Monday, February 5, 2018
Everyone has an agenda
Our national attention span seems to last only few days at a time. The media reports one thing, President Trump says another, and it's into the pit we go for another round of mud wrestling. Then the next week we're on to something else.
Our most recent bout with dysfunction resolves around whether the FBI used the infamous Steele dossier (written by former British MI6 agent Christopher Steele) as the basis for obtaining a FISA court order allowing eavesdropping on the Trump campaign in 2016.
Republicans say that Mr Steele was working for the opposition research firm Fusion GPS, which was in turn being paid by the Democratic National Committee, and that his dossier should therefore automatically be considered biased and invalid. "No Steele dossier, no FISA court order, no FBI spying, case dismissed" they say. The Democrats....wait for it....disagree! *BIG shock*
Brief background: The investigation by the opposition research firm Fusion GPS on Donald Trump was initially funded by a conservative political website, and was later picked up and funded by the Democrats after Trump emerged as the probable Republican nominee. Fusion GPS contracted with Steele, asking him to use his foreign connections to investigate Trump. Following Trump's election funding from the Democrats ceased, but Steele continued working on the report, with financing coming directly from Fusion GPS principal Glen Simpson.
Lost in all this "yes he did...no he didn't" BS is this: Is the information contained in the dossier true? If the collection of 17 memos, aka "the dossier", written by Steele between June and December 2016 are accurate, then I personally don't care who paid for it. I don't want Russia worming their way into our election system, and possibly into a position where they can blackmail a candidate they helped.
We're not talking about a friendly Australia or Canada or even Spain here folks....but RUSSIA! Russia is NOT our friend. Vladimir Putin longs to see Russia elevated back to the level of power and prestige enjoyed by the old Soviet Union. Contrary to popular myth, Russia in NOT a great economic power today. In fact, Russia's GDP is roughly equal to that of the state of California. Their ace card, of course, is that they still possess a massive nuclear arsenal, and they are rapidly modernizing their conventional military forces as well.
Putin alone controls Russia. The billionaire business oligarchs inside Russia operate with the approval and support of Vladimir Putin, and they in turn know that when Putin calls, they respond. Nobody crosses him. (The few that have tried have found themselves charged with "tax evasion" and locked up, or worse.) Think of it as an old-school organized crime family. Russia's objective is to weaken (mainly) the United States, NATO, and the European Union any way possible. If the West bickers and fractures, Russia benefits.
This is a serious position we're in today. Much is at stake. Anyone who doesn't understand this and blindly tries to stymie Special Counsel Muller's investigation are potentially doing the United States great harm. Let Mueller do his job, and if there has been Russian collusion, say so and put away the guilty. And if not, tell us that, too, and lets move on.