Ron Paul Posts Criticism of Censorship on Social Media Shortly Before Facebook Blocks Him

We have been discussing the chilling crackdown on free speech that has been building for years in the United States. This effort has accelerated in the aftermath of the Capitol riot including the shutdown sites like Parler.  Now former Texas congressman Ron Paul, 85, has been blocked from using his Facebook page for unspecified violations of “community standards.” Paul’s last posting was linked to an article on the “shocking” increase of censorship on social media. Facebook then proceeded to block him under the same undefined “community standards” policy.

Paul, a libertarian leader and former presidential candidate, has been an outspoken critics of foreign wars and an advocate for civil liberties for decades.  He wrote:

“With no explanation other than ‘repeatedly going against our community standards,’ @Facebook has blocked me from managing my page. Never have we received notice of violating community standards in the past and nowhere is the offending post identified.”

His son is Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) tweeted, “Facebook now considers advocating for liberty to be sedition. Where will it end?”

Even before the riot, Democrats were calling for blacklists and retaliation against anyone deemed to be “complicit” with the Trump Administration. We have been discussing the rising threats against Trump supporters, lawyers, and officials in recent weeks from Democratic members are calling for blacklists to the Lincoln Project leading a a national effort to harass and abuse any lawyers representing the Republican party or President Trump. Others are calling for banning those “complicit” from college campuses while still others are demanding a “Truth and Reconciliation Commission” to “hold Trump and his enablers accountable for the crimes they have committed.” Daily Beast editor-at-large Rick Wilson has added his own call for “humiliation,” “incarceration” and even ritualistic suicides for Trump supporters in an unhinged, vulgar column.

After the riots, the big tech companies moved to ban and block sites and individuals, including Parler which is the primary alternative to Twitter.  Also, a top Forbes editor Randall Lane warned any company that they will be investigated if they hire any former Trump officials.

The riots are being used as a license to rollback on free speech and retaliate against conservatives.  In the meantime, the silence of academics and many in the media is deafening. Many of those who have spoken for years about the dark period of McCarthyism and blacklisting are either supporting this censorship or remaining silent in the face of it. Now that conservatives are the targets, speech controls and blacklists appear understandable or even commendable.

The move against Paul, a long champion of free speech, shows how raw and comprehensive this crackdown has become. It shows how the threat to free speech has changed. It is like having a state media without state control. These companies are moving in unison but not necessarily with direct collusion. The riot was immediately taken as a green light to move against a huge variety of sites and individuals.  As we have seen in Europe, such censorship becomes an insatiable appetite for greater and greater speech control.  Even Germany’s Angela Merkel (who has a long history of anti-free speech actions) has criticized Twitter’s actions as inimical to free speech.  Yet, most law professors and media figures in the United States remain silent.

216 thoughts on “Ron Paul Posts Criticism of Censorship on Social Media Shortly Before Facebook Blocks Him”

  1. Boycott their advertisers. Everyone. Make it clear to these guys and to everyone you can that you are done buying anything from their sponsors. They don’t want us. We will spend our money on everybody but you and your financial backers.

  2. Pingback: Auribus Arrectis
  3. Free Speech Champion Turley..

    Happy To Host Q’anon Conspiracies..

    But Mainstream Views Deleted From Threads

    Since the U.S. Capitol was invaded last week, these comment threads have been packed with far-right conspiracy theories; most notably the lie that Antifa infiltraters committed most of the violence. So many of these lies are posted by Turley’s blog troll, our main content provider. About 70% of the posts each day are from said troll who uses so many names that occasional readers can’t possibly keep track.

    The Professor uses said troll to keep these threads a safe place for Trump supporters. If not for the troll, liberal commenters would easily win any debates that might develop. That was always the case before the troll was hired. Therefore the troll is tasked with keeping these threads cluttered with stupid, repetitive nonsense appealing to the far-right yahoos Turley seeks to influence.

