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

Censors have a fantasy that if they get rid of all the Berensons and Mercolas and Malones, and rein in people like Joe Rogan, that all the holdouts will suddenly rush to get vaccinated. The opposite is true. If you wipe out critics, people will immediately default to higher levels of suspicion. They will now be sure there’s something wrong with the vaccine. If you want to convince audiences, you have to allow everyone to talk, even the ones you disagree with. You have to make a better case. The Substack people, thank God, still get this, but the censor’s disease of thinking there are shortcuts to trust is spreading.

Matt Taibbi

22 comments to Samizdata quote of the day

  • Unacceptable

    True that.
    It was the double speak of Fauci and the media that made me suspicious of the vax.


  • Unacceptable

    Just in time for this Taibbi quote is the FLCCC weekly round table. It addresses the lies my government told me, the fact that US statistics are out of sync with the rest of the world, questions over modeling, horror stories emerging from hospitals/enforcers, questions about the increase in metastatic cancers……


  • Rudolph Hucker

    Here’s an amusing comment on the fuckwittery of Neil Young -v- Joe Rogan.

    The arrogance of certainty


    And an earlier article –

    A Finger of Nudge is Just Enough … (on) the team of arch-manipulators known informally as the “Nudge Unit”.


  • XC

    “thinking there are shortcuts to trust”

    Not sure that they are actually thinking in the way I’d use the word, and I’m definitely sure that trust isn’t their goal. Obedience, maybe. Capitulation for sure.


  • Shlomo Maistre

    I agree with the commenter who said that it’s not about trust, it’s about obedience. Maybe trust is what the censors think they are helping build by censoring, but the real goal of the people who are very powerful and are implementing this agenda has nothing to do with trust. The real goal of the very, very powerful people implementing this agenda is obedience.

    I will also note that censorship works. In many ways. Does it build trust? For some people yes and for some people no. For people who frequent this blog censorship does not build trust. And for many, many people who do not frequent this blog censorship does not build trust.

    But, on the other hand, for many, many people censorship does help build trust because they do not know about the scale of the censorship or because the censorship falls into the “it’s good because we need to stop the spread of lies/misinformation” bucket. I know, it makes no sense. But not every human is the sharpest tool in the shed. And we would do well not to paint so broadly with too-generous a brush.

    I recall Mattias Desmet the famous psychology professor (whose youtube video interview went viral and was posted on this blog not a long time ago) said that as restrictions get more extreme in a mass psychosis, the supporters of the restrictions become more adamant and more passionate in their support of the restrictions. Presumably, in a certain sense, censorship is one of those such restrictions.

  • Rudolph Hucker

    Worth noting (from the same source)

    If these stories sound familiar, it’s because this same Center for Countering Digital Hate two years ago tried to pull the same stunt with The Federalist, using NBC to ask Google to crack down on them. Humorously, and typically — this happens a lot with these stories — that effort ended in fiasco. The piece NBC ended up writing boasting of the success of its “Verification Unit” in getting the site demonetized, entitled, “Google bans two websites from its ad platform over protest articles,” turned out to itself be misinformation. The Federalist was never banned, only warned, and the issue was its comments section, not its articles. Google had to issue a statement:

    Even in a society with fairly robust protections, as ours once was, the most dangerous misinformation is always, without exception, official. Whether it’s WMDs or the Gulf of Tonkin fiasco or the missile gap or the red scare or the twenty-year occupation of Afghanistan, the worst real-world disasters always turn out to be driven or enabled by official falsehoods. In the case of Afghanistan (and Iraq, and Vietnam before both), the cycle of war disaster was perpetuated by a sweeping, organized, and intricate system of official lying, about everything from the success of missions to the efficacy of weaponry to the political devotion of supposed allies. The only defense against these most dangerous types of deceptions is an absolutely free press.

    To me, the story most illustrative of the problem inherent in policing “Covid misinformation” involves a town hall by Joe Biden from July 21 of last year. In it, the president said bluntly, “You’re not going to get COVID if you have these vaccinations,” pretty much the definition of Covid misinformation:

    Matt Taibbi

  • Shlomo Maistre

    FWIW, I don’t remember ANY conservative calling for censorship of either media or people who dared question whether or not Saddam Hussein and Iraq had WMDs back in the run up to and early days of the Iraq War in 2002 and 2003. And ya, we were 100% certain that he had WMDs. Some of us would question the patriotism of anyone questioning the narrative that Saddam had WMDs but none of us called for censorship of those who claimed he did not have WMDs.

    These days, on the Left, there are more people on the Left publicly calling for censorship than there are people on the Left publicly speaking out against the censorship. And that’s censorship of everyone. Regular people, media, podcasters, individuals, organizations, epidemiologists, researchers, and medical doctors.

