Social Media

48% of Americans Want the Government To Restrict Misinformation on Social Media

The Pew Research Center found that support for censorship is increasing.

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The American appetite for social media censorship is apparently increasing: 48 percent of survey respondents now want the government to restrict misinformation, compared with just 39 percent in 2018.

That's according to recent findings from the Pew Research Center, which asked respondents what should be done about "false information online." The percentage of people who thought the social media companies themselves should curb misinformation has barely changed over the last few years (59 percent today versus 56 percent three years ago), but support for government action jumped 9 points.

That figure—48 percent—is significant. It means, that just about half of all people want the government to violate the First Amendment, which protects the free speech rights of private actors, including tech companies. Free speech can be messy, but the authors of the Bill of Rights believed that the federal government should not have the right to decide what ideas the people are allowed to express. After all, the government might accidentally criminalize true information rather than false information, or nefariously censor criticism of its own actions.

Indeed, this is precisely what has occurred over the course of the pandemic. Federal health bureaucrats and their allies in the White House have repeatedly urged tech platforms to take action against so-called misinformation relating to COVID-19. But over and over again, it has subsequently been the case that the misinformation in question was not quite so clear-cut. For instance, after weeks and weeks of the government's preferred health experts shrieking that the lab leak theory of COVID-19's origins was unthinkable and no one should be allowed to even discuss it, the idea gained enough mainstream traction that social media sites had to revise their policies of censoring the topic.

The government's own health guidance has varied wildly from moment to moment. At the beginning of the pandemic, top White House COVID-19 adviser Anthony Fauci discouraged the use of masks among the general population. Then, for months, masks became an urgent necessity in any and all circumstances. Eventually, health officials relented and said that masks were only necessary indoors. After the vaccine rollout began, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Director Rochelle Walensky said that vaccinated individuals didn't need masks at all. But the CDC's current position is that in many circumstances, masks should be worn regardless of vaccination status.

The constantly shifting expert consensus, as well as the government's own history of issuing confusing and contradictory statements, should make people more reticent to entrust a single entity with the task of determining truth from falsehood. So it's a bit concerning that the American public has grown even hungrier for a central information czar since Pew last conducted this survey.

Note that the increasing appetite for censorship is mostly a reflection of increasing openness toward government action on the part of Democrats. While Republicans have grown even less willing to let either governments or the tech companies themselves restrict misinformation, Democrats have moved dramatically away from a robust defense of the First Amendment.

Pew also notes that the demographic differences pertaining to this question have largely disappeared.

"Three years ago, older Americans and those with less education were more likely than younger and more educated adults, respectively, to say the U.S. government should take steps to restrict false information online, even if means limiting some freedoms," write the survey's authors. "Now, Americans across nearly all age groups are fairly evenly divided between the two views. Similar changes have occurred when it comes to Americans' educational background."

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    1. A population frightened by the threat of disease is more likely to embrace authoritarian ideological extremes.

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      4. This is a very serious pandemic, with an ultra-deadly and ultra-contagious disease circulating around, plus it’s killed over a half million people here in the United States. These anti-vaxxers and conspiracy theorists who are deliberately spreading false information and mis-information on the internet and elsewhere need to have their ability to do so seriously restricted.

        1. Unfortunately giving this ability to a fascist site like FB or Twitter to be used improperly and just like the real info that was restricted by them during the 2020 election, that authority was abused. You’re much better off to think for yourself than to put the choice of what is and what isn’t “misinformation” in the hands of a bunch of crooks with an agenda.

          We all know the government would never lie to us.

          1. …think for yourself…

            According to recent educational, governmental, and health related PSAs, you are no longer required to think for yourself. In fact, it’s fully discouraged. You need not think for yourself as we, the government, will think for you.

            Just sit back and relax and we’ll think extra hard for you and all the other citizens to ensure the full power and might of the US government is working to solve your every problem right now.

            And for any leftover who are still thinking for themselves or maybe telling others that’s ok….we have a little reeducation program, or rather, we have a wonderful summer camp just for you and your closest friends. & we promise, you will get to pick whatever friends you want and keep them regardless of which truth you decide works best for you.

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      5. It’s unfortunate the left will force us to get rid of them to save ourselves. But ultimately American freedom > democrat lives.

    2. Theoretical question: if there was a meme that promoted suicide, and was so convincing that 10% of the people that read it would commit suicide, would you support restricting the spread of the meme through government action? Discuss.

      1. Realistic answer: there is no such meme.

      2. Usually theoretical questions are used when idiots don’t have a valid argument to make based in reality. Some people who do this may think libertarianism is closer to marxism that others.

      3. No. If someone wants to kill themselves based on what they read, that’s none of my business.

        1. Brian, these people are putting others at risk, not just themselves. That’s why they have to be restricted. This is a deadly pandemic that’s killed over a half a million people here in the USA, plus it’s super contagious and super-deadly.

          1. This works for you right up until the government you want to restrict them either changes hands and now you’re the one being restricted using the same tactics, or the very same government decides that you are a problem and restricts you using the same tactics you suggest.

            Also, support authoritarianism much? Because that’s what you’re supporting.

          2. Mapol, So you want someone else making decisions for you about what is & what isn’t misinformation? Especially if it means that the antidote that will save your life is banned from being printed?

            FYI the death rate is super low. The survival rate is 99.7% By your own admission your comment would be flagged and deleted as misinformation.

            Are you still a fan of restricting content?

        2. I have a list of leftists that pst here that I wish would kill them selves when they read what I write. Which is usually me encouraging them to commit suicide.

      4. This is not a good argument. Obviously, if reality worked differently than reality does, we’d have to reevaluate lots of things.

        In this case, though, I still wouldn’t support banning speech. Likewise, if some upstart death cult was going to convince 10% of their members to commit suicide, I still wouldn’t outlaw the religion. People are free to make even bad decisions.

        Of course, all of that applies only to government action. Private companies should be able to ban or allow whatever they want.(Unless, perhaps, there’s some element of natural monopoly that would mean they are functionally banning things beyond their own platform.)

        1. My guess is chipper was hoping for a different answer so he could then say we should ban covid misinformation.

          1. I think that’s likely.

            What drives me crazy on the other side of the issue is people complaining about Facebook et al setting the rules for their platform. I mean, sure, I think they’re doing a garbage job of balancing moderation with platform openness, but hey get to make bad decisions too.

            Government demanding Facebook restrict certain speech on their platform and government demanding Facebook allow certain speech on their platform are the same problem. (this is not at all intended to suggest Facebook moderation is anything but a dumpster fire)

            1. My problem is they are controlled through contract law but allowed to violate normal precedence like the denial of conscionable clauses. In no other arena would contract law allow for one side to arbitrarily change or arbitrarily enforce a clause.

              This especially harmful for companies like YouTube that promised revenue share based on one set of rules and then 10 years later after building up viewers changed terms without notice and even hindcast rule changes and then remove revenue share from channels on often ambiguous rules.

              1. The TOS wouldn’t really line up well with what I’d think of as a “contract” and the differences would be highly relevant. First, there’s no explicit term specified in TOS for any of the platforms I know of. Either side can walk away from it at any time. They generally have a statement that the TOS may be updated from time to time, a statement that they will attempt to notify users, and that continued use of the platform after the change goes into effect will constitute agreement to the changes.

                As far as the monetization aspect, that would only hold if they were trying to refuse monetization from activity prior to the change. If they decide that come Tuesday only videos prominently featuring small plastic alligators will get monetization, they can make that change. I’m not seeing anything in Facebooks monetization policy that would create or even imply a guarantee of any permanent, long term, or even ongoing rights to monetization.

                Everything seems to be rather explicit that they retain the right to alter the TOS at any time for any reason and that your recourse at that point would be to discontinue using the service.

                Are those crappy terms? Sure, and I’d encourage everyone to stop using facebook 100%. However, those are the terms under which they’ve offered their service, and if they’ve made any other contractual agreement, that would be a standard civil proceeding, not anything the government should be legislating.

                1. I can show you plenty of court cases rulling a terms of service is an enforceable contract, especially on the company. And many of these entities had working relationships, not just user relationships, such as ad buy programs and promotion efforts with the companies.

                2. The issue is their actions under a particular version of the TOS.

                  The fact that they can change it is only applicable to actions in the future.

                  If they TOS says one thing now, and they violate it now, the clause claiming the right to change it is irrelevant.

                  But otherwise, I agree. It says what it says, not what users want it to say. But that also cuts against the company and should be enforceable.

                3. This is a bit of a moot point because there is ample evidence that in at least some of these cases, people weren’t deplatformed/demonetized strictly because of any of Facebook’s internal motivations.

                  Moreover, as Ken and others have pointed out, I can’t hang a poster saying “Lost cat. $500 reward*.” and, once you’ve found my cat, say “You voted for the wrong political party, no reward, too bad.” If I knew I wasn’t going to pay you when I hung the poster, I effectively perpetrated fraud. Agreed they shouldn’t be legislating, but mediation of contract disputes oral, written, or even just implied has been a valid function of government since before the time of King Solomon.

                  *Reward subject to terms and conditions.

            2. They are not doing a garbage job. They are doing exactly the job they intend. It is obvious by how they stock their ‘independent panels’ of righteous information adjudicators.

