The Real Russian Story

Since the election of Donald Trump as the 45th President of the United States, the media has been pushing a narrative that Russia either influenced the election in Trump’s favor or somehow colluded with him or his campaign.

However, there is a much more real, complex, and interesting “Russian Story” which is beginning to bubble to the surface.  The clues have been there for years, and some have begun to see them.

To get a picture of the real “Russian Story,” first consider Russia’s state interests:

  • Secure and maintain access to uranium for civil and military projects.
  • Grow the influence of Russia’s state nuclear company, Rosatom.
  • Protect Russia’s carbon-based fuel exports.  Oil and gas sales make up 16% of Russia’s GDP, 70% of exports, and over half of revenues to the federal budget.
  • Increase Russia’s foreign influence and power

Now, keeping these interests in mind, look back on Russian activities the past ten years or so:

  • Russia began building nuclear reactors in Iran
  • Rosatom (Russia’s state nuclear company) purchased Uranium One, a Canadian mining company, in 2013, securing access to, and control of, additional nuclear material
  • Russia allegedly funds anti-fracking and anti-pipeline groups operating in the United States.  This ensures that the U.S. does not produce more oil and gas and thereby protect’s Russia’s own exports.

Instrumental to these Russian goals and activities was the purchase of Uranium One by Rosatom and the Iran Nuclear Deal in 2015.  As mentioned above, the Uranium One deal helped secure Russian access to uranium.  The Iran deal ensured that the planned Russian building of nuclear reactors in Iran could go ahead, all under the guise of ensuring that Iran does not use nuclear materials for weapons.  In addition, the Obama administration’s blocking of the Keystone XL Pipeline and opposition to coal and fracking served to further Russia’s economic interests (whether intended by the Obama administration or not).  Therefore, in the end, Russia was the real beneficiary of these staples of the Obama administration.

How did the Uranium One deal come to be?  First, since the Uranium One company had mines in the United States, its purchase had to be approved by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States.  This approval came unanimously in 2010.  Among the members of the Committee at the time were Hillary Clinton (then Secretary of State) and Eric Holder (then Attorney General).  It is worth noting as well that Robert Mueller, currently leading the investigation of Russia’s interference of the U.S. election as special counsel, was then the head of the FBI, reporting to Holder.

These circumstances make what has now been revealed more interesting, for there is evidence that prior to the Uranium One deal being approved, the FBI uncovered evidence of Russian meddling, but didn’t report it for years.  According to The Hill:

Before the Obama administration approved a controversial deal in 2010 giving Moscow control of a large swath of American uranium, the FBI had gathered substantial evidence that Russian nuclear industry officials were engaged in bribery, kickbacks, extortion and money laundering designed to grow Vladimir Putin’s atomic energy business inside the United States… They also obtained an eyewitness account — backed by documents — indicating Russian nuclear officials had routed millions of dollars to the U.S. designed to benefit former President Bill Clinton’s charitable foundation during the time Secretary of State Hillary Clinton served on a government body that provided a favorable decision to Moscow…

Thus, the Uranium One deal strengthened Russia’s position (it gave it access to 20% of the U.S.’ uranium) and was important enough for Russia to engage in whatever tactics necessary to get it approved.

With access to increased uranium reserves secured, how was Russia to benefit?  One way was to grow another country’s nuclear program, providing equipment and services to do so.  Iran was a convenient place for Russia to do this; it was estranged from the West, embroiled in sanctions, and a traditional ally of Russia.  However, Russia needed international acceptance of Iran’s nuclear program to pull this off.

This necessary acceptance came with the Obama administration’s 2015 Iran Nuclear Deal, which provided international approval of Iran’s civilian nuclear program.  Russia could then continue with its plans to build additional reactors in Iran while supplying engineers, equipment, and uranium for them.  Thus, both the Uranium One deal and the Iran Deal assisted Russia’s long-term goals.

Now, allegations have been made that not only did the FBI know about attempts by Russia to secure the approval of the Uranium One deal, but that they threatened a witness to prevent him from testifying before Congress.

From the Daily Wire:

Victoria Toensing, the attorney for an FBI confidential witness, alleged that the Obama Department of Justice blocked her client from informing Congress that Russian executives told him how they facilitated the Obama administration’s 2010 approval of the Uranium One deal and transferred millions of dollars in Russian nuclear funds to an entity assisting Bill Clinton’s foundation…. Bill Clinton accepted $500,000 in Russian speaking fees in 2010, as The New York Times reported in 2015; Uranium One’s chairman used his family foundation to make four donations totaling $2.35 million to the Clinton Foundation.

With all these facts in mind, the conventional narrative that “Russia influenced the U.S. election to help Trump” not only begins to look inane, but also like a useful cover for the actions of the Obama administration and the Clinton State Department in assisting Russia in its commercial enterprises.  And the person investigating the alleged Russian election interference is Robert Mueller, head of the FBI at the time in which the Uranium One deal was approved and during which Russian influence was discovered but not reported.

