Facebook, Facebook, Facebook. They just keep doubling down. That’s what you can do when you’re among the most powerful companies in the history of Western Civilization.
This is the company whose CEO, Mark Zuckerberg, who still owns 29.3 percent of Facebook, bought the 2020 election. The man who personally spent about $400 million dollars to selectively target voters in Democrat rich precincts in swing states, is going to make sure the man who he paid to defeat has no chance to bellyache about it. Let’s remember that Mark Zuckerberg, whose net worth is last estimated at $119 billion, can spend $400 million the way most of us can buy a cup of coffee.
There’s so much wrong with this it’s hard to know where to begin. Perhaps bullet points will suffice:
(1) Zuckerberg’s expenditure epitomizes the new reality: Democrats have all the money. They have the unions, they have big media, they have big tech, they have the woke corporations, and they have the billionaires.
(2) What Zuckerberg did violated existing campaign laws by creating unequal access to voting opportunities. It also was ethically suspect insofar as politically motivated private money was funding public agencies entrusted with overseeing voting.
(3) Trump did not incite the riots that took place on January 6th. By the standard Facebook used to judge Trump’s actions, so many politicians are guilty, most of them Democrats, that none of them should have Facebook accounts anymore.
(4) In any event Facebook is not suspending Trump for another two years based on his actions of January 6th. They are keeping Trump off Facebook because they don’t want him to use their platform to influence the 2022 elections.
(5) Facebook may be a “private company,” but they enjoy the legal immunity of a communications platform. With that immunity comes the responsibility to operate as a public forum, accepting all content that does not violate the First Amendment.
(6) The reason Facebook relies on the highly subjective “danger to the public” rationale for banning Trump from their platform is because it is the only way they can claim he is not entitled to First Amendment protections. It is wholly unjustified.
Ultimately what companies like Facebook are doing is sowing the seeds of Balkanization. They are driving more and more people onto alternative platforms. Trump himself is rumored to have a new social media platform he intends to launch soon as a competitor to Facebook.
Facebook has made the political calculation that their monopoly status will remain in spite of increasingly robust alternative platforms emerging. In this they may be right. It is time to force Facebook in court to either adhere to the obligations attendant to their Section 230 immunity, or lose those protections.
Zuckerberg’s come a long way since he built a website where his buddies could post photos of women and rate them on their sex appeal. That was only 16 years ago! In interviews, Zuckerberg claims his earlier “Facemash” had nothing to do with “Facebook.” Anyone who’s so much as smelled a line of code knows that’s BS. Change the name, expand the scope. Same architecture, same sordid founding user base. It’s fine if Zuckerberg wanted to be a crass undergraduate with a “prank” website that morphed into a zillion dollar company, but where’s the outrage from the predictable quarters? Where are the cancel culture police?
And now, this young man buys national elections, and decides who can speak, and who must be silent.
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