, indictment part two, however many parts we end up having. I don't know.

Anyway, the next thing I thought I'd mention is the judge that got assigned to this case. Um, so it's, it's a random assignment, just like we talked about in Florida.

It's a, not a, you know, know, it's not like a process where somebody makes a choice and pick somebody.

It's, you know, you have the people who are eligible based on where you are, where the case is being held, blah, blah, blah.

And they, they pick, uh, randomly in Florida, they, it was, you know, they expressed, uh, there were various complications about like each judge has a quota as well.

And if they're already full, then they're not in the pool. And then there are also retired judges that can be in the pool, but they have the lowercase load and blah, blah, blah.

Anyway, the person we got was Tanya Chutkin.

Uh, and this is like, you know, Trump has to be you big at this draw, right? Okay.

She was appointed by Obama. She is black.

She is a woman. She is an immigrant, like, and she is going to be in charge already.

Like the, there was a magistrate judge who was, you know, somebody else entirely, but there were reports that Donald Trump was already extremely agitated and upset because the magistrate judge called him Mr.

Trump instead of president Trump. Trump over and over and over again.

And he was apparently like his mind was going crazy because of that.

And he was all upset and blah, blah, blah.

And he is not used to having to be deferential.

And he is certainly not going to like being deferential to a smart immigrant, black woman, who.

Also, from all reports, I've heard a number of people who have worked with her in the past.

She used to be a public defender, actually, for a decade before she became a judge.

I've heard from people who were on the opposing side when she was the public defender.

I've heard from people who, no, I've heard from.

It's like they called me. No, they didn't call me. I've heard them interviewed on TV and podcasts and stuff.

Anyway, I've heard people who've worked with her both opposing her as a public defender and have had cases in front of her as a judge or who have just observed her career.

And basically, they've said, I don't know which one it was, but one of them says she don't play.

Basically that she's an absolutely no-nonsense judge. She doesn't take any shit in her courtroom.

She keeps things moving.

Also, she's already handled a bunch of January 6th cases.

And she is apparently the only judge who has had January 6th cases who has given out stricter sentences than the prosecutors asked for.

In addition, she was involved in a case with Donald Trump as well, one where Donald Trump was contesting, giving up documents, uh, to the January six committee.

And Donald Trump was saying that he didn't have to, uh, executive privilege, blah, blah, blah, whatever reasons.

Uh, but she ruled that he did have to.

And Donald Trump of course, appealed the appeal court said, Nope.

First judge was right. Donald Trump tried to take it to Supreme court.

Supreme court was like, we're not even gonna bother looking at this.

So it was upheld all the way up.

And so yeah, this is not necessarily a great draw for Donald Trump.

Well, you know, look, I've had some of the talking heads have been very careful to say, look, this is not nobody's saying she's biased against Donald Trump.

They're saying she's actually very fair. She's very tough. You know, she's going to go buy the book. Thank you for watching. Bye.

But frankly, when you're Donald Trump and the facts of the case are the kinds of things we're looking at here, you got to hope for somebody like Canon who has shown a track record of nudging things in your direction, you know?

Um, and basically, and basically anybody who doesn't fit that profile is a bad draw for you.

So we'll see also on timing, um, in the arraignment, um, a bunch of the commentators were surprised because normally it's basically in and out, you know, here are the charges.

What's your plea, blah, blah, blah. we'll schedule a hearing for later where we can start talking about dates and stuff like that.

But the judge had sent a note to the magistrate judge to tell both sides of this case to provide briefs on their proposed schedule right away, and that when they get to the first hearing on the 28th, she expects to set the trial date already.

Like in the Florida case, they didn't even talk about that till the first hearing.

And then at the first hearing, then the judge asked for that, and then there was more time before they both submitted their briefs, and then the thing and then the blah blah blah blah so basically she shaved a couple weeks off the process already by saying.

Get that information from me, I'm going to set a schedule already." And then there was the prosecution has already gone ahead and put in motions for a protective order, which is basically like, what are the rules going to be when we start giving discovery?

They're basically saying, we're ready to go. We're ready to give the discovery.

We just need an appropriate protective order in place, which basically covers, Hey, if we give this evidence to the defense, they can't be going and putting it all on social media or talking about it the next day.

Because there's a lot of personal information, there's a lot of confidential stuff. There's a bunch of stuff that could, if made public before the trial, could prejudice jurors, etc.

And, you know, when it, when the request for the protective order came out, uh, there was a lot of blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, about how it was a response to Donald Trump giving a, you come after me, I'll come after you message on truth social, and this being sort of a shot across the bow of of like, make Trump behave, et cetera.

But they were gonna request the protective order anyway. This is not like, this is a normal part of the discovery process and making sure that the rules around it are set, et cetera.

And given the history, I bet they'd written up that protective order request, you know, days earlier, if not weeks earlier, and just had a slot.

Do you try again? Thank you, Siri.

Um, thanks. Um, I bet they just had a slot in there for if Trump says something's crazy on social media, to insert here, you know, as.

A given example of why Trump needs a fairly detailed protective order with some significant restrictions, because otherwise he's gonna...

Do his thing, you know, um, like he does.

And it was in the process of including it in that note. It puts the court on notice that, hey, he's doing this kind of stuff.

Uh, in the last couple of days, since the arraignment, he has made other comments, uh, both, uh, at speeches he's made and on truth social, uh, that could be interpreted as threats or intimidation to the people involved in the trial.

And the magistrate judge did specifically admonish and remind him and put on the record that he's being released on his own recognizance, et cetera, but if he commits a crime, that could go out the window.

