Last week’s massive social media purges – starting with President Trump’s permanent ban from Twitter and other outlets – was shocking and chilling, particularly to those of us who value free expression and the free exchange of ideas. The justifications given for the silencing of wide swaths of public opinion made no sense and the process was anything but transparent. Nowhere in President Trump’s two “offending” Tweets, for example, was a call for violence expressed explicitly or implicitly. It was a classic example of sentence first, verdict later.

Many Americans viewed this assault on social media accounts as a liberal or Democrat attack on conservatives and Republicans, but they are missing the point. The narrowing of allowable opinion in the virtual public square is no conspiracy against conservatives. As progressives like Glenn Greenwald have pointed out, this is a wider assault on any opinion that veers from the acceptable parameters of the mainstream elite, which is made up of both Democrats and Republicans.

Yes, this is partly an attempt to erase the Trump movement from the pages of history, but it is also an attempt to silence any criticism of the emerging political consensus in the coming Biden era that may come from progressive or antiwar circles.


After all, a look at Biden’s incoming “experts” shows that they will be the same failed neoconservative interventionists who gave us weekly kill lists, endless drone attacks and coups overseas, and even US government killing of American citizens abroad. Progressives who complain about this “back to the future” foreign policy are also sure to find their voices silenced.

Those who continue to argue that the social media companies are purely private ventures acting independent of US government interests are ignoring reality. The corporatist merger of “private” US social media companies with US government foreign policy goals has a long history and is deeply steeped in the hyper-interventionism of the Obama/Biden era.

“Big Tech” long ago partnered with the Obama/Biden/Clinton State Department to lend their tools to US “soft power” goals overseas. Whether it was ongoing regime change attempts against Iran, the 2009 coup in Honduras, the disastrous US-led coup in Ukraine, “Arab Spring,” the destruction of Syria and Libya, and so many more, the big US tech firms were happy to partner up with the State Department and US intelligence to provide the tools to empower those the US wanted to seize power and to silence those out of favor.

In short, US government elites have been partnering with “Big Tech” overseas for years to decide who has the right to speak and who must be silenced. What has changed now is that this deployment of “soft power” in the service of Washington’s hard power has come home to roost.

So what is to be done? Even pro-free speech alternative social media outlets are under attack from the Big Tech/government Leviathan. There are no easy solutions. But we must think back to the dissidents in the era of Soviet tyranny. They had no Internet. They had no social media. They had no ability to communicate with thousands and millions of like-minded, freedom lovers. Yet they used incredible creativity in the face of incredible adversity to continue pushing their ideas. Because no army – not even Big Tech partnered with Big Government – can stop an idea whose time has come. And Liberty is that idea. We must move forward with creativity and confidence!


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  • I don't think that a private entity, such as Twitter should be free to do anything it want. We can and we should criminalize biasness and discriminations even done by private businesses. For instance, there should be no private school, shop, hospital etc that discriminate on the basis of religion or ethnicity. You just cannot say '...this is my shop, I can do anything I want...'
    • I know outlawing discrimination even by private persons may be tricky. Of course a Christian, for instance, cannot go to a mosque to preach christianity there. A mosque can be seen as a private group that discriminate against other groups albeit only in the mosque. However Islam, by definition excludes other beliefs and a mosque is a place dedicated for islam and nothing else. If they incongruously convert a mosque into a meeting place for politics, yes I can say we should bar it from discrimination.

      So it is challenging but not impossible to define well what it means to say a group constitutes a 'church' and therefore the 'discrimination' law donnot apply to it. Golf, for instance, is something else other than religion, ethnicity or politics. Therefore no private person should form a golf club that say discriminates against Muslims, e.g. banning kufiyas or hijabs or a 'Allah uhakbar' shout after scoring.

      A political party meeting then is a 'church' in the sense of politics. It is free to discriminate against other political views. However, it is not a 'church' in the sense of religion. Therefore it is not free to discriminate on the basis of religious beliefs.

      A male toilet is a 'church'. It can discriminate against females going there. But there can be no toilets for Jews and another one for gentiles, or for Christians and another one for Muslims, unless the things forbidden there are those that are forbidden in Islam. In other words if an event is allowed both in Islam and in Christianity, there should be no discrimination against a Christian or a muslim around the event.

      So now less check Twitter to see if it can discriminate against say republicans etc. Twitter isn't a political party nor a religion etc. Ergo it must not discriminate on these basis.

      Also note that there can be no equivalent of 'church' with regard to ethnicity. So there is absolutely no case of discriminations based on ethnicity.
  • But this is precisely what 'liberty' means in the perverted world of crony capitalism. (And btw there is no such a thing as capitalism). It means the freedom of the elite. It means the freedom of the tycoons to oppress the common man. That is why a country that has the highest percentage of people in prisons can style itself as a 'free' country. It refers solely to the freedom of the political elit.

    Facebook is free to take its microphone off near the mouth of anyone it choose. It is 'freedom'!!
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