Wednesday, May 30, 2018

I am Roseanne

Sorry to take a couple of days off. In times like these, two days AFI (Away From Internet) means missing out on a month's worth of news.

A word about the cancellation of Roseanne's show: I was never a Roseanne fan, and never sat through a full episode of the original run of that series. Yet, being a contrarian, I'm now tempted to say a few words in...well, I was about to say "in her defense," but let's not take things that far.

Nevertheless, I sympathize with her. Unlike many other liberals, I can understand what happened to her.

As readers know, I stupidly spent part of the 1980s and much of the 1990s immersed in the world of High Paranoia. The online company Roseanne keeps is familiar to me. That is: I may not know the current dramatis personae, but I certainly know the mind-set. I know what being in that milieu can do to a person.

Although I was never on the right, I did gain a taste for the extremes. If a text was not outlandish, it wasn't intriguing. One can start out as someone interested in the JFK assassination and soon find oneself collecting literature produced by the kind of right-wing fearmongers who detested JFK while he was alive.

Here's the most important thing you have to know about conspiracy buffs: They continually bait each other, continually test each other, continually force each other to adopt ever more extreme positions. They disdain anyone who maintains a reasonably high standard of proof. When you demand better evidence, you harsh their buzz. Evidence is for losers -- for the mundanes. Or, to employ current terminology, the normies.

One buff says: JFK was killed because he was about to reveal the truth about Roswell -- and if you disagree, then obviously THEY got to you too. Buff 2 responds: JFK was killed because he was about to expose the Rothschild conspiracy -- and if you disagree, then obviously THEY got to you too.

And so on and on, as all parties spin into an ever-increasing delirium. The conspiracy-buff culture is the place where formerly-normal people try to out-insane each other. It's more than a social milieu -- it's a machine designed to create psychopathology. And I say this as someone who still does not accept, and never will accept, the conclusions of the Warren Commission.

I always had a puckish interest in the most unhinged writings to come out of the JFK assassination subculture. Mark Lane and Sylvia Meagher were for newbies and squares; I sought more unusual fare. Not many people would travel a hundred miles just to photocopy Revilo P. Oliver's article "Marxmanship in Dallas." Not many people would seek out a bonkers volume like Treason for my Daily Bread, written by someone calling himself Mikhail Lebedev. (If memory serves, this book claims that Martin Bormann ordered the Dallas hit.) Not many people spent as much time as I did collecting obscure variants of the dreaded Torbitt Document.

You probably don't recognize the names of those works. You don't need to; they were all garbage. My point is this: I hobnobbed with folks who not only read such documents but considered themselves connoisseurs. In that pre-internet world, Weird Literature was considered collectable, like fine wines. My personal stash contained some true rarities -- documents perfumed with pathology. I would hold them up to my nostrils, get a good whiff of The Crazy, and think: "Ah! Exquisite!"

I sought out these scriptures not because I thought that they would get me closer to THE TRUTH but because they transported readers to the edge of the edge. In my mind's eye, those texts bore an invisible legend: "Welcome to the extremes. Enter at the risk of your reason." Mere possession of these artifacts seemed dangerous and exciting. One of my correspondents, in those pre-internet days, literally stamped the word "PSYCHOTOXIN" on the front page of such documents. Yes, he created an actual rubber stamp.

I may even have produced some psychotoxic material myself, back in the day.

Why? Because addiction to outlandish conspiracy theories is like involvement in the BDSM subculture, where developing a taste for a little spanky-spanky can give rise to the sort of practices that require sutures -- and may even get one fired from an important job (such as, oh, say, New York prosecutor).

Here's a better (albeit more predictable) metaphor: It's like drugs. For some people, grass really does lead to H.

So, yeah: I feel sorry for Roseanne Barr, even though I know that many people will hate me for speaking about her as though she is a fellow human being. I sympathize with her in the same sense that I can sympathize with any other addict. She got hooked. So did I. A long time ago, she fell in with people who kept urging her to inject ever-stronger forbidden substances into her arm.

