Covering a Cover-up

In 2011, days after Donald Trump challenged President Barack Obama to “show his records” to prove that he hadn’t been a “terrible student,” the headmaster at New York Military Academy got an order from his boss: Find Trump’s academic records and help bury them.

The superintendent of the private school “came to me in a panic because he had been accosted by prominent, wealthy alumni of the school who were Mr. Trump’s friends” and who wanted to keep his records secret, recalled Evan Jones, the headmaster at the time. “He said, ‘You need to go grab that record and deliver it to me because I need to deliver it to them.’ ”

The superintendent, Jeffrey Coverdale, confirmed Monday that members of the school’s board of trustees initially wanted him to hand over President Trump’s records to them, but Coverdale said he refused.
“I was given directives, part of which I could follow but part of which I could not, and that was handing them over to the trustees,” he said. “I moved them elsewhere on campus where they could not be released. It’s the only time I ever moved an alumnus’s records.”

The former NYMA officials’ recollections add new details to one of the allegations that Michael Cohen, the president’s longtime personal lawyer and fixer, made before Congress last week. Cohen, who told the House Oversight and Reform Committee that part of his job was to attack Trump’s critics and defend his reputation, said that Trump ordered him “to threaten his high school, his colleges and the College Board to never release his grades or SAT scores.”

Trump has frequently boasted that he was a stellar student, but he declined throughout the 2016 campaign to release any of his academic records, telling The Washington Post then, “I’m not letting you look at anything.” [continues]

While reading the above, keep in mind this quote:
The fact of the Watergate cover-up is not nearly as interesting as the step into making the cover-up. And when you understand the step, you understand that Richard Nixon lied. That he was a criminal.

– Bob Woodward


40 thoughts on “Covering a Cover-up”

  1. [after detailing more of the cover-up efforts, the story concludes]

    The academy, founded in 1889, has had a mixed relationship with Trump through the years.

    The school was in debt, and was openly discussing selling its 113-acre campus and shutting down, when a group of graduates and others trying to save the school visited Trump at his Manhattan office in 2010. The group was seeking a $7 million donation that they hoped to use to raise an additional $30 million from graduates and other sources.

    The meeting did not go well.

    First, Pezzullo, Trump’s fellow graduate, spilled a glass of Diet Coke on Trump’s cream-colored carpet, which caused Trump to blurt an expletive, according to two participants in the meeting.

    Then, according to Pezzullo, when the school’s graduates made their pitch, Trump responded by asking, “What do I get for my $7 million?”

    The military academy was prepared to offer to name a summer program, a building or potentially even the school itself after Trump, according to academy officials.

    But Trump said no investment in the school was worthwhile. “It’s not a good business proposition,” he said, according to Pezzullo. “The school has had a good run.”

    A decade before that meeting, Trump offered to build a facility on campus in honor of his coach and mentor, Theodore Dobias, according to two former school officials. But the school’s board turned down the offer, preferring a cash donation. Trump, who had “just wanted to build something for this man he loved,” gave nothing, Pezzullo said.

    The Trump Tower meeting in 2010 ended with Trump’s “firm ‘No,’ very polite, but firm,” Pezzullo said.

    After the meeting with Trump, the group from the academy met with Cohen, who delivered the same message but in a less gracious manner.

    “Cohen told us he would love to have enough money to buy the school so he could bulldoze it,” Pezzullo said.

  2. hello from the wild and effing cold north.  It has taken me a few days to figure out that I had to use our Amazon fire tablet to comment.  My iPhone is forbidden. Bink is correct…. WordPress sucks!  I am reading Everything Trump Touches Dies by Rick Wilson.  Best book about Trump I’ve read yet…. and it’s hilarious to boot!  The hot tub is great!

  3. from nyt best of late night:

    President Trump has responded dismissively to congressional Democrats’ push to investigate him. He told reporters on Tuesday that the House Judiciary Committee’s broad inquiry into his activities was merely an effort to overshadow his achievements.

    “No administration has accomplished — probably you could say this with absolute surety — in the first two years anywhere near what we’ve accomplished,” Trump asserted.

    By now, Stephen Colbert is used to hearing Trump speak in superlatives — but he couldn’t countenance that claim.