And the judge, And apparently all of that is boilerplate.

They say that to every defendant, except the judge added one bit that's not boilerplate, which is specifically saying, and you know, trying to interfere or intimidate or bribe or whatever, any witnesses or anybody involved in a trial, that counts as a crime.

And arguably some of the stuff he said could already count that way. now Trump is careful.

He makes sure that when he says things, there's some ambiguity in terms of who's he talking about.

And, you know, like the, if you come at me, I'll come at you.

It doesn't say who's coming at him.

And in other places, you know, he's, he's called the prosecutors like deranged or whatever, but he hasn't specifically like threatened them, right? You know, so, yeah.

I posted on Mastodon that here on this show, I've said for years...

I don't think Trump will see a single day in jail.

Even assuming he gets convicted, he will draw out appeals for years.

He's going to appeal every single one of these, through every single level, and at each stage of the appeal he's going to try to delay it as long as he can.

He may be younger than Joe Biden, but he's still up there in years and he's not in as good health as Joe Biden as far as we know.

Just judging by appearances, who knows?

I guess they've both had medical reports done on them.

You could easily see Trump extending appeals and such until he's dead of natural causes. It'll take years.

And even now, even assuming you get to the end of the appeals, you're going to have him arguing that because of his unique position as an ex-president, or hell, because of his age too, that he can't go to a real prison cell.

There was a Washington Post article, I guess, this week also that went into the prison system and the Secret Service, and they're all concerned about the logistics that would be involved in incarcerating an ex-president and still providing the legislatively required protection for him, and blah, blah, blah.

So I figure even if he gets convicted and even if he outlasts all the appeals, they'll give him house arrest or something.

He'll be prohibited from leaving Mar-a-Lago without supervision or some bullshit like that, but he'll get to live at Mar-a-Lago or one of his other properties. I don't know.

That thing about it being logistically hard to put him in prison, I'm sure they could figure it out.

There are ways to deal with that. They could figure it out.

They may not want to figure it out, but they certainly could figure yard out and have his secret service protection, follow him around in prison, like it didn't take eight hour shifts.

Like they would anyway, it's just, it might actually be easier because he's not going anywhere.

Anyway, I've said for years that he's not going to see a day in jail. Thank you for having me.

The one way that I could be proven wrong really, really quickly is if Trump just can't keep his fucking mouth shut and does things that violate judges' orders on how he's supposed to behave with regard to these trials.

You know, blustering and threatening and doing this and that, and saying things about the evidence that's not supposed to be public and blah, blah, blah.

If he can't keep his mouth shut, I could see him getting in trouble.

Now, even then, even if we've got this, no nonsense judge that doesn't play, they're going to give him like a bunch of chances.

They're not going to take the first thing that he does and say, oh, guess you're going to jail.

No, they're not going to do that.

No, they're going to give him every chance in the world so that if they are forced into some sort of action, it will be abundantly clear to everybody that they had exhausted all the other alternatives.

And even there, same thing, they're not going to put them in a prison cell.

They're going to, at least not at first, they're going to do things like, they're going to be explicit don't post this kind of stuff on Truth Social.

And then if he keeps doing it, then maybe they'll find him.

Or maybe they will confine him to Mar-a-Lago for a little while, the house arrest kind of thing. I don't know. They're not going to...

Anyway, but the one way that I could see of potentially going to jail is if he just repeatedly disrespects one of the judges over and over and over again, blatantly violating their orders.

That's the one scenario where I could see some judge getting fed up on one of these three cases right now, probably four before very long.

One of these judges just being fed up and being like, okay, you're done.

Now we get to timelines. It apparently won't be very long until we know when this case is scheduled.

The hearing will be on the 28th. The judge has said that they expect to decide on a schedule after that hearing.

I don't know if they'll give the dates on the spot or whether they'll take in all the information they have at that point and then give it shortly thereafter, but we're going to have timelines by the end of the month.

Like all of these, they're provisional timelines because they're going to be all kinds of things that could further push it back as various things get litigated in the pre-trial motions etc etc etc but all the commentary seems to agree that this is this case is a lot simpler than the florida case it doesn't have the classified documents it's got one defendant um that this should be able to move faster than that one Now the calendar is already pretty full.

There's a trial in March for the New York stuff.

There's the, the, the Mar-a-Lago documents cases now in May.

Um, I believe in January, there's, uh, the, the, the next phase of the civil case with the Eugene Carroll.

Um, and then there's some other civil cases that are a little bit less profile going on in the background.

Now, the judge in the New York case that relates to the campaign finance stuff related to Stormy Daniels and all that has explicitly said—not the judge, sorry, not the judge, the prosecutor—has said that they would not object to moving that trial in favor of this one if it made sense.

Now, it's not up to the prosecutor. It's up to the judge of that case.

But the prosecutor not objecting would be make it easier.

And so there's a chance that this one, and from what what I gather, a fairly good chance that this one will slip in before the documents case.

Um, at least in the initial scheduling. And then we go from there, uh, because again, there's going to be all kinds of efforts to delay, delay, delay with the pretrial motions with everything else and try to push this back after the election, but it sounds like this judge.

Is the kind of judge that isn't going to allow that to happen now, apparently in the DC circuit, where this is the typical time from indictment to trial is like a year and a half, which would indeed put us past the November 2024 election.

But ultimately it's the judge's discretion and there are a lot of reasons why you might want to have this thing done before the presidential election.

