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How Conservative Drudge Report Became Russian Propaganda Tool

The Russians didn’t just screw the red hat wearing Chumph fools – they screwed their favorite news sources as well. By now, the Russians use of bots to control Breitbart and Alex Jones’ Infowars site are well known. The Russians, given free reign by white wing press whose journalistic integrity is only just below that of supermarket tabloids announcing the latest sighting of Elvis, or little green men from Mars. The formula to get them to bend over was simple, make it salacious and anti-Liberal. Within those confines the slow-witted ignorati would absorb and believe anything.

Here is how the Russians turned Drudge into their sock puppet, and turned him into a “Useful Idiot”-

How Matt Drudge became the pipeline for Russian propaganda

Drudge Report has linked nearly 400 times to RT, Sputnik News, TASS since 2012

On July 17, 2014, Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 was shot down over eastern Ukraine, killing 298 passengers and crew. The next day, President Barack Obama alleged that the responsible parties were Russian-backed separatists seizing territory in the region following Russia’s annexation of Crimea. Obama’s statement came amid a furious effort by Russian propaganda outlets to foster confusion about the act. In their telling, the tragedy had actually been a failed attempt by Ukrainians to shoot down President Vladimir Putin’s plane.

The Russian propaganda effort received a substantial boost when right-wing internet journalist Matt Drudge highlighted a story on the topic from RT.com, the website of the Russian government-backed English-language news channel RT. Drudge titled the resulting item on the Drudge Report, his highly trafficked link aggregation website, “RT: Putin’s plane might have been target…” in bright red text.

After Drudge propelled the RT story to his massive audience, it was picked up by right-wing U.S. conspiracy websites. (Others on the right warned that Drudge had gone too far by aiding a Russian disinformation campaign.)

This was not an anomaly. Drudge has for years used his site as a web traffic pipeline for Russian propaganda sites, directing his massive audience to nearly 400 stories from RT.com and fellow Russian-government-run English-language news sites SputnikNews.com and TASS.com since the beginning of 2012, according to a Media Matters review. Those numbers spiked in 2016, when Drudge collectively linked to the three sites 122 times.

Drudge’s increasing affinity for and proliferation of Russian propaganda comes amid what The New York Timescalls “a new information war Russia is waging against the West.”

RT and Sputnik News are part of what the Times’ Jim Rutenberg has termed “the most effective propaganda operation of the 21st century so far,” a coordinated network of state-controlled TV and online media outlets and social media accounts that take advantage of the traditional protections of Western liberal democracies to undermine public confidence in the governments of those nations. TASS, which has received less attention in the United States, is a Russian news agency similar to The Associated Press but owned by the state.

Russia’s English-language propaganda operation came under increasing scrutiny from the U.S. intelligence community during and following the 2016 presidential election, during which, according to U.S. intelligence agencies, it was part of an effort to bolster now-President Donald Trump’s campaign. Mixing slanted coverage with outright lies, the state media effort promotes an anti-establishment worldview featuring criticisms of the U.S. from both the far left and far right, packaged with the same strategies used by modern American news outlets to increase viewership.

When the Kremlin’s interests converge with the right’s interests in undermining Democratic politicians like former President Barack Obama and former Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton, its outlets find prominent allies in the U.S. conservative media landscape. As Andrew Feinberg, the former White House correspondent for Sputnik News, has explained, the Russian media outlets are part of the “right-wing media ecosystem,” with their stories picked up and promoted by prominent far-right news sites like Breitbart.com and conspiracy theorist Alex Jones’ Infowars.com.

For decades, Drudge has played a dominant role in that ecosystem. The Drudge Report is one of the most highly trafficked news websites in the country, and because it simply aggregates links, it is the top source of referral traffic to a host of right-wing and mainstream news websites. That ability to create a firehose of traffic leads some reporters, especially on the right, to craft stories for the explicit purpose of getting Drudge links, allowing him to serve as the media’s assignment editor. And the media outlets benefiting from that traffic are not only U.S. traditional media or conservative outlets, but the press organs of one of the nation’s top adversaries.

To measure this effect, Media Matters wrote a program to crawl through Drudge’s archives and create an index of all instances in which the website linked to pages that included the URLs “rt.com,” “sputniknews.com,” or “tass.com.”

We found that the Drudge Report has promoted dozens of RT articles every year since 2012. Soon after Sputnik launched in November 2014, it, too, began regularly receiving attention from Drudge. TASS articles receive much less promotion, but Drudge’s website features a permanent link to the TASS main page (listed as ITAR-TASS).

As the U.S. presidential race and Russia’s machinations both escalated in 2015, the number of Russian propaganda articles promoted by Drudge shot up to 79 for the year. The total jumped again to a high of 122 articles in 2016, before dropping down to 45 this year through September 18.

The articles Drudge highlighted cover a wide range of U.S. and international topics, but — as one might expect from the content of Russian propaganda outlets — many fall into discrete categories that fit the interests of the Kremlin.

During the 2016 presidential campaign, for example, several of the Drudge-promoted articles reported on the contents of emails and voicemails the U.S. intelligence community says were stolen from the Democratic National Committee or former Clinton campaign chair John Podesta by Russian hackers.

Others promoted the claims of WikiLeaks founder and former RT host Julian Assange. Drudge highlightedcoverage from Russian propaganda outlets of his attacks on Clinton and his contradiction of the U.S. intelligence community over whether Russia was the source of the Democratic emails he published.

Drudge has also regularly turned to RT and Sputnik for unskeptical coverage of statements from Putin and other Kremlin officials, including their denials of Russian election interference, their criticisms of the U.S. role in Syria, and their efforts to undermine NATO members.

And he’s frequently highlighted the Russian outlets’ conspiracy theories and hysterics, including their reports on meetings of the “mysterious Bilderberg Group,” debunked claims that Google manipulated its search results to favor Clinton, and warnings of increasing Western support for satanism.

Drudge’s affinity for Russian president Vladimir Putin and his propaganda outlets is undoubtedly a major asset for the Kremlin. Drudge has rare power as a media gatekeeper due to his unusual ability to push reporting from previously unknown outlets to a massive audience.

Jones’ Infowars — also a favorite of the Russian government — is a case study in the potential impact of sustained promotion from Drudge. A 2013 Media Matters study found that the Drudge Report linked to Infowars hundreds of times over the previous two years, giving the conspiracy theory website crucial exposure to the rest of the right-wing media space.

As Jones himself put it, Drudge was the “one source who really helped us break out, who took our information, helped to punch it out to an even more effective level.”

Putin could say the same.

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Chumph Pulls FBI/Law Enforcement off Nazis

In a bid to help his white supremacist and neo-Nazi friends – the Chump tries to stop anti-terrorist law enforcement against them –

 

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Conservative Media’s Kristallnacht in America

FOX News and other right wing racist media now use fake news propaganda to incite neo-Nazi and white supremacist thugs into violence against minority individuals and families.

Who is going to hold the scumbags responsible? They are responsible for thousands of hate crimes since the election.

Perhaps some folks need to consider how to make fake right wing news a little less profitable…

Jewish Family Leaves Town After Conservative Media Blames Them For Christmas Play Cancellation

The school says it absolutely did not cancel the production because of religious complaints.

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A Jewish family in Pennsylvania has pulled their child out of school and left town after media outlets across the country ran stories blaming them for the cancellation of a Christmas play.

Local station WHTM reported last week that Centerville Elementary School in Lancaster decided not to put on its production of “A Christmas Carol” this year after two parents complained to the them about the famous line, “God bless us, everyone.” The school had been doing the play for more than 40 years.

But the controversy really took off after conservative outlets including Fox News, Breitbart News and The Blaze picked up the report and gave it national attention.

WHTM said school officials told the news outlet the play was not cancelled because of complaints about that line, although “many parents” believed it was so.

The Fox News commentary piece framed the controversy as part of the so-called “War on Christmas.” “[T]his year, I’m afraid Tiny Tim’s goose has been cooked by the Ghost of Christmas Intolerance,” the article stated.

But the Hempfield School District has vehemently denied this account of why it cancelled the play, and a Jewish family that says it’s being blamed for the controversy is so afraid for their safety they have left the area, at least temporarily. The earlier articles did not identify the parents being blamed as Jewish or identify them by name.

The parents of a fifth grader in the district told LancasterOnline that they never asked for the play to be cancelled or complained about it; they simply asked for their child to be excused and were told that was fine.

But they said since the school announced the cancellation last month, classmates had harassed their child. And after the story broke nationally, the school said it received at least 200 phone calls and emails about the play.

The family said they were disturbed by some of the comments on the conservative outlets’ stories ― including one on the Breitbart story asking for information about the family’s address.

And after a fake news story created an uproar over a pizza place in Washington, D.C. ― which ultimately resulted in a man coming in with an assault rifle to “self-investigate” whether there truly was a child sex ring there ― the family said they didn’t want to risk their safety by sticking around, although they were hoping to be able to come back.

