Hunter Biden’s Laptop, Twitter, and the New York Post

Sarah M. Inoue
3 min readDec 15, 2022

You may have heard these three topics talked about together recently and thought, what is that about, and do I care? This is a quick summary of what that is about so you can decide if you care. The summary mostly comes from a BBC podcast, The Coming Storm, Episode Midterms 2[1], that you can listen to here:

In 2019, Hunter Biden brought three items to a computer repair shop, including his laptop. He never picked it up, and according to the terms and conditions, the computer then became the owner of the shop’s property. He gave a copy to the FBI, and he gave a copy to Rudy Guiliani, who gave a copy to Steve Bannon. Someone from Bannon’s team looked through the laptop and tried to get the press to write about what was in the laptop.

What was in the laptop, you ask? First, a lot of personal pornography. Hunter Biden films himself. Second, all of his emails. These emails show how Hunter Biden used his father’s name when Joe Biden was a senator and Vice President to enrich himself. Two emails suggest subtly that Joe Biden may have possibly also gotten something out of it or been involved. One is an email from someone thanking Hunter for a meeting with Joe. The other mentions that the Big Guy will get $10,000, but not who the Big Guy is. So, not much, but enough to “ask questions” if you are so inclined. Third, there are many pictures of a young woman, as if Hunter Biden’s niece or someone accidentally downloaded her photos to his laptop, and she happened to be the kind of girl who takes a lot of selfies. Some people claimed that some of the pornography is child porn, but the reporters for the BBC did not find any pictures to substantiate that claim. That’s why I mention the photos of this girl.

In October 2020, right before the presidential election, the New York Post published a news story about the email that purported that someone had met with Joe Biden through Hunter Biden. This story was censored on all social media outlets, including Twitter. That was a big deal because this news might have impacted the election, but instead, it essentially got buried and ignored. I remember hearing about it and assuming it was a hoax. Many others did so, and then after the election, we learned that the laptop was really Hunter Biden’s, and the story was not a hoax. As the podcast cited above notes, one could see the suppression of the story as a conspiracy among the FBI, the news media, and social media outlets.

The FBI warned Facebook, Twitter, and other social media that Russia might push hoax stories in October, as they had in the 2016 election. Facebook and Twitter, both ashamed of what happened in 2016, were therefore quick to suppress any stories that might be hoaxes. The FBI, which had a copy of the laptop and all of the emails, could have (and should have) said, except if the story is about Hunter Biden’s laptop, which is a real thing that we are investigating. They didn’t, but it’s unclear if they didn’t because the laptop was in a different department of the FBI or because they wanted that story to be suppressed. News media was similarly skeptical of the story. Although many have since worked to verify the information on the laptop and published reports on it, they needed more time to get the news out in October.

To me, this shows the fallacy of Steve Bannon’s flood the media policy (from his infamous quote, “The real opposition is the media. And the way to deal with them is to flood the zone with shit.” Because he does that all the time when news of Hunter Biden’s laptop came from his office, many people dismissed it as “shit.” On the other hand, because they ignored it, and the news of those two possibly damaging emails was not discussed before the election, some people see a conspiracy. That is why this information and the leaked Twitter files are newsworthy.

I hope this summary helped, and if you have questions or comments, please let me know.

[1] The whole podcast is fantastic and well worth a listen. It provides perspective on QAnon and other crazy phenomena.