Amerika

Posts Tagged ‘facebook’

How You Know You Are Living in a Soft Totalitarian State

Wednesday, August 16th, 2017

Conservatives struggle with a fundamental problem: our ideals are perennially unpopular, at least until things get so bad that people are desperate enough for a solution that they turn to matured wisdom.

As long as the proles — the 90% of any society who belong to the category of people who need to be told what to do — have fat enough paychecks, beer, bread and circuses, they are perfectly content to ignore any long term problems. In fact, they delight in not just ignoring them but shaming anyone who notices them as a “loser,” because this makes them feel more powerful.

With the fall of Berlin, conservatism was not just marginalized by its relative unpopularity, but actively under assault for any area where its ideas overlapped with those of the National Socialists. This caused the “winners” to immediately drop those ideas, and the “losers” to hang on to them, perhaps with the disclaimer that they could be implemented differently.

Only fifteen years after the end of the second world war, America and Europe were already swinging hard to the Left, mainly because post-war prosperity guaranteed that people would be entirely unconcerned about any long-term consequences. As the saying goes, while there’s food, the peasants party, and then only worry about what to do when they wake up the next day to find themselves hungry.

Since that triumph of the Left, conservatives who speak honestly and realistically have been essentially a persecuted minority, with those who speak taboo truths finding themselves facing the terror of public opinion which seeks to deprive them of jobs, housing, friends and family:

“The thought of getting outed as ‘white supremacists’ to our employers and possibly losing our jobs is a horrifying prospect,” the user Ignatz wrote. If forced to choose between a rally, which could bring him unwanted exposure, or supporting his white family, he says he would choose the latter.

…”But, by and large, people are scared because of the exact same reasons you’d expect,” says Hankes. “It’s hard to get a job, hard to make a living, hard to have a normal social life when all your friends and family know you believe in ethnic cleansing.”

This means that we are living in a soft totalitarian state. Like regular garden-variety totalitarianism, soft totalitarian controls people by regulating what methods and ideas they can be exposed to. However, soft totalitarianism adds a wrinkle: We The People, in our endless quest for social acceptance, do the enforcing instead of government.

That extends to corporations and others who achieve their success and wealth through being popular. Consumerism, as it turns out, is a form of democracy; whatever the largest group of people purchases, wins, and so a market or competition is set up in which companies compete to be the most popular. Inevitably, that spills outward from value and quality of their products to public image, which then swings Leftward as all things do when left up to a mass of people, mainly because that mass chooses the lowest common denominator, which is always simple social sentiments instead of complex critical thinking.

In a soft totalitarian state, government uses freedom as a weapon, knowing that most people are short-term thinkers and therefore both selfish and oblivious to long-term consequences, and that in groups, people always choose a mediocre option in order to keep the group together because only a few people understand the task and have a sensible take on it, anyway. The more freedom and fewer restrictions, the more emboldened the mob becomes to engage in bad behavior, and as a result, the more it fears anyone who wants actual standards, morals, customs, values, culture, heritage, religion or purpose. The mob is the weapon.

In any democratic state, the mob takes over because it creates a market for liars. These actors go on stage, make promises they know are untrue, collect votes and then drive out anyone else. Like the Chicago “political machines” of the 19th century, they then rig the system so no one else can win. As Plato noted, they invariably import foreigners who, as people alienated from the majority, always vote for strong protectors, and so keep the actors in charge.

Their problem is that, as conductors of the masses, they must find a way to motivate an increasingly selfish and sluggish group of very distracted people, most of whom are lost in solipsistic ego-drama and attention whoring, in order to stay in power. To do this they must create vivid images like we would find in comic books of exaggerated good versus evil, with the underdog always winning because most people see themselves as an underdog, if for nothing else to justify their selfish behavior and excuse their failings, claiming oppression and therefore a “right” to take what they secretly believe is theirs, or to simply not contribute much. Politics becomes a hybrid between a circus and a football game, with constant distractions to keep the crowd interested, and then narrow characterizations to channel them into one opinion or another. This is one of the many reasons that democracy is immoral and dishonest.

Many have misunderstood this characteristic of democracy. They see how democracy acts against white people, men, Christians and intelligent people, and assume that it has singled these out for some purpose of its own. In a realistic assessment, what it is doing is forming a pretext. Democracy is the political system of equality; equality is only valuable to those who need it, which are the ones who could not succeed without it. If there are one hundred students in a class and a test comes back where grades are worse than usual, it is not the kids with As who are claiming the test was not fair. Equality creates an inherent victim narrative where those who are not successful claim to be equal, which means that the only reason they are not doing as well as the successful is that they have been victimized, oppressed or discriminated against by some force… and there is no one to blame except those who are successful. This is why all equality movements consist of taking from the successful and giving to the less successful. The war against successful groups — including white people in lands founded by white people — is a pretext for the seizure of wealth and power, followed by redistribution of the same.

