I was talking about the whole “Russiagate” phenomenon with a political activist today, and I think we’re in agreement that there’s a very good reason why Democrats haven’t shown much concern that their supporters are severely misinterpreting the basic facts of Russian interference in the 2016 election. On the contrary, it seems the prefer their fanbase to deliberately distort the story so that for many of them “Russia tried to influence the election” has become “Russia hacked the election” or “Russia got Trump elected.” Can you guess why Democrats are happy to let that narrative go off the rails? I think I’ve figured it out, and my interlocutor is on to them as well.
To put it simply, the Democratic party establishment, the Clinton political machine, needs this narrative. They need it to explain to them why they lost what should have been the easiest campaign in recent history. They need it to fend off pressure from within the party’s base to embrace ideas and morally superior positions as opposed to technocratic, Republican-lite policies. If the election was stolen by Putin, what sense does it make to criticize the DNC’s strategy and policies? Shut up, Bernie Bros! The problem wasn’t Clinton or her supporters- it was Russia!
Clinton dead-enders also seem to need this “hacked election” narrative as a coping strategy and an alternative to actually opposing Trump’s policies and the political forces his victory emboldened. When reading some of what these people have to say, one gets the impression that they fervently hope for the day that Rachel Maddow or some other beloved liberal pundit interrupts regularly scheduled programming to announce that Trump and Pence have been impeached and removed from office, and despite a total lack of any legal grounding for such a decision, Hillary Clinton has been appointed president henceforth. And why? All because Eric Garland or one of the other Twitter nutcases found the smoking gun tying Trump to Russian intelligence agencies. After the Great Reckoning, we can all enjoy the next four years of condescendingly lecturing leftists about how the real reason President Clinton II can’t implement her most progressive agenda is because of “this thing you might have heard of called Congress.” Seriously, who knows what goes on in the minds of these delusional people?
Of course the Russia story highlights serious issues for America and its political system. That the United States has sunk to such a level that it could feel threatened by propaganda from such an incoherent, paranoid kleptocracy is an issue that clearly demands attention. But don’t bet on our politicians or #TheResistance doing anything about that. No, they will use the Russia story to serve their own agendas and as salve for their mental wounds after their pathetic failure. That’s one guarantee you can take to the bank.*
*Said “bank” may be holding large amounts of ill-gotten money from Russia and other kleptocratic, authoritarian regimes. Nobody will be prosecuted for this, however, because uh…growth…er…free market! Why do you hate America so much?!