Why Are Trump Surrogates Calling for U.S. Civil War?
Smoke, Mirrors, Roger Stone and Infowars
By now, many people will be familiar with the name Roger Stone. During the 2016 U.S. presidential election campaign, Roger Stone distinguished himself by becoming the mouthpiece for Donald Trump, embedded in the online media operations of alt-right conspiracy platforms such as Alex Jones’ Infowars and Breitbart.
The story was, as I have documented elsewhere, that Roger Stone either quit or was fired as Trump’s presidential campaign manager back in its embryonic phase in August 2015. According to Trump, Stone was fired, according to Stone he left of his own accord. The likelihood is, however, that he never left the campaign at all but in a smoke and mirrors manoeuvre became Trump’s man on the burgeoning right-wing conspiracy fringe, probably with the caveat that, should such a move blow up in Trump’s face, and the public association with conspiracy nuts such as Infowars’ Alex Jones invite ridicule and poor polling numbers, Trump would have the plausible-deniability of saying that Stone had left the campaign in acrimonious circumstances.
As it turns out, that wasn’t required and Trump appeared on Infowars being interviewed by Alex Jones, who fawned over and soft-soaped Trump in one of the most embarrassing political interviews ever recorded. In one fell swoop, Trump managed to co-opt the truther, conspiracy and patriot movements that Infowars and Jones had spent many years cultivating.
Alex Jones and Alien Intelligence
Have no doubt about it, it was the support of Infowars and Breitbart that won the election for Trump, evidenced by the thousands of ‘Hillary For Prison’ t-shirts that were worn at every Trump rally during the election campaign. This fact should disturb every American. Even more disturbing should be the fact that Alex Jones at Infowars and some of his guests are now openly and regularly inciting civil war in the United States.
During the election campaign it appeared that where Alex Jones went ideologically, Trump always followed, although he kept his rhetoric somewhat saner and decided not to go with Jones’ assertion that the elite are planning to destroy the earth and then merge with machines before blasting off for Alpha Centauri.
The question that now needs to be asked, is if Trump took his cues from Alex Jones and Infowars during the election campaign, is he still doing that now. If so, the United States is in for an uncomfortable time, especially as the investigation into the allegations of Russian interference in the 2016 election gets closer and closer to Donald Trump.
Right on cue, as Roger Stone finds himself having to testify in private before the House Intelligence Committee, Stone is himself suggesting civil war will break out should Donald Trump be impeached. In a video filmed at Los Angeles International Airport by TMZ, Stone was asked if he thought there was any chance that Trump would be impeached. In the exchange, Stone was very forthright:
“The people who are calling for impeachment are the people that didn’t vote for him, they need to get over it. They lost. Their candidate had every advantage, they spent two billion dollars, he spent two hundred and seventy-five million, sorry, he whipped her ass, it’s over, you lost. Try to impeach him, just try it, you will have a spasm of violence in this country, an insurrection like you’ve never seen. No question, both sides are heavily armed my friend, absolutely.
This is not 1974, the people will not stand for impeachment, a politician who votes for it would be endangering their own life. There will be violence on both sides, I’ll make this clear, I’m not advocating violence but I’m predicting it.”
He was then asked if he was predicting a civil war scenario and he replied:
“Yes, I think that is what will happen.”
Roger Stone's Groundhog Day
Stone has said publically on Infowars that he wanted to testify before the House Intelligence Committee in public in the interests of transparency but this was refused, probably on the grounds that when Roger Stone gets a public platform, he uses it to stir up rancour and hatred and he couldn’t get a more public platform to use than a public hearing of the Intelligence Committee.
But surely just because Roger Stone is suggesting civil war in the case of a Trump impeachment, it doesn’t mean it’s going to happen, right?
Stone uses the comparison of 1974 when Nixon resigned and says we are now living in different times and I’m guessing that he means the media landscape is far different today than it was back then. Alex Jones claims Infowars pulled in 85 million viewers in one week during the election and while that figure is debatable, as we know that Jones is prone to the odd exaggeration or two, his audience does regularly run into the millions and whilst many are probably viewing and listening merely for the spectacle, there are millions taking him seriously.
Add to that the Infowars readers’ comments section, which for years has been exposing millions of his audience to a hotbed of racism and extremist calls for civil war and we might just have a situation that could turn real ugly, real quickly.
Jones is well aware that his on-screen ranting can have real-world consequences. In the late nineties, Jones gate-crashed the Bohemian Grove ‘Cremation of Care’ ceremony, which has often been attended by politicians, including notably, George W. Bush. He was joined in his escapade by British author and filmmaker Jon Ronson and they both came away with very different impressions of what they thought they witnessed. Ronson thought he had seen a childish, fratboy scenario which he thought rather odd, whilst Jones thought he’d witnessed a child sacrifice. After giving his version of events on his radio show, one of Jones’ listeners turned up at Bohemian Grove, armed with a gun, ready to shoot those he thought were devil worshippers inside.
More recently, Jones was responsible for popularizing the so-called ‘pizzagate’ conspiracy and once again, someone turned up armed to the restaurant that had been incorrectly implicated and actually fired shots. On this occasion, Jones had to eat a little humble pie and issued a lengthy public apology on his show.
A Civil War for All Age Groups
And it’s not just upstarts like Alex Jones who are getting in on the civil war act. Just to make sure that it isn’t just the younger generations who are getting their taste of reactionary hyperbole, Rush Limbaugh is also engaging in some stochastic terrorism for seniors.
So how does the U.S. get out of this situation?
It appears the Trump team knows it won’t survive the Russia probe and is willing to risk all-out civil war in order to survive.
The Hillary campaign made a huge mistake in 2016 by no-platforming Alex Jones and Infowars until far too late in the campaign. Even when they did eventually go on the attack, they used the most obvious examples such as Sandy Hook to try and make Jones look bad but by that point, so many people had engaged Infowars and similar platforms that it needed a nuanced approach to analyze and pick apart the propaganda.
The problem with that is it exposes a lot of people to Jones and his ideas but as that boat had already sailed, it’s too late to worry about Jones popularity and time to do something about it. The other problem is there is a fair amount of truth to some of what Jones says. And those kernels of truth may be uncomfortable for the political elite to swallow but without facing them they will be open wounds that can be used as cover to twist the minds of the unwary. The cracks that let the dark in.
Looks like interesting times in the United States.
Could be a hell of a ride.
Or a ride to hell.
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© 2017 Mr Bueno