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Posts Tagged ‘Big Tech’

Former Intelligence Officials, Citing Russia, Say Big Tech Monopoly Power is Vital to National Security

Posted by M. C. on April 21, 2022

When the U.S. security state announces that Big Tech’s centralized censorship power must be preserved, we should ask what this reveals about whom this regime serves.

https://greenwald.substack.com/p/former-intelligence-officials-citing?s=r

A group of former intelligence and national security officials on Monday issued a jointly signed letter warning that pending legislative attempts to restrict or break up the power of Big Tech monopolies — Facebook, Google, and Amazon — would jeopardize national security because, they argue, their centralized censorship power is crucial to advancing U.S. foreign policy. The majority of this letter is devoted to repeatedly invoking the grave threat allegedly posed to the U.S. by Russia as illustrated by the invasion of Ukraine, and it repeatedly points to the dangers of Putin and the Kremlin to justify the need to preserve Big Tech’s power in its maximalist form. Any attempts to restrict Big Tech’s monopolistic power would therefore undermine the U.S. fight against Moscow.

While one of their central claims is that Big Tech monopoly power is necessary to combat (i.e., censor) “foreign disinformation,” several of these officials are themselves leading disinformation agents: many were the same former intelligence officials who signed the now-infamous-and-debunked pre-election letter fraudulently claiming that the authentic Hunter Biden emails had the “hallmarks” of Russia disinformation (former Obama Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, former Obama CIA Director Michael Morrell, former Obama CIA/Pentagon chief Leon Panetta). Others who signed this new letter have strong financial ties to the Big Tech corporations whose power they are defending in the name of national security (Morrell, Panetta, former Bush National Security Adviser Fran Townsend).

The ostensible purpose of the letter is to warn of the national security dangers from two different bipartisan bills — one pending in the Senate, the other in the House — that would prohibit Big Tech monopolies from using their vertical power to “discriminate” against competitors (the way Google, for instance, uses its search engine business to bury the videos of competitors to its YouTube property, such as Rumble, or the way Google and Apple use their stores and Amazon uses its domination over hosting services to destroy competitors).

One bill in the Senate is co-sponsored by Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) and Sen. Charles Grassley (R-IA), and has attracted ample support in both parties, as has a similar House bill co-sponsored by House Antitrust Committee Chair David Cicilline (D-RI) and ranking member Rep. Ken Buck (R-CO). The amount of bipartisan support each bill has garnered — and the widespread animosity toward Big Tech reflected by this Congressional support — has shocked Google, Amazon, Apple, and Facebook lobbyists, who are accustomed to getting their way in Washington with lavish donations to the key politicians in each party.

This letter by former national security officials is, in one sense, an act of desperation. The bills have received the support of the key committees with jurisdiction over antitrust and Big Tech. In the Senate, five conservative Republican Committee members who have been outspoken critics of Big Tech power — Grassley, Sens. Lindsey Graham (R-SC), Ted Cruz (R-TX), Josh Hawley (R-MI), Sen. John Kennedy (R-LA) — joined with Democrats to ensure the passage of one bill out of the Judiciary Committee by a 16-6 vote, with a companion bill passing that Committee with the support of 20 of twenty-two Senators. As The Intercept‘s Sara Sirota and Ryan Grim report: “Both bills have Big Tech reeling” since “a floor vote would likely be a blowout for Big Tech.”

The extreme animus harbored by large parts of the left and right toward Big Tech make it very difficult for any lawmaker to go on record in opposition to these proposed bills if they are forced to publicly take a position in a floor vote. Many Senators with financial ties to Big Tech — including the two California Senate Democrats who represent Silicon Valley and are recipients of their largesse (Sens. Dianne Feinstein and Alex Padilla) — have expressed reservations about these reform efforts and have refused to co-sponsor the bill, yet still voted YES when forced to vote in Committee. This shows that public pressure to rein in Big Tech is becoming too large to enable Silicon Valley to force lawmakers to ignore their constituents’ wishes with lobbyist donations. These politicians will work behind the scenes to kill efforts to rein in Big Tech, but will not vote against such efforts if forced to take a public position.

As a result, Big Tech’s last hope is to keep the bill from reaching the floor where Senators would be forced to go on record, a goal they hope will be advanced by Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer of New York due to his close ties to Silicon Valley. “Both [Schumer’s] children are on the payroll of companies the proposals would seek to rein in,” reported The New York Post: “Jessica Schumer is a registered lobbyist at Amazon, according to New York state records. Alison Schumer works at Facebook as a product marketing manager.” Despite that, Schumer claimed to The Intercept that he supports both bills and will vote in favor of them, even though he has engaged in maneuvers to impede the bills from getting a full floor vote.


This is where these former intelligence and national security officials come in. While these former CIA, Homeland Security and Pentagon operatives have little sway in the Senate Judiciary and House Antitrust Committees, they command great loyalty from Congressional national security committees. Those committees, created to exert oversight of the U.S. intelligence and military agencies, are notoriously captive to the U.S. National Security State. The ostensible purpose of this new letter is to insist that Big Tech monopoly power is vital to U.S. national security — because it is necessary for them to censor “disinformation” from the internet, especially now with the grave Russian threat reflected by the war in Ukraine — and they thus demand that the anti-Big-Tech bills first be reviewed not only by the Judiciary and Antitrust Committees, but also the national security committees where they wield power and influence, which have traditionally played no role in regulating the technology sector:

We call on the congressional committees with national security jurisdiction – including the Armed Services Committees, Intelligence Committees, and Homeland Security Committees in both the House and Senate – to conduct a review of any legislation that could hinder America’s key technology companies in the fight against cyber and national security risks emanating from Russia’s and China’s growing digital authoritarianism.

Why would these former national security and intelligence officials be so devoted to preserving the unfettered power of Big Tech to control and censor the internet? One obvious explanation is the standard one that always runs Washington: several of them have a financial interest in serving Big Tech’s agenda.

Unsurprisingly, Apple CEO Tim Cook has himself pushed the claim that undermining Big Tech’s power in any way would threaten U.S national security. And there is now an army of well-compensated-by-Silicon-Valley former national security officials echoing his message. A well-researched Politico article from September — headlined: “12 former security officials who warned against antitrust crackdown have tech ties”detailed how many of these former officials who invoke national security claims to protect Big Tech are on the take from the key tech monopolies:

The warning last week from a dozen former national security leaders was stark: An antitrust crackdown on Silicon Valley could threaten the nation’s economy and “cede U.S. tech leadership to China.”

But the group was united by more than their histories of holding senior defense and intelligence roles in the Trump, Obama and George W. Bush administrations: All 12 have ties to major tech companies, either from working with them directly or serving with organizations that get money from them, according to a POLITICO analysis….

