MCViewPoint

Opinion from a Libertarian ViewPoint

Posts Tagged ‘Financial Times’

MSM calls for “new definition of free speech” – OffGuardian

Posted by M. C. on January 18, 2021

Ives clearly thinks he’s enlightened and liberal and educated, after all he drops references to Kant AND Mills (that’s right TWO famous philosophers), but he’s really not. He’s just an elitist arguing working class people are too dumb to be allowed to speak, or even hear ideas that might get them all riled-up and distract them from their menial labour.

https://off-guardian.org/2021/01/16/a-new-definition-of-free-speech/

Kit Knightly

Part of the main duty of OffGuardian is to troll through the masses of media output and try and pick up patterns. Sometimes the patterns are subtle, a gentle urging behind the paragraphs. Sometimes they’re more like a sledgehammer to the face.

This has been face-hammer week. In fact, it’s been a face-hammer year.

From “flatten the curve” to “the new normal” to “the great reset”, it’s not been hard to spot the messaging going on since the start of the “pandemic”. And that distinct lack of disguise has carried over into other topics, too.

We pointed out, a few days ago, the sudden over-use of the phrase “domestic terrorism” preparing us for what is, almost certainly, going to be a truly horrendous piece of new legislation once Biden is in office.

Well, the buzz-phrase doing the rounds in the wake of Donald Trump being banned from the internet is “the new definition of free speech”…and variations on that theme.

Firstly, and papers on both sides of the Atlantic want to be very clear about this, Donald Trump being banned simultaneously from every major social network is not in any way inhibiting his free speech.

Indeed none of the tens of thousands of people banned from twitter et al. have had their free speech infringed either. Neither have any of the proprietors – or users – of the Parler app which the tech giants bullied out of existence.

Free Speech is totally intact no matter how many people are banned or deplatformed, the media all agree on that (even the allegedly pro-free speech think tanks).

They also agree that maybe…it shouldn’t be. Maybe “free speech” is too dangerous in our modern era, and needs a “new definition”.

That’s what Ian Dunt writing in Politics.co.uk thinks, anyway, arguing it’s time to have a “grown-up debate” about free speech.

The Financial Times agrees, asking about the “limits of free-speech in the internet era”.

Thomas Edsall, in the New York Times, wonders aloud if Trump’s “lies” have made free speech a “threat to democracy”.

The Conversation, a UK-based journal often at the cutting edge of the truly terrifying ideas, has three different articles about redefining or limiting free speech, all published within 4 days of each other.

There’s Free speech is not guaranteed if it harms others, a drab piece of dishonest apologia which argues Trump wasn’t silenced, because he could make a speech which the media would cover…without also mentioning that the media has, en masse, literally refused to broadcast several of Trump’s speeches in the last couple of months.

The conclusion could have been written by an algorithm analysing The Guardian’s twitter feed:

the suggestion Trump has been censored is simply wrong. It misleads the public into believing all “free speech” claims have equal merit. They do not. We must work to ensure harmful speech is regulated in order to ensure broad participation in the public discourse that is essential to our lives — and to our democracy.

Then there’s Free speech in America: is the US approach fit for purpose in the age of social media?, a virtual carbon copy of the first, which states:

The attack on the Capitol exposed, in stark terms, the dangers of disinformation in the digital age. It provides an opportunity to reflect on the extent to which certain elements of America’s free speech tradition may no longer be fit for purpose.

And finally, my personal favourite, Why ‘free speech’ needs a new definition in the age of the internet and Trump tweets in which author Peter Ives warns of the “weaponising of free speech” and concludes:

Trump’s angry mob was not just incited by his single speech on Jan. 6, but had been fomenting for a long time online. The faith in reason held by Mill and Kant was premised on the printing press; free speech should be re-examined in the context of the internet and social media.

Ives clearly thinks he’s enlightened and liberal and educated, after all he drops references to Kant AND Mills (that’s right TWO famous philosophers), but he’s really not. He’s just an elitist arguing working class people are too dumb to be allowed to speak, or even hear ideas that might get them all riled-up and distract them from their menial labour.

