Elon Musk now owns Twitter – but the investments from Saudi Arabia shouldn’t leave you feeling warm and fuzzy. Mike Papantonio & Farron Cousins discuss more.


*This transcript was generated by a third-party transcription software company, so please excuse any typos.

Mike Papantonio:             Elon Musk now owns Twitter, but the investments from Saudi Arabia shouldn’t leave you feeling warm and fuzzy. Well, okay, let me, Farron, I saw this Newsweek, I have almost zero confidence in Newsweek. I mean, zero. It has become nothing more than a, you know, a polarized propaganda rag. What I hated about this story is they act like this is something new. Okay. Twitter was, Saudi Arabia already owned huge interest in Twitter.

Farron Cousins:                  They had spies at Twitter.

Mike Papantonio:             They had spies.

Farron Cousins:                  We talked about that.

Mike Papantonio:             Yeah. We did a story on it. Not only they owned, they, they had huge shares in Twitter. So they roll it over to him, to, to Musk and Newsweek goes crazy about it. Like, oh, this is, this is something new. It’s not anything new. They’ve been owning part of Twitter.

Farron Cousins:                  Right. It, it’s definitely not new, but it certainly is terrifying that, you know, the Saudi Royal Holding company has $2 billion now invested in Twitter. They are the second largest investor behind Elon Musk.

Mike Papantonio:             Mm-hmm.

Farron Cousins:                  And of course, the danger with that, as we have talked about plenty of times, is that Twitter, or not Twitter, Saudi Arabia puts people in jail for their tweets. An American citizen is now in jail in Saudi Arabia for 16 years.

Mike Papantonio:             Yeah. For a tweet.

Farron Cousins:                  For criticizing the kingdom on Twitter.

Mike Papantonio:             Yeah.

Farron Cousins:                  And, and, and we can’t have these people who will kill you over your tweets having any stake in it. That’s the danger.

Mike Papantonio:             Okay. The story we did on this, I, I just, it was weeks and weeks ago. I, I don’t remember exactly, but part of that story was Twitter knew what was going on.

Farron Cousins:                  Yeah.

Mike Papantonio:             The folks at Twitter knew that they had Saudi spies that were doing this, and they did nothing about it. And it wasn’t Elon Musk, it was the owners before Elon Musk that said, yeah, that’s okay because Saudis are giving us so much money. This mutt, the prince, the Saudi prince who is an absolute mutt, a wild bear, they describe him, is a guy that is going to do everything he can to influence the, the, the messaging there for $2 billion, just like the government does. We’re gonna do that story today. Just like, just like, just like all these agencies have done with social media. This is a great avenue for the Saudis, isn’t it?

Farron Cousins:                  It, it is. And again, I can’t stress enough how dangerous this is for the people of Saudi Arabia. Now, I got tons of issues with Musk buying Twitter. I don’t want the oligarchs out there holding the public town hall. That’s dangerous in and of itself. But having people that will literally kill you for your tweets, that’s even more dangerous.

Mike Papantonio:             But Farron, do you see the point I’m making? Newsweek acts like this is, okay, this is something new. It’s not anything new.

Farron Cousins:                  Right.

Mike Papantonio:             The Saudis we’re already in control of Twitter to where the, to where the folks at Twitter knew they had spies, didn’t do anything about it. And now this American is in prison for 16 years because of

Farron Cousins:                  Well, part of the reason this is treated as something new is because the Royal Holding company came out and bragged about it.

Mike Papantonio:             Yeah, yeah.

Farron Cousins:                  On Twitter, they put out this big post like we’re now the second. So they’re drawing attention to it because now they think, oh look, we can be open about what we’ve been doing for years at Twitter. So if, if they’re willing to come out in the open, that again, super scary because now they feel like we don’t have anything to hide.

Mike Papantonio:             But is Newsweek suggesting that the folks at Twitter are so stupid that they didn’t know that the Saudis were already in control of Twitter when they were in charge? You see, you got, you gotta, you gotta call balls and stripes.

Farron Cousins:                  Yeah. People don’t understand that it’s not that they just put the money in.

Mike Papantonio:             No.

Farron Cousins:                  It’s that they’re, they already had the investment and they’ve just rolled it over.

Mike Papantonio:             Yeah. And put in a little more, I’m sure they’re gonna put in more depending on Elon, what Elon Musk does.

Mike Papantonio is an American attorney and television and radio talk show host. He is past president of The National Trial Lawyers, the most prestigious trial lawyer association in America; and is one of the few living attorneys inducted into the Trial Lawyer Hall of Fame. He hosts the international television show "America's Lawyer"; and co-hosts Ring of Fire Radio, a nationally syndicated weekly radio program, with Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. and Sam Seder.