Peddlers of Russia-gate have boosted the U.S. president’s re-election campaign, writes Caitlin Johnstone.
By Caitlin Johnstone
After news broke that Robert Mueller had turned in his final report without recommending any further indictments, MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow began frantically retweeting blue-checkmarked Twitter pundits who claimed that since nobody knows the contents of the report yet, the news that the number of Americans indicted for conspiring with the Russian government is set at zero doesn’t matter.
Well guess what, Rachel? We know what the report contains now.
U.S. Attorney General William Barr has sent a letter to congressional officials which you can read here. It contains the following unequivocal quote:
“The Special Counsel’s investigation did not find that the Trump campaign or anyone associated with it conspired or coordinated with Russia in its efforts to influence the 2016 U.S. presidential election. As the report states: “[T]he investigation did not establish that members of the Trump Campaign conspired or coordinated with the Russian government in its election interference activities.”
A footnote on the document clarifies that the Mueller investigation defined coordination with the Russian government very broadly, to include not just overt coordination but any “agreement — tacit or express — between the Trump Campaign and the Russian government on election interference.” No such agreement, tacit or otherwise, was found to have taken place.
So that’s it then. The central and foundational claim of the Russia-gate conspiracy theory has been found to have been completely baseless. The report asserts that Russia hacked and distributed Democratic Party emails (a claim for which the public has yet to see any hard evidence), and “did not draw a conclusion — one way or the other” whether Trump committed obstruction of justice in the investigation of baseless collusion allegations. But the central and foundational Russia-gate claim that Trump and the Kremlin conspired to steal the 2016 election has been killed. Finito. Case closed. Debate over.
And Trump is loving every second of it.
No Collusion, No Obstruction, Complete and Total EXONERATION. KEEP AMERICA GREAT!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 24, 2019
“No Collusion, No Obstruction, Complete and Total EXONERATION. KEEP AMERICA GREAT!” tweeted America’s reality TV star president exactly as you would expect him to, taking some creative license with the actual contents of Barr’s letter.
This is your life for the next 594 days, America. You can expect to hear over and over and over again, from today until November 2020, that the president was victimized for over two years by a “WITCH HUNT” which was “COMPLETE and TOTAL FAKE NEWS!” All Trump will have to do to get re-elected is keep his economy narrative going and repeat the claim that he’s been unjustly persecuted by the establishment “swamp.”
It Will Work
And it will work, because that claim will not be unfounded. As much of a corrupt establishment crony as Trump has proven himself to be, he does indeed have all the facts he needs to successfully sell the narrative that the political/media class has spent over two years pushing a baseless conspiracy theory that the highest levels of the U.S. government had been infiltrated by the Kremlin, and he can indeed claim persecution and victimization in the process. He can easily leverage this into sympathy and support in his reelection campaign, and can use it to reinforce his tarnished image as an enemy of the beltway swamp. Those who’ve been selling the Russia-gate narrative handed him this weapon.
So thanks, Rachel Maddow. Thanks Adam Schiff, Maxine Waters and Eric Swalwell. Thanks CNN and MSNBC, Washington Post and New York Times. Thanks supposed progressives like Bernie Sanders and The Young Turks. Thank you to everyone who spent the first half of Trump’s term helping to push the Russiagate narrative, thereby helping to ensure another four years of this asshole advancing longstanding establishment agendas of war, nuclear brinkmanship and ecocide. Thank you so much for helping to inflict that upon our planet with no regard for the inevitable consequences of your actions.
Here's @mtaibbi: "WMD was a pimple compared to Russiagate. The sheer scale of the errors and exaggerations this time around dwarfs the last mess." https://t.co/ebPl0DW9rs
— Brian Stelter (@brianstelter) March 23, 2019
So are any of the aforementioned offenders admitting any fault on this? Actually, it’s a surprisingly mixed bag.
Sure, you’ve got more Russiagaters than I can count moving the goalposts to possible financial crimes and frantically grasping at the straws of Mueller’s words in Barr’s letter regarding potential obstruction of justice, “while this report does not conclude that the President committed a crime, it also does not exonerate him.” You’ve got MSNBC analyst and “Saint Mueller Preserve Us” t-shirt salesman Malcolm Nance starting up a whole new conspiracy theory that Barr has committed the “greatest scandal in history to coverup the greatest scandal in history,” I guess implying that Barr is lying about the contents of a report that will with absolute certainty will be viewed and verified by other people. You’ve got some trying to pretend that Russia-gaters never cared about Russia-gate at all anyway.
But you’ve also got CNN’s Reliable Sources host Brian Stelter sharing Matt Taibbi’s excellent article titled “It’s official: Russiagate is this generation’s WMD,” which describes the mass media’s spectacular failures to ask the questions that needed to be asked and demand the evidence that needed to be demanded for the claims advanced in the Russiagate narrative. You’ve got NBC’s Ken Dilanian, an actual CIA asset who has been eagerly advancing the establishment Russia narrative, saying that “this is a total legal exoneration of the president. Congress will want to know more, of course. But the topline: No conspiracy, no obstruction.” This is highly unusual behavior from such stalwart empire loyalists, and it may be taken as a turning point of sorts on this particular aspect of this particular subject, due solely to the total destruction of any basis for their previous narrative.
But, of course, the damage is already done. Trump has been handed a powerful political weapon which may have ensured his reelection to the White House, and, far, far worse, a new Cold War with Russia is now underway which threatens the life of every organism on this earth, facilitated by a political/media class who convinced the public that they could hurt the president by demanding that he take a more hawkish posture toward Russia. That Pandora’s box won’t be un-opened by these new revelations.
Congratulations to Russia-obsessed Democrats for being the single-most valuable contributors to the Donald J. Trump 2020 re-election campaign!
