Kris McCormack: “Here is an article about Robert Mercer, the money man behind Trump, and the person who introduced Cambridge Analytica to the Trump campaign.”
It’s long, and you absolutely have to read every word of it. This is how Brexit happened. This is how Trump came within 3 million votes of Hillary. This may start wars, pit one community against another, shape your children’s future.
. . . On its website, Cambridge Analytica makes the astonishing boast that it has psychological profiles based on 5,000 separate pieces of data on 220 million American voters – its Unique Selling Proposition is to use this data to understand people’s deepest emotions and then target them accordingly. The system, according to Albright, amounted to a “propaganda machine” . . .
. . . “It’s no exaggeration to say that minds can be changed. Behaviour can be predicted and controlled. I find it incredibly scary. I really do. Because nobody has really followed through on the possible consequences of all this. People don’t know it’s happening to them. Their attitudes are being changed behind their backs.”
. . . This week, Russia announced the formation of a new branch of the military: “information warfare troops.”
. . . “Politics is war,” said Steve Bannon last year in the Wall Street Journal. And increasingly this looks to be true.
. . . One of the things that concerns Howard most is the hundreds of thousands of “sleeper” bots they’ve found. Twitter accounts that have tweeted only once or twice and are now sitting quietly waiting for a trigger: some sort of crisis where they will rise up and come together to drown out all other sources of information.
Many of the techniques were refined in Russia, he says, and then exported everywhere else. “You have these incredible propaganda tools developed in an authoritarian regime moving into a free market economy with a complete regulatory vacuum. What you get is a firestorm.” . . .
But read it all.