First Amendment Rights Being Eroded by Technocrats: Director of Citizens for Free Speech

The logos of Big Tech companies Amazon, Apple, Facebook, and Google, in file photos. (Reuters)

The increased censorship of people’s views expressed on social media by Big Tech companies has been part of an orchestrated attack on the First Amendment, Patrick Wood, director and founder of Citizens for Free Speech, told The Epoch Times.

Wood believes that there is an agenda behind the censorship. It would be almost statistically impossible to attack simultaneously all five elements of the First Amendment: freedom of religion, free speech, freedom of the press, the right to assemble, and the right to petition the government for a redress of grievances, Wood said in an interview for Epoch Times’ “Crossroads.”

All five of those “have been shattered to pieces in the last year and the attack had started actually before that probably five [or] six years ago,” Wood said, adding, “Free speech is hanging by a thread and the First Amendment is hanging by a thread.”

Wood said that it was unprecedented that three Big Tech companies in one day took down competitor Parler under the pretext of violating their policies, calling it collusion.

Apple and Google removed the social media platform Parler from their app stores, saying that the app would be suspended until they could moderate “egregious content.” Soon after, Amazon Web Services took the site down due to alleged violations.

Parler was taken down by those companies after civil unrest and acts of violence marred a largely peaceful protest at the Capitol building in Washington on Jan. 6.

Free speech has been at the heart of all human and economic progress in the last 200-300 years, Wood said. “When you curtail free speech it becomes regressive to society; in other words, you’re going backwards when you start to censor it,” he added.

Wood compared censoring speech on the Internet to electronic book burning. Every Marxist or fascist revolution takes over or squashes media first because they need to control communications before they proceed with the rest of the revolution, Wood explained.

The people in the technocratic core of Big Tech believe that they must silence any narrative which disagrees with their narrative, Wood said. And it is not limited to conservatives, he explained, providing the example of Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., founder of the Board of Children’s Health Defense, who was also silenced for criticizing vaccine safety even though Kennedy is a liberal.

“They don’t want to hear an alternative narrative so they are squashing free speech in the process of shutting other people up from contradicting their own narrative, Wood said.

When attacks on First Amendment rights started about five years ago, similar policies had been openly advocated at the World Economic Forum (WEF) as part of the Fourth Industrial Revolution, Wood explained.

Epoch Times Photo
World Economic Forum founder and executive chairman Klaus Schwab during the WEF’s annual meeting in Davos on Jan. 20, 2020. (Fabrice Coffrini/AFP via Getty Images)

The Fourth Industrial Revolution “is characterized by a fusion of technologies that is blurring the lines between the physical, digital, and biological spheres,” Klaus Schwab, the founder and executive chairman of the WEF, wrote on the organization’s website.

Schwab also proposed the concept of the Great Reset to transform the world economy from “shareholder capitalism” to “stakeholder capitalism” which will harness the innovations of the Fourth Industrial Revolution “to address health and social challenges.”

But the Great Reset is “warmed over technocracy from the 1930s,” Wood said.

columbia university cancels classes
The campus of Columbia University in Manhattan in a file photograph. (Benjamin Chasteen/Epoch Times)

What is Technocracy?

Technocracy was a political-economic movement that started in the early 1930s at Columbia University in New York.

“Engineers and scientists at that time believed capitalism was dead and that they and only they had some kind of a mandate to create a brand new economic system that was a resource-based economic system that would control the entire economy,” Wood said.

The concept of technocracy assumes that price cannot be used to control the abundance of goods because it decreases with the increase of abundance. Therefore a scientific method of balancing production and distribution must be used, according to a 1937 edition of The Technocrat magazine.

“Technocracy will distribute by means of a certificate of distribution available to every citizen from birth to death,” The Technocrat magazine states.

The movement failed when the economy recovered after the Great Depression, but it was revived in the early 1970s and it began to mature, Wood said, adding that what he called a global elite had embraced the idea that controlling the world’s resources would allow them to control the world’s economy.

Michael Rectenwald, a retired liberal arts professor at New York University, wrote for the Mises Institute that the planners of the Great Reset support driving ownership and control of the most important factors of production to those enrolled in stakeholder capitalism.

