Thursday, September 1, 2016

Shoot The Mess, Assange-r

Can we stop pretending that WikiLeaks isn't a pro-Russian, pro-Trump outfit trying to affect the election and US politics in general, and that Julian Assange is far from a neutral, objective voice here?

In an interview with New York Times investigative reporter Jo Becker on Wednesday, WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange accused the press of supporting Hillary Clinton, whom he likened to a “demon.” 
The American liberal press, in falling over themselves to defend Hillary Clinton, are erecting a demon that is going to put nooses around everyone’s necks as soon as she wins the election, which is almost certainly what she’s going to do,” Assange said in the interview, which was broadcast live Wednesday on Facebook. 

Hey Julian, I know you're not from around here, but let's talk about American history and the use of "nooses around everyone's necks" as far more than just hyperbolic imagery, especially when it comes to black folk.  See, saying Hillary Clinton is going to lynch people is really not the term you want to use in a country where black people were strung up and publicly hanged by the hundreds as recently as my parents' lifetime.  This wasn't figurative of symbolic, this was literal.  I'm offended by you using that, and I have to assume that someone who has spent years as an information broker and prophet of the power of words used that sentence entirely on purpose.

WikiLeaks has already aimed to influence the 2016 election. In July, the organization released a trove of emails hacked from the Democratic National Committee’s servers that showed Democratic staffers criticizing Sen. Bernie Sanders. Assange has defended the release of the emails, which prompted a flurry of resignations within the DNC. Assange has been accused of helping fuel conspiracy theories about the circumstances surrounding the death of Democratic staffer Seth Rich, who was killed in a mugging earlier this year. 
In Wednesday’s interview, Assange said WikiLeaks is impartial. He also reiterated earlier statements that he would publish more information about the 2016 election in the future.

Impartial, but more than happy to make damaging leaks against Hillary Clinton and the Democratic party, and promising more such damaging leaks before Election Day.  You know, that kind of impartial.

“We have a range of information related to the U.S. election and a number of different institutions,” he said, when Becker asked whether the organization would release information damaging to the Clinton Foundation. 
Some critics have accused the WikiLeaks editor in chief of trying to undermine the Clinton campaign in an effort to help Donald Trump’s campaign and advance Russia’s political interests. (Russian hackers are widely suspected to be behind the DNC email hack.) Assange has denied the claims and in the interview said the concerns over Russia’s involvement are “neo-McCarthyist hysteria.”

This is exactly the tack Double G has taken this week: if you mention the numerous Russian connections that Donald Trump, Julian Assange, or Edward Snowden have to Vladimir Putin, you're now automatically dismissed as a "Clinton neo-McCarthyite".

So there's something a lot bigger going on here with Assange and his little info shop. But mention it and you're instantly pegged as the new Tailgunner Joe.

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