Manafort And Context
The ability of many Americans to grasp context has been severely compromised and the media is primarily responsible for that.
The major media outlets require clicks and ratings and the clicks and ratings are generated by the most fantastic headline the news networks can create. Context around the facts that would actually inform the reader or viewer is not a relevant factor in generating clicks and ratings.
An excellent example of this loss of context was just this morning from CNN’s website with the story of the Manafort indictment – which made mention of Manafort (briefly) being employed by the Trump campaign at the top of the article, entirely omitted that Manafort was employed by Podesta (the Clinton campaign manager) at the time that the alleged crimes occurred and at the bottom of the article declared “The charges against Manafort and Gates are unrelated to the Trump campaign…”
The charges against the secondary characters appear to revolve around lying to the FBI and failing to file paperwork. These may be unsavory criminal acts but the assumption that these may be the evidence of Trump conspiring with Putin to commit treason is unfounded without considerably more evidence.
On the other side – the ‘Hillary sold uranium to Putin’ story also loses context. By all accounts the uranium in question is not weapons grade so the treason argument is specious. What we do not know about that transaction is if there was a quid pro quo in which Bill and Hillary profited from Hillary exercising her government authority in approving that transaction. There is reasonable evidence that Bill and Hillary received financial reward from wealthy Russians at the same time this transaction was being considered and ultimately approved by Hillary. It certainly has the distinctive odor of corruption but we do not know if a quid pro quo occurred.
In regard to the Steele dossier we also lose context – the Democrat media proclaims it is not a crime to commit opposition research on the opposing candidates. That is a true statement – but that is not where the alleged crime was committed. The potential crime here is if the Obama administration used that dossier as justification to obtain a FISA warrant in order to commit espionage against people who were an integral part of the Trump campaign. The obvious second question is if the information acquired via the FISA warrant targeting the Trump campaign staff ever made its’ way to the Clinton campaign, the DNC or any advocacy groups aligned with Clinton/Obama or was used in the campaign in any manner.
Manafort, Podesta, Flynn, Clinton – for all of these people there is more than justifiable suspicion that they are corrupt and willing to abuse power in order to benefit themselves. That should not shock anyone. I would submit that the ease with which we now toss around the word ‘treason’ in regard to the politicos that we do not like is because tossing around the term ‘corrupt’ is no longer effective – and it is no longer effective because we all understand that the corruption is so pervasive that calling someone ‘corrupt’ is no longer a distinguishing characteristic.
The context we have lost is that DC is a cesspool. Arguing over who has dived deeper into the cesspool is beyond foolish when we should be uniting to get rid of the cesspool and taking steps to eliminate the possibility that the cesspool can ever be recreated.
The argument has become who has the less corrupt politicians and functionaries rather than the unanimous rejection of all of the corruption.
One would think this would cause rational people to rethink this whole thing – but we would rather argue to the effect that your guy stinks more than my guy and if he doesn’t – I need to throw some stink on him to make it so.
We get the government that we deserve.