WaPo: Harvey Weinstein Helped Pay the Clinton’s Legal Bills

Once I saw the headline, I remembered: Harvey Weinstein was one of those Hollywood liberals who helped the Clintons cover their legal bills in the 90’s, and the Washington Post was the outlet that broke it.

Yes, the ironic fakenews bourgeoisie is sharing a WaPo story. Not really “in the tank” after all. Especially now, with all the attention Weinstein is getting lately. It’s been fairly easy to throw a stick and hit another Harvey story, so there’s no point in belaboring the topic. However, the story does remind the electorate how deep the Clinton’s network was built over the years. Over the years, Bill and Hillary Clinton have received nearly $30,000 in donations from Weinstein.

Of course, Harvey wasn’t alone. The Clinton Legal Defense fund, established in Arkansas by Clinton family friend David Pryor, saw over 17,000 donors, 62 of which gave the maximum $10,000. It was a list of who’s who, including Tom Hanks, Barbra Streisand, Michael Douglas, Ron Howard, Norman Lear, Steven Spielberg and Kate Capshaw-Spielberg as well as studio executives Jeffrey Katzenberg, David Geffen, and Weinstein. By law, the operation was not allowed to solicit donations, but was promoted heavily at the time through Hollywood circles. The fund was closed in 1997, leaving the Clintons with more than $3 million in outstanding legal expenses.

It was a nice thought while it lasted. And apparently, it attracted some tawdry characters with it.

“Birds of a feather,” you might say.



Hillary Clinton: “Creep” Trump Made My Skin Crawl

‘This is not ok,’ I thought. It was the second presidential debate, and Donald trump was looming behind me. Two days before, the world heard him bragging about groping women. Now, we were on a small stage, and no matter where I walked, he followed me closely, staring at me, making faces. It was incredibly uncomfortable. He was literally breathing down my neck. My skin crawled.

“It was one of those moments you wish you could hit pause and ask everyone watching, ‘well, what would you do?’ Do you stay calm, keep smiling and carry on, as if he weren’t repeatedly invading your space? Or do you turn, look him in the eye, and say loudly and clearly, ‘back up, you creep. Get away from me. I know you love to intimidate women, but you can’t intimidate me, so back up.’ I chose option A. I kept my cool, aided by a lifetime of dealing with difficult men trying to throw me off. I did however, grip the microphone extra hard. I wonder though whether if I should have chosen option B. It certainly would have been better TV. Maybe I have over-learned the lesson of staying calm, biting my tongue, digging my fingernails into a clenched fist, smiling all the while, determined to present a composed face to the world.”

It’s been 10 months since the most shocking election in recent modern history, and Hillary Clinton is saying now what she wanted to say then. We all knew she’d have something to say in the limelight of a wall-hitting political career, but this was a doozy.

On October 7, 2016, America was treated to the raw video of a man who thought he was alone with a buddy, joking about and admitting the sexual assault of women he came across. There was hardly a single person to be found defending it. Heck, even Reince Preibus quietly suggested Trump drop out of the race. But, two days later, Hillary Clinton faced him in the second of three presidential debates, making for some of the best made-for-tv political drama in history. Now, after almost a year in relative exile, she’s speaking out about the campaign, and she’s holding nothing back. Perhaps she realizes she has nothing left to lose. Literally, nothing.

70,000+ votes in three pivotal, traditional blue states sent Hillary Clinton packing after an election she felt entitled to win. Everything had been lined up, and Donald Trump was arguably the most obnoxious, offensive and unrestrained candidate to ever run for president. But, the results went the opposite way, and now she’s working on explaining her own process, before and after the election. She must feel intense depression for having lost an election against someone like Trump. I mean, it takes an amazingly bad candidate to lose such a race. I suppose there will be those who want to hear her personal debrief, but I’m not one of them.

However, calling the president a “creep” may sell a few more books for her.

In a seven-month presidency that has been filled with Russian collusion investigations, crowd sizes, Muslim bans, staff “resignations,” failed repeal bills, more Russian investigations, saber-rattling with North Korea, profane speeches to Boy Scouts, more staff “resignations,” Nazi equivocation, riots, and more Russian investigations, Trump’s history with the other gender (yes, there are just two) has been a footnote. At least, so far. Now, it may come back to the surface, as the news constantly churns out new developments of a chaotic presidency.

Then again, why give him the headline? The adage “he who controls the microphone controls the conversation” means we’re facilitating his instability by covering it. But how can we not?

I don’t know… Maybe I’m just getting tired – because it’s not passivity – but I’m not sure I want to go that route again. We already know he’s a creep. We already know he’s the stereotype of spurned high school bullies. It’s clear that his defenders don’t care. I’m not interested in making them care anymore.

