Trump Threatens To “Shut Down” Social Media Companies

donald_trump_president-elect_portrait_croppedI have a column criticizing Twitterfor its labelling of tweets from President Donald Trump as presumptively false. Twitter has yielded to demands in Congress to censor and regulate political speech.  In signature style, however, Trump promptly bulldozed the high ground in the controversy by threatening to close down social media companies through retaliatory regulations.  The First Amendment was written to bar that very authority in either the President or Congress or both.  The President cannot be the putative victim of private censorship while claiming the authority to engage in government censorship.  In fairness however Democratic leaders have threatened such a regulatory crackdown in the past. The coverage on Trump’s threat telling omits the fact that Democratic leaders and presidential candidates have made the same threat in the past.

Trump went on Twitter to warn social media giants that the federal government could “strongly regulate” or “close them down” if they continue to “silence conservative voices.” 

Some of us who have long criticized Twitter, Facebook and other companies for bias and speech regulation. However, such private speech regulation presents a difficult “Little Brother” problem under our Constitution, which is focused on state action.  Ironically, Trump is suggesting a more chilling prospect of using government power to retaliate against companies due to their bias.  That is neither nuanced nor difficult. It would constitute a core violation of the First Amendment.

The President tweeted “Republicans feel that Social Media Platforms totally silence conservatives voices. We will strongly regulate, or close them down, before we can ever allow this to happen. We saw what they attempted to do, and failed, in 2016. We can’t let a more sophisticated version of that happen again.”

Again, I have been a long critic of these companies and their policies. However, this threat is chilling and wrong.  It is a circular call for retaliatory regulation to deter the viewpoint bias.  

What is particularly bizarre is that the President was winning in this fight.  Truth will come out.  Many commentators, even some opposed to Trump, raised concerns over the action.  This is precisely what Justice Louis Brandeis meant in his concurring opinion in Whitney v. California (1927) when he declared “If there be time to expose through discussion the falsehood and fallacies, to avert the evil by the process of education, the remedy to be applied is more speech, not enforced silence.”

The President has long struggled with the core values of the free press and free speech, even when those values work to his own advantage. His original objections against Twitter were well-founded and compelling.  He then assumed the very same abusive position as the company in seeking to limit or regulate speech. The difference is that he was speaking as the head of the Executive Branch. That is precisely what the First Amendment was designed to protect against.  That is not the “Little Brother” problem. That is the “Big Brother problem.”

 

131 thoughts on “Trump Threatens To “Shut Down” Social Media Companies”

  1. Turley is in an unenviable situation. He’s a democrat that hasn’t remained in lockstep with the treason of the modern left, and they will never forgive him for it. They don’t care what his reasoning is, they don’t care if he’s right or wrong, all the care about is that he didn’t submit to their agenda. He might as well shave his head and join the KKK because for the rest of his life the democrats are going to treat him as if he did. The only slim chance he has of getting back in their good graces is to start molesting children and participating in satanic rituals in DC. And even then they’ll just tolerate him until the opening comes to knife him in the back.

    There is no middle ground anymore. You are either for the democrats or you are against them. Turley is trying to maintain a position that no longer exists.

    1. Jimmy, you sound like the commenter known as Crazed Idiot. It’s like you revel in celebrating your stupidity. And you’re inviting others to see how stupid they can get.

        1. Mespo, Jimmy is inviting you to get stupid with him. And you’re answering the call. Like, “Yeah, sure, I’m stupid too. Jimmy is on my wavelength”.

    2. I feel like Jimmy overstates the nature of the Democrat party as such. The rank and file are not in control, not sure they have been in a long time, and the leadership are mostly just evil power-lusters who do not serve the Democrat citizens well.

      I also don’t really call them the left, they are mostly a certain faction of the international plutocracy whose interests revolve around globalism. They have rivals on “the left” and on “the right” but their biggest rival? Is the enduring form and legal status of the nation-state itself. Hence globalism, which tries to dissolve it.

      A lot of the people who call themselves “Democrat party” are no more globalist than I am. I had a nice conversation just the other day with a lady who was a “bernie bro” and we had many points of agreement, and a few pleasant chuckles over Big Don’s foibles. And Biden’s.

      There was no sense of hatred and rage that one gets from some of the Democratic party cheerleaders here. I meet a lot of regular folks like this out here in the Rust belt, who are in their own true selves, simple, good hearted Americans. I’m a Republican, and a Trump supporter, but I refuse to let the sabotage and excesses of Nancy Pelosi and her ilk spoil my good will towards my fellow Americans.

  2. “Trump Threatens To “Shut Down”…Companies”

    – Professor Turley
    ______________

    Wow! That’s exactly what “Crazy Abe” Lincoln did.
    ________________________________________

    America is in a condition of hysteria, incoherence, chaos, anarchy and rebellion.

    President Abraham Lincoln seized power, neutralized the legislative and judicial branches and ruled by executive order and proclamation to “Save the Union.”

    President Donald Trump must now seize power, neutralize the legislative and judicial branches and rule by executive order and proclamation to “Save the Republic.”
    _____________________________

    Let’s get this party started!

  3. I know Trump is pissed off, and he has a right to be. But I doubt he has the constitutional authority to do this. He’ll have to find another way to combat this. These people on the left have no use for the first amendment.

  4. Shame on you Jonathan to call it censorship to point out blatant lies. You are an ignorant man. You are the worst example of an elitist academic.

    1. David

      It would be helpful if Trump’s people could develop a signal to use whenever he’s about to tell the truth.

    2. Another of the wumao army shows up to pull for Twitter, which is in the pocket of the CCP.
      This time by presuming to “shame” Turley. LOL. he is actually the best kind of academic who is NOT elitist at all.

  5. I’m Trump The 8th I am!
    Donald the 8th I am I am.
    I got married to the widow next door.
    She’s been married seven times before, and..
    Every one was a Donald!
    It wouldn’t be a Willie or a Fred.
    For there ain’t no Trump like Don Old.
    Donald the 8th I am!

