20200131: The Argument Over Flynn and Powell

Thought it best to remove this battle from the Open Thread and take it to the Woodshed because of the necessity to curse a little bit.

I’m at the point where I’m personally offended, which rarely happens. Nonetheless, I agreed to respond to Tonawonda when I had time and felt this was the proper place = the woodshed. I’m also offended to be wasting my time on an issue considered a common sense judgement, but I committed, so here I am.

I am now aware Tona and FG&C have had dialogue on the subject of Flynn and Powell prior to yesterday and the issue is contentious. Okay, no problem. It has nothing to do with me or Big T, but apparently we have been dragged in, in the most bizarre of ways, by Tona.

Here is what Big T said, dropping a comment in the early morning hours and moving on with his day:

1. re: Flynn.

Lawyer Interruptus here: I read the Flynn Affidavit (FA) carefully. In my past experience, Covington & Burling was well known as corporate bag men for what we now know as the Deep Swamp. I would never, ever guide a criminal target in a DC investigation by DOJ to anyone associated with C&B simply because the corporate powers and billions of business the government steers their way is an inherent, unavoidable conflict. There are dozens of boutique law firms with highly-skilled criminal specialists whose very existence is because of cesspools like C&B.

Here, however, C&B was actively part of the psyop designed to take down Trump using Flynn. I have no doubt that the FA is factually accurate. Therefore, every piece of advice given to Flynn was tainted and designed to push him over a cliff and get a guilty plea on the record to be used as predicate to suggest everything the Trump administration did was illegal. How many times have you heard “Why then did Flynn plead guilty?”

The lawyers intentionally overbilled him to get him under duress. They acted like surrogate prosecutors. They created false deadlines. They gave him materially inaccurate and false legal advice. All with the goal of coercing a guilty plea. And, whether C&B knew it or not, the judge was in the bag. I don’t know what leverage they have over him, but the DS got to the judge as well.

Flynn was always the most important and first target. He knows where all the bodies are buried. He knows the Obama corruption, especially Russia and Ukraine. He is Jack Ryan in Clear and Present Danger. I have no illusion that the judge will deny his plea withdrawal and sentence him. I surely expect Trump will pardon him and others in his second term.

2. Bolton.

Vindman’s brother is the leaker. The book has never cleared security review. There is a chance the transcript submitted for review with such tempting language is a deliberate plant but we will likely never know. I an convinced it is a trap and the hook has been set. Let’s see.


Here is Tona’s response:

If you have the time, it would be interesting if you gave your legal analysis of the Flynn case.

As a trial attorney, you must know how Flynn would be humiliated on cross-examination based on the statements he makes in this affidavit. Some things he says are preposterous.

Once again, through her incompetence, Powell puts Flynn in a poor light. Re-read the affidavit paragraph by paragraph and ask yourself what this says about Flynn by implication, the poor, frightened, dependent, clueless dear.

It is quite extraordinary that Flynn would not have “known” the same stuff you knew about C&B. Based on his affidavit, he apparently heard different from what you heard.

And as someone experienced in the criminal law, you understand how often courts hear the plaintive refrain: “I was railroaded!”


At that point, FG&C weighed in, tossing a few expletives, giving an indication of the contentiousness of this issue between the two posters. Several others weighed in, “Why can’t we all get along” type posts. Others, intentionally avoiding the issue.

In the afternoon, hours later, Big T responded to Tona as follows:

I have some time but, gee, I kinda thought I already did. So I’ll reiterate, it’s a frame-up from start to finish and the C&B firm is in it from top to bottom.

As for “humiliation” on cross, it has never happened in the thousands of cross-exams I have done and anyone who expects or predicts that outcome is simply not experienced. I don’t find his statements “preposterous” as he is making a sworn affidavit and his skilled and experienced attorney, who will have hours of direct exam to flesh out the affidavit, blunt the anticipated cross and set traps for the novice prosecutors, knows exactly what she is doing.

Perhaps you gathered from my original piece that I have much experience with the very specific and identifiable sub-species of lawyer of which Flynn’s original counsel are members. Big firm criminal defense lawyers are pawns of the corporate department, kept far enough away that they cannot be smelled but close enough to bail out firm clients who get crossways with DOJ over stock deals, regulatory stuff or SEC rules. They are not trial lawyers and they do as they are told. That Flynn was herded toward them and then ensnared speaks not to his naivete but to his vulnerability at that time. Once you hire a lawyer and your professional life hangs in the balance you do not question that lawyers judgment in the heat of the moment.

I have no idea what ax you are grinding with Sydney Powell nor do I know anything about your professional background. I try to avoid taking a personal position in a professional situation, particularly when it comes to professional behavior. Trump is the greatest president of our lifetime despite his rocky marital past. In my home growing up, my dad railed weekly against Alan Dershowitz the TV icon as they travelled in the same circles, but he never had one bad word about his intellect and practice skills.

I have no basis to judge Attorney Powell’s professional skills other than her actions in this case and what other professionals say about her. I judge her to be an articulate, strong and indefatigable Southern woman; I married one so I understand and admire the fact that such women can move mountains, change history and not break a nail. She is exactly the person I would have recommended Flynn hire at the outset when facing a battalion of angry, chauvinistic, nerdy prosecutors and a mercurial trial judge.

Her professional reputation is impeccable and she is well-liked by her peers. The first is more important as I have met many world-renowned doctors who were reviled by their less-skilled peers. Their peers never played golf with them but sent their mothers for a cure.

Attorney Powell was handed an on-going trainwreck when Flynn finally fired C&B. As an added factor, it is clear that the DOJ has acted with complete disregard of Brady rules in the “discovery” phase of the case. Thus, she had a client who already plead guilty based on incomplete records and incompetent prior representation.

I don’t need to “re-read the affidavit” or do any self-exam. We simply disagree on its import and the strategy behind it. I think your assessment is biased and driven by your dislike of Attorney Powell.

As a federal district court clerk early in my career, I worked for a the chief judge of the US District Court in Boston. Criminal cases are very unusual in USDC as 99% are handled at the state level. Nonetheless, the only people who were less experienced than my judge in criminal practice and procedure were the US Attorneys and no one has given this aspect attention. I can promise you that Van Dorkle has not done enough cross-exams in open court to qualify as a novice. I am sure he has NEVER done one of a high-profile, well-prepared, well-represented defendant in a high-profile, politically-charged case with media covering the color of his tie. If you think Attorney Powell is somehow not skilled, wait til you see Van Dorkle.

Finally, I think I have heard “I was railroaded” maybe twice in my career as a trial attorney. When it comes from a career criminal in his max-security jail cell a year after trial, I yawn. When my federal judge heard it in a habeas corpus case brought by a prisoner sentenced to 30 years for a relatively minor crime, he listened and, against all his conservative DNA, he sent the case back for a de novo sentencing hearing.

I have a far less cynical view of this case and criminal law in general than you apparently do. Perhaps if you have the time, you explain to all of us, with some specific examples and facts, how you came to form these categorical opinions of both Powell and, apparently, Flynn too. It’s Thursday and I’ve been wrong a whole bunch this week already so what’s a couple more times worth in the big picture?


A few people responded in the middle, weighing in, but at this point, we’re at long and detailed posts going back and forth with each other and we’re in the minutiae. Tonawanda and Thomas obviously disagree on the subject. Thomas attributes the disagreement to Tona’s dislike of Powell, but in the end, Thomas admits he has been wrong a whole bunch this week and is open. Clearly, Thomas is becoming aware of Tonawanda’s disdain and long running position on the issue.

Here is Tona’s response, which is strangely personal and offensive in tone: At this point, highlighting will be my emphasis added in response as I agreed to respond to Tona.

We have a different understanding of legal analysis.(Who says your analysis is correct?) Concluding that a prosecution is a frame-up from start to finish, to my mind, is not legal analysis. (Says you, it’s an open shared by many) It is interesting speculation about the motivations behind a case. (Which is what is at stake here, questioning the motivation behind the FBI charges as well as C&B’s response) Legal analysis, to my mind, is applying the law to the facts of a case.(Fact, we have a potential charge of a FARA violation and a potential lying to FBI charge)

I am curious about the nature of the cases where you have done thousands of cross examinations without a person once, not even once, being humiliated. (What? The point of cross is not to humiliate but gather fact for points during closing argument) How many have been in a criminal case? (Why does it matter if someone was humiliated in criminal versus civil? Cross is cross. Unfold the facts of case for the record) How many have been of a defendant who is testifying about an absurd and contradictory alibi? (In criminal cases, many. Alibi originally given is proven to be false and real alibi is revealed on cross or more likely, in a deposition. Reminder, Flynn has never been “cross examined” to my knowledge. He’s not yet taken the stand in an open court. I guess Tona is not aware of this point.) How many have been of a paid expert in a criminal case where the expert was called in to throw a Hail Mary in the face of overwhelming evidence? (This is a silly question but Tona is down the road, let’s let him run to see where he lands.) How many have been where a defendant wants you to believe he didn’t lie by saying he lied under oath, which is Flynn’s present position? Have you ever cross examined someone who states that he committed perjury twice, on exactly the same subject, and the second time he committed perjury because he was surprised? (Oh, I get it now. Because Tona gives a very small Venn diagram of questioning, and assumes Thomas has no similar experience in such a similar line of questioning……… therefore, Thomas should shut up, because he is incapable of giving an opinion……….. but Tona is capable of giving an opinion? What? Why does this remind me of Adam Schiff logic?)

I am interested in the knowledge you have that Flynn was “herded” to C&B. (Easy and rational assumption based on his affidavit, hired the best he could afford at the time) How do you know that? (Thomas doesn’t KNOW that – but it’s an easy assumption. Better question, how do you NOT know that?) How do you know he was “ensnared?” (Again, look at the affidavit, 3 million dollars for a FARA violation and potential charge for lying to the FBI is excessive, thus ensnaring=trapped=have to stick with a big gun DC law firm because Flynn thought he was in serious trouble.)

True, once you hire a lawyer and your life hangs in the balance you do not question the lawyer’s judgment in the heat of the moment. (Glad to see you concede on point) But two points: 1) doesn’t that apply to Powell as well as to any other lawyer? (It could be, but you are assuming facts not in evidence. You’re assuming Powell is overcharging the Flynn family as C&B did and you have no proof of this fact) It looks to me like Flynn is not questioning her judgment under circumstances where her judgment appears harmful to him.(Ah, so you’re giving your opinion as opposed to the “legal analysis” you claim to profess.) That rationalization can be made about C&B or Powell, so where does it get us? (Wrong, we do have a signed affadavit to the 3 million dollars for C&B, we do not have any indication of similar overbilling from Powell) 2) And of course anyone can say they were railroaded by their lawyers. (Although you say you have only heard that twice in your life, you are making exactly that argument in Flynn’s case. You are saying Flynn was railroaded, so that makes a third time.) (This is a personally contentious attack and unnecessary) But do you twice LIE under oath because of your lawyers? (If that was the strategy and the deal to stop the bleeding and free my son from government persecution – the answer is yes) Are you absolved of lying under oath because of your lawyers? (Probably not, which is why Thomas, I believe, inferred Flynn would probably be sentenced and then pardoned) Doesn’t lying under oath carry some moral liability and psychological agency which exceeds your lawyer’s judgment? (It should but find it odd that Tona presumes the position of expert in legal analysis and my moral authority. Indeed, Tona is omniscient.)

