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From The New Yorker:

The Fundamental Uncertainty of Mueller’s Russia Indictments

By Masha Gessen February 20, 2018

… It is true that the indictment tells us nothing about connections between the Russian efforts and the Trump campaign, and the Trump victory. It is also true that Moscow is laughing, at least in part because the Kremlin had no grand plan to elect Trump. … An event as shocking as Trump’s election demands that the forces that may (or may not) have contributed to his victory be rendered suitably monstrous in retrospect.

Trump’s tweet about Moscow laughing its ass off was unusually (perhaps accidentally) accurate. Loyal Putinites and dissident intellectuals alike are remarkably united in finding the American obsession with Russian meddling to be ridiculous. … I wrote at the time that the article showed the Russian effort to be more of a cacophony than a conspiracy. The Kremlin and its media are, as Joshua Yaffa writes, tickled to be taken so seriously. Their sub-grammatical imitations of American political rhetoric, their overtures to the most marginal of political players, are suddenly at the very heart of American political life. This is the sort of thing Russians have done for decades, dating back at least to the early days of the Cold War, but those efforts were always relegated to the dustbin of history before they even began.

Goldman, the Facebook V.P., has seen more of the Russian ads and posts than most Americans, and his imagination clearly strains to accommodate the push to take them seriously. It’s hard to square words like “sophisticated” (frequently used by the Times to describe the Russian campaign) with posts like one from an apparently fake L.G.B.T. group promoting something called “Buff Bernie: A Coloring Book for Berniacs” with catchy English-language copy: “The coloring is something that suits for all people.” It’s hard to apply the description “bold covert effort” (used by Politico) to the enormous amount of social-network static that Russian trolls produced. To Goldman, it may all look like a giant gray mass in which only a few colorful ads and posts have any meaning—and that meaning is hard to discern.

The need to see the Russian effort as somehow meaningful and masterly has produced its own experts in the field. … Russians, meanwhile, have laughed parts of their anatomy off over her coverage of the Gerasimov Doctrine, which is a thing that, well, doesn’t exist.

The phantom Gerasimov Doctrine, described in Politico as a “new chaos theory of political warfare,” sounds more sinister—but also, comfortingly, more serious—than the picture that emerges from the indictment, of Russian agents staging an elaborate production to travel to the United States to gather valuable intelligence, such as advice to “focus their activities on ‘purple states like Colorado, Virginia and Florida.’”

Colorado is nice place to visit in summer (and winter if you ski), Virginia in spring and fall, and Florida in winter, especially if your boss is paying for the trip.

Americans’ apparent need to imagine a Russian adversary as cunning, masterly, and strategic is matched only by the Russians’ own belief in a solid, stable, unshakable American society. … In a society with a strong sense of shared reality, a bunch of sub-literate tweets and ridiculous ads would be nothing but a curiosity.

 
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  1. If you go back through the archives, you can dig up some fascinating journalism from WaPo and others accusing Joseph McCarthy of a baseless ‘witch hunt’ and following ‘red herrings’ regarding the USSR and its Communist influence in United States politics. Here’s a link of some classics: https://loc.gov/exhibits/pointing-their-pens-editorial-cartoons/red-scare.html#obj010

    In the [current year], it’s the Democrats’ turn to play witch hunters and follow red herrings (even though Joe McCarthy was right in the 50s, and the Dems are wrong now). They are pinning their entire electoral strategy of one Monsieur Mueller and the tantalising but illusory ‘Impeachment’. This strategy is slowly but surely unravelling, exposing Uranium One, Obama’s wiretapping of the Trump campaign, and the FBI’s malfeasance. Personally, I believe there are far bigger scandals coming, and they have nothing to do with Trump and everything to do with the Military Industrial Complex, as President Eisenhower once labelled it. Or as we call it today: The Deep State. These scandals will undermine the entire separation of powers doctrine which became entrenched in the American Republic’s institutions. Once these scandals reach the mainstream, journalists will need to decide whether they abandon their Never Trump hysteria and fight for the survival of the Republic, or to choose to wilfully destroy it and encourage further chaos for the foreseeable future. I believe Bezos, Carlos Slim, et al will choose the latter option, without any doubt. If that is the case, then prepare for large scale civil unrest and the end of American Exceptionalism as we knew it.

    Read More
    • Replies: @nebulafox
    Well, McCarthy's own charges were largely baseless, but the general idea that there were Soviet spies embedded deep in high levels of the US government after WWII was not. VENONA made it pretty clear that Alger Hiss and Harry Dexter White were, in fact, in the service of the NKVD. And of course, the Soviet atomic bomb program could have never accelerated to the degree that it did without key industrial and scientific spies, Klaus Fuchs and Theodore Hall being only the most notorious examples. It is hard to imagine tens of thousands of American soldiers falling in Korea without the Soviet atomic bomb enabling Stalin to give-if rather lackadaisically-the green light to Kim Il Sung.

    That's the irony about Joe McCarthy. The Soviet spy network in the USA by the early 1950s was under severe stress after J. Edgar Hoover and his merry men cracked down on them hard. Public sympathy for suspected Communists was at a minimum. It wasn't made easier by Truman thoroughly purging the lefty intellectual wing of the Democratic Party of the FDR-era Sovietphiles with the onset of the Cold War. But McCarthyism gave anti-anti-Communism life, if not much of one until the long 60s. It could have died then and there, but McCarthy gave the aforementioned Sovietphiles something to hang onto, in the idea that the real threat in the Cold War came from the American petty bourgeoisie above all else-a legacy of the rise of fascism in Europe, I suppose.
    , @Jim Don Bob
    The FBI's case against Michael Flynn is about to go south: http://thefederalist.com/2018/02/19/michael-flynns-plea-reversal-uncover-federal-corruption/
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  2. Steve,

    Surprised that this article appeared in The New Yorker as it is the quintessential organ of the pretentious upper, upper bourgeois (and infantile) Left.

    I appreciated the author’s swipes at Politico, the alleged purveyor of inside-the-beltway political reportage.

    Read More
    • Replies: @annamaria
    Agree. Even for such committed Russophobes as Remnick and Gessen, the stupidity and cognitive dissonance emanating from the senior-level of the US national security apparatus have become too much. We should expect to see greater disarray among the presstituting estate; the disarray might depend on a degree of self-respect.
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  3. “An event as shocking as Trump’s election demands that the forces that may (or may not) have contributed to his victory be rendered suitably monstrous in retrospect”

    I didn’t find it shocking, though I admit it was highly unusual, if not unprecedented. I was prepared by not living in the Bubble.

    Anywho, the above describes normal people who don’t like Trump and can’t believe it was a fair victory. They want to blame things like the DNC leaks/hack, Comey’s Oopsie, or Russian Cat Memes. Couldn’t be that the polls were just wrong, possibly on purpose. Or that people changed their minds last-minute for legitimate reasons. That is to say, not because Moscow or Fake News kidnapped their brains.

    Which is understandishable. Regular people are like that.

    But of course the Russia Ploy was thought up by people who matter prior to the election. They weren’t looking for monsters to explain Queen Hillary’s crownless head. They were using Steele, Christopher Steele’s Pee-Pee Files and Carter Page, FBI employee #… and known comrade of Russia, to spy on Donny Tinyhands. FISA-style.

    That was just to fish around. Then the unthinkable happened, and it became the Fake Scandal it is today.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Emblematic
    Exactly. The Russia thing was originally just an excuse to spy on Trump. After he won they had to turn it into something real to justify their own behavior, to justify the spying.
    , @Frau Katze
    After the school shooting, I read at NYT that Russian bots were pushing gun control.

    So what side are the bots on anyway?

    Russian Cat Memes? LOL.

    I think a lot of Russians must find the whole thing very entertaining,
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  4. I don’t think any remotely sane person with an IQ over 90 has taken the Russian Conspiracy theory seriously. The American left in 2018 exemplifies mass psychosis to a degree perhaps completely without historical precedent.

    Read More
    • Replies: @neutral

    I don’t think any remotely sane person with an IQ over 90 has taken the Russian Conspiracy theory seriously. The American left in 2018 exemplifies mass psychosis to a degree perhaps completely without historical precedent.

     

    One should however take this mass psychosis very seriously, people like to talk about ISIS or North Korea as crazy, but these US leftists are by far the most deranged lunatics on the planet. It is made worse by the fact that they along with the neocon warmongers are very close to igniting a very real nuclear war (over online comments of all things).

    The feeling I get from articles by Sailer, and the comments, and other such related sites and writers is to treat this as mostly a joke, but I really don't feel this is a joke anymore. During the Cuban Missile Crises, there were still people in the government that saw the dangers of starting a nuclear war, such people don't seem to exist anymore.
    , @william munny
    Exactly. I don't think they have ever asked their constituents about it either. Since the election, I have never, in real life, heard anyone say one word about Russia. I have an annoying lefty relative who sends me every single anti-Trump or anti-conservative article he sees, but he has never sent me anything remotely connected to the Russia hoax, because he would be embarrassed to do so.
    , @dearieme
    " completely without historical precedent": oh you are a wag.
    , @Coemgen
    There's certainly historical precedent.

    Does this(1) not sound like much of the activity occurring nationwide after the 2016 election(2)?

    1. The girls screamed, threw things about the room, uttered strange sounds, crawled under furniture, and contorted themselves into peculiar positions ...

    2. Woman lets out agonizing screams as Trump is sworn in
    , @Forbes
    I live in NYC and there are plenty of (seemingly) sane people that are Pauline Kael-like, and can't believe it was possible for Trump to have been elected without something underhanded occurring. First of all, they firmly believe that polls are/were correct, and Hillary was a shoe-in.

    The Russian interference/collusion serves as an answer to what in their mind is inexplicable chaos.

    I'd suggest you get out a bit more, your bubble is showing. It's unlikely the mass psychosis you diagnose is solely limited to those with IQs under 90.
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  5. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    But turn the page…

    https://www.nytimes.com/2018/02/18/opinion/trump-russia-putin.html

    Whatever Trump Is Hiding Is Hurting All of Us Now

    Thomas L. Friedman FEB. 18, 2018

    Our democracy is in serious danger.

    President Trump is either totally compromised by the Russians or is a towering fool, or both, but either way he has shown himself unwilling or unable to defend America against a Russian campaign to divide and undermine our democracy.

    That is, either Trump’s real estate empire has taken large amounts of money from shady oligarchs linked to the Kremlin — so much that they literally own him; or rumors are true that he engaged in sexual misbehavior while he was in Moscow running the Miss Universe contest, which Russian intelligence has on tape and he doesn’t want released; or Trump actually believes Russian President Vladimir Putin when he says he is innocent of intervening in our elections — over the explicit findings of Trump’s own C.I.A., N.S.A. and F.B.I. chiefs.

    In sum, Trump is either hiding something so threatening to himself, or he’s criminally incompetent to be commander in chief. It is impossible yet to say which explanation for his behavior is true, but it seems highly likely that one of these scenarios explains Trump’s refusal to respond to Russia’s direct attack on our system — a quiescence that is simply unprecedented for any U.S. president in history. Russia is not our friend. It has acted in a hostile manner. And Trump keeps ignoring it all.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Beckow
    Even Masha Gessen is smarter than Thomas Friedman. And that's something.
    , @Autochthon
    Tom Friedman is both very evil and very stupid, but I must begrudgingly salute him for not indulging in the idiotic tend to write nonsense like "...and/or a towering fool..." in favour of using the proper construction to account for three possibilities.
    , @CJ
    A great example of how Trump Derangement causes some people to expose how crazy, foolish, and ignorant they actually are. It's truly extraordinary. If The Donald was a DC or Marvel comic book hero he would be called The Revealer or The Catalyst or somesuch. His mere presence would be like some special kind of Kryptonite that causes his opponents to blurt out their innermost demons.
    , @ben tillman
    Someone needs to lock Friedman in a room with a little manual on how to use the word "either". He made five mistakes (either lack of parallelism or use of "either" to refer to more than two things) in that short passage. And, again, my contention that the NYT does not have editors appears to be vindicated.
    , @Frau Katze
    Friedman is even more of an idiot than the others. I never read him, he’s hopelessly out of it.
    , @RadicalCenter
    Thomas Friedman is not our friend. Many Russians are or could/should be.
    , @guest
    "either Trump's real estate empire has taken large amounts of money from shady oligarchs linked to the Kremlin -- so much that they literally own him"

    I think the idea is that they literally own the property he developed for them. You'd think an economist might understand that.
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  6. @ChrisD
    If you go back through the archives, you can dig up some fascinating journalism from WaPo and others accusing Joseph McCarthy of a baseless 'witch hunt' and following 'red herrings' regarding the USSR and its Communist influence in United States politics. Here's a link of some classics: https://loc.gov/exhibits/pointing-their-pens-editorial-cartoons/red-scare.html#obj010

    In the [current year], it's the Democrats' turn to play witch hunters and follow red herrings (even though Joe McCarthy was right in the 50s, and the Dems are wrong now). They are pinning their entire electoral strategy of one Monsieur Mueller and the tantalising but illusory 'Impeachment'. This strategy is slowly but surely unravelling, exposing Uranium One, Obama's wiretapping of the Trump campaign, and the FBI's malfeasance. Personally, I believe there are far bigger scandals coming, and they have nothing to do with Trump and everything to do with the Military Industrial Complex, as President Eisenhower once labelled it. Or as we call it today: The Deep State. These scandals will undermine the entire separation of powers doctrine which became entrenched in the American Republic's institutions. Once these scandals reach the mainstream, journalists will need to decide whether they abandon their Never Trump hysteria and fight for the survival of the Republic, or to choose to wilfully destroy it and encourage further chaos for the foreseeable future. I believe Bezos, Carlos Slim, et al will choose the latter option, without any doubt. If that is the case, then prepare for large scale civil unrest and the end of American Exceptionalism as we knew it.