You might wonder, why does this equality of power not threaten those in power? The answer is that equality is entropy. If everyone literally has the same amount of power, nothing will get done; this is why all known anarchist communes have perished, even those below Dunbar’s number, the mythical amount of people that one can personally know which allows — in theory — any political system to work. As a result, the equal crowd will always turn to a leader or protector, and who better to do this than the person who just gifted them with wealth and power taken from those who succeeded more than the herd? This creates a cycle where politicians gain power by stealing, then give it to the people, who give it back in exchange for more, and so taxes always go up, more rules are created so there can be more fines, more fees are charged to those with more wealth, and educational systems are designed to bore the intelligent and delight the idiotic.

Soft totalitarianism consists of this cycle. In the circus part of the cycle, the politicians provoke outrage in the herd about some target that can be easily destroyed. The mob, which like all groups with no individual power and full anonymity, loves to destroy, and this whets its excitement like a guillotine or race riot. Then comes the football game part of the cycle, where the crowd is encouraged to view itself as intelligent and morally upstanding for supporting blue team over red team. Finally, the politicians deliver the flashpoint: the other team victimized us, and thus we are justified in destroying them. By any means necessary. They are against our values. They threaten us. They must be destr– errr, defeated, wink wink.

We are now caught in that cycle. The Left whipped up the circus by calling the Alt Right “racists,” and there has been no greater sin according to American herd politics since 1945, so people were ready for violence. The cops created the football game by encouraging violence. Then, after one potentially mentally unstable person panicked and in trying to escape, crashed into another car which then killed one person and injured nineteen, the herd was told that it was the victim. There was the dog whistle! The crowd rushed off to smash the bad team, and the corporations, desperate for attention because it is the only thing keeping them relevant in an anarchic society with no values, used that as a pretext to wage war against the Alt Right.

In the past twenty-four hours, we have seen:

  • The Daily Stormer website being removed from GoDaddy and then invalidated by Google.
  • Amazon dropping author Billy Roper’s book The Ice Path because of complaints.
  • VDARE, Counter-Currents and others being deplatformed by Paypal.
  • Discord deleting the thriving Alt.Right chat server.
  • Numerous accounts deleted on Twitter, Reddit, Facebook, and Instagram.

At this point, we see a fundamental problem with the internet: once entirely owned by the government, it now is mostly in the hands of private businesses, and they are prone to do whatever reduces the number of complaints coming in while also giving them headlines that appease the Left, because the Left are the primarily media consumers and especially of social media, where they are most active in both finding news and regular use:

Overall, consistent conservatives are somewhat less likely than consistent liberals to get government and political news on Facebook or Twitter, primarily because they are somewhat less likely to use the sites in the first place. About half (49%) of consistent liberals (and a similar share of those with mixed ideological views) say they got news about government and politics in the past week from Facebook, compared with 40% of consistent conservatives. And while 13% of consistent liberals say they got political news on Twitter in the past week, just 5% of consistent conservatives (and 8% of groups in between) say the same.

Rather than expand to an audience which is less interested in spending its time clicking around, perhaps because it has more important things to do, the media is doubling down on its existing audience, mainly because the fortunes of the dot-com boom are fading and since statistics count warm bodies, it is essential to these companies to get as many warm bodies in the door as possible.

This means that private companies are in control of public spaces where these private companies derive benefit from making “safe spaces,” which means removing all non-Left-wing content. That realization prompted calls to regulate social media as a public utility:

Bannon’s basic argument, as he has outlined it to people who’ve spoken with him, is that Facebook and Google have become effectively a necessity in contemporary life. Indeed, there may be something about an online social network or a search engine that lends itself to becoming a natural monopoly, much like a cable company, a water and sewer system, or a railroad. The sources recounted the conversations on the condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to give the accounts on record, and could face repercussions for doing so.

…Under the Obama administration, the Federal Communications Commission moved forward on a plan to regulate internet service providers as utilities, barring them from slowing down traffic to a site in order to pressure it into paying higher fees. The Trump administration is pushing to reverse that move, which complicates Bannon’s message.

…Silicon Valley’s liberal cultural politics puts it at odds occasionally with more conservative, rural Trump voters. Facebook was confronted by a backlash over its news curating during last year’s presidential campaign. With insiders claiming there was an anti-conservative bias, Facebook pulled its live team off the project.