I have stated what “ax” I have to grind with Powell many times and at length on QTH. (Presuming everyone reads what you write and has total recall would be fairly arrogant) She took over Flynn’s case when he was ready to be sentenced to no incarceration after pleading guilty to a minor offense, for which he could expect to be pardoned.(true) The stress and the financial bleeding were coming to an end. The government promised no further prosecution for him and his son. (Sure, but Tona is NOT accepting the fact of what Flynn learned at a later date = that Strzok and Pientka did not think Flynn lied in his interview. At the time of pleading, C&B confirmed to Flynn that Strzok and Pientka DID think Flynn lied in the interview. This point indicates someone wasn’t telling the truth, and if Flynn knew or thought he was not lying in the interview – it would renew his fight to clear his name.)

I read Powell’s original papers and posted my thoughts at the time, several times at least.(Again assuming everyone reads what you write. Most of us read them and formed our own opinions and were shocked by Sullivan’s slam to Powell) And what I said, in sum, was that she was not making a legal argument, she was making a political statement. (Oh, there’s your opinion again, it was pretty detailed objections and accusation as to concealing Brady evidence, and requests for the original 302 is sure as hell not a political statement) I could go into detail again but I won’t. Suffice it to say, she never applied the law to the facts, and such law as she did cite was inapplicable (the Stevens case, a topic in her book).(That’s your opinion, definitely NOT a fact, and the Stevens case is directly applicable.)

Sullivan gave her every chance to make a legal argument, and she did not.(Not true, and this goes to your personal attack on Powell. You’re presenting an opinion about Powell’s detailed motion) So Sullivan conducted a legal analysis and, predictably, denied her motion.(Assuming facts not in evidence, again. Could it be that Sullivan had dinner with someone from the DC bar who encouraged him to bury the case, not to open up C&B to malpractice, and defend the DOJ? It’s plausible….. more than plausible) Sullivan conducted actual legal analysis, based on actual law.(I’m laughing – Tona has the ability to know what Judge Sullivan was thinking) I have yet to see anyone refute his legal analysis, certainly Powell has not. (This is how bad Tona’s logic has become. Tona reasons because Powell did not directly attack and challenge the sitting judge of her client, that the Judge was correct and Powell was wrong) Can you? That is what I was asking. (Tona wants Big T to spend hours of his valuable time to lay out a complete defense? For free? Without access to exact materials? For a blog? Fuck off!) Can you apply the intricate law governing Brady to the many allegations and facts of the case? (Sure, short answer. If there is Brady evidence not turned over to the defense, and OBVIOUSLY there is an edit on the original 302, which remains withheld from the defense, and conclusively proves the DOJ hid Brady evidence) And apply that Brady analysis in the context of a guilty plea, one which has been taken twice under oath? (Follow the time line. It’s easy. At first, DOJ and C&B told Flynn that Pientka and Strzok stood firm in contention that Flynn had lied. They changed their story. Now, Flynn has a chance at defense instead of all the weight of the government being against him) I am ready to be convinced, but none of Powell’s defenders have made the slightest effort to do so. Instead, they disparage the judge. (All you have to do is get rid of the chip on your shoulder. You’re too personally invested in your position. The situation changed when new revelations came to light, revelation which SHOULD have been divulged by the DOJ from the beginning – if not for the “illegal” editing of the 302)

Has the stress and financial bleeding stopped since Powell took over? (You don’t know that it has not. We do know the charges from C&B have stopped) Is Flynn in a better position now, or when he was ready to be sentenced on a minor offense to no incarceration? (Calls for speculation, but now, Flynn gets to fight for his integrity) Does Flynn now have to worry about additional charges against him or his son? Does he know? (Yes, he does face additional attacks according to his affidavit) Do we know? (Yes, we do know that he faces additional attacks. AND we have his affidavit) Why are we worrying about this when it all could have been over long ago? (Because the situation changed, more information came out. The 302 was wrong. Are you really saying Flynn should just lay down and take it? for expediency?) Especially when the highly favorable circumstances were obliterated by a motion which had very little chance of succeeding. (Again, you dislike Sidney, discredit her motion, and are pushing a personal opinion)

Powell has her client in a far worse position than when she took over the case, and there was no good reason for it. (Are you kidding me? Practically framed by the government because of an association with a political candidate, forces of the government aligned against him, a government he loved and served, and finally the chance to clear his name and potentially prosecute those who harmed his family) Powell was not handed a train wreck. (Yes, she was, again offering your opinion. We disagree.) She turned the case into a train wreck.(What? No, in my opinion, since we’re all talking about opinions here, volumes of evidence was in the public domain to give rise to doubt Peter Strzok. Of course Flynn would throw a challenge flag and attempt to clear his name. Powell gave him that opportunity and came to the case AFTER the Strzok/Page texts were released) I find her advice to Flynn despicable, and I find her publicity campaign during her representation repugnant. (Well, now you’re off on a personal vendetta and have become irrational) BTW, how much money is Powell making, both in payment for services and in book sales because of the huge publicity and adulatory audience she has created? (Why are you concerned about the money Powell is making but not the fees of C&B? Is the money Powell makes from this case, or threw book sales, increase your personal hatred of Powell, or decrease it – and why does it matter to you so much?) Does that count as much as the money C&B made?