    Well, McCarthy’s own charges were largely baseless, but the general idea that there were Soviet spies embedded deep in high levels of the US government after WWII was not. VENONA made it pretty clear that Alger Hiss and Harry Dexter White were, in fact, in the service of the NKVD. And of course, the Soviet atomic bomb program could have never accelerated to the degree that it did without key industrial and scientific spies, Klaus Fuchs and Theodore Hall being only the most notorious examples. It is hard to imagine tens of thousands of American soldiers falling in Korea without the Soviet atomic bomb enabling Stalin to give-if rather lackadaisically-the green light to Kim Il Sung.

    That’s the irony about Joe McCarthy. The Soviet spy network in the USA by the early 1950s was under severe stress after J. Edgar Hoover and his merry men cracked down on them hard. Public sympathy for suspected Communists was at a minimum. It wasn’t made easier by Truman thoroughly purging the lefty intellectual wing of the Democratic Party of the FDR-era Sovietphiles with the onset of the Cold War. But McCarthyism gave anti-anti-Communism life, if not much of one until the long 60s. It could have died then and there, but McCarthy gave the aforementioned Sovietphiles something to hang onto, in the idea that the real threat in the Cold War came from the American petty bourgeoisie above all else-a legacy of the rise of fascism in Europe, I suppose.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Pericles
    Cool story bro.
    , @guest
    The alternative of letting commies run amuck was preferable? Fighting back only gave anti-anti-communists a target, namely anti-communism, to shoot at. I suppose the populist right that cared about the U.S. Establishment and Permanent Government should'vd just sat the Cold War out and waited for them all to die.

    McCarthyism in fact represented the last successful mass populist backlash in U.S. history. If it failed and the Establishment was able to blacken his name for generations, that's because they're liars. It's no reason to think McCarthy shouldn't have tried. Unless you aren't on his side or have the heart of a loser.

    "McCarthy's own charges were largely baseless"

    Wrong. I think he went overboard with Marshall, for instance, but the attack on him was not baseless.

    "a legacy of the rise of fascism in Europe"

    Nonsense.
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  7. This is promising. Maybe the Democrats are starting to come to their senses. I saw the initial reaction of the Young Turks’ Cenk Uygur and John Iadarola.

    Very interesting psychology. There are some feckless attempts to spin it, but mostly they’re reluctantly entering the acceptance stage, and seem pretty depressed. The last time I checked in with TYT they were full speed ahead with the “Trump is a Kremlin puppet!” narrative.

    Read More
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  8. @guest
    "An event as shocking as Trump's election demands that the forces that may (or may not) have contributed to his victory be rendered suitably monstrous in retrospect"

    I didn't find it shocking, though I admit it was highly unusual, if not unprecedented. I was prepared by not living in the Bubble.

    Anywho, the above describes normal people who don't like Trump and can't believe it was a fair victory. They want to blame things like the DNC leaks/hack, Comey's Oopsie, or Russian Cat Memes. Couldn't be that the polls were just wrong, possibly on purpose. Or that people changed their minds last-minute for legitimate reasons. That is to say, not because Moscow or Fake News kidnapped their brains.

    Which is understandishable. Regular people are like that.

    But of course the Russia Ploy was thought up by people who matter prior to the election. They weren't looking for monsters to explain Queen Hillary's crownless head. They were using Steele, Christopher Steele's Pee-Pee Files and Carter Page, FBI employee #... and known comrade of Russia, to spy on Donny Tinyhands. FISA-style.

    That was just to fish around. Then the unthinkable happened, and it became the Fake Scandal it is today.

    Exactly. The Russia thing was originally just an excuse to spy on Trump. After he won they had to turn it into something real to justify their own behavior, to justify the spying.

    Read More
    • Agree: Travis
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  9. 1. This is the tip of the iceberg Trumo is hiding something

    2. Clinton won the popular vote

    3. Interesting how while people no longer hate Russia now that they aren’t communist

    Things that make you go hmmmm

    Read More
    • Replies: @Tyrion 2

    3. Interesting how while people no longer hate Russia now that they aren’t communist
     
    Perfect satire. Very well done.
    , @duncsbaby
    "2. Clinton won the popular vote"

    This is the worthless participation badge that lefties will get to hold onto for the rest of their sad lives. It is worth nothing but will bring happiness to me every time they say it. As always thanks for the smiles, Tiny Duck. You are a constant morale booster to the iSteve commentariat.
    , @Anon
    LOL are you posting from a flip-phone?
    , @Crawfurdmuir

    3. Interesting how while people no longer hate Russia now that they aren’t communist
     
    I assume that by "while" was meant "white."

    I can't speak for anyone else, white or otherwise, but why should it be "interesting"? It should instead be obvious that it was never Russia that deserved hatred - it was always communism. Communism was an ideological enemy to Western Civilisation. The Soviet Union repressed human rights in order to achieve its supposed socialist utopia, and sent dissenters to the Gulag, where millions of them died.

    They now have private property and allow the open practice of Christianity in Russia. It is not a totalitarian country. Its government is not liberal in the Western sense, but it is probably less authoritarian now than any Russian government has been in the past few centuries. Geopolitically, Russia has its own sphere of interest and influence, but this does not encompass much more than neighboring states most of which were formerly parts of the Soviet Union or Tsarist Russia. Putin is not going to send his army through the Fulda Gap to conquer Western Europe. He just wants to sell Western Europe natural gas.

    The fuss about Russia in U.S. politics today owes to two things.

    First and foremost, it is about the Democrats' effort to discredit and depose Trump, who won despite all their machinations. This was indeed "shocking," at least to them, and they have yet to recognize that (as Obama once said) elections have consequences.

    Second, it is about the attitude of neoconservatives, largely of Eastern European Jewish descent, who interpret Putin's suppression of a largely Jewish group of oligarchs/gangsters as a revival of historic Russian anti-semitism. As some wag once put it, for these people, whenever a situation is not Munich in 1938, it is Odessa in 1905.

    , @Buffalo Joe
    TD, you, hands down, win the popular vote for most favorite Troll, but that doesn't make you president on iSteve. Did you have something in your mouth while going Hmmmmmm?
    , @DCThrowback
    vote Trumo imo
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  10. @AndrewR
    I don't think any remotely sane person with an IQ over 90 has taken the Russian Conspiracy theory seriously. The American left in 2018 exemplifies mass psychosis to a degree perhaps completely without historical precedent.

    I don’t think any remotely sane person with an IQ over 90 has taken the Russian Conspiracy theory seriously. The American left in 2018 exemplifies mass psychosis to a degree perhaps completely without historical precedent.

    One should however take this mass psychosis very seriously, people like to talk about ISIS or North Korea as crazy, but these US leftists are by far the most deranged lunatics on the planet. It is made worse by the fact that they along with the neocon warmongers are very close to igniting a very real nuclear war (over online comments of all things).

    The feeling I get from articles by Sailer, and the comments, and other such related sites and writers is to treat this as mostly a joke, but I really don’t feel this is a joke anymore. During the Cuban Missile Crises, there were still people in the government that saw the dangers of starting a nuclear war, such people don’t seem to exist anymore.

    Read More
    • Agree: AndrewR
    • Replies: @guest
    I don't think they're actually close to igniting nuclear war. They talk like that's what they want, but we know and I think they know they're not serious.

    I don't want to guess what Russia thinks of all this. But they know the people actually in charge now aren't the ones talking about Pearl Harbor. That's out-of-power talk, though admittedly especially stupid out-of-power talk.
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  11. @Tiny Duck
    1. This is the tip of the iceberg Trumo is hiding something

    2. Clinton won the popular vote

    3. Interesting how while people no longer hate Russia now that they aren't communist

    Things that make you go hmmmm

    3. Interesting how while people no longer hate Russia now that they aren’t communist

    Perfect satire. Very well done.

    Read More
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  12. …the Russians’ own belief in a solid, stable, unshakable American society. …In a society with a strong sense of shared reality, a bunch of sub-literate tweets and ridiculous ads would be nothing but a curiosity.

    Sorry to say, but the Russians’ view of us as “a society with a strong sense of shared reality” is out of date.

    Read More
    • Agree: Autochthon
    • Replies: @yurivku

    Sorry to say, but the Russians’ view of us as “a society with a strong sense of shared reality” is out of date.
     
    Have to confirm. Our view of US society - it's a circus with desperate imbeciles on the scene and lots of obtuse and obedient viewers in the hall.
    Sorry for being sub-literate.
    , @Jake
    I think Russians, slowly, are coming to realize that the American Elites have "a strong sense of shared reality" that is both antagonistic toward the masses of the non-Elite (especially white non-Elites) and is actually anti-reality in key ways.
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  13. If you’re in need of a really comprehensive debunking of Russiagate, David Stockman has it:

    http://davidstockmanscontracorner.com/muellers-comic-book-indictment-how-to-prosecute-a-great-big-nothingburger/

    Read More
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  14. @Anonymous
    But turn the page...

    https://www.nytimes.com/2018/02/18/opinion/trump-russia-putin.html


    Whatever Trump Is Hiding Is Hurting All of Us Now

    Thomas L. Friedman FEB. 18, 2018

    Our democracy is in serious danger.

    President Trump is either totally compromised by the Russians or is a towering fool, or both, but either way he has shown himself unwilling or unable to defend America against a Russian campaign to divide and undermine our democracy.

    That is, either Trump’s real estate empire has taken large amounts of money from shady oligarchs linked to the Kremlin — so much that they literally own him; or rumors are true that he engaged in sexual misbehavior while he was in Moscow running the Miss Universe contest, which Russian intelligence has on tape and he doesn’t want released; or Trump actually believes Russian President Vladimir Putin when he says he is innocent of intervening in our elections — over the explicit findings of Trump’s own C.I.A., N.S.A. and F.B.I. chiefs.

    In sum, Trump is either hiding something so threatening to himself, or he’s criminally incompetent to be commander in chief. It is impossible yet to say which explanation for his behavior is true, but it seems highly likely that one of these scenarios explains Trump’s refusal to respond to Russia’s direct attack on our system — a quiescence that is simply unprecedented for any U.S. president in history. Russia is not our friend. It has acted in a hostile manner. And Trump keeps ignoring it all.
     

    Even Masha Gessen is smarter than Thomas Friedman. And that’s something.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Jim Don Bob
    Friedman and Brooks are having a contest to see who can write the more pretentious twaddle.
    , @Forbes
    I dunno. Thomas Friedman-level smarts is a pretty low bar. In fact, I call it a curb--easy to step over so long as no one is passed out in the gutter. Masha Gessen has fucked up politics, but she no dummy.
    , @EdwardM
    Actually, that's nothing.
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  15. I tremble to think that Masha Gessen is the sanest person in the asylum. My mother has been going on about the end of Western Civilization since I started first grade. It seems it has finally arrived.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Harry Baldwin
    My mother has been going on about the end of Western Civilization since I started first grade.

    My kids can say the same thing about their father.

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  16. Wow. Masha Gessen is beginning to display unmistakable symptoms of sanity. She should go see a shrink immediately!

    Read More
    • Replies: @gcochran
    She probably just needed to meet the right guy.
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  17. @International Jew

    ...the Russians’ own belief in a solid, stable, unshakable American society. …In a society with a strong sense of shared reality, a bunch of sub-literate tweets and ridiculous ads would be nothing but a curiosity.
     
    Sorry to say, but the Russians' view of us as "a society with a strong sense of shared reality" is out of date.

    Sorry to say, but the Russians’ view of us as “a society with a strong sense of shared reality” is out of date.

    Have to confirm. Our view of US society – it’s a circus with desperate imbeciles on the scene and lots of obtuse and obedient viewers in the hall.
    Sorry for being sub-literate.

    Read More
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  18. @AndrewR
    I don't think any remotely sane person with an IQ over 90 has taken the Russian Conspiracy theory seriously. The American left in 2018 exemplifies mass psychosis to a degree perhaps completely without historical precedent.

    Exactly. I don’t think they have ever asked their constituents about it either. Since the election, I have never, in real life, heard anyone say one word about Russia. I have an annoying lefty relative who sends me every single anti-Trump or anti-conservative article he sees, but he has never sent me anything remotely connected to the Russia hoax, because he would be embarrassed to do so.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Chrisnonymous
    Oh, they're out there. My co-workers have been going on about it. In the early days, I used to hear

    "it's the final nail in the coffin"

    "the dossier is almost completely confirmed now"

    "Trump's admitted everything"

    and all variety of BS.

    Even just last week, one was saying he expects Trump to be impeached and that if the Democrats take both houses of Congress it's definitely going to happen.

    Right now, he's on his high horse about gun control, but I expect the Russia probe will come around again.
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  19. Remember when The Guardian encouraged its readers to send pleading emails to the American electorate in 2004? That was pretty good meddling.

    https://www.theguardian.com/world/2004/oct/18/uselections2004.usa2

    The emails weren’t hilarious and based like Russian Facebook ads but the responses were pretty funny.

