I wrote a response to an OC Register opinion column from columnist Susan Shelley; her story ran October 29 and it focused on Hillary Clinton and the art of concealment and embraced the Trump message points on his Twitter feed as the special prosecutor’s investigation tightens around the inner circle of the Trump campaign.
My response is below; the original draft ran more than 900 words and I had to cut it to 650:
A note to Southern California News Group opinion columnist Susan Shelley; Hillary Clinton is not the president of the United States. Donald Trump is. And the nature of her column about Clinton’s “art of concealment” is as stale as finding an old loaf of bread in your pantry – it’s moldy, irrelevant and no longer matters.
But let’s refocus the columnist on where she ought to be directing the “art of concealment.”
Clinton isn’t a technical person; she knows how to use a cell phone, a PDA and a laptop, but her staff set up the private email server and managed everything. Current and former Trump administration officials have and used private email servers for their work in the White House including former strategist Steve Bannon, as well as Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner. Oh their emails.
She probably forgot the 22 million official White House e-mails created by the Bush administration between 2003 and 2005 were sent and received via private email servers run by the RNC. They were reported as lost or missing, and some emails were recovered, but were not released to the public. Oh those emails.
On Uranium One, every reputable non-partisan fact checking site says there is no evidence of a “quid pro quo” deal that gave Russia ownership of one-fifth of U.S. uranium deposits for a $145 million donation to the Clinton Foundation. It’s fake news.
The mining company, Uranium One merged in 2007 with UrAsia Energy in Canada. In 2010, Russia’s nuclear agency, Rosatom, bought a 51 percent stake in the company. The transfer of ownership of uranium –about one-fifth of U.S. reserves — was approved by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS). Clinton was on this committee along with nine cabinet members or department heads and had no solo authority to “sell” anything. Lastly, this uranium cannot be exported to Russia and remains under the control of U.S.-based subsidiaries of Uranium One.
The Clinton campaign and the DNC paid for opposition research is shocking somehow? That research began in 2015 and was paid for by “a wealthy Republican donor who strongly opposed Mr. Trump.” When that funding ceased, a San Francisco law firm kept it going on behalf of the Democratic Party.
What should be far more concerning to Shelley is the meeting in Trump Tower attended by the Trump campaign and Russian officials who promised “damaging information on Clinton.” How isn’t this collusion? Paying for opposition research firm is legal; but meeting with foreign agents from a government seeking to disrupt our democracy and then lie about who was in the meeting that should be far more concerning to Shelley. I’ll also point out a number of facts derived from the “Steele Dossier” have been verified.
Shelley should be more concerned about President Trump sharing classified intelligence about ISIS and US allies with Russian officials in the Oval Office. Be concerned that Trump fired FBI Director James Comey in the middle of the agency’s Russian investigation. Be concerned about the President’s advisers being subpoenaed. Be concerned about Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ recusal from the Russian investigation.
And when will President Trump release his 2015 and 2016 income taxes from 2015? Why can’t the public see the visitor’s logs from Mar-A-Lago or the White House so we know who sees the President and his staff? Concealment much?
The Chicago Tribune said it best in a column last June: “These are all commonly used tactics in the shadows of authoritarian societies: If people don’t know what’s happening, it’s a lot harder to criticize it.”
Ms. Shelley, Hillary Clinton holds no office and is not in power. Focus your interest in government concealment on the current administration. Try replacing the word “Trump” with “Clinton” and see how that works for you.
The comments to this piece in the Register are priceless; ignorance exposed. I’m grateful to the team at the Register for letting me draft this rebuttal.