2020.02.24 – Russiagate: The Toxic Gift That Keeps on Giving

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The point of the preposterous Russiagate conspiracy theory has always been the same: to distract from issues that really matter

What if every social media post about “Russia!” had instead focused on climate change? Or the opening of public lands to resource extraction? Or the gutting of the National Environmental Policy Act? Most people probably don’t even know what that last one is, which is sad. These are issues of immense importance, but they’ve gotten totally short shrift.

And this is where it’s not just about the DNC and their corporate media stooges: it’s about all the people who fell for it and helped spread it around; the people who were not merely gullible, but who were eager to lap up whatever they were served and spit it out again on command; the people for whom “America” was already “great” and who were shocked by Trump’s popularity.

I wasn’t shocked. I’m from Nebraska, and though I was as surprised as anyone that Trump squeaked through on election night, I was not mystified about his appeal. I didn’t need a fairy tale to explain his following. Watching him give his victory speech, I was like, “Yep, I know that guy, and I know the people who like him, and I see why they do.” (I got out of Nebraska as soon as I could!)

But liberal urbanites don’t get that, and they needed an explanation of how His Deplorableness could possibly have won. Hence the psychological attractiveness of the Russiagate narrative: it claimed that the force that propelled him to victory was not “American”; it came from outside. The nation’s deeply ingrained, widespread racism and patriarchy—of which Trump was merely an expression—could be papered over. “We’re better than this,” people could reassure themselves. Yeah, you wish.

A teachable moment came and went. An opportunity for self-examination was passed over. A mirror was held up, but the gaze was quickly averted.

That Trump is as “American” as apple pie was too much to consider.

Original post at Macska Moksha Press: