Blog Credo

The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary.

H.L. Mencken

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

From Russia With Love

I haven't commented on the growing suspicions that Donald Trump may have tied to Putin's Russia.

In some ways, this is typical hardball from Democrats, the sort that Trump really hasn't had to deal with.  He's largely skated from one PR disaster to another without any one "gaffe" pulling him down, because how can you pick one?

As we enter the homestretch of the 2016 Hunger Games, Trump will be put under different microscopes that he was in the past.  It exasperated Jeb Bush that he could not bring typical political lenses to bear on Trump, and maybe it will prove impossible.  Plus, no matter what, Trump will win over 40% of the vote because of partisanship.

The Russian charges are currently circumstantial and speculative to a large degree and thus reek of conspiracy theory mumbo-jumbo.

However, we do know that Trump has been shut off by every major American bank - only Deutschebank will lend to him.  He is not liquid and needs capital, and apparently, Russian investors have backed him.  We also know that he admires Vladimir Putin and vice versa.  We know that his statements about withdrawing US from NATO commitments is warming to Putin's heart.  And we know that Paul Manafort has a long history of working with despots and dictators, including people close to Putin. Finally, it seems pretty clear someone in Russia was behind the hack of the DNC.

Put together, it's fishy as hell, but not definitive.

What Trump needs to do, however, to make this go away is to release his tax returns.  These returns would demonstrate that he's not as rich as he says he is, and also that he pays very little tax.  They could also disclose how much money he gets from Russia.

Trump isn't going to release his tax returns. Again, for most candidates, that's a deal breaker.  Romney eventually had to release his returns, even though that caused him political damage.

Is this another case of Trump denying the laws of political gravity?

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