Skip to comments.Meet The GOP Senator Who Wants To Eradicate Social Media Companies
Posted on 05/27/2019 11:40:25 AM PDT by Kaslin
Social media companies, whose base of operations are on the Left Coast and operated by staff who are almost universally left wing, are squeezing conservatives. There have been some pretty glaring examples of bias, specifically the whole notion being accounts being suspended on Twitter for entirely arbitrary reasons. Yes, Facebook banned Louis Farrakhan of the Nation of Islam for his long history of bigoted remarks, like calling Jewish people termites, but his account wasn’t suspended on Twitter. Oh, and even without using examples of bias, Twitter itself admits that the environment is so left wing that conservative employees cannot speak up without fear. Still, while the tech giants of Silicon Valley are very, very…veryliberal, they still like making money. Hence, why Facebook has dedicated staffs to serve its conservative and liberal clientele. Despite conservatives being cracked down harder than liberal users, Twitter still knows that they need Right America to stay engaged on their platform.
Whether we like it or not, social media is where business, political, and cultural news spread and intersect. Many have called it a cancer on society. They may be right, but they’re here to stay for now—and debates circling the issues that we face as a nation are shared on these platforms. Still, that doesn’t mean that some on the Hill view the ever-increasing power of social media companies as a problem. There has been talk about regulating these companies, breaking them up, or doing away with them altogether. One Republican Senator, Josh Hawley (R-AR), says that these companies have done more harm than good, that they’re dabbling in the “addiction economy,” and that they should more or less be eradicated. Hawley made these claims in an op-ed for USA Today last week. Vice added the impact social media is still in its infancy, but added that the basis for Hawley’s criticism of the social media giants isn’t without merit. Making them go away probably isn’t realistic, but breaking them up could be an option (via Vice):
A Republican senator who works on antitrust says that social media, including Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, have done more harm than good and they should “disappear.”
“Social media’s innovations do our country more harm than good. Maybe social media is best understood as a parasite on productive investment, on meaningful relationships, on a healthy society,” he wrote. “Maybe we’d be better off if Facebook disappeared.”
Some lawmakers asked Zuckerberg why Facebook shouldn’t be broken up, but, for the most part, Zuckerberg has gotten off easy by pitching himself as living the quintessential American dream: From humble beginnings in a Harvard dorm room, a college dropout made an all-American company that has connected the world and created many thousands of high-paying jobs.
Hawley called out those lofty claims in his op-ed: “Ask the social giants what it is they produce for America and you’ll hear grand statements about human interaction,” he wrote. But “Facebook, Twitter, Instagram—they devote massive amounts of money and the best years of some of the nation’s brightest minds to developing new schemes to hijack their users’ neural circuitry.
“High salaries and stock options have encouraged a generation of our brightest engineers to enter a field of little productive value. This is, to put it mildly, an opportunity missed for the nation,” Hawley wrote. “What marvels might these bright minds have produced had they been oriented toward the common good?”
Hawley’s argument is persuasive, but there is, of course, no way to magically make social media disappear. Considering that he’s on the subcommittee on antitrust, competition policy, and consumer rights, breaking the social media giants up might be the next best choice.
What say you?
Why did any thinking person believe that what was called “facebook”—a place where anyone could share their most personal and family thoughts—would be anything but a place where those gullible “anyones” might be exploited for someone else’s benefit?
Yes - Alan Greenspan and Ayn Rand eloquently explained why decades ago. Every one of those "trusts" got that way through government preferences, as did Facebook, which is a front for law enforcement and intelligence interests. Take those preferences away and the market will rapidly do its work.
Ayn Rand had some great things to say, but her musings on monopoly were about as coherent as her strange musings about sex.
So you want to trash the Constitution when others do stuff you don’t like. That what the Left does. Wake up. The threat to our county isn’t what others do that you don’t like. It’s the mostly unconstitutional federal government that, as Trump said, is coming for YOU.
Pretending you're the purist while they cut off your balls using Novocaine isn't all that productive.
Just calm down and try to think clearly. These people you're defending don't deserve your foolishness.
Well, not that I’m a fan of the Koch Bros, by any stretch. But they tried to buy NBC a few years ago and they were run out of town on a rail. I guess Conservative-leaning folks aren’t allowed to own any of the MSM.
Limbaugh got a group together to buy the Rams, if I’m not mistaken. He too, was run out of town based on lies.
