The Big Lie: Russia Stole the Election

“If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it.” - Joseph Goebbels

Paul Roderick Gregory wrote in Forbes, “The Kremlin knows that repeated lies are eventually taken as truth, so that an unsourced narrative, repeated, will eventually become the ‘truth.’”  Of course Joseph Goebbels said it more concisely.  The public is now being subjected to a barrage of reports that the Russians are in effect responsible for Donald Trump being elected president.

Naturally Donald Trump is denying this.  California Rep. Eric Swalwell avers that Trump’s denials are ridiculous.  He claims, "He (Trump) is denying that the sun sets in the West."  Rep. Elijah Cummings claims, "experts agree that there is overwhelming evidence that Russia interfered with the 2016 presidential election. Overwhelming. It is not disputed, it's overwhelming."  If you disagree with this you are crazy.

The congressmen and media are basing their opinions on the October 07, 2016 “Joint Statement from the Department of Homeland Security and Office of the Director of National Intelligence on Election Security” issued by the Director of National Intelligence.  The various accounts of the meeting of the CIA with House and Senate leaders do not appear to support the claim that there was overwhelming evidence of Russian interference.  The Washington Post quoted one official saying, "It is the assessment of the intelligence community that Russia's goal here was to favor one candidate over the other, to help Trump get elected."  The article claims that the CIA has “high confidence” and that it “believes” the Russian were responsible several items.  It also states, “we are not now in a position to attribute this activity to the Russian Government.” 

This does not sound overwhelming.

Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell questioned the veracity of the intelligence.  Rep. Devin Nunes, R-Calif., the chairman of the House Intelligence Committee stated, ‘‘I’ll be the first one to come out and point at Russia if there’s clear evidence, but there is no clear evidence – even now.  There’s a lot of innuendo, lots of circumstantial evidence, that’s it.’’  Julian Assange has stated the Russian government is not the source.  The Russians have also denied it.  Craig Murray, the former UK ambassador to Uzbekistan, and a close associate of Assange, called the CIA claims “bullshit,” stating, “They are absolutely making it up.”

Naturally Donald Trump does not believe the Russians interfered in his favor.  He criticized the CIA, saying, “These are the same people that said Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction.”  He pointed out that the hacking, ‘‘could be Russia. And it could be China. And it could be some guy in his home in New Jersey.’’  The guy from New Jersey is a real possibility.  During congressional hearings on the Clinton emails Congressman Chaffetz asked Director Comey, “Are you implying in that statement that the private email servers of Secretary Clinton were perhaps less secure than a Gmail account?”  Comey responded, “Yes.”   During the same hearing Congressman Blum claimed that, “the going rate to hack into somebody’s Gmail account: $129.

Donald Trump is being portrayed as not very bright and indifferent to intelligence matters.  He is “a man known to have a very short attention span and a dislike of reading.”  Michael V. Hayden, former N.S.A. director, stated, “To have the president-elect of the United States simply reject the fact-based narrative that the intelligence community puts together because it conflicts with his a priori assumptions — wow.”  Politico reported, “Trump's highly public rebukes of the U.S. intelligence apparatus will undermine morale in the spy agencies.”  They state, “If the U.S. president doesn't believe his own intelligence officials, why should anyone else?” and “There is nothing more sacred to intelligence officers than their professionalism, honesty and non-partisanship.”

Is there a problem with intelligence being misused?  50 intelligence analysts formally complained that their reports on ISIS were being inappropriately altered.  The FBI went through 650,000 emails In 8 days and they failed to recommend prosecution for Clinton’s misuse of classified material.  Trumps critics on the left have been joined by John McCain and Lindsey Graham who issued a joint statement with Chuck Schumer.  It read, "This cannot become a partisan issue. The stakes are too high for our country."

McCain seems to have a particular problem with Trump’s relationship with Putin, whom McCain calls “a thug and a murderer and a killer and a KGB agent.”  What did Senator McCain say when President Obama told Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, “Tell Vald that I’ll have more flexibility once I am re-elected.” Senator McCain appears to have he own problems with intelligence.  When he proclaims someone his hero they turn out to be ISIS or Al-Qaeda.

What is the purpose of this elaborate scheme?  White House spokesman Eric Schultz announced,  “This is not an effort to challenge the outcome of the election.”  Senator Angus King commented, “I’m not trying to relitigate the election.  I’m just trying to prevent this from happening again.”  These comments will be repeated endlessly and they should concern us all.  It should remind us of Otto von Bismarck’s remark, "Nothing is proven until it is officially denied."

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