Irony alert: Firm that warned Americans of Russian bots…was running an army of fake Russian bots

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By Danielle Ryan

The co-founders of cybersecurity firm New Knowledge warned Americans in November to “remain vigilant” in the face of “Russian efforts” to meddle in US elections. This month, they have been exposed for doing just that themselves.

Ryan Fox and Jonathan Morgan, who run the New Knowledge cybersecurity company which claims to “monitor disinformation” online, penned a foreboding op-ed in the New York Times on November 6, about “the Russians” and their nefarious efforts to influence American elections.

At the time, it struck me that Fox and Morgan’s reasoning seemed a little far-fetched. For example, one of the pieces of evidence presented to prove that Russia had targeted American elections was that lots of people had posted links to RT’s content online. Hardly a smoking gun worthy of a Times oped.

ALSO ON RT.COMThe only ‘Russian bots’ to meddle in US elections belonged to Democrat-linked ‘experts’Morgan and Fox, intrepid cyber sleuths that they are, claimed in the article they had detected more “overall activity” from ongoing Russian influence campaigns than social media companies like Facebook and Twitter had yet revealed — or that other researchers had been able to identify.

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The New Knowledge guys even authored a Senate Intelligence Committee report on Russia’s alleged efforts to mess with American democracy. They called it a “propaganda war against American citizens.” Impressive stuff. They must be really good at their job, right?

This week, however, we learned that New Knowledge was running its own disinformation campaign (or “propaganda war against Americans,”you could say), complete with fake Russian bots designed to discredit Republican candidate Roy Moore as a Russia-preferred candidate when he was running for the US senate in Alabama in 2017.

The scheme was exposed by the New York Times — the paper that just over a month earlier published that aforementioned oped, in which Fox and Morgan pontificated about Russian interference online.

New Knowledge created a mini-army of fake Russian bots and fake Facebook groups. The accounts, which had Russian names, were made to follow Moore. An internal company memo boasted that New Knowledge had “orchestrated an elaborate ‘false flag’ operation that planted the idea that the Moore campaign was amplified on social media by a Russian botnet.”

Moore lost the race by 1.5 percent. To be fair, accusations published by the Washington Post that he pursued underage girls back in the 1980s may have had something to do with it as well, but that’s a different story.

Of course, New Knowledge and even the New York Times, which blew the lid of the operation, are trying to spin this as some kind of “small experiment” during which they “imitated Russian tactics” online to see how they worked. Just for research, of course. They have also both claimed that the scheme, dubbed ‘Project Birmingham’ had almost no effect on the outcome of the race.

The money for the so-called research project came from Reid Hoffman, the billionaire co-founder of LinkedIn, who contributed $750,000 to American Engagement Technologies (AET), which then spent $100,000 on the New Knowledge experiment. After the scheme was exposed, Hoffman offered a public apology, saying he didn’t know exactly how the money had been used and admitting that the tactics were “highly disturbing.”

ALSO ON RT.COMLinkedIn billionaire ‘sorry’ for funding ‘Russian bot’ disinformation campaign against Roy MooreIf people like Fox and Morgan actually cared about so-called Russian meddling or the integrity of American elections, they would not have run the deceptive campaign against Moore, no matter how undesirable he was as a candidate. Their sneaky and deceitful methods are in total contrast to the public profile they have cultivated for themselves as a firm fighting the good fight for the public good. But is it really that much of a surprise?

You would think that a newspaper like the New York Times would have cottoned on to the fact that guys like Fox and Morgan, with their histories in the US military and intelligence agencies, have clear agendas and are not exactly squeaky clean or the most credible sources of information when it comes to anything to do with Russia. But that kind of insight or circumspection might be too much to ask for in the age of Russiagate.

Facebook removed Morgan’s account on Saturday for “engaging in coordinated inauthentic behavior” around the Alabama election. Three days after publishing its initial article on the scandal (the one in which it played down the effects of New Knowledge’s disinfo campaign), the New York Times published a follow-up piece about the Facebook removal, in which it admitted that the controversy would be a “stinging embarrassment” for the social media researcher, noting that he had been a “leading voice” against supposed Russian disinformation campaigns.

In Fox and Morgan’s original NYT oped, they warned of the ubiquitous “Russia-linked social media accounts” and estimated that “at least hundreds of thousands, and perhaps even millions” of US citizens had engaged with them online. One must now wonder, were they including their own fake Russian bots in that count, or were they leaving those ones out?

