Finally, something interesting came from the Twitter Files

Originally published at: Finally, something interesting came from the Twitter Files | Boing Boing


That’s a new wild claim that Lee Fang makes, and provides no information to back it up.

Intercept’s article, with no mention of James Baker:

Slate’s answering article:

I’d like some evidence that rather respected tech experts were involved in fabricating a claim.

I’ve read and indexed a lot of Fang’s work, but two years ago, I noticed that his tweets were really going skew and stopped following him. :person_shrugging:


Musk’s performance theater in allowing this access just allows us to see the obvious contrast between pre- and post-Musk Twitter.

The revelations show Twitter employees deliberated on difficult issues, often pushed back against government requests for information, declined to ban accounts that were alerted to their attention, etc.

Meanwhile, Musk makes company policy changes on a whim and a random suggestion from a sycophant in his public tweets and hatred and bigotry run rampant while journalists get banned for factually incorrect justifications.


When he does good work, it’s good. But he’s certainly been poisoned by some anti-anti-Trump brainworms. An impulse to push back against accepted heterodoxy is good! Questioning neoliberal narratives is good! It can certainly be easy for journalists to forget to check their own biased impulses in the face of such a radical propaganda machine as the far right runs. Fang isn’t quite Greenwaldian gone yet, though I could see him going there. Still, good reporting is good reporting, and this is actually good reporting.

(Also FWIW I believe that Baker was proven to receive an anonymous tip on something related to those emails, and did in fact forward it onto the relevant investigators. Which is … pretty innocuous, and also probably what he was supposed to do?)

ETA: The insistence that Baker was deliberately helping the Clinton campaign launder that info is absurd. So is the idea that a biased source is incapable of providing valuable Intel.


The claim that James Baker (Republican) was supposedly working for the Clinton campaign, and respected experts in DNS stooged for him is into weird conspiracy territory. That he’s tossing it out there without any backing info seems like he’s lost objective balance.

It might be good reporting, but it’s a pain to have to gear down and double-check everything.


This apologia does not come across as nearly even-handed nor as objective as the author strains to paint it. Can’t tell if the author is simply deluded, kissing the asses of power, or even more cynically, engaged in the very type of agitprop described. Worth noting, “banal and bureaucratic” can readily describe “worst behaviors” manifest as blatantly evil throughout the scope of human history.

Care to elaborate?


I’m curious as to how one gets more powerful than the (former) richest man in the world?

Who has had a surfeit of ass kissing. He must be chapped.


Absolutely. So is exposing the ways that neoliberal globalism’s guard labour operates. For certain writers, though, what starts as a good-faith populist approach tends to fall into conspiracism and also apologias and Useful Idiocy on behalf of authoritarian regimes and fascist politicians on the basis they’re not aligned with the bad ol’ U.S. government. That’s how Greenwald and (to a lesser extent) Taibbi and Fang find themselves cited positively by MAGAts and Putin.


The Big Lebowski Dude GIF


Well sure, how else are they supposed to alarm their followers yet again, with more promises that they’re diligent curtain-pullers devoted to exposing nefarious machinations of (a never actually revealed) “Deep State”?


And we all know what they say about opinions…


I don’t totally disagree agree with you here, but I also don’t think you’re going to change hearts and minds in such a way as to dismantle those systems by going “THIS IS THE MOST HEINOUS EVIL IN THE WORLD.” When it comes to the FBI, on their best days, they uphold the centrist status quo. I personally don’t like that centrist status quo. But I think there’s a difference between what they do and, like, marines committing blatant war crimes on camera. “Subtly seducing a social media company into helping my agenda without breaking current laws” is a world apart from “beheading Afghanis and laughing at the photographs.” Hell, it’s even different from “paying Whitey Bulger for information and turning a blind eye to his killing spree as long as he’s informing” or “Blackmailing Tamerlan Tsarnaev with the dangled promise of citizenship and ignoring his other violent crimes as he gets increasingly radicalized because we told him to.” Like, c’mon.


They’ve got layers?

No, wait, that’s onions.


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