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November 1, 2022

DHS Colluded With Facebook, Twitter to Fight ‘Disinformation’

Thanks to leaked documents, we’re now able to see the lengths to which Team Biden will go to censor inconvenient speech.

We had a hunch it was too good to be true.

Back in May, we celebrated the apparent demise of Joe Biden’s Orwellian Ministry of Truth. You remember — the Department of Homeland Security’s brand-new Disinformation Governance Board, which was supposed to be led by 33-year-old Mary Poppins impersonator and “Disinformation Czar” Nina Jankowicz. Happily, those plans went up in smoke only three weeks after Alejandro Mayorkas’s announcement, when the disgraced Jankowicz, who herself had been found to be a purveyor of disinformation, turned in her resignation.

Silly us.

As it turns out, Joe Biden and his Department of Homeland Security have been no less busy usurping the citizenry’s First Amendment rights, albeit on the sly. As The Intercept reports: “The Department of Homeland Security is quietly broadening its efforts to curb speech it considers dangerous, an investigation by The Intercept has found. Years of internal DHS memos, emails, and documents — obtained via leaks and an ongoing lawsuit, as well as public documents — illustrate an expansive effort by the agency to influence tech platforms.”

What platforms might these be? Facebook and Twitter, among others.

Among the topics around which the government sought to censor and control speech: “the origins of the COVID-19 pandemic and the efficacy of COVID-19 vaccines, racial justice, U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan, and the nature of U.S. support to Ukraine.”

Each of the above topics can be seen as representing a notable weakness of Democrat policy, a weakness that might not hold up well in the face of continued scrutiny and criticism.

In its efforts to help this Democrat administration suppress the speech of its political opponents, Facebook went so far as to build a special portal through which those with a government or law enforcement email address can directly flag content on Facebook or Instagram and request that it be suppressed.

Big Brotherish, huh? All it takes for government actors to trample on the First Amendment rights of American citizens is an official email address? And the portal is apparently still active. At the time of publishing, The Intercept’s Ken Klippenstein and Lee Fang report that the “content request system” (facebook.com/xtakedowns/login) hasn’t been taken down. And why would it? This is how the Left operates. When its arguments continuously get trounced in the marketplace of ideas, it resorts to the last refuge of Democrat scoundrels: censorship.

Not surprisingly, neither DHS nor Facebook’s parent company, Meta, responded to The Intercept’s request for comment. As for the election-interfering FBI, which colluded with Facebook to stop the distribution of the New York Post’s election-changing blockbuster about Hunter Biden’s abandoned laptop and the influence-peddling corruption detailed therein, it declined to comment.

Ultimately, disinformation is in the eye of the beholder. “How disinformation is defined by the government has not been clearly articulated,” write The Intercept’s Ken Klippenstein and Lee Fang, “and the inherently subjective nature of what constitutes disinformation provides a broad opening for DHS officials to make politically motivated determinations about what constitutes dangerous speech.”

Indeed, that’s the real danger of government involvement. Nina Jankowicz, for example, who but for a clumsy rollout might today be making decisions about what speech gets censored, believed that the Steele dossier was legit and Hunter Biden’s laptop was disinformation.

Have the Democrats gone too far this time? Perhaps so. “If a foreign authoritarian government sent these messages,” noted Nadine Strossen, the former president of the American Civil Liberties Union, “there is no doubt we would call it censorship.”

When you’ve lost the ACLU…

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