Fridays with Nicole Sandler (and LOLGOP and Spocko)

Nicole Sandler was quite sick today so LOLGOP and Spocko helped fill in.

Listen on Spotify (transcripts available)

Listen on Apple (transcripts available)

25 replies
  1. Tom Flaherty says:

    Thank You for providing us the fact with clarity. I was recording you on Nicole’s show today and lost half the show due to a quick Bluetooth switch over!

    You are great, breaking things down as if the least common denominator was easy.

    Thank You Sincerely,


  2. Thomas_H says:

    Thank you Marcy, Spocko & LOLGOP. Having been a teenager during the end of the Vietnam war and the Watergate investigation and hearings I know what good investigative journalism is. Disappointment in the state of our news media today hardly even begins to describe my reaction to all of the ways journalists and news organizations have been either complicit with this ongoing smear campaign or simply unable to think critically about the issues they cover. That the, also, ongoing intimidation campaign is so pervasive is simply sinister. The people aligned with Trump are using threats of violence to both insure compliance/
    “loyalty” and to threaten anyone deemed an enemy. Everything you discussed this evening would’ve been bombshell news a generation or two ago.

    I would be keen on seeing a comprehensive discussion of this intimidation campaign and the people who are active behind the scene in it.

    • Spocko says:

      Thanks Thomas H.
      “also, ongoing intimidation campaign is so pervasive is simply sinister. The people aligned with Trump are using threats of violence to both insure compliance/
      Yes, I agree. I’ve been writing about the use of threats for awhile now, with one of my focus on WHY they aren’t investigated, why there are few arrests and convictions.
      And, when there ARE convictions they are not publicized by the DOJ.
      There are many reasons. They don’t see it as their Job. They don’t want to touch anything that involves “Words” they don’t
      have the laws that they can use (like for Doxxing) in many states.
      I have been talking to Glenn Kirschner about this for months. ONE thing I’m learning is that law enforcement needs to be pushed into doing their jobs, and if they don’t the people being threatened need to use other means of making the threats stop. The use if civil lawsuits is one method.
      I point out that no one went to jail for the threats to Ruby Freeman d Shaye Moss, but they succeeded in suing OAN, & getting a settlement. They sued Rudy. & WON. Next is Gateway Pundit
      I Like this:
      ” keen on seeing a comprehensive discussion of this intimidation campaign and the people who are active behind the scene in it.”
      Yep s. What I want to do is let people know about is how can things change?


  3. Curious Blue says:

    I found today’s interview particularly illuminating. It’s easy for me to get lost in the details and this podcast connected a lot of dots. I am delighted to discover Ball of Thread. So many thanks for your vision and voice.

    • Spocko says:

      Glad to hear it! I’m planning to add photos of the people Marcy talked about for clips to share. Do you think that would be helpful? Which part specificly helped you the most? I’ve also transcribed the whole interview where I can add links. Would that helpful?
      Finally, I know I’m not an expert on social media, but I do know that authentic sharing makes a difference. But we are competing against an organized, and well funded group of people.
      I’m alway looking for how to get out good information and understand how to mitigate the forces that put out disinformation.
      Also, as you heard, I think the use of threats by the right is much more significant that is reported in the media.

        • Sussex Trafalgar says:

          Good question.

          Trump will show up with the intent of taking a cheap shot or shots at Biden and then he’ll walk off stage before Biden can respond to his cheap shots.

          I’m thinking this will all happen within the first ten minutes of the show.

          To Trump, it’s a show, not a debate.

  4. Elizabeth Fuller says:

    I’m reaching out to the community in hopes of finding out how to access the transcripts said to exist on Spotify and Apple. Anybody?

    • Clare Kelly says:

      Hey Elizabeth,

      I suspect it might be delayed because Nicole is ill.

      I listened to it here, rather than my usual methodology via Apple Podcast (with transcripts) because it hasn’t dropped there yet.

      I can’t speak to Spotify.