    “Really? I just want to point out, on Day 149 of George Washington’s presidency, they passed the Bill of Rights — and it’s taken you almost two years to violate all of them.” — STEPHEN COLBERT


    At an event on Monday, a reporter asked Trump whether he would cooperate with Representative Jerry Nadler, the head of the House Judiciary Committee, who is investigating whether the president committed obstruction of justice. Trump shot back: “I cooperate all the time with everybody.”

    James Corden cried foul.

    “He’s right, unless you count the special counsel, the F.B.I., every single Democrat, half his own cabinet and every country in the United Nations except Russia. Other than that, yes, everybody!” — JAMES CORDEN


    Jimmy Kimmel welcomed the arrival of Mardi Gras with some old-fashioned cynicism.

    “It’s also Mardi Gras today. Mardi Gras harkens all the way back to the 17th century, when the king of France sent Catholic missionaries to the Louisiana territory to flash their boobs in exchange for beads.” — JIMMY KIMMEL

    “The official slogan of Mardi Gras is ‘laissez les bons temps rouler,’ which is French for ‘I vomited in an Uber today.’” — JIMMY KIMMEL


  4. in re reprimand discussion yesterday

    the hill:    Progressives come to Omar’s defense


    IfNotNow, a Jewish progressive activist group, started a petition urging Democratic leaders to withdraw the resolution, arguing the focus should be on white nationalism. A coalition of Muslim and left-leaning Jewish advocacy groups also plan to hold a press conference on Wednesday in support of Omar and urge Democratic leaders to “equally condemn” anti-Semitism, Islamophobia and racism.


  5. Renee, cold in the White Mountains in February – who could have guessed that?  I’ve been cold there, too.  As long as the lifts are still running enjoy the hot tub and think about Rick freezing his ass off on his way up the mountain. Any deals you just couldn’t pass up at Lahouts?

    I’m not sure why you and Bink (and Sturge) can’t access and comment on your iPhones – I don’t have that problem, but then again mine is a coal fired iPhone 7.  It does have a few limitations with respect to the display and accessing the link feature for the first couple of lines of text, but other than that, it works with the platform (although I do agree with the WordPress comments).
    OK, so SFB and his minions did a full Court Press to bury his academic records.  ~~I can’t imagine that he was anything less than a stellar student ~~ The guy’s a phucking idiot now and I bet he was a phucking idiot then – otherwise he’d be holding the goddam transcript up in front of every camera within sight.

  6. patd, I have  great deal of trouble shrinking cartoons, pictures, etc to get them to post – got any tips?

  7. Reported in WaPo today:

    The Commerce Department said Wednesday that — despite more than two years of President Trump’s “America First” policies — the United States last year posted a $891.2 billion merchandise trade deficit, the largest in the nation’s 243-year history.
    The trade gap with China also hit a record $419 billion, underscoring the stakes for the president’s bid to reach a deal with Chinese President Xi Jinping as soon as this month.
    The department’s final 2018 trade report, which was delayed by the partial government shutdown, showed that the United States bought far more in foreign goods than it sold to customers in Africa, Asia, Europe and North America. The shortfall topped the 2006 record of $838.3 billion, set as the housing bubble was peaking, and marked the third consecutive year of rising deficits.
    Changes in U.S. tariffs called for in the South Korean deal took effect only on Jan. 1, while Congress has yet to act on the new North American agreement.
    Still, tariffs have proved to be a blunt weapon. The president often boasts about how much money the U.S. government is reaping from tariffs.
    “Billions of dollars, right now, are pouring into our Treasury,” he told the Conservative Political Action Conference on March 2, adding that Chinese exporters are absorbing almost the entire burden of the tariffs.
    But a pair of new studies concludes that he is wrong. “When we impose a tariff, it is the domestic consumers and purchasers of imports that bear the full cost of the tariffs,” said David Weinstein, an economics professor at Columbia University, who co-wrote one of the papers.
    Weinstein said the president appears to be relying on a 2018 analysis of data from the 1990s, when the United States represented a larger share of the global economy and had more leverage over exporters in other countries.
    Weinstein’s study, co-written with Mary Amiti of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York and Princeton University’s Stephen J. Redding, reviewed what actually occurred last year after U.S. tariffs took effect. It concluded that Americans paid the entire tariff bill.
    second study — by four economists from the University of California at Los Angeles, Yale University, the University of California at Berkeley and Columbia University — reached the same conclusion.
    That study also found that workers in Republican-leaning counties, especially in farm states, suffered the greatest losses from tariffs that U.S. trading partners imposed in retaliation for the president’s actions.
    Trump’s tariffs also may cause U.S. companies to write off sizable investments in their Chinese factories as they scramble to shift operations to safer venues, said the study by Weinstein, Amiti and Redding. If the tariffs continue, about $165 billion worth of trade would be redirected each year, they added.
    The study also found sizable costs relative to any expected benefits. If the tariffs led to the creation of 35,000 new manufacturing jobs — equal to all the steel and aluminum jobs lost in the past decade — they would cost $195,000 per job, the study found.

