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The U.S. Government Is Building A Vast Surveillance And Speech Suppression Web Around Every American
The Federalist ^ | MARCH 21, 2023 | Margot Cleveland

Posted on 03/21/2023 7:50:05 AM PDT by george76

Our government is preparing to monitor every word Americans say on the internet and censor citizens who don’t toe the party line.

ur government is preparing to monitor every word Americans say on the internet—the speech of journalists, politicians, religious organizations, advocacy groups, and even private citizens. Should those conversations conflict with the government’s viewpoint about what is in the best interests of our country and her citizens, that speech will be silenced.

While the “Twitter Files” offer a glimpse into the government’s efforts to censor disfavored viewpoints, what we have seen is nothing compared to what is planned, as the details of hundreds of federal awards lay bare. Research by The Federalist reveals our tax dollars are funding the development of artificial intelligence (AI) and machine-learning (ML) technology that will allow the government to easily discover “problematic” speech and track Americans reading or partaking in such conversations.

Then, in partnership with Big Tech, Big Business, and media outlets, the government will ensure the speech is censored, under the guise of combatting “misinformation” and “disinformation.”

AI and ML Technology Will Monitor Everything We Say and Read..

The federal government has awarded more than 500-plus contracts or grants related to “misinformation” or “disinformation” since 2020. One predominant area of research pushed by the Department of Defense involves the use of AI and ML technology to monitor or listen to internet “conversations.”

Originally used as a marketing tool for businesses to track discussions about their brands and products and to track competitors, the DOD and other federal agencies are now paying for-profit public relations and communications firms to convert their technology into tools for the government to monitor speech on the internet.

The areas of the internet the companies monitor differ somewhat, and each business offers its own unique AI and ML proprietary technology, but the underlying approach and goals remain identical: The technology under development will “mine” large portions of the internet and identify conversations deemed indicative of an emerging harmful narrative, to allow the government to track those “threats” and adopt countermeasures before the messages go viral.

With AI and ML identifying in real-time the origins of supposed influence operations and how the messages spread, the government will have the ability to preempt the amplification of the speech, squelching even true reporting before the general populace has an opportunity to learn the news. To appreciate fully the danger this poses to free speech requires Americans to consider the use of that technology with these seven additional details.

1. Everything Everywhere All At Once..

First, the AI and ML technology under development will mine every conceivable mode of conversation for the government. Consider, for example, the databases monitored by just a few of the companies the government is paying to develop this AI and ML technology.

PeakMetrics, the recipient of a $1.5 million award, tracks millions of news sites, blogs, global social platforms, podcasts, TV and radio, and email newsletters.

Omelas Inc., which received more than $1 million in taxpayer money, culls data from “the most influential newspapers, TV channels, government offices, militant groups, and more across a dozen social networks and messaging apps, thousands of websites, and thousands of RSS feeds.”

Alethea Group, which received a Phase I award of nearly $50,000 to develop a “machine learning tool for proactive disinformation/misinformation detection, assessment, and mitigation,” boasts it covers data sources including mainstream and “fringe” social media platforms, peer-to-peer messaging platforms, blogs and forums, state-affiliated media sites, “gray” propaganda sites, and the dark web.

Newsguard, awarded $750,000 by the DOD, offers two databases, including its unreliable reliability ratings database of thousands of news and information websites and a second database of purported hoaxes.

Primer, which scored a $3 million award to develop its technology, offers a database that looks to news and media data sources, publicly captured images, the dark web, cyberattacks shared by the general public, and classified—presumably for government clients—and unclassified data sources. Primer also partners with Flashpoint, which adds “Telegram, Reddit, Discord, and “the deep and dark web” to the databases mined.

2. We’re Talking Americans, Not Just Russian Bots..

It is also important to recognize that the AI and ML technology under development will not just mine foreign or state-connected actors, but will monitor everyone’s speech. Both the government grants and the web pages of the monitoring companies confirm this reality.

We also know from the “Twitter Files” that the government and its fellow residents in the Censorship-Industrial Complex view the speech of Americans as related to foreign influence operations merely because the viewpoint matches what they claim is an adversary’s perspective. And we know the government pushed for the censorship of ordinary Americans.

By its nature, AI and ML technology has unlimited potential to flag problematic speech on any imaginable subject. Here, the past is prologue: Speech need not involve terrorism, acts of war, or even our electoral process for our government to consider it within its purview to fact-check. (It also need not be false; see point 4).

The “Twitter Files” and recent events provide Americans a glimpse into the breadth of the topics the government may deem harmful narratives worthy of censor—from elections, to vaccines, to runs on grocery stores. Underlying the government’s obsession with silencing misinformation, disinformation, and mal-information is the “Great Power Competition” perspective of foreign relations, under which China and Russia represent a constant threat to America’s power, influences, and interests.

