I’m regaining a little dexterity in my hand, even though I still have a splinted finger, so let’s see how this goes…
I’ve ranted before about the insidiousness of licensure. In effect, it reduces a right to a permission that can be denied at the government’s whim. It’s usually introduced under the rationale that it’s necessary to ensure “order” and / or “public safety.” And regardless of any evidence that might emerge subsequently to challenge that “necessity,” the licensing regime never, ever goes away. Power, jobs, and graft have their own logic, don’t y’know.
Right after right has been reduced to a permission in this manner. Most Americans have accepted it as “just one of those things.” The flacksters of “American democracy” tell us that as long as we have the right to say whatever we think and vote for the candidates we prefer, we can always change such things to suit our preferences…and that “that’s what freedom is all about.” But as of today, the process has finally reached the First Amendment’s guarantee of freedom of expression:
Two Congressional Democrats sent letters of demand to thirteen prominent cable and streaming services, including Amazon, Roku, Hulu and Apple streaming services attempting to shred what is left of free speech….
The final demand comes with an ominous tone;
“Are you planning to continue carrying Fox News, Newsmax, and OANN on U-verse, DirecTV, and AT&T TV both now and beyond any contract renewal date? If so, why?”
Behind those “demand letters” stands the implied threat of regulatory constriction of the threatened streaming services. In this fashion, the Democrats hope to extend Washington’s stranglehold over traditional broadcasting onto the Internet. Their rationale: combatting the spread of “disinformation and extremism.” The probable mechanism would be the use of the Commerce Clause to impose federal control on the Net, with all that implies.
Feeling a chill yet?
The fear I’d harbored was that the late, unlamented Fairness Doctrine would return. This is plainly worse: an attempt to censor streamers if they carry disfavored content. It begins with intimidating inquiries such as the ones cited here; it will end with draconian regulation. I should have been more paranoid, not less.
Consider: the “disinformation” the Democrats are most determined to suppress concerns the blatant theft of the 2020 presidential election. They don’t want any further propagation of the evidence for that theft. A fair number of Republicans would unhesitatingly support them in that goal. It’s all about “order” and “public safety.” Can’t have the peasants marching on the palace with torches and pitchforks, now can we? Too may rice bowls are at stake!
Your vote has already been neutered. Your right to keep and bear arms, as heavily restricted as it already is, is likely to be restricted even further. Now your access to channels through which to receive and further disseminate important information – information the Usurper Regime doesn’t want you to have – is under attack.
We have well and truly arrived at the last hill.