— Michael Tracey (@mtracey) March 24, 2019
This should be the end of the mass media. In anything resembling a sane world, Rachel Maddow would be unloading her desk into a cardboard box today, and Aaron Maté would become the most respected and highest-paid journalist in America.
This should be the end of the Democratic party. This dismal state of affairs is their fault, from the content of the leaked emails to their handling of it. They have had choices on the way to clean up their act but, they have blankly refused at every juncture. Not one thing has changed since the emails revealed that the DNC rigs its primaries, and yet here we are in the middle of another fake primary with everyone going along with it like it’s a real thing. It’s weird. In a healthy democratic republic the party would be dead already, and a new one would’ve taken its place fueled by fresh energy and enthusiasm but the donor-class corruption is so deeply entrenched that that possibility has seemed like a fantasy.
For now. The next couple of days are going to be very important. As the clamoring din of Russia-gate falls into the memory hole, a large empty space will open up. As the pundits scramble to find the Next Big Thing to blare through the screens, the people will be left to their own devices for a few precious moments. They won’t know what to think. They may even have some of their own thoughts for once. The media landscape will resemble a demolition site. So why not use this space to push forward some new exciting ideas. Space means possibilities. Space means something new can be built. After the crushing disappointment of finally finding out that the whole thing was a bust, two years have been lost to the bumbling ineptitude of Pelosi and Schumer, and now impeachment is off the table, what has anyone got to lose? Let’s try something new.
Caitlin Johnstone is a rogue journalist, poet, and utopia prepper who publishes regularly at Medium. Follow her work on Facebook, Twitter, or her website. She has a podcast and a new book “Woke: A Field Guide for Utopia Preppers.” This article was re-published with permission.
Russsiagate decoyed attention away from the corporate Democrats’ own corrupt primary system, which is still to a lesser extent being practiced. Worst of all it ignored the real issue of the massive voter disenfranchisement of Black and Latino voters through crosscheck and other methods used by the Republicans.
Now if we want to really talk about foreign meddling in the “best democracy money can buy” lets look at Israel and AIPAC.
The source of all this Hillary and her Hillary bots. The Queen of Chaos who convinced Obama to bomb Libya and attack Syria not to mention approving the coup in Honduras.
Kudos to the liberals for showing how stupid and liars they are….
I only wish the party would go down permanently!
This was a 2 year $25 million dollar waste of taxpayer monies witch hunt!
Fantastic article, Caitlin. Where from here? May I suggest that you first look at policy. Both Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders attacked the WTO and free trade agreements for being the cause of US manufacturers moving production to low-wage countries with no unions, no emission and pollution rules. Contravening conventional Harvard economic theories, they were both completely correct. Putting tariffs on goods posing a major threat to US manufacturers is one of the steps to replace free trade with fair trade. Trump did this with modest tariffs on steel and aluminum. Obama and the EU put much higher tariffs on steel from China. Both Trump and Sanders proposed strengthening the border with Mexico to stop US companies from replacing American workers with obedient, slave wage, anti-union illegal migrants. Both these policies were the main reasons for Trump’s election and were and continue to be strongly supported by American workers. Both these policies are adamantly opposed by Republican elites because they allow the rich to get richer at the expense of American workers and farmers. Grass-root Republicans, however, support these policies, and, this support is now compelling many elected Republicans to about-face and (at least in public) agree with Trump. These policies also are supported by many Democrat voters (at least those who supported Sanders). What would happen if a group of Democrats, rather than continued character assassination of Trump, started passing, with Republican support, legislation which supported Trump on these specific policies? What if a group of Democrats stopped Russia-bashing and supported Trump’s efforts to normalize relations with Russia? In my view, they would immediately receive support from American workers on all sides of the political spectrum. What is happening now, however, is that Democrats continue (with support from Republican elites) opposing Trump on both these issues. If this continues, Democrats will continue alienating themselves from their traditional base – American workers.
As an old-fashioned labor-lefty who used to call himself a Democrat, I’d say the alienation continues unabated.
No illusions about who and what the party represents. Bad enough at home, but shit, they also drop bombs like no tomorrow and spout lines from Langley and Likud like the back of their hand.
As an armchair goof playing early guessing games, I’d say Sanders will pull at least the weight he did last time as the uninspiring field of corporatists will split Hillary’s wing and the wild card Gabbard may draw support widely.
Lifelong Democrat here that saw the writing on the wall, one year into Obama’s first term (gave up on MSM during the runup to the Iraq invasion). Although, I could hardly have imagined how low the Democratic leadership would sink with Russia-gate. Gabbard is inspiring, but they are already starting to wear her down. I can’t see anyone winning against imperial propaganda at this point, but I will support her as much as I can.
I’m sending a small donation to help her get into the Dem debates.
Here’s Tulsi interviewed by independent media:
I guess I will repeat it monthly. She seems to be ignored, but still she gets some media presence, and established Dems may form a circular firing squad. Good bio, good looking and yet, unexpectedly, very good articulation of what is wrong with foreign policy and foreign aggressions.
Very good post.
Progressives should have cherry-picked areas to work with Trump from the get-go. Instead they wallowed in hysterical TDS to a degree that every disgusting image and insult of Trump was “on the table”—these idiots had no thought they were transgressing normal standards of decency and *respect for the **office of the presidency** of the United States.*
This might be Caitlin’s “new idea,” namely: Grow up and grasp the fact that “politics makes strange bedfellows.” Ever hear that one before, Dems? Do you understand what it means?
I knew it!!!!!!! THANKS!!!!
You knew it but you didn’t give a damn about it before now. You should have suggested a headline for this same story.
