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?