Sunday, January 08, 2017

The Mainstream Media’s Dangerous “Witch Hunt” Against Trump

New York Post

Democrats wage anti-Trump offensive for their own gain

By Michael Goodwin

This is a first: Donald Trump is guilty of an understatement, of making a molehill out of a mountain. He called the Washington furor over Russian hacking a “witch hunt” when it is actually far more sinister and dangerous.

Witch hunts end. The Washington mob aims to make sure the election never ends and that Trump can never govern.

There are no modern precedents to the scandalous attempts to smear and undermine the president-elect. Nearly nine weeks after his victory and less than two weeks before he takes the oath, the voter-nullification plot is growing more vile.

It began when the Clinton campaign and her donors tried to overturn results in key states, then tried to steal the election outright by intimidating electors of the Electoral College.

When all that failed, the establishment forces that opposed Trump all along — the Obama White House, members of both parties, the Democratic media and Big Government activists — switched their goal to thwarting his presidency. One example: They aim to deny confirmation to as many as eight Cabinet picks.

This is not mere politics. This is half the country going rogue in a fit of madness.

Most alarming is the newest recruit to the confederacy. The intelligence community, including leaders of the FBI and CIA, is pushing the Russian hacking narrative in unscrupulous ways.

Consider that the same media organizations that led the campaign assault on Trump were leaked details of the hacking report before Trump saw it.

The leaks came after Trump expressed doubts about Russia’s role and any election impact. Lest the rookie miss the message, Chuck Schumer, the Dems’ man in the Senate, made like a Soprano in a TV interview: “Let me tell you: You take on the intelligence community — they have six ways from Sunday at getting back at you.”

Going public with classified information, which the leakers did, is a crime, but these days it’s acceptable if it serves the left’s political purpose.

Is Schumer suggesting CIA analysts would stay silent about a terrorist plot? Would they feed Trump misinformation to get back at him?

As for the report itself, there’s not much there there, at least in the version made public. It is full of assertions that Vladimir Putin wanted to hurt Clinton and help Trump, but zero evidence is offered. I repeat: zero evidence.

Instead, the 25-page document serves up a dog’s stew of innuendo and anecdotes. Examples include that Russian television operating in America said nice things about Occupy Wall Street.

Well, so did President Obama and half the Democratic Party. Is Obama a Russian agent?

Another silly example is that Russian TV runs lots of anti-fracking reports. Well, Gov. Cuomo also opposes fracking. The report cites the fact that Russian TV anchors are required to have social-media accounts as proof of Putin’s evil intent.

Here’s a fact that really matters and it’s not in the report: The FBI concluded that Russians hacked the Democratic National Committee without ever inspecting its computers. The gumshoes say the DNC balked, but party leaders say the FBI never asked. In the end, it let a private firm search the computers for evidence.

None of this is normal. And it’s no excuse that Trump himself often veers outside the lines. He won the election fair and square, period.

Then again, some Democrats can’t bring themselves to admit that. Nancy Pelosi, the House minority leader, was spitting fire after she was briefed on the classified report.

Asked if she believed hacking cost Clinton the election, Pelosi declared to reporters: “You were accomplices in this. Every single day you reported there was an e-mail that was embarrassing to the Clinton operation, without saying we know this because of a disruption by a foreign power of our election system. You knew that.”

Wow, so journalists are “accomplices” when they report embarrassing news. Nothing could be more Putin-like than her view of the media’s job.

To be clear, it may be true that Putin ordered that the e-mails of John Podesta and the DNC be stolen and given to WikiLeaks. But officials also admit that Russia hacked our government and industries for years and always pushes negative propaganda about America, including during the 2012 campaign.

So why the sudden DefCon outrage, especially when the intelligence report concludes there was no attempt to change vote tallies?

The furor amounts to sounding five alarms for a dumpster fire. It’s a dumb overreaction, or part of the effort to thwart a president the establishment doesn’t want. Either way, intelligence leaders are proving they are part of the swamp that must be drained.

By all means, America needs better cybersecurity and a retaliation policy to act as a deterrent. The current president has no interest in the issue, so perhaps we’ll get better policies when we get a new president. Assuming, of course, the man who won the election actually makes it to the Oval Office.


