Elder Patriot – We have been fighting wars for more than two centuries ostensibly to protect our Constitutional rights. The men and women who have served in those wars receive our highest respect because they earned it.
But what about those who don’t wear a uniform and whose weapon in the war against tyranny is a keyboard? How much reverence do they deserve? Here is the story of one such young man.
Our Founding Father’s understood the importance of information to making informed decisions. Thomas Jefferson, the author of our Declaration of Independence, made that abundantly clear in a letter to Edward Carrington on January 16, 1787:
“Were it left to me to decide whether we should have a government without newspapers, or newspapers without a government, I should not hesitate a moment to prefer the latter. But I should mean that every man should receive those papers and be capable of reading them.”
Jefferson’s view on the need to protect a free and open discourse were shared by all of the Framers and was the underlying reason that they added the First Amendment to the Bill of Rights before considering their work finished.
The First Amendment orders that:
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.
Sadly, our Framers never contemplated the vertical integration of the newspaper, television, and radio businesses that concentrated the dissemination of information into the hands of fewer providers and that effectively cut off the ability of dissenting voices to be heard.
And, with the advent of the Internet, we are quickly approaching the point where there will no longer be any newspapers but one where there is plenty of government. Jefferson would be aghast.
And, while printed information is disappearing, its being replaced by digital news transmitted mostly by social media and that brings with it a whole new set of challenges – including laws that fail to protect the very free speech rights that are essential to self governance.
James Madison, widely credited with authoring the Constitution, wrote in 1822:
“Knowledge will forever govern ignorance; and a people who mean to be their own governors must arm themselves with the power which knowledge gives.”
And herein lies the problem those on the front lines of protecting our democratic republic are being confronted with.
Google-YouTube/Facebook/Twitter who control the vast flow of information and interpersonal discourse today, claim they are not subject to laws governing free speech because the First Amendment only guarantees that the government will not abridge free speech. It doesn’t hold private news organizations to that standard.
But while these social media giants supply some small modicum of news, they mostly serve as the conduit for human interaction, including the exchange of news and commentary.
It is this role that Jason Fyk, an alternative news Internet entrepreneur used to build his empire. Now he has seen his business destroyed because of his Libertarian beliefs and it is his contention that the social media titans – because of their overwhelming share of the markets that they operate in – are in violation of the Constitutional protections Americans have been promised by the Founding Documents.
Fyk appeared with Owen Shoyer and Roger Stone on their radio show, The War Room to discuss the existential threat that the restrictive actions of Google-YouTube/Facebook/Twitter pose to the Freedom Movement, that Donald Trump is leading.
Fyk told Shoyer and Stone “the long-term effect is they’re going to control the 2018 and the 2020 elections” [the social media globalist kingpins] because millennials rely almost solely on social media for their news and information and that news and information is being funneled through new algorithms that restrict, and even block, conservative messaging.
Fyk’s news enterprise has been the victim of these algorithms, employed by these monolithic companies, that search for articles contentious to the liberal-progressive ideology and then diminish traffic to those sites by 80%, if they don’t shut them down completely.
We’ve warned about the growing threat that news censorship and downgrading, being employed by Google and Facebook, pose to our elections last March when we wrote:
The power of Internet giants Google and Facebook to change the outcome of elections has not only been established, according to these studies, but is highly likely to have already happened many times and in many places around the planet.
Researcher Robert Epstein explains that, “Google, Inc., has amassed far more power to control elections—indeed, to control a wide variety of opinions and beliefs—than any company in history has ever had. Google’s search algorithm can easily shift the voting preferences of undecided voters by 20 percent or more—up to 80 percent in some demographic groups—with virtually no one knowing they are being manipulated.”
Facebook then permitted strategically timed computer commands, known as “bots,” to blitz their platform with links to the pro-left stories.
“The bots’ end products were largely millions of Twitter and Facebook posts carrying links to stories on lefty Internet sites such as Huffpo News and CNN, as well as on the Soros-backed Move-on and Black Lives Matter News. Some of the stories were false or mixed fact and fiction.
At the same time, through the use of algorithms, Facebook was limiting the reach to conservative and Libertarian websites. Those algorithms today block as much as 80% of the traffic to sites that don’t pass ideological muster.
Imagine, for a moment, if your phone dropped 80% of your calls because you are a conservative. Or, if you and your friend were asked to deplane by the carrier because you were sharing a conversation about the Nunes memo?
What if you only received 20% of your subscriptions to the Limbaugh Letter? Or, you were given only 3.2 ounces of steak instead of the 16 ounces you have ordered?
These are all examples of private companies where free speech is not protected but where infringing on it would never be tolerated under equal protection clause of the Fourteenth Amendment.
Of course, in Obama’s universe, these laws don’t apply to Christian bakers proving the government’s willingness to get involved when it behooves them to ignore the First Amendment in favor of the Fourteenth Amendment.
Fyk is well aware of the threat the powers being exercised by the social media giants pose to our democracy largely because many of the lawmakers who would be disposed to do something about it are older and do not understand the power of the internet. And, there’s little chance they’ll get any help from Democratic lawmakers who will be the beneficiaries of social media manipulation.
When we sat with Jason to discuss these threats he told us:
“We have a real threat to our national security.
“Today Silicon Valley can dictate what and how the majority of people receive their information.
“Make no mistake, the moves made by social media companies are anti-competitive, biased and potentially treasonous.
“For the first time in my life I am looking at the government to provide guidance to these social media giants before they control all aspects of our minds.”
“One solution I think Congress should explore lies within the Consumer Decency Act that was written to protect children but that is so vaguely written that it is being used as a shield to censor unfavorable users.
“It is also time for Congress to revisit U.S. Monopoly Law that never envisioned either the Internet or the social media monoliths that have cornered the market on news and commentary.”
Fyk has been meeting with attorneys who are committed to protecting our Constitutional rights not only our right to speak but also our right to hear what others are saying.
He is planning on suing Facebook, a company that has the resources to bury him and to destroy everything he has worked for. The courage for this undertaking cannot be overstated.
Jason Fyk remains undeterred.
Whether Jason knows it or not Ronald Reagan would be proud of him: