Comments on a cultural reality between past and future.

This blog describes Metatime in the Posthuman experience, drawn from Sir Isaac Newton's secret work on the future end of times, a tract in which he described Histories of Things to Come. His hidden papers on the occult were auctioned to two private buyers in 1936 at Sotheby's, but were not available for public research until the 1990s.

Saturday, August 12, 2017

Pedogate: Spin and Victimhood

On 18 February 2017, a mansion on Turkey Run Road in McLean, Virginia, USA burned down. Conspiracy theorists assumed that this fire related to their theory of Washington's corrupt establishment, and involved the destruction of child abuse evidence. News sources reported that the mansion was owned by the United Arab Emirates and the people who lived in the house escaped unharmed. Image Source: WUSA-9.

We live in a hybrid condition, between past and future, between the 20th century and the 21st. In this hybrid condition, we see a number of problems: systemic corruption; taboo ideas and extremist language ramp up the energy of discourse; increasing efforts to use technology to impose control in old ways. This leads straight to totalitarianism, the very thing everyone claims they want to avoid.

The only antidote, the only possibility of recovering balance, would be to lay down ideological arms, step back from left-right arguments, and express compassion for those of opposing views and situations. Almost no one seems ready to do that.

Corruption's Crisis: How to Fix an Evolving System? 

"Ng Lap Seng planned to build the UN conference center in the Chinese gambling enclave Macau": US Convicts Chinese Billionaire of Bribing UN Diplomats (28 July 2017). Image Source: Brenden Brian CC BY-SA 3.0 via OCCRP.

The system is in a mess. Corruption is everywhere. To start, here are a few photos, with recent headlines, from the Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project. Things are so bad that on 5 July 2017, the UK’s National Crime Agency established the International Anti-Corruption Coordination Centre (IACCC), to combat "global grand corruption." It doesn't matter if you are talking about national governments, international bodies, corporations and multinationals, institutions, or individuals. The rot spreads and spreads.

Ex Greek Minister Sentenced for Money Laundering in Siemens Scandal (31 July 2017). Image Source: OCCRP.

Pakistan Supreme Court Ousts PM Nawaz Sharif over Panama Papers Findings (28 July 2017). Image Source: OCCRP.

Firm Linked to Putin Friend Smoothed Path for BP in Russia (1 August 2017). Image Source: OCCRP.

Click to enlarge. The Russian Laundromat Exposed. Infographic Source: OCCRP.

How the Camorra Went Global (21 July 2017). Image Source: Cecilia Anesi via OCCRP.


The spread of corruption reveals that 20th century political models are collapsing. In America and Europe, corruption investigations are politicized; but again, whichever side you take, the whole model is compromised.

Politicization of Corruption Narratives

Thus, it is no fantasy that the system is corrupt. But corruption is also the stuff of fantasy. On the Internet, discourses about corruption become difficult to understand and control. Merely talking about corruption is a powerful act. Those who claim to expose and combat corruption may use that discourse to entrench corruption. These cynical actors work cheek-by-jowl with legitimate anti-corruption hacktivists.

To make matters worse, anti-corruption discourses are politicized. On 1 August 2017, a pro-liberal lawsuit was launched, claiming that Trump's White House and the conservative FOX News network had faked news about the murder of an IT staffer for the US Democratic National Committee, Seth RichReports claim that Trump approved the falsified Seth Rich story to divert attention away from the probe into the connections between his election campaign and Russian influence. This lawsuit is just one of dozens launched by pro-Democrat forcessince Trump's election and inauguration. See: hereherehere, here, here, here.

In the United States, one view sees Donald Trump lying to hide his illegal and illegitimate election, supported by the Russian government's insidious interference. In this view, Putin has attacked the American electoral process; Trump is a Russian puppet as well as a supporter of racist extremists, and he must be impeached and removed from office. You can see many examples of this story, which is strongly supported by the mainstream media: herehere, here, here, here, here, here.

Just as the liberals accuse the conservatives of rigging the 2016 US election, so the conservatives accuse the liberals of doing the same. Trump's supporters argue that Seth Rich was the DNC's WikiLeaks' leaker, meaning that the Russians did not hack the Democrats' e-mails and provide them to Julian Assange. Rather, the source came from inside Democratic party ranks.

