I’ve moved beyond posting about the latest allegations and developments in the conspiracy wank that is TrumpRussia and have instead been driven to write about the state of the conspiracy theories and its proponents themselves.

It’s all gotten sad and you are embarrassing yourselves.  I’m saying this without any sense of anger, frustration, or condescension toward you.  If I wanted to be mean, I’d ask that anyone who doesn’t want to see Trump re-elected in 2020 continue obsessing over every possible detail in the TrumpRussia saga because I know that it’s all they have and it’s a loser.

Today it’s all about Donald Trump Jr and him meeting with a Russian lawyer to “get dirt” on Hillary.  I’m not going into details about it here except to observe that it wasn’t a crime and means nothing.  The lawyer provided nothing and received nothing.

This is just one more story that fits the mold of the dozens of collusion claims that have come before it.  Look, we know that Russian officials and other individuals worked hard to get close to the Trump campaign.  We even know that members of Trump’s campaign were happy to talk to them.  None of it has amounted to collusion nor was any of it against the law.

In saner times, that would be the end of it, but again the Democrats (and the media) have nothing else to run with against Trump.  They don’t understand why they lost in November, are in a blind terror that Trump is in the White House with the Democratic Party at its weakest point at all levels of government in a century, and Trump doesn’t have anything negative on his job performance to attack him with yet being that this is so early in his term.

You want to know why I’m so dismissive of all of this, besides all of that stuff I just said?

It’s because I’ve been applying a rational approach.  Well, I think it’s rational anyway.  My starting point is that Russia had a legitimate interest in who would win the 2016 US Election, they preferred that Trump win, and they tried to make inroads of goodwill wherever they could.

My guess is that my use of the word “legitimate” might be questionable to some.  I’ll explain.

Russia has been under devastating US-led economic sanctions over Putin’s government invading Ukraine and some other nefarious shit for a few years now.  They really want the sanctions gone, but don’t want to abandon the Crimea either.  Their only hope for getting rid of the sanctions without backing down from doing the things that brought them in the first place is to convince the US government to do so.

Lots of people accept without hesitation the idea that Russia interfered in our election, but they rarely seem to wonder why they’d want to do that.  I say that it’s because we insist on interfering in matters that are vital to Russian security even when those matters shouldn’t concern us.  The Obama Administration helped egg on the Ukraine crisis and then punished Russia for intervening.

Clinton certainly wasn’t going to ease sanctions nor could Putin expect another “reset”.  Do we even need to discuss her Ukrainian “collusion”, if we can call it that, which Russia certainly must have been aware of?  Putin had every reason to believe she would continue the “Let’s Have Another Splendid Cold War With Russia” policies of Obama. This is why I say Russia had a legitimate interest in who won the election.

You don’t want other countries interfering in our elections?  Then maybe we should conduct our foreign policy in a manner that doesn’t make the outcome of our elections a threat to the vital interests of other countries.

So the Russians had all this incentive to meet with Trump associates, right?  Then why did so many Trump associates eagerly want to meet with them unless TREASON?  I can think of two plausible reasons.

The first is that those associates would stand to benefit financially from the elimination of sanctions against Russia and they were happy to make some connections.  That’s obvious, right?  Shady, but not unusual in government in either party and likely not a crime.  Maybe it should be.

Second reason is that those Trump associates are already well-disposed toward Russia for a variety of reasons and would like to lift sanctions and build a closer relationship for–you’re not going to believe this but–the sake of the best interests of the United States.  Does that sound insane to you?  Unbelievable?  It shouldn’t.  It happens to be what I really believe, though I would also happily write nice things about Russia if I could get paid for it.  Hey, I’m even better looking than Lee Stranahan.

At the end of the day, the collusion myth isn’t going to remove Trump.  I think the best its proponents can hope for is that a few close associates of Trump might get tangled up in some sort of obstruction or perjury charge, but nothing that will remove Trump, much less somehow reverse the 2016 election.

The only other “achievement” of this conspiracy mongering, and the one that actually does bother me, is that any sort of rapprochement with Russia is doomed to failure.  Congress will levy more sanctions, won’t ease the old ones, and with that Trump will have nothing to offer in negotiations.    The only possible reason you could have for thinking this is a good thing is if you happen to be employed by the military-industrial complex and rightly see that Cold War II is good for business.

Jeez, whatever happened to the good old fashioned conspiracy theories where the shady government war profiteers were the bad guys?

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kevinmkr

Oh, you’re so totally wrong. We’re like *this* close to impeaching Trump. It’s so close I can already read the headlines calling for President Pence’s impeachment. Once we’ve run through the gamut of impeachment of every single Republican, there will be NO CHOICE but to elect a Democrat! So, laugh now, smug Trump supporter! We’re only 43 years away from single payer and there’s nothing you can do about it!

Just wait till democrats and the media discover that nations other than russia, attempted to effect the outcome of the election too….

Is there any legal mechanism to force a early or new presidential election? I’m not aware of one but…..?