          2. If that was his goal, perhaps he should have used a death rate that actually reflected Covid.

          3. But Jesse, if we banned COVID misinformation, the CDC couldn’t make any press releases.

        2. …some element of natural monopoly that would mean they are functionally banning things beyond their own platform.
          You mean like the “religion” of Islam, that passes lethal judgement on to people that don’t adhere to their ideology?

      5. We should make it illegal to go in a bathroom, turn off the lights and say “bloody Mary” 3 times. Just in case.

      6. If a meme makes you kill yourself, eunuch, you’re not exactly fit for life.
        Look forward to you finding that meme.

      7. Also known as “The Entertainment” in Infinite Jest. This “question” is little more than a confession of your love of censoring people with different opinions than you.

      8. would you support restricting the spread of the meme through government action?

        Every version of this ever has been a shitty movie.

      9. Here’s another question – should pharmaceutical companies be allowed to promote drugs and treatments that have not yet been proven effective?

        1. They always have to some extent. They are not allowed to outright market drugs for unapproved uses but off label prescribing and emergency or compassionate use of a drug for a new indication or a new drug has always been an acceptable practice.

          Regeneron, a monoclonal antibody treatment used for Covid is an example. Donald Trump got it when it was still in the early experimental stage. Turns out it is effective and in more widespread use now.

      10. Don’t grant the “magic button” premise of the question.

      11. No. If you want to punch out, you have every right to do so.

        -jcr

      12. Do I get to know the 10% up front or can I restrict the spread of the meme for two weeks to fail to get ahead of the curve? Asking for the CDC.

        Can I play the meme in old folks’ homes and force them to watch it? Asking for Mr. Cuomo.

      13. So now our hypotheticals sound like plots from Korean horror movies?

        What if there was a video tape when you watched it, 7 days later you would die? Would you ban it?

      14. No Thin the herd.

    3. “Three years ago, older Americans and those with less education were more likely than younger and more educated adults, respectively, to say the U.S. government should take steps to restrict false information online, even if means limiting some freedoms,” write the survey’s authors. “Now, Americans across nearly all age groups are fairly evenly divided between the two views. Similar changes have occurred when it comes to Americans’ educational background.”

      So no difference between Rev. Artie’s Clingers and Throat-Forcers?

  1. It seems that MANY of us want to suppress the lies… Of the OTHER tribe! My tribe’s lies GOOD; your tribe’s lies BAD!

    From a web site that can be found using search string “Jesus_Validated”…

    In summary, “My tribe GOOD, your tribe BAD”, and by simple extension, “My tribe’s violence GOOD, your tribe’s violence BAD” seem to be behavior-genetics-wise embedded into the human brain, sad to say. But genetics isn’t destiny! Awareness of this whole thing is the first step towards fixing it! We DO have free will; we aren’t just “meat puppets”!

    It does get worse, however. We aren’t merely just self-righteous by genetic programming; we are also prone to making up lies about our “tribal enemies”, in order to justify attacking them! Not to make you retch, but please recall your history. And not to pick on Christians too much; this is just the history that I am most familiar with. Dark-ages Christians spread horrible lies about “witches” (pre-Christian Wiccans, pagans, etc.) in order to justify witch-burnings, witch-drownings, etc. And the same with rumors about Jews and (ugh!) drinking the blood of Christian babies, etc. (Sorry I had to go there).

    This, too, may be at least somewhat genetically programmed. See https://thehill.com/changing-america/respect/equality/566982-terrifying-new-study-says-our-conspiracy-theory-epidemic and (same thing) https://www.salon.com/2021/08/08/a-terrifying-new-theory-fake-news-and-conspiracy-theories-as-an-evolutionary-strategy/
    A terrifying new theory: Fake news and conspiracy theories as an evolutionary strategy.

    Social scientist Michael Bang Petersen on why people believe outrageous lies — as a tool in violent group conflict.

    So we instinctively hold fast to the lies that we WANT to believe, to mark our tribal allegiances! And to pre-justify “my tribe’s violence GOOD, and YOUR tribe’s violence BAD!” This is next to impossible to “educate away”, since it is so primordial. It’s not a matter of FACTS; it is FAR more so, a matter of tribal alliances and allegiances, and political (and even physical, in times of war) survival.

    The true nature of reality has very-very little to do with short-term political success. That’s what the above-cited article is all about! Short-term political success has MUCH more to do with signaling that “I am part of OUR tribe! I hold ALL of the wacky beliefs that OUR tribe holds, whether they are true, or not! My tribe’s violence GOOD; THEIR tribe’s violence is BAD! So when our tribal chieftain is looking to whack the bad guys with a stick… Remember! I am one of the GOOD guys! I go with the untruths of OUR tribe, NOT those of the BAD tribe!”

    Dear Reader, I’m sorry to rain on your parade! All I can add, that amounts to much, is that Love is the anti-dote to the above. “Love” most certainly includes resisting tribal stupidity, and treating individuals as individuals, not as mere representatives of their tribes. Sometimes, due to “do-gooder derogation”, your doing the right things will get you killed! Just as Jesus, Mahatma Gandhi-killer, and Martin Luther King Jr. were killed for speaking moral-ethical truths, often largely concerning this exact same thing!

    Love wins in the end! Keep the Faith!

    1. When 65% of one side wants to limit freedom and only 28% of the other side wants to limit freedom, it’s hard to argue “both sides”.

      1. That more than meets Congress’s definition of “bipartisan.”

      2. The blame (right now) is lop-sided, yes. 28% is still a significant number! As I understand, the American Revolution was fought with only roughly 1/3 in favor of the rebels… 1/3 did not care, and 1/3 were “loyalists” to the Crown in England.

        The dems being stupid (and now stupider) is partly fed by Trump’s “Big Lie” about stolen elections, etc., going way back to the YUUUUGE (not really) crowds at His Inauguration, in 2017. As my cite shows above, lies are often laying the groundworks for inter-tribal violence. So the “Ds” are wrong about free speech, IMHO… The (or an) antidote to lies is the truth. But we should understand their fears in face of the “Big Lie”… For reasons spelled out in the link below:

        https://www.salon.com/2021/04/11/trumps-big-lie-and-hitlers-is-this-how-americas-slide-into-totalitarianism-begins/
        Trump’s Big Lie and Hitler’s: Is this how America’s slide into totalitarianism begins?

        1. “The dems being stupid (and now stupider) is partly fed by Trump’s “Big Lie” about stolen elections,”

          So what? Seriously man, you are so focused on HATING people with views you don’t like that you would rather insult them than try to build a coalition that could possibly stop the totalitarian lockdown of information on the internet. Do you think this is wise?

          At the end of the day, if you allow free flow of information, you are going to have people believing BIG LIES and LITTLE LIES. So, either you reconcile yourself with that and still stand up for free speech, or you become part of the problem and watch our free speech go down the drain. Its very simple.

          1. I still support free speech. Free speech is part of true freedom and democracy (little part subsumed under bigger part). The Trumpists right now threaten democracy itself. If democracy goes, truly free speech goes with it!

            https://thehill.com/blogs/blog-briefing-room/news/565610-47-percent-of-republicans-say-time-will-come-to-take-the-law

            47 percent of Republicans say time will come ‘to take the law into their own hands’: poll

            Them doing so is being mentally-morally-ethically skids-pre-greased by the “Big Lie”:

            https://news.yahoo.com/poll-two-thirds-of-republicans-still-think-the-2020-election-was-rigged-165934695.html

            Poll: Two-thirds of Republicans still think the 2020 election was rigged

            The threat is very real! My tribe’s lies leading to violence GOOD! YOUR tribe’s lies leading to violence BAD!

            1. Democracy is when your elected officials in legislature has a vote to decide if you have a vaccine mandate.

              Those applauding the mandated in NYC are not interested in democracy except as lip service to weaponize the term against their foes.

              1. You are responding to someone citing thehill and a goddamn yahoo poll to smear Republicans. That guy is a partisan shill like you haven’t seen and communication is futile.

            2. Yeah this is exactly what I mean. Trumpers are out of power. They are doing jack shit right now, and Jack left to Mar-a-Largo.

              For you to say that Trumpers are the big threat to democracy when the actual Democrats- by a wide majority- want to stifle free speech, and have the power to do it right now- demonstrates an incredible lack of perspective.

              When the Federal Government is looking to outlaw their ability to speak, organize protests, and use other basic services, why do you think maybe those republicans are thinking they’ll have to take the law into their own hands?

              The proximate cause right now is the stifling of speech. Quit fighting with the republicans and focus on the people in power KILLING OUR FREEDOM right now. Then you can get back to your ranting and delusions.

              1. For you to say that Trumpers are the big threat to democracy

                Ask them whether they think voting is a right or a privilege.

                I’ve asked, several times, and the response is either: (1) it’s a privilege, or (2) it’s a “right”, but one that you have to earn by jumping through bureaucratic hoops.

                1. Voting is a privilege of citizenship and age. Those should be the only significant barriers, but there is a legitimate interest in making sure that only those who are entitled to the privilege vote.

                  1. I missed the part where there was a huge problem with children or tourists or migrant workers trying to vote.

                    1. Sounds like your missing a lot of parts.

                    2. Maybe he chipped his morning wood. If he did, would mourning be the reaction?

                    3. “Prove that people who aren’t allowed to vote are voting, but you can’t verify their voting status!!!”

                    4. I missed where you completely changed what question was being asked. Oh wait, no I didn’t. You just did that.

                    5. I don’t know if there is a problem like that, but it seems reasonable to take some measures to make sure it doesn’t become one.

