Strange, isn't it? The same corporate media outlets, journalists and pundits that were all in for Hillary, are now trying to convince the country that a poorly run, hardly seen Russian troll campaign is grounds for reversing the election, and launching a war with a nuclear power. This is insanely irresponsible.
Campaign finance watchdogs say "Correct The Record is “creating new ways to undermine campaign regulation.”' The FEC, split between Democrats and Republicans, was deadlocked on taking action against David Brock and his multimillion dollar troll farm. In those FEC filings, Hillary Clinton's Correct the Record trolls were listed, including their salaries.
As you may remember, Bernie Sanders' supporters were the first victims of Hillary Clinton's likely illegal astroturfing efforts with CTR and it's "Breaking Barriers" online spam and troll campaign, and they were not happy.
Libby Watson of The Sunlight Foundation observed that the astroturf effort goes far beyond merely defending Clinton, to targeting and intimidating those who criticize her. She told The Daily Beast,
“This seems to be going after essentially random individuals online. (Clinton's troll network) Is meant to appear to be coming organically from people and their social media networks in a groundswell of activism, when in fact it is highly paid and highly tactical.”
Daily Kos forum posters also noticed Correct The Record interference:
“[T]here have been a number of diaries claiming to ‘have switched from Bernie to Hillary’ lately, and some of them have been from recently created accounts with no record of pro-Sanders remarks or diaries.”
During the election, there were allegations of CTR bribing Reddit mods to silence, censor anti-Clinton posters, and coordinate "downvotes" and "upvotes" to promote Hillary and hide pro-Trump views.
CTR's new incarnation, ShareBlue was eventually
"removed from the [Reddit] whitelist for violation of our media disclosure policies." ~ r/politics • r/Against_Astroturfing
Meanwhile, according to FEC filings Clinton's CTR PAC disbursed $9,617,828.28 in 2016. Most interesting is that CTR PAC listed $0 for expenditures, other than $4k in filing and administrative costs.
David Brock spent $10 million dollars and claimed it wasn't part of any normally listed campaign expenditure. He spent $10M on sock accounts, trolls and paying off mods on social media. That’s nearly a factor of ten times more than what has been claimed the 13 indicted Russians spent.
Obama's OfA PAC uses similar astroturf, troll-farm tactics as Hillary/Brock's CTR/ShareBlue. We know that the "Russian bots" accounted for 0.43% of total election-year political tweets. I'd love to see the totals for bots linked to the Democrats, given the funding differential.
Democrat-supporting trolls swarm when contentious subjects like gun control, DACA, Obamacare, or corruption by Democrats are in the news and trending topics column on Twitter. They attacked during the #PPSellsBodyParts scandal. They've been all over during the aftermath of the Florida school shooting, pushing "gun sense" and signal-jamming opponents to David Hogg and his Rescue Rangers. None of this should come as a particular surprise at this point.
Back in October 2016-January 2017, these Democrat operated sock accounts took on "Ex-GOP, #NeverTrump, "Reagan Conservative!" appearances, to push anti-Trump propaganda, and directly attack conservatives who expressed support for Trump. Pretending to be "real conservatives" and shaming people to control the opposition to damage the President is a low tactic, even for Correct The Record.
While we don't know the full extent of this problem, it is clear that the CTR/OfA Democrat trolls participated in spreading "cuck-Nazi" attacks on Republicans. They helped flood social media with dank memes, and virulent messages, aimed at Blue Check moderates, who reacted so poorly. CTR/OfA socks also promoted the more fringe characters on the alt-right, pushed down the less extreme, and helped smear alt-lite figures, to paint the narrative that all conservatives were literally Nazis, and sow division in the ranks. It worked.
The election PAC CTR became ShareBlue in Jan 2017. Several prominent #NeverTrumpconservatives have been linked to Brock's propaganda farm, including Cheri Jacobs, Ana Navarro and people associated with Evan McMullin. An investigation into the corporate paper trail behind Shareblue reveals that it appears to be supported and sponsored by a raft of foreign interests from China, Britain, Israel and various Middle Eastern entities [SA, Qatar, Iran] to interfere in American politics.
