The formidable Caity Johnstone has again sent down a couple of extremely timely and insightful pieces. Please read and help circulate them as widely as you can. This is now an absolute necessity.
Biden has announced plans to roll out new domestic terrorism laws in the wake of the Capitol Hill riot.
“Mr. Biden has said he plans to make a priority of passing a law against domestic terrorism, and he has been urged to create a White House post overseeing the fight against ideologically inspired violent extremists and increasing funding to combat them,” Wall Street Journal reports.
Did you know that Biden has often boasted about being the original author of the US Patriot Act?
The first draft of the civil rights-eroding USA PATRIOT Act was magically introduced one week after the 9/11 attacks. Legislators later admitted that they hadn’t even had time to read through the hundreds of pages of the history-shaping bill before passing it the next month, yet somehow its authors were able to gather all the necessary information and write the whole entire thing in a week.
This was because most of the work had already been done. CNET reported the following back in 2008:
“Months before the Oklahoma City bombing took place, [then-Senator Joe] Biden introduced another bill called the Omnibus Counterterrorism Act of 1995. It previewed the 2001 Patriot Act by allowing secret evidence to be used in prosecutions, expanding the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act and wiretap laws, creating a new federal crime of ‘terrorism’ that could be invoked based on political beliefs, permitting the U.S. military to be used in civilian law enforcement, and allowing permanent detention of non-U.S. citizens without judicial review. The Center for National Security Studies said the bill would erode ‘constitutional and statutory due process protections’ and would ‘authorize the Justice Department to pick and choose crimes to investigate and prosecute based on political beliefs and associations.’
Biden’s bill was never put to a vote, but after 9/11 then-Attorney General John Ashcroft reportedly credited his bill with the foundations of the USA PATRIOT Act.
“Civil libertarians were opposed to it,” Biden said in 2002 of his bill. “Right after 1994, and you can ask the attorney general this, because I got a call when he introduced the Patriot Act. He said, ‘Joe, I’m introducing the act basically as you wrote it in 1994.’”
The post 9/11 era is over. The single greatest national security threat right now is our internal division. The threat of domestic terrorism. The polarization that threatens our democracy. If we don't reconnect our two Americas, the threats will not have to come from the outside. pic.twitter.com/ADgGcf7qEo
— Rep. Elissa Slotkin (@RepSlotkin) January 8, 2021
“The post 9/11 era is over,” Slotkin tweeted while sharing a clip of her appearance. “The single greatest national security threat right now is our internal division. The threat of domestic terrorism. The polarization that threatens our democracy. If we don’t reconnect our two Americas, the threats will not have to come from the outside.”
“Before Congress, Elissa worked for the CIA and the Pentagon and helped destabilize the Middle East during the Bush and Obama admins,” tweeted journalist Whitney Webb in response. “What she says here is essentially an open announcement that the US has moved from the ‘War on [foreign] terror’ to the ‘War on domestic terror’.”
And it wasn’t just Trump. Accounts are vanishing quickly, including some popular Trump supporter accounts. I myself have lost hundreds of followers on Twitter in the last few hours, and I’ve seen people saying they lost a lot more.
It also wasn’t just Trump supporters; leftist accounts are getting suspended too. The online left is hopefully learning that cheering for Twitter “banning fascists” irrationally assumes that (A) their purges are only banning fascists and (B) they are limiting their bans to your personal definition of fascists. There is no basis whatsoever for either of these assumptions.
Wow! These people hold rallies protesting the unjust evictions of poor people during the Covid. We have been telling you. They will come for the Progressives as well. That is why we must protect our freedom of speech and our civil liberties. pic.twitter.com/IXVW86HjL6
— Craig Pasta Jardula (@yopasta) January 9, 2021
This is all happening just in time for the Biden administration, about which critics had already been voicing grave concerns regarding the future of internet censorship.
The censorship of a political faction at the hands of a few liberal Silicon Valley billionaires will do the exact opposite of eliminating right-wing paranoia and conspiracy theories, and everyone knows it. You’re not trying to make things better, you’re trying to make them worse. You’re not trying to restore peace and order, you’re trying to force a confrontation so your political enemies can be crushed. You’re accelerationist.
A Venn diagram of people who support the latest social media purges and people who secretly hope Trumpers freak out and attempt a violent uprising would look like the Japanese flag.
"Domestic terrorists"; "coup"; "attacks on our democracy"; welcome to the latest iteration of the War on Terror.
The Boutique Left, in the blink of an eye, discards all talk of healthcare & stimulus checks to help lay the groundwork and usher in a new age of authoritarianism. pic.twitter.com/qwMwe8WtjZ
— Richard Medhurst 🇸🇾🇵🇸 (@richimedhurst) January 8, 2021
The correct response to a huge section of the citizenry doubting an electoral system we’ve known for years is garbage would have been more transparency, not shoving the process through and silencing people who voice doubts and making that entire faction more paranoid and crazy.
Supporting the censorship of online speech is to support the authority of monopolistic tech oligarchs to exert more and more global control over human communication. Regardless of your attitude toward whoever happens to be getting deplatformed today, supporting this is suicidal.
Patriot Act 2, Censorship, And Other Notes From The Edge Of The Narrative Matrix
Patriot Act 2.0 will be rolled out with a lot of mindless bleating about white supremacists and fighting fascism, and the actual policies and laws put into place will have virtually nothing to do with any of those things. They will be geared at preventing the revolutionary changes that need to be pushed for in the United States by the American people.
Listening to US politicians and pundits the last few years you’d assume it’s been raining actual 9/11s and Pearl Harbors in America 24/7.
“Our democracy has been attacked!” screamed the political establishment that just forced you to choose between Donald Trump and Democrat Donald Trump for president.
Saying there’s been an attack on American democracy is like saying there’s been an attack on Kazakhstan’s fjords.
Liberals learned the words “coup” and “insurrection” like five seconds ago and now they are academic experts on both of these things.
The narrative managers’ ability to move liberals and progressives from “Defund the police” to “MOAR POLICING” in just a few months was even more impressive than their ability to move them from “Believe Women” and #MeToo to “Tara Reade is a lying grifter”.
Here’s how politicians, media and government could eliminate conspiracy theories if they really want to:
- Stop lying all the time
- Stop killing people
- Stop promoting conspiracy theories (eg Russiagate)
- Stop doing evil things in secret
- End government opacity
- Stop conspiring
To support the censorship of online speech is to support the authority of monopolistic tech oligarchs to exert more and more global control over human communication. Regardless of your attitude toward whoever happens to be getting deplatformed today, supporting this is self-destructive.
I don’t share people’s magical fascination with the word “tolerance”. As far as I can tell it’s an empty and irrelevant concept. This isn’t about tolerance, it’s about trusting government-tied tech oligarchs to regulate speech around the world on monopolistic speech platforms.
The future of humanity depends on our ability to wake up a critical mass of people to how fucked things really are, and if speech which doesn’t conform to establishment orthodoxy is censored on the platforms the mainstream crowd use to share ideas, that will become impossible.
“We need to stop fascism so let’s give massive sweeping powers to an elite alliance of unelected authoritarians.”
“Well I’m a leftist and I haven’t been banned on social media.”
That’s because the left is politically impotent in our society. Unless this is just a hobby for you, at some point you should plan on the left becoming a threat to the oligarchs and warmongers. What do you think happens then?
Do you really think if the left actually becomes a threat to the status quo the Neera Tandens and Rachel Maddows aren’t going to suddenly discover a reason why you’re dangerous and need to be censored? The only way to be fine with censorship is to plan on never challenging power.
Tech billionaires are not on your side, and neither are the government agencies and plutocratic media leaning on them to implement censorship. Those institutions don’t give a shit about silencing the right, they want to implement measures to silence you. The left is being censored already, but it hasn’t seen anything yet.
“As a leftist I’m fine with censorship because it’s not like the leftist revolution is going to be organized on social media.”
Social media isn’t for organizing the leftist revolution you bonehead, it’s for creating more leftists. It’s for reaching the mainstream.
A leftist’s first and foremost job is to create more leftists. If the left becomes a potent political force, all the censorship protocols they’ve been putting into place these last few years will be used to stop it from infecting the mainstream herd. You shouldn’t want this.
Trying to stop fascism by making it invisible is like trying to avert a charging bull by putting your hands over your eyes.
If you want to stop the rise of fascism you need to change. Change your sick society. Profoundly. Not just cover up the manifestations of that sickness. Compartmentalizing and covering up the problem instead of pouring money and resources into creating a healthy society which addresses the underlying problems is the most shitlib thing ever.
Saying you are free to leave these monopolistic platforms and go to some fringe website no one uses is the same as saying you are free to dig a hole and yell into it. There is no magical free market solution to this problem, because the problem is that imperial power structures are deliberately herding people onto monopolistic speech platforms that they can then censor under the guise of terms of service.
All of the most critical factors determining what people’s lives are like are invisible now. Most people don’t even know they’re happening. Oligarchy. Neoliberalism. Imperialism. Used to be you knew who the king was, and he’d openly do anything he wanted. Now that’s all kept carefully hidden.
Why is it kept hidden now? Well there are a lot of factors, but mostly it’s because the rank-and-file public discovered guillotines. Ever since then your rulers are out of necessity kept hidden from you, and so is their totalitarianism.
The US government is the most evil and destructive force in the world. Not Trump. The US government. This will not change in any meaningful way when Trump leaves. Massive amounts of manipulation have been poured into keeping you from seeing this.
Thanks for reading! The best way to get around the internet censors and make sure you see the stuff I publish is to subscribe to the mailing list for at my website or on Substack, which will get you an email notification for everything I publish. My work is entirely reader-supported, so if you enjoyed this piece please consider sharing it around, liking me on Facebook, following my antics on Twitter, throwing some money into my tip jar on Patreon or Paypal, purchasing some of my sweet merchandise, buying my books Rogue Nation: Psychonautical Adventures With Caitlin Johnstone and Woke: A Field Guide for Utopia Preppers. For more info on who I am, where I stand, and what I’m trying to do with this platform, click here. Everyone, racist platforms excluded, has my permission to republish, use or translate any part of this work (or anything else I’ve written) in any way they like free of charge.
This is a dispatch from our ongoing series by Caitlin Johnstone
^5000The arch-hypocritical corporate media are our worst enemies.
They shamelessly block truth, peace, equality, and true democracy.
They are shills for those who murder the environment with impunity.
It's time you embrace YOUR media, the citizens' press.
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NOTE : ALL CAPTIONS AND PULL QUOTES BY THE EDITORS, NOT THE AUTHORS.