If you have been following my blog, I mainly like to note how disinformation is spread and the way it moves through echo chambers. I really got into tracing the networks with The Byrning Man, which I showed how the Overstock CEO, Patrick Byrne, brought a story to national attention through Fox News before fleeing to Indonesia.
With the whistle blower situation, most on the right think that it is a political hit job. This sentiment is being expressed by majority of the Republicans as well, including the president. The New York Times released some information about the whistle blower in the past including that he was a male, worked for the NSC, and went back to the CIA. This was irresponsible reporting by the NYT, but it set off a hunt to find out who the whistle blower is. If this was a few months ago and I still had the same Twitter Detective mindset, I probably would have joined along. This is because I probably would have thought that this was a political hit job as well.
I first started seeing threads about who the whistle blower could be on October 10th, 2019. I ignored it since I take guesses at who people could be indicted all the time. It was a guess at the whistle blower, whatever. Over the last week though, things got worse from there. First The Daily Beast posted an article on October 28, 2019 saying that Devin Nunes staffer, Derick Harvey, had been posting disinformation on who the whistle blower could be. Considering I had seen the theories on social media retweeted by prominent right wing accounts and knowing their proximity to Nunes, I figured that they were one in the same.
Following the leads from the article, they mention One America News Network and just doing a quick search I was able to find that the whistle blower mentioned in the post was indeed the guy being spread on Twitter.
I had refrained from retweeting it or spreading it since I believe that all whistle blowers deserve the right to anonymity. I also understand that most right wing theories turn out to be wrong anyway, so I didn’t want to be spreading possible disinformation about a potentially innocent man. I also mentally highlighted the hypocrisy on how NYT is always fake news, unless they post something that helps Trump out. Then it is perfectly acceptable to use the NYT as a source.
So as things are heating up, on October 30, 2019, Real Clear Investigations posts an article written by Paul Sperry naming the whistle blower. This was the first time the name was getting into more of the mainstream sources. Once it was written by RCI, it was retweeted by prominent accounts like Senator Rand Paul and Michael Flynn Lawyer Sidney Powell.
So watching this madness unfold, I am thinking to myself, “This is getting out of control. They don’t even know if this is the guy for real.”
With the publicity of the story though, people start to get emotionally hurt when they are not properly credited. One threader on twitter, Greg Rubini, posted a rant last night how he has been treated unfairly and how his information was stolen. Greg has me blocked because I called him a gas lighter back in the day, but I was able to see the thread by other’s who also share my sentiments. Turns out Greg posted screen shots of his DM’s showing it getting sent to Sara Carter and Kevin Corke. Sara Carter did not respond to the DM, but Kevin Corke bit.
So going through the Direct Messages shared, you can see that this was swirling around Fox News and even got on their radar. Rubini asked for it to be shared with Fred Fleitz and says that his original thread has already been retweeted by Powell and Michael Flynn’s sister. Checking Fleitz timeline, he never shared any of the information on the suspected whistle blower. Why is this coming out now though?
Turns out on October 30, 2019, on air Sean Hannity shared details of Paul Sperry’s article, without naming the whistle blower.
Fox News continued pushing the news the next day, by having Tucker Carlson repeat the article. Once again though, the whistle blower wasn’t named.
Without them crediting Greg Rubini for his work, it allowed an insight into how this type of information spreads. The worst part is that Greg Rubini was not even the first one to name the apparent whistle blower as there were other theorists on Twitter naming the same guy on October 10, 2019, which was the day before.
If I want to start tying things back full circle, along with retweeting Rubini’s thread and retweeting Sperry’s article, Sidney Powell endorsed Rubini a week before the Sperry article on October 23, 2019. “Check out @GregRubini for some answers!!”, she posted while also endorsing her book.
The craziest thing is, even when I was still a full fledged conspiracy theorist, I knew not to go to Rubini for answers.
Now I am hoping that this is information, because if the man alleged to be the whistle blower is not the whistle blower, I want to watch it all burn down. The only hard part is if another person happens to be named, right wing media can just call it a Schiff Cover-up and it will be believed, just like the rest of the bullshit.
Update: Turns out Donald Trump Jr. has been spreading it as well. Wonder how long until Trump retweets it himself?
Sara Carter joins the party.