I don’t watch these Fake News MSM shows, e.g., MSNBC, CNN, NBC, et al. Their personalities come across as just being silly. The mischief that some of these MSM people have stirred up across our country reminds me of that biblical quote: ‘He that troubleth his own house shall inherit the wind.’ It’s great fun to watch these MSM fools squirm as they’re incompetence is exposed. Will be even more entertaining to see what bad karma awaits them.
A general question I would like to propose and understand. I conceive all that was wrong with the investigation but what are your thoughts(author) about all the convictions and corruption that was revealed because of the countless inquiries.
Simply, this is just a line of thinking that I am trying to dig into the logic and understand the big picture.
Jay, nothing special here. The investigators found corruption because US politics is all about corruption. Some of it may even have involved people or properties in Russia. But the charge, the subject of the investigation was Russian interference in the US election and Trump’s collusion with it. And here there was never any evidence, and there still isn’t. Like $20,000 worth of FB ads in a $2 billion dollar campaign. Meanwhile, Israel spends 100 times more and actively seeks to influence in US federal and state governments and no one says anything. The US interferes and overthrows governments all over the world and no one says anything. Russiagate has been a massive psyop and a highly effective one. Now it’s time to fight back.
The only serious crimes were by Manafort, and they occurred years before he was briefly Trump’s Campaign Manager. The other things were process crimes that bring to mind the quote from Felix Derzhinsky – ‘show me the man, and I’ll show you the crime.’ They were an abuse of prosecutorial power. Personally I would not want to be the subject of that kind of pressure/scrutiny and neither would you.
Excellent article again from Johnstone. My thanks to her and to CN for shooting straight throughout this episode. Few outlets that I had more or less trusted managed.
And meanwhile, the Democratic Party announced quietly that it is officially blackballing any election-related company that works with a primary challenger to a Democratic incumbent.
I voted Democrat fairly routinely for some thirty years. I might never do so again. It is not just that the DNC announces this policy (or their others), but the near-universal refusal of any Democrat in office to condemn these actions, and the insistence of even outwardly “progressive” candidates and officials in endorsing a straight Blue ticket, regardless.
The last I read, DNC will retreat on that.
President to America on eve of 2020 re-election: WERE YOU NOT ENTERTAINED?! HUH? BE HONEST! TRUMP 2020.
Meanwhile, DHS is gouging eyes out of brown refugees for fun
Who wouldn’t like to gouge out some eyes from time to time. Luckily, we may experience it vicariously, thanks to our governments on all levels (starting from the local/municipal police departments).
I wish we could say we all saw it coming…
Mueller and Barr just confirmed that Russia intervened in the 2016 election to support Trump. So many here have claimed it was all a hoax. Is anybody in this space eating crow on that point? Should this be the ebd of Consortium News?
And the state primaries are controlled by the states not the DNC. And no “corruption” was uncovered in the hacked emails. Is it realky that shocking that some Democrats favored the candidate who worked for decades building the Party over the vandidate who used it just to run for president? When the Republicans broke into the DNC at Watergate, the state chairs were actively working to elevate another nominee besides McGovern who went on to lose in a landslide. Nobody confused the real crime — the break-in — with the sausage-making of Party politics.
You’re just the type of person I had in mind when I wrote my earlier comment under this article.
Really? And what, exactly did they say? Mostly what I’ve heard them say is that DNC was hacked by the Russians but Assange, who released the files, said he didn’t get them from Russia. In any event Mueller wouldn’t know anyway. He didn’t call Bill Binney, he spoke to none of the other CIA agents who said it was not a hack, and, of course, he didn’t speak with Assange. You sound to me like a DNC apparatchik.
I do not believe Mueller stated the DNC was hacked by Russia. The Russians trolled and were on social media.
Murdered Seth Rich downloaded the material.
VIP’s on this site proved through the data stream fingerprint that it was a download.
Assange has admitted it was Seth Rich and placed a $10,000 reward for the capture of Seth Rich’s murderer.
Last July, Mueller indicted twelve Russians for hacking DNC and Clinton campaign officials to publicly leak their emails and potentially influence the election.
A separate indictment from February 2018 is aimed at the social media stuff.
So Mueller and Barr confirming something makes it fact? Hillary being fed the questions in a debate by Donna Brazile isn’t corrupt? Hillary telling bankers that she holds “public” positions different from her “private” positions isn’t corrupt? I could go on. Have another slug of the Kool-Aid.
Still a hoax, sorry. Try taking a closer look at the evidence … it is laughable nonsense. No more convincing than the collusion garbage. Did it occur to you that liars … lie? It is ALL a lie, along with every other story you read in the MSM … Syria, Israel, Russia, Iran, Venezuela … add your own to the list.
Russia-gate is also an incredibly dangerous and despicable lie, given that a war with Russia would be the end of your life and mine, and everyone else living in the US, if not the planet. And all done for political advantage? If you want to think about treason … think about Russia-gate, and I don’t mean Trump.
I have a whole welter of emotion/thought after I get past the “I tole you so”, even though they didn’t get so far as to admit that they haven’t got a case against those GRU agents. I think about Slick Willie who, although he was really a moderate Republican, was bedeviled by the Congressional Republicans for 8 frickin’ years over an equally bogus complaint about a land deal back in Arkansas gone bad. Thankfully, Robert Mueller is no Ken Starr. Leave us not forget that the voters swiftly turned on the Congressional Republicans over Clinton’s impeachment and Caitlin is suggesting that the same will happen to the Congressional Democrats and I suspect she’s right.