Trump's supporters further argue that the system is ruined, and that corrupt officials, entrenched within the system, are using every trick in the book to safeguard their positions. Trump advocates believe Trump's tempestuous presidency does not indicate his corruption; instead, it reflects (to them) the fact that he is trying to clear corrupt people out of their positions of power.

This latter assumption informs claims of Democrat party corruption; a class-action lawsuit has been launched against the Democratic National Committee by Bernie Sanders' supporters. The litigants contend that pro-Sanders donations were diverted to support Hillary Clinton's electoral campaign and that Sanders' candidacy was sabotaged by the party. This lawsuit connects to a brewing scandal about former DNC chair, Debbie Wasserman Schultz, and her IT team, one of whom (Imran Awan) was arrested on Monday, 24 July 2017, while attempting to flee to Pakistan, amid rumours of Washington, DC espionage.

The rumours get weirder. Three attorneys (federal prosecutor Beranton J. Whisenant Jr., Ervin A. Gonzalez, and Naphtali Hertz Wacks) died in Florida earlier this summer. Right-wing conspiracy theorists claim their deaths relate to Sanders' supporters' lawsuit against the DNC. The police and medical examiner ruled Whisenant's death a suicide on 10 August 2017. Wacks, a defense attorney, was killed after his car was hit by another car traveling at over 100 miles per hour. Gonzalez died in his home, reportedly by suicide.

One alt-news video (below) interviewed the former fiancée of the murdered US ambassador to Libya, Chris Stevens, and she strangely tied his death to the lawsuit against the DNC, while further claiming that two potential witnesses in the anti-DNC lawsuit had died (these 'potential witnesses' were Seth Rich and Whisenant). On 13 June 2017, the plaintiffs in the lawsuit filed for protection for themselves, their relatives, and their lawyers, after receiving threatening messages and creepy telephone calls.

Anti-Democratic party alt-news: Media Blackout on DNC Lawsuit: 2 Witnesses Dead (1 July 2017). Video Source: Youtube.

The mainstream media angrily dismissed these theories and an explosion of Youtube videos, which imagined corruption of the Democratic party; all of this was 'fake news.' Moreover, a Florida local said this was business as usual for Miami:
"Do you live down here in Florida ...? I DO live here and I am telling you this IS NOT strange. It is business as usual. The corrupt SOB's are being taken out because they pissed off a bigger fish, so to speak. No one in business or politics down here is safe. NO ONE! When they step out of line, say the wrong thing, litigate a case for the wrong side, they get taken out. They call Miami 'Little Cub[a]' for a very good reason."
Note of course, that Wasserman Schultz is member of the House of Representatives for Florida's 23rd Congressional District, an area just north of Miami; it includes the community of Hollywood, Florida where Whisenant's body was found; her district also includes the town of Miami Beach, where Wacks died. Gonzalez died in Coral Gables, Florida, which is part of the 27th Congressional District, currently represented by a Republican.

Add to this the frightening and bizarre rumours that establishment corruption overlaps with global child abuse and pedophilia, sex trafficking and human trafficking.

"reporter" @KurtEichenwald was an administrator of a child porn site; claims he was only "posing as online predator" https://t.co/xQT5K6jRzJ
— WikiLeaks Task Force (@WLTaskForce) July 24, 2017

At this end of the spectrum, we find the murder of the lawyer, Trinh Huynh, who was gunned down on 3 April 2017 during the morning rush hour in midtown Atlanta, Georgia. Police described her death as a "targeted killing." Huynh was remembered for her pro bono work in cases related to human trafficking and child exploitation; she also worked on asylum and immigration cases, especially for refugees.

Background: Pizzagate's Anti-Corruption Message in 2016

Image Source: Allegedly from James Alefantis's now-private personal Instagram (I have not confirmed this directly) via Renegade Tribune. The photo may be genuine; or it may have been set up to engineer the Pedogate moral panic.

No matter what might be happening in the real world, the Internet will take stories of corruption one step further. The 2016 US election became a textbook case on the potentials of the hybrid environment of 20th century politics and 21st century alt-media.