    “The costs of the trade war are quite large relative to optimistic estimates of any gains that are likely to be achieved,” the three economists wrote.

    I guess the tariff talk, blustery bullshit and bringing jobs back isn’t working out as SFB hoped.  He’s so far out of his depth he couldn’t see the surface to save his life.

  8. Pogo…it’s below zero at the top of Loon today.  Rick is skiing today with two friends who came up… I expect them back here at this condo soon.  Next week it’s going into the 40s and 50s even this far north.  I bought a very colorful pair of running sneakers at Lahouts… I’ll be styling this summer!  And trumpty dumpty is still an effing idiot…

  9. On yeah… I forgot to say that I own an iPhone 7 plus.  I can go anywhere on the world wide internet with it except for this blog.

  10.  “He’s so far out of his depth…” 

    pogo, considering his many bankruptcies, failed casinos, marriages, etc  this economic disaster he’s brought on seems rather consistent.  and you know what consistency denotes:  small mind hobgoblins.


    as far as knowing how to shrink cartoons, i’m lucky they get posted at all, too large or too small.  I just point and click and hope for the best.

  11. politico via msn:

    Donald Trump is in trouble in Florida, a state that’s crucial to his reelection hopes.

    Just 40 percent of Florida voters said they believed the president should be reelected, while 53 percent were opposed to a second term, according to a new Bendixen & Amandi International poll.



    Trump’s approval ratings were also poor, with 43 percent having a favorable impression of Trump, and 52 percent viewing him unfavorably — and 46 percent very unfavorably. Trump’s approval ratings look even worse when compared with the man he helped make Florida governor, Ron DeSantis, who has a 50 percent approval rating while only 23 percent disapprove.

    “Trump is in trouble,” pollster Fernand Amandi said, noting that 23 percent of all Florida Republicans said he doesn’t deserve reelection. “When that many people from your own party don’t support you, it means you have to spend more time consolidating your base.”


  12. Patd, your last posted pic is priceless.  And doesn’t trump have some sort of property in Florida?  And with his orange visage I’m surprised he’s not viewed as a native.

  13. You get what you pay for, and WordPress is free.

    So, before this forum dies, as all things do, i’d like to thank Mr. Crawford for providing it, free of charge, and apologize for any personal contribution to its demise- i’m sure my tactless presentation of my strong opinions has run at least one contributor off.  Thanks, also, to those who have taken the time to read and consider my musings, in this contemporary world of near-infinite options for the consumption of information and such.


    While the benefit, or lack thereof, of my, or our, participation may always be in question to those who have perused these pages, and to others beyond, i’m both proud and ashamed to say that Trailmix has always been the exclusive home of my internet-based blathering.


    Thanks for the opportunity, Mr. Crawford.

  14. “When that many people from your own party don’t support you, it means you have to spend more time consolidating your base.” -from above quoted article

    -good news, considering that is all he spends his time doing.

  15. for those who missed a particularly entertaining Nicole show on MSNBC the other day here’s rawstory :

    Wallace then introduced a New York Times column by Garrett Graff that she described as explaining, “how pursuing Trump-world as a mob operation could take down Trump and his entire empire.”


    “Indicting the whole Trump Organization as a ‘corrupt enterprise’ could also help prosecutors address the thorny question of whether the president can be indicted in office; they could lay out a whole pattern of criminal activity, indict numerous players — including perhaps Trump family members — and leave the president himself as a named, unindicted co-conspirator,” Graff explained.


