Since the hara-kiri of the American electorate on November 8, 2016, we have had a few scattered tip-offs about the mentality that will soon be holding the Executive Branch of the government.
Election recounts are commonplace in cases where the results were close, and sometimes it is automatic. But when Hillary Clinton recently sought a recount in three very close states, Donald Trump first referred to it as “sad,” then unleashed his Chief of Staff Reince Priebus to deliver a hyper-emotional condemnation of the recount effort. He then personally took to Twitter to say he would have won the popular vote by “three million” if not for illegal aliens being fraudulently allowed to vote.
The stellar fact-checking, myth-busting website www.Snopes.com has looked into Trump’s charge. They found only a few right-wing media outlets repeating the claim, none of them having any evidence to back it up, apart from two (count ‘em, two) tweets by a far right Twitter account. The ironically named @JumpVote is operated by a guy named Greg Phillips. The two tweets are reproduced in the Snopes piece. No shock in learning that neither tweet has any supporting evidence for three million illegal aliens voting, just a threat of legal action over the supposed voter fraud.
This same Greg Phillips once claimed that Obamacare was being used to register tens of millions of illegal voters, again without stating a case for it.
From the Snopes article: “Based on these past statements, it seems likely that Phillips’ case that three million non-citizens voted in the past election is related to his claim that ‘illegals’ are registering to vote via Obamacare. In the absence of supporting data, however, he has really made no case at all. The ‘three million non-citizens’ figure may just as well have been plucked out of thin air.”
Phillips’ two-tweet wonder of the three million illegal votes was posted two weeks ago. A check of his Twitter feed in the wake of Trump’s outburst reveals brand new tweets – “Our partners at @TrueTheVote are making a statement right now supporting Trump’s claims of millions of illegal votes.” Never heard of TrueTheVote, but eventually on their web site I found a press release, which said they stand by the claim of three million illegal votes: “TrueTheVote absolutely supports President-elect Trump’s recent comment about the impact of illegal voting, as reflected in the national popular vote. We are still collecting data and will be for several months . . .”
They promised to release a report, at some point “several months” away. I was reminded of the reports of a video that was said to exist of Michelle Obama shrieking denunciations of white people. It was always on the verge of release during the 2008 campaign. It would be released “soon.” Then we had the claim by Donald Trump that he had sent a team of investigators to Hawaii to check on Obama’s birth certificate, and what they had found was dynamite. Stand by, it will be released – “soon.”
We will have to wait and see how sturdy Phillips’ information is, if ever it emerges, but plenty can be gleaned from the reaction to it. The very fact that so much has been made of such scanty material tells us a lot. Trump himself has bought into the Phillips deal. This kind of weirdness is a pattern with Trump, going back to the birther nonsense.
Then we have his claim that climate change is a hoax, and there is no drought in California. He is now threatening to investigate Hillary Clinton after saying he wouldn’t, only because she wants a recount on those three close states! We’ve seen Trump appear on the radio program of conspiracy crackpot Alex Jones, a guy who argues that the Sandy Hook massacre was a hoax, staged with actors, and that Obama is going to declare martial law in Texas. Only tabloid newspapers endorsed Trump in the 2016 campaign! His ignorance is such that he couldn’t answer a simple question about the nuclear triad, revealing that he didn’t know what it was! Why does this man retain any credibility at all? Unfortunately, tragically, the only possible answer seems to be a damning indictment of the intelligence of his supporters.
But a gullible and reactionary base of voters is not the whole story of this grim phenomenon. It is no conspiracy theory that Russia’s Putin regime staged a massive intelligence operation against the 2016 election. American intelligence sources back it up.
Can you imagine the volcano of outrage if the dictator of Russia had helped a liberal Democrat win the White House? Probably you cannot. Normal human imagination can only encompass just so much. Putin is A-OK with right-wing America now, ‘cause he’s not a commie anymore. He is every bit the human rights monstrosity that he was when he was a top KGB officer, but he allows for rampaging private corporations now, so he is brethren. Most likely the few Trump supporters who have heard about Putin’s operation in America don’t even care about it.
The support for Donald Trump from Christian Americans really requires an article dedicated just to that.
Donald Trump is frantically back-peddling on myriad promises even as he erratically plunges ahead. He freaks out over TV shows and Miss Universe contestants while he neglects to read his National Security Briefings. His stability has never been more questionable. We are in uncharted waters and anything can happen. It is no time for despair, fearfulness, rage, or anything other than clear thinking, reading a variety of views, organizing, and keeping score.