Lev Explains It All, Episode Two: How I Stopped Worrying And Learned To Love Talking To Rachel Maddow
Did you watch the first night of Lev Parnas on the Rachel show? And most importantly, did you read Wonkette's recap of it, because it took us a long time to write? If you have not done those things, you have five hours of homework, and then you can read this post, which is Wonkette's recap of NIGHT TWO of the Lev Parnas on the Rachel show!
Rachel Maddow started last night's episode of the new hit
CW MSNBC show Lev Splains It where we started our recap yesterday, with a discussion of why precisely exactly Lev Parnas, who was indicted by the SDNY, is doing what he's doing right now. The first night, Maddow said what came across in her discussions with him is that he feels that by spilling his guts about what he knows, he is rendered safer than if he were a man who could, we dunno, fall out of a window like a common Russian journalist (either they are particularly bad at knowing which one is "window" and which one is "door" or Vladimir Putin is a murderer), taking his secrets with him.
And yes, it sounds like he is scared of that. We want to emphasize at the outset, though, that we actually don't know Lev Parnas's true motivations in what he's sharing right now. (Marcy Wheeler is skeptical, but also acknowledges that a lot of what Parnas is saying is tracking with what we already know.)
But Parnas said last night that what he fears more than these "criminals" is
his shadow spiders the monster under his bed
BILL FUCKING BARR.
(We will replace this grody poop-smell picture of Barr as soon as MSNBC uploads the fucking video, please.)
That's right, the low-rent el cheapo Big Lots clearance rack regional theater understudy version of Roy Cohn that Trump hired to be his attorney general. Indeed, Parnas said he fears Barr more than any of these other "criminals," one of whom, we imagine, is the Russian-mob-tied Ukrainian criminal Dmitry Firtash, for whom the law firm of Hairball and Hairball hired Parnas to be "translator." From what Parnas says, and Wonkette figured out ages ago, the hairballs also hired Parnas to negotiate the quid pro quo where they'd save Firtash from indictment and extradition to the United States in exchange for Firtash giving them sweet fake Biden dirt and leaning on the Ukrainian government to announce a Biden investigation.
Parnas says "people are scared" now that Barr is attorney general. He noted that Trump wasn't all that powerful to start out with, but now that he has Barr, Trump has more power. Lev Parnas is not wrong.
Now, you might think, "Well, Lev Parnas is indicted by the SDNY. We think he might have a reason to fear the attorney general!" But we think he's saying it's more than that. He's talking about what happens when you run afoul of the Circle of Trump, which he describes as less like organized crime, and more of a "cult." (Parnas says he regrets things he did while in that cult, like all former cult members do.)
According to Parnas, Barr was a full player in the Trump/Giuliani Ukraine crime cult. And what happens when you run afoul of the cult? They banish you, throw you under the bus, pretend they never knew you. Sometimes worse.
So what we hear Lev Parnas saying is that he feels safer telling all his secrets as insurance against whatever Bill Barr might try to do to him, and he fears that more than he fears the Russian fucking mob. (We are saying "fucking" like an expletive, not that there is a deranged mob of Russians who won't stop fucking.)
As an example of what happens to people once banished from the Circle of Trump, Parnas spilled tea about two dipshits we've come to know well:
JOHN 'COMIC SANS' DOWD AND PAUL MANAFORT'S STUPID-LOOKING MEATCAKE BEEF-FARTER LAWYER KEVIN DOWNING, WHOM EVERYONE HATES
(We will replace this groddy poop-smell picture of John Dowd as soon as MSNBC uploads the fucking video, please.)
Remember Kevin Downing, that shithole who represents Paul Manafort? Remember John Dowd, that other idiot who used to rep Trump and sends his letters in comic fucking sans? (We are saying "fucking" as an expletive, we are not saying that "comic" is literally fucking "sans.")
Those guys originally repped Lev Parnas too, because all these idiots feel the need to be in the same joint defense agreement in order to protect
themselves Donald Trump. Parnas told stories about what that was like, and why he fired those lawyers, in jail.
