Big Tech Censorship in Favour of the Pharma Mafia

Giants stifle dissent in the digital public square

 
Adam Creighton The Australian January 3. 2022
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Twitter heralded the new year on Sunday by deleting the account of congresswoman and contentious Donald Trump supporter Marjorie Taylor Greene, who incurred a fifth “strike” for posting Covid-19 misinformation. Not to be outdone, within hours YouTube, owned by Google, removed a three-hour interview between popular American podcaster Joe Rogan and Robert Malone, one of the pioneers of mRNA technology, which underpins Covid-19 vac­cines.
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What they had to say was just too dangerous for you to hear, according to the social media giants, which have taken it on themselves to look out for your health (only as far as it relates to Covid-19).
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Well, brace yourself, I’m going to tell you.
US Republican Marjorie Taylor Greene has been banned from Twitter. Picture: AFP

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Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. is quickly becoming one of the most important voices of our time. He continues to fearlessly call out the tyranny that is ripping apart the fabric of our country.

“No One Has Ever Complied Their Way Out of Totalitarianism – This Is the Hill We Need to Die On” –

Malone, an immunologist with decades of experience and num­erous peer-reviewed papers to his name, reckons we focus too much on vaccines and not enough on treatment, advocating greater use of drugs such as ivermectin for infected patients.
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He also thinks the pandemic has fuelled what he calls “mass formation psychosis”: a lot of people doing neurotic, irrational things such as driving in masks or queuing up for hours without symptoms to be tested for a mild disease that’s endemic, or just lashing out at strangers minding their business who don’t want to wear a mask for hundreds of days.
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Greene, meanwhile, who has made bonkers claims on other subjects, said Covid-19 deaths caused by “extremely dangerous” vaccines were being ignored, posting a chart from a publicly available source that seemed to suggest more than 20,000 Americans had died from Covid-19 vaccines. Greene was wrong to fearmonger about the vaccines, which clearly have reduced the severity of Covid-19. Even Trump recognised this, recently telling supporters they should get their boosters.
Yes, there have been some deaths, but they are rare and inevitable when a large share of the population is suddenly vaccin­ated. Greene’s early strikes, though, arose from claims Covid-19 was dangerous only for the over-65s and obese, and Covid-19 vaccines were failing – exaggerations, to be sure, but not entirely without factual merit.
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Vaccine was a poor choice of word in hindsight given what most people thought that meant and what was originally promised: stopping transmission and infection. But who cares what they or I believe anyway? In the universe of terrible things to say on social media, their statements would not stand out.
Individuals have never had so much scope to check, relatively quickly, others’ claims on whatever topic from a variety of public and private sources. The idea social media giants or even public health officials and governments have a monopoly on truth is farcical. Science is a method, a process of debate. Almost by definition, there is no progress without a minority that challenges the consensus, making the tech censorship by scientists quite shocking.
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What was “dangerous misinformation” a year ago is now acceptable. Zerohedge, for instance, a popular Twitter account that aggregates articles by sceptical investors, was deleted in February 2020 for suggesting SARS-CoV-2 might have leaked from a Chinese lab in Wuhan. A few months later Twitter restored the account, saying: “We made an error in our enforcement action in this case.”
Should we really punish and censure those who were ahead of the curve?
Unelected, high-income tech bros living in San Francisco shouldn’t be able to censor what individuals say based on vague “community guidelines”. It’s no good to say Google, Twitter and Facebook are private companies so can do what they want. In the 21st century, they own, indeed they are, the town square, where once, in liberal democracies at least, you could yell out whatever you wanted, no matter how crazy or misinformed.
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Moreover, governments that typically say they respect freedom of speech shield tech giants from liability from what their users publish, protections without which they might not even exist. So they have social obligations to the constitutions and traditions of the nations in which they operate.
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The internet was meant to liberate us from governments and publishers, not launch a new totalitarian conformist society. It’s early days, but the social media giants are beginning to mimic what their Chinese counterparts do, censoring and reporting individuals. “If we did it for Covid, we can do it for X and Y,” you’ll start to hear in a few years.
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Free speech was never absolute. If some expression could obviously cause harm, such as yelling fire in a crowded theatre, the classic example, a case for restrictions could be made. But there’s no evidence tweets by politicians or three-hour videos with eminent scientists harmed individual, let alone public, health.
I suspect public health isn’t in fact a priority of the tech oligarchs, given it never was before 2020 and there were plenty of other harmful behaviours and claims that could have been censored. Will they ban alcohol advertising?
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There’s plenty of evidence social media causes psychological harm, especially for teenagers. Anonymous users on social media still can say the most vile and hurtful things, and that’s OK. But heaven forbid anyone talk about hydroxychloroquine, which few people could even spell, or cast doubt on the effectiveness of vaccines, which most people have already taken.
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Condemn the forced masking of five-year-olds, which two years ago would have been considered insane under these circumstances, and risk digital oblivion. Advocate for a Black Lives Matter national uprising and the inevitable violence that entails, and watch the likes roll in.
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Two friends contacted me to say they were listening to Mal­one’s podcast with Rogan, having never heard of either. Censorship campaigns don’t work; they attract attention to people and ideas. Even if you intensely dislike Greene, Malone or their arguments, it’s important to speak out in favour of free speech.
Next time you might be in the frustrated minority.

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