Social Media

The Government Should Stop Telling Facebook To Suppress COVID-19 'Misinformation'

White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki wants the social media site to ban 12 specific anti-vaccine accounts.

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The federal government is stepping up its effort to purge the internet of COVID-19 "misinformation." On Thursday, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki singled out a dozen specific anti-vaccine Facebook accounts and called on the platform to ban them.

"There's about 12 people who are producing 65 percent of vaccine misinformation on social media platforms," said Psaki. "All of them remain active on Facebook, despite some even being banned on other platforms, including ones that Facebook owns."

She was discussing a Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) report on "confronting health misinformation." It instructs social media platforms to redesign their algorithms so that false information about COVID-19 is deprioritized, to shield journalists and medical professionals from harassment, and even to address misinformation during livestreams, a task that the report admits is "difficult" given the streams' "temporary nature and use of audio and video."

"We all have the power and responsibility to confront health misinformation," tweeted Surgeon General Vivek Murthy. "That's why we included recommendations for individuals, educators, researchers, health professionals, tech companies, and more."

The federal government is not explicitly ordering tech platforms to take down content. These dictates are essentially strongly-worded suggestions. But you're forgiven if you think Psaki's summary of the report sounded like a command.

"Facebook needs to move more quickly to remove harmful, violative posts," she said. "Posts that would be within their policy for removal often remain up for days, and that's too long. The information spreads too quickly."

Psaki was alluding to anti-vaccine content, though the report itself impugns "medical misinformation" more broadly. Of course, the government itself has spread plenty of "medical misinformation," from the early bad guidance on masks to White House coronavirus czar Anthony Fauci's deliberate misstatements about the herd immunity threshold. For months, government health officials treated the lab leak theory of COVID-19's origins as a wild conspiracy theory, and Facebook followed suit: It vigorously censored content that promoted the lab leak theory. That policy was not revised until June.

Efforts by the government and tech platforms to suppress misinformation have undeniably resulted sometimes in the suppression of information that is either factual, or could plausibly turn out to be factual. (This has been the case outside the realm of pandemic-related content as well.) New initiatives undertaken by the federal government that would encourage Facebook to be even more heavy-handed with potential misinformation should be met with skepticism: The track record is just not very encouraging.

The White House's targeting of Facebook should make critics a little sympathetic to Mark Zuckerberg's position. Prominent legislators from both political parties—as well as the current and former presidents—want to aggressively regulate his company if not break it apart entirely. Facebook's CEO must feel tremendous pressure to give federal health bureacrats exactly what they're asking for, or else.

Instead of defending the rights of private companies to set their own moderation policies independent of whatever the government would like them to do, Republicans are taking this opportunity to further erode Facebook's autonomy. Sen. Josh Hawley (R–Mo.) even suggested that the site's submission to the feds renders it an agent of the state.

"The social media platforms are increasingly just arms of the federal government and the Biden White House," Hawley tweeted. "Why should the #BigTech companies continue to be treated as private companies when they function as agencies of the federal government."

Hawley is essentially saying that a private company complying with the government becomes a state actor, and thus should be bound to the same restrictions as any other public agency. (Former President Donald Trump's doomed social media lawsuits rest on a version of this argument.) But Hawley and others are also attempting to punish these same private companies for not doing what the White House wants. (In Hawley's case, he wants Facebook to suppress fewer posts.) That's quite a Catch-22: Facebook is in trouble either way.

NEXT: Biden Admits Some Asylum Seekers but Won't Say Who Qualifies for Entry

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  1. Wait… Robbie is going to fnally admit this is happening?

    1. https://twitter.com/NewGranada1979/status/1415742179331379201?s=19

      REPORT: Jen Psaki just admitted, The U.S. Government is actively involved in censoring social media content.
      [Video]

      1. Now that the masks are finally off and the apparatchiks have finally copped to being behind big tech censorship, I wonder how Sullum, ENB, Chemleft, White Mike Laursen and SQEALSY are going to be able to keep on pretending this was all about private companies determining what they will allow on their platforms.

        It was always obvious that the Democrats were behind it, but now our resident shills can’t pretend anymore.

        1. Why not?
          They lie about everything, what’s one more?

          1. Keep in mind they’re also the same people who would say a male boss should be fired and jailed for *suggesting* they go out for drinks to a female subordinate.

            But they’ll jump through a million hoops to tell us how the government *suggesting* Is a OK.

        2. This has been reported as misinformation.

          1. That they can’t pretend any more? Yeah, I’m pretty sure that’s *actually* misinformation, because if there’s one thing people are good at, it’s pretending that unpleasant truths are false.

        3. “It was always obvious that the Democrats were behind it, but now our resident shills can’t pretend anymore.”

          What are my odds, and how much do you want to pa…er, I mean bet, that they will continue to pretend. Because I’m pretty sure Jen Psaki will say she misspoke tomorrow am, that video will not be seen by most people, including some commentators here that will have it linked in a response to their own comments, and they’ll excuse it away.

          1. Look, private companies are free to ban whatever speech they want and it’s not an infringement of free speech. Even if the government advises them to ban the speech, because it’s not an order. Even if the government orders them to, because they’re free to disobey the order. Even if the government seizes the company and bans the speech, because it’s a government-owned company that’s banning the speech and not the government itself. Even if it’s the government itself that’s banning the speech, it’s still not an infringement of free speech because you still have other platforms to get your speech out on. Even if the government bans you from speaking on any platform whatsoever it’s not an infringement of free speech because you’re still free to speak on any subject the government approves of.

            See how simple that was?

            1. I get it now

            2. This will be chemleft and Sqrlsy’s argument tomorrow.

        4. Sullum will be by shortly to explain, with geometric logic, how you are wrong.

      2. Must be at least somewhat painful to have your bullshit narrative blasted out of the water by an admission from a twit like Psaki.

        1. Robby makes it sound like Facebook was put upon by the government to ban conservative users and delete their posts. I’m not so sure Facebook employees minded doing that at all. My suspicion is they rather enjoyed it.

      3. No, she didn’t admit that the U.S. Government is actively involved in censoring social media content. She asked the media to voluntarily censor selected subjects, but they are free to reject her request or advice and they know it. The anti-vaxers and other spreaders of bad information would love to portray this as the government big-footing the media…not happening folks.

        1. Government to FaceCrack, Twatter, Gaggle, and any others:
          “Nice platforms you have there. It’d be a shame if some kind of regulation happened that would keep you from earning anything, if you were to not prevent people from saying things we don’t like.
          Of course it would be voluntary on your part, mind you.”

          Government’s massive position of power doesn’t allow even the slightest pressure to be considered as not “big footing”.

        2. Lmao thanks for the insight jeff

        3. “…but they are free to reject her request or advice and they know it…”

          Sarc or stupidity?

        4. Yes, they are there to help.

    2. PRIVATE COMPANY THEY CAN DO WHATEVER THEY WANT!!1!

      1. And if they want to bow to overt government threats, okey-dokey.

        Totally not a violation of the 2nd Amendment.

        1. Shit. 1st Amendment.

          1. Close enough for government work. The 2nd is used to protect the 1st.

        2. Not Right Amendment

        3. No one violates the 3rd amendment, not in my house . . .

        4. In that case, it’s the government violating the first amendment, not the company, no?
          I certainly agree that this is a big problem and very disturbing, but it’s not clear what to do about it. I mean, who’s going to stop it? The people in power who are using it to their own benefit?
          I’m not opposed to changing some of the liability protections and stuff, but I think alternatives in the market are what is really needed. And there are getting to be more. No one has a hard time finding information that is blocked by these sites. But of course, the problem is that most people won’t go look for it.

          1. We are. With guns. I’m pretty certain the protest against the federal with guns is supposed to be done through the channels of sovereign states, not loosely formed, private club “militias”.

            It’s time to take back our states.

      2. So what exactly is the libertarian solution to the privatization of censorship by the Democratic Party?

        1. Expect a Sullum article explaining that the solution to government censorship is outsourcing to the private sector.

          1. He said libertarian, not Reason.

        2. Well, you could rescind the special protections provided to them under section 230, since they are clearly no longer acting as a common carrier as a platform, and allow individuals who are harmed by this censorship to sue them in civil court, for violating the contractual agreements under which they operate.

          1. “…allow individuals who are harmed by this censorship to sue them in civil court…”

            They took down my post!!!! WAAAAAA!!!! Ten $million for my BUTT-HURT baby feelings!!!

            Hey Minadimwit… No matter HOW many times you tell your “Big Lie”, it is NOT true! You’re part of the mob, aren’t you, gangster? For a small fee, you tell small businesses that you will “protect” them… From you and your mob! Refute the below, ye greedy authoritarian who wants to shit all over the concept of private property!

            Look, I’ll make it pretty simple for simpletons. A prime argument of enemies of Section 230 is, since the government does such a HUGE favor for owners of web sites, by PROTECTING web site owners from being sued (in the courts of Government Almighty) as a “publisher”, then this is an unfair treatment of web site owners! Who SHOULD (lacking “unfair” section 230 provisions) be able to get SUED for the writings of OTHER PEOPLE! And punished by Government Almighty, for disobeying any and all decrees from Government Almighty’s courts, after getting sued!

            In a nutshell: Government Almighty should be able to boss around your uses of your web site, because, after all, Government Almighty is “protecting” you… From Government Almighty!!!

            Wow, just THINK of what we could do with this logic! Government Almighty is “protecting” you from getting sued in matters concerning who you chose to date or marry… In matters concerning what line of work you chose… What you eat and drink… What you read… What you think… Therefore, Government Almighty should be able to boss you around on ALL of these matters, and more! The only limits are the imaginations and power-lusts of politicians!

            1. Lmao so you ignore the fact that government is pressuring these companies because it’s antithetical to the argument you’ve had all along.

              It’s amazing how many word you waste just to signal you’re a stupid cunt every day.

      3. Let me know when that baker is not going to be forced to bake a cake that he doesn’t want to bake.

    3. To be sure, both sides are equally at fault. Tje overreaction to actual Fascism shows Republicans are pouncing on this

      1. The Republicans could have stopped this the first 2 years of the Trump administration when he had complete control of the government with no opposition.

        1. Trump never had complete control of the Trump administration, nevermind the Congress.

          McConnell kept the Senate continuously “in session” for the entire four years to prevent any recess appointments.

          1. Yeah I was being sarcastic.

            1. Sorry, completely missed it.

        2. He had people like Paul Ryan in positions of power. He had control of very little.

    4. In a just world, Fauci would face a firing squad.

      1. #FiringSquadFauci

      2. Forcing Fauci to deal with The Squad is too cruel, even for him.

    5. Don’t you remember last year, when people said that they were voting for Biden despite his flaws, known repeated sexual assaults, and his brazen bribery in order to preserve freedom from Trump, who was enacting fascism?

      This is so brazen that I wouldn’t have even thought it possible.

  2. I will remind what we complained about wrt these companies and their quasi governmental status. We were told nah bro they are private companies exercising free speech. Terms of service yada yada yada. Well that didn’t work out that way at all. They are in fact being told what to kibosh. By the federal government. You all were wrong.

    1. That’s a bit of a leap. The govt isn’t forcing them. They are asking them and Facebook is choosing to listen. Show a me a quid pro quo and then we can start a lawsuit against Facebook. The govt should already be sued for suppressing speech

      1. The feds are offering the same deal the mafia does. No quid pro quo required.

        1. Ive seen no evidence of that.

          1. Lack of proof is not proof of lack.

            1. Lack of proof defines a conspiracy.

              1. How was that turnip truck ride yesterday, jonny?

          2. Psaki “It should not come as any surprise we are in regular touch with social media platforms…and we want to know that the social media platforms are taking steps to address this.”

            1. Yeah, they are asking and the companies are choosing to go along. That’s not a quid pro quo. It’s wrong for the govt to ask, but it’s not wrong for Facebook to run their biz how they want.

