Pop Star or Pentagon Psy-Op? Bizarre Taylor Swift Conspiracy Theories Engulf Right-Wing Media

A post-game kiss between Kansas City Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce and pop superstar Taylor Swift has kicked off a bizarre conspiracy theory that’s engulfed right-wing media, centered on the unfounded belief that their relationship is a “psyop” designed to help Joe Biden win in 2024.


A post-game kiss between Kansas City Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce and pop superstar Taylor Swift has kicked off a bizarre conspiracy theory that’s engulfed right-wing media, centered on the unfounded belief that their relationship is a “psyop” designed to help Joe Biden win in 2024.

  • The Kansas City Chiefs won the AFC Championship over the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday thanks to some Ravens unforced errors and a little luck. The Chiefs are set to face the San Francisco 49ers in Super Bowl 58 on Feb. 11, their fourth Super Bowl appearance in five years.
  • Swift, who reached billionaire status in 2023 after her wildly successful “The Eras Tour,” has been regularly featured in NFL broadcasts of Kansas City Chiefs games since her relationship with Travis Kelce became public knowledge last October. Her prominence atop two pillars of American popular culture – music and football – has led to attention from political operators.
  • According to the New York Times, the Biden campaign is actively seeking Swift’s endorsement in the hope that the pop star’s popularity with her 279 million Instagram would rub off on the octogenarian incumbent. Swift previously endorsed Biden in 2020 and backed two unsuccessful Tennessee Democrats in 2018. 
  • Reports that the Biden campaign covets a Swift endorsement – and Kelce’s decision to record ads for a COVID vaccine awareness campaign – have provided fuel for MAGA influencers to criticize the pop star. Some, like Fox News’ Jeanine Pirro, stuck to rote admonitions for the celebrity to “stay out of politics.” 
  • Others pulled on tinfoil hats and dove into the fever swamps, like Fox News’ Jesse Watters. Earlier this month, Watters floated without evidence that Swift was an “asset” of a “Pentagon psy-op unit.”
  • Vivek Ramaswamy did not let his unsuccessful presidential campaign deter him from weighing in on sports. “I wonder who’s going to win the Super Bowl next month. And I wonder if there’s a major presidential endorsement coming from an artificially culturally propped-up couple this fall,” Ramaswamy wondered on X on the morning after the game. “Just some wild speculation over here; let’s see how it ages over the next eight months.”
  • Elon Musk replied to Ramaswamy with “Exactly,” while a failed 2022 GOP House candidate  claimed he has “never been more convinced that the Super Bowl is rigged.” Failed House candidate Laura Loomer and Rumble host Mike Crispi agreed with the “rigged” claims.
  • Ramaswamy’s evidence-free musings were a reply to right-wing influencer Jack Posobiec, the promoter of the unfounded “Pizzagate” conspiracy theory back in 2016, who posted, “Thinking about when Taylor Swift called out the Soros family in 2019 for buying the rights to her music and then how she came out a super liberal in 2020.” Posobiec didn’t elaborate.
  • Later on Monday, Posobiec blamed an unspecified “they” who he claimed were “gearing up for an operation to use Taylor Swift in the election against everything: against Trump, for Biden, they’re gonna get her and all you know they call them the Swifties they’re going to turn those into voters, you watch.” Once again, Posobiec offered no sources besides, apparently, his own imagination.


reporting from the left side of the aisle


  • The New York Times’ Jonathan Weismann covered the “MAGA meltdown” over Swift and Kelce. Weismann observed, “Much of the Swift paranoia has lurked on the MAGA fringes, with people like [Laura] Loomer, the conspiracy theorist from Florida who declared in December that “2024 will be MAGA vs Swifties” and [Charlie] Kirk, who declared in November that Ms. Swift would “come out for the presidential election” after Democrats had another strong showing in an election that demonstrated the issue of abortion motivated voters to the polls.”
  • CNN’s Oliver Darcy explored what he called “the real reason” right-wing influencers ran with the Swift psyop conspiracy theories. “For a right-wing online influencer, the top incentive is to amass video views and shares — all in a bid to increase one’s social media footprint and, thus, power and treasure. When viewed from that vantage point, peddling increasingly outlandish, attention-grabbing junk makes sense,” Darcy writes. “In effect, declaring war on popular institutions like Disney and celebrities like Swift makes business sense for these media personalities. It delivers them the attention they so desperately crave while appealing to a sliver of the population — enough to carve out a lucrative career in this arena.”
  • Rolling Stone covered the efforts by some on the Trump campaign to declare “Holy War” against Swift ahead of the 2024 election. Trump has reportedly told people that “no amount of A-list celebrity endorsements will save Biden” but that hasn’t stopped “members of Trump’s inner sanctum and social circle” from “signaling Swift’s prominent position atop their enemies list.”



  • National Review’s Charles C.W. Cooke urged the “freaks” who buy into the “psyop” drivel to “follow the advice that is given to children when they start to get too squirrely: For goodness sake, go outside.” Cooke pointed out that ranting about Swift being a “Deep State psyop” at “a bar, a baseball game, a kids’ Christmas concert, or a church… would yield embarrassed confusion, the sound of feet slowly shuffling away, and a hasty investigation into the availability of straitjackets.”
  • Conservative New York Times columnist Ross Douthat called the Swift conspiracy theories a sign of “the Right’s abnormality problem.” Douthat noted that this “self-defeating weirdness” has led conservatives to miss a deeper point: “A story where the famous pop star abandons her country roots and spends years dating unsuccessfully in a pool of Hollywood creeps and angsty musicians, only to find true love in the arms of a bearded heartland football star who runs a goofy podcast with his equally bearded, happily married, easily inebriated older brother … I mean, this is a Hallmark Christmas movie! This is an allegory of conservative Americana! This is itself a right-wing meme!”
  • Breitbart’s Hannah Bleau Knudsen offered up a perfect example of how media outlets use passive voice to spread ideological narratives without evidence or sources. Knudsen covered Ramaswamy’s comments about the “rumored” Swift endorsement of Biden, without bothering to say where these rumors came from or who is spreading them. Knudsen then referenced the “continuing speculation” about media coverage of Swift, without saying who was speculating, when it started and why, etc. Knudsen characterized media coverage of the world’s most famous pop star was a “continued obsession” and cited “countless NFL fans” who are “over the Swift obsession,” without offering a comment from even one NFL fan or a citation of how Knudsen came to this conclusion and felt comfortable offering it as an undisputed fact.

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© Dominic Moore, 2023

2 comments On Pop Star or Pentagon Psy-Op? Bizarre Taylor Swift Conspiracy Theories Engulf Right-Wing Media

  • Okaaaaaay…so even with your acknowledgment that the Biden admin *desperately* seeking her endorsement, you then pretend that it’s *conspiracy theory*, the favorite catch-all para-pejorative of the left ( screw the ‘centrist’ BS, babydolls ). And yes, this administration is demonstrably eager—by your own words— to exploit this air-headed illiterate’s talentless popularity in an effort to grasp at those young fools stupid enough to look to her for political analysis. But *conspiracy theory*, anyhow, right?

  • The Steel dossier was true and and the Hunter laptop was Russian dis information. Nothing to see here.

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