Um, so even if they don't try it, even if they don't manage to squeeze it in in the first couple of months of 2024, I think they'll still try to squeeze it in before November.

There's no way that this judge is going to come back and say, oh, okay, we'll do this in 2025.

And even if they decide that it has to be after the documents trial, they're going to put it in June or July.

Not. And then be strict on things that delay, like...

The judge really has a lot of power in this in terms of what they allow to delay and what they don't. And I think they're going to try to stick to a schedule.

I mean, there'll be some slippage. There's always slippage.

People talk about the speedy trial act that requires the trial within 70 days.

That never happens because of all the things that are exemptions and blah, blah, blah. Uh, so it's not like we're going to see one, uh, see, see a trial.

Um, and what would 70 days be from now? Um, October. Yeah, that's not going to happen, but you know, it's, we're still, I think.

At least one of these four, probably more like are, are going to actually happen in 2024 before the election.

It's possible that one of them, maybe even two of them get pushed out past the election.

But I, I find it almost impossible that Trump would succeed in delaying all four until past the election.

We're going to have some Donald Trump criminal trials in 2024, but.

This timing is still annoying. And that gets us back to why, what took so long, you know, and we've, we've seen plenty of information now that DOJ wasn't really taking seriously, looking at the people at the masterminds until the January 6th commission forced their hand.

I mean, they were doing this, oh, we're work our way up from the bottom, blah, blah, blah.

But there didn't seem to be any actual excitement, maybe that's the wrong word, to really get to the top.

Because there were plenty of places where there was evidence, and they just weren't looking at it yet. And I guess they were looking at it specifically from the point of view of the violence at the Capitol as well.

And that's one of the smart things that I've heard people comment on this indictment.

He's not charging incitement of the violence. He's not charging insurrection.

Um, because those things are a lot harder to prove the connections.

There's the first amendment stuff is a concern there on like incitement, like, yeah, you have to prove that he's gone beyond what is allowed by the first amendment to other things.

The charges he picked very much sort of avoid those issues as much as Trump's defenders wish they didn't. And are talking about that stuff anyway.

He didn't go there. I think the DOJ, prior to the January 6th Commission, really was concentrating only on the violent elements and trying to sort of – if they were working their way up, they would have only gotten to the big folks if they found a direct connection where you You can draw a direct line from Donald Trump telling like the Proud Boys or somebody or the three percenters or somebody like this, go attack and be violent.

And I'm pretty sure that direct connection doesn't actually exist.

Trump's careful enough not to do it. He'll like imply things and make it clear that he wouldn't mind if you did that.

But the be there and be wild is about as close as it gets, the tweet he made, and it would be hard to prove that beyond a reasonable doubt.

And if DOJ was concentrating only on the direct violence, and they were doing it only from bottom up, no wonder they weren't getting very far on that.

I mean, they've arrested tons and tons of the actual protesters, but there's a gap between them and the people who are actually promoting the whole stupid thing.

Whereas, the January 6th committee proved that you could start at the top.

And there were plenty of shenanigans going on that weren't necessarily directly about the violence.

The indictment, as it is, mentions the violence, makes reference to Donald Trump taking advantage of the violence, but it doesn't, it doesn't accuse him of directly guiding the violence.

But there's all of these other shenanigans. There were all of these other elements of the plot there, you know, the, the fake electors, the trying to get Pence to invalidate results, the trying to convince members of Congress to put objections in based on bullshit things that weren't real, all of this stuff.

And so I've heard a few people argue that DOJ's delay, like if DOJ had gone full bore on these top people before the January 6th committee, that, and this, like this indictment just dropped out of the blue without the January 6th committee prepping us about it, that the reaction to it would be very negative in terms of, where's this coming from, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, because people, well that's nonsense.

No, I, no, I, the people who are gonna react that way are gonna react that way anyway and the prepping of the January 6th committee is not gonna change that.

I view a big portion of it as just flat-out wasted time because Merrick Garland.

Didn't want to seem political by going after Donald Trump and his cronies.

They let the Mueller Report obstruction of justice stuff lapse, and I did check in on that, it really did lapse, like the statute of limitations didn't pause while he was president or whatever.

They let that lapse, and they certainly weren't going after a bunch of other stuff, bunch of other stuff.

But Donald Trump's been a criminal his whole fucking life. There's all kinds of things they could have gone after him. But the January 6th stuff specifically, they were like, let's look forward, not back.

And whereas really the political, I understand they want to make DOJ look like it's not political and going after the previous president seems political, but again, the real political thing is not going after somebody when there's clear evidence.

It would also be political if they were going after him when there wasn't clear evidence, obviously, or even a predicate for an investigation.

You don't need to have proved the case before you investigate, obviously. Thus, the Mueller report was completely justified.

But yeah, in this case, I think the delay hurt. I mean, where we are now is where we should have been a year ago.

And because of the delay, We're bumping up against the election.

We're going to have trials in the middle of campaign season.

Uh, next year is going to be so screwed up. So, so screwed up. Um, okay. You know what?

I got some more stuff to talk about, but I'm going to take another break.

Uh, this is a wiki of the day one. We will be back right after this.

Do do do. Hello, this is Nicole Standard.

I'm here to let you know about Sam the Commodian's other podcasts, the Wiki of the Day podcasts.

Wiki of the Day comes in three varieties, popular, random, and featured.

Each highlights a new Wikipedia article each day. They just pick the articles differently. This week on Random Wiki of the Day, You would have heard this summary for Office of Fair Trading v Abbey National plc.