A child-sized coffin was falsely associated with James Alefantis's Instagram account. You can see Voat forum members arguing here over whether child-sized coffins are real artefacts of Pedogate child exploitation and murder, or whether they are used merely as coffee tables in morbid sub-cultures. PizzaGate - Child Sized Coffins Explained (5 December 2016). Video Source: Youtube.

The Pizzagate/Pedogate rumours are stark examples of that potential. They revive the Nazi-era anti-Semitic conviction that there are child murderers in high places around the world. This is the most dangerous kind of conspiracy theory. As Adolf Hitler so well knew, tell a down-and-outer that he is a victim and he will be yours forever. Draw him in with the psychological trick that his enemies and fancied targets are his oppressors. Promise him and his lot that you will empower them in vengeful glory against social injustice, and you will ride the mob's enraged dragon. This is democracy at its darkest, inflamed by self-righteous and inverted victimhood.

Pizzagate arose during the US election and damaged Hillary Clinton's bid for the presidency. It was part of several alt-media stories which depicted Washington, DC as a political cesspool. Pizzagate helped corroborate Trump's 'drain the swamp' motto. The theory contributed to the potent message that angry common people from across America would converge on the country's power centre and purge it of corruption.

The Pizzagate rumours grew out of WikiLeaks' leaked Podesta e-mails; this is one example, in which conspiracy theorists decided some of the e-mails contained coded references to pedophilia and sex games. Image Source: WikiLeakvia DCPizzagate.

Another example of theorists' interpretations of online media associated with the Pedogate moral panic. Click to enlarge. Image Source: WikiLeaks via DCPizzagate.

Above are some of the examples from Pizzagate: in a WikiLeaks leaked e-mail, John Podesta and other adults were invited for a hot tub swim with the Luzzatto children, aged 11, 9 and 6. The e-mail is compared to a screenshot from a weird blog (archived here) depicting the same, or possibly related, Luzzatto children. The headline of the now-private blog was: "Evelyn is growing up, soon she will be the Queen of the entire US of A, right now, for a limited time only, you can spend some time with her online, raw and uncut. Take advantage of this now, as in the future she will have the power of life and death over you." The blog screenshot above was altered to show conspiracy theorists' comments: Something sick going on here.

Voices of Authority: Who will Investigate Corruption?

If the establishment is compromised, and the mainstream media are voices of the establishment, it raises the question of whether or not the MSM can fairly report systemic corruption.

If the mainstream media are no longer reliable - although they insist they are - then it is left to the alt-media to expose corruption on social media and whistle-blowing sites. In this context, the MSM's dismissals of 'fake news' become attacks on legitimate underground investigations.

Pizzagate's wild rumour apparently arose among 4Chan's political trolls, who see a lot of trafficking in the Internet underground - of labourers, sex slaves and children,  as well as clandestine services, drugs, or arms. The trolls compared a Washington, DC pizza restaurant owner's Instagram photos (this was the now-famous James Alefantis, who defended himself here) to WikiLeaks' leaked e-mails of Hillary Clinton's election campaign manager, John PodestaThe Instagram pages and WikiLeaks e-mails contained strange, seemingly coded messages about exploiting children. The e-mails also linked to the restaurant. The conspiracy theory, summarized here, was dismissed by the mainstream media as a hoax and moral panic, conceived by Donald Trump's disinformation team.

Normally, it should fall to the police and media to investigate alleged crimes of this nature. But according to conspiracy theorists, both the police and the media are compromised.

John Podesta and James Alefantis have made statements in social media, the mainstream media, and especially in the Washington Post, denying all allegations. The comments under each of their statements (here compared to here) reveal varied opinions directed at them. Liberals support them and think the fake news attacks are horrifying. Conservatives think they are modern day vampires.