Seven of the 12, including Panetta, hold roles at Beacon Global Strategies, a public relations firm that according to a person familiar with the matter counts Google as a client…Five of the former officials, including former director of the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency Robert Cardillo and former National Security Agency deputy director Richard Ledgett, serve as advisory board members at Beacon. Panetta and Michael Morell, a former acting CIA director under President Barack Obama, are senior counselors for the firm….

Frances Townsend, who was a counterterrorism and homeland security adviser to President George W. Bush, is on the national security advisory board for American Edge, a Facebook-funded group that opposes changes to strengthen antitrust laws….Townsend is also on the board of directors of the Atlantic Council, which counts Facebook and Google as funders; the board of trustees for Center for Strategic and International Studies, which counts Apple and Google as funders; and the board of directors of the Council on Foreign Relations, which receives money from Microsoft and counts Facebook and Google in its highest membership category.

As Rep. Buck, the Colorado House Republican who favors reform, put it: “It is not surprising that individuals who receive money from Big Tech are defending Big Tech. At the end of the day, Big Tech is harming U.S. competition and innovation through anticompetitive practices.” In other words, these former intelligence officials are exploiting their national security credentials to protect an industry in which they have a deep financial interest.

The view that preservation of Big Tech is vital for national security is by no means a unanimous view even in that world. Retired Gen. Wesley Clark and others have vehemently argued that this claim is a “myth.” As veteran internet security expert Bruce Schneier observed: “These bills will encourage competition, prevent monopolist extortion, and guarantee users a new right to digital self-determination.” But the National Security State has enough True Believers combined with paid shills to make it appear as if Americans should be desperate to preserve and protect Big Tech’s power because this power is crucial to keeping America safe and, particularly, fighting Russia.

There are indeed valid and rational reasons for these officials to view Big Tech monopoly power as a vital weapon in advancing their national security agenda. As I documented last week when reporting on the unprecedented censorship regime imposed in the West regarding the war in Ukraine, Big Tech censorship of political speech is not random. Domestically, it is virtually always devoted to silencing any meaningful dissent from liberal orthodoxy or official pieties on key political controversies. But in terms of foreign policy, the censorship patterns of tech monopolies virtually always align with U.S. foreign policy, and for understandable reasons: Big Tech and the U.S. security state are in a virtually complete union, with all sorts of overlapping, mutual financial interests:

Note that this censorship regime is completely one-sided and, as usual, entirely aligned with U.S. foreign policy. Western news outlets and social media platforms have been flooded with pro-Ukrainian propaganda and outright lies from the start of the war. A New York Times article from early March put it very delicately in its headline: “Fact and Mythmaking Blend in Ukraine’s Information War.” Axios was similarly understated in recognizing this fact: “Ukraine misinformation is spreading — and not just from Russia.” Members of the U.S. Congress have gleefully spread fabrications that went viral to millions of people, with no action from censorship-happy Silicon Valley corporations. That is not a surprise: all participants in war use disinformation and propaganda to manipulate public opinion in their favor, and that certainly includes all direct and proxy-war belligerents in the war in Ukraine.

Yet there is little to no censorship — either by Western states or by Silicon Valley monopolies — of pro-Ukrainian disinformation, propaganda and lies. The censorship goes only in one direction: to silence any voices deemed “pro-Russian,” regardless of whether they spread disinformation….Their crime, like the crime of so many other banished accounts, was not disinformation but skepticism about the US/NATO propaganda campaign. Put another way, it is not “disinformation” but rather viewpoint-error that is targeted for silencing. One can spread as many lies and as much disinformation as one wants provided that it is designed to advance the NATO agenda in Ukraine (just as one is free to spread disinformation provided that its purpose is to strengthen the Democratic Party, which wields its majoritarian power in Washington to demand greater censorship and commands the support of most of Silicon Valley). But what one cannot do is question the NATO/Ukrainian propaganda framework without running a very substantial risk of banishment.

It is unsurprising that Silicon Valley monopolies exercise their censorship power in full alignment with the foreign policy interests of the U.S. Government. Many of the key tech monopolies — such as Google and Amazon — routinely seek and obtain highly lucrative contracts with the U.S. security state, including both the CIA and NSA. Their top executives enjoy very close relationships with top Democratic Party officials. And Congressional Democrats have repeatedly hauled tech executives before their various Committees to explicitly threaten them with legal and regulatory reprisals if they do not censor more in accordance with the policy goals and political interests of that party.

Needless to say, the U.S. security state wants to maintain a stranglehold on political discourse in the U.S. and the world more broadly. They want to be able to impose propagandistic narratives without challenge and advocate for militarism without dissent. To accomplish that, they need a small handful of corporations which are subservient to them to hold in their hands as much concentrated power over the internet as possible.

If a free and fair competitive market were to arise whereby social media platforms more devoted to free speech could fairly compete with Google and Facebook— as the various pending bills in Congress are partially designed to foster — then that new diversity of influence, that diffusion of power, would genuinely threaten the ability of the CIA and the Pentagon and the White House to police political discourse and suppress dissent from their policies and assertions. By contrast, by maintaining all power in the hands of the small coterie of tech monopolies which control the internet and which have long proven their loyalty to the U.S. security state, the ability of the U.S. national security state to maintain a closed propaganda system around questions of war and militarism is guaranteed.


In this new letter, these national security operatives barely bother to hide their intention to exploit the strong animosity toward Russia that they have cultivated, and the accompanying intense emotions from the ubiquitous, unprecedented media coverage of the war in Ukraine, to prop up their goals. Over and over, they cite the grave Russian threat — a theme they have been disseminating and manufacturing since the Russiagate fraud of 2016 — to manipulate Americans to support the preservation of Big Tech’s concentrated power, and to imply that anyone seeking to limit Big Tech power or make the market more competitive is a threat to U.S. national security:

This is a pivotal moment in modern history. There is a battle brewing between authoritarianism and democracy, and the former is using all the tools at its disposal, including a broad disinformation campaign and the threat of cyber-attacks, to bring about a change in the global order. We must confront these global challenges. . . . U.S. technology platforms have given the world the chance to see the real story of the Russian military’s horrific human rights abuses in Ukraine. . . . At the same time, President Putin and his regime have sought to twist facts in order to show Russia as a liberator instead of an aggressor. . . .

The Russian government is seeking to alter the information landscape by blocking Russian citizens from receiving content that would show the true facts on the ground. .. . . . Indeed, it is telling that among the Kremlin’s first actions of the war was blocking U.S. platforms in Russia. Putin knows that U.S. digital platforms can provide Russian citizens valuable views and facts about the war that he tries to distort through lies and disinformation. U.S. technology platforms have already taken concrete steps to shine a light on Russia’s actions to brutalize Ukraine. . . . Providing timely and accurate on-the-ground information – and disrupting the scourge of disinformation from Russian state media – is essential for allowing the world (including the Russian people) to see the human toll of Russia’s aggression. . . . [T]he United States is facing an extraordinary threat from Russian cyber-attacks . . .