At first, Dowd didn't think he could get Trump to waive conflict and let him represent Parnas, whom Trump says is a perfect stranger to him. Parnas said LOL, no, dude, I am in the group, ask Trump, he'll let you rep me. And Lev was right!
But those guys, from Parnas's perspective, didn't seem to be representing him or his best interests. It was all about Trump. Some combination of those guys and the law firm of Hairball and Hairball, according to Parnas, were the ones who told him not to cooperate with Congress's impeachment inquiry, even though he felt fully inclined to do so. Because they had "three-way privilege," him and Giuliani and Trump, Parnas explained. Was that to protect Lev Parnas? Or was that to protect Trump?
The big firing happened, in Parnas's telling, once he was arrested and sitting in jail and Dowd and/or Downing started talking to him "like a drill sergeant" and basically telling him to be a good little boy and do what they say. Parnas felt they were telling him to throw himself under the bus in order to protect Him From Whom All Blessings Flow. (See: cult.) So according to Parnas, he told them to get the fuck out of his face and Kevin Downing ended up hitting the emergency button to let him out of the meeting area in the jail because he was scared like BAWK! BAWK! and oh man, that woulda been funny to watch.
Anyway, those guys are not Lev Parnas's lawyer no more.
Any Other Trump-Sucking Lawyers Lev Would Like To Throw Under A Bus?
(We will not replace this screengrab under any circumstances, because oh my god we got it on our first try.)
Jay Sekulow, hi! Hi, Jay Sekulow!
Was Jay Sekulow aware of Trump and Rudy Giuliani's Ukraine crime spree? "Oh, absolutely," according to Parnas, who added that Sekulow "didn't agree with what Rudy was doing," but he knew. You know, in real time, as the crime was being committed, just like John Bolton knew about it. Parnas said yesterday that Bolton should really testify in the impeachment trial.
Sekulow is set to act as Trump's lead counsel in the impeachment trial, alongside Pat Cipollone, AKA Patty With The Good Letters. (THE BEST LETTERS, EVERYBODY SAYS IT WAS A PERFECT LETTER, PAT CIPOLLONE IS GETTING MADE FUN OF ON THE INTERNET OVER A PERFECT LETTER!1!1!!!)
Perhaps Jay Sekulow should sit down in the witness chair, next to John Bolton, since it sounds like he's a witness.
YOU'RE UP, RICK PERRY!
Sounds like Rick Perry, who announced he was noping out of his job as Energy secretary about five seconds after this Trump scandal blew out into the open, should ALSO probably sit his dancing ass down in the witness chair!
Lev Parnas reports that Rudy Giuliani told Perry, when he went to Ukraine for Volodymyr Zelenskyy's inauguration, that he needed to tell Zelenskyy that they needed to announce bullshit Biden investigations. (This after Pence canceled his trip to the Zelenskyy inauguration, allegedly as punishment because Trump was pissed the incoming Zelenskyy administration wouldn't announce bullshit Biden investigations.) And according to Parnas, Perry reported back to Giuliani that he indeed got Zelenskyy to agree to that.
But the problem Parnas says they kept running into was that Ukraine would keep saying OK sure fine, we will make your damn Biden announcement, but then they'd "walk it back." They'd come out and just say some milquetoast thing about "corruption" or whatever, which would piss off the Circle (Jerk) Of Trump, because HAVE 2 SAY BIDEN DOESN'T COUNT IF U DON'T SAY BIDEN111!11OMG!!
AND NOW MIKE POMPEO!
Speaking of witnesses who know a lot and refuse to share it with the class!
Parnas told some funny kneeslapper stories about The Man Who Could Not Fire Marie Yovanovitch, who is the president of the United fucking States. (We mean "fucking" as an expletive, not that our nation is some kind of united states of fucking.)
A recurring theme that comes up again and again in Parnas's texts is that it sounds like Trump tired to fire former ambassador Marie Yovanovitch multiple times, but it just never stuck. Parnas enlightened Maddow and Viewers Like You about that last night, saying Trump would fire her, but then "she wouldn't leave." He did this "four or five times," according to Parnas, and the State Department would refuse/forget to remove her.