                    6. There’s not…

                      Postal workers in Philadelphia and Atlanta are neither, and they got to vote 500 times each!

                2. Can foreigners vote in federal elections? No. It is not a right. They have a right to things like civil trials, trial by peers, etc. They do not have a right to vote. Once you recognize this, you know it is a privilege by definition. This has been explained to you dozens of times you lying PoS.

                  1. Does anyone know if there are jurisdictions where it is possible to have the privilege to vote revoked at the Federal or State level, while still maintaining a right to vote locally?

                    1. California and Oregon both have regions where foreigners can vote in city elections but not federal.

                    2. Same with felons.

                3. Ask them whether they think voting is a right or a privilege.

                  Determining who gets to vote is not a power enumerated to the federal government in the Constitution, therefore, originally it would have been reserved to the States to award as a privilege, or if the State deferred, to the People which would make it a right. That would be the correct way to assess the question prior to amendment if the Constitution.

                  Unfortunately there has been scholarly and legal debate for 150 years over the effect of the Amendments that reference voting. It requires analysis of each amendment and analysis of the incorporation of that amendment to the States through the 14th amendment and analysis of the effect subsequent amendments on the earlier amendments.

                  You could actually present an argument instead of presenting an incredibly complex question and representing that it has a simple answer. But I think you prefer to keep it shallow and spout rhetoric.

              2. Meanwhile, you freely speak your mind right here, for FREE, with only the vaguest threat of EVER getting your posts taken down! WHERE is the big threat? (OK, only 2 links per post; just make more posts in a row. Big deal).

                You can ALSO pay for your own web site, and post as many links as you want! As I do! Neither the Big Evil Google, nor Government Almighty, has ever said so much as “boo” to me!

                I wonder if I will still have these privileges under a 1-party “R” state? Recall, HillaryPanzees never went apeshit (lusting after mobocracy to replace democracy), but Trumpanzees did!

                I still have enough internet freedom to get by. I can freely access the lies of TrumpenFuhrer and BidenFuhrer alike. And The Big Evil Google doesn’t hate me either!

                I pay (PAY! With MY money! I OWN!) for my own web site at Go-Daddy. I say some VERY sarcastic and un-politically-correct, intolerant things about cults like Scientology there (and Government Almighty as well). I am QUITE sure that a LOT of “tolerant” liberal-type folks at Google etc. would NOT be happy with the types of things I wrote! Yet, if you do a search-string “Scienfoology”, Google will take you STRAIGHT to MY web site, top hit! #1!

                https://www.google.com/search?q=scienfoology&nfpr=1&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwjPzZqf0dXsAhUCT6wKHez9DNwQvgUoAXoECDEQKg&biw=1920&bih=941

                1. “I pay (PAY! With MY money! I OWN!)

                  Wow. You are a truly REMARKABLE squirrel. That kind of thing HARDLY EVER happens anymore!

                  Would you like to PAT YOURSELF ON THE BACK for brushing your teeth today TOO?

                  Haha. WHAT a DOOSH.

                  1. Greedy fuckers take FREE stuff (like posting on Reason.com) and then piss, whine, cry, and moan, that they are not in TOTAL control of what gets posted, and what posts (once in a billion years around here) get taken down. What do you WANT, power pigs?!?! Ever hear of “unquenchable thirst”, evil ones?

                    Power pigs would be well served by listening to the words of “The Boss”, AKA Bruce Springsteen… From the song “Badlands”, which is an anthem to the pursuit of TRUE happiness:

                    Poor man wanna be rich,
                    Rich man wanna be king,
                    And a king ain’t satisfied,
                    Till he rules everything!

                    Rule EVERYTHING? Really?!? Nah! Not gonna happen! So this mentality is a sure-fire guarantee for dissatisfaction, for unhappiness.

          2. There were also far bigger lies from 2017-2021. That whole “Russian collusion” thing, as an example.

            1. Hey Damiksec, damiskec, and damikesc, and ALL of your other socks…
              How is your totalitarian scheme to FORCE people to buy Reason magazines coming along?

              Free speech (freedom from “Cancel Culture”) comes from Facebook, Twitter, Tik-Tok, and Google, right? THAT is why we need to pass laws to prohibit these DANGEROUS companies (which, ugh!, the BASTARDS, put profits above people!)!!! We must pass new laws to retract “Section 230” and FORCE the evil corporations to provide us all (EXCEPT for my political enemies, of course!) with a “UBIFS”, a Universal Basic Income of Free Speech!

              So leftist “false flag” commenters will inundate Reason-dot-com with shitloads of PROTECTED racist comments, and then pissed-off readers and advertisers and buyers (of Reason magazine) will all BOYCOTT Reason! And right-wing idiots like Damikesc will then FORCE people to support Reason, so as to nullify the attempts at boycotts! THAT is your ultimate authoritarian “fix” here!!!

              “Now, to “protect” Reason from this meddling here, are we going to REQUIRE readers and advertisers to support Reason, to protect Reason from boycotts?”
              Yup. Basically. Sounds rough. (Quote damikesc)

              (Etc.)

              See https://reason.com/2020/06/24/the-new-censors/#comment-8316852

            2. And no studies indicating 65% of Republicans wanted social media should be reigned in *even if it means limiting freedom*.

              And Trump praised Ajit Pai for doing his job well.

          3. SQRLSY would be much happier if he just focused on finishing what’s left in his shit bucket.

        2. “The dems being stupid (and now stupider) is partly fed by Trump’s “Big Lie””

          Is there anything PDT can’t do? ????

        3. Totalitarianism begins when average Americans think Jan6 was horrific while not thinking that the IRS(Lois Lerner), ATF(Guns for Cartels), FBI(James Comey),NSA(Clapper) are a threat to America.

        1. Compared to the 1/3 of Americans that believe UFO sightings could be extraterrestrial it’s not so bad. There are reasonable justifications for some restrictions that could pop to the forefront when asked in a poll, especially of the poll is biased towards that answer, which we don’t have the information to confirm/refute.

    2. >>Love wins in the end!

      I believe this.

      1. I think the woman who was shot dead in Kabul for not wearing enough clothes will 100% agree with your belief. She probably found tons of love in the end.

  2. This, in addition to the obvious govt involvement in ‘private’ censorship, is our objection to “but private companies…”. If you don’t value free speech and defend free speech as good in and of themselves, you get this.

    Reason, being full of fucking idiots, didn’t get that until its too late.

    1. Free speech IS good and and of itself – but so are property rights. The two goods are in tension.

      Consider the implications of your position. What legal principle would let me force the private company Facebook to host speech they disagree with but would not also let me force you to put a sign on your front lawn that you disagree with? If Facebook can be forced to host pro-Trump (or pro-Biden) posts on their private servers in the name of fairness, why can’t the same logic be used to force you to put both Trump and Biden campaign signs in your window?

      Clearly, forced lawn signs is an absurd outcome. The way to resolve it is to recognized that property rights do matter. Facebook’s private censorship is disappointing – but tolerating it is much less bad than giving government the power to fix it.

      1. Treat social media companies like we treat the NY Times instead of treating them like Verizon. The NY Times is a private company with 1st amendment rights, but if they publish a letter to the editor slandering you, or encouraging violence against you, they are liable.

        That’s all, just treat Twitter like the NY Times.

        1. How about treating them like a private library instead?

          The libraries themselves don’t author the works in their collections, but they do pick and choose which items to admit to their collections. If an item in the collection is slanderous, the librarians themselves are not responsible, the author of the item is. That would seem to be the more apt analogy.

          1. How about we treat them as a private library where the librarians constantly peruse the archives and deliberately rip pages out of books that they do not like and then disseminate the remnants to the public and present them as the unadulterated truth for all time?

            That would be one fucked up library, and much closer to the truth of what is happening with social media these days. Your analogy, on the other hand, is a rusty bucket of carried water painted by a blind man wearing rose colored glasses.

            1. The library would ALSO have to ADD pages to books to discuss their “misinformation” or “questionable” sources.

        2. “That’s all, just treat Twitter like the NY Times.”

          This is an absurd mockery of justice!

          It is apparently true that news rags have been successfully sued for contents of outside-written editorials and-or letters to the editors. If Joe Biden writes an editorial in the NYT saying that “Ra’s al Gore” murdered JFK, first off, it should be laughed out of court. If not, then who should be sued? NYT or Joe Biden? Answer “NYT” if you LOVE deep-pockets-chasing Goddamned ambulance-chasing slime-sucking LAWYERS, fer chrissakes!!! At the VERY most, NYT should be liable for the estimated profits that they made from THAT specific snippet of content, and NO more!

          If anything, we need a “Section 230” for hardcopy rags!

          Arguing conversely, as you do, is stepping AWAY from justice, not towards it… White folks held black slaves… Let’s “fix” it by having black folks hold white slaves as well, to square it up! THAT is your “logic”!

          (How else does one mitigate or stop the “endless cycles of violence and injustice”, other than by STOPPING it, rather than copying it from here to there?)

      2. I don’t think Facebook really cares about what people post, except when the government starts threatening them about what people post.

        Facebook didn’t give a rats ass about pro-trump posts before the threats.

      3. “”Facebook’s private censorship is disappointing””

        It’s not really private censorship when you are being threatened by the government. It’s coercion. If Facebook was doing this absent the coercion then your point would stand.