(In my case, I decided that I just could no longer tolerate being around the people who inhabit that world. They seemed to keep everyone around them perpetually angry, and I came to hate being angry. All I really wanted was a girlfriend and a dog.)

Roseanne probably is not a genuine racist in her heart of hearts. So why did she use the term "Planet of the Apes" to describe a person of color?

For the same reason a certain now-deceased small-press publisher went through a phase when he would sign his name with a swastika. The guy was Jewish. He was not, in my opinion, a self-hating Jew or a Nazi sympathizer. He was simply addicted to shock -- to the transgressive.

When you enter the world of right-wing conspiracism, when you rationalize nonsense like Pizzagate, when you convince yourself that Q-anon's ravings have some relationship to reality, you find yourself constantly searching for a stronger high. You're always playing a game of "Can you top this?" Person A says something hateful, forcing Person B to offer 2XHateful, which forces Person A to come up with 3XHateful. And so on.

Then your show gets canceled, and all sorts of people who depended on you are now out of work.

Has Roseanne hit rock bottom? No. She won't admit that she has a problem. Some people learn to love the endorphin rush they get from the transgressive. Some addicts die with a needle in the arm.
I agree with much of your argument.

At first introduction, the Conspiracy Theory view of life is comforting. In part that's because the Conspiracy Theory view creates appropriately Big Causes for Big Events, an almost-omnipotent They who Manufacture the turmoil in our world. And in part it's the tempting fruit of the Arcane, of accessing Hidden Knowledge which is still 'hidden' even when it's all over the internet. This marks the believer as Enlightened -- Red-Pilled -- unlike the Sheeple who gullibly believe the Official Story.

Never mind the study that found people who subscribe to the Conspiracy Theory view often walk themselves into logically impossible corners, such as simultaneously believing that Princess Di was murdered and also that Princess Di is alive and in hiding. They believe these mutually-exclusive tales despite the utter absence of evidence for either, and as a matter of logic there could not be conclusive evidence for both. Instead, the study authors found, people believe both tales -- Alternative Facts -- because both tales reject the Official Story … which is, by definition, mind-numbing Propaganda pushed by Them.

And yes, you can twist yourself into those pretzels for only so long before you have to invent ever-more-elaborate Plots and ever-more-omnipotent Plotters to explain the gaping holes in the evidence. To the point that the absence of evidence is itself proof, because it proves the Coverup!

Conversely, the Cockup Theory is anything but comforting. It offers unnervingly Trivial Causes for Big Events. In the Cockup Theory, mundane mistakes and ordinary human flaws can unleash tragedy or even global catastrophe. That doesn't feel right or fair.

And of course the Cockup Theory doesn't offer any enticing Arcana. Where's the sense of Enlightenment in reading that JFK's parade route took that tight turn onto Elm Street in front of the Book Depository because … someone didn't study a street map closely enough?

So yes, I agree with all of that. Here's the part with which I disagree:

Rosanne Bar has repeatedly made vile, racist comments. I don't know or need to know what's "in her heart of hearts." In fact, I don't care what's "in her heart of hearts."

She says and does racist things … therefore she is a racist.

It really is that simple.

What Crissie B said and what ABC knew, Roseanne is a Red State racist. Too bad for the rest of the cast and crew she couldn't keep a lid on her psychosis. ABC is going to lose a boatload of bucks and that makes me smile. The get to suffer the consequences of corporate greed.
Well said, all around.

But then there's the Ambien, which adds new levels of strangeness.

The wonderful journalist Murray Kempton admitted to feeling sympathy for Nixon as Watergate deepened because he always sympathized with the underdog.

The true depravities of Nixon-Kissinger, Cheney-Bush etc have cured me of any such feelings for the bosses of these operations.