    My dear, beloved Brits,
    I understand the Guardian is sponsoring a service where British citizens write to Americans to advise them on how to vote. Thank heavens! I was adrift in a sea of confusion and you are my beacon of hope!

    Real Americans aren’t interested in your pansy-ass, tea-sipping opinions. If you want to save the world, begin with your own worthless corner of it.
    Texas, USA

    Thank you, thank you, thank you! What a wonderful idea! I am a US citizen who is scared to death that Bush and Klan will get back in. We need all the help we can get to ditch this bunch of maniacs.
    United States

    Hey England, Scotland and Wales,
    Mind your own business. We don’t need weenie-spined Limeys meddling in our presidental election. If it wasn’t for America, you’d all be speaking German. And if America would have had a president, then, of the likes of Kerry, you’d all be goose-stepping around Buckingham Palace. YOU ARE NOT WANTED!! Whether you want to support either party. BUTT OUT!!!
    United States

    Please be advised that I have forwarded this to the CIA and FBI.
    United States

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  20. Subgrammatical, subliterate . . . c’mon, Masha, go ahead and say “subhuman,” you know you want to, filthy cossack goy cattle.

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    • LOL: Cortes, jimbojones
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  21. @Tiny Duck
    1. This is the tip of the iceberg Trumo is hiding something

    2. Clinton won the popular vote

    3. Interesting how while people no longer hate Russia now that they aren't communist

    Things that make you go hmmmm

    “2. Clinton won the popular vote”

    This is the worthless participation badge that lefties will get to hold onto for the rest of their sad lives. It is worth nothing but will bring happiness to me every time they say it. As always thanks for the smiles, Tiny Duck. You are a constant morale booster to the iSteve commentariat.

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  22. anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    Russia is a white Christian nation. America used to be and still in many ways is a white Christian nation. Jews the enemy of Christ and Christians do not want two great white Christian nations uniting to solve the worlds problems but would much prefer white Christian Russia and white Christian America kill each other. Do you see how the devil works?

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  23. @AndrewR
    I don't think any remotely sane person with an IQ over 90 has taken the Russian Conspiracy theory seriously. The American left in 2018 exemplifies mass psychosis to a degree perhaps completely without historical precedent.

    ” completely without historical precedent”: oh you are a wag.

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    • Replies: @AndrewR
    Perhaps Mao's "cultural revolution," but certainly nothing in US history comes close.
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  24. Masha Gessen:

    Americans’ apparent need to imagine a Russian adversary as cunning, masterly, and strategic is matched only by the Russians’ own belief in a solid, stable, unshakable American society. … In a society with a strong sense of shared reality, a bunch of sub-literate tweets and ridiculous ads would be nothing but a curiosity.

    Gessen brings to mind Sam Huntington questions:

    Who are we as a nation?

    What are we fighting for?

    The Democrats are using the Russia — Russia — Russia — attack as a way of suggesting that they are in some way guardians of national concerns or national security. The Democrats are using pseudo-nationalistic rhetoric to distract attention away from the fact that the Democrats have gone global in their outlook.

    The Democrats are now actively attacking the sovereignty and the particular national interests of the United States. In matters concerning immigration, foreign policy and legal structures, the Democrats are openly renouncing any attempt to govern the United States as a sovereign nation with concerns particular to the United States.

    The Democrats treat illegal alien invaders as if they were American citizens. The Democrats harp on about humanitarian interventionism and the sovereignty-destroying notion of so-called “right to protect” in terms of foreign policy. The ruling class of the Democrats is just as much in favor of sovereignty-sapping trade deal scams and other transnational schemes as the Republican Party ruling class is.

    That is why the ruling class of the American Empire is using pseudo-nationalism and this “Russia — Russia — Russia” nonsense to attack President Trump. Trump, in his own way, has done more than most recent presidents to draw out the evil treasonous scum in the Deep State and the American Empire’s ruling class on the big questions of sovereignty, immigration, trade and foreign policy.

    President Trump should start talking more about how the ruling class is using fake nationalism to destroy the historic American nation. Trump should also talk more about how the ruling class uses the US military to advance the interests of the globalized plutocracy and certain other nations instead of the United States interests as a whole.

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  25. It is not the first time that Masha Gessen criticizes the evidencefree Russiagate conspiracy theory.

    After that absurd “intelligence report” from January 6, 2017, she wrote about that “flawed intelligence”: http://www.nybooks.com/daily/2017/01/09/russia-trump-election-flawed-intelligence/

    This is probably the best critical dissection of that document I have seen.

    Masha Gessen is, of course, extremely critical of both Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin, but she has been consistent in rejecting the attempt to portray the victory of Trump as something of non-US origin.

    I think Masha Gessen goes much too far in her criticism of the current Russian government – there is legitimate criticism, but the word totalitarianism she uses is certainly not adequate. Probably also her criticism of Trump is rather too extreme.

    But I think she deserves a certain amount of respect for consistently rejecting the absurd evidencefree conspiracy theory about Trump being a Russian puppet almost all the liberal establishment has gone along with.

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  26. @AndrewR
    I don't think any remotely sane person with an IQ over 90 has taken the Russian Conspiracy theory seriously. The American left in 2018 exemplifies mass psychosis to a degree perhaps completely without historical precedent.

    There’s certainly historical precedent.

    Does this(1) not sound like much of the activity occurring nationwide after the 2016 election(2)?

    1. The girls screamed, threw things about the room, uttered strange sounds, crawled under furniture, and contorted themselves into peculiar positions …

    2. Woman lets out agonizing screams as Trump is sworn in

    Read More
    • Replies: @Brutusale
    The first major instance of problems with minorities in America.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tituba
    , @AndrewR
    Silly me. I didn't realize hundreds of millions of people lived in Salem.
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  27. @International Jew

    ...the Russians’ own belief in a solid, stable, unshakable American society. …In a society with a strong sense of shared reality, a bunch of sub-literate tweets and ridiculous ads would be nothing but a curiosity.
     
    Sorry to say, but the Russians' view of us as "a society with a strong sense of shared reality" is out of date.

    I think Russians, slowly, are coming to realize that the American Elites have “a strong sense of shared reality” that is both antagonistic toward the masses of the non-Elite (especially white non-Elites) and is actually anti-reality in key ways.

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    • Replies: @guest
    Would it be proper to refer to it as reality, in that case? More like a strong sense of shared illusion.
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  28. The press is unbelievable – they flogged Trump’s candidacy endlessly because they thought he was a joke and his success in the GOP primaries would help deliver the presidency to Clinton, who incidentally also wanted to face Trump more than anyone else as well. They gave him hundreds of millions in free air time to make him more likely to be the GOP nominee and then are shocked when it worked.

    Now that he’s president, they have ginned up this theory that our entire democratic process was subverted by a foreign power but the best they can do is this? No matter – all of my left-leaning friends are convinced Russia elected Trump despite not being able to explain how, other than muttering about how powerful social media is in this day and age.

    Maybe the Russians are as smart as everyone claims – a relatively small investment has yielded hundreds of millions of media airtime about a big nothingburger but has successfully created a total sense of paranoia and conspiracy in half of the country. It’s the media and the left that were suckered, not the right.

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    • Replies: @Pericles
    Better not to spend too much time trying to untangle the lolworld logic. I'm sure you know it will lead nowhere. "Bzz bzz and furthermore bzzt bzz"
    , @anonymous
    Yep.

    Someone should dredge up the circa 2015 Wikileaked DNC (or HRC campaign?) internal analysis of Mr.Trump and two others as ideal opponents, which shortly preceded an article in the NYT reporting that Mr. Clinton had talked to Mr. Trump about seeking the Presidency. Bill stroked, but Hillary choked.

    None of this matters, anyway, as the Establishment wins every election in the end. But it may help the mildly brainwashed to see all of this for the farce that it is.
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  29. @Tiny Duck
    1. This is the tip of the iceberg Trumo is hiding something

    2. Clinton won the popular vote

    3. Interesting how while people no longer hate Russia now that they aren't communist

    Things that make you go hmmmm

    LOL are you posting from a flip-phone?

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  30. sub-literate tweets

    I love how they think people voting for their own interests is some inscrutable disease of the mind. The fall’s gunna be hard and fun to watch, cracks are already starting to show, they demonstrated their weakness.

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  31. Does Masha Gessen ever have a straight face?

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    • LOL: Bill
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  32. There’s a (((reason))) why Soviet efforts have been relegated to the dustbin of history. And it’s not because they were unsuccessful.

    Everyone should read Comrade J, in which Russia’s man in New York before and after the Soviet collapse makes it perfectly clear who they targeted for real intelligence and disinfo ops: liberals, who either dislike America or just fancy themselves cosmopolitan. Everyone from Strobe Talbott to Carl Sagan is a useful idiot for Tretyakov and the cat ladies at the bottom of this class of people who hang around the “international” scene comprising the UN/diplomats/academics/NGO/etc were easy for him to straight up recruit.

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  33. OT: The Sports Illustrated expose on the Dallas Mavs’ hostile work environment features a cast of characters that should sound familiar to iSteve readers.

    https://www.si.com/nba/2018/02/20/dallas-mavericks-sexual-misconduct-investigation-mark-cuban-response

    Main culprit is the business CEO who in addition to impressive educational credentials added diversity in the executive ranks

    from a 1993 Sports Illustrated profile:

    “Will Ussery be among the NBA’s next call-ups? “Isn’t that what the league’s all about, to get to the next step?” says Utah Jazz president Frank Layden. “T is something special, and the next step would be a higher position in the major leagues. There are so few black men in executive positions. Now that we have a very bright black man in a key position in charge of a professional league, let’s fight to get him up there.” Up, and over the fence.”

    https://www.si.com/vault/1993/05/03/128532/in-a-league-of-his-own-cba-commissioner-terdema-ussery-ii-has-risen-from-the-back-streets-to-the-front-office

    other culprit is a Mavs website writer who had a habit of beating up his girlfriends

    https://www.google.com/search?safe=active&hl=en&biw=758&bih=430&tbm=isch&sa=1&ei=CIGNWtPzIKW8ggfD5pyYAw&q=Earl+K.+Sneed+&oq=Earl+K.+Sneed+&gs_l=psy-ab.3..0i30k1.4407224.4409025.0.4409776.2.2.0.0.0.0.372.543.0j1j0j1.2.0….0…1c.1.64.psy-ab..0.2.541…0.0.m3nAc2HsOK4

    and the white head of HR who looks like he’ll be the fall guy for not doing anything about the other two guys

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  34. @nebulafox
    Well, McCarthy's own charges were largely baseless, but the general idea that there were Soviet spies embedded deep in high levels of the US government after WWII was not. VENONA made it pretty clear that Alger Hiss and Harry Dexter White were, in fact, in the service of the NKVD. And of course, the Soviet atomic bomb program could have never accelerated to the degree that it did without key industrial and scientific spies, Klaus Fuchs and Theodore Hall being only the most notorious examples. It is hard to imagine tens of thousands of American soldiers falling in Korea without the Soviet atomic bomb enabling Stalin to give-if rather lackadaisically-the green light to Kim Il Sung.

    That's the irony about Joe McCarthy. The Soviet spy network in the USA by the early 1950s was under severe stress after J. Edgar Hoover and his merry men cracked down on them hard. Public sympathy for suspected Communists was at a minimum. It wasn't made easier by Truman thoroughly purging the lefty intellectual wing of the Democratic Party of the FDR-era Sovietphiles with the onset of the Cold War. But McCarthyism gave anti-anti-Communism life, if not much of one until the long 60s. It could have died then and there, but McCarthy gave the aforementioned Sovietphiles something to hang onto, in the idea that the real threat in the Cold War came from the American petty bourgeoisie above all else-a legacy of the rise of fascism in Europe, I suppose.

    Cool story bro.

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  35. @Arclight
    The press is unbelievable - they flogged Trump's candidacy endlessly because they thought he was a joke and his success in the GOP primaries would help deliver the presidency to Clinton, who incidentally also wanted to face Trump more than anyone else as well. They gave him hundreds of millions in free air time to make him more likely to be the GOP nominee and then are shocked when it worked.

    Now that he's president, they have ginned up this theory that our entire democratic process was subverted by a foreign power but the best they can do is this? No matter - all of my left-leaning friends are convinced Russia elected Trump despite not being able to explain how, other than muttering about how powerful social media is in this day and age.

    Maybe the Russians are as smart as everyone claims - a relatively small investment has yielded hundreds of millions of media airtime about a big nothingburger but has successfully created a total sense of paranoia and conspiracy in half of the country. It's the media and the left that were suckered, not the right.

    Better not to spend too much time trying to untangle the lolworld logic. I’m sure you know it will lead nowhere. “Bzz bzz and furthermore bzzt bzz”

    Read More
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  36. @Anonymous
    But turn the page...

    https://www.nytimes.com/2018/02/18/opinion/trump-russia-putin.html


    Whatever Trump Is Hiding Is Hurting All of Us Now

    Thomas L. Friedman FEB. 18, 2018

    Our democracy is in serious danger.

    President Trump is either totally compromised by the Russians or is a towering fool, or both, but either way he has shown himself unwilling or unable to defend America against a Russian campaign to divide and undermine our democracy.