  6. Appeals Court Previews Negative Reception To ‘Free Speech’ Claims By Trump Regarding Social Media

    A ruling that emerged from a powerful federal appeals court in Washington on Wednesday morning is strong evidence that the courts are unlikely to be receptive to President Donald Trump’s claims that he and his political supporters are being silenced by social media platforms like Twitter.

    The U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit resoundingly rejected a lawsuit the conservative legal organization Freedom Watch and right-wing provocateur Laura Loomer filed in 2018 against four major technology companies: Google, Facebook, Twitter, and Apple.

    The unanimous court decision from a three-judge panel runs to only four pages, but is dismissive of a wide range of legal claims some conservatives and liberals have leveled at social media firms in recent months.

    The appeals court judges said that despite the companies’ power, they cannot violate the First Amendment because it only regulates governments, not the private sector.

    “Freedom Watch’s First Amendment claim fails because it does not adequately allege that the Platforms can violate the First Amendment. In general, the First Amendment ‘prohibits only governmental abridgment of speech,’” the court said.

    “Freedom Watch contends that, because the Platforms provide an important forum for speech, they are engaged in state action. But…‘a private entity who provides a forum for speech is not transformed by that fact alone into a state actor….’ Freedom Watch fails to point to additional facts indicating that these Platforms are engaged in state action and thus fails to state a viable First Amendment claim,” the judges added.

    The court decision was released as Trump mounted an intense flurry of attacks against Twitter, after the social-media messaging firm took the unprecedented step of attaching fact-checks to some of his tweets about potential fraud in vote-by-mail programs being rolled out to address the coronavirus pandemic.

    Edited From: “Appeals Court Ruling Suggests Little Legal Traction For Trump’s Anti-Twitter Campaign”

    Today’s Politico

    1. Oh gee, what are the odds.
      “The court decision was released as Trump mounted an intense flurry of attacks against Twitter…”
      Laughing.

      1. Shadki, did I tell you your comments sound like Crazed Idiot’s?

        It’s that same, aggressively stupid attitude that assumes everyone else is stupid. That reflects the rightwing media bubble.

  7. To Paul Schulte (because the “reply” feature on this blog isn’t working): why isn’t Scarborough under arrest if he really confessed? It was sarcasm.

    1. Natacha – the reply may be shut off for a good reason. It is working fine for me. 🙂 I do not know why McCabe is not under arrest.

    2. Democrat supporters get a pass, you know that. Then you idiots have to root around for years and can’t find any crimes on the other side. So you make some up. Still, no one believes you.
      Then, eventually, after years of you making fools of yourselves, a rogue element or two exposes your closely guarded secrets from the top of your sick baby murdering cabal.
      Declassified.
      You idiots search for your non existent conspiracy theory crimes for years trying desperately to cover your self inflicted low self esteem problems, but heck, the far more open possibility suggested by your opposition is immediately dismissed by your sick twisted power players, whom you had better pray never get brought to justice. I’m sure molech gets many plenary indulgences from you.

  8. What amazes me is the oft-repeated claim by Trumpsters that when their hero lies, falsely accuses critics of something or otherwise does something outrageous to distract from his failures, that this is part of a clever, brilliant scheme to troll us. No, it isn’t.

    Trump is just a dumb loudmouth arrogant narcissist who does these things to distract, but there is no strategery (a Bush 2 word) behind what he does.

    1. What amazes me is how Natch shows up to lick Chinese Communist boots and do their bidding here every day

      and she probably doesn’t even know it

      1. Kurtz, shut up with that ‘Chinese communist boot-licking’ crap!

        This has to be the most labored and stilted talking points campaign to ever come down the pike.

        Here we have a parade of Trumpers, who’ve been kissing up to Putin these last 4 years, obsessed with linking liberals to communist China.

        To begin with, China is ‘communist’ in name only. In reality their’s is a system of crony capitalism where families connected to top leaders are essentially aristocrats who get first pickings on any profitable enterprise. It’s a system Chairman Mao would scarcely recognize (not that he was any hero).

        This convoluted thrust to link American liberals to the Chinese is a well-documented effort by Trump to divert attention from his failed leadership. It is nothing more than that.

        1. Seth Paint Chips Judy July in May Miss October Captain Pike Warner is right. He is not a communist boot-licking’

          Hairy ass, big cock, smelly armpits….yes, but not boot-licking

          1. Paint Chips is the code name for Commenter Estovir whose constantly writing about grinders and restrooms.

        2. Clinton really made it profitable selling off everything to the Chinese, especially for the Clinton Family and slush funds.
          Yours have been doing it since then, and with Russia.
          The Cox Report is one place to start your slow, stunted, shortbus escapade to being informed.
          You’re welcome.

        3. Seth, you’re ignorant of Chinese communism, and obtuse

          I will give you, again, an excellent recent paper with sources to primary materials which makes reality clear if you care to read it.

          I will address three points you raised that are incorrect.

          a) Mao was and still is a hero to the Chinese communist party,. And in fact to many Chinese. they do not share our usual opinions of him. I am not speculating about this, I have abundant social contacts to regular northern Chinese people, the “lao bai xing,” and the most certainly do regard Mao as a founder of their modern state and a champion of their people, against foreigners and Japanese etc. Xi and other party leadership do invoke his memory, and draw on his fame, to try and buttress their own legitimacy. It’s hard for westerners to understand this dynamic, but get yourself some “cultural diversity” and try and figure it out. If I could, probably you can too.

          b) the system of communism with chinese characteristics: it is communism in the sense that it was established and lead by the worker’s class, historically, and cadres trained in Marxism. The one party system was doctrinaire Marxist Leninism and it still is. The use of market mechanisms to set prices inside the state– and the use of banks to allocate capital– is a retrenchment from the obvious failings of command economies that history has revealed. However, Lenin himself had a “new economic plan” along the same lines, and the current system draws strength on thousands of years of Chinese market activity that existed long before Karl Marx or even the industrial age. They are not mere “crony capitalists” they actually have a system now that is working pretty well for the nation as a whole. And they have the right to call it communism whether you agree or not, and they certainly do still call it that.

          c) The current generation of leadership in the CCP often is related to an earlier generation, but it’s simplistic and naive to call it an aristocracy. This is the sort of lame scolding that substitutes for a nuanced understanding of the PRC. I expect that from simple minded propagandists, but the funny thing here is that you are calling me a propagandist even thought it’s you who is parrotting the oversimplifications.

