Twitter Boots Popular Account Followed By Major Right Wing Figures Because (Shocker) It’s Run By Russians

I followed this account for months after seeing how many major right wingers were retweeting it. Eventually I was blocked but I never dreamed it was by Russians.

Buzzfeed News reports:

Twitter took 11 months to close a Russian troll account that claimed to speak for the Tennessee Republican Party even after that state’s real GOP notified the social media company that the account was a fake.

The account, @TEN_GOP, was enormously popular, amassing at least 136,000 followers between its creation in November 2015 and when Twitter shut it down in August, according to a snapshot of the account captured by the Internet Archive just before the account was “permanently suspended.”

@TEN_GOP gained enough support from the far right that when it was finally shut down, commentators like Reddit’s pro-Trump r/the_donald forum expressed outrage. Jack Posobiec, a pro-Trump internet activist who himself has more than 213,000 Twitter followers, questioned the action when Twitter temporarily suspended the account in July.

In contrast, the actual Tennessee GOP’s Twitter account, @tngop, has only 13,400 followers, despite being the Twitter voice of the state party since 2007.

After Twitter finally booted the Russian troll account TEN_GOP, it resurfaced under another handle and quickly won praise from Trump.

  • Prost Seattle

    As if on cue Donald. Timing is everything.

  • HZ81

    I can’t believe TN republicans were fooled! I mean, TN?

    • Comixbear

      I live and bang my head daily against the wall in Tennessee.

      Believe it.

      • HZ81

        I’m sorry. We should start a relocation gofundme page for our homo peeps. Seriously.

        • Comixbear

          We can call it the Witless Protection Program…to protect us from these witless idiots!

    • Xiao Ai: The Social Gadfly

      Who says they were fooled?

    • greenmanTN

      Ah, shutcher pie hole.

      • HZ81

        Only if you have pie, sir! 🙂

  • fastlanestranger

    This country is full of idiot f**ks.

  • shellback

    Perhaps it’s time to shut down the twitter. And facebook as well.

    • Prost Seattle

      How about just an education campaign so people understand when they’re reading information that has not been put through rigorous journalistic standards?

      • shellback

        Education? Let’s ask betsy devos about it.

      • safari

        Education is elitist. It causes people to not believe the right wing trolls.

      • Karl Dubhe

        A campaign to teach people how to read biased news sources would be an easier sell in the current atmosphere.

        What they say, and how they say it, has meanings. Just not necessarily the meaning that you first hear.

  • Prost Seattle

    I know, we really need a border wall. I don’t think we should burden poor Mexico, the Mason-Dixie line would be nicely spruced up with a wall. The greatest wall!

  • Treant

    But, see, Twitter is totally concerned with your safety and taking care of its own problems! You shouldn’t blame them, comrades!

    • (((GC)))

      And everything Dear Leader* Cheetolini tweets is “newsworthy” by definition, and therefore exempt from those pesky Terms of Service that are for the little people.

  • Sam_Handwich

    Now that i think about it, I fell for the account being the TN GOP.

    • JoeMyGod

      I did too at first and almost wrote a post about one of their tweets last year. Wised up just in time after going over their history.

  • Henry Auvil

    Ivanka went through a “phase” and was REALLY into Pussy Riot. Then she forgot about it for some reason.

    • Treant

      She graduated college and gave all that up.

  • bkmn

    Take them all down.

  • Sam_Handwich
    • Sam_Handwich
      • Starwind65

        Shows where Trump is getting his talking points from.

        • clay

          Spencer, the Millers, Jared, etc.

          Even during the campaign 1/2 of the things Turmp re-tweeted were from accounts that were set up just to post the one thing Turmp re-tweeted. His social media group has always been a little circle of reciprocal spray.

      • Karl Dubhe

        I read that as Loretta Lynne…

        Mabye I should get the eyes checked.

        • Comixbear

          I now am hearing a voice singing “I’m proud to be a Communist’s minor daughter”…..

    • Treant
      • Acronym Jim

        That picture is obviously fake. The guy isn’t using an American Flag as a beach towel.

        • doninkansas

          Too clean and well dressed, no Hover-Round in sight.

      • glass

        I call BS on this. That picture is from the Bowling Green Massacre!

  • liondon#iamnotatraitor

    It’s all about money.

  • another_steve

    Why can’t the world be nice again.

    Let’s go back to Ozzie and Harriet time. That was a nice time, wasn’t it?

