The Ruling Elite Strike Back

 

By Erick-Woods Erickson

First, the scans were good. Thanks for the prayers.

For the sake of argument, again just for the sake of argument, let’s say the FBI and DOJ have clear and convincing evidence that Donald Trump and others, including Congressman Scott Perry whose cell phone was confiscated yesterday, had orchestrated the riot into the United States Capitol with the express purpose of stopping the Congress from certifying the Electoral College vote.

Just for the sake of argument, let’s say they have the goods of a crime to thwart the lawful and peaceful transfer of power.

If you watch the video above, I hope you understand why so many people will, until the end, be absolutely incredulous of any statements from the prosecutors and law enforcement regarding that. I hope you’ll understand why so many people will not believe the media.

They’ve been out to get him the whole time.

Now, I understand that some of you reading this will take the position that, of course, they’ve been out to get him because he’s been an ongoing threat to democracy.

The problem is that about half the country disagrees.

But part of the country that does agree makes up the reporter and anchor core of major media outlets, the talking heads and chattering class, the editorialists, the “non-partisan” think tankers, and the policy wonks within the federal bureaucracy. There has been a relentless, nonstop, drumbeat for impeachment and indictment since the day after the election in 2016.

I’ve lost count of how many stories and narratives were so easily advanced in the press only to later be retracted or substantially revised. From the story about what James Comey would testify to Congress to the story about Anthony Scaramucci working with a Russian hedge fund to the story about the clearing of Lafayette Park, the press and elite in the nation ran too easily with the worst framing of a story only to whisper the retractions.

To this day, McClatchy still claims Michael Cohen flew to Prague to meet with Russians, even though the Mueller investigators thoroughly debunked it. Who can forget the Buzzfeed story about Trump ordering Cohen to lie to Congress, also debunked by the Mueller investigation and one of the rare times Mueller publicly commented to refute a story that appeared in the press?

These are the people that fully bought into the idea Trump was an agent of Russia and Russia stole the election. These are the people who have bought every rumor against Trump, amplified every attack on Trump, and run with every accusation against Trump, only to be retracted later.

In other words, half the country takes as fact that the major media and the nation’s elite never accepted the 2016 election, fought Trump the whole way through, used the press to lie about him with impunity, embedded within the Trump Administration to sabotage him (see e.g., Miles Taylor as Anonymous), and even now relentlessly harass Trump.

You might think he deserves it. But you might also try to understand that half the country supported the man and you people never treated him as legitimate and now demand everyone treat you and your actions as legitimate.

Look, maybe the DOJ and FBI have the goods. Maybe Trump really did try to organize and execute a coup to sabotage the lawful and peaceful transfer of power.

But also, maybe he did not, and you can’t even bring yourself to accept that possibility because you are convinced of his awfulness. Maybe you should at least understand others are convinced he was a great President and you people opposed him every step of the way. Maybe we all need to remember our nation is premised on the idea that people are innocent until proven guilty.

After all, many of the people I’m talking about here:

  • Argued moving the American Embassy to Jerusalem would start a war;
  • Argued withdrawing from the Iran deal was bad;
  • Argued that the Paris Accord was worthwhile;
  • Thought killing Solemani would bring about a regional war;
  • Cheered leftwing federal judges enjoining actions of the Trump Administration;
  • Openly encouraged saboteurs and obstructionists to stop the advance of what was really pretty normal Republican public policy;
  • Tried desperately to stop domestic American energy independence and now provide cover for Biden to undermine fossil fuel production further;
  • Gave “Anonymous” Miles Taylor a column to claim there was an embedded force within the Trump White House to stop him and cheered on the claims;
  • To this day cannot acknowledge he was the lawfully elected President;
  • Have bent over backward to ignore the declining mental health of the current President;
  • With straight faces claim pretty much any Republican is now unacceptable including Congressman Peter Meijer, for the sin of shaking hands with the man who beat him, after years of bitching about Republicans being mean and refusing to concede defeat;
  • Defended Hunter Biden and encouraged Twitter to turn off the New York Post’s account;
  • Refused to accept Biden’s spending plan caused inflation but have rapidly defended his redefinitions of recession;
  • Quickly embraced “pregnant people” while forgetting what the definition of a woman is; and
  • Were fine when Democrats wanted banks and financial apps to give the IRS notice of accounts with more than $500 in monthly transactions and are now fine with the Democrats hiring 87,000 new IRS agents, in both cases to clearly target the middle class and gig economy workers.

(They probably also privately immediately assumed the Muslim men in New Mexico were murdered by a MAGA supporter.)

Many of the people who have advanced those positions are even now setting the tone and coverage of what is happening in the press and behind the scenes guiding government-based investigations.

Many of us saw FBI agents falsify information related to Carter Page and read the text messages from Peter Strzok. We saw the FBI and DOJ lose their case about the alleged kidnappers of Michigan’s governor. Then there was the FBI’s Jeffrey Epstein screw up and the Larry Nassar screw up. We saw the elite denounce small business owners for protesting only to turn around and demand protests over George Floyd. Now we’re watching the partisan elite accuse anyone who criticizes George Soros of anti-Semitism no matter how legitimate the concerns. It seemed truly to confirm there is an elite who believe they know best for the rest of us how to run the country and will stop anyone who dares challenge the direction.

Oh, and did I mention the press’s ongoing help rehabilitating Bill Gates after his connection to Jeffrey Epstein was exposed, and the judge who issued the subpoena just so happens to have been Epstein’s former lawyer? Where is all the media concern about the victims and traffickers there? They’re too tied up ranting about Trump, apparently.

The reality is we are more and more a nation where the press gives a dominant voice to those who agree with the elite, and the elite believe they can operate in defiance of republican norms. To the extent the elite provide platforms for other voices, they find the least disruptive voices possible who will not challenge prevailing ideas and the elite’s conventional wisdom.

And if you don’t agree with that, you need to explain how the Washington Post can still, with a straight face, claim Jennifer Rubin “provides insight into the conservative movement,” the Atlantic can sever ties with Kevin Williamson because progressive staffers were butt hurt by his writings, the New York Times is more comfortable giving column space to a leader of the Taliban than a sitting Republican Senator from Arkansas, and multiple television outlets that cover politics are almost completely devoid of any conservative voice that actually supported or defends Trump.

Please also explain how none of you are willing to demand an end to gay orgies to stop monkeypox from spreading but vilified small business owners for protesting during COVID to re-open their businesses.

America is really, really divided right now. All I ask is that you try to understand why some people are willing to defend Trump. It has a great deal to do with that video montage, and if you can’t understand that, you’re going to be really surprised by how the GOP shifts moving forward. The elite cried wolf just too many times and lack the humility to engage in self-reflection and change.

But it is a whole lot easier to vilify people you don’t like, don’t know, and don’t think highly of. That, of course, is true for both sides.

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