What if collusion is secondary and blackmail comes to the fore? What if what everyone knew and then suppressed turns out to have been true? What if collusion was just there all the time with a different name? What if blackmail is a little too nasty a term? Could we not call it a convenient understanding? These are today's trump questions.

As I suspected, our aha moments these days are really ours. They are not individual, they are communal. On this page, I will happily share a few references to my most original thesis. No, it wasn't my idea at all.

That's not how things work. Scooping and other journalistic notions of superiority are yesterday.

C. S. Peirce, the great American philosopher, a pragmaticist, understood that science works slowly but surely. A consensus is utterly necessary to the ultimate determination of truth.

Of course

Someone is always first. That may be the case. But being the first one to say Trump may be the victim of blackmail is not a Big Deal. The big deal is proof. At the moment, proof of this is known to Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin and maybe Mike Flynn and the reporters I am referencing in the embeds below.

This hypothesis requires no insider information.

All it takes is a guess (abduction) and perhaps some facility at inference -- drawing conclusions by putting facts together logically. Again, being right is ever more obviously a matter of consensus. I repent faulting the media for not heeding my intuitions over the years. They will be heeded if and when they prove true.

The rest of the time we should be content to admit that we are mainly dealers in supposition and that truth is most mysterious.

For example, it might prove true that most of Trump's crimes are within the nether region of conflict over what is corrupt and what is OK.

This is the man of 3000 -plus lawsuits.

The Vox article by @mattyglesias is one of those you would think is pertinent now but it was published last July. This is a demonstration of the life and death of stories.

Getting to the truth

If the line of thinking I am promoting is valid, we go back to the beginning in the 1980s, when Trump fancied he could end the Cold War, if he could just have some face time with Gorbachev. We segue into Trump's noxious 90s when his casinos in Atlantic City went belly-up. We factor in the aftermath when no bank would give him the time of day. Money flowed from the newly minted Russia.

When Trump is led away, and the Steele allegations are revealed to be true after all, he will be able to say with a grain of truth, "I meant well."