InfoWars and the Rise of the Tech Fascists
Fascist is a big word not to be bandied about (though it too often is these days), so let me make myself clear. I've spent about ten minutes of my life on InfoWars and think Alex Jones is a boring blowhard of little interest except to those who want to spend their lives worrying about whether there was a second gunman on the Grassy Knoll.
Nevertheless, the group censorship of Mr. Jones, led by our friends in Cupertino, the makers of the ubiquitous iPhone -- I've had a half-dozen myself and am typing this on a MacBook -- is one of the scarier developments of our time, if not potentially the scariest.
Apple is one hypocritical organization banning the puny Jones. They -- the first trillion-dollar company -- are the people who are genuflecting to the Chinese, kowtowing (that is definitely the proper word) to Xi Jinping and Co., and making all kinds of accommodations to that totalitarian regime for access to their giant market.
China is, as most of us know and Apple CEO Tim Cook prefers to ignore, the nation that has for years put their political dissidents in jail, completely censored the press and the Internet, stolen our intellectual property, brutally oppressed Tibetans and other minorities, and, lest we forget, mowed down the democracy demonstrators at Tiananmen. Alex Jones -- to my knowledge -- has done nothing anyone near as monstrous.
So what Apple is doing picking on the basically irrelevant Jones is a form of corporate virtual signaling, a particularly dangerous form if you believe in the Bill of Rights.
Yes, I know they're a private company not subject to government restrictions, but they are bigger, richer, and more powerful than almost every government on the planet, maybe more, which leads me to their noxious and equally powerful comrade-in-tech-arms.... FACEBOOK.
The Internet behemoth -- lest they be humiliated, I suppose, and not seen as politically incorrect -- immediately followed in Apple's footsteps, deleting all things Jones. They were joined rapidly by half a dozen others including Google and, bizarrely, Spotify. Did anyone have Alex Jones on his playlist?
But remarkably, only a few days before, Facebook's founder, my fellow Jew (yes, it's relevant) Mark Zuckerberg, had announced he was allowing Holocaust deniers on FB. From CNET:
He said content from Holocaust deniers should not be taken down from the platform because "I don't think that they're intentionally getting it wrong," he said.
"It's hard to impugn intent and to understand the intent," he continued. "I just think, as abhorrent as some of those examples are, I think the reality is also that I get things wrong when I speak publicly."