Moby, the Patriot: Examining his ‘inside information’ on Russian conspiracy
Donald Trump’s presidency has been a widely divisive issue among the American public, to say the least. Support or dissent aside, intense media speculation has given way to surreality, as vast amounts of scandals and controversy have surrounded the chief of state since he assumed office in January of 2017.
One of the most-contended topics around Mr. Trump involves rumors of his campaign’s alleged collusion with Russia — a matter currently under investigation by Special Counsel Robert Mueller.
Enter Moby: iconic forefather of contemporary electronic music, animal rights activist, and an outspoken dissenter of the United States’ 45th president. He expressed disdain for the real estate mogul’s antics all through his campaign for office, later implying that his victory would cause the country to “bottom out” before writing an open letter criticizing citizens’ aversion to facts for letting such an event occur.
As headlines of collusion with Russia cast a shadow over the POTUS’ first months in charge, Moby’s statements grew increasingly grandiose — ironically, close to the level of the very person he was speaking out against. Such declarations culminated in an interview with WFPK on January 13, where he claimed that “active and former CIA agents” he liaises with requested that he “sound the alarm” on the conspiracy’s validity. The reason why, he continued, was due to his greater social media following and ability to use his platform to get the word out.
Such a risky and, quite frankly, outlandish confession begs the question, “Why would he confirm these rumors in such a manner, especially with no proof to back it?” Moby later clarified that his “CIA connections” were actually “friends in other intelligence agencies” and softened his tone, but he is still putting these supposed friends at risk by revealing their relationship and concerns to the public. Furthermore, he’s putting himself at risk for libel charges, or worse.
It’s hard to pinpoint exactly how this will all serve him either, other than his name briefly taking over discussion before being plunged back into the annuls of dance music legends. Perhaps his account is true, and he is simply a patriot who’s willing to martyr himself in order for the truth to be known by all. Or, maybe he’s running a social experiment that simultaneously critiques persistent mob mentality in people by amassing his own malleable cult of followers that behave as the antithesis to Trump’s crowd.
Whatever the answer may be to this question, Dancing Astronaut has compiled a timeline of Moby’s comments on the Russia/Trump development, looking into his supposed relationship with Washington “insiders” and others’ reactions to his claims.
June-December, 2016 — the Steele Dossier
A man claiming to be a former British intelligence officer by the name of Christopher Steele circulated an expansive document to various elected officials and high-tier press officials that earned the nickname, “Steele Dossier.” He’d claimed to be covering the Trump path to the presidency, compiling information he’d tracked down from June-December of 2016. In addition to outrageous claims, one of which was the infamous “golden shower fetish,” the report also detailed multiple ways in which the Trump campaign and his family established ties to, and cooperated with Russia to win the election.
Journalists running the story made sure to point out the document’s inconsistencies and that the information was largely unconfirmed.
February 2017 — Moby spends weekend in DC, gains ‘insider information’ on Dossier
The producer took to Instagram right before Valentine’s Day in 2017 to state he’d spent the past weekend “with friends in DC,” and could “safely (well, ‘accurately…’) post the following things” about President Trump’s administration, and the Steele Dossier. He first advised that the dossier is in fact very much real, and that the president is being blackmailed by Russia on multiple “nefarious things.” Moby then went on to imply that the country was being steered in a direction of war with Iran, and that even Republicans were now plotting to rid him of the government.
after spending the weekend talking to friends who work in dc i can safely(well, ‘accurately’…) post the following things: 1-the russian dossier on trump is real. 100% real. he’s being blackmailed by the russian government, not just for being peed on by russian hookers, but for much more nefarious things. 2-the trump administration is in collusion with the russian government, and has been since day one. 3-the trump administration needs a war, most likely with iran. at present they are putting u.s warships off the coast of iran in the hope that iran will attack one of the ships and give the u.s a pretense for invasion. 4-there are right wing plans to get rid of trump. he’s a drain on their fundraising and their approval ratings, and the gop and koch brothers and other u.s right wing groups are planning to get rid of trump. 5-intelligence agencies around the world, and here in the u.s, are horrified by the incompetence of the trump administration, and are working to present information that will lead to high level firings and, ultimately, impeachment. i’m writing these things so that when/if these things happen there will be a public record beforehand. these are truly baffling and horrifying times, as we have an incompetent president who is essentially owned by a foreign power. -moby
January 10, 2018 — WFPK interview: “‘active and former CIA agents’ are ‘truly concerned'”
Naturally, the current president came up in an interview with Moby on his forthcoming album. “They were like, ‘This is the Manchurian Candidate, like [Putin] has a Russian agent as the President of the United States,’” he told his interviewers about the “former and active CIA agents” he’d come in contact with. “So they passed on some information to me and they said, like, ‘Look, you have more of a social media following than any of us do, can you please post some of these things just in a way that… sort of put it out there.’”
January 13, 2018 — Moby clarifies: “The CIA didn’t ask me to post about Russia. But…”
Ha, no, the CIA didn’t ask me to post about Trump & Russia, as much fun as that would be. BUT, for what it’s worth, I do have some friends at other intelligence agencies who have told me that: 1-there is genuine concern, globally, that #trump is desperate for a war, either with North Korea or Iran. He needs a distraction as the Russia probe gets closer to home. And 2-it’s still broad consensus that the FusionGPS report is quite accurate, as reinforced by congressional testimony released by Diane Feinstein last week. Trump is a dirty foreign agent, and one way or another the depths of his, and his campaigns, collusion(and treason) will be revealed. Flynn, Manafort, Kushner, Sessions, Trump, Page, etc. they’re all dirty. Just watch.
A post shared by moby XⓋX (@moby) on
He backpedaled from his original story a few days later, explaining that he hadn’t been directed by the CIA to tell the public that the rumors were true about Russian collusion before once more alluding to his friends at “other intelligence agencies” that he’d spoken to as the ones who verified the claims he made in February of 2017.
Late January: Fallout and critique
Despite clarifying his claims, the damage had already been done in the media’s eyes. Moby soon found himself under immense scrutiny, with various outlets and journalists emphasizing the potential falsehood of his claims, and even questioning his mental stability. Those at the other side of the spectrum called out Moby for his “fake news.”
“Either he is lying… or even worse – there are people in the CIA who are supposed to be serving the intelligence community, who are going to the liberal entertainment community and asking them to get out a message that they don’t want to give to the American people from the intelligence community. I think either way, it is a very distorted discourse in America.” – Bryan Crabtree, Political Radio Host
The Washington Examiner also put in its two cents on the claims: “First off, while there are credible indications of Russian influence over President Trump and the Trump Organization, much of the details of these indicators are not in the public domain. In turn, CIA officers or analysts are highly unlikely to have released any of that information to a celebrity singer. They wouldn’t be stupid enough to risk a prison term for the sole benefit of flippant remarks on Moby’s social media feed.”
So, what do we really know about the President & his ties to Russia?
We can’t necessarily dismiss all of Moby’s sensational assertions; the investigation into collusion is still ongoing, and some ties between the President’s camp and Russia have been unveiled to the point where the Washington Post deems it somewhat verified in a broad sense. For as many accuracies, however, there lie apparent inaccuracies. Ultimately, only time will tell what the conclusion to the ongoing investigations will be.
Photo credit: Jason Kempin