    That is, either Trump’s real estate empire has taken large amounts of money from shady oligarchs linked to the Kremlin — so much that they literally own him; or rumors are true that he engaged in sexual misbehavior while he was in Moscow running the Miss Universe contest, which Russian intelligence has on tape and he doesn’t want released; or Trump actually believes Russian President Vladimir Putin when he says he is innocent of intervening in our elections — over the explicit findings of Trump’s own C.I.A., N.S.A. and F.B.I. chiefs.

    In sum, Trump is either hiding something so threatening to himself, or he’s criminally incompetent to be commander in chief. It is impossible yet to say which explanation for his behavior is true, but it seems highly likely that one of these scenarios explains Trump’s refusal to respond to Russia’s direct attack on our system — a quiescence that is simply unprecedented for any U.S. president in history. Russia is not our friend. It has acted in a hostile manner. And Trump keeps ignoring it all.
     

    Tom Friedman is both very evil and very stupid, but I must begrudgingly salute him for not indulging in the idiotic tend to write nonsense like “…and/or a towering fool…” in favour of using the proper construction to account for three possibilities.

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    • Replies: @Jenner Ickham Errican
    Autochthon, avoid this place at all costs.

    But seriously, Friedman’s faulty use of “either” (see ben tillman’s comment) would technically have been improved with and/or. Friedman, of course, only offered numerous vague bitchy accusations—which trapped him in an either/and/or stylistic conundrum.

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  37. “Even Masha….”

    No, her pushback on multiple fronts here on the Dem line on Russia just shows she’s honest and sincere. There are likely 400 ProgBots hating on her on twitter for this right now.

    The truth has always been that HRC is extremely anti Russia, Russia predictably screwed around with her online in a small low budget operation that was augmented by various patriotic private hackers, Trump neither knew nor had the technical knowledge to understand it, and the extent of his campaign’s involvement was, as Ann Coulter noted, a few random sleazy lobbyists with Russia ties had positions in his campaign largely because mainstream GOP figures were threatened with career ruin if they joined.

    The final connection is missing however. Manafort, Page, etc were connected to both Russia and Trump, but not to Russia’s hacking operations or anyone associated with them.

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    • Replies: @peterike

    No, [Gessen's] pushback on multiple fronts here on the Dem line on Russia just shows she’s honest and sincere.

     

    Since there is less than zero evidence of Gessen's honesty or sincerity, and copious amounts of evidence to the contrary, I'll let this pass as poorly constructed satire.

    In any event, I think the reason Gessen is off-message is simple: she's miffed at all these nobodies suddenly invading her turf. She's the "Russian expert" and it annoys her no end that every punk in the Democrat party is now barking Russia! Russia! Russia! like Jan Brady, as if they knew something about the place, which of course they don't because only Gessen does, in her limitless self-regard.

    She's off-message as a way of saying, "See, I'm still the only one that knows what's really going on."

    There's a word this: it's pique.
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  38. AnonFromTN [AKA "Anon"] says:

    Anon from TN
    Not only Russians are laughing their ass off about this “meddling” fairy tale, 90% of the world population is laughing (the only reason for 90%, rather than 100%, is that ~10% have no sense of humor). Never before was the US dragged through the mud like that. It is sad that this is done by certifiable scum. To add insult to injury, it is done for our tax money. Everyone who contributed to this “Russian meddling” BS should be tried for high treason.

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  39. @Anonymous
    But turn the page...

    https://www.nytimes.com/2018/02/18/opinion/trump-russia-putin.html


    Whatever Trump Is Hiding Is Hurting All of Us Now

    Thomas L. Friedman FEB. 18, 2018

    Our democracy is in serious danger.

    President Trump is either totally compromised by the Russians or is a towering fool, or both, but either way he has shown himself unwilling or unable to defend America against a Russian campaign to divide and undermine our democracy.

    That is, either Trump’s real estate empire has taken large amounts of money from shady oligarchs linked to the Kremlin — so much that they literally own him; or rumors are true that he engaged in sexual misbehavior while he was in Moscow running the Miss Universe contest, which Russian intelligence has on tape and he doesn’t want released; or Trump actually believes Russian President Vladimir Putin when he says he is innocent of intervening in our elections — over the explicit findings of Trump’s own C.I.A., N.S.A. and F.B.I. chiefs.

    In sum, Trump is either hiding something so threatening to himself, or he’s criminally incompetent to be commander in chief. It is impossible yet to say which explanation for his behavior is true, but it seems highly likely that one of these scenarios explains Trump’s refusal to respond to Russia’s direct attack on our system — a quiescence that is simply unprecedented for any U.S. president in history. Russia is not our friend. It has acted in a hostile manner. And Trump keeps ignoring it all.
     

    A great example of how Trump Derangement causes some people to expose how crazy, foolish, and ignorant they actually are. It’s truly extraordinary. If The Donald was a DC or Marvel comic book hero he would be called The Revealer or The Catalyst or somesuch. His mere presence would be like some special kind of Kryptonite that causes his opponents to blurt out their innermost demons.

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  40. anonymous • Disclaimer says:
    @Arclight
    The press is unbelievable - they flogged Trump's candidacy endlessly because they thought he was a joke and his success in the GOP primaries would help deliver the presidency to Clinton, who incidentally also wanted to face Trump more than anyone else as well. They gave him hundreds of millions in free air time to make him more likely to be the GOP nominee and then are shocked when it worked.

    Now that he's president, they have ginned up this theory that our entire democratic process was subverted by a foreign power but the best they can do is this? No matter - all of my left-leaning friends are convinced Russia elected Trump despite not being able to explain how, other than muttering about how powerful social media is in this day and age.

    Maybe the Russians are as smart as everyone claims - a relatively small investment has yielded hundreds of millions of media airtime about a big nothingburger but has successfully created a total sense of paranoia and conspiracy in half of the country. It's the media and the left that were suckered, not the right.

    Yep.

    Someone should dredge up the circa 2015 Wikileaked DNC (or HRC campaign?) internal analysis of Mr.Trump and two others as ideal opponents, which shortly preceded an article in the NYT reporting that Mr. Clinton had talked to Mr. Trump about seeking the Presidency. Bill stroked, but Hillary choked.

    None of this matters, anyway, as the Establishment wins every election in the end. But it may help the mildly brainwashed to see all of this for the farce that it is.

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    • Agree: ben tillman
    • Replies: @anonymous
    I recall that article. I may be wrong about this but I seem to recall that the conversation started in the locker room of Trump's golf club in Westchester County after the two played a round of golf.

    Slick knew that the Wife of Record would inevitably implode at some point and that the only way she could win would be against a perceived media clown. He was right about the former, wrong about the latter.
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  41. @Tiny Duck
    1. This is the tip of the iceberg Trumo is hiding something

    2. Clinton won the popular vote

    3. Interesting how while people no longer hate Russia now that they aren't communist

    Things that make you go hmmmm

    3. Interesting how while people no longer hate Russia now that they aren’t communist

    I assume that by “while” was meant “white.”

    I can’t speak for anyone else, white or otherwise, but why should it be “interesting”? It should instead be obvious that it was never Russia that deserved hatred – it was always communism. Communism was an ideological enemy to Western Civilisation. The Soviet Union repressed human rights in order to achieve its supposed socialist utopia, and sent dissenters to the Gulag, where millions of them died.

    They now have private property and allow the open practice of Christianity in Russia. It is not a totalitarian country. Its government is not liberal in the Western sense, but it is probably less authoritarian now than any Russian government has been in the past few centuries. Geopolitically, Russia has its own sphere of interest and influence, but this does not encompass much more than neighboring states most of which were formerly parts of the Soviet Union or Tsarist Russia. Putin is not going to send his army through the Fulda Gap to conquer Western Europe. He just wants to sell Western Europe natural gas.

    The fuss about Russia in U.S. politics today owes to two things.

    First and foremost, it is about the Democrats’ effort to discredit and depose Trump, who won despite all their machinations. This was indeed “shocking,” at least to them, and they have yet to recognize that (as Obama once said) elections have consequences.

    Second, it is about the attitude of neoconservatives, largely of Eastern European Jewish descent, who interpret Putin’s suppression of a largely Jewish group of oligarchs/gangsters as a revival of historic Russian anti-semitism. As some wag once put it, for these people, whenever a situation is not Munich in 1938, it is Odessa in 1905.

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    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    There was very little anti-Russianism in America during the Cold War. Russian high culture was very prestigious in the U.S.
    , @Dmitry

    First and foremost, it is about the Democrats’ effort to discredit and depose Trump, who won despite all their machinations. This was indeed “shocking,” at least to them, and they have yet to recognize that (as Obama once said) elections have consequences.

    Second, it is about the attitude of neoconservatives, largely of Eastern European Jewish descent, who interpret Putin’s suppression of a largely Jewish group of oligarchs/gangsters as a revival of historic Russian anti-semitism. As some wag once put it, for these people, whenever a situation is not Munich in 1938, it is Odessa in 1905.
     

    Putin is the most pro-oligarch leader in the world at the moment. If it had to do with interpretation of his alleged 'anti-semitism to businessmen' (which in reality is the complete opposite - multiculturalism and Judeophilia and Islamophilia amongst the elites), you would not get very far with this interpretation for their agenda.

    The America's Jewish leading Russia-conspiracy theorist, Julia Ioffe, hates Jewish oligarchs as much as any "Russia for Russians" nationalist

    https://twitter.com/juliaioffe/status/793218192189554688

    https://twitter.com/juliaioffe/status/793217915243880450

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  42. four points I’d like to make:

    1. Trump’s win was always predictable and obvious for two reasons. A) Winning was spelled C O A L and if the Democrats hadn’t become so utterly degraded that they don’t even remember Tip O’Neill, they might have known that all elections are local. The fact that they lost because of the flip of coal country counties, and they still can’t figure that out, is truly pathetic. The fact that they come up with ever more hysterical, lunatic, and genuinely ridiculous reasons for their painfully obvious loss, is frightening. B) Anybody with as many unsavory nicknames as H R Clinton didn’t have a prayer of a chance in hell of winning a national election. ( Remember Shrillery, Hitlery, Killery, Cankles, the Hildebeest, Frosty the Snow Bitch, and, my personal favorite, the Salmon Scented Secretary of State?)

    2. In all the “Russians interfered with the election ” crap, no one has yet said what their actual “interference” consists of. So what, hacked voting machines, voter suppression, giving money illegally to Candidates, threatening people? What the hell did they actually do?

    3. If we can accuse Russians of interference, for at best, a minor propaganda effort, what on earth can we accuse the Israelis and Mexicans of doing? If we are going to accuse people of crimes vis a vis the Russians, then every politician in this country can be hanged for treason for what they have done for the Israelis.

    4. Minor point, but Hillary “won” the popular vote strictly on the backs of the illegal alien vote. Outside of California she was pretty decisively crushed, and if Trump’s personality was anything other than well, Trump’s, it would have been a Nixonian\Reaganesque landslide.

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    • Replies: @anonymous
    Spot on--especially #2. Still waiting for an answer. And waiting...and waiting...and waiting...and...zzzz.
    , @J.Ross
    This is a very good comment. I was thrown by deep feelings regarding Gessen, who has made unambiguously genocidal comments about Russians which would be illegal if she made them about other people, and Friedman (who did the same thing with the Russian brother-folk, the Serbs), and couldn't get past my old observation that, insofar as the Jews are a single programmatic entity (which if course they're not in a literal sense), the bright ones are sent into finance, the middle gets academia, and our burgeoning international mass media absorbs the guys who couldn't figure out where to sign their name on the intelligence test.
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  43. anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    “In a society with a strong sense of shared reality, a bunch of sub-literate tweets and ridiculous ads would be nothing but a curiosity.”

    What is frightening is the prospect that that society has gone (or is going) the way of the passenger pigeon. If so, then we are (in words penned by Walker Percy) “Lost in The Cosmos.”

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  44. anonymous • Disclaimer says:
    @anonymous
    Yep.

    Someone should dredge up the circa 2015 Wikileaked DNC (or HRC campaign?) internal analysis of Mr.Trump and two others as ideal opponents, which shortly preceded an article in the NYT reporting that Mr. Clinton had talked to Mr. Trump about seeking the Presidency. Bill stroked, but Hillary choked.

    None of this matters, anyway, as the Establishment wins every election in the end. But it may help the mildly brainwashed to see all of this for the farce that it is.

    I recall that article. I may be wrong about this but I seem to recall that the conversation started in the locker room of Trump’s golf club in Westchester County after the two played a round of golf.

    Slick knew that the Wife of Record would inevitably implode at some point and that the only way she could win would be against a perceived media clown. He was right about the former, wrong about the latter.

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  45. @Anonymous
    But turn the page...

    https://www.nytimes.com/2018/02/18/opinion/trump-russia-putin.html


    Whatever Trump Is Hiding Is Hurting All of Us Now

    Thomas L. Friedman FEB. 18, 2018

    Our democracy is in serious danger.

    President Trump is either totally compromised by the Russians or is a towering fool, or both, but either way he has shown himself unwilling or unable to defend America against a Russian campaign to divide and undermine our democracy.

    That is, either Trump’s real estate empire has taken large amounts of money from shady oligarchs linked to the Kremlin — so much that they literally own him; or rumors are true that he engaged in sexual misbehavior while he was in Moscow running the Miss Universe contest, which Russian intelligence has on tape and he doesn’t want released; or Trump actually believes Russian President Vladimir Putin when he says he is innocent of intervening in our elections — over the explicit findings of Trump’s own C.I.A., N.S.A. and F.B.I. chiefs.

