Russiagate jumps yet another shark

Washington struck back against Russia twice today for things that either aren't crimes, or are things we are responsible for.
Let's start with the biggest one.

Thirteen Russians have been criminally charged for interfering in the 2016 US election to help Donald Trump, the office of Robert Mueller, the special counsel, announced on Friday...
A 37-page indictment alleged that the Russians’ operations “included supporting the presidential campaign of then-candidate Donald J Trump ... and disparaging Hillary Clinton,” his Democratic opponent.

Uh, is that even a crime?
And if it is, what does that say about our empire?

Rod Rosenstein, the deputy attorney general, said at a press conference in Washington: “There is no allegation in this indictment that any American had any knowledge.” Rosenstein added that the charges did not mean the Russian activity had an effect on the outcome of the election.

So then why are we even bothering? Why is this even a thing?
The U.S. actively rigged the 1996 Russian election, not to mention beaming propaganda at them for 60 years that "promoted discord" in Russia. Both of those efforts were a Hell of a lot more effective. Shouldn't they be indicting our government?

“This indictment serves as a reminder that people are not always who they appear to be on the internet,” said Rosenstein.

No shit Sherlock!?!

He alleged that the Russians had “worked to promote discord in the United States and undermine public confidence in democracy,” adding: “We must not allow them to succeed.”
The charges state that from as far back as 2014, the defendants conspired together to defraud the US by “impairing, obstructing, and defeating the lawful functions of government” through interference with the American political and electoral processes.

This is such a vague and political statement that it could be taken straight out of COINTELPRO.

I find this second move more interesting.

Russia will be made to pay for its acts of cyber aggression on the international stage, Rob Joyce, special assistant to the president and White House cybersecurity coordinator, told CNBC on Friday.
The act in question was the malware attack known as NotPetya that wiped out billions of dollars as it spread across 64 countries in July 2017. The White House, for the first time Thursday, directly blamed Russia's military for the attack.
"We're going to work on the international stage to impose consequences. Russia has to understand that they have to behave responsibly on the international stage," Joyce said at the Munich Security Conference in Germany. "So we're going to see levers the U.S. government can do to impose those costs."

First of all, proof?
Nope. No proof.
Secondly, and here's the interesting part, consider where the NotPetya virus came from.

The Shadow Brokers is once again trying to sell yet more stolen NSA cyber-weapons, raising the asking price in the process. And the gang has threatened to out one of the US spy agency's ex-operatives that it claims hacked Chinese targets.
..."Another global cyber attack is fitting end for first month of theshadowbrokers dump service," it said. "There is much theshadowbrokers can be saying about this but what is point and having not already being said?"
That's referring to this week's Petya/NotPetya outbreak and last month's WannaCry drama: both of these strains of malware used NSA exploits from the Shadow Brokers' April leak to attack Windows PCs around the world. The group, which is thought to be linked to Russian intelligence, claims the cyber-weapons it is now flogging off were nicked from the Equation Group, which is understood to be a moniker for an NSA hacking team.

If you were serious about stopping the virus attacks, you would do something about the NSA.
Obviously that isn't the agenda.
Also, why the big deal about this one virus attack? Do they have any idea just how common cyber attacks are?

A total 87% of local government organisations have experienced a phishing attack in the past 12 months, closely followed by 76% who have experienced a malware, virus or Trojan attack, according to research into threats and opportunities across local government by Malwarebytes.

Cyberattacks are a big deal, but they are done almost entirely by criminals...and our government.

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China is

Wanhua Chemical, a $10 billion chemical company controlled by the Chinese government, now has an avenue to influence American elections.

On Monday, Wanhua joined the American Chemistry Council, a lobby organization for chemical manufacturers that is unusually aggressive in intervening in U.S. politics.