In the face of these growing threats, U.S. policymakers must not inadvertently hamper the ability of U.S. technology platforms to counter increasing disinformation and cybersecurity risks, particularly as the West continues to rely on the scale and reach of these firms to push back on the Kremlin . . . . Russia’s invasion of Ukraine marks the start of a new chapter in global history, one in which the ideals of democracy will be put to the test. The United States will need to rely on the power of its technology sector to ensure that the safety of its citizens and the narrative of events continues to be shaped by facts, not by foreign adversaries.

It is hardly controversial or novel to observe that the U.S. security state always wants and needs a hated foreign enemy precisely because it allows them to claim whatever powers and whatever budgets they want in the name of stopping that foreign villain. And every war and every new enemy ushers in new authoritarian powers and the trampling of civil liberties: both the First War on Terror, justified by 9/11, and the New Domestic War on Terror, justified by 1/6, should have taught us that lesson permanently. Usually, though, U.S. security state propagandists are a bit more subtle about how they manipulate anger and fear of foreign villains to manipulate public opinion for their own authoritarian ends.

Perhaps because of their current desperation about the support these bills have attracted, they are now just nakedly and shamelessly trying to channel the anger and hatred that they have successfully stoked toward Russia to demand that Big Tech not be weakened, regulated or restricted in any way. The cynical exploitation could hardly be more overt: if you hate Putin the way any loyal and patriotic American should, then you must devote yourself to full preservation of the power of Google, Facebook, Apple, and Amazon.

It should go without saying that these life-long security state operatives do not care in the slightest about the dangers of “disinformation.” Indeed — as evidenced by the fact that most of them generated one Russiagate fraud after the next during…

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Addict, Degenerate and Bagman of a Corrupt Family Enterprise Exposed

Posted by M. C. on March 8, 2022

In history, sociopaths have played important destructive roles because they have no moral compass and no commitment to virtuous conduct. A republic cannot stand without a virtuous people.

https://www.americanthinker.com/articles/2022/03/addict_degenerate_and_bagman_of_a_corrupt_family_enterprise_exposed_.html

By John Dale Dunn, M.D.

Laptop from Hell: Hunter Biden, Big Tech, and the Dirty Secrets the President Tried to Hide by Miranda Devine 224 pp Kindle 14.99 Hardcopy 24.33,  ISBN978-1-63758-105-6 A Liberatio Protocol Book Imprint of Post Hill Press New York 2021

It is hard to find words to describe the debauched and sleazy satyr that is Hunter Biden and how he used his family name and his father’s status as an important American politician to become an extraordinary international grifter involved in multi-million dollar — sometimes billion dollar — deals with international entities that included corrupt criminal enterprises such as Burisma Holdings of Ukraine and the government- and military-controlled companies of Russia and China, international enemies of the United States.

His business activities and lifestyle were revealed on the laptop he left in a Wilmington, Delaware Mac computer repair shop owned by a Mr. Isaac, who took possession after Hunter failed to pick it up after 90 days.  Mr. Isaac had already fixed the water damage and looked at the contents, found discussions about Burisma (the Ukrainian oil and gas company) so he arranged through his father, a retired Air Force Colonel, to turn the laptop over to the FBI in Arizona. 

Mr. Isaac kept a hard drive copy to protect himself.  Then he made some inquiries after the FBI failed to do anything.  The inquiry that was most productive was to Rudy Giuliani, who was Trump’s personal attorney and very interested in the Burisma matter.  Mr. G had an old DOJ colleague named Costello from his federal prosecutor days who was an IT expert, and the hard drive was analyzed.  Then, in October, it was presented to the New York Post for the bombshell it was — proof of Hunter’s grifting and also proof that Joe Biden lied when he claimed he didn’t know anything about Hunter’s international machinations involving corrupt Ukrainians and nefarious Chinese and Russian autocrats/plutocrats.

The plot thickened as the Post did its due diligence.  A full-court press was initiated to suppress and censor the Post’s publication of the laptop materials in October of 2020, the run-up to the election and the interval in the debates being held between Trump and Biden. 

See the rest here

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The Big Tech Empire Worried About The Rise of the Alternative Media Platforms and The Rebel Alliance – The Last Refuge

Posted by M. C. on December 8, 2021

Notice how the focus of concern from within the Axios article is not about the creation of the alternative platforms per se’; what the Empire is really angered about is that money is available to support the rebel alliance.

https://theconservativetreehouse.com/blog/2021/12/06/the-big-tech-empire-worried-about-the-rise-of-the-alternative-media-platforms-and-the-rebel-alliance/

Sundance

There is a tremor in the dark force that encompasses the totality of the Big Tech control platforms.  An interesting article from Axios notes the Tech oligarchs, and multinational corporate behemoths [Google, Facebook, YouTube, Instagram etc] that manipulate and control information, are starting to worry about the new “right-wing” architecture that is creating alternate platforms.

It is important to keep a solid reference point in the front of our mind when we review any details about the information war.  The Fourth Branch of Government has strong dependency on their public-private partnership between Big Tech and govt/intelligence networks.

It is a partnership of mutual benefit.  U.S. government officials use their political power to direct the filtering mechanisms of Big Tech.  In return, the tech empire facilitates the reelection of political officials to support the network.

However, a large and growing band of rebels have been assembling platform architecture outside the controls of Big Tech.  The method of delivering what you are reading right now was created specifically as part of this architecture.   A growing network of dissident people in/around the tech industry continue to build the framework for alternative platforms on the internet, and now Big Tech is starting to realize it is actually possible for ants to eat an elephant.

Notice how the focus of concern from within the Axios article is not about the creation of the alternative platforms per se’; what the Empire is really angered about is that money is available to support the rebel alliance.  “Many of these efforts couldn’t exist without the backing of major corporate figures and billionaires who are eager to push back against things like “censorship” and “cancel culture,” the Empire says; as the officials inside the system gnash their teeth in anger.

That section under “why it matters” tells us the Empire storm troopers, FBI, DOJ and government regulatory agencies, are likely to target the financial mechanisms, people and groups, who help fund the Rebel Alliance.   Watch for it.

The Empire is worried about these cloud-based hosting possibilities and the creation of server banks to support dissident voices.  Everything from video platforms and book publishing companies are being created outside of the control of the Empire.  They are starting to worry how their business models will be affected as their audience shrinks. Thus, the government subsidizing of these Big Tech platforms is likely to become more prevalent in the future.

