Social media’s attempts to suppress and censor the New York Post’s bombshell report about Hunter Biden, as well as other damning stories about the Biden family’s corruption, have conservatives crying foul, and rightfully so. Big Tech censorship has become a huge problem, and when social media is actively trying to decide what the public should know about, it raises many questions.
But perhaps the first question that must be asked is: what stories were not suppressed or censored by social media despite being complete bunk? If social media companies think they have an obligation to prevent the public from seeing a story because of questionable or unverified sources or for being misleading, then is there any evidence that this standard is being equally applied across the political spectrum?
The answer to this question is easy to find. In a matter of minutes, I was able to find at least a dozen misleading or outright false stories, that were quickly debunked, that social media chose not to suppress in any fashion. Why not? Because the lie made Trump look bad. I’ve compiled just five of them below.
I should clarify that I’m not suggesting Twitter should have suppressed any of these stories. I am merely pointing out that the company has unequally applied its policies with a clear bias against Trump.
5. The Charlottesville lie
How many times does President Trump have to condemn white supremacy for the media to stop reporting that he hasn’t? The media has repeatedly claimed that, in reference to the infamous Charlottesville protests in 2017, that there were “very fine people” on “both sides,” while refusing to point out that he said immediately afterward that he wasn’t talking about “the neo-Nazis and the white nationalists, because they should be condemned totally.”
Meanwhile, Twitter has never suppressed or censored tweets or links alleging that Trump hasn’t condemned white supremacy. Joe Biden, for example, has repeatedly made the false claim that President Trump has refused to condemn white supremacy. Here’s a tweet from a week ago:
Time and time again, President Trump has refused to condemn white supremacy and stoked the flames of hate for political gain.
It’s a pattern — and America deserves better. pic.twitter.com/o1zKKd0bpf
— Joe Biden (@JoeBiden) October 9, 2020
This tweet hasn’t been flagged, suppressed, or censored despite being 100 percent false. And clearly, Joe Biden’s account was not blocked the same way the Trump campaign’s or Kayleigh McEnany’s accounts were.
4. The fake Russian bounties story
In June, the New York Times published a report claiming that “a Russian military intelligence unit secretly offered bounties to Taliban-linked militants for killing coalition forces in Afghanistan — including targeting American troops,” and that President Trump had been briefed on this in March and yet did nothing about it.
The story was quickly debunked by military and intelligence sources, but the story was not only widely reported as fact, Twitter and Facebook did nothing to suppress the story. Even now, the story has never been proven true.
3. The bogus Atlantic smear
Last month, The Atlantic published a story citing anonymous sources claiming that President Donald Trump didn’t want to visit the Aisne-Marne American Cemetery near Paris in 2018 because the troops there who died in battle were “losers” and “suckers.”
Over a dozen witnesses who were with President Trump on that trip to Paris disputed the story. Each of them went on the record. Despite bipartisan calls for the anonymous sources to come forward, it has been over a month since that story broke and no one has gone on the record to publicly make the accusation. Even Jeffrey Goldberg, the editor-in-chief of The Atlantic, admitted during an interview with CNN that a key detail of his article could be wrong.
2. Trump’s tax returns
If there was ever a story that would have fallen under the umbrella of Twitter’s inconsistently-applied hacked materials policy, the New York Times story on Trump’s tax returns should have applied. The tax returns may not have been acquired via hacking, but they were indisputably leaked illegally. But the story wasn’t suppressed or censored by social media. The story was allowed to spread like wildfire, largely due to the false claim that Trump had only paid $750 in taxes in 2017.
As PJM’s Stephen Green noted, this allegation was false, and the New York Times story itself acknowledged that Trump had pre-paid millions in taxes in 2016 and 2017, and the $750 line-item on his taxes was simply the result of how our complicated tax codes work. “In reality, Trump has paid enough in taxes just this century to buy more than one $85 million F-35A Lightning II stealth strike jet.”
But the false bombshell, based on illegally obtained tax returns, became a huge story, and was shared on social media without any suppression.
1. Trump/Russia collusion
If you attempted to share the New York Post’s bombshell about Hunter Biden’s emails, you were blocked from doing so. If you tried to share any of the follow-up stories, like the story about Hunter Biden’s lucrative business dealings with China, you were warned by Twitter that the link “may not be safe.” According to Twitter, the New York Post story was identified as being “potentially spammy or unsafe that could “mislead people.”
So where were all the warnings about the countless stories alleging President Trump colluded with Russia? There was never any evidence of this. In fact, we’re finally starting to see evidence of the opposite: that it was Hillary and the Democrats colluding with Russia to come up with fake dirt on Trump. After years of endless investigations and constant media coverage, one thing that has been made abundantly clear is that there was never any collusion, and the Obama-Biden administration never had any empirical evidence of collusion.
Despite the allegations against Trump being disproved, it remains an unsuppressed line of attack.
Matt Margolis is the author of Airborne: How The Liberal Media Weaponized The Coronavirus Against Donald Trump and the bestselling book The Worst President in History: The Legacy of Barack Obama. You can follow Matt on Twitter @MattMargolis