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Elon Out-Memes The Speech Cartel
The past week saw explosive developments in Elon’s battle with Twitter.
Whistleblower Peiter “Mudge” Zatko testified to Congress about the company’s willful negligence toward spies, bots, and data security.
Elon took the opportunity to drop several dank memes on his opponents and encourage other whistleblowers to speak up.
As October’s court date draws near, let’s take a look at how Elon put himself in the catbird seat, and what it could mean for Dogecoin.
Mr. Mudge Goes to Washington
The drama surrounding Elon's acquisition of Twitter continues to escalate.
With an October court date looming and shareholders finally approving the acquisition, last week saw a series of improbable and at times hilarious events that raised the stakes even higher.
At noon on Tuesday, Twitter whistleblower Peiter "Mudge" Zatko testified to Congress, in the process confirming several damning suspicions about the company.
Speaking before the Senate Judiciary Committee, Mudge said he discovered Twitter had an employee on its payroll who was also working for China's Ministry of State Security.
When he brought the issue to management, he was told, "Well, since we already have one, what does it matter if we have more?" (Twitter has been accused of employing spies from Saudi Arabia and India).
A larger question remains unanswered by Mudge's testimony: how much influence do foreign entities wield over Twitter's content moderation? With any luck, time will bring this information to light, too.
Mudge also testified that thousands of Twitter engineers could access sensitive personal user data and had the ability to tweet as anybody. Mudge was originally hired by Twitter to improve security in the wake of a 2020 hack in which several high profile accounts—including Joe Biden, Barack Obama, Kanye West, Bill Gates, and Elon—were compromised to promote a Bitcoin scam.
While the hearing was heating up in the halls of Congress, the plot thickened on Twitter itself.
An hour into the Mudge's testimony, The New Yorker's Ronan Farrow tweeted an investigative piece describing how personnel research companies, acting on behalf of unnamed clients, inundated Mudge's former colleagues with potentially illegal requests to buy dirt and discredit his testimony.
Fortunately, ex-colleagues had only positive things to say about Mudge.
Elon retweeted Farrow's article and proposed outing the secret clients. So far, they remain unidentified.
All told, Mudge's testimony is very bad for Twitter.
Elon's legal team has already cited his testimony as further reason for backing out of the $44 billion dollar deal.
If the court agrees with Mudge that Twitter intentionally misrepresented the number of users on the platform, the company would be liable to advertisers who thought they were paying for real human eyeballs.
In such a scenario, Twitter's stock would likely take a dive.
After the trial ends, If Elon is still interested in acquiring Twitter, as he recently suggested, it could be an opportunity to buy the platform on the cheap and mold it into the long-awaited financial social network X.com.
It's reasonable to wonder if Elon didn't foresee this entire sequence of events unfolding when he started buying Twitter stock at the beginning of the year.
By engaging Twitter in a lawsuit, he's able to reveal its underhanded role in manufacturing public opinion while avoiding liability for its past dishonesty.
If all goes well, he'll restore free speech to the Internet as a kicker.
Meme them until they cry
Throughout the day's events, Elon seemed to be enjoying himself.
As usual, the memes told the story.
A few hours before the hearing, he tweeted out a popcorn emoji, a possible indication that he knew Twitter's lies were about to unravel.
Minutes later, he updated his profile picture to his childhood photo sporting an impish grin, and changed his Twitter name "Naughtius Maximus."
The name comes from a Monty Python skit in The Life of Brian.
In the skit, Pontius Pilate says the names of his friends Naughtius Maximus, Biggus Dickus, and Incontinentia Buttocks while Roman guards struggle to suppress laughter for fear of angering the humorless dictator.
Like Pilate in the skit, Twitter has shown itself to be dour and oppressive, increasingly resorting to censorship when the jokes don't fit its political script.
Recent data indeed indicates that when Elon's tweets include the words "Twitter" or "Bot," they reach fewer people than normal.
Twitter's motive is clear: it doesn't want users to get the idea that it has its finger on the scales.
The return of Elon as a mischief-making trickster is welcome news for the DogeArmy.
He memorably played the role during Dogecoin's 2021 explosion, dubbing himself "Low-key Loki."
On Tuesday, he dropped a few hints that his antics had only just begun.
In keeping with the Monty Python theme, he boosted a meme suggesting that Dogecoin may be his most ambitious prank yet.
As day turned to night, he reposted a photo of Tesla's famous short shorts.
Tesla's original July 2020 release of "S3XY" shorts, which quickly sold out for $69.42, signaled the start of a historic run for its stock while viciously trolling short-sellers.
It remains to be seen if the latest post is another omen of doom for thehedgies and suits.
If the past is any indication, the oil cartel, legacy auto, Barry Silbert, and anyone else who makes a habit of betting against Elon should be shaking in their boots. Or shorts.
A few hours later, he announced the return of the Cyberwhistle to Tesla's merch store, payable only in Doge.
The whistle quickly sold out, but the question lingers: will more whistleblowers to come forward to corroborate Mudge's claims?
For the time being, the meaning of the meme is shrouded in mystery, but there are a number of possibilities.
Ethereum successfully transitioned to Proof of Stake last Wednesday, an update known as The Merge.
The update will means Eth will become deflationary and significantly reduce its energy usage. It also makes Dogecoin the second-largest Proof of Work cryptocurrency after Bitcoin.
Will the merge benefit Doge in some other way?