              1. Hey, I got the north anchorage of a bridge for sale cheap, just for someone like you!
                Grow up.

              2. Biden should be impeached for this.

          3. “Ive seen no evidence of that.”

            Misek claims that the “proof” that the Holocaust didn’t happen is the lack of Brit intelligence intercepts with the Nazis bragging about murdering millions of innocent people. Well, most Nazis were not happy about it and did their best to hide it.
            Now we have another gullible (or otherwise) sole assuming that because the government isn’t bragging about pressuring the companies, it’s really not happening.
            Suggest you grow up, jonnysage.

      2. The govt isn’t forcing them

        Hahahahahaha… okay champ.

        “Those Republicans sure like their anti-monopoly legislation. Wouldn’t it be interesting if The Party went along with them”

      3. “The govt isn’t forcing them.”

        Speaking of commentators that will pretend the video doesn’t exist, here’s jonnysage. He’s friends with markbasil and larrytime! He just made fifty cents for this comment.

        1. Ten dollars says that’s Jeff.

          1. Heres my doggecoin acct. I dont even know who that is. I know you all are just as cynical as me, but there are still some people out there that can have an original thought.

            1. Original thought? You repeated much of what Jerryskids said, but he was being sarcastic. You have, however made great inroads toward proving his point.

              1. Like I said, Jeff.

                  1. Fuck off slavers.

                    1. “Original thought” spelled H-E-L-L-O S-U-C-K-E-R.

      4. The govt is asking them with one hand and filing antitrust litigation with the other.

        No coercion whatsoever.

      5. The fact that FB did it voluntarily makes them more, not less, complicit.

  3. Yes. Facebook is a private company, and the government should NOT be telling them what to do or not. The only exception is if they are engaged in theft or fraud.

    If Facebook wants to block misinformation, they can do so. If they want to let it through, they can do so. If they want to make Baby Josh Hawley cry, they can do so I will will add Mark Zuckerberg to my Christmas Card list.

    Don’t give me that common carrier bullshit. Bell Telephone was a common carrier and never once did the government tell me what I could or could not converse about over the copper.

    1. Well the government IS telling them what to do. And they are doing so. They are now government actors and not private.

      Sorry this does not comport with your version of reality.

      1. Notice how Brandybuck pretended that government actors weren’t even a factor.

        1. If he can’t blame Trump, nothing the government does is wrong; fucking TDS-addled piece of shit.

    2. What qualifies FB to determine what is misinformation?

      1. On their site? Property rights, primarily.

        1. Which site are you talking about. NRO or TheFederalist?

        2. their property is supposed to be an open forum with a few exceptions. Again, by what standard do some bots at FB determine what information is valid and what is not? And valid means just that, not “info FB disagrees with.”

          1. Clearly you have never read the terms of service on FB.
            they openly state they will shut you down for no reason other than they want to shut you up.
            And you agreed to it when you signed up.

            1. they openly state they will shut you down for no reason other than they the government wants to shut you up.

              1. Among leftists, is there really a practical difference between de o rats in government and democrats outside of government?

            2. And you agreed to it when you signed up.

              Only if you signed up in the last six years. A majority of Facebook subscribers in North America signed up before then.

                1. For the first statement only.

        3. So if they label something as misinformation, or censor it as such, they would possibly be guilty of defamation

          1. I’m old enough to remember last year when Twitter censored Oxford virologists for talking about stuff the WHO copped to four months later.
            Apparently Twitter programmers felt that premier university researchers are no match for the info in an outdated CDC pdf.

        4. No. That may qualify them to pick ad choose what they allow on site. It does not mean they are qualified to objectively determine a piece of information is correct or incorrect.

        5. Property rights? Seems like an argument for them being a publisher.

      2. What qualifies anyone?

        This whole “misinformation” thing is creepy as fuck. People say wrong shit all the time. Sometimes deliberately, but often with honest intentions. This is all about controlling what people think.

        1. I agree but ‘misinformation’ gets tossed around so much that the impression is given that it’s easy to recognize. YouTube has taken down Senate committee hearings plus some local govt hearings where people took issue with kids forces to wear masks.

          1. Yeah, it’s really awful. Truth is really hard to nail down. Especially with something new and developing like a pandemic. And it’s looking more and more as if some of the censorship has done real harm by keeping useful information about treatment and actual risks from people.

        2. If you like your doctor you can keep your doctor.

        3. And it’s all about only allowing a narrative approved by a government regime. Carried bait by their oolitcal operatives in the tech community. Ultimately, these companies aren’t the core problem. The core problem is now the democrats party, which is increasingly controlled by people of AOC’s ilk.

      3. The First Amendment?

      4. What qualifies the government?

    3. The irony between your last sentence and your 2nd paragraph.

    4. The very fact that White House is “suggesting” that Facebook deplatform these people gives them a 1st Amendment case against Facebook of it does so, because it is arguably that they are doing this at the federal government’s behest. It is evidence of collusion with the executive to circumvent the free speech/press clause.

      1. Seems like Facebook is one of the victims of government in this scenario, not a colluder.

        1. Fascist hyper-partisans, sad to say, will NEVER see the truth that you speak (write)!

          Fascist hyper-partisans imagine that they can pussy-grab the liberals, and negate Section 230, and the liberals will NEVER be smart enough to pussy-grab them right back!

          Smug, self-deluded arrogance knows NO limits, it seems!

          1. More insanity than arrogance on your part, but at least you’ve finally admitted you’re a fascist.

          2. spaz flag – fuck off, you pathetic piece of shit.

        2. Do you need a dictionary again?

          1. Last time she used one it was a cawlossal failure.

          2. Doesn’t help; ML will mute Merriam-Webster if needed to avoid being called on bullshit.

        3. Facebook could have said no then pleaded their case in public. I would have liked their chances and probably supported them. Instead they did what they were told by their masters. Just like you.

        4. -the “i was only following orders” soldiers, guards at prison camps…
          couldnt they be considered the victim AND the colluder ? Even if it werent obvious that Facebook serves with gusto. They got orders [strong suggestions] to “do some things” but things that were in line with their proggy ideology.

        5. In this theory of the case, then the government is asking for a bribe (silencing of its opponents) in exchange for not punishing the social media case.

    5. Don’t give me that common carrier bullshit. Bell Telephone was a common carrier and never once did the government tell me what I could or could not converse about over the copper.

      Uh, Bell Telephone didn’t collude with the Democrats to cut off your phone line when you spouted wrongthink. They only did it if you didn’t pay your bill.

      1. Bell Telephone was a common carrier and never once did the government tell me what I could or could not converse about over the copper.

        But it’s okay if the government does it on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram?

        Name one time in history when the people banning books, media and opinions were the ‘good guys’.

        1. Nazis were the classical “bad guys” for doing this. Please provide citations whereby Google, Facebook, Twitter, etc., engaged in book-burning, with those who bypassed the book-burnings… To spread their truth or lies… by alternate means… Got PUNISHED? Is there ANYONE in the USA who can NOT freely access the lies of Alex Jones and Der TrumpfenFuher? If so… Citation please! (Fucking whining crybaby LIAR that you are, MammaryBahnFuhrer!)

          1. Also neat how you turned my “banning books” into “book-burnings”.

            Have you been taking liar lessons from White Mike? Learning how to twist and change words in order to keep up the lies?

            1. Is there ANYONE in the USA who can NOT freely access the lies of Alex Jones and Der TrumpfenFuher? If so… Citation please!

              Crybaby didn’t answer ANY of the questions! NONE of them!

              1. Search engines make it easy to find all kinds of info – even for … shall we say… non tech savants.
                Increasingly they are making it harder to find certain information They bury the results 10+ pages down in results, they bubble contrary sites above certain sites and topics, etc. For the non savvy – even for regular people… I would guess most people dont go more than 2 pages into a search. In the Anyone category there are many that would not find what they are looking for due to their lack of either -determination or -understanding etc. AND due to the way the results are presented by the tech oligarchs. Its not deterministic but probabilistic on their part. They dont make it impossible to find stuff but i would wager they look at the probability cloud for their users search habits and put the info just out of reach of the calculated probability that the person finds what they are looking for. Hope that word salad conveyed my conspiracy theory and totally debunked opinion.

        2. Okay, i got one. When the conquistadors burned 1,ooo’s of Maya books, because they were the work of the devil. i mean, it was the work of the devil, so they sorta had to, and, you know, what they were offering was lots better than the ignorant Maya were, you know, believing and shit. i mean, didn’t you even see Apocalypto?

    6. ” the government should NOT be telling them”

      Reminds me of a conference call the other day, when called out by a staffer on a problematic issue the senior VP replied “I wish we could get away from doing that…”

      Wish my ass, you are the senior VP, if you do not want it to happen tell everyone to stop making it happen.

      Wish.
      Should.

      Both are bullshit words.

    7. If a baker doesn’t want to bake a cake, he can do so?

    8. “It should not come as any surprise we are in regular touch with social media platforms…and we want to know that the social media platforms are taking steps to address this.”

      – psaki

      You fucking mong get it through your head.

    9. Well, ATT, Verizon, Tmobile are all next! Try to keep up.

  4. Social media actively censoring govt by taking down videos of committee hearings that deviate from right-think. And now, here we are; govt openly wanting to do what it had previously outsourced.

  5. The Government Should Stop Telling Facebook To Suppress COVID-19 ‘Misinformation’

    The Government should stop telling… there is a LOT to unpack in those three little words in the middle there.

    I know, let’s consider this entire thread to be a place of silent reflection.

    1. I’ll just say this and bow out:

      This puts us at what, phase two of the process?

      1. It’s not happening.
      2. Ok, we’ll it’s happening, but it’s not as bad as you say.
      3. [y’all know what goes in here]

      1. Is 3 “Fascism is kind of libertarian” Because that’s essentially what they’ve been defending the last year or so.

        1. Been saying it for a few years know – Reason ‘libertarianism’ is kinder gentler statism.

          The government doesn’t send men with guns to silence (most) of you. They just ask banks and every other sort of business to cut you off.

          1. Does anyone really wonder why proggs like Suderman wanted a government takeover of healthcare?

            No coercive opportunities there…

      2. 3.) “It is happening but that’s actually a good thing.” ?

        1. Yes, with some variations:

          a good thing
          the new normal
          get used to it
          nothing we can do
          suck it
          FYTY

        1. Nah. Profits are racist. Unless the profits are “donated” to fight racism, aka, supporting Democratic candidates.

      3. 3. Get in the damn boxcar or we’ll shoot

    2. Just wear your mask. The government told you so.

      1. The same government also told us not to – – – – – – – –

    3. 3. Anyone who doesn’t do what we say is a racist.

  6. The White House’s targeting of Facebook should make critics a little sympathetic to Mark Zuckerberg’s position.

    What position? Is the White House trying to hump Facebook’s leg before Zuckerberg can hump the White House’s leg?

    1. First you PANIC about something which kills just barely above the flu and now you blow off the threat of the government dictating what a publisher can publish.
      Pretty sure we can safely assume you’re a statist fuck who should fuck off and die. Soon.

    2. It must suck to look so stupid on this topic now.

      1. JFree’s too stupid to recognize that.

  7. Jen Psaki should ask Facebook to suppress pictures of her face.

    1. Her face would look a lot better with my balls bouncing off her chin.

      1. Are you 12? Or just the mentality of a 12 year old?

        1. Im told he drinks a lot. Could that be a factor?

          1. Don’t know or care what the troll said, but I’ve always had a weakness for gingers. I think it’s the fact that they have no soul. Turns me on.

            1. Carrot Top appreciates your fandom

              1. More like Karen Gillan. Dudes aren’t my thing. But now I know to buy your holiday card at Spencers.

                1. Fuck off and die, TDS-addled lefty asshole.

                2. I only get Christmas cards. And iirc Spencer’s sunset their raunchy cards. No word whether the WH had asked them to stop selling them.

