Ted Cruz is a politician, yes, but he's also a very smart lawyer with plenty of government law experience. Therefore, when he suggests that the Fauci emails may have revealed Facebook acting as an agent of the US government, it behooves us to sit up and take notice. Here is and extended excerpt from Cruz's interview with Maria Bartiromo this morning:
Maria: Did Fauci just commit perjury there?
Senator Ted Cruz: It sure looks like it. He looked at Rand Paul's eyes and told a flat out falsehood. And unfortunately this has been a pattern with Dr. Fauci, that what he says on Monday somehow isn't the same as what he says on Tuesday but, don't worry, what he says on Wednesday is almost certain to be different.
And I gotta say that this email dump that came out, it makes clear that this is not just [Fauci] being sloppy. It is systematic and it is systematically an effort to mislead the American people. And as you noted he wasn’t doing it alone but he was doing it with much of the US government behind him and with Facebook and Big Tech operating as an extension of the US government in order to silence any views that disagreed--not with the science, because he wasn’t looking for the science, he was suppressing the science. But rather trying to silence anything that disagreed with the political narrative that was convenient that he was pushing at that moment…
Maria: [Long rant about social media collusion in political hoaxes and censorship of dissenting views: Russia Hoax, Fake Impeachment, Covid, etc. Displays timeline of collusive emails between Fauci and Zuckerberg. Wants to know when there will be consequences.]
Cruz: Well they [social media] certainly should be [held to account]. Unfortunately I don't expect the Baiden administration will do anything to hold them to account. But these breakthroughs have real consequence, because it now is clear that Facebook was operating at the direction of and in the direct benefit of the federal government. And operating as the government censor, utilizing their monopoly position to censor on behalf of the government. Maria, that's a very dangerous admission that's out there now for Facebook, because it means that anybody in the country, or anybody in the world, whose statements, whose speech, was censored by Facebook. ... If you went out and posted the facts that led, a year ago, to the very strong likelihood that the Covid virus escaped from a Chinese government lab in Wuhan, China. If you posted that a year ago and they took it down, I think there is a very good argument you have a cause of action against Facebook. And, Facebook would ordinarily say, “We’re a private company. We’re not liable.” Well, you know, when they act at the behest of the government. When they contact Fauci. When they say, “Should we censor this and Fauci says, “Yes.” And they censor it for the federal government. And then magically when the government changes its mind and says, “Oh, all those facts that were there a year ago, now you’re allowed to talk about it.” They stop censoring it with the flip of a switch. That lays a very strong argument that Facebook is operating as a state agency and that opens very significant legal liability.
Thomas Lifson has posted the relevant emails that Maria shows on the video, with commentary, so you can see what they're talking about, where the redactions turn up: Why was Mark Zuckerberg’s ‘even bigger deal’ offer to Fauci redacted from the FOIA emails just released? It sure looks like a smoking gun.
I terminated my Facebook account yesterday.ReplyDelete
January 2021, me tooReplyDelete
Private companies like Facebook and Dominion Voting Systems may have arrogantly over-stepped their boundaries and gotten themselves into big trouble by being unwitting (or witting) agents of the Federal government. I sure hope there are consequences for them.ReplyDelete
"I sure *hope* there are consequences...."ReplyDelete
I don’t know where it will come from, but Ted Cruz has recognized the vulnerability that “operating as a state agency opens very significant legal liability.” Alan Dershowitz has also recognized the vulnerability of being a State Actor (agent of the government) when it comes to suppression of a citizen’s free speech. Censorship is a big issue that I want attacked and Ted Cruz and Alan Dershowitz are the first hints that there may be a way to use legal warfare to end this growing plague of censorship. It may not be the entire answer, but it is a start.Delete
Back in January 2021, the Wall Street Journal had an interesting article titled:
Save the Constitution From Big Tech—Congressional threats and inducements make Twitter and Facebook censorship a free-speech violation. It is behind a paywall but I got in through my local library. https://www.wsj.com/articles/save-the-constitution-from-big-tech-11610387105
Thanks. With this pressure out in the open hopefully someone will bring a civil rights action of some sort. I'd like to see a full article discussing this (I could only read the first few WSJ paragraphs). In particular I'd like to know who would be liable--social media, government personnel, or both.Delete
The remaining paragraphs: https://archive.is/F1iNrReplyDelete
Thanks. As I read that, the action would be against any government officials involved in pressuring the social media companies, since the actions of the social media companies would be taken to be government censorship. That's the example they give in the article and that seems to be what Cruz has in mind--government pressuring private companies. So Cruz may be wrong about who's liable.Delete
OTOH, what we see in the Fauci emails seems to be private companies reaching out to Fauci and offering their services to censor. Of course, we're only seeing part of what may have happened. It's possible the private companies were put up to that by other government actors, and this approach was a subterfuge.
Or the social media companies could offer their services with the idea of obtaining some favor later, or agree to censor with that understanding of a later favor. Then we'd have a conspiracy.Delete
As a non-attorney, it seems to me that you have to punish both sides (government and big tech/media) if you are going to protect free speech. Yes, private entities do have a right to censor, but isn’t the private entity complicit in breaking the law if they accept becoming an agent of the government? Doesn’t that make them a State Actor? It seems like private entities should be expected to know the law and follow the law also.Delete