About Roseann, what Joseph said and what Crissie B said are not mutually exclusive. She can go further down the insane path because she needs the high of getting a reaction and she can actually believe that is a good road. While some conspiracies are obviously true, that is different than being a conspiratorialist. I believe conspiratorialist are that way because it gives them a sense of self-importance, knowing something that others do not.
As we all hopefully are aware, conspiracies are very real and take place on a daily basis, both big and small. There is now almost no question that the official story of JFK's assassination is not the story of what actually happened (though parts of it probably are true). I mean, the Vietnam war was started by an event that never actually took place, but people believed it did for many years.

All that said, I agree with you about conspiracy theorists. It starts with a desire to learn more about the world we live in, about REAL history (which as we all know, isn't what we are taught in school, mostly). However, like you say, it's like a buzz feeling you are "in the know" about things no one else knows about (or not the majority, anyway). It's so easy from there to get deeper and deeper into the conspiracy theory world and loose objectivity and critical thinking. It happened to me during the Bush administration. It wasn't hard to believe that people like Dick Cheney could be evil enough to orchestrate something like 9/11/01 (and the official investigation was rather perfunctory not very thorough for such a major even..but I digress). It was actually this very blog that helped bring me out of the conspiracy thinking fever swamp.

I still think it's good practice to question everything, especially authority. I still think too many people accept unquestioningly the words of authority and government. I also think too many people take that stance way too far and go over the deep end with Illuminati and 4th dimensional aliens and similar "controllers" that are nearly omnipotent and completely control huge numbers of people.

This is a minor point, but "grass" isn't the gateway to heroin. We all know what the REAL gateway drug is, and it is perfectly legal and a huge part of American, and much of the worlds, culture and daily life.
Roseanne wasn't fired for the Muslim Brotherhood part of her tweet but for calling an African American person an ape. That's racist, not conspiratorial. Unless you are suggesting she believes the Planet of the Apes really exists somewhere and infiltrated Obama's government.

I don't buy your argument about being extreme and trying to shock others. For one thing, her remark wasn't shocking -- it was just sickening. It is run-of-the-mill racism. For another thing, there are a lot of ways to be extreme and shocking that don't involve racism. The reason for avoiding racist remarks is that they gratuitously hurt other people, just by being uttered. Comments about JFK, not so much. Further, as the manufacturers of Ambien have noted, racism is not a side effect. She brought that to the party. She has the right to tweet whatever she wants (within the Twitter rules), but she doesn't have the right to a TV show that hopes to appeal to a broad audience, including both people of color and those who are offended by racism.
"When someone shows you who they are, believe them." - Maya Angelou
I'm not so sure that Angelou is correct on this point. As another great American poet once said: "Do I contradict myself? Very well, then I contradict myself, I am large, I contain multitudes." If I am many, how can you be so sure about what you see at any given time? I don't know who you are, Mr. or Ms. Anonymous, but I refuse to believe YOUR worst self (yes, you have one) is your truest self.

Much of David Lynch's work addresses this conundrum.
I think there were other solutions. Once again, we rely on "punishment" as the solution when it is not.
I don't see the cancellation of her show as punishment. ABC seems to be cutting its losses in anticipation of boycotts and loss of sponsors as angry viewers react.
Since Lord Mouse (h/t Gore Vidal) owns both ABC and Star Wars, I have this image in my head:

Mickey, in emperor's robes, speaks in his high-pitched voice, "She has failed me for the last time!", and then Force-chokes Roseanne.
Where Trump points to spies, hold up a mirror. Jump down entertainment, porn, & sports rabbit holes to keep a focus on divisive issues. If you don't think that bait snares you, keep whistling Dixie.
* * *
A lot is flying under the radar. Keep ignoring how tech developed to classify strings of dolphin or human vocalizations in Miss. and blockchain is used. Don’t examine why AG Sessions was sent to negotiate terms of Nat Sec data exchanges w/EU member Bulgaria.

