This is worthy of Pravda.
Those of us of a certain age remember hearing of the old Soviet newspaper, formerly the official newspaper of the Communist Party. As kids in the 80s, we would occasionally come across Pravda articles in textbooks or on the real news. I recall them being “obvious” in their partisan hysteria and using just enough “facts” to confuse the real news entirely.
Please keep all the above in mind when you see this Tweet, put out by the rightwing front group Judicial Watch.
— Tom Fitton (@TomFitton) December 3, 2019
They’re playing the propaganda game at a Pravda level.
Do you see what they did there?
The real “news,” indeed a blockbuster, is the fact that Rudy Giuliani was in constant contact with OMB and the White House during the days of decision-making on the Ukrainian money and extortion. Rudy Giuliani is not a government employee. He has no official duties or post. He doesn’t have a daughter who works at OMB. Thus Rudy has no reason to be placing calls to or receiving calls from OMB. None.
Thus, it would appear that Trump did direct everyone working with the Ukrainian matter to “go through Rudy” with respect to releasing the funds. The records reveal that Giuliani played a critical role to something going on at OMB. It lends credence to Trump’s phone call with Zelensky, when Trump told Zelensky that he wanted him to “work with Rudy” on the matter. That is a massive story.
But look at what Judicial Watch highlighted.
Forget for a second that the Congress has subpoena power and oversight ability, and can thus get the documents legally. Forget that DOJ arrested Parnas and Fruman (a possible source of the records), and forget for a second that the Fourth Amendment protects people in criminal proceedings and not in an impeachment proceeding. Forget even the fact that the group is called Judicial Watch and should have a vague familiarity with legal principles!
Instead, note that Judicial Watch is already shading the story as grossly unfair to Donald Trump. They have painted Donald Trump as the victim, already. Forget the real news. Feel bad for Trump because the House “cheated” by getting the evidence.
Recall, to this point, the White House’s only real defnese is that the House hasn’t provided Trump ‘due process” in his impeachment. So now when more horrid evidence comes out directly contradicting Trump’s statements, the news on the Right isn’t about Rudy’s antics, or about Trump lying, it is about just how bad Trump is being abused in this process. Judicial Watch ignores that Rudy is caught red-handed and ignores what the evidence means. It makes Trump the victim of such damning evidence.
That is propaganda.
Trump has not had his constitutional rights abused. Congress is allowed to subpoena government records. If anything, Trump is the one abusing the process by denying Congress each witness and document sought. Trump is not a criminal defendant. He is the president of the United States, a person supposed to be above reproach, never one to fear a subpoena. Yet Judicial Watch expects its supporters to be outraged abot the process by which Trump is proven to be a liar. Trump has gotten away with stonewalling everything, witnesses, taxes, subpoenas, such that when Trump loses his grip, Judicial Watch wants outrage!
In doing so, they look as silly as Pravda looked when it tried to manipulate people and their emotions.
One bad thing. Pravda and the Russians have a great deal of experience in manipulation and propaganda. That is why it is good for us to catch it and flag it in real time. It is bullshit, plain and simple. The story is Congress legally obtained documents that prove Trump is lying and hiding. Period.
firstname.lastname@example.org and on Twitter @MiciakZoom