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trump pot and clinton kettle

if you've been in contact with any media in the last couple of months, you know that presidential candidate donald trump's pet name for his electoral rival [or puppet-master, if you believe some rumours] hillary clinton is "crooked hillary". the nickname reflects a general perception that mrs. clinton is untrustworthy because of the scandal related to her use of a private email server to conduct state business, rather than a government server, where the public could be guaranteed that all her communication on their behalf would be properly scrutinized and archived. [he has also resurrected the story that hillary was implicated in the death of deputy white house counsel vince foster, a rumour that has been investigated and dismissed six different times, including by monice lewinski blow job prosecutor kenneth starr. the story is often included in tales of the so-called "clinton body count", which has also been dismissed.]

what likely galls her supporters the most is that the donald isn't entirely wrong about his opponent's email server and missing messages being a problem. she can claim all she wants that the thirty thousand messages she deleted were of a personal and non-business nature, but we have to take her word on that. and being asked to take a politician's word on something is a really hard pill to swallow. [some of us would argue that you don't have to delve into the hypothetical to raise concerns about hillary clinton as a leader. her advocacy of regime change in iraq and libya and her championing of corporate-driven trade deals like the bush-drafted and bill clinton-approved nafta, as well as her tendency to shift position on issues from one campaign to another, should really be enough.]

but accusations of crookedness sound a little rich coming from donald trump. earlier today, he encouraged russian hackers- believed to be responsible for breaking into the server of the democratic national congress and releasing their findings to wikileaks- to find the 3thirty thousand emails mrs. clinton had deleted from her infamous email server. that request in itself might constitute a crime and at the very least, it gives another twist in the bromantic saga of donald trump and vladimir putin. but it's hardly the only criminal activity to which trump has been linked, and not even the first involving the former soviet union.

for starters, there's trump campaign manager paul manafort. for almost a decade, manafort was the head of the election team for ukrainian president viktor yanukovych for nearly a decade, over the course of three elections and a popular uprising. yanukovych is currently in hiding in russia, the subject of warrants from both the ukraine [who allege that he committed treason by supporting russia's annexation of the ukraine] and interpol [who allege that he helped himself to the contents of the ukraine's treasury before riding off into the sunset. or sunrise, since he headed east...] now, the long time connections to yanukovych aren't illegal, because, honestly, who among us doesn't have at least one authoritarian foreign dictator among our friends and former employers, but the fact that he never registered his work in ukraine with the foreign agents registration act may well be. it is at least a breach of his industry regulations, and a threat to security, since manafort's employment could have put him in contact with sensitive government information. [but why would anyone just go sharing government information with paul manafort? well, possibly that he had been an employee of the republican party for year earlier, marshalling the forces for gerald ford and against ronald reagan in 1976.]

and if that's not seedy enough for you, manafort has a number of financial links to ukrainian petrol magnate dmytro firtash, who wanted by the fbi on allegations of bribery. former ukrainian prime minister yulia timoshenko alleges that manafort allowed firtash to disguise millions of purloined dollars through u.s. real estate investments, a process that's otherwise known as money laundering. none of that proves criminal wrongdoing on manafort's part, in exactly the way that deleting thirty thousand emails doesn't prove that hillary clinton has something to hide.

i wouldn't wait for the democrats to try to drag this to the surface, though, since their own organisation has plenty of links to yanukovych as well. but in theory, that's why we have the media. to make us aware of things that politicians don't want us to know, so that we don't have to go hunting them down on random blogs.

but you don't need to focus on paul manafort to find the smoke of criminal behaviour in donald trump's past. because the man himself is just fragrant with it, and in the most salacious way. hm... in what possible way could a businessman in the construction industry in new york be linked to criminality? yes, it's the obvious one. trump has some pretty suspicious mob ties. again, there are such things as innocent links to mafia-owned businesses. and one could argue that being in the construction industry in new york and new jersey, those links are nearly impossible to completely avoid. but if you read the linked article, you'll see that the established links between trump and convicted mafia members are a little uncomfortably close. and you'll also see that the investigations into those links has been rather less thorough than the investigations into, say, former secretary of state clinton's use of an email server.

so, mr. trump, if you're going to shake your fist righteously at your opponent and claim criminal wrongdoing, you might want to make sure you don't dislodge any nasty stories from your own past as you do.

and mainstream media- why aren't you talking about this? because if people are getting the news from this blog, that's a problem. 

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