The ACC is a prominent recipient of so-called dark money — that is, unlimited amounts of cash from corporations or individuals the origins of which are only disclosed to the IRS, not the public. During the 2012, 2014, and 2016 election cycles, the ACC took this dark money and spent over $40 million of it on contributions to super PACs, lobbying, and direct expenditures. (Additional money flowed directly to candidates via the ACC’s political action committee.)

For example, in 2012 the ACC was the largest single donor funding last-minute ads attempting to save former Rep. Eric Cantor, R-Va., then-House Majority Leader, during his losing primary campaign. The ACC donated $50,000 to a super PAC supporting the 2014 campaign of GOP Sen. David Vitter of Louisiana for the state’s governorship. And while lobbying to revamp federal chemical safety standards in 2015, the ACC simultaneously aired advertisements in support of key legislators who were then crafting an industry-friendly version of the legislation.

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from now, if there's anyone left that is? All this will once again be admitted as the farce it is, but it will once again be too late as the damage will be done. Which country will be utterly destroyed this time? Russia? Or the US itself? Both? And all for what? Duopoly politics? Idiot America.

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Wink's picture

didn't want to fess up that Her lost the 2016 election all on her lonesome. That she lost for a Lot of reasons, including ignoring the white working class as so much trailer trash, but "Russian interference" wasn't one of them.
@lizzyh7
And becuz there are too many Hill bots and Hill fans supporting and defending the bitch the U.S. marches off to another war, nary a word from the Hillary-supportive M$M mentioning the run up. History books left wondering again why no one stopped the war. "Where were the Boomers?"
yeah, where were those late 60s and 70-somethings?
We were pulling another shift at Wally World, Mickey Dees.

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the little things you can do are more valuable than the giant things you can't! - @thanatokephaloides. On Twitter @wink1radio. (-1.9) All about building progressive media.

Creosote.'s picture

@Wink
of the early 2014 startup of Her campaign "behind the scenes":
"as far back as 2014, the defendants conspired together to defraud the US . . ."

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dkmich's picture

Mueller’s Investigation A Farce: Files Joke Indictment Against Russian Trolls

If one needed proof that Mueller’s investigation was an utter farce, they were in for a treat this morning when the Deputy Attorney General announced the indictment of indicted 13 “Russian trolls,” for allegedly interfering in the 2016 Presidential election by posting on social media accounts.

Laying Mueller’s disregard of the First Amendment aside, the indictment is blatantly hypocritical in light of active social media intervention by pro-Clinton David Brock and his multi-million dollar efforts to ‘Correct The Record.’

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"Religion is what keeps the poor from murdering the rich."--Napoleon

*donate to c99 *like us on Facebook *follow us on Twitter

Meteor Man's picture

@dkmich
How can a political lightweight like David Brock with his limited resources compete with the combined political omniscience of 13 Russians? Hah! I guess you didn't know that Putin invented the internet and allowed his undercover operative Al Gore take all the credit.

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"They'll say we're disturbing the peace, but there is no peace. What really bothers them is that we are disturbing the war." Howard Zinn

@dkmich IMO: "But why bring up this apparently old news, in the face of Mueller’s latest mockery of the American judicial process and the First Amendment? Because it reveals in the words of the legacy press that by definition Mueller’s circus has zero interest in campaign or election integrity and is solely interested in getting scalps for Clinton and for the unelected powers she represented."

Great site by the way, thanks for that.

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snoopydawg's picture

@lizzyh7

More from that article:

The Washington Post reported in 2015 that David Brock’s Correct The Record would work directly with the Clinton Campaign, “testing the legal limits” of campaign finance in the process. How did Correct The Record skirt campaign finance law? The Washington Post tells us: “by relying on a 2006 Federal Election Commission regulation that declared that content posted online for free, such as blogs, is off-limits from regulation.” And post online, Brock’s PAC did: “disseminating information about Clinton on its Web site and through its Facebook and Twitter accounts, officials said.”

Whew! Legal just by her chin hairs. How is that different from what Mueller is accusing the Russian bots of doing?

What else did she do that was illegal?