          Now, i have tried to explain why the Democrat party leadership has been in bed with the CCP leadership since the days of Jiang Zemin and Bill Clinton. on the American side, it has been about offshoring and outsourcing American industry, a policy of financialization, that has made the Democrat kingmakers of Wall Street very rich and very close to the CCP bosses. That has spread from simple things like Nike shoes to more complicated things like apple iphones and software and Silicon valley. To the point at which today Twitter presumes to scold our POTUS even as it is banning Chinese mainland dissident accounts at the behest of the CCP wumao army of complainers on Twitter. I linked ten times to an article from Taiwan news proving the point yesterday.

          And all you could say in reply was this. Sad!

          1. I am not pulling the notion that the CCP is still “communist” out of my backside.
            You people who think so should read this article which draws on primary source materials
            The scholar Tanner Greer writes:

            https://www.tabletmag.com/sections/news/articles/china-plans-global-order

            The People’s Republic of China now commands the world’s largest population, its second-largest economy, and a military-industrial complex and high technology sector second only to America’s. Behind this great mass of men and material stands Xi Jinping, General Secretary of the Communist Party of China. Xi, supported by the class of Chinese communists who rule along with him, believe it is their role to guide China—and the rest of the world—into a new age. China’s military expansion, massive economic investment in controlling global trade routes, and escalating information operations all point to a struggle for dominance that puts it in direct conflict with the West.

            In their internal speeches and planning documents, China’s communist party leaders describe their perceptions of this struggle quite openly: As Beijing sees it, China’s success depends on discrediting the tenets of liberal capitalism so that notions like individual freedom and constitutional democracy come to be seen as the relics of an obsolete system. To understand how China’s leaders intend to accomplish this and fully appreciate their designs for the future, we must first come to terms with how they understand themselves.

            “The very purpose of the [Chinese Communist] Party in leading the people in revolution and development,” Xi Jinping explained to an audience of party cadres in 2012, “is to make the people prosperous, the country strong, and rejuvenate the Chinese nation.” This “rejuvenation” of the Chinese people, which might also be translated as their “revival” or “restoration,” reflects a specific understanding of Chinese history and China’s proper place in world affairs. Chinese of all political persuasions are acutely aware that China was once the standard setter in advanced civilization, the center point around which the economies and cultures of much of the Earth revolved. For many Chinese nationalists, the last two centuries have been a painful aberration from this natural order. The party labels the years that China was exploited by imperialists and divided by warlords “the century of humiliation,” a century that ended only when they took control. The century that followed—which comes to its end 29 years from now, in 2049—is different. This will be the century that makes China great again.

            “The rejuvenation of the Chinese people” has been officially endorsed as the “historical mission” of the Communist Party since 1987 but it is an old dream whose origins predate the party’s founding. In the early 20th century Chinese intellectuals searched for a way to “save China,” modernize it, and restore it to the preeminence that the world’s largest civilization deserved. What made the later communists different from other Chinese modernizers was the solution they endorsed. As their sloganeering went: “Only socialism can save China.” The slogan is still in use, though Xi and other 21st-century Communists add a second clause: “Only socialism can save China, and only socialism can develop China.”

            Listening to Chinese communists champion their socialist bona fides in one of China’s money-hungry metropoles summons a special sort of cognitive dissonance; distant electric billboards gleam through industrial smog while your conversation partner parrots Marxist cant. But this dissonance cannot be too different from, say, what an outsider might have felt listening to Franklin Delano Roosevelt address a Jefferson-Jackson dinner in 1936. If Jefferson’s writings are your scripture, Roosevelt’s titanic interventions in American life are heresy. Yet Roosevelt thought of himself as the heir to Jefferson and Jackson. He earnestly believed that his program was an adaptation of Jeffersonian ideals and principles to a 20th-century political economy. Roosevelt’s politics were a natural—albeit historically contingent—evolution of America’s liberal tradition, so the politics of the Chinese communists are an outgrowth of their Leninist identity.

        4. An article from Tanner Greer a scholar who cites to primary source materials:

          The People’s Republic of China now commands the world’s largest population, its second-largest economy, and a military-industrial complex and high technology sector second only to America’s. Behind this great mass of men and material stands Xi Jinping, General Secretary of the Communist Party of China. Xi, supported by the class of Chinese communists who rule along with him, believe it is their role to guide China—and the rest of the world—into a new age. China’s military expansion, massive economic investment in controlling global trade routes, and escalating information operations all point to a struggle for dominance that puts it in direct conflict with the West.

          In their internal speeches and planning documents, China’s communist party leaders describe their perceptions of this struggle quite openly: As Beijing sees it, China’s success depends on discrediting the tenets of liberal capitalism so that notions like individual freedom and constitutional democracy come to be seen as the relics of an obsolete system. To understand how China’s leaders intend to accomplish this and fully appreciate their designs for the future, we must first come to terms with how they understand themselves.

