Grab your britches and hitch up your drawers, kiddies. Mister Trump’s Wild Ride to Toad Hall just found a new gear.
The Hillary Clinton campaign and the Democratic National Committee helped fund research that resulted in a now-famous dossier containing allegations about Donald Trump’s connections to Russia and possible coordination between …
“helped fund”: remember that term. It is crucial to your interpretation of the story.
It was only a matter of time before the unholy covens of the Republican Echo Chamber came up with a GOPpelgänger argument to reflexively counter the “Russia” story. As the drowning scorpion said to the dying frog: I can’t help it; it’s my nature. But who would have thought that they would come up with a narrative that may well rend this nation asunder.
Here’s the short of it: The Clintons (and, hazily Obama because he’s a Kenyan) and the FBI, led by hyper-liberal James Comey, were all in collusion to sell uranium to the Russians, to fund the evil Pee Pee Dossier, and to generally … cause the Republican’ts (sic) to, er … lose?
The problem with a reactionary political machine (a party of “no” on every question) is that you ofttimes find yourself maneuvered BY yourself into bizarre positions that might not be exactly what you wanted it to be. The charge itself is innocuous enough, guilt by association, fundamentally.
Fusion GPS’s work researching Trump began during the Republican presidential primaries, when the GOP donor paid for the firm to investigate the real estate tycoon’s background.
Fusion GPS did not start off looking at Trump’s Russia ties, but quickly realized that those relationships were extensive, according to the people familiar with the matter.
When the Republican donor stopped paying for the research, Elias, acting on behalf of the Clinton campaign and the DNC, agreed to pay for the work to continue.
The Democrats paid for research, including by Fusion GPS, because of concerns that little was known about Trump and his business interests, according to the people familiar with the matter.
These people said that it is standard practice for political campaigns to use law firms to hire outside researchers to ensure their work is protected by attorney-client and work-product privileges.
Tinker to Evers to Chance.
The Washington Post‘s story is not illegitimate. But the leaking of these particular “facts” follows a familiar pattern of walking a fake narrative into the public arena by articulating some facts, then mixing those facts with certain fake facts and creating a narrative based on the mélange one hopes to remain upwind of. (One’s hopes are rarely realized.)
Inquiries into Trump’s shadowy background began because … he was running for president.
Somehow, by GOPtical Logick, the Fusion GPS research begun during the primaries found its way into the general election adnn by recursive redounds of recirculation we return by commodious vicus to Howth Castle and environs. As in CLINTON DID IT! (What? Never mind.) But Trump WON the election. Hunh…?
The story isn’t the story. it’s the Right Wing blogs’ (the mysterious fax machine that keeps all GOP messaging on some single silly point) gives it away (reliably right blog headlines in BOLDFACE:
Erica Pandey / Axios: Clinton campaign, DNC backed research for Trump-Russia dossier
Esme Cribb / Talking Points Memo: WaPo: DNC, Clinton Campaign Partly Funded Research Behind Trump Dossier
Scott Johnson / Power Line: Collusion, Clinton style
Elizabeth Preza / Raw Story: Trump-Russia dossier originally commissioned by ‘unknown GOP donor’ then funded by Clinton and DNC: report
Fuzzy Slippers / Le·gal In·sur·rec· tion: “Sh*t just hit the f*ing fan.” Bigly. — Democrats and the left …
Erick Erickson / The Resurgent: Well this is a pretty big story. It was not just the FBI collaborating …
Kristinn Taylor / The Gateway Pundit: BOOM! Clinton Campaign, DNC Paid for Bogus Russia Dossier on Trump: Report
Which the robots of Memeorandum have, with inadvertent sentience, linked outline style to the subset:
Joe Schoffstall / Washington Free Beacon: Hillary Clinton’s Top Aides Still Being Paid by Campaign Nearly One Year After Defeat
David Krayden / The Daily Caller: Clinton Campaign Cash Still Paying Top Aides
Sam Dorman / IJR: Report: Clinton Campaign Paid Huma Abedin, Other Aides Through 2017
Douglas Ernst / Washington Times: Hillary Clinton’s key aides still collect cash from campaign months after loss
Which has led, in an almost syllogistic (or soritesesque) manner to the inevitable THEREFORE:
Rachael Bade / Politico: House GOP opens probe into DOJ’s Clinton investigation
Taegan Goddard / Political Wire: House GOP Opens Probe Into Clinton Investigation
Think about the “accepted facts” in the Republican’ts’ narrative: the FBI the Clinton Campaign AND the DNC were collaborating to throw the election, and the Clintons are bribing people and all that stuff all over again, and whatever you do, DON’T talk about Russia, unless it’s the CLINTON/OBAMA Russia scandal. Whew.
It is the GOPpelgänger argument: the almost mindless mirroring of the Right that creates a NewsBusters to counter Media Matters. That creates an American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ … get it? we only removed PART of the “U”) to mirror the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU “our U is intact“). That creates a Move America Forward (originally) to mirror MoveOn dot Com.
So, we must have a COUNTER-scandal narrative to feed to Faux Nooz viewers and talk radio listeners and …
Wait a minute? Isn’t this kicking a woman after she’s already down? Isn’t this beating a dead donkey?
Yes, but there is a GENERATION of Republican/Conservative voters who have literally grown up with false Clinton stories, and why waste all that expensive conditioning when the dogs still drool every time you ring the bell? Why ELSE would this absurd narrative of attacking the losers of the election exist at all? It HAS to be to distract, but it is so ham-handed that it risks awakening even the most comatose of the gullible.
Seriously: the GOP has all three branches of Government, as Mitch McConnell reportedly brayed (speaking of jackasses) at the GOP Trump meeting this news cycle, “Trump gave us Gorsuch on the Supreme Court AND is helping us transform the federal judiciary!” (I’m paraphrasing but fairly accurately per the reporting.)
And now, as the bizarre web of Russian hacking and Trump campaign intersections continues to spread, the only thing they can come up with as a narrative basically leads to accusing the Justice Department, the FBI, the Democratic Party, the Democratic Nominee and the Obama Administration of colluding in a massive coup d’etat that didn’t work, thanks to stupid voters everywhere.
There is desperation here, because the COUNTER-narrative is constructed reflexively, an endless refrain of “anything you can do I can do better…” as if from the lips of a zillion Ethel Mermans. Problem is, we don’t KNOW what the Russian narrative is, and it’s hard to construct a reactionary position when there’s only fog and mist.
But fear not. The Right Wing Message Machine has never worried about contradictions. The only thing that matters is that you keep screaming.
Problem is, that screaming may well tear this nation in half. I see the dominoes falling up ahead. I doubt that those consciously constructing the Russian counter-narrative do. It’s just another GOPpelgänger to them, after all.
Still: The sudden retirement of several senators may be more than the harbinger of some electoral catastrophe. It may well presage a far more dangerous crisis.
The new narrative doesn’t help.