It’s nearly two years into the Trump presidency and still we have no solid evidence that the Russian “collusion” theory is anything more than a fantasy concocted by Democrats desperate to provide a more palatable reason for Hillary Clinton’s loss than the fact that she simply ran a bad campaign.

In fact, at this point, we actually have more solid and irrefutable evidence of election meddling from the likes of dodgy American and British companies like Cambridge Analytica and New Knowledge than we do of any meddling orchestrated by Russia.

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Maine Governor Writes ‘Stolen Election’ on Note Certifying Democrat’s Election Win

By Kathrine Rodriguez

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Outgoing Maine Gov. Paul LePage decided to troll a Democratic candidate who won a House race on Friday by writing the words “stolen election” on an election certificate certifying the win.

LePage, in one of his final acts as Maine’s governor before his term ends, confirmed Democrat Rep.-elect Jared Golden’s election win on Friday, but not before scribbling a few words noting how he felt about the election:

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Golden won the election to Maine’s 2nd congressional district after two-term incumbent Rep. Bruce Poliquin (R-ME) conceded on December 24, ending a legal challenge contesting the election results.

The controversy in the congressional election stemmed from Maine’s “ranked choice” voting system, which allows voters to rank their candidates in the order they prefer.

But if neither candidate wins the majority of votes, the votes are tallied a second time and voters’ second and third-choice preferences are added to the voting total.

In this case, Poliquin initially led the race by 2,000 votes but was short of winning an outright majority. Golden then leaped ahead of Poliquin in the polls after election officials tallied voters’ second preferences from ballots listing two independent candidates as the first choice in the recount.

Golden won 50.5 percent of the vote while Poliquin pulled in 49.5 percent of the vote after the recount, the Portland Press-Herald reported.

Poliquin called the move unconstitutional and took the matter to court. He asked the court to hold another election or declare him the winner.

LePage is stepping down as governor in January due to term limits. Janet Mills, a Democrat who served as Maine’s attorney general, will replace LePage in January.

The outgoing governor told reporters in November he would be getting out of politics and relocating to Florida to take advantage of the state’s low taxes.

Russiagate eats itself: Democrat ‘tech experts’ try their hands at election meddling, report reveals

Russiagate eats itself: Democrat 'tech experts' try their hands at election meddling, report reveals

Doug Jones & Roy Moore © Reuters / Reuters Photographer

A group of Democrats working in secret replicated the deceptive social media tactics they claim Russians used to steal the 2016 election in order to win the 2017 Alabama Senate race, according to an explosive NYT report.

The primarily social-media-based campaign to bolster the candidacy of Democrat Doug Jones and smear Republican Roy Moore implemented many of the divisive techniques outlined in the reports released earlier this week on Russian social media influence operations, according to an internal report on the effort acquired by the New York Times. Such resemblance is not surprising, given that one of the Alabama effort’s ringleaders was Jonathon Morgan, whose company New Knowledge produced one of those reports.

ALSO ON RT.COMRacist ‘Russians’ targeted African-Americans in 2016 election ploy, reports claimThe campaign was clearly meant to remain classified – the Times’ attempts to interview participants were as often as not met with claims of “I don’t remember” or pleading the Fifth. Others downplay the effect of their actions, or claim they were just meddling in the name of research. But, as much as they claim their actions had no consequences, they succeeded in electing the first Democrat to represent Alabama in the Senate for over 25 years.

In order to paint Roy Moore as the Kremlin candidate, the manipulators linked his campaign to thousands of Russian Twitter accounts that all started following him at once – drawing the attention and suspicion of the media, which obediently published rumors that his support numbers were artificially bolstered by Russian bots.

Morgan claims the botnet “false flag” – a term that actually appears in the report – “does not ring a bell,” dismissing the project as “a small experiment” in tactics that were not meant to sway the election. He pleads the Fifth on the report’s claims that the Alabama project intended to “enrage and energize Democrats” and “depress turnout” among Republicans, weaponizing accusations that Moore had tried to seduce teen girls while in his 30s. Morgan also claims to forget the names of the Twitter and Facebook accounts he set up to manipulate Moore voters.