          “The very purpose of the [Chinese Communist] Party in leading the people in revolution and development,” Xi Jinping explained to an audience of party cadres in 2012, “is to make the people prosperous, the country strong, and rejuvenate the Chinese nation.” This “rejuvenation” of the Chinese people, which might also be translated as their “revival” or “restoration,” reflects a specific understanding of Chinese history and China’s proper place in world affairs. Chinese of all political persuasions are acutely aware that China was once the standard setter in advanced civilization, the center point around which the economies and cultures of much of the Earth revolved. For many Chinese nationalists, the last two centuries have been a painful aberration from this natural order. The party labels the years that China was exploited by imperialists and divided by warlords “the century of humiliation,” a century that ended only when they took control. The century that followed—which comes to its end 29 years from now, in 2049—is different. This will be the century that makes China great again.

          “The rejuvenation of the Chinese people” has been officially endorsed as the “historical mission” of the Communist Party since 1987 but it is an old dream whose origins predate the party’s founding. In the early 20th century Chinese intellectuals searched for a way to “save China,” modernize it, and restore it to the preeminence that the world’s largest civilization deserved. What made the later communists different from other Chinese modernizers was the solution they endorsed. As their sloganeering went: “Only socialism can save China.” The slogan is still in use, though Xi and other 21st-century Communists add a second clause: “Only socialism can save China, and only socialism can develop China.”

          Listening to Chinese communists champion their socialist bona fides in one of China’s money-hungry metropoles summons a special sort of cognitive dissonance; distant electric billboards gleam through industrial smog while your conversation partner parrots Marxist cant. But this dissonance cannot be too different from, say, what an outsider might have felt listening to Franklin Delano Roosevelt address a Jefferson-Jackson dinner in 1936. If Jefferson’s writings are your scripture, Roosevelt’s titanic interventions in American life are heresy. Yet Roosevelt thought of himself as the heir to Jefferson and Jackson. He earnestly believed that his program was an adaptation of Jeffersonian ideals and principles to a 20th-century political economy. Roosevelt’s politics were a natural—albeit historically contingent—evolution of America’s liberal tradition, so the politics of the Chinese communists are an outgrowth of their Leninist identity.

          https://www.tabletmag.com/sections/news/articles/china-plans-global-order

          SETH, LEARN SOMETHING BEYOND YOUR CURRENT HORIZONS

          1. Kurtz, your quote does not say what you claim it does. China is no longer a communist country. It’s a crony capitalist semi-police state that is kicking our ass through competition. Our current president is too stupid to do anything about it except throw up tariffs – which cost Americans – and then buckle when he gets flattered.

            1. Deng Xiaoping compared capitalism to a bird that is allowed to sing in a cage. Don’t kill the bird, it sings a pretty song. Let it sing, but keep in in the cage.

              The understanding of the efficiencies of capitalism in allocating capital and setting prices through market mechanisms, is understood by Chinese communists.

              “crony capitalism” is a western made up phrase that implies corrupt relationships between government officials and businesses. however, that sort of corruption is not new, it is very old, and existed long before capitalism or industrialization.

              and in China it is both an ongoing them over thousands of years of political thinking going back to the tensions between two schools of thought, one called Confucianism, and the other called “legalism.” \

              it is a theme in many civil wars, rebellions, and revolutions

              it is also what put over a million petty, corrupt officials in jail under Xi
              https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-china-37748241

              corruption then, can’t be easily uprooted, in any system, because the PRC is still plenty corrupt, even after that
              one wonders to what extent Xi was just locking up his petty rivals, of course

              anyhow, in Chinese culture, social relationships are cemented with gifts of money, most of all. what would be gauche for us, is required for them. hongbao.

              the bottom line is, they are a one party state, that party is the CCP, it is a communist party, and the name for their ideological variant was named “Communism with Chinese characteristics.” that was Mao’s turn of phrase.

              you guys can keep arguing about this point but you are not arguing with me, who is not a communist, you are arguing with those who truly are communists. you think you understand their system better than them? that’s funny. well, i have given you some materials to help inform yourselves more, so feel free to ignore them or not.

              Tanner Greer is a very smart scholar on the subject, and you can pull a lot of his work off the internet. It’s very very good. You might even find it in some publications you approve of. I will let you bother to figure out which ones, or not.

              1. There are no Chinese communists remaining in power. There are no communes – workers are on their own – and the level of freedom is night and day from Maoist China. You have to be blind to not see this. These are positive signs and the main threat from China is their economic power, not ideology, proxy wars, or seeding revolutions.

                1. The party is a Marxist-Leninist Communist party by their own claim. Deny it all you like, the fact stands.

                  As for freedom, I would not know. Freedom is both a matter of social understanding and social perception. Freedom in our language relates to a range of individual autonomy that is important to us as Americans and Westerners. Freedom in the sense of national liberty from foreign domination is a whole other creature. In both contexts, freedom is relative to perceptions of past and current social conditions. Actually a lot of Chinese may have felt very happy and free under Mao compared to life under the Japanese or even under some petty warlord. And Xi’s current strength may be in that he is by our standards, a tyrant, which in the perception of the average person living North of the Yellow River, may mean that he is esteemed as a champion of the Chinese nation vis a vis foreigners. Whether they like him in Hong Kong is a whole other subject.

                  Just like Russians who had a fond memory of Stalin, a lot of Chinese had a fond memory of Mao. I am familiar with the horrors of the Famine and failure of the Great leap forward, Frank Dikotter’s work on that, etc. But i am also familiar with what many ordinary Chinese people from the mainland believe. Their thinking and interpretations of their recent history are far more different from yours and mine, than yours and mine are different in the first place. I am just relating what I have learned.

                  These observations are neither here nor there to my key point. You are arguing with things that are secondary, anyways. The primary concern i have been articulating the past day, is that the CCP is engaged in information warfare, and economic warfare, and they have successfully gained huge influence over Twitter. Which is an American company, supposedly, not a Chinese one.