                  1. Ha ha, I used the word “holiday” to see who I could trigger. Gotcha! Like fish in a toilet.

                    1. I’m correcting your mistake. Gotcha? The only thing you got was the NAMBLA award for protecting a kiddie porn poster.

                    2. You never provided sufficient proof that you don’t fuck donkeys as a side job on the weekends. I’ve known donkey fuckers, and they all had the decency to fuck them on Wednesday or Thursday. But you do the whole weekend. What the fuck? Nobody does that.

                    3. And who made you Donkey Fucker anyway? Sevo’s been serving that long and hard for a while now.

                    4. Do I need to link to your comments below regarding your “chaff and redirect” of SBP and posting kiddie porn?

                      One needs to prove an allegation. Not challenge the recipient to disprove it. I understand why Ken muted you. You bring nothing of value to any conversation. You’ll be my first mute.

                    5. Guy who falls for troll-shit mutes me. Meh.

                    6. Hey buddy, this post is about the govt’s balls bouncing off the 1st amendment’s face. No Sandwich Confessions today?

                    7. “You never provided sufficient proof that you don’t fuck donkeys as a side job on the weekends…”

                      You never provided proof you’re capable of thinking above the third-grade level that you show here.
                      Fuck off and die.

            2. So the mindset of a 12 year it is. Sad nobody will actually fuck you. Not even 60 year old women want to put up with victim crying alcoholics.

  8. >>The White House’s targeting of Facebook should make critics a little sympathetic to Mark Zuckerberg’s position.

    fuck Mark Zuckerberg with Jen Psaki’s dick.

    1. But she can totally use the “ladies” room.

  9. The White House demanding that Facebook suppress content and Hawley demanding that they not suppress content are not equivalent.

    Surely what the White House is doing should be considered an outrage against the principle of free speech?

    1. Yeah, this is absolutely outrageous. They want to control what information people are exposed to. Even if it is all false, that should be extremely troubling.
      I don’t know what I think about Hawley’s demands, but it’s sure a lot less threatening to basic rights and values than the president’s press secretary trying to suppress information.

    2. Not equivalent, but the First Amendment guarantees Facebook’s right to suppress or not suppress whatever it chooses to.

      1. Name one time in history when the people banning books, media and opinions were the ‘good guys’.

        1. MammaryBahnFuhrer is stuck in an endless repeat loop! Fruit loop in an endless poop-loop!

          Nazis were the classical “bad guys” for doing this. Please provide citations whereby Google, Facebook, Twitter, etc., engaged in book-burning, with those who bypassed the book-burnings… To spread their truth or lies… by alternate means… Got PUNISHED? Is there ANYONE in the USA who can NOT freely access the lies of Alex Jones and Der TrumpfenFuher? If so… Citation please! (Fucking endlessly bitching-lying whining crybaby LIAR that you are, MammaryBahnFuhrer!)

          1. I said ‘book banning’ and Sqrls twists it to ‘book burning’. Sqrlsy may be retarded but he still lies like a fascist.

            1. OK, MammaryBahnFuhrer is MERELY a power-pig authoritarian, NOT a fascist, if you want to split hairs, then…

        2. “Name one time in history when the people banning books, media and opinions were the ‘good guys’.”

          The banning of CRT in books and opinions going into our schools is definitely a good thing done by the good guys.

      2. Lol. So you did ignore the two court cases, one from the ninth, that said you were full of shit.

      3. Especially when it chooses the exact same thing the Feds suggest*, right?

        *see mafia deal suggestion

      4. Even when doing it under government orders? Eventually the Supreme Court will have something to say about that.

      5. No it does not. And the arguments have been explained to you ad-nauseum but you ignore them. Because you’re just a sock troll for white knight.

      6. I suspect you would take a contrary view if it were Trump asking a media platform to censor leftist speech.

    3. “The White House demanding that Facebook suppress content and Hawley demanding that they not suppress content are not equivalent.”

      Only, as another commenter noted the other day, in the sense that pushing someone in front of a train is the same as pushing someone out of the path of a train. Because they both involve pushing.

  10. The WH is not mandating that FB do anything, or threatening any action if they do not. It is ok fo the WH to ask FB to take down dangerous lies that are literally going to kill people.

    1. this White House is in no position to lecture anybody over lies, dangerous or otherwise. Just stop, drama queen. These are the same people who dismissed the lab leak theory before that became impossible.

    2. That is debatable, as it has been shown that much of what was suppressed in the past year as misinformation was not. Such as banning discussion of hydrochloriquine as having potential benefits in fighting Covid

      1. Hydrochloriquine was shown to be ineffective. There was never any solid data to show that it worked.

          1. Nothing in that says it works.

            1. Are you seriously this stupid?

              It doesn’t have to work 100% . It is a cheap generic drug. The CDC and FDA claimed it would harm covid patients just last year. Study linked below shows it reduced death rates, so did the study in India.

              Is your back sore from moving goalposts?

              1. I don’t think it is the back.

            2. At best, it works, at least in some circumstances. At worst, it is an open question. In either of those cases, it is not misinformation, and there was no basis for banning discussion of it for that reason.

          2. Also….Rs don’t care if meds work or not anyhow.

            1. Says the guy ignorant to fucking studies proving him wrong. God damn man. This is sarcamic/jeff level idiocy.

              1. Oh, MG can give those TDS-addled shits a run for their money.

            2. Thankfully, President Biden fast-tracked developing a vaccine to bypass the typical molasses that the FDA drug approval process is so that vulnerable populations could get protection.

        1. The lamestream media said it didn’t work, and they’re all out to get Trump. That right there is proof that it worked.

          1. Do you really think it doesn’t? Or is this all about Trump for you?

            1. He said it worked and that’s all that matters. So if you voted for him then it worked, and if you didn’t it doesn’t. Who needs actual medical data? Politics is the only thing that matters.

              1. The only reason you opposed hydroxychloroquine is because Trump said that it showed positive results, and don’t pretend otherwise.

                Anyway, contrary to Tony MollyGodiva’s narrative, the AMA has reversed its stance against HCQ to treat COVID-19. The association’s reversal now allows physicians to prescribe the medicine to address infections.
                It isn’t effective in advanced cases but works well in the early stages for elderly patients.

                1. From a month ago.

                  https://news.yahoo.com/study-shows-hydroxychloroquine-zinc-treatments-210300816.html

                  But 12 year old sarcasmic says knowing the science means you support trump. The irony of his projecting.

              2. Medical data says it works

                1. Medical data does not show that. None of the studies linked so far says that.

                  1. No no. Nardz read tweets from Ph.D.’s in Twitterology which can prove it all!

                  2. I just fucking linked one you illiterate fuck. Literally 3 posts up.

                    1. But look at sarcasmic and the two retards he’s suckholing, deliberately ignore that.

                  3. That’s an ad hominem. You voted for Biden, and that means you’re wrong.

                    1. Yes, and as a fucking piece of lefty shit, you deserve them regularly.

                    2. Now you’re getting it.

                  4. c19ivermectin.com

                    c19hcq.com

            2. “…Or is this all about Trump for you?”

              Yes.
              To sarc, the government can do anything at all and so long as that TDS-addled piece of lefty shit can’t blame Trump, it’s fine by him.

          2. Or the science you ignorant fuck.

          3. That right there is proof that motivation for the ban was political, not the pursuit of what is objectively true.

        2. You just got dunked on 3 times within 6 posts.

    3. Lies that kill people? For that to be true people would literally have to read the so-called lies and then just die, right then and there. You are ignoring a lot of intermediate steps between them reading and then dying… mainly their freedom to make choices as they see fit in accordance with how they see the world, those choices put in action, the consequence of those choices actually being lethal, and then them dying of something tangible and real, like Covid, rather than an idea that someone thinks is wrong.

      Face it… you don’t care about controlling what the people say on FB except to the extent it allows you to control what the general public thinks.

      1. Nobody said, “Lies that directly and immediately kill people.”

          1. Was the lie actually carrying a license to kill, like 007? Can you show it? Otherwise . . .

            /dee

        1. Your talking about lies like “COVID came from a wetmarket, Ivermectin doesn’t work, HCQ doesn’t work, The jab isn’t making anyone ill, Fauci was consistent, Masks work, COVID passports, Cuomo didn’t kill old people, Gain of Function wasn’t funded, Trump said drink bleach, 15 Days to Slow the Spread, MAGA rallies = super spreaders, Only vaxxed can enjoy July 4, No immunity via C19 infection, COVID Spring break will kill you, etc”, right?

        2. Get into the showers so you can be deloused.

        3. “Lies that directly and immediately kill people.”

          https://reason.com/2021/07/13/brickbat-cow-dung/

          Brickbat: Cow Dung … Cure for Covid… Good for what ails ya! USA right-wing wing-nuts want the USA to follow in the cow-poop-filled steps of India!

          Fuck truth; go with what is good for MY tribe and tribal alliances! Who cares how many have to die, so long as we get things MY way?!?!?!

          1. spaz flag
            Fuck off and die, spaz

          2. Sqrlsy thinks a folk remedy/ritual in Manipur, India is somehow USA right-wing.

            Do you think the problem here is that Sqrlsy is inherently dishonest about everything, or that he is too stupid to comprehend a one paragraph Brickbat? He saw a picture of a cow and thought ‘bad rural people’?

            He’s certainly right that he’s fucking truth, though.

            1. I muted him right away. His comments are a waste of time, and I didn’t care to scroll past him repeatedly.

    4. It’s not FB’s fault no one trusts the government.

      1. Yes it is. If it wasn’t for Facebook and the Russians, Hillary would have had her rightful seat on the throne. But nooooooo. Facebook had to get Trump elected. That’s why nobody trusts government.

        1. Poor Bloomberg spent almost a billion and didn’t get past the post, but the Russians spent just $150K on Facebook ads for both Hillary and Trump and stole the election.

            1. Oh look, new Killian Papers.

              I bet these are as real as the Steele Dossier, the Trump Jr. emails and the peeing Russian hookers.

              After thirteen fraudulent ‘document dumps’ this one’s got to be real, right Sqrlsy?

              Tell you what. Why don’t you go on record right now telling us you believe the Graunaids story is 100% accurate.
              I’ll save it and six months from now we can all have a good laugh at you.

        2. Remember how sarcasmic has cried he isnt a troll the last week…

    5. It is ok fo the WH to ask FB to take down dangerous lies that are literally going to kill people.

      Why do left wingers pretend they care about killing people? The most direct causal link of deaths from covid is the 4 Democratic Governors (including Cuomo) ordering nursing homes to accept covid patients resulting in outbreaks. No one on the left cares about this because they’re only interested in what they can use against their enemies.

      Further during covid the government was overwhelmingly the primary source of misinformation. What they are trying to suppress isn’t misinformation at all. It’s information disputing that their actions during covid were necessary.

      1. Why do left wingers pretend they care about killing people?

        I know, right? Why everyone knows left-wingers are evil zombies and vampires who feast on the flesh of the living. Unlike right-wingers, who are noble and pure and God’s chosen ones upon the earth.

        1. Unlike right-wingers,

          I’m so old I remember when he pretended to be against whataboutism.

          Meanwhile he and the rest of the left continue to ignore people who caused mass death because it doesn’t help their political preferences. Thanks for proving the point!

          1. Yes you got it. Left-wingers are cartoon villains. Of course! Every Bernie Bro is secretly a Stalinist who wants to murder you.

            1. Ever notice that every comment he makes is specifically to protect the left?

              Here he claims concern about government officials killing people is bad. This is what insane partisanship leads to.

              Amusingly tomorrow he’ll accuse someone else of blind partisanship, because leftists have no principles other than defending the shield.

              1. Ever notice how you reduce everything to cartoonish stereotypes and black/white thinking?

                1. Black culture/White culture

                  1. Distinctions are racist.

                    1. Assigning behavior to a race certainly is. And it dehumanizes.

                    2. I’ve never met a stereotype or offensive joke that didn’t contain a grain of truth.

                    3. “I’ve never met a stereotype or offensive joke that didn’t contain a grain of truth.”

