I was out of pocket during the release of the Mueller report so I got to sit back for a few hours and digest the reaction before writing on it.
The report was everything many of us have been saying it’d be. It’s mostly a nothing-burger wrapped in a lot of innuendo, so as to keep feeding the raging conspiracy kooks in the media. Sprinkled throughout it are plenty of cat-nip like phrases which don’t actually provide any evidence of the underlying insinuation. The section on obstruction, for example, is essentially a case of “here’s this stuff we think is sketchy, but we can’t really determine anything.” In other words, it’s a walking testament to exactly why the DOJ usually has regulations on keeping material like this private. It’s a garbage use of our legal system to use prosecutorial authority to slander people without actually bringing charges.
But I digress. The report was always going to be made public and it appears the President, in not choosing to exert executive privilege over anything, decided it was best to rip the band-aid off. That has of course led to a complete media frenzy. Go through The Washington Post’s Twitter feed right now and it’s just dozens of out of context headlines and “analysis” pieces omitting the bottom line, that being that Trump didn’t collude with the Russians and that there was not sufficient evidence to charge obstruction.
As Katie Pavlich wrote, it’s essentially a bunch of pointless palace intrigue.
Much of the Mueller report is White House palace intrigue
— Katie Pavlich (@KatiePavlich) April 18, 2019
There’s no “there there” in terms of actual, substantive evidence of criminal wrongdoing. Its only real value is to serve as a second Steele dossier. Another product full of speculation that ultimately doesn’t lead to its promised end. Sure, it’s couched in authority of a special counsel, but again, there’s a reason they concluded no collusion and didn’t charge obstruction. If they had the goods, they would have used them. No one can doubt that.
One particular line really got the media’s attention though. I got no less than three alerts on my phone from different major media sources presenting the following as some kind of bombshell.
The insinuation here is obviously that Trump was admitting guilt. The thinking goes “He said he was F-ed and his presidency was over! That means he knew he’d committed crimes!!”
Let’s think about that. Imagine for a second that you are accused of a crime. You know you didn’t do this crime. Yet, everyone in the media is saying you did and you’ve now got a special counsel with unlimited resources and the full force of every government agency about to go full bore at you. Would you have confidence in the system? Or would you be nervous of having your activities misconstrued and turned into something they weren’t?
The answer for those who are honest is the latter. If I knew the FBI was putting 40 guys on me, I’d be incredibly nervous no matter how innocent I was. I’d also recognize that it was going to destroy my life, regardless of the outcome, because of how vicious the innuendo resulting from that investigation would be.
That is essentially the situation the President was (and continues to be) in and that was the motivation behind the comment. How do I know this? Because he said so just a few lines later in the report.
Everyone suggesting the president reportedly saying "I'm f*****" is evidence of guilt or that he was in legal trouble needs to keep reading and learn context. Mueller's report then says the president stated the following.
Y'all will latch onto literally anything. #MuellerReport pic.twitter.com/Ul2nTD4hDd
— Micah Rate (@Micah_Rate) April 18, 2019
See what I mean about out of context headlines? In reality, Trump was simply pointing out that Mueller’s appointment would stall his presidency and keep him from accomplishing anything. For the most part he was right. He was not admitting guilt or any other such nonsense. He was reacting in a way most would react when faced with a major investigation over something they didn’t even do.
This is exactly why this report never should have been made public. I understand the political challenges in keeping it private because it’s a special counsel report, but if that’s the argument, then this shows why we never should have had a special counsel in the first place. This report was a complete waste of time and money. It’s only value is to serve as partisan fodder for Democrats and CNN hosts. They will now spend two more years taking excerpts, separating them from principle conclusions, and inventing new conspiracy theories. Rinse and repeat.
This country has real issues that are worth spending time on. Things that actually matter and affect the lives of everyday Americans. But the media and the Democratic party would rather spend the rest of Trump’s first term chasing their mythical white whale for political gain. If there’s any justice left, it won’t work in their favor.