I had to take a second to highlight the hilarity found in one major media outlet and two members of Congress falling for a fake tweet. If it was not so dang funny, it would be sad. Very sad.
So a little context; General Michael Flynn allegedly met with some Russian officials (read spies) prior to being named the National Security Advisor. “Someone” knew about this within the US intelligence community and informed the FBI after Flynn won passage by Congress. Trump reportedly requested Flynn resign, which he did. Pretty straightforward…
Enter social media!
Some unsung hero hailing from the land of Trolls (not those annoying singing ones with the hair) created a parody Mike Flynn account. Using this account, this master of Trolls, this giant among men, tweeted several statements which, when viewed from a surface level, appear to be very official. The Nancy Pelosi staffers obviously didn’t pay attention to the profile name which clearly says, “Not Michael Flynn”, nor did these social media experts read the account description which stated, “Parody account.”
In their politically-orgasmic glee, the staffers ran to Pelosi and showed her the tweets. She, in turn, decided to hold a press conference about the tweets. Specifically she wanted the press to know she understood the meaning of the word scapegoat. Furthermore, because of the nuanced meaning of the word scapegoat, Pelosi concluded a conspiracy was afoot thus necessitating a wider investigation. The press conference was one for ages; I mean a real-life Russian spy novel mixed with the confessions of a Trump insider! This was going to be epic.
Then reality set in and Nancy was informed she’d been duped. Now, it is not uncommon for members of Congress to be mislead. It happens so often we’ve forgotten it’s even a thing. But this level of deception stuns one into silence, especially considering her own staffers inadvertently misled her into calling for an official investigation into a (fake) goat!
After all of the talk about fake news you would think national level leaders would be a bit more careful. If nothing else, this entire episode shows how dependant we’ve become on social media for information and how trusting we tend to be.