The Russian Interference of 2016

I feel like the 2016 election would be a great backdrop for a new spy movie genre.


So the Mueller indictment charged 13 Russian nationals and 3 Russian organizations with conspiracy to defraud the US.  Listening to the various news sources and podcasts, these Russians released propaganda in support of Trump and against Clinton in an effort to influence the Presidential election.  In fact, the propaganda actually sounds very familiar to what a Political Action Committee (PAC) does when a PAC tries to influence elections too.

Which got me thinking… what’s the difference?  After some Internet research, a Newseek article described why the Russian propaganda to influence the elections is illegal.  A federal law found in regulation 110.20 “prohibits any foreign national from contributing, donating or spending funds in connection with any federal, state, or local election in the United States, either directly or indirectly.”  Another law also requires foreign “agents” to register with the US in an attempt to minimize any influence from non-American sources in elections.  What’s interesting is that US has also meddled in the political affairs of other nations too according to a a New York Times opinion article.  But I actually already knew that.  In all honesty, I was amused at the Russian interference.  It’s like US getting a taste of their own medicine.  But at the same time, I understand why US will want to try to influence foreign elections in order to have a more pro-American official leading the nation.  It’s the same reason Russia did what they did in 2016.

When you think about all that’s happened during the 2016 election, what’s disturbing is that Russian misinformation became the defacto truth creating even more divided America.  There was never any questioning of the misinformation.  The proliferation of #fakenews and #alternativefacts by even those in the Trump campaign is disturbing.  Do you remember when Kellyanne Conway termed the coin “Alternative Facts” for Sean Spicer’s “biggest audience to witness an inauguration. Period!“?  Compare that to these videos (herehere) of what the National Mall looked like from the previous President.  And then with #fakenews, incidents like Pizzagate makes you wonder why people aren’t thinking for themselves.




Gerrymandering Podcast

The 538 political podcast have been putting out a special gerrymandering episodes for listeners.  Gerrymandering is in my opinion one of the bigger political issues of that may need to be “solved” in order to minimize the partisan political bickering that seems to dominate the news.

I highly suggest listening to these podcasts because it dives into the intricacies of trying to establish “fair” political districts for communities to send their representatives to Congress.  And it’s more complicated than I had previously imagined.

That New Trump Book

By now, those who follow the news (here, here, here) should be aware that there is a new best selling book about Trump called Fire and Fury by Michael Wolff.  It’s apparently an inside look into Trump’s first year of Presidency taken from the author who managed to finagle his way into the White House.  The Trump and the White House are trying to prevent the book from printing and at the same time, Trump is defending the stories that are being told in the book.

It seems like the more the White House is trying to suppress this book, the more popularity this book will gain and the more believable these stories about Trump will be.  Whether or not all the stories should be believed is one issue.  Trying to suppress a book is also another issue.

But what I find most amusing about this tale is eloquently summed up by Trevor Noah at 4 min:

“Bizarre, unverified, fraudulent claims.  This is the world Donald Trump promotes.  Millions of illegal votes.  Barack Obama born in Kenya.  Ted Cruz’s dad killed JFK.  Suggesting Joe Scarborough killed an intern.  Someone who tweeted: “check out sex tape” can’t complain about tabloid gossip.  The truth is Mr. President, you made your bed.”

Here’s the whole opinion.


A bigly app for Trump?

So I read on the BBC today there’s a new app that “applauds” China’s Xi Jinping.  It’s purely a communist political tool for China.  But the concept of this app is ingenious.  It brings the whole country to participate in such rousing patriotic spirit by applauding the President Xi.

Come to think of it… This would be a great app for Trump.  I need to learn how to program apps.

Trump’s Remark on Charlottesville

Is there absolutely any point in confronting Trump on his many remarks… the latest being his “too late for that” Monday statement and then back-pedaling from it today.  Nothing Trump says (or doesn’t say) surprises me anymore.  His initial statement on Saturday wasn’t enough… but I saw it more of Trump riding the fence trying to find that perfect balance where he doesn’t alienate his core supporters and the everyone else who has some common sense and human decency.

Trump should just go all in and be the racist/sexist/isolationist/egotistical President that he campaigned on.  Screw the fake media.