“There’s no way we’re going to take a chance after the pizza incident,” said the parents, who were not named by LancasterOnline.

The Hempfield School District has backed up the family’s account. Officials have posted an FAQ sheet on its website and said the play was absolutely not cancelled because of complaints over the “God bless us” line. Instead, they dropped it because it consumed too much instructional time in the classroom. From the FAQ sheet:

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DC Restaurant Attacked By Gunman Because of Right Wing Fake News Story

The mental acuity of many Trumpazoids is at the level of a Kumquat. Which is how they have been easily manipulated by the Republican Party and now Trump. Give them a salacious story, an these idiots will eat it up like Manna from  God, being to stupid to do any validity check as long as it supports their prejudices.

The problem is, they are also easily manipulated into violence.

The fabricated propaganda piece for ignorant white assholes in this case is based partially on a real story. I am pretty intimate with the details because I was involved very peripherally with sorting some of the information out shortly after my arrival after the earthquake. A white, American “Evangelical” supposedly with a Church in Idaho came to Haiti supposedly to help the earthquake victims. The Church was real, and the woman’s association with the Church was real. Virtual Child slavery is not uncommon in Haiti, in a system they call Restavek, wherein poor families sell their children as servants in rich families households. There are about 300,000 children held in the system. The buyer of the children’s services is contracted to feed and clothe the children, pay an extremely minimal wage, and in some cases to provide for their education.

White church lady saw an opportunity. The Dominican Republic is one of the world centers of child prostitution. Many of the children forced into prostitution come from Haiti, and they are frequently acquired through fake Restavek agreements with poor families. The prostitution rings in the DR would gladly pay for children who were delivered across the border. Church lady set up a fake “orphanage” in the DR – and went about selling children into prostitution. Before she could deliver her first load, she was caught.

In the Meth and heroin infused world of the right wing racist whack jobs, this became a story of Hillary Clinton and the church lady being in business together and shipping over 100,000 children to the US to a restaurant in DC for prostitution.

For some reason, the shit spewing right wing propagandists chose a real restaurant.

Armed Man Targets D.C. Restaurant That Faced Violent Threats Because Of Fake News

The popular pizza restaurant was implicated in a preposterous right-wing conspiracy theory that spread through fake news stories.

A jarring incident at a restaurant that has faced violent threats because of an unfounded and preposterous conspiracy theory raises concerns about the real-world consequences of spreading fake news stories.

Washington, D.C., police on Sunday afternoon detained a man armed with an assault rifle at Comet Ping Pong, a popular pizza restaurant in a busy neighborhood of the city.

According to police, the man entered the restaurant with an assault rifle; there were conflicting reports of gunshots. Police locked down the surrounding block, which includes other restaurants and shops, including a popular bookstore, Politics and Prose.

While no one was injured, and it is unclear what the suspect’s motive was, the incident is alarming because the restaurant has been the subject of death threats originating from a false right-wing conspiracy theory alleging that Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton and campaign chairman John Podesta ran a child sex trafficking ring in the back of the restaurant.

There is no evidence of the disturbing claim, but it quickly spread through fake news stories on right-wing websites and circulated on social media. Among those tweeting a spurious story alleging Clinton’s “sex crimes” to his more than 100,000 followers, was Gen. Mike Flynn, President-elect Donald Trump’s appointee for national security adviser.

After the restaurant’s owner, James Alefantis, and staffers began receiving death threats, Alefantis contacted local and federal authorities, including the FBI, to get the fake news stories removed. But the threats continued, and nearby businesses have also reported threats in recent weeks, according to the Washington Post.

“One person said he wanted to line us up in front of a firing squad,” Matt Carr, the owner of a nearby coffee shop, told the Post.

Of Sunday’s incident, he said: “This was our worst fear, that someone would read all this and come to the block with a gun. And today it happened.”

 
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Posted by on December 4, 2016 in Second American Revolution

 

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Confederate Flag Waiving Trumpazoid Murders Two Police Officers In Iowa

Yet another right-wing racist nut case murderer…

Perhaps now some of the small verbose faction of hardhead cops who believe BLM is a “problem” will wake up to who the real threat is.

There is a big difference between black folks peacefully demonstrating and white whack-jobs with guns killing innocent cops.

 

Accused cop killer waved Confederate flag at football game to protest ‘cop haters’ sitting out anthem

The suspect in the “ambush” killings of two Iowa police officers was kicked out of a high school football game last month after clashing with black fans over his Confederate flag.