The mainstream media encouraged the theorists by automatically dismissing the conspiracy theory as an insane, Pro-Trump, alt-right hoax and moral panic. The Pizzagate researchers argued that Reddit, TwitterFacebookYoutube and other social media sites demonetized them and banned them for discussing evidence. Censorship made it look like the establishment did indeed have something to hide. The assault on fake news provoked a disastrous, anti-MSM backlash:
"Here’s how we envision the extent of the [New York] Times’ fact checking:

REPORTER: Hi, this is Cecilia Kang from The New York Times. My editor, who is friends with John Podesta, told me to call you about some silly online conspiracy theory that you and Hillary Clinton are trafficking children in the back room of your pizza parlor. So are you?


REPORTER: Okay, great. Feel free to send me an email with your comments about how this conspiracy theory is affecting your business. We will send a photographer over to get a promotional image. Thank you. Bye."
These claims cast conspiracy theorists as rising guardians of democracy, online vigilantes confronting a broken system. You could not get a reality (or an imagined reality) closer to Gotham City. I can see the Internet's trolls now, casting themselves in Batman's role, ready to take down the corrupt Titans of industry and government, as fact blurs with fiction. Unsourced online material, floating around virtual reality, becomes the stuff of a real life movie or video game, overlapping insanely with actual high politics.

Dark Knight soundtrack medley (2005; 2008; 2012) © Hans Zimmer/James Newton Howard/Reprise/Warner. Reproduced non-commercially under Fair Use for discussion purposes. Video Source: Youtube.

The Big Lie Gets Bigger

For those already alienated from the system, shock suspends disbelief and leads believers into ever more dangerous territory. Mass propaganda, the unholy child of the 20th century, uses shock as one of its strongest assets. Shock drives the Big Lie, a famous technique developed by the Nazi Minister of Public Enlightenment and Propaganda, Joseph Goebbels (1897-1945), who claimed the mass psychological reaction to a big lie was the best way to build totalitarianism:
"If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it. The lie can be maintained only for such time as the State can shield the people from the political, economic and/or military consequences of the lie. It thus becomes vitally important for the State to use all of its powers to repress dissent, for the truth is the mortal enemy of the lie, and thus by extension, the truth is the greatest enemy of the State."
According to Trump's critics and anti-populists, Pedogate is a Big Lie which paves the way for totalitarianism. On 16 February 2017, Podesta argued in the Washington Post that Trump was using a "fake-news pivot" to undermine reality. Scare people enough with Big Lies, and you can burn down the parliament, destroy democracy, and mass murder those whom you have falsely accused.

In that article, Podesta was implicitly responding to a hellish online rumour that he participated in child torture. The day before, he was accused of this crime on his Twitter account by hundreds of people. Accusations exploded due to two gruesome videos from 'WorldCorp Co.,' which gained attention between December 2016 and February 2017.

The incredibly frightening smear 'WorldCorp Co.' videos supposedly show Podesta violently abusing a terrified child. There is absolutely no proof that John Podesta has anything to do with this video. Nor is there proof that there is a child being abused in the video. It just looks that way. Both people in the video could be acting. These videos were connected to Podesta through conjecture and rumour. You can search for the WorldCorp Co. videos yourself. They are entitled Fatherhood and Everyday I Grow Some More. You can see an attempt to find the origins of the WorldCorp Co. videos below.

NSFW: An attempt to research the origins of the WorldCorp Co. videos, which originally appeared on WorldCorp's Youtube channel, which had the masthead tagline: "we are your gods now" (30 January 2017). Video Source: Youtube.

No matter how you interpret these Dark Web videos, they are terrible. Real or fake; false accusations or real ones: no matter which door you pick, it's terrible. This material is not reported on by MSM outlets, which is why online researchers are so alarmed and angry. When MSM outlets and authorities shut down rumours like this without considering criminal investigations, it looked like a cover-up, not a reassertion of journalistic authority and systemic stability. Automatic dismissals and denials made the rumours look true.

When MSM journalists refused to investigate, amateurs began to investigate. The MSM abandoned this area because it is not respectable, and so they fueled the problem, and damaged their credibility on the Internet. Until recently, though, the Internet did not matter. Why, someone asked on 4chan, did everyone believe that Pizzagate was fake news? Answer: "Because everyone outside the 4chan/MAGA Twitter bubble thinks its retarded."

