“Presidents come and go and even the parties in power change, but the main political direction does not change. That’s why, in the grand scheme of things, we don’t care who is the head of the United States. We know, more or less, what is going to happen. And so in this regard, even if we wanted to, it would not make sense for us to interfere.” Vladimir Putin interview with Megyn Kelly, June 5, 2016
I remember watching Megyn Kelly’s first show on Fox News. She was fresh, feisty and full of energy in the pursuit of journalistic progress. Somewhere in the last year or two, Kelly seemed to change. She morphed from progress to progressive, seemingly to transform from a curious newsroom bloodhound into a robotic propagandist for left-wing disinformation. This most recent version of Megyn Kelly was on full display as she interviewed Vladimir Putin in Russia. Putin mopped the floor with her.
Sometimes a journalist should be careful what they wish for, particularly when they get an exclusive with a savvy world leader who has been raised in a no-nonsense, power playing dictatorship such as the old Soviet Union. Putin has a brutal past in a brutal country. But he is a reformer of sorts as Russia struggles to become relevant again on the world stage. Putin is at least smart enough to know that old Stalinist type repression is a poor formula for actual societal and economic progress. And lately, especially compared to the flaccid appeasement policies of Obama, Putin is looking like an alpha-dog leader among international dignitaries.
Throughout the interview with Kelly, Putin demonstrated just what a mockery the western press has truly become. He destroyed Russian hacking accusations, stating the Kellys’ daughter could have done such things from her basement and make it look like Russia was to blame. He even suggested it may be our own intelligence agencies at work behind the scenes. He laughed at the idea that members of the Trump campaign had “contact with the Russian Ambassador prior to the election”. Putin stated that is what he is paid to do, to “talk to people.” Putin claimed he received no special reports during that time.
Despite Putin’s pointed answers Kelly continued to proffer the pathetic progressive talking points aimed to sway a pandering American public. Several times during the interview Putin looked at his watch with the expression on his face screaming “how much longer do I have to put up with this nonsense”. His answers were practical, straightforward and believable. Kelly just continued to shovel propagandist questions and dig her “gotcha” news tactics into a deeper hole. Putin never bit, maintaining the upper hand throughout, while openly revealing the hypocrisy of many of the implications thrown at him.
Unfortunately, no matter what the Russians have done, Putin would certainly not admit anything to a smug western journalist. Did the Russians hack us? I am sure they did and continue to attempt widespread hacks every day. So do the Chinese, the Iranians, the North Koreans and many others. We hack them frequently also. But is there any evidence at all tying Russian hacking to any influence over the election? None at all. And that is the quandary. If the Trump haters had any hard evidence it would have been on the table long ago. This entire witch hunt is a simple ruse to try and discredit the Trump Presidency. And that is harmful to America and our democratic process in general. Kelly and her ilk are arguably doing more harm to our country than Putin at the moment.
Many readers may wonder if Russia and China are allies or enemies. The answer is “it depends.” They are both historic communist regimes, but they are each reaching for a more open market socialist paradigm, sort of a back-tracking on hardcore communism of old. They will be cooperative with the United States as long as they perceive we have a military and economic advantage. Regimes like Russia and China respect strength but will conspire against weakness. That does not preclude attempts to steal information and technology on a regular basis. Such pursuits are universal and know no political or philosophical boundaries. It is a basic tenet of geopolitics in a modern, competitive global environment. However, if they perceive us weakened or vulnerable, look out! All bets are off and no action, including military action, should be ruled out of such a problematic future scenario.
And that is the problem here. A strong, united and vigorous America is fairly resilient to outside influences such as Russia. A divided and weak America, an America that is tearing itself apart, becomes a target. And being the target is never a good thing. Pundits like Megyn Kelly, along with her many cohorts at MSNBC, CNN and every other propaganda factory posing as a news agency, replete with their unfounded, blame Trump, leftist nonsense, are the ones doing the real damage. The manufactured hysteria these news outlets create is fracturing America, and frankly conspiring to create such hysteria (a term Putin used openly) is unforgivable.
President Trump recently stated that the Fake News Press was an enemy of America. Kelly put that hyperbole into much clearer perspective. Facts matter, truth matters. And in this exchange, the sad truth is that it looks like Putin is the one putting forth the facts. And that is a sad day for America when a dictatorial communist leader looks more credible than we do. Poor Megyn, she should have quit while she was behind.