To season these stale ideas with a sprinkling of fear-porn, NBC News is reporting that the FBI didn’t report their “concerns” over possible violence at the Capitol, because they were worried about free speech. (See, if the FBI hadn’t been protecting people’s free speech, that riot may not have happened!)

And on top of all of that, there’s the emotional manipulation angle, where authors pretend to be sad or exasperated or any of the emotions they used to have.

In the Irish Independent, Emma Kelly says that “free speech” doesn’t include “hate speech” (she’s never exactly clear what part of “go home in peace love” was hate speech though).

In The Hill, Joe Ferullo is almost in tears that the first amendment has been ruined by the right-wing press continuously “shouting fire in a crowded theatre”, citing the famous Oliver Wendell Holmes quote, which so many use to “qualify” the idea of free speech, without realising it hands over power to destroy it completely.

Up until you can show me the hard-and-fast legal definitions of “shout”, “fire”, “crowded” and “theatre”, this open-ended qualification is nothing but a blank canvas, free to be interpreted as loosely – or stringently – as any lawmaker or judiciary feels is necessary.

As an example:

Twitter is certainly bigger and more populated than a theatre, and spreading anti-vaccination/anti-war/pro-Russia/”Covid denial” news [delete as appropriate] is certainly going to cause more panic than one single building being on fire. Isn’t it?

It’s this potential abuse of incredibly loose terminologies which will be used to “redefine” free speech.

“Offensive”, “misinformation”, “hate speech” and others will be repeated. A lot.

Expressions which have no solid definition under law, and are already being shown to mean nothing to the media talking heads who repeat them ad nauseum.

If “go home in peace and love”, can become “inciting violence”, absolutely everything can be made to mean absolutely anything.

The more they “redefine” words, the further we move into an Orwellian world where all meaning is entirely lost.

And what would our newly defined “free speech” really mean in such a world?

Be seeing you

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Is This How Europe Ends? – LewRockwell

Posted by M. C. on March 10, 2020

[ muhtas-tuh-sahyz ]

verb (used without object), me·tas·ta·sized, me·tas·ta·siz·ing.

Pathology. (of malignant cells or disease-producing organisms) to spread to other parts of the body by way of the blood or lymphatic vessels or membranous surfaces.
to spread injuriously: Street gangs have metastasized in our city.
to transform, especially into a dangerous form: The KGB metastasized after the fall of the Soviet Union. Truth metastasized into lurid fantasy.

Europe, western culture, Christianity is stage 4.

https://www.lewrockwell.com/2020/03/patrick-j-buchanan/is-this-how-europe-ends/

By

“Fortress Europe is an illusion.”

So declares the Financial Times in the closing line of its Saturday editorial: “Europe Cannot Ignore Syrian Migrant Crisis.”

The FT undertakes to instruct the Old Continent on what its duty is and what its future holds: “The EU will face flows of migrants and asylum seekers across the Mediterranean for decades to come.”

Can Europe not repel this unwanted home invasion from the Global South?

It is “delusional” to think so, says the FT. Europe must be realistic and set about “providing legal routes for migrants and asylum seekers.”

What occasioned the editorial was Greece’s rough resistance to Turkish President Erdogan’s funneling of thousands of Syrian refugees, who had fled into Turkey, right up to the border with Greece.

Erdogan is threatening to inundate southeastern Europe with Syrian refugees to extract more money from the EU in return for keeping the 3.5 million Syrians already in Turkey away from EU frontiers.

Another Erdogan objective is to coerce Europe into backing his military intervention in Syria to prevent President Bashar Assad from capturing all of Idlib province and emerging victorious in his civil war.

In the human rights hellhole that is Syria today, we may see the dimensions of the disaster wrought when Wilsonian crusaders set out to depose the dictator Assad and make Syria safe for democracy.

A brief history.

When the Arab Spring erupted and protesters arose to oust Assad, the U.S., Turkey and the Gulf Arabs aided and equipped Syrian rebels willing to take up arms. The “good rebels,” however, were routed and elements of al-Qaida soon assumed dominance of the resistance.

