did someone muck with the backend here

Re: Guest Post - Didn't I see you at the national prayer breakfast?

1

I miss Boris and Natasha.


Posted by: Spike | Link to this comment | 02-10-20 8:04 AM
horizontal rule
2

Apparently they are Pottsylvanian.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 02-10-20 9:10 AM
horizontal rule
3

This sounds like the kind of thing that Bellingcat gets up to - there are a surprising number of massive data dumps from inside the Russian government, and they used them to find passport numbers, real names etc for the Salisbury murderers and several of their colleagues.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 02-10-20 9:27 AM
horizontal rule
4

At least we can be assured that no-one in the Trump Administration could possibly be doing anything bad with the massive amount of personal data that the US government has collected over the years.


Posted by: Spike | Link to this comment | 02-10-20 9:43 AM
horizontal rule
5

Wait, Amazon has a Rocky and Bullwinkle reboot?


Posted by: Spike | Link to this comment | 02-10-20 9:48 AM
horizontal rule
6

Stallone fights a moose.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02-10-20 9:58 AM
horizontal rule
7

I've long been puzzled why this kind of information doesn't get routinely used as a weapon by powerful people. If so, why it doesn't become public more often. Bezos' hack is the most recent example, but for instance pressure between parties in a lawsuit or competition for a position or a contract.

Hastert was brought down by "leaked" information in 2006, for instance, not 100% clear, but I thought an individual passed on information. Kohl was brought down by an insider who leaked, rather than a dig into one of his offshore bank accounts. The Panama Papers are maybe an example of a data release with hostile intents.

I had cause to translate something recently where secretly recorded business conversations and malicious revelations looked like SOP for a middling businessman. Maybe not in the US, because people don't make shifty deals or have affairs or hidden addictions here? It gets cleaner at higher levels of power? Sketchy behavior causes its own problems, and the people involved are consequently self-defeating? I'm not convinced.


Posted by: lw | Link to this comment | 02-10-20 10:03 AM
horizontal rule
8

I had cause to translate something recently where secretly recorded business conversations and malicious revelations looked like SOP for a middling businessman.

Was this fiction? I feel like fiction about powerful people, whether in business or in politics, has them pull the blackmail/threats/extortion card a lot more often than you get in real life, partly because it's more dramatic, but also because writers (especially TV/movie) aren't as good at writing horsetrading and other more congenial, long-term-repeatable forms of persuasion.

That said, given their connections with National Inquirer and other shady parties, I think there is a lot of simmering suspicion that the Trump world may have engaged in blackmail sub rosa to bring stragglers like Graham in line. It's not like we'd know.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 02-10-20 10:20 AM
horizontal rule
9

It would be irresponsible not to speculate.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02-10-20 10:32 AM
horizontal rule
10

8. Not fiction, police documents. I mean, the guy was probably lying about something, but the documents were intended to be exculpatory, and his behavior was better than what he described the other people doing.

Yes, Graham is someone I was thinking of, as well as JE Hoover's files. What's new is that this can be done without a big powerful organization.


Posted by: lw | Link to this comment | 02-10-20 10:35 AM
horizontal rule
11

I've long been puzzled why this kind of information doesn't get routinely used as a weapon by powerful people. If so, why it doesn't become public more often. Bezos' hack is the most recent example, but for instance pressure between parties in a lawsuit or competition for a position or a contract.

It does, doesn't it? This is the sort of thing people hire Kroll for. We just don't hear about it most of the time because it's not in anyone's interest to talk about it. Bezos was unusual in that he publicly refused to be blackmailed.


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 02-10-20 10:55 AM
horizontal rule
12

Romney is the only GOP senator who hasn't fucked someone who he would be embarrassed to have it publicly known about. That seems clear enough.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02-10-20 10:58 AM
horizontal rule
13

11: Right, I'm sure there's plenty of blackmail going on, it's just that if it works we never hear about it. And most of the time it probably does work.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 02-10-20 11:00 AM
horizontal rule
14

Meanwhile, the US has just accused China's military intelligence of being behind the Equifax hack.


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 02-10-20 11:01 AM
horizontal rule
15

Obvious inference number 2: Doug Jones and Joe Manchin are very happily married.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02-10-20 11:01 AM
horizontal rule
16

To each other?


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 02-10-20 11:05 AM
horizontal rule
17

You know my methods.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02-10-20 11:06 AM
horizontal rule
18

Apply them. But not very thoroughly or they really aren't my methods anymore.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02-10-20 11:15 AM
horizontal rule
19

Doug Jones and Joe Manchin are not two peas in a pod. Doug Jones is a liberal who got elected on a fluke and has no expectation of being reelected. Joe Manchin is trying to be the one Democrat holding national office Trump fans still like.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 02-10-20 12:25 PM
horizontal rule
20

Cousins. Identical cousins.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02-10-20 12:27 PM
horizontal rule
21

So I should say that Manchin voting to convict Trump is at least as much of a surprise as Romney doing so. Good job Joe Manchin.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 02-10-20 12:28 PM
horizontal rule
22

19: Doug Jones is working very hard to be re-elected, and just might pull it off. He won convictions in the Birmingham church bombing, so he is no stranger to what it takes to do right in Alabama.


Posted by: Doug | Link to this comment | 02-11-20 1:41 AM
horizontal rule
23

In a further twist, it turns out that the Experian hack itself was perpetrated by the Chinese government . [how long before we take for granted that if it had been the Russians, the FBI would not dare say so?]


Posted by: NW | Link to this comment | 02-11-20 2:48 AM
horizontal rule
24

Something interesting. Remember the Ashley Madison data leak? That was a thing and pretty much nothing happened as a result. Yes, a lot of the profiles in the data set were bots, but plenty weren't and you'd think just so-and-so's being on the site would be exciting news. But I don't remember a wave of scandals, resignations, or even just divorces. And I don't have a clear idea why.


Posted by: Alex | Link to this comment | 02-11-20 4:30 AM
horizontal rule
25

24: that came to mind for me as well. You'd think that dumping a huge list of married people who were having, or wanted to have, affairs would have some impact. But nothing.
According to wiki, three suicides and several blackmail ops were linked to the hack; it links to an analysis which suggests that there was no evidence of any human-human interaction on the website at all.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ashley_Madison_data_breach


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 02-11-20 4:44 AM
horizontal rule
26

23/upthread: For the PRC, this does appear to be standard practice.
Also, you know who actually was at the national prayer breakfast?


Posted by: Mossy Character | Link to this comment | 02-11-20 4:44 AM
horizontal rule
27

I was at a Nebraska Prayer Breakfast. That was before they decided vicious ranting was close enough to count as prayer.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02-11-20 6:20 AM
horizontal rule
28

Is Doug Jones helping any change in the rest of AL state government, or is he having to devote 100% of his energy to reelection?


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 02-11-20 11:43 AM
horizontal rule