Oh yeah, she basically bought the DNC and then had total control over where the money went. She laundered campaign money by sending donations to down state candidates but then redirected it into her Hillary for America fund. And who knows what other things she did to make sure that she won the primary?

Remember that it was wrong for Don Jr. to meet with the Russian lawyer to get dirt on Hillary, but apparently it's okay for her to hire a foreign ex spy to get dirt on Trump. Funny how that was used to get a FISA warrant to spy on on her opponent, isn't it?

This is what Mueller and congress should be investigating, but this is a Clinton and they can do no wrong.

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@snoopydawg

We always know what they're up to by the fact that they always then accuse others of doing it.

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Psychopathy is not a political position, whether labeled 'conservatism', 'centrism' or 'left'.

A tin labeled 'coffee' may be a can of worms or pathology identified by a lack of empathy/willingness to harm others to achieve personal desires.

@dkmich "He alleged that the Russians had “worked to promote discord in the United States and undermine public confidence in democracy,” adding: “We must not allow them to succeed.”

Oh noes!! Not the discord! Anything but the discord!!! (as if we were discord-free before the ruskies).

Is this for real or have I been punked? Are our employees acting out a screenplay written John Cleese or Mel Brooks?

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dfarrah

dkmich's picture

@dfarrah @dfarrah

distrust and discord all by themselves here and abroad.

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"Religion is what keeps the poor from murdering the rich."--Napoleon

*donate to c99 *like us on Facebook *follow us on Twitter

@dkmich fox news, interviewers are asking about the Russian meddling, but they also ask about US meddling in other countries. The interviewees, so far, has said the meddling was justified because US interests.

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dfarrah

Meteor Man's picture

The gall!

He alleged that the Russians had “worked to promote discord in the United States and undermine public confidence in democracy,” adding: “We must not allow them to succeed.”

The only people who are allowed to promote discord in the United States and undermine public confidence in democracy are Republicans, Democrats, official or unofficial American political operatives and owners of M$M news outlets that promote the Washington Consensus.

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"They'll say we're disturbing the peace, but there is no peace. What really bothers them is that we are disturbing the war." Howard Zinn

@Meteor Man
that we still have a democracy.

I swear the sh*t I've seen over the past year has been absolutely Orwellian.

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@gjohnsit from the outrage and fear, something new comes right on along. It is Orwellian and scary as hell how many people are buying it.

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@gjohnsit No matter how cynical you become, it's never enough to keep up.

- Lily Tomlin

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GreatLakeSailor's picture

@Meteor Man

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The only reason the 1% are rich is because the 99% have agreed to it.

@GreatLakeSailor
if only the russians had been invited to speak before congress or at their PAC convention instead of having to use the internet.

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bygorry

snoopydawg's picture

"There is no allegation in this indictment that any American had any knowledge"

This is what many people are saying about Rosenstein's statement. "Just give Mueller time and he will find the evidence that will connect them to people in Trump's campaign."

As for the phishing attacks that gets people to divulge their identity information, if that was such a big concern then Mnunchkin would have charged Equifax for their security breaches. But no, he closed the investigation into it and then closed the door on it. Millions of people were affected by that. But the Trump administration doesn't think that's worth prosecuting.

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@snoopydawg it was 150 million affected by the Equifax breach.

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movie buff's picture

Expressing a point of view online while pretending to be someone you're not isn't breaking any laws--yet. But that's the endgame here. Both the MSM and the national security state are threatened by the free and open internet. They hate the equality and anonymity of it. They hate the fact that there are people online who don't need to be told what to think, that there are entire communities that have no use for officially-sanctioned gatekeepers. So expect plenty of Orwellian new laws to be proposed in the near future, with these "indictments" used to justify them.

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"The smart way to keep people passive and obedient is to strictly limit the spectrum of acceptable opinion, but allow very lively debate within that spectrum." --Noam Chomsky

@movie buff All political activity must be made public, and even at that, must be approved.

