Thursday, January 12, 2017

Trampas or the Virginian: Trump and The Spooks and the Supine Media

Sworn Donald Trump enemy John McCain admitted Wednesday that he passed the dossier of claims of a Russian blackmail plot against the president-elect.
The Arizona senator issued a public statement amid mounting questions of his exact role in the affair - and how a document riddled with errors and unverifiable claims came to be published.
'Late last year, I received sensitive information that has since been made public,' he said.
'Upon examination of the contents, and unable to make a judgment about their accuracy, I delivered the information to the Director of the FBI.
'That has been the extent of my contact with the FBI or any other government agency regarding this issue.' The Daily Mail

“the document was prepared for political opponents of Trump by a person who is understood to be a former British intelligence agent.” Ben Smith Buzzfeed

Super. Pretty wet out there with all the leaks, Golden Showers, Sobbing spooks and CNN unabe to fathom the fact that the Electoral College worked the way it was supposed to work.

So yesterday the media and the clubby spooks got a nose bleed.

I immediately thought of Owen Wister's great novel - The Virginian.  This is a novel more about the constructive and community forming application of words, than it is about the single show-down and gun play.

The character known as the Virginian is opposed to the glib, cowardly and shameless Trampas.  The Virginian will allow a friend, a person with whom he has shared danger, laughs and a few drinks, to call him an S.O.B. any minute of the day.  He will not tolerate, however, any malicious tag to sit in his aura for a second.

Five or six players sat over in the corner at a round table where counters were piled. Their eyes were close upon their cards, and one seemed to be dealing a card at a time to each, with pauses and betting between. Steve was there and the Virginian; the others were new faces.
“No place for amatures,” repeated the voice; and now I saw that it was the dealer’s. There was in his countenance the same ugliness that his words conveyed.
“Who’s that talkin’?” said one of the men near me, in a low voice.
“What’s he?”
“Cow-puncher, bronco-buster, tin-horn, most anything.”
“Who’s he talkin’ at?”
“Think it’s the black-headed guy he’s talking at.”
“That ain’t supposed to be safe, is it?”
“Guess we’re all goin’ to find out in a few minutes.”
“Been trouble between ‘em?”
“They’ve not met before. Trampas don’t enjoy losin’ to a stranger.”
“Fello’s from Arizona, yu’ say?”
“No. Virginia. He’s recently back from havin’ a look at Arizona. Went down there last year for a change. Works for the Sunk Creek outfit.” And then the dealer lowered his voice still further and said something in the other man’s ear, causing him to grin. After which both of them looked at me.
There had been silence over in the corner; but now the man Trampas spoke again.
“AND ten,” said he, sliding out some chips from before him. Very strange it was to hear him, how he contrived to make those words a personal taunt. The Virginian was looking at his cards. He might have been deaf.
“AND twenty,” said the next player, easily.
The next threw his cards down.
It was now the Virginian’s turn to bet, or leave the game, and he did not speak at once.
Therefore Trampas spoke. “Your bet, you son-of-a—.”
The Virginian’s pistol came out, and his hand lay on the table, holding it unaimed. And with a voice as gentle as ever, the voice that sounded almost like a caress, but drawling a very little more than usual, so that there was almost a space between each word, he issued his orders to the man Trampas: “When you call me that, SMILE.” And he looked at Trampas across the table.
Yes, the voice was gentle. But in my ears it seemed as if somewhere the bell of death was ringing; and silence, like a stroke, fell on the large room. All men present, as if by some magnetic current, had become aware of this crisis. In my ignorance, and the total stoppage of my thoughts, I stood stock-still, and noticed various people crouching, or shifting their positions.
“Sit quiet,” said the dealer, scornfully to the man near me. “Can’t you see he don’t want to push trouble? He has handed Trampas the choice to back down or draw his steel.”
Then, with equal suddenness and ease, the room came out of its strangeness. Voices and cards, the click of chips, the puff of tobacco, glasses lifted to drink,—this level of smooth relaxation hinted no more plainly of what lay beneath than does the surface tell the depth of the sea.
For Trampas had made his choice. And that choice was not to “draw his steel.” If it was knowledge that he sought, he had found it, and no mistake! We heard no further reference to what he had been pleased to style “amatures.” In no company would the black-headed man who had visited Arizona be rated a novice at the cool art of self-preservation.
One doubt remained: what kind of a man was Trampas? A public back-down is an unfinished thing,—for some natures at least. I looked at his face, and thought it sullen, but tricky rather than courageous.
Something had been added to my knowledge also. Once again I had heard applied to the Virginian that epithet which Steve so freely used. The same words, identical to the letter. But this time they had produced a pistol. “When you call me that, SMILE!” So I perceived a new example of the old truth, that the letter means nothing until the spirit gives it life. The Virginian Owen Wister (emphases my own)

The Media makes me want to shower.  The spooks ?  Who knows from spooks?

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