BILOXI, MISS., 3/23/18 "The Israeli delegation featured companies specializing in security technology...(there) to expand into the U.S. market and introduce themselves to LOCAL officials and PRIVATE companies."

" …far from any Jewish population center… representatives of 16 Israeli companies…with a delegation from its Defense Ministry and arms industry…Bryant credited a national security conference he spoke at in Israel in 2016 as the inspiration for this one."

Miss. is using:"Magal Security Systems…a border security sensor system that’s used on Israel’s northern and southern frontiers... (already used) in the United States securing the perimeters of prisons, power plants and Secret Service sites…(and) securing 80 percent of Israel’s borders…(and) some borders in Europe."

Why isn’t every threat to 2nd Amendment rights opposed by the NRA?: "...Beeper…a surveillance system…deployed by the Israeli military and police…in Baltimore and Houston — that can pinpoint where a gun is fired and instantly take video of who fired the weapon."
Why send DOJ AG Sessions to Bulgaria to negotiate terms for Nat Sec data Xchange unless it violates US and EU privacy laws/rights and/or he had a covert agenda? Data exchange is a matter for Sec of State, Dirs of CIA & FBI, not AG, right?
"...the Cloud Act...(passed 3/18, makes)…EU-US agreement on law enforcement access to digital evidence...almost certain...The EU is separately moving ahead with…“E-Evidence” Regulation...(to) streamline law enforcement access to data among its 28 member states...the CLOUD Act authorizes the U.S. to enter into EXECUTIVE AGREEMENTS with foreign governments…to better facilitate law enforcement access to data across borders...”

Data ops in Colombia & Mexico implicated when "Kaiser…(said) Banks set up a MI company called Big Data Dolphins, (which was) working with a data science team at… (UMiss) after he ceased negotiations with Cambridge Analytica….(Was) data of British citizens “was sent abroad, specifically to Mississippi” for processing by Big Data Dolphins." ;

"Using the same technique that Facebook and Google use to estimate relationships between people or web pages, the team developed an unsupervised learning strategy to identify dominant click types…based on (audio)…spectral shape and...interval distributions. The process...identified distinct, recurrent click types… to develop an algorithm to automatically classify (sounds) in the test dataset."

Who has capacity & incentive to hack 21 states voter reg networks+RNC+DNC? Cloudmasters hold keys to data, but who screens & controls gatekeepers? “Being able to control the users allowed on a blockchain network reduces the risk of malicious action while increasing control." ;
The thesis here seems extreme, contrarian, provocative. Roseanne Barr should be out of a job. The same goes for Ilie Nastase after what he said about Serena Williams's unborn child. Not all cases are equally bad, for sure. Perhaps with support she'll get cured of racism. I hope she seeks it and does. But there is no excuse whatsoever for her sick action. And in fact she doesn't seem anywhere near wanting to recover, to judge from the wording of her apology and how she used a fucking "tweet" to issue it: "I apologize to Valerie Jarrett and to all Americans. I am truly sorry for making a bad joke about her politics and her looks." Her comment was WAY beyond a bad joke about a person's looks; she assumes Valerie Jarrett subscribes to the same cesspool that she herself uses to advertise her brand; and as for "all Americans", that includes the American Nazi Party, then, and the KKK (not to mention white-skinned Argentinians)? She doesn't get it. She doesn't get fuck. Like all racists, she's a bonehead.
"I came to hate being angry. All I really wanted was a girlfriend and a dog."