    The arrogance of certitude is a dangerous thing from any part of the “political spectrum”. But this left-wing version is particularly terrifying.

  • That Taibbi bit is going in my quote file, along with XC’s response.

    Sholomo Maistre: At the time, even as a mild conservative, I was somewhat suspicious of the WMD as justification for invasion. Being a Cold War soldier, I was perhaps a bit dismissive. “Wake me up when the get ICBMs, like the Soviets” was my go-to phrase, along with “Let’s just keep having Iraq and Iran keep killing each other”. I guess I was too Jacksonian in my philosophy of war.

    But I never heard anything about censoring other views, even my view which was quite controversial amongst some of my more warhawk associates. Even my one Paleoconservative friend didn’t shout for censorship. He was usually shouting about other things, like the gold standard…

    The censorious Left, to me, merely signals the inadequacy of their premises and their arguments.

  • Stonyground

    “The censorious Left, to me, merely signals the inadequacy of their premises and their arguments.”

    This, absolutely. Can I nominate this for SQOTD?

  • bobby b

    “Censors have a fantasy that if they get rid of all the Berensons and Mercolas and Malones, and rein in people like Joe Rogan, that all the holdouts will suddenly rush to get vaccinated. The opposite is true. If you wipe out critics, people will immediately default to higher levels of suspicion.”

    Dissent, somewhat.

    If it is obvious that anti-vax discussion is being quelled, then, yes, it’s only going to increase suspicion and pushback.

    But if all of that anti-vax discussion simply doesn’t occur – if you can censor so completely that the discussion of the censoring doesn’t even happen – then I think it works.

    So, just be grateful they’re not very good at censoring. If they were good at it, the game would be over.

  • Shlomo Maistre

    So, just be grateful they’re not very good at censoring.

    I mean, it’s a gradient. They certainly could be a lot better at censoring.

    But they also could be a lot worse at censoring too.

    There are still a lot of people who think the Science is Settled and Everyone Should Get The Jab and Booster(s) ASAP.

    And More Jabs Are Coming, Halleluyah!!


  • Shlomo Maistre

    Censors have a fantasy that if they get rid of all the Berensons and Mercolas and Malones, and rein in people like Joe Rogan, that all the holdouts will suddenly rush to get vaccinated. The opposite is true.

    Censors have a fantasy that if they get rid of all the Berensons and Mercolas and Malones, and rein in people like Joe Rogan, that all the holdouts will suddenly rush to get vaccinated. The opposite is true for some people.*

    FTFY, Matt

  • I was trained as a scientist, and science is never settled. Scientists are still performing more and more sensitive tests of Einstein’s General Relativity. That’s been around for over 100 years.

    There are, however, a bunch of ‘scientists’ who don’t know that, nor agree with it.

  • Shlomo Maistre



    The World Health Organization chief has backed the veteran rock star Neil Young in his dispute with the music streaming behemoth Spotify, thanking the musician for “standing up against misinformation and inaccuracies” around Covid vaccinations.

    Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO’s director general, tweeted that “we all have a role to play to end this pandemic and infodemic” – in particular social media platforms.

    Spotify has begun removing Young’s music from its platform after an ultimatum issued by the star earlier this week to the company. Referring to controversial podcasts by Joe Rogan hosted by Spotify, Young said: “They can have Rogan or Young. Not both.”

    Spotify swiftly made its choice, triggering an almighty storm over anti-vaccine conspiracy theories, cancel culture and the policing of social media.

    Many of Young’s fans and supporters of his stance called for a boycott of the streaming platform, and for other artists to follow his lead. “I stand with Neil Young” and “#CancelSpotify” became rallying calls on social media on Thursday.

  • Shlomo Maistre

    .@NeilYoungNYA, thanks for standing up against misinformation and inaccuracies around #COVID19 vaccination.
    Public and private sector, in particular #socialmedia platforms, media, individuals – we all have a role to play to end this pandemic and infodemic.


  • bobby b

    Mean girls. They’ve all simply turned into mean girls.

  • Rudolph Hucker

    Re Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO’s director general

    Lest we forget how the dots are joined:

    He graduated from university in Ethiopia in 1986 with a degree in biology and went to work as a health official in the regime of Marxist dictator Mengistu Haile Mariam, while the country was ruled by the Derg military junta. According to the BBC, Dr Tedros then joined the hard-left TPLF – which started life as a Communist party and played a major role in overthrowing Mariam in 1991. It later became part of the EPRDF, a coalition of left-wing parties that ruled Ethiopia until last year.

