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Last week was another Twitter whirlwind.
The Doge community got some of its biggest hints yet about integration with Twitter Payments.
Meanwhile, Elon delivered another #TwitterFiles bombshell while jousting with the establishment for control of the narrative.
Let’s dive in!
Gonna be great
Something is cooking with Twitter and Dogecoin.
On Tuesday, the Dogecoin account DogeDesigner posted a photo of PayPal-era Elon updated to show him working on Twitter payments. In the bottom right corner, there was a picture of a Doge.
Elon wrote under the meme, "It's gonna be great."
Two days later, he responded to a quotation about viewing money from the perspective of information theory.
The quotation, from January 2021, is a plausible reference to Dogecoin.
In the past, Elon has explained how "error" can be understood as government money printing, which devalues existing money. Dogecoin makes this impossible with its predetermined issuance schedule.
"Latency" refers to the speed at which data is transferred. Dogecoin, with it's one minute block time, is faster than Bitcoin. When compared to legacy systems like SWIFT, in which payments take days to settle, Dogecoin blows the competition out of the water.
On Thursday night, another big news item dropped: Elon started following the crypto exchange OKX.
The next day, the exchange's Twitter handle tweeted out a Dogely Good Morning.
The role a crypto exchange like OKX might play on Twitter 2.0 is worth thinking about.
When Twitter launches its Payments processor, it plans allow people to buy articles, videos, and other content with crypto.
From the beginning, the goal of Dogecoin has been to increase mainstream crypto adoption. Crypto-novices are much more likely to use Dogecoin for payments if they can buy it directly through Twitter, rather than setting up an account on a separate exchange, buying Dogecoin, and transferring it to Twitter.
On the receiving side, not all content creators are going to want to accept crypto right off the bat. Exchange-Twitter integration could allow buyers to pay in crypto, and have those payments instantaneously converted into other currencies by the exchange, allowing both buyers and sellers to transact in their preferred forms of money.
For the last couple months, it seemed like Binance was a logical choice to partner with Twitter. It is the world's largest exchange, and contributed to Elon's Twitter purchase as a $500M equity investor.
However, at the moment, Binance is the subject of rampant speculation. Largely because of the FTX meltdown and fears of contagion, crypto investors are skittish. Binance users removed billions worth of digital assets from the platform last week.
Its CEO CZ insists that the company is solvent and its customer assets are backed 1:1, but has also told his employees in a staff memo he expects "the next several months to be bumpy" as crypto passes through a "historic moment."
Later on Friday, Elon received an invitation to join a Twitter Spaces discussion with the Dogecoin community.
He wrote back that he was tied up with happenings at Twitter (more on this below) but might show up around Christmas.
With all of the recent drama involving the Twitter Files, censorship, and attacks on Elon himself, it's easy to lose sight of Doge's steady progress towards global adoption.
Dogecoin has always been the underdog—many in the crypto space still doubt its legitimacy. But its devoted community of investors, developers, meme artists, and cheerleaders have continued to push it forward undeterred.
While other projects grab headlines, Doge keeps plugging away in the background. When it shocks the world, don't be surprised.
The Rabbit Hole
Last Monday, after the release of Twitter Files Part 5, Elon tweeted the word "Follow" and a rabbit emoji.
Technically, the rabbit emoji was grey, but the tweet was widely understood to refer to the phrase "follow the white rabbit" from the scene in Alice in Wonderland where Alice falls down the rabbit hole.
Today, of course, the popular connotation of "falling down the rabbit hole" is of someone who loses their marbles in the world of conspiracy.
The tweet immediately provoked the claim by the press that Elon was encouraging people to "start following QAnon," a "domestic terrorism movement."
From here, the media launched a coordinated attack to associate Elon with domestic terrorism, paranoia, and fascism.
In one leaked email, Washington Post reporter Drew Harwell asked Elon, "What do you think of QAnon? Do you believe in this stuff, or is this just you owning the libs, trolling people mucking things up, getting attention, as some of your top allies tell us?"
Elon wrote back, "lol."
Interestingly, the press also accused Elon of adopting "techniques used by the QAnon conspiracy movement" when he questioned Twitter's past failure to protect children on the platform.