He told of a dinner meeting he attended at the Trump hotel on April 30, 2018. Trump himself was there, though he obviously has never met Lev Parnas. Don Jr. was there too! And according to Parnas, at that meeting he told Trump that Yovanovitch had been saying swears about how Trump was going to get impeached, and just generally badmouthing him. (Parnas now regrets this, as he now believes it was a lie.) This sent Trump into a rage, at which point Trump demanded Yovanovitch be fired, but Parnas says former Trump aide John DeStefano said no, Mister President, we can't do that, because Mike Pompeo hasn't been confirmed. (Maddow noted he had been confirmed, but not yet sworn in.)
But Yovanovitch wasn't actually fired until April 2019. So it sounds like what Parnas was saying is that Trump tried to get Pompeo to fire Yovanovitch for a year, he moved on Pompeo like a bitch to do that, but he just couldn't get there. Parnas says Trump also tried to order John Bolton to have her fired, but still NOPE. (It's notable that according to Parnas's texts, Trump was not happy with Pompeo, and was maybe planning on getting rid of him after he got rid of Bolton.)
And this, children, Lev Parnas explained, was why Rudy Giuliani's smear campaign against Yovanovitch had to happen. Because all these bad people had been trying get Trump to fire Yovanovitch for AGESFUCKINGAGES, And Trump had been hereby ordering people to fire Yovanovitch for AGESFUCKINGAGES. But they just ignored the loudstupid president and went about their day.
We've been saying, and we'll say it again, that everything Lev Parnas says to Rachel Maddow or anyone else needs to be investigated and verified, but that certainly does track with all the other one million reports we've read (including the Mueller Report), which say Trump's people routinely ignore his orders.
Here is Victoria Toensing, AKA the She-Hairball (not to be confused with her husband Joe diGenova, AKA the He-Hairball), in February 2019 huffing and puffing at Rudy Giuliani demanding to know if there was finally a commitment for HER to be fired, and by HER she meant YOU-KNOW-WHO:
Anyway, point is SIT YOUR ASS DOWN IN THE CHAIR AND SQUEAL, Mike Pompeo.
That Is A Lot Of People Lev Parnas Is Telling Us Need To Be Called As Witnesses!
Yes it is! Here, watch Rachel and Lawrence talk about that.
Couple More Interesting Things Before We Go!
Lev Parnas says he is no longer part of Trump's cult. And because of that, he is now smarter than he used to be, telling Maddow that when he was in the cult, he believed all the Trump/Giuliani/Russian/Disgruntled Corrupt Ukrainian Prosecutor lies about Joe Biden, but now that he's out of the cult, he realizes it's all bullshit. Just like scripture says, "When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things." (One Corinthians Not Two Corinthians 13:11)
Parnas said "a lot of rich people in Ukraine have their own agenda," and that they "use us" (he means Trump idiots) to achieve their aims. For instance, that Yovanovitch thing. All the corrupt former prosecutors general of Ukraine wanted her out, because she fights corruption, and as State Department diplomat George Kent said during the impeachment hearings, "You can't promote principled anti-corruption action without pissing off corrupt people."
Parnas laughed about it, because as he explained, former corrupt prosecutor Viktor Shokin, whom Joe Biden had fired because the entire western world agreed he should be fired, for corruption, haaaaaaaates former corrupt prosecutor Sergey Lutsenko. But yet both of those guys have played large roles in manipulating Rudy Giuliani and Donald Trump for their own ends, specifically in getting Marie Yovanovitch removed.
And Trump wasn't going to get his damned fake Biden dirt investigations if he didn't fire her.
On one hand it's so embarrassing that Trump and his cult can be manipulated so easily by bad actors around the world. But it's also frightening.
What the hell else are they hiding in the vault?
Anyway, all of this needs to be investigated, so CHOP-CHOP, CONGRESS, TIMES A-WASTIN'. It's not like Bill Barr is going to do it.
Follow Evan Hurst on Twitter RIGHT HERE, DO IT RIGHT HERE!
Wonkette is fully funded by readers like YOU. If you love Wonkette, SUPPORT WONKETTE FINANCIALLY.