One possibility is that The Merge clears the way for the Doge-Ethereum Bridge, which is expected to go live in the next few months.
Since mid-2021, Dogecoin has struggled to make inroads with the Bitcoin community. Division between the two leading forms of digital money has been a distraction from the larger goal of mainstream adoption.
An alliance between Doge and Ethereum could benefit both currencies, allowing Doge-holders to buy NFTs with newly minted DogeTokens and bringing more liquidity to the Ethereum ecosystem.
Time will tell what fruit the partnership bares, but if the memes are the message, it looks promising.
The Meme War Continues
Elon is locked in battle with Twitter's Speech Cartel for the future of the First Amendment in our hallowed republic
So far, comedy has been his most effective strategy against the dreary censors and hostile media.
Elon seems destined to outlast his adversaries in the court of public opinion: his endless barrage of gags, pranks, trolls, and memes (to say nothing of his efforts for human progress) make his opponents look stiff and joyless by comparison.
In the quest to out-vibe the enemy, Dogecoin is Elon’s secret weapon.
The king meme-coin gains strength from any attempt to discredit it. The longer Doge survives as a top crypto, the sillier the doubters look, and the more it becomes clear that the joke's on the haters.
With October's court date looming, Elon's position has been getting stronger.
Further revelations from another whistleblower, or even Jack Dorsey himself, could turn the battle into a rout.
No one knows what will happen, but one thing's certain: the DogeArmy will be watching with bated breath and memes at the ready.
Dogey Treats: News Bites
Global Financial System
China has been giving out tens of billions in secretive "emergency loans" to financially distressed nations Sri Lanka, Pakistan, and Argentina. The news puts China in direct competition with the IMF as a lender for infrastructure development in other countries.
Iran signed a memorandum stating its intention to become a permanent member of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), a security group formed by Beijing and Moscow to counterbalance US global influence. Turkish President Erdogan stated his intention to make Turkey the first NATO country to join the SCO. An ambassador from Uzbekistan, where the SCO was held last week, said the summit will give Eurasia "a new strategic dimension."
The US is considering sanctions against China to deter it from invading Taiwan. China will impose sanctions on the CEOs of Boeing and Raytheon over arms sales to Taiwan. A Chinese envoy said Xi was willing to work with Putin to steer the global order "in a more just and reasonable direction."
Germany's Central Bank said signs of a recession are "multiplying."
As the dollar continues its rise against other fiat currencies except the Ruble, countries are increasingly being incentivized to buy oil with Russian Rubles rather than Petrodollars—known in as Putin's Paradox. Is Russia's economic endgame to create currency crises among G7 nations?
The number of companies in England and Wales declared insolvent increased by 43% in August compared to a year ago due to rising cost of electricity.
Elon tweeted that "Energy is the foundation of the economy."
August's Core Inflation print was higher than expected, causing the stock market plunge. Elon called for the Fed to cut interest rates by 25 bps after warning that a large hike risks deflation. Deflation could prove devastating to merchants who borrowed to buy goods commodities at higher prices. Wall Street is increasingly predicting a 100 bps hike.
Joe Biden told 60 Minutes, "The Pandemic is over."
Kanye West explained why he planned to terminate his deal with GAP to a CNBC interviewer: "A king can't live in someone else's castle, a king has to make his own castle." He also criticized GAP's "commitments to China" and talked about bringing manufacturing back to America
Fidelity, Schwab, Citadel launched crypto exchange called EDX Markets for legacy financial institutions.
Coinbase added a feature to their app for users to learn the crypto-related policy positions of their local politicians. Testifying before the Senate Banking Committee, Gary Gensler received pushback from Congressmen who claimed the SEC wasn't living up to its mission to protect retail investors.
The White House released a comprehensive framework for crypto regulation that mentions the possibility of a US CBDC.
South Korean prosecutors said Luna creator Do Kwon is on the run and not cooperating.
Washington Post reporter Taylor Lorenz caught heat from the Ape community for blaming GameStop investors for destroying the economy in a new Netflix documentary called "Eat the Rich: The GameStop Saga." The documentary has been widely derided among Apes as anti-retail propaganda.
A report found the SEC Ombudsman lied to congress and investigators about the agency's program for receiving reports of fraud.
The SEC green-lighted a plan to tap pension funds for liquidity in the event that a member of the Options Clearing Corporation (OCC) defaults. The limit that financial entities can draw from pension funds was expanded from $1 billion to $35 trillion.
Speedcast, a global communications provider, signed a deal with Starlink to provide satellite Internet to its customers. With the addition of Antarctica, Starlink is now available on all seven continents. Elon said Starlink is "meant for peaceful use only" to "help mend the fault in our stars."
54 more Starlink satellites were launched into orbit.
MyDoge Social Wallet has been teasing something called DogeTV. BigCommerce, a provider of payment software for merchants, partnered with Bitpay to allow Dogecoin payments. Dogecoin is now the second largest Proof of Work crypto after the Ethereum merge.
An NFT of the original Doge meme turned one year old at the end of August. The Doge Times forecast the future of the Doge NFT community.
Elon posted memes about salted butter, moms sharing memes, Mediocrates, and self-love. After his Naughtius Maximus profile makeover, several pro-Elon accounts reinvented themselves as members of the "Legionnaire of Claudius Nero's Legion under Naughtius Maximus."
Survey data suggests that the viral phenomenon of quiet quitting is extending to college students. A clip of a woman urging people to prioritize family over work went viral with more than four million views.
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