In the world of online conspiracies, the "white rabbit" refers to adrenochrome, a youth-giving substance allegedly consumed by satanic elites. This is what mainstream outlets were referring to when tying Elon's tweet to "QAnon."
Since, however, there's no evidence he was talking about any of that stuff, it makes sense to think along more conventional lines when interpreting his tweet.
In the context of recent events, the rabbit hole is censorship revealed in the Twitter Files—a real, verifiable, undeniable red pill that has shown how involved government three-letter agencies have become in policing the speech of regular American citizens.
Two weeks ago, the big news from the files was the extent to which intelligence agencies interfered in the 2020 Presidential election through censorship.
Last Sunday, Elon teased that the government also played a role in Covid censorship.
Specifically, he suggested there was a relationship between Twitter employees and government health agencies like the CDC and NIH.
When it comes to Covid, the rabbit hole starts the origin of the virus—a hotly contested and still unresolved question.
Somehow, despite lockdowns, school closures, mandatory masking, three years of investigations, and a series of experimental vaccinations, the public is still in the dark about what sequence of events caused the virus to appear in the world.
Since the beginning, the official stance has been that the virus came from bats sold at the wet market next to the Wuhan Institute of Virology. Anything else was a "conspiracy theory".
The problem is that the hypothesis that the virus emerged from the wet market has never been proven, and no conclusive evidence to support the claim has emerged.
Meanwhile, there is a cornucopia of circumstantial evidence implicating a lab origin for the virus.
Specifically, Fauci and the NIH funded an organization called the EcoHealth Alliance to perform research on bat coronaviruses at the Wuhan Institute of Virology.
In doing so, he appears to have skirted Obama-era regulations that prevented the US labs from performing gain-of-function research, which modifies pathogens to make them more dangerous.
The putative justification for gain-of-function, as with all so-called "defensive bioweapons research," is to study advanced pathogens so we are prepared in case someone else creates them and uses them against us.
In reality, this is a disingenuous excuse to continue doing the bioweapons research the military industrial complex has been carrying out for decades. The US and other countries don't want to admit to performing offensive bioweapon research because it violates international agreements.
Dr. Anthony Fauci has avoided the topic of gain-of-function research like a hot potato.
In May 2021 congressional testimony, Fauci denied funding gain-of-function research in the Wuhan lab through EcoHealth while acknowledging "a modest collaboration with very respectable Chinese scientists who were world experts on coronavirus.”
In October, NIH deputy director Lawrence Tabak contradicted Fauci and admitted to funding gain-of-function research in Wuhan through EcoHealth.
He said the goal of the research was to test whether "spike proteins from naturally occurring bat coronaviruses circulating in China were capable of binding to the human ACE2 receptor in a mouse model.” Tabak blamed EcoHealth alliance for not being transparent about its research.
If the NIH indeed funded the research that led to Covid, it would mean that Fauci, the man elevated by the media and political establishment as the fount of scientific truth, is actually personally responsible for millions of coronavirus deaths across the world.
Questions about the virus's origins are as timely as ever. After a muted 2022, Covid has once more swept into the news.
Meanwhile, the media machine has kicked into gear, touting the "Tripledemic" of Flu, RSV, and COVID.
The media blitz has coincided with calls to return to masking, especially in heavily Democratic cities.
At this point, it's not clear that the media and government ever plan to return to pre-2020 normalcy.
One of the few things that could shake up this new status quo would be revelations about government-media Covid corruption—the kind of story that could only break on Twitter.
While the Internet waits for the #FauciFiles to drop, a few other important pieces on the chess board are starting to move.
Their return is a sign that the pendulum on Covid censorship is starting to swing back the other way.
On Thursday, Elon created another spectacle when he suspended several corporate journalists after they engaged in a coordinated attempt to share his real-time location.
The journalists were briefly kicked off Twitter for linking to an account that tracks Elon's private jet, after the information led to a masked stalker leaping onto the hood of a car carrying his son.
The suspensions were hilariously dubbed the "Thursday Night Massacre." Elon reinstated the journalists on Friday after running two polls.