If you can imagine a town where the only public spaces — churches, pubs, parks, streetcorners and any other place where more than a handful of people could gather — were owned by a company that forbade discussion of certain topics, you can see the risk in allowing private companies to control what has become a public space that has displaced other means of mass communication. This causes concern for the removal of free speech through methods that soft totalitarianism pioneered:

This brings me to the heart of my argument, today free speech no longer hinges on the government telling people it cannot say certain words. Earlier this year the Supreme Court affirmed that “hate speech” that bogeyman of inferior minds is protected speech. Rather, what’s happened is that the concept of “corporate social responsibility” a buzzword for social justice taught in business schools across the US, has been used to deplatform and deny the right the opportunity to participate in the arena of ideas simply because they control the medium, or media, through which the message must travel.

Technology has put the spirit of the First Amendment in a difficult position. Pedants all over the internet will tell you that censorship is only censorship when the government does it, private companies can censor all they want. They can refuse to do business with an individual.

Totalitarianism is a government banning ideas and behaviors; soft totalitarianism is a raging mob that destroys anything which disagrees with the idea of the mob itself, which is that everyone is accepted and wealth and power should be redistributed to them. This is what mobs have always wanted, an excuse to destroy and loot, and resembles a slow-motion riot more than intelligent political change. With social media, soft totalitarianism has found its ultimate weapon.

For the Right to survive this, it will need to create its own internet from the ground-up based on explicit principles of freedom of speech. A good start would be decentralizing, or abandoning centralized sites like Facebook and Google, to instead user a smaller network of blogs, news sites, search engines and chat rooms that are too numerous and too unknown to become targets. Eventually, the wires and servers themselves could be furnished, presenting a space of actual net neutrality not just in its mechanics but in its refusal to allow any host to prioritize traffic from any other, because that would in itself be a form of proto-censorship of this public-private space.

We are living in a soft totalitarian state. As Plato wrote, democracy always collapses this way and leaves behind tyranny. People are loathe to realize that what most of us want, in any group, is usually wrong, mainly because a mob has no accountability and people act through social behavior instead of logical thinking. If humanity is to survive into the next century, it is essential that we come to awareness that the crowd is evil and our only salvation lies in creating a hierarchy where the smartest, not the mob, are on top.

Huxley Proven Right: Distraction Serves Control More Than Direct Propaganda Does

Friday, June 23rd, 2017

George Orwell, a Leftist, wrote 1984 to convince us that Leftism was okay just so long as it did not use extreme methods. Over a decade earlier, Aldous Huxley wrote Brave New World to show us that our vapidity of direction would destroy us no matter what methods we use. He was concerned with our motivation and purpose, because void of those would end in a human Hell.

The Chinese government discovered this principle, and has used it to wage a war of distraction upon opponents of the regime:

In the first large scale empirical analysis of this operation, we show how to identify the secretive authors of these posts, the posts written by them, and their content. We estimate that the government fabricates and posts about 448 million social media comments a year. In contrast to prior claims, we show that the Chinese regime’s strategy is to avoid arguing with skeptics of the party and the government, and to not even discuss controversial issues.

This “strategic distraction” works in approximately the same way American social media does, which is to provide a constant stream of non-issues so that actual issues remain unnoticed. The complete study shows how China immerses its citizens in irrelevance rather than argue with them directly.

If Leftism has a singular technique, it is to insist that methods are more important than goals or purpose. As long as we avoid bad methods like censorship or repression, they argue, everyone is “free” and things will work out. Huxley pointed out that what we do with our freedom is more likely to doom us by creating a society of vapidity designed around human pleasure as a means of distracting from essential questions.

Anecdotally, older users of the internet have mentioned in conversation how the internet was better when it was a repository of research and writing, and not a stream of “what’s happening now.” It turns out that the best way to hide problems is to keep people awash in distraction, and government and industry exploit this to their own ends.

Caught In The Web

Wednesday, June 21st, 2017

Without remembering exactly when I first heard the term “internet,” it appeared in my house somewhere after 1990 as a dial-up modem. I had absolutely no interest in it for some reason. I was skeptical towards it some time later even when we got the faster, more convenient ISDN. The thought of communicating with strangers around the world seemed very unpleasant to me. Closing in on 2000 some homes near us started getting cable modems that put them online 24/7. Soon thereafter it was the norm.

I began using the web infrequently to search for topics I found interesting. Later I would start using IRC, unwillingly at first. But it had benefits for communicating with friends. You were a nick on a screen and nothing more. However, the system with channels was clearly altering the way people met new contacts and made social bonds. Not in a good way. I noticed it. The amount of drama, gossip, conflicts and lies where downright disturbing. Often people behind nicks did not reflect who the person was in reality at all.

Some people I had a good impression of, whom I felt I knew after long periods of chatting, but then “met” them again when a careless comment revealed their actual character, made me want to turn around and run. I had some serious arguments with people who were present on the channels to the point it seemed we were ready for a time and place to rip each other to pieces. Only to meet by coincidence, looking at each other, embarrassed, laughing and shaking hands. This was the norm by the way. My worst examples in each end of the spectrum are not even bad compared to what other people did. I can mention a person who attempted ordering an assassination and something close to a local gang war as the worst ones. And most of these people where just the normal guys and girls in town.