    In 2010, Dr. Tedros served as the Number 3 in executive leadership in the Ethiopian Peoples’ Revolutionary Democratic Front. During the election that year, the EPRDF won all but 1 of the 547 seats in the legislature. In October 2017, Dr. Tedros tried to appoint Robert Mugabe as a “goodwill ambassador” for the WHO. The Times UK reported that the appointment of Mugabe as goodwill ambassador was to appease China, a long-time supporter of Mugabe.

  • APL

    Unacceptable: “It was the double speak of Fauci and the media that made me suspicious of the vax.”

    Wow. You’re easily pleased.

    It was the fact that for this emmergency all of the protections we’d accumulated around producing a novel drug, were swept away. Normal drug research development and production cycle, ten to fifteen years. Anti Covid-19 mRNA therapy, six months ( if you ignore the fact that the instructions for the Spike protein were patiented sometime around 2009 ).

    There is no way in hell, I’m going to mainstream something that was cobbled together in six months, for a condition that I suspected then ( 2020 ) was no worse than influenza, but if you ignored the symptoms, or even, misdiagnosed and mistreated the symptoms, could, like influenza in similar circumstances, kill you.

    The double speak of Fauci, came later, and confirmed my opinion.

  • Sam Duncan

    And ya, we were 100% certain that he had WMDs.

    And why wouldn’t we be? He did. Not even the UN disputed that and, indeed, in 2009 when Iraq signed the Chemical Weapons Convention, it declared a massive stockpile. The issues at the time were how ready they were for use, and whether he could be trusted not to mislead the UN inspectorate over that question.

  • Paul Marks

    Censorship does not have to prevent most people seeing and hearing dissenting arguments – it just needs to prevent the MAJORITY of people from doing so.

    Remember that piece of excrement (no apology for the harsh language) who came onto this very site and claimed that the only opposition was from Robert Kennedy and “other kooks”.

    That creature was an example of how successful the censorship, and the smearing of dissenters, has been.

    Remember, for example, in both the United States and the United Kingdom most people still get the news from the “mainstream media” (the BBC, Sky News – owned by Comcast, C4, and so on – and in the United States ABC, CBS, NBC…..).

    The number is falling (that I grant) – but the Collectivist, tyranny supporting, “mainstream” media is still very powerful. As is the Collectivist, tyranny supporting, EDUCATION SYSTEM.

    The education system is incredibly powerful – and now dominated by pro tyranny forces, forces that lie about, or hopelessly twist, just about everything.

    Indeed it is the education system that produced the “mainstream media” and it is also the education system (specifically Frankfurt School doctrines that Freedom of Speech is “repressive tolerance”) that has spread the idea that censorship, and smearing dissenters, is morally good.

  • Rudolph Hucker

    Folks might remember the “Streisand effect”

    The Streisand effect is a phenomenon that occurs when an attempt to hide, remove, or censor information has the unintended consequence of increasing awareness of that information, often via the Internet. It is named after American singer Barbra Streisand, whose attempt to suppress the California Coastal Records Project’s photograph of her residence in Malibu, California, taken to document California coastal erosion, inadvertently drew greater attention to it in 2003

    I wonder if (in years to come) we’ll be noting the “Neil Young effect”?

    Mainstream media unleashed an avalanche of notes over the weekend claiming that Spotify has had $2 billion wiped off its market value because of the actions of Neil Young and others in opposing Joe Rogan’s content on the platform. (That has) now been exposed as embarrassing fake news.

    Against a background of the NASDAQ down 20%:

    Shares of Spotify surged Monday following a bullish analyst rating, helping to pare losses stemming not from the high-profile controversy around Joe Rogan’s podcast, but instead shockwaves sent across the industry by Netflix’s massively underwhelming growth outlook.

    Spotify shares are soaring and the company has now added “billions” in market cap since Neil Young’s virtue-signaling.

  • Rudolph Hucker

    Joni Mitchell is another “media star” with unintended consequences, and increasing awareness of their woeful condition. It appears she spoke in favour of Neil Young (and censorship), and then her medical condition got mentioned.

    Joni Mitchell suffers from a disease most doctors think isn’t real … it’s Morgellons disease, a cousin of “delusional parasitosis” (a nasty psychosis that heavy cocaine users frequently suffer, in which they believe bugs are in or under their skin)

    Who knew that cocaine users are reliable witnesses?

    Oh, and follow the money…

    As with Neal Yong selling his music to outside investors, there is more to this story … Let’s talk Joni Mitchell. She made a huge deal with Reservoir media last year. They are owned by Golnar Khosrowshahi. Her brother is Behzad Khosrowshahi. He owns DRI Capital a 2 Billion dollar company which makes royalties on Biopharmaceutical products.

    Make a fuss about a reseller (of your music) who pays you less than you think you deserve. Transfer the rights to someone like Reservoir instead. But do say the fuss is for a reason other than money.