                      So you’re saying the whole “Jews sacrifice Christian children to perform religious rituals” nonsense has a modicum of truth to it? I thought it was a total antisemitic line of bullshit, but you seem to think there’s something to it.

                2. Ever notice how you reduce everything to cartoonish stereotypes and black/white thinking?

                  And yet my comments accurately describe reality. Meanwhile you’re reduced to pretending opposing government officials causing tens of thousands of deaths is a problem.

                3. You literally did exactly the same in your comment.

                4. Ever notice how you reduce everything to cartoonish stereotypes and black/white thinking?

                  The utter lack of self-awareness from chemtard radical deathfat here is not unexpected, but still hilarious. This is the same fork-tongued humunculus who argues that anyone pushing back against cultural Marxism in schools only wants to learn about REEL MURICAN HISTURY!

                5. He’s not the one engaging in hyperbolic strawmen.

              2. Ever notice that every comment he makes is specifically to protect the left?

                No, but I do notice him mocking people like you who blame everything on the left. “My aunt has gout! Fucking Biden!!!”

                1. I do notice him mocking people like you who blame everything on the left.

                  It’s revealing that when government officials kill tens of thousands of people left wing commenters conclude the key issue is that left wingers not be blamed. The funny part is their belief this universal protection of their team shows other people are team focused rather than themselves.

                  1. Marshal, you’re arguing with a troll who doesn’t care whether he’s wrong or right. Might as well mute him. He doesn’t care about facts or logic. He isn’t here to teach or learn. He’s a classic shitposter.

                    “Shitposting is posting “aggressively, ironically, and of trollishly poor quality” posts or content to an online forum or social media. Shitposts are intentionally designed to derail discussions or cause the biggest reaction with the least effort. Sometimes they are made as part of a coordinated flame war to make the site unusable by its regular visitors.”

                    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shitposting

                    1. That definition is consistent with what I’ve seen out of that guy so far. His comments are mostly a waste of time to read.

                  2. I have no idea of who you are talking to or what you are talking about.

                    Perhaps those arguments were best left in you head?

            2. They aren’t cartoons.

    6. We’re all glad you’re here to protect the WH’s interests. Joe and Kamala will be inviting you to the Rose Garden soon.

  11. Robby would prefer the government to “instruct” Facebook in private, therefore allowing him to feign ignorance.

    1. Luckily, you are able to tap into Robbie’s private thoughts.

      1. Probably time to fire up your white knight sockpuppet again.

      2. What can I say? It’s a gift.

  12. POLITICOEurope
    @POLITICOEurope
    “Free speech is not an absolute human right,” says Helle Thorning Schmidt, member of Facebook’s Oversight Board and former PM of Denmark. “It has to be balanced with other human rights.”

    1. We should be more like Denmarx.

    2. “It has to be balanced with other human rights… like our right to farm you like cattle”

  13. “Efforts by the government and tech platforms to suppress misinformation have undeniably resulted sometimes in the suppression of information that is either factual, or could plausibly turn out to be factual.”

    Which is a good reason to mock such proposals and actively oppose them, not to throw in an extraneous “both sides” argument.

    1. Both major parties are pressuring social media sites. Why is it verboten to talk about it?

      1. “Both sides!”

      2. One is pressuring them to produce speech. The other is pressuring them to restrict speech. You choose the latter.

  14. But you’re forgiven if you think Psaki’s summary of the report sounded like command.

    You’re not forgiven. If you don’t understand the difference between a press flack broadcasting the view of an administration and a government’s outright attempts to suppress, ban or compel speech, you’re an idiot, and you’re not forgiven.

    And Josh Hawley can go fuck himself with a rusty chainsaw before dying in a grease fire. That guy is the most vile and evil political huckster since McCarthy. He gives slime a bad name.

    1. If you don’t understand the difference between a press flack broadcasting the view of an administration and a government’s outright attempts to suppress, ban or compel speech, you’re an idiot, and you’re not forgiven.

      I know, right? If the opinion among various commenters around here is such that a government *request* to do something constitutes an impermissible command to force or coerce someone into action, then it so cheapens the concept of speech suppression as to render the concept meaningless.

      If the government requests that you brush your teeth, is this coercion? Should the government be prohibited from ever making any requests of anyone ever again, for fear of coercing people into submission? This is paranoid levels of lunacy.

      1. God damn youre retarded. No wonder sarcasmic wants to fuck you. It hasn’t been an ask since 2016.

      2. I’m shocked to discover left wingers defending speech suppression. Shocked.

        1. Tipper Gore applauds.

      3. I look forward to the book burning rallies!

    2. I member way back when Literally Hitler calling (blatantly dishonsst) reporters ‘Fake News’ and (accurately) The Enemy of the People was a Nazi attack on the First Amendment. He didnt propose anything be done to them.

  15. Funny thing, when the government actively tries to shut down people more people tend to search them out to see what the big deal is and in the end more people end up seeing what the government doesn’t want you to see.

    1. Barbs has noticed that.

  16. Dating web site for MAGA types:

    https://www.findmagalove.com/

    hilarious

    1. Nobody here trusts any link you provide given your history of posting CP.

      1. He posts child porn here? Seriously.

        1. I thought it was actually chemjeff, but everyone else said Buttplug, so maybe my memories foggy.

          1. The accusation was against PBP. He was apparently banned for it.

            I didn’t see it myself.

          2. Jeff supported child rapists crossing the border. Spb posted the deep web links to cp.

              1. Yep.
                And admitted it.

        2. I’ve seen people say that. I’ve also seen people say I have sex with monkeys. Well the monkeys deny the entire thing. So what does that say?

          1. Drunk early i see.

          2. Well the monkeys deny the entire thing. So what does that say?
            It says you drugged the monkeys.

          3. Methinks they would have gone apeshit if you tried to monkey around with them like that.

            1. Nothing but tall tails….

              1. Nothing but bullshit.

          4. Did you post statements verifying those claims, or links to pics/video of you sexing monkeys? That’s apparently what happened, respectively.

            1. It was just some scam that Ken concocted up with JesseAz, R Mac, Mother’s Lament, Tulpa and Sevo. They figured if they could train the monkeys to jerk them off, that they could photoshop something of me doing the nasty with the primates. Instead they got busted by a security guard, who happens to be a friend of mine, and now I’m blackmailing them. It’s funny when you think about it!

              1. They aren’t denying it. That’s proof that it’s true.

                1. Well, next time sarcasmic whines that he’s being bullied, and as a poor little lamb he never starts shit, I’m bringing up this post.

              2. “…They figured if they could train the monkeys to jerk them off, that they could photoshop something of me doing the nasty with the primates…”

                Adolescent TDS-addled pieces of shit always assume their erotic fantasies are of interest to others.
                Hint, fuck-face: They aren’t.

        3. Yes. He was banned for it and they had to scrub the comments. Tulpa saved his admissions when he made a new user name. I dont have them. But was on the thread in question when he did.

    2. More kiddie porn links?

      1. Your mom’s not a kid anymore.

        1. You’re supporting the OP that posted kiddie porn?

          1. He has so few friends left here.

          2. I think the odds of an impersonator like Tulpa posting kiddie porn to smear someone to be greater than the smearee smearing themselves.

            1. But their account got banned.

              You can dress up as Bill Clinton with a mask and rob a bank. Maybe few folks will believe it was really him. But if a guard shoots you dead during the act it will be clear it wasn’t Bill Clinton.

              1. And when Squirrely dies, the trolls will still swear I’m him and jeff and everyone else. Some people cannot be swayed by silly things like facts.

                1. We say you are as stupid as Jeff, not that you are jeff. Could attempt at strawman though. And yes you’re sqrsly. You’ve posted sqrsly copy-paste multiple times by accident when drunk.

                2. Keep making up excuses for your idiocy, TDS-addled lefty asshole.

                3. You’re providing chaff for a person that posted kiddie porn. For a second time.

                  1. More than a second time – he did it in other thread(s) too.
                    It’s now consistent behavior.

                  2. Homosaywhat? Made you look!

        2. Mean girl!

    3. Yeeaaah… There’s no way in hell I’m clicking a Buttplug link. I don’t want to have to scrub my hard drive and worry about the FBI, thanks.

      1. And out side of pedos, who wants to see nasty stuff like that?

        1. FBI agents. But I repeat what you said.

          1. And the poor, victimized, sarc, here.

    4. “Dating web site for MAGA types:”

      Dating sites for lefty shits like you feature 10-year-olds, right, turd?

  17. Two wrongs never exactly make a right, but sometimes the 2nd wrong can mitigate the 1st. If government is making a private entity not carry certain messages, the government floor is thereby opened for political action to forbid the private entity from disallowing certain messages.

    1. Off topic, I’ve thought about your explanation, from the other week, regarding Reason feeling it necessary to differentiate themselves from the Republicans (rather than the Democrats) to be compelling.

      If we’re in a situation where things can only get more libertarian once the Democrats lose, which is where I think we are, then It’s high time for libertarians to start differentiating themselves from the Democrats again.

      1. It has always, always been time for libertarians to differentiate themselves from both major American political parties.

        1. Libertarians have always differentiated themselves by saying “I don’t want to control you” at which point everyone laughs at them until they leave.

        2. As screetch says above it’s impossible for any third party to win especially at the national level. LP might move the needle a bit in each of the two major parties, but that’s all.

          Your best bet is figure out which of the two parties is closer to you, and stop wishing on a star. For example, most liberaltarians here voted for Biteme even if they sometimes hate admitting it.

          1. I don’t make the rules the world works by. I just have a pretty good understanding of how they work.

            https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Duverger%27s_law

            The path of least resistance is to infiltrate one of the two major parties, and the one that isn’t fundamentally hostile to capitalism is the more inviting of the two. And as the Democrats become more authoritarian and more socialist, Duverger’s law tells us that libertarian capitalists should become more Republican. It’s the nature of the chess board and the way the pieces can move.

            This has worked well in New Hampshire, where the majority leader of their state House may not be a Libertarian–but he is a Free State Project Republican, and a huge chunk of the Republicans in his coalition are libertarians, too.

            When libertarians attain influence in Congress, per Duverger’s Law, it probably won’t be as Libertarians. They’ll represent more or less the same things, but they’ll be called Republicans–and a libertarian rose by any other name would smell as sweet.

            I care far more about where Trump stands on forever wars, the Green New Deal, and Medicare for All than I do about whether he’s a libertarian or a Republican, and the reason I hate Biden is because of his authoritarian and socialist policies–not because he’s a Democrat.

            1. Your goal is to _infiltrate_ the Republican Party, and you are pursuing that goal by backing Trump? You may want to check your math.

              1. Math is an ad hominem.

              2. It is his weak-sauce rationalization. “No no, I’m not really a MAGA cultist, really, it is 9-D chess to ‘take over’ the Republican Party from the inside! It’s such a cunning plan it just might work!” Except we have already seen how this story ends (see: Tea Party, ca. 2011-15), and it ignores everything that Ken has done up until now to run interference for Team Red.

                1. So what is your plan?

                  1. Trump was the best we had for the last century or so; him or someone close. And I really don’t give a shit if people don’t like his ‘personality’; I’m not looking for a daddy.

                  2. I defy anyone to rationally argue that Biden, the Democrats, and a one party government have been better for the cause of libertarianism than Trump winning would have been–from a libertarian perspective.

                    1. Nobody has ever made that argument.

                      I’d rather not vote than pull the handle for a Turd Sandwich because it’s better than a Giant Douche.

                      Sure you can argue one’s less-terrible than the other.

                      Can’t convince me that either one is good.

                    2. Was that an ad hominem?

                    3. “…I’d rather not vote than pull the handle for a Turd Sandwich because it’s better than a Giant Douche…”

                      TDS-addled assholes seem to think this absolves them of the stupidity of their claimed positions.
                      It doesn’t, you steaming pile of shit.