    Efforts to post intelligent views from mainstream media that conflict with Turley’s columns are met with hostility. The blog troll responds with perverted smears and distracting videos. But even these efforts can fall short when determined liberals keep posting. When it comes to stand-offs of this nature, the nominal moderater will simply delete the mainstream posts. ‘No one should ever try to counter-program the troll’, is the message one should take.

    Turley repeatedly features himself as a ‘champion of free speech’. But ‘free speech on this blog is accorded to only far-right commenters. Liberals will be harassed and smeared by Turley’s troll.

      1. If he’s not going to allow them, he shouldn’t let them be posted in the first place. But it’s silly to allow them and then require Darren to go through all of the comments to delete them.

        Whoever wants to can post under ever-changing names. There’s not much difference between that and anonymous posts.

        1. There are ways to handle the problem. Among the ways one can make each name and icon to have one operable email address. However, totally anonymous comments increase traffic. At the same time they decrease the value of the comment section.

  4. Rather than repealing Section 230, why not add a legal requirement that the providers may not restrict speech unless it falls within one of the judicially recognised exceptions to the 1st Amendment. This would put the providers on the same footing as the government when it comes to restricting speech.

  5. Congresswoman Lauren Boebert, who has bragged about her desire to carry a weapon on Capital Hill is currently in a standoff with Capitol Police at the newly installed metal detectors outside the doors to the House Chamber.

  6. https://blog.acton.org/archives/118139-rev-robert-sirico-reject-moral-relativism-over-the-capitol-riot.html

    Acton Institute’s Rev. Robert Sirico: Reject ‘moral relativism’ over the Capitol riot

    Rev. Robert Sirico, the president and co-founder of the Acton Institute, discussed how Christians should respond to the Capitol riot in a segment of EWTN’s The World Over dedicated to “political protests and lawlessness.”

    “Why are we seeing more frequent, violent political protests here in the U.S., and what needs to be done about this rioting?” host Raymond Arroyo asked his guests, Rev. Sirico and Catholic League President Bill Donohue.

    “We need to be outraged – morally outraged – by what we saw in D.C.” for “the same reason that we were morally outraged by what we saw in Seattle, and Portland, and Minneapolis,” said Rev. Sirico. “We can’t be tempted to a kind of moral relativism.”

    Vandalizing the Capitol is “not that much morally different than the violation a coffee shop, or a grocery store, or a retailer,” he said during the 22-minute-long segment. Both acts violate “private property, which is sacred.”

    Donohue regularly returned to the ways political figures on the far-Left sanitized this summer’s riots over the murder of George Floyd. Rev. Sirico said that political ideologues cannot give people of faith “permission to lower our own moral standards.”

    Instead, Rev. Sirico encouraged Christians to keep their eyes on the prize. “We’re trying to build a society that is virtuous, a society that is good, where there can be cooperation,” he said. “Are conservatives now going to” begin “promoting this kind of division – which is exactly what Marxism wants?” he asked.

    Rev. Sirico and Raymond Arroyo said that Christians must detoxify our personal relationships of politically motivated animosity. “I think we need to begin recognizing that there is a division in this country, and the only way out of it is for us to listen to each other and not throw things at each other,” said Rev. Sirico. “We need to begin a new conversation.” Raymond Arroyo agreed that Americans have to “get away from seeing everyone through a partisan lens.”

    Engaging in honest, robust dialogue with those who disagree with us will reveal how much we have in common. The ringleaders of riots consist of “a smaller group of irresponsible, ideological people who are bent on destruction, bent on violence, and those people need to be isolated and identified. Those thoughts, those principles, those politics need to be identified and [exorcised] from the body politic,” Rev. Sirico said.

    “We need to be ruthless with our principles and our ideas, and gentle with our neighbors.”

  7. NEW ENLIGHTENMENT CAMPS AN INVESTMENT IN THE PARTY’S FUTURE
    -Designed to meet needs of historically underserved communities and promote Unity

    WASHINGTON, DC – The Party today announced its new Enlightenment Camp program, which was adopted as part of the historic domestic terrorism legislation enacted by President Biden earlier this week. The Program is designed to develop the next generation of Party members, especially among underserved communities.