That’s downright scary. There’s nobody to vote for. Democrats aren’t really a great option to the Republicans who’s decades long history of cheating, chicanery, and general fiscal incompetence have left us with $22T in debt and a foreign policy that is largely forever war. The Democrats are no better, if anything, they are more hell bent on starting wars, including wars with nuclear armed adversaries, than the Republicans. And the deep state isn’t listening. Putin has already said that the world cannot have another Nazi German/fascist Italy/fascist Japan axis and that the days of the US fomenting “regime change” were over. He made that stick in Syria and it looks like he’s making a run at making it stick in Venezuela. He also said something that I’ve said many times before. Using the US dollar with its privileged position in the world’s financial system as a weapon is a serious mistake. We’re heading for a train wreck unless we prompt a nuclear war.
Vote third party Stein is the real deal,
There is never going to be a change until citizens have the courage to vote third party.
Sanders blew it when he ignored Stein’s offer of the top spot.
Identity politics is the foundation of fascism,
“Using the US dollar with its privileged position in the world’s financial system as a weapon is a serious mistake.”
I think you’ve hit on something of fast-rising significance. Will the bankers continue to choose war?
And a very, very special thanks to Hilary, who saw a mule in the pasture and said she saw a bear.
You neglected to mention American comedian Jimmy Dore who practically single-handedly spent the past two and a half years ferociously combating the Russiagate conspiracy myth with some of the best amateur investigative journalism in the world essentially alone while building up his base of a half-million subscribers. He has been praised by the likes of Aaron Maté, Tulsi Gabbard, and Glen Greenwald for his incredible work. He has been such a force for truth that even Bernie Sanders has timidly ignored and avoided his show. The Jimmy Dore Show on YouTube ranks up there with The Intercept in journalistic integrity and diligence. In a sane world, Jimmy Dore would be deserving of a Presidential Medal of Freedom.
When the mainstream news is a joke, the court jesters are the only ones allowed to tell the truth. But Jimmy is exceptionally well informed.
Indeed, Jimmy Dore the self-styled “jag-off” comedian working out of his garage informed growing numbers of us of us who were willing to peel our eyeballs away from the cavalcade of celebrity ravings on MSNBC, CNN, New York Times, Washington Post, et al. Hillary Clinton, in her vainglorious attempt to find a scapegoat for her political ineptitude blamed her loss on her invented Trump-Putin “collusion.”
So, now the nation is in the midst of a New Cold War and a renewed arms race between two world powers — all because this woman and her criminally liable hordes in the Democratic Party and the idiotic corporate media pedalled this insanity. I only hope there is a special place in the ninth circle of Hell for Mdm. Clinton and her lickspittles.
This is right on point. There were two main reasons for this (perhaps fatal) error on the Democrats’ part. First, they made common cause with neo-cons, retired intelligence chiefs, Congressional hawks, Pentagon officials, and other advocates of a revived American Empire. Second, they let Donald Trump dictate the mode of political discourse (ultra-personal, characterological, conspiracy-minded, etc.) and thought that they could beat him at his own game. The first error was criminal and the second stupid. We may have to support some Democrat in 2020 to get rid of Mr. Trump, but we clearly need a new political party to represent the interests of working people in social justice and peace.
I think it’s time to revisit “Howard Beale’s” (Peter Finch’s) awesome performance in the 1976 film, “Network.”
Yes, I do think they have.
And I fear it is going to prove quite disastrous for a great many people.
Trump has proved to be something much more threatening and dangerous than any of the expectations of early critics.
In general, they missed the real danger he represents,, which is not a matter of domestic social policies.
Here are some thoughts I wrote in response to another article on this topic:
I wish competent writers would eliminate the uncivil, and crude name calling and make their strong points without it. As to the end of it all, afraid not. The opening left by the “possible obstruction of justice” is a very wide opening for more of the same by the Democrats up to and possibly beyond the election.
Judging by the media reaction the Trump hysteria will not abate and yes Trump will benefit from the bogus effort to impeach.
What is of note, with the exception the few like those who read and write for CN, the outrageous things Trump does are not the targets of criticism. His actions on Israel, or Syria, or Iran meet with approval unless he suggests something really outrageous like pulling troops out of Syria where they are illegally. Jerusalem, the Golan Heights, starving Iranians and Venezuelans, selling arms to dictators are generally ignored or often applauded.
So what is it about Trump the elite doesn’t like. Perhaps it is the ham handed way he goes about their business, his failure to recognize the merits of our identity crisis, views on abortion and school choice which he parrots, his hair, the Mussolini look puffing out of his lower jaw, or me-tooism, that other people don’t like him so neither do I.
When Trump leaves the entertainment industry will feel lost, and all of us will think of him as one of the most unforgettable characters ever to be president. With luck we will survive him and the rest of the Washington crowd without a cataclysmic war and Trumpy bear sales will never abate.
“Jerusalem, the Golan Heights, starving Iranians and Venezuelans, selling arms to dictators are generally ignored or often applauded.” Reminder: you won’t find starving people in Iran or Venezuela. Their governments get food to their people. They don’t live under the neoliberal ideology of ‘pulling yourself up by your bootstraps’. Their governmental policies are to ‘be their brother’s keeper’. Ironic for the good Christians so profuse in Washington DC.
Another reminder: it was well-known Washington DC neocon from the past, William Browder, not a Russian agent, who invited Trump Jr. to learn of Russian dirt on Hillary Clinton. The now famous Natalia Vesselnitskaya(sp?), Russian lawyer and supposed Putin insider, believed she was to talk with Trump Jr about reviving child adoptions between Russia and the United States, which had been stopped in the US Mitninski Act. When young Trump realized she didn’t have any incriminating info on Hillary, he called off the meeting. I personally think W. Browder was deliberately trying to set up a Trump/Russia connection with both sides receiving the wrong reasons for being at this meeting.
