Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Last Call For The Clinton Cash Con

We live in an era where you can just make up a scandal and then dare actual news outlets to go and prove your assertions, which you yourself don't have any solid evidence about.  That's the scam behind the latest News Corporation attack on Hillary Clinton.

"Clinton Cash", a book by former Breitbrat Peter Schweizer. designed to keep the 18 months of Campaign 2016 interesting and to keep the haters tuned into FOX News, will be hitting the shelves next month.  But FOX News and the NY Times have cut deals to investigate the book's unproven allegations before the rest of the vultures can strike.  It's literally a manufactured, slickly packaged, and baseless scandal.

ThinkProgress obtained an advance copy of Clinton Cash, which will be released May 5. Schweizer makes clear that he does not intend to present a smoking gun, despite the media speculation. The book relies heavily on timing, stitching together the dates of donations to the Clinton Foundation and Bill Clinton’s speaking fees with actions by the State Department. 
Schweizer explains he cannot prove the allegations, leaving that up to investigative journalists and possibly law enforcement. “Short of someone involved coming forward to give sworn testimony, we don’t know what might or might not have been said in private conversations, the exact nature of the transition, or why people in power make the decision they do,” he writes. Later, he concludes, “We cannot ultimately know what goes on in their minds and ultimately provide the links between the money they took and the benefits that subsequently accrued to themselves, their friends, and their associates.” 

Right there, the NY Times should have passed on it, but it didn't.

Though Schweizer is unable to provide direct evidence that State Department actions were influenced by Clinton Foundation donations, he does raise questions about unsavory donors and possible conflicts of interest, regardless of whether or not they dictated Clinton’s policy. 
The book alleges the Clinton Foundation has failed to disclose some of its donors, digging up Canadian tax records as evidence of a $2 million donation from the Fernwood Foundation that Schweizer says went unreported. He also says he found a $40,000 donation in the form of stocks from the Dattels Family Foundation that was listed on their website but not on the Clintons’ donor list.

Well, those are pretty specific allegations, so they should be easily proven or disproven, yes?

Another 18 months of this is going to be awesome.  Charles Pierce reminds us this stuff has a long, ugly history, and we're going to spend the next year plus getting very familiar with it.


Horace Boothroyd III said...

From the very beginning, Whitewater and all that (I recommend the Hunting of the President by Gene Lyons and Joe Conason for those who are too young to remember), the New York TImes has been at the head of the journalist pack in the sordid business of buying up unsubstantiated garbage from right wing hacks. The kind of thing that led First Lady Clinton to denounce the Vast Right Wing Conspiracy - for which she was roundly mocked, despite - or perhaps because of - her essential correctness.

So why should this time be any different?

Well, actually, now that I mention it, because we now have left wing hacks at the Daily Kos trading in right wing talking points because they are just as enthusiastic as the Republicans about harassing and rattling the presumptive Democratic nominee. It makes me yearn for the unity we had during the George W Bush administration - although, God forbid, not the Bush administration itself - because then it was obvious that we had to pull together and beat the Republicans for the good of the nation.

Maybe it was inevitable. Victorious coalitions through history have fallen to squabbling among themselves, allowing the partially disabled enemy time to regroup and counterattack.

Anyway, no surprise at all that the allegedly liberal NYT would pay good money for this box of chocolate covered dogshit. It's only a matter of time before "even the liberal Washington Post" joins in the fray.

Scopedog said...

Conason and Lyon's THE HUNTING OF THE PRESIDENT was a damned good book, one I suspect a lot of the DKossaks haven't read. Hillary was right, of course--there was a vast, right wing conspiracy, one that successfully stopped Al Gore from reaching the White House (of course, they had help from Nader and company). It's turned it's sights on President Obama, but so far, PBO has managed to defeat them time after time.

Sadly, as you mentioned, the GOP talking points about Hillary are being regurgitated on the Left (similar to what happened to Obama). in most comment sections on DKos, Raw Story and Crooks and Liars there is repeated use of "Hitlary", Whitewater is being trumpeted as the truth, and of course the actions of the Clinton Foundation. Add to that nonsense that Robert Scheer brings up about Hillary--used to justify his pulling the lever for Rand Paul, which Conason rightfully smashed to bits) and we see a dangerous cauldron that could repeat what happened in 2000. I hope such a thing does not happen, because honestly the current GOP crop could cause irreparable damage to the nation. But I suppose those on the Far Left will not care a wit--after all, they did not care in 2000, 2010, and 2014. Even in 2004 and 2008 there were still grumbles about how the Democrats were worse than the GOP (the late Alexander Cockburn's statement that "Democrats are police state light" comes to mind).

It's going to be rough over the next few months, but to be fair, Hillary has survived over 20 years of this nonsense. That's certainly a plus.

Horace Boothroyd III said...

To me, Libertarianism can be crudely summarized as a deviant Leftism that has been gutted of all the good parts - unlimited dope and a tight reign on the police being the major points of overlap. Thus it is a mystery of the highest order than anyone can be cruising along in the liberal/left coalition, only to spin on a dime and plump for Rand Paul.

And this pathetic mewling about the police state. CERTAINLY we have areas to reform, and the sooner the better, but I have lived in countries that had recently thrown off dictatorships - and some of my relatives lived through the worst - so the idea that the Democrats are propping up a police state here and now is a sick sick joke. Hey, Kossack! How many times a week does someone in your office/classroom simply disappear - without explanation - never to be mentioned in public again?

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