New York Times Rewrites January 20 Story to Delete "Wiretapped" Claim; --- Rolling Stone Cautions Leftist Reporters About Pinning Their Hopes on the Yuri Theory of Trump's Rise
From Ace of Spades:
Once the New York Times said that "wiretapped" communications were used in the investigation of Trump. Then Trump said he'd been "wiretapped," and we can't have Trump being right about anything.
CHUCK TODD: I understand that. But does it exist?
JAMES CLAPPER: Not to my knowledge. Todd pressed him to elaborate.
CHUCK TODD: If [evidence of collusion] existed, it would have been in this report?
JAMES CLAPPER: This could have unfolded or become available in the time since I left the government.
This is the former Director of National Intelligence telling all of us that as of 12:01 a.m. on January 20th, when he left government, the intelligence agencies had no evidence of collusion between Donald Trump's campaign and the government of Vladimir Putin's Russia.
Virtually all of the explosive breaking news stories on the Trump-Russia front dating back months contain some version of this same disclaimer.
There is a lot of smoke in the Russia story.... [Traces of "smoke" omitted for length and for them being common knowledge -- ace] But the manner in which these stories are being reported is becoming a story in its own right. Russia has become an obsession, cultural shorthand for a vast range of suspicions about Donald Trump.
The notion that the president is either an agent or a useful idiot of the Russian state is so freely accepted in some quarters that Beck Bennett's shirtless representation of Putin palling with Alec Baldwin's Trump is already a no-questions-asked yuks routine for the urban smart set.
And yet, this is an extraordinarily complex tale that derives much of its power from suppositions and assumptions.
GO READ THE WHOLE THING.