Stop Blaming Russia for 2016

Blaming 2016 on Russian disinformation is American disinformation. The Republican controlled Senate Intelligence Committee released a report today outlining just how deep Russian interference in the 2016 election ran.

Entitled “The IRA, Social Media and Political Polarization in
the United States, 2012-2018″ the report zeroes in on Russia’s Internet Research Association which used Google, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to promote Donald Trump’s candidacy.

I’m sure everything in the Senate Intelligence Committee report is true. I have no doubt that through the Internet Research Association Putin was able to spread misinformation to American voters as far back as 2012. I’m sure Russia tricked a lot of American voters into believing patent falsehoods about Hillary. I just don’t think that’s the reason Trump is in the Oval Office.

America is a big country. It’s going to take more than just counterfeit social media posts out of Russia to get Americans believing serial falsehoods. No, it takes forty years of Koch Brothers assisted right wing propaganda mills like The Heritage Foundation, The Weekly Standard and Fox News to get Americans believing serial falsehoods like Trickle Down Economics, Climate Change Is a Hoax and The Clinton Foundation Is A Clearinghouse for Pedophiles.

Trump didn’t need Putin to convince Americans that Hillary was dying, or that she was selling plutonium or blowing up embassies. He already had Rush, Sean, The National Enquirer, Trey Gowdy, Darrell Issa, Newt Gingrich and Jason Chaffetz.

This is the same GOP we’ve always had. This is the same right wing media we’ve always had. Now that they’ve all been shown to be morally and intellectually bankrupt it’s only sporting to blame Trump on Russia. How could this possibly be our fault? Yes, Trump crashed our car, but we weren’t driving, and he took the keys from us. Oh, please. Russia did what they could to get Trump elected, but their efforts paled in comparison to what the usual rogue’s gallery of GOP loyalists did.

Look, I hate Trump. I voted for Bernie and then Hillary. I have no doubt the Trump Crime Family colluded with the Russians. And yes, there’s ample evidence Putin has been purchasing Republican politicians for a decade. They should all be locked up.

But Russian interference shouldn’t have swung the 2016 election. Especially since Hillary won the popular vote. Cambridge Analytica turned out to be a myth, it didn’t work. The Mercer family ended up owning it and it was a financial bust. I have yet to see any evidence that Russia used Facebook to zero in on key districts so Trump could win the Electoral Vote but not the popular vote.

So yes, there was Russian interference, and everybody should be indicted and thrown in prison. But that’s not why Hillary lost.

Once again America pivots overseas to blame somebody else for its own failure. Hillary lost because we don’t let people vote in America. That’s the real reason Hillary lost. The Roberts Court overturned the Voting Rights Act of 1965. People of color have to wait hours to cast a ballot, not to mention the ID laws. That’s why Hillary lost. The Russians didn’t pass voter ID laws. The Republicans did. The Russians didn’t scrub voting rolls.

Also, there are 100 million Americans who can vote but don’t vote because both parties on SOME, not all, but SOME, of the big issues are interchangeable.

Yes, the GOP is far, far worse but that should make the Dems far, far better and far, far more progressive but the Dems are not. They’re just a wee bit less bad than the GOP.
Seriously, to hear Dems still insisting that Medicare for All isn’t practical is almost enough to make ME stay home on Election Day.

If the Dems don’t think Medicare for All is THE issue of our time then we don’t have an alternative to the GOP, which, given its complete lack of intellectual and moral footing should be effortless to defeat.

So all I’m saying is America needs to own 2016. We did it to ourselves. Not Putin.

And, even if Russia did rig 2016 and it’s all Putin’s fault then we are even MORE culpable for spending a trillion dollars on defense each year and still finding our democracy powerless in the face of a handful of Russian hackers.

We let our guard down. Nobody got fired after 9/11. Nobody got fired after 2016. Because in America it’s never anybody’s fault unless you’re powerless. That’s what those 2.3 million prison beds are for.

So, we blame Iraq or Russia. Blame anybody but the powerful corporate owned sinecures who are supposed to protect us. We sleep better if Trump is Russia’s fault. Go ahead and believe that lie. Believe that there would be no racism, no class divide, no stupidity and hatred in America had Putin not planted all those seeds in 2016 on Facebook. Sure. It all started in 2016 on Facebook. Blame Russia.

2016 is all our fault. Nobody else’s. It’s been 18 years since Bush v. Gore, and we still can’t count votes.

And finally, all elections have some degree of irregularities. What can’t be stolen is a landslide. Had Hillary run on Medicare for All there couldn’t possibly have been enough Russian troll farms to steal that tsunami. Put Medicare for All on the ballot and watch how many people turn out.

I’m sorry, but this one’s on us, not Putin. You want to blame somebody? Start with the health insurance lobbyists who own Trump, Hillary, Obama, Pelosi and Schumer. That’s why 100 million Americans stayed home on Election Day.

Health insurance lobbyists have killed more Americans than Putin, Bin Laden and the NRA combined. A vast majority of Americans want Medicare for All. But it was health insurance lobbyists who took a brief respite from killing us in order to kill our democracy. Americans don’t vote because health insurance lobbyists have rendered them powerless.

The biggest lie being told to Americans is that Medicare for All isn’t practical. That one didn’t emanate from Russia. That one’s good old American deception.

That’s why Trump won.