Stakeholders “include the enterprise’s owners and shareholders, customers, suppliers, collaborators of any kind, as well as the government and society, including the communities in which the company operates or which may in any way be affected by it,” according to a WEF report (pdf).

“The productive activities of said stakeholders, meanwhile, would be guided by the directives of a coalition of governments under a unified mission and set of policies, in particular those expounded by the WEF itself,” Rectenwald wrote.

“While these corporate stakeholders would not necessarily be monopolies per se, the goal of the WEF is to vest as much control over production and distribution in these corporate stakeholders as possible, with the goal of eliminating producers whose products or processes are deemed either unnecessary or inimical to the globalists’ desiderata for ‘a fairer, greener future.’ Naturally, this would involve constraints on production and consumption and likewise an expanded role for governments in order to enforce such constraints,” Rectenwald wrote.

Epoch Times Photo
Former U.S. National Security Adviser Zbigniew Brzezinski speaks at the Nobel Peace Prize Forum in Oslo on Dec. 11, 2016. (Terje Bendiksby/AFP via Getty Images)

The technocracy idea was introduced to communist China in the 1970s by Zbigniew Brzezinski, the political scientist, co-founder of the Trilateral Commission, and the national security adviser to President Jimmy Carter, Wood said.

That caused a blending of the Chinese Communist Party and communism in general with “this technocratic system of social management, of total management of the economy and the people,” Wood explained.

“If you look deeper you see that there’s a group of people, a core of engineers and scientists, that are working to use high technology to capture the entire society, all of the people in it, and to control and engineer the economic system.”

Source: First Amendment Rights Being Eroded by Technocrats: Director of Citizens for Free Speech

Parler CEO ‘Prepared to Take Full Legal Action’ After Big Tech Companies Target Platform

Parler founder and CEO John Matze speaks to The Epoch Times' American Thought Leaders in 2019. (Screenshot/The Epoch Times)

Parler founder and CEO John Matze said his company is “prepared to take full legal action” after several big tech companies suspended the social media network from their services, according to an email.

John Matze, Parler’s founder, told The Epoch Times in an email that he believes Apple, Google, and Amazon had acted in bad faith and that the social media platform is considering legal action.

Responding to accusations that Parler was enabling “threats of violence and illegal activity,” Matze said these companies are using recent events to “go after Parler,” even though “there is no evidence Parler was used to coordinate the events.”

“Parler has no groups-style feature and Facebook was the number one tool for coordinating meetups for that event,” Matze said.

The targeted moderation by these companies against Parler came after civil unrest and acts of violence marred a largely peaceful protest at the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday. A group of rioters and a minority of protesters waving American and Trump flags illegally stormed the Capitol building as lawmakers were counting electoral votes in a joint session of Congress. The mayhem on the day left five people dead, including one police office, and dozens of officers injured.

In response to the Capitol breach, a number of Silicon Valley technology companies ramped up their policing of statements and comments from President Donald Trump, conservatives, and other voices they believe may cause harm. Twitter on Friday permanently removed Trump’s account on its platform and justified its censorship by saying that the president had violated its “Glorification of Violence Policy” after he posted a message urging protesters to remain peaceful and leave the Capitol. The Trump campaign Twitter account has also been removed.

Parler, which has attracted a large following of classical liberal and conservative-leaning users, appeared to have been targeted for lacking a system to “implement robust moderation for egregious content.”

Apple said in a statement to media outlets on Saturday that they believe Paler had “not taken adequate measures to address” the proliferation of “threats of violence and illegal activity.”

“We have suspended Parler from the App Store until they resolve these issues,” the statement said.

Apple did not respond to The Epoch Times’ questions about the ban.

Similarly, Amazon told Parler that they would be shutting Parler’s servers at midnight Sunday, Jan. 10, over what it says is the platform’s alleged lax approach to violent content posted by its users. Parler disputes this claim.

Amazon also did not immediately respond to The Epoch Times’ questions about their suspension.

Matze said he believes these companies are also operating with a double standard.

