And the Weiner is! Hillary Clinton and the obedient lapdog media
Robert Bridge is an American writer and journalist. He is the author of 'Midnight in the American Empire,' How Corporations and Their Political Servants are Destroying the American Dream. @Robert_Bridge
Political pundits have been chatting up a storm over ‘The Donald’, but all that free publicity has not been a blessing for the Republican presidential nominee. Since July, Trump has grabbed wads more attention than his Democratic rival, but the majority of that coverage (91 percent) has been hostile, according to a new study by the Media Research Center (MRC).
Now ask yourself. Is it just coincidence that every time the Clinton campaign hits a pothole, it’s Trump who gets his suit muddied?
When WikiLeaks performed the function once reserved for real journalists and released a mountain of incriminating Clinton emails, the media instead hawked the pulp fiction that Trump was conspiring with the Russians to infiltrate the US election process. Talk about switch and bait. That unsubstantiated bit of intrigue kicked up just enough dust to conceal the real story (the explosive content of those emails, of course). But when the Trump campaign hits the rails, as was the case with the release of the tycoon’s lewd, locker-room comments, caught on tape over a decade ago, Trump feels the entire weight and wrath of America’s media machine for days on end.
When WikiLeaks released proof of Clinton secretly hobnobbing with Wall Street power players, including Goldman Sachs, the investment bank once described as “a great vampire squid wrapped around the face of humanity,” Vanity Fair opened its report on the news with all the punch of a soggy firecracker: “[I]t’s hard to discern why the Democratic nominee was so fastidiously paranoid about releasing the transcripts in the first place.”
Why not just change your name to 'Vanity Despair' and get it over with?
Politico also breezed over the emails with a scratch and yawn, with the most damaging comment being: Clinton "dragged her feet in voicing fierce opposition to the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal that progressives loathe.”
The savvy site then wasted the rest of the time discussing some conspiracy theory about a Martian invasion of Washington, D.C. that would postpone this year's presidential election indefinitely... Well, not really. But we can dream.
In fact, Politico made journalism history when it quoted Clinton spokesman Glen Caplin, who pulled a spectacular hat trick straight out of his nether regions when he connected WikiLeaks, the Kremlin and Guccifer in a single statement that should be cast in bronze and put on display at some media museum as the ultimate 21st century specimen of political propagandizing: “The US government removed any reasonable doubt that the Kremlin has weaponized WikiLeaks to meddle in our election and benefit Donald Trump’s candidacy (…) We are not going to confirm the authenticity of stolen documents released by Julian Assange who has made no secret of his desire to damage Hillary Clinton. Guccifer 2.0 has already proven the warnings of top national security officials that documents can be faked as part of a sophisticated Russian misinformation campaign.”
It really doesn’t get more insane than that. Except when it does.
Follow the Weiner, not Clinton crimes
Over the weekend, FBI Director James Comey, perhaps responding to a nagging voice inside his head that kept telling him 'Clinton may not win the White House after all,' gave America its much-anticipated ‘October Surprise’ when he said the bureau had discovered additional emails that may be connected to Clinton, national security, and Anthony Weiner serial sexting images to, er, underage females...
Yes, like so many other blotched 'gotcha moments' in the recent past, the vexed American voter is once again being dragged down a dark, torturous passage - not to the Kremlin this time, or Julian Assange’s ambassadorial lair - but rather through the Red Light District of disgraced former congressman Anthony Weiner’s tragic love life, which is apparently consumed by an inordinate amount of time sexting women and, it seems, even girls. In fact, just this past summer, the wild Weiner was caught exchanging sexually suggestive messages with a 15-year old.
Who says American politics isn't fun?