This is a great line. I know that feeling very well.
I didn't like Rosanne then and I cringed when I heard she was back.
The show was always about people that are somehow proud and unapologetic about being lazy, uneducated, bad parents, bad communicators, bad planners and generally not good at much.
I understand that some shows strive to showcase what ails a community, but there needs to be some effort in including some "teachable moments".
Way back then, "All in the Family" was such a show.
I suspect that Rosanne the person has always reaped what she has sowen.
Does someone know

* where exactly in Washington DC the letter from Kim Jong-un will be handed by Kim Yong-chol to Donald Trump or to whoever receives it on his behalf (which exact room or other location);

* at what exact time the handover will occur;

* whether the handover will be publicly shown on film?
The thing is, those who need adulation "play to the room" rather than operating by any internal compass—different audiences, different versions of the self exposed & expressed.

The filter is whether the adoring crowd is expected to respond fabourably, and human nature is such that we tend to osmose the beliefs & opinions of those who we believe will love and validate us. Feeling connected to your tribe, or the current audience, by collectively hating on "the other" is a feedback loop/mob mentality (further bolstered by the one-upmanship that tends to happen when people are competing for love & attention, as referenced in your post).
Answer: the handover took place in the Oval Office. I haven't worked out the asymmetric arrangement of hands on the apparently unsealed envelope. Trump's way of spitting at the other side was to tell reporters the letter was "very nice" but that he hadn't opened it yet. (Can anybody remember the last time a head of government at an international meeting was so ill-mannered?) A "foreign government official" (Israeli?) who had been briefed by US officials told the Wall Street Journal the letter didn't make any noteworthy threats. (Note that the North Korean regime, unlike the US one, appears able to speak for itelf.) The WSJ also slagged off Kim Yong-chol, calling him sarcastic and referring to sources saying he is insufficiently deferential to superiors, overbearing, and dozed off at a meeting. Perhaps he doesn't wash himself often enough too. If the US goes any further down this road, Trump and his officials will drop their trousers and fart in Kim Jong-un's face in Singapore, while telling him he's "fired". They may be in for a fucking big surprise. Negotiating with opponents is one thing; negotiating with mentally ill opponents who suffer from inferiority complexes is another.
The Daily Mirror reports that some kind of US populist techno-god called "Social Media" has written that the North Korean envelope was big so as to show Trump's hands as tiny. They quote some idiot who has posted to its Twitter account saying "Here's the letter. It came in a big envelope so Kim Jong un could make fun of Trump's small hands. I bet he's cracking up in North Korea."

That's utter bullshit. Nobody in Korea cares a crap about the size of Trump's hands. Korea is a different PR market from US smartphone addicts gabbling about what they saw on TV and thinking they're cynical. Lord "Social Media" is correct to observe that that picture does totally "own" Trump. He just doesn't know how it does.

I have made significant decoding progress but I won't post about it here. One entry point lies in the shit-eating grin that Trump is wearing, as if he has just crapped his pants in the bankruptcy court. And there's a key in the shape marked out by the flap of the envelope.

It's remarkable how people think they can comment usefully on the symbolism without knowing a damned thing about Korean symbolism and culture, and about how games are played in Korea.

My prediction: North Korea and South Korea will have meet successfully with one or more other countries before Kim Jong-un meets with Donald Trump (if he does) on 12 June. Most importantly, they will meet successfully with each other. It's clear that if a Korean peace is announced, the mentally ill crook from New York who keeps saying how "great" he is won't even be in the room. I'm now saying that he won't even be depicted as a helper (except perhaps by himself). Russian leaders may be. So may Chinese leaders. The NK-US track in peninsula affairs will be short-circuited.
Mr Cannon; I don't know if u heard or not, but Dump declared himself above the law. What do we do now, I hereby declare you our leader.
The reply to my Roseanne comment is the stuff that drives me nuts. So now, the number one ABC show was rightfully canceled by ABC because of the massive boycotts that were going to occur. Oh, ok. And everyone laughed when NFL ratings dropped by 20% because of conservative boycotts.
So only progressive boycotts work. The sht has not only hit the fan, it's so interwoven all that is left is a shtty fan.
Anon: "Leader"?