    In sum, Trump is either hiding something so threatening to himself, or he’s criminally incompetent to be commander in chief. It is impossible yet to say which explanation for his behavior is true, but it seems highly likely that one of these scenarios explains Trump’s refusal to respond to Russia’s direct attack on our system — a quiescence that is simply unprecedented for any U.S. president in history. Russia is not our friend. It has acted in a hostile manner. And Trump keeps ignoring it all.
     

    Someone needs to lock Friedman in a room with a little manual on how to use the word “either”. He made five mistakes (either lack of parallelism or use of “either” to refer to more than two things) in that short passage. And, again, my contention that the NYT does not have editors appears to be vindicated.

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  46. @Tiny Duck
    1. This is the tip of the iceberg Trumo is hiding something

    2. Clinton won the popular vote

    3. Interesting how while people no longer hate Russia now that they aren't communist

    Things that make you go hmmmm

    TD, you, hands down, win the popular vote for most favorite Troll, but that doesn’t make you president on iSteve. Did you have something in your mouth while going Hmmmmmm?

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  47. OT : A couple of months ago I was trying to contact a friend . I knew he had a twitter account so I opened a twitter account thinking to contact him . I have never posted anything on it . Nothing . Abt. a month ago I started getting e-mails informing me that I had followers on twitter . Now I’m getting e-mails that Steve Sailer posted whatever . WTF?

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  48. @guest
    "An event as shocking as Trump's election demands that the forces that may (or may not) have contributed to his victory be rendered suitably monstrous in retrospect"

    I didn't find it shocking, though I admit it was highly unusual, if not unprecedented. I was prepared by not living in the Bubble.

    Anywho, the above describes normal people who don't like Trump and can't believe it was a fair victory. They want to blame things like the DNC leaks/hack, Comey's Oopsie, or Russian Cat Memes. Couldn't be that the polls were just wrong, possibly on purpose. Or that people changed their minds last-minute for legitimate reasons. That is to say, not because Moscow or Fake News kidnapped their brains.

    Which is understandishable. Regular people are like that.

    But of course the Russia Ploy was thought up by people who matter prior to the election. They weren't looking for monsters to explain Queen Hillary's crownless head. They were using Steele, Christopher Steele's Pee-Pee Files and Carter Page, FBI employee #... and known comrade of Russia, to spy on Donny Tinyhands. FISA-style.

    That was just to fish around. Then the unthinkable happened, and it became the Fake Scandal it is today.

    After the school shooting, I read at NYT that Russian bots were pushing gun control.

    So what side are the bots on anyway?

    Russian Cat Memes? LOL.

    I think a lot of Russians must find the whole thing very entertaining,

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  49. @Tiny Duck
    1. This is the tip of the iceberg Trumo is hiding something

    2. Clinton won the popular vote

    3. Interesting how while people no longer hate Russia now that they aren't communist

    Things that make you go hmmmm

    vote Trumo imo

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  50. @Anonymous
    But turn the page...

    https://www.nytimes.com/2018/02/18/opinion/trump-russia-putin.html


    Whatever Trump Is Hiding Is Hurting All of Us Now

    Thomas L. Friedman FEB. 18, 2018

    Our democracy is in serious danger.

    President Trump is either totally compromised by the Russians or is a towering fool, or both, but either way he has shown himself unwilling or unable to defend America against a Russian campaign to divide and undermine our democracy.

    That is, either Trump’s real estate empire has taken large amounts of money from shady oligarchs linked to the Kremlin — so much that they literally own him; or rumors are true that he engaged in sexual misbehavior while he was in Moscow running the Miss Universe contest, which Russian intelligence has on tape and he doesn’t want released; or Trump actually believes Russian President Vladimir Putin when he says he is innocent of intervening in our elections — over the explicit findings of Trump’s own C.I.A., N.S.A. and F.B.I. chiefs.

    In sum, Trump is either hiding something so threatening to himself, or he’s criminally incompetent to be commander in chief. It is impossible yet to say which explanation for his behavior is true, but it seems highly likely that one of these scenarios explains Trump’s refusal to respond to Russia’s direct attack on our system — a quiescence that is simply unprecedented for any U.S. president in history. Russia is not our friend. It has acted in a hostile manner. And Trump keeps ignoring it all.
     

    Friedman is even more of an idiot than the others. I never read him, he’s hopelessly out of it.

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    • Replies: @annamaria
    But he is a wealthy idiot. And a Russophobe.
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  51. @theMann
    four points I'd like to make:


    1. Trump's win was always predictable and obvious for two reasons. A) Winning was spelled C O A L and if the Democrats hadn't become so utterly degraded that they don't even remember Tip O'Neill, they might have known that all elections are local. The fact that they lost because of the flip of coal country counties, and they still can't figure that out, is truly pathetic. The fact that they come up with ever more hysterical, lunatic, and genuinely ridiculous reasons for their painfully obvious loss, is frightening. B) Anybody with as many unsavory nicknames as H R Clinton didn't have a prayer of a chance in hell of winning a national election. ( Remember Shrillery, Hitlery, Killery, Cankles, the Hildebeest, Frosty the Snow Bitch, and, my personal favorite, the Salmon Scented Secretary of State?)


    2. In all the "Russians interfered with the election " crap, no one has yet said what their actual "interference" consists of. So what, hacked voting machines, voter suppression, giving money illegally to Candidates, threatening people? What the hell did they actually do?

    3. If we can accuse Russians of interference, for at best, a minor propaganda effort, what on earth can we accuse the Israelis and Mexicans of doing? If we are going to accuse people of crimes vis a vis the Russians, then every politician in this country can be hanged for treason for what they have done for the Israelis.

    4. Minor point, but Hillary "won" the popular vote strictly on the backs of the illegal alien vote. Outside of California she was pretty decisively crushed, and if Trump's personality was anything other than well, Trump's, it would have been a Nixonian\Reaganesque landslide.

    Spot on–especially #2. Still waiting for an answer. And waiting…and waiting…and waiting…and…zzzz.

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  52. @Autochthon
    Tom Friedman is both very evil and very stupid, but I must begrudgingly salute him for not indulging in the idiotic tend to write nonsense like "...and/or a towering fool..." in favour of using the proper construction to account for three possibilities.

    Autochthon, avoid this place at all costs.

    But seriously, Friedman’s faulty use of “either” (see ben tillman’s comment) would technically have been improved with and/or. Friedman, of course, only offered numerous vague bitchy accusations—which trapped him in an either/and/or stylistic conundrum.

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    • Agree: Autochthon
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  53. @Anonymous
    But turn the page...

    https://www.nytimes.com/2018/02/18/opinion/trump-russia-putin.html


    Whatever Trump Is Hiding Is Hurting All of Us Now

    Thomas L. Friedman FEB. 18, 2018

    Our democracy is in serious danger.

    President Trump is either totally compromised by the Russians or is a towering fool, or both, but either way he has shown himself unwilling or unable to defend America against a Russian campaign to divide and undermine our democracy.

    That is, either Trump’s real estate empire has taken large amounts of money from shady oligarchs linked to the Kremlin — so much that they literally own him; or rumors are true that he engaged in sexual misbehavior while he was in Moscow running the Miss Universe contest, which Russian intelligence has on tape and he doesn’t want released; or Trump actually believes Russian President Vladimir Putin when he says he is innocent of intervening in our elections — over the explicit findings of Trump’s own C.I.A., N.S.A. and F.B.I. chiefs.

    In sum, Trump is either hiding something so threatening to himself, or he’s criminally incompetent to be commander in chief. It is impossible yet to say which explanation for his behavior is true, but it seems highly likely that one of these scenarios explains Trump’s refusal to respond to Russia’s direct attack on our system — a quiescence that is simply unprecedented for any U.S. president in history. Russia is not our friend. It has acted in a hostile manner. And Trump keeps ignoring it all.
     

    Thomas Friedman is not our friend. Many Russians are or could/should be.

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  54. @ChrisD
    If you go back through the archives, you can dig up some fascinating journalism from WaPo and others accusing Joseph McCarthy of a baseless 'witch hunt' and following 'red herrings' regarding the USSR and its Communist influence in United States politics. Here's a link of some classics: https://loc.gov/exhibits/pointing-their-pens-editorial-cartoons/red-scare.html#obj010

    In the [current year], it's the Democrats' turn to play witch hunters and follow red herrings (even though Joe McCarthy was right in the 50s, and the Dems are wrong now). They are pinning their entire electoral strategy of one Monsieur Mueller and the tantalising but illusory 'Impeachment'. This strategy is slowly but surely unravelling, exposing Uranium One, Obama's wiretapping of the Trump campaign, and the FBI's malfeasance. Personally, I believe there are far bigger scandals coming, and they have nothing to do with Trump and everything to do with the Military Industrial Complex, as President Eisenhower once labelled it. Or as we call it today: The Deep State. These scandals will undermine the entire separation of powers doctrine which became entrenched in the American Republic's institutions. Once these scandals reach the mainstream, journalists will need to decide whether they abandon their Never Trump hysteria and fight for the survival of the Republic, or to choose to wilfully destroy it and encourage further chaos for the foreseeable future. I believe Bezos, Carlos Slim, et al will choose the latter option, without any doubt. If that is the case, then prepare for large scale civil unrest and the end of American Exceptionalism as we knew it.

    The FBI’s case against Michael Flynn is about to go south: http://thefederalist.com/2018/02/19/michael-flynns-plea-reversal-uncover-federal-corruption/

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  55. @Beckow
    Even Masha Gessen is smarter than Thomas Friedman. And that's something.

    Friedman and Brooks are having a contest to see who can write the more pretentious twaddle.

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  56. I believe and hope that this is the beginning of the slow walkback by the commies from their conspiracy theory. The article clearly makes very strong attempts to identify with the conspiracy theorists (“there so much smoke, I agree, and he’s practically Hitler!”) but then seeds a few doubts from reality into it.

    If I’m right, other Journolisters will start the slow walkbalk in their articles and broadcasts as well, giving more balanced coverage and talking about it as a potential “nothingburger.” Not the Charles M. Blow types, but the “nuanced” ones, the ones like the gays at the NY Times opinion colummns.

    If this is the beginnings of the walkback, I fully expect Keith Olbermann next year to declare he never believed in the Russia nonsense but only was doing it to point out how awful Trump is. Because that’s Keithy’s logic.

    Related: how much of this conspiracy theory was promoted by Trump? Trump understands the media is a circus, so he put this nonsense center ring to have them salivate over, all the while knowing they’d find nothing. Then Trump did a bunch of stuff in the background they didn’t notice and would’ve reported on had this not dominated the news cycle. A yuuuge misdirection by the Emeperor?

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  57. The book Shattered, was written about Hillary’s failed crusade by a couple of leftys, On the last page they mention how the evil minions get together the day after and decided the Russian meddling was the reason why the millions they got paid didn’t get their horrible candidate elected.

    Now we know why they picked that; they knew about the fake dossier they had bought and paid for. Knew what was invented to put into it. The rest of us didn’t.

    The leftys figured this was going to end with a bang, not a whimper, like it’s going to be…..

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  58. @theMann
    four points I'd like to make:


    1. Trump's win was always predictable and obvious for two reasons. A) Winning was spelled C O A L and if the Democrats hadn't become so utterly degraded that they don't even remember Tip O'Neill, they might have known that all elections are local. The fact that they lost because of the flip of coal country counties, and they still can't figure that out, is truly pathetic. The fact that they come up with ever more hysterical, lunatic, and genuinely ridiculous reasons for their painfully obvious loss, is frightening. B) Anybody with as many unsavory nicknames as H R Clinton didn't have a prayer of a chance in hell of winning a national election. ( Remember Shrillery, Hitlery, Killery, Cankles, the Hildebeest, Frosty the Snow Bitch, and, my personal favorite, the Salmon Scented Secretary of State?)


    2. In all the "Russians interfered with the election " crap, no one has yet said what their actual "interference" consists of. So what, hacked voting machines, voter suppression, giving money illegally to Candidates, threatening people? What the hell did they actually do?

    3. If we can accuse Russians of interference, for at best, a minor propaganda effort, what on earth can we accuse the Israelis and Mexicans of doing? If we are going to accuse people of crimes vis a vis the Russians, then every politician in this country can be hanged for treason for what they have done for the Israelis.

    4. Minor point, but Hillary "won" the popular vote strictly on the backs of the illegal alien vote. Outside of California she was pretty decisively crushed, and if Trump's personality was anything other than well, Trump's, it would have been a Nixonian\Reaganesque landslide.

    This is a very good comment. I was thrown by deep feelings regarding Gessen, who has made unambiguously genocidal comments about Russians which would be illegal if she made them about other people, and Friedman (who did the same thing with the Russian brother-folk, the Serbs), and couldn’t get past my old observation that, insofar as the Jews are a single programmatic entity (which if course they’re not in a literal sense), the bright ones are sent into finance, the middle gets academia, and our burgeoning international mass media absorbs the guys who couldn’t figure out where to sign their name on the intelligence test.

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  59. @Coemgen
    There's certainly historical precedent.

    Does this(1) not sound like much of the activity occurring nationwide after the 2016 election(2)?

    1. The girls screamed, threw things about the room, uttered strange sounds, crawled under furniture, and contorted themselves into peculiar positions ...

