The Red Russian Herring

Russian President Putin and US President Trump

The 2016 Unites States President Election saw new levels of political vindictiveness.  Along with it came high levels of intrigue, corruption, hatred and distortions.  Personally, I was appalled at the choice presented to voters by the candidates of the two main political parties.  Both of them, in my opinion, are reprehensible individuals who have repeatedly engaged in dishonorable if not completely illegal behavior, and neither should have been seen fit to hold the highest elected office of the land.  More on that at a later time.

What I want to get into here is the way the election of Donald Trump was handled by some of his opponents.  They have attacked the very VALIDITY of the election.  They are saying that Trump somehow colluded with the Russians, and this is how he won the election.  They are in fact saying, “Trump wasn’t validly elected President”.

There is no evidence, none, that a single vote was changed by “outside forces”.  This means that American voted for Trump over Clinton.  Trump’s opponents know this.  So they have to move from accusations of vote tampering to accusing Trump of using Russians to somehow “influence” the American electorate.

The current “evidence” of this happening is that Russian “internet trolls” were directed to post false and misleading information on Facebook and other internet media platforms.  I do not doubt that Russians did this.  Trump’s accusers also say that Trump was somehow getting other assistance, money and influence that allowed him to somehow “trick” people into voting for him.

Americans have ALWAYS been subjected to huge choruses of people telling them this or that or the other thing, and the VAST majority know that they have to wade through the smoke to find the truth.  Even children know the internet is mostly wild and outrageous claims.  But to say that somehow, this time, the Russians were successful in tricking a large number of people is a far, far stretch of the imagination.  I find it to be an unbelievable Red Herring.  Trump did somehow get enough people to vote for him to VALIDLY win the presidential election of 2016.

Trump’s detractors try to assign motive to the purported Russian interference by further stating that Putin somehow controls Trump due to owing his high office to Russian influence.  To date I have only seen evidence of Trump doing things contrary to Russian wishes.  This includes involvement in Syria (which I personally don’t agree with, yet it is the opposite of what Russia wants), restrictions on Putin’s oligarch cronies, installing missile defenses in Poland, selling anti-tank missiles to Ukraine, expelling Russian diplomats and so on.

On the other hand, under Obama (and much if this was while Hillary Clinton was his Secretary of State), the US pulled plans for missile defenses in Poland, had no restrictions on robber baron oligarchs and their dirty money, would not sell even defensive weapons to Ukraine, and even allowed Russia to directly intervene in Syria.  We all even saw Obama tell Medvedev (Putin’s protégé) that he would have more “flexibility” to acquiesce to Russian desires, once he was re-elected.

What to Do

We may not like that Trump is our president.  I certainly don’t.  But I do acknowledge that he won the 2016 election by valid means.  People voted in the Republican Primaries for him to be the Republican candidate, and then people voted for him so that he won the election in November.

People can detract from this somewhat by saying that he didn’t win 50% of the popular vote, but our system is set up this way, and I believe for wise purposes.  Everyone going into a presidential election knows the intricacies of this system, and if Hillary could complain about anything it would be her staff not sending her to Wisconsin or more frequently to Pennsylvania and Michigan.

It is OK to not like the American President or his actions.  But to say the Russians put him there is both ludicrous and dangerous.  Saying this makes Trump more apt to do things contrary to Putin’s wishes in order to prove that Putin doesn’t pull his strings.  And this will just make the world a MUCH more dangerous place.

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