You seem to take issue with my making a judgment on Powell’s professionalism.(You seem to take issue with Thomas’ professionalism when he was open to listening to what you had to say!) But at least it was based on the actual facts of her actual representation, (Bwhahahaha, you contend what you submit was based on facts, when it’s comparable to an EPA danger zone of opinion and innuendo? Tona – you’ve gone off the deep edge) facts which can be refuted or contradicted. (Strongly refuted) But you seem to have disparaged the professionalism of the lawyers at C&B in terms which are impossible to address.(He has personal history with C&B and speaks from experience but you pay no mind and fire at will to disparage Thomas which is inconsiderate and disrespectful.) And you disparage the professionalism of Sullivan in terms which are impossible to address.(Again, bad logic. It’s okay for you to disparage Thomas but it’s not okay for Thomas to disparage, in your OPINION, the judge) Does the same standard of judging professionalism apply to Powell, C&B, and Sullivan alike, or are some lawyers OK to disparage, and others are not? (Tona is clearly picking and choosing whom to disparage in this case but attempting to ridicule others who do. Thomas stated he tried to avoid taking a personal position in a professional matter when it came to “disparagement” of Powell. A 3 million dollar bill for a FARA violation and potential lying to FBI opens up C&B for FULL ON DISPARAGEMENT)


Tona is then asked about his qualifications, background, to offer such an opinion, and responds in snide fashion.

I wish I was so sublime as to be a concert cellist or pianist.


Several others chimed in, and at this point it is difficult to keep track of who is responding to which comment. Zoe makes a comment admiring the defense of Powell, and Tona rebuts Zoe.

Read Flynn’s affidavit. He admits he was a fool. Being a fool was the complete logical basis of his affidavit. That is exactly why Powell is an incompetent counselor. (Again, this is Tona’s opinion and based on bias to Powell – and no clear reason for the hatred. I still can’t figure out the source of Tona’s hatred, NOR DO I CARE, but I was sideswiped and attacked by Tona, and here I am)


Within the thread, it appears as though this is my first comment back to Tona. In fact, it was a later comment as time stamps confirm. I didn’t realize, originally, that I was being sideswiped by Tona:

Says you.
Appears to me you are trying to crawl into Flynn’s mind and assuming the worst possible motives.
Hey, I’m highly qualified in my narrow slice of a skillset, but if the government was coming after me, I would fold like a cheap suit.
And we can imagine, a military man might be more prone to do so.


Tona responds as follows to me:

Flynn’s affidavit comes down to a single characterization: I WAS FOOLED! (To be as objective as possible, Flynn could be saying, “I was fooled”. Yet, he could also be saying, “I was framed”.)

It has nothing to do with me. What is Flynn saying? I WAS FOOLED! (Ditto from above)

I am looking at his affidavit logically (That’s laughable, Tona is no longer objective at all), not crawling in his mind. I am looking at the LEGAL and practical implications of his affidavit, which Powell selfishly did not do. (No, you’re pushing your opinion, which lacks credulity in the same sentence where you infer Powell is selfish.)


I respond as follows:

Tona, I have no idea why you are so pissed off about this issue, but you are entitled.
Logic dictates 4 days of proffer is insane.
Logic dictates a 3 million dollar bill in 6 months is usury and highly suspicious.
I have all kinds of questions for C&B, but it’s a separate issue.
Can I see pleading guilty to a crime I did not commit? Yes. Absolutely, especially to end the bleeding or threat to family.
Strangely, it was almost the same thing which happened to the Merrill Lynch execs.


Tona responds to me as follows:

I am not pissed off. (Chuckle. Really? I can’t hear you over your screaming.) I asked logical questions, and did not get logical answers. (I’m laughing at the delusion. 4 days of proffer is unreasonable, even for a complicated RICO case where we were tracking accounting. A 3 million dollar bill is insane for 6 months of work on such small charges – pretty logical to me) You say that is pissed off. I say that is something else. (Tona is clearly pissed off on this issue, and that’s FINE. Leave me out of it. Can’t understand why I can respect Tona’s wild opinions but I’m not allowed the same latitude. And neither is Zoe. And neither is Thomas. And neither is FG&C. Why not? Why so triggered? Why so irrationally triggered? Why so personal? Why so offensive to other members?)

By now, I realize I’ve waded into an irrational conversation and attempt to brush it off and find common ground. I respond as follows:

What is that, a 20yr bad history of the DOJ ignoring Brady evidence? Made worse under Obama?(and thereafter)

There’s that “thing”, again. (by now the posts are no longer in coherent chronological order)


Tona responds as follows:

Oh my goodness.(Exasperated because I don’t agree?) It is the facts of the Flynn case. (Says you) Powell has ruined Flynn. (I see no evidence Flynn’s reputation has diminished nor has his popularity) She is an incompetent, and probably more. (Incompetent is a judgement based on facts not in evidence, only personal bias. “Probably more” implies further disbaragement and is an emotional attack on Tona’s part. Reminds me of Schiff trying to impeach Trump because Schiff thinks Trump MAY steal an election in the future. What a wild assumption.) Why are people adulating her? (More indication of Tona’s bias but nothing to base it on. Did Sidney kill someone? Did she not pay a bill? Did she cheat on a test in high school? What is it?)


A few people chime in, Big T and FG&C go back and forth, nothing serious. Further down the thread is my initial comment, where I weighed into the quagmire. Guess I should have gone to bed early.

The key, learned in Flynn’s statement only yesterday, was the FOUR DAYS of proffers.
NO ONE does that.
Should have been a 2 hr meeting at best.
C&B attorneys should have their houses egged at Halloween.
No excuse for not pulling him out.


Here is Tona’s original sideswipe at me, directly. What a bizarre comment.

How many times have you negotiated a plea in a criminal case? How many times has Thomas? I am really curious – – can I negotiate the purchase of marble from Wherever, never have done it before?