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@movie buff "Expressing a point of view online while pretending to be someone you're not" isn't that the essence of recent political campaigns?

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@movie buff end game is here.

The PTB are already accusing the Russians of 'helping' Bernie and Stein. Apparently, the PTB will be accusing anyone that opposes establishment types of working for the Russians - not that they don't already. IMO, the accusations will become ubiquitous and used to suppress dissent.

(OMG!! did Russians organize that protest that Americans decided to show up for?)

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dfarrah

@movie buff when I heard about this yesterday, that was my immediate thought. This will be the rationale for restricting speech on the internet.

It also serves to increase the drumbeat for war against russia. Presumably these defendants are not in the US (I confess I have not read the details). So, there will likely be rending of garments about how putin must give up these miscreants to face American brand justice. Phase 43 of TEH RUSHANS!

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earthling1's picture

are circling my house now because I dare to pose as an earthling attempting to sway belief in climate change as real.
So long everybody.

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Arrow's picture

@earthling1 You'll be hauled before the 'House Masquerading as an American Committee'!

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I want a Pony!

Steven D's picture

We are in an era of show trials.

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"You can't just leave those who created the problem in charge of the solution."---Tyree Scott

You sit on your porch with your rifle. Watch, listen to country music, drink booze of choice, raise your rifle if they get too low, too close. That turns the copters back.
Then, you sell your Texas property, move to Alaska, use snow mobiles so you never have to pay for registration or tags for your vehicle.
In Alaska, you get paid for being in that place where there are no roads, and you have your bullets and booze delivered once a month.
I participated in this plan to the extent the people who painted my house explained it, and when I was hired to prepare the deeds for the sale of their properties.
They have never returned.

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snoopydawg's picture

@on the cusp

Or is this a Texas yarn?

Smile

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@snoopydawg One of the guys was a carpenter who helped build my house. I prepare the deeds when he and his family sold out and moved.

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@on the cusp

Does it have to be country music, or can you opt for blues/rock? And if you lack a rifle, since reaching for a driver's license places militarized US police in fear of their lives, would one of those substitute, or do you have to be Black first?

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Psychopathy is not a political position, whether labeled 'conservatism', 'centrism' or 'left'.

A tin labeled 'coffee' may be a can of worms or pathology identified by a lack of empathy/willingness to harm others to achieve personal desires.

"undermine public confidence in democracy”

Man, we just had an election where 2 of 3 voters said neither candidate is qualified to be President, and each candidate was disliked and distrusted by 40-45% of the voters. What could possibly undermine confidence in democracy as effectively as the Two Parties and the Media have done?

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@jim p I like the one where the guys organized both pro and anti-Trump rallies. Oh my gosh, democrats are Putin puppets. I think Putin is some sort of demonic genius. He sends a few guys to America and spends $150K and destorys the election in favor of Trum.

I think this charge of Russians playing both sides just shows off Putin's sense of humor. Really, the ultimate punk.

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@MrWebster the Russians had a budget of one million dollars!!!

See? Rosenstein had to be acting from a script provided by Cleese.

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dfarrah

@dfarrah

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cKKHSAE1gIs

Dr Evil in 1 million Dollars
Pierre Pavia

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Psychopathy is not a political position, whether labeled 'conservatism', 'centrism' or 'left'.

A tin labeled 'coffee' may be a can of worms or pathology identified by a lack of empathy/willingness to harm others to achieve personal desires.

@Ellen North that dr evil scene when I wrote the comment.

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dfarrah

earthling1's picture

@MrWebster
The Russians were pulling for Trump AND Sanders.
Whoop!

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CB's picture

@earthling1
Damn, those Russians sound just like a bunch of Americans. I'll even bet they were eating pizza and drinking Coke when they were Tweeting.

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@earthling1 Russians weren't so opaque and would just tell us what candidate they prefer, then we could vote their preference.

And they could save that million dollars for something else.