I am, at present, mentally living in an alternate reality where none of these horrors are taking place.
Added note: On the bright side, I think I've solved (partially) the mystery of Etta Place, paramour of the Sundance Kid (played by Katherine Ross in the movie). You may not have known that she is considered one of the great mysteries of the old west.
The Etta Place story sounds worth posting.

Something good to read while waiting for the next dozen shoes to fall.

Joseph, enjoy your vacation in the Wild West. Alessandro M, please share links to sources of statistics. If Starbucks shut down to train staff after calling police on people of color, should ABC just send execs and staff to undoing racism training ( Roseanne’s twitter acct normalized indefensible lies. Why give boneheads endless chances if NFL players are denied free speech rights enjoyed by evangelical bakers and trigger-happy twitterati?

Punishment is 1) separating children from parents as young as 18mos, then 2) locking them up in warehouse-style mass detention centers after the dehumanizing experience of being caged for more than 72 hrs, 3) deprived of the security of parental care, and 4) brought in front of the court to state their case without parent, guardian, or attorney as young as 53 weeks.

Trauma compounds when authorities don't speak children’s (often indigenous) languages. These kids receive not one simple comfort: no toy, blankie, mattress. Even alleged criminals & minors in disputed custody matters have a right to legal representation and no cruel or unusual punishment. The youngest refugees can’t communicate basic needs, let alone plead their court case. A parent's first job is to keep their child safe from the violence of crime, poverty, injustice, exploitation, and corruption. Escaping a house on fire, who expects ‘firemen’ to jail children? They come for refuge to the land of the “free” seeking “liberty and justice for all”.

Separating a minor from a parent is an unjust, irresponsible fiscal and humanitarian policy. The U.S. lacks adequate detention facilities for the volume of asylum-seekers with children. Increasingly limited tax dollars may build more detention centers and a wall, or fix U.S. infrastructure, but not both.

Cheap alternatives to new ‘zero tolerance’ policies which "punish" parents and children: ankle monitors have supporters & detractors . It's clear the US would save taxpayer $$ by housing digitally monitored undocumented persons w/legally present family & friends prior to court dates. Legal challenges to ankle monitors are unresolved (e.g. unconstitutional invasions of privacy), but the foster care system is already maxed.

"The US government...can’t blame families for the needless cruelty it has chosen to subject them to…families being pulled apart by the new “zero tolerance"...(Asylum-seekers)...have every right to (apply for asylum) under US and international law—(but they often) have their children taken away from them…the government holds far too many asylum seekers in immigration detention while their claims are being processed. So these parents, who are following the law… are nevertheless torn apart from their children, potentially for months..."

"… families being pulled apart by the new “zero tolerance” push are (also those who) claim asylum—something they have every right to do under US and international law—sometimes also have their children taken away from them…the government holds far too many asylum seekers in immigration detention while their claims are being processed. So these parents, who are following the law and trying to do everything right, are nevertheless torn apart from their children, potentially for months on end."

Roseanne’s Hx of vituperative, “off-color” remarks fans Trump’s base, keeping serious issues out of sight & Congress in Trump’s corner. Thousands died avoidable deaths after the hurricane in Puerto Rico because our gaze was elsewhere, shielding Trump & Congress from timely accountability. “God bless us, everyone.” (Dickens’ Tiny Tim, “A Christmas Carol”) dataflo
Well Joseph, it's looking like Putin is doing what he can to make this Korea summit succeed. The left leaning press is selling this as a big set up for Kim to embarrass Trump on the world stage. There's a bigger game at play here with Russia and China. Kim will feel really important and thrilled to be part of this plot to neuter the United Sates. Kim's now a member of the Big Boys Club. He'll be happy to make Trump look good if it ultimately results in the realignment of world power structure to N Korea's benefit.
@Anon 9.08 - You are completely right about Russia and China, but I don't think Kim Jong-un is interested in the world stage. He's interested in the Korean stage, which Donald Trump doesn't understand. Trump got made a fool of in that photo holding the envelope. He tried to outsmart the other party but failed. I mean from the viewpoint of the Korean market.

