My brother's birthday; Cohen has a tape, Page has an excuse - Rundown 7/23

Monday, July 23, would be my little brother's 49th birthday had he not passed away in 2004. Please take a look at a little web site we've created in Cliff's honor:

You've probably never heard of him -- and I hadn't even though I have loved his work for years. Screenwriter Shinobu Hashimoto died last Friday in Tokyo at the age of 100. Read about his work here, and if you've never seen the movies mentioned, you should make ever effort to see as many as you can:


Meanwhile, in political news: On Friday we learned that Donald Trump's former personal attorney, Michael Cohen, made a recording of a discussion he had with then-candidate Trump about paying former Playboy Playmate of the Year Karen McDougal for the rights to "her story" (presumably about an affair with Trump.) The payment was apparently never made. Trump supporters, including his current attorney Rudy Giuliani, say the tape is exculpatory. I highly doubt that it will be so definitive. But I also think it doesn't matter very much. If evangelical Christians have stuck with Trump for this long, they'll stick with him through this. And nobody else will care. 

It's worth noting that CNBC reported that Trump's legal team waived privilege for the tape to get it, or at least info about its existence, released to the public. That means either that they think it's exculpatory, or that they think it might be harmful so it's better to deal with it now rather than closer to the election:

And then there's this freakin' guy, Carter Page, whose highly redacted FISA warrant applications were released this past weekend:

The story:

The actual documents:

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