INTERESTING…

Zurvan

Moving election day up is easy since Congress determines it. But moving up the date he leaves office would be almost impossible with the current atmosphere in Washington. Article II states: The executive power shall be vested in a President of the United States of America. He shall hold his office during the term of four years, and, together with the Vice President, chosen for the same term, be elected, as follows” And the Twentieth Amendment states: The terms of the President and Vice President shall end at noon on the 20th day of January, and the terms of Senators… Read more »

You don’t want other countries interfering in our elections? Then maybe we should conduct our foreign policy in a manner that doesn’t make the outcome of our elections a threat to the vital interests of other countries. ??? That’s what foreign policy is. You think the Norks are thrilled with your foreign policy? You think dropping Russia sanctions doesn’t affect NATO countries? To apply your logic, not sanctioning Russia would make the outcome of your election vital to the interests of, oh I don’t know, Ukraine? Sorry is the Republican foreign policy now “let’s try not to piss anyone off”?… Read more »

I think your interpretation of what Thrill is saying goes way too far. To the first point, the problem isn’t that we have policies that may threaten other countries’ interests, but rather a stark partisan divide in what those policies should be, which disposes a rival to try and tip the scales. I also don’t think it’s too crazy to suggest we might consider the impact of our policies on the vital interests of other nations and weigh them against the benefits. We should do what is in the U.S.’s best interests, but with clear eyes as to the impacts… Read more »

Before I go onto the Russian policy question, I just want to address this: My starting point is that Russia had a legitimate interest in who would win the 2016 US Election, they preferred that Trump win, and they tried to make inroads of goodwill wherever they could. You sound like you’re fine with this? I’m guessing Iran had a preference for who was a winner – would you be cool with Iran and Hillary working together? Or Hillary and Ukraine? (You don’t seem so cool with that one?) Pretty much every nation on earth has a legitimate interest in… Read more »

There was nothing unusual about Russian nationals trying to get access to Trump’s campaign associates, Agreed. What is unusual is that the Trump campaign accepted that offer. Isn’t it strange to you that the ONLY time it’s problematic that this happened was when it was Russia and the candidate was Trump? nope. The ONLY time it’s problematic was when a political campaign agreed to it. To be clear – I’m sure all politicians get a lot of bribes. That doesn’t excuse the ones who take them. So. Let me get your position straight. Last week your position was that there… Read more »

Zurvan

No, he’s not a nice guy and he certainly wants what’s best for Russia and that isn’t what’s best for Europe or us.

I actually think Putin wants what is best for Putin, not Russia. But then, I think the same of most politicians in Washington.

Zurvan

What is unusual is that the Trump campaign accepted that offer.

That’s funny, considering.

I guess it’s okay if a foreign person/government gives you millions of dollars towards your re-election campaign (an actual crime), but offering opposition research is beyond the pale (not a crime).

I guess it’s okay if a foreign person/government gives you millions of dollars towards your re-election campaign (an actual crime), but offering opposition research is beyond the pale (not a crime). Nope – both are a crimes (different crimes). “Money or thing of value”. I’m assuming you were on Clinton’s side in 96? Also the opposition research was stolen. Once you call something collusion, it makes it sound ominous, but what does it mean? You’re confusing something there. The question isn’t ‘collusion with Russia’. It’s ‘colluding with Russia in committing a crime.’ ‘Collusion’ means ‘Did the Trump campaign cooperate with… Read more »

Zurvan

Nope – both are a crimes (different crimes). “Money or thing of value”. You’re going to have to try harder than that if you want to try to make that case. Here’s the actual law that you quoted part of. (b)Contributions and donations by foreign nationals in connection with elections. A foreign national shall not, directly or indirectly, make a contribution or a donation of money or other thing of value, or expressly or impliedly promise to make a contribution or a donation, in connection with any Federal, State, or local election. In order for the opposition research to be… Read more »

(BTW – I’d be keen for some links on this – not because I’m asking for proof or anything, just that basically all the media I can find is either agreeing with me, or dismissing it. But that’s probably my bubble.) I don’t have any reason to think that Trump or the campaign hacked the DNC or Podesta. Obviously all this would have to be argued in court, but if the accusation is that Russia committed election fraud (by hacking the DNC and disseminating the information and misleading information to US voters) the question is whether the Trump campaign conspired… Read more »

Is the suggestion that the Obama admin was trying to set Trump up? Before the election, just in case he won, as a sort of back up plan? It’s almost as if we’re both biased but I’m the one taking the trouble to learn all of the available facts and make a rational determination about what it all means. Dude. I’m the guy on the right wing blog to try and get other points of view. I literally asked you to give me any facts that I didn’t have. I’m keen to get the version of events where this isn’t… Read more »

Except Putin. In fact Putin could leak that they discussed anything, and Trump wouldn’t be able to counter, as he didn’t have any US note takers.

(By the way, I don’t think this is a huge deal, but it is a bit silly of Donny J Trump to get himself into this situation)

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