With the government viewing foreign relations through the Great Power Competition paradigm, speech on any topic, touching even tangentially on America’s “power, influences, and interests,” will be fair game for censorship efforts.

3. The Great Power Competition Renders Everything Fair Game for Censorship..

While to convincingly prove this reality requires a deeper exposé—coming soon—on the Great Power Competition’s connection to the government’s focus on misinformation, disinformation, and mal-information, last week Sen. Mark Kelly, D-Arizona, showcased the current thinking inspiring our leaders. During a conference call with the Federal Deposit and Insurance Corporation about the Silicon Valley Bank bailout, Kelly asked whether there was “a way to censor information on social media to prevent a run on the banks.”

Kelly’s question was “couched” “in a concern that foreign actors would be doing this,” Rep. Thomas Massie told Public, but, according to Massie, Kelly “didn’t suggest the censorship should be limited to foreigners or to things that were untrue.”

The move from the censorship of terrorism to the silencing of supposed interference in elections to censoring posts about “bank runs” follows naturally from the shift in foreign relations paradigms from the War on Terror to the Great Powers Competition. The latter views anything affecting American power or influence as fair game. We also saw this shift with the Department of Homeland Security’s Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Agency (CISA) proposal to consider “financial misinformation” within its purview.

The government’s censorship efforts won’t stop at supposed “financial misinformation,” however, because anything and everything journalists report and citizens discuss affects America’s “power, influence, and interest.” So, the government’s development of technology to monitor the entirety of the internet foretells a much more dangerous threat than apparent on the surface.

4. The Government Brands True Speech Misinformation..

The threat to free speech stemming from the government’s monitoring of the internet is further increased by our overlords’ willingness to brand true speech “misinformation, disinformation, or mal-information” and then seek to censor it. The “Twitter Files” also exposed this reality, with our government and its lackeys seeking the censorship of true facts that might lead to “vaccine hesitancy” or reveal runs on grocery stores.

That our government would seek to silence true speech on such matters gives Americans reason to fear further censorship of true information.

5. Faulty Analysis and Biased Censors..

The “Twitter Files” also revealed that censorship demands by the government, think tanks, and academic institutions relied on faulty misinformation analyses, including ones that identified innocent Americans as foreign actors. Also, many of those involved in the disinformation industry maintain left-leaning bias and a penchant for targeting conservatives.

In furthering its plans to monitor the internet for supposedly harmful narratives to silence, the government is continuing to work with biased groups, including ones that pushed faulty analyses, adding to the threat to free speech.

6. The Government’s Partners Are Poised to Censor..

The government’s push to develop AI and ML technology to mine the internet is even more terrifying knowing that a Censorship Complex has already been built. The “Twitter Files” revealed the breadth and depth of the complex, with every alphabet-soup federal agency working with the social media giants and an array of think tanks and academic institutions, and with the legacy media providing an assist when censorship requests went ignored.

While Elon Musk may have exited Twitter from the group, the Censorship Complex still stands tall and ready to silence the speech of those who dare dissent. This public-private collaboration makes the government’s move to monitor the internet even more threatening to free speech.

7. Those Who Could Warn the Public or Stop the Plot Are All-In..

The threat is further heightened because those with the power to warn the public and demand the government stop silencing Americans’ speech are complicit. The corrupt media’s coverage, or lack thereof, of Matt Taibbi and Michael Shellenberger’s congressional testimony on the Censorship Complex proves this point. So too does the Democrats’ pathetic performance during the hearings, when they exposed themselves as enemies of free speech.

With Democrats, the legacy media, and many Republicans all in on the government’s efforts to censor misinformation and disinformation, it will be extremely difficult for the public to recognize the risks free speech faces—especially since those trying to sound the alarm have already been falsely branded purveyors of disinformation.

A chance remains, though, that enough ordinary Americans will hear the message before it is too late and demand Congress close the Censorship-Industrial Complex.

TOPICS: Business/Economy; Constitution/Conservatism; Crime/Corruption; Front Page News; Government; News/Current Events; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: ai; anarchotyranny; bidenregime; bidenvoters; bigtech; bigtechcensorship; censorship; civilrights; free; freedom; freespeech; governmentcontrol; greatreset; socialmedia; speech; spying; tyranny; worthlessjoe

1 posted on 03/21/2023 7:50:05 AM PDT by george76
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To: george76

It’s not “our government.” It’s a group of elected and appointed representatives and DeepStaters in our Constitutional form of government who are traitors with their attempts to destroy the freedom of speech. And they are aided and abetted by other traitors in business, big tech, and the enemedia.

2 posted on 03/21/2023 7:59:50 AM PDT by Carl Vehse
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To: george76

Amendment I

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.

ESAD commies

3 posted on 03/21/2023 8:01:07 AM PDT by broken_clock (Go Trump! Still praying.)
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To: Carl Vehse

Time is running out. Once this happens, there will be almost no chance of turning back.