Office of Fair Trading v Abbey National plc and others, 2009, UKSC 6 is a judicial decision of the United Kingdom Supreme Court relating to bank charges in the United Kingdom, with reference to the situation where a bank account holder goes into unplanned overdraft.

When a bank customer uses an unplanned overdraft and then makes a payment request, whether by a standing order, direct debit or using an ATM or debit card, banks generally make the payment as requested, and then charge fees, which may include paid item charges and unauthorised overdraft fees, which occur on a daily basis whilst the unauthorised overdraft continues.

The Office of Fair Trading, OFT, acting on behalf of consumers, challenged these fees under the Unfair Terms in Consumer Contracts Regulations 1999, which implements European Union Unfair Contract Terms Directive.

OFT claimed the sizeable fees charged were not a fair reflection of the bank's costs but were instead a penalty upon the consumer or bank account holder, hence unlawful.

If these fees were confirmed to be a penalty for breach of contract then under UK law the amount that could be charged would be limited to reflect the actual, and considerably lower, costs which were incurred by the bank.

The High Court held that although the charges were not penal, they fell within the remit of the legislation and hence their fairness could be assessed by the OFT.

The Court of Appeal agreed and held unanimously and emphatically that the charges could be assessed for fairness. But the UK Supreme Court reversed this decision, holding that the charges could not be assessed for fairness by the OFT, or the courts.

They held that UTC1999 R62, as the United Kingdom chose to implement the European Directive, precluded any assessment of the core terms of a contract, and because overdraft.

Fees to decide differently. The Supreme Court denied any reference to the European Court of Justice through Art 234 tech, so bringing to an end the litigation.

The regulations could be challenged as failing to implement the directive through a separate case, but since any decision by the ECJ would be prospective only the government, and not the banks, would have to pay any compensation.

This may be unlikely to succeed, since the directive gives discretion to member states to regulate all terms or non-core terms.

That's it. See? Fun, entertaining, and educational, right?

Okay, now look for and subscribe to the Wiki of the Day family of podcasts on your podcast playing software of choice, or just go to to check out our archives.

Now back to curmudgeon's corner. do do do do do do do do do do do do do do do do do do do do do do do do do do do do do do.

Okay, I'll be honest, that one was not particularly short.

And it was kind of an obscure, somewhat boring topic.

I'm sorry, you know, random wiki of the day is random. It just picks a wiki page.

The popular and featured are the other two variants.

And featured is like Wikipedia editors specifically choosing ones that they want want to highlight right now, because, and they're, they're chosen like a month in advance or something, so you can see which ones are coming up, but they're like, these are particularly well done Wikipedia articles, although I've noticed that there's certain topics that come up a lot so that whoever's picking them, there are certain things they like more than others.

Um, and then popular is just like, what's getting a lot of views.

And, um, it's not always the most popular page from the previous day or whatever because I exclude things if they've already been the popular wiki of the day within the last hundred days.

So like, you know, it might be like the fifth most popular or something like that.

Cause the first four have already been used. Uh, but it typically is something not always, but it's typically something topical.

Like somebody has just died and so there's the thing on them or somebody has been in the news or there's a new movie that's popular.

So it's those kinds of things, and Popular Wiki of the day gets by far, by far the most listens compared to random or featured, but for exactly that reason. It's sort of like, anyway.

But whenever I do one of these in the show, I pick randomly from the three. anyway.

So if you were interested in that obscure British law...

I'm happy for you. Anyway, back to the topic.

Next up is the Republican response so far, and I'll include in that elected officials, but also Fox and the conservative media.

This is the fundamentals to trying to assess how this will affect politics in both the the Republican primaries and the general election.

Fundamentally if you're paying attention through – if your primary source is Fox News or online conservative media, your impression of all this is going to be completely and totally different from anything I just said.

A whole different planet because they'll be talking about how this is a political witch hunt, how this is going after his First Amendment rights, how all he did was say stuff and that was within his right, and he believed the election was stolen, and he was operating on the advice of his attorneys, etc., etc., etc.

They have been covering it, not as much as other places, but they have been covering it, but they've been covering it with that spin.

And so if that's all you hear, you're not hearing all of these details.

I mean, fundamentally the case, this, this particular case, the 2020 election case, as opposed to the documents case or anything else boils down to a fraud on the American people and the victim of that, I mean, there are multiple victims.

Everybody's a victim in one way or another, but fundamentally Trump supporters are one of the big victims here.

They were lied to.

They were fundamentally made to believe stuff that was bullshit.

There was nothing to any of this and Trump and all his cronies.

Now, again, the actual charges do not depend on whether or not Trump knew he was lying.

The charges are on something else. But for the Trump supporting public, I mean, the bottom line is this is like page after page after page after page of Trump and the people around him have absolutely no respect for Trump supporters.

Lied to them about everything.

And in the case of these fake electors, I mean, the indictment specifically says many of the fake electors were fooled into doing this.

We're told that these fake ballots would not be used unless Trump won in court, but they used them anyway.

And all of the major witnesses in this thing are not only Republicans, but they, and they're not only MAGA Republicans, they're hardcore Trump supporters that were with him until the very end, but couldn't take this last little step.

And, but it is so hard for people to admit they were were fooled.

It's even harder to admit you are fooled. If what that means is your enemies were right.

And if you were fooled, but it was in the cause of doing things that you like, because you liked the anti-abortion judges, you liked your tax breaks, whatever, Then there's all kinds of reasons to go.

Not want to know you were fooled, or to, even if you admit that, to not care.

