The Clock Struck 13: “Wiretapping” Trump

By | March 20, 2017 | 0 Comments


There is an old saying that if the clock strikes 13, it casts doubt not only on that, but also on everything that went before. If we cannot believe the clock when it strikes 13, should we have believed it when it struck 10 or 11? Should we believe anything it ever did?

Some time ago, I saw a prominent criminal-defense attorney being interviewed on TV regarding his client, who was accused of a serious crime. The lawyer declared pompously, “I can’t say there is a shred of evidence against my client.”

This statement was literally true. Of course he couldn’t say anything implying that his client was guilty ‒ he would be disbarred, and even if he were not, no one would hire him. His career would be over. And it turned out that there wasn’t a shred of evidence against his client ‒ there was a mountain of evidence. The lawyer’s statement was the worst kind of lie ‒ a half-truth intended to give a wholly false impression to the listener.

What does all this have to do with the accusation that candidate Trump or his associates were surveilled, and that the contents of their communications were revealed to the Democrats and the media? Let me try to make my case.

● The New York Times said as much in a front-page headline. On Jan. 20, 2017 ‒ the day President Trump was inaugurated ‒ the Times told the world that “wiretapped data” had been used to probe the business dealings of Trump aides, in an effort to uncover links to the Russians.

But now, when President Trump and his press secretary say something similar, they are raked over the coals for making up fantastic stories that no one would believe. Both Democrats and some Republicans join in condemning the president for this accusation.

Well, which is it? Are Trump and his aides spinning unbelievable tales now, and was the Times making up fake news then? Or are both Trump and the Times correct? In any case, the charge that Trump and his people are making up far-fetched stories is directly contradicted by the Times report of Jan. 20.

But how many times did you see images of that Times front page on network TV news? How many times did you hear it referred to on ABC, CBS, NBC, MSNBC, CNN, or NPR? How many times did you see it referred to in the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, or most papers in between? I didn’t hear or see it once.

If it were not for conservative talk radio and websites, I wouldn’t know about the Times headline. And neither do many millions of people in America and across the world. The mainstream media weep and wail about how Big Bad Trump is attacking the “free press.” What “free press”? All I see is the propaganda arm of the Democratic Party. I don’t see Joseph Pulitzer or Edward R. Murrow. All I see are pale imitations of Joseph Goebbels.

● Keeping in mind the lawyer’s remarks regarding his client, let us look at this statement: “There is no evidence that President Obama wiretapped candidate Trump or Trump Tower.” What does this really say, and what does it not say?

(a) No sane person believes that President Obama personally wiretapped anyone. He may not even have directly ordered it done. But did people in his administration, or the intelligence agencies, do it ‒ knowing it would please Obama, or out of hostility to Trump? That is the real question.

(b) No informed person believes anyone has actually been “wiretapped” in recent years. Law-enforcement or intelligence agents no longer have to put on coveralls, borrow a phone-company van, put on spiked boots, climb a telephone pole, find the appropriate wires, and put alligator clips on them. Now it is all done electronically, especially with cell phones.

No, the lawyer couldn’t say that there was a shred of evidence against his client. And no, there isn’t a shred of evidence that President Obama “wiretapped” candidate Trump. But there is evidence that the Obama administration did perform electronic surveillance on Donald Trump and his associates. There is enough evidence that the New York Times put the report on its front page, above the fold, only a short time ago.

How else did we learn that Lt. Gen. Flynn talked to the Russian ambassador ‒ and what is more, what they talked about? Did we consult a clairvoyant? Did we read tarot cards? Did we find it in a fortune cookie? Beyond all doubt, Flynn’s phone conversations were electronically intercepted by someone ‒ either in the U.S. Government, or working with the U.S. Government, for example, the British or the Israelis.

The mainstream media’s incessant condemnation of President Trump and his aides for suggesting what the New York Times actually published is, in effect, the clock striking 13. That clock is broken. We can no longer trust anything it tells us. It’s time to get a more reliable clock.

Were candidate Trump and his associates electronically surveilled for political purposes, in violation of the Constitution, as now seems likely? We don’t know. We may never know for certain. But one thing is certain: The mainstream media cannot be relied upon to tell us.

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