One crowd-source researcher (here and here) slowed the video down to try to understand who is in it and what is happening. Others tried to determine if the man in the video has a Boston or Chicago accent. Another summarized the whole affair in an open-sourced amateur documetary.

Further investigation of the WorldCorp channel claimed its producer may or may not be someone named Gary Lee Monroe Barney, aka Gary Lee Munroe, aka Sage Munroe, who turns up in absolutely foul and disgusting NSFW videos here and here. One Voat commenter on WorldCorp Co.'s offerings was unimpressed:
"I watched all of the videos at worldcorpo and it reminds me of college film students from the 90's trying to be edgy. I lived in a town in the 90's that had an art school so I saw plenty of this amateur film student crap. Most of the videos look to be produced by the same person with a combination of original and stolen content. I do find the video with the man and child to be disturbing and I do wonder about the origins of it. The man sounds like that he is from Boston to me and all of those white guys from Boston sound the same to me. I would not be surprised if Meth usage was involved in the production of these lame videos. I don't think that these videos have anything to do with John Podesta, Pizzagate."
Consider how corrosive and dangerous this material is, if it is used to destroy an innocent person or people. Imagine if that innocent person was you. Imagine if someone linked your name to that material on social media, and now thousands of online vigilantes were planning to hunt you down. Imagine if this video was prepared by foreign intelligence, and leveled at the leaders of your country. Imagine if this video were prepared by domestic intelligence, and aimed at the leaders of your country.

And now, conversely, imagine if the material exposes real corruption in the system. If nothing can be verified - what do you do? What can you accept beyond your personal biases and opinions?

The people who responded to this video on Twitter believed the abuser in the video might be Podesta as accused, because they compared the video to this leaked e-mail from WikiLeaks, although WikiLeaks may also be compromised. Podesta cannot be blamed for receiving peculiar e-mails, like this one on biopolitics, human gene-editing and eugenics. Online sleuths are left to wonder about Podesta's 25 adopted siblings, his background, his pig-slaughtering skills, his strange connectionsand his oddly-named evil twin and alter ego, 'Skippy.' None of that proves anything; but in the Pedogate extravaganza, it doesn't have to; it only needs to feed the fire, which it does.

The WorldCorp Co. videos upped the ante in the mounting accusations against Mr. Podesta; and the accusations were so alarming and serious that they damaged the civic fabric, whether they were true or not.

Reasonable people would conclude: this cannot be true. It must be a Big Lie. If those videos are a Big Lie, then they are part of the foundations Trump's totalitarianism, in the same way as Hitler was elected and subsequently turned the German democratic system against itself. However, if those videos are true and connected to one of Washington, DC's most powerful liberal figures - what then?

The bizarre accusation connects to other conspiracy theories, such as crazy speculation about the death of Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia on 13 February 2016.

Podesta's e-mail 'wetworks' reference, 9 February 2016. Scalia died on 13 February 2016. Image Source: WikiLeaks via Voat.

Pedogate's Post-Recession Angle: 2017

Real Big Money: Revelations by an insider Part 1 ENGLISH SUBS (26 April 2017). Video Source: Youtube.

The Pedogate moral panic incorporates anti-élitism and financial anxiety in a confessional aspect - a new type of online purge. Rather like witch trialspuritanical public confessions of sins to assembled Christian congregations, or Stalinist show trials, there is a whistle-blower who abandons the establishment to tell all.

These people are all over Youtube, and they may or may not be legitimate. In April 2017, a self-proclaimed Dutch banker whistle-blower, Ronald Bernard (above), discussed his exposure to the alleged ritual abuse and murder of children in the financial industry. Bernard's professional background is unconfirmed, although he may have worked in Belgium. Belgium, seat of the EU, is also famous for the Dutroux affairwhich some connect to deep state child abuse and criminality. Over twenty witnesses who could have connected the Dutroux affair to a larger arena have died under mysterious circumstances.

Real Big Power: Revelations by insider Ronald Bernard-part 2 (9 June 2017). Video Source: Youtube.

While whistle-blowing on the Illuminati, Bernard was coincidentally promoting his grassroots start-ups, the Dutch Bank of Joy and the United People Foundation to build supposed ethical banking alternatives. This video was greeted with curiosity and skepticism by Voaters who dug into Bernard's background (here and here). They could not find information on Bernard prior to 2010.

