Apparently the world as we know it came to an end on Friday, not that I knew anything about it. For me, these last 4 days are my World Series and Super Bowl all tied together. Starting at 9:15 PDT on Thursday, and ending around 8:30 on Sunday night, I am a totally whacked out zombie for 4 days, furiously switching between 4 different TV stations, desperately trying to catch every play of my guilty passion, March Madness.
That doesn’t mean that I was totally disconnected, I caught short bursts of coverage in the scattered breaks between the morning and evening sessions of the tournament. And I must say that I was highly amused. Mueller dropped his report bombshell just before 5 EDT on Friday evening, and of course the networks went all hands on deck. Which was by itself highly amusing, since only in America can an endless assembly line of vapid talking heads spend the next 40 hours earnestly discussing an upcoming release of a report summary that they haven’t seen, and the contents of which they have not the slightest clue.
But Mueller is finally done. After 22 months of angst and despair, wailing and gnashing of teeth, and broken relationships and workplace feuds, Mueller has finally spoken. And as of this moment, we still have absolutely no idea of what he said. because all of the information that we have to go on doesn’t come from Robert S Mueller III, it comes from a company paid shill, William Barr. And his “summary” of the Mueller report sheds about as much light on the subject as a dead firefly. It’s kind of like suffering through weeks and months of anonymous teasers about an upcoming “Blockbuster Movie,” only to find out when it’s finally released that it’s just another damn sequel to The Care Bears Movie.
However, one thing has changed. From here on out, 24/7 for the next I have no idea how many months, we will no longer be referring to the Mueller investigation. We will all now be referring to the Mueller report instead.Because the fight over the release of the whole report is going to be the political version of the release of “Die Hard 37: Die Even Harder Than The Last 36 Times.” It’s going to be the same old, tired plot, with the same basic cast of characters, but with different shit blowing up. We most likely won’t really learn anything really definitive until Barr and Mueller get their asses hauled up to Capitol Hill in the DC version of Battle of the Network Lawyers!
But we did learn a couple of things, at least I think we did, because so far we haven’t heard or read a word that Mueller wrote, all we’re doing is playing “William Says,” For example, William says that Mueller did not find indictable evidence of collusion between any members of ht Trump campaign and Russia. Barr had to be careful here, he couldn’t say that Mueller found no evidence of collusion, because sooner or later the facts are going to come out. But this proclamation from the new court jester is giving Trump more nocturnal emissions than Stormy Daniels. But I’m not sure that they’re really thinking this through. They’re bragging that Trump and his Trumplets were telling the truth all along, that they were literally too fucking stupid to collude with a foreign power. But I’m not so sure that having the image of Vlad the Imp sitting in his office in the Kremlin, and telling his lackeys, “What a bunch of dipshits! I guess if we want this done right, we’re going to have to do it all by ourselves,” is exactly the look they are going for.
Also, William Says that Mueller did not find indictable evidence that Trump obstructed justice. Again, notice that Barr can’t say that he didn’t try to obstruct justice, only that Trump is as incompetent at that as he is at everything else. Obstruction was always going to be difficult to prove, because one has to show intent, an actual plan to obstruct justice, and anybody who thinks that Trump wakes up in the morning with an actual plan to tie his shoes is fooling himself.
So, apparently we’re sitting in a dark theater, and they’re rolling the opening credits in another installment in the “Neverending Story” franchise. But there is a danger here. Because, while there is pretty strong interest in the public to see the actual report, the report itself won’t actually change anything. Those who support Trump will key on the fact that he wasn’t directly implicated, no matter what the evidence shows. And those of us who would like to see Trump riding a rail, covered in tar and feathers, will latch onto whatever sins Mueller did uncover, including the non publicly disclosed attempts to obstruct justice.
But while there is interest in the report, it is not an overriding interest, voters are still much more motivated by core, basic issues. So it would be wise to fight the battles, make the voluntary requests, followed by subpoenas, followed by court battles to get the report released. But don’t fixate over that long and tortured road the way we have for the last 22 months. There are no more indictments coming, the investigation is over. nobody is going to change their minds over Russia, or collusion, or obstruction of justice. What we need to key on right now, every day, is the in-p;ain-sight cruelty, corruption, and manifest incompetence of the everyday workings of the worst presidential administration in the history of this country. Fight those battles, but let them play out in the background, until there’s something actually worth reporting. Because, both through House investigations, as well as just the daily missteps of the Trump White Hose, there are plenty of things going on around us that can seal Trump’s fate in November. Let’s not start throwing our own bright, shiny objets around, shall we?
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