Defending Freedom in the Public Square

Ace has a long and interesting post about the way corporate America is busily censoring the public square. A very important event in this is the banning of Robert Spencer by Patreon at the apparent express command of Mastercard. It does not appear that Patreon wanted to ban Spencer, but Mastercard insisted…and, I guess, quite a lot of Patreon’s transactions flow through Mastercard. Check your own wallet to see how many of your cards go through Mastercard’s system. Essentially, for unexplained reasons, Mastercard has decreed that no one – not even Mastercard – is permitted to make money off of Spencer.

If you are unfamiliar with Spencer, he’s most famed for running the Jihad Watch website. Ace points out that this banning might be, ultimately, at the command of Muslim investors who would prefer that certain subjects unflattering to Islam not be discussed. Ace can’t prove this – neither can I – but it does make sense. The bottom line is that a company normally doesn’t refuse to make money. Most companies will make money any way they can. Cutting off Spencer just means Mastercard is making less, which can’t be in the shareholder’s interests. But, there it is – and I just can’t imagine this happen unless some pressure was exerted somewhere along the line.

Did you know that most banks – perhaps all, but I don’t know for sure – don’t do business with legal marijuana shops. To be sure, such businesses are disreputable, but they are legal. Does it seem right to you that a legal business can be essentially cut off from normal financial activity? It should. Because the precedent of not doing business can be extended endlessly – and eventually to every sort of business that either SJW activists or Ruling Class big wigs simply don’t like.

You may have heard that Google is creating and app just for China – and which will be in accord with China’s strict censorship laws. Oddly enough, information about this doesn’t show prominently in a Google search. It does, however, show up just fine in a Duck Duck Go search. Main thing: Google, a corporate giant which collects data on us, with or without our consent, is making an app which will allow a Ruling Class to govern what people see. How long before every government tries to get in on this? Do you get the feeling that everyone in charge has had just about enough of this whole free flow of information thing the Internet brought to the world about 25 years ago? I do. I think they want it stopped.

I think we’re seeing the dawning of a two-fold control of the public square. One part of it will be simply de-platforming disliked opinions. The other part of it will be rage mobs ginned up by the Ruling Class to punish anyone who speaks out of turn. Think, for a moment, how the totalitarian tyrannies of the past kept control. To be sure, brutal terror played a big role: if you really stuck your head up, you were going to be arrested and tortured and perhaps killed. But you can’t arrest and torture everyone. You can, however, control them by putting not their lives, but their livelihoods at stake. Comrade, you better show up at the pro-government demonstration on Saturday…be a shame if you were to lose your job, or your kid were to be kicked out of school, because you didn’t. See you there!

People who are afraid of losing their jobs are going to be very careful – and with the big corporations already showing themselves willing to both bow to SJW mobs and assist governments in oppressing people, people will more and more come to understand that silence is golden. Just better not to say the things that those who control your employment will find distressing. In fact, might be a good idea to shout along with the SJW’s from time to time, to ensure they don’t turn their insane glare at you. Right now, our rights to free speech, free exercise of religion and freedom of association are already greatly eroded. Give another ten years of this SJW Mob + De-platforming, and our freedoms will be a dead letter.

I know this will cause a lot of knee-jerk opposition on the right, but our only answer to this is to exert pressure of our own. As we don’t own major search engines, nor major computer program companies, and we have no say in the media, we’ll have to use the only power we have: government. We simply must start regulating the protection of freedom into existence. Make so many damned rules and so much damned hoop jumping before anyone can be fired or de-platformed by private companies that it simply won’t be worth the effort. We Conservatives have to get over the absurd notion that just because a company is private, it is part of the public square we Conservatives want to conserve. The bottom line is that the larger the corporation, the more likely it is dependent upon and partnered with government…and that it will work with government to try to warp the public square against the interests of the people.

Some years back, I said that we needed an Employment Free Speech act – a law prohibiting any corporation (above a certain size) from firing anyone for speech made outside the work environment. We still need that; even more than before. But we also need regulations prohibiting companies within the United States – even if not based here – from cooperating with anti-liberty actions of foreign governments. You want your product or service to be available here? Then you cannot cooperate with tyranny over there. We need anti-doxxing laws (ie, laws which make it a major felony to reveal without permission the personal details of another person on line). We need laws strictly regulating what sort of data the tech giants can gather, how long they can keep it, and what they can do with it. We need laws prohibiting the government from accessing any of the tech giant data on us without a specific warrant. In short, we need a whole series of laws and regulations which will essentially make SJW-mobbing and de-platforming illegal. It will be a bitter pill for most Conservatives to swallow, but we have to do it. That is, if we want to remain free.