As a protection against this ridiculous form of skewed socialization I and some others moved out of channels like #yourtown to ones set up for networks of people who used to be together out in the real world. This improved the situation somewhat but still had problems. People would invite in others they knew, just like in real life. The difference was of course that it still had some of the same problems as the major channels. You had to deal with persons who were not there physically. People you under normal circumstances would never bond to, but ended up doing still because you kind of knew the friends of your friends more that way. This resulted in networks being formed in a more unnatural way, at least to some extent that was important. Every circle of people that formed around me at that time that had come out  of internet communication was quickly torn up by levels of conflict that were unusual in our culture prior to this. Including one episode of severe violence that had substantial effect on the local community as a whole.

The final solution to this came around 2002/03. MSN. I quickly faded my IRC use to looking at the screen now and then a few times a day to pulling the plug forever in 2004. So did “everyone” else. I looked at my hometown channels list of nicks just before quitting. The only names remaining were those of a few nerds who were the original inhabits. MSN was perfect. Just a list with your actual friends to talk to. As a add-on you had forums for different interests. I left most of those to because of many of the same reasons as IRC. That it had the tendency to put incompatible people in the same “room” in a situation that would not occur in a purely IRL setting.

So here we have a example of how social networking online went from one primitive prototype and back into just private messages and forums for whatever interests the person had. You could still be on the internet with gloves on and nothing was centralized yet. There was a very clear distinction between your life and the internet, even when you consider the negative impacts it could have had already at that point. 

However, here I should add one important thing. There were some other sites then, used by a certain kind of troubled people, which were similar to later ones like Facebook. It is interesting for me to note that the users of these that I knew often correlated with Leftism, r-selected traits and somehow using the internet purposely to find partners or sexual adventures.

Then came 2007…

Everyone was talking about this Facebook. “You have to join. It’s fantastic! You are not there yet?”

No, I was not there. I quickly learned that this was a new network that was different. I instantly felt a deep opposition to the idea and decided to not go on it. I got even more reluctant when we met friends out or invited them home. They seemed to know everything about everyone because of Facebook. I found that repugnant because one of the interesting things about meeting people is to talk about what’s new and what they have been up to. Knowing it all beforehand seemed to take away a lot of the point about going for a cup of coffee or visiting someone. Not to mention that everyone you knew were supposed to know certain things about you all the time the moment you did it. You could of course join and not broadcast everything, but it seemed to me that careful use was not the rule but the exception.

Looking back at Facebook I wonder why it happened. A network like that had certainly been technologically possible for years. And there had been some other attempts at similar ones before. But most people had a sense of a border between the internet and IRL. As in: you put on decent clothes when you  go out, you don’t go to the store in underwear or walk around your garden naked. A bit of a clumsy analogy, but you get the point. Somehow people were very willing to break down those boundaries. Why take the gloves of then? Did the users of those similar networks before pave the way, push the boundaries further and somehow pull the rest of the population with them into this new level of doing it? Or was there a strong media campaign driving people towards it that was orchestrated by the creators?

I joined in 2009, in the summer. I made a compromise. I would not add people I had been in the same room as once. I would add people I knew well enough, then, or in the past, like the guy who sat two seats behind me in the German class I attended for two weeks in 97 would not be enough. So I was there doing nothing important. Somehow parodying the whole thing or doing it with a tongue in cheek attitude when I did anything at all. So for the first years it had very little impact at all. I mostly kept things as they were by doing my communication at MSN or SMS and some forum activity.

MSN was scrapped, and people I knew in real life wanted to use Facebook for messages so I had to do so as well. They quickly introduced their own Messenger. And suddenly, together with a lot more, the internet was centralized around the monster imitation Facebook…It had by then taken over networking, chat, personal home pages, dating services etc. to such and extent that you could almost call Facebook the heart of the internet. The metaphor of the boiling frog comes to mind here

In my point of “revelation” in 2015 I finally used Facebook for activism. I had done so on occasions earlier, but not very actively. I did some posting now and then on Islam and the breakdown of family values from 2011. My prediction or hope of a rising movement in 2015 included a rebellion against this form of networking as well. As I clearly saw how the peer pressure there and in the media had finally caught complete hold. Just before the migrant crisis most people were ready to say no…but they did not.

Over time I found myself deleting Facebook, then Instagram, then messaging services. My online usage trickled to a rivulet, having once been a stream. It was as if a false world fell away, replaced by an emptiness, and this emptiness proved to be less empty than what had gone before it. Perhaps, much as there can be degrees of infinity, there can be degrees of nothingness, and in leaving behind the full void it was possible to rediscover the daily void and search for meaning within it. I felt an absence as I deleted these empty things.

