Finally, some fun. Finally, something to off set the angst, the fear, the crushing dread of a Trump presidency. Of course, nothing has been verified as yet (and very likely never will be), but given the Soviet Union's history of espionage, and Trump's notorious impetuosity, the first reports to leak out have proven to be tantalizingly believable.
Basically, the story going around is that the Russians have compromised Donald Trump. They did it by tricking him into committing some fairly bizarre sexual indiscretions, recording them on film (their standard Cold War modus operandi), and filing them away for future use, which is to say, for blackmail purposes. Surely, this has to be illegal.
All of it is said to have occurred while Trump was in Moscow as part of the 2013 Miss Universe contest. What makes the story so credible--besides men being men, Trump being Trump, and the FBS being the FBS--is the fact that using women as leverage (the "honey trap") goes back to before Mata Hari. In fact, it can be traced all the way back to the Bible, where Delilah is said to have betrayed Samson to the Philistines.
In an early TV interview, spy writer John Le Carre explained how a garden variety honey trap = was conducted. The KGB (today's FBS) would set their sights on a married, highly-placed embassy or consulate official, and then go to work. It didn't have to be an American embassy or consulate; it could be any country whose security the USSR wished to breach.
The operatives would follow the target for several weeks, learn his habits and routine, get a feel for him. They would then arrange to have an attractive woman ingratiate herself. If the honey trap worked according to plan, the woman would eventually seduce the man. The couple would engage in sex in a hotel room designated by the KGB, a room already set up with video equipment.
The official would later be shown graphic photographs of the tryst, and be told that unless he cooperated by betraying his country, the pictures would be shown to everyone--his wife, his children, his parents, his church, his Boy Scout troop, his bowling league, et al--and his life would be effectively ruined.
Not only was the honey trap a very inexpensive and uncomplicated espionage device, it had the additional virtue of being fairly reliable. After all, it was based on the male homo sapiens instinctual susceptibility to naked lust.
But before anyone turns all self-righteous and anti-Russian, let's be clear as to how big-time espionage is conducted. It's a dirty business. Our own CIA has used variations of this insidious technique for decades.
In the 1950s, the CIA began staking out gay bars and known haunts in Washington D.C. and New York, shadowing Soviet homosexuals, photographing them, and threatening them with exposure if they did not become "double agents." It's a dirty business.
Again, maybe this whole honey trap scenario involving Trump is as phony as every other fake news story on the Internet. When it comes to sex scandals, it's not hard to grab the public's attention. Still, given the clandestine community's sordid history of mischief, and their obsession with obtaining "leverage," why on God's earth would they NOT do it if they had the means?
How to vote
Vote-by-mail ballot request deadline: Varies by state
For the Nov 3 election: States are making it easier for citizens to vote absentee by mail this year due to the coronavirus. Each state has its own rules for mail-in absentee voting. Visit your state election office website to find out if you can vote by mail.Get more information
In-person early voting dates: Varies by state
Sometimes circumstances make it hard or impossible for you to vote on Election Day. But your state may let you vote during a designated early voting period. You don't need an excuse to vote early. Visit your state election office website to find out whether they offer early voting.My Election Office
General Election: Nov 3, 2020
Polling hours on Election Day: Varies by state/localityMy Polling Place