Wednesday, November 13, 2019

The media is pushing a false narrative that Republicans are pushing a false narrative

No wonder the American public is confused, disengaged, or both. It's even hard for people following this impeachment circus to figure out which ring the show is in.

In the hearing held today, Republican Ranking Member of the House Intelligence Committee Devin Nunes went into considerable and well informed detail on how Russia wasn't the only former Soviet state to meddle in the 2016 election and how Democrats cooperated with corrupt Ukrainian officials.

The biased media jumped on this, calling it unsubstantiated and a false narrative. It is neither.

Here's what the Associated Press presented today in a meek attempt at a 'fact check:'

Trump himself was told by his officials that the theory was “completely debunked” long before the president pressed Ukraine to investigate it anyway, according to Tom Bossert, Trump’s first homeland security adviser. In testimony at the closed-door hearings that preceded Wednesday’s public session, Fiona Hill, a former special assistant to Trump on the National Security Council, said it was bogus.

“It is a fiction that the Ukrainian government was launching an effort to upend our election,” Hill testified. “I’m extremely concerned that this is a rabbit hole that we’re all going to go down in between now and the 2020 election, and it will be to all of our detriment.”

Broadly, the theory contends that a hack of the Democratic National Committee in 2016 was a setup designed to cast blame on Russia but actually was cooked up by or with the help of Ukrainians. The evidence points conclusively to Russia, not Ukraine.
If that's what Fiona Hill really told Congress last month, she should join all of the folks Robert Mueller successfully prosecuted for lying to Congress. The Ukrainian government in power as of 2016 absolutely sought to prevent Trump's election and I'm not alone in knowing this.

It is no 'theory' that Ukrainians were elbow-deep in election interference and it wasn't the DNC server hack AP (and the New York Times) seems to think it is. It was a direct attempt to get dirt on the Trump campaign and keep Democrats happy with Ukraine.

In a subscribers only post on his site, Rolling Stone's Matt Taibbi (no friend of Donald Trump) wrote:

Still, it’s an undeniable fact that Ukraine worked to help Democrats oppose Trump in 2016. A Ukrainian court has ruled that its government “meddled” illegally in the American election, among other things by providing information about payments made to former Trump campaign manager Manafort.

This was after a veteran Democratic operative named Andrea Chalupa traveled to Ukraine in search of Trump oppo, which, not that anyone cares, is a similar story to Ukrainegate, the difference being that Chalupa was not president of the United States when she asked a foreign government for dirt about a presidential candidate. Even making the simple factual observation that the Chalupa/Ukraine transaction took place, however, has become an impossibility in the current media landscape.

The Chalupa story was originally broken by Politico reporter Ken Vogel in 2017 (“Ukrainian efforts to sabotage Trump backfire”). But Politico now describes Trump being committed to “unsubstantiated allegations… a conspiracy theory that Ukraine aided Democrats in the 2016 election.”

Politico originally reported that conspiracy theory!
Ken Vogel's story from 2017:
Ukrainian government officials tried to help Hillary Clinton and undermine Trump by publicly questioning his fitness for office. They also disseminated documents implicating a top Trump aide in corruption and suggested they were investigating the matter, only to back away after the election. And they helped Clinton’s allies research damaging information on Trump and his advisers, a Politico investigation found.

A Ukrainian-American operative who was consulting for the Democratic National Committee met with top officials in the Ukrainian Embassy in Washington in an effort to expose ties between Trump, top campaign aide Paul Manafort and Russia, according to people with direct knowledge of the situation.

The Ukrainian efforts had an impact in the race, helping to force Manafort’s resignation and advancing the narrative that Trump’s campaign was deeply connected to Ukraine’s foe to the east, Russia. But they were far less concerted or centrally directed than Russia’s alleged hacking and dissemination of Democratic emails.

Taibbi's story, "The New York Times sinks below Fox," is a serious and saddening takedown of what used to be one of the great institutions of American journalism. His site is well worth a subscription, despite the fact that Taibbi is an avowed liberal who detests Donald Trump but has the professional courage to call shitty journalism what it is.

The Financial Times' story is also behind a paywall, but it's entitled "Ukraine’s leaders campaign against ‘pro-Putin’ Trump" and goes into detail how the 2016 Ukraine government worked against Trump, providing the information to DNC contractor, Alexandra Chalupa, that eventually got Paul Manafort caught in an FBI trap. and Politico's Ken Vogel puts the AP 'fact check' in a very bad light. Are they being dishonest, or just being shitty journalists?

The Hill's Investigative Reporter John Solomon also documented the pre-Zelensky Ukrainians attempts to influence the 2016 election. Solomon presents evidence that shows:
Sworn statements from two Ukrainian officials admitting that their agency tried to influence the 2016 U.S. presidential election in favor of Hillary Clinton. The effort included leaking an alleged ledger showing payments to then-Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort;

Contacts between Democratic figures in Washington and Ukrainian officials that involved passing along dirt on Donald Trump;

Financial records showing a Ukrainian natural gas company routed more than $3 million to American accounts tied to Hunter Biden, younger son of then-Vice President Joe Biden, who managed U.S.-Ukraine relations for the Obama administration. Biden’s son served on the board of a Ukrainian natural gas company, Burisma Holdings;

Records that Vice President Biden pressured Ukrainian officials in March 2016 to fire the prosecutor who oversaw an investigation of Burisma Holdings and who planned to interview Hunter Biden about the financial transfers;

Correspondence showing members of the State Department and U.S. Embassy in Kiev interfered or applied pressure in criminal cases on Ukrainian soil;

Disbursements of as much as $7 billion in Ukrainian funds that prosecutors believe may have been misappropriated or taken out of the country, including to the United States.
The information shown in italics is hotly disputed by Democrats and Democrat-friendly media, but their disputes are made without evidence (they just don't 'believe' them). Solomon has said on the air that he has the records and that the Dept of Justice has them as well.

Solomon also has sworn statements that Ukrainian officials tried to come clean, offering reams of evidence to U.S. State Dept officials, only  to be turned down. WT everlovin' F was that?

It is very easy to lump what Republicans are doing in the impeachment hearings with what's being uncovered by John Durham in an ongoing DOJ investigation. They may be covering the same thing, but to claim that Durham's probe and Republican lines of attack in the hearings are a defense against impeachment is backwards.

The Democrats have been in a panic since May, when Durham started digging. Their impeachment circus is a preemptive strike against the potential criminal indictments Durham is probably going to produce.  They're trying to poison the well and prejudice the jury pool. The jury pool is of course the American public. Last month, AP was deliberately dishonest in its characterization of the July 25 phone call between President Trump and new Ukrainian President Volodomyr Zelensky. Again, poisoning the well.

The media--from the Associated Press through the NY Times--are just carrying the Democrats' water.


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