At the McCullough Report, we will stay ahead of the information curve on emerging infectious disease threats. This time, it’s another contagious respiratory illness from China. From Courageous Discourse Substack John Leake: “U.S. government agencies are fond of...
The Power to Shape the Narrative is the Power to Control the Outcome
“Whew, that was close. But we won, right?”
The administration likely knew that such an Orwellian move as this would generate debilitating pushback on this first attempt. Perhaps the more significant goal was the signal this attempt sent.
Setting up the “Disinformation Board” and rolling it out under the DHS moved the “Overton Window” of conceivable action closer to the Marxist ideal of information control. That was achieved even if the functional implementation wasn’t immediately feasible.
This administration also succeeded in sending a strong signal to domestic Communists and an international, globalist cabal (to which it answers?) that it intends to bring about the end of the American era by undermining America’s codified defense of each person’s right to speak. The Marxists know that as they further weaken subscription to and codification of freedom of speech, the entire balance of the American foundation crumbles. Through its surrogates, the Party has already exercised a frightening level of control over public discourse.
While they’d have liked to “legitimize” their influence on media companies with edicts from a DHS Board, the ideological alignment of the major media companies is already working steadily to undermine PUBLIC SUBSCRIPTION to the very notion of intellectual liberty.
Ostensible “Constitutionalists” who acquiesce to the viewpoint suppression by “private” media are a big part of our society’s rapidly-degrading respect for free speech. “The Constitution only restrains the government from infringing our right to speak,” they say. They contend that social media giants like YouTube, Twitter, and Facebook are subject to no such restraint.
Are these companies free to suppress users’ content and ‘shape the narrative’ in any manner that aligns with their corporate goals?
No, they’re not.
> Social media platforms enjoy codified protections against liability for content on the basis of their claim NOT to edit, curate, or otherwise control user content except to comply with the laws of the jurisdiction in which they operate.
> Alignment and coordination with a political party to suppress speech is a direct violation of the 1st Amendment. The political party on whose behalf the coordinated suppression is done exercises governmental power.
> Users are subjected to a FRAUDULENT representation of public discourse taking the form of simulated support for the Platform’s favored Party. The simulation is purposely created via fake accounts, bots, and party-paid trolls.
The FOUNDATION of American SOCIETY ITSELF (not just our governing doctrine) is respect for the equal standing of each person’s natural rights. Our NATURAL rights are those that are presumed to pre-exist in any law or national charter. They are the liberties to think, speak, associate, and act – liberties to engage in behaviors that are intrinsic to our BEING HUMAN.
Moral conduct between human beings, then, is founded on respect for the intrinsic rights of others.
This fundamental morality exists independent of any law. It is, very simply, a practical necessity for the peaceable exchange that makes specialization, advancement, and prosperity possible. The rapid progress made by Western Civilization in the past 200 years is owed to the mutually-consenting exchange that can ONLY occur in a condition of relative respect for the equal standing of each Party’s rights. The codification of this foundational ethic (respect for each person’s intrinsic rights) in our Nation’s Constitution permits a legal defense against infringement by government. Still, it should not be credited with conferring any of our rights.
Nor should our Constitution’s proscriptions against infringement by government be construed to mean that infringement by those outside government is acceptable.
Infringement of your freedom to speak by a social media platform is not made okay by its status as a private corporation. A platform for USER-GENERATED CONTENT is, by its own definition, not a vehicle for advancing the owners’ opinions. Advancing its own policy preferences or other opinions should be grounds for terminating its unique legal status as a platform rather than a publisher.
Infringements against Freedom of the Press by Party-aligned corporations (by suppressing coverage of legitimate news reports such as Hunter’s laptop story) threaten to disable the political process entirely.
The body politic CAN NOT function on junk-food “stories” about actors suing each other over dog poop and insults.
WaPo’s slogan, “Democracy Dies in Darkness,” was embraced by a former, better version of that org, one that recognized that only an informed populace is effectively self-governed.
They believe that “The POWER TO SHAPE THE NARRATIVE is the POWER TO CONTROL the OUTCOME.” And they are busy doing precisely that on behalf of the Party with which they are now wholly aligned.
Our Declaration cites the defense of our most fundamental liberties as the purpose of government. “… that to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men.”
But respect for each person’s natural rights must be restored as a shared moral value. This is especially true of our freedom to inform and express our own MINDS, our FIRST Freedom, as this one nurtures the reasoned exercise of every other human liberty.
Governmental respect for our natural liberty cannot long be maintained if we no longer respect it ourselves.
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