        1. I think this is the variable that keeps getting missed by people.

          I am fully a Rothbardian property rights guy. The only reason yelling for in a theater should face punishment is because the theater owner stated you can’t as a precondition of entering a contract with you.

          But the moment the property rights are violated (meaning a third party unduly compels a property owner how they must manage said property) then that action can no longer be seen as an extension of free, therefore defensible, choice but the outcome of violence. At that point it should be attacked and repelled so as to restore proper property rights. If after doing so the owner freely chooses to do that which they were previously compelled to do… so be it.

          The third party (government) role in this is central to discerning what is going on and what is just.

          1. That was very well said, and also very correct.

    2. The appropriate response is to erode the institutions and laws that encourage centralization of Big Tech, and makes them a target for Big Government and other activists.

      Sarbanes-Oxley and other major regulations make capital formation for potential competitors very difficult. Similar regulations in the financial sector have allowed the government and other activists to target competitors ability to receive and make payments.

      And all of this is a problem in general because we have allowed the government to become too intrusive into our lives. That intrusiveness means that the stakes of losing control are prohibitively high, so we fight harder to control it.

      The deregulation that would decrease centralization in the private sector is also the deregulation that reduces Government’s role in our lives, and therefor the incentive to influence it.

      1. Even worse was that Sarbanes-Oxley didn’t even deal with the major issue they were dealing with (accounting fraud). Make CREDIT AGENCIES liable for poor decisions they make. They are the ONE entity with the power to force companies to disclose everything, as their ratings determine the company’s existence in many, many ways. Reading about Enron for years, credit agencies never bothered to even look at their books in a remotely diligent manner. Sarbanes does not really address that.

      2. The appropriate response is to erode the institutions and laws that encourage centralization of Big Tech, and makes them a target for Big Government and other activists.

        Principal among them being Section 230. Without section 230, the website owner and the content contributor are equals. Newspapers don’t get sued out of existence for not printing every last letter to the editor. TV networks don’t get sued out of existence for not airing the opinions of every man on the street. The web would still exist without section 230. The only change would be that Congress wouldn’t be able to use S230 as both a carrot and a stick to steer social media and pretty much *just* social media.

        Section 230 and Operation Chokepoint need to go.

  3. “Note that the increasing appetite for censorship is mostly a reflection of increasing openness toward government action on the part of Democrats.”

    Formally positioning ourselves as Democrats is literally the smartest thing we Koch / Reason libertarians have ever done.

    #LibertarianMoment

  4. “48% of Americans Want the Government To Restrict Misinformation on Social Media”

    Alternatively: “48% of Americans Aren’t Willing to Actually Think for Themselves About Anything”

    1. Or plan, or do, or pay for, or take responsibility for.

    2. 48% want to put their fingers in their ears so they can’t hear stuff they don’t like.

    3. The indoctrination centers have been working hard to push it this way for a very long time. Surprising it’s only 48%.

    4. “Secrecy is the keystone to all tyranny. Not force, but secrecy and censorship. When any government or church for that matter, undertakes to say to its subjects, “This you may not read, this you must not know,” the end result is tyranny and oppression, no matter how holy the motives. Mighty little force is needed to control a man who has been hoodwinked in this fashion; contrariwise, no amount of force can control a free man, whose mind is free.”
      – RA Heinlein

      1. “no amount of force can control a free man, whose mind is free”

        I disagree with Heinlein. a scant 130 ft. lbs. delivered at 1200 fps, is sufficient to permanently free any mind from the need to be controlled.

        1. The rest of the quote is: “The most you can do is kill him.”

          1. And I stand by my assertion that killing someone is far easier than hoodwinking them and keeping them hoodwinked.

    5. 48% of Americans Want the Government To Restrict Misinformation on Social Media
      Due to the continuing dumbing-down of America on it’s march to Idiocracy.

  5. 48% of Americans can fuck off.

  6. words are light and always shine through. censors lose every time.

    1. ^what Dillinger replies every time a girl tells him to stop sending dick pics.

      1. lol nobody wants to see that.

        1. Why is your handle an anagram of “ill dinger”? I feel like that means something but i cant quite put my finger on it.

          1. But possibly in it.

  7. Freemasons. The secret society that made up one third of the founders and most of the upper echelon across the world. Their illegal secret satanic oaths rendered useless without censorship.

    Presidents have admitted that their loyalty to freemasonry supersedes their commitment to office. How can this be allowed.

    Free speech is an inalienable right, like the right to life. If a poll shows that half the citizens don’t value inalienable rights, what makes us better than the worst fascist shithole on earth?

    People that try to reason their way around inalienable rights, like free speech and the right to life may do so thinking it’s all about their liberty to censor social media or kill a fetus only result in becoming fascists themselves.

    The inconvenient truth that you don’t want to consider is that we are only protected when we protect the inalienability of rights.

    The whole world just witnessed the sitting president of the United States get deplatformed censored canceled and erased along with everyone else who wanted to exercise free speech to expose election irregularities.

    We’ve seen it all the time in communist shitholes around the world and how overconfident we were that it would never happen here.

    Satanist Freemasons don’t believe there is any difference between right and wrong, good or evil. Satan is the god of animals. Animals don’t have inalienable rights. Allow this and we won’t either.

    1. Satanist Freemasons now? I thought it was the Jews? Who will it be tomorrow, Miserable Misek? Have you forgotten about burning witches and heathens? How about SQRLSY Ones? I feel neglected!

      1. Well, I wasn’t going to go there, but you do have a knack for stumbling over the punchline.

        Are these Jewish leaders and media lying about Jews owning freemasonry?

        The Jews OWN and CONTROL Freemasonry today and have from the beginning. Its beginnings were entirely Jewish and it is controlled by the Jews to this day.

        Here’s what the JEWS have to say about THEIR ownership of Freemasonry!

        THE JEWISH TRIBUNE, New York, Oct. 28, 1927, Cheshvan 2, 5688, Vol. 91, No. 18: “Masonry is based on Judaism. Eliminate the teachings of Judaism from the Masonic ritual and what is left?”

        LA VERITE ISRAELITE, Jewish paper 1861, IV, page 74: “The spirit of Freemasonry is the spirit of Judaism in its most fundamental beliefs; it is its ideas, its language, it is mostly its organization, the hopes which enlighten and support Israel. It’s crowning will be that wonderful prayer house of which Jerusalem will be the triumphal centre and symbol.”

        LE SYMBOLISM, July, 1928: “The most important duty of the Freemason must be to glorify the Jewish Race, which has preserved the unchanged divine standard of wisdom. You must rely upon the Jewish race to dissolve all frontiers.”

        AN ENCYCLOPEDIA OF FREEMASONRY,Philadelphia, 1906: “Each Lodge is and must be a symbol of the Jewish temple; each Master in the Chair, a representative of the Jewish King; and every Mason a personification of the Jewish workman.”

        MANUAL OF FREEMASONRY, by Richard Carlile: “The Grand Lodge Masonry of the present day is wholly Jewish.”

        THE FREEMASON, April 2, 1930, quoting Br. Rev. S. McGowan: “Freemasonry is founded on the ancient law of Israel. Israel has given birth to the moral beauty which forms the basis of Freemasonry.”

        Rabbi Br. Isaac Wise, in The Israelite of America, March 8, 1866: “Masonry is a Jewish institution whose history, degrees, charges, passwords and explanations are Jewish from beginning to end.”

        Benjamin Disraeli, Jew, Prime Minister of England, in The Life of Lord George Bentick: “At the head of all those secret societies, which form provisional governments, men of the Jewish race are to be found.”

        LATOMIA, a German Masonic journal, Vol. 12, July 1849, Page 237: “We cannot help but greet socialism (Marxism – Communism) as an excellent comrade of Freemasonry for ennobling mankind, for helping to further human welfare. Socialism and Freemasonry, together with Communism are sprung from the same source.”

        BERNARD STILLMAN, Jew, in Hebraic influences on Masonic Symbolism, 1929, quoted The Masonic News, London: “I think I have proved sufficiently that Freemasonry, as what concurs symbolism, lays entirely on a formation which is essentially Jewish.”

        O.B. Good, M.A. in The Hidden Hand of Judah, 1936: “The influence of the Jewish Sanhedrin is today more powerful than ever in Freemasonry.”

        JEWISH ENCYCLOPEDIA, 1903, Vol, 5, page 503: “The technical language, symbolism and rites of Freemasonry are full of Jewish ideas and terms … In the Scottish Rite, the dates on official documents are given according to the era and months of the Jewish calendar, and use is made of the Hebraic alphabet.”

        B’NAI B’RITH MAGAZINE, Vol. 13, page 8, quoting rabbi and mason Magnin: “The B’nai B’rith are but a makeshift. Everywhere that Freemasonry can admit that it is Jewish in its nature as well as in its aims, the ordinary lodges are sufficient for the task.

        The ADL (Anti-Defamation League) of B’nai B’rith is a totally Jewish controlled organization with its main goal to destroy Christianity. (Also, the B’nai B’rith form a super-Masonic lodge where no “Gentiles” are admitted.)

        TRANSACTIONS OF THE JEWISH HISTORICAL SOCIETY Vol. 2, p 156: “The Coat of Arms used by the Grand Lodge of England is entirely composed of Jewish symbols. FREEMASONS WORSHIP LUCIFER!