Do you see how this media game of smoke and mirrors works? You’ve probably already forgotten all about Clinton’s emails, which is exactly what the media gatekeepers would like you to do. But let's try to keep our eye on the bouncing ball a bit longer. The silver thread that connects the notorious Weiner to the honorable Hillary weaves through Clinton top adviser Huma Abedin, Weiner's now estranged wife. As the highly dubious story goes, while investigating Weiner's rampant sexting habits, the FBI stumbled upon Abedin's emails on Weiner's sticky laptop, “with initial data showing those emails went through Clinton's server.”
BOOM? Not so fast.
I have to admit, I have some real problems with this story. First, why would two young professionals, who both live life in the ultimate fast lane, need to share a laptop? And it's really difficult imagining Huma telling her Weiner to 'hurry up with that illicit Tweet, honey, I need to send the US Secretary of State a classified email!' I think the Weiner household could probably have afforded a second laptop. The other question is (full disclosure, I know next to nothing about how computers work): How can a single laptop – and especially one that is connected to the lap of a full-time sexting fiend – hold almost one million emails? My laptop freezes up after the first 5,000 messages.
In any case, FBI Director Comey apparently had sufficient reason to be concerned about one or more of the estimated 650,000 emails on Weiner’s sloppy laptop to take the extraordinary step of reopening the investigation he had closed in July.
This begs another question: Why on earth would Comey throw a spanner in the already overheated electoral machine with just over a week before the vote? Is Comey a glutton for punishment? Somehow I doubt it. My personal hunch is that the FBI Director is simply hedging his bets. After all, Trump railed during the debates that should he win the presidency he wouldl investigate Clinton’s “situation.” He even blurted something about "jail" during one such outburst. And Comey knows very well that Trump will probably not choose him to lead the next Clinton probe, which could get very ugly, very fast (which is why, in my humble opinion, Trump will never enter the Oval Office except in his wildest dreams).
So by opening an investigation against Clinton, Comey is simply playing it safe, and will be able to tell a future President Trump that he was hot on the trail of sorting through almost a million additional emails, courtesy of the Weiner household. And in the likely event Clinton gets her coronation ball, the media will happily sweep the scandal - Weiner and all - under Washington’s very large carpet (I should also like to add the less cynical possibility that James Comey, as a man of real integrity, may be just carrying out his duty as his office demands).
In any case, Joe Public will soon lose the plot of this twisted political tale long before the next Monday Night Football match. In fact, we should not be surprised if the media suggests that Anthony Wiener, aka ‘Carlos Danger,’ is in reality a Russian spy sent to the United States on a secret mission from Putin himself to upset Clinton’s chances of winning the White House by Tweeting unbecoming photos of himself in his jockey shorts to girls not old enough to legally drive.
Banana republic, indeed.
Meanwhile, the cracks are already starting to appear in the overloaded media machine, which is struggling to contain – like some sort of crazed, Jekyll and Hyde monster of its own making – the fallout from its disastrous effort to protect Hillary Rodham Clinton come hell or high water.
On Monday, the wheels appeared to go wobbly inside of famed Democratic strategist James Carville's brain over the FBI’s decision to reopen its investigation into Clinton’s private email server.
Not to be undone by Clinton spokesman Glen Caplin, nor by the late fiction writer Tom Clancy, Carville actually ventured the opinion on live television that the KGB, which was dissolved in 1991 following the collapse of the Soviet Union, is hacking American democracy.
“We also have the extraordinary case of the KGB being involved in this race and selectively leaking things from the Clinton campaign that they hacked,” he screeched through bulging neck veins.
“It would seem to me that the FBI shouldn't be getting rolled by the House Republicans, that's what happened here... and in the meantime … democracy is under assault by the KGB,” he continued. “To me that's something we ought to be talking about.”
No, Mr. Carville. That is really the last thing the American people should be talking about. But so long as the mainstream media has gained almost total purchase of the election process, heavily controlling what the voters see and hear, we will continue discussing the Russians, WikiLeaks and Anthony Weiner’s unhealthy sexting habit.
Long live American democracy - late night comedy just isn't what it used to be.
The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.