    2. Woman lets out agonizing screams as Trump is sworn in

    The first major instance of problems with minorities in America.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tituba

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  60. @Coemgen
    There's certainly historical precedent.

    Does this(1) not sound like much of the activity occurring nationwide after the 2016 election(2)?

    1. The girls screamed, threw things about the room, uttered strange sounds, crawled under furniture, and contorted themselves into peculiar positions ...

    2. Woman lets out agonizing screams as Trump is sworn in

    Silly me. I didn’t realize hundreds of millions of people lived in Salem.

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  61. @dearieme
    " completely without historical precedent": oh you are a wag.

    Perhaps Mao’s “cultural revolution,” but certainly nothing in US history comes close.

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  62. @Lot
    "Even Masha...."

    No, her pushback on multiple fronts here on the Dem line on Russia just shows she's honest and sincere. There are likely 400 ProgBots hating on her on twitter for this right now.

    The truth has always been that HRC is extremely anti Russia, Russia predictably screwed around with her online in a small low budget operation that was augmented by various patriotic private hackers, Trump neither knew nor had the technical knowledge to understand it, and the extent of his campaign's involvement was, as Ann Coulter noted, a few random sleazy lobbyists with Russia ties had positions in his campaign largely because mainstream GOP figures were threatened with career ruin if they joined.

    The final connection is missing however. Manafort, Page, etc were connected to both Russia and Trump, but not to Russia's hacking operations or anyone associated with them.

    No, [Gessen's] pushback on multiple fronts here on the Dem line on Russia just shows she’s honest and sincere.

    Since there is less than zero evidence of Gessen’s honesty or sincerity, and copious amounts of evidence to the contrary, I’ll let this pass as poorly constructed satire.

    In any event, I think the reason Gessen is off-message is simple: she’s miffed at all these nobodies suddenly invading her turf. She’s the “Russian expert” and it annoys her no end that every punk in the Democrat party is now barking Russia! Russia! Russia! like Jan Brady, as if they knew something about the place, which of course they don’t because only Gessen does, in her limitless self-regard.

    She’s off-message as a way of saying, “See, I’m still the only one that knows what’s really going on.”

    There’s a word this: it’s pique.

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  63. @neutral

    I don’t think any remotely sane person with an IQ over 90 has taken the Russian Conspiracy theory seriously. The American left in 2018 exemplifies mass psychosis to a degree perhaps completely without historical precedent.

     

    One should however take this mass psychosis very seriously, people like to talk about ISIS or North Korea as crazy, but these US leftists are by far the most deranged lunatics on the planet. It is made worse by the fact that they along with the neocon warmongers are very close to igniting a very real nuclear war (over online comments of all things).

    The feeling I get from articles by Sailer, and the comments, and other such related sites and writers is to treat this as mostly a joke, but I really don't feel this is a joke anymore. During the Cuban Missile Crises, there were still people in the government that saw the dangers of starting a nuclear war, such people don't seem to exist anymore.

    I don’t think they’re actually close to igniting nuclear war. They talk like that’s what they want, but we know and I think they know they’re not serious.

    I don’t want to guess what Russia thinks of all this. But they know the people actually in charge now aren’t the ones talking about Pearl Harbor. That’s out-of-power talk, though admittedly especially stupid out-of-power talk.

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  64. @Anonymous
    But turn the page...

    https://www.nytimes.com/2018/02/18/opinion/trump-russia-putin.html


    Whatever Trump Is Hiding Is Hurting All of Us Now

    Thomas L. Friedman FEB. 18, 2018

    Our democracy is in serious danger.

    President Trump is either totally compromised by the Russians or is a towering fool, or both, but either way he has shown himself unwilling or unable to defend America against a Russian campaign to divide and undermine our democracy.

    That is, either Trump’s real estate empire has taken large amounts of money from shady oligarchs linked to the Kremlin — so much that they literally own him; or rumors are true that he engaged in sexual misbehavior while he was in Moscow running the Miss Universe contest, which Russian intelligence has on tape and he doesn’t want released; or Trump actually believes Russian President Vladimir Putin when he says he is innocent of intervening in our elections — over the explicit findings of Trump’s own C.I.A., N.S.A. and F.B.I. chiefs.

    In sum, Trump is either hiding something so threatening to himself, or he’s criminally incompetent to be commander in chief. It is impossible yet to say which explanation for his behavior is true, but it seems highly likely that one of these scenarios explains Trump’s refusal to respond to Russia’s direct attack on our system — a quiescence that is simply unprecedented for any U.S. president in history. Russia is not our friend. It has acted in a hostile manner. And Trump keeps ignoring it all.
     

    “either Trump’s real estate empire has taken large amounts of money from shady oligarchs linked to the Kremlin — so much that they literally own him”

    I think the idea is that they literally own the property he developed for them. You’d think an economist might understand that.

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  65. @Crawfurdmuir

    3. Interesting how while people no longer hate Russia now that they aren’t communist
     
    I assume that by "while" was meant "white."

    I can't speak for anyone else, white or otherwise, but why should it be "interesting"? It should instead be obvious that it was never Russia that deserved hatred - it was always communism. Communism was an ideological enemy to Western Civilisation. The Soviet Union repressed human rights in order to achieve its supposed socialist utopia, and sent dissenters to the Gulag, where millions of them died.

    They now have private property and allow the open practice of Christianity in Russia. It is not a totalitarian country. Its government is not liberal in the Western sense, but it is probably less authoritarian now than any Russian government has been in the past few centuries. Geopolitically, Russia has its own sphere of interest and influence, but this does not encompass much more than neighboring states most of which were formerly parts of the Soviet Union or Tsarist Russia. Putin is not going to send his army through the Fulda Gap to conquer Western Europe. He just wants to sell Western Europe natural gas.

    The fuss about Russia in U.S. politics today owes to two things.

    First and foremost, it is about the Democrats' effort to discredit and depose Trump, who won despite all their machinations. This was indeed "shocking," at least to them, and they have yet to recognize that (as Obama once said) elections have consequences.

    Second, it is about the attitude of neoconservatives, largely of Eastern European Jewish descent, who interpret Putin's suppression of a largely Jewish group of oligarchs/gangsters as a revival of historic Russian anti-semitism. As some wag once put it, for these people, whenever a situation is not Munich in 1938, it is Odessa in 1905.

    There was very little anti-Russianism in America during the Cold War. Russian high culture was very prestigious in the U.S.

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    • Replies: @Glossy
    But most of that high culture was destroyed in the 1990s, replaced by crappy Hollywood movies, adapted American sitcoms, McDonalds, KFC, jeans and sneakers, feminism, etc. And this was in part what your side fought for in the Cold War. And you approve of those war aims entirely, Steve. So it's disingenuous of you to claim that you or America repsected Russian high culture. You celebrate the processes that destroyed that culture, likely forever, as a victory. And actually, you like trash culture. Roughly half of your movie reviews are positive. All Hollywood movies are stupid and vulgar.
    , @Harry Baldwin
    Weirdly, during the Cold War, the cliché was that Russian women were dumpy and frumpy, like Mrs. Krushchev. Quite a turnaround on that one!

    Reminds me of Gore Vidal's response when asked what would have happened had Krushchev, not Kennedy, been assassinated: "With history one can never be certain, but I think I can safely say that Aristotle Onassis would not have married Mrs. Krushchev."
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  66. @AndrewR
    I don't think any remotely sane person with an IQ over 90 has taken the Russian Conspiracy theory seriously. The American left in 2018 exemplifies mass psychosis to a degree perhaps completely without historical precedent.

    I live in NYC and there are plenty of (seemingly) sane people that are Pauline Kael-like, and can’t believe it was possible for Trump to have been elected without something underhanded occurring. First of all, they firmly believe that polls are/were correct, and Hillary was a shoe-in.

    The Russian interference/collusion serves as an answer to what in their mind is inexplicable chaos.

    I’d suggest you get out a bit more, your bubble is showing. It’s unlikely the mass psychosis you diagnose is solely limited to those with IQs under 90.

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    • Replies: @AndrewR
    Lol.

    It's funny you accuse me of living in a bubble when your NYC friends are the ones living in one. If everyone one associates with is a bourgie NYC shitlib, it can seem disconcerting to realize that large portions of the country are not bourgie NYC shitlibs.

    I may or may not live in a bubble but I'm definitely aware of the fact that this country has a lot of people who believe one general set of things and a lot of people who believe another, very different set of things. The political polarization in this country is not exactly a secret. Insanity or low IQ are the only explanations I can think of for why someone wouldn't acknowledge that not everyone is a bourgie shitlib. Even otherwise low-info people should be vaguely aware that this country is very big, very populous and that there is a great deal of political heterogeneity.

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  67. @Beckow
    Even Masha Gessen is smarter than Thomas Friedman. And that's something.

    I dunno. Thomas Friedman-level smarts is a pretty low bar. In fact, I call it a curb–easy to step over so long as no one is passed out in the gutter. Masha Gessen has fucked up politics, but she no dummy.

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  68. @nebulafox
    Well, McCarthy's own charges were largely baseless, but the general idea that there were Soviet spies embedded deep in high levels of the US government after WWII was not. VENONA made it pretty clear that Alger Hiss and Harry Dexter White were, in fact, in the service of the NKVD. And of course, the Soviet atomic bomb program could have never accelerated to the degree that it did without key industrial and scientific spies, Klaus Fuchs and Theodore Hall being only the most notorious examples. It is hard to imagine tens of thousands of American soldiers falling in Korea without the Soviet atomic bomb enabling Stalin to give-if rather lackadaisically-the green light to Kim Il Sung.

    That's the irony about Joe McCarthy. The Soviet spy network in the USA by the early 1950s was under severe stress after J. Edgar Hoover and his merry men cracked down on them hard. Public sympathy for suspected Communists was at a minimum. It wasn't made easier by Truman thoroughly purging the lefty intellectual wing of the Democratic Party of the FDR-era Sovietphiles with the onset of the Cold War. But McCarthyism gave anti-anti-Communism life, if not much of one until the long 60s. It could have died then and there, but McCarthy gave the aforementioned Sovietphiles something to hang onto, in the idea that the real threat in the Cold War came from the American petty bourgeoisie above all else-a legacy of the rise of fascism in Europe, I suppose.

    The alternative of letting commies run amuck was preferable? Fighting back only gave anti-anti-communists a target, namely anti-communism, to shoot at. I suppose the populist right that cared about the U.S. Establishment and Permanent Government should’vd just sat the Cold War out and waited for them all to die.

    McCarthyism in fact represented the last successful mass populist backlash in U.S. history. If it failed and the Establishment was able to blacken his name for generations, that’s because they’re liars. It’s no reason to think McCarthy shouldn’t have tried. Unless you aren’t on his side or have the heart of a loser.

    “McCarthy’s own charges were largely baseless”

    Wrong. I think he went overboard with Marshall, for instance, but the attack on him was not baseless.

    “a legacy of the rise of fascism in Europe”

    Nonsense.

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  69. Gessen is “serious”, and one of the gov-sanctified HNIC of the demonize-Russia campaign(she even moonlights, translating the Russian dialogue in the highly Russophobic CIA-written cable tv show “The Americans”), so of course she’s pushing back at the BAD propaganda that’s floating around. Her job is in Good Propaganda.

    What her current discomfort illustrates is that there really is a larger agenda and TPTB are now fearing the taint of ridiculousness from Russiagate as they pursue their larger agenda in the Russian sphere, which is the one it always has been, global hegemony.

    Shorter Masha Goebbels; “less Russiagate, more Russia! So let’s not adopt her, please.

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  70. @Jake
    I think Russians, slowly, are coming to realize that the American Elites have "a strong sense of shared reality" that is both antagonistic toward the masses of the non-Elite (especially white non-Elites) and is actually anti-reality in key ways.

    Would it be proper to refer to it as reality, in that case? More like a strong sense of shared illusion.

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  71. @william munny
    Exactly. I don't think they have ever asked their constituents about it either. Since the election, I have never, in real life, heard anyone say one word about Russia. I have an annoying lefty relative who sends me every single anti-Trump or anti-conservative article he sees, but he has never sent me anything remotely connected to the Russia hoax, because he would be embarrassed to do so.

    Oh, they’re out there. My co-workers have been going on about it. In the early days, I used to hear

    “it’s the final nail in the coffin”

    “the dossier is almost completely confirmed now”

    “Trump’s admitted everything”

    and all variety of BS.

    Even just last week, one was saying he expects Trump to be impeached and that if the Democrats take both houses of Congress it’s definitely going to happen.

    Right now, he’s on his high horse about gun control, but I expect the Russia probe will come around again.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Harry Baldwin
    Yep, "gun control," another perennially losing issue for the Democrats.
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  72. @Forbes
    I live in NYC and there are plenty of (seemingly) sane people that are Pauline Kael-like, and can't believe it was possible for Trump to have been elected without something underhanded occurring. First of all, they firmly believe that polls are/were correct, and Hillary was a shoe-in.

    The Russian interference/collusion serves as an answer to what in their mind is inexplicable chaos.

    I'd suggest you get out a bit more, your bubble is showing. It's unlikely the mass psychosis you diagnose is solely limited to those with IQs under 90.

    Lol.

    It’s funny you accuse me of living in a bubble when your NYC friends are the ones living in one. If everyone one associates with is a bourgie NYC shitlib, it can seem disconcerting to realize that large portions of the country are not bourgie NYC shitlibs.