Without batting an eyelash, Bernard fully accepts as fact the 1903 Russian anti-Semitic hoax documentThe Protocols of the Elders of Zion. Notice that anti-Semitism (which I in no way believe or endorse) is used to dehumanize global leaders in banking, government and multinational corporations. This whistle-blower thereby exploits and appeals to a demoralized and disillusioned, but hyper-plugged-in, literate population. The latter struggle to understand why they have become the have-nots, despite access to education and consumerist materialism. The online precariat conclude that the only way to rise to the top is to be a narcissist, a psychopath and a Luciferian cultist. Bernard's allegations easily channel the social, political, and economic frustrations of those who have not functioned well in the evolving system.

Did Bernard genuinely see horrible things in the financial industry and did he discover he had a soul and conscience after all? Or is he an opportunist exploiting popular conspiracy theories about the Illuminati and a public desire for a "righteous", "sustainable abundant society," served by a "happy bank"? In this example, the Recession-era backlash against the 1 per cent is now interwoven with allegations of Satanic ritual abuse, anti-Semitism, Russian disinformation, and child sacrifice.

The interview was conducted by De Vrije Media TV (DVM) by Irma Schiffer; this appears to be a new, cooperative crowd-funded online channel, which covers today's conspiratorial fringe topics. In other words, the MSM would consider DVM to be a fake news tabloid outlet.

The Counter-Attack: Media Matters Chat and Confidential Playbook Leaks

David Brock. Image Source: NYT.

David Brock, an ex-Republican turned-Democrat watchdog and founder of Media Matters for America in Washington, DC, stood at the heart of the Pizzagate conspiracy theory, through close connections to both Alefantis and Podesta.

In an unconfirmed leak from October 2016, circulated on 2 June 2017, Redditors claimed they had hacked the Website of Correct the Record, Brock's pro-Clinton super PAC. The hackers said they had unearthed an internal chat between Brock and other members of Correct the Record during the American election campaign. The context of the chat below allegedly shows David Brock's team strategizing informational damage control after a Clinton-Trump televised debate. The leaked chat text may have been faked. It was followed by a leaked document, embedded below, which looks real - although I have not confirmed its authenticity, either.

Whether this is true or not, what struck me was that online political activism was described in the chat as an uncontrollable virus - with decentralized participants clustering and scattering on the Internet, in a wholly new political environment. The hack purportedly revealed the secret plan to combat this novel form of political activity by doxxing and targeting leading individuals on 4chan and Reddit; the explanatory notes below are not mine; I have bolded the sections of note:
brock = David Brock? – Founder Media Matters

efink = Elliot Fink? – Executive Assistant of Correct the Record

cshaw = Connor Shaw? – Special Projects – Correct the Record ...

efink [6:11 AM] alright. we need to move beyond the disruption scripts and down-voting. we need to start hurting people and that’s what this is about. This is about winning because we’ll never get a chance at this again. everything is justified. David?

brock [6:11 AM] dramatic.

[6:13] f–k–okay. so the Trump team is an emergent order. thirty million little chan and reddit assholes that bump around and then congeal to vote in a poll or push a meme or make a hashtag trend or whatever. This is new. It isn’t like fighting a centrally organized campaign.

[6:13] It’s more like fighting a disease.

[6:14] So what we need to do is break the pattern. The usual means isn’t working. Trump’s too charismatic. Morale is too high. This is an army of chaos folks.

[6:14] so we have full clearance. Word of God.

[6:15] Fink–let’s do this. I have a ph.

[Note – this is the hardcore stuff here. Brock is saying he’s been given full clearance to do anything to win basically!]

efink [6:16 AM] uploaded and commented on an image: foxacid.jpg 1 Comment FOXACID

[Note: FoxAcid is an NSA system of spoofing servers in order to download and implant malware on users computers]

ekim [6:16 AM] Ew.

cshaw [6:16 AM] i like it! wtf is it??

efink [6:17 AM] This is manna from heaven, kids.

