Saturday, November 26, 2016

Is Donald Trump Indebted To Russia For His Election ?

There is no doubt that the Russian democracy is just a sham. Russia is ruled by a strongman (a nice term for a tyrant), who controlled that government even for the short period when he was no longer the country's president.

And it is a fact that Donald Trump was aided in winning the American presidency by the government of that Russian strongman (Vladimir Putin). The Russians not only hacked the e-mails of prominent Democrats and fed that information to Trump, but also used social media platforms to post numerous fake news stories -- stories that Trump and the right-wing eagerly spread as fact.

This brings up some troubling questions for those of us that don't want a Russian-style strongman in this country -- an orange-tinted Putin. What does the Russian government expect in return for helping Trump win the election? Does Trump think he owes that Russian government a debt, and is that going to result in this country kowtowing to Russian interests? Is Trump, ignorant to the ways of government, going to be played for a fool by his new best-buddy, Vladimir Putin?

Some of you may think I'm going off the deep-end, but I don't think so. Consider the following.

From The Washington Post:

The flood of “fake news” this election season got support from a sophisticated Russian propaganda campaign that created and spread misleading articles online with the goal of punishing Democrat Hillary Clinton, helping Republican Donald Trump and undermining faith in American democracy, say independent researchers who tracked the operation.
Russia’s increasingly sophisticated propaganda machinery — including thousands of botnets, teams of paid human “trolls,” and networks of websites and social-media accounts — echoed and amplified right-wing sites across the Internet as they portrayed Clinton as a criminal hiding potentially fatal health problems and preparing to hand control of the nation to a shadowy cabal of global financiers. The effort also sought to heighten the appearance of international tensions and promote fear of looming hostilities with nuclear-armed Russia.
Two teams of independent researchers found that the Russians exploited American-made technology platforms to attack U.S. democracy at a particularly vulnerable moment, as an insurgent candidate harnessed a wide range of grievances to claim the White House. The sophistication of the Russian tactics may complicate efforts by Facebook and Google to crack down on “fake news,” as they have vowed to do after widespread complaints about the problem.
There is no way to know whether the Russian campaign proved decisive in electing Trump, but researchers portray it as part of a broadly effective strategy of sowing distrust in U.S. democracy and its leaders. The tactics included penetrating the computers of election officials in several states and releasing troves of hacked emails that embarrassed Clinton in the final months of her campaign.
And from The Miami Herald:

In the scarcely two weeks since Donald Trump’s surprise victory over Hillary Clinton, he and Russian President Vladimir Putin have spoken at least twice by phone. 
Their aides have had additional contacts.
That’s more contact than Trump is known to have had with any other world leader since he defeated Clinton in the Nov. 8 election. But it is a concrete display of what many predicted would be a reversal in the standoffish relations between the two nuclear powers should Trump win election.
Russian news outlets reported Wednesday that Trump and Putin already are negotiating how Russia and the United States will act in the Middle East next year.
Putin cultivates an image as a stern-faced tough guy with a black belt in judo who rides horses bare-chested and exiles political foes. But it appears he can hardly contain his joy at Trump’s ascension to the presidency.
Putin discussed his most recent talk with Trump at a briefing in Lima, Peru, on Sunday.
“The president-elect confirmed he is willing to normalize Russian-American relations,” Putin told reporters. “I told him the same.”
Putin said he and Trump had not set a date for a personal summit, but he noted that their representatives will be meeting soon.

ead more here:

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