Because one of the things that is crystal clear at this point is that for, and not all, and I want to be clear, we'll talk about the people who are in the opposite situation in a second, but for a lot of Trump supporters, They know all this stuff is true.

And not only do they not care, well, I should say, it's not that they not care.

It's not that they don't care. Let's get my language right, Sam. They like it.

This stuff shows that Trump fought for them in their point of view.

And they want somebody who'll do whatever it takes, even if what it takes is dishonest and fraudulent and anti-democratic.

And I was going to say, even if it stomps on all of American values to this date or anything like that. But no, that's what they want.

They want somebody who just comes in and fucking breaks things.

So for those people, Donald Trump trying to engage in a coup and keep himself in power, fine, prove it.

It's not a bad thing to them. They like that he did it. They wish he had succeeded.

And the only problem with any of this is that he failed!

A significant portion of Trump supporters feel that way.

But like I said, not all.

There was a new poll that came out this week that specifically asked Trump supporters, Would you still vote for him if he was convicted?

Would you still vote for him if he was in jail?

And big chunks would not. I think it was... I should look this up, shouldn't I?

Um, here we go. Let's get this stupid article so I can have the proper reference and tell all you guys.

It's making me sign in.

Apple News is making me sign in because of course the stupid link that was sent on our curmudgeon's corner chat by Yvonne was Apple News instead of the original.

Okay, this was an Axios article from August 3rd, 52% of Republicans won't vote for Trump if he goes to prison.

The poll was a Reuters poll that was published on Thursday.

All kinds of things are popping up here, stupid.

Anyway, it was a Reuters poll that was published on Thursday, and let's read a couple of things.

75% of Republicans believe Trump is facing politically motivated prosecutions.

66% do not find the charges that Trump committed criminal acts to overturn the results of the 2020 election believable.

So many believe it is a witch hunt. On the other hand, 45% say they would not vote for Trump if he was convicted, 52% say they wouldn't vote for him if he was in prison.

Now the fact that those numbers are actually really low, you would think, you would hope that like 100% of them would dismiss it and say, well, he's a fucking criminal.

Let's vote for somebody else. I mean, in the primaries, come on, you got other Republicans, but if we're talking in the general specifically, and this poll was for November, not for the primaries, just to be absolutely clear.

And the dynamic there is still, okay, maybe Trump is a criminal, but the alternative is a Democrat.

And that's worse. And that's why these numbers are what they are. However.

To be clear, let's even take the lower number, the convicted number, not the jail number, because even if Trump is convicted in 2024, like I discussed briefly earlier, there's not a fucking chance in hell he'll be in jail at the end of 2024, at election time.

If 45% of Republicans don't vote for Donald Trump, Biden wins easily.

It doesn't matter if those Republicans actually vote for Biden or if they stay home.

If that many Republicans don't vote for Trump, we're talking about a Biden landslide.

Now, I am way overdue for an Election Graph's blog post update, but the bottom line is things are still a dead heat if the election was held today according to the state polling.

It's like right on the line. It could go either way.

We've said for a long time that all of this legal stuff, if anything, helps Trump with his primary race.

So far, what we're seeing there, by the way, let's look at that.

A lot of people have said every time he gets indicted, his poll numbers improve in the Republican primary.

I'm not actually seeing that. To be honest, if you look at five 38, um, averages of the Republican primary race on a national level, and we all know it's Iowa, New Hampshire, South Carolina, Nevada, blah, blah, blah.

All the early States matter more. And we should start looking at those soon, but at the national ones, Trump did get a bump up in April.

And I'm trying to remember when the, when the first indictment was, let me, let me check real quick. Um, the New York indictment was at the end of March.

Um, and, and the Carol thing was in may.

Uh, the Florida was in June. June, it looks like the only real bump I can see is an early May, early May, April, May, April, what the hell is April?

Um, anyway, Trump basically has been, was running in the mid forties.

Um, all year through till April, uh, in the beginning of April, he bumped up to being in the low fifties. So, between 50 and 55.

And he's basically bounced around between 50 and 55 ever since.

So maybe that first indictment bumped him a little bit, although there was a little delay there. It didn't happen right in March, so he got a bump in April.

But since then, it bounces around, but I have not seen a thing where after each indictment, it goes up.

After each indictment, there's always one poll that shows him much better than before, and people jump on that poll.

But if you look at the averages, it's just bouncing around between 50 and 55, and it has been since mid-April, regardless of what's been happening.

Now, at the same time, his opponents, I mean, DeSantis, before April, actually, if anything correlates to Trump's bump in April, it's a decline for DeSantis.

It's people that we're like, oh, DeSantis sucks. Maybe we do want to go to Trump.

That happened because before the middle of March, DeSantis was in 30s.

And then ever since April, he's been, well, he was in the 20s from April until mid-July.

He's now dropped into the teens.

So, but Trump has held steady. It's like, it's, and then there's everybody else, but I don't see the big bump in the primary, but what we're wondering if at some point in the nationals, he collapses under the weight of all this stuff.

And that might affect the primaries too. If it looks like in the national race, he's getting completely and totally crushed all the time, Maybe that changes the dynamic.

If it looks like it's going to be a fucking Biden landslide, then maybe at that point, the Republicans will choose somebody else because they want to win.

But there's so much personality cult here. and there's so much we must rally behind our man here that maybe not.

In the actual national view, and you can go to, even though I haven't done a blog post, click on the 2024 Electoral College tab in the upper navigation, once you get there, and you'll get all the current numbers, instead of my month-plus-old blog post that's at the top of the main page.

