By James Howard Kunstler, Kunstler.com
The gaslighting of the American public continues, with Gaslighter-in-Chief, The New York Times, whipping up a frenzy of Russia paranoia.*
It reminds me of an old gambit in fly fishing called the “artificial hatch.” Trout like to gorge on mayfly nymphs as they rise out of a stream and shuck their nymphal shells to fly away as winged adults. The bugs do this in bunches, at a particular time of day, according to sub-species. This “hatch” drives the trout into a feeding frenzy.
A lot of the time, of course, there’s no action on the stream, so the bored fly fisherman whips his line here and there around a particular pool, trying to create the simulation of a mayfly hatch so the trout will wake the fuck up. It is, to be frank, a crude dodge, really an act of desperation. But at least it gives the fisherman something to do for a while besides worry about missing another mortgage payment.
The Russia paranoia frenzy is serious business because it indicates that a state-of-war exists between the permanent bureaucracy of government (a.k.a. the Deep State) and the new Trump administration. There are features of the struggle that ought to be much more disturbing than the dubious alleged monkey business about Russia hacking the election and the hoo-hah around a single intercepted phone call between Michael Flynn and the Russian ambassador, made to open a line-of-communication between high-ranking officials, strictly routine business in any other administration.
Most disturbing are signs that the so-called intelligence community (IC) has gone rogue in collusion with forces aligned around Democratic Party functionaries up to and including former president Obama and Hillary Clinton, along with CNN, The Times, The Wash-Po, NBC News and a few other mouthpieces of the defeated establishment. Obama and Hillary remain conspicuously sequestered from this maelstrom, but they must be working their phones like nobody’s business. (Is the IC monitoring them, too, one wonders?)
Until his Queeg-on-steroids news conference late yesterday, Trump laid pretty low after General Flynn was thrown under the bus, but he must be plotting counter-moves, with Bannon and Steven Miller straining at their leashes, slavering for blood. Will some employees over at the CIA and the — what? — sixteen other IC outposts that stud the government like shipworms in a rotting hulk — be called on the carpet of the oval office, and possibly handed pink slips? How do you drain that swamp in Langley, VA? Perhaps with subpoenas? Surely Jeff Sessions over at the Department of Justice has got to be weighing action against the IC leakers. That shit is against the law.
The next disturbing element of the situation is all the war-drum beating by the same cast of characters: the IC, the Democratic Party, and major media. Why in hell are we antagonizing Russia? In the last month of Obama’s term — and for the first time in many years — NATO moved a bunch of tanks close to Russia’s border with the Baltic states. Do you really think Russia wants to reoccupy these countries for the pleasure of subsidizing them and draining the Russian treasury? In those twilight days of Obama, government officials made wild and unspecific charges about “Russian aggression,” and vague assertions about Russian plans to dominate the global scene. Major what-the-fuck there. There’s the ugly situation in Ukraine, of course, but that was engineered by Obama’s state department. Do you know why Russia annexed Crimea after that? It couldn’t have been for more transparently rational reasons. And what exactly is our beef with Russia in Syria? That they’re trying to prop up the Assad government because the last thing the Middle East needs is another failed state with no government whatsoever? What’s our plan for Syria, anyway? Same as Somalia, Iraq, and Libya? These stories about Russia’s intentions seem insane on their face. It’s amazing that readers of The New York Times swallow them whole. It must say something about the deterioration of the coastal gene pool. The story-mongers have a purpose though: to promote a state of permanent hostility, neo-cold-war style, to justify the grotesquely overgrown operations of the IC.
Note, too, that the new cold war benefits the thousands of ex-CIA personnel and retired US military officers who have signed on to work as Deep State IC private contractors in recent years. A new cold war is their gravy train. How about a congressional inquiry into the number of private security contractors selling their services to the Deep State, and exactly who they employ? Now that might be a scandal greater than Watergate, but not the Mike Flynn affair.
Have you asked yourself: what would war with Russia look like if the wishes of ninnies like Senator McCain and Lindsey Graham come true? Where’s the battlefield? Do we dispatch a few divisions over to invade Russia proper? Napoleon and Hitler already tried that… didn’t work out so well. And what’s the strategic objective? To occupy Russia and school them in democracy? That’s rich. Or do we go back to fighting proxy wars with Russia in various Third World backwaters as we did so earnestly in the 1960s. Another Vietnam would be grand, right? Just what we need. Or maybe a fifty-year-war like the one in the Congo. Or should we put aside all that penny-ante nonsense and just Drop the Big One, no a thousand Big Ones! Oh, wait a minute… they’ve got plenty of their own Big Ones.
Now, it may be the case that President Donald Trump is batshit crazy, but cooking up fake hostilities with the world’s second-leading nuclear super-power is a strange way to run a coup d’état against the White House. I mean, if it’s that bad, the generals and the senior spooks ought to just step up to the plate without further pretense and remove the fucker — as I’ve been predicting they would inside of sixty days from the inauguration. But then even if Trump is crazy and incompetent, what’s so great about a Deep State security matrix that refuses to be subordinate to anybody, that can do whatever it wants to whomever it wants? This thing is turning into a regular shoot-out at the OK Corral. If you know your history, you’ll recall that Wyatt Earp was hardly the eagle scout he’s depicted as on the boob tube. He was something of a thug, with a mad streak. Maybe that’s what it takes to stand up to the Deep State.
* Gaslighting — a form of manipulation that seeks to sow seeds of doubt in a targeted individual or members of a group, hoping to make targets question their own memory, perception, and sanity.