[Read Axios Article Here]

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Kyle Rittenhouse trial exposes Big Tech’s ‘censor until proven innocent’ approach

Posted by M. C. on November 22, 2021

Dan Gainor, VP of the Media Research Center, said Big Tech’s attempts to stifle discussions about Rittenhouse proves how much control it has in societal and political issues. “It’s dangerous that they have this much power over what can be discussed in a public forum,” he said. “They could prevent free elections in every free country in the world if they wanted to.”

https://view.parlermailer.com/?qs=478a6a8a57833fc6d62fa340774f8d1fcc79a595708ababba646845a85d2fe8876bb7dd2e4a5ea2570052919cb9393edac07367c4afefaf516278aa4764016cacbdef0f75e81ff515aef9fb7f111cf89

A Wisconsin jury finding Kyle Rittenhouse acted in self-defense, when he shot three people at a BLM protest in Kenosha last year, makes more apparent the dangerous powers of Big Tech. Within days of the August 2020 shootings, Facebook labeled Rittenhouse a mass murderer, telling Breitbart: “We’ve designated the shooting in Kenosha a mass murder and are removing posts in support of the shooter.” It also blocked search results on “Kyle Rittenhouse.”

In September 2020, Twitter suspended the account of Rittenhouse’s attorney for attempting to raise funds for the teenager’s defense. GoFundMe cited its policies against supporting those charged with violent crimes when thwarting efforts to pay for Rittenhouse’s legal fees, despite plenty of similar fundraisers remaining live. Only after the verdict of innocence was reached would GoFundMe allow campaigns to help pay for the teen’s legal fees and living expenses. 

During Rittenhouse’s trial, Facebook again blocked search results on his name, leaving users to converse about it only on their profiles or in their subscribed feeds. And YouTube suspended live streams about the trial hosted by independent legal analysts.  

In America, alleged criminals are presumed innocent until proven guilty. The court of Big Tech social media, however, is anything but impartial. And their actions regarding this particular case should concern us all. 

Dan Gainor, VP of the Media Research Center, said Big Tech’s attempts to stifle discussions about Rittenhouse proves how much control it has in societal and political issues. “It’s dangerous that they have this much power over what can be discussed in a public forum,” he said. “They could prevent free elections in every free country in the world if they wanted to.”

What do you think? Should Big Tech protect its users from the “bad side” of a criminal case? Talk about it on Parler.

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Of Two Minds – America Is Now a Kleptocrapocracy

Posted by M. C. on October 22, 2021

Please don’t make the mistake of expecting anything to work properly in America. The components are garbage, the parts are on back-order, the people who knew how to make the kludgy mess function just quit in disgust, and we’ll have to get back to you about your request, as our service staff just left to launch an OnlyFans site.

https://www.oftwominds.com/blogoct21/kleptocrapocracy10-21.html

Charles Hugh Smith

I hope everyone here is hungry because the banquet of consequences is being served.

I’ve coined a new portmanteau word to describe America’s descent: kleptocrapocracy, a union of kleptocracy (a nation ruled by kleptocrats) and crapocracy, a nation drowning in a moral sewer of rampant self-interest in which the focus is cloaking all the skims, scams, rackets and bezzles in some virtuous-sounding garb, a nation choking on low-quality junk ceaselessly hawked by robocalls, spam, phishing and Big Tech manipulation.

It’s little wonder trust has collapsed in America: the only thing we can trust is whatever’s being pitched is deceptively packaged to mask the self-interest and profiteering of the perps.

The stench from the decomposing carcasses of once-trusted institutions is everywhere. Insiders and the marketers they pay to cloak their grifting are banking bennies at the expense of hapless debt-serfs who fell for the scam. You need these three costly medications, and then when the side-effects kick in, you need six more to counteract the first three, and so on. But trust us; your “health” (heh) is our only concern. Uh, sure.

Why do state universities need to market themselves like a roto-rooter service? Maybe because they’re both working the sewers: state universities are exploiting the student loan sewers, desperate to recruit another batch of debt-serfs who fell for the 3-card monte game in which a lifetime of debt is exchanged for a credential of dubious value.

The competition for the remaining pool of debt-serfs is heating up, so like everything else in America, the game is now all about marketing, virtue-signaling, exploiting Big Tech manipulation, and so on.

Doing something useful is now for chumps. The opportunities in America are all about getting rich by doing, well, nothing: skimming 20% “guaranteed” returns in DeFi, mining cryptos, trading stablecoins, selling volatility, etc.–getting rich and then living large on the sweat of the chumps who are still working (poor deluded fools!).

The obvious goal here is for everyone to get in on trading stablecoins, buying rentals with DeFi, churning meme stocks, etc. Why should anyone lower themselves to doing something useful anymore? Why bother?

Labor has been degraded for decades in speculative-frenzy America. Why work when the Fed has our backs and all those newly issued trillions are up for grabs? Doing something useful is for chumps.

Nobody seems to ask what happens when we’re all minting fortunes off speculative churn and there’s nobody filling potholes, stocking shelves or carrying bags of QuikCrete to customers’ trucks.

And while we’re on the subject of sewage: if America’s security services and Big Tech oligarchies track everything and everyone, why are we drowning in robocalls, spam, SMS-spam (smishing), etc.? Couldn’t the NSA/CIA track the spammers and robo-callers down and rendition them (warrantlessly, of course) to a hellhole camp in an unnamed country?

Of course they could. But the ruination of everyday life is of no concern to the kleptocrats (fly with me to the stars!) or our dysfunctional government, which has become nothing more than an invitation-only auction of favors that elevates the relentless pursuit of self-interest and profiteering to new kleptocratic heights.

Please don’t make the mistake of expecting anything to work properly in America. The components are garbage, the parts are on back-order, the people who knew how to make the kludgy mess function just quit in disgust, and we’ll have to get back to you about your request, as our service staff just left to launch an OnlyFans site.

I don’t want to work, I’m minting money speculating, but gol-darn it, I want everyone else to wait on me and meet my needs for low, low quality goods and services at not-so-low prices, and if I’m not treated well enough by everyone earning chump-change, then I’ll freak out, and if that doesn’t pan out, I’ll blame it all on my meds. Accountability is like work–only for chumps.

Trust me, everything’s going great and we’re all going to get wealthier and wealthier until we won’t be able to take it any more, it will be so great. I hope everyone here is hungry because the banquet of consequences is being served.

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Doug Casey on the Real Reason Why the Mainstream Media is Dialing Up the Fear

Posted by M. C. on September 9, 2021

International Man: How can the average person find the truth about a given issue?

Doug Casey: First of all, you have to actively cultivate habits of critical thinking. Ask yourself about everything you read or hear from any source: Does this make sense? What’s the hidden agenda?  What is being omitted? What’s being shaded, twisted, and spun?

This is an essential skill. Subject everything to a process of critical thinking. Question everything—especially authority.

https://internationalman.com/articles/doug-casey-on-the-real-reason-why-the-mainstream-media-is-dialing-up-the-fear/

by Doug Casey

mainstream media

International Man: The mainstream media can dial up the fear in society much like you can with the thermostat in your house. And right now, they seem to be cranking up the fear to hysterical levels.

Governments are able to enact radical policies when people are fearful.

What is your take on the situation and the media’s role in it?

Doug Casey: The great American journalist H.L. Menken once said, “The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary.”

He was right.

Fear is one of the most powerful and primal emotions, and government has always used fear to unite the people behind it. Government—which produces nothing—only exists because of fear. Fear of foreigners is allayed by its army. Fear of domestic chaos is allayed by its police.