The power of the federal government to break up private enterprises is not found in the Constitution. The foundation of Leviathan's "trust-busting" is - are you ready? - the Commerce Clause! Yes, that's right...the same abused favorite-of-statists lever to effectively regulate everything under the sun is the basis of "anti-trust" laws in the US.
Therefore, when you cheerfully suggest that Trump break up Amazon, FB, Twitter, and any other firm you dislike, you are also giving philosophical sanction to Schumer and Pelosi etc to tax away ammo, most of the New Deal, and pretty much every despotic economic law in the US since the 1930s.
I get it: these firms wield great power and access to data etc. I also understand nobody is forcing you to buy their products. Therefore I do not see the philosophical congruence of simultaneously saying Bernie is a dope and we dislike socialism and crony capitalism etc but then support the government using an unenumerated power to break up a company that offers a service people voluntarily use.
Trump will someday not be president and someday we will have a ghastly DNC apparatchik heading the Executive branch. When that President pushes to break up FR or Fox or Diamonds and Silk on antitrust grounds, I can sleep well knowing I didn't help contribute to the right-wing antitrust witch hunt.
Oh, and FB and Amazon and Google will likely be like IBM at that time...a once-feared firm that is now still big but yesterday's news.
None of the feds freaking business.
GET GOVERNMENT OUT OF OUR LIVES!!!!
Government is outsourcing totalitarianism to the likes of Facebook. You can’t virtue signal your way out of this problem.
I keep saying it folks.
Turn the USPS into a social media service.
Available to everyone. No censorship or shadowing.
The USPS would make tons of money.
Josh Hawley (Dumberer-AR): Amarica's newest Nanny State ninny.*
Nanny State PING!
*FD: I'd be fine with some sort of regulation on social medai companies like Facebook to make sure that they allow all lawful speech (not including threats, doxxing, etc.) Free Republic would not fall under such regulation, since they advertise themselves as a CONSERVATIVE forum from the get.
Correction: Josh Hawley (Dumberer-MO).
Good post, DB. Too many FReepers are hostile to govt intrusion except when its something they want.
Is it for the common good that the traditional meaning of marriage is espoused?
Is it for the common good that child pornography be illegal?
Is it for the common good that the principles of limited government be espoused?
To hear “common good” and immediately think “collectivism” is a tad out of line, don’t you think? After all, liberty isn’t an end in and of itself.
Well your personal opinion about whoever doesn’t matter when it come to constitutional authority of the feds.
The Left loves you supporting their unconstitutional actions because there’s something there you don’t like. You’re helping their tyranny.
Farakhan was not banned for his content. he was banned as an acceptable “proof” that the bannings are not politically one sided at the same time that they are calling Looey a right wing extremist, which is, I guess a sop to the lefties out there. Sop sop chewie.
Newspapers won't be broken up.
They will, however, go out of business over time and go the way of the buggy whip. They are an outdated technology experiencing a waning reader base.
If they don't go digital and establish their base on the internet, they won't make it as a newspaper. At that point they would be a website and not a newspaper. News websites will have to compete on the ethernet too.
But if you listen carefully, you can hear the death knell tolling for the newsprint industry already. Most of them know it's coming.
I haven't read a newspaper in 25+ years and the young people my kids' age, never read newspapers to begin with.
Congress won't waste their time breaking the big newspaper chains up. They'll self-destruct on their own soon enough.
To the degree government is financially and legislatively helping Facebook, that is true.
Again, government isn't the solution. Government is the PROBLEM!
IBM did not have the power to use the power of Persuasion to shift opinions, voter turnout, and hence - elections.
We are now *literally* living in a “Brave New World”.
I suggest you may want to start following Scott Adams’ daily periscope podcasts to get back up to speed. Its 1984. To leave the primary information/opinion/news shaping media to the tyranny of the left is equivalent to committing political suicide.
Example: President Trump should have a 70% approval rating based on his performance. That he is barely treading water is no accident - at least half of the electorate has been completely brainwashed (LITERALLY) and if the ‘social media’ can sway just 5% more they can get Trump out of office next year. That is the way youngsters (defined by me as anyone under 50) are now getting their information - AND - their opinions (which are literally ASSIGNED to them by the leftist social media. Its not hit or miss propaganda anymore - its psychology and science. Again, consult Scott Adams to start learning about the new world we live in).
To cede those battlefields is to surrender.
They were in it from the beginning... Lifelog. Look it up.
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