[6:18] We have the use of an NSA intrusion package. We are going to find the thought leaders. the meme-generators. the sh-t-posters. I need a target analysis for reddit, twitter, and the chans by tomorrow 5 PM.

[6:18] You will monitor, identify, and using the FA software set we have, identify/dox.

cshaw [6:18 AM] that will dox them??

efink [6:20 AM] It will man-on-the-side for the anon boards and intercept traffic. We can use that for IP addresses and loading tracking software and magic lantern onto their devices. Once we have them compromised

[6:20] David? How many do we need?

[Note – they are going to use NSA software to get IP addresses for Trump supporters and then unmask these IPs to get Names and Addresses! They’re also going to download Magic Lantern software onto their devices]

brock [6:21 AM] I want 150 from 4chan, whatever you can get from 8. I want 1000 top reddit drivers exposed and I want content analysis for their posts. I want the people who are really driving their narrative.

[6:22] I need all that in a packet by tomorrow afternoon with lexical analysis, proof of compromise. I want clips of memes. I want to up-vote patterns. All this has to be inside the US too. We can’t use externals.

cshaw [6:23 AM] It won’t work outside the US?

efink [6:23 AM] It works fine outside the us you idiot. That’s NSA stuff.

brock [6:24 AM] WE don’t work outside the US. Do you think this is f–king bean-bag?

[6:24] We are going to disrupt them before this sh-t goes any further.

[6:24] if they don’t have leaders, we’re going to get their thought leaders.

cshaw [6:24 AM] like pajama boy!

brock [6:25 AM] I AM NOT N THE MOOD cshaw

cshaw [6:25 AM] sorry

efink [6:26 AM] just get us the target profiles. Hit the numbers. Give us a matrix for each of them. Okay? PII, influence grid, recent activity, Q-rate. Like that.

[6:26] You know what to do.

cshaw [6:26 AM] Yes sir.

ekim [6:26 AM] What are we going to do with that?

brock [6:27 AM] dof u really want tio f–king know, kim?

ekim [6:27 AM] i’m good.

brock [6:28 AM] u better be. I am going to get a plane. You will be up ALL NIGHT. Keep the lab LOCKED. Fink bring in pizza or whatever to keep the kids going.

[6:28] I am out.

cshaw [6:28 AM] does it have to be We the Pizza?

efink [6:29 AM] Brock LIKES WtP. What do you want?

ekim [6:29 AM] Sushi. Sushi would be nice.

efink [6:30 AM] what do you think this is, the Trump campaign. We’re getting pizza from We.

[6:30] Get those files together.

ekim [6:30 AM] I’m on it. Do you know what brock is going to do with them? I do kind of want to know, sir.

efink [6:31 AM] google Seth Rich and shut up about it.
After the election, another leak came on 19 May 2017 (also previously circulated) via The Gateway Pundit; it apparently revealed the secret playbook that Brock's team developed after Hillary Clinton's electoral loss:
"A new document, titled 'Democracy Matters: Strategic Plan for Action', was discovered recently that reveals a liberal coalition of business entities and groups and their plans to influence the media and the general public for the 2017-2020 period featuring everything from Russian-conspiracy jargon to anti-Trump dictums.

The four entities are as follows: Media Matters for America, American Bridge, CREW, and Shareblue. Each has their own strategic plan."
The Media Matters playbook supposedly exposed the fact that the Democrats had access to Facebook users' personal data, and were granted use of NSA tools to breach individuals' privacy on social media; all this, to target online alt-right, alt-media and conservative thought leaders - to ruin their reputations, and jeopardize their jobs.

I make no comment here on the political dimensions of this document, its legality, morality, or veracity. Instead, I want to point out that whatever this item is, it reveals the escalation of surveillance and online control of information to orchestrate the predominance of a mainstream narrative.

Read it, and you will see that just as there are hardline disinformation tactics storming out of the Internet's underground, there are also hard-hitting tactics associated with establishment reaction. The establishment means to define what is fake and real.

In this conflict, control of the cyber-political narrative is considered more important than the truth of the narrative, although 'truth' is the watchword of every discussion in the push for power. The tactics in this playbook illustrate how mainstream cyber-tactics are evolving to combat hackers' and leakers' decentralized bids for establishment transparency and trolls' meme warfare.

