Free Press (and the Left) Wanted Obama’s “Cambridge Analytica” List When It Was “Cool” to Poach Facebook Profiles

by Mike Wendy on March 22, 2018

You might have heard the latest panic about Cambridge Analytica (CA) and its social media work for the Trump presidential campaign. Allegedly, the company repurposed the Facebook-gathered data mining of a researcher, ultimately yielding access to millions of Facebook profiles, which, we’re told, it then used to help the campaign during the campaign’s primaries.

This has the Left’s undies in a big wad.

“How dare the Trump campaign use Facebook in such a manner?” they decry.

Turns out, Trump’s primary campaign was just doing what Obama had already done in his general election campaign of 2012.

Notes the National Review:

[Writer / reporter] Sasha Issenberg gushed about how the Obama campaign used the same permissions structure of Facebook to extract the data of scores of millions of Facebook users who were unaware of what was happening to them. Combining Facebook data with other sources such as voter-registration rolls, Issenberg wrote, generated “a new political currency that predicted the behavior of individual humans. The campaign didn’t just know who you were; it knew exactly how it could turn you into the type of person it wanted you to be.”

This made me return to some video I shot at a New America Foundation event on 11/16/12, entitled “Dark Money, Media and Campaign 2012” (shown below). One of the participants there was Craig Aaron, President of “media reform” group, Free Press – a group that, ironically, now wants the FTC to punish Facebook for the CA “breach.”

At the event, a different story was being told, you know. There, Aaron talked about the online / offline organizing efforts of the Obama election campaign…

…and his concerns about one day being able to access that LIST, stating:

“…[T]he organizing lessons that came out of the campaign, if you’re an organizer, certainly if you’re using some sort of hybrid online and offline model, as we are and a lot of the groups are, you have to look at what was done.

Politically, maybe the big question is, are those who have THAT LIST, the political campaign, or campaigns, are they willing to sort of encourage or turn these folks loose on anything except for elections. And that remains to be seen. Certainly, in the first term, if we’re talking about Obama for America, you know, not really. “Um, thank you. Amazing. We’re getting you ready for next time. You know, but we kinda’ got this over here, and this agenda. And, hey, there’s the people who were at those 200 fundraisers – get them some jobs.” Um, and that’s going to be the fight here in the next few weeks and months about whether that energy can be translated into a kind of accountability.

“I think there’s reason to be optimistic. I think people are feeling energized, you know, [about] whose candidate did well in the election. I think a lot of people feel a weight lifted maybe they didn’t know it was there. So, it’s an exciting time. But, it’s going to be those folks, those personal connections being brought into these actual [campaign finance / media reform, etc.] issues that will determine whether, I think, we can accomplish some of these things…” (Emphasis added)

I guess it’s OK for the Free Pressers of the world to benefit from the same tactics as CA because, you know, their cause is all about “fairness” and “equality.”  And ours is about freeing individuals and markets from liberty-killing governmental control – you know, the “evil” stuff.

What hooey, the Left.

One wonders if that LIST wasn’t ultimately accessed by groups like Free Press and others to “accomplish some things.”

Remember when Obama called on the FCC to issue Title II Net Neutrality rules for ISPs, and then suddenly millions of people commented online for their adoption?

Or, when the current FCC worked to repeal the Obama Title II Net Neutrality rules, and then millions showed up again objecting to it?

Or, when the EPA tried to enact new global warming regulations?

Or, when the ACA was being impended?

Or, when the Iran nuke deal went through?

Hmm.

What a hot, fake news mess this all is.

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