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dfarrah

Good fucking golly gosh did the Hillary/Obmaa base go ape shit. Oh hell, Trump is about to be indicted real soon. Those Russkis are going to flip. It was this giantic mass hallucination. I tried to point out the Russians are like in Russia. And Mueller's guy said no evidence of collusion. Russiagate is stronger than opiods for this junkies.

I thought earlier that given the arc of Mueller investigation, the Clinton/Obama base will curse the day Mueller was born when he does not come back with impeachment and inside shows the fine little fish he caught.

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@MrWebster Russiagate of now = Ken Starr, etc. in the 90s. I mean, the similarities are striking, barring the fact that the Clinton nonsense wasn’t restarting the Cold War.

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snoopydawg's picture

We're being played again

This is the type of mindless hogwash Americans are being pressured to swallow, and in fact are swallowing, millions of them. But then, this is how propaganda works. It doesn’t have to make any sense. In fact, it’s usually more effective if it doesn’t. In profoundly authoritarian cultures like the contemporary USA, people tend to believe the authorities, particularly when they’re all repeating the same simple message over and over. People want to believe the authorities. They want to because they’ve been conditioned to want to from the time they were children by their parents, teachers, political leaders, the corporate media, television, Hollywood, cultural icons, and more or less every other ideological organ of “normal society.”

The PTB knew that people weren't going to fall for the WMDs story again so they came up with a softer target that people would believe. And they are believing it.

This is why, when it’s time to whip up popular support for a war of aggression (or a war against anyone expressing dissent), all the ruling classes have to do is make up an emotionally-loaded narrative with a halfway-believable official enemy and have their “authoritative media sources” repeat it, over and over and over, in a thousand different iterations, each repetition reifying the others, until the narrative becomes the axiomatic “truth,” which no respectable, normal person would ever even think of wanting to question.

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CB's picture

America is fsked. It's primo domestic police agency is wasting untold millions of dollars and thousands of hours of valuable time on a massive nothing burger while sociopathic nut balls, who openly post about their intentions of mass killing in schools, are completely ignored.

BREAKING: Robert Mueller indicts 13 Russians and Russian entities on conspiracy charges
Named Russians include no one on any known lists, two hospitality companies, and a Russian “Internet trolling” company doing from Russia what alternative US media does to CNN all the time
...
Apparently IRA is responsible for about US $100,000 of ad spending between June 2015 to May 2017, enough to run about 3,000 ads on Facebook. Just for reference, the total ad spending for the presidential election only from all parties amounted to $2.65 billion. So IRA must have spent its money very well indeed for a 0.0038% of the whole expenditures to swing the election to Donald Trump!

This is one of a number of problems with this “bombshell” announcement. Another is this: Dozhd is basically tabloid TV from St Petersburg, which is Russia’s analogue to San Francisco. Ksenia Sobchak, one of the candidates for president this year, is an anchor for Dozhd. On New Year’s Eve she was dancing drunk in front of an Orthodox Church saying that Pussy Riot basically had nothing on what she was doing. This attests to her own character and while she carries popularity among some, most Russians do not take kindly to disrespect being shown to the Russian Orthodox Church, in respect at least to the suffering the Church experienced under Communism.
...
The second problem is that anyone can write anything about anyone, and America’s press is free, and that means by extension that anyone writing opinion on American politics from outside the USA is free to do so, and just as American media carries its own bias, any international agency can and does have a right to express its own point of view. It would probably be real news if Mueller indicted Russia Today, which is a reputable network in the United States and which also provides news from a distinctly pro-Russian perspective. Add to that of course, The Duran, right here, or our sister sites RussiaFeed or Red Pill Times, or Hellenic Insider. We also report from a point of view that is not under the hale of the American mass media.

So the question really comes down to. what is this? Robert Mueller making a big optical illusion to make it look like his investigation came up with something?

Because so far, this is a massive nothing burger, with extra cheesiness.