Backed into a corner, Morgan finally opted to lie to the Times, claiming that while the project did create a generic Facebook page to lure conservative Alabamans, and was in contact with write-in candidate (and Moore rival) Mac Watson, its influence efforts stopped there. The report tells a different story: the Facebook page “boosted” Watson’s campaign, getting him interviews with major media outlets, and swelling the ranks of his Twitter followers. Watson confirms he received media assistance from a Facebook page with no human face to it – the only page that replied to his contact.

“The research project was intended to help us understand how these kind of campaigns operated,” Morgan told the Times. “We thought it was useful to work in the context of a real election but design it to have almost no impact.”

It’s a truism that so-called “coastal elites” have only disdain for Middle America, but the way Morgan describes the Alabama special election as an inconsequential throwaway contest fit only for a science experiment is eye-opening.

Morgan, it’s worth noting, was one of the developers of the infamous “Hamilton68” dashboard, beloved by Western media for its ability to link any troublesome narrative to “Russian bots.” Morgan’s co-developer, Clint Watts, has since distanced himself from the bot crusade, admitting he’s “not convinced on this bot thing.”

Everyone the Times spoke with was careful to shunt blame elsewhere. Renee diResta, who works with Morgan at New Knowledge and was the lead author of the group’s Russian report, said: “I know there were people who believed the Democrats needed to fight fire with fire,” emphasizing that she was not one of these people.

Moore campaign operatives remain frustrated at their narrow margin of loss – just 21,924 votes, less than the number of write-in ballots that were cast. They complained to Facebook about possible interference but were brushed off. Presented with incontrovertible evidence of wrongdoing by their opponents, Moore campaign manager Rich Hobson acknowledged that “any and all of these things could make a difference.”

“We still kick ourselves that Judge Moore didn’t win,” he said.

DEM WHO CALLED CONSERVATIVE BIAS A ‘FANTASY’ GETS MAJOR CONTRIBUTIONS FROM GOOGLE

Dem Who Called Conservative Bias a 'Fantasy' Gets Major Contributions from Google

Congressman Jerry Nadler labeled Big Tech bias against conservatives a ‘right wing conspiracy’

Democrat House members rejected claims of Google’s conservative bias during a Judiciary Committee hearing Tuesday, but a close look at the financial backing of those politicians reveals they could lose a lot by coming out against the tech giant.

Pichai was grilled on whether Google was in violation of the public trust by tracking users’ habits via mobile devices, and also answered questions about the censorship of conservatives.

In Congressman Jim Nadler’s (D-NY) opening statement, he called Google’s bias a “fantasy dreamed up by some conservatives” and a “right-wing conspiracy,” however OpenSecrets.orgrecords reveal he’s bought and paid for by Google’s parent company, Alphabet Inc., his top contributor.

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“Google is among the dominant firms in this field. As such, given the public’s widespread use and reliance on its products and services, there are legitimate questions regarding the company’s policies and practices, including with respect to content moderation and the protection of user data privacy.

“But before we delve into these questions, I must first dispense with a completely illegitimate issue, which is the fantasy, dreamed up by some conservatives, that Google and other online platforms have an anti-conservative bias.

“As I have said repeatedly, no credible evidence supports this right-wing conspiracy theory. I have little doubt that my Republican colleagues will spend much of their time presenting a laundry list of anecdotes and out-of-context statements made by Google employees as supposed evidence of anti-conservative bias. But none of that will actually make it true. And even if Google were deliberately discriminating against conservative viewpoints—just as Fox News and Sinclair Broadcasting discriminate against progressive ones—that would be its right, as a private company, to do so.

“But we should not let the delusions of the far right distract us from the real issues that should be the focus of today’s hearing. For example, we should examine what Google is doing to stop hostile foreign powers from using its platform to spread false information, in order to harm our political discourse.”

Open Secrets also shows Google’s parent company, Alphabet Inc., is a major Democrat contributor, including donations of up to $227,199 to the failed campaign of Texas senatorial candidate Beto O’Rourke.

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MSNBC’s Eddie Glaude: “I Overestimated White People,” I Didn’t Think They Would Put Trump In Office

By Ian Schwartz

Professor Eddie Glaude Jr. said he “overestimated” white people in 2016 and didn’t think they would put someone like Donald Trump in office. Glaude expressed fear of a Trump loss and what the president and his supporters will do. He also accused the president of “doubling down” on the rhetoric that caused the Pittsburgh synagogue shooting by introducing the Fourteenth Amendment to the discussion.

