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About Auctoritas

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    Exceedingly Deferential

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    Ft. Myers, FL
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  1. 2017 Touchdown Auburn Bowl

    Florida Georgia Vanderbilt South Carolina Kentucky Tennessee Missouri Auburn LSU Alabama Mississippi State Arkansas Texas A&M Ole Miss Auburn Auburn 456
  2. Fantasy Football?

    Was just thinking of this earlier. Joined!
  3. Four years later and I'm still mad

    As always, I come here to make a post only to find that we've shared a brain wavelength. Good call.
  4. 2017 AU Football Man Crush

    Gimme some of that Carlton Davis. Dammit, mcg! Fine, give me Stephen Roberts then. Don't tell him he was my second choice!
  5. **Official 2017 "Nip Watch"**

    You know, I've been stuck in eternal summer, down here in SW Florida for the past 2 years. It's been tough, I will be honest - I'm a mountain boy, and I like fall and winter, and here it's flat and hot and it just...never...ends. The past 2 Thanksgiving and Christmases have been 90 degrees. It's been tough to get in the football mood - thankfully, that also means I am allowed to pretend that the last couple of seasons have been nothing more than a fever dream - perhaps one brought on by endless heat, or perhaps from constant exposure to folks who think football has something to do with the NFL. Except. I have my new orders, finally, officially. In just another 66 days, I get to come back home to Atlanta, where people understand what barbeque is (no, bless your heart, its not just a grilled hot dog), appreciate sweet tea (I'm still not sure how they get the sugar out of it down here, since I could have sworn that sweet was how God made it in the first place) - but most of all, I get to come home where the air will turn cool and all good men, women, and children will spend their week waiting for Saturdays. As nature intended. Is the nip here yet? No...but by golly, it's calling me. Get the tailgate, the drinks, and the family ready - it's time to come home. WDE. The nip is coming.
  6. Ole Miss