    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/bdf0f776cac3cd4b35520ef670ce9aca9925787f0f7bc58e287685036b6ae426.jpg

    • Ken M

      I have nieces born in the 21st Century. I’m from the Ozzie days as well. Sorry to say, I don’t think we will ever see them, or anything that simply again.

      • ScubaBearLA

        But was it really that simple back then? TV at the time was just escapist fantasy; real life in the 50s and early 60s was non-stop fear of communism and nuclear war. Fears fanned by politicians to keep the public in line and voting them back into office.

        I don’t think today is appreciably different. The fears have changed somewhat, but the purpose of those fears to keep the populace in line is still very much in effect.

      • Cattleya1

        They were only simple because the outgroups were living Thoreau’s lives of quiet desperation.

    • Lazycrockett

      For the people in the picture yes, it was.

      • Lars Littlefield

        Harriet Nelson was well-known to be an alcoholic for most of her life until she died.
        Ozzie Nelson, a work-aholic robbed his sons of childhood by making them grow up in show business. He was also famous for dipping his wick in anything that moved.
        Ricky Nelson likely caused his own death by igniting a fire by free-basing cocaine on the plane he had chartered.
        David Nelson was so estranged from his family he made pointed arrangements not to be buried in the Nelson family plot.

        Yup. A classic, loving 1950s era family. So wholesome.

    • TampaDink

      Not so much for our tribe.

      • another_steve

        Queer people didn’t exist on TV back then, during the 1950s and 60s. To say we were “invisible” back then is to put it mildly.

        I’m a rabid fan of Rod Serling’s classic The Twilight Zone, which aired from 1959 to 1964. I know all 156 episodes. At parties, when drunk, I recite entire dialogue segments from memory.

        There were no LGBT people in Serling’s world – which is particularly ironic because Serling knew all of the great Hollywood queers of his day. Some – like Roddy McDowell – were featured in the series.

        Serling certainly touched upon the “social outcast/pariah” theme in many of the TZ episodes.

        But still, we were nonexistent.

        • ScubaBearLA

          OT:

          Hey Steve– I too am a big fan of Twilight Zone. I enjoy reading your comments especially when you put in some little inside reference related to the show as I see you often do.

          This year I’m again involved with a makeover of the Magic Castle in Hollywood for Halloween, and this year our theme is “Invasion!”. I’m 55, but a lot of the people involved with helping on the makeover are millennials; they’ve heard of TZ but not seen the show. I enjoyed screening a few episodes for them, and now we are redoing the menus at the Castle to look like the book from “To Serve Man”, and in another area I have a tribute to “The Monsters Are Due on Maple Street”.

          Did you also ever watch the original “Outer Limits”? I’ve also tucked in a reference to “The Zanti Misfits” 😉

          • TKW

            And “One Step Beyond.” All favs.

          • ScubaBearLA

            I remember an episode of that with (if I recall correctly) Werner Klemperer. He was a U-boat captain, and the U-boat was haunted by the ghost of a worker who was accidentally sealed inside when the boat was made. Very spooky show.

          • another_steve

            One Step Beyond was excellent. It ran for something like two and a half years. As with The Twilight Zone and The Outer Limits, many of the leading Hollywood stars of the day were featured in it.

          • another_steve

            Wonderful what you’re doing, ScubaBear. Much love to you.

            Yes, I’m a fanatic when it comes to The Outer Limits, too. There’s a very excellent “companion guide” to that series that was put together by David J. Schow. It’s occasionally gone out of print. I don’t know whether it’s still available, but if it is, I highly recommend it to any lover of that series.

            The Outer Limits was an uneven TV series. It contained some of the best sci-fy thrillers in all of TV history, and also some of the worst.

    • Ken M
    • Gianni

      Yes it was. The problem was that it was only on TV, along with Leave It To Beaver, Father Knows Best, etc. Always happy, pleasant, comfortable endings.

      • safari

        But people didn’t have any other screens aside from movie screens and sometimes talked to one another.

        • Gianni

          Quite true. It was a different world then.

        • another_steve

          I remember, with a certain fondness, people talking to one another.

          When my husband and I go to a casual restaurant for dinner and I observe people actually talking to one another at other tables and not on their smartphones, I say to my man, Ooh, look, hon… People at that table over there are talking to one another!