    “Such an action would allow investigators to make public all the known activity for Congress and the public to consider as part of impeachment hearings or re-election,” Graff continued. “It would also activate powerful forfeiture tools for prosecutors that could allow them to seize the Trump Organization’s assets and cut off its income streams.”


  16. miami herald via msn:

    MIAMI – Just days before a Friday deadline, the Justice Department has reassigned the Jeffrey Epstein victims’ rights case to the U.S. attorney’s office in Atlanta, the attorneys representing Epstein’s victims said Tuesday.



    Miami federal prosecutors, in a letter to attorneys for the victims Monday, said they had recused themselves from the case, according to Brad Edwards and Jack Scarola, representing Epstein’s victims.

    The reassignment means that the U.S. attorney for the Northern District of Georgia, Byung J. “BJay” Pak, will oversee the case for the government. Pak, a former Georgia lawmaker, was appointed Atlanta’s chief federal prosecutor by President Donald Trump in October 2017.

    The Justice Department is still under a Friday deadline for prosecutors to confer with the victims’ attorneys in an effort to settle the case. On Feb. 22, U.S. District Judge Kenneth A. Marra in Palm Beach County ruled that federal prosecutors, under former Miami U.S. Attorney Alexander Acosta, broke the law when they concealed a plea agreement from more than 30 underage girls in Palm Beach who had been sexually abused by Epstein, a multimillionaire New York hedge fund manager.

    Marra stopped short of voiding the agreement, which granted Epstein and an untold number of accomplices immunity from federal prosecution for sex trafficking crimes, provided Epstein plead guilty to minor charges in state court. At the time of the plea deal, federal prosecutors had gathered enough evidence against Epstein to write a 53-page federal indictment, court records show.

    An investigation by the Miami Herald, “Perversion of Justice,” found that after Acosta met privately with one of Epstein’s lawyers, the government agreed to seal the plea agreement so that no one – not the victims, not even the state court judge who sentenced Epstein – would know the full extent of his crimes. Epstein, now 66, was allowed to plead guilty to prostitution charges and served 13 months in the Palm Beach County jail, where he was given liberal work release, and allowed to travel to New York and his private island in the Caribbean during his subsequent house arrest. He was released in 2009, and now divides his time between New York, Palm Beach and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

    The Herald interviewed four of Epstein’s victims, who were as young as 13 at the time they were abused by Epstein. They said they felt betrayed by state and federal prosecutors, who treated them like prostitutes instead of victims. Two of them sued the federal government in 2008 under the Crime Victims’ Rights Act, which grants crime victims the right to be informed about plea deals and to confer with prosecutors.

    Marra, in a 33-page opinion, said prosecutors not only intentionally violated the Crime Victims’ Rights Act, but they misled the girls into believing that the FBI’s sex trafficking case against Epstein was ongoing – when, in fact, prosecutors had secretly closed it after sealing the plea bargain from the public record.

    Marra, noting that he reviewed affidavits, depositions and interrogatories, said “Epstein worked in concert with others to obtain minors not only for his own sexual gratification, but also for the sexual gratification of others.”

    The victims’ attorneys – Edwards, Scarola and Paul Cassell – have asked the Justice Department to throw out Epstein’s plea agreement and reopen the criminal investigation.

    Edwards, who brought the victims’ rights case against the government, said transferring the case to another jurisdiction is a prudent decision.

    “I think it’s good that we’re going to get fresh eyes and a fresh opinion on the way the case was handled,” Edwards said Tuesday. “We were obviously in an adversarial posture with the U.S. attorney’s office in Miami because they handled the case to begin with.”

    Miami’s new U.S. attorney, Ariana Fajardo Orshan – who was appointed by Trump in September – did not respond to a request for comment.

    Edwards predicted that it would take some time for Pak’s office to review the case, which includes more than 500 docket entries and thousands of documents. He said if the sides can’t agree on a resolution, then Marra would likely have to come up with one. The case is being closely watched by crime victims’ rights advocates, as it will likely set a precedent.

    Acosta, who was appointed by Trump as the U.S. secretary of labor in 2017, is the focus of a separate Justice Department investigation into whether there was any prosecutorial misconduct in the Epstein case. That probe, by the DOJ’s Office of Professional Responsibility, was initiated in response to demands from a bipartisan group in Congress, led by Republican Sen. Ben Sasse of Nebraska and Democratic Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz of Florida.

