Here’s an interesting if overheated article by Adrian Chen in the NYT Magazine about the Russian government’s hasbara operation employing Russians to post pro-Putin comments on articles.
(The American prestige media is really getting worked up these days over the Comment Menace.)
Of course, the NYT article doesn’t mention the word “hasbara,” even though it’s the best single term for what the Russians are up to. The Israelis have been pretty upfront about their long-running, well-funded hasbara operation: here’s the expensive-looking Hasbara Fellowships website where you can apply for money for promoting Israel online.
A lot of Americans think Russia and Israel are polar opposite countries, but they have deep connections and a lot of back and forth travel due to the emigration from Russia to Israel in 1970 – 2000 or so. And a lot of them seem to wind up in the San Fernando Valley.I wouldn’t be surprised if some folks have put in a few part-time hours for both Netanyahu’s and Putin’s hasbara efforts.
Of course, Putin and Netanyahu pay their people to do social media hasbara for them, in contrast to America’s Volunteer Auxiliary Thought Police. From WWTDD:
In the first day of official Caitlyn Jenner shaming, former Nickelodeon kid star Drake Bell suffered a blast of the acceptance shaming laser cannon when he Tweeted that he was still going to call Bruce Jenner by the name Bruce as he’s been known since 1950. It’s unclear whether Drake was taking a swipe at tranny attention whores or merely just expressing the logical point that calling somebody by a brand new name after a lifetime of otherwise is practically awkward. Didn’t matter. He was labeled a non-believer and forced into the LGBT time machine and sent back to relieve his child TV casting days. Some more aggressive man paw on your tween junk ought to get you ship-shape on your tolerance.
It’s always good to remind yourself that while 5% of those on social media are self-loathing dirty sock smelling virgin trolls, the other 95% are knee jerk reflexive sycophants who view self-righteousness as the top block on their personal success pyramids. Those two should add up to 100%.