    • ByronK

      When they mainly used fire hoses against the blacks and most women didn’t work. Fun times.

    • lymis

      Ah yes, a lovely family photo. Oleg, Natalya, and their strapping sons Dimitri and Viktor.

    • Megrim Twist

      Yessss, a time when the females, the non-whites and the queers knew their place.

      • another_steve

        There have always been worlds-within-worlds.

        We here on JMG are chatting and enjoying ourselves on our expensive electronic toys.

        Elsewhere in the world, people are literally starving to death.

    • Friday’s_cat

      Ward, weren’t you a little hard on the Beaver last night?

  • Tawreos

    It used to be you had to warn people that every hot girl they talked to was a guy now they have to be warned that they are all Russians.

  • Lars Littlefield

    Not having either a Twithead or Facepalm account is still proving to be two of the better decisions I’ve ever made.

    • Gianni

      I’m with you on that.

    • Adam King

      I can’t do anything about the “social media” monster, of course, but I can refuse to participate. I can see why people find it so tempting and involving, though, so I can’t criticize them for engaging in it–just reassure them that real life still exists and is even more fascinating than the internet.

    • Nowhereman

      My instincts kept me away, too. I’m glad that I never joined any of those platforms.

  • vorpal 😼

    Russia is the new world power.
    Somebody either hand me a bottle of tequila or just kill me now.

    • Sam_Handwich
    • MT YVR

      If I’m going out it WILL involve a bottle of alcohol. But more like : https://static.tumblr.com/e17445879fde44f8448674651b19ae65/2oejp4q/z8Oo60k57/tumblr_static_tumblr_static__640.gif

      THAT is how I will go. Of course, let’s be honest, most money has it also involving an explosion that levels a city block and the final words “here, hold my drink”.

      • vorpal 😼

        Indeed.
        Just give me a nice purple curly straw and point me towards the nearest liquor distillery.

        If you’re trying to take out Trump, make sure you don’t get the address for the White House from Sarah Palin, since numbers over three tend to give her problems.
        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=055TEJ7XGyU

        • MT YVR

          Curly straw with lights in it.

          Mmmm.

          Of course I’m a rum man, m’self. Vodka is fine, but someone else can have the gin wing. And the wine wing of things.

          https://i.pinimg.com/564x/3a/7a/ac/3a7aace41d81ae747483051246d2ae02–liquor-store-e-cards.jpg

          • Adam King

            Gin? Did someone say gin? I’ll take it all!

          • shellback

            You know what they say about gin, don’t you?
            One is alright.
            Two, at the most.
            Three, under the table.
            Four, under the host.
            Wilberforce Clayborne Humphries

          • vorpal 😼

            I like them all, but have to say: here in Chile, the red wine is so good that that’s pretty much all I drink now.

            Bottles that would cost $40 USD can be bought here for about $10. One bottle a day keeps the liver at play.

          • MT YVR

            Sadly I get migraines from all wines. Red, white, all of it. Within 1/2 hour of drinking even a sip. Hell I have to be careful with some sauces if they’re not cooked enough.

            I’ve never had a full glass of wine in my life. I’ve no understanding of taste of wines because I figured this out when I was 17. Nothing since. (sad panda)

          • BearEyes

            sulfates? You might look at organic wines without sulfates/sulfites?

          • vorpal 😼

            I know a number of people like that. Fortunately, the hard liqours are easier to take. That being said, I do get headaches (nasty ones) from cheap red wines, but good ones don’t seem to trigger me… probably because they don’t have added sulfates / sulfites to compensate for bad quality product and only naturally occurring ones? I have no idea.

            White wine never interested me.

            Do you prefer white or dark rum, or does it matter? The husband is a rum fiend.

          • MT YVR

            I really really tried as a teenager to find a wine. Because it was So Adult. But I had already been suffering (unbeknownst to me at the time as in those days “kids don’t get migraines”) cluster migraines for years. They started when I was … 12? So I had a strong disincentive to try to work through the pain.

            But for rum.

            Well first: my husband refers to rum as a] my demon aphrodisiac and b] my pant dropper. So. For flavours… start with rum. 😛

            Actually I discovered recently I adore silver/whites. I’ve never been a fan of spiced though I’ve recently found a few darker ones that don’t have that spice/cloying flavour palette. I find them, oddly as everyone else says the opposite, too sweet.

            Mount Gay Silver. Which I can no longer find. (crying) Is so far one of my favourites.

