In the wake of Republican losses in 2020, a cast of mega-rich financiers, senior figures in the Trump administration, high-ranking NSA and Pentagon intelligence officials, Wall Street pitchmen and leading Trump campaign donors began to piece together a new global disinformation apparatus intended to promote the political project of the far right.
The twin focal points of these efforts are the Trump Media and Technology Group (TMTG), which filed on February 8, 2021 as a Delaware corporation, and Rumble, the global social media platform choice of the right, based in Canada but with an escalating presence in the U.S.
From the start, TMTG announced plans to launch “Truth Social,” a new social media platform intended as an alternative to Twitter and billed as “an open, free, and honest global conversation without discriminating against political ideology.” TMTG publicly disclosed its intent to enter a partnership with Rumble last fall, and this past week Rumble reported that Truth Social had successfully migrated its website and mobile applications to Rumble’s cloud infrastructure.
Trump has been largely absent from social media since the former president was permanently suspended from Twitter on January 8, 2021 for violating the social media platform’s Glorification of Violence policy. Specifically, Twitter found that Trump’s tweets could be interpreted as attempting to undermine a legitimate election, disrupt the orderly transfer of power, and support and encourage those who were considering violent acts at the Capitol on January 6, and in state capitols later on.
Trump’s attempts to establish a technologically viable pulpit have been plagued so far with his trademark clumsiness, technical failures and regulatory missteps, providing comfort to his adversaries and those who oppose his return to power. But as indicated on the accompanying chart, it would be a mistake to underestimate the formidable array of right-wing political forces, powerful financial interests and ex-military and political intelligence figures lined up behind the Trump/Rumble alliance.
American democracy is under siege from the far right. Among the core principles at risk are the fair and impartial administration of justice, the independence of the judiciary, the protection of rights enshrined in the constitution, the rule of law, the separation of church and state, the system of checks and balances so essential to the orderly functioning of democracy, the accountability of public office holders and the integrity of elections. And looming over all of these suddenly fragile concepts is the ferocious right-wing attack on truth.
The attached chart, the first in a series labeled “Architecture of the Right,” identifies many of the personalities and assets that have organized on the right to build a global digital communications capability. The chart was produced by the Democracy Protection Project (DPP), a joint undertaking of The Washington Spectator and The Public Concern Foundation.
To download and print the flowchart, use the download button in the toolbar below:
Trump Media Digital World Acquisition April 26, 2022
The intent of the project is to document the anti-democratic involvements of far right political actors and their donors, allied with ideologically sympathetic factions of the intelligence community, and to report on the purpose and impact of their actions.
Our hope is to encourage further scrutiny and investigation into activities underway that threaten the survival of the democratic process. The DPP is developing several investigative articles for the Spectator that were suggested by the material assembled for this chart.
For more information about the Democracy Protection Project and how you can help, please contact [email protected].