                  3. My plan is to reject both major parties. They don’t deserve our support.

                    1. “If you choose to reject both sides you still have made a choice!”

                      [insert Canadian music and dub with a shrill voice]

                    2. But until you implement the plan you’ll keep supporting just one of the parties.

  18. “In the absence of competition, Facebook’s quality has deteriorated over time, resulting in worse privacy protections for its users and a dramatic rise in misinformation on its platform”.

    —-House Democrat Report, October of 2020

    Lina Khan, et. al.

    Page 14 of 450

    https://judiciary.house.gov/uploadedfiles/competition_in_digital_markets.pdf

    That report listed the reasons to break various big tech companies up with antitrust, and “misinformation” was listed as being one of the reasons the authors gave to break up Facebook. One of the main authors of that statement was none other than Lina Khan, who is now the chair if the FTC, which is suing to break up Facebook. You can see her name on the report at the link.

    Subsequent to the publication of that report, the Democrats took control of both the White House and the Senate, Lina Khan was appointed by Biden to be the Chair of the FTC (which is suing to break up Facebook), and Facebook started censoring, for example, any statement that contradicted the CDC or Dr. Fauci’s NIAID.

    If the American people aren’t allowed to contradict federal agencies like the CDC or the NIAID on Facebook, because the government is threatening to break up Facebook for tolerating “misinformation” on their platform, then that’s an excellent example of the government violating our freedom of speech. Everyone who cites Facebook’s association rights and property rights to defend or rationalize the government violating our First Amendment rights should be ashamed of themselves.

    Maybe they should defend the Red Scare, too. The Hollywood studios blacklisting actors, directors, and writers–because the government was threatening to break up the studio system if they didn’t blacklist them–isn’t an excellent example of the Hollywood studios exercising their association and property rights either. The Red Scare, actually, was a shameful violation of people’s First Amendment rights–just like what the Democrat controlled U.S. government is doing to social media in the name of “misinformation” today.

    1. I am assured that it is totally fine if the government tells private companies to censor people that disagree with the government. They are private companies. They can do what they want….

    2. Was the answer to the Red Scare to empower the government to force Hollywood to hire communists and promote communist propaganda? That is the extension of the logic of forcing Facebook to host content merely because the current government is trying to force them to ban it.

      The real lesson is we must support Facebooks right to host or ban content of its own choosing. We should oppose Psakis veiled threats; we should also oppose DeSantis trying to force them to host political campaign ads.

  19. https://twitter.com/JackPosobiec/status/1415784617890754570?s=19

    Biden really went up to Philadelphia to give a speech about how he is the most legitimate President in US history

    1. Real punk rock kids didn’t dress up like punks. What we really wore became thought of as punk because we were real punks.

      Real cowboys don’t dress up as cowboys. If I wear a cowboy hat, I’m dressing up like a cowboy, but what real cowboys wear isn’t dressing up when they wear it.

      There’s a Chinatown in Los Angeles, New York, and San Francisco, with restaurants that claim to serve real Chinese food. But there’s no Chinatown in Beijing, Hong Kong, or Shanghai. Places in China being Chinese is self-evident.

      If Joe Biden were a real punk, a real cowboy, serving real Chinese food, or the most legitimate president in U.S. history, he wouldn’t need to wear Doc Martins, sport a cowboy hat, hand out fortune cookies, or tell everybody about how legitimate he is. It would be self-evident.

      1. “Real cowboys don’t dress up as cowboys.”

        While I get your point. They actually do. At least they in the sense of what “real” means and how there are regional variations in the dress of those people.

        Looking at people who actually work ranches/cattle:

        In the south they dress extremely “cowboy” – jeans, boots (working styles like ropers, unless they are dressed up for a city night), tooled leather belts, sheathed folding knife on the belt, western style shirts, hats are either western style or ball caps. Bolo ties are worn when fancy dressed.

        Cowboys in AZ and CO also dress very cowboy, but will include more of the southwestern style, and neckerchiefs are way more common than in the south (because, unlike in the south, evaporation is a thing.) Another thing you will see there that you will not see in the south is packer style boots.

        Cowboys in MT are probably the least ‘cowboy’ of anyplace I’ve lived. Sneakers and a ball cap are real cowboy, boots and a western hat much less so.

        1. Agreed, though work clothes can vary based on location as you note. A hat to block the sun and weather, sturdy pants, a knife, usually a pair of boots or the new work sneakers, a decent pair of gloves. I hate the latter, but am a boots for work guy, so, it’s a bias. I haven’t worked fencelines this year, but I usually choose a baseball hat over a cattlemans’, more due to the region than anything else.

          1. Yeah, I’m living back east now after a long time out west. When I’m out helping friends with their land I get funny looks because I wear Carhartts. Here they see those and think “hipster try-hard.” I deal with the ribbing because they are the better choice. About the only time I wear jeans anymore is when visiting my wife’s kin in Florida and I need to go full Florida Cracker.

            But the universal tell tale for ‘cowboy’ is as an honest to Mauney rodeo belt buckle. That will even get you respect on the reservation.

    2. “Any man who must say ‘I am the king’ is no true king.”- G.R.R. Martin.

    3. Speaks to an nagging need to prove himself, be it through bragging, or lying, which he has had throughout his career. I’ve said it before, a good rule is that if someone needs to tell you that they are honest, or the most qualified, or most legitimate, or that something is not hyperbole, the opposite will be the truth. The same is very true of mission statements, political slogans.

  20. Read the thread

    https://twitter.com/ggreenwald/status/1415725320381079569?s=19

    The Biden administration is telling Facebook which posts it regards as “problematic” so that Facebook can remove them.

    This is the union of corporate and state power — one of the classic hallmarks of fascism — that the people who spent 5 years babbling about fascism support.

    1. Part of Trump’s lawsuit… One that Robert Barnes suspects is being intentionally set up to fail, in order to curtail future challenges. He suspects the attorneys of being something along to double-agents, due to the obvious missteps in their filings with the court. He has been right about many things in this arena over the last 9 months, so maybe he is on to something with this one too.

      1. The suit cites standing ninth precedent regarding government coercion of business. Prof Volokh has cited the same cases when discussing common carrier.

  21. I imagine Nards as Fury.

    Not on Marvel.

    On Mystery Men.

    “Twitter makes me….. FURIOUS!!!!”

    1. I imagine you cannot figure out how to use the Reply button, screetch.

      1. You imagine what I imagine? That’s gross. Perv.

    2. Remember. This is what sarcasmic cries about when talking about everyone here being a mean girl.

    3. Was that supposed to be funny? Or is there a more serious point there?

      1. Yes and no….

      2. And don’t expect anything hinting at intelligence.

    4. Are those cartoons?

  22. They are also admitting to taking the same action with regard to SMS messages. That is you texting your friends from your phone.

    The Washington Examiner had an article “debunking” a politico article that told of the White House plan to enlist the carriers to combat “misinformation” in text messages.

    They debunk it by telling us that the DNC assured them that “No, Joe Biden is not reading everyone’s text messages”. So… Rest easy.

    And now that they slayed that straw man… They fill us in with the facts.

    They are not reading your texts. They are just using machine learning to identify mass texts that they disagree with that are being shared and “moving to combat them”.

    So… Totally not the same thing at all. Having AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile, etc. filter SMS messages that are being shared among friends if the white house seems the topic to be off limits is in no way related to censorship. The right wing media was totally spreading a conspiracy theory. They aren’t censoring anything. Just combatting “misinformation”.

    https://www.washingtonexaminer.com/news/no-biden-and-dnc-arent-trying-police-text-messages

    The article starts with “they totally are not doing that but everyone has been doing it for years anyway”. Double-think has nothing on these guys.

    1. The past:

      “A DNC official told the Washington Examiner that the Democratic Party has been training its grassroots volunteers to sign up for various mass email lists from Republican-affiliated groups since 2019 and to flag noteworthy messages for the communications team.”

      And then

      “That new process sees communications officials take the misleading bulk texts about vaccines flagged by volunteers and then forward them to SMS aggregator companies, such as Twilio or Bandwidth, “who either work with a mass texting client or have companies that work with mass texting clients,” the official said.”

      So they have been attacking right wing messaging via SMS the same way they have been attacking the online presence… By going after the service provider companies.

      That just blocks bulk texts from think tanks and PAC type entities. You know.. like political campaigns.

      But then they let this drop:

      “”The idea that, like, Joe Biden is reading everyone’s text messages, that’s not what happening,” the DNC official said.

      Sources on both sides noted that federal law prohibits SMS carriers from monitoring P2P messaging without a warrant, although carriers may deploy machine learning technology to block some bulk messages that violate fair use practices from being delivered.”

      So….. They are using the same “violates fair use practices” type of argument to get the carriers to “voluntarily” block “misinformation”.

      But there is nothing to see. No worries. That slope isn’t slippery. They only block the bad people.

      1. “The idea that, like, Joe Biden is reading everyone’s text messages,…”

        Because what people are arguing that Joe Biden is, personally, reading everyone’s text messages. That is a semantic dodge that leaves a lot of realistic sins unaccounted for.

  23. How many of you will read this and STILL use Facebook? Stop enabling them.

    1. Just for the record: never did, never will.
      Any of them.
      This joint is my only perversion, and it pleases me less and less.

    2. Why in the world does anybody look to Facebook as a source for political or medical information in the first place? It’s a place for cat photos.

      1. Then why bother trying to censor it?

        1. You pretty much hit on ML’s weaseling process:
          He’s past ‘it’s not true’, he’s working on ‘it’s no big deal’. Soon that steaming pile of lefty shit will tell us ‘it’s old news’.

      2. I hear democrats say this, and then in the same breath insist that Russia swung 2016 using Facebook.

    3. “How many of you will read this and STILL use Facebook? Stop enabling them.”

      How long will *you* defend the idiotic claim that a ‘suggestion’ from a POTUS administration is other than implied coercion?

  24. “misinformation” is to the first amendment as “assault rifle” is to the second; a humpty-dumpty made up word that means whatever it needs to at any given moment. Generally, these newspeak words come down to “away with their rights!” rather than “off with their heads!”

    1. Important point… There is no “misinformation” exception to the first amendment.

      But then again, our courts really don’t give a crap about following the law. There is no “but it is a machine gun” exception to the second amendment either, nor is there “unless it is obscene” in the first amendment.

      I get that the language of those amendments is probably impracticality absolute… But tough tittie. The solution to that is to change the law, not to just make up “strict scrutiny” for whether or not the state has a good reason to violate the law. That is the dumbest possible way to handle things.

      1. Senator Richard Blumenthal (D, Connecticut) misinformed the public about having served in Vietnam.

    2. Misinformation =
      Hunter’s laptop
      Lab Leak Theory
      Voting and vote counting irregularities

      Mentioning any of those things could get you deplatformed and demonetized just weeks ago.

      1. Ga SoS is finally getting a clue about Fulton County.

  25. Is Facebook free to refuse these requests from the government?

    Because if so, then the requests are nothing more than requests. The government, or anyone else, may request Facebook to do anything that it wishes. They can request that Facebook hand out ice cream to all of its users. Big deal. And if later on Facebook really does hand out ice cream to all its users, then it was their choice to do so, because they were never mandated into doing so.

    But if not, because – for example, there is a law, or a regulation, that mandates or compels Facebook to accede to these requests – then yes, Facebook may properly be considered a ‘quasi state actor’.

    So the Hawley side of the debate needs to show that Facebook is mandated or compelled to accede to these requests from the government. Are they?

    1. I know, right? I don’t see what anyone is complaining about. It isn’t like a credible threat to destroy a multibillion dollar business is going to actually force anyone to do anything…

      Just because they are directing a censorship campaign that runs across telephone carriers, major internet companies and major media companies out of the White House, that’s no reason to suspect that it isn’t just a voluntary cooperation.

      I mean, the entire manufacturing sector switched over to war production under FDR in response to world war II. They didn’t size any companies.