      2. P.S. I was going to call you a straight man, but I don’t think you are. Haha

        1. Misek is a great argument in favor of censorship. Muted.

          1. You chose the bigotry button because you can’t refute what you deny.

            1. Bigotry is your specialty. Your unending thirst for a second Jewish holocaust is well known here. You clearly want to beat Adolph’s record of six million Jews killed. Which was was well documented.

              1. I have refuted the bullshit holocaust conspiracy with the evidence of logic and science many times here.

                You nor anyone else has ever refuted my statements.

                I refute that which I deny, you never have. You can’t even provide a cite to back up your worthless lies about me.

                That clearly makes you a bigot, not I.

                1. Don’t for a second think that lack of replies equals tacit agreement to your arguments, I assure you it does not.

                  Just as no one refutes flat earthers here either; because they, like you, simply aren’t worth the time.

                  But you are wrong – people here are just tired of telling you that.

          2. Misek is a great argument in favor of censorship.

            Quite the opposite. I’m 100% in favor of Misek posting all of his most “persuasive” arguments, so that we can point and laugh.

            1. Circle gets the square.

            2. The fact, truth remains for all to see that you can’t refute what I share. You can’t refute what you deny.

              Yes, I’m laughing about that.

            3. Eunuch isn’t smart enough to figure those kinds of things out

    2. Investigative video of their secret satanic rituals.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AYHUEjHME20

      1. Thanks for that.

        The best trick Satan ever played was convincing us he didn’t exist.

        The best lie is mangled truth.

        1. Satan could only do that if he actually existed, M’Fraulein.

          *Tips Yarmulke*

        2. The best trick Satan ever played was convincing us he didn’t exist.

          The best lie is mangled truth.

          Not entirely convinced the original statement hasn’t been mangled conceptually. Modern secular interpretation conceives of Satan as a man who was banished to hell a long time ago. The classic interpretation of Satan is the embodiment of evil, the daemon that always sits on everyones’ shoulder. There’s a Nietzche-esque aspect to it.

          “If you ever think all evil has been abolished, you’re wrong.”

    3. Have you ever met any Freemasons? Like, actual ones?

      1. Right? I know several very high level Masons, and they throw nice “Wish we could through frat parties, but we are expected to be dignified now, so…” Get Togethers. And they handle a lot of small charities (unlike, say, the Clinton Foundation). That’s…about it.

        1. Yep. And frankly, all of the ones I’ve known find it enough of a challenge to organize fundraisers, let alone some kind of ultra-secret international conspiracy. A “band of elites” it is not.

          I also don’t think I’ve ever met a Jewish Freemason, but I’ve known some pretty anti-Semitic Freemasons, so this “Freemasons are a front for the Jewish Conspiracy” is a new one on me.

          1. I never suggested that Jews are smart.

            It doesn’t take brains to be part of a corrupt pyramid scheme.

            It does require lying and conspiracy.

            I have said and demonstrated with irrefutable evidence that lying is a tenet of the Jewish religion.

            Their holiest prayer on their holiest day is clearly a plan to lie. The faithful can lie for another year with the comfort and blessing of their religion. If Satan is the father of lies, members of the Jewish religion are his faithful children.

            Here is the Kol Nidre text. The holiest Jewish prayer on the holiest Jewish day.

            “All vows, obligations, oaths, and anathemas [curses]which we may vow, or swear, or pledge, or whereby we may be bound, from this Day of Atonement until the next we do repent. May they be deemed absolved, forgiven, annulled, and void, and made of no effect: they shall not bind us nor have any power over us. The vows shall not be reckoned vows; the obligations shall not be obligations; nor the oaths be oaths.”

            1. I never suggested that Jews are smart.

              So how are they pulling off this international, intergenerational conspiracy with only you finding out about it?

              1. Everyone knows about Freemasonry.

                Everyone recognizes that it operates like a pyramid scheme and goes to the highest levels of influence in society.

                Everyone knows that the details of a secret society are secret.

                When the highest levels are complicit in a conspiracy, investigations don’t get very far.

                Fortunately every once in a while a courageous person exercises free speech on social media to expose some of the illegal details.

                That’s why free speech is under attack, using propaganda to control the masses.

                If something were legal or would be acceptable to people, why would it need to be secret.

                1. If something were legal or would be acceptable to people, why would it need to be secret.

                  Because people think it’s cool to have secret knowledge. Much the same way that you like to pretend you have secret knowledge.

                  The Masonic rights contain about as much secret knowledge as The Celestine Prophecy, and scratches the same sort of itch for roughly the same sort of person.

                  1. I have knowledge that I share. There’s nothing secret about it.

                    If you weren’t a bigot you would consider the arguments that refute your bigoted uninformed perspective. If you were honest, not a liar, you would recognize that only things that can’t be refuted are true

                    But you are neither and for that you will never be taken seriously.

                    1. Any credible sharer of knowledge cites his sources.

                    2. I have.

                    3. That being said, the veracity of what is said, by you or your source, is only demonstrated with irrefutable evidence of logic and science.

                      Just as only logic and science can refute what anyone says.

        2. I’m sitting outside a freemason house right now.
          It’s… not exactly a palace, or temple, but it does have a nice little gazebo out front.

          1. Sorry, freemason lodge.
            Don’t think it’s up to code for a house.

          2. The Santa Ana temple was pretty nice, actually, but they had to sell it. I guess international banking conspiracies don’t pay what they used to.

      2. Freemasonry is a secret satanic society based on the principles of lies, criminal oaths, secrecy and misinformation and to operate like a pyramid scheme. (no pun intended)

        Why would you expect a member of a secret society to divulge the secrets or even tell you the truth if asked? It wouldn’t be much of a secret society if they did, would it?

        I’ve met all kinds of low level Freemasons who have sworn criminal oaths to improve their position in business. Useful idiots in a pyramid scheme.

        I’ve read some of their literature and I’ve watched a 5 hour video made by an ex-Freemason who has decided that his soul isn’t worth the corrupt perks and privilege that attract all Freemasons.

        Have you watched the video? Will you? If not, you represent a bigoted perspective being unwilling to consider the counter argument

        Altiyan Childs is an Australian entertainer and an ex-freemason who has had a change of heart and decided to show the world the truth at his own peril.

        His 5 hour video is here.

        https://healthimpactnews.com/2021/insider-exposes-freemasonry-as-the-worlds-oldest-secret-religion-and-the-luciferian-plans-for-the-new-world-order/

        1. If not, you represent a bigoted perspective being unwilling to consider the counter argument

          Freemasons in my family, dude. I was a DeMolay as a kid. I don’t need your video to be able to tell you that you’re deluded.

          Did you know that you can pick up their sooper-dooper secret ritual books for a very reasonable price at virtually any used book store, flea market, or (especially) estate sale?

          Spoiler alert: they’re not particularly interesting.

          1. Like I said, you’re a bigot.

            I’m sure you don’t care that you demonstrate bigotry and that makes you more stupid than most.

            As long as you refuse to consider counter arguments your denials are a joke.

            1. “Freemasonry is a secret satanic society” is not a counterargument. I also don’t need to provide an argument against the assertion that Freemasons are pan-dimensional beings from the Glurg Nexus.

              I don’t know how to break this to you, but the Illuminati have never actually been a significant historical force, either.

              1. If you want anyone to believe you, you need to do things like refute statements that you claim are false, deny.

                Or provide irrefutable evidence for the claims you make.

                You do neither.

                1. If you want anyone to believe you, you need to do things like refute statements that you claim are false, deny.

                  I suppose you’re right. I can not refute the assertion that the Illuminati are secretly controlling the course of events, and I don’t suppose I could refute the assertion that within Freemasonry there’s a secret cabal of Jews in control of the (Christian) organization that even other Freemasons don’t know about but somehow act in obedience to, my own direct personal experience aside.

                  But I’m going to go with you being a dumbass.

                  1. You should have admitted that you don’t know what you’re talking about first and saved yourself this embarrassment.

                    Your ignorance was easy to refute with irrefutable evidence of my original statement.

                    I should thank you.

                    1. Just fuck off. Seriously, this statement/question of yours:

                      Have you watched the video? Will you? If not, you represent a bigoted perspective being unwilling to consider the counter argument….

                      That statement is bullshit. No one anywhere is required to read/watch exactly what you think they should and if they don’t, they’re automatically bigots or whatever. I’m sorry, but you’re simply not the arbiter on what sources (including first person sources such as people with family members joined) might help someone understand a certain point.

                      Just go away.

                2. How, exactly, does one prove they are NOT something?

                  And, as an addendum, what evidence would you accept?

                  1. Logically, you would prove you are something that is mutually exclusive with what you are claiming you are not.

                    Give it a shot.

                    1. Fuck off again – you cannot prove a negative. If you don’t know how to parse that sentence, let me know, but if means no one can prove to you or anyone else what they aren’t. Idiot.

              2. The Trilateral Commission called. They’re not feeling the love on this thread.

      3. I’ve met a few Freemasons, and they were all boomers or older.

      4. Prefer the Stonecutters.

        1. I hear they a have a ‘no Rob Miseks’ rule.

  8. The problem with government defining truth is that a lot of misinformation comes from the government. The only real cure for misinformation is absolute free speech and listeners smart enough to recognize clear falsehood. Social media must provide means for the public to debunk falsehood and then stand back and let a vigorous debate reveal what is known true and false and what is unknown. Ideally every public statement, especially from the government, would come with a reply comment tab.

    1. You’re exactly right.

      Another problem with letting any government define what is true is that it makes truth meaningless when a new government with a different definition is elected.

