Sunday, April 12, 2015

Hillary's E-Mails and the Clown Car's Hilarious PR Campaign

Waiting to see the "Whites" of Hillary's Eyes
FOX promised them that there was no reason to worry.
It's just Hillary's advance team looking for office space.

The GOP's "clown car" is already packed to the breaking point with unscrupulous, sold out characters running for President. There is already at least half a billion dollars jammed into cardboard boxes in the trunk, and some of the richest, greediest oligarchs haven't even "contributed," yet.

Relax. It's just her advance team [image]
looking for a spot to rent.
What's "missing" is a single pollster saying that she can still be beaten. Not even the high stakes Las Vegas "non-political" odds makers are "putting any cash" on a political long shot that long

Worse, even the type on the think tank's copy of the Citizens United decision is beginning to wear away because so many think tank fingers have repeatedly scoured through it desperately searching for a previously overlooked loop hole big enough to accommodate the mass of week old dog food waiting in the wings for the Republican debates.

The oligarchs gave the order months ago: "Hillary Clinton must be destroyed before the November, 2016, election."

MeanMesa is certain that a "very tasty, very tempting" reward is on the table for the think tank tactician who finally comes up with some scheme to accomplish this mission. Whatever that solution might turn out to be, it will have to reach considerably more of the electorate than the usual drivel aimed at just the American Legion beer hall and traditional GOP trailer park base.

There simply aren't enough hill billies and bigots in the country to elect a President.

The "B5" Assault
 Bouncing Back From the
 Billionaires' Benghazi Bungles
Not even the mighty Ted Cruz seems able to land a punch.

It's always a good idea to begin with a "big picture," and the "Hillary e-mails" Republican public opinion disaster is no exception. In order to see the thing in "all its beauty," we must set aside our own view of the chaos and imagine what we would see if we were to look at this latest GOP train wreck through the eyes of one of the billionaire owners of the Republican Party. 

To start with, as one of these power crazed billionaires, you are paying for this thing. The whole thing. That means that you are bankrolling everyone and everything. If you want the Republicans to do things for you, there are only two choice: black mail them or pay off their lobbyists. So, what would your world look like if you were one of these billionaires with your check book at the ready, dreaming about how much more you could loot from the country if you were in control of the White House?

To begin you already know that it will be your extremely large bank account that is "signing the pay checks" to the now desperate "psych experts" in your dirty trick bunker. The think tank managers saw you coming. It was clear from the outset that you were consumed with an "addict-like" obsession to rough up Mrs. Clinton even before she announced, and they promised you that -- for the right price -- their team could handle it.

Three Think Tank Attempts to Derail Hillary,
and One Complete Fizzle
Very few things are more entertaining than watching 
hopeless, terrified billionaires grasping at straws.

Because the selected "hit men" have brought such disparate approaches to the task of manufacturing this first scandal, we have to list it twice, individually defining each attempt by the "creative school" responsible for its theme.

First Attempt: Benghazi One -- Issa-esque

Months ago they suckered you into financing the House Benghazi catastrophe. It took some serious "campaign contributions" to weasel even a sold out loser like Darrel Issa to host the hearings extravaganza, but then you watched it fall apart like a mortally wounded chipmunk as the story repeatedly met one ignominious demise after another from lack of interest. Finally, there was that last check to convince Issa to hurl himself on his own sword.

Second Attempt: Benghazi Two -- Gowdy-esque

Not being a "billionaire quitter," you tried again. This time it was necessary to replace Issa's lackluster attempts with another try, this time -- after greasing Boehner's hands with even more of your money -- the House leadership decided that the attempt would be piloted by South Carolina's Trey Gowdy ["Howdy Doody"].

This second try hit the rocks almost immediately. Although the FOX base voters were dutifully interested for a day or two, your big show turned out to be something akin to hiring a band for a baptism in a mausoleum, but behind the scenes, the effort was still gobbling down your money just like there was "no tomorrow." No matter how much cash you injected in the "search for truth," hardly any one beyond the GOP's trailer park base was even bothering to listen.