According to a report in ZeroHedge:
“An investigation into a shadowy world of shell companies and chains of influence stretching all over the globe has revealed that Democratic propaganda figure David Brock's organization Shareblue appears to be an apparent front group being used by a number of Chinese, Middle Eastern, British, Israeli, Mexican and American special interests to spread anti-Trump and anti-democratic rhetoric both during the presidential election as well as in its aftermath.”
ShareBlue is basically Google or Apple in terms of scale, compared to the poorly run and ineffective, mom and pop operation of Russian trolls busted by Mueller.
It has made pushing propaganda on Twitter and other social media for foreign interests into big business. From the same ZeroHedge piece:
Peter Daou is the CEO of Shareblue's holding company, True Blue Media LLC. An adviser to Hillary Clinton, in addition to the Clinton Foundation, Clinton Global Initiative, the U.S. Department of Energy, the UN Foundation, Microsoft, Intel, AARP, PR Newswire and Bloomberg Philanthropies and the UK's UBMplc. Daou played an advisory role for OneVoice International, an "international grassroots movement that amplifies the voice of mainstream Israelis and Palestinians, empowering them to propel their elected representatives toward the two-state solution."
This infographic shows the web of foreign ties that ShareBlue and it's parent company True Blue Media have.
"Brock, Daou, and others in the propaganda group could be in violation of Foreign Agent Registration Act.Shareblue exists as an outlet for political interests to subvert democratic institutions in America and to promote [foreign] interests..to take advantage of American citizens" – The New York Times, Sept 2016 - Inside Hillary Clinton’s Outrage Machine, Allies Push the Buttons.
(ShareBlue/CTR) "has instructed its surrogates to blame news coverage for negative press. 'Are they going to hold Hillary to a different standard again?' read one recent “talking points” memo..."
Tad Devine, a senior strategist to Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont, described ShareBlue, Dauo, and Brock as “The pond scum of American politics,” which is damning indeed from the camp of a hard-left candidate.
To go into much more detail on the tactics deployed would take a book in itself, so forgive us for covering in light strokes. Here is a link to the full David Brock confidential "playbook" for ShareBlue trolls. I do encourage that you read it for yourself, it is highly informative. Here is an excerpt which illustrates the agenda and the massive resources available to David Brock’s organization.
Staggering. Further evidence of just how far Shareblue is willing to go to push their narrative was dug up by Ethan Pepper of Newsnuke last year.
“In all, CTR tricked people into thinking that Hillary Clinton had more organic support online than she actually did. Countless bots and low wage employees would smear Hillary’s opponents and scramble sensible discussions about her flaws.”
Naturally, because the Left cannot meme, detailed instructions had to be given to enable paid shills to spread disinformation effectively. Check out these instructions- particularly the emotive targeting and the hilarious admission that pro-Hillary memes sucked.
The Hillary SuperPAC Correct the Record operated by David Brock morphed into ShareBlue, and continues their troll campaign on Twitter today using sock accounts to sow disinformation and push narratives. They've spent millions on this process already.
Brock's Correct the Record PAC openly coordinated with the Hillary campaign, despite campaign finance laws that explicitly prohibit this. They determined that since Twitter, Reddit and Facebook are free, spending money to employ socks wasn't an expenditure. pic.twitter.com/5o53mDmXLG— Notorious Augusto P (@GenAugustoP) February 19, 2018
In a leaked transcript of a Slack private message board, Brock claims that they have been given an NSA sniffing program called "Fox Acid" which was used to dox and threaten 'anonymous' users on Reddit and the Chans. At the time, hundreds of users were outed, suspended or dropped off the boards.
There you have it folks- no big whoop, just a pro-Clinton PAC, illegally coordinating with the campaign and using NSA sniffing tools to out social media users and drive them off platforms, while mobilizing a bot-net troll army to steer the narratives, and bribing mods on boards to help.
When taken into consideration with what we know of Fusion GPS, MM4A, ShareBlue, CTR, George Soros’ Open Society, Tides Foundation, OfA, American Bridge, Hamilton 66 and JournoList to name but a few of the leftist organizations playing for keeps in the war for your mind it appears pretty clear that the “Vast Left-wing Conspiracy” is very real, foreign-funded and pushing propaganda on both the American people and those overseas.