Tuesday, April 19, 2022

Elon Musk and the "Threat" of Free Speech

It's amusing to see leftists out themselves as the enemies of free speech we always knew they were. After The Babylon Bee was banned from Twitter for daring to point out that men are not women and can never be women, Elon Musk asked a sensible question of his Twitter followers.

The poll results speak for themselves.

Musk followed up by pointing out, as I've been arguing for ages, that social media functions as the modern-day public square, and that if you can't speak freely in the public square, the free dissemination of ideas is under threat, and all you end up with is one-sided propaganda.

Musk asks if a new platform is needed... but then he got the idea to up his own stake in Twitter, with an eye toward buying it and taking it private.

Cue the hysterics from the "tolerant" left.

Free speech on Twitter is a threat to health and human rights:

In fact, free speech on Twitter is a threat to freedom itself:

Not just a threat to freedom, but a threat to the survival of the entire planet:

That's right, Nazis. And not the Ukrainian ones we pretend don't exist.

Yes, Jeff, because allowing people to speak freely on a public platform is exactly like book-burning Nazism. 

So you get the gist of all this hysterical left-wing bedwetting, right? Free speech is terrifying. In fact, it's fascism

Sounds like something Orwell would have said. But as you may recall from Justin Trudeau's attacks on Canadian truckers, this is exactly the upside-down way these people think:

Max Boot, the biggest shill you'll ever find for woke neoliberalism, could have drawn that last cartoon: He literally thinks free speech is a threat to democracy. I'm not joking. He's Genuinely Frightened, like these people always are. Ideas that they disapprove of are an existential threat to them. (And why am I not the least bit surprised that he's virtue-signaling with a Ukrainian flag in his profile?)

That's why he's always so enthusiastic about the censorship of conservative voices. That's just the "free market" at work, you see. 

But I really love the ones who, in reaction to Musk's defense of free speech, are showing the world just how little self-awareness they possess. Of course, that's giving them the benefit of the doubt. They could just be raging hypocrites.

Walking yourself out to the curb, Travis?

It's OK when the oligarchs we like do it:

"Private companies can do whatev... oh, wait."

There it is for all the world to see. All the selective bans, all the narrative-controlling "fact-checks"... that's what this has always been about. Now they're just admitting it out in the open, to the point that they characterize free speech as a threat to freedom. 

But if, as these same people always say, over and over again, that private companies can do whatever they want, then why would they care if Elon Musk wanted to buy Twitter and do whatever he wanted with it? Hmm, gosh, they must not have really meant what they said. OK, maybe they really are all raging hypocrites.

Since Twitter has now implemented a poison pill aimed at blocking Musk's takeover of the company, I think he'd be wise to pour his resources into creating a viable free-speech social media platform to challenge Twitter, Facebook, and all the other Silicon Valley totalitarians getting off on controlling what people can say on their platforms. Or he could invest in one of the many alternatives that already exist, like Minds. 

That's the thing. The alternatives are already out there, but no one will use them. They'd just rather hang out on the Silicon Valley platforms that hate them and complain but do nothing when they or their friends get "fact-checked" or banned. But if Musk got himself, and his money, involved, that could change everything.

It's way past time for these social media monopolies to be regulated like utilities. But we know that no one in Washington has the guts to do that. Most politicians are happy to use these same monopolies as a way to do an end-run around the First Amendment and engage in corporate censorship by proxy. So it's up to people like Musk to take action.

But if we want the situation to get better, not only will Musk have to do something big -- but the people who use social media and care about the free exchange of ideas will have to take some initiative as well. 

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