Notably, the episode caused the entire journalistic establishment to unite behind the First Amendment and, for the first time in years, condemn censorship.
Finally, on Friday, independent journalist Matt Taibbi released the most consequential installment of the Twitter Files yet.
The latest thread showed how the FBI maintained "constant and pervasive" contact with Twitter content moderators by flagging posts, requesting accounts be suspended, and asking for location data on individual Twitter users.
In a follow-up Substack post, Taibbi wrote that the federal government had become the "central player" in the movement to moderate content, "clearly the boss of the whole operation, and clearly also the driving force in its expansion."
Taibbi added that the FBI has "taken on this new authority unilaterally, as part of an apparently massive new effort to control and influence public opinion." He ultimately characterized the relationship between the FBI and Twitter as "master-canine."
On Sunday, Taibbi posted a supplemental thread showing communications between FBI agent Elvis Chan and content moderator Yoel Roth about the topic of foreign states using Twitter for propaganda.
Monday afternoon, Michael Shellenberger released #TwitterFiles Part 7, about various channels of communication the FBI set up with Twitter to convince employees to censor the Hunter Biden laptop (which, as a reminder, the FBI knew was authentic because it was in possession of it since 2019).
Strangely, the corporate press was silent about all the FBI revelations.
Over the weekend, the media amplified more Elon scandals—a rule change that blocked people from promoting other social media sites he later reversed, temporary suspensions for Taylor Lorenz and Paul Graham, a poll asking if he should step down as head of Twitter, a photo of him standing next to Jared Kushner at the World Cup—all while ignoring arguably the biggest story of the year.
Throughout this entire saga, it's worth remembering one thing: Elon is in the journalism game, and his main competition is the legacy media.
His persona of being an unpredictable "chaos agent" is highly cultivated. Everything he does has a purpose.
Right now, he is carrying out two objectives:
First, he is demonstrating how hypocritical his rivals are:
When Elon took over last month, the establishment immediately started calling for more censorship, stoking fears that Twitter would become a den of hate
Then, as soon as legacy journalists lost the ability of doxx him personally—arguably the most dangerous form of online speech in existence—they became free speech warriors and demanded less censorship
Barely 24 hours later, they ignored news that the FBI has been secretly censoring American citizens for years—once again, free speech was no longer a noteworthy cause
Part of the reason is that every time the media runs another hysterical "Twitter is dying" or "Elon did a crazy thing" article, it provides free advertising.
No matter how desperately mainstream press tries to convince people to stay away from Twitter, readers are inevitably drawn to the platform just from hearing about it so much, a dynamic known as the Streisand Effect.
Elon's actions are best understood as a 24/7/365 ad campaign/reality show to get eyeballs on Twitter so that when a bombshell like the Twitter Files drops, people see it first-hand rather than relying on media’s representation.
If the idea of intentionally provoking negative media coverage for the purpose of self-promotion sounds eerily familiar, it's because it is a strategy perfected by none other than Donald John Trump.
Trump rode to Presidency playing the clown while journalists spilled endless ink seething over his every "mistake," especially his tweets.
Importantly, Elon and Trump aren't just using negative press to promote their own brands (although that is definitely part of what they're doing).
Both are on stated missions to delegitimize the mainstream media in the eyes of the people.
It has become de rigueur for 74 million Trump voters to view everything the media says with flinty-eyed suspicion. Trump may have done more than anyone ever to pull back the curtain on "fake news."
Now, it's Elon's turn to deconstruct the illusion. He is targeting a broader, more moderate swath of people, but his message about the press is essentially the same.
Whatever you think of Elon personally, there isn't a better show on offer right now.
Keep your eye on the rabbit, the bird, and the Doge.
The rabbit, the bird, and the Doge
Something big is cooking at Twitter.
The latest from this week's #TwitterFiles shows more alarming collaboration between government agencies and Silicon Valley to advance the censorship agenda.
The future release of the #FauciFiles is worth watching out for. The US government, with its astounding history of corruption and malfeasance, should not be in the business of deciding what people are allowed to say, especially about a global emergency shrouded in mystery.
As Elon continues jousting with the media for control of the narrative, it's worth remembering that not everything is as it seems. The goal is to get as many people on the platform as possible, so bombshells like the #TwitterFiles have greater reach among the population.