                  So in my interpretation of “freedom” as range not only of individual autonomy, but a matter of freedom from foreign domination, I feel somewhat unfree when i see how the CCP is manipulating the American social media, even as they are scolding our leader Trump, whom you obviously hate. I suspect that you and other haters of Trump would stoop to collaborating with the CCP to get rid of him.

                  And that’s what you were accusing Trump of doing for years, collaborating with Russian foreigners, in spite of the pittance of actual socalled help to support this faulty narrative. But apparently you have believed your own narrative so much that you are keen to embrace one you perceive will be a powerful foreign patron of your own, Comrade Xi!

    2. The election was 2016, and you’re still claiming the same thing.
      He won, you lost.
      You said he wouldn’t but he did.
      No strategy sounds correct. Congratulations.
      I’m laughing.
      I’m taking notes…oh wait I’ll just use your scribbling from 2016.

  9. Turley claims “The President cannot be the putative victim of private censorship while claiming the authority to engage in government censorship. In fairness however Democratic leaders have threatened such a regulatory crackdown in the past.” The second sentence there links to a Buzzfeed story, “Democrats Running For President Say Social Media Companies Have A White Nationalist Problem. Some Think Regulation Should Be The Answer.”

    Just to be clear, Trump’s statement “We will strongly regulate, or close [social media platforms] down…” doesn’t say what regulation he has in mind, so there’s no way to know if Democratic candidates proposals constitute “such a regulatory crackdown.” The article didn’t give even a hint that any of those candidates were suggesting that social media platforms be “closed down.” Nor does all regulation — such as Warren’s plan for breaking up big tech monopolies like Facebook — constitute “government censorship.”

  10. Follow-up On False Twitter Claim:

    France Bans Use Of Hydroxycloroquine As Treatment For Covid-19

    The French government is revoking a decree that had allowed hospitals to prescribe hydroxychloroquine in some COVID-19 cases, saying there is no proof that it helps patients – and citing data that shows it could cause heart problems and other health risks.

    “This molecule must not be prescribed for patients affected by COVID-19,” the Ministry of Solidarity and Health said as it announced the change.

    The move to bar hospitals from prescribing the drug for coronavirus patients comes two days after the World Health Organization halted clinical trials of hydroxychloroquine as a treatment for COVID-19. The WHO cited a study published in The Lancet, which had found no benefit from the drug and reported a higher mortality rate for hospitalized patients and “an increased frequency of ventricular arrhythmias.”

    France’s health ministry had approved hydroxychloroquine for emergency prescriptions in COVID-19 cases in late March.

    As France 24 reports, that’s when French researcher Didier Raoult, who has been an insistent proponent of hydroxychloroquine, said he had successfully treated COVID-19 patients using the controversial drug in combination with azithromycin. But the health ministry says recent studies show the treatment can produce “cardiac toxicity, particularly in combination with azithromycin.”

    Edited From: “France Bans Use Of Hydroxycloroquine In Covid-19 Cases”

    Today’s NPR

    1. politicized medicine cuts both ways these days. sad

      Didier Raolt criticized the recent publication’s data and methods in the Lancet and so now the government bans what has been working well on his patients. tant pis!

    2. FALSE CLAIM EXAMPLE:

      Donald J. Trump
      @realDonaldTrump
      ·
      Mar 21
      HYDROXYCHLOROQUINE & AZITHROMYCIN, taken together, have a real chance to be one of the biggest game changers in the history of medicine. The FDA has moved mountains – Thank You! Hopefully they will BOTH (H works better with A, International Journal of Antimicrobial Agents)…..

        1. Absurd, you’re allegedly a researcher. Are you finding support from the Science community on Hydroxycloroquine?

          1. You’d have to do an extensive literature review of the various studies and read them carefully with an eye to study design. You’re in over your head. If you weren’t a knucklehead, you’d STFU.

              1. Trump knows what he’s doing. That’s why he’s a billionaire and you’re a partisan peon.

          2. there is some support
            https://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-8309337/Zinc-hydroxychloroquine-effective-COVID-19-patients-study.html

            the medical establishment in India and Costa rica are using HCQ + widely as prophylaxis

            there has been peer review of the various anti-HCQ studies done and here is an overview of the criticisms:

            a- the “Studies” are not double blind, placebo controlled experiments. VA study for example was just a paper review

            b- often the HCQ is adminstered late, once the covid symptoms are severe. this is like saying the air bags dont work after the crash. of course not. the therapy advocated was always early stage prophylaxis

            c- often there is no observation in the study of the use or nonuse of azithromycin and zinc in combination with HCQ, which was always the recommended therapy, not hcq alone

            d- there are other experimental design and data problems. See Didier Raoult’s comments https://www.thelocal.fr/20200526/french-doctor-defiant-on-hydroxychloroquine-despite-study

            there is a lot of politicization of medicine going on most of all at Lancet which for the first time in its history has published editorials about who should be an elected leader and who should not, as if that were their subject in the first place. it has only discredit them as obviously no longer a neutral publication

              1. your friend Seth asked. your rude reply shows that you value neither my reply nor his question.

        2. Wait till they lock in single payer and national healthcare and destroy all the insurance companies.(401k’s plummet) Next will be non profit pharmaceutical companies. (401k’s drop again).
          Then they’ll tell you which treatments you are allowed, in a much bigger and more insidious way. Those treatments won’t be available, much like now !

          The death cult gets more and more dangerous and those in power that can oppose it effectively had better step up.

    3. Nothing is put the Lancet, and all you fools followed mr 2.2 million dead flawed computer cv19 model…UK.
      When remdesivir costs $4,600.00 a dose, the liberals suddenly lose all hate of pharmaceutical corporations, because TDS.
      Get the 39 (13+26) grand for jamming a pipe down the throats and killing patients, also liberal supported. They stopped whining though when TDS no longer applied and Trumps move made ventilators ubiquitous.

      If you want to die follow the libs on this. They hope you die to feed their own BDS.
      Remember, they claim Trump murdered the fishtank chemical drinker.

