The Talking Dog

December 9, 2016, Everything's coming up Россия

There is a WaPo story out to the effect that the CIA has concluded in a (naturally) secret assessment that our comrades in Москва decided to do what they could to throw the election to Comrade Trump, notably, through supplying hacked data to Wikileaks (such as the embarrassing Podesta emails); our friend Joe Gandelman has more. Among the money-quotes:

Intelligence agencies have identified individuals with connections to the Russian government who provided WikiLeaks with thousands of hacked emails from the Democratic National Committee and others, including Hillary Clinton’s campaign chairman, according to U.S. officials.

Those officials described the individuals as actors known to the intelligence community and part of a wider Russian operation to boost Trump and hurt Clinton’s chances.

“It is the assessment of the intelligence community that Russia’s goal here was to favor one candidate over the other, to help Trump get elected,” said a senior U.S. official briefed on an intelligence presentation made to U.S. senators. “That’s the consensus view.”

Seems all cloak and daggar. Perhaps we'll get to the bottom of it in the "deep dive" into intel-related activity that President Obama ordered. Or perhaps we won't.

Or perhaps Americans already knew that Russia (whose leader Hillary equated to Hitler, while Mr. Trump is evidently some kind of business associate of Putin/Hitler) was probably playing favorites here, and trying to intervene in our election, via exactly the means suggested. It's not as if this wasn't out in the open as a campaign issue-- Hillary Clinton said as much during a debate (in an attempt to deflect attention from the contents of emails, which she could have quite easily batted aside, she accused Russia of the hacking...) She still managed to lose the election, as that debate evasion was one of an almost infinite number of incompetent acts that she committed in the course of losing to the second-worst major party candidate ever (the first worst, of course, being herself).

Of course, WaPo recently distinguished itself by publishing an equally journalistically valid neo-McCarthyan hit-piece asserting that around 200 assorted media outlets were ostensibly pro-Russia propaganda arms peddling "fake news." Hmmmmm...

Honestly, regular readers (my readership these days could likely fit in a VW Microbus, with plenty of room for luggage and pets) know that I not only hold no brief for Mr. Trump, I regard him as evil incarnate and felt compelled to both poll-watch and vote for Mrs. Clinton (who I regard as corrupt and incompetent, but at least not evil incarnate). Nonetheless... I do have to say... come on. Put up or shut up on this Russia and Putin stuff: stop with the innuendo. If there is solid evidence that a foreign power intervened in our election to favor one candidate-- the winning candidate no less-- then by God, out with it before said Muscovian Candidate takes office. If said candidate were aware of the intervention, and his "denials" of said intervention were part of the strategy... even more compelling... so let's not waste time-- let's arrest his ass for treason (i.e., "lock him up! lock him up!") Otherwise... shut up. Because without such solid evidence (rather than the b.s. innuendo)... he'll take office, and presumably, engage in policies detrimental to USA national interests for the benefit of... Mother Russia...

Such as, perhaps, appointing Exxon Mobil CEO Rex Tillerson as Secretary of State. As observed by Kevin Drum,

Oh come on. Trump is planning to nominate a wealthy, inexperienced fossil-fuel mogul whose only qualification—literally—is that he's sort of chummy with Vladimir Putin? And Republicans are expected to confirm him?

Who's writing the script for this show? No one's going to believe these plot twists. I gave up on Designated Survivor after a couple of episodes, and it was more realistic than this.

Right now, I'm looking at an Establishment that was all-in for a miserably awful sclerotic candidate who was ultimately nailed in a close election by forgotten Obama voters who turned against her for her undeniable coziness with and connections to Wall Street and inability to convey a message of economic (or any other kind) of promise for them... so she lost to a trust-fund baby, whose own promise to "drain the swamp" clearly meant decimating some wet-land somewhere so he could develop a casino... and replace the wildlife with... pretty much the same set of Wall Streeters we'd have expected Hillary to surround herself with. Only in his case, we're also probably looking at an anti-labor Labor Secretary, an anti-public education Education Secretary (whose brother is Erik "Mr. Blackwater" Prince and who herself married into the Amway fortune), an anti-environmental quality Environmental Protection Administrator, and a pretty ill-informed conspiracy-mongering know-it-all psychopath as his National Security Advisor... and our esteemed media is instead focusing on shadowy connections between Trump and Russia, which I gotta tell you, may be the only thing to actually recommend Trump, because Hillary's vilification of that nuclear armed nation that holds the world's largest oil reserves ranged somewhere between irresponsible and psychotic.

OK then... everyone signing up for Russian class and increasing their tolerance for vodka? I know I am.

Update: FWIW, NBC News reports... it's Tillerson. Old Rex is a two-fer-- maybe even a three-fer... he's a buddy of Vlad and has presided over the world's largest climate-change-denying operations at Exxon. He's also worth 9-figures, and could cash in tax free (he'd have to divest of his Exxon Mobil holdings worth over $150 million) should he take the Sec of State post.