            As for hangovers/headaches? I don’t get them. I’ve had probably a dozen hangovers in my life (and hon, I drink…). Which people hate me for… or fear me. I drink like it’s a competition with prizes, when I drink. And nothing. Me and hard liquor. We’re like this. (fingers crossed)

            😉

  • JT

    Twitter Boots Popular Account Followed By Major Right Wing Figures Because (Shocker) It’s Run By Russians

    Now we know why they’re called Red States.
    https://www.conservativereview.com/-/media/images/conservative-review/article-images/2017/october/handmaiden-commies.jpg

  • safari
    • Halou

      Trump is the most pro-gay president in American history, according to the Log Cabin group.

      • vorpal 😼

        The three of them should be getting used to being wrong by now.

    • BearEyes

      go back to judge school. You missed the part about the 14th amendment.

    • (((GC)))

      Lambda Legal and 35 other groups are demanding that tRump withdraw Jeff Mateer’s nomination.

      Among other things, he mocked trans kids and referred to their parents suing for the kids’ rights as evidence of “Satan’s plan”, and dismissed Obergefell as “not the law of the land” because “it’s a 5-4 decision with Justice Kennedy joining the four liberals”. (Wonder what he’d say about the 5-4 decision for Hobby Lobby?)

      https://www.eriegaynews.com/news/article.php?recordid=201711lambdalegalmatter35orgs

    • Cucker “Dick” Tarlson
      • edrex

        i freakin LOVED that show. i was so bummed that it wasn’t carried for another season. husband and i still begin conversations with “management says…!”

    • Michael R
    • Opinion Sousaphones

      That poor bastard. He is so so so gay and so so so effed up… deadly dangerous, evil, and so effed up. I would feel bad for him, but, seeking an approval he will never get, he persecutes The Other, hoping nobody will take a clear-eyed look at him… cowardice, weaponized cowardice.

  • safari

    I laughed as I typed
    man top

  • LovesIrony

    the ghost of stalin sighs

  • Halou

    Outraged that Twitter would take action to ensure that American politicians speak for American citizens? Dammit! The Trumpanzees want the Russians, not Americans, to rule over them and the rest of us.

  • Gianni

    Seems pretty obvious to me that the Russian troll factory, either through very dedicated effort and study, or with directed help from this side of the pond, knew and knows just where in certain locations and in which states the dimwits are concentrated.

    • clay

      Have you heard of Cambridge Analytica?

      • Lars Littlefield

        I’m inspired to form my own political/polling/informatcs think tank. I will call it Gay Super Heroes Who Save the World.

      • Gianni

        No I haven’t but I looked it up. Very interesting. Partly owned by the Mercer family caught my eye.

      • boatboy_srq

        The modern Reichwing: we prefer being the tool of a foreign government intent on subverting US democracy than being an unGodly unXtian LiebrulSoshulist Dummocrat™.

  • bobbyjoe

    Let’s repeat this once again:

    The Russians really, really, really, really, really wanted Trump to win.

    And they’re still doing things that suggest they really, really, really, really, really want to keep him in power.

    It really, really, really, really, really smells a lot like treason.

    • Lumpy Gaga

      Eeeeeeverywhere you goooooooooo…..

    • Treant

      It’s beginning to look a lot like treason,
      Everywhere you go…
      Take a look at the Twitter hen,
      Cackling once again,
      And kicking up some concealing snow…

      • Mattie

        Google is paying 97$ per hour,with weekly payouts.You can also avail this.
        On tuesday I got a great New Land Rover Range Rover from having earned $11752 this last four weeks..with-out any doubt it’s the most-comfortable job I have ever done .. It sounds unbelievable but you wont forgive yourself if you don’t check it
        !ka92d:
        ➽➽
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    • Lawerence Collins

      Then there’s this from The Hill.com

      https://youtu.be/OfdLZCMsrzs

      • Guy z

        Critical thinking. Obviously not part of the US education curriculum. Read the actual article from the Hill. A lot of innuendo. Just enough to get the “confirmation bias” folks riled up. Just enough for “Whataboutism”. The horseshoe theory is indeed true. God help us.

    • RationalismRules

      Treason: “the crime of betraying one’s country, especially by attempting to kill or overthrow the sovereign or government.”