      If this is what you’re looking for, once it drops on Apple Podcasts click the three dots in upper right hand corner for the drop down menu where “transcripts” is an option.

      • Spocko says:

        I’m working on a transcription that will be available soon. The correct spelling of the names is the main problem with AI transcriptions.
        It’s Smirnov NOT Smirnoff.
        Volodymyr Zelensky NOT Vladimir Zelensky
        Abbe Lowell not Abby Lowell
        Leo Wise NOT Leo Weiss
        Hallie Biden NOT Haley Biden
        Guo Wengui NOT (some gibberish)
        John Paul Mac Isaac NOT John, Paul, MAC Isaac

        • Clare Kelly says:

          SPOCKO wrote:
          “ John Paul Mac Isaac NOT John, Paul, MAC Isaac”

          …which made me chuckle as it sounds like a name worthy of a frothy-right Beatles cover band, or maybe John Paul Mac Issac’s next endeavor.

        • Matt___B says:

          While you’re at it, I notice that LOLGOP’s name was listed underneath the Zoom rectangle as “Jason Statler”, but the name embedded into the lower left of the Zoom rectangle is “Jason Sattler”. FWIW.

      • Elizabeth Fuller says:

        Thanks Clare, but I can’t find the three dots. Just to be sure it wasn’t a timing issue, I tried with last week’s as well. Problem is the same with Firefox or Chrome.

  5. zscoreUSA says:

    Another detail about the stolen device, which actually goes against my theory of it being an iPad. Hunter uses the term “laptop” in a court filing.

    In Hunter’s reply brief for the motion for summary judgement against Mac Isaac in Delaware court, he writes that he had “multiple laptops, that one was stolen from him during a trip to Nevada, and that one was left at Keith Ablow’s facility”, so why would Mac Isaac assume that Hunter’s comments to CBS about Russians possibly stealing a laptop referred to Mac Isaac and not the other ones?

    I still go with my theory that it was an iPad stolen, and that people, including Hunter, use “computer” and “laptop” and “iPad” interchangeably. Marco Polo even writes of Hunter recording a video from his “laptop” and taking a mirror selfie, but the image pretty clearly shows an iPad and not a MacBook.

    • zscoreUSA says:

      Sorry if I am annoying to anyone for bringing it up. Lol. I keep bringing it up and hopefully it’s helpful information for people following along the Mac Isaac laptop narratives.

      Some people may be thinking, what’s the big deal, it was a stolen device, who cares if it was an iPad or a laptop. Or just find it annoying that I bring it up again.

      Here are some reasons why this detail matters, whether the stolen device was an iPad instead of a laptop.

      1) It would leave a laptop connected to the iCloud unaccounted for and may have a further role in the genesis of the Mac Isaac laptop

      2) The Daily Mail first reported the stolen laptop, and the only proof offered was Hunter in a recording using the words “computer” and “passcode” and that it had salacious videos and financial information on it. Marco Polo corroborated with a text message using “it”. Left unchecked and uncorrected by mainstream media, it effectively gives rw media license to spin whatever narratives they want, which can resonate and take hold the public’s view at large. Then when mainstream media later reports on the laptop being real, they are playing from behind, and the false rw narratives are mainstream.

      3) If the stolen device was an iPad Pro, and it’s the same iPad Pro that ends up being reassociated with the iCloud while Hunter is at Ablow’s in January, that would be concrete evidence of a conspiracy to setup Hunter

      4) If the laptop in use (12” MacBook Retina named Roberts MacBook) was not stolen, and Hunter still used it, it should still pop up in images past that date. Since it doesn’t, Marco Polo could have deliberately not put it into images released past the date of theft, which could be evidence of coordination

    • Fancy Chicken says:


      I got shot down by Dr. Wheeler when I speculated that the “computer” HB said was stolen in Nevada could possibly be the device used in conjunction with one of the the multiple lost or stolen phones HB had at the time, to hack his digital life or inform the devices MacIssac claims he received. I even wondered if it could have be what was presented in court before Dr. Wheeler corrected me on the fact the device stolen was an IPad.