This monster clearly acts and shapes the internet in this way. It is the same pattern mirrored there as in the outside world: feedback looping. In my retelling of how I witnessed the rise of the internet I left out another very important event just to avoid mixing them up. In January 2007 I watched Steve Jobs introduce the iPhone. That event is hugely important as it marked a shift in people’s use of all these things. People would soon be able to have the internet not only 24/7 on their desktop and laptop at home, work or school. They would soon be on it 24/7 everywhere. Life went total as most people picked it up towards 2010 and it caused further innovations in various services.

I like many others have seen notable behavior changes in people after 2007. And even I being alert to this feel that my perception and experience of the world have changed. Even when leaving all this behind I can sense it around me like some sort of field. By that I don’t mean I can sense the microwaves. It is more a presence I know is there, everywhere, that my instincts detect as a threat, which it undoubtedly is. I can illustrate what I mean by this. In 2012 we where hit by a bad storm during Christmas. It knocked out everything. The mobile network, most emergency services and lines of communication went down. At one point the power went out and we were in total blackout as in a pre-1900 state. It was like some switch was shut off. My whole body and mind had a stress reduction response that was very notable. My thoughts was “Freedom!” And that was what it felt like. 

A YouTube personality I found on Stefan Molyneux’s show brought my attention to another strange psychological phenomenon that is well known but somehow less talked about. Mass hysteria. She further connected it to social media. Where she theorized that it not only caused it, but made it more frequent and long-lasting. And pointing out that it was much more difficult to cure it because of that. This further reinforced the notion I have picked up that white people tend to be much more sensitive to outer stimuli and how it affects perception of reality. That makes the current overload of media and virtual social interaction a significant contributor to our current situation. Although not being the origin of our problems it has been speeding up the decline to an extent I find hard to calculate.

We should study how this artificial shrinking of the world, distances and communication methods really affect us. What happens in the body, the brain and its various systems when you meet someone in person compared to communicating over the web? And so on…The difference might be more important than we think or tend to feel about it. Because in our time there is a huge cliff between how we consciously think various things affect us compared to what they actually do. And this lie at the heart of it all. The disconnectedness.

As Diversity Fails, Europe Intensifies Censorship While America Backs Off

Monday, June 19th, 2017

Someone ran over some Muslims in England yesterday. The Muslims, sensitive to optics and public relations moments, quickly made a big show of being peaceful despite having been attacked in front of a mosque known for its extremist sentiments. They know the voters are stupid and plan to take them for the fools they are and use them as useful idiots in their war against non-Muslim civilization.

In the meantime, the circus ringmasters of the useful idiot herd started up with the sentimental and strong statements designed to pacify the sheep for another good fleecing in the next election. That included applying anesthesia in the form of action to conceal the problem, so that the voters can go back to sleep in the blaze of glory that is themselves:

It was the latest in a series of statements from Ms May that suggest she believes recent attacks have strengthened the case for her widely-criticised plans to regulate the online world.

Those plans include launching a massive crackdown on internet security so messages on apps such as WhatsApp can be accessed more easily by authorities, and censorship of what can be published online.

England has experienced three Muslim terrorist attacks in a row and one white guy hitting a few people with a van. This shows that whatever the UK is doing is not working, but admitting that requires the voters to admit they were wrong, which means they were manipulated, which means they have lost. So what will they do?

Like all primates, they will double down. To reverse course is to admit error, and especially at the lower end of the IQ curve, people hate to do that. Instead of looking at the issue of terrorism and diversity, which really is a single issue when you think about it, they will focus on the best way to sprinkle gold dust on the disaster and proclaim themselves strong, independent voters who don’t need no logic.

In the meantime, as if in concert, Google and the other big internet monopolists are planning to increase censorship on their services:

Google and YouTube will:

  • Use “more engineering resources to apply our most advanced machine learning research to train new ‘content classifiers’ to help us more quickly identify and remove such content.”
  • Expand YouTube’s Trusted Flagger program by adding 50 independent, “expert” non-governmental organizations to the 63 groups already part of it. Google will offer grants to fund the groups.
  • Take a “tougher stance on videos that do not clearly violate our policies — for example, videos that contain inflammatory religious or supremacist content.” Such videos will “appear behind a warning” and will not be “monetized, recommended or eligible for comments or user endorsements.”
  • Expand YouTube’s efforts in counter-radicalization. “We are working with Jigsaw to implement the ‘redirect method’ more broadly across Europe. This promising approach harnesses the power of targeted online advertising to reach potential Isis recruits, and redirects them towards anti-terrorist videos that can change their minds about joining.” A Google spokeswoman said Jigsaw’s “redirect method” is already in use in the US.

