Long Live the Chief!

Already Happening: The Normalization of Trumpism – via TDB

Excellent post, please read.

Just Merveilleux?

“… Only the characteristic bluntness of a child, who proclaimed the emperor’s nudity as he paraded through the streets humiliating himself and his kingdom, threatened to break the spell. But when the boy spoke out he was quickly rebuked by his father, who assured the gasping public that the child was clearly soft in the head. So powerful is the compulsion to normalize the powerful.”

Source: Media Normalization of Trumpism – The Daily Beast

Interesting article- but that’s not the normalisation we need fear most. Yesterday I read a complaint that a reporter was offended by the use of the N word. Let that sink in. It means a reporter does not have the right to be offended by the use of the N word. This N word:

nword

Shocked? Offended? Good, you should be. Decent people who believe in ethics, civil and human rights should be offended. Why do…

View original post 219 more words

Washington Post, November 24, 2016: Russia Spread Fake News to Subvert the 2016 U.S. Election

Photo of Vladimir Putin
Washington Post, November 24, 2016 Russia spread fake news during the 2016 U.S. election

From the Washington Post:

Watts’s report on this work, with colleagues Andrew Weisburd and J.M. Berger, appeared on the national security blog War on the Rocks this month under the headline “Trolling for Trump: How Russia Is Trying to Destroy Our Democracy.” Another group, called PropOrNot, a nonpartisan collection of researchers with foreign policy, military and technology backgrounds, planned to release its own findings Friday showing the startling reach and effectiveness of Russian propaganda campaigns.

The researchers used Internet analytics tools to trace the origins of particular tweets and mapped the connections among social-media accounts that consistently delivered synchronized messages. Identifying website codes sometimes revealed common ownership. In other cases, exact phrases or sentences were echoed by sites and social-media accounts in rapid succession, signaling membership in connected networks controlled by a single entity.

PropOrNot’s monitoring report, which was provided to The Washington Post in advance of its public release, identifies more than 200 websites as routine peddlers of Russian propaganda during the election season, with combined audiences of at least 15 million Americans. On Facebook, PropOrNot estimates that stories planted or promoted by the disinformation campaign were viewed more than 213 million times.

Some players in this online echo chamber were knowingly part of the propaganda campaign, the researchers concluded, while others were “useful idiots” — a term born of the Cold War to describe people or institutions that unknowingly assisted Soviet Union propaganda efforts.

The Russian campaign during this election season, researchers from both groups say, worked by harnessing the online world’s fascination with “buzzy” content that is surprising and emotionally potent, and tracks with popular conspiracy theories about how secret forces dictate world events.

Some of these stories originated with RT and Sputnik, state-funded Russian information services that mimic the style and tone of independent news organizations yet sometimes include false and misleading stories in their reports, the researchers say.

Read more on the Washington Post:

Russian propaganda effort helped spread ‘fake news’ during election, experts say

I kept a screenshot log of the disinformation campaign against
Hillary Clinton here:  A Gilded Throne of Lies – The Right Wing War on Truth

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Weaponized Disinformation: Death by a Thousand Lies

Art by Rob Goldstein
The fundamental purpose of disinformation, is to undermine the official version of events — even the very idea that there is a true version of events. The Atlantic

From Business Insider

Russian internet trolls, paid by the Kremlin to spread false information on the internet, are behind a number of “highly coordinated (disinformation) campaigns” to deceive the American public.

It’s a brand of information warfare, known as “dezinformatsiya,” that has been used by the Russians since at least the Cold War. The disinformation campaigns are only one “active measure” tool used by Russian intelligence to “sow discord among,” and within, allies perceived hostile to Russia.

“An active measure is a time-honored KGB tactic for waging informational and psychological warfare,” Michael Weiss, a senior editor at The Daily Beast and editor-in-chief of The Interpreter — an online magazine that translates and analyzes political, social, and economic events inside the Russian Federation — wrote on Tuesday.

“It is designed, as retired KGB General Oleg Kalugin once defined it, ‘to drive wedges in the Western community alliances of all sorts, particularly NATO, to sow discord among allies, to weaken the United States in the eyes of the people in Europe, Asia, Africa, Latin America, and thus to prepare ground in case the war really occurs.’ The most common subcategory of active measures is dezinformatsiya, or disinformation: feverish, if believable lies cooked up by Moscow Centre and planted in friendly media outlets to make democratic nations look sinister.”

It is not surprising, then, that the Kremlin would pay internet trolls to pose as Trump supporters and build him up online. In fact, that would be the easy part.

From his interviews with former trolls employed by Russia, Chen gathered that the point of their jobs “was to weave propaganda seamlessly into what appeared to be the nonpolitical musings of an everyday person.”

“Russia’s information war might be thought of as the biggest trolling operation in history,” Chen wrote. “And its target is nothing less than the utility of the Internet as a democratic space.”

New York Times Magazine

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