Does Russia Really Have Evidence That Donald Trump Paid Sex Workers for Golden Showers?

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I call it “Trumped up, trickle down.”

Earlier this evening the website BuzzFeed revealed a supposedly classified memo that provides details on just what kind of dirt Russian intel might have on our next Commander-in-Chief. And needless to say, it ain’t pretty. According to the documentwhich has yet to be verified, mind you — during his stays in Russia, Trump engaged in what the report calls “perverted sexual acts.”

Just how perverted? It alleges that Trump hired “the presidential suite of the Ritz Carlton Hotel” in Moscow “where he knew President and Mrs OBAMA (whom he hated) had stayed.” He then “defil[ed] the bed where they had slept by employing a number of prostitutes to perform a ‘golden showers’ (urination) show in front of him.” Supposedly the room was equipped with “microphones and concealed cameras” in order to gain “compromising material” on Trump, who, by 2013, had made his presidential aspirations known.

Aside from the revulsion that I’m sure the great majority of you share in reading that, the point is that Russia and Vladimir Putin have incriminating material on Trump that they were prepared to blackmail him with. Indeed, Putin’s preference for Trump and selective leaking of DNC emails are already well known at this point, as are former campaign manager Paul Manafort’s ties to pro-Russian politicos in Ukraine. So, on the one hand it wouldn’t shock me that Russia has something they could use to manipulate Trump into doing the Kremlin’s bidding.

One the other hand, the idea of Trump paying women to urinate in front of (or on) him seems prima facie ridiculous. In fact, the notorious white supremacist/troll haven known as 4chan’s /pol/ forum have claimed the entire affair was one large hoax that spiraled out of control. Their anonymous members are claiming that this began as a trollish fan fiction-style story that they sent to conservative pundit Rick Wilson — who became known for his vociferous opposition to the alt-right — and that that Wilson forwarded the scoop to the intel community. The goal would be seeing the CIA and the mainstream media with egg on its face, as well as rubbing it in that they peddled “fake news” to the public.

And on the other other hand, it’s 4chan we’re dealing with here. This could all easily be some Inception-level trolling by claiming responsibility for a real report in an effort to undermine it and convince the public that real news is fake news. I don’t know what the answer to that is. I certainly take the specific claims from both sides — about both the urine fetish and the gullible media — with a grain of salt, and will wait for further confirmation or a sound debunking of this story.

Until then we can at least enjoy the golden shower jokes and revel in the reaction of the far right. Paul Ramsey sounded downright indignant:

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As did the “unofficial” Twitter feed for the Tennessee Republican Party:

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White supremacist radio host Jazzhands McFeels is firmly onboard the “4chan hoax” hypothesis:

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Lauren Southern dismissed it as “anime #goldenshower fanfics”:

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Even crackpots and kooks who pushed the bogus PizzaGate and “spirit cooking” nontroversies were uncharacteristically skeptical for a change:

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Now if only they could remain that incredulous about secret pedo rings, Black Lives Matter-inspired hate crimes, and race and IQ statistics.

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