We are developing the social individualist meta-context for the future. From the very serious to the extremely frivolous... lets see what is on the mind of the Samizdata people.

Samizdata, derived from Samizdat /n. - a system of clandestine publication of banned literature in the USSR [Russ.,= self-publishing house]

Samizdata quote of the day

And then there’s that rather larger point that if the censor gets to decide what can appear on Facebook then what about claims in the wider media? The opinion pages of all newspapers carry pieces which at least some, on any particular point, will claim is fake including – oft with respect to Oliver Kamm – the use of and and/or or. That a genetic male claiming they are female is correct or not? Which answer – no they ain’t, only if they have surgery or whatever they say – is fake news or not?

To give anyone the power to decide upon fake news on any part of the media is to give the same prodnoses and authoritarians the power to censor it all.

Well, except the Guardian, obviously – “It accuses them of profiting” – if you’ve not made a profit in a decade then you can’t be accused of that now, can you?

Tim Worstall

9 comments to Samizdata quote of the day

  • Stonyground

    This is why free speech is so important. If every one is allowed to express themselves clearly then we can all decide for ourselves whom to believe. It may be a messy and complex process but it is the only way that can ever really work. How are we ever to going to decide what is and is not true when some self appointed authority has decided that you are only allowed to hear one side of the argument? The only people who would prefer such a state of affairs are those whose side of the argument is too weak to compete in the free market of ideas.

  • Runcie Balspune

    Democracy is at risk

    The rallying cry of the eternally mistaken. Many control-left ultimately want “democracy” in a “you can vote for anyone as long as they’re a member of the communist party” kind of way. They want sham democracy, just people voting and the dear leader getting 100% of the vote.

    Liberty is what is at threat here, not by fake news, but by the desire for more censorship, under any guise, and without liberty there is no democracy, not in the sense that voting can change things.

    Corbyn and his leftist cronies are already rigging the leadership vote to ensure a hard left candidate gets in next time and forever, this entire internet policing is just a cover for greater control of the media and people.

  • Paul Marks

    Few people actually buy the Guardian – it makes what money it makes from adverts from the powerful. Most people do NOT support its opinions – or they would buy it, and they do not buy it.

    Ditto these Members of Parliament – few of the people who “elected them” even know their names (they voted for a party label – and as the Committee is “All Party” it rather shows that none of the political parties really supports Freedom of Speech), and certainly would not come out to hear the Members of Parliament.

    On the other hand – people such as “Sargon” (Carl Benjamin) and others that the Members of Parliament wish to ban from public life, because they are “internet trolls” attract vast numbers of subscribers.

    “Internet Trolls” – the Members of the House of Commons Committee do not even know what that term really means (clue people such as Lauren Southern are actually the VICTIMS of “trolls”, they are not the trolls you stupid Westminster establishment puppets), “Fake News” – again the Members of the House of Commons Committee do not really know what that term means, clue it is what the BBC (and the at least equally vile Sky News and Channel Four news) broadcast every day.

    Conservative television news stations are ILLEGAL in the United Kingdom – the left have control of all television stations BY LAW. Yet the “Conservative” Members of the Committee do not seem to care about that – what they care about (just like the Labour and Lib Dem committee members) is evil “right wing” people on the internet, expressing the “wrong” opinions.

    Let us be blunt – people like “Sargon” are NOT racists (not that it would matter, for Freedom of Speech, if they were) people such as the members of the House of Commons want to ban them from public life (say standing as a local councillor) because they WILL TOLERATE NO DISSENT FROM THE ESTABLISHMENT LINE.

    This is becoming a totalitarian country, certainly if the House of Commons all party committee has its way – “how can it be if you can type that?”. I can type what I like – as-long-as-only-a-few-people-read-it. If I was as well known as “Sargon” or Lauren Southern (or….) then the government (and cowardly corporations as well) would be out to destroy me as well.

  • Mr Ed

    This is all about the Left and their useful idiots losing control of the narrative. Today I heard on the BBC’s Radio 4 an interview with a former editor of the Daily Mirror, Roy Greenslade, who is now a ‘Professor of Journalism’. He called for subsidies for regional newspapers, either from internet companies or even the taxpayer, on the basis that people should be made to pay for newspapers that they don’t buy (and so don’t read) as they need to have a reliable source of news.

    I see a two-pronged attack on liberty, one by the Left as they wish to dictate what is said, the other by the press and they wish to press-gang our money into their pockets, ‘because they’re worth it’, for our own ‘good’.

  • Paul Marks

    It is not a shock Roy Greenslade is a totalitarian who supports taxpayer subsidies for leftist propaganda to try and brainwash the public – however, it is an interesting example of the nexus between the “mainstream media” (such as the leftist BBC – I repeat that conservative television and radio stations are ILLEGAL in Britain) and the education system. Not just the leftist universities, but the leftist schools as well.

  • Paul Marks

    As for the internet companies – as they are dominated by people who went through a “mainstream” (i.e. leftist – collectivist) education, and never really questioned what they were being told (actually questioned it LESS than the average student does – as they were not really thinking about it, thinking instead of their dreams of creating great internet enterprises) they have missed a basic point.

    WHY (why?) do people go to something like YouTube for news? Why not just switch on the BBC instead?

    People go to the internet (for example to YouTube) because they do not like the “mainstream” (i.e. leftist) line of the BBC (and Sky News and Channel Four news) and want an alternative.

    By making things difficult for conservative and libertarian voices on YouTube, Twitter, Facebook and so on – the people who control these enterprises and undermining the very business dreams that they worked so hard to make a reality.

    They just do not seem to “get it” – make YouTube, Facebook and Twitter like the “mainstream media” (the same leftist world view) and there is NO POINT in people going to YouTube, Facebook and Twitter.

    The work of Deep State Vermin such as “Ofcom” and the “Electoral Commission” would be done.

  • people such as Lauren Southern are actually the VICTIMS of “trolls”, they are not the trolls, you stupid Westminster establishment puppets (Paul Marks, July 30, 2018 at 7:36 pm)

    Sadly, Lauren is also the victim of stupid Westminster and Whitehall establishment puppets-cum-puppetmasters who ban her from the UK – because we do indeed have blasphemy laws once again, but only for ‘The Religion of Peace’, not for any actually peaceful religions (as the circumstances of Lauren’s ban very explicitly demonstrate). There is indeed stupidity here, but it is a deep stupidity. On the shallow surface there is intentional allying with the real trolls to protect them by victimising their targets.

  • Flubber

    Sargons latest vid on Sharia policing concludes with Christopher Hitchens warning us that our right to complain about how badly we’re being screwed will be taken away from us.

  • Paul Marks

    Agreed Niall – and agreed Flubber.