Donald Distraction

Forget that Drake album, it now really feels like nothing is the same. Since the reality of the election has set in, I’ve been sick. And not because my candidate or party lost. I’m only a registered Democrat so I can vote in primaries. I’m not a tribal simpleton. I’m sick because of what it represents for the country. My initial takeaway was a deep sadness that nearly half the voting public would either endorse or ignore hatred for their fellow people.

This very issue has predictably caused a firestorm, as most Americans are actually against the President-elect. His appointees with either racist or white nationalist ties (same thing) have only fanned the flames. Any “chance” he was to be given went out the window with his choices. He saved his strongest condemnation for the broadway play Hamilton and not hate crimes or the hate groups who support him.

But let’s take a step back for a second and see if something else isn’t going on here. I mean we all should agree bigotry is objectively awful. Alas, there are a lot of bad people out there though (deplorables if you will). And this administration knows just how to cater to them. Say what you wish about White House Chief Strategist Steve Bannon; you cannot say he doesn’t know how to manipulate his audience. See the success of Breitbart. I believe he could be attempting to manipulate all of us with the loud (and correct) response so many are having. This is a man who compared himself favorably to Darth Vader and Satan after all.

This administration has already successfully created a propaganda division (it started with the campaign and even before). Some call it fake news, I’d prefer to use propaganda. It is certainly not as if the President-elect is above this sort of thing. He is the one who created a fraudulent university. He shared numerous fake statistics and stories throughout his run. His aforementioned adviser peddles the stuff and his newly appointed National Security Adviser, Michael Flynn, also publicly disseminates it.

You know who else has a propaganda news division? Russia. And aside from the ties to white nationalism, the common thread in the Trump administration has been ties to Russia. It is not like these are new either. See this interview with Donald on Fox News in 2014.

Not only does he reference Vladimir Putin but he also shares a philosophy of the country needing to crash in order to rise again. One echoed by Bannon in this piece. Mr. Vader Satan literally said, “ Lenin wanted to destroy the state, and that’s my goal too.”

Of course the Russian influence on this process does not end there. Trump’s newly appointed National Security Adviser has done paid appearances and can be seen in this photo next to Putin (notice Jill Stein is also there).

Look, I’m not one for conspiracy theories. I’m just dealing in facts here. The President of Russia is a former KGB spy with a propaganda news division and has been accused of punishing journalists and activists who oppose his viewpoint as well as launching unprovoked attacks on other countries. Some might refer to him as a bit of a real life Bond villain.

Possible Russian interference in our affairs do not end with dinner and pleasantries however. Our top intelligence officials believe Russia played at least some role in our election. See this quote from the Director of the National Security Agency, Michael Rogers… “This was a conscious effort by a nation-state to attempt to achieve a specific effect. This was not something that was done casually. This was not something that was done by chance. This was not a target that was selected purely arbitrarily.”

In addition, intelligence officials also believe voting systems were targeted by Russian hackers. At best, the people in charge of such things seem to believe Russia hacked the DNC and fed the info to WikiLeaks. At worst, something far more nefarious. Whatever you think of Russia (of course I’m not against a non hostile relationship with any country or state), whatever your party affiliation, you should be worried about the concept of a foreign body influencing our election process.

Then ask yourself why Trump won’t release his taxes. We already know he doesn’t pay any so that can’t be the reason. Is it because there is a smoking gun there? Like a ton of money owed in Russia. Or business there. Or somewhere else damning. The conflict of interests are enormous for a man who has turned his finances over to his children in a “blind trust”. Is no one else concerned the highest office in the land could be for sale?

Meanwhile we are all distracted by Trump’s mercurial personality, the hateful rhetoric being spewed and the awful racism that still exists. But while we are arguing about something that should be inarguable, are we letting something far bigger slide under our nose? I’m not saying I know what happened here. I’m just following the facts. And the facts show me the American people should be entitled to a full investigation into Russia’s role in our election and a transparent disclosure of Mr. Trump’s finances. I’ve been calling the House Oversight Committee and my local Senator every day to ask for a bipartisan review of these things. This is fair for the public to demand.

I’m not a sore loser, I’m a concerned citizen.