Facing defeat, Syria’s president put out a call to his allies — Russia, Iran, Hezbollah — to save his regime. They responded, and Assad, over four years, recaptured all of Syria west of the Euphrates, save Idlib.

There, the latest fighting has pushed 900,000 more refugees to Turkey’s southern border.

The 21st-century interventions and wars of the West in the Islamic world have not gone well.

George W. Bush was goaded into invading Iraq. Barack Obama was persuaded to overthrow Colonel Moammar Gadhafi in Libya and the Assad regime in Damascus. Obama ordered U.S. forces to assist Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman in his war to crush Houthi rebels who had ousted Riyadh’s resident puppet in Yemen.

And what has the West reaped from our Mideast wars?

In Syria and Yemen, we have helped to create two of the world’s greatest human rights disasters. In Libya, we have a new civil war. In Iraq, we now battle Iran for influence inside a nation we “liberated” in 2003

In Afghanistan, we have concluded a deal with our enemy of two decades, the Taliban, that will enable us to pull our 12,000 troops out of the country in 14 months and let our Afghan allies work it out, or fight it out, with the Taliban. America is washing its hands of its longest war.

In five wars over 20 years, we lost 7,000 soldiers with some 40,000 wounded. We plunged the wealth of an empire into these wars. 

And what did these wars produce for the peoples we went to aid and uplift, besides hundreds of thousands of dead Afghans and Arabs and millions of people uprooted from their homes and driven into exile?

Now, Europe is being admonished by the FT that, having done its duty by plunging into the Mideast, the continent has a new moral duty to take in the refugees the wars created, for decades to come.

But if the EU opens its doors to an endless stream of Africans and Arabs, where is the evidence that European nations will accept and assimilate them?

Will these migrants and asylum seekers become good Europeans? Or will they create in the great cities of Europe enclaves that replicate the conditions in the African and Middle East countries whence they came?

The history of the last half millennium tells the story of the rise and fall of a civilization.

In the 16th, 17th and 18th centuries, Spain, Britain, France and Portugal, and then Belgium, Italy, Germany and America, all believing in the superiority of their civilization, went out into the world to create empires to uplift and rule what Rudyard Kipling derisively called “the lesser breeds without the law.”

After two world wars, the rulers of these empires embraced a liberalism that now proclaimed the equality of all peoples, races, creeds, cultures and civilizations. This egalitarian ideology mandated the dismantling of empires and colonies as the reactionary relics of a benighted time.

Now the peoples of the new nations, dissatisfied with what their liberated lands and rulers have produced, have decided to come to Europe to enjoy in the West what they cannot replicate at home. And liberalism, the ideology of Western suicide, dictates to Europe that it take them in — for decades to come.

The colonizers of yesterday are becoming the colonized of tomorrow. Is this how the West ends?

Be seeing you

 

 

 

 

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Soros ‘person of the year’ indeed: In 2018 globalists pushed peoples’ patience to the edge — RT Op-ed

Posted by M. C. on January 2, 2019

Indeed, if the globalist George Soros wants to lend his Midas touch to ameliorating the migrant’s plight, why does he think that relocating them to European countries is the solution?

Any guesses who will be forced to pay down the debt on this high-risk venture? If you guessed George Soros, guess again.

https://www.rt.com/op-ed/447686-globalists-soros-france-protests/

Reuters / Bernadett Szabo

Since 2015, the proponents of neoliberalism have been pushing ahead with their plans for open borders and globalist agenda without the consent of the people. The last 365 days saw that destructive agenda greatly challenged.

In light of the epic events that shaped our world in 2018, it seems the Yellow Vests – the thousands of French citizens who took to the streets of Paris to protest austerity and the rise of inequality – would have been a nice choice for the Financial Times’ ‘person of the year’ award. Instead, that title was bestowed upon the billionaire globalist, George Soros, who has arguably done more meddling in the affairs of modern democratic states than any other person on the planet.

Perhaps FT’s controversial nomination was an attempt to rally the forces of neoliberalism at a time when populism and nascent nationalism is sweeping the planet. Indeed, the shocking images coming out of France provide a grim wake-up call as to where we may be heading if the globalists continue to undermine the power of the nation-state…

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