It is difficult to overstate the helpless feeling that results when one finally realizes that the most powerful arbiters of communications in the history of the world are not platforms, but publishers, intent on ensuring that only news and information they approve of ever sees the light of day.
The most egregious refutations of the approved narrative are banned entirely, left to sputter away on backwater alternative platforms that lack the capacity to virally connect with a mass audience. But reputable journals are victims of more refined tactics, equally frustrating, equally unfair. One of the most reputable of these reputable victims is City Journal, one of the finest policy magazines in America.
Earlier this month City Journal exposed the force behind Facebook’s “fact checking” operation, a nonprofit organization named “Science Feedback.” These people are not objective fact checkers in any sense of the word. They are a partisan gang of fact blockers, created to filter out of mainstream online content anything that violates their ideological and political preferences.
City Journal author John Tierney describes how his report on the harms to children from wearing masks was labeled by Facebook’s “fact checkers” as “Partly False Information. Checked by independent fact-checkers.” But as Tierney describes, there is solid evidence to back up his claim that wearing masks can cause oxygen deprivation, especially in children and athletes.
Tierney is not alone. The “fact checkers” have labeled two peer reviewed studies conducted in Germany on this topic “unsupported,” and for their justification, turned to pronouncements from the American Academy of Pediatrics, a professional association which advocates for progressive causes.
The shameful behavior of these “fact checkers” is well documented. As Tierney reminds us, when back in October President Trump said that COVID vaccines were going to be available within a month or two, “Science Feedback” slapped an “inaccurate” label on his prediction, saying the vaccine wasn’t going to arrive sooner than mid-2021. The reality? Within days after the November election, the vaccines were announced as ready, and shots began in December.
How do you fight corporations that have lined up, with all their hundreds of billions of dollars, to hire “fact blockers,” implacable and blatantly biased? City Journal appealed to Facebook and to Science Feedback, and neither changed their position despite being given compelling evidence to support Tierney’s claims.
Ultimately what these propagandists do is spread the truth when the truth is convenient, and lies when lies are convenient. Their mission is to promote whatever reality they’re paid to promote, and to suppress and smear anything that challenges that reality.
“Science Feedback” is focused on two things, heath and climate, which are the “emergencies” being hyped to take away individual freedom and national sovereignty. Organizations like “Science Feedback” are the reason why whenever millions of people hear cliches like “science based policy,” or “trust the science,” or the infantile “Science Says…” they turn away in disgust.
The ironic bottom line result of organizations like “Science Feedback” is to discredit “science” as a politicized fraud, adding it to the list of institutions for which reasonable people have lost all trust.
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