The media is an ideal way to transmit fear. The media has transformed itself into the government’s lapdog. It has the same talking points and communicates “the narrative” in the same way. Government and media have always worked hand in glove, of course, but today more than ever. There are no longer thousands of independent newspapers scattered across the country, just a few conglomerates that control all significant print and electronic media.

One thing that hasn’t changed as far as the media is concerned is the old saying “if it bleeds, it leads.” Fear, danger, and violence make stories interesting and exciting. They make events urgent—and most important, they make people want to buy newspapers and visit their websites.

I don’t trust neither the government—which has its own interests and enforces them with coercion—or the media which, if it knows what’s good for it, either touts the party line or acts like a “loyal opposition” to give readers the impression they actually have real choices.

It’s a dishonest and disgusting charade.

International Man: CNN, FOX News, MSNBC, The NY Times, The Washington Post, and others are notorious for sensationalizing stories, dramatizing situations, and propagandizing certain issues.

How does the mainstream media today contrast with the mainstream media in previous decades?

Doug Casey: They’re very similar in essence because the newspaper business wants to sell newspapers, and TV and radio want the public to hear ads. The magazine business wants to sell magazines. The more you sell, the more advertising dollars you generate. That results in a tendency to generate outrageous copy. It’s why you must be a skeptical, critical thinker and demand proof for everything.

During the 19th and early 20th centuries, we had the yellow press. Hearst and Pulitzer were famous for pumping up public enthusiasm for wars. Everybody wanted to hear news from the front. There’s absolutely nothing better—nothing even close—than a war for generating readers, listeners, and viewers.

The mainstream media hasn’t changed much from that point of view. Newspapers and the media have always competed with each other based on outrageous headlines. If they’re wrong, you forget them and drive on. If they’re right, they never let the booboisie forget it.

People like stuff that’s interesting. That hasn’t changed much, although today it is more advertising rather than subscription-driven. That is especially the case with the ongoing COVID-19 hysteria. Big pharma has big advertising dollars, and you don’t want to make your major advertisers unhappy.

There are, however, other meaningful differences between the media of today and that of years past. First, the people who became reporters in the past weren’t college-educated. They were basically street kids who liked to write; they were much closer to the ground level. They actually had to put boots on the ground to get the story.

Today’s reporters have all gone to college, as opposed to the school of hard knocks, to learn journalism. They get most of their information from their computer, as opposed to firsthand research, the way reporters used to do it. They now just Google something and accept what somebody else says as fact.

Another big difference is that Washington DC has grown exponentially more important over the last 100 years; there’s vastly more reporting about the government in DC than there ever has been in the past.

Reporters once reported about things that they knew, their local scene. Today, unless he’s posted in DC, a reporter is nearly irrelevant; all they know is what other people say on the internet. In general, the quality of reporting has gone down tremendously over the years.

International Man: Does real journalism exist today? Where can it be found?

Doug Casey: The so-called “paper of record” in the US is the New York Times. I used to read the NY Times, but not anymore; it’s totally woke. It shouldn’t be trusted. I don’t even trust their science section anymore.

Everything has been very politicized. They try to relate everything to global warming, COVID, or what the government should do to solve some real or—usually—imagined problem. Everything is written through that filter. They even try to tie science issues into Critical Race Theory and gender.

I like to see what people are reading, so I read book reviews. But in the New York Times, the New York Review of Books, and the London Review of Books—I still subscribe to them out of inertia—it seems the majority of books today are written and/or reviewed by people of color (POCs), people with sexual aberrations, or women. And they all seem to grind Left-wing axes.

The Left—the statists and collectivists—has completely captured the mass media, especially the upmarket mass media, like The Atlantic, The New Yorker, and the publications I just mentioned. They’re just vehicles the elite use to talk to each other about being elite.

If you want to subscribe to anything today, I recommend that you consider subscribing to blogs, of which there are thousands on the internet. Look for blogs you think are reliable, and subscribe to select newsletters. Since it’s your subscription dollars—not the advertisers’ favor—that they have to earn, they generally try to be more intellectually honest, although, at least in the financial realm, many have become nothing but overpriced tout sheets. Be discriminating.

However, there are still some magazines out there I think are good—like Reason Magazine and The Spectator—but it’s slim pickings.

International Man: Large tech companies like Facebook, Twitter, and Google are the new information gatekeepers.

Are these companies becoming the new mainstream media in that sense? What are the implications?

Doug Casey: Frankly, these Big Tech companies have had their day in the sun. They’re too big to be managed efficiently. They’re arrogant and corrupt. And, I suspect that even though everyone uses them, most people no longer like or trust them.

There will be either a change in technology or a change in the public mood that will turn them into dinosaurs. I’m not interested in owning their ultra-expensive stock, and not just because I despise them and their editorial takes; they’re stooges for the State.

The fact is the government still can’t directly censor things. It’s too hard because the First Amendment, at least in name, still exists. But as I said earlier, these media companies work hand in glove with the State. Big Government prefers to work with Big Tech companies like Facebook, Google, Microsoft, and the rest. There’s no law against Big Tech censoring somebody—nor should there be—because they’re a private business. You certainly don’t want to give the government even more power.

This type of “private” censorship is a clever way to get around the Constitution. The fact is that these companies have become unofficial arms of the government—that’s part of what the “Deep State” is all about. The good news is that this will eventually cause them to cut their own throats. They’ll be superseded by changes in technology and the public mood. Many people—including myself—already deny them support in any way possible.

People who seriously rely on them for their news are basically useless misinformed idiots. Thinking people go elsewhere for news.

International Man: How can the average person find the truth about a given issue?

Doug Casey: First of all, you have to actively cultivate habits of critical thinking. Ask yourself about everything you read or hear from any source: Does this make sense? What’s the hidden agenda?  What is being omitted? What’s being shaded, twisted, and spun?

This is an essential skill. Subject everything to a process of critical thinking. Question everything—especially authority.

Number two is to trust your own eyes, ears, and senses. By that, I don’t mean what you see on television or what you read in Google. Things that you see with your own boots on the ground. Actually, talk to people one-to-one to find out what the man on the street is thinking, not what some reporter says he’s thinking. Or perhaps I should say feeling since few of the public think.

Try to be your own personal reporter. Put your own boots on the ground and investigate the real world first hand. Don’t just accept what some reporter tells you.

Editor’s Note: The 2020s will likely to be an increasingly volatile decade. More governments are putting their money printing on overdrive. Negative interests are becoming the rule instead of the exception to it.

One thing is for sure, there will be a great deal of change taking place in the years ahead.

That’s precisely why legendary speculator Doug Casey and his team released an urgent new report titled Doug Casey’s Top 7 Predictions.