What We Learned, or Didn't, from the 'Russian' Hackers


Of all the tantrums being thrown by the Democrats in their inability to accept defeat and move on, perhaps the most absurd is the Great Russian Hacking Scandal.

Did the Russians under express orders of Communist Party General Secretary... scratch that... President Vladimir Putin himself direct the hacking of the computers of the Democratic National Committee and the Hillary Clinton campaign?

Well, yeah, probably -- if we are to believe our (for the next two weeks) Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, who regrettably is not able to show the actual evidence to the public for fear of "compromising sources" or some such.

Clapper, it will be remembered, blatantly lied to the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence on March 13, 2013, when he replied to Senator Ron Wyden's question "Does the NSA collect any type of data at all on millions or hundreds of millions of Americans?" with a resounding "no," which the DNI then doubled down on.

Poor Clapper got a bit of egg on his face, several dozen actually, only three months later when Eric Snowden revealed to the world that the NSA was collecting just such data on those millions of Americans via our cellphones.

But no matter.  Let's assume, arguendo, that James is telling the truth this time. After all, John McCain and Lindsey Graham assure us it's true.  (If you're interested in more on Clapper, I recommend the wryly titled, now at day 1397.)

Let's ignore too the well known fact that every country, friend or foe, with sufficient computer capability is cyberspying on as many allies and enemies as much as possible all the time. Let's also ignore the other well-known fact that the USA over the years has covertly monkeyed with the elections of other countries on several occasions, against friends and foes, most recently our supposed great ally Israel. It's no surprise Barack Obama would do just about anything in his power to upend someone he despised far more, until a few weeks ago, than Vladimir Putin -- Benjamin Netanyahu.

In fact, I'd be willing to bet that Obama spent more U.S. taxpayer money -- via his cut-out OneVoice -- to defeat Netanyahu than Putin ever did to defeat Hillary.

You know how I know? Hacking into the Podesta emails must have cost about five dollars -- okay, fifteen. Can you imagine this conversation?

FSB AGENT: Comrade, er, President Putin.  You will never believe this. We were able to obtain the emails of John Podesta, the campaign manager of Mrs. Clinton, with a simple "phishing" trick.

PUTIN:  Agent Shostakovich, do you want to go to Lubyanka?  No one is that stupid.  This is 2016.

Which leads me to the real question. What was learned by the American people, the Russians, or anybody else by the supposed Russian hack of the Hillary campaign and the DNC?  Let's break it down to three basic areas that appeared via WikiLeaks.

  1. The mainstream media was 99.9% in the pocket of the Democratic Party and their candidate Hillary Clinton.
  2. Backbiting goes on inside political campaigns.
  3. Democratic Party officials wanted Hillary, and absolutely not Bernie Sanders, to be the nominee .

Am I missing anything of importance? I don't think so. More importantly, was there anything in the WikiLeaks that anyone with an IQ in the proverbial triple digits wouldn't have assumed in the first place?  Not that I can think of.

Yes, it was amusing to read the details and imagine some scoundrels being embarrassed, but they really weren't affected in the end anyway. Glenn Thrush, then of Politico, a "reporter" literally caught submitting his articles to Podesta for approval in advance of publication, instead of being fired, got promoted to The New York Times. (The next Walter Duranty?)

So the whole thing was a big nothing. In any case, there wasn't anything there that would have changed an election, yet we still have a sudden brouhaha about the Russians doing something that they have been doing literally every day since the Cheka and even before with the czars' Okhrana. Those of us who have been to Russia or the Soviet Union know that spying is a lifestyle with them. I think we can assume we've been doing something back. This latest bit is nothing but a sideshow.

One last point: the Russians allegedly tried to hack into the Republican National Committee and failed. Wouldn't you prefer to be governed by people who know something about cybersecurity or at least took it seriously enough to protect their data? As Vladimir says in my mock-dialogue above, "This is 2016." Scratch that, 2017.

Roger L. Simon is an award-winning novelist, Academy Award-nominated screenwriter and co-founder of PJ Media.  His latest book is I Know Best:  How Moral Narcissism Is Destroying Our Republic, If  It Hasn't Already.