4 posted on 03/21/2023 8:04:43 AM PDT by dforest (All of America has derailed.)
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To: broken_clock

They do not care about the Constitution. It is a worthless piece of paper in their minds.

5 posted on 03/21/2023 8:05:51 AM PDT by dforest (All of America has derailed.)
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To: george76

We could significantly damage the tech companies economically by embracing open source and ditching them.

Not that anybody is interested in doing something like that though.

6 posted on 03/21/2023 8:12:30 AM PDT by ProgressingAmerica (The historians must be stopped. They're destroying everything.)
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To: dforest
"They do not care about the Constitution. It is a worthless piece of paper in their minds."

No, it is a "living document", as they say. That means they can reinterpret, alter, or destroy some or all of it. I know, I've actually had conversations with liberals where they say this.

7 posted on 03/21/2023 8:22:34 AM PDT by Sicon ("All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others." - G. Orwell>)
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To: george76

Everyone involved in these 500+ contracts or grants needs to be permanently censored.

8 posted on 03/21/2023 8:29:14 AM PDT by ConservativeInPA ("How did you go bankrupt?" Bill asked. "Two ways," Mike said. "Gradually and then suddenly." )
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To: Carl Vehse

Uh oh. You’ve just been flagged as a conspiracy theorist. So in for a penny, in for a pound. Go ahead. Go to town.

9 posted on 03/21/2023 8:36:02 AM PDT by Eleutheria5 (Every Goliath has his David. )
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To: Sicon

No, it is a “living document”, as they say

And according to their understanding

let’s it fart...


crap all over US citizens !!!

10 posted on 03/21/2023 9:36:17 AM PDT by cuz1961 (USCGR Veteran )
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To: Carl Vehse
It’s not “our government.” It’s a group of elected and appointed representatives and DeepStaters in our Constitutional form of government who are traitors with their attempts to destroy the freedom of speech. And they are aided and abetted by other traitors in business, big tech, and the enemedia.


11 posted on 03/21/2023 10:43:40 AM PDT by The Truth Will Make You Free (o )
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To: ConservativeInPA

Anyone involved in this is selling out their country and fellow citizens to communist slavery, they are evil and selfish and deserve much worse than to be censored. Much much worse

12 posted on 03/21/2023 11:12:35 AM PDT by boxlunch (Red State governors, kick the fednazis OUT of red states! BTW, We are a REPUBLIC not a democracy!)
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To: george76
The tenacity of our benevolent communist rulers in imposing more & more tyranny is unmatched by those seeking (supposedly) to protect our Constitutional freedoms & liberties...

Stinking communist bastards continue to run roughshod over the servile & indolent Aamerican sheeple...

There are no limits to tyranny...
There is no end in sight!

13 posted on 03/21/2023 12:09:29 PM PDT by SuperLuminal (Where is the next Sam Adams when we so desperately need him)
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To: Sicon

They only say “living document” to cover their asses. They no longer respect or really acknowledge the Constitution.

14 posted on 03/21/2023 12:13:07 PM PDT by dforest (All of America has derailed.)
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To: george76

George Orwell was a prophet.


15 posted on 03/21/2023 12:18:04 PM PDT by M Kehoe (Quid Pro Joe and the Ho have got to go)
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To: Sicon

“No, it is a “living document”, as they say. That means they can reinterpret, alter, or destroy some or all of it.”

True. Clarence Thomas is only current Supreme Court Justice who adheres to the words of the Constitution as written, and interpreting them based on definitions in place at the time the Constitution was written. All of the others partially or fully subscribe to the “living document” philosophy which is taught at the nation’s leading law schools.

Republican presidents are as guilty as Democrats in nominating attorneys from elitist progressive institutions to the federal judiciary. Most Supreme Court justices are graduates of Ivy League law schools. This likely explains why “conservative” appointees to the Supreme Court often veer to the left once they have a lifetime appointment.

16 posted on 03/21/2023 7:23:27 PM PDT by Soul of the South (The past is gone and cannot be changed. Tomorrow can be a better day if we work on it.)
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To: Carl Vehse; george76

"The telescreen recieved and transmitted simultaneously. Any sound Winston made, above the level of a very low whisper, would be picked up by it; moreover, so long as he remained within the field of vision which the metal plaque commanded, he could be seen as well as heard.
There was of course no way of knowing whether you were being watched at any given moment.
How often, or on what system, the Thought Police plugged in on any individual wire was guesswork.
It was even conceivable that they watched everybody all the time. But at any rate they could plug in your wire whenever they wanted to.
You had to live - did live, from habit that became instinct - in the assumption that every sound you made was overheard, and, except in darkness, every movement scrutinized.


-1984, Book 1, Chapter One, George Orwell
17 posted on 03/22/2023 5:55:44 AM PDT by Elsie (Heck is where people, who don't believe in Gosh, think they are not going...)
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