      No government was overthrown. No country was betrayed (so far…) Getting yourself elected is not treason, no matter how dishonestly and fraudulently the electorate was manipulated. At most, it’s fraud. At worst, it’s a broken electoral system (aka ‘democracy’).

      • The_Wretched

        Getting your puppet in office is a pretty good take over comrade.

        • RationalismRules

          I detest and despise Trump, but I haven’t lost the ability to understand words.

  • Leo
  • Lazycrockett
  • Megrim Twist
  • worstcultever

    Where are our “defense” agencies? Did nobody in any of them anticipate this kind of fuckery? Are they still doing nothing, for the hundreds of billions we’re paying them to “secure” our nation? So – that’s it, we’re just USA Bambi to RU Godzilla and oh well, move along, nothing to see here?

    W. T. F.??!!

    • Lars Littlefield

      All of the good software encryption/decryption engineers work for Samsung, Siemens, and LG.

    • BearEyes

      we don’t take privacy or security seriously enough.

  • safari

    Whenever a new scandalous story comes out, Benjamin Wittes posts a video of one of his baby cannons firing. I find it adorable.
    https://twitter.com/benjaminwittes/status/920773954649903106

  • Sam_Handwich

    2-0 Yankees heading into the 5th

    for those who are concerned

    • TimCA

      Is this about the game played with the oblong orange ball or the spheroid orange ball and a hoop? 😉

      • BearEyes

        spheroid off-white. But also halloween-ish a la Frankenstein

  • Do I understand this correctly? Trump gets his intelligence from Russian owned twitter feeds and repeats their talking points as proof of democratic corruption? A moronic deplorable or deplorable moron?

    • Treant

      And this is A-OK with the Republicans in the House and Senate, don’t forget that.

      ETA: This is why I hold very little hope for the Mueller investigation. I’m making the deduction that the corruption and Russian influence is so entrenched in the Republican party that it’s endemic and pretty much incurable. Mueller is a Republican.

      Therefore, Mueller is also influenced and corrupt. Or, at best, he’s been threatened or bribed into silence and putting on a good show. The time to act was twenty years ago. It’s too late now.

      • canoebum

        You may be teetering over the edge into the dark side. It may be difficult to believe given our current circumstances and what comes in over the media daily, but there are still honorable people in this country who want to see its government function as intended. You can believe what you like, but I will not be so quick to dismiss Special Counsel Mueller and his team, some of whom are the very best investigators and prosecutors in the country. Hang in there. The cretin will get his, and his little dog too.

        • Treant

          I doubt it. Information and leaks from the investigation is always timed with a new low from Dumpy, plus a six hour delay. It’s just enough to keep people from protesting in the streets, and nothing more.

          And frankly, the circles keep expanding without any indication that they’re closing the circle at any point. I fully expect Mueller to pop up with, “Nothing to see here, move it along,” about a week before the 2018 mid-terms, re-energizing Republican voters and insuring that they keep the House.

          • canoebum

            O….K…..it’s your right to believe what you like. All I would suggest is you dial the cynicism control back a notch or two until we have more information about what the investigation is actually accomplishing. Mueller is famous for holding his cards close to his vest. We just can’t know right now what he has and what will come of it.

          • Treant

            Thank you for your suggestion.

    • Lars Littlefield

      Nailed it.

    • boatboy_srq

      Yes.

      Yes.

      Both.

  • ChiTownGuy

    Mo Ron

  • Lars Littlefield

    OT: Sheila Murphy, mother of soldier Calvin Murphy killed in Syria, is refuting all of the liar in chief’s claims. He never called her or her husband. No on has offered them any $25,000 check. They’ve never received a letter from Trump or anyone representing Trump.

    Rep Frederica Wilson, who was in the limo listening to the speaker phone when Trump called the widow of a fallen soldier, has a different story than what Trump’s faulty memory recalls. Gee. . . who to believe?

  • DesertSun59

    Clearly, Twitter is not our friend. Otherwise, it would have done something about this a year ago.

  • Jean-Marc in Canada
  • JCF
    • -M-

      They also had ELEVEN_GOP.
      All three shut down now.

  • Meanwhile trans and other women are getting their accounts yanked overnight when Nazis complain about them en mass for objecting to threats of rape and other violence.

  • The Milkman

    The Russians are taking advantage of the stupidity and bigotry of the American public. As long as half of us are unable to think critically, it will continue to be our greatest national weakness.

  • leastyebejudged

    You’ve got a bunch of Russians here too.