Um, you'll see that Trump was doing really well and getting stronger and stronger and stronger through the midterms ever since the midterms, he had been declining and Biden had been getting stronger, but that seems to have leveled out since, uh, call it mid June.

So for almost two months now, it's been kind of steady.

Yeah, Siri, you never understand. And kind of steady with nominally, if you believe all the polls, Biden with a slight lead in the Electoral College.

I have him ahead by 68 in the Electoral College right now.

The problem with that is, and the reason my probabilistic views have it more like a dead heat, is because that win relies on several states where his lead is well under 1%.

And historically based on the last four elections.

You can't trust a Democratic lead of less than 1.5% or so.

More than half of the time, the Republican ends up winning those states.

Now, the Democrat could win, but that's why. just based on the indictments and the trial and blah, blah, blah. And you don't need a lot.

You don't need that 45, 50, 55% of Republicans defecting to make Biden a strong leader here in the race.

You just need some portion of Republicans that are like, okay, I've had enough.

I'm going to sit it out. I'll or, or even I'll suck it up and vote Biden.

You it's right on the edge right now. So you only need a small group of people moving over. We haven't seen it yet.

And in fact, like I said, the last almost two months, things have kind of flattened out. They've stopped moving in Biden's direction.

We'll see if this new indictment moves anything, but I, I suspect like a lot of this stuff is just people who are locked in that are locked in.

Um, but I wonder if all of the legal stuff impacts motivation and the people the people who maybe answer the poll, but when push comes to shove in November, Republicans will sit on their hands while Democrats are all invigorated and mad and are going to do everything to get out the vote because A.

Abortion, B, LGBTQ rights, C, Democracy D Donald fucking Trump, you know, like and yeah, okay, only one more thing to mention really and then we'll take one last break and we'll do the Alex thing I mentioned after that.

And I know some of you will just skip that. That's okay. But, you know, he appreciates it when you listen to him and what he's doing.

Anyway, Georgia's coming next. Fonny Willis has promised that she will make public whatever she's doing by the end of this month.

And lots of people suspect that it's actually going to be earlier rather than later. could be as soon as this coming week.

There are talk of potential Rico charges against Donald Trump.

Plus according to some of the things that the former grand jurors have said, perhaps a dozen other people involved, maybe more.

Um, and the Georgia case, of course, the Georgia and New York cases, unlike the two federal cases, even if Donald Trump wins, he can't make them go away because they're state cases.

And so I wonder like, and the Georgia one is specifically related to election stuff too.

Like the New York one, all kinds of people are like, yeah, campaign finance, hush money to a porn star. Who cares?

But the Georgia one is also related to election stuff.

And I wonder if it's going to be the sleeper here. Like, I wonder if it's going to be just as impactful, or perhaps even more so.

Than the indictment we got this last week on the federal level.

So, stay tuned. Oh, and I forgot to pick which break we would do coming up, so let's do that now.

Okay, we're doing the Ray Lynch break. So, enjoy this, and when this is done, I will talk to Alex.

I will mention this. I haven't mentioned this on the show before, but Alex has always been very limited in who he was willing to talk to.

It's called selective mutism. It often comes along with autism.

They used to consider them completely separate, like you couldn't get both diagnoses at the same time. Now you can.

But anyway, it's meant he's only talked to close family and anybody outside of that, he will not speak to them.

Since may, he's restricted that even further.

He's not normally even talking to us anymore, except when he's recording a video and he has said specifically that he will talk to me on this podcast for this purpose.

So we'll see if that happens. Um, yeah. Anyway, after this.

No, no, it's not the beginning of the show again. We're just taking a little time to credit the artist responsible for the music we use at the beginning and end of the show.

What you are listening to right now is The O of Pleasure by Ray Lynch.

The music we close our show with is Celestial Soda Pop. Both of these songs are from Deep Breakfast.

Now Platinum, deep breakfast with.

You can check out Ray Lynch or buy his music at, iTunes, Amazon, or anywhere you usually find music.

And we are back and I am indeed joined by my son Alex. So hello, Alex.

Okay, then. And, um, you wanted to talk about something called tea, uh, something.


TIG. Oh, okay. But, I thought that was confidential.

It is. Oh, okay.

So we have to talk about something else.

Okay. So, is the other thing Capsule Playground?

How did you know?

I don't know how I knew. It was, it's just, it came up in my head. I, I, I don't know.

So tell me about capsule playground. What is that?

You tell me about capsule playground first.

I thought I was interviewing you, but okay. All I know about this is that you showed me something on my screen that was like a bunch of.

I want to say stars, but they weren't stars. They were like little bowls or something, weren't they, on the screen? And then there was this big capsule, and you could make it jump by hitting space and move it around with A and D and stuff.

And I know that it was something you were working on. That's about all I know.

Well, you do know more.

I do?

Yeah. Why was Capsule Playground created?

Okay, I think it is because you were testing something that you were trying to get working on that other confidential project, but you couldn't get it working on the confidential project, so you made a new project to do that.


Okay, so what was involved?

What do you mean, what was involved?

What did you have to do to make the capsule playground thing, and what was it trying to do?

We made a new Unity project.

Now, what's Unity?

You know what Unity is. You aren't stupid.

No, but I'm trying to get answers for our audience who might not know.

But you know, so you should tell them.

Okay, Unity is a game development platform that's very popular, used in a whole bunch of well-known games. How about that?


Okay, so, but... yeah?

The first step in making Capsule Playground was having a reason to, which was testing the thing.