    I may or may not live in a bubble but I’m definitely aware of the fact that this country has a lot of people who believe one general set of things and a lot of people who believe another, very different set of things. The political polarization in this country is not exactly a secret. Insanity or low IQ are the only explanations I can think of for why someone wouldn’t acknowledge that not everyone is a bourgie shitlib. Even otherwise low-info people should be vaguely aware that this country is very big, very populous and that there is a great deal of political heterogeneity.

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  73. @Dan Hayes
    Steve,

    Surprised that this article appeared in The New Yorker as it is the quintessential organ of the pretentious upper, upper bourgeois (and infantile) Left.

    I appreciated the author's swipes at Politico, the alleged purveyor of inside-the-beltway political reportage.

    Agree. Even for such committed Russophobes as Remnick and Gessen, the stupidity and cognitive dissonance emanating from the senior-level of the US national security apparatus have become too much. We should expect to see greater disarray among the presstituting estate; the disarray might depend on a degree of self-respect.

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    • Agree: Dan Hayes
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  74. @Frau Katze
    Friedman is even more of an idiot than the others. I never read him, he’s hopelessly out of it.

    But he is a wealthy idiot. And a Russophobe.

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  75. @Crawfurdmuir

    3. Interesting how while people no longer hate Russia now that they aren’t communist
     
    I assume that by "while" was meant "white."

    I can't speak for anyone else, white or otherwise, but why should it be "interesting"? It should instead be obvious that it was never Russia that deserved hatred - it was always communism. Communism was an ideological enemy to Western Civilisation. The Soviet Union repressed human rights in order to achieve its supposed socialist utopia, and sent dissenters to the Gulag, where millions of them died.

    They now have private property and allow the open practice of Christianity in Russia. It is not a totalitarian country. Its government is not liberal in the Western sense, but it is probably less authoritarian now than any Russian government has been in the past few centuries. Geopolitically, Russia has its own sphere of interest and influence, but this does not encompass much more than neighboring states most of which were formerly parts of the Soviet Union or Tsarist Russia. Putin is not going to send his army through the Fulda Gap to conquer Western Europe. He just wants to sell Western Europe natural gas.

    The fuss about Russia in U.S. politics today owes to two things.

    First and foremost, it is about the Democrats' effort to discredit and depose Trump, who won despite all their machinations. This was indeed "shocking," at least to them, and they have yet to recognize that (as Obama once said) elections have consequences.

    Second, it is about the attitude of neoconservatives, largely of Eastern European Jewish descent, who interpret Putin's suppression of a largely Jewish group of oligarchs/gangsters as a revival of historic Russian anti-semitism. As some wag once put it, for these people, whenever a situation is not Munich in 1938, it is Odessa in 1905.

    First and foremost, it is about the Democrats’ effort to discredit and depose Trump, who won despite all their machinations. This was indeed “shocking,” at least to them, and they have yet to recognize that (as Obama once said) elections have consequences.

    Second, it is about the attitude of neoconservatives, largely of Eastern European Jewish descent, who interpret Putin’s suppression of a largely Jewish group of oligarchs/gangsters as a revival of historic Russian anti-semitism. As some wag once put it, for these people, whenever a situation is not Munich in 1938, it is Odessa in 1905.

    Putin is the most pro-oligarch leader in the world at the moment. If it had to do with interpretation of his alleged ‘anti-semitism to businessmen’ (which in reality is the complete opposite – multiculturalism and Judeophilia and Islamophilia amongst the elites), you would not get very far with this interpretation for their agenda.

    The America’s Jewish leading Russia-conspiracy theorist, Julia Ioffe, hates Jewish oligarchs as much as any “Russia for Russians” nationalist

    Read More
    • Replies: @Crawfurdmuir
    I did not say that Putin had suppressed all oligarchs, nor did I say that the oligarchs he did not suppress were exclusively non-Jewish.

    Rather my contention was that he suppressed "a largely Jewish group of oligarchs/gangsters." Is this not true? And was it not seized upon by the neocons? Look at their embrace of Bill Browder, descendant of the notorious American communist. The younger Browder claims to be a capitalist and wears his Judaism on his sleeve.

    The fact is that many American neoconservatives, who are largely of Jewish extraction, simply detest the new non-communist Russia. They would detest any Russian government that flew the old Russian flag and supported the Orthodox Church, because of historical memories.

    American Jewish leftism has deep roots in historical grudges. The only phenomenon remotely comparable to the persistent Jewish antipathy towards a Christian Russia was the support that some Irish-Americans gave to the Irish Republican Army well into the last quarter of the twentieth century.

    Neoconservatism is the offspring of this Jewish leftism, and arose among former followers of Trotsky, together with others disenchanted with post-WWII Soviet treatment of Jews. Now that the Soviet era is over, these people have joined their leftist co-ethnics in shared detestation of post-Bolshevist Russia.

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  76. Why is Masha Gessen less strident about the “Russian meddling” story than one would expect? Is she trying to get a job in the Trump admin?

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  77. I think there is realization that they have ‘over-shot’ with the Russia conspiracy theory. Next month they will cycle to another program – that Trump hates women, or is a closet Nazi, or is suffering dementia, again.

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  78. @Steve Sailer
    There was very little anti-Russianism in America during the Cold War. Russian high culture was very prestigious in the U.S.

    But most of that high culture was destroyed in the 1990s, replaced by crappy Hollywood movies, adapted American sitcoms, McDonalds, KFC, jeans and sneakers, feminism, etc. And this was in part what your side fought for in the Cold War. And you approve of those war aims entirely, Steve. So it’s disingenuous of you to claim that you or America repsected Russian high culture. You celebrate the processes that destroyed that culture, likely forever, as a victory. And actually, you like trash culture. Roughly half of your movie reviews are positive. All Hollywood movies are stupid and vulgar.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dmitry

    But most of that high culture was destroyed in the 1990s, replaced by crappy Hollywood movies, adapted American sitcoms, McDonalds, KFC, jeans and sneakers, feminism, etc. And this was in part what your side fought for in the Cold War. And you approve of those war aims entirely, Steve. So it’s disingenuous of you to claim that you or America repsected Russian high culture. You celebrate the processes that destroyed that culture, likely forever, as a victory. And actually, you like trash culture. Roughly half of your movie reviews are positive. All Hollywood movies are stupid and vulgar.
     
    Can't entirely blame the Americans, given the box-office receipts and official treatment (mainly from people who know nothing of cinema) certain talented filmmakers like Zvyagintsev receive.

    The only good film of last year, Nelyubov' - was the 99th most popular film of last year.


    https://www.kinopoisk.ru/index.php?level=6&view_best_box=1&view_best_box=3&view_year=2017

    , @Crawfurdmuir

    So it’s disingenuous of you to claim that you or America repsected Russian high culture.
     
    I don't think Russian high culture was broadly popular in the U.S. during the Cold War era, and it is no more popular today. High culture of any sort never was broadly popular in this country.

    Yet both then and now Russian music, opera, and ballet were and still are respected and supported by the sorts of Americans that appreciated high culture of all types. Are symphonies by Tchaikovsky or Shostakovich less frequently performed today than they were fifty years ago? Do we less often see a Russian ballet or opera at Lincoln Center now than we did then?
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  79. @Glossy
    But most of that high culture was destroyed in the 1990s, replaced by crappy Hollywood movies, adapted American sitcoms, McDonalds, KFC, jeans and sneakers, feminism, etc. And this was in part what your side fought for in the Cold War. And you approve of those war aims entirely, Steve. So it's disingenuous of you to claim that you or America repsected Russian high culture. You celebrate the processes that destroyed that culture, likely forever, as a victory. And actually, you like trash culture. Roughly half of your movie reviews are positive. All Hollywood movies are stupid and vulgar.

    But most of that high culture was destroyed in the 1990s, replaced by crappy Hollywood movies, adapted American sitcoms, McDonalds, KFC, jeans and sneakers, feminism, etc. And this was in part what your side fought for in the Cold War. And you approve of those war aims entirely, Steve. So it’s disingenuous of you to claim that you or America repsected Russian high culture. You celebrate the processes that destroyed that culture, likely forever, as a victory. And actually, you like trash culture. Roughly half of your movie reviews are positive. All Hollywood movies are stupid and vulgar.

    Can’t entirely blame the Americans, given the box-office receipts and official treatment (mainly from people who know nothing of cinema) certain talented filmmakers like Zvyagintsev receive.

    The only good film of last year, Nelyubov’ – was the 99th most popular film of last year.

    https://www.kinopoisk.ru/index.php?level=6&view_best_box=1&view_best_box=3&view_year=2017

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  80. @Seamus Padraig
    Wow. Masha Gessen is beginning to display unmistakable symptoms of sanity. She should go see a shrink immediately!

    She probably just needed to meet the right guy.

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  81. @Dmitry

    First and foremost, it is about the Democrats’ effort to discredit and depose Trump, who won despite all their machinations. This was indeed “shocking,” at least to them, and they have yet to recognize that (as Obama once said) elections have consequences.

    Second, it is about the attitude of neoconservatives, largely of Eastern European Jewish descent, who interpret Putin’s suppression of a largely Jewish group of oligarchs/gangsters as a revival of historic Russian anti-semitism. As some wag once put it, for these people, whenever a situation is not Munich in 1938, it is Odessa in 1905.
     

    Putin is the most pro-oligarch leader in the world at the moment. If it had to do with interpretation of his alleged 'anti-semitism to businessmen' (which in reality is the complete opposite - multiculturalism and Judeophilia and Islamophilia amongst the elites), you would not get very far with this interpretation for their agenda.

    The America's Jewish leading Russia-conspiracy theorist, Julia Ioffe, hates Jewish oligarchs as much as any "Russia for Russians" nationalist

    https://twitter.com/juliaioffe/status/793218192189554688

    https://twitter.com/juliaioffe/status/793217915243880450

    I did not say that Putin had suppressed all oligarchs, nor did I say that the oligarchs he did not suppress were exclusively non-Jewish.

    Rather my contention was that he suppressed “a largely Jewish group of oligarchs/gangsters.” Is this not true? And was it not seized upon by the neocons? Look at their embrace of Bill Browder, descendant of the notorious American communist. The younger Browder claims to be a capitalist and wears his Judaism on his sleeve.

    The fact is that many American neoconservatives, who are largely of Jewish extraction, simply detest the new non-communist Russia. They would detest any Russian government that flew the old Russian flag and supported the Orthodox Church, because of historical memories.

    American Jewish leftism has deep roots in historical grudges. The only phenomenon remotely comparable to the persistent Jewish antipathy towards a Christian Russia was the support that some Irish-Americans gave to the Irish Republican Army well into the last quarter of the twentieth century.

    Neoconservatism is the offspring of this Jewish leftism, and arose among former followers of Trotsky, together with others disenchanted with post-WWII Soviet treatment of Jews. Now that the Soviet era is over, these people have joined their leftist co-ethnics in shared detestation of post-Bolshevist Russia.

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    • Replies: @Dmitry

    I did not say that Putin had suppressed all oligarchs, nor did I say that the oligarchs he did not suppress were exclusively non-Jewish.

    Rather my contention was that he suppressed “a largely Jewish group of oligarchs/gangsters.” Is this not true? And was it not seized upon by the neocons? Look at their embrace of Bill Browder, descendant of the notorious American communist. The younger Browder claims to be a capitalist and wears his Judaism on his sleeve.
     

    There was not national component to oligarch infighting. The elite have a remarkable multinationalism, and all of them marry into different nationalities - including Putin himself, whose wife I believe is from mixed-nationality origin.

    The fatal blow to Berezovsky's fortune (who was 3/4 Jewish) before he killed himself, was Roman Abramovich (also Jewish).
    https://www.theguardian.com/law/2012/sep/04/london-abramovich-v-berezovsky-court-case

    There's also a bit of a zero-sum component for oligarchs, as when one falls, it allows the fortune for another one to be made. When one oligarch falls, the other ones will not necessarily be unhappy (they are not some kind of class with common interests across them).


    The fact is that many American neoconservatives, who are largely of Jewish extraction, simply detest the new non-communist Russia. They would detest any Russian government that flew the old Russian flag and supported the Orthodox Church, because of historical memories.
     
    The historical memory is that millions of Jews were saved from the holocaust, but were also subject to moderate restrictions and hazing.

    Russia's historical memory of America in 1945 - was that it had just saved the country on a logistical basis from total destruction through the land-lease program, but that doesn't stop the Iron Curtain from arising in the same year.

    Conflict between Russia and America is a classic case of perceived conflicting interests. The historical memories should have been positive between these countries who had helped each other in the most vital way imaginable - but historical memories have little impact on which countries are allies and enemies.

    American Jewish leftism has deep roots in historical grudges. The only phenomenon remotely comparable to the persistent Jewish antipathy towards a Christian Russia was the support that some Irish-Americans gave to the Irish Republican Army well into the last quarter of the twentieth century.
     

    I was in Israel last week (not my first time there - I have lived there for several months five years ago). I don't perceive any racism or grudges to Russians (as there are Russian - and some American - flags on all kinds of buildings, and on restaurants, and balconies) - well perhaps from the Ukrainians there (I took a photo of some Ukrainian flags as well).

    Interestingly, the television was all talking about Putin last week, but they were discussing it in relation to Syria (asking whether he would or would not reign back Iran). They follow their own interests, without much interest in historical grudges (which doesn't explain present positions).