      Same thing.

      Voluntary compliance. Duh

      1. Is Facebook free to refuse those requests, or not? You can make whatever paranoid leaps of logic that you want, but that is the bottom line question.

        You can oppose the government making unseemly requests of private corporations without actually believing those requests are no different than coercive commands, you know.

        So, is Facebook free to refuse the requests, or not?

        1. Now apply your argument to rape when the victim was ‘coerced by someone in a position of authority.’ The argument Cyto is making could be a stretch, but it is nonetheless coming from the entity with the power to break up FB.

      2. Chuck Schumer, tomorrow:

        “Every citizen had better brush their teeth, or else!”

        Is he coercing you into brushing your teeth?

        1. You are pathetic.

          1. Of course! It’s not enough to oppose unseemly requests by government officials. I have to go all the way into IT’S THE DARK NIGHT OF FASCISM territory.

            That is one way how tribalism rots our public discourse. Because members of the tribe are *not only* expected to have congruent political beliefs, they must also believe in the tribal mythology and narratives about the other tribe. That is, I cannot merely oppose Team Blue’s actions, I must also buy into the lies about Team Blue. They are not just wrong, but EVIL! And anything less than this level of submission constitutes heresy. It’s stupid and wrong.

            1. We agree. You don’t understand what fascism actually is.

              Please talk about how you’re a globalist libertarian and socialist libertarian again.

              1. Socialists cannot be libertarians.

        2. Chuck Schumer, tomorrow:

          “Every citizen had better brush their teeth, or else!”

          Is he coercing you into brushing your teeth?

          More like:
          “We are working with Sonicare to ensure all citizens enjoy proper oral health. Sonicare is the recommended provider for oral health. We have looked into Oral B and they do not comply with our understanding of what is the best solution for the oral health of all. We are tracking all Oral B users and recommending they switch to Sonicare for proper oral health. Those that continue to use Oral B will not be allowed the dental care they require. Oral B users will no longer have access to toothpaste and replacement brushes for their existing units.
          We have also identified a number of dentists who are actively promoting Oral B over Sonicare. We are addressing the licensing of those dentists as well as their compliance with the recommendation to promote Sonicare. We will review their status to provide dental care under their current practices.”
          Chaz Shumer

      3. “…Voluntary compliance. Duh”

        I’m not going to waste the time looking, but it’s odds-on that the steaming pile of lefty shit jeff told us that ‘masks were just strongly recommended’.
        He’s stupid that way. And many others.

    2. I can only repeat how stupid you are. There are links in this very thread in regards to the actions the government is threatening them with for non compliance. Yet you stick to the DNC gaslighting.

    3. “Is Facebook free to refuse these requests from the government?
      Because if so, then the requests are nothing more than requests…”

      TDS-addled pile if shit is not about to quit defending the Biden administration, is he?

  26. “Is Facebook free to refuse these requests from the government?
    Because if so, then the requests are nothing more than requests.”

    Lol, oh wow!
    “Yeah folks, you’re totally free to ignore us. Now where’s that antitrust document?”

  27. That headline’s a real barnburner. Robby, please try to moderate your rhetoric.

  28. “Big Tech and government agencies are actively coordinating to remove content from the platforms according to the guidance of agencies such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Big Tech and traditional media entities formed the Trusted News Initiative, which essentially takes instructions from the CDC about what information they need to “combat.” The tech companies are doing the government’s bidding, colluding to censor unapproved ideas.

    This coercion and coordination is unconstitutional. The Supreme Court has held that Congress can’t use private actors to achieve what the Constitution prohibits it from doing itself. In effect, Big Tech has been illegally deputized as the censorship arm of the U.S. government. This should alarm you no matter your political persuasion. It is unacceptable, unlawful and un-American.

    —-Donald Trump, July 8, 2021

    “Why I’m Suing Big Tech”

    https://www.wsj.com/articles/donald-j-trump-why-im-suing-big-tech-11625761897?

    Donald Trump is right about that. He’s right about a lot of things.

    We’d be much better off with Trump as president in 2024 than Biden or Harris. If Trump wins in 2024, he won’t be able to undo all the damage Biden and the Democrats are doing to our country, but that isn’t Trump’s fault. That’s our fault for failing to vote for Republicans.

    I’m looking forward to the day when the choice won’t be between a totalitarian and socialist, one party government and the Republicans anymore, but until the Democrats are no longer in power, defeating them at the ballot box by voting for the Republicans is the most libertarian and capitalist thing we can do.

    1. You really think he will be able to run again? Forget being way too old…

      They have locked up communications. Face to face is the only way he can talk to his supporters. No real avenue to speak with fence sitters or people willing to be persuaded.

      We have a massive push to stop being so racist and allow universal vote by mail without any audit or verification at all… Even requiring voters to request a ballot is voter supression, so they will be sending out ballots to everyone, registered or not.

      As the last election showed, there will be no meaningful debates.

      And the media companies have already laid the groundwork for banning any advertising supporting Trump.

      1. His age is a far bigger concern.

        I don’t think they will be able to lock up communications on him, and I think Biden is incredibly vulnerable (and Harris has all the charisma of a Spiro Agnew).

        I think Trump will probably win the nomination, whether I want him to or not, and once he wins the nomination, Biden or Harris may be easy to beat.

        I don’t know how effective Trump will be in office because of his age, but if having a Republican in the White House means a pause in this progressive nightmare, I’ll be glad to see him win.

        1. At least Agnew projected some kind of competent credibility.

    2. You’re an easy date.

      1. And then Mike whines that you’re not addressing the issue, when someone posts something similar in response to him.

        1. Yup. The pot is cawing the kettle black.

    3. When the Supreme Court said Congress cannot force private business to suppress speech, it was clearly putting the onus on Congress, not the private business. This lawsuit is doomed to fail just like all his others.

  29. Somebody here already MUST have asked (so if this is a repeat, I apologize):

    “Who is going to purge the CDC, or for that matter, the entirety of the federal government for spreading “misinformation?”

  30. I am not even sure what Facebook is, and have never had the inclination to find out, and so probably will never sign up. Should I be worried about the misinformation I am missing out on?

    1. You are missing out on SO MUCH!!!

      What is LIFE WORTH without tons of misinformation?

    2. “I wish I had spent more time on Facebook.” – said nobody on their deathbed

    3. No, Facebook isn’t even a political or information-rich site. What you are missing out on is knowing what your friends had for dinner.

      1. Then why would the WH ask them to censor information?

      2. You’re a fucking dumbass, leftie shit.

      3. Steaming pile of lefty shit has gone beyond ‘it’s not true’, and is now mining ‘it’s not a big deal’.
        We’ll soon get ‘it’s old news’ from the TDS-addled lefty asshole

  31. Just dropped by to say FUCK YOU and your Both Sides and your Muh Privit Cumpaneez

  32. It would appear misinformation = truth.

    1. The Ministry of Misinformation

  33. So basically you’d like bullshit to be left open to be gobbled up by the idiots just so long as even .01% of it *might* turn out to be factual. Got it.

    Article wins for dumbass opinion of the day.

    1. Shut the fuck up you totalitarian freak. Your far left opinion means nothing and you’re a supporter of authoritarianism through and through. You should end that nasty oxygen habit.

      1. That nasty oxygen habit result in CO2 emissions.

    2. I guess that whole “freedom” thing is too much for some people to handle.

      1. Tony’s sockpuppet only cares about personal freedom when it has something to do with “candy-flipping” and ass sex. Otherwise he doesn’t give a fuck.

      1. Fuck off and die, TDS-addled lefty pile of shit.

  34. The article links to an hhs.gov document recommending ways of battling misinformation and the single most important point on which it is founded is buried in this note in the end references section, which basically admits the concept is rather, um, fluid:

    Note: Defining “misinformation” is a challenging task, and any definition has limitations. One key issue is whether there can be an objective benchmark for whether something qualifies as misinformation. Some researchers argue that for something to be considered misinformation,
    it has to go against “scientific consensus” (e.g., Chou, Gaysynsky, & Cappella (2020)). Others consider misinformation to be information that is contrary to the “best available evidence” (e.g., Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security (2021)). Both approaches recognize that what counts as misinformation can change over time with new evidence and scientific consensus. This Advisory prefers the “best available evidence” benchmark since claims can be highly misleading and harmful even if the science on an issue isn’t yet settled. At the same time, it is important to be careful
    and avoid conflating controversial or unorthodox claims with misinformation. Transparency, humility, and a commitment to open scientific inquiry are critical. A second key issue is whether misinformation should include not only false information but also misleading information. This Advisory includes misleading claims in the definition. Consider an anecdote about someone experiencing a rare side effect after a routine surgery. The specific anecdote may be true but hide the fact that the side effect is very rare and treatable. By misinforming people about the benefits and risks of the surgery, the anecdote can be highly misleading and harmful to public health. Going forward, there is a need for further alignment on a shared definition of misinformation. However, we can meaningfully improve the health information environment even without a consensus definition of misinformation. For further discussion on definitions, see Vraga & Bode (2020).

    1. So a statement can be true, but still defined as ‘misinformation’ by the government who deem is less valuable than the alternative lie.

  35. Hey Robbie!

    We have said this many times….

    Using tech companies to censor your political enemies and trying to get them to sop censoring you is not the same thing. Not remotely.

    Stop with the false equivalence.

    I get it. You are the only one at reason who even sees that the left is using internet services to silence opponents. Everyone else thinks the real problem is right wing Republicans complaining about being silenced.

    But it still doesn’t make the comparison legitimate. Sure, government toadies are gonna do the only thing they know how to do … Invoke government power.

    But the danger is not from those idiots. The actual threat is from the left. And they are succeeding in a broad way.

    Remember when you wondered if “shadow banning” was real and they all called you a conspiracy theorist? Yeah, quaint times.

    Now we have the white house openly discussing how they are coordinating directly with companies, telling them what content to censor.

    And still… The problem is those nasty republicans who are complaining about it?

    1. And especially since one side mostly just wants to adjust 230 to only grant special protections for those companies not censoring content.

      1. Hey JesseBahnFuhrer… No matter HOW many times you tell your “Big Lie”, it is NOT true! You’re part of the mob, aren’t you, gangster? For a small fee, you tell small businesses that you will “protect” them… From you and your mob! Refute the below, ye greedy authoritarian who wants to shit all over the concept of private property!

        Look, I’ll make it pretty simple for simpletons. A prime argument of enemies of Section 230 is, since the government does such a HUGE favor for owners of web sites, by PROTECTING web site owners from being sued (in the courts of Government Almighty) as a “publisher”, then this is an unfair treatment of web site owners! Who SHOULD (lacking “unfair” section 230 provisions) be able to get SUED for the writings of OTHER PEOPLE! And punished by Government Almighty, for disobeying any and all decrees from Government Almighty’s courts, after getting sued!

        In a nutshell: Government Almighty should be able to boss around your uses of your web site, because, after all, Government Almighty is “protecting” you… From Government Almighty!!!

        Wow, just THINK of what we could do with this logic! Government Almighty is “protecting” you from getting sued in matters concerning who you chose to date or marry… In matters concerning what line of work you chose… What you eat and drink… What you read… What you think… Therefore, Government Almighty should be able to boss you around on ALL of these matters, and more! The only limits are the imaginations and power-lusts of politicians!

        1. spaz flag, narcissistic pile of shit.

    2. It is like in ice hockey where the player that retaliates gets the penalty and the initial infraction goes unpunished. Libertarians are like the 3rd player in and get a 5 minute major.

    3. The actual threat is from the left.

      So when you write, “the left is using internet services to silence opponents”, who *PRECISELY* are we talking about here? Are we talking about Joe Biden? Chuck Schumer? The government? Some random left-wing Twitter troll? Because it very much matters.

      If some random left-wing Twitter troll wants Facebook to ban certain people, then why should anyone care? Who gives a shit?