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Wink's picture

is fake.
@CB

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the little things you can do are more valuable than the giant things you can't! - @thanatokephaloides. On Twitter @wink1radio. (-1.9) All about building progressive media.

@CB out the weasel words used by Rosenstein - that his wording was very narrow, so that is why the indictments aren't dispositive of the issues of collusion and whatever else they are trying to throw on the wall.

Of course, nothing will be dispositive to the her crowd anyway.

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dfarrah

The MIC (a major player of the Deep State) is still itchin' for a war with Russia. They didn't get Hillary and her no-fly zone, so they quickly went another route. 'Trump/Russian collusion'.
For some reason, I'm reminded of random things. Like the couple of days of good spin Trump got when he shot those missiles into Syria. The Hannah character (Cheney's former 'aid') expected to be named envoy to/for Syria. And the pattern of those in positions of power who make money for the MIC seem to be immune to justice (Hillary, "W" etc.).
Why does it seem like a deal is being cut? Why does it seem like if Mueller goes easy on Trump it would be a sign of a coming war?
It's probably just me.

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Mike Taylor

jorogo's picture

are the only foreign persons to have posted their opinions on the 2016 US campaigns on social media, right?

Could we possibly find thirteen, maybe, Canadians who did the same? Eh? Maybe even on their laptops while visiting the US, without registering as foreign agents? I'm sure they wouldn't want to even risk stepping forward into the legal meat-grinder turd-dropper that is Mueller's investigation.

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"If I sit silently, I have sinned." - Mossadegh

CB's picture

America Is Descending Into a Dangerous Psychosis

Forget about sharks. In their Valentine’s Day editorial: Why Does Trump Ignore Top Officials’ Warnings on Russia?, The New York Times jumped several blue whales (all the ones left on earth), a cruise ship, a subtropical archipelago, a giant vortex of plastic bottles, and the Sport’s Illustrated swimsuit shoot. The lede said:

The phalanx of intelligence chiefs who testified on Capitol Hill delivered a chilling message: Not only did Russia interfere in the 2016 election, it is already meddling in the 2018 election by using a digital strategy to exacerbate the country’s political and social divisions.

...
scared.jpg

...
The longer this fantasy about Russia continues from the Left side of the political transect, the deeper the nation sinks into a dangerous collective psychosis. After all this time, the only known instances of American political figures “colluding” with Russians involve the shenanigans between the DNC, the Hillary Clinton campaign, and US intel services including the FBI and CIA, in paying for the “Steele Dossier” and the activities of the Fusion GPS company that claimed Russia hacked Hillary’s and John Podesta’s email.

There is now a ton of evidence about all this monkey business, and no sign (yet) that Special Prosecutor Robert Mueller may be taking a good hard look at it, not to mention the professional misconduct of a half dozen senior FBI, NSA, and CIA officials, especially former CIA chief John Brennan, who has now morphed into a CNN “analyst,” taking an active role in what amounts to a psy-ops campaign to shove the public toward war.
...

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... The charges state that from as far back as 2014, the defendants conspired together to defraud the US by “impairing, obstructing, and defeating the lawful functions of government” through interference with the American political and electoral processes. ...

Wait a minute, those infesting what passes for the US government keep claiming to be above all law, and now they're saying they're full of it? Sounds rather Oxy(con)moronic to me...

Edit: also, the Republicans swore an oath to do exactly that -“impairing, obstructing, and defeating the lawful functions of government” - when Obama got in and actually, provably did that as part of the show as to why Obama/the Dem Party could do nothing for the public and instead were 'forced' to act against the public interest to steal all that for their donors. The Republicans are also a lot handier to take to court over this... but I guess it's no fun when you can't 'torture some folks' until you finally get whatever excuses you want for invasion and resource-theft.

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1 user has voted.

Psychopathy is not a political position, whether labeled 'conservatism', 'centrism' or 'left'.

A tin labeled 'coffee' may be a can of worms or pathology identified by a lack of empathy/willingness to harm others to achieve personal desires.