Google, Facebook, Twitter and Reddit have all stepped up their censorship policies of late. They claim they intend to crack down on terrorism, and maybe they will. But as the bolded words above indicate, their real target is to crack down on any Right-wing speech by declaring that it is supremacist, extremist or otherwise anti-social. They have been doing this for years.

They are doing this because the EU has demanded this crackdown on anti-diversity speech after events like the Cologne rapefest of New Years’ Eve, or subsequent terror attacks. The EU is becoming unstable because people share anti-immigrant and anti-diversity sentiment on social media, and so they are demanding (yet again) that social media censor its users.

No social media will escape this, because the EU will fine or block these social media services within its borders if they do not comply, forcing them to comply with its censorship or lose huge chunks of income.

In EU states, people are regularly arrested for posting anti-diversity messages, but this makes the EU states look bad, so instead they are using their broad regulatory powers to force the social media services to comply.

This enables the EU to cover up how badly its policies are failing. The voters really just want to go back to sleep, and if they stop seeing alarming messages, they will bed down in the paddock for a good rest before another day of grazing and dodging sheepdogs. But the broader concern is that speech laws are being taken into the realm of health and safety laws, where they are invisible.

On the other hand, in American the Supreme Court took a strong stand for freedom of speech, mainly because it can since the real censorship these days is being done in de facto public spaces like social media that are nonetheless owned by private parties, thus not regulated by the First Amendment:

In his opinion on the case, Justice Samuel Alito wrote, “Speech that demeans on the basis of race, ethnicity, gender, religion, age, disability, or any other similar ground is hateful; but the proudest boast of our free speech jurisprudence is that we protect the freedom to express ‘the thought that we hate.'”

Justice Anthony Kennedy, in a separate opinion, echoed Alito’s sentiments. “A law found to discriminate based on viewpoint is an “egregious form of content discrimination,” which is “presumptively unconstitutional,'” Kennedy wrote, continuing to say, “A law that can be directed against speech found offensive to some portion of the public can be turned against minority and dissenting views to the detriment of all.”

“The First Amendment does not entrust that power to the government’s benevolence. Instead, our reliance must be on the substantial safeguards of free and open discussion in a democratic society,” he concluded.

The best decisions are those which change nothing but grab headlines, and the Supreme Court has done that. The United States has strengthened free speech in public, perhaps, but not necessarily on private college campuses or private services like Google, Amazon, Facebook, Twitter, Reddit, Netflix and Skype.

EU governments are experts at the shakedown. All they need is one law that says they can suspend, fine, or stop your service and the entire market of the EU is shut down to your company. Using this tool, they will invisibly force these companies to censor content, so that while technically we have free speech, in the places where people talk, nothing of the sort will exist.

Why The Dot-Com Collapse Is Rushing At Us

Tuesday, June 13th, 2017

You have probably heard too much of it already: the internet industry is beginning its collapse. But until now, few have mentioned that it also suffers from monopolistic tendencies which will make this collapse even more devastating.

Some are picking up on a small group of companies have become as powerful as government and threaten to savage our industries, then fail and leave us with no alternatives to the services they provided:

Many elements of Taplin’s case are familiar. Newspaper ad revenue has declined by roughly $40 billion between 2000 and 2014, recorded music revenue has dropped $10 billion in the same period, and over 5,000 independent book and record stores have closed in the last two decades. Facebook’s covert experiments in manipulating the emotions of hundreds of thousands of users, Amazon’s atrocious treatment of workers at its distribution centers and Google’s cavalier disregard for copyright laws are also well-documented.

Taplin, director emeritus of the University of Southern California Annenberg Innovation Lab, argues that the major tech companies are fundamentally monopolistic and parasitic — they exploit positions of market dominance to ignore legal regulations, extract inflated prices from advertisers and rely on content produced by others, often without their consent or knowledge.

…Because Amazon can deny publishers access to its enormous customer base, it can force them to accept artificially deflated prices. Google and Facebook can do something similar with advertisers by threatening to deny them access to billions of users. Taplin cites the Herfindahl-Hirschman Index, a widely used measure of market concentration in antitrust law that allows regulators to determine whether markets are becoming monopolistic. A score of 2,500 is considered highly concentrated. The HHI for internet search markets is 7,402.

Industries which behave in this way are ones near the peak of their life cycle. They have grown too far and become too big to manage themselves, and now they need more money just to survive. Instead of admitting that its product was search and advertising, and downsize to fit that need alone, Google expanded to conquer nearby industries and now is a towering behemoth that must constantly expand to feed its own bulk.