“Twitter let ‘Hang Mike Pence’ trend the same day Parler was banned from Google … the double standard is obvious,” he said.

The big tech suspension came after Parler rose to become the number one application in Apple’s app store on Saturday, following Twitter’s suspension of Trump’s personal account. Matze said his social media network had around 20 million accounts at the time the companies suspended them.

Mobile app analytics company Sensor Tower told The Wrap in a statement that Parler saw approximately 182,000 first-time downloads in the United States on Jan. 8, which is up 355 percent on Jan. 7. The app saw about 268,000 installs across U.S. app stores since Jan. 6, the statement said.

Matze said on his Parler account late Saturday that he believes Amazon, Google, and Apple coordinated to “try and ensure they don’t have competition.”

“They will NOT win! We are the worlds last hope for free speech and free information,” he said.

“This is a battle against all of us. Liberals, conservatives, atheists, Christians, black, white, etc. They want to keep their monopoly over speech. They want us fighting. They don’t want us working together. They don’t want us working with each other, they want us hating one another.”

Unbalanced policing of user content and certain political views has raised concerns over First Amendment rights and the lack of checks and balances on decisions made by big tech companies. Discussions over limiting or eliminating liability protections under Section 230 of the 1996 Communications Decency Act for tech companies that have engaged in censoring or political conduct have been heavily discussed in the past year.

Twitter’s move to remove Trump’s account has received widespread scrutiny. U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson, State Secretary Mike Pompeo, and former United Nations Ambassador Nikki Haley likened Twitter’s move to conduct by the communist party ruling China.

Source: Parler CEO ‘Prepared to Take Full Legal Action’ After Big Tech Companies Target Platform

Twitter Locks President Trump Out of His Account for the First Time

President Donald Trump calls on protesters near the U.S. Capitol building during the Joint Session of Congress in Washington to go home, on Jan. 6, 2020. (Donald Trump)

Twitter has disabled the account of President Donald Trump after deleting recent posts made by the president, including a video of him calling on protesters who had gathered on Wednesday at the U.S. Capitol building in Washington to go home in peace.

“As a result of the unprecedented and ongoing violent situation in Washington, D.C., we have required the removal of three @realDonaldTrump Tweets that were posted earlier today for repeated and severe violations of our Civic Integrity policy,” a Twitter announcement reads.

“This means that the account of @realDonaldTrump will be locked for 12 hours following the removal of these Tweets. If the Tweets are not removed, the account will remain locked,” the announcement continues. “Future violations of the Twitter Rules, including our Civic Integrity or Violent Threats policies, will result in permanent suspension of the @realDonaldTrump account.”

Both Facebook and Twitter have removed a video of the president calling on protesters to go home. “You have to go home now. We have to have peace. We have to have law and order, we have to respect our great people in law and order,” Trump said in the deleted video.

Facebook was first to remove the video, which was up for just a few hours on late Wednesday afternoon.

A Facebook spokesperson said in a statement to new outlets, “The violent protests in the Capitol today are a disgrace. We prohibit incitement and calls for violence on our platform. We are actively reviewing and removing any content that breaks these rules.”

Guy Rosen, Facebook’s vice president of integrity, said in a statement, “This is an emergency situation and we are taking appropriate emergency measures, including removing President Trump’s video. We removed it because on balance we believe it contributes to rather than diminishes the risk of ongoing violence.”

Trump had not called for violence in his speech.

Prior to the removal of the video, Facebook applied a label to the president’s video that linked to its “Voting information center,” which shows Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden as the winner of the November 2020 election. The Facebook label at the time read: “The US has laws, procedures, and established institutions to ensure the integrity of our elections. Get Accurate Election Info.”

The Epoch Times has yet to call the race.

Twitter removed the same video from its platform within an hour later of Facebook’s video removal, replacing the post with the message, “This Tweet violated the Twitter Rules,” and linked to the platform’s “enforcement options” page.

Twitter also removed a message from the president posted at 6:01 p.m. ET that read, “These are the things and events that happen when a sacred landslide election victory is so unceremoniously & viciously stripped away from great patriots who have been badly & unfairly treated for so long. Go home with love & in peace. Remember this day forever!

