18:00 Kevin Grace: "There is a momentum amongst the progressives that is nothing less than Soviet – that they do not regard any dissent from their opinions as as legitimate: none of it, ever." https://t.co/oizCsNcBVq
— Claire Khaw (@MinimumSt8) August 7, 2018
I’m trying to figure out where I stand on this story, so I’m going back to my fundamental premises.
* At least 90% of people 90% of the time have the capacity to glide through life, and if they’re not gliding, it is because something is screwed up in their operating system. If you are getting deplatformed as Alex Jones is, it probably has a lot to do with your own behaviors.
* Nothing is personal. If a left-winger said and did the things Alex Jones did, he’d be deplatformed too.
* If I were a right-wing activist, I’d jump on the side of Alex Jones and decry Big Tech censorship. This story would be fodder for my cause. I wouldn’t worry about the merits. The activist operates like a close-up in a movie — all intensity. Distance shots are emotionally distancing. When I am operating at my best, my natural inclination is to see things from the 10,000 foot perspective, to stay calm, to avoid feuds, and to avoid being a homer.
When you are a hammer, everything looks like a nail. When you are an activist, every big story looks like an opportunity to create activism.
I see Alex Jones as low IQ information and entertainment. I don’t see why social media should be forced to host him. I don’t want him banned from the internet. Let the free market market operate.
* If somebody wanted to make a video about dog poop, is Youtube compelled to host it?
Jones has repeatedly claimed the government staged the Oklahoma City bombing, the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, Sandy Hook shootings, and numerous other mass shootings and tragedies.
Mr. Jones is facing defamation lawsuits filed by the parents of victims of the Sandy Hook school shooting for claiming the shooting was an elaborate hoax. Most of Mr. Jones’s conspiracies push a theme that a global cabal of political and corporate leaders run the world’s institutions to brainwash citizens and take away their rights. Mr. Jones partly funds his operation by selling expensive nutritional supplements and vitamins between Infowars segments.
Some tech companies, including Facebook and Google, had appeared reluctant to remove Mr. Jones’s pages entirely and were instead taking action against specific videos or podcasts. YouTube, for instance, recently deleted four of Mr. Jones’s videos.
So why did Alex Jones bet banned today? I believe there is an explanation that has to do with something Jones said about Robert Mueller.
Jones set off a round of debate in recent weeks about whether Infowars should be granted carte blanche on big social media outlets when he addressed Russia investigation special counsel Robert Mueller on his show, imitated firing a gun, and said, “You’re going to get it, or I’m going to die trying.” (Facebook’s statement almost certainly is in response.)…
Supporters of the ban on Jones — including the families of the victims of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting (Alex Jones has stated the tragedy never took place) — argue that the conspiracy theorist’s message constitutes a “societal crisis.” But his supporters, particularly those on the right, like Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, believe that limiting Jones’s online reach is an affront to free speech.
Alex Jones’s media empire, explained
Alex Jones has been a leading voice in the conspiracy theorist corner of the internet for more than 20 years, spreading ideas such as “the government controls the weather” and “Hillary Clinton is a literal demon.” As my colleague Zack Beauchamp wrote in October 2016 on Jones’s views:
The US government is secretly controlled by a shadowy international cabal called the New World Order. The Federal Emergency Management Agency is going to put Americans in concentration camps. The “Jewish mafia” controls Uber and American health care. Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton are literal demons — like, the kind that come from hell and smell like sulfur. … Jones and those like him believe the world has been secretly taken over by a secret global cabal, the so-called “New World Order.” These “globalists,” as Jones types derisively call them, want to take over the United States, which they see as the final stronghold of freedom on Earth.
He was also one of the biggest pushers of the Pizzagate conspiracy theory, which eventually led a gunman to enter a Washington, DC, pizzeria and fire several shots.
On July 24, Jones issued a threat aimed at Robert Mueller on The Alex Jones Show:
“That’s a demon I will take down, or I’ll die trying. So that’s it. It’s going to happen, we’re going to walk out in the square, politically, at high noon, and he’s going to find out whether he makes a move man, make the move first, and then it’s going to happen,” Jones said, miming a pistol with his hand. “It’s not a joke. It’s not a game. It’s the real world. Politically. You’re going to get it, or I’m going to die trying, bitch. Get ready. We’re going to bang heads. We’re going to bang heads.”
Jones is a Donald Trump supporter and promoter. During the 2016 presidential campaign, Trump appeared on Jones’s show, saying Jones’s “reputation was amazing,” and Jones has repeatedly bragged that he is in close contact with the president.
In a statement on the decision to remove Jones’s content from its site, Facebook said that the company was not doing so because Jones was a conspiracy theorist, but because he was “glorifying violence” and “using dehumanizing language” against minorities:
As a result of reports we received, last week, we removed four videos on four Facebook Pages for violating our hate speech and bullying policies. These pages were the Alex Jones Channel Page, the Alex Jones Page, the InfoWars Page and the Infowars Nightly News Page. In addition, one of the admins of these Pages – Alex Jones – was placed in a 30-day block for his role in posting violating content to these Pages.
Since then, more content from the same Pages has been reported to us — upon review, we have taken it down for glorifying violence, which violates our graphic violence policy, and using dehumanizing language to describe people who are transgender, Muslims and immigrants, which violates our hate speech policies… While much of the discussion around Infowars has been related to false news, which is a serious issue that we are working to address by demoting links marked wrong by fact checkers and suggesting additional content, none of the violations that spurred today’s removals were related to this.
More recently, Jones has been embroiled in a series of lawsuits filed by people about whom he has made repeated false assertions, like Marcel Fontaine: Infowars declared him to be the shooter at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida (despite the fact that Fontaine had never even visited the state of Florida). There’s also Leonard Pozner, the father of a Sandy Hook victim, Noah Pozner, whose family has endured endless harassment by followers of Jones who believe that Pozner’s son never existed.
Since the election The Gateway Pundit found from traffic analysis that Facebook has eliminated 93% of traffic to top conservative websites.
** Twitter is shadowbanning and censoring conservative lawmakers and conservative publishers.
** Wikipedia is controlled by far left editors who are regularly accused of liberal bias.
** YouTube is shutting down conservative pages and demonitizing several others.