As a result, its profit is no longer based on delivery of product alone; it manipulates its own product to make it more profitable, without offering a competitive advantage. This self-cannibalization is leading to the implosion of all internet media, since they have outpaced what the market can offer and now are treating consumers like piggy banks:

The decline of the establishment industries has led to the increased quality of the alternative industries; but the alternative media has been relying upon advertising dollars, and it’s the establishment media which pays for advertising. The establishment industries have effectively been paying to destroy their consumer base. Furthermore, the technology itself undermines advertising. Why pay for a $6 million advertising campaign, when for a few hundred dollars you can advertise on Tom Leykis, and the algorithm will do the rest?

So, the companies which sell algorithmic content – Twitter, YouTube, Google, Amazon, and Facebook – are undermining the establishment industries whose advertising campaigns are bankrolling their algorithms. Thus, to maintain profitability, they need to destroy the very algorithms they offer. They’re currently subsisting off of their First-Mover Advantage, but that’s a foundation which is quickly eroding away.

This means that the industry as a whole is overvalued, and the market will have to correct for this value, which means huge losses inbound. Like all other industries based on consumerism itself, or popularity instead of function, this one too will face the knife, and leave in its place a gaping void where functional business used to be.

Leftists Outraged That Holocaust History And Immigration May Be Openly Discussed

Thursday, May 25th, 2017

Leftists are disturbed that, since our society has achieved diversity, there are many different opinions floating around out there which do not please the Leftist narrative.

Currently the Leftist governments are campaigning against Facebook to force it to censor “hate speech,” which is a very wide category that includes any speech critical of diversity or sexual, racial, ethnic or religious groups. Traditionally hate speech rules favor minorities, which means anyone but the founding ethnic group in a nation, but now that majorities are becoming more like minorities, interpretations vary.

This creates a situation where Leftists express outrage at the lack of censorship on some social media sites:

Facebook’s policies on Holocaust denial will come under fresh scrutiny following the leak of documents that show moderators are being told not to remove this content in most of the countries where it is illegal. The files explain that moderators should take down Holocaust denial material in only four of the 14 countries where it is outlawed. One document says the company “does not welcome local law that stands as an obstacle to an open and connected world” and will only consider blocking or hiding Holocaust denial messages and photographs if “we face the risk of getting blocked in a country or a legal risk.” A picture of a concentration camp with the caption “Never again Believe the Lies” was permissible if posted anywhere other than the four countries in which Facebook fears legal action, one document explains. Facebook contested the figures but declined to elaborate.

While Holocaust revisionism gets a pass, which is a reversal of past trends in censorship, interestingly enough Facebook struggles to come up with a standard for discussion about immigration:

Documents show Facebook has told moderators to remove dehumanizing speech or any “calls for violence” against refugees. Content “that says migrants should face a firing squad or compares them to animals, criminals or filth” also violate its guidelines. But it adds: “As a quasi-protected category, they will not have the full protections of our hate speech policy because we want to allow people to have broad discussions on migrants and immigration which is a hot topic in upcoming elections.”

Most likely, Facebook policy shows us the complexities of business in a diverse environment. In much of the world, especially wherever Islam is, criticism and revisionism of the Holocaust is a rising interest. On the other hand, in Europe and in the USA, Facebook is trying to filter out any content that criticizes immigrants for engaging in illegal activities or being dirty.

Naturally this will upset Leftists and they will push for more censorship. Assuming that this Facebook leak is not engineered by Facebook itself, which is an assumption no one should make, this shows the impossibility of maintaining community standards under diversity. And so the more Leftists succeed in achieving diversity, the more fragile their ideological hold becomes.

Silicon Valley: New Boss, Same As The Old Boss, But With More Power Over Our Lives

Monday, May 22nd, 2017

People are suckers for a revolution. If a revolution happens, in their minds it means that everything that went before was bad which by the converse principle, implies that everything “the people” were doing was good; the people were simply victims of the bad. It explains away their failures and omissions, and gives them license to seize whatever they could not have before.

And to think, people once doubted that we had origins among ancestors of the apes. We are just monkeys underneath the clothes, vocabulary, technology, social pretense and fancy theories. Monkeys are forgivable because they at least do not erect layers of deception around their raw self-interest and essentially venal, opportunistic mentality. Humans just bury it in justifications and rules.

Silicon Valley — this term can be used broadly to represent the technology revolution, especially its post-internet variety — promised a revolution. Old business was manipulative and inefficient, so they would do it better, they promised. And yet, twenty-five years into the process, we are seeing not better but slight improvement coupled with a more powerful version of the bad bosses of decades ago.

Let’s review some of the comedy along these lines from this week.

First, we have Google with some dubious “do as I say, not as I do” behavior regarding women in the workforce:

The DoL has accused Google of systematically underpaying women, and the court battle centers on the company’s refusal to hand over salary data the government has requested.