      Truth is reality. Does reality become whatever anyone wants it to be? It would be meaningless if it did.

    2. The standards for what is misinformation is not actually falsehood, it includes information that is speculative or true that is inconvenient to whatever line the government is pushing today. It is defined as contradictory to the government’s propaganda.

      1. The standards for what is misinformation is not actually falsehood, it includes information that is speculative or true that is inconvenient to whatever line the government is pushing today.

        And don’t forget that it does not include false things that have been communicated by the government for the right reasons.

    1. “Both sides” doesn’t address the issue of free speech.

      Only “all perspectives” does.

  9. O/T – Don’t know why, but I feel Biden’s going to step down during his 1 PM press conference with Kammy.

      1. He is not wrong, mind you. Biden today is as sharp as Biden was 30 years ago.

        Doesn’t speak well of him 30 years ago, however.

        1. I would love to see a chess match between Biden And Sen. Patty Murray. That would truly be a clash of intellectual titans.

      1. I’m not saying it’s going to happen with all certainty, I’m just saying.

        From a political perspective, it makes sense for the Dems. Biden’s legacy is done. Kammy ascends and gets to pick another left wing nut as her VP.

        1. “Joe all we needed was you to be the guy remembered for fucking up Afghanistan, thanks buddy.”

          1. The plus side is that he won’t with this failure for long.

          2. “This is a big fucking deal, man!”

    1. Now that would be giving into the terrorists!

      Trump called for his resignation so no way he steps down now. The Dems would cover themselves with shit and engorge on it before they ever give into the demands of a right wing racist white supremist extremist.

      And to help Sevo out /Sarc.

      1. And the sarc part is that Trump is a terrorist, the dems would actually cover themselves in shit before listening to Trump.

    2. It takes a majority of both houses of Congress to confirm a new VP, and there would be no Dem VP to be the Senate tie breaker. If the GOP is smart (insert howls of laughter here), they wouldn’t confirm one in the Senate and deny the Dems the tiebreaker.

      1. Difficulty… Romney

        1. Also Murkowski and Cheney.

  10. So, Democrats want more censorship. Republicans want more freedom of speech.

    “Both sides.”

    1. “Republicans want more freedom of speech.”

      You mean like Trump offering to pay for legal bills for one who used political violence to defend Trump? Political violence to defend Trump (from free speech) is simply “wanting more freedom of speech”?

      https://www.latimes.com/politics/la-na-trump-campaign-protests-20160313-story.html

      Trump’s endorsement of violence reaches new level: He may pay legal fees for assault suspect

      1. He won’t pay for anything. He would use the slush fund money his supporters gave him.

      2. So one man and his actions = 68% of an entire political party.

        You can blow that out of “both sides” of your ass.

        1. Trump was elected by Team “R”, nationwide. Does that count for anything?

          Also, I bet I could give you 95% of “Team R” individuals doing and believing authoritarian things, and you would still count them all as “individual anecdotes”, NOT representing the whole, and NOT meaning that “Team R” leans authoritarian these days… Because you WANT to believe whatever you want to believe!

          https://reason.com/2021/03/23/sidney-powell-says-shes-not-guilty-of-defamation-because-no-reasonable-person-would-have-believed-her-outlandish-election-conspiracy-theory/
          Sidney Powell Says She’s Not Guilty of Defamation Because ‘No Reasonable Person’ Would Have Believed Her ‘Outlandish’ Election Conspiracy Theory

          Which particular lies are you wanting to hear and believe today?

  11. The American appetite for social media censorship is apparently increasing: 48 percent of survey respondents now want the government to restrict misinformation, compared with just 39 percent in 2018.

    But you know, we can trust the people. Mob rule is the superior way to go. The populists all tell me that is the case.

    1. THAT is why the Trumpanzees Gone Apeshit in DC on 6 Jan. should have finished the job, those wusses! We could all be SOOOO much better off, now! (As long as we following the dictates of the 1-Party “R” state, under the Trumptatorshit, that is).

    2. Look, as long as no titty streamers are demonetized, there’s nothing to get animated over.

    3. LOL @ the asshole who wants unrestricted open borders and voting for everyone without verification for bemoaning the supposed evils of populism and mob rule.

      Lying shit cannot keep his talking points straight.

      1. If you like populism and mob rule, you’ll love majoritarian tyranny! Masks forever!

        1. If you like open borders and unrestricted voting, you’ll love majoritarian tyranny by foreigners and idiots! Depressed wages, crime, and shitty policies forever!

        2. You are literally arguing for rule by a small group of experts in the roundup thread. Expets to be chosen by democrats of course.

        3. Several thousand Americans in Kabul that probably have had their fill of majoritarian tyranny on…

          wait for it…

          BOTH* SIDES!

          *Taliban v. Democrats

    4. I enjoy how you are open statist authoritarian now. You would be less so if you realized you aren’t one of the “elite” ones.

      1. See https://reason.com/2020/01/01/trumps-inartful-dodges/#comment-8068520 , where
        Der JesseBahnFuhrer says, of Trump, “He is not constitutionally bound on any actions he performed.”

        WHO is the authoritarian now?

  12. Hopefully Republicans after the midterms will act to restrict the regulatory state through legislation and not expand upon with bills like the EARN IT Act or the SMART Act. Why Republicans in Congress want to give big government more tools is beyond me.

    1. Republicans will do no such thing.

      1. The greatest political philosopher was Darth Helmet:

        Evil will win because Good is dumb.

  13. Just like taxes, people are willing to come down on the “govt takes X away from a person, supports other person” so long as they are sure they are the one who will benefit and not pay the price.

    Its no surprise the dems have moved toward 80% support for essentially propaganda-level censorship. Hollywood, almost all the media, social media are all gung ho on the DNC platform/talking points. Big surprise they are OK with the govt collaborating with social media (and traditional) knowing their views will be celebrated and any argument has a high chance to be labeled misinformation.

    Notice its never worded such that the respondent is choosing to give the govt power which they suspect will be wielded against them. Again, its the same with taxes. Ask the left and they want the govt to do everything for everyone, so long as not a dime more comes from their paycheck. If any of them even had to pony up 25% of their money (effective not marginal), they would shit a holy brick and have a tantrum. Its OK so long as the “other” person is the one who takes on the burden.

  14. I’ll agree that hate speech should be banned if I get to decide what it is.

  15. The only sure way for a society to defend its civil liberties is to have a populace that believes in them and is willing to take the authorities to task for violating them. Once you lose the majority of the people to defend free speech, you will lose free speech, whatever constitutional protections are in place. We live in perilous times.

  16. Why are people shifting blue? After all of the bullshit in the last year+.

    WT-Acutal-F?

    1. They liked staying home, watching Netflix and ordering shit from Amazon using the free money from DC. It is like folks that watch singing contest shows, thinking they are some Simon Cowell, shitting on all the contestants where if they were up there on stage it would be far worse. How many team blue members in here aren’t just shilling for an improvement to their lifestyle at the expense of someone else’s efforts? Pontificate and supervise cia mail in voting is a better gig for them than using their limited skill set and work ethic.

    2. THIS is why people are shifting blue!

      https://www.salon.com/2021/04/11/trumps-big-lie-and-hitlers-is-this-how-americas-slide-into-totalitarianism-begins/
      Trump’s Big Lie and Hitler’s: Is this how America’s slide into totalitarianism begins?

      1. I am perfectly fine forgetting that the orange man ever existed. We also don’t need another 4 years of word salad puppet man.

  17. First thought, This coming through the lens of an oppressive self centered greedy media industry that wants to control ideas and thus people…

    Second, This coming from a population poorly educated by a self centered activist teaching industry ghat wants to control ideas and people.

    Third, Ministry of Truth is Orwell’s ministry of thought control.

    All sad. All are enemies if freedom and the ideals of the nation.

  18. Republican/Republican-leaners “Party of Freedom”
    Pastured old bull’s Nick and Matt gotta hate that

  19. Those who rely on government handouts don’t have any problem with having the government do their thinking for them as well.
    The results of this poll indicate the enormous amount of indigents and uneducated belong to the Democrat party.

  20. Democrats clearly have a short memory. Imagine if Donald Trump was able to restrict anything he considered “fake news”

    1. But the progressives are right and Trump wasn’t. Just ask them.

    2. The difference between virtuously resisting tyranny and honorably crushing a rebellion turns entirely upon which side of the firing squad you find yourself.

      1. I like this turn of phrase! Well done.

        I assume it is yours since there was no attribution.

  21. Every Democrat there is probably makes up a significant part of that 48%.

  22. “48 percent of survey respondents now want the government to restrict misinformation”

    What if the government is the source of the misinformation?

  23. The poll is itself the misinformation. The illusion of support to gain support in the bandwagon affect. The same way the polls that in 2016 said Hillary was 90% to win were misinformation. Or the fraudulent counts that Joe Biden, who lost every single bell weather county in the nation, who lost every indicative metric, whose party lost House seats, whose party lost every toss up race, was actually the most popular president in American history and got 81 million votes. Beating the all time record of Obama with 69 million votes. Even though Biden only won half the counties that Obama did. That’s weird.
    81 million votes = misinformation.

    1. I believe that fluoridated water is chock-full of tiny little Hunter Biden homunculi (one each per each fluorine atom, with a tiny sub-atomic Hunter Biden working the tiny little brain-control levers, and chucking an evil laugh) as they FORCED tens of millions of fluoridated-water-drinking voters to NOT vote for Trump!

