The further to the left or the right you move, the more your lens on life distorts.

Tuesday, May 16, 2017


Still another media leak (more on the probable leakers later) from The Washington Post alleges that Donald Trump divulged top secret information in a meeting with the Russians. Before going any further, let me stipulate that Trump's undisciplined bravado may very well be in play here, that he may have inadvertently said something that was off-script and that may have compromised some intelligence operation. That's unfortunate, but it's not a threat to our democracy or an error so egregious that it justifies the unhinged histrionics by all Democrats and the #Nevertrump GOP elites.

How do we know that the same thing hasn't happened dozens or even hundreds of times with past presidents—both Dem and GOP? Because during their terms in office, the intelligence community wasn't compromised with as many partisans that care only about crippling a president they clearly don't like.

As an example, on May 25, 2014, the same WaPo had this story on page one: “White House mistakenly identifies CIA chief in Afghanistan,” and just last year, the same WaPo had this story, “U.S. Offers to share Syrian intelligence on terrorist with Russia.” The Obama administration inadvertently leaked classified information and actively shared such information with the Russians. The world didn't come to an end, and the media hamsters spent little time on the stories.

So let's apply a little perspective. Every person in the room with Trump during the meeting with the Russian ambassador states that no compromising information was divulged. That includes people of substance who have served this country with distinction for decades. Are they liars? At least they have the cojones to put their names behind their statements—unlike the anonymous leakers who cannot be confronted and whose motivations are suspect at best.

Of course, it's more fun to believe WaPo and the anonymous leakers in the intelligence community who were not there but when briefed on the meeting rushed to leak the information. By the way, we're learning about this "blockbuster" leak from the same Washington Post that last week falsely reported that Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein had threatened to resign after the Comey memo (denied by Rosenstein himself). And the WaPo sources? Current and former Intelligence agency officials.

Charlie Martin comments:
Apparently, the Trump people did report to the NSA and CIA what they talked about with the Russians, and that some of it was highly classified. Following that, the story was leaked by "current and former U.S. officials," speaking anonymously, of course.

One thing we know -- since we know exactly who was in the meeting -- is that these "current and former officials" were not in the meeting. The second thing we know is that -- well, let's work backward a bit. "Current officials" work for the current administration. "Former officials" must have worked for some previous administration. Those would be the Obama administration, the Bush administration, the Clinton administration, and the previous Bush administration. Of course, of that list, only Obama administration officials are likely to still be cleared for anything like this, so it's a fair guess "former officials" means "former Obama administration officials."

So, rewriting the lede with this, we have: "President Trump revealed highly classified information to the Russian foreign minister and ambassador, as reported by unnamed sources who are current officials, or who were Obama administration officials, and who were not present at the meeting."

Let's go further. Later in the story, it's reported:
Trump went on to discuss aspects of the threat that the United States learned only through the espionage capabilities of a key partner. He did not reveal the specific intelligence-gathering method, but he described how the Islamic State was pursuing elements of a specific plot and how much harm such an attack could cause under varying circumstances. Most alarmingly, officials said, Trump revealed the city in the Islamic State’s territory where the U.S. intelligence partner detected the threat.

Okay, remember the emphasized part, and let's move to the next paragraph:
The Washington Post is withholding most plot details, including the name of the city, at the urging of officials who warned that revealing them would jeopardize important intelligence capabilities.

So, now what we know is that these anonymous sources were so alarmed about what Trump told the Russians that they immediately got in touch with Washington Post reporters and ... revealed the same information to them?

Okay, so now I'm getting a little bit suspicious.
Yeah, I think suspicion of the sources and of the reporting is justified. That doesn't mean the story is necessarily false, but it does mean that there's a clear agenda in the leaking and in the reporting. A little cynicism is in order.


The #Nevertrumpers (many within the GOP elite) and #Resistance (pretty much all Democrats) are trying to conduct a slow motion coup in which they topple a duly elected president because they are offended by his style, his positions, and his actions. Aided and abetted by a media that despises Trump, they become hysterical about every leak, every tweet, and every action, suggesting that this president is a Russian puppet, the new incarnation of a fascist dictator, or an incompetent fool—maybe all three.

They are driven by media stories containing unattributed leaks that have become pervasive in the first months of Trump's presidency. The media has now jettisoned all semblance of objectivity and fairness and is at war with Trump. Every story is spun negative and anything positive is either not reported or buried on the figurative back pages.

The #Nevertrumpers and #Resistance are winning this battle, but they may very well lose the war. Because their hysteria is so pronounced, because their bias is so obvious, and because their innuendo and assertions are so ridiculous, they have already lost a significant segment of the public. They are, in an odd way, in a hole, and they are digging ever deeper.

The results of the past election were a giant middle finger targeted at the political and media elites who want to control our government, our culture, our economy, and our lives. Polls may not show this (just as they didn't show Trump's strength during the presidential campaign), but the coup that is being attempted may backfire.

Americans have an innate sense of fairness, empathy for an underdog (which Trump, amazingly, has become) and a common sense way of looking at opposition politicians and the claims they make. Voters in the center and the right may decide that a middle finger isn't enough, and react by voting out the Democrats who want the coup to happen. Heads exploded in 2016. If this despicable behavior continues (and that is a near certainty). those same heads may vaporize in 2018 and 2020.

UPDATE (5/17/2017):

Molly Hemingway helps us understand just how inaccurate the WaPo has been in its rush to destroy the sitting president:
Previous Washington Post stories sourced to anonymous “officials” have fallen apart, including Josh Rogin’s January 26 report claiming that “the State Department’s entire senior management team just resigned” as “part of an ongoing mass exodus of senior Foreign Service officers who don’t want to stick around for the Trump era.”

The story went viral before the truth caught up. As per procedure, the Obama administration had, in coordination with the incoming Trump administration, asked for the resignations of all political appointees. While it would have been traditional to let them stay for a few months, the Trump team let them know that their services wouldn’t be necessary. The entire story was wrong.

Rogin also had the false story that Steve Bannon had personally confronted Department of Homeland Security’s Gen. John F. Kelly to pressure him not to weaken an immigration ban. . . .

Each of these stories were explosive breaking news that served an anti-Trump narrative but later turned out to be false.

This week, the Washington Post reported that President Trump threatened national security during his meeting with Russians last week. The story was based on anonymous leaks regarding a real meeting that took place. The report was immediately slapped down as false by multiple high-level Trump officials who were present in the meeting.
Always consider the source. If an anonymous leak comes from the trained hamsters in the mainstream media, there's a non-trivial likelihood that it's fake news.