On most nights, Fox News’ Tucker Carlson speaks out on the concerns of conservative Americans outraged at the paths leftists aim to be taking the country.
On Wednesday night, he was speaking for the whole country — at least the vast majority of the country who cherish a national tradition of free speech that is being directly attacked by the social media giants Facebook and Twitter.
And “outrage” doesn’t even start to cover it.
Tucker Carlson segment on Hunter Biden selling access to his father when he was Vice President
— Daily Caller (@DailyCaller) October 15, 2020
As anyone who cares about the country should know by now, Facebook and Twitter on Wednesday squelched an explosive report by the New York Post that exposed what the Post described as emails it obtained from a laptop computer that, if they’re authentic, show a level of corruption surrounding Democratic nominee Joe Biden that’s absolutely stunning.
The emails would not only prove that Hunter Biden’s well-documented, and well-compensated, position as a board member of a Ukrainian energy firm was directly tied to his status as the son of the vice president of the United States, but that Joe Biden himself had lied to the country when he said he had no involvement in his son’s business dealings.
A little more than two weeks from an election that decides whether Biden will be the president of the United States, it’s a story that demanded to be disseminated into the public arena for a hearing.
If it were proven false or overblown (as The Washington Post, naturally, tried to do), Americans could vote in good conscience to send President Donald Trump packing from the White House.
If it were proven true, the Biden campaign could be — and should be — effectively destroyed.
Why everyone is so scared of the article.?
— jon st.john (@jonstjohn1) October 15, 2020
The reaction of the social media giants, however, was horrifying: They tried to kill the story on the shakiest of grounds and in the most loathsome traditions of totalitarian societies the world over.
“They prevented the public from reading the news. They didn’t apologize for doing this. They didn’t bother to make up reasonable-sounding justifications for it,” Carlson said. “They just did it, exactly as the Chinese government does. These are monopolies. They have all the power, you have none. They don’t have to care about what you think and they don’t.”
In this regard, Carlson wasn’t quite correct. Wednesday evening, Twitter offered an attempt at explaining itself — arguing that “the images contained in the articles include personal and private information — like email addresses and phone numbers — which violate our rules.”
That may be a policy, and Twitter could be on firm semantic ground in invoking it with a tendentious hypocrisy worthy of the Pharisees. But is there a sentient human being who believes that was the actual reason Twitter squelched a story with such implications for the American presidency?
The fact that Twitter’s explanation was not posted until nearly 8 p.m. Eastern time — long after the damage had been done — is not reassuring. In fact, it looks a lot like a policy being invoked to support a decision that was already made, and made with panicked, knee-jerk speed.
The fact that this same social media platform only two weeks ago had no problem with users spitting out a demonstrably flawed New York Times story about Trump’s taxes — based on information that was almost certainly obtained illegally — also doesn’t help Twitter’s attempt to portray itself as a stickler for the rules.
Facebook’s position was even more ludicrous.
Andy Stone, the company’s policy communications manager — and a man whose LinkedIn profile boasts a career in Democratic Party politics — claimed the company was limiting the Post article’s reach “pending fact-checker review.”
“This is part of our standard process to reduce the spread of misinformation,” Stone wrote, presumably with a straight face.
Again, is there anyone — no matter what political persuasion — who believes that? The political sympathies of Facebook, Twitter and the rest of the Big Tech universe are too well known, too well documented for any remotely honest person to accept the Big Tech explanation for what is happening with the New York Post bombshell.
I am old enough to remember Watergate very well. This is a much bigger deal
— Tom Walsh (@TomWalsh12683) October 15, 2020
Carlson’s explanation — infuriating as it is — is the Occam’s Razor of the question: the simplest answer, and the most dangerous.
“This was mass censorship on a scale that America has never experienced, not in 245 years, and it’s a threat to all of us,” the Fox News host said. “Democracies only function when there is a free exchange of information between citizens. We no longer have that.”
It’s a well-established fact by now that even intelligent, generally honest liberals (most conservatives know at least one) have been driven insane by the Trump presidency. But this kind of draconian behavior by social media giants should have all Americans outraged, no matter their political preference.
If the Twitter CEO Jack Dempsey and Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg can commit deeds of such magnitude against the American political process with impunity (and no lame alibi about “policy” a “standard process” makes this anything but a crime against intellectual honesty), the country might as well forget elections and just let social media magnates run the show.
Carlson’s audience is overwhelmingly conservative, of course, but on Wednesday, he was speaking for all Americans.
And any American who cares about the country should have been listening.
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