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What I’m grateful for this Thanksgiving: The Resistance

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In September, 2016, I–like most Americans–was not aware of what would eventually become the Trump-Russia scandal, but I did see the Republicans trying to weaponize Hillary’s stolen emails against her. On Sept. 13, 2016, in my first blog post about it, “Let’s Get Hillary: A modern witch hunt from Republicans,” I wrote how Jason Chaffetz, the Utah arch-conservative Republican, had subpoenaed then-FBI Director Jim Comey, demanding the full [Clinton email] file with no redactions of personal identifiable information,” even though the FBI had already concluded Hillary broke no laws. (In 2017, an embattled, embarrassed Chaffetz was forced to resign his seat.)

That was my first clue that the Republican Party and the Trump campaign were waging a fake war against Hillary using her emails. But back then, I couldn’t imagine what had occurred behind the scenes, in terms of Russian-Trump collusion involving Wikileaks.

That was to change just three weeks later. On Oct. 4, 2016, I wrote my first post that mentioned Wikileaks. “Hey Julian Assange: Instead of gossiping about Hillary’s emails, why don’t you get Trump’s taxes?” We’d learned that it was Wikileaks that had stolen and released the emails. But we still had no idea why, or of the extent of the scandal that reached all the way from Assange to Trump. In that post, I asked questions whose answers I suspected, but didn’t know. “Why is Assange so anti-Hillary anyway? Is he a Trump surrogate?”

Exactly two weeks later, on Oct. 18, 2016, as more details emerged in the media, I blogged again: “Why does Julian Assange want Trump to win? An analysis.” Once again, I asked more questions I couldn’t answer. “Why is Assange so anti-Hillary?” “What is Wikileaks, anyhow?” “Why are they training all their firing power upon Hillary Clinton, instead of hacking into The Apprentice and Access Hollywood tapes to see what other incriminating things Trump has done?” Although I still didn’t have answers, I speculated that “There may be something far more insidious about Assange than merely his professed idealism,” and I wondered if perhaps his motive was his “hatred of Hillary Clinton.” But still, we didn’t know how Assange had gotten the emails, and his relationship to Trump remained a mystery.

Twelve days later, on Oct. 30, 2016, we’d learned a bit more. On that date, my post was “The vast rightwing conspiracy: 2016-style,” and for the first time in my posts, Trump–still a week away from winning the election–begins to star in my commentary. Meanwhile, Comey re-enters it. The Hillary email plot, I wrote, “was hatched in darkness and anonymity…fueled by dark money, only its leaders now are the foursome of Donald Trump, Wikileaks’ Julian Assange, Vladimir Putin and James Comey.” The pieces of the puzzle were beginning to fall into place with enough clarity for me to make those connections. I also made a prediction: “If Trump wins…fasten your seatbelts. It’s going to be a bumpy ride.”

The next six weeks were exciting ones for American investigative journalism, as The Washington Post, The New York Times, NBC News, Politico, The Wall Street Journal and a host of other media dug up more facts. On Dec. 12, 2012, more than a month after the election, I had finally connected all the dots. In my post, “ElectionGate: The Putin-Assange-Comey-Trump conspiracy,” I noted many things we now take for granted: that “Comey illegally interfered with the election,” that a “Secret CIA assessment says Russia was trying to help Trump win White House,” that “GOP leaders have refused to support efforts by Democrats to investigate any possible Trump-Russia connections,” that “Something horrible has happened that’s far beyond mere dirty politics. This has been an assault on our Constitution.” I concluded, “We, the American people, Republican and Democrat alike, have got to get to the bottom of this Putin-Assange-Comey-Trump conspiracy.”

And now here we are, closer than ever to getting to the bottom of the conspiracy, and inching even closer every day. I always knew the truth would come out. I always trusted in our American institutions, and in the fairness and sound judgment of a majority of the American people–not the tea party, not evangelicals, not the white supremacists at Breitbart, but normal, moral Americans. That majority of the American people united into what became known as The Resistance sometime in early 2017–obviously, no specific date can be assigned to the start of an informal, spontaneous coalition. But on March 20, 2017, I first mentioned it in my post, “Trump’s game plan, and how The Resistance is wrecking it.” I wrote about how The Resistance (of which investigative journalism was now an active part) was “chipping away at [Trump’s] plausibility,” and I hoped that eventually we would reach “Gladwell’s tipping point,” a time by which Trump would be impeached, or quit, or removed via the 25th Amendment. “Perhaps by this summer,” I wrote.

I was premature. It did not happen last summer. But I still have no doubt it will. And I am so proud of The Resistance, of the wonderful patriots and lovers of truth and freedom in the U.S.A. who, once the facts were presented to them in a credible manner, believed, in mounting numbers, and continue to believe, that it is intolerable to allow this anomaly, this bizarre, unstable liar to remain President, and for his kleptomanical family to profit from his power. So, this Thanksgiving, although I have many other things to be grateful for, I lift my glass of Champagne and toast The Resistance. To my fellow Resisters, I say: Some day, your children and grandchildren will bless your name, and be endlessly proud that you were their ancestor; for you helped save our nation.

In Memoriam

Nov. 22, 1963

  1. Invoking Deep Throat’s advice during the Watergate scandal (used in a different context):

    “Follow the money . . .”

    From The New Yorker Online
    (September 28, 2017):

    “How Trump’s Tax Plan Would Benefit Trump”

    Link: https://www.newyorker.com/news/john-cassidy/how-trumps-tax-plan-would-benefit-trump

    By John Cassidy

    — and —

    From The Huffington Post
    (October 24, 2017):

    “Estate Tax Repeal Is Really ‘The Donald Trump, Jr. Relief Act’;
    The GOP tax plan could be worth more than a billion dollars to Trump’s kids.”

    Link: https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/estate-tax-repeal-is-really-the-donald-trump-jr-relief_us_59ef2847e4b06bbede69b394

    By Robert Creamer
    Contributor

    Excerpt:

    “Donald Trump claims that his giant tax cut proposal would do nothing to benefit the very rich like himself and his family. In reality a major portion of that proposal – the repeal of the estate tax – could reasonably be named: “The Donald Trump, Jr. Relief Act.”

    “That’s because it would provide Trump’s namesake, Donald Trump, Jr. – and his four siblings – with a billion dollar windfall that would ultimately go right into their ever- so-deserving pockets.”

  2. From The New York Times Online
    (September 28, 2017):

    “Trump Could Save More Than $1 Billion Under His New Tax Plan”

    Link: https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2017/09/28/us/politics/trump-tax-benefit.html

    By Jesse Drucker and Nadja Popovich

    Excerpt:

    “President Trump could cut his tax bills by more than $1.1 billion, including saving tens of millions of dollars in a single year, under his proposed tax changes, a New York Times analysis has found.”

  3. The repeal of the estate tax sure “trumps” any benefit from skirting or violating the “Emoluments Clause.”

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