Op-Ed

Not buying the Russian meddling reports, no matter how often repeated

Some of the Facebook ads linked to a Russian effort to disrupt the American political process and aggravate divisive social issues, released by members of the U.S. House Intelligence committee in November.
Some of the Facebook ads linked to a Russian effort to disrupt the American political process and aggravate divisive social issues, released by members of the U.S. House Intelligence committee in November. Associated Press

There are some things that have to remain unspoken. It has gotten to where in the world today it is sometimes just easier to not say certain things. It is a shame, especially in view of freedom of speech and freedom of expression.

I may be the only person in America who does not believe there has been Russian interference in our elections.

The goal has been that if something is said over and over and over again, eventually people will accept it. Whether or not it is true is not important, repeating it as if true again and again will bring into play “where there is smoke, there is fire.”

The premise of Russian interference must be accepted in order for several other falsehoods to be presented.

I have followed politics, foreign affairs and government issues for years and years, and never has Russian interference even been an issue with an American election. One thing that is incredible to me is why on Earth would I believe anything the FBI has to say about anything.

When I heard 17 intelligence agencies all were in agreement that there was without a doubt Russian interference, it did not ring true. Generally, and historically, intelligence agencies seem to be at war with one another. The odds of them agreeing on anything are usually slim and none.

The way it was presented to the public was also strange, as if this information is beyond reproach and not up for examination. The intelligence groups are all in agreement, so it is now a fact.

Another problem I have is with the whole concept of Russian meddling. It is 2018, and the word “meddling” does not fit in our high-tech society.

What is meddling? Nothing has been said about a IP addresses being changed, nothing about ambassadors misusing their diplomatic immunity and nothing about remote pirated access to computers and networks. There has been nothing about ghost phone accounts or using satellites to intercept signals from election returns.

It is only referred to as Russian meddling. There really needs to be something stronger than that to even sound credible. Macedonians have been accused of interference, but it is hard to dignify that with anything other than humor.

Except that the whole thing is just not funny. It has been horrible for America, and has made the media and the intelligence agencies promoting the idea into a very bad joke.

Of course, it is best to not say that aloud. One opens oneself up to ridicule, going against 17 intelligence agencies, going against the obvious intent of Russia, and going against what we all know to be true.

My concern is that many will just go along with the idea of Russian meddling, whether they agree with it or not. Some will decide its not worth the trouble it will cause to dispute it.

Repeating something over and over does not make it true, but the 20th time it is heard is different from the first. The first time there may be disbelief, and scorn; but over time, and with repetition, even a lie becomes more palatable.

The problem for America is that things are being accepted that are not true. I think people know they are not true, but just don’t care. I was sad when I heard the times in which we are living referred to as the “post-truth era.”

A line from the TV show “Seinfeld: seems to sum it up: “It’s not a lie if you believe it.” Some have come to believe what they knew as a lie, to now believe it as the truth.

Reach Thomas W. Downey of Louisville at twayned@bellsouth.net.

  Comments