“I know your pain, I know you’re hurt. We had an election that was stolen from us. It was a landslide election and everyone knows it, especially the other side,” the president said in the now-removed video.

“We don’t want anybody hurt. It’s a very tough period of time. There’s never been a time like this where such a thing happened where they could take it away from all of us—from me, from you, from our country,” he added.

“This was a fraudulent election but we can’t play into the hands of these people. We have to have peace. So go home, we love you, you’re very special. You’ve seen what happens, you’ve seen the way others are treated that are so bad and so evil. I know how you feel. But go home, and go home in peace.”

The U.S. House and Senate temporarily halted the joint session of Congress on Wednesday after protesters breached the Capitol building, which interrupted concurrent debates in the two chambers over an objection to the counting of a slate of presidential electors from Arizona for Biden. The session has since resumed.

Source: Twitter Locks President Trump Out of His Account for the First Time

Twitter Drops SPLC Following Controversy. But What About Facebook And Google?

Facebook, Google, Amazon Silent For Days After Twitter Drops SPLC

Author’s Comment: I have been personally attacked and labeled on the SPLC hate-watch list. My crime was supporting the Bundy Ranch Patriot Political Prisoners and their families during their unjustified incarceration while waiting for the trials that ultimately exonerated them. At one point I was also removed from Facebook for more than 2 months. It took the actions of an Attorney to have my account reinstated.

Twitter distanced itself from the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) following reports suggesting that the group scams liberal donors out of money. Facebook has not yet revealed whether it plans on ending its partnership with the group.

Twitter appears to be one of the only big tech companies in Silicon Valley to completely divorce itself from the SPLC, an Alabama-based group that got slammed in March following reports it takes donors’ money while ignoring racial harassment. Facebook has not responded to The Daily Caller News Foundation’s repeated requests for comment about its affiliation with the SPLC.

“The SPLC is not a member of Twitter’s Trust and Safety Council or a partner the company has worked with recently,” a source within Twitter told TheDCNF on the condition of anonymity. The company listed the SPLC as a “safety partner” working to combat “hateful conduct and harassment,” according to a June 2018 DCNF report.

Twitter also included the Trust and Safety Council, which “provides input on our safety products, policies, and programs,” the company’s policy page noted at the time. Twitter’s page no longer includes SPLC as a member helping to govern certain types of conduct. Facebook’s involvement with the group was apparently more intimate.

The SPLC is on a list of “external experts and organizations” that Facebook works with “to inform our hate speech policies,” Facebook spokeswoman Ruchika Budhraja told TheDCNF in June 2018. The company consults with outside organizations when developing changes to hate speech policies, he said at the time.

Budhraja declined to name all the outside groups working with Facebook but confirmed the SPLC’s participation. The SPLC accused Facebook in a May 2018 article of not doing enough to censor anti-Muslim hatred. That article did not disclose the SPLC’s working partnership with Facebook.

Amazon has not responded to TheDCNF’s repeated requests for comment after SPLC fired co-founder Morris Dees on March 13 over “inappropriate conduct.”

(RELATED: Twitter Backs Off Partnership With SPLC Amid Bombshell Reports. Amazon Stays Silent) 

Google was also dinged in 2018 for using the SPLC to assist YouTube in policing content on its platform. The left-wing non-profit group is one of the more than 100 nongovernment organizations (NGOs) and government agencies in YouTube’s “Trusted Flaggers” program, TheDCNF reported in June 2018. Google has also not yet responded to TheDCNF’s requests for information.

The group designated the Family Research Council a “hate group” in 2010 because of its occasional belligerent defense of traditional marriage. Media outlets often rely on the SPLC to craft stories.

CNN, for instance, published the group’s list of 900 hate groups in 2017 under the headline “Here Are All the Hate Groups Active in Your Area,” then was forced to modify the story after conservatives complained that the story effectively conflated conservatives with neo-Nazis. CNN maintains that the SPLC is one of the only groups that monitors hates groups.

Source ~ dailycaller.com/2019/04/15/splc-facebook-conservatives/