There is absolutely no chance of a Bill Clinton-Yasser Arafat-Yitzhak Rabin type of photo in Singapore.

I hope this finds you well this Saturday morning, June 9. If not, you are near one of the premier medical centers here in the Big PX.
Today after stinking up the joint at the G7-1 the Great White Dope flies off to his summit with Kim Hong Un, will Putin broker a settlement to dampen any Blue gains come November?
To your West a new natural gas pipeline failed spectacularly, I wonder what country made the steel?
To anonymous. I watched the ER kill my mother by refusing to treat her wheezing, a condition that she normally didn't have and that was treatable. We were forcibly removed by the ER. Why the panic by the ER, too many people to take care of might have been the excuse, so the elderly were the first to not be treated. And I've discovered that E.M.T.A.L.A. does not even protect the elderly if they were living in their own home. So they have no fear in the ER if the senior came from their own home. So the bleeding hearts for the immigrants at the expense of people who have live in this country for 50 years and paid their taxes doesn't cut it for me. I am devastated at how my mother was treated like garbage by nurses of all people. And we were forcibly removed from the ER by a security guard after he forcibly erased my video that I had take to document their evil actions.
You can't have both, you worry about the immigration issue, you are saying screw you to the elderly who have lived here for many decades. This is why I believe both sides suck.
Joseph, Hope you are feeling ok in the historic Wild West, because it's not ok in the new "Mad Man" West, where the only policy is disrupting healthy relationships and replacing them with political sturm und drang (or porn and golf, depending on where Commander Bone Spur is combing his mane).

At least a few patriots left behind by the GOP are willing to give their political lives to bring this country to its senses. They are sending independent messages of conciliation to allies on our near borders and other members of the G7 (this too shall pass, the President was not elected by the majority of Americans...).

Mueller continues teasing out NRA-Russia U.S. campaign funding, beginning in 2015, aided by findings in the Spanish money laundering investigation.
"Torshin has drawn focus in part because he was implicated in a years-long investigation by Spanish authorities (no highlighter!) into money-laundering by the Russian mob. Spanish prosecutor Jose Grinda, who has led that investigation, was in Washington late last month and met with FBI officials for several hours, a well-placed source said."

"A photograph taken during a 2015 trip to Russia by leaders of the powerful group showed them meeting with Torshin, Rogozin and Rudov, and a source knowledgeable about the visit confirmed the gathering. The source spoke on condition of anonymity to avoid damaging relationships."

I take heart from this: "NRA spokesman Andrew Arulanandam said, however, that the FBI has not contacted the group." Assuming any GOP ally is believable is a stretch, but if I'm not mistaken, those who haven't been contacted are possible subjects and/or even targets of an investigation.;

"The NRA, Trump’s biggest financial backer, spent more than $30 million to boost his upstart candidacy; that's more than double what it laid out for 2012 GOP nominee Mitt Romney, and the NRA money started flowing much earlier in the cycle for Trump." (damn, no highlighter!)

"Trump to NRA: ‘I will never ever let you down’"

"Last month on Capitol Hill, Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee who examined Russian interactions with the NRA reached a preliminary conclusion that “the Kremlin may also have used the NRA to secretly fund Mr. Trump’s campaign.”

"Citing that finding, Lieu and Rep. Kathleen Rice, D-N.Y., asked FBI Director Christopher Wray in a May 24 letter to expand the inquiry to also explore whether Kremlin money flowed illegally to the NRA for use in influencing House and Senate races."

"The NRA reported spending $24.4 million to back Republican candidates for Congress in 2016."

"“Illegal campaign contributions by a foreign nation, especially one whose interests stand in stark contrast to those of the United States, threaten the very underpinnings of our democracy and cannot remain unchallenged,” Lieu and Rice wrote."
dataflo cites McClatchy
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