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Greenwald: Big Tech Is Training An Entire Population To Accept Authoritarianism

Posted by M. C. on June 29, 2021

And when someone hears Katie Couric or people like her who live in 25 million dollar co-ops on the upper east side of Manhattan announce that anyone who disagrees with her has to be deprogrammed, it’s really not difficult to understand why that mentality is so off-putting and I think it’s a major reach why people have lost faith and trust in these institutions.

https://www.realclearpolitics.com/video/2021/06/25/greenwald_big_tech_is_training_an_entire_population_to_accept_authoritarianism.html

Posted By Tyler Stone

GLENN GREENWALD: I don’t know if you saw there was a poll of 46 countries released this morning that demonstrated that the country in which the American media has held in the lowest esteem in which they’re most distrusted is the United States out of 46 countries. And when someone hears Katie Couric or people like her who live in 25 million dollar co-ops on the upper east side of Manhattan announce that anyone who disagrees with her has to be deprogrammed, it’s really not difficult to understand why that mentality is so off-putting and I think it’s a major reach why people have lost faith and trust in these institutions.

I think that so much more than trying to ban a particular view because it’s dangerous, which is their excuse, what they are really doing is training an entire population to accept authoritarianism that our political debates from now on are going to be constricted and limited so that any questioning of or disagreement with anointed authorities will become simply banned from the internet. We have been trained for years now to accept that. The coronavirus pandemic intensified that greatly. And I think that’s really what the playbook is going forward is to ensure that official pronouncements are insulated from any kind of dissent which is what makes it so dangerous.

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America’s Corporate Thought Police | Mises Institute

Posted by M. C. on May 18, 2021

https://mises.org/library/americas-corporate-thought-police

David Gordon

In my column last week, I said that Senator Josh Hawley’s book The Tyranny of Big Tech raises important issues, and I’d like this week to go into one of these. He notes that Facebook, Amazon, Twitter, YouTube, and Google Search have immense influence on the news and political opinions people see.

As he points out, the

tech platforms are destroying Americans’ control over their lives … by manipulating what news Americans can see and influencing the political decisions they make. By 2019, Facebook was boasting it could change election outcomes…. In the days leading up to the 2020 presidential vote, Facebook and Twitter seemed determined to try. Both platforms censored the distribution of a New York Post report detailing illicit foreign profits by Joe Biden’s son, Hunter, and alleging Joe Biden’s potential involvement. The platforms suppressed the story until after the election was over. (p. 7)

Here is an example of censorship I experienced myself. Sometime ago, I tried to send a link using Facebook to an article by Gordon Tullock, “Hobson’s Imperialism” (Modern Age, 1963). Although I tried to send the link in a private message, the message did not go through. The problem was that my link was to an index run by Ron Unz, who holds controversial views that make him a “nonperson” to Facebook. His index is just that, an index, and doesn’t contain political views. But the very mention of his name in a link is sufficient to block a message.

The media giants operate on a premise that, if true, would make their acts of suppression reasonable. The premise is that certain opinions, if widely held, can cause great damage and that people cannot be trusted to judge these opinions for themselves. A wise elite must protect us from these opinions.

To return to an example mentioned last week, suppose that you would like to study whether wearing masks helps prevent the spread of covid-19. Tom Woods had an excellent YouTube video arguing that it doesn’t. YouTube took it down, and now people are now longer able to listen to his case and make up their own minds about it.

The censors reason in this way. If people see the video, they may be convinced by it and, as a result, stop wearing masks. But Woods, they think, is wrong: wearing masks is beneficial. His talk may thus have bad consequences and should be suppressed.

What is wrong with this reasoning? Obviously, if Woods is right, then if people listen to him, this will have good consequences. People will be reluctant to wear masks and this will help free us from a petty tyranny that blights our lives. But suppose, contrary to fact, that Woods were wrong. That is, suppose that wearing masks did help save lives. Then wouldn’t YouTube have done the right thing in taking down his video?

I do not think so. Shouldn’t people be free to evaluate for themselves conflicting opinions on controversial issues? That, at any rate, is the assumption on which a free society is based. In response, it might be urged that people lack the ability to do so, either because they are stupid or because they do not have the expert knowledge needed to make accurate judgments. The implicit premise of the censors is that because ordinary people do not have the ability to evaluate arguments for themselves, they must be guided by their betters to do so.

On what basis do the censors claim that ordinary people are too stupid to be able to see their way through controversial issues without expert guidance? Often, the support for the premise is that people by themselves arrive at conclusions the experts think are wrong. People who saw the video might because of their stupidity throw their masks away. And what shows they are stupid? The very fact that they find convincing the arguments against masks. This blatantly begs the question.

But aren’t the censors right that some issues cannot be judged properly without expert knowledge? That is true, but this just pushes matters back one step. Why can’t people be trusted to figure out for themselves who count as real experts? Further, it is vitally important to bear in mind that the judgments of the alleged experts on political issues to whom the media giants appeal at least in part reflect their own values, which often differ greatly from those of the public. Most people, it is safe to think, wish to retain their liberty and resent intrusions on it. Those who wore masks did so because they thought this a regrettable necessity. Dr. Anthony Fauci appears to think freedom of little value, though he does not himself observe the restrictions he endeavors to foist on others.

Unfortunately, wearing masks is but one of many instances of suppression by the media giants. If you attempt to post on Facebook videos critical of the view that “climate change” requires drastic action to deindustrialize the American economy, you will not be permitted to do so. If you search for “climate change,” you will be directed to the “Climate Science Information Center.” Here you will learn, among other things, that “the cause of climate change is widely agreed upon in the scientific community.” You will not be surprised to learn that global warming is “human-caused.” Disagreement among qualified scientists about this alleged fact is a myth. One might view this assertion with more confidence were it not the case that those experts who do dissent are censored and attacked. First you suppress the experts who reject your views; next you support your views by pointing out that those whom you haven’t suppressed agree with you. This is not altogether convincing.

The critics of the advertising algorithms whom I talked about in my article last week usually have very different political views from the supporters of masks and “climate change” activism mentioned in the present article. But both groups fall into a common pattern: they assume that people cannot judge for themselves. Thus, from one side, the purveyors of the algorithms must be stopped; from the other, people must not be exposed to the “wrong” opinions.

Though it is a digression, I’ll mention one topic that came up in the comments on my article of last week. Some people adduced as a point in support of their critical view of the algorithms that if you spend a great deal of time on Facebook or on your phone, changes in your brain will result. The insinuation was that if this is so, you are being manipulated and that such attacks on your brain need to be curtailed. Though the matter merits much more discussion than I’m giving it here, the point about brain changes is trivial and doesn’t lend support to demands for suppression. Whenever you think or feel, something is changing in your brain. To call attention to this is insufficient to show that something sinister is going on.

To return to our main topic. We ought to reject the claim that ordinary people need to be protected in forming their opinions, from whatever source this claim comes.

Note: The views expressed on Mises.org are not necessarily those of the Mises Institute.

Author:

Contact David Gordon

David Gordon is Senior Fellow at the Mises Institute and editor of the Mises Review.

