Today we look at how, in his column this week, Jack Kelly (conservative columnist at the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette) rehashes a debunked by more than a year conspiracy theory about, you guessed it, Presidential Nominee Hillary Clinton.
After framing the election this way:
Donald Trump will run as if he were in a Democrat primary. He’ll be to Ms. Clinton’s left on some economic issues, in sync on most social issues. He’ll aim his pitch at Sanders backers and the white working-class that Democrats have abandoned.For the record, that was Jack Kelly calling Trump supporters "morons."
This strategy comports with Mr. Trump’s political views, such as they are. It will discombobulate Ms. Clinton, who doesn’t respond well to the unexpected. Trumpkins will applaud whatever he says. Republican “leaders” are too ethically compromised to complain.
After outlining well in his acceptance speech why America is in crisis, Mr. Trump said: “I am your voice. I alone can fix it.”
This is Chavismo, Caesarism. Only megalomaniacs say such a thing. Only morons believe it.
(And if some local Inspektor des Sicherheitspolizei und SD is reading this sometime after January 2017, I want to make sure Jack's standing right next to me facing the local militia's firing squad - BTW, I mean that "sarcastically.")
Anyway, Jack frames the debunked conspiracy with the emails:
The FBI thinks Russian intelligence hacked the DNC emails. Ms. Clinton turned over fewer than half the emails she sent through her private server while she was secretary of state. Odds are the Russians have the ones she didn’t.Let's take a look at the source of this smear: Peter Schweizer (of the Government Accountability Institute). Who is this guy? The way Jack describes him, he sounds politically neutral, right? Some sort of apolitical guv'ment watch dog who can be trusted to call the balls and strikes fairly, right?
That’s bad news for Ms. Clinton, because the Russians have a powerful interest in electing Donald Trump. He has a man-crush on Vladimir Putin and has indicated a willingness to dismantle NATO, Mr. Putin’s foremost foreign policy objective.
The gaps in Ms. Clinton’s email record coincided with meetings with shady foreign characters who got favors after making megabuck contributions to the Clinton Foundation, noted Peter Schweizer of the Government Accountability Institute. Few Americans know how badly Ms. Clinton has harmed national security. Most would be appalled by evidence that she may have solicited bribes.
Yea, that's a no.
He's got a bio at the right wing Federalist Society that says this:
Peter Schweizer is the William J. Casey Fellow at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University and a best-selling author. He is a partner in the Washington, D.C. firm Oval Office Writers which provides speechwriting and communications services for corporate executives and political figures.By the way, I tried to find out something (ANYTHING) about this "Ultraterrorism Study Group" at the Sandia National Lab. Interestingly, I couldn't find any reference to it that wasn't included in a Peter Schweizer bio. Try it yourself: google ["ultraterrorism study group" -schweizer] and you won't find ANY references to speak of. At this writing, I'm seeing one that includes a misspelling of his last name and others that are obviously spam. Works the same if you include type the word "ultra-terrorism".
From 2008-9 he was a consultant to the Office of Presidential Speechwriting in the White House. He has also served as a member of the Ultraterrorism Study Group at the U.S. government’s Sandia National Laboratory and is a former consultant to NBC News.
Was there an "ultra terrorism study group" at Sandia? And if so who else was on it? And if it existed the way Peter Schweizer wishes us to believe it existed, WHY CAN'T I FIND ANYTHING ABOUT IT ON-LINE?
Is everything except Peter Schweizer's participation in the group a state secret?
Please, if I am incorrect and there is some credible findable information about this Sandia committee that Schweizer says he was a part of, please email it in. I'll post an update. I want to be incorrect. I don't want to have found out that this guy lied about his own bio and has been lying about it for years.
On the other hand, Melania Trump lied about having an architecture degree from Slovenia. So...
Anyway, he's also the guy who wrote the roundly debunked smear on the Clintons, called Clinton Cash.
And that's where Jack got this story about the Clintons:
Rosatom, the Russian nuclear agency, bought a Canadian mining company. “The deal made Rosatom one of the world’s largest uranium producers and brought Mr. Putin closer to his goal of controlling much of the global uranium supply chain,” reported The New York Times in April 2015.Funny thing. This story's bogus - and it was shown to be bogus in April of 2015:
The deal, which gave Rosatom control of 20 percent of U.S. uranium production, had to be approved by the State Department, because of the national security implications. The shareholders of Uranium One contributed $145 million to the Clinton Foundation. The deal went through.
The author of “Clinton Cash” falsely claimed Hillary Clinton as Secretary of State had “veto power” and “could have stopped” Russia from buying a company with extensive uranium mining operations in the U.S. In fact, only the president has such power.Wait, did Jack really not tell us that there were eight other members of that committee that also had to agree with a sale that eventually went through?
At the time of the sale, Clinton was a member of the Committee on Foreign Investments in the United States, which is required by law to investigate all U.S. transactions that involve a company owned or controlled by a foreign government. Federal guidelines say any one of nine voting members of the committee can object to such a foreign transaction, but the final decision then rests with the president.
Jack also fails to tell us that there is a conspicuous lack of evidence tying Clinton to that sale. Curiously Chris Wallace (of Fox News) is the one Factcheck quotes. (Remember this is from 2015.):
Wallace, April 26: Nine separate agencies and they [Clinton campaign officials] point out there’s no hard evidence, and you don’t cite any in the book that Hillary Clinton took direct action, was involved in any way in approving as one of nine agencies the sale of the company?Factcheck points out that Schweizer is also incorrect in asserting that Clinton had "veto power" in that situation:
Schweizer: Well, here’s what’s important to keep in mind: it was one of nine agencies, but any one of those agencies had veto power. So, she could have stopped the deal.
The committee, which is known by its acronym CFIUS, can approve a sale, but it cannot stop a sale. Only the president can do that, and only if the committee recommends or “any member of CFIUS recommends suspension or prohibition of the transaction,” according to guidelines issued by the Treasury Department in December 2008 after the department adopted its final rule a month earlier.And that's what Jack based his story of Clinton Corruption. A smear that was debunked 15 months ago.
WHY CAN'T ANYONE AT THE P-G FACT-CHECK JACK KELLY?
This has gotta be embarrassing for the staff at the Post-Gazette - knowing they're pulling down a paycheck from the same folks who both a) pay Jack Kelly and b) can't keep him from making a fool of himself in print.