    Around here? Black.
  7. Trump readies Russian payoff

    I have zero words for this. In what political world is this a good idea from an image, policy, or legal standpoint? Is nobody in the Trump circle going to throw up a stop sign on this? Fairly boggles the mind.
  8. At first glance, Alabama Senator Luther Strange has everything going for him headed into the special election for his seat. Strange, who filled the Senate vacancy left by Jeff Sessions’ appointment to serve as attorney general, enjoys the full financial support of the National Republican Senatorial Committee. He’s been endorsed by Richard Shelby, the state’s senior senator and former chairman of the Senate Banking Committee. And as a former state attorney general, Strange has positioned himself as a law-and-order candidate at a particularly scandal-rich moment for a state that has seen its share. But there’s someone who could make life complicated for Strange, and it’s not an actual candidate. Though almost a dozen Republicans filed to run in the Republican primary and nearly that number signed up on the Democratic side, the biggest threat to Strange’s bid is a burly man whose love of Auburn football is matched only by his grudge against Strange, who draws support from University of Alabama territory. Jimmy Rane is the chairman and CEO of the Great Southern Wood Preserving lumber company, whose signature product—YellaWood pressure-treated pine—is known to homebuilders everywhere. Rane’s lumber colossus operates in 27 states and over a dozen countries with annual revenues of $700 million, which explains why Rane, 69, is considered Alabama’s wealthiest citizen, according to Forbes. Rane is no recluse though. Rane is best known for a series of short web videos starring himself as the “Yella Fella,” a wandering hero fighting bandits in a lemon-yellow cowboy outfit. The acting isn’t quite Oscar quality, but Rane himself stands out as a sort of poor man’s Jimmy Stewart. Rane is about to play a different role in the ongoing gothic drama that is Alabama politics. The stakes are high, maybe not as bitter as the rivalry between the University of Alabama and Auburn, but close. Even in a year of unusually tight special elections brought about by Donald Trump’s Cabinet nominations, the 2017 special election for Alabama’s Senate seat is unique. The dynamic is far from simply Republican versus Democrat. It’s not even hard-line conservative Republicans versus the party’s dwindling moderate wing. This race comes down to the opposing factions in a corruption trial that last year took down the state’s speaker of the House. The man leading the case was Strange, the state’s attorney general. Strange pulled a number of the state’s most prominent businessmen—including Rane—into the trial in unflattering ways, and that didn’t sit well with a class of high-level executives who are accustomed to calling the shots from behind the scenes. So when Strange geared up to win the seat he had been appointed to, speculation about Rane’s desire for payback started in earnest. At first, there was talk Rane would run himself. He knocked those rumors down. Then his most likely preferred candidate begged off. But no one thinks Rane, with his deep pockets and deeper well of anger at Strange, will sit on the sidelines. While the NRSC will bring its war chest in defense of Strange, the betting money says Rane, and a like-minded cadre of other CEOs, will put together a formidable bankroll to block Strange. “I believe there are people out there that are ready to set up a super PAC and lay out the message that it's best for Alabama to pick its own senator,” says Del Marsh, the Alabama Senate president pro tempore who had been weighing a Senate bid himself until recently. “Jimmy Rane comes to the front of the list. ... He's going to probably ... create some sort of a super PAC to do what he thinks needs to be done to make sure the right person was elected in the state of Alabama.” Rane declined to speak about the race when asked, but he did put out a statement on May 17 that confirmed he’s going to be a factor in deciding the outcome of the primary, scheduled for August 25. “While I have decided not to run, I will continue to be an advocate for policies that matter most to the people of Alabama and to support leaders focused on education, fiscal responsibility, job growth, and the success of our state,” Rane said. He didn’t mention Strange, but he didn’t have to. Everyone knows that’s what’s driving him. *** The root of one of the biggest feuds in Alabama politics goes back to a decision to bring corruption charges against one of the most powerful politicians the state has ever seen. Mike Hubbard, the former Alabama House speaker, was a driving force behind a massive wave of GOP wins in 2010. Now, only four years later, Hubbard was being accused, by another Republican, no less, of soliciting lobbyists and using his position as the leader of the Alabama Republican Party to help businesses he was linked to. The man who brought the ethics case was Luther Strange, known as “Big Luther” for his imposing 6-foot-9 frame. During the trial, Jimmy Rane, who is friends with Hubbard, was forced to testify alongside a number of Alabama political leaders, including former Alabama Governor Bob Riley, and businessmen such as Will Brooke, a founder of the Alabama-based Harbert Management Corporation. The prosecution asserted that Hubbard had solicited these men as investors in his business while he was House speaker. The prosecution argued that that was a crime, as Rane and the other businessmen had lobbyists on their payroll. “Jimmy Rane was listed in one of the counts of corruption that Luther Strange's office investigated on him,” Alabama Republican strategist Chris Brown said. “This is like a revenge thing. He hates Luther because he drug his name through the mud. And that was one of the counts that, I believe, Mike Hubbard was acquitted on, but it's like Jimmy Rane is a wealthy guy, well-known. And Luther, you know, dirted [sic] him. Dragged him in front of the court and made him testify.” Hubbard was ultimately convicted of 12 felony ethics violations and sentenced to four years in prison, with an additional eight years on probation. Months after Hubbard was sent to prison, the pieces began to fall into place for some kind of score settling. Before stepping down in the midst of a sex scandal, Alabama