      If Chuck Schumer or Joe Biden want Facebook to ban certain people, then that’s a little more consequential, because they are individuals who hold real power, but again if they don’t perform any ACTION, such as passing a law or a regulation, that MANDATES Facebook perform certain actions, then it is just hot air and speechifying. Oh horrors, some politician wants their opposition silenced. This isn’t exactly a new thing. No they oughtn’t be demanding that their opponents be silenced, because it’s creepy and authoritarian (quelle surprise), and if you want to get outraged over it, then fine, but again in the absence of tangible ACTION to FORCE private individuals to comply with their dictates, it’s just words.

      Now if it is official government policy to MANDATE that Facebook ban certain individuals, THEN we have a real problem and all of us absolutely ought to oppose such a thing. But we aren’t there yet and we shouldn’t act as if we are there when we’re not.

      1. It’s all of the above, shit break. The government is rapidly weaponizing social media not only to track individuals but force them off the platform or silence them. Individuals do the same with less force but similar limited consequences. In addition we have internet infrastructure (ISPs, Cloud, host services, etc) that is being used to force off unpalatable ideas (opinions, even apps) that deviate from the acceptable (to democrats and the far left). This all happened within the last year.

        The feds finally admitted it today. Quasi governmental tech companies (trillion dollar plus valuations, run by amoral billionaires) are in thrall to the feds. It’s symbiotic now. But the multinationals aren’t located all here, and if the feds get too handsy, they will walk.

        1. In addition we have internet infrastructure (ISPs, Cloud, host services, etc) that is being used to force off unpalatable ideas (opinions, even apps) that deviate from the acceptable (to democrats and the far left).

          I understand that is the right-wing narrative, but it is not reality. Again it is the difference between IDEAS and CONDUCT. Conservatives en masse are not being banned from social media, as evidenced by the popularity of so many right-wing figures on all forms of social media. What has happened is that certain individuals who engaged in questionable conduct, *and who also happened to be conservative*, were banned on certain social media platforms. They were banned for their behavior, not for their ideas. The one possible exception to this was discussion concerning certain ideas revolving around the pandemic. I think that is debatable how justifiable that was.

          1. It’s reality. Why can’t you democrats at least just ADMIT that you’re doing this?

            1. The funny thing is Jen Psaki did admit it. And Lying Jeffy still denies it.

        2. I was actually reflecting a little bit on this earlier today. And it struck me, you all really do think this is some type of 1984 scenario that we have going on here. That we have the government, via social media, broadcasting to everyone on their smart phone screens, the approved Party Line Message that all are expected to obey. It’s not really hyperbole to you, it is pretty close to the literal truth, isn’t it? So from this perspective, arguing about whether social media firms are private platforms are not, is completely missing the larger point, of mass government indoctrination of the entire nation using social media, whether willing or not, as its vehicle. Does that about sum it up?

          1. And you got exactly what you wanted, you pathetic piece of lefty shit.
            Fuck off and die. Soon. This week.

          2. You’re really in denial.

  36. So I asked this before, maybe I can get a better response this time.

    What precisely is, or should be, the bright dividing line between a simple request, and a coercive threat, when it comes from a government official?

    Is every opinion uttered by any government official equivalent to a coercive threat? When is a request not a request but a threat?

    1. According to recent events, it’s a request if Biden makes it, it’s a threat if Trump makes it. Ridiculous, no? Even you can understand that.

      Democrats are solidifying their lock on power. We would do well to stop playing their game especially with language.

      1. Maybe you can come up with a more coherent distinction between what constitutes a request vs. a threat.

    2. The government shouldn’t be trying to compel speech.

      1. I agree! So now the question is, what precisely constitutes a demand to compel speech?

        1. Asshole tries feigned idiocy to cover asshole’s REAL idiocy, hopes no one notices.
          TDS-addled asshole is pretty stupid that way and many others.
          Fuck off and die, asshole.

        2. The government shouldn’t be trying to compel speech.

          1. Nor even ‘influence’ it, given the awesome power of the government. Imagine the screams from the TDS-addled assholes sarc, jeff, turd, the fucking piece of shit who now claims Mike something, Tony and the lot if Trump had even *mentioned* such in a meeting, immediately leaked to CNN et al.
            Fuck every one of you slimy assholes with a running, rusty chainsaw.

        3. You strike me as one of those people who instead of conceding an a virus point, will insist on endless irrelevant evidence eventually demanding proof that water is wet.

    3. “So I asked this before, maybe I can get a better response this time…”

      Let’s translate this from “steaming-pile-of-lefty-shit-speak”:
      ‘I asked this before and muted all those who might provide an honest response, so would some other TDS-addled lefty shit please confirm my bullshit?’
      No, TDS-addled pile of lefty shit, no one seems willing to accept your bullshit.
      Fuck off and die.

  37. Maybe BIG TECH censorship is a 1A violation after all? Cuckotarian commies hardest hit.

  38. Just so everyone is clear: Reason admitted this is happening AFTER the Executive Branch accidentally admitted this is happening. Before that, they lied that this wasn’t happening and ridiculed anyone suggesting it was. And they won’t apologize. Jen Psaki’s admission will have no bearing on Reason’s coverage of the topic before the week is over.

    1. tReason will ignore this as studiously as they have ignored the way 1/6 “rioters” have been persecuted like no others who have done similar (or worse.)

      Yet another Jan 6 defendant was arrested today for what we’re still being told is the “existentially threatening” crime of being present in the Capitol Building for a total of 13 minutes

      https://twitter.com/AndyGrewal/status/1413611293425143812

  39. Republicans are taking this opportunity to further erode Facebook’s autonomy. Sen. Josh Hawley (R–Mo.) even suggested that the site’s submission to the feds renders it an agent of the state.

    “As much as it pains me to say it”, Hawley is dead right.

  40. “It’s not censorship when the government does it”
    \reason

    1. “The information spreads too quickly.”

      It just wants to be free

      UNLIKE A FORMERLY-LIBERTARIAN MAGAZINE

  41. Former President Donald Trump’s doomed social media lawsuits

    doom

    Doom

    DOOM

    DOOM!

    1. Jen Psaki, like Trump, is a Russian stooge!

  42. Fixed this for Robby. Fauci’s early email-based guidance was correct.

    “Of course, the government itself has spread plenty of “medical misinformation,” from the on-going bad guidance on masks to White House coronavirus czar Anthony Fauci’s deliberate misstatements about the herd immunity threshold.”

    1. There’s the grand irony. We’ve been fed a diet of officially sanctioned misinformation/disinformation for a year an a half just about.

  43. It cannot be overlooked, and needs a spotlight.

    BLM sides with Cuba, communist, protestor-killing, anti personal rights/freedom, authoritarian govt.

    Supporters of BLM (Dems) in US congress fall in line.

    Just in case you live in a neighborhood where someone asks how come you dont have a BLM sign? Silence is violence right? Most unaware folks are fooled with their good intentions into promoting this hate group (BLM) thinking its just a way to support black people. It is not. This is yet another reason to be actively against BLM.

    1. Have you ever taken the trouble to read or listen to black activists? They are Marxists, or at least toe a Marxist line, or repeat a Marxist analysis. Support for Cuba is simply the flipside of opposition to the US, a Capitalist nation shot through with racism.

  44. The lab leak IS a crazy conspiracy theory. It’s basically fear-mongering nonsense that lockdown skeptics have eaten up, in the same way covid true believers think we need to wear masks forever.

    Ask yourself why some the same people who pushed the WMD scam in Iraq are LITERALLY the same people pushing the lab “theory.”

    1. How is it a conspiracy theory? What conspiracy does it rely on?

      1. It relies on the “crazy conspiracy theory” that the Chinese Communist government is:

        A) Involved in viral research
        B) Has a viral research unit in the city where it all started
        C) Has routinely displayed communist level competency in matters of public safety
        D) Has routinely displayed extreme levels of secrecy in just about everything
        E) as a matter of course will deny anything and everything that is possibly negative or embarrassing to themselves

        1. A) true. As are centers for viral research in 32 other countries.

          B) unproven. Where it was first recognized by an ophthalmologist in Wuhan as a pattern of disease. Nobody knows where it originated.

          C) communism is political. It has nothing to do with competency in public safety, rocket science, molecular biology, artificial intelligence…False dichotomy.

          D) true. Yet it does not prove anything.

          E) restatement of the above.

          So none of the above is conclusive. Of the related viruses we know of all have been traced to animal vectors. A lab created virus is a possibility not yet proven.

          1. So none of the above is conclusive.

            You really are on the spectrum, aren’t you?

          2. “C) communism is political. It has nothing to do with competency in public safety, rocket science, molecular biology, artificial intelligence…False dichotomy.”

            Bullshit.

            1. BTW, this suggests your ‘knowledge’ of history is limited to what you ‘learned’ by grade 12; ‘Lysenkoism’ was and is not limited to Stalin’s USSR.
              Tell us how you claim otherwise.

              1. Echo’s lack of knowledge is epic. He gets corrected and informed of it routinely yet persists in talking like he knows that which he talks about.

                Remember, this is the guy who tried to tell us that antibiotics are not useful for preventing infections.

      2. I’d say the idea that China purposefully released the virus as an act of germ warfare against the US or West, as has been bruited about in comments here whenever the topic comes up, falls firmly in conspiracy territory.

        1. I’d say you are obtusely ignoring the reality that talk of an accidental release has also been dismissed as conspiracy theory.

          1. Not by me. Human error is a very plausible explanation for any disaster like this. Perhaps the lab’s budget was cut or the scientists were facing pressure to keep up with the schedule led to cutting corners, increasing the chances of something going wrong. Accidents can’t be conspiracies. Those people you accuse me of obtusely ignoring are wrong. They deserve to be ignored. I suggest you ignore them too, obtusely or otherwisely.

      3. Calling something a “conspiracy theory” is just a tactic to end debate.

        1. And pointing out actions taken openly and obviously is not theorizing.

  45. Keep it simple, stupids: You can be a “platform” for user content. You’re the phone company. You don’t get to censor legal user content nor deny service to anyone using it legally. In exchange, you have no liability for the content—all of that falls on the users. OR—you’re a publisher. You get to decide what’s allowed on your platform and what isn’t. Because of that, you are responsible for the content, and suffer liability for libel, copyright infringement, and illegal content unless you make every effort to police and remove it. Pick one. No more special privileges for platform providers.

    1. “Pick one.”

      Publishing is a technology from the 1400s. William Caxton, 1422 – 1496. Telephony is more modern, Graham Bell 1847 — 1922. Why are you trying to straight jacket a new way of communicating into old technology? Your solution to sue the platforms for everything should keep our lawyers happy but won’t be conducive to free and open communications over the internet.

      1. Somehow you managed to read the opposite of what I wrote.

        1. This is no great surprise. trueman seems to assume his posts are ‘profound’, when they are largely bullshit, and when called on it, posts even more idiocy; his idea of ‘clever repartee’ I guess:

          mtrueman|8.30.17 @ 1:42PM|#
          “Spouting nonsense is an end in itself.”

        2. Consider yourself lucky. What you wrote is hidebound, simplistic drivel. And it’s not even original hidebound simplistic drivel. I’m sure you’re just parroting off something you heard on TV.

          1. mtrueman|8.30.17 @ 1:42PM|#
            “Spouting nonsense is an end in itself.”

            trueman posts here in the hopes that someone clicks on his name by mistake and thereby doubles the number of weekly hits on his blog.
            He is nothing other than a pedantic dimwit, posting one bit of drivel after the other, with enough ‘lipstick’ in the hopes that someone sees it as other than the bullshit it is.

            1. My second opportunity to use the Mute User button. I’d like to see it used more. We’d have fewer morons here if the adults stopped interacting with them.

              1. “I’d like to see it used more. ”

                You’re welcome to mute me again tomorrow if it’ll make you feel better!

                1. Fuck off and die, asshole.

  46. “The federal government is stepping up its effort to purge the internet of COVID-19 “misinformation.””