Now that I look back, this Trump Jr/Tower meeting was an example of how neoliberals (Hillary’s campaign) AND neocons (Browder) in the ‘System’ worked to bring down Trump.
“Another reminder: it was well-known Washington DC neocon from the past, William Browder, not a Russian agent, who invited Trump Jr. to learn of Russian dirt on Hillary Clinton.”
I have not heard this before. Do you have any links to support it?
I posted this on Medium when this article first came out.
Unfortunately, in every way that matters, RussiaGate has been a complete success. When Donald Trump said “wouldn’t it be great to get along with Russia” RussiaGate was born. The thought of detente was his cardinal sin. That possibility has been completely demolished. The MIC and its trillions of wasted dollars are safe. The Evil Empire’s Forever War continues unabated, and even has new horizons in places such as Iran and Venezuela. Nuclear brinksmanship keeps the R&D money flowing to Lockheed Martin and the other death dealers. Though Trump says he is a Nationalist, his every move in foreign policy shows him to be toeing the line for the interests of the PNACers, and whenever he bucks their interests, he has shown that he can be brought to heel as long as they don’t trample his ego.
The DNC/RNC theater will go on, and the MSM will seek to ensure that our choice for 2020 will be corporate sponsored warmonger from column A or B.
I really hope that we can “try something new”. The time is ripe for a third party to get someone to the TV debates and upset the applecart. If Tulsi has any sense she’ll make a dramatic switch to the Green Party and seek to mobilize the power of the internet before it gets shut down or “contained”. She has zero chance inside the DNC controlled democratic party. The young people of today spend more time on the internet than they do watching network television, and 42 percent of registered voters didn’t bother to cast a ballot in 2016. Therein lies our hope.
Skip, thanks for a very good analysis in my humble opinion. Yes, we do need a third party movement with all the zeal of the early twentieth century muckrakers and trust busters to work for myriad reforms that all go back to restoring power to ordinary people and halting the concentration of our great wealth in the hands of a few.
On a more concrete point, wasn’t there a Hoover Commission led but Herbert not J. Edgar that did some good work in this regard? Only more ambitious than merely making government work better. Herbert was a good guy caught in an economic collapse but did wonderful work feeding starving millions in Russia.
Hoover was quite a bit before my time, but he was a Quaker from Iowa, so my guess is he was a pretty decent fellow. It was probably just bad luck that the crash of ’29 happened on his watch.
The time is ripe for leaving the Democrats, Skip. I think Tulsi should take your advice. But I’ve a funny feeling she’ll throw the support she builds to Bernie towards a V.P. slot on the ticket.
Tulsi Gabbard is saying things fairly directly that Americans aren’t used to hearing from their politicians. I love hearing it. But I have to say I’m bothered by her handling of the “Assad question”. She could simply relate some of her experience in Syria, including her time with Assad. She could, in point of fact, refer to Assad as the President of Syria. She could say that Syria’s culture and political system are their own and that we would all do better to seek understanding of that culture before we set about trying to destroy it by arming terrorists.
She did say the CIA armed terrorists in Syria, didn’t she? Come on Tulsi. Just part of the truth isn’t enough truth. Tell them they ought to go to Syria themselves. Tell them the reporters aren’t doing their jobs.
Tell them how utterly abhorrent and degenerate this war of terrorism against the Syrian people has been. Somebody’s gotta do it. But Tulsi appears a bit restrained…and cautious.
Yeah, I agree. She totally flubbed the Syria question by trying to walk a tightrope. Once you accept a small part of the MSM narrative, it is a slippery slope to being fully compromised. She doesn’t stand a snowball’s chance in hell of getting a democratic nod. Bernie will look for someone more mainstream, and I doubt he even stands much chance in the DNC controlled democratic party. They will offer us “warmonger from column B” in the hope of countering the MAGA crowd with a corporately acceptable “lesser evil”. At least we get non gender specific restrooms with our forever war.
If not Tulsi, maybe someone new? Jill is great, but she doesn’t have “star power” and can’t break through the MSM roadblock. The appeal of a progressive democrat changing parties in a dramatic fashion is that it’d likely get some MSM coverage. The only other possibility is somebody else with name recognition making a big enough noise that they couldn’t be ignored.
It is a slippery slope to being fully compromised. Great thought.
The DNC sure isn’t Bernie’s friend. But if he polls and wins primaries, what are they gonna do?
I think there will be a major smear campaign against Bernie and Tulsi. Wikileaks has shown that the DNC had plans to smear Bernie as an atheist in 2016, among other things. They have Bob Parry’s “Mighty Wurlitzer” and a vast toolkit. They will say that the progressives are splintering the party, and that getting rid of Trump is all that matters, so you need to hold you nose and choose warmonger from column B. They will say that Socialism will bankrupt the Nation, and if we don’t keep bombing everyone the “terrorists” will win. Divide and conquer is the game plan. They have retained the superdelegates for the second ballot, and they are running so many candidates that they are purposely aiming for a second ballot, where the oligarchs will once again decide for the people. That’s why a real progressive needs to split from the Dems in a dramatic fashion , go third party, and shoot for the 15% to make the debates. In the end, that’s the only venue that matters.
Good food for thought Skip.
If the Greens adopt an impossible platform calling for the level of austerity like “the new green deal” then it hasn’t a snowballs chance. A true peace based platform, a labor and immigration reform platform and a repeal of corporate campaign contributions, even a term limits platform, there may be a chance. But the silly pie in the sky emotionally based juvenile nonsense will not be a viable alternative for the American people.
Next step for the MSM propaganda machine? Probably assisting the CIA in whipping up war fever against Venezuela. They’ve pounded “Putin evil!” into the heads of their party fanatics long enough that shouting “Putin plus Maduro!” at them will have the most ardent Democrat voter screaming to massacre all of Caracas.