The motion for a dismissal – which a judge rejected, in part citing the first amendment – sheds light on Google’s aggressive efforts to end the case at a time when the tech industry is facing increasing criticisms over sexist workplace cultures, gender discrimination and widespread pay disparities. Critics said it appeared that Google was attempting to limit media scrutiny with unusual tactics that raise free press concerns and seem to contradict the corporation’s public claims that it is committed to transparency and accountability in its efforts to promote equal pay.

Google also attempted to restrict press access during a hearing last month. Following a private meeting with the judge about the Guardian’s reporting, Google’s attorney requested that the proceeding be closed to the media before continuing, but a DoL attorney objected and the judge sided with the government.

Not very promising, but probably nothing in comparison to Google’s position as editor and censor of what people see, hear and believe. Most internet searches — some say up to 90% worldwide — are run through Google.

When Google drops a site, it falls into a black hole where no one sees it unless they go looking for it, and since other sites are penalized for linking to it, that group gets smaller and smaller. How powerful is Google? A recent anecdote by hacker and nationalist Weev shows how Google pagerank is more important than trademark or even advertising dollars:

They trademarked the name “Weev”, which I have been using since I was 10 years old, built a social video app, and dozens of celebrities were given money and shares in the company in exchange for using the app.

…I would delay every troll operation I wanted to do until they were spending serious money and resources to try to dig themselves out of a pagerank hole. Whenever they would drop deep into the second page of Google results (where they might as well not even exist) they would try to do another press push and garner backlinks.

…In 2016, after three years of an entire team of people working fulltime, a few million dollars in funding wasted, dozens of physical events they threw in meatspace, and repeated humiliation at the hands of a single neo-Nazi blogger, the Weev app closed up shop forever.

This is what one man — albeit a creative and knowledgeable one — can do with an internet connection and a few thousand dollars. But what about Google, who can simply alter an algorithm, which is not made public, and drop whole sites from the internet? Or appoint a proxy like Wikipedia, who censors any right-wing information and crowds the top five search results on many topics?

If anyone else were doing it, we would recognize this as censorship by monopoly.

This leads to the question of what Google might be censoring. We know the company leans Left because their Google doodles tend to celebrate minor Left-wing figures in preference to major Right-wing ones, and the company’s public statements suggest a social justice mentality pervades the organization.

And now, we have some data on how Google is using its market power to quash conservatives:

The former Chairman and CEO of Fox News, Roger Ailes, has passed. He was arguably one of the most consequential individuals in media and politics in the last century, and he leaves behind a loving wife and son. He also leaves behind a cadre of loyal former employees who love and respect him.

But if you run a Google search on him, you’ll find that the top results consist almost entirely of articles from several liberal publications savaging his reputation as a person. The search results — both on mobile and desktop platforms — begin with entries that are strikingly cruel and meanspirited — and raise new questions about Google’s objectivity.

Why do companies lean Left? Right now, the Left is the dominant ideology; for the last century, the West has moved further and further Left to the point where a moderate view of fifty years ago would be considered “far right” now. The goalposts have moved, the Overton window shifted, and the Left has used this to marginalize conservative viewpoints.

It seems Google is doing the same thing. Not only that, but European governments are putting pressure on Google and other social media — Google’s PageRank rewards the popularity of links, not their content, so might be seen as early social media — to remove “hate speech” and other non-Leftist facts and opinions.

We know this is commonplace because companies like Reddit edit content all the time, and social media companies are planning to expand into mind-computer links which allow people to navigate social media with their thoughts, raising the question of social media will use your thoughts for advertising purpose and possibly, influence them in turn:

Facebook is at least at the moment not able to assure users that their brain activity will not be appropriated to sell ads. This is of course not an indication that the company will do this, only that they are not prepared to rule it out. And to be sure, this is still a hypothetical — it’s possible the company’s neural keyboard will remain somewhere between vaporware and marketing stunt, as has been the case with its solar-powered flying internet relay, or Amazon’s national delivery drone fleet.

A handful of sites control most of the traffic on the web, and their tendency is to be good Leftists and censor or at least bury opposing sources. At the same time, they are expanding to take over even more of our daily lives, putting us at the mercy of them and their ideological overlords.

On top of that, these technologies already work as digital bullies that enforce conformity and lower self-esteem among the young and probably, the rest of us:

Four of the five most popular forms of social media harm young people’s mental health, with Instagram the most damaging, according to research by two health organisations.

…The survey, published on Friday, concluded that Snapchat, Facebook and Twitter are also harmful. Among the five only YouTube was judged to have a positive impact.

The four platforms have a negative effect because they can exacerbate children’s and young people’s body image worries, and worsen bullying, sleep problems and feelings of anxiety, depression and loneliness, the