Sometimes you let me,
You grasp me,
In your Fist,
So that I can’t breath!
Who am I kidding?
You never let me,
Have any Freedom,
Maybe when you were
A young Liberal Lover?
Now all you want to do,
Is be the Boss of me!
By: ElRoyPoet © 2019
“We all see freedom differently. Your interpretation is smothering me! But this is what I get, for letting you have the upper hand; I should’ve known better!” By: B. Bondsman
“Being good is hard if you live under an authoritarian regime… Dictatorships elevate the nation and the leader as ultimate ends, while mere individuals have no inherent worth outside of their service to the state… Damir Marusic, an Atlantic Council senior fellow, recently wrote, ‘Putin is a wholly authentic Russian phenomenon, and the imperialist policy he’s pursuing in Ukraine is too.’ This is right, but only up to a point. We simply don’t know what individual Russians would choose, want—or become—if they had been socialized in a free, open democracy, rather than a dictatorship where fear is the air one breathes. Like everyone else, they are products of their environment. Authoritarianism corrupts society. Because punishment and reward are made into arbitrary instruments of the state, citizens have little incentive to pool resources, cooperate, or trust others. Survival is paramount, and survival requires putting one’s own interests above everything else, including traditional morality. In such a context, as the historian Timothy Snyder puts it, ‘life is nasty, brutish, and short; the pleasure of life is that it can be made nastier, more brutish, and shorter for others.’ This is the zero-sum mindset that transforms cruelty into virtue.
In short, authoritarianism twists the soul and distorts natural moral intuitions. In so doing, it renders its citizens—or, more precisely, its subjects—less morally culpable. To be fully morally culpable is to be free to choose between right and wrong. But that choice becomes much more difficult under conditions of dictatorship. Not everyone can be courageous and sacrifice life and livelihood to do the right thing.” Excerpt from Why the Russian People Go Along With Putin’s War
“Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán cut right to the chase. He said that Hungary had been ‘completely healed’ of anything smacking of liberalism, and he was crystal clear about how to do it: Control the media….
Again, the mainstream news media has been reluctant to warn the American public in any consistent way about the escalating fascist threat to democracy, which is now global in nature. If ‘blow-back’ is the term used in foreign policy and intelligence to describe ‘the unintended consequences of the U.S. government’s international activities that have been kept secret from the American people,’ the growth and spread of right-wing terrorism in the Age of Trump is the exact opposite. These events are obvious, public and easily predicted, indeed almost inevitable. They are happening right now, in real time.
Because of a desperate desire for ‘normalcy’ and no small amount of self-delusion, America’s mainstream news media and much of the political class has deliberately downplayed the existential danger to American society and democracy represented by Donald Trump, the Republican-fascist movement and the larger white right. In fact, the public is to blame as well, for having chosen willful ignorance and denial, and defaulting to the helpless belief or hope that someone, somewhere—but definitely not them—will solve America’s problems.”
Excerpt from After Buffalo, Trump threatens “civil war”: Mainstream media refuses to connect the dots
“Virtually every American politician professes to love the First Amendment. Many of them profess to hate another law: Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act. But the more they say about 230, the clearer it becomes that they actually hate the First Amendment and think Section 230 is just fine.
The heart of Section 230 is famously just 26 words: ‘No provider or user of an interactive computer service shall be treated as the publisher or speaker of any information provided by another information content provider.’
The law was passed in 1996, and courts have interpreted it expansively since then. It effectively means that web services—as well as newspapers, gossip blogs, listserv operators, and other parties—can’t be sued for hosting or reposting somebody else’s illegal speech. In addition, it means courts can dismiss most lawsuits over web platform moderation, particularly since there’s a second clause protecting the removal of “objectionable” content.
Threatening to repeal 230 is a shakedown racket, a way for lawmakers to quietly put their thumb on the scale—a back door to imposing government speech regulations.
When lawmakers do take up serious issues around platform regulation, it’s often with the blatant ulterior motive of punishing “Big Tech” for perceived political misdeeds.
Removing Section 230 protections is a sneaky way for politicians to get around the First Amendment
Platform moderation has become one of the few enforcement mechanisms to punish bad behavior. When bad behavior goes unpunished, unaddressed, and spirals out into something worse and worse, people look for something to blame. And the reality is that no politician can blame the First Amendment, so they blame 230 instead. That’s the lesson, the takeaway: whenever politicians talk about regulating Big Tech or changing 230, they are almost always talking about imperiling the First Amendment.
The bigger issue, though not the only one, is that the internet allows people to speak to each other at a scale unprecedented in human history. The shortcomings and tradeoffs of the laws governing that speech have never been so evident, and their troublesome edge cases never so numerous. And instead of trying to reckon with a new world, the people who make and enforce those laws have abdicated their principles and responsibilities in favor of wielding raw power—and, often, abdicating a lot of their common sense as well.
The First Amendment is over 200 years old. It might remain the law on paper for a long time to come, but for the average American, the era of government speech regulations is already here, and things are about to get darker than ever.”
Excerpt from How America turned against the First Amendment
“Though liberty is established by law, we must be vigilant, for liberty to enslave us is always present under that same liberty. Our Constitution speaks of the ‘general welfare of the people’. Under that phrase all sorts of excesses can be employed by [authoritarian] tyrants—to make us bondsmen.” By: Marcus Tullius Cicero