No one knows how deep the rabbit hole at Twitter goes, but one thing is certain: at its bottom is Dogecoin
Dogey Treats: News Bites
Elon tweeted a poll asking if he should step down as head of Twitter. In a separate tweet, he wrote, "As the saying goes, be careful what you wish, as you might get it," leading to speculation that he already planned to appoint Jared Kushner, Jack Dorsey, MySpace Tom, Lex Friedman, or someone else as Twitter CEO.
He explained his decision to devote his energy to Twitter, writing, "Social media in general, especially Twitter, were eroding civilization. If civilization collapses before Mars becomes self-sustaining, then nothing else matters."
NBC, CBS, ABC, CNN, & MSNBC spent 14 minutes combined covering the Twitter Files.
Elon dissolved Twitter's 'Trust and Safety' Council after its inaction on child sexual abuse material.
Gucci heiress Alexandra Zarini filed a lawsuit against three of her family members alleging her stepfather sexually abused her.
Rose McGowan and Eliza Bleu are hosting a Twitter Space called 'Hope and War.'
Global Financial System
China's President Xi invited China invited Saudi Arabia to trade oil and gas in Yuan on the Shanghai Exchange, effectively ending petrodollar hegemony. Will Russia peg a barrel of oil to a gram of gold, creating PetroGold? Egypt joined BRICS's development bank.
Elon cautioned about taking on debt during "turbulent macroeconomic conditions" and warned about "Potentially, the biggest financial crisis ever," cautioning that the automotive market was showing signs of stress. Is the Federal Reserve on the brink of bankruptcy?
The NY Federal Reserve's CBDC project is called "Project Cedar" and it has already completed its first phase of testing. The Bank of International Settlements announced a new policy that allows banks to hold 2% of their reserves in crypto.
SEC Chair Gary Gensler scrubbed meetings with Hillary Clinton, George Soros, and Nancy Pelosi from the public version of his calendar.
Scientists claim to have discovered a method of clean fusion.
Trump released a series of NFTs that quickly sold out.
SBF was arrested the day before he was expected to testify before Congress on fraud charges from the Southern District of New York. Maxine Waters expressed surprise. The next day, the SEC charged him with violating securities law. FTX spokesman Kevin O'Leary testified to congress that Binance intentionally put FTX out of business. White House spokesperson Karen Jean-Pierre refused to answer questions about SBF's donations to the Biden campaign, saying, "I am covered here by the Hatch Act."
Chinese police arrested 63 people for using Tether to launder $1.7 billion
In response to concerns that Twitter was hurting Tesla, Elon wrote, "I will make sure Tesla shareholders benefit from Twitter long-term"
In response to a criticism from Ross Gerber about Tesla's decline in market cap, Elon wrote, "Tesla is executing better than ever! We don’t control the Federal Reserve. That is the real problem here."
Ye said "I may be slightly autistic, like Rain Man" but denied being capable of hatred.
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Memes of the Week
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Disclaimer: This is not financial advice and I am not a financial advisor. The article above references an opinion for entertainment purposes only and it is not investment advice. Always assume that the author of the article is actively trading and that the opinions expressed may be biased towards the author’s holdings. Do your own research and consult with a licensed financial adviser before making any investment decision. Do not treat any opinion expressed in this newsletter as a specific inducement to make a particular investment. Content, news, research, tools, and securities symbols are for educational and illustrative purposes only and do not imply a recommendation or solicitation to buy or sell a particular security or cryptocurrency or to engage in any particular investment strategy. The information provided is not warranted as to completeness or accuracy and is subject to change without notice. The projections or other information regarding the likelihood of various investment outcomes are hypothetical in nature, are not guaranteed for accuracy or completeness, do not reflect actual investment results and are not guarantees of future results. All investments involve risk, losses may exceed the principal invested, and the past performance of a security, industry, sector, market, cryptocurrency, or financial product does not guarantee future results or returns. Dogecoin is a speculative and highly volatile asset susceptible to pump-and-dump schemes.
At the time of publication, Dogecoin is around $0.07 per coin.