The second step...

The thing. Now, what was the thing?

The confidential thing.


Then the next step was to make the Unity project.

So I did that. Then the next step was to get a texture for the landscape. Okay.

Yeah. That's like the background that the capsule was going to be on.

No, the landscape, the landscape, the little the little um bowls but What why why bowls?

Because that is really fitting to capsule playground is it now Why?

Because it is Okay, trying to open Pixelmator caused the computer to crash.

So the next step was restarting it, and then finding the texture, and then exporting it.

And then I put it into Unity on a tile map, a hexagonal tile map with a flat top. And then...

What does that even mean?

It means it's hexagons.

Are you really that stupid? So... I made the tilemap, and then I used the tilemap to draw terrain.

And then I added a capsule.

And gave it a movement script. Okay. So, then I tested the game.

And it worked. The movement script is like, what maps what you do on the keyboard to what it does, or what?

Yeah, something like that.

So, it worked. So I expanded the map.


And then, you have Capsule Playground, how it is today.

And what this is, is you can bounce the capsule around in this little environment, basically.

Yes. Any questions?

So, what was different about how you were trying to make the capsule move than the movement you already had in the secret confidential project?

Well, that's confidential, so you'll have to censor this, but it was different because it was.

It was different because it was. So something about the movement in the confidential project was not the way you wanted it to be, so this was a test bed to make it move the way you wanted it to.

Now did you have to mess around with it to get it to do what you wanted?

It worked like the first time out of the box.

Which meant that the problem was with the other Unity project.

The problem was with what? I'm having trouble hearing you all of a sudden.

Project. Is your finger covering the microphone on the phone?


Okay. The problem was with the Unity project? project.

What was that problem?

I have no idea. I tried again and all of a sudden it worked.

I deleted all of the scripts that were already there, added the new script, and it worked. Even though I tried that several times.

So this was considerable progress on your overall project, the secret project?


And now it works much better than it worked before?

Yes. What else would you like to know about Castle Playground?

Sorry, say that again.

What else would you like to know about Capsule Playground?

Um, why is it a playground?

Because it's a little area that you play on.

Okay. Ish. That makes sense, and it's Capsule because it's a capsule.

Exactly. What else would you like to know?

Are you going to do anything more with Capsule Playground, or only stuff in the Secret Project now that you've got it moved into there? Yes.

What are the next plans for Capsule Playground?

Well, the next plans for Capsule Playground are going to be new ground tiles.

New ground tiles.

Yes. So the basic ground tile is honeyed grits.

Oh, that's what's in the bowl.

Yeah, so...

And they're really tiny bowls, though.

The next... The next one is going to be Truffle Worm Soup.

Truffle Worm Soup. Yes.

And it's going to act differently from the Honeyed Grits.

Instead of just being solid, you can point it in a direction And it's...

It blows the capsule.

It blows the capsule? What does that even mean?

It works like a giant thing. It works like a giant thing.

It works like a giant thing. Okay, and so will some of the things in the background be the grits and some be the soup?

Yeah, but the soup acts differently.

Instead of it just being a solid thing It's a solid thing and blows the capsule away.

Oh, that's what I was asking what the blowing is.

You can figure it out.

Like if you're near the soup, the capsule sort of gets blown by the hot air coming from the soup.

Well, it's not hot air, it's normal air, but yes.


Then there's also going to be Chili.

Also Chili. OK. And these will all interact differently with the capsule.

Yes. What Chili does is reset the player.

So if you touch the Chili, you go back to the beginning.

I think I might understand.

Then, of course, there's going to be the blueberries. The blueberries.

Yes, and the blueberries can do different things to the different things.

So if you touch the blueberries, you could have the blueberries set to make it so you can walk through some of the honeyed grits, or change the direction of the truffle worm soup, or make it so chili is safe.

Now, are all these features that will eventually be in the Secret Project 2, are some of these only ever gonna be in Capsule Playground?

All of these are only going to be in Capsule Playground.

Gotcha. So you're using Capsule Playground to learn how to do a whole bunch of stuff, but Capsule Playground will also be a game in its own right?



And the most important thing is...

That this game doesn't have an actual campaign.

So there's no objective?

Until you make one.

How do you make an objective?

In the release of Capsule Playground, it's going to be so that...

When it's going to be so that everything is just custom made levels by the community.

Which community is this?

The community who likes Capsule Playground for some reason.

So are you going to actually put Capsule Playground out to some place where other people can play it?

Well, once it's finished.

Excellent. Have you decided where you're going to put it, or that's like, later on?

Uh, that's later. Um, and then, also, do you want to know what the menu screen will be?


There is no menu screen.

Oh, I'm shocked.

How it works is instead of having a menu screen, you have a different menu screen that you access by jumping out of the playground.

Ohhh. Okay.

You open a menu of things.

And do you have to choose things in the menu by making the capsule, like, bump into them?

Now you can click them.

Or do that. You can do either one.

Okay. Anything else about Capsule Playground you would like to share at this time?

Um... What do you think of Capsule Playground? Do you think it'll be a good game?

I like the mechanics of the bouncing around. I'm not sure about the no objective thing. It's just like different maps to bounce around in. I guess that could be fun for a while.

So, if you had to give it a rating, of thumbs up, thumbs down, thumbs up, how would you rate it?

I'm gonna give it a thumbs up.

Okay. What about the confidential project?

Also a thumbs up, from what I've seen of it so far. Okay. Okay? Is that it?


Okay, what else?

There's one more thing.

What's that?

