Influencing the vote, a reminder
[ by Charles Cameron — Not just Putin, Zuckerberg, remember? ]
We’ve all been forcibly reminded of Russian attempts to influence the US electoral system — but have we forgotten Facebook?
Weisburd, Watts & Berger, WOTR, Trolling for Trump, 2016 Micah Sifry, Mother Jones, Facebook Wants You to Vote on Tuesday, 2014
June 29th, 2017 at 8:30 pm
According to the most complete study of foreign intervention in elections that I’ve found (Yuval’s), the worst offender in interfering with other people elections is the United States. I’ve asked these questions over at my place but they bear repeating.
Is intervention in other people’s elections right or wrong? Is it only wrong when somebody else is intervening in our elections? Is it only wrong when it’s the Russians intervening in somebody’s elections? Is it only wrong when Russia is intervening in our elections? Or should we just stop whining, decide that everybody is intervening in everybody else’s elections, secure our voting machines as well as we can, and get on with our lives?
June 30th, 2017 at 1:52 am
The Russians have always tried to meddle in our political system, to infiltrate our unions, our media companies (many reporters and writers during the Cold War were fellow travelers or actual agents of the NKVD -including Ernest Hemmingway, I.F. Stone, Bernard Redmont and others)our congressional staffs and our intelligence agencies. Russian spies or agents of influence have worked in most major agencies of every administration since Adolf Berle brought FDR a list of suspected Communist spies (which FDR purposefully ignored).
What’s different today is the eroding legitimacy of the US elite, it’s adversarial posture on a class and identity politics basis towards about half of the country, intra-elite competition within the ruling group and deep cultural divisions within the American people. The Russians found leverage they had not enjoyed since the 1930’s but their tricks, their active measures, have hardly changed except to go digital. Our major problem, is us.