      I believe it was stolen because the computer found at Ablow’s cottage was bought on August 29th, shortly after the iPad was stolen so it seems it was bought as a replacement.

      You are much more familiar and literate on the timeframe of when HB’s digital life went to hell, so do you know if the bulk of that damage was done between August 2018 and when MacIssac claims he received devices?

      I always am amenable to correction, but your idea intrigues me and I think you might be right, hence my question about the timeframe of the fuckery.

      • zscoreUSA says:

        Hi Fancy Chicken,

        Let me see if I can clarify anything on this topic.

        The laptop Hunter took with him to Las Vegas was a 12 inch MacBook Retina. The device that ended up with Mac Isaac is a 13 inch MacBook Pro (w/o Touch Bar).

        So, no the device stolen cannot be the one that ended up with Mac Isaac.

        Could it have been used “in conjunction” with other devices? I think that’s possible, as I mentioned above, but I need to do more work to examine the likelihood.

        Was it an iPad stolen and not the 12 inch MacBook Retina? I believe so and that’s why I keep bringing it up. I don’t know if emptywheel did her own analysis there and concluded it was an iPad or is basing off my comments.

        The accepted narrative is that the stolen device was a laptop. Which if it were, would have been the 12 inch MacBook Retina.

        But here’s a big point that I emphasize. The original report that there was this 3rd laptop stolen from a Russian drug dealer was the Daily Mail in August 2021. Their proof is what I mentioned above. They provided no analysis whatsoever using Hunter’s digital data.

        This narrative has become the accepted narrative.

        When you are making an assumption that the August 29 purchase of the 13 inch MacBook Pro (w Touch Bar) was bought to replace the stolen laptop from August 4, you are doing analysis to prove the Daily Mail’s own report. More analysis than they did. I did the same thing at first. emptywheel mentioned the same thing.

        There could be many reasons why Hunter bought the Ablow laptop. Maybe his laptop wasn’t stolen in Vegas but he left it at an Airbnb in Los Angeles. Maybe he wanted a second computer because the Retina wasn’t powerful enough for his needs. Who knows.

      • zscoreUSA says:

        As far as when the “bulk of that damage was done”, I believe emptywheel made the case that occured in Jan/Feb 2019.

    • gmokegmoke says:

      Harvard’s Shorenstein Center got rid of Dr Joan Donovan of their Technology and Social Change Research Project in 2023 and closed down the project.

      “In December 2023, Donovan alleged that she was forced to leave Harvard due to pressure from Meta Platforms owing to her research on online extremism. In a legal filing sent to both the Massachusetts Attorney General’s office as well as the federal United States Department of Education, Donovan alleged that financial pressure from the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative led to her being pushed out of Harvard. Harvard disputed her accusation, asserting that they did not ‘fire’ her; that they were unable to find a faculty member who would oversee her work (although being director of the research project, she was not employed as ‘faculty;); and that they offered her an alternate position, which she turned down.”

      She’s at BU now and I wonder how Harvard Law’s Berkman-Klein Center is doing, especially since companies like Google, Twitter, and Facebook (Meta) seem to be no longer willing to share information with researchers the way they were formerly.

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  6. Spocko says:

    Thank you Clare Kelly! Another great point backed up with a link.
    You might be interested in hearing about Annalee Newitz’ new book Stories Are Weapons she was on the Nicole Sandler show on
    June 4th talking about her book, the Stanford Internet Observatory, & . Alex Stamos. She talked about the history of the Russian Internet Research agency , which was a product of Russian psyops, a firm once owned by Yevgeny Prigozhin, who we, you know, dared to challenge Putin and then mysteriously died in a plane crash.
    Here is a link to the show

    If you want to buy Annalee’s book here is a link that helps Nicole’s show.

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