Governor Robert Bentley had picked Strange to serve the rest of Sessions’ term until a special election could be held. The appointment frustrated critics, who saw Strange as linking himself too closely to Bentley in exchange for personal political gain. Strange had previously moved to slow down impeachment proceedings against the governor prior to being appointed to the Senate. Strange has denied any kind of pay for play. To Hubbard allies and Strange critics, though, Strange’s campaign is as good a chance as any to exact revenge. “The Hubbard trial is their driving force for Luther,” a keyed-in Republican with ties to Marsh and Rane said. “And it's not just the Hubbard [trial]. It's also that Luther went so far and wide in terms of the business community in who he pulled into that trial. There was the former governor, Riley. I mean, there is a large group of folks ... those tentacles went so far that I think many of them saw it as unnecessary.” There’s a particularly Alabamian wrinkle to the feud, and the demarcation line runs roughly along college lines. In Alabama, that means only two schools: the University of Alabama and Auburn University. It’s more than just about bragging rights on the football field, though that’s a big part of it. It’s cultural. Alabama is considered the stodgier, more football-centric school. Auburn, which is a national powerhouse on the football field as well, fancies itself a little more bookish and likes to tout its engineering program. People joke about “mixed marriage” when an Auburn grad weds an Alabama alum. And it bleeds over into politics. When former Auburn University coach Tommy Tuberville toyed with running for governor earlier in the year, the popular campaign newsletter Daily Kos noted that one hurdle for him is that Alabama fans “far outnumber Auburn’s” in the state. “The rivalry between the Crimson Tide and the Tigers is a very serious matter, and it's very possible that plenty of Bama supporters won't back someone so identified with their hated foes,” the newsletter noted in February. Marsh, Rane and even Hubbard have strong ties to Auburn University. Harbert, Rane and Governor Kay Ivey (who moved up the special election schedule, some say, to spite Strange) all sit on the board of trustees. Rane has given $12 million to the school. Buildings at the school were named after Hubbard. Marsh, too, is a Tiger alumnus. On the other side is the University of Alabama contingent. Strange went to Tulane University, but his roots run deep in the northwestern part of the state, where the Crimson Tide play. He was born in nearby Birmingham and later practiced law there. When he ran for attorney general, Strange’s strongest support came in Birmingham County. Senator Shelby, a Strange ally, got his undergraduate degree from the University of Alabama and represented the 7th Congressional District—which includes the University of Alabama—in Congress. That rivalry isn’t lost among the political players in the Strange or Marsh-Rane camp. “There's certainly a dynamic there,” the Republican connected to the business community told me. *** If Marsh had chosen to run, there wouldn’t be much doubt about where Rane’s money would go. Businessman? Check. Auburn fanatic? Check. Strange antagonist? Check. But without the Senate pro tem in the race, there’s considerably more doubt about the ultimate beneficiary.
  9. By MATTHEW ROSENBERG and MARK MAZZETTI May 17, 2017 WASHINGTON — Michael T. Flynn told President Trump’s transition team weeks before the inauguration that he was under federal investigation for secretly working as a paid lobbyist for Turkey during the campaign, according to two people familiar with the case. Despite this warning, which came about a month after the Justice Department notified Mr. Flynn of the inquiry, Mr. Trump made Mr. Flynn his national security adviser. The job gave Mr. Flynn access to the president and nearly every secret held by American intelligence agencies. Mr. Flynn’s disclosure, on Jan. 4, was first made to the transition team’s chief lawyer, Donald F. McGahn II, who is now the White House counsel. That conversation, and another one two days later between Mr. Flynn’s lawyer and transition lawyers, shows that the Trump team knew about the investigation of Mr. Flynn far earlier than has been previously reported. His legal issues have been a problem for the White House from the beginning and are at the center of a growing political crisis for Mr. Trump. Mr. Flynn, who was fired after 24 days in the job, was initially kept on even after the acting attorney general, Sally Q. Yates, warned the White House that he might be subject to blackmail by the Russians for misleading Vice President Mike Pence about the nature of conversations he had with the Russian ambassador to Washington. After Mr. Flynn’s dismissal, Mr. Trump tried to get James B. Comey, the F.B.I. director, to drop the investigation — an act that some legal experts say is grounds for an investigation of Mr. Trump for possible obstruction of justice. He fired Mr. Comey on May 9. The White House declined to comment on whether officials there had known about Mr. Flynn’s legal troubles before the inauguration. Mr. Flynn, a retired general, is one of a handful of Trump associates under scrutiny in intertwined federal investigations into their financial links to foreign governments and whether any of them helped Russia interfere in the presidential election. In congressional testimony, the acting F.B.I. director, Andrew G. McCabe, has confirmed the existence of a “highly significant” investigation into possible collusion between Mr. Trump’s associates and Russian operatives to sway the presidential election. The pace of the investigations has intensified in recent weeks, with a veteran espionage prosecutor, Brandon Van Grack, now leading a grand jury inquiry in Northern Virginia that is scrutinizing Mr. Flynn’s foreign lobbying and has begun issuing subpoenas to businesses that worked with Mr. Flynn and his associates. Sally Q. Yates testified to senators this month that she had warned President Trump that Mr. Flynn could be vulnerable to Russian blackmail. Stephen Crowley / The New York Times The New York Times has reviewed one of the subpoenas. It demands all “records, research, contracts, bank records, communications” and other documents related to work with Mr. Flynn and the Flynn Intel Group, the business he set up