  11. Competition is always the solution to every problem in a free society which enjoys free enterprise.

    If effective competition is not extant or possible, the related industry, social media in this case, must be consolidated and operated as a state-regulated monopoly, incorporating all constitutional rights and freedoms.

  12. Important issue. This is really amazing, those disclaimers or fact checking notices implied and attached to his tweets. It is absolutely unconstitutional and ridiculous. Fact check, is a doctrine, that if implied, then, every issue shall become subjected to such check so called. Every proposition, or statement, can be subjected ( genuinely, objectively) to such kind of censorship. But, the cost, is too high. Ideas must flow. Must find ways to the ” stock market” of free speech. Otherwise, not only chilling effect is generated, but, it would bar development of new insights and as a result, contribution of all sorts, to the spiritual and actual, development of one society.

    On the other hand, Trump himself, needs to serve as example. Recently, in the second circuit, he has been ordered by federal court, to stop the blocking of users, trying to comment, in his tweeter account ( simply disliked their views).

    Here to the ruling mentioned:

    https://www.politico.com/f/?id=0000016b-d745-d768-ab6b-d7ff25ce0001

    Thanks

  13. Trump, Trump..bo bump!
    Banana fanna fo mump.
    Fee fi Moe tump.
    Trump!

    If the first two twiiters are ever the same..
    You drop them both and spray the name..
    Like Bob, fob, seeking f so Rob..
    And Mary, Mary,. Is contrary..
    That’s the only ruler that beats up Harry!

  14. Climate More Favorable Than Ever For Bots And Trolls

    Four years after Russia’s expansive influence operation, which touched the feeds of more than 100 million users on Facebook alone, Americans’ usage of social media has only increased — and drastically so, as a result of the pandemic.

    More people are more online right now than at any point in human history, and experts say the Internet has gotten only more flooded since 2016 with bad information.

    “It’s far, far worse in terms of quantity,” says Steven Brill, a former journalist and now the CEO of NewsGuard, a browser extension that helps users discern the quality of what they’re reading online.

    In April, NewsGuard published a list of 36 websites that were peddling hoaxes related to the coronavirus. Just a month later, that list had ballooned to more than 200.

    A study out last week from researchers at Carnegie Mellon University found that nearly half of the Twitter accounts spreading messages about the coronavirus pandemic are likely bots — automated accounts designed to make it appear that more humans are acting a certain way than truly are.

    And in 2020, as in 2016, it’s only a matter of time before the focus shifts back away from the coronavirus and to the presidential election.

    Edited From: “Social Media Usage Is At An All-Time High: That Could Mean A Nightmare For Democracy ”

    Today’s NPR

    1. REGARDING ABOVE:

      A certain commenter is suddenly very prominent on these threads; demanding our attention for all the wrong reasons. Their name is overtly ethnic but I question if they really ‘are’ that ethnicity. Typically their comments are overtly cynical and stupid; which is typical of Russian trolls. It’s like their entire thrust is negative in every respect.

      1. That was a very positive comment Seth, thank you for bringing us all up.
        I’ll pass that along to Putin who will have more flexibility after the 2020 election.

    2. Seth, i thought i heard a version of this story the other day too, not sure where
      in that one someone said there is a state actor who is “taking the “Russian strategy and running with it” at an exponential rate: the People’s Republic of China

      here the NYT runs an exceptional article criticizing China for one such operation.. maybe NYT will get active on this issue?

      https://www.nytimes.com/2020/04/22/us/politics/coronavirus-china-disinformation.html

      I’ve posted another article about this plenty already today, from taiwan, about twitter

      this is information warfare plain and simple

  15. JT says “I have a column today criticizing Twitter for its labelling of tweets from President Donald Trump as presumptively false.”

    But Turley doesn’t link to that column, and I don’t see one “criticizing Twitter for its labelling of tweets from President Donald Trump as presumptively false.”

    To be clear, Twitter attached a warning to tweets like this:
    twitter.com/realDonaldTrump/status/1265255835124539392

    The warning said: “! Get the facts about mail-in ballots,” and if you click on it, it leads to a Twitter release with statements like:
    “- Trump falsely claimed that mail-in ballots would lead to “a Rigged Election.” However, fact-checkers say there is no evidence that mail-in ballots are linked to voter fraud.
    – Trump falsely claimed that California will send mail-in ballots to “anyone living in the state, no matter who they are or how they got there.” In fact, only registered voters will receive ballots.
    – Five states already vote entirely by mail and all states offer some form of mail-in absentee voting, according to NBC News.”

    They’re saying that Trump’s claims are false because there is either explicit evidence of them being false, or no evidence of them being correct.

    Trump’s false and/or misleading claims harm the country, especially when they’re about things like voting or health. Twitter has no obligation to stand by silently while he misleads people. Shame on Turley that he’s criticizing Twitter’s attempt to deal with harmful misinformation.

    Justice Brandeis, in Whitney v The People of the State of California:
    “no danger flowing from speech can be deemed clear and present, unless the incidence of the evil apprehended is so imminent that it may befall before there is opportunity for full discussion. If there be time to expose through discussion the falsehood and fallacies, to avert the evil by the processes of education, the remedy to be applied is more speech, not enforced silence.”

    Twitter isn’t bound by Whitney, as Twitter isn’t a government entity. But Twitter is nonetheless doing what Justice Brandeis advocates: remedying some of Trump’s false and misleading claims by applying more speech.

    1. Twitter allows the CCP “wumao army” to run wild on Twitter antagonizing Americans and spreading lies

      Twitter has hired a CCP agent to run its AI censorship routines. Twitter is a CCP asset. In this information war, people must pick sides. USA or CCP? Identify who you want to be the boss. Xi fanboys have been busy today whining about Trump– Comrade XI is pleased!

      https://www.taiwannews.com.tw/en/news/3940206

      TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — A White House petition was created last week after news broke that the Twitter accounts of Chinese dissidents started to disappear after a controversial Chinese-American artificial intelligence (AI) expert was hired to serve on the company’s board.

      On May 11, Twitter announced in a press release that it was hiring Li Fei-Fei (李飛飛), an AI expert and former vice president of Google, to its board of directors as a “new independent director” with immediate effect. Li quit Google in 2018 after a trail of leaked internal emails revealed that she appeared to be more concerned about the public relations damage to Google’s image if news broke about the company’s work on Project Maven than the ethical issues raised by over 3,000 Google employees.

      Project Maven is a U.S. Department of Defense AI project that seeks to use the technology to help military drones select targets from video footage.

      During her tenure at Google, there is no public record of Li objecting to the controversial Project Dragonfly, which was meant to be a search engine that would suit China’s censorship rules, as she opened an AI research facility in Beijing.

      When she took the helm of Google’s new AI center in Beijing, Li was quoted in Chinese media as using the CCP slogan “stay true to our founding mission” and said that “China has awakened.” In addition, Li allegedly has ties to a student association that is affiliated with the Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP’s) United Front, according to Radio Free Asia.

      Caption reads: “Li Fei-fei returns to the motherland to take charge of the Google AI Chinese team: Stay true to our founding mission, China has awakened.” (Screenshot of Weibo post)

      A week after Li joined Twitter, a Chinese writer who goes by the handle Caijinglengyan (財經冷眼), discovered that four of his accounts were simultaneously deleted on May 18. He did not receive an explanation until May 23, when he was told his accounts had been taken down for violating Twitter’s rules against posting identical content on duplicate accounts.

      He countered that he had only posted content on one of the accounts and used the other to retweet the original post. He pointed out that Twitter does not have a policy precluding a person from having more than one account.

      The writer stated that he believes the real reason for his account cancellations was that, on May 17, he tweeted that Twitter’s new board member has a “red background.” In the post, he alleged that she is a member of a student association affiliated with the CCP’s United Front and has close ties with “Second Generation” and “Third-Generation Reds.”

      Caijinglengyan claimed that many other Twitter accounts used by Chinese dissidents were suddenly suspended without notice. After he contacted them, he found that they had also criticized Li or started commenting about Li just before their accounts were banned.

      The writer listed @beacon__news (灯塔爆料社) and @kevinheaven9 (Calvin看美国) as other Twitter users who found their Twitter accounts suddenly shut down. He claimed that one Twitter user simply wrote “Li Fei-Fei is coming, I have to run,” and soon found that both his primary account and secondary account had been suspended.

      French-based Chinese dissident Wang Longmeng (王龍蒙) wrote that Twitter’s ban on those who criticized Li and exposed her background “was undoubtedly related to Li Feifei’s appointment as a director, because criticism and negative information were banned, which is Beijing characteristic,” reported Liberty Times. He believes that Twitter was quickly “dyed red” after Li took charge.

      On May 20, a petition was created on the White House website titled “Call for a thorough investigation on Twitter’s violation of freedom of speech.” The creator of the petition wrote that Twitter is suppressing criticism of the CCP and suspending dissident accounts while pro-Beijing accounts remain unscathed.

      The petition listed May 18 as a date when many “anti-CCP” Twitter users found their accounts permanently suspended. The author of the document pointed out Li’s involvement with Project Maven and alleged that she was engaged in extensive military-technical programs while running Google’s AI center in Beijing.

      The document then alleged that Li continues to have “close ties with top leaders of the CCP.” The petition closed by calling on the U.S. government to investigate “Twitter’s violation of freedom of speech, and on Dr. FeiFei Li’s collaborations with the CCP, a threat to national security.”

      YOU KNOW GUYS, IN A WAY i DONT BLAME XI EITHER. HE IS A WARLORD OF A HISTORIC EMPIRE. IT IS HIS JOB TO MAKE WAR ON HIS RIVALS.

      I DO BLAME AMERICANS WHO ARE NOT ON OUR AMERICAN TEAM. YOU REVEAL NAIVETE!

    2. But of course Trump statement isn’t false at all as Jimmy Carter found in his bipartisan 2005 report to Congress. Too bad Twitter’s 20-something anti-Trump “fact-fibbers” missed that one.

  16. The issue here is that Google, Twitter and Facebook are monopolies that control the socially important flows of information. The argument the there is a 1st Amendment question therefore does not apply. An organization cannot take monopoly control of a vital function and then use its position to deny, degrade or control a constitutional right — in this case, free speech. This is well established and I’m surprised the author is unaware of it.

    In law, the president cannot deprive private companies of their 1st amendment rights, but if they are monopolies, he can certainly regulate them and break them up. And in the case of Google, FB, and Twitter, he should.

  17. Here you go again, buying into the Fox News narrative that tries to normalize Trump, by repeating his comments about being some poor “conservative” that the “Dems, Libs and the Left” are trying to squelch. Trump is not a conservative. He is a malignant narcissist, a chronic, habitual liar, a racist, xenophobe, misogynist and is not very bright, either. Conservatives are patriots and do not support Trump. If you don’t believe me, read the writings of Bill Kristol, George F. Will and Michael Steele, former head of the RNC.

    Trump’s endless harping that Ms. Kansutis was having an affair with and was murdered by Joe Scarborough, with no proof and despite all evidence to the contrary, has nothing to do with conservatism or left vs. right politics. It has to do with malignant narcissism–retaliation against the host of a broadcast who said things Trumpy Bear didn’t like. His claim isn’t just some random offensive comment, either, like gratuitous profanity or sexual innuendo, which even Turley doesn’t allow. This baseless allegation that Ms. Kansutis was having an affair with Scarborough and was murdered because of it causes emotional distress to her widower, and is not motivated by anything other than pure arrogance and misuse of the platform of the presidency stolen by Trump to attack his critics with lies. He couldn’t care less about the hurt he is imposing on the family of the lady who died.