New York Post
Celebrity divas insult half of America with their Trump ‘resistance’

By Kyle Smith

At the Golden Globes Sunday night, and the Oscars next month, expect lots of gold-plated bitching about Donald Trump. Honorees will mourn the “dark times in America” in their $20,000 frocks. Or they’ll mutter “fight the fascists” as they head back to their Malibu estates.

They’re going gaga in La La Land. Chris Kelly, co-head writer of “SNL,” said in March that “Donald Trump is winning because everyone you’ve ever been on a bus with gets to vote too.” The tweet wasn’t shocking because of its sneering disdain for Americans. What was breathtaking was the blitheness with which it dismissed a principle as formidable and established as democracy.

Four days after Donald Trump was elected president, “SNL” transmuted that disgust for the people into contempt for its own animating principle — that it should at least try to be funny. It opened the show with an open display of grief, Kate McKinnon’s weepy, earnest (and consequently) embarrassing performance of “Hallelujah” while dressed as Hillary Clinton. The show’s first post-9/11 segment was not nearly as sorrowful in tone.

McKinnon, Kelly and many other entertainers might as well have told 46 percent of their audience to take their business elsewhere. How contemptuous is that? Even Krusty the Clown, in one of his darkest hours, vowed to spit on only one of every 50 Krusty Burgers to punish America. That’s only 2 percent! When you hate 23 times as much as Krusty, seek therapy.

Jennifer Lawrence, who wasn’t strongly identified with liberal politics before the election, wrote an angry open letter after it, telling America, “Do not let this defeat you — let this enrage you! Let it motivate you! Let this be the fire you didn’t have before.”

Her latest movie, “Passengers,” which will need to earn well over $300 million to be profitable, has fizzled, bringing in only $130 million in its opening weeks. Might be a coincidence. Or maybe her new Dixie Chick shtick is turning off her fans.

“RISE UP” and “THE REVOLUTION IS COMING” tweeted Katy Perry in defiance of Trump’s election. “This is an embarrassing night for America. We’ve let a hatemonger lead our great nation,” agreed Captain America, Chris Evans, whose tweet virtually tagged 46 percent of American voters as supporters of the hate that Trump supposedly mongered. Chrissy Teigen, also on Twitter, called Trump a “POS” (meaning “piece of s–t”) for saying Mike Pence should not have been hectored from the stage by a star of “Hamilton.”

Michael Shannon — General Zod in “Man of Steel” — joined fellow actors Debra Messing and Rosie O’Donnell in signing an open letter published in The New York Times exhorting, “Fill the streets of DC with millions, millions more demonstrate in every major city and small town all over US and the world, demanding that Trump-Pence be prevented from taking office before January 20.” It was an open call for mob rule to overturn the results of an election. And somehow Trump is the fascist?

Celebrities have every right to say what they think, including the remarkably dumb things they think, and if they want to turn their backs on half of America, their diminished relevance and pay is of little concern to the rest of us.

Possibly the craving of performers to be taken seriously is understandable when you consider how intellectually insecure they can be. Lawrence has been acting since she was 14 and didn’t attend college. Shannon is a high-school dropout. Perry left high school at age 15. Evans did not attend college. Teigen attended community college “for a couple of days.” They look around and see a Nobel Prize winning columnist like Paul Krugman of The New York Times inveighing against Trump, and they long to be valued as much for their thoughts as their looks. They hunger to be known as “activists” in addition to mere actors or singers.

But they’re supposed to spread joy, not rancor. And they’re oblivious to the way they motivate Trump supporters. A central reason for his victory was the widespread conviction of his backers that progressive politics, as relentless and fanatical as the Viet Cong, was infiltrating and attacking every nook of American life, not excluding bakeries, the national anthem, restrooms and now even pronouns. (Don’t call her a her if she wants to be called zir, zid or indeed Zod.)

Dragging politics in where it doesn’t belong makes life more combative, irritating and exhausting. It means no escape, no outlet, no letup, anywhere. The Viet Progs not only never give up, they never take a week off or stop advancing into new territory. We keep saying the country is too divided and it is. But five minutes ago the national anthem was considered uncontroversial. Now it’s a fount of disputation and bitterness. Whose fault is that, progressives?