I responded, a little curious, but trying to be helpful:

Honey bear read the 12 page memo to me and discussed.
When he got to the fourth day, he was red-faced.
Should have never taken that long and disservice to their client, Flynn.
My comment was based on what he said.

Could you negotiate marble from all over the world……… sure.
Why not?


21:48 Daughn = And to answer directly, Big T can’t count that high, as far as negotiating a plea. He did it a LOT.

Tona responds as follows:

Yes, just like Thomas can evaluate what happened in Flynn’s plea, or analyze a Brady issue. Please turn to Thomas now, and ask him: are you competent to do a Brady analysis?


21:55 Tona = Come on daughn, be real. (What? Inferring I’m the stupid one? Excuse me?) Did Big T negotiate as a criminal defense attorney, or as a prosecutor?

21:56 Daughn = defense atty, he was never a prosecutor.

21:57 Daughn = Why?

21:57 Daughn = Am I missing something?

22:11 Tona = How many pleas did Thomas negotiate as a defense attorney? (I respond later too many to count) And has he ever analyzed a Brady issue? (Yes, he has) And why did he not answer my long answer to him? (Because he thinks you’re off your rocker on this one, too demanding of his time within a thread which already has too many responses to follow coherently, irrational in your assumptions, offended in your accusations, and wrong about the case….. which he previously stated. IOW, He thinks you’re a troll.)


I come back, still oblivious that there is a source of contention and confused as to why Tona has assumed such an abrasive tone:

Hang on I will ask. (Thomas was also unaware anything was wrong at this point.) (I asked my husband and he was taken aback and offended. He responded as follows)

He says he doesn’t owe you an explanation on anything.
“This isn’t a law school class, and you aren’t the professor.” and ” If you have the qualifications to be said law school professor, he would be happy to discuss” and ” leave my wife out of it”
Now, that’s a direct quote.

(I chime back in still making an attempt at peace) What he did say earlier,
He’s never heard of a proffer taking 4 days no matter how complicated the case.
Don’t think I understand the anger here.
What did I miss? (I’m just becoming aware there is something wrong. )

(At 22:11 I also made the following comment) Oh, I get it now.

Flynn’s proffer should have been easy, and his atty’s should have limited it to the two charges he was facing. Sounds like they pumped him for info.

FARA violation and lying to FBI should have been a 30 minute MAX type meeting.

Common sense, how much can you say?


Tona responds as follows: Comments are flying back and forth fairly quickly.

I am curious, what did Thomas say when you asked him if he was competent to analyze a Brady issue? And how many criminal pleas has he negotiated as a criminal defense attorney or a prosecutor?


I responded “too many to count”

Earlier, in mid afternoon but lower in the thread, Thomas responded to another poster as follows:

You might be right. We’ll certainly see on the pardon.

On the hearing, because Flynn has already plead guilty, Sullivan has very broad discretion to deny the motion out of hand despite the affidavit. In that context, an appeal is futile. So a pardon would be the last available option.


21:47 Tona responds to Thomas, challenging him directly:

You really have not the faintest idea how an appeal works under the circumstances, do you? (Yeah, Thomas is the fool, the rube, and no one understands except Tona.) Why give an opinion on something you know nothing about? (More indication of irrational behavior)


Tona also says:

So, he does not have the faintest idea how Powell abused the Brady issue in this case to sucker MAGA people,(Wrong, there you go again, making false assumptions. Thomas was the one who originally devoured the Powell motion to Sullivan and read it to me, highlighting Brady violations) and he does not have the faintest idea how guilty pleas work and the legal consequence of guilty pleas.(What a stupid and bullshit comment)

And he certainly did not even attempt to defend Powell legally, (What? Within a post which now has over 50 subcomments, making them impossible to track?) just as she never even attempted to make a legal argument,(Ahhhh, we’re back to your personal bias of Powell again) as I have been saying all along.(Yep, I believe we’ve heard of your personal disdain for Powell)

No one owes me an explanation about anything, true.(Bet your ass on that one.) But people who assert themselves based on their profession ought to have the decency to defend themselves on their profession. (WTF does that mean? Because someone, a highly trained lawyer, does not step and fetch to your irrational rambles, offer long winded responses on a free blog post, he is therefore “less” in your eyes? What the hell is wrong with you, Tona?)


Thomas responds to the direct attack as follows:

We can maybe address these substantive issues in the clear light of day tomorrow under one condition. We dispense with the attacks, innuendo and insinuation.

If you have some specialized knowledge or experience then you owe it to the group and to basic courtesy to share it with us. If you don’t then stop with the inquisitorial tone and the angry, condescending attitude because it serves no one well, especially you. I enjoy the exchanges and the breadth of experience here. You apparently don’t enjoy it and don’t respect the people and the genuine sense of comradeship we find here.

Beyond that I’m done here and have things to do.


Tona responds to Thomas, taking another swipe:

I owe nothing to anyone but my honesty and logic. (Again, false assumption that Tona is the only one who possesses logic….. and honesty….. because everyone else is lying? It’s laughable) What difference does it make if anything is “specialized”? (Similar to “my opinion is just as important on Twitter and nevermind I have no header or avatar and no followers”)

You do not know what you are talking about with respect to guilty pleas and Brady, why pretend that you do? (Incorrect assumption) What is more harmful, your pretense or my inquisitorial tone? (We have a troll?)

You refuse to answer questions when you have puffed up yourself as an expert. Answer, expert. (At midnight? Again, fuck off. No, You’re not deserving. You’re far too wrong on base premise and wedded to your bias to be persuaded – thus, you would be a wasted effort of a 4 hour deep dive of a post in explanation- and certainly not within a post approaching 75 side comments)


Ahhhh, but you missed this classic exchange, where Tona responds to me, directly, to tell me how stupid I am………. and my husband is also stupid….. and Tona is right about everything. This is what I said:

Tona, I now understand you have a “thing” about Sidney Powell and Flynn.
Fine, your choice.
Say what you want. Free speech zone.
In fact, you don’t even have to make a rational argument.
Hell, I disagreed with your argument and bizarre assumptions, based on your opinions, which weren’t really based on anything.
But, that’s okay, too.

