Friday, October 16, 2020

Arizona, California, Georgia, Iowa, Indiana, Illinois, Kansas, Kentucky, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, Montana, Nebraska, New Jersey, New Mexico, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, and Wyoming

OCT. 17 - Massachusetts and Nevada
OCT. 19 - Alaska, Arkansas, Idaho, North Dakota
OCT. 20 - Louisiana, Utah, and Wisconsin
OCT. 21 - West Virginia
OCT. 24 - Florida and New York
OCT. 26 - Maryland
OCT. 27 - Washington, D.C.
OCT. 29 - Oklahoma

What did Donald Trump do today?

He fell victim to a slightly more innocent internet conspiracy theory than he usually does.

Twitter was down briefly yesterday. The company blamed a power outage, though with the election looming, there was some speculation that Trump's favorite social media platform had been hacked. 

One news site, the Babylon Bee, reported that Twitter had deliberately trashed its own servers to defend Joe Biden against the bungled Russian disinformation campaign launched this week by Trump's fixer Rudy Giuliani. The story got picked up by the Twitter algorithm, and Trump immediately retweeted it.

The Babylon Bee is a satirical news site—like the Onion or Saturday Night Live's "Weekend Update," it is literally fake news.

Trump's deadly-earnest retweet and commentary came just hours after he claimed he had no idea what QAnon was when he retweeted posts endorsing the bizarre and dangerous conspiracy theory, during this exchange with the host:

NBC'S SAVANNAH GUTHRIE: Let me ask you about QAnon. It is this theory that Democrats are a Satanic pedophile ring and that you are the savior of that. Now, can you just once and for all state that that is completely not true and disavow QAnon in its entirety?

TRUMP: I know nothing about QAnon —

GUTHRIE: I just told you.

TRUMP: You told me. But what you tell me doesn't necessarily make it fact, I hate to say that. I know nothing about it. I do know they are very much against pedophilia. They fight it very hard, but I know nothing about it. If you'd like me to —

GUTHRIE: They believe it is a Satanic cult run by the 'deep state.'

TRUMP: — study the subject. I'll tell you what I do know about: I know about Antifa and I know about the radical left.

Trump certainly does know what QAnon is; he's thanked them at campaign rallies. The FBI regards QAnon as a potential terror threat, and—like many of the things Trump has tweeted—is linked to Russian intelligence agencies

Why should I care?

  • It's really important that the President of the United States be able to tell when something is real, and when it's fictional, especially if it's labeled as being fictional.
  • Even by Trump's standards, this is pretty embarrassing.