Jet Ski is going to be killed.

No, no, no, no. By a unicorn. By what?

By a unicorn.

A unicorn.

A unicorn right here.

The problem is that she is mad.

Because Jet Ski accidentally...

Oh! I think I just realized why I can't hear you properly.

It's using the microphone from the headset, which is broken.

Oh, that makes sense. Okay, hold on. We're... Dammit. Can we do some of this over? Uh...

No. Ugh, okay. Because I thought it would... Ugh, I was dumb.

I was dumb. I was dumb. I was dumb.

You were dumb. I agree.

Okay, are you there? Can you hear me?


Okay, I will start with some transition noises and then go. Okay, hold on.

Doo-doo-doo. you do!

Okay. Like Alex was saying before I took that, before I stopped things and started again, I was really dumb.

You see, I set up Alex to record using a broken pair of headphones on his phone, on my phone, actually, which works fine for listening, but the microphone on it is shot.

And like, but there were still parts where the microphone was dropping out and it was hard to understand Alex. And it was because I set them up to record with headphones, with a broken microphone.

Because stupid me was like, I kind of knew, I knew the headphones had a broken microphone, but I usually use them sitting at my computer with a different microphone.

But of course the phone tried to use that microphone instead of its built in microphone because it switches both of them at the same time. Anyway, I apologize.

And so maybe this last segment, well, not this last little bit, we were just wrapping up anyway, will sound slightly better on Alex's side.

Anyway, I feel dumb. Am I dumb, Alex?


Yeah, I thought so. So one one more thing that was like I noticed During this break, you were working more on Capsule Playground, and one of the things I noticed is you were using instructions generated by ChatGPT, weren't you?


What do you—have they worked? Has it—, served its purpose? Like, are you getting good results using...

Like, you asked ChatGPT how to do this, and it's telling you, and it's working?

Well, you know the answer to that.

The answer is yes, right?

Yeah, how did you know?

But there have been some things you've had to debug and try to figure out and blah blah blah along the way. So it hasn't just worked, like, right...

You haven't been able to just take what ChatGPT said and drop it in and everything's beautiful and works exactly the way you want it to. Right?

Yeah. You have to do that a few times.

Okay. And you adjust things and figure out what's wrong and try again and blah blah blah? Mm-hmm. Okay. So, are you enjoying this effort that you're doing?


Oh, sorry. I did not mean to imply that in any way it is work.

You are having fun, right? Yes? No? Sure. Sure. Um, is there anything about Capsule Playground that we really should cover that we haven't covered?

Yes. There's one last thing. Ah!

You know, I screwed up something else.

Okay. You're still dumb.

Okay, because, you know, I tried to make like little swooshing noises when we were doing the transition, but like, I forgot this thing that we use has a preview mode and a live mode and I had it in preview, which means only I could hear the swooshes.

So here, here's what it would have been.

There you go. It was that better? Like that's a better transition to do a good job.

There we go.

Anyway, so yeah. Okay. Anything else about capsule playground?

I I've asked that already. Haven't I?


Oh, there is a last thing.



Tell me, anyone who pays.

$8 a month or more gets free early access to Capsule Playground.

$8 a month or more to the Commudgen's Corner Patreon?


Okay, so you would get early access to Capsule Playground.

Except there's something very important you need to remember.

Yes, what's that?

That would also mean that I get 1% of everything you get now.

Which will be much more with the extra $8. Hmm. I don't know.

If someone comes in at the $8 level to get this early access, we will discuss the rest.


Okay. So with that, I think we should wrap this up because this has gone on long enough. It is now, by the way, I started recording this episode on Saturday.

It is now my time here in Seattle, Monday morning at 2 51 AM.

Yeah. And I have work in the morning, so I got to get this thing done and out the door.

Um, so thanks everybody for listening to convergence corner, especially if you made it this far, you know the deal at the end.

You can find all of our information at

You'll find emails for us, for me and Yvonne.

No, well, no, it's a feedback email for the show, but it'll get to both of us.

And you will find our Mastodon addresses. You'll find the show's Facebook account.

You'll find our archives, which as of like the last month and a half or so, also include transcripts.

I know that's so exciting to everybody.

And you will also find a link to our Patreon, where, as Alex was kind of mentioning, You can find...

You can give us money. And at various levels, we will mention you on the show, we will send you a postcard, we will send you a mug. And apparently we now have a new tier where you will get early access to Capsule Playground.

And yeah, and very importantly, at $2 a month or more, or if you just ask nicely in any of the contact methods that we mentioned earlier, we will invite you to our Commendants Corner Slack, where myself, Yvonne, various of our listeners, sometimes even Alex, are in there sharing links, chatting about things, etc.

And yeah, it's lots of fun. It would be great if more of you join us.

And with that, I'm not going to give a highlight of something from the Slack this week.

You know, it is... You know, there's fun stuff on there all the time.

This has gone on long enough. Hey everybody, have a great week, stay safe, and we'll see you next time.

Ivan should be back next week. He has sent pictures, his new computer has arrived, he was setting it up. I presume it'll be all ready to go by the time that we're ready to record.

I was gonna say next week's show, but at this point it's later in this week's show, and it just happens that this is last week's show, even though it's not out yet. Oh, it's so confusing.

I know, so sad.

Anyway, we're out of here. Oh, go back to the phone downstairs so you can say goodbye on the right track. Oh, well.


On the right track. Do, do, do.

Do Bring me that phone right now. It went to sleep or something because nobody was there. All right, here we go. Okay, bye.

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