US elections are like those in the Roman Empire: prestigious but meaningless.
Who received more standing ovations than any one else in history from a joint session of congress?
Which is the only nation in USA history that has been deemed illegal to protest against (BDS) ?
Which genocidal nation has bought 75% of the USA governments?
Which nation influences USA policy more than USA citizens do?
I’m struggling to figure out what ISrael has to do with this. All you rabid-Israel haters have such a myopic view of the world that you’re unable to process any other information logically without complaining about Israel.
there you go: the only thing you got from the Greeks, the sophistics, rabbi’s argumentary.
America. We are definitely a genocidal nation. In all ways we are to blame forvour own problems.
As usual, Caitlen is right on. She mentioned Aaron Maté. He did a great video for Grayzone today. See:
The fact that Trump has thoroughly exposed the deep state MSM to be a crock of s**t is vindicating enough. So happy this man got elected and he truly is the gift that keeps on giving. Unfortunately I feel as if the majority, so coddled and spoon fed by the MSM will not even recoil from this blunder of epic proportions and will continue to tune in to these thoroughly corrupt media programs in order to be told what to think.
My opinion on this article is that sure Trump has his faults, when it comes to the environment he truly doesn’t care about obliterating it, his stance on climate change is also worrying, however unless tulsi gabbard gets voted in he’s probably the best thing the US has got, solely based on the fact that he’s not part of that corrupt deep state MSM cabal of satanic worshipping deviants who’s goal is to suck the wealth out of the hoi polloi, eliminate borders and reduce the world population to a controllable amount – not to mention the fact that he’s an anti neoliberal (which reduces the MNC’s use over slave labor, while simultaneously invigorating a disenfranchised working class) and somewhat of an anti war president (he has slowed down on Venezuela which gives me the impression his hand was forced). All in all God bless Donald Trump, f*** Hillary Clinton and have a good night.
If this nation is to survive any modicum as a constitutional form of government, it is time to hold accountable and criminally prosecute the perpetrators of the Russiagate hoax with the full force due traitors of this country.
Members of four previous administrations, as well as lobbyists — both domestic and international — and members of at least two other European governments are culpable and have directly interfered with the US political and intelligence process.
There will be no spring sunshine until justice is brought to bear on the seditionalists that have advanced a coup against a sitting US president. And this includes the despotic fourth estate (MSM) that has perpetuated the false narrative without doing its job that was properly defined and codified due to the illegal activities of the Watergate era.
Many good, public-serving professionals have had their careers ruined and worst yet, many truth-seeking and exposing individuals have been permanently silenced due to the criminal shenanigans of forcing this false narrative down the throats of our nation.
A sad nation we have become, and this is our last chance to turn it around.
From the beginning for anyone who pays attention it was evident that the Russia collusion story was to serve as a diversion from the fact that the DNC and Hillary Clinton actually subverted the Democratic process. Eventually the msm ran with the story and used it for 2 years to undermine trumps legitimate presidency. It’s appallingly clear to me that if Clinton were elected she would not even receive a fraction of the scrutiny from the MSM or any investigators for her extremely corrupt activities – if she was held to the same standard Trump was she would be done in a second. Agreed that the media should be exposed and lampooned for their extremely unprofessional behavior yet a lot of these media giants Facebook, Twitter for example are doubling down on demonizing alt news sites like this one, constantly slandering them and there control of the airwaves is so strong it makes me extremely hesitant to believe that anything will change. It’s unbelievable to me but it seems the only person that can save the people is Donald f*****ng Trump the man who ran the reality tv show the apprentice.
Any way you want to look at it, it’s been obvious all along, any real or imagined interference in our election by Russia paled in comparison to the documented machinations of the democratic party and the super delegate system to oust the very popular Bernie Sanders in favor of the Goldman. Sachs, “If elected I will enforce a no fly zone over Syria,” Hillary Clinton.
It’s sad to realize that the democratic party is the neo-liberal, war, Zionist party and Rachel Maddow is a public relations mouthpiece for the banksters who own MSNBC and who obsessed over Russiagate in order to deflect from their own collusion/conspiracy to undermine the will of democratic and many traditional republican voters who wanted Bernie.
It’s hard to know, but I often think, for all the HELL this admin’s let loose, the Trump fluke may have saved our butts from some REAL trouble…with a Ukraine locus. Not because of anything Trump and his admin intended of course (cause now he’s gung ho to seize money that was owed Russia).
Seems I can think clearer now that the report’s out. All along I tended to think Risen was wrong, but now…what’s happening to me?!?! Is it really clarity??
For me (I’m just say’n for me) there are still murky areas.
Just put the following under a friend’s share of Sanders demanding the whole report…
Wonder if this from Bruce Schneier is accurate…
Doubts among Dems and doubts among Pubs?
correction, 2nd quote…from article by Schneier and Henry Farrell
David its been clear since day one There were NO Russian Hacks.
Seth Rich was murdered for DOWNLOADING DNC files ( see VIP technical proof at CN that the DNC leaks was a download)
And Podesta was a PHISH as related by Podesta himself.
What needs to be investigated is the 30,000 illegally deleted emails of Killary.
And the Zionist take over of the USA, look what Trump is doing for Isreal and what Trump is doing against Russia– actions show reality.
