Last week, I noted that Combover Crybaby Donald Trump, the embattled yet still nominally sitting President of the USA, had effectively thrown former UKIP Oberscheissenführer Nigel “Thirsty” Farage under the bus. Any unwanted fallout from Mr Thirsty’s visit to the Ecuadorian embassy would have to be carried by the man Wot Did It. Now, although Farage has not yet acknowledged the fact, matters have got rather more serious.
Next one with bars, eh?
It was The Donald’s least favoured network CNN that told the world how serious. “A federal grand jury in Washington on Friday approved the first charges in the investigation led by special counsel Robert Mueller, according to sources briefed on the matter … The charges are still sealed under orders from a federal judge. Plans were prepared Friday for anyone charged to be taken into custody as soon as Monday, the sources said. It is unclear what the charges are”. The investigation concerns Trump, his gang, and Russia.
There was more. “Mueller's team has also examined foreign lobbying conducted by former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort, former national security adviser Michael Flynn and others. His team has issued subpoenas for documents and testimony to a handful of figures, including some people close to Manafort, and others involved in the Trump Tower meeting between Russians and campaign officials”. Manafort is close to Farage.
Moreover, Manafort had his home raided by the FBI in August, under what is known as a “no knock” warrant - the Feds just marched in and seized what they wanted. Manafort was given no notice because of a perceived fear that he would destroy evidence.
So what does this mean for all those from the UK who courted Trump so assiduously? Well, that very much depends on what form the courting took. Anything looking like collusion, conspiracy, dabbling in dodgy material, and certainly anything to do with the influencing of the democratic process would put any or all of those people well beyond the mouth of Shit Creek without recourse to any hand-held marine propulsion device.
After CNN’s Shimon Prokupecz broke the news, those consequences were explained by Renato Mariotti, who is not merely some amateur Twitter pundit, but a former Federal prosecutor. Readers are advised to pay good heed to his words here.
“To approve an indictment, grand jurors must find there is enough evidence to show there’s good reason to believe the crime was committed … But federal prosecutors don’t present indictments unless they believe they can prove the charges beyond a reasonable doubt at trial … Generally prosecutors wait until the end of the investigation to present indictments, so they have all of the evidence beforehand … Sometimes prosecutors will indict someone earlier if they hit a ‘wall’ and want to get someone to flip”.
Who might they have in mind? “Given Mueller’s ongoing interviews of White House staff, it doesn’t appear that his investigation is wrapping up soon … So this suggests to me that he most likely is indicting someone early to get him/her to flip. The obvious candidate is Paul Manafort”. There is also the consideration that Mueller may want to get his foot in the door before Trump tries to fire him. We’ll get on to that part later.
Behold a headless chicken
All of that is bad, but for Farage, there is worse. Information arrived on Zelo Street last week concerning someone whom the investigators may want to flip. The name in the frame was not Paul Manafort. It was someone even closer to Nigel Farage. That ties up with Mariotti’s analysis (for reasons of not wanting to frighten the horses, the name will not be pitched here - yet).
And for anyone still not convinced that this is serious for all within the Trump orbit, all you need is to look at the headless chicken display coming out of Fox News Channel (fair and balanced my arse) right now. All semblance of news presentation and grounding the narrative in reality has been abandoned in favour of turning the network into Trump TV.
Don't panic, Mr Murdoch!
So FNC is running knocking copy on Mueller, signalling panic - and opening the door to nudging a highly susceptible President into sacking the Special Prosecutor. Viewers were urged to look anywhere else but at the prospect of their hero going the same way as Richard Milhous Nixon - except in rather less time.
Professional loudmouth Sean Hannity was on the case as soon as CNN broke the Mueller story. “When will @HillaryClinton be indicted?” Panic indeed. And there was more. “This has been a HORRIBLE week for Mueller, Special Counsel’s office. THIS IS ALL A DISTRACTION. Monday I’ll have the details. TICK TOCK….!”. Drink that Kool-Aid!
It won’t work. And in bad news for the Murdoch mafiosi - remember, Rupert Murdoch is now in personal change of FNC - Media Matters for America is on the case. The attempts by FNC to talk up a “Hillary Clinton uranium story” - one with the paw prints of FNC host Hannity and his Breitbart counterpart Steve Bannon all over it - are not credible. It’s panic propagandising. The shit has well and truly hit the fan.
So should Farage and his pals steer clear of their trips to the USA? But you know the answer to that: Mr Thirsty and his closest comrades believe they’re untouchable. So sit back, get the popcorn in - and wait to see who gets flipped first. More later.