One of America's leading authorities on technology and telecom policy, Motley is a writer, television and radio commentator, political and policy strategist, lecturer, debater, activist, and policy advisor to The Heartland Institute.
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We all know most of the modern Tech World is very, very Leftist. And has been from its mid-1990s inception. Which is ok. But all the while, the relationship between the Tech World and our $4-trillion-per-year Leftist government has grown exponentially. Which ain’t nearly so ok.
The harmonic convergence has been the Barack Obama Administration. Which has actually been the Silicon Valley Administration – issuing Tech-favoring crony regulations like a Pez dispenser. Google has been a particular insider favorite. Social media monster Facebook has also all along been deep in the tank for senator-cum-president Obama. Etc, etc, etc. The Silicon Valley is nigh totally a Leftist ideological tar pit.
The Atlantic just polled a panel of Silicon Valley heavy hitters. The results are…unsurprising. 88% of them are voting for Democrat Hillary Clinton for president. ZERO percent of them are voting for Republican nominee Donald Trump – not one person. Shocker.
We conservatives don’t mind people who disagree with us. Less and less, however – the Left isn’t returning the favor.
Conservative icon William F. Buckley once said “Though liberals do a great deal of talking about hearing other points of view, it sometimes shocks them to learn that there are other points of view.”
He was right. And these Tech World Leftists are more and more using their market dominance to prop up Leftists – and remove conservatives from their platforms, and their World.
An important preface: What they’re doing is not censorship. The First Amendment protects us from government speech infringement – and only government speech infringement. Private companies can handle speech on their private platforms any way they wish.
Private companies are also protected by the First Amendment freedom to assemble, or not assemble, any way they wish. (Unless you’re a conservative or traditionalist. The federal government, for instance, is currently in court trying to force nuns to pay for abortions under Obamacare.)
We conservatives don’t want the government compelling these private companies to engage in speech or assembly they do not like.
Our concern arises – because the $4 trillion-per-year federal government is increasingly fusing with these companies. A government that is with ever-greater-frequency issuing regulations that make no sense, economic or otherwise, to anyone – save for its Silicon Valley beneficiaries.
So when Silicon Valley companies promote Leftists – and lash out at and silence conservatives, traditionalists and all-around less government types – we can not help but wonder if this is the “quo” for all of the received government “quid.”
Let us examine just a small part of the cavalcade of Silicon Valley ideological favoritism.
Remember Brendan Eich? He was the Chief Executive Officer of web browser company Mozilla – until he was forced to resign in 2014. Because he privately donated $1,000 in support of California’s Proposition 8 – which would have prevented homosexual marriage. Mozilla being uber-tolerant of all viewpoints – save for the like of Eich’s.
This year’s Trump Derangement Syndrome has certainly infected the Valley. It has caused many companies to ever-more-frequently-and-brazenly help Leftists and hurt conservatives.
Google was caught rigging searches for Clinton. Google, of course, denied it. But was then caught still doing it. (I’m sure you’re just as confident as I am in Google’s new labeling of fact-checked articles.)
Facebook had to have a transparently-face-saving damage-control-meeting with conservatives after it came to light thattheir newsfeed was squelching conservative stories.
Twitter has permanently banned conservative gadfly Milo Yiannopoulos. It suspends other conservatives like Robert Stacy McCain all the time. But racist and incredibly foul-mouthed accounts are left alone – so long as they are held by Leftists. Twitter doesn’t ban Jihadi terrorists. Neither does Facebook.
Twitter also “shadow bans” conservatives and stealth-promotes Leftists: “According to the (inside-Twitter) source, Twitter maintains a ‘whitelist’ of favored Twitter accounts and a ‘blacklist’ of unfavored accounts. Accounts on the whitelist are prioritized in search results, even if they’re not the most popular among users. Meanwhile, accounts on the blacklist have their posts hidden from both search results and other users’ timelines.”
Google owns YouTube – so YouTube is in on the game.
YouTube slapped a warning on a Trump video about Clinton’s health – and hid it from searches behind their “Restricted Mode” firewall, erected for what they deem “inappropriate content.”
YouTube has likewise “warned” about and firewalled twenty-one videos by conservative radio host Dennis Prager’s Prager U(niversity). If you’ve ever heard, seen or read Dennis Prager – you know he’s doing nothing vile in style. YouTube simply finds his conservative substance ban-able.
YouTube banned a video exposing the terror connections of the Muslim Brotherhood. But Google is, like Twitter and Facebook, loathe to ban terrorist accounts.
And on, and on, and…
Again, I don’t want the government doing anything about any of this to any of these companies. The problem is, the government is doing so much FOR these companies – it makes it look an awful lot like a whole lot of quid meeting an avalanche of quo.
About that – we should all be concerned.