I suppose I am interested in cataloguing, and not forgetting every single abrasive, angry, hateful, childish, uncivil, obsessive trait this president shows. Someday, it may be needed for either a big election, or a big impeachment trial. So, I guess take note, file it away somewhere, and remember this election when the next one comes along.

Hopefully, America will do a better job than nominating the two worst candidates on the planet, and forcing us to choose which creep we want as president. Because for people like me, who voted for neither one, it brings no joy to watch America beat each other bloody and senseless (sometimes literally) over why they picked one liar over the other.

At least some of them will have their legal bills covered.


Rand Paul: ‘President Hillary Clinton Would Have Been Proud’ Of Omnibus Spending Bill

Sen. Rand Paul, (R-Ky.) says that President Hillary Clinton would be proud of the Omnibus Spending Bill, in an op-ed written for Breitbart. 

“You would be tempted to think the $1 trillion government funding deal is like Christmas morning for them, as Republicans have handed them free media to brag about how much of the President’s agenda they have stopped,” Paul says.

“You’ll see it in the news as an “Omnibus spending bill,” when it should really be called “the Status Quo Protection Act.” President Hillary Clinton would have been proud of this bill.

Paul says that the bill has some “good provisions tucked in,” but overall breaks campaign promises to cut the funding of multiple agencies, while continuing to fund the “military industrial complex and welfare state.”

“Instead of legislating from crisis to crisis, Republicans should use fiscal deadlines to articulate the principles that supposedly set us apart – to boldly defend the conservative philosophy that fueled the country’s growth and can lead it into a new era of prosperity,” Paul continues.

“Yet, for too long, Republican majorities have backed down from those debates. Like Monty Python’s Sir Robin, they have turned and fled from what seems the least bit threatening, with no shortage of people willing to sing their praises for “bravely” doing so.”

“As a result, we’ve allowed a narrative that equates “compassion with money” to dominate. If you don’t want to increase funding levels, you’re painted as not caring about the underlying issue.”

Paul then blasts the “compassion with money” narrative that Republicans have failed to fight for so long.

“If you don’t want to give the military a blank check, you’re said to be unpatriotic. In the church of Big Government, every dollar is holy.”

“You free Americans to save for retirement, educate their children, or support small businesses when you don’t nickel-and-dime them with every last tax or fee.  Cutting down on red tape incentivizes entrepreneurs to chase their dreams, start a business, and innovate. Removing the promise of guaranteed money demands the highest quality research and results to justify continued support.”

“In the end, how compassionate is it if we can’t help anyone because politicians bankrupted our nation by forcing the federal government to try to do everything?”

AirBNB Set for Inauguration Record Despite Special Snowflakes

Prior to Donald Trump’s upset at the ballot box, large numbers of Clinton supporters had already begun making reservations for their celebratory inauguration weekend. In the month since the largely unexpected election result, record numbers of reservations have been cancelled but they’ve been outpaced by new need for lodging.

Cancelling reservations isn’t cheap. In most cases, the fee is 50% and in some cases that has cost as high as $2000! Apparently these folks REALLY don’t want to be near Trump supporters.

The cancellations aren’t just from visitors. Many AirBnB hosts have pulled their listings out of fear of having Trump supporters under their roof:

But some individuals who had planned to post their D.C. area homes on Airbnb said they are feeling conflicted about renting to or sharing their place with people who voted for Trump.

“I have a visceral reaction to the thought of having a Trump supporter in my house,” said Lobna, who had planned to rent out a room in the apartment she shares with two roommates. All three of them are Clinton supporters.

“No amount of money could make me change my mind,” she said. “It’s about moral principles.”

All of the bluster may be distracting but the bottom line is that AirBnB hosts are going to make bank over inauguration weekend! A recently released internal report from AirBnb shows that they expect more than 10,000 guests for the inauguration, 10 times the 2013 number.

Those reservation numbers will mean more than $3.5 Million in revenue for hosts in the DC area!

While 94% of DC voters, it seems that the powers of the free-market outweigh their desire for a trump-supporter-free safe space. Maybe the interaction of these groups will help thaw some tensions and break down misconceptions as administrations change.

DR Radio

DR Radio: Election Special Edition

In this edition of Dead Reckoning Radio, we go all out on our 2016 Election coverage. We talk about the reasons for voting, “throwing away” your vote, the candidates on the top of the ticket, and the nature of down-ballot voting. Note: We experienced some technical difficulties during the first commercial break but the audio *does* correct after a few minutes.

For full show notes or to subscribe to the podcast, visit our site.

DR Radio

DR Radio: Transgenders, Political Hooliganism & Stranger Things

This week’s show includes discussion on the challenging topic of transgenderism, whether or not the Presidential debate had any meaningful impact on the presidential race, and for Expand Your Horizons, we’ll be talking about Stranger Things and the dawn of a new film format! As usual, we have two games of wit and whimsy, specifically Nerd v. Nerd and #JesusJuke.

You can read the full show notes  or subscribe to the podcast at our website.