An old American ‘boy-prank’ directed at a deserving person (to send a message) was to fill a small paper bag with a fresh dog shit, put just a little bit of lighter fluid (kerosene) on it, place this on the porch of the target, light the bag on fire, ring the doorbell and run. If all went to plan, the target would open their door to sight of a small fire and reflexively stamp it out with their feet. As a metaphor, I’m inclined to think someone had done this to Matt Taibbi, and perhaps, to the editors of RollingStone.
RollingStone’s Why You Should Care About the Julian Assange Case  by Matt Taibbi, is a piece this writer (yours truly) finds not only disingenuous but worthy of an intelligence agency propaganda award.
The thrust of the article being any prosecution of Julian Assange endangers journalism, we’ll dissect Taibbi’s premise concerning a very plausible secret/sealed indictment of Assange:
“Assange’s lawyer Barry Pollack told Rolling Stone he had “not been informed that Mr. Assange has been charged, or the nature of any charges.”
“Pollock and other sources could not be sure, but within the Wikileaks camp it’s believed that this charge, if it exists, is not connected to the last election.
““I would think it is not related to the 2016 election since that would seem to fall within the purview of the Office of Special Counsel,” Pollack said.
“If you hate Assange because of his role in the 2016 race, please take a deep breath and consider what a criminal charge that does not involve the 2016 election might mean. An Assange prosecution could give the Trump presidency broad new powers to put Trump’s media “enemies” in jail, instead of just yanking a credential or two. The Jim Acosta business is a minor flap in comparison”
These four paragraphs likely have Gina Haspel’s information operations people over at Langley, Virginia, orgasming in their pants. Taibbi missed the fact trying Assange on charges unrelated to the ‘the Russians did it’ is a solid means of shutting Assange up and burying him where he cannot shed any light concerning the 2016 elections’ intelligence agency caper. Trying Assange on unrelated charges, prior to sending him to deep isolation at, for instance, Florence ADX super-max, actually solves a CIA problem. How’d that work? The American legal principle of ‘relevance’  where practically infinite technicalities can be argued to exclude any mention or reference to another case possibly pending before another court, such as the work of the incredibly corrupt ,  special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation, example given. Yep, sending Julian off to super-max on charges unrelated to the 2016 ‘the Russians did it’ would be perfectly predictable (desirable outcome) for those intelligence operatives who’d used Wikileaks to frame Russia, and some of Trump’s associates , , for meddling in the USA’s so-called ‘democratic processes.’ Hey, Matt Taibbi, was it Gina Haspel set the dog shit on fire you proceeded stamp out? Because a bit further on in his article, Taibbi goes on to screw it up even more:
“The perception that Assange worked with Vladimir Putin to achieve his ends has further hardened responses among his former media allies.
“As to the latter, Assange denies cooperating with the Russians, insisting his source for the DNC leak was not a “state actor.” It doesn’t matter. That PR battle has already been decided”
Beyond political fellatio, Gina Haspel would arrange a literal blow-job for Taibbi (even give it herself, if only she were pretty enough) because RollingStone has gone on record stating the DNC mails leak story is passé, out-of-fashion, old news. In other words, Taibbi is saying there is no point in investigative journalism looking into whether (the promptly assassinated) Seth Rich was Wikileaks’ source of the DNC mails, despite more than ample evidence, even a ‘preponderance of the evidence’ or the USA civil law standard necessary for conviction.  He might as well have written “Don’t go there.” Why? We’ll come back to this.
“Although Assange may not be a traditional journalist in terms of motive, what he does is essentially indistinguishable from what news agencies do, and what happens to him will profoundly impact journalism”
This is not only wrong, Taibbi (apparently without noticing) contradicts it himself later in the article:
“…the relationship between Assange and the press deteriorated quickly. A lot of this clearly had to do with Assange’s personality. Repeat attempts by (ostensibly sympathetic) reporters to work with Assange ended in fiascoes … gain[ing] him a reputation for egomania and grandiosity.
“Partners like the Committee to Protect Journalists, who had been sifting through Wikileaks material to prevent truly harmful information from getting out, began to be frustrated by what they described as a frantic pace of releases”
Precisely. Journalists not only vet their sources (Assange, in the past, has stated Wikileaks does not  ) but they also must assess whether they can do more harm than good with the secrets they are in possession of, and consider how to finesse information that must be divulged in the public interest in such a way as to not create social chaos. One means of attempting this would be to refer the actual material (documents) evidencing state crimes to the apropos authorities, while restraining oneself to writing about having done this within the context of the story, putting the relevant authority on the spot and in a position of having to do something. Wikileaks dumping massive caches is not journalism. This is not a case of, as Taibbi would have it, “…what he [Assange] does is essentially indistinguishable from what news agencies do”, that is if the news-service is not corrupted and taking intelligence agency scripts to amplify fake stories and bury real stories (like the Associated Press, Reuters, Washington Post, New York Times, and now, clearly, RollingStone also does.)
