November 9, 2017

COMPLETELY UNFAIR TO CHARLIE-IN-THE-BOX!:

The Strange Pleasure of Seeing Carter Page Set Himself on Fire (Rick Wilson, 11.08.17, Daily Beast)

Legal scholars watching Page's borderline insane interviews, reviewing his bizarre public statements and reading the wackadoodle transcripts of his testimony to congressional investigators have expressed various levels of shock. His testimony this week must have dismayed his friends in Trump world; a long, rambling, performance art piece before the House which confirmed key sections of the Steele Dossier and opened up entirely new venues for investigation.

The emerging paper trail of his forays into Russia has been an amazing mosaic of comic-opera misunderstandings, grand and petty corruptions, grade-school category errors, and fundamental delusions about Putin's kleptocracy. In short, Page is a perfect example of the ad-hoc weirdness of the Trump campaign, Trumpism's deep, misplaced love of Putin's Russia, and the power of magical thinking among the coterie of misfit toys Trump calls his advisors. Page is weird and wrong and in most campaigns he'd be the weirdest, wrongest dog in the pack. In Trump world, Carter Page is in the middle quintile.

A bizarre fascination with Russia as an ally shaped the view of many of Trump's foreign policy advisors like Steve Bannon, Mike Flynn, Stephen Miller, Seb Gorka and the rest of the Foreign Policy Center for Kids Who Can't Read Good and Want To Read Good. Yes, a meaningful fraction of it is informed by an alt-rightish belief that the U.S. and Russia are white Christian allies in the global war on Islam and brown people in general, but some of it is just their natural inclination toward nationalist authoritarianism.

It's easier to have sympathy for the guys--like Manafort--who were just looking to cash in on the Donald/Vlad relationship than for the guys driven purely by hatred of Muslims, Jews, etc.

Posted by at November 9, 2017 7:45 AM

  

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