consultants are sandburs

Monday, July 25, 2016

If there is a progressive mindset against the Dem establishment's awful conduct and awful top ticket candidate pairing, an attitude of "Screw them, I'll vote Trump," is possible, everybody being ultimately responsible for personal choice, but there is an item that could grow legs, multiple ways, that any such disgruntled progressive should consider.

A hat tip to an occasional reader who emailed me this TPM link to an item dated July 23, 2016, and titled, "Trump & Putin. Yes, It's Really a Thing."

It is a lengthy item and each Crabgrass reader, Democrat, Republican, Green, or Libertarian is urged to read it in its entirety.

That said, here is a single, and arguably unrepresentative mid-item excerpt pair, but a pair tweaking my interest most -

After his bankruptcy and business failures roughly a decade ago Trump has had an increasingly difficult time finding sources of capital for new investments. As I noted above, Trump has been blackballed by all major US banks with the exception of Deutschebank, which is of course a foreign bank with a major US presence. He has steadied and rebuilt his financial empire with a heavy reliance on capital from Russia. At a minimum the Trump organization is receiving lots of investment capital from people close to Vladimir Putin.

Trump's tax returns would likely clarify the depth of his connections to and dependence on Russian capital aligned with Putin. And in case you're keeping score at home: no, that's not reassuring.:

[...] As TPM's Tierney Sneed explained in this article, one of the most enduring dynamics of GOP conventions (there's a comparable dynamic on the Dem side) is more mainstream nominees battling conservative activists over the party platform, with activists trying to check all the hardline ideological boxes and the nominees trying to soften most or all of those edges. This is one thing that made the Trump convention very different. The Trump Camp was totally indifferent to the platform. So party activists were able to write one of the most conservative platforms in history. Not with Trump's backing but because he simply didn't care. With one big exception: Trump's team mobilized the nominee's traditional mix of cajoling and strong-arming on one point: changing the party platform on assistance to Ukraine against Russian military operations in eastern Ukraine. For what it's worth (and it's not worth much) I am quite skeptical of most Republicans call for aggressively arming Ukraine to resist Russian aggression. But the single-mindedness of this focus on this one issue - in the context of total indifference to everything else in the platform - speaks volumes.

This does not mean Trump is controlled by or in the pay of Russia or Putin. It can just as easily be explained by having many of his top advisors having spent years working in Putin's orbit and being aligned with his thinking and agenda. But it is certainly no coincidence. Again, in the context of near total indifference to the platform and willingness to let party activists write it in any way they want, his team zeroed in on one fairly obscure plank to exert maximum force and it just happens to be the one most important to Putin in terms of US policy.

[links within original omitted] The part about big bank blackballing, to me it is a plus, in that if elected Trump might harbor a vengeance whereby good could come from Wall Street hubris getting a comeuppance,

Goldman Sachs folks finally perhaps being slapped upside the head. All that.

The rest suggests something beyond sensible policy thinking about Russia; the suggestion being there might be something unwholesome and in need of voter attention. The suggestion tax returns might evidence Trump money ties to Russian money puts those tax returns in the same class as the Clinton transcripts. What's being hidden and why?

Voters need reminding if troubled by the awful two-party offerings, top ticket this cycle, that there is Libertarian Party candidate Gary Johnson, with general cred for honesty; and Green Party candidate Jill Stein, comparably credible.

- see top sidebar item, with links -

Blind allegiance to inner party offering is another voter choice, of course, lesser evil between the two being the linchpin of past awful pairings [remember G.H.W. Bush - Michael Dukakis // G.W. Bush - John Kerry, where greater and not lesser evil won].

However, the resounding possibility presented us by the truly uniquely awful pair being fobbed off on us this time is a ripe opportunity to do damage to the two-party stranglehold on the nation; to the clear benefit of the nation; and to promote and grow alternate party serious contention. That opportunity, that chance, should NOT be wasted, by either polar end of the spectrum, in lesser evil traffic to where the muddy awful centrists are posturing today: Wall Street Dems, Angry White Republicans, mediocrity raising like rancid cream-to-the-top; merit sidetracked over keeping the status quo on track because it is what the 1% want and have bought.


As with the Clinton family, for the Trump family, the golden adage remains golden; follow the money. In particular this family pair is fit for such scrutiny, since each has a clear history of being driven by the money.

Both Libertarian and Green candidates have not shown a comparable history demanding an easy sleazy-greed categorization. To the best of my knowledge. Admittedly, I have devoted more attention to Jill Stein than to Gary Johnson, so cogent reader commentary on Johnson, who he is, what he has achieved, is welcome.

Dan Burns at MPP, this link; linking to Kos, here.

__________FURTHER UPDATE__________
Do read Dan's item, link above, he seems convinced it is not just smoke, but fire. In any event, the story is (or appears to be) growing legs; e.g., this google, and this "doth protest too much" item from

Here is where Kos savvy reader help is needed. The KOS item Burns links to has, currently as the update is written, 180 comments. Is that unusual, or par for the course. What I can note, short of wading through KOS commentary, a few minutes ago, say a quarter hour or so, it was 162 comments. While growing legs on KOS is not growing legs in a larger sense, readers are urged to see if the story gets an AP or Reuters feed, soon, or Guardian coverage. Those are my touchstones of mainstream, even more than WaPo or N.Y. Times, certainly more than HuffPo.

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