Bookies placing odds on the identity of NY Times op-ed
Whodunnit? That's the question roiling social media and news websites around the world as the hunt is on for the identity of the anonymous author of a New York Times op-ed that savaged Donald Trump and his administration.
How crazy has it gotten? Bookies around the world are giving odds on who the traitor might be.
Vice President Mike Pence – and "the field" – lead offshore bookmaking picks as the White House mole behind the anonymous bombshell New York Times op-ed blasting President Trump.
Pence was listed at 2-to-3 odds on the site MyBookie as the fifth column official who claims to be working behind the scenes to stop some of Trump's policies that they find wrongheaded.
The biggest favorite, at 1-3 odds, is "the field," someone not listed among the 18 administration officials listed by the Costa Rica-based operation.
At 2-to-3 odds, a winning bettor investing $1 would profit 66 cents. At 1-to-3, a gambler wagering $1 would net 33 cents with a win.
Why Pence? Desperate gamblers have latched on to the thinnest of reeds: the use of a single word in the op-ed that has also been used on occasion by the vice president.
The unidentified author singles out the late Arizona Sen. John McCain as "a lodestar for restoring honor to public life and our national dialogue."
The word – which Merriam-Webster defines as either "a star that leads or guides" or a person who "serves as an inspiration, model, or guide" – isn't that commonly used. But Pence apparently says it a lot, according to this mash-up posted on Twitter:
The "lodestar" hashtag is already trending on Twitter. While it might sound like a conspiracy theory, audio producer Dan Bloom explained in an interesting Twitter thread why he thinks the use of "lodestar" in the op-ed makes Pence a key suspect.
This may be the definition of "grasping at straws":
The word is "LODESTAR." Note that it comes in the same paragraph praising John McCain. That would rule out flame-throwers like Stephen Miller and Dan Scavino and suggest someone with Senate ties. This reveal is not going to take long. pic.twitter.com/NwnUtvFlko— Dan downLODESTAR Bloom (@danbl00m) September 5, 2018
"Lodestar" just seems like an unusual word to use in general, not to mention in an op-ed that's going to be widely read. It has this whiff of sanctimony. So I search for John Kelly and James Mattis ever having used the word "lodestar." Nothing. But then...— Dan downLODESTAR Bloom (@danbl00m) September 5, 2018
Pence has denied being the author of the op-ed.
On Thursday morning, Pence's Chief Deputy of Staff and Communications Director Jarrod Agen tweeted that Pence puts his name on anything he writes, and that whoever wrote the piece should be ashamed.
"The Vice President puts his name on his Op-Eds," Agen tweeted. "The @nytimes should be ashamed and so should the person who wrote the false, illogical, and gutless op-ed. Our office is above such amateur acts."
The piece, penned by a "senior official in the Trump administration," described President Donald Trump as erratic and amoral and said his aides were actively working to thwart him on decisions that are detrimental to the nation.
Pence as the author is beyond a long shot, beyond fantasy – it is a leftist delusion. It points up how truly unhinged opposition to Trump has become.
Even if every word in that op-ed is true, there is nothing impeachable or criminal described. Trump's opponents apparently can't wait until 2020 to remove him the legal and constitutional way – the American way – through an election. This makes them as treasonous as they accuse Trump of being.
Unable to make any headway in their collusion scenario, failing to find impeachable offenses elsewhere, we have now entered a new phase of TDS. With Woodward's book and this Times op-ed – the narrative that Trump is crazy and unbalanced and needs to be removed before he does something really bad – the tactics have changed.
But the goal remains the same: overturn the results of a legitimate election for the sole purpose of seizing power.