    Enlightenment Camps will be organized into Villages, which provide a welcoming environment to all youths, irrespective of the ill-conceived ideologies of their parents. Village members will receive training on core Party values, learn to identify and combat reactionary elements, and develop the skills needed to serve as the next generation of Party members.

    “Far too many of today’s youth remain trapped in traditional two-parent households where they are steeped in the dangerous remnants of our divisive heteronormative past. As a result, they have been underserved by the Party’s social services organizations,” said Audrey Lord, the newly-named Overgroupleader for the Enlightenment Camp program. “ Enlightenment Camps will level the playing field and allow them to reach their full potential as Party members,” Lord added.

    “My time at the founding Village opened my eyes to a world of possibilities. Our Gender Coach was amazing, and I had the opportunity to build new bonds that will help me serve the Party in the years to come,” said Justin Blanchette of Lee’s Summit, Missouri. “I now have the confidence to help my birth parents overcome their resistance to change and incorporate my learnings as part of their everyday lives. I’m really looking forward to returning to my Village in the Spring.”

    Graduates of the Enlightenment Camps program will be eligible to join the Youth Cadet Training Corps (YCTC), which is being established to train young adults to support domestic peacekeeping efforts being carried out by National Guard units nationwide.

    Blog moderators and readers will recognize that the foregoing is intended as satire to foster discussion on important issues relating to the role of the government, the rule of law, and free speech.

  8. Last week’s massive social media purges – starting with President Trump’s permanent ban from Twitter and other outlets – was shocking and chilling, particularly to those of us who value free expression and the free exchange of ideas. The justifications given for the silencing of wide swaths of public opinion made no sense and the process was anything but transparent. Nowhere in President Trump’s two “offending” Tweets, for example, was a call for violence expressed explicitly or implicitly. It was a classic example of sentence first, verdict later.

    Many Americans viewed this assault on social media accounts as a liberal or Democrat attack on conservatives and Republicans, but they are missing the point. The narrowing of allowable opinion in the virtual public square is no conspiracy against conservatives. As progressives like Glenn Greenwald have pointed out, this is a wider assault on any opinion that veers from the acceptable parameters of the mainstream elite, which is made up of both Democrats and Republicans.

    Yes, this is partly an attempt to erase the Trump movement from the pages of history, but it is also an attempt to silence any criticism of the emerging political consensus in the coming Biden era that may come from progressive or antiwar circles.

    After all, a look at Biden’s incoming “experts” shows that they will be the same failed neoconservative interventionists who gave us weekly kill lists, endless drone attacks and coups overseas, and even US government killing of American citizens abroad. Progressives who complain about this “back to the future” foreign policy are also sure to find their voices silenced.

    Those who continue to argue that the social media companies are purely private ventures acting independent of US government interests are ignoring reality. The corporatist merger of “private” US social media companies with US government foreign policy goals has a long history and is deeply steeped in the hyper-interventionism of the Obama/Biden era.

    “Big Tech” long ago partnered with the Obama/Biden/Clinton State Department to lend their tools to US “soft power” goals overseas. Whether it was ongoing regime change attempts against Iran, the 2009 coup in Honduras, the disastrous US-led coup in Ukraine, “Arab Spring,” the destruction of Syria and Libya, and so many more, the big US tech firms were happy to partner up with the State Department and US intelligence to provide the tools to empower those the US wanted to seize power and to silence those out of favor.

    In short, US government elites have been partnering with “Big Tech” overseas for years to decide who has the right to speak and who must be silenced. What has changed now is that this deployment of “soft power” in the service of Washington’s hard power has come home to roost.

