While the Washington Post piously reminds us that “democracy dies in darkness,” it’s busy shooting out the lights: On Tuesday it published a lengthy call to Facebook to shut down dissident media, including PJ Media, because, you see, the non-Leftist publications are daring to spread “climate change denial” on the platform. Not just democracy, but also the freedom of speech will die in darkness if the Post gets its way.
The Post article focuses upon a newly published study from one of the endless stream of far-Left advocacy groups masquerading as think tanks, the Center for Countering Digital Hate (CCDH), which the Post hastens to assure us is a nonprofit. Of course. What else could it possibly be called?
Disagree with the Leftist establishment about the causes of and/or remedies for climate change, and what else could possibly be your motivation but “hate”? You don’t want to see your country voluntarily impoverish itself and empower the People’s Republic of China in service of unproven assumptions and selective application of accountability? Come on, man! You’re just a bigot!
The CCDH study supposedly shows that “10 publishers, including RT and the Federalist Papers, are responsible for nearly 70 percent of interactions with climate change misinformation on the platform.” The CCDH has labeled these publishers the “Toxic Ten,” and they comprise virtually all of the major dissident platforms operating today: Breitbart, the Western Journal, Newsmax, the Media Research Center, the Washington Times, the Federalist Papers, the Daily Wire, and the Patriot Post, along with Russian State Media (what’s a Leftist conspiracy theory these days without the Russians) and of course Townhall Media, including PJ Media, Townhall, Red State, and Twitchy.
These publications, the Post claims, put out “a broad range of climate disinformation, including articles that undermine the existence or impacts of climate change or misrepresent data in ways that might erode trust in climate science experts.” They’re out there exercising the freedom of speech, utterly heedless of the looming apocalypse: “The study comes amid increasing political concern about the catastrophic impact of climate change, as global leaders gather in Glasgow for the United Nations-brokered COP26, described as the last chance for nations to hammer out a unified plan to significantly cut greenhouse gases.”
The Post hopes that the CCDH report will put an end to all that and bring about still more ideological conformity on Facebook: “While the report doesn’t provide a comprehensive look at all misleading climate change content promoted on Facebook, it has the potential to inspire political action as the CCDH has historically captured policymakers’ attention.”
It notes that the CCDH’s earlier report, which targeted the “disinformation dozen” who supposedly spread “anti-vaccine content,” was repeatedly cited by the White House along with numerous lawmakers in Congress, and it was used as a proxy for questions about the role of social media in aggravating vaccine hesitancy.”
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The need to act is urgent, or so the CCDH and the Post would have you believe. CCDH chief Imran Ahmed wants you to know that he is thoroughly petrified: “When you put it all together, you’ve got these two industries, Big Oil and Big Tech, and they are the two industries that pose the greatest threat to the survival of our species.”
Facebook, however, is not being cooperative, and not exercising enough censorship: “Earlier this year, Facebook promised to start adding informational labels to some climate posts, much like it does with election or coronavirus posts. But CCDH researchers found that of the posts they surveyed containing climate misinformation, just 8% carried Facebook’s informational label.” Nor does it look as if this is going to change anytime soon.
Facebook spokesman Andy Stone called the methodology of the CCDH study “flawed.” Facebook previously, according to the Post, “pushed back on the structure of the CCDH’s disinformation dozen report, arguing it was based on ‘narrow data’ that wasn’t representative of the hundreds of millions of posts that people shared about coronavirus vaccines on Facebook.”
That’s not to say that Facebook doesn’t interfere in climate change discussions at all. Nick Clegg, the social media giant’s vice president for global affairs and communications, noted that Facebook “reduces distribution of posts that its third-party fact-checkers say are false.” That’s not enough, as far as Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-Gestapo) is concerned. “Facebook and other social media companies make money when they send users down rabbit holes of climate change denial,” Whitehouse thundered. “That’s a very dangerous business model for the future of the planet. It’s hard to tell which is more disgusting: Facebook propagating this disinformation, or the fossil fuel industry funding it.”
So far Facebook isn’t cooperating, but fascists such as Whitehouse and the Post editors aren’t going to give up their efforts to silence all dissent and destroy the freedom of speech. As Paula Bolyard noted the other day regarding another controversial issue where PJ Media is telling truths that others fear to enunciate, “In 21st-century America, truth is considered a revolutionary idea….We’ve sacrificed a lot of revenue over the last few years because we refuse to cave to the social-media censors, but we will continue to tell the truth. If you want to support us in this mission, please consider becoming a VIP member. For the price of a cup of coffee per day, you can partner with us to make sure the Left isn’t the only voice out there.”
The Left is working hard to make sure it is the only voice out there. That’s why we must raise our voices all the louder.