Below, you can see an apparent example of the playbook's tactics in action, implemented in August 2017. Julian Assange observes politically targeted attacks on Fox News' conservative anchor, Sean Hannity; this includes the launch of the site, Fire Hannity, which attacks Hannity's reputation, labels him as a bigot and liar, and provides lists of the advertisers which have bought spots during the airing of his Fox show.

Those who engage with these dangerous Internet narratives find their real world jobs threatened. On 7 June 2017, editor Greg Kesich at the Portland Press Herald asked whether a school board member should be allowed to keep her position, given that she (a Green Party and Bernie Sanders supporter) vlogged about Pizzagate, Pedogate and related conspiracy theories:
"You’ve heard the conspiracy theories: The 'kill count' of Bill Clinton’s crime family tops 90 murders. High-ranking Democrats are running a child-sex ring in Washington. The terrorist attacks of 9/11 were really an inside job. ...

Where does this stuff come from?

If you live in Portland, it may come from a duly elected member of your local school committee. ... In a recent episode, the Green Party member laughed off the notion that it’s just the right wing who thinks the Democrats have blood on their hands. ... 
In addition to the Rich conspiracy, Seeliger has been an active proponent of the thoroughly debunked “Pizzagate” child-sex ring theory – alleging in a commentary that Democratic operative and Clinton Campaign Chairman John Podesta sent emails that used 'code words including "pizza,"' which people in the 'sexually deviant community' knew referred to 'child abuse and child rape, pedophilia and human trafficking.'

Seeliger has at times proposed on other social media sites the notion that Hitler and the Nazis started out as liberals, and that President Lyndon B. Johnson ordered the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr. because he didn’t want King running against him as a third-party candidate in 1968. (Never mind that Johnson had already pulled out of the race by the time of King’s death.)

No one gives up their constitutional rights when they run for the school board, and Seeliger is free to read, write and say whatever she likes. But in a democracy, elected officials are a reflection of the people they represent. What does it say about Portland’s West End that Seeliger has twice been the choice of the voters, including her last race, where she ran unopposed?

She has been a prominent member of the city’s Green Party, occasionally crossing party lines, such as when she supported Bernie Sanders for the Democratic presidential nomination or Democrat Ethan Strimling’s 2015 run for mayor.

Is the rest of the city’s political community comfortable with Seeliger’s views? Is this kind of thing a problem only when it’s a Republican talking?"
Is Pedogate about Right or Left? Neither. It is about Internet Politics

While the Pizzagate and Pedogate moral panic has gripped the right and alt-right, to realize how these rumours work, it is important to suspend one's political perspective and understand that any conspiracy theory could be substituted for the one in question. If you consider Pedogate to be hogwash, imagine a conspiracy theory which has appealed to your sensibilities. Pick a rumour you believe and try to debunk it.

Pizzagate and Pedogate are alt-right and new right favourites, but members of the progressive left are also susceptible to conspiracy theories. In 2016, LSE reported on an academic article, which found that liberals and conservatives equally believe in conspiracy theories; but what they believe varies according to their values and vulnerabilities (J. Eric Oliver and Thomas J. Wood, "Conspiracy Endorsement as Motivated Reasoning: The Moderating Roles of Political Knowledge and Trust," American Journal of Political Science (5 March 2014; 10.1111/ajps.12084)):
"In contrast with many theoretical speculations, we do not find conspiracism to be a product of greater authoritarianism, ignorance, or political conservatism. Rather, the likelihood of supporting conspiracy theories is strongly predicted by a willingness to believe in other unseen, intentional forces and an attraction to Manichean narratives."
A conspiracy theory is a way of identifying danger to self and community, and developing a narrative to combat the danger as a mode of empowerment. It is a way of defining or redefining one's community under stressful conditions. The challenge is to recognize the larger backdrop. We must understand that our perceptions are skewed by the unprecedented ways in which technology spreads Internet rumours, so that it changes all pre-existing definitions of self and society. That is the true identity crisis at hand. In that crisis, any form of control is an illusion.

See all my posts on Time and Politics.

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