      THAT is what most properly explains the strange goings-on that you have noticed, and have documented so splendidly!

  24. I bet there are a bunch of people in here who think that supporting absolute freedom of speech, damn the consequences, makes their pee-pees look 2 inches bigger to the ladies.

    You don’t want to restrict the free flow of information. You want to restrict the free flow of deadly bullshit. The essence of the crime of fraud is the use of bad information to deceive people into harm. You cannot lie on a witness stand. International affairs involves a vast propaganda operation on all sides, including ours. The Fairness Doctrine recognized, in this country, the social necessity of not permitting radical ideologies from dominating sources of information based on their funding prowess.

    The internet was always going to cause problems like Trumpism at the same time as it promises to free people to spread messages like democracy and women’s rights. All tools can be used for good or bad.

    Just because it’s people flapping their jaws doesn’t make this tool less dangerous than any other. We’re misapplying an Enlightenment principle. The point of those is to increase knowledge and well-being, not turn the world into a stew of chaos where facts are slaves to power.

    Dangerous information can be kept to a minimum, even with the internet, with appropriate government and private-sector oversight. We do it with bomb making instructions, terrorist propaganda, and all sorts of things.

    The only variable here are large media corporations with a laissez-faire attitude that has been experimentally proven to be a disaster for human lives. There’s no need for anything here but normal public safety tools updated for an internet that was created government regulations for a certain social end that turned out to be, partly, a mistake.

    1. Meh Disinformation is not new.

      Somewhere in Rome 2500 years ago someone was standing in the public square shouting and spreading rumors that Antonia Augustus is an evil sorceress who is causing the black boil disease among us.

      It should come as no surprise that there is a lot of it surrounding Covid.

      1. A re-copy of part of a longer post I made above, is below… A lot of this can be explained by sociobiology. If you want to take your neighbor’s land, property, and life… Or all of theirs, of their entire tribe… Genocide, basically, at the extreme… First, your get YOUR tribe all worked up with LIES about the witches, Jews, blacks, Satanist, Free-Masons, whatever your enemy tribe is… Get YOUR tribe to believe your lies, and now we can go to town, and do what we want to do! It is flat-out evil, and needs to be named as such!

        See https://thehill.com/changing-america/respect/equality/566982-terrifying-new-study-says-our-conspiracy-theory-epidemic and (same thing) https://www.salon.com/2021/08/08/a-terrifying-new-theory-fake-news-and-conspiracy-theories-as-an-evolutionary-strategy/
        A terrifying new theory: Fake news and conspiracy theories as an evolutionary strategy.

        Social scientist Michael Bang Petersen on why people believe outrageous lies — as a tool in violent group conflict.

        So we instinctively hold fast to the lies that we WANT to believe, to mark our tribal allegiances! And to pre-justify “my tribe’s violence GOOD, and YOUR tribe’s violence BAD!” This is next to impossible to “educate away”, since it is so primordial. It’s not a matter of FACTS; it is FAR more so, a matter of tribal alliances and allegiances, and political (and even physical, in times of war) survival.

        The true nature of reality has very-very little to do with short-term political success. That’s what the above-cited article is all about! Short-term political success has MUCH more to do with signaling that “I am part of OUR tribe! I hold ALL of the wacky beliefs that OUR tribe holds, whether they are true, or not! My tribe’s violence GOOD; THEIR tribe’s violence is BAD! So when our tribal chieftain is looking to whack the bad guys with a stick… Remember! I am one of the GOOD guys! I go with the untruths of OUR tribe, NOT those of the BAD tribe!”

        1. Quite right, but we shouldn’t attach positive value to this habit, even in the form of raw Darwinian success. Apart from the fact that this tribe is infecting itself with a deadly virus as part of its in-group virtue signaling (hardly adaptive behavior), the entire enterprise of tribalism is a mismatch with our current environment.

          Sure, if you’re part of a band of 20 close relatives under constant threat by the tribe 5 miles away, your in-group cohesion, including rites and delusions, will serve you well. Fear serves you well, as it will keep you alert when the very real threats are sneaking around your campsite.

          The modern world is of course an entirely alien environment to our evolutionary one. There isn’t a tribe 5 miles away that will kill your entire family. So that part of the brain latches onto a race, another country, or a political party, but the fear reaction is no more sophisticated.

          The one way humans have been able to overcome its evolutionary tendencies to adapt to more successful and safe living circumstances (civilization) is to increase literacy. Literacy (being educated) is what makes civilization possible.

          Facebook constantly shitting lies into our ears is the opposite kind of project.

          1. Yeah, ya nailed it, Tony! We have nukes now! We can’t be doing this shit any more!

            More details at http://www.churchofsqrls.com/Do_Gooders_Bad/ and at http://www.churchofsqrls.com/Jesus_Validated/ … A lot of it from the sociobiological angle…

      2. But now we know about all the various plagues that wiped out a third of continents. Our entire advantage as a species is supposed to be our capacity to pass information down the generations.

        It’s our world. We can make it less stupid if we want.

  25. This is why I’ve lost all hope. I used to think that there was a silent majority who wanted nothing to do with the insanity, but now I find more and more I’m a part of an ever-shrinking minority of people who don’t want everything to be fucked up forever. There’s no point in trying to persuade people who don’t want the end results that you want. But where else can you go? Everywhere else in the world is, impossibly, somehow even worse.

    1. I’m with you. 2020 was when I really lost faith in humanity. Of course I always knew people were stupid, but the aggressively ignorant brand of stupidity that was shown to be prominent has been depressing. Shared American values apparently aren’t widely shared. Nobody is really willing to fight for our rights and speak up against tyranny. I just don’t see any real limits to what the government can do when half of the people cheered the tyranny and the other half just fell in line.

      1. Don’t lose faith. America has survived worse than this. BTW, half cheered, half fell in line? That’s everyone. I did neither. Which side did you choose?

  26. If, as I believe, HCQ (if used early and with zinc) is effective against Covid-19, then its approval for emergency use could – would – have saved many thousands of lives.

    But censorship of evidence and opinions supporting it ensured that didn’t happen, resulting ultimately in many thousands of deaths.

    1. There is nothing stopping anyone from prescribing it and it has been used extensively. A quick search on Google scholar got me 46,600 hits on the subject.

      What social media sites choose as disinformation to delete or not is up to them. People seem to have plenty of access to whatever they want to believe about it.

      I have read some of those studies and believe that it has not been proven effective. You can believe otherwise. Makes no difference to me.

      1. “People seem to have plenty of access to whatever they want to believe about it.”

        (Or about anything else, for the matter).

        Yes, this! This is why all of the whining and crying about “censorship” by FaceBooooo etc. is a HUGE waste of time!

        Here is an example of “believe what you want to believe”.
        (Not much time left in August, BTW!)

        https://www.thedailybeast.com/mypillow-guy-mike-lindell-punts-timeline-for-trump-retaking-power-as-august-conspiracy-theories-get-wackier
        MyPillow Guy Punts Timeline for Trump Retaking Power as Conspiracy Theories Get Wackier

        The Lord Trump didn’t return to us as scheduled, but the Second Coming is now re-scheduled. You can TRUST us THIS time, for sure!

        The Lord Trump DID return to us faithful ones, but He did it in an invisible way! Hold strong in your Faith in Him!

        The Lord Trump didn’t return to us yet, this is true! It only did NOT happen because YOU were not faithful enough, and didn’t send Him enough donations!

        The Lord Trump didn’t return to us yet, but He DID miraculously protect us all from the VERY worst forces of Evil, which is Der BidenFuhrer! Hold fast in your Faith… Lord Trump will come back VERY soon now! Especially if you send more money!

        The Lord Trump moves in Mysterious Ways! All will be revealed SOON! Especially if you have Enough Faith to DONATE till it HURTS!

        1. I think most people just criticize censorship, whereas I have pointed out the enormous harm it can do – which is perhaps why you have responded as vehemently as you have.

          I didn’t mention Trump. Your rant against him (and his supporters) does not inspire confidence in your credibility, your objectivity, your opinions.

          1. I responded to Echospinner, not to you! But since you seem to be in need of attention…

            Sure, only those who support Trump inspire confidence in their credibility, objectivity, and opinions.

            Trump will run again unless He keels over dead, first (even then, they may run His Corpse!).

            Meanwhile…
            https://www.salon.com/2021/04/11/trumps-big-lie-and-hitlers-is-this-how-americas-slide-into-totalitarianism-begins/
            Trump’s Big Lie and Hitler’s: Is this how America’s slide into totalitarianism begins?

            The above is mostly strictly factual, with very little editorializing. When I post it, the FACTS never get refuted… I only get called names. But what do you expect from morally, ethically, spiritually, and intellectually bankrupt Trumpturds?

            1. Echospinner’s post also didn’t mention Trump.

      2. There is evidence both for and against its effectiveness, and I was specific that it must be used early and with zinc. The authorities (and specifically the FDA and NIH) are against its use. The emotion demonstrated by its opponents calls into question the reliability of their beliefs. These opponents, including social media sites, need to bear in mind the harm that their actions can cause (irrespective of whether their actions are motivated by their own personal beliefs or fear of possible future government action against them).

  27. If the government wants to restrict misinformation, they can tell Biden to shut up without violating the first amendment.

  28. 48% of US citizens want the government to take their freedom away.