    In the case of Putin, you can see this in the opposite sense. Putin is the most pro-Jewish and friendly to Judaism politician there has been in the country's history. On an emotional level, he should be getting heavy support. But the Israelis have zero interest in that stuff and really don't give a shit what Jews in Russia are saying, or even what Yakov Kedmi's is sayiing - for them the discussion on the news is all about direct interests (what happens next week or next month).


    Neoconservatism is the offspring of this Jewish leftism, and arose among former followers of Trotsky, together with others disenchanted with post-WWII Soviet treatment of Jews. Now that the Soviet era is over, these people have joined their leftist co-ethnics in shared detestation of post-Bolshevist Russia.
     
    The left was traditionally sympathetic to the Soviet Union and in thrall to KGB propaganda. With Putin, you can an actual KGB worker in the Kremlin, just the guy they were supporting a few years back. So I don't see a left-right distinction which can flip like this, except for the most cynical form as occurring in internal US politics.

    Until 2012, it was Obama who was criticizing the Republicans for being anti-Russian, and vice-versa.

    What happened afterwards was a genuine stepping on each other's shoes (real conflict between the countries) in Ukraine. But also subsequent instrumentalisation of such international political conflict, for use as a political weapon to take down Donald Trump.

    It's now clear for everyone that the Russia-conspiracy theory is simply the latter.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T1409sXBleg

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  82. @Glossy
    But most of that high culture was destroyed in the 1990s, replaced by crappy Hollywood movies, adapted American sitcoms, McDonalds, KFC, jeans and sneakers, feminism, etc. And this was in part what your side fought for in the Cold War. And you approve of those war aims entirely, Steve. So it's disingenuous of you to claim that you or America repsected Russian high culture. You celebrate the processes that destroyed that culture, likely forever, as a victory. And actually, you like trash culture. Roughly half of your movie reviews are positive. All Hollywood movies are stupid and vulgar.

    So it’s disingenuous of you to claim that you or America repsected Russian high culture.

    I don’t think Russian high culture was broadly popular in the U.S. during the Cold War era, and it is no more popular today. High culture of any sort never was broadly popular in this country.

    Yet both then and now Russian music, opera, and ballet were and still are respected and supported by the sorts of Americans that appreciated high culture of all types. Are symphonies by Tchaikovsky or Shostakovich less frequently performed today than they were fifty years ago? Do we less often see a Russian ballet or opera at Lincoln Center now than we did then?

    Read More
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  83. @The Big Red Scary
    I tremble to think that Masha Gessen is the sanest person in the asylum. My mother has been going on about the end of Western Civilization since I started first grade. It seems it has finally arrived.

    My mother has been going on about the end of Western Civilization since I started first grade.

    My kids can say the same thing about their father.

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  84. @Steve Sailer
    There was very little anti-Russianism in America during the Cold War. Russian high culture was very prestigious in the U.S.

    Weirdly, during the Cold War, the cliché was that Russian women were dumpy and frumpy, like Mrs. Krushchev. Quite a turnaround on that one!

    Reminds me of Gore Vidal’s response when asked what would have happened had Krushchev, not Kennedy, been assassinated: “With history one can never be certain, but I think I can safely say that Aristotle Onassis would not have married Mrs. Krushchev.”

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  85. @Chrisnonymous
    Oh, they're out there. My co-workers have been going on about it. In the early days, I used to hear

    "it's the final nail in the coffin"

    "the dossier is almost completely confirmed now"

    "Trump's admitted everything"

    and all variety of BS.

    Even just last week, one was saying he expects Trump to be impeached and that if the Democrats take both houses of Congress it's definitely going to happen.

    Right now, he's on his high horse about gun control, but I expect the Russia probe will come around again.

    Yep, “gun control,” another perennially losing issue for the Democrats.

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  86. Yep, “gun control,” another perennially losing issue for the Democrats.

    Blame that on the 14th Amendment, which is the Republicans’ doing. 19th-century gun bans were quite popular around the country. But applying them to white folks across the board is so ham-handed that only Englishmen would be stupid enough to do it.

    However, the coming “majority of color”, means a majority of Americans simply will not be able to be trusted with firearms. (Look at California now.) And their white neighbors will agree.

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  87. @Crawfurdmuir
    I did not say that Putin had suppressed all oligarchs, nor did I say that the oligarchs he did not suppress were exclusively non-Jewish.

    Rather my contention was that he suppressed "a largely Jewish group of oligarchs/gangsters." Is this not true? And was it not seized upon by the neocons? Look at their embrace of Bill Browder, descendant of the notorious American communist. The younger Browder claims to be a capitalist and wears his Judaism on his sleeve.

    The fact is that many American neoconservatives, who are largely of Jewish extraction, simply detest the new non-communist Russia. They would detest any Russian government that flew the old Russian flag and supported the Orthodox Church, because of historical memories.

    American Jewish leftism has deep roots in historical grudges. The only phenomenon remotely comparable to the persistent Jewish antipathy towards a Christian Russia was the support that some Irish-Americans gave to the Irish Republican Army well into the last quarter of the twentieth century.

    Neoconservatism is the offspring of this Jewish leftism, and arose among former followers of Trotsky, together with others disenchanted with post-WWII Soviet treatment of Jews. Now that the Soviet era is over, these people have joined their leftist co-ethnics in shared detestation of post-Bolshevist Russia.

    I did not say that Putin had suppressed all oligarchs, nor did I say that the oligarchs he did not suppress were exclusively non-Jewish.

    Rather my contention was that he suppressed “a largely Jewish group of oligarchs/gangsters.” Is this not true? And was it not seized upon by the neocons? Look at their embrace of Bill Browder, descendant of the notorious American communist. The younger Browder claims to be a capitalist and wears his Judaism on his sleeve.

    There was not national component to oligarch infighting. The elite have a remarkable multinationalism, and all of them marry into different nationalities – including Putin himself, whose wife I believe is from mixed-nationality origin.

    The fatal blow to Berezovsky’s fortune (who was 3/4 Jewish) before he killed himself, was Roman Abramovich (also Jewish).

    https://www.theguardian.com/law/2012/sep/04/london-abramovich-v-berezovsky-court-case

    There’s also a bit of a zero-sum component for oligarchs, as when one falls, it allows the fortune for another one to be made. When one oligarch falls, the other ones will not necessarily be unhappy (they are not some kind of class with common interests across them).

    The fact is that many American neoconservatives, who are largely of Jewish extraction, simply detest the new non-communist Russia. They would detest any Russian government that flew the old Russian flag and supported the Orthodox Church, because of historical memories.

    The historical memory is that millions of Jews were saved from the holocaust, but were also subject to moderate restrictions and hazing.

    Russia’s historical memory of America in 1945 – was that it had just saved the country on a logistical basis from total destruction through the land-lease program, but that doesn’t stop the Iron Curtain from arising in the same year.

    Conflict between Russia and America is a classic case of perceived conflicting interests. The historical memories should have been positive between these countries who had helped each other in the most vital way imaginable – but historical memories have little impact on which countries are allies and enemies.

    American Jewish leftism has deep roots in historical grudges. The only phenomenon remotely comparable to the persistent Jewish antipathy towards a Christian Russia was the support that some Irish-Americans gave to the Irish Republican Army well into the last quarter of the twentieth century.

    I was in Israel last week (not my first time there – I have lived there for several months five years ago). I don’t perceive any racism or grudges to Russians (as there are Russian – and some American – flags on all kinds of buildings, and on restaurants, and balconies) – well perhaps from the Ukrainians there (I took a photo of some Ukrainian flags as well).

    Interestingly, the television was all talking about Putin last week, but they were discussing it in relation to Syria (asking whether he would or would not reign back Iran). They follow their own interests, without much interest in historical grudges (which doesn’t explain present positions).

    In the case of Putin, you can see this in the opposite sense. Putin is the most pro-Jewish and friendly to Judaism politician there has been in the country’s history. On an emotional level, he should be getting heavy support. But the Israelis have zero interest in that stuff and really don’t give a shit what Jews in Russia are saying, or even what Yakov Kedmi’s is sayiing – for them the discussion on the news is all about direct interests (what happens next week or next month).

    Neoconservatism is the offspring of this Jewish leftism, and arose among former followers of Trotsky, together with others disenchanted with post-WWII Soviet treatment of Jews. Now that the Soviet era is over, these people have joined their leftist co-ethnics in shared detestation of post-Bolshevist Russia.

    The left was traditionally sympathetic to the Soviet Union and in thrall to KGB propaganda. With Putin, you can an actual KGB worker in the Kremlin, just the guy they were supporting a few years back. So I don’t see a left-right distinction which can flip like this, except for the most cynical form as occurring in internal US politics.

    Until 2012, it was Obama who was criticizing the Republicans for being anti-Russian, and vice-versa.

    What happened afterwards was a genuine stepping on each other’s shoes (real conflict between the countries) in Ukraine. But also subsequent instrumentalisation of such international political conflict, for use as a political weapon to take down Donald Trump.

    It’s now clear for everyone that the Russia-conspiracy theory is simply the latter.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Romanian
    What does Israel have to do with American lefty Jews? The worlviews are different, even if they retain some historical angst. Herzl was right that having their own country where they can fill every available role freely would normalize the Israelis and their worldview.
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  88. @Dmitry

    I did not say that Putin had suppressed all oligarchs, nor did I say that the oligarchs he did not suppress were exclusively non-Jewish.

    Rather my contention was that he suppressed “a largely Jewish group of oligarchs/gangsters.” Is this not true? And was it not seized upon by the neocons? Look at their embrace of Bill Browder, descendant of the notorious American communist. The younger Browder claims to be a capitalist and wears his Judaism on his sleeve.
     

    There was not national component to oligarch infighting. The elite have a remarkable multinationalism, and all of them marry into different nationalities - including Putin himself, whose wife I believe is from mixed-nationality origin.

    The fatal blow to Berezovsky's fortune (who was 3/4 Jewish) before he killed himself, was Roman Abramovich (also Jewish).
    https://www.theguardian.com/law/2012/sep/04/london-abramovich-v-berezovsky-court-case

    There's also a bit of a zero-sum component for oligarchs, as when one falls, it allows the fortune for another one to be made. When one oligarch falls, the other ones will not necessarily be unhappy (they are not some kind of class with common interests across them).


    The fact is that many American neoconservatives, who are largely of Jewish extraction, simply detest the new non-communist Russia. They would detest any Russian government that flew the old Russian flag and supported the Orthodox Church, because of historical memories.
     
    The historical memory is that millions of Jews were saved from the holocaust, but were also subject to moderate restrictions and hazing.

    Russia's historical memory of America in 1945 - was that it had just saved the country on a logistical basis from total destruction through the land-lease program, but that doesn't stop the Iron Curtain from arising in the same year.

    Conflict between Russia and America is a classic case of perceived conflicting interests. The historical memories should have been positive between these countries who had helped each other in the most vital way imaginable - but historical memories have little impact on which countries are allies and enemies.

    American Jewish leftism has deep roots in historical grudges. The only phenomenon remotely comparable to the persistent Jewish antipathy towards a Christian Russia was the support that some Irish-Americans gave to the Irish Republican Army well into the last quarter of the twentieth century.
     

    I was in Israel last week (not my first time there - I have lived there for several months five years ago). I don't perceive any racism or grudges to Russians (as there are Russian - and some American - flags on all kinds of buildings, and on restaurants, and balconies) - well perhaps from the Ukrainians there (I took a photo of some Ukrainian flags as well).

    Interestingly, the television was all talking about Putin last week, but they were discussing it in relation to Syria (asking whether he would or would not reign back Iran). They follow their own interests, without much interest in historical grudges (which doesn't explain present positions).

    In the case of Putin, you can see this in the opposite sense. Putin is the most pro-Jewish and friendly to Judaism politician there has been in the country's history. On an emotional level, he should be getting heavy support. But the Israelis have zero interest in that stuff and really don't give a shit what Jews in Russia are saying, or even what Yakov Kedmi's is sayiing - for them the discussion on the news is all about direct interests (what happens next week or next month).


    Neoconservatism is the offspring of this Jewish leftism, and arose among former followers of Trotsky, together with others disenchanted with post-WWII Soviet treatment of Jews. Now that the Soviet era is over, these people have joined their leftist co-ethnics in shared detestation of post-Bolshevist Russia.
     
    The left was traditionally sympathetic to the Soviet Union and in thrall to KGB propaganda. With Putin, you can an actual KGB worker in the Kremlin, just the guy they were supporting a few years back. So I don't see a left-right distinction which can flip like this, except for the most cynical form as occurring in internal US politics.

    Until 2012, it was Obama who was criticizing the Republicans for being anti-Russian, and vice-versa.

    What happened afterwards was a genuine stepping on each other's shoes (real conflict between the countries) in Ukraine. But also subsequent instrumentalisation of such international political conflict, for use as a political weapon to take down Donald Trump.

    It's now clear for everyone that the Russia-conspiracy theory is simply the latter.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T1409sXBleg

    What does Israel have to do with American lefty Jews? The worlviews are different, even if they retain some historical angst. Herzl was right that having their own country where they can fill every available role freely would normalize the Israelis and their worldview.

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  89. @Beckow
    Even Masha Gessen is smarter than Thomas Friedman. And that's something.

    Actually, that’s nothing.

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