I read your reply, and could pick apart the flawed logic, or at least the questionable logic – as I did verbally as I read.
There is a LOT we don’t know here.

Yet, sure as heck, the proffer should have never taken 4 full days, and it does smell suspicious.
A 3 million dollar bill in 6 months for a FARA violation and potential lying to FBI is doubly suspicious.


To me, the argument was pretty simple as I tried to explain. Gosh, I tried to give Tona room for his opinion and right to a crazy opinion if he needed one. I concluded with bottom line numbers which seem to sum up the problem, to me, …………… but not to Tona.

Tona responds to me:

Look at your statement. I have a “thing”. Is that a logical statement, or a rhetorical one? (It’s a fact, given your laundry list of documented bias against Powell for some unknown reason – You have a “thing” about her)

You say I have flawed logic, but you do not cite a single instance. (I promised to address it later, which is WHY I am wasting my time with you, here, now!)

I realize both you and Mr T are wonderful people, and I admire you both. But logic is logic, and avoidance is avoidance. (Piss off, and YOU have avoided Thomas’ double invitations to tell us all MORE about what you know. Truth is, he’s trying to figure out WHY you are so irrational on this issue to address THAT issue, to move forward. Otherwise, you’re stuck with a weird and confounding opinion.)

Sorry, Mr T has not the faintest idea what he is talking about. Sorry, he does not. (Says you. And Cates, and Barnes, and Margot Cleveland, and all the Powerline guys, along with Thomas are all wrong and you, and you alone, are correct. Yeah, got it.)

Lawyers (like Mr T) have some bizarre idea they are authorities on everything. They are not. It is distressing to me that someone says “I am a lawyer” and other people assume understanding and knowledge. (Well, here is where you are wrong completely. Big T readily admits he doesn’t know shit about finance, or blueberry muffins.) And furthermore (Tell me what is wrong with you, Tona, did a lawyer steal your cookies in school? Were you wronged in some way? You are lashing out and it makes no sense whatsoever.)

Lawyers are NOT anywhere near omniscient. But for some reason they try to pretend they are. Law is a very subtle, logical, ethical, moral and necessary aspect of life, but the practitioners are not, necessarily. (It’s clear you’re not talking about Big T but about someone else who has harmed you in some way. What’s going on with you? Are you okay? And for the record, I not longer care. You need help I cannot provide)

You can not pick apart my logic, you are just saying so. (I already have) That reflects on you. (You need a big mirror and a vacation for some self-reflection. God speed) But you are lovable (in my eyes) for many other reasons, and so I let it go. (Again, piss off – you’ve burned your bridge to me)


23:12 Daughn = Tona, you have a “thing”

23:14 Daughn = When I have time, I’ll pick this one apart. (Which is why I am here, wasting time with a troll, right now)
Right now, you’re not worth the effort. (Definitely not at midnight)

23:33 = Tona = I realize, T does not know what he is talking about. (Again, everyone else is stupid and Tona is all knowing, but we still don’t know how or why) You are an admirable spouse. (What an unmitigated asshole. Total asshole. Pat me on the head, the good compliant wife who is an idiot. Most condescending statement I think I’ve ever seen written about me. Congratulations to you, Tona. You win the prize as the biggest asshole. I’m beyond offended. Funny thing is, I didn’t rely on my husband’s rationale to reach my conclusions. And you’re so damned self-absorbed you can’t get out of your own bubble )

23:34 Tona =

I am waiting for your logic and truth. (You wouldn’t know it if it hit you. You’re stuck.)

But your honesty would be preferable. (You’re lying. Because unless someone agrees with you, you’re incapable of hearing. It’s unfortunate.)


Thomas comes back, this is now the NEXT DAY, but still confused as to the reaction of Tona:

From your high chair of superiority, please tell me just how I am so deficient. I have appeared before many imperious, haughty and demeaning judges in my time. They pale before your highness and haughtiness. So I kneel before your greatness and ask that you enlighten us all. What do I not know? Apparently there is much I don’t and I thirst to drink from the font of your well of knowledge.


Tona responds, demanding hours of Thomas’ attention:

Apply a Brady analysis to Powell’s argument which demonstrates she had the slightest chance of winning, instead of putting her client in a much worse position to her pecuniary benefit. (All you need is the original 302, and we already, I believe, have some evidence Lisa Page edited it. Hinge point is why did DOJ and C&B contend Strzok and Pientka were of the opinion Flynn was lying….. and then retract? There’s obviously other Brady material but wouldn’t that be enough to satisfy Tona? Would ANYTHING satisfy Tona at this point?) She didn’t do it, and not a single one of her adulators has done it. (Again with the opinions from Tona “she didn’t do it” and those who disagree with Tona are Sidney’s adulators – more evidence of bias)

Barnes has not done it, Cleveland has not done it, Cates has not done it, the Powerline guys have not done it, you have not done it. (Yeah, right…… Only Tona knows best. Margot Cleveland and Robert Barnes are fools, Cates and the Powerline guys, as well as Thomas……. none of them are smarter than Tona.)