    I wonder what “misinformation” will be purged next. Once started this will expand in size and scope, and will never end.

    1. “I wonder what “misinformation” will be purged next.”

      My bet, bullshit about the next pandemic. Or even this pandemic.

      “Once started this will expand in size and scope, and will never end.”

      If we’re hit with a far deadlier pandemic than covid 19, the vagueries of Facebook’s posting policies will be the least of your worries.

  47. Look at this from the viewpoint of your typical statist politician in DC that doesn’t understand the social media business, has seen (or been involved) in getting great help for free from social media firms in elections (e.g., Eric Schmidt of Google helping Obama), and does understand they are media companies that make billions. You’d then see social media as firms to milk for campaign cash and other favors, and an industry to capture to control the media narrative.

    It’s too bad Zuckerberg and or Dorsey didn’t take an ethical libertarian approach to dealing with the politicians and political parties. E.G., by censoring nothing, by not partnering with one political party, by not partnering with government censors, by refusing to provide services exclusively to one politician or political party, etc. Government power in commerce has become so great, that new big money firms have to tread carefully to avoid government affecting their business negatively. That government threat usually comes as a suggestion you’d do well to partner with the right people in government; as a stick masquerading as a carrot.

  48. Facebook should have it’s corporate charter revoked. That is the death penalty for a corporation.

    1. Isn’t election interference a specific federal crime?

  49. There is no “freedom of speech” where your “speech” is endangering others past a certain point, like yelling FIRE is a crowded theater.

    The tough question is, when is that line crossed? In this case we have an easy answer…it’s PEOPLE DYING because of certain people’s “free speech” (esp when it’s based on LIES). In an imperfect world with a million different opinions, that’s the best line in the sand I can think of.

    1. That’s not how this works. The case law on this is clear and reasonable. In order to consider that line crossed, an utterance must be a clear incitement to an imminent and particular act of violence. That clarity must exist at the moment of the utterance. You may not work backwards from events you consider to be consequences of the utterance and hold the speaker responsible for consequences not made explicit in the speech. Advocating even violence in a non-specific way, such as when a Communist speaker advocates revolution, is protected speech. Whether you consider the speech to be “based on lies” is irrelevant.

      Now, in the particular case that you are cutely not directly referring to, if you can quote from where President Trump said, “Let’s go kill Ashli Babbitt!”, then perhaps we’ll have an example of the legal line being crossed.

    2. “…The tough question is, when is that line crossed? In this case we have an easy answer…it’s PEOPLE DYING because of certain people’s “free speech” (esp when it’s based on LIES). In an imperfect world with a million different opinions, that’s the best line in the sand I can think of.”

      Fuck off and die, slaver. Painfully.

    3. That’s a general idea. Please provide a specific example of a post on Facebook that lead to a specific death. Just so you don’t wiggle out of this with more overly broad generalizations. Imagine… I yell fire in a crowd theater. A rush to the door ensues. A person is trampled to death. Point to the dead person. You win. No dead person. You lose.

      1. Even if there’s a corpse, you have a mens rea issue. Did the person yelling FIRE know that there was NOT a fire? Was a loss of life a reasonably foreseeable consequence of yelling FIRE?

  50. The Disinformation Dozen largely support themselves by selling placebos through their online stores, and only use social media to drive traffic to their stores.

    The alternative to the White House suggestion to social media is serious enforcement of existing laws on false advertising of medical products and extension of those laws to capture more of the activities of snake oil peddlers such as general fundraising to support disinformation activities.

    The libertarian position that consumers are smart enough to know when they’re being scammed by big snake oil is simply wrong. The current uptick in COVID-19 cases and fatalities – almost exclusively among the unvaccinated – proves as much.

    Free speech is nice and all, but public health is pretty damn important too.

    1. My freedom of speech is far more important to me than the government’s idea of what is healthy for me.

    2. “Snake oil peddlers” such as the big pharmaceutical companies?

    3. “…The libertarian position that consumers are smart enough to know when they’re being scammed by big snake oil is simply wrong. The current uptick in COVID-19 cases and fatalities – almost exclusively among the unvaccinated – proves as much.
      Free speech is nice and all, but public health is pretty damn important too.”

      Fuck off and die, slaver. Painfully.

      1. Even intelligent people can be scammed. Look in the mirror. It’s not about protecting us from ourselves. No guarantee of safety exists. But thank you for your concern

  51. Robby: Your article’s topic was too broad. You should have said “The Government Should Stop” and then advise on how we can make that happen. Why? Because, “There are a thousand hacking at the branches of evil, for every one striking at the root.” – Thoreau

  52. It doesn’t matter. This is NOT a “free country” anymore, and hasn’t been for a while. And pretending republicans give a fuck about our constitutional rights is as laughable as thinking the democrats give a fuck about the poor and blacks.

    It’s over. We just need to let entropy finish the job, and hope that these sociopaths don’t nuke the world “for its own good” as they drive the train off the bridge and into the gulch.

    And all our elections do is decide who gets to be the engineer of said train. A completely useless, futile, and worthless charade.

    1. “It doesn’t matter. This is NOT a “free country” anymore, and hasn’t been for a while. And pretending republicans give a fuck about our constitutional rights is as laughable as thinking the democrats give a fuck about the poor and blacks…”

      So you’re a TDS-addled piece of shit who finds no difference between Trump and Biden?

      1. It’s all a big argument over who gets to fuck us and how. And it’s been that way long before Trump. This country is a giant, corrupt shithole, with politicians gorging on corporate money, and has been for decades.

        Trump was just another pothole on the road to hell. Insignificant in the grand scheme. I do like that he pissed in Killary’s Cheerios, but his purposeful usefulness ended that day. The only other thing he did was expose how absolutely corrupt DC is, but that was unwitting, because he is as stupid as Biden is senile.

        1. So you have nothing other than ‘they’re both the same’?
          You are a TDS-addled asshole; thanks for proving it.

          1. Your definition of “TDS” is anyone who hasn’t got Trump’s cock down their throat as far as you do.

            Yes, I hate Trump. Yes, I hate Biden. I hated Obama, both Bushes, Clinton, and even grew to hate Reagan, as I began to have a clearer assessment of the farce this bullshit “democracy” is. And I will hate the next one, because the people on both sides of the political spectrum are dumb enough to keep voting in this human trash.

            This country is done, dude. But you keep playing that red-blue game with your bluetard opponents because that is the lifeblood of the corruption that is destroying this dumpster fire nation. Both parties are counting on you guys.

            1. I was with ya until “this country is done” we’ve survived a bunch of dumpster fires. Have some faith. Don’t give up brother.

            2. “Your definition of “TDS” is anyone who hasn’t got Trump’s cock down their throat as far as you do…”

              TDS-addled pieces of shit have several things in common. One of which is conflating their erotic fantasies with the fact that many of us noted the Trump was the best POTUS in the last century. Hence we have this raging TDS-addled asshole fantasizing that his desire to suck Biden’s cock somehow relates to others, and then tries to bail on it with the standard, assholish “both sides” bullshit.
              Hint: You CAN’T not take sides, and anyone with an 8th-grade gov’t school ‘education’ should know that, asshole.
              You been busted, you pathetic piece of shit. Stuff your TDS up your ass so your head has the company it so dearly deserves.

      2. And your powers of observation are lacking: “TDS addled pieces of shit” like Biden. He’s human garbage in my eyes. Been wrong about everything for 47 years…and counting.

        1. And your ‘solution’ is 10th grade nihilism!
          Go find some recess buddies who might buy your pile of shit.

        2. BTW, it’s worth pointing out that this pathetic pile of shit has never had to deal with that thing called “reality”; no one EVER gets to chose perfection or disaster. Every choice is a compromise, but fuck-face here claims that Biden is every bit as obnoxious as the best POTUS we’ve had for the last century.
          That tells you everything you have to know about this assholic pile of lefty shit.
          MVP, please post again to prove how much an ignoramus you are.

  53. The author’s comment that Trump’s lawsuit is ‘doomed’ may not be accurate. It is longstanding law that the government may not hire or even ask a private party to take an action that the government is not legally able to do for itself. I worked for the fed for 26 years and this was drilled into us on day one. For example, we could not ask for foreign student academic records but neither could we ask someone with access to them to give the records to us or even accept them if they volunteered to do so unsolicited. If it is unconstitutional for the government to censor opposing opinions, then it is just as unconstitutional for them to ask Facebook, Twitter and YouTube to do it on their behalf. Psaki’s statement alone would be grounds to validate Trump’s complaint.

  54. Scary stuff. The 1A does prevent the government from imposing on free speech, and if this isn’t it I don’t know what is.

  55. I’m really not that concerned about Facebook being “in trouble either way” my concern is with a media and electorate that isn’t alarmed about an administration that feels at ease with openly demanding any company, public or private, to get in line and suppress free speech

    1. See the assholish MVP above: “Both sides!!!”

    2. Trump called every news story that was critical of him fake and encouraged millions of people to believe lies.

  56. We should trust them in this situation. Or we can never stop Covid-19!

    1. Trust them to do what, grossly violate one of our most basic freedoms, speech? Furthermore, the implication that COVID-19 will never be stopped unless we sacrifice our First Amendment guarantees is absurd.

      1. Is Congress making a law abridging the freedom of speech?

        I see a politician using speech to criticize a private company for its practices. I see no freedom being harmed.

  57. What Biden is doing as he colludes with Facebook, et al. is crystal-clear violation of the First Amendment. Biden is telling Facebook what speech they don’t like and directing Facebook to remove it. Regardless of whether or not Facebook removes it, the actions of Biden are impeachable. The government cannot determine what can be said and what can’t be said by anyone.

    This is impeachable and he must be impeached.

    1. What about when Trump called the mainstream media the enemy of the people?

      Presidents have free speech rights too. If someone’s spreading, say, Islamist radicalism in local mosques, politicians should be allowed to at least criticize it.

  58. What about when Trump called the mainstream media the enemy of the people?

    He was correct. And he wasn’t telling the media what they may or may not say. So, what’s your point? Oh, I forgot—it’s Tony. There’s not going to be a point.

    1. How is social media allowing only comments that are in accord with what the authorities say different from Pravda?

      1. Pravda didn’t pretend to be something other than an officially approved organ.

  59. activistpost July 19, 2021 ( A real libertarian site)
    This is Fascism: White House and Facebook Merge to Censor “Problematic Posts” /b>
    Many have argued (Woke Reason) — although incorrectly — that companies like Facebook and Twitter are private entities and therefore can censor whatever speech they want to on their own platforms. As TFTP has been reporting for years, however, this censorship was anything but private.

    While there has been a grey area as to the relationship between social media and government, on Thursday, the White House made sure to clear up any doubt. During a press briefing, Jen Psaki removed any uncertainty that Facebook is a wholly private entity by claiming that the United States government will now dictate to the social media behemoth, exactly what is and isn’t allowed on their platform.

    “We are in regular touch with the social media platforms,” said Psaki, adding, “we’re flagging problematic posts for Facebook.”

  60. activistpost July 19, 2021 ( A real libertarian site)

    This is Fascism: White House and Facebook Merge to Censor “Problematic Posts”

    Many have argued (Woke Reason for one) — although incorrectly — that companies like Facebook and Twitter are private entities and therefore can censor whatever speech they want to on their own platforms. As TFTP has been reporting for years, however, this censorship was anything but private.

    While there has been a grey area as to the relationship between social media and government, on Thursday, the White House made sure to clear up any doubt. During a press briefing, Jen Psaki removed any uncertainty that Facebook is a wholly private entity by claiming that the United States government will now dictate to the social media behemoth, exactly what is and isn’t allowed on their platform.

    “We are in regular touch with the social media platforms,” said Psaki, adding, “we’re flagging problematic posts for Facebook.”

  61. “We are in regular touch with the social media platforms,” said Psaki, adding, “we’re flagging problematic posts for Facebook.”

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