VIP writes what it writes. AFAICS no one has proven…yep, to me…there weren’t hacks; and, if there were hacks, no one can prove who did’em (due to the stuff in Vault 7; neither has anyone proven the alleged hacks could have had…or did have…any more of an influence than outright proven voter suppression). I can relate to anyone and everyone who is glad the scapegoat distraction’s been dealt a blow. You could tell the hype was paranoid by the way Maddow, Joe, Mika, and their guests always seized on some minute obscure point and never emerged back to put the thing in a listener-friendly general context or general outline [I refuse to pay for cable TV; caught snippets in places other than where I live]. Glenn Greenwald seemed to hit every angle of the Bozo-ness of the giant distraction yesterday on Democracy Now https://www.democracynow.org/2019/3/25/as_mueller_finds_no_collusion_did#transcript
If Mueller had found, in the course of things, the real deal on the Winner docs (and they weren’t fake), then the Pubs would rail on about how deep state folks were too stupid to make the docs known to us themselves, and about how all their assumptions regarding us were gospel (it wouldn’t have proven Trump was in the loop). If his investigation had, in the course of things, revealed they were fake, then our side would have done the same regarding all our assumptions about them. But in a way the paranoia was made possible by the nature of software and the net as it exists/functions today (737-8 Maxes for instance). And then there are the turf wars…the reason info wasn’t shared on the 9/11 hijackers. Put’em both together.
Compared to voter suppression the fb shares were feeble (didn’t Russian media itself investigate the IRA on this?). Yet that doesn’t mean fomenting distrust isn’t a tactic that means nothing (so far to me anyway). If you’re interested in how prevailing narrative is set up, why not look at what Schneier and Harrell were saying? Seems IMO to fit reality that the Russians cannot be all white and gullible “liberals” all black. Russians just for instance…whomever…if there were penetration attempts bordering on “serious.” Cannot be all black, because: would it be that weird to assume they would attempt on us what we attempt on them?
Good article Caitlin.
“As the clamoring din of Russia-gate falls into the memory hole, a large empty space will open up. … So why not use this space to push forward some new exciting ideas. Space means possibilities.”
It’s sad, but in a very important way, I don’t think that’s true.
One of the neat tricks of Russia-gate all along has been that while such prolonged and sententious effort has been devoted to the question of “collusion” – i.e. TrumpWorld’s alleged disloyal canoodling with Russia – which was always destined to come up dry in the end, the underlying allegation of the Russian “attack on our democracy” – i.e. the thing Trump was supposedly colluding *in* – has been allowed to solidify into an undisputed fact, despite being likewise unproven, and in reality just as false, or at best wildly overblown.
Nowhere in any corporate media coverage will you see the collapse of the collusion narrative used as an opportunity to re-examine the Russian attack narrative, based as it is unassailably (they would have us believe) on the twin pillars of the January 2017 Intelligence Community Assessment and Mueller’s never-to-be-tried indictments of a raft of obscure Russians.
Rather, the Russian attack story is getting all the more play now in corporate media as they try to salvage the Russia-gate debacle from the Mueller disappointment.
(This has been playing out on MSNBC as I have been composing this comment: Chris Hayes just had on a congressman who used the very phrase “attack on our democracy” referring to what he considers an undisputed fact, and now David Corn and Michael Isikoff are on, energetically moving the goalposts away from the collapsing collusion fairy tale. For what it’s worth, Isikoff and Hayes are showing a little more discomfort than Corn, who is full-steam-ahead on perfidious Muscovy.)
That has always been the main event: convincing the U.S. public of Russian enmity and aggression – the Threat – to ensure the diametrically opposed reality remains outside the mainstream.
There will be some dead-enders who will try to keep the Trump side of Russia-gate alive (obstruction of justice!), but most of that energy will eventually be diverted to the vast cesspool of Trump’s financial dealings, which has always been the more promising and legitimate route for exposing the Orange Schmegegge’s corruption.
Meanwhile the campaign to keep the U.S. public squarely behind the drive to Make Earth Great Again (for the subterranean archaea prokaryotes that will survive the nuclear exchange unscathed, that is) continues, and has even been strengthened by Russia-gate’s sinister propagandistic sleight-of-hand.
Soon it’ll be “China, China, China!”
Yes. The Dismal Faking MSM are NOT going to let go of their Russophobic Orwellian propaganda – it clearly serves purposes (the MIC’s being one, surely). This morning on NPR (don’t recall the Beeb World Service, but all too likely there as well) while the presenters, facilitators – whatever they’re called – were presenting the non-existence of *collusion* they continued with their assertions, at some length, that Russia *had meddled* in the 2016 election, had hacked the DNC server etc., etc. No if, ands or buts, evidence lacking or not. And they proceeded to ‘warn’ about the ‘strong likelihood’ of both Russia (read the Kremlin, read Putin) and China doing the same for the 2020 election: so be warned, folks if the Strumpet gets re-elected it won’t be because of anything the Demrats have done or not done, won’t be because the Demrats’ candidate is HRC in drag, attractively turned out. No. It will be Putin’s and Xi’s doing.
Meanwhile, the country that really does interfere in our elections and policies – via oodles of money contributed by its lobbying group supporters (and I gather there will be another such “legal” lobbying entity established in DC for smaller donors to continue to, see Alison Weir’s article at Mint Press News) – neither has to register as a foreign agent nor cease and desist its influence over our politicians (who are all too clearly buyable). Nor is the UK getting hauled over the coals, or threatened with war, being beleaguered by sanctions for its real interference in our politics.
Thank you Caitlin for your usual good work.
Trump the Siberian Candidate was a useful part of the hate campaign against Russia, but ultimately expendable, like one stage in a multi-stage rocket booster.
The important work goes on, regardless of what happens to one individual like Donald, or one species like Homo sapiens.
So you have obstruction preventing the finding of evidence. Mueller proclaims no evidence found, punts on obstruction charges, presenting only the facts indicating obstruction. New AJ Barr, a relic from Iran Gate and close to Mueller, concludes there is not sufficent evidence of obstruction.
