One interesting aspect of Russiagate is how it was propelled by the very large access to information a powerful government like the USA, and its five-eyed friends, nowadays have.
If the Intelligence apparatus doesn't look particularly efficient at thwarting terrorist plots, it at least showed itself very good at snooping on Americans engaging in apparently legal behavior. We now know that, contrary to some overexcited initial reports, Obama's FBI did not rely exclusively on the Steele dossier, nor it had to withhold, from the FISA court, its connection to opposition research funded by opponents. That's because it had material of its own to start what looks like a very wide snooping of Trump's campaign, with far consequences to Mueller's probe today:
Pervasive surveillance has shown its power perhaps most significantly in creating perjury traps to manufacture indictments to pressure people to testify against others.
Mr. Van Buren finishes the piece above with an exhortatory remark:
Don’t be lured into thinking the ends justify the means, that whatever it takes to purge Trump is acceptable. Say what you want about Flynn, Kushner, et al, what matters most is the dark process being used. The arrival of pervasive surveillance as a political weapon is a harbinger that should chill Americans to their cores.
As a matter of principle, I tend to agree with Mr. Van Buren. Yet, for all the weaknesses associated to cases manufactured over perjury traps, I keep asking myself why the people involved were so eager to perjury themselves.
What was their mindset? Why would they all lie about things they could refuse to answer anyway?
Can you mount a case where most actors perjured themselves, but were still innocent?