The Complete Fizzle Attempt -- Clinton Foundation Donor Countries

Whichever one of the ambitious think tankers who placed this one on the table at the "dirty tricks" meeting definitely didn't get the "big prize." Although it was clear right away that "the word had gone out" to the Republican's media mouth junk team to start "talking it up" about the fact that the Saudis had contributed to the philanthropic Clinton Foundation, the scheme had officially hit the rocks within hours.

Within the GOP's base the plan simply had gained no traction. The hill billies couldn't understand why it was a problem, and the billionaires weren't infatuated with criticizing other billionaires shoveling out the dough as they tried to rehabilitate their public image. In the first instance the ball had simply careened out of the park, and in the second case the ball had hit too close to home.

The Third Attempt -- the e-mails

Although initiating the re-branded "Gowdy" version for another repeat of Issa's Benghazi disaster may appear to be an unusual tactical decision for the think tankers, we must realize that by this time the "cabinet where the dirty tricks were stored" had grown disturbingly empty. Not even your offer of the "big reward" seemed to be having any beneficial effect.

In fact after cashing out the final invoices of both of the Benghazi bungles, you were left with only the smoldering cinders of the great bon fire you had dreamed of igniting under the Juggernaut of Mrs. Clinton's political future. The search for the "next attack" was not pretty. The bourbon stained PostIt note bearing only the single, cryptic word, "e-mails," was the solitary suggestion your tactical squad of "dirty tricksters" had left on the conference table before sheepishly exiting your strategy session.

For lack of anything more promising, you resigned yourself to the fact that it was going to have to be the emails. Giving forth a sigh that only a billionaire can know, you once again pulled out your check book.

The New Confederacy
"Yew cain't jest fool them 
folks agin, kin ya?" [image]
We could discuss the possibility of all sorts of "possible nightmares" which might be hidden in the otherwise rather banal content of Mrs. Clinton's extensive e-mail records, but what's the use? There can be little doubt that communications records from the office of a New York Senator or US Secretary of State are "full to the gunwales" with a sensitive and discrete collection of messages both received and sent, but what hidden, embarrassing secret does an American voter expect to be revealed?

The vetting of this massive body of content will, assuredly, leave the "juiciest" tid bits locked away in a secure electronic State Department warehouse somewhere in Virginia, while the massive category of the "rest" will become an unread dead weight on Washington Post hard drives. The aging "trailer park" PC's of the Republican Party base, although routinely taxed with the work of preparing poorly annotated. misspelled FaceBook photos of Obama as a cannibal or pictures of talking cats, will never be burdened by a need to support any exhaustive analysis of Clinton's correspondence.

The Delicious Clinton "Nothing Burger"
Irresistibly mouth watering and totally calorie free!
Or, upgrade to our new, deluxe
 "no there" there fat free, grilled cheese delight! Tomato is extra.

The think tank "fact twisters" immediately launched into a frenzied session of remarkable "multi-tasking." There was clearly an urgent need for the preparation of a credible "nothing burger" to meet the hungry clamor from the Party's base. Once the flaming "e-mail scam" had been officially spewed from the  mouths of hundreds of obedient media reactionaries, it became obvious that if the story were ever going to be embellished sufficiently to gain much traction, it was going to be another right wing "fixer upper."

There were suddenly all sorts of "fact problems" littering the think tanks' marketing scheme. For starters there was no law on the books requiring Mrs. Clinton to do anything besides what she had actually done with her e-mails. Further, there was no precedent. Since there was no law, none of the previous Secretaries of State had done anything particularly different from what she had done.

Worse, the records show that there was not ever so much as even any kind of unspoken "policy" floating around in the State Department concerning the matter. It began to look very much like no one had ever really cared that much about what had been done with the correspondence aside from blotting out the seriously sensitive stuff.

The job of servicing the story's "fixer upper" status quickly expanded to encompass the sometimes tricky extra duty of "re-writing history." The fact that there not really any "history" to re-write only complicated matters further.

The Clinton machine blinked a bit at this point. Someone very reasonably presented the "countering evidence" that all this correspondence had been hosted on a server in Bill's office. Normally, such a revelation would have enjoyed a certain "persuasive inertia," but in this case it only revealed that most of the voters who were "being convinced" by the think tanks' gambit had absolutely no idea what a "server" actually was. The fact that Bill's office -- where this secure server was located -- was under the protection of the Secret Service may as well have been "dried leaves blowing in an autumn wind."

As we casually scan the horizon for the faint scent of any "scandalous revelation" headed this way, we come up bare handed. Sure, there may be one out there, but if we see no evidence, at least presently, of some nefarious deception or other duplicity, why are we so willingly obsessed by such pessimistic certainty? Scandals are not made of the fine drawn white clouds of morning. They come in the company of evidene, motives, mechanisms and effects.

MeanMesa did not "arrive on this morning's turnip truck." Happily, all these years of experience have led to a serious reluctance for using the term or concept: "perfect." There is no glassy eyed, naive expectation that Hillary Clinton is a reincarnate Joan of Arc. A president with those sterile, crippling, imaginary qualities would be even more terrifying than the bumbling George W.

There remains one final clown car "hilarity" as we move on from this discussion. Last week MeanMesa watched a television interview with one of America's famous "men on the street." One of the many softball questions being bandied forth was whether or not the interviewee could "trust" Hillary Clinton as President.

The man being interviewed took up the most curious, affected expression. It seemed as though he were mimicking some maudlin character in an old 1940's black and white film. His eyes rolled back to create the impression of a wise, "knowing" countenance, and after a far too inauthentic dramatic pause, he answered, relying confidently on the viewing audience's ready memory of memorable Ronald Reagan quotes, with "Trust but verify."

Trust but Verify
Mindless paranoia only grows sweeter with age.

The phrase first surfaced as a "public appliance" from some Republican think tank's "political strategy" laboratory during Ronald Reagan's nuclear arms negotiations with Mikhail Gorbachev, General Secretary of the old Soviet Union. The phrase was scripted by a Reagan Administration "Russia expert," and it was intended to buffer the domestic US electorate's distrustful opinion of the USSR.

Reagan, the notably fluid, charming, yet already rather addled Democrat turned Republican, actor turned President was the perfect "mouth piece" to convincingly present the idea to his constituents.

Suzanne Massie, a writer on Russia, met with President Ronald Reagan many times between 1984 and 1987. She taught him the Russian proverb, доверяй, но проверяй ["doveryai no proveryai" -- trust, but verify] advising him that "The Russians like to talk in proverbs. It would be nice of you to know a few. You are an actor – you can learn them very quickly." The proverb was adopted as a signature phrase by Reagan, who subsequently used it frequently when discussing U.S. relations with the Soviet Union. [Content emphasis added, MeanMesa]

After Reagan used the phrase to emphasize "the extensive verification procedures that would enable both sides to monitor compliance with the treaty", at the signing of the INF [Intermediate Range Nuclear Force] Treaty, on 8 December 1987, his counterpart General Secretary Mikhail Gorbachev responded: "You repeat that at every meeting," to which Reagan answered "I like it." While Reagan quoted Russian proverbs, Mr. Gorbachev quoted Ralph Waldo Emerson.

Following the 2013 Ghouta [Syrian chemical warfare used on civilians -- read more  here - BBC] attacks, Secretary of State John Kerry told a news conference in Geneva on September 14, 2013 that the United States and Russia had agreed on a framework to dispose of Syria's chemical weapons. He said "President Reagan's old adage about 'trust but verify' ... is in need of an update. And we have committed here to a standard that says 'verify and verify'."

[Excerpted. Read the entire article here -- WIKI]

Although the precise details of Reagan's "foreign policy gambit" may have faded into the admittedly undependable, foggy recesses of the American cultural memory, the "verify" part of the admittedly suspicious agreement represented the extensive effort the US would expend to be certain that the Kremlin was actually doing what it had promised. The "unspoken proposition" in the talks was that the USSR could not be trusted, and that the agreement's promise was intended as a strategic deception.

So, returning to this case what exactly has Mrs. Clinton promised which must be so closely "verified?" What has she said that must be "trusted?" These questions becomes even more difficult when one realizes that Hillary Clinton isn't even campaigning yet! We can comfortably presume that the"promises" -- if there are any -- will begin only after the campaign begins.

In the meantime, we can glance once again at the denizens inhabiting the Republican Party's clown car, relieved. 2016 promises a great ballot for the 30% to 40% of American voters inclined to actually vote.

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