Yes, there is much you don’t know. (But Tona refuses to tell us? Hell, Thomas asked Tona to inform us all. Admittedly, he was baiting Tona because he thinks Tona is a fool on this one and a waste of time.) The first thing to do is, admit it. (Tell me Tona, are you shaking your finger at my husband? What a pious ass!), Second, stop being a license flasher. (Sounds like you’re a little intimidated…. yeah. You’re protesting WAY TOO MUCH) Third, answer the question and stop changing the subject when you are wrong or do not know what you are talking about; that is truly an ugly trait. (I’m laughing now, no one changing subject. Question, are you still on a soap box and shaking your finger?) Fourth, answer people regardless of whether they are your law professor or your cleaning lady (Ahhh, definitely intimidated… and insecure about it….. and again, he disagreed with you on point early on. Asked and answered. He thinks you’re blinded by biased); if you give an opinion, defend it without regard to credentials. (Because YOU DEMAND IT? Are you stomping your feet as well? Did your mother always give you a cookie when you threw a tantrum?) Fifth, stick to facts and logic, quit the unbecoming atmospherics. (Honey, Tona, I could take lessons from you on unbecoming atmospherics. To wit, I shall reiterate, Thomas’ last post to you asked you to please, inform us all……. which you avoided.)


Bottom Line

The whole thing is stupid and a waste of time. A hemorrhoid would be less painful. Apologies to ANY other QTreeper who was caught up in this bullshit.

Be assured, I will never respond to Tona again, not worthy. Obviously, I am not worthy to him.

Saves us both a lot of time, going forward.

Hey Wolfie, the UTree was a good idea. Thank you for the Woodshed.

35 thoughts on “20200131: The Argument Over Flynn and Powell

  1. I was watching this as these comments were on my watch 1/30/20 open topic. Had thoughts of telling Tona to take it to the U TREE but figured Wolf would decide that that. Disturbing to me when Wolf has outlined the guidelines on civility and went so far as to start the U TREE because of his high standard for free speech. No doubt the U TREE is a excellent idea

    Liked by 3 people

    1. TIM, I was so surprised by the whole thing.
      Definitely, UTree is a great idea.
      Hope I won’t need it again for this specific purpose and apologies to other Qtreeps AND you for drtying up the main thread.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Sometimes we do not know what stresses happen in peoples life.
    “Our weakness is our strength and our strength is our weakness”
    We have to first figure out what our weakness is and what we perceive as our strength.
    Love you Daughn for sharing. Peace all will be well.

    Liked by 3 people

  3. OMG, probably my second UTree. Will post QTree. Not too much potty language, I think. I hope 😉

    Simply stunned.

    Gotta say, I never agreed with a Flynn related post by Tona. Even said as much on one or moar occasions. But I used to want to see another view, to consider. Hell I miss a lot in life. Even when folks hold the obvious up in my face…and it’s a talking picture…I miss stuff. But, again, never understood the Tona, Flynn posts absolutely hammering Sydney and Flynn.

    The idiot in me readily identified with the wrongs and corruption Sydney highlighted while representing Flynn. Hell, I, we, saw the wrongs and corruption before Sydney came along! Saw it a couple years ago. Validated moar along the way.

    Biggest TELL beyond years of postponing sentencing.
    – A year ago or so, DOJ recommend probation.
    – A month or so ago DOJ recommends six months.
    – Thursday or Friday DOJ recommends probation.

    DOJ just blinked. DOJ wants to let shit slide under the table. DOJ has been caught railroading a US citizen. DOJ & FIB lied about 302s…

    Until I slowly read, and yea I am slow article above, I did not realize the very jaded and seemingly” personal, as opposed to analytical posts Tona shared regarding Sydney, AND Flynn. Something very, very personal in this.
    ^^^ One of those deals, “once I see it, I can’t unsee it”. Dunno if it is related to one or moar of following…military, senior military officer, successful female, high viz lawyer, can’t accept DOJ facked up, can’t accept FIB facked up… But I am done with it ^^^.


    Given what we have witnessed for eleven plus years, there is no doubt Flynn was framed. hussein, bite me, hildabeast, kerry, and his corrupt departments & agencies blatantly violated the law for eight years. As that shithead went into the shadow to wreak havoc on America, remnants of his shithead followers are still conspiring against America, Americans… IRS, fast & furious, Benghazi, emails, tarmac, corrupt IC, DOJ, FIB, ATTEMPTED COUP… LL, Holder, Yates, McCabe, Comey, RR, Strokz, Page…so many moar.
    ^^^ Absolutely obscene what these assholes have done to our Country. Done to our citizens. ^^^
    ^^^ Wheels of Justice are way too slow. But wait we must. 100% on Trump Train and believe in Barr.

    OBVIOUS unending corrupt and endless illegal actions against good guys. FLYNN IS A GOOD GUY. RAILROADED. Have ALWAYS believed in his innocence.

    100% I can see myself with crappy memory saying something. Later recalling moar accurately. Has happened to me for several decades. Both recent and not so recent memory. Doesn’t mean I lied. Shit happens.

    AND, 100% the Federal government can be oppressively overbearing, threatening, INTIMIDATING…I can easily see myself taking a fall, “phony” guilty plea to save my wife or children from OPPRESSIVE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT…COMMONLY ACTING ILLEGALLY.

    This fool is not a lawyer. How the hell would I know, what the Feds can do, can’t do, what the law is, procedures…? Get a lawyer AND bad advice…client is facked. Then see my world, which I struggled to build for 30+ years imploding…can’t fathom trying the fight the weight of the Federal government.

    Rant off.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Hey, that was a pretty good rant, Kalbo. Thank you for taking the time to type it all out.
      In retrospect, I should not have waded in and simply avoided him.

      Still don’t know what Tonawanda is asking Thomas to do. Seems like he wants a full brown legal breif, several billable hours of my husband’s time, for Sidney’s original motion. Then, to get into a legal discussion.
      Answer is no, eff off.