    So what is to be done? Even pro-free speech alternative social media outlets are under attack from the Big Tech/government Leviathan. There are no easy solutions. But we must think back to the dissidents in the era of Soviet tyranny. They had no Internet. They had no social media. They had no ability to communicate with thousands and millions of like-minded, freedom lovers. Yet they used incredible creativity in the face of incredible adversity to continue pushing their ideas. Because no army – not even Big Tech partnered with Big Government – can stop an idea whose time has come. And Liberty is that idea. We must move forward with creativity and confidence!
    https://www.lewrockwell.com/2021/01/ron-paul/the-war-on-terror-comes-home/

    1. Olly; Like your post.
      I suggest that 39 states quickly recall their congressmen & senators who will not stand up for our constitution, American civil rights.
      That we can also write a declaration of independence from communist china, and make a special plebiscite to all branches of federal and state govts.
      Unfortunately, The US will fall; Eschatology will replace all our current concerns.
      THE END sad

      1. THE END sad

        Jstacat,
        This ending was always coming. Fortunately we know what it’s supposed to look like and this ending means we are now at a new beginning. How we get there and how long it will take is the unknown.

  9. FORMER RNC CHAIRMAN SEES PARTY GOING NOWHERE

    Michael Steele, the GOP’s one and only Black chairman, sees the party tethered to Trump (and toxic to minority voters) for the foreseeable future.

    They’re not gonna take the White House at 2024. Who’s voting for them? Where do you, how do you get 8 million more votes four years from now? If Donald Trump is still sitting there on the sidelines, bringing in everything that you do. I mean Republicans right now can’t even say the damn election is over and that they lost and Joe Biden is the next president without fear of the ire of Donald Trump. So how do they then go into our community and the Black community? Into Hispanic communities or any community and go, “Just ignore the last four years. That we’re just, we were just kidding. You know, don’t tell Trump, I said that.” I mean, you know this idea that it all just suddenly, like, cleanses itself and goes away and we start fresh in two years in the ’22 cycle in four years in 24, it’s not happening. Donald Trump won’t let it happen. Leadership requires trust and it starts by you trusting the American people. Right. And the way you demonstrate that trust is how you lead them.

    Edited from: “The Next Four Years”, an Amazon original podcast

      1. “ I’m just one voice here right now but trust me, if you do this to 75 million Americans, try to put us in jail, you’re going to have to hire 175 million to guard us.”

        Dahyum

  10. The Left keeps telling us that ‘race’ is only a social construct without any relationship to biology.

    Biden’s choice to lead the DOJ’s Civil Rights Division, August Takala, is now proclaiming Black Supremacy.

    “”Melanin endows blacks with greater mental, physical, and spiritual abilities — something which cannot be measured by Eurocentric standards.”

    https://twitter.com/AugustTakala/status/1348806347689701377

    Doubtless that explains why African countries are world leaders in science, engineering, medicine, mathematics, education and democracy.

    It looks like it is okay to say race exists again, so long as you credit melanin with super powers.

    And then there is the soi disant ‘Wise Latina’ on the Supreme Court.

    What a mess. Time to look to your own tribe. These people hate you and they aren’t even pretending not to anymore.

    1. Young, Clarke wrote that in 1994 when an undergrad at Harvard. Calm down. You write worse everyday here and you’re old.

      1. Just a few years before the Central Park Five incident. I’m sure you afford Trump the same latitude.

        1. Trump wasn’t an undergrad at the time. He took out a full page ad in the newspaper. No, we don’t treat them as analogous. Because they aren’t.

      1. Like the idea or not – I don;t go for all the God stuff – Clymer suggetsed it as “unifying”. There is no mention of race or being black or white in it.

        Lift every voice and sing
        Till earth and heaven ring
        Ring with the harmonies of Liberty;
        Let our rejoicing rise,
        High as the list’ning skies, let it resound loud as the rolling sea
        Sing a song full of faith that the dark past has tought us,
        Sing a song full of the hope that the present has brought us;
        Facing the rising sun of our new day begun,
        Let us march on till victory is won.
        Stony the road we trod,
        Bitter the chast’ning rod,
        Felt in the day that hope unborn had died;
        Yet with a steady beat,
        Have not our weary feet,
        Come to the place on witch our fathers sighed?
        We have come over a way that with tears has been watered,
        We have come, treading our path through the blood of the slaughtered,
        Out from the gloomy past, till now we stand at last
        Where the white gleam of our star is cast.
        God of our weary years,
        God of our silent tears,
        Thou who has brought us thus far on the way;
        Thou who has by thy might,
        Led us into the light,
        Keep us forever in the path, we pray
        Lest our feet stray frm the places, our God, where we met thee,
        Least our hearts, drunk with the wine of the world, we forget thee,
        Shadowed beneath the hand,
        May we forever stand,
        Tru to our God,
        Tru to our native land.

