A little-noticed moment occurred on CBS News’ ‘Face the Nation’ program on Sunday morning, where information that was claimed to be “100%” accurate was not backed up by evidence and the person making the claim did not necessarily have the expertise to do so.
It sounded like what some might understandably call “disinformation.”
CBS News host Margaret Brennan asked her guest Scott Galloway about Twitter owner Elon Musk lifting the ban on former President Donald Trump.
“So what does lifting the ban on his use of Twitter actually do?” Brennan asked.
After another guest suggested Musk’s action was just a PR stunt, Galloway agreed, saying (emphasis added), “I think if- if Elon is out of the news for more than 48 hours, he’ll decide to kick him off again. He said that the people had spoken in Latin. I found that this poll- you know Elon Musk polls on Twitter are more for support than illumination. He ran a similar poll to see whether or not he should sell Tesla stock, and it ended up he’d already filed to sell those shares.”
“So I think these polls are mostly a gimmick,” he added. “And I would argue the people haven’t spoken the GRU has spoken these, Twitter–”
“Russian intelligence, you mean?” Brennan asked, for clarification.
“Hundred percent, “Galloway confirmed. “Twitter has become a playground for bad actors and fake bots. This poll is meaningless. This decision is meaningless.”
Was Galloway’s assertion also meaningless? That ‘Russian intelligence’ aka ‘GRU’ (Glavnoye Razvedyvatelnoye Upravlenie which is Russia’s Chief Intelligence Office) is behind the goings on at Twitter?
He offered no evidence for his claim.
Galloway is a business professor, entrepreneur and podcast host so how would he “hundred percent” know the Russians were manipulating Twitter? His credentials were not called into question. No sourcing. No citing.
There it was, nonetheless, broadcast on CBS on a program that regularly gets over two and a half million views each week.
It did not go unnoticed. Independent journalist Michael Tracey quipped.
"Face the Nation" guest @profgalloway claims Russian intelligence manipulated Elon Musk's poll to get Trump reinstated on Twitter. If you're wondering what his evidence is — well, it's not that kind of show pic.twitter.com/6z24Kd0kwY
— Michael Tracey (@mtracey) November 20, 2022
Fellow independent journalist Glenn Greenwald also had some thoughts.
These liberal corporate media employees and their academic comrades are about 6 seconds away from demanding FBI and Mueller investigate whether Musk colluded with the Russians to manipulate the Trump poll.
This is the same clique who lied about the Biden laptop being Russian. https://t.co/dyPCATMz38
— Glenn Greenwald (@ggreenwald) November 21, 2022
Because we do believe in truthful reporting here at BASEDPolitics, readers should know that the “same clique” to which Greenwald ascribes Galloway’s Russia assertion coming from, once claimed that the controversial Hunter Biden laptop story at the end of 2020 was “Russian Disinformation.”
Unlike “misinformation” where the info is merely incorrect, “disinformation” means sharing “false information deliberately and often covertly (as by the planting of rumors) in order to influence public opinion or obscure the truth.”
Was that what Scott Galloway was doing on Face the Nation? Russia now being the established go-to answer for so many for so long no matter what happens? It certainly looks like that’s what U.S. intelligence was doing in 2020 in retrospect with the Hunter Biden laptop story.
Is anyone going to fact check or discern whether this claim on a major broadcast network has a morsel of validity? It’s not rhetorical: Does CBS actually care about the potential spread of disinformation on its programming or not?