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‘Undermining faith in NATO’ is now grounds for Twitter ban, because certain kinds of politics have become a religion — RT Op-ed

Posted by M. C. on February 26, 2021

Twitter has long abandoned its “free speech wing of the free speech party” shtick to become a cudgel for Our Democracy to beat its critics with.

https://www.rt.com/op-ed/516503-twitter-faith-nato-censorship/

Nebojsa Malic

Nebojsa Malic

is a Serbian-American journalist, blogger and translator, who wrote a regular column for Antiwar.com from 2000 to 2015, and is now senior writer at RT. Follow him on Telegram @TheNebulator and on Twitter @NebojsaMalic

Heresy against NATO has apparently joined the ever-expanding list of sins that will get one erased from Twitter, as Big Tech mounts a crusade against infidels at home and abroad on behalf of values of Our Democracy.

Twitter announced bans on 373 accounts it connected to “state-linked information operations” on Tuesday. Some of them, the company said, “amplified narratives that were aligned with the Russian government” or “focused on undermining faith in the NATO alliance and its stability.”

Twitter is a US-based company, and the First Amendment of the US Constitution guarantees freedom of speech as well as religion. Under that set of rules, anyone’s faith in NATO – or lack thereof – would be none of Twitter’s business. 

Then again, that set of rules isn’t exactly in effect anymore. Twitter has long abandoned its “free speech wing of the free speech party” shtick to become a cudgel for Our Democracy to beat its critics with. Or did you miss the part where they censored a sitting president of the United States over how he “might be perceived and interpreted” and meddled in the election by blocking a newspaper over a true story they falsely claimed was based on hacked materials?

Assuming for the sake of argument that these things were all part of “fortifying” the election – as TIME magazine put it – and defending Our Democracy from the evils of the constitutional republic, that might explain the repudiation of free speech and free press.

Which leaves religion, and still doesn’t answer why Twitter is now embarking on a jihad to protect NATO from heretics. 

Last I checked, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization was not a god, but a military alliance. It hardly needs anyone’s “faith” – or Big Tech protection thereof. Not only is it armed to the teeth but commands its own legions of “disinformation”hunters and propaganda shops. Why, one of Twitter’s executives is literally an officer in a psychological warfare outfit of the UK military – a member of NATO, if anyone hasn’t been paying attention. 

I will not undermine faith in the NATO alliance I will not undermine faith in the NATO alliance I will not undermine faith in the NATO alliance I will not undermine faith in the NATO alliance I will not undermine faith in the NATO alliance I will not undermine faith in the N https://t.co/94FBinTPS0— Dan Cohen (@dancohen3000) February 24, 2021

Big Tech is also working hand in glove with an entire cottage industry of “disinformation researchers” such as Ben Nimmo – an alum of the Atlantic Council, a think-tank serving as a NATO cut-out – and Renee DiResta of the Stanford Internet Observatory. 

DiResta ought to be notorious because her old firm, New Knowledge, was exposed for literally running a bunch of fake accounts posing as ‘Russian bots’ during a 2017 special US Senate election in Alabama. Because that helped a Democrat, NK was allowed to quietly rebrand and DiResta failed upward to land at Stanford. These are not the “Russians” you are looking for, move along, that sort of thing.

So it’s ironic that DiResta’s new outfit has provided more information about Twitter’s newest crusade, as well as where it might be headed. Based on information they were provided by Twitter, some of the accounts in one of the “Russian networks,” the SIO says, “appear to have been linked to the operations primarily via technical indicators rather than amplification or conversation between them.”

Notice the weasel phrasing such as “appear to be linked,” or “show signs of being affiliated” in Twitter’s original blog. It’s simply amazing how the same people who demand irrefutable evidence of, say, US election irregularities suddenly need no evidence whatsoever for their own assertions.

From a @Reuters report.Cancel culture doesn’t exist though pic.twitter.com/eCAdfGPkF7— Philip Cunliffe (@thephilippics) February 24, 2021

SIO also offers a glimpse into the future of this crusade, noting that while Twitter, Facebook and Medium “chip away” at accounts “pushing Russia-aligned narratives about Syria and NATO,” such activity persists on LiveJournal and Telegram.

No doubt these two platforms – one bought by a Russian company back in 2007, the other founded by a Russian national but currently operating out of Dubai – will find themselves in the crosshairs soon enough.

“Censorship is an intoxicating power that endlessly expands until it’s smashed,” as independent journalist Glenn Greenwald pointed out.

Especially since enforcing “faith” means this isn’t about differences of opinion anymore. Forget about things such as free speech, or due process, or debate that’s the cornerstone of an actual democracy. Politics of a certain kind is now religion.  

Soi-disant “champion of freedom in Russia” cheers on @Twitter for closing down accounts and hence suppressing free expression. https://t.co/z2Esugd3Ps— George Szamuely (@GeorgeSzamuely) February 24, 2021

In a move that should surprise no one, this religious war against heretics who dare doubt NATO and other “Russian” wrongthink was hailed by such luminaries of the US establishment as former ambassador to Moscow Michael McFaul. 

Lest you think he’s an outlier, the US embassy in Kiev applauded the Ukrainian government’s order to close down three opposition TV stations earlier this month. Democrat lawmakers are currently pushing for similar censorship at home. 

Just last week, the newly installed US President Joe Biden told European allies that “the transatlantic alliance is back,” pledging his renewed support for NATO. Biden has also said he would govern based on “values.” The thing to understand is that those values aren’t necessarily what the Constitution of the American Republic, now effectively replaced by what has been dubbed Our Democracy, says they are.

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Only You Can Beat Big Tech Censorship

Posted by M. C. on January 29, 2021

Think it through folks. Amazon’s AWS doesn’t become a dominant player without those vaunted contracts with the CIA. Parler, at a minimum should have an expectation of service per any legal contractual arrangement, and as such is due damages from Amazon for unilaterally breaching that basic trust.

Facebook doesn’t grow to become the monster it is without strategic investments by quasi-governmental companies like Goldman-Sachs and Morgan Stanley.

Google doesn’t become the ad revenue generating machine if it had had to properly pay its bandwidth costs for the content they forced on us.

https://tomluongo.me/2021/01/27/only-you-can-beat-big-tech-censorship/

Author: Tom Luongo

This article originally appeared at Daily Libery News

When Facebook censors Ron Paul, or Twitter bans President Trump, is that censorship?

Or because these are private companies, does that automatically make it NOT censorship?


Amazon banned Parler, but is it their right as a private company to choose their customers?

That’s the crux of the issue I need to address with you in today’s post-Trump world of social media.

Because make no mistake “Big Tech” repression is a foundational problem facing any society that considers itself even somewhat free. In the wake of the allowed ‘assault on the Capitol’ and the confirmation of Joe Biden as the 46th president of the U.S., the big tech firms which control access to speech went ballistic.