    Turley talks about “fairness” to Trump–that Democrats have made similar threats against free speech. Tell us, Turley what Democratic President ever made a false accusation of an illicit affair and resulting murder against a media figure who criticized him? What Democratic President ever recommended use of an untested and unproven drug to be used to treat a viral illness against medical advice or encouraged people to disregard public health safety guidelines in the face of a pandemic? There isn’t anything remotely comparable to Trump. Thank God!

    1. “Trump’s endless harping that Ms. Kansutis was having an affair with and was murdered by Joe Scarborough, with no proof and despite all evidence to the contrary, has nothing to do with conservatism or left vs. right politics. ”

      THAT MUCH IS CORRECT

      it is has to do with this: we are in an information war with the PRC

      and Twitter is one of their pieces on the chessboard

      Trump is trolling with this story. Trolling the media, trolling you, and trolling the censorship teams at Twitter.

      It’s sad for the widower that he has to hear about it, but this is a bigger game than just one person’s feelings.

      it’s a happy day that the US has a clever and strong hand at the helm. You don’t feel the joy, but without him, one day your or your children will taste the CCP whip. Just as freedom loving people in Hong Kong today are tasting the tear gas and pepper spray. The CCP is a Devil and you eager volunteers for Xi’s cause would make a bargain with what you don’t understand.

      https://www.taiwannews.com.tw/en/news/3940206

      TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — A White House petition was created last week after news broke that the Twitter accounts of Chinese dissidents started to disappear after a controversial Chinese-American artificial intelligence (AI) expert was hired to serve on the company’s board.

      On May 11, Twitter announced in a press release that it was hiring Li Fei-Fei (李飛飛), an AI expert and former vice president of Google, to its board of directors as a “new independent director” with immediate effect. Li quit Google in 2018 after a trail of leaked internal emails revealed that she appeared to be more concerned about the public relations damage to Google’s image if news broke about the company’s work on Project Maven than the ethical issues raised by over 3,000 Google employees.

      Project Maven is a U.S. Department of Defense AI project that seeks to use the technology to help military drones select targets from video footage.

      During her tenure at Google, there is no public record of Li objecting to the controversial Project Dragonfly, which was meant to be a search engine that would suit China’s censorship rules, as she opened an AI research facility in Beijing.

      When she took the helm of Google’s new AI center in Beijing, Li was quoted in Chinese media as using the CCP slogan “stay true to our founding mission” and said that “China has awakened.” In addition, Li allegedly has ties to a student association that is affiliated with the Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP’s) United Front, according to Radio Free Asia.

      Caption reads: “Li Fei-fei returns to the motherland to take charge of the Google AI Chinese team: Stay true to our founding mission, China has awakened.” (Screenshot of Weibo post)

      A week after Li joined Twitter, a Chinese writer who goes by the handle Caijinglengyan (財經冷眼), discovered that four of his accounts were simultaneously deleted on May 18. He did not receive an explanation until May 23, when he was told his accounts had been taken down for violating Twitter’s rules against posting identical content on duplicate accounts.

      He countered that he had only posted content on one of the accounts and used the other to retweet the original post. He pointed out that Twitter does not have a policy precluding a person from having more than one account.

      The writer stated that he believes the real reason for his account cancellations was that, on May 17, he tweeted that Twitter’s new board member has a “red background.” In the post, he alleged that she is a member of a student association affiliated with the CCP’s United Front and has close ties with “Second Generation” and “Third-Generation Reds.”

      Caijinglengyan claimed that many other Twitter accounts used by Chinese dissidents were suddenly suspended without notice. After he contacted them, he found that they had also criticized Li or started commenting about Li just before their accounts were banned.

      The writer listed @beacon__news (灯塔爆料社) and @kevinheaven9 (Calvin看美国) as other Twitter users who found their Twitter accounts suddenly shut down. He claimed that one Twitter user simply wrote “Li Fei-Fei is coming, I have to run,” and soon found that both his primary account and secondary account had been suspended.

      French-based Chinese dissident Wang Longmeng (王龍蒙) wrote that Twitter’s ban on those who criticized Li and exposed her background “was undoubtedly related to Li Feifei’s appointment as a director, because criticism and negative information were banned, which is Beijing characteristic,” reported Liberty Times. He believes that Twitter was quickly “dyed red” after Li took charge.

      On May 20, a petition was created on the White House website titled “Call for a thorough investigation on Twitter’s violation of freedom of speech.” The creator of the petition wrote that Twitter is suppressing criticism of the CCP and suspending dissident accounts while pro-Beijing accounts remain unscathed.

      The petition listed May 18 as a date when many “anti-CCP” Twitter users found their accounts permanently suspended. The author of the document pointed out Li’s involvement with Project Maven and alleged that she was engaged in extensive military-technical programs while running Google’s AI center in Beijing.

      The document then alleged that Li continues to have “close ties with top leaders of the CCP.” The petition closed by calling on the U.S. government to investigate “Twitter’s violation of freedom of speech, and on Dr. FeiFei Li’s collaborations with the CCP, a threat to national security.”

    2. If you don’t believe me, read the writings of Bill Kristol, George F. Will and Michael Steele, former head of the RNC.

      They’re on the payroll of Jeff Bezos and Pierre Omidyar. Why not cut out the middleman?

    3. When did Trump ever say that? (Hint, if he was ‘endlessly harping’, there should be multiple examples).

    4. Natacha – Scarborough admitted having an affair and killing or having her killed on Don Imus in 2003. So, who is in the wrong here?

    5. Obama, a democrat tapped the media’s phone lines, then put some in prison.
      I guess you’re just so insane with TDS you forgot.
      Obama also murdered American citizens. Obama, democrat.
      You’re laughable.
      You’re lousy at trolling, because you happen to be serious.
      Laughing.

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