Did the Russians hack the presidential election? Certainly, the Russians are guilty.
But this is not the question that needs asking. The real question is: did Electoral College President Elect (ECPE) Trump campaign know or somehow participate in the hack?
“to hack is to mod or change something in an extraordinary way”
We may never know. But there are tell tale signs suggesting more than just a passive assist from the Russians. So what is the case?
Well to start as anyone watching a television police drama knows, before criminality can be determined three aspects of a crime must be satisfied: means, motive and opportunity.
Means – One Phone Call Away
Did the ECPE team have the means to collaborate, coordinate or communicate with the Russians as they hacked away to their advantage?
In a word, yes: Paul Manafort. This guy was the ECPE campaign chairman until suddenly he was not. Is it a coincidence ECPE Trump received his first security briefing on August 17, where he first learned of the active FBI investigation into the Russians hacking of the Democratic National Committee and Manafort suddenly “resigned” on August 19th. Manafort was too close to the Russians and the campaign didn’t want the dots connected.
Evidence of Manafort’s links to the unsavory Russian-backed Ukrainian former President Victor Yanukovych were just then emerging . So too were reports of Manafort’s active meddling with the help of some “Russian strategists” in the Ukrainian elections.
Hack: A political flunky who either doesn’t want to work or who is so stupid they can’t work
Manafort, in fact, had been active in the Ukraine until October 2014 as an advisor to the Presidential Administration of the Ukrain, Serhiy Lyovochin. His work induced helping influence the Ukrainian parliamentary elections. But for whom? According to the Ukrainian national Anticorruption Bureau, Manafort received $12 million in cash between 2007 and 2012 from the pro-Russian Ukraine Party of Regions.
The means? Yesterday, the New York Times reported that the Russians were known to have “test-fired” their cyber warfare in the Ukraine elections.
Motive – It’s all about the Money
In October 2016, the Washington Post questioned why ECPE Trump had nothing but admiration for Russia, an “aggressive U.S. rival”, saying this was “one of the most troubling aspects of his thoroughly toxic campaign.”
Ignorance? Naivete? Bromance? Perhaps, but Ockham’s Razor suggest something more motivational: the ECPE’s business interests. But we can’t know exactly what they are because to this day the ECPE has yet to disclose his taxes and businesses interests as all modern day presidential candidates/president elect/presidents have done.
Hack: An event that is unexpected and favors a particular person especially in competition. Also, when someone uses a video game glitch, exploit or trainer to give them an advantage
But the ECPE’s business interests in Russia are well known in general. His son Eric made it clear in 2008 when he publicly bragged “Russians make up a pretty disproportionate cross-section of a lot of our assets. We see a lot of money pouring in from Russia.”
Atrocious English aside (maybe he was translating from the Russian original), the ECPE family motive is clear. ECPE Trump is all about the money and according to the Daily Beast: Trump in Putin’s Russia has been about “nothing more than cashing in.”
Moreover, and most importantly, at the point in the campaign the ECPE likely still didn’t believe he had a chance to win. His motive? By currying favor with Putin, perhaps, he could get his long wished for Trump Tower Moscow building permits finally approved. Sure, the money has been pouring in from Russia, but the Trophy Tower was not. And we know who loves trophies with his name on it.
And we have to remember too that in Russia business and politics are not separate and that “opportunity” there is always two edged sword. One simply cannot deal in a kleptocracy without getting dirty hands. Indeed, investigations by Mother Jones alleged the Russians had colluded with ECPE Trump for years, providing him intel on political rivals. It was suggested the partnership did so much nasty that the Russians could easily blackmail the ECPE to pursue Russian interests within the U.S.
Either way you cut it, greed or fear, there was motive enough.
Opportunity – Our Collective ADD
The conventional press gave the ECPE Trump his opportunity as it stumbled all over itself to report on the latest ECPE distraction. Ironically, the Access Hollywood tapes provided plenty of cover for the Russian hacking story. The “real October surprise” was “not the Russians dumping hacked documents (though they did that)” but that “Donald Trump talking openly–and disgustingly–about his anything-goes sex life as a billionaire TV star.” A tape like that was usually enough kill a planet let alone any dinosaur businessman cum politician. A tape like that was also surely more distraction than needed from keeping the press occupied and from not fully connecting the hacking dots .
The Three Fer’
Manafort provided the means. Money was the motive. The media provided the opportunity.
To be fair and contrary to detective shows, you need more than these three elements to convict a criminal. To prosecute, you must provide compelling evidence and prove the opportunity was actually acted upon by the defendant.
So if you are in doubt, recall this late July distraction where ECPE Trump’s alter ego, also known as Narcissus, couldn’t help but blurt “Russia, if you’re listening, I hope you’re able to find the 30,000 emails that are missing,” Trump said. “I think you will probably be rewarded mightily by our press.”
I rest my case.
Headline image from dailytech.com its a great site check it out!