after he was forced out as chief of the Defense Intelligence Agency in 2014. The subpoena also asks for similar records about Ekim Alptekin, a Turkish businessman who is close to President Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey and is chairman of the Turkish-American Business Council. There is no indication that Mr. Alptekin is under investigation. Signed by Dana J. Boente, the United States attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia, the subpoena instructs the recipient to direct any questions about its contents to Mr. Van Grack. Mr. Van Grack, a national security prosecutor based at the Justice Department headquarters in Washington, has experience conducting espionage investigations. He prosecuted a businessman for illegally exporting thousands of sensitive electronics components to Iran and a suspected hacker in the Syrian Electronic Army. In 2015, he prosecuted a Virginia man for acting as an unregistered agent of Syria’s intelligence services. According to people who have talked to Mr. Flynn about the case, he sees the Justice Department’s investigation as part of an effort by the Obama administration and its holdovers in the government to keep him out of the White House. In his view, this effort began immediately after the election, when President Barack Obama, who had fired Mr. Flynn as the head of the Defense Intelligence Agency, told Mr. Trump that he would have profound concerns about Mr. Flynn’s becoming a top national security aide. The people close to Mr. Flynn said he believed that when that warning did not dissuade Mr. Trump from making him national security adviser, the Justice Department opened its investigation into his lobbying work. They spoke on the condition of anonymity to avoid angering Justice Department or White House officials. The investigation stems from the work Mr. Flynn did for Inovo BV, a Dutch company owned by Mr. Alptekin, the Turkish businessman. On Aug. 9, Mr. Flynn and the Flynn Intel Group signed a contract with Inovo for $600,000 over 90 days to run an influence campaign aimed at discrediting Fethullah Gulen, an reclusive cleric who lives in Pennsylvania and whom Mr. Erdogan has accused of orchestrating a failed coup in Turkey last summer. When he was hired by Mr. Alptekin, Mr. Flynn did not register as a foreign agent, as required by law when an American represents the interests of a foreign government. Only in March did he file a retroactive registration with the Justice Department because his lawyer, Robert K. Kelner, said that “the engagement could be construed to have principally benefited the Republic of Turkey.” Trump campaign officials first became aware of a problem with Mr. Flynn’s business dealings in early November. On Nov. 8, the day of the election, Mr. Flynn wrote an op-ed in The Hill that advocated improved relations between Turkey and the United States and called Mr. Gulen “a shady Islamic mullah.” “If he were in reality a moderate, he would not be in exile, nor would he excite the animus of Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his government,” the op-ed said. Days later, after an article in The Daily Caller revealed that the Flynn Intel Group had a contract with Inovo, a Trump campaign lawyer held a conference call with members of the Flynn Intel Group, according to one person with knowledge of the call. The lawyer, William McGinley, was seeking more information about the nature of the group’s foreign work and wanted to know whether Mr. Flynn had been paid for the op-ed. Mr. McGinley now works in the White House as cabinet secretary and deputy assistant to the president. The Justice Department also took notice. The op-ed in The Hill raised suspicions that Mr. Flynn was working as a foreign agent, and in a letter dated Nov. 30, the Justice Department notified Mr. Flynn that it was scrutinizing his lobbying work. Mr. Flynn hired a lawyer a few weeks later. By Jan. 4, the day Mr. Flynn informed Mr. McGahn of the inquiry, the Justice Department was investigating the matter. Mr. Kelner then followed up with another call to the Trump transition’s legal team. He ended up leaving a message, identifying himself as Mr. Flynn’s lawyer. According to a person familiar with the case, Mr. Kelner did not get a call back until two days later, on Jan. 6. Around the time of Mr. Flynn’s call with Mr. McGahn, the F.B.I. began investigating Mr. Flynn on a separate matter: phone conversations he had in late December with Sergey I. Kislyak, Russia’s ambassador to the United States. Current and former American officials said that, on the calls, Mr. Flynn discussed sanctions that the Obama administration had imposed on Russia for disrupting the November election. After news of the calls became public, Mr. Flynn misled Mr. Pence about what he had discussed with Mr. Kislyak, telling him that the two had only exchanged holiday pleasantries. Days after the inauguration, Ms. Yates, the acting attorney general, spoke with Mr. McGahn at the White House, telling him Justice Department lawyers believed that Mr. Flynn might be vulnerable to Russian blackmail. Since the Russians knew that Mr. Flynn had lied to the vice president, she said, they might have leverage over him.
  10. Special Counsel for Russia Investigation

    Wow. Good on Rosenstein. I would love to be a fly on the wall next time he, Trump, and Sessions are in the same room.
  11. This may be the most telling thing:
  12. Monty Adams and Carl Lawson Draft talk

    Ok, then, so which of the kids you just signed to scholarships in your 85 scholarship limit do you tell "no thanks, nevermind, Jim Bob is coming back after all so we don't have a spot for you anymore." This is one of those cases where making a new rule "in the interest of the player" would come at the expense of other potential players. I imagine that, to protect themselves, college coaches would organically institute the same system we have now, namely that if you leave to try for the draft you are going to be replaced. NSD is in February. The draft is in April. There is literally no way to make that system work without moving one or the other.
  13. Monty Adams and Carl Lawson Draft talk

    There he goes, 116 overall to the Bengals.
  14. A-Day game thread

    Ha! Suck, though, we just used up some fumble luck on that play. Why cant the ball bounce like that against Bama?
  15. A-Day game thread

    NCM showing out today.