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December 09, 2022

The Twitter Files: The Road to the Removal of Donald Trump
Update: Mike Huckabee Was Nearly Banned for Making a Joke


1. THREAD: The Twitter Files

Part One: October 2020-January 6th

This tranche will concern the backdrop to the removal of Trump, not the main event.

2. The world knows much of the story of what happened between riots at the Capitol on January 6th, and the removal of President Donald Trump from Twitter on January 8th...

3. We'll show you what hasn't been revealed: the erosion of standards within the company in months before J6, decisions by high-ranking executives to violate their own policies, and more, against the backdrop of ongoing, documented interaction with federal agencies.

4. This first installment covers the period before the election through January 6th. Tomorrow, @Shellenbergermd will detail the chaos inside Twitter on January 7th. On Sunday, @BariWeiss will reveal the secret internal communications from the key date of January 8th.

5. Whatever your opinion on the decision to remove Trump that day, the internal communications at Twitter between January 6th-January 8th have clear historical import. Even Twitter's employees understood in the moment it was a landmark moment in the annals of speech.


So the big reveals will be tomorrow and Sunday, but tonight will be interesting too.

The article will be tweeted here. I won't be copy and pasting it into the blog because, well, I mean. You can just read it on Twitter.

Update: Yoel Roth seems to admit here that the FBI told him that Trump was some kind of "danger" to democracy and that Twitter should ban him.

Here Roth laments that his electronic calendar does not have generic enough descriptions to allow him to hide the people he's having meetings with -- the government, the FBI.

Matt Taibbi @mtaibbi

10. As the election approached, senior executives -- perhaps under pressure from federal agencies, with whom they met more as time progressed -- increasingly struggled with rules, and began to speak of "vios" as pretexts to do what they'd likely have done anyway.

11. After J6, internal Slacks show Twitter executives getting a kick out of intensified relationships with federal agencies. Here's Trust and Safety head Yoel Roth, lamenting a lack of "generic enough" calendar descriptions to concealing his "very interesting" meeting partners.


Update: Mike Huckabee was nearly banned for what Twitter admitted was a joke. Only lefties are allowed to joke. (Or to speculate, or to make guesses, or to deviate from the Established Official Government Cover Story in any way whatsoever. If anyone else does it, it's Disinformation.)

27. Examining the entire election enforcement Slack, we didn't see one reference to moderation requests from the Trump campaign, the Trump White House, or Republicans generally. We looked. They may exist: we were told they do. However, they were absent here.

31. In one case, former Arizona governor Mike Huckabee joke-tweets about mailing in ballots for his "deceased parents and grandparents."

32. This inspires a long Slack that reads like an @TitaniaMcGrath parody. "I agree it's a joke," concedes a Twitter employee, "but he's also literally admitting in a tweet a crime."

The group declares Huck's an "edge case," and though one notes, "we don't make exceptions for jokes or satire," they ultimately decide to leave him be, because "we've poked enough bears."

33. "Could still mislead people... could still mislead people," the humor-averse group declares, before moving on from Huckabee


33. Roth suggests moderation even in this absurd case could depend on whether or not the joke results in "confusion.' This seemingly silly case actually foreshadows serious later issues:


34. In the docs, execs often expand criteria to subjective issues like intent (yes, a video is authentic, but why was it shown?), orientation (was a banned tweet shown to condemn, or support?), or reception (did a joke cause "confusion"?). This reflex will become key in J6.

This is what leftwing "fact-checkers" do all the time: If it's a liberal telling a joke, that's the end of the inquiry. It's a joke. Therefore it's not misleading. There's no fact to check in a joke.

But if it's a conservative telling a joke, they start scrutinizing for "intent," "capacity to mislead," etc.

If a liberal statement is true on its face, then it's true. End of analysis. But leftwing fact checkers won't allow a conservative statement to be rated as true if it's merely true on its face -- they'll search to see if it has any possible implications which they can quibble with. And if they disagree with those implications, the statement is false (or partly false). Note the liberal statements also of course have implications of dubious veracity -- but the leftwing fact-checkers never bother checking those.

"Fact" checkers terminate inquiries into the veracity of leftwing statements as quickly as possible, finding them to be factual, but do the most probing possible analyses of conservative statements, from the subatomic scale to the transcendental metaphysical levels of what the statement "could possibly mean to someone."

If Taibbi isn't careful, he'll wind up overturning the applecart on the whole "fact" checking scam!

Dr. Jay Bhattacharya, at Real Clear Politics:

We needed to have a discussion, an open scientific discussion about the right policies for COVID. Imagine how different all the small businesses who stayed open, all the people that wouldn't have missed their cancer screenings, all the kids that wouldn't be depressed and suicidal, all the learning loss that could have been avoided if we just had an open scientific discussion. This was not a free and fair kind of discussion. It wasn't science that happened. When we followed the science, it was not actually science we followed. It was something else entirely. It was censorship that I think led to the tremendously bad policies we've had over COVID and the failures that we've seen over the last three years.

Video at the link.

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posted by Ace at 06:17 PM

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