    In the meantime, a court hearing will be held Wednesday in New York in another Epstein-related case. A federal appeals court will hear oral arguments in a motion by the Herald, supported by 32 other news organizations, asking the court to unseal documents that could reveal details about the extent of Epstein’s crimes and any other people who may have been involved.

    Three of Epstein’s former attorneys – who helped negotiate his plea deal in 2008 – wrote a letter published in The New York Times on Monday, defending the plea bargain cut with Acosta as a fair deal. The letter was in response to a Times editorial that called on Congress and the Trump administration to hold Acosta and others involved in the case accountable.

    Epstein’s lawyers said the editorial’s conclusions were “in profound conflict with the reality,” noting that there was no evidence that Epstein committed federal sex trafficking offenses. The letter was signed by former Epstein lawyers Kenneth Starr, Jack Goldberger and Lilly Ann Sanchez, as well as Epstein’s current attorney, Martin G. Weinberg.

  17. patd, jace – one’s in the queue,

    Bink, I predict this blog won’t die. And strong opinions might drive some away, but who the hell wants to hang out where strong opinions aren’t expressed? The blog’s in a lull right now, but we’ve seen this before. People come, people go. But those who give a shit stay.

  18. Got a new tool, a photo slide or negative viewer and converter.  I grabbed a couple of boxes of slides out of a bag and took a peek.  1973 on top of Pike’s Peak, including when my jeans split up the back as I was climbing on the altitude sign, 14,110 feet summit.  Ooops.  Second box 1981, my oldest son’s second birthday party. What memories.  Now to go through a few thousand of the slides and make a nice photo album to send back.

    So SFB thinks he is above the law.  I am waiting to see how he weathers the spring and summer.

  19. KC, beats shit out of me, but I wish I knew how.

    Here’s a story that should FUNKING tell you all you need to know about trumpofuckingnomics. If it doesn’t, tell me why.

  20. Bink,

    I like this place because it is the only place on line that I can express an opinion and have it batted down intelligently.  Although KGC has been known to be a bit rough. Bless her heart.

    Any where else on the web my opinion just gets lost in the noise. no rational feed back.  Howcan you learn if somebody doesn’t knock you idiot  opinions down.  While I sometimes think you are a bit pessimistic…….

    Fact is my pessimistic self  tends to win the bets, damn him anyway.


  21. Pogo

    Gm is just closing down the car lines they created to get the bailout from Obama. Small energy efficient cars are a loss leader. If they were smart they would retool one of those plants and start making the Hummer again. Double the price and it will still sell. It is the Harley Davidson of 4 wheelers.  There are a number of older Hummers in the neighborhood and they never have dirt on them, they always shine.


  22. Jack. You’re either full of shit or right as rain. If gas is expensive you’re full of shit. If it’s cheap you look like an economic genius. Regardless, I enjoy your musings. I’m of the same school of thought  of course I know I may be right and will think twice about my opinion here.


  23. Pogo

    the Hummer was an American classic especially out here among the working class set. If you are the boss/owner  of a framing crew driving one of those on the  construction site, it was the same as driving a Cadillac back down home in your and my parents’ generation. Proof that you had made it. Gas be damned.


  24. one other thing

    The auto industry is changing and damn fast, Ford has quit making sedans and is doubling down on the f150 and SUVs.

    Will it be a good bet? we will see.

    BTW Tesla is down sizing to meet demand A lot of money to be made and loss if the right bet is made.


  25. Yeah. I hear ya about the Hummer. Iconic military vehicle homogenized for civilian use. Basically a big fucker that folks who didn’t drive one but wished they did held in high esteem and people who wouldn’t drive one on a bet held in disdain. But no matter. Lordstown was the home of the Cruze. I literally do not know anyone who owns one.

  26. It seems that the trump boys had their personal ‘illegal alien’ fill out forged immigration documents.

    It’s time to re-open Alcatraz.

    Lock ’em ALL up.

  27. We had a 2012 Cruze that was a really great car until a guy in a sparkling, shiny monster truck ran over it while I was sitting at a stop light. I guess the Cruze was too insignificant to see. Anyway, I liked the Cruze a lot more than our ’13 Altima that replaced it.

  28. GM will suffer for this decision, cuz the price of oil is rising and the stock market is flailing. The gas hog will not be the car of choice later this year.

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