“Nothing is going to get better after this midterm,” Glaude said Wednesday on MSNBC. “Everything is going to get more intense, and it may even get worse. But let me say this. Not only did he not do all the things you just laid out. He introduced birthright citizenship. He doubled down. He doubled down on what motivated them to go in there and kill 11 people. He doubled down like a moral monster.”

EDDIE GLAUDE JR.: I was critical of Hillary Clinton and get hemmed up on Twitter every day for criticizing Donald Trump because people believe I’m responsible, in part, for Donald Trump being in the White House. What I did wrong in 2016 is I overestimated white people. I didn’t think white people would put him in office.

So here he is running around the country appealing to our darker angels, appealing to our hatred and fears and I’m supposed to believe that Delaware County in Ohio is not going to vote for him. That the suburbs in Pennsylvania aren’t going to vote for him? Aren’t going to vote for him in Florida?

So part of what I do know is that it’s going to require young people, it’s going to require people of color, it’s going to require African-Americans like they showed up in Alabama and Virginia. It’s going to require us to turn out in massive numbers because I made a mistake in 2016. And the evidence is not in yet. I know it sounds cynical, but this man doubled down after 11 beautiful people were shot and killed while worshiping. Jefferson Town, Kentucky, murdered, shot in the back of the head for what? For what? Some ideal of whiteness that Donald Trump represents and spews out of his mouth every single day.

VOTER FRAUD: Orange County Numbers DON’T ADD UP – Democrats Had 300,000 More Votes for Congressional Seats than for Governor

By Jim Hoft

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Orange County, a traditionally conservative enclave in Southern California turned all blue after Democrats found tens of thousands of votes post election day.

Just two years ago in 2016, only 2 Congressional districts in Orange County voted blue–now just two years later every single district voted blue.

Democrat blue wave? More like Democrat election fraud.

From a reader:

I did a bit of my own research, and what’s interesting is in both Stanislaus County (ca-10) and Orange County Republican John Cox beat Gavin Newsom for Governor. John Cox ran a horrible campaign and was virtually invisible. I find it hard to believe that voters would split the ticket — voting R for an unknown guy Governor and D for a super liberal congressperson. Just seems like a BIG red flag.

The election results

Orange County Governor’s race:

Republican John Cox 489,249
Democrat Gavin Newsom 476,827

Orange County House results:

District 39:
Democrat Gil Cisneros 113,075
Republican Young Kim 109,580

District 45:
Democrat Katie Porter 143,144
Republican Mimi Walters 135,120

District 46:
Democrat Lou Correa 85,691
Republican Russell Lambert 40,777

District 47:
Democrat Alan Lowenthal 124,436
Republican John Briscoe 69,942

District 48:
Democrat Harley Rouda 140,323
Republican Dana Rohrabacher 123, 401

District 49:
Democrat Mike Levin 139,480
Republican Diane Harkey 111,778

Total votes in Orange County House races:
Democrat: 776,218
Republican: 590,598

So according to the election results:

300,000 (299,931) more Democrats voted for the Democrats in the Orange County Congressional races than voted fro Democrat Gavin Newsom for governor.
This screams of voter fraud.

And Republican John Cox beat Newsome by 12,000 votes in Orange County.

This makes no sense and points to fraud.

This came from TGP reader:

I’m is lifelong Californian and want this exposed. I was a Democrat until recently and know many former California Democrats like me who are sick of what’s happening in California. These seats were stolen.

Ocasio-Cortez mocked for ‘3 chambers of Congress’ gaffe, hits back at critics

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After being mocked by the right for referring to the non-existent “three chambers of Congress,” newly elected Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez hit back at critics for “drooling over every minute of footage” to use against her.

In an instagram video to supporters this weekend, Ocasio-Cortez appeared to have missed Civics 101 in high school.

“If we work our butts off to make sure that we take back all three chambers of Congress — Uh, rather, all three chambers of government: the presidency, the Senate, and the House,” she said in the video.

Congress has two chambers, the House and the Senate, while the government has three branches: the executive (the President and his administration), the legislative (Congress), and the judicial (the courts). Right-wing Twitter didn’t let the mistake go:

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Ocasio-Cortez snapped back on Sunday, night, responding to mocking from Ohio State Representative Niraj Antani (R).