Mueller and Barr cover it up as they have been doing for 30-40 years. Why is anyone surprised?
I never was big on Russia gate but collusion with Russian Mafia and Israel and certainly conflict of interest over the proposed Trump Tower in Moscow certainly should have been exposed, as should a DNC insiders complicity in releasing the emails
Moscow never actualized so there was no benefit.
Caitlin, I get the overwhelming message that you consider Trump the worst possible POTUS and that Hilary, Sanders, or any other POSSIBLE alternatives would be even worse.
When it comes to the realistically POSSIBLE, we do have to settle for the lesser of two evils.I believe the Yanks have actually done just that, and it seems pointless to argue so vehemently against all possibilities.
Could you be making a case for Tulsi by omission?
I have never worked as a prosecutor, but I have taught criminal law
at an accredited state university law school.
Mueller’s report states: “While this report does not conclude that the president committed a crime, it also does not exonerate him.”
This is the first time I ever heard such a statement.
I have never heard of a criminal investigation that concluded
that the defendant was “not exonerated”.
The prosecutor is not empowered to make statements intended to influence public opinion.
It seems to be a 100% political statement, 100% extralegal comment.
The purpose of a criminal investigation is to find crime
and prosecute it. It is NOT to exonerate or “not exonerate”.
If insufficient evidence is found to proceed with criminal prosecution,
then the job is done, the prosecutor is not empowered to comment
about ifs, buts, or maybes, or about exoneration.
Such comments are contrary to our system of criminal justice,
which supposedly assumes innocence until guilt is proven
beyond reasonable doubt.
Your assertion is completely at odds with the historical reality of criminal investigations under the old Independent Counsel law, which produced voluminous, public reports after investigations into Iran-Contra and Whitewater/Monica.
While that law was allowed to expire without opposition from either corrupt party in Washington, even under the currently operative DoJ regulations governing the Mueller investigation, the Special Counsel is required to submit a final report. If it were true that statements of findings other than what is contained in indictments, plea bargains, and trials were not proper, then the report would have no content other than a summary of already-public documents. Obviously more is contemplated.
I’m not defending Muller’s report since – like you and everybody else other than a small circle around AG Barr – I haven’t read it. Until we do, none of us has much basis for condemning (or praising) its contents, least of all based on the tiny excerpts quoted by Barr in his public letter.
Moreover, notwithstanding any faults in the Mueller report that may be seen when it is eventually released, your categorical claim that a “prosecutor is not empowered to make statements intended to influence public opinion” is clearly contrary to the applicable Special Counsel regulation, which requires a report that may (though unfortunately also may not) be made public by the AG.
Yes, Mueller’s statement: “while this report does not conclude that the President committed a crime, it also does not exonerate him” appears to be a sop thrown to the media and the DNC, in short, those that hired him to prosecute Trump… er, I mean investigate Trump’s supposed crime of collusion.
It certainly muddies the waters, and is a wishy-washy, cowardly declaration. It’s outside his mandate as Special Counsel and borders on slander. In his blog today Howard Kunstler referred to Mueller’s parting aspersion as a “nice red poison cherry” on top of the report.
I’ve always felt that Mueller knew from the very beginning that this was a witch hunt, and the sloppy commentary added to his report only confirms it in my mind.
Could it be that this is Mueller’s “Comey moment”?
A lot of voters are fed up with the continuous barrage of hate coming from the Left towards President Trump. If the Left keeps on coming up with more and more investigations after the Mueller report found no collusion on the president’s part voters are going to get fed up with the whole debacle…this could well backfire on Democrats and conservative Republicans might just take back the House.
>people will be left to their own devices for a few precious moments. They won’t know what to think. <
Well, here's what I think…
This Russia-Trump collusion thing is and has been a criminal conspiracy to undermine and possibly remove from office an elected President, and it has taken Russian-American relations down to a plainly dangerous level.
Why not get something positive out of it?
I think there’s evidence that this conspiracy was a product of Hillary Clinton, her staff, the DNC, elements of the FBI, FBI director Comey, CIA director Brennan, other elements of the CIA, elements of British intelligence, possibly elements of the Ukrainian govt., and possibly persons tied into the corrupt Clinton “charity” foundation and its networks.
The US govt. is deeply corrupt – murderously corrupt – that’s been plain at least since the Kennedy assassination in 1963, followed by the murders of a number of other prominent American political figures.
Why not use this recent obvious conspiracy to start a real investigation using a newly created, large well funded investigative organization independent of the above mentioned corrupted organizations, to investigate what has going on?
If this most recent deep state operation is allowed to pass un-investigated, without punishment and a long overdue rooting out of what’s been making this country’s government sick and corrupt, it’s going to be taken as a sign of encouragement by certain actors, with future actions that will make past ones look mild.
From the single shot theory, to the single Fixer theory, to the single Shanksville theory, to the Russians ate my votes theory, many of those involved are still involved today and the statute of limitations is open ended for murder. This includes the CIA who made up the phrase “conspiracy theory”. And always note: President Trump does indeed suck on climate change and the 2016 alternatives sucked on everything (Sanders somewhat excluded).
Totally agree. However, I’m afraid the “murderously corrupt” ones would rather set the whole world on fire “that will make past ones look mild” to save themselves than get exposed. But I hope Trump will find a way. He’s been smart and strong enough to survive THIS and what doesn’t kill you — makes you stronger.
You are putting far too much faith in the American people’s attention span. Omar’s comments on AIPAC were erased in a matter of days by a conveniently timed terror attack. We are in the middle of March Madness, currently the single most important event in the majority of American’s lives. This is why Assange was so brilliant in waiting until weeks before the election to release the Clinton emails.
Maybe we’ll move from dumb to dumber.