        1. Oh, I’m a good old rebel
          Now thats just what I am
          And for this yankee nation
          I do no give a damn
          I’m glad I fought against her
          I only wish we’d won
          I ain’t asked any pardon
          For anything I’ve done
          I hates the Yankee nation
          And eveything they do
          I hates the declaration
          Of independence too
          I hates the glorious union
          ‘Tis dripping with our blood
          I hates the striped banner
          And fought it all I could
          I rode with Robert E. Lee
          For three years there about
          Got wounded in four places
          And I starved at Point Lookout
          I caught the rheumatism
          Campin’ in the snow
          But I killed a chance of Yankees
          And I’d like to kill some more
          Three hundred thousand Yankees
          Is stiff in southern dust
          We got three hundred thousand
          Before they conquered us
          They died of southern fever
          And southern steel and shot
          I wish they was three million
          Instead of what we got
          I can’t take up my musket
          And fight ’em down no more
          But I ain’t a-goin’ to love them
          Now that is certain sure
          And I don’t want no pardon
          For what I was and am
          I won’t be reconstructed
          And I do not give a damn
          Oh, I’m a good old rebel
          Now that’s just what I am
          And for this Yankee nation
          I do no give a damn
          I’m glad I fought against her
          I only wish we’d won
          I ain’t asked any pardon
          For anything I’ve done
          I ain’t asked any pardon
          For anything I’ve done…

          See internet for the music. Very well done song! by Hoyt Axon

    2. You seem very confused. I doubt you can quote anyone who says that race is “without any relationship to biology.”

      Race IS a social construct. It does have a relationship to biology, in the sense that skin color, nose shape, hair color and texture, etc. are determined by biology. However, the specific features that are associated with a given race is a social determination, not a biological one. You can find people with the same skin color who belong to different races. You can find people with the same hair color who belong to different races. Etc. Height is determined by biology, yet we don’t say that tall people are a different race than short people. Sex (as contrasted with gender) is determined by biology. Yet we don’t say that men and women are different races. The features that people focus on for race are superficial. There’s more variation within a race than between races.

      1. “I doubt you can quote anyone who says that race is “without any relationship to biology.”
        ***
        It’s a paraphrase of what CTHD said here. Also ” Race is not biological. It is a social construct.” Angela Onwuachi-Willig, NYT 9/6/16, and others.

        Your arguments are non sequiturs.

        1. If you quote what CTHD herself said, we’ll find out whether you’re truly paraphrasing her or are instead putting words in her mouth.

          As for Angela Onwuachi-Willig, she said “Race is not biological. It is a social construct. There is no gene or cluster of genes common to all blacks or all whites. Were race “real” in the genetic sense, racial classifications for individuals would remain constant across boundaries. Yet, a person who could be categorized as black in the United States might be considered white in Brazil or colored in South Africa.”

          She’s correct that “there is no gene or cluster of genes common to all blacks or all whites,” and only to them.

          Saying “Race is not biological” (what she wrote) is not the same as saying “‘race’ is … without any relationship to biology” (what you said). If I point out that Ivanka Trump isn’t Donald Trump, that doesn’t imply that Ivanka Trump is without any relationship to Donald Trump.

          1. “Were race “real” in the genetic sense, racial classifications for individuals would remain constant across boundaries.”
            ***
            Not true.

            You are allowing ambiguities in language to create ambiguities in your perception of nature. If you thought of races as sets it would be easier for you to understand. The elements of the sets can be selected by different rules but that does not mean they are not valid.

            Try a relatively neutral example. From the larger set of modern humans one could describe a proper subset of those who have Neanderthal genes. Most Africans would be excluded. Would that be a race? As the term is loosely used, as Churchill spoke of the English race, then why not? Would it have a genetic basis? Yes. It was selected by a genetic rule.

