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Presidents and governors often grant criminal pardons and commute prison sentences in their final days of office. There are several things a little bit odd about this case. A military prison is certainly not a pleasant place for anyone transgender. At the same time, there is something a little bit funny about just letting Manning go under such dishonorable circumstances. Obama's commutation was not a full pardon, in any event.

I do not think that Donald Trump "has it in" for Manning. I rather think the case is quite to the contrary. I think Trump would have objected to the torture and cruel and unusual punishment which was taking place in prison where Manning was held, much as Obama did. At the same time, Trump is under a lot of political pressure himself in office, and he cannot intervene in that case from where he stands now without jeopardizing his own legal position.

I do not see the same hostility from Trump and the "alt-right" toward Manning, Assange, Snowden, and the Wikileaks camp as I saw from Obama and the establishment Democrats. The Wikileaks folks are liberal; I wouldn't mistake them for conservatives or right-wingers, but at the same time, I do think they fell out of line with certain more "established" fellow Democrats and really made enemies of them, much more so than they ever offended the Republicans, the Tea Party, the Alt-Right, etc.

The Libertarians would call these establishment Democrats "statist conservatives," putting them completely in the opposite corner of a four-quadrant political space from where they envision themselves. And obviously there are quite a few Republicans who hold to such statist or big-government authoritarian conservatism as well, which is why the Tea Party and the Alt-Right are so disgruntled. That big-government authoritarianism is taking away our guns, property, rights, and freedoms without the due process of law, something to which the establishment Democrats refuse to object under any circumstances whatsoever.

The information Manning released was the kind of information that would have endangered lives, let us grant that, but there is strong evidence that the information never was the secret from the enemy which it was purported to be. Ergo, it was not, in fact, classified, as it was claimed to be in the case against Manning. There was too much conflation in the court martial of the facts of the criminal case against Manning with the general "offensiveness" of her transgender condition. There was (and still is) a strong and deliberate cultivation of that offensiveness and hate on the part of many who barely knew the individual on trial.

This has got to relate somehow to Eric Snowden's refuge in Russia as well as the trumped-up rape charges against Assange. This whole thing is starting to come together as a grand conspiracy, and it is taking a very long time to sort out without access to full information.

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