    1. If this 48% had any basic understanding of our constitution/amendments they’d know the founders built a path for change into these. Any amendment can be changed using this. Btw, it’s not rioting or executive orders.

  29. According to a, “survey of 11,178 adults”
    WOW! the population of a itsy-bitsy tiny whiny rural town can tell us the fate of the nation….

    Give me a break; This crappy ?research? isn’t anything but propaganda building a Nazi narrative.

  30. Science is the study of the structure and behavior of the physical and natural world through observation and experiment.
    Science continually changes with respect to many conclusions based on new hypothesis and evidence.
    Science can be thought of as any endeavor that uses the scientific method: “The accumulation of observable data that conforms to the requirements of objectivity and reproducibility.”

    This censorship issue could be rectified instead of removing a post, would simply put a check mark next to the post in question, that means in their opinion, this is not true. Then the Censor, should put a URL pointing to their specific data source of information.
    As we all know, data sources are made up of people with agendas. Even scientist have agendas. As adults, we need to take in all information and make informed decisions, without filtered information!

  31. Truth is reality that is defined by logic and science, not by what the government or anyone else simply says it is.

    We can have both free speech and protection from the coercion of lying by allowing speech and criminalizing lying.

    1a is like 2a. We reject the government censoring our speech like we reject them taking weapons away from legal responsible owners.

    Only when someone has been demonstrated in court to exhibit harmful irresponsibility do we accept that their rights should be temporarily limited. As it should be with speech.

    Misinformation is lying. All lying is harmful and irresponsible as it coerces people by compelling them under the falsely assumed authority of truth to make decisions in the interest of the liar instead of their own.

    Judges of what constitutes truth just need to be skilled and licensed to apply logic and science correctly.

    1. And the last time someone was murdered by lies they themselves didn’t accept??? There’s miles of difference between 1A and 2A.

      1. When was the last time a lie resulted in death?

        Besides every time a murderer tell himself it’s ok to murder, you mean?

  32. Well, this only proves that 48% of Americans are morons with zero knowledge of our Constitution. There needs to be a couple of follow up questions, like ‘Who gets to determine what qualifies as misinformation?’ (I seem to remember when the lab leak theory and ivermectin treatments for COVID were misinformation – until they weren’t.) Another question would be, ‘What recourse should the censored person have if/when their ‘misinformation’ turns out to be true? An apology? Monetary compensation?’ Finally ask, ‘Should you be kicked off of social media for simply stating an opinion that the government doesn’t like?

    1. Most blogs like this are monitored and people get kicked off for any reason the censors determine.

      I don’t use social media at all. I detest it actually but it is up to anyone who wants to. To me it looks like if you want to play those are the rules of the game. If it is not fair, we’ll nothing is, is it?

      Anyway on those two subjects the first will never be resolved. It is the new who killed JFK. The second is not yet resolved but will be, at least for the medical community. Large scale trials are underway.

    2. Like it or not, social media is how people communicate today. It is the town square.

      Companies that provide the opportunity for people to communicate must by law do so in accordance with our inalienable rights to free speech.

    3. Please enterine my partial hypothetical. A Facebook post made under an account called “BLM-Antifa-RevolutionNow” shows a ten second clip of a cop handcuffing a screaming black dude. Under this video the account claims to have been there and states that this man later died and the attack was both unprovoked and done with the explicit order from the police chief who has a racist past. None of this is true, but that is not information most people who share and see this post will be aware of.

      * Do you think this situation has a negative impact upon society?

      * Do you think the people who see and share this video will be influenced to believe that the police are racist and attacking black people?

      * Would this type of mentality, in which people are exposed to these posts over an extended period of time, lead to anger that nothing is being done to stop these racist cops who are evidently all over the place?

      As you point out, there are serious questions to be asked about how this sort of thing would be handled. Should people be removed from social media for spreading or creating fake news, or should just an information blurb appear next to the video to explain what is really happening? What would the process look like to evaluate fake news and who is selected to oversee it? These are all very important questions that must be answered and conducted in a way that maximizes speech and minimizes the harm these things are having upon society.

      1. Good grief, autocorrect is the devil sometimes. I apologize for the second word, haha.

      2. We can have both free speech and protection from the coercion of lying by allowing speech and criminalizing lying.

        Judges of what constitutes truth just need to be skilled and licensed to apply logic and science correctly.

        1. And by criminalizing the key tenet of the Jewish religion, stop the persecution they’ve received for thousands of years for establishing corrupt pyramid schemes wherever they do business.

  33. And, of course, the problem is: who gets to decide what is truth and what is false.

    Most western democracies/republics have freedom of speech built into their constitution, are we willing to throw that away?

    We are being manipulated down a slippery slope to tyranny, by means of a fake pandemic and exaggerated and illegal response to it.

    By 2030, “You Will Own Nothing and Be Happy,” said Klaus Schwab, Founder and Executive Chairman of the World Economic Forum.

    1. If you believe the pandemic is fake, that makes you a walking threat to the lives of the humans around you.

      Maybe we can leave the internet alone and throw you in a cage.

      1. Well then; What about the ‘common cold’??? Isn’t it a ‘pandemic’??? Anyone who catches the common cold aren’t they “a walking threat to the lives of the humans around them”…. So it has a death toll of only 1/3 what COVID does; so what… Does that extra 2/3rds legitimize throwing people in cages at the end of a Gov-Gun?

        1. What about Ebola?

          Is your freedom of movement more important than protecting people from infection against Ebola?

          1. Yes Tony it is; for exactly the same reason we don’t lock up everyone who has AIDS into cages.

  34. Crickets from the ACLU.

  35. We have lost the country to mindless millennial and Z sheep. There will be hell to pay.

    1. Whatever you say, boomer.

  36. Liberals support censorship of conservatives. News at 11:00.

    1. As a liberal myself, I hear my left-wing friends make the exact same claim about you. Do you know how many people believed the Steele Dossier was legitimate and think its censorship is just Trump trying to protect himself?

      People have become so partisan that they are living in alternative worlds that they are convinced is the real one and the other side are crazy and out to get them.

      1. Difference being, “Which Government”? The National Socialist (def; Nazi) one or the Constitutional Union of Republican States.

        Because the alternative worlds of partisan politics rests upon that very foundation. USA Patriots ARE out to make sure Nazi’s don’t take-over the USA and Nazi’s are out to get USA Patriots.

        The dramatization of the political arena isn’t fake. It’s exactly how people of any country would react to a “take-over”. The USA (defined by the U.S. Constitution) has been ignored long enough…

  37. If the government wants to restrict misinformation, they can tell Biden to shut up without violating the first amendment.
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  39. As Mencken warned, government magnifies its power by frightening the populace with bugbears, monsters, and hobgoblins, informing them it is protecting them from menaces, threats, war, invasions, and plagues.

    Yes, I know everybody has seen it but it ought to be dragged out and quoted again occasionally:

    “The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary.”

    1. Just so we’re clear.

      COVID-19: not imaginary.

      Communists, cancel culture, critical race theory, trans predators, COVID being the fault of immigrants, voter fraud: imaginary.

    2. The National Socialist Platform of 1920 point 23 made it even clearer: We demand legal measures against the conscious political lie and its propagation through the press. Both halves of the U.S. Kleptocracy have clearly gone fully National Socialist. All they have to do to achieve national unity is get rid of the Libertarian Party. Judging from recent platform infiltration and vote totals, that’s pretty close to a fait accompli.

  40. Of course, anything those 48% disagree with must be “misinformation”.

  41. no it’s very wrong to ban social media apps in us

  42. 48%

    “So this is how Liberty dies, with thundrous applause.” — Senator Padme

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  45. Americans are turning into socialists and fascists, courtesy of half a century of socialist/fascist indoctrination in public schools.

  46. I noticed that the survey used the phrase ‘false information’ not ‘misinformation as the headline stated.
    To me the two are not the same. To say that ‘the election was conducted unfairly’ is not the same as saying ‘drinking a gallon of bleach a day is good for you.’ One can be scientifically disproven, the other cannot.
    But of course the liberal media has tried to blur the distinction between the two.

  47. Social media is packed with rubbish and misleading content. Its Polarizing the community.

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  49. It simply means that 48% of those polled are mind controlled morons.Products of public education or rather public miseducation in which the public schools should be sued on the grounds of false advertising.
    The first thing that is attacked is freedom of speech. This is done in every authoritarian movement. Silencing dissent, contrary opinions, or even factual evidence becomes the norm and soon the arrests, the show trials, the imprisonments and even executions of those who dared speak out.
    Just ask anyone who lived through such tyranny.
    Soon though,the Americans will have their turn at tyranny. let’s see how ell they like it.

    1. Once tyranny takes hold its nearly impossible to overcome without civil war.

      If it weren’t for people fighting for 2a your guns would have been confiscated already.

      If people don’t fight for 1a, there will be no way to expose government lies, propaganda.

      Social media is the town square of the 21 st century.

      Our guns remind the government and oligarchs that they are not our rulers.

      Only our voices stand in the way of their lies.

      Arm and train yourselves. Form militias and only elect freedom fighters. Oppose with steadfast commitment all trespassers and violators of constitutional rights. Show these fascists what commitment they’ll need to overcome ours.

      Expect a number of your neighbours will be collaborators preferring velvet chains to freedom.

      If they don’t fuck off, be ready.

  50. People advocating government censorship, and Reason a supposed libertarian site, doesn’t even take a stand. How low has Reason sunk?

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