Conservatives along with President Trump himself were wiped from the public square. Any mention of the election being stolen or open support on Twitter of Trump himself was flushed down the memory hole.

This is censorship of the highest order by these firms to put parameters around political speech in the U.S. where such a right is enshrined in the Constitution. None of it is constitutional.

But the problem is far deeper than that. The deplatforming of Parler, one alternative social media platform to Twitter, via corporate collusion by Apple, Google and Amazon was something far more sinister than Twitter silencing the sitting president of the U.S.

This was a blatant hit job by companies stifling competition in the public square for hosting material which is constitutionally protected as ‘free speech.’

But these firms, especially Amazon, who terminated Parler’s server hosting agreement with 24 hours’ notice, lazily applied their vague and ever-changing ‘Terms of Service” to single out Parler and hide behind their status as a private company.

The worst part about this is that libertarians see this as a rational and defensible free market action. And for years adolescent libertarian arguments about corporations being private actors preferable to governments have now been turned around by authoritarians who hang us with our own words.

And we wonder why conservatives look at us like we have four-heads when we make such arguments?

When this attack on free speech began, during the 2016 presidential campaign with the first deplatforming of alt-right provocateurs like Richard Spencer and Andrew Anglin of the Daily Stormer website, it was obvious then that these were dry runs for the mass action we’re seeing today, in the name of creating an information-free literal one-party police state.

It was this that prompted former Silicon Valley programmer Andrew Torba to start Gab. Crazed liberals then said,

“If you don’t like Twitter, leave and build your own.”

So, he did. And after the attack on the Pittsburgh Synagogue in 2018, Gab was given the even worse treatment than Parler got last week.
They survived that.

All the while myself and people like Torba were screaming about the duopoly controlling the on-ramp to the mobile web, and no one cared. But we could see this day coming.

And now it’s here.

But this is most certainly not a private property issue as much as it is a contract law issue allowed to fester because of government interference into the marketplace for communications.

Government interference altered the landscape these companies operate in. The grew to the size they are now because of government largesse and federal and state tax revenue into the networks and systems they depend on.

It doesn’t matter that the duopoly is Google and Apple. It could have been Palm and Microsoft. Or Blackberry and IBM. What matters is that the environment wasn’t a level playing field between the companies and the people using the services.

They were paying not only for access but at the same time subsidizing the revenue streams by accepting costs these companies outsourced to government.

It is a cozy arrangement.

The companies outsource their fixed costs and the government outsources their censorship desires that pesky First Amendment forbids them from doing directly.

No wonder the response to the allowed assault on the Capitol was so swift and coordinated.

Think it through folks. Amazon’s AWS doesn’t become a dominant player without those vaunted contracts with the CIA. Parler, at a minimum should have an expectation of service per any legal contractual arrangement, and as such is due damages from Amazon for unilaterally breaching that basic trust.

Facebook doesn’t grow to become the monster it is without strategic investments by quasi-governmental companies like Goldman-Sachs and Morgan Stanley.

Google doesn’t become the ad revenue generating machine if it had had to properly pay its bandwidth costs for the content they forced on us.

Trump nixing ‘Net Neutrality’ put some of that onus back on them, giving ISP’s some latitude to price usage according to their needs rather than Google’s.

All of the above companies, including Microsoft, have been chosen by our government to succeed in this tilted marketplace.

Apple doesn’t dominate the mobile internet in the U.S. without all those user fees and taxes tacked onto the cost of your monthly cellphone bill.

If these companies were operating on their own private satellite and wire networks then they would absolutely be in the right, via the application of private property rights, to set whatever terms of service they wanted.

I, as a libertarian, fully support that.

And also, as a libertarian, understand that public property always creates a tragedy of the commons scenario.

But when you operate in the public sphere, when you move your goods and services on the digital equivalent of the public road system (not a digression I want to get into today) and your corporate charter exists within the framework of U.S. and state contract law it is clear that these companies are neither wholly private entities with respect to their customers nor neutral actors trying to enforce public decency standards.

They are acting in their best interest to stifle competition – Gab, Parler, Minds, etc. – while setting precedents to allow for even further restrictions of speech through lawfare thanks to a complicit and fully cowed legal system.

And herein lies the smart path to reining them in, if it is at all possible at this point, since it’s clear the Biden Administration is ready to reframe all speech critical of the U.S. government as ‘domestic terrorism’ giving all of these companies the legal justification into the future to unperson all dissent.

Removing their Section 230 immunity under the Communications Decency Act is paramount. It will not happen now. The government is in on the grift, folks, so looking ahead to the 2022 election cycle isn’t an option.

They just proved to you your vote doesn’t count, so it means hitting them in the only place they truly care about, their bottom lines.

So, the first thing to do is sue them into the ground. It will be up to the people themselves to hound these companies through both contract law violations and shareholder revolts because they have done irreparable damage to their brands and their future revenue streams.

That is what has to happen right now. Parler’s suit against Amazon is a good start. A class-action lawsuit by every small business in America now wondering about Amazon’s policies should end this nonsense quickly.

A good judge in a sympathetic jurisdiction should side with anyone making a strong case that modern tech company Terms of Service are ‘contracts of adhesion,’ defined as contracts entered into where one party is so much stronger than the other the weaker party is, in effect, coerced into signing it.

The second thing to do is to simply jack-out. Put the screen down. Stop using it as a substitution for real communications and pull back from the brink.
De-google your life, as I have. Close your Facebook account permanently. You will feel better immediately, trust me. I did this two years ago, to the detriment of the marketing efforts of my business, and I have never looked back.

If you need a social network, use Twitter for keeping tabs on things but save your thoughts and your content for Gab or some other, smaller private community you are a part of.

Being a global citizen is a canard they sold us as some true net positive. But it was something designed wholly to drive us mad and deracinate us to the point of having no home, no culture and no real friends.

It’s no wonder they are trying so hard to shut off the escape routes and only allow certain platforms to exist forcing us to interact with people we don’t like while locked in our homes over a wholly contrived public health emergency.

It was always part of the globalist plan.

Ending this starts with the very libertarian idea of simply opting-out. We don’t need to be plugged into their reality-generating nightmares every moment of every day.

But the thing about the web is that it is built on protocols which are themselves censorship resistant. So, the tyrants of today will be the footnotes of tomorrow. We’ve seen early attempts at censorship-proof blockchain platforms like Steemit. It’s still running even though its growing pains nearly killed it.

The next great service is just around the corner because necessity is the mother of innovation. But the first step is accepting the fact that they’ve won this round and it is now time to change the rules of the game.


P.S.: If you want to see what this looks like, just look at what the guys at Wall Street Bets are doing to the capital markets today. Brokerage outages, trading suspended, newly-minted millionaires.

All because a bunch of hedgies got over-confident of their one-way skimming and thinking no one would press their luck to the breaking point.

They have and it is glorious.

You beat them by turning their supposed advantages and bought-and-paid-for rules of the game back on them.

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