Scott Michael Greene was identified by police as the gunman who fatally shot the officers in separate attacks early Wednesday morning in the Des Moines area.

He remained at large as of 9:30 a.m. Wednesday and is considered armed and dangerous.

A YouTube video uploaded to an account belonging to Scott Greene appears to show him arguing with Des Moines police officers after he claimed he was assaulted by fans Oct. 14 at a football game at Urbandale High School.

The officers asked the man to leave school property after the altercation, which witnesses said Greene instigated by carrying an American flag and Confederate flag.

“I think I’ve been assaulted by you,” Greene says to the officers. “You grabbed me and shoved me around.”

Greene posted a photo of himself holding the flags as several black fans in the background appear to yell at him, which his caption shows he considered a “civil rights violation.”

He offered a tragically ironic explanation for his Confederate flag display in a comment posted on the YouTube video.

“I was offended by the blacks sitting through our anthem,” Greene said. “Thousands more whites fought and died for their freedom. However this is not about the Armed forces, they are cop haters.”

He posted three other short video complaints set to music about drafty windows at his apartment building, along with another viral video showing a Latino “gang member” threatening a group of bikers with a gun.

Greene was arrested in 2001 on charges of domestic assault, assault causing bodily injury and fourth-degree criminal mischief.

He was also charged with drunken driving in 2010 and with first-degree harassment in 2014.

 

 

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Cop Relieved for Showing His Pointy Hood

This is stuck on stupid. A cop who is supposed to uphold the law, joining an extremist right wing group (and bringing it to work) which in various turns is both racist and opposes the US Government, losing his job…

Good Riddance!

Anne Arundel officer suspended after Oath Keepers hat spotted in cruiser

Anne Arundel Co Police car.jpg

Anne Arundel County police say an officer has been suspended for displaying a hat bearing the name of an anti-government group in a cruiser.Media outlets report that department spokesman Lt. Ryan Frashure confirmed Tuesday that the officer’s police powers were suspended pending the outcome of an internal investigation. A photo of the hat, which displayed the name “Oath Keepers,” was shared with the department Monday after it was spotted in a grocery store parking lot.

The organization is made up of current and former military and police who vow to uphold the Constitution, but it has caught the attention of hate-watch groups.

Chief Timothy Altomare says the hat appears to violate the department’s policy against officers espousing political beliefs and such conduct won’t be tolerated.

 
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Posted by on October 20, 2016 in Domestic terrorism

 

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Trumpizoids Arrested for Domestic Terrorism

More Trump crazies in the news. Three white nationalists were arrested in Kansas planning to blow up an apartment building because many of the residents were Somalis.

3 Militia Members Arrested In Connection With Plot To Carry Out Terror Attack On Kansas Mosque

Three Men Charged With Plotting Attack On Somali Immigrants In Kansas

Three men have been arrested and charged with planning to use a weapon of mass destruction in a terrorist attack on a mosque and housing complex in a western Kansas town where Somali immigrants live and worship,according to the U.S. Justice Department.

The men were part of a militia group whose members called themselves “The Crusaders,” Acting U.S. Attorney Tom Beall said at a news conference. They had conspired to detonate a bomb at an apartment complex in Garden City, Kan., which houses about 120 people, many of whom are Muslim.

The defendants had allegedly conducted surveillance of the housing complex, stockpiled firearms and bomb-making materials and had even written a manifesto that was to be published in conjunction with the attack, which was scheduled for Nov. 9, the day after the presidential election.

“One of [the defendants] said the bombing would ‘wake people up,’ ” Beall said.

The arrests come after an eight-month investigation of the three men, identified as Curtis Allen, 49, Gavin Wright, 49, and Patrick Eugene Stein, 47. During that time, investigators say, the men considered a number of targets, including churches and public officials who supported Somali immigrants, as well as landlords who rented to Somalis.

They allegedly settled on the apartment complex. Some local people call the complex “Somali Town,” says Garden Valley Church pastor Steve Ensz.

Ensz’s church is about a mile from the apartment complex and helps refugees acclimate to life in western Kansas. He tells NPR he was “saddened, but not surprised” to hear the news and says that most people in Garden City are “good moral people, welcoming to refugees.”

When told that the defendants allegedly wanted to “wake people up,” Ensz said, “They’re the ones that need to be woken up.”

If convicted, the three men would face up to life in federal prison.

 
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Posted by on October 15, 2016 in Domestic terrorism, The Clown Bus

 

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