This brings us to Assange had attempted, via Dana Rohrabacher, a horse-trade with Trump, where Assange gets immunity from prosecution or a pardon and Trump gets definitive proof the Wikileaks DNC mails source was not Russia.  The people surrounding Trump, notably Chief of Staff John Kelly, shut that avenue down.  Taibbi, with his ‘don’t go there’ posed as “It doesn’t matter. That PR battle has already been decided” obviously isn’t going to touch this, rather wants it buried. Why?
Possibly, even likely, because of a phenomenon we had seen slip out of the closet during the Obama POTUS tenure, meetings with John Brennan on “Kill List Tuesdays” where America’s extra-judicial assassinations targeting list had been regularly updated, to include American citizens. , , 
We can likely add to the CIA’s three known assassinations of American citizens abroad these past seven years, two of those ordered by Obama and one ordered by Trump, at least two domestic assassinations by CIA, both of which tie into this assessment; Seth Rich and Michael Hastings.
Seth Rich removed, whether at that time incidental to present circumstance or not, doesn’t matter; that is to say if Rich was initially silenced for the leak to send a message, or silenced to remove a dupe, is immaterial to the present moment. Either way, Rich’s removal is part and parcel of what enabled the framing of Trump and Wikileaks for ‘Russian collusion.’ That’s a big piece of the ‘problematic witnesses’ solved for the people behind the making a patsy of Russia. It is entirely possible the DNC leak was initially a MOSSAD operation (Trump has been Bibi’s wet dream) and Rich was gunned down by Brennan’s CIA, with a ‘Russian collusion’ follow-on or the neo-liberal intelligence agency faction’s attempt to reverse the damage. A second possibility (the one I favor) is the leaked DNC mails by a duped Seth Rich reflects the internecine warfare between neocon and neoliberal elements in American intelligence. A third (least likely, in view of developments, but still plausible) possibility is, Rich’s had been an unmanipulated, straight-foward motivation based in a rather ‘naive idealism’ (victim of a Wikileaks bait and hook.)
Michael Hastings, whose car of its own will, took upon itself a desire to run into a tree at high speed and explode with the force of a military grade limpet mine, had been 1) investigating then CIA Director John Brennan, 2) in contact with Wikileaks, and 3) writing for RollingStone , all shortly before he died. A lesson Taibbi and his editors at RollingStone have taken to heart? It is no stretch of the imagination, at all, to assume Taibbi (and his employer) had subsequently been put on notice ‘you will take our script and run with it or die.’ The alternative is, RollingStone, editors & writers, had suddenly morphed into incredibly stupid parties who, by pure coincidence, appear to follow diktat and promote the intelligence agency line. Which do you think is more likely? Of course it is also possible the insect species ignavum nominare  had crawled up Taibbi’s butt altogether independently of any specific threat.
Pointing towards wrapping this up, with turning our attention to Wikileaks per se, the following question must be posed: how is it certain alternative media stars miss that Julian Assange was a critical gear in the intelligence agencies (primarily CIA & MOSSAD) information operations responsible for the so-called ‘Arab Spring’ … leading to not only revolution and counter-revolution in Egypt but also the overthrow of Gaddafi and the Syrian so-called ‘civil war.’  How do Chris Hedges (RT’s On Contact), Caitlin Johnstone (medium.com), Glenn Greenwald (The Intercept), Vanessa Beeley (21st Century Wire), Raul Ilargi Meijer (Automatic Earth), and Elizabeth Vos (Disobedient Media), among others, with their defense of Assange, drive the ‘Assange is a good guy’ square peg into the round hole of Wikileaks assisting intelligence agencies geopolitical engineering the so-called Arab Spring?  This is also a question certain Wikileaks personalities should be asking themselves, notably Baltasar Garzon, Jennifer Robinson, and Craig Murray.
A second question the Wikileaks staff should be asking, among themselves is, whose strategy is it to conceal THE critical information, information that can only be helpful to Assange when it is made public; the method and source used by Wikileaks to acquire the DNC mails? Is this concealment a strategy of Sarah Harrison? Does Wikileaks have an uncompromised, professional counter-intelligence unit? Because if you don’t, you’re not only a lot of stooges, the lot of you are ultimately screwed. Take a lesson from Amnesty International:
“My conclusion was that a high-level official of Amnesty International at that time, whom I will not name, was a British intelligence agent. Moreover, my fellow board member, who also investigated this independently of me, reached the exact same conclusion. So certainly when I am dealing with people who want to work with Amnesty in London, I just tell them, “Look, just understand, they’re penetrated by intelligence agents, U.K., maybe U.S., I don’t know, but you certainly can’t trust them” 
Finally, when it come to what Russia HAS done, it is to use their propaganda  to ‘flip’ the ‘Assangemania’  infecting the Western alternative press, in a disingenuous way so as to promote Wikileaks as straight-foward example of a persecuted whistle-blower by the corrupt fascism of Western institutions, but this strategy ultimately props up ‘the Russians did it’ Western intelligence propaganda lie; and one wonders when the Russian press will get this. Assange’s currency as an asset is exhausted, no matter which side of the contest is taking advantage.