“Maybe instead of Republicans drooling over every minute of footage of me in slow-mo, waiting to chop up word slips that I correct in real-tomd, they actually step up enough to make the argument they want to make,” she said, correcting her new slip-up to “real-time” in a follow-up tweet moments later.

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A self-described socialist, Ocasio-Cortez shot to fame this June when she unseated ten-term incumbent Rep. Joe Crowley in New York’s Democratic primary elections. Running on a progressive platform of socialized healthcare, immigration reform, gun control and free education, Ocasio-Cortez will be the youngest woman to ever serve in Congress when she takes office in January.

Her path to Capitol Hill has been live-blogged and tweeted in intimate detail, with Ocasio-Cortez causing a stir at orientation day last week when she claimed that staff assumed she was an intern or spouse. When critics called BS on her story, Ocasio-Cortez suggested that she was discriminated against as a “woman or person of color.”

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Ocasio-Cortez’ ‘three chambers’ gaffe is not the first time her critics have questioned her political knowledge. Days after her primary victory this summer, Ocasio-Cortez said in a television interview that US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) was running “black sites” at the US border, a claim that was pounced on and ridiculed by the right.

In addition, Ocasio-Cortez was savaged in July for calling Israel’s presence in the West Bank an “occupation,” before admitting that she couldn’t explain why she chose to use this word.

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Democrat Eric Swalwell Calls for Confiscation of Semi-Automatic Weapons in US — Nuke Those Who Resist

HE WANTS YOUR GUNS AMERICA!

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By Jim Hoft

You can tell the election is over.
Democratic Rep. Eric Swalwell called for the confiscation of semi-automatic rifles in a USA Today oped on Friday.

Swalwell wants taxpayers to foot the bill using 15 billion of taxpayer dollars to do it.

Swalwell then says to prosecute those who resist.

Democrats will ALWAYS go after your guns and they will ALWAYS LIE at election time and say they won’t.

NBC reported:

In a USA Today op-ed entitled “Ban assault weapons, buy them back, go after resisters,” Rep. Eric Swalwell, D-Calif., argued Thursday that prior proposals to ban assault weapons “would leave millions of assault weapons in our communities for decades to come.”

Swalwell proposes that the government should offer up to $1,000 for every weapon covered by a new ban, estimating that it would take $15 billion to buy back roughly 15 million weapons — and “criminally prosecute any who choose to defy [the buyback] by keeping their weapons.”

Former combat veteran, hunter and political junkie Joe Biggs responded to Swalwell’s controversial proposition.

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Joe Biggs continued by lecturing Swalwell on the history of the AR.

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This obviously set Swalwell off because he then called for nuke attacks on resistors.

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That’s why Democrats should NEVER be given power in this country.

FLORIDA DEM HATCHES PLOT TO INVADE RED STATES TO TURN THEM BLUE

Florida Dem Hatches Plot to Invade Red States to Turn Them Blue

“A migration of only 50k people would turn some red states blue”

 | Infowars.com – NOVEMBER 16, 2018

Losing congressional candidate Pam Keith has a cunning plan for Democrats to win red states – by encouraging tens of thousands of leftists to move there in huge numbers.

“Hey Blue State Dems: Have you considered moving to a red state? A migration of only 50k people would turn some red states blue for the Senate & electoral college. Think about it. Wide open spaces, low cost of living & an outsized say in our politics. Indeed, 75k would flip FL,” tweeted Keith.

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After another leftist suggested it would be “tough to move to a place with close minded neighbors,” Keith responded by suggesting “an Amish approach” of moving whole communities at a time.

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“Maybe try voting red in your own state to support the same policies that make red states better places to live,” responded one user.

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Keith appeared to be ignorant of the fact that if tens of thousands of Democrats left a blue state, that state might have a chance of turning red.

“The nerve of these people. What’s especially hilarious about her tweet is the very things she claims as incentives for moving to red states would go bye-bye if Democrats run them. C’mon, the reason there are wide open spaces and a low cost of living is because of those evil red-state policies,” commented Hot Air.

However, massive demographic changes might render Keith’s plot totally necessary.

According to the Dallas Morning News, if current immigration trends continue, Texas could turn blue in 2020, with other states potentially to follow.

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