The Empress-in-Waiting might have had one dream destroyed, but that isn't stopping her from posing as the Empress-in-Exile.
If you thought that Hillary was going to go quietly into that good night of one of her fortified palaces, you foolishly thought wrong.
If you also thought that, like most other people, she is scared witless about Donald Trump's formation of a military junta assisted by a claque of kleptocrats depraved enough to make even Caligula blush, you thought wrong again.
Hillary's comeback consists of pretending that the scurrilous rumor mill - something which has probably been an integral part of human civilization ever since the first hominid landed on her feet after being pushed out of a tree by a bully - is suddenly the Threat To End All Threats.
There's supposedly an epidemic of Fake News devouring the brains of our nation, but Hillary Clinton is here to immunize you through the magic bullet of censorship.
While everybody else either is hysterical or depressed about the lethal, real-world consequences of the Trump presidency, Hillary is more worried about the Clinton World consequences of #PizzaGate. That's the hashtag given to a weekend incident in which a paranoid guy fired shots into the floor of a Washington D.C. eatery after arriving there to check out for himself a deranged online rumor about a Hillary-run pedophile ring.
So, before arriving on Capitol Hill to say goodbye to outgoing Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid on Thursday, Hillary arrived at the pizza joint to check out for herself the true news reports about the fake news reports.
But rather than use her TV time to urge citizens to use their own common sense before brandishing their unregulated weapons, and rather than urge immediate emergency funding for the teaching of critical thinking skills in public schools, Hillary is calling instead for massive government censorship. Leaders in both the public and private sectors should act immediately to "snuff out" stories which they deem to be bogus:
"The epidemic of fake news and false propaganda that flooded social media over the last year ― it’s now clear that so-called fake news can have real-world consequences,” Clinton said.Clinton implies that there is such a thing as good, government-sanctioned propaganda. An example of good propaganda might be the selling of the Iraq War by the establishment media based upon bogus claims of weapons of mass destruction. This propaganda resulted in the deaths and displacements of millions of innocent people.
“This isn’t about politics or partisanship,” she continued. “Lives are at risk, lives of ordinary people just trying to go about their days to do their jobs, contribute to their communities. It’s a danger that must be addressed and addressed quickly.”
Good propaganda might be her own selling of the deadly bombing of Libya based upon false claims that Muammar al-Qaddafi was on the verge of exterminating his own people.
It might be the running deficit-hawk narrative that "Social Security and Medicare are going broke" used by politicians and the mainstream media to sell the neoliberal program of pain and austerity for the many, and prosperity for the plutocrats - some of whom comprise Donald Trump's cabinet.
Ordinary citizens' lives are indeed at risk as they go about their precarious business working at their precarious jobs. Neoliberalism as preached by Clinton and both sides of the Uniparty has served to increase the national mortality rate to its highest level in two decades. Good propaganda outlets like the New York Times report that all the experts are ever so surprised that so many victims of the neoliberal class war are suicidally depressed, or addicted to drugs, or eating cheap unhealthy food, or not using their high deductible health plans, and then dying so tragically young.
When Hillary was running for president, it was the epidemic of opioid addiction that she said was the most pressing social issue of our time. Now that she's not running, it's those vile yet silly rumors about her on the Internet.(Which is odd, because nowhere on her campaign website is there one single mention of the fake news epidemic destroying all our lives.)
Meanwhile, that bogus Washington Post story boosting a slimy blacklisting Internet site called PropOrNot turns out to have Clinton machine and State Department and CIA fingerprints smeared all over it. Investigative journalist Mark Ames looks into the sourcing:
The only specific clues given were an admission that at least one of its members with access to its Twitter handle is “Ukrainian-American”. They had given this away in a handful of early Ukrainian-language tweets, parroting Ukrainian ultranationalist slogans, before the group was known.Ames notes that the language of the PropOrNot site and that of Ukraine-based blacklisting and censorship efforts are remarkably similar. And he notes a direct link between a Ukrainian lobbyist and the Democratic National Committee:
One PropOrNot tweet, dated November 17, invokes a 1940s Ukrainian fascist salute “Heroiam Slava!!” to cheer a news item on Ukrainian hackers fighting Russians. The phrase means “Glory to the heroes” and it was formally introduced by the fascist Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists (OUN) at their March-April 1941 congress in Nazi occupied Cracow, as they prepared to serve as Nazi auxiliaries in Operation Barbarossa.
One of the key media sources who blamed the DNC hacks on Russia, ramping up fears of crypto-Putinist infiltration, is a Ukrainian-American lobbyist working for the DNC. She is Alexandra Chalupa—described as the head of the Democratic National Committee’s opposition research on Russia and on Trump, and founder and president of the Ukrainian lobby group “US United With Ukraine Coalition”, which lobbied hard to pass a 2014 bill increasing loans and military aid to Ukraine, imposing sanctions on Russians, and tightly aligning US and Ukraine geostrategic interests.Ames further notes that Yahoo News named Chalupa one of the 16 key influencers of the Democratic campaign and the main impetus behind reports that Russia interfered with the election and boosted the chances of Donald Trump.
As I read Ames's piece, I could have sworn I was in the throes of a John Le Carre novel.
Glenn Greenwald writes that MSDNC and other mainstream outlets were also complicit in the "good," Clinton-approved propaganda. They all helped spread the bogus claims that the damaging emails released by Wikileaks were all fakes. To bolster that claim, one "Trump operative" who named himself Omnivore posted a fake speech by Hillary to Goldman Sachs to trick her opponents into citing him. It was just such a tactic that got Dan Rather fired after citing a planted forged document to bolster the otherwise legitimate claim that George W. Bush skipped out on his Air National Guard training.
Even after Omnivore was exposed as a Clinton plant, the fake news that all the Wikileaks documents were faked continues to be spread by corporate "real news" sites.
As I reported during the waning days of the campaign, one of my own articles, cross-posted on Truthout (one of PropOrNot's blacklisted sites) was caught up in the cache of the Democratic National Committee emails provided by Wikileaks. I can personally attest that it was not a fake. I wrote every word of it. It's in the cache because Campaign Director John Podesta apparently subscribes to Truthout. So Hillary should probably warn him about this clear and present danger to his brain.
It just goes to show you that American fascism, like American propaganda, is not an epidemic suddenly unleashed upon us in the Age of Trump. It's been around for a very long time. And it has usually been well-hidden by the gloss of democracy and liberalism.
Not any more. The veneer is not only showing cracks, it is coming apart at the seams.
Update: Under political pressure,President Obama has now ordered a full investigation of the alleged Russian infiltration of American democracy and the electoral process. The New York Times reports, however, that the actual results of this alleged investigation may never be released to the public. Otherwise Russia might steal our investigation techniques!
In other words, what we don't know can't possibly eat our brains.
So carry on. Buy the latest gadgets, consume approved propaganda content, and go about your precarious business as you struggle to be a finalist in the mortality sweepstakes.
Update 2: Within hours of Obama announcing the investigation, the Washington Post quoted secret anonymous sources as reporting that the CIA has already secretly decided - with the usual "high level of confidence" - that Russian operatives did indeed hack into the DNC and John Podesta's emails and furnished the caches to Wikileaks as a direct ploy to help elect Donald Trump. The New York Times adds that a similar Russian hack of the Republican National Committee did not result in any fair and balanced leakage. Oh what a sticky, tangled web.