      At first I thought Tona was a woman, but no woman would utter the phrase, dripping with condescension, “you’re a loyal wife” after insulting the husband. I damn near went through the roof on that one. PISSED me off. And certainly, no southern man would be so stupid to say such a thing = Tona is a northern male.

      Sounds to me like he has crossed Sidney before, personally, and has an issue unrelated to me or Thomas but I am just guessing.

      I’m still PISSED off about him and that he wasted so much of MY valuable time.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yes. An unnecessary diversion to otherwise positive conversations here QTree. And a waste of time. (Understatement.)

        Agree, Sydney seems to be the trigger. But, dunno.

        Occasionally, my ignore button is applied. So much positive and constructive banter, nothing to gain by dwelling on that crap again. IF future nonsense arrives, I’m simply moving on.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Wow Daughn I missed that whole thread – must have been hiking in the cactus. You & Thomas held your own, and emotional arguments devolve quickly for the one who gets emotional. Singing Soul is gracious to say we never know what stresses someone is under when posting. I’m more of a “Tona should put down the bottle if he wants to debate”.

    This is about the second time I’ve moseyed over to UTree cuz I wanted to read Marica’s comments from when she was binned during the rally. Then I saw your header and WOW.

    You will laugh though … because I wasn’t aware of the whole back and forth, I started reading your post thinking it was WOLFIE who was posting, and it wasn’t until I was about halfway through, my brain went, “Wait a second. Is this Wolfie or Daughn talking?”

    🙄🙄 You done good. Always do. Appreciate you so much 💖💖

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Funny, I’ve learned a LOT about chemistry over here at Utree.
      Some of the guys are taking one element per day.
      Actually quite informative, like a fun chemistry class with a bunch of buddies.
      Never know when the info will come in handle, and an grateful for the brain feed.

      Liked by 2 people

        1. Oh yeah, the guys are smart, for sure.
          Makes us all pedal faster.
          Daddy always said, “If you’re the smartest one in the room, then you’re in the wrong room.”

          Liked by 2 people

        1. Different skill sets. I want both guys…. Interesting, smart, funny as hell, and would have dated both (not at same time) in high school! Definitely, my type.

          Liked by 2 people

  5. At the outset, I will assume he or she is a lawyer; it is pretty clear both in attitude and context.

    I decided to leave the private practice of law for a variety of reasons. One of the most prominent ones: with the exception of a handful of friends who were also lawyers, I had nothing in common the others. I saw them as parasitic amoeba – replicating as they lived off the problems of others: parasitic enablers who thrived on conflict and who existed to create more, Dickensian caricatures who never died, just slowly turned to dust when there were no more conflicts to feed off. Each time I walked into a courtroom my cynicism meter pegged to red and all I saw was a corrupt judge and a gaggle vultures waiting for fresh kill. Call me jaded.

    So, now that I have enough information, I can have compassion, even empathy for other lawyers. The cold glow of a computer monitor is soothing in the solitude of purposelessness. The click of the keyboard can sound strangely like conversation but it is cold solace when it produces only bilious epithets. Lawyers, trained to attack, competitive by nature and bred in an adversarial system, who no longer have a legitimate outlet, are dry drunks: lashing out at the world for no apparent reason – unaware that they are the problem; craving the attention they no longer can earn and stomping their feet in an empty prairie raising only dust. They are sad, pitiable, mournful withered shadows.

    I have fought that demon so I recognize it in others. While I can summon sympathy, I have must more disdain because, unlike athletes, lawyers don’t lose their skills with age. In fact, I know many lawyers in their 80’s whose knives are ninja-worthy. Perhaps that is heart of the problem: world-class skills; poverty-stricken souls.

    I don’t care anymore whether my analysis is SCOTUS level or Single A NY-Penn League. I share what I know with my friends and I step in bovine scat as often as the next guy fumbling in the dark. BUT, having done a personal, recovering lawyer program I now look ahead not back and now I get to do what I find to be most rewarding. I get to make a gourmet breakfast for kind, friendly people who will tell me a little about their own interesting lives and, at the end of the meal, we all will be a little better, a little happier for it. That is purpose, at least me.

    I trust you all will have a meaningful day. The sun also rises – in the East here too. And as we say in Ireland – mazel tov. To the kitchen!

    Liked by 3 people

    1. So, wait …. Big T makes the blueberry muffins !?!?!?! 😱🥰🥰

      Love you both Big T and Miss Daughn – a formidable couple and colorful, patriotic individual lives well-lived 🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸 The American Dream


    2. In their motion to continue, the GOVERNMENT ATTORNEYS stated that their purpose in filing the motion was:

      “to make certain and clear that counsel [Covington & Burling] may take the necessary steps to vindicate their public reputation by addressing and defending against the defendant’s claims of ineffective assistance of counsel, and equally to vindicate the integrity of this Court’s previous proceedings, the government asks this court to issue the attached proposed order.”

      Can I get a concession at this point? All masks are off. A government prosecutor defending the discharged former attorneys? Gee, ya think there was a cabal going? Or do you just have some more bile to spew?


  6. Amazing the meaningful realities we learn in life, and adjust our perspectives for “goodness”. Ours and others.

    Absolutely cracked up reading… And as we say in Ireland – mazel tov. 🙂

    A beautiful morning northern Nevada…as the sun is rising.

    Liked by 3 people

  7. Daugn/Big T, caught the beginning of this. And I am thinking why is this person acting like this definitely no call for it. But y’all handled it beautifully. In agreement something personal with Sidney earlier and as they say the older you get the filters come off. I’ve seen it more than once.
    I am sure you’ve moved on, it takes to much energy to fight a useless battle. Have a great rest of your weekend

    Liked by 2 people

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