            It was recently found that genetic distances between human populations were much greater than previously observed.

            The biggest distance is between Pygmies and Papuans, which in fact, is both morphologically and genetically greater than the distances between acknowledged subspecies of tiger.

            1. I don’t know a lot about the subset of humans who have Neanderthal genes. Agreed that there’s a genetic basis for determining that subset, but is that subset a race?

              A quick search pulled up “The percentage of Neanderthal DNA in modern humans is zero or close to zero in people from African populations, and is about 1 to 2 percent in people of European or Asian background,” a quote from a Medline article. Are you saying that “people of European or Asian background” are therefore a single race?

              1. “Are you saying that “people of European or Asian background” are therefore a single race?”
                ***
                That’s a good question. The term ‘race’ has been used roughly to describe populations that can be better defined as proper subsets of the general population. For example in the past one sometimes saw Italians and Germans referred to as different races. Some variations in animal species have been referred to as races. In that sense the term race is only an imprecise expression for a proper subset that has a genetic basis. Genetics makes it much more precise. You can choose any rule you like, say presence of Neanderthal or Denisovan genes and call it a race; a proper subset based on a rule that chooses genetic elements for the set. From there you can enlarge it to a wider subset or narrow it down, ultimately to a single individual since each of us is genetically unique. Looked at that way there are as many races as there are combinations that are proper subsets of the whole. Structured that way the information is much more useful for studying human migrations, evolution, and disease risk factors.

                1. “The term ‘race’ has been used roughly to describe populations that can be better defined as proper subsets of the general population.”

                  No it hasn’t. The vast, vast majority of proper subsets of humans have never been described as races.

                  There are currently more than 7.7 billion people in the world, so there are over 2^(7.7 billion) proper subsets. You’re saying that there are over 2^(7.7 billion) races. I doubt you can find anyone who agrees with you about that.

                  1. The vast majority of human populations have never been described in terms of precise genetics until recently. Terms that were once imprecise can be made more precise but far more complex with scientific advances. Once you recognize that our simple use of ‘race’ was a description of poorly understood genetic subsets there is no reason why it cannot be refined to describe other subsets, not to say that it has been to the extent I described as possible. You appear to be stuck on the notion that a race is like a neatly defined Platonic object, a cube or whatever. It isn’t.

                    I am not driven to call those subsets races. I am more interested in them as subsets by whatever name for what can be learned from them. However, it is obvious that there are large genetic subsets that correspond rather well with historic morphological races.

                    Skeletal remains are routinely identified as belonging to one race or another on the basis of morphology and genetics. Subsets that we commonly know as races exist.

                    1. You’re distorting the meaning of “race” to such an extent as to make it meaningless. If every proper subset is a race, the skeletal remains of one person would belong to an astronomical number of races instead of being described as belonging to just one race (and lots of people are mixed race). Skeletal remains are also routinely identified as tall or as belonging to a child, but that doesn’t make “tall people” or “children” races.

                      You have bizarre beliefs about races.

                    2. “You’re distorting the meaning of “race” to such an extent as to make it meaningless.”
                      **
                      Then you define race.

                    3. “Skeletal remains are also routinely identified as tall or as belonging to a child, but that doesn’t make “tall people” or “children” races.”

                      ***

                      No, but they are routinely identified as Caucasian, Asian or whatever. Races that can routinely be recognized by the subsets of genes they have.

                      I suspect this subject is either too subtle for you or you choose to argue for argument’s sake. Maybe both.

                    4. If you don’t know the meaning of “race,” you have dictionaries at your fingertips, and you can look it up.

                    5. Race is real., It may be more or less useful in any particular situation., It may have more validity in some venues as a definable category than in others. But it is a valid concept.

                      In general I find foreigners are pretty realistic about race, and by that I mean non-white foreigners, but white Americans, the more they are educated, the less they understand.

                      I had a longer post to share but the blog cancelled it.

                      Saloth Sar

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