Payback Time

Now that the Mueller report is wrapped up, we are told that no more indictments will be forthcoming and there is no evidence of Trump’s collusion with Russia to influence the 2016 election. Unfortunately, during the two year investigation, the media was rife with prognostication and innuendo regarding Trump’s culpability in colluding with the Russians. There was so much hype about the investigation and so much spin about the possibility of finding Trump guilty that it took center stage for the entire period of the investigation. There was not a single day in which we weren’t bombarded with hype about the Mueller investigations and what might come out of them.

The outcome of the investigation should have been foreseen from the very beginning. While there are numerous real crimes1 which may have been committed by the Trump organization, the collusion theory was a far stretch. Furthermore, foreign influence in our elections is nothing new, so what’s the big deal about the Russians joining the club? The only real difference is the manner in which they did it by flooding Facebook and Twitter with propaganda posts by fictitious subscribers to be read by gullible readers. (While that was truly innovative on their part, it was substantially supported by poor security management on the parts of Facebook and Twitter.) Trump knew the media and the investigation didn’t have a leg to stand on and said so more than a thousand times. So why did the media and Democrats create such hype over it?

The problem with all of this is that, now it has been reported there was no collusion, it is time for payback. Trump and his coterie of conservative pundits are about to make fools of the media and the Democrats who created all the hype about the collusion and the investigation. And they will succeed, not only in the eyes of his followers but in the eyes of many independents and even Democrats as well. Just as Trump has been raving about “evil Hillary” ever since the election, you can count on Trump raving about the witch hunt essentially forever. Unfortunately the media and Democrats have added fuel to Trump’s rants which resonate with a large segment of our population. All of this hype has distracted us all from important policy issues. It has also distracted Trump’s base from realizing how his policy achievements have victimized them.

It is sad that the media and Democrats fell into this trap as the Republicans will try (and succeed with many) to make them look like fools. It is even sadder that Democrats make it so easy for Republicans to make fools of them. Even when Republicans do stupid things (which is quite often) they never seem to get the same level of payback from Democrats. Witness the impeachment of Bill Clinton for lying to Congress about getting a blowjob, but no one considered impeaching G. W. Bush for lying to Congress, the United Nations and the public about weapons of mass destruction and leading us into an unjustifiable war which killed hundreds of thousands of innocent people.

It is clear that the media bears much of the responsibility for this charade, but the Democratic Party is equally guilty for feeding the media frenzy. Now that they have tried and failed, it’s payback time for the Republicans. It’s their turn to reboot the investigations into the Clinton emails and other issues swept under the rug during the Mueller charade.

So what did we get out of all this? Nothing. A total waste of time and a waste of about $25 million. We have successfully been distracted from the important issues facing our nation for two years, and we get nothing in return because there was nothing to begin with.

When will we ever learn?

1 If Trump has committed any real crimes, they are most likely to be financial crimes. It is his entire empire of 500+ companies (see interactive chart of Trump empire), most of which are shell companies, that are suspicious and beg the question why anyone needs that many businesses simply to do real estate development.