While the American public is having their brains numbed by endless retellings of Donald Trump’s decades-old putatively unwanted sexual advances, the media is almost entirely, in many cases deliberately, ignoring the far more significant revelations being made by WikiLeaks. What does the media care? It doesn’t affect them, just the common folk. And the disclosures might impede the coronation of Queen Hillary.
Many stories have drifted by almost without notice—including confirmation that the president of the United States lied when he claimed he learned of Hillary Clinton’s private email server only when the public did. He had been communicating with her on it for over a year on multiple occasions under a pseudonym. (If a President Trump had done such a thing, the cries for his impeachment would drown out the Super Bowl.) Andrew McCarthy has cited this as the reason the FBI was prevented from recommending the prosecution of Clinton. To have done so would have implicated the president himself.
Today’s “Podesta Emails” revelations from WikiLeaks bring up another matter—money. The foreign kind. As the Federal Elections Commission notes, “Foreign nationals are prohibited from making any contributions or expenditures in connection with any election in the U.S.”
The reasons for this should be obvious—foreign subversion of our national interest, etc.—but, as we shall see, the crew at Hillary Clinton HQ evidently wasn’t convinced these risks were serious, not serious enough anyway to merit observing the federal regulation known to all.
(These are the same people—it should be noted—who blather on about the danger of Russia and insist that Putin & Co. are responsible for their computer break-ins rather than their own embarrassing [and hugely perilous] cyber idiocy. Unfortunately, there is now evidence that the culprits were not always the FSB or the Chinese or even the Iranians, but in some cases a couple of twentysomethings in North Carolina known as the “Crackas With Attitude.” Working with UK teenagers they were, among other things, able to the break into the emails of CIA Director John Brennan, Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson and Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, turning the results over to Wikileaks. Doesn’t sound much like the NKVD to me—though it does sound as if a lot of people should be fired…. If you read the link, hacking into Brennan’s account was the most simple of all.)
But back to today’s revelations, wherever they came from originally. An email chain–subject line: “RE: Registered foreign agents“—that wound up in the lap of Clinton campaign communications director Jennifer Palmieri tells a tale of greed over national interest straight out of H. L. Mencken’s famous remark: “When they say it’s not about the money, it’s about the money.”
On the cc. line and responding at various points were many of the usual suspects: Clinton campaign manager Robby Mook, Huma Abedin (no identification necessary), John Podesta (ditto), campaign general counsel Marc Elias, national finance director Dennis Cheng, and quite a few others.
The issue at question was what to do about donations from representatives of several dozen countries, some, not surprisingly, misogynistic and homophobic, few democratic. Included are Iraq, Egypt, Libya, UAE, Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka, National Security Council of Georgia, Hong Kong Trade Dvelopment [sic] Council, Embassy of the Republic of Azerbaijan, Republic of Kosovo, Republic of Peru, Republic of Cyprus, the Republic of Colombia (of Clinton Cash fame) and something called the Breaux Lott Leadership Group for Government of Taiwan that appears to have been bought by a group connected to the Embassy of China.
This only touches the surface because early in the chain Karuna Seshasai, also an attorney, writes: “This is only 23 names of the first 350 prospective bundlers we looked at pre-launch. I anticipate more coming down the pipeline. ”
More do. And there follows a debate about what to do. Can they get away with it? Can they disregard the inconvenient federal regulations proscribing foreign donations? Finally, campaign manager Robby Mook steps forward to clear up the legal and moral issues at hand:
Marc [campaign counsel Elias] made a convincing case to me this am that these sorts of restrictions don’t really get you anything…that Obama actually got judged MORE harshly as a result. He convinced me. So…in a complete U-turn, I’m ok just taking the money and dealing with any attacks. Are you guys ok with that?
And after that “U-turn,” Ms. Palmieri wraps things up with this succinct comment: “Take the money!!”
Yes, the two exclamation points are hers. Don’t believe me? See the whole chain for yourself at the link below.
But before you do, before you go around assuming our country is being sold out to foreign despots by Democratic Party crony capitalists and that in a society that observed the rule of law these clowns would be up on RICO charges, just remember what’s really important: Donald Trump may have kissed a woman on the lips on Mother’s Day at Mar-a-Lago. Now go ahead and read.
UPDATE: Apparently Hillary was not told of this decision—to take foreign money—but read about it in the paper. However, she DID NOT move to stop it, just wanted to weigh in on choices. From Law Newz:
After this whole discussion over the course of several days of emails and at least one conference call, nobody told Clinton what the decision was. That turned out to be a mistake, because it got reported anyway. From campaign chairwoman Huma Abedin to Mook (Podesta is ostensible CCed):
HRC read in paper that we are taking FARA money
We are going to discuss today in Elias meeting
talked to Elias
Flagging for you
Mook was slightly taken aback:
She doesn’t want to?
Abedin calmed him down:
she just didnt know that we had decided to accept it
wanted to know who the individuals are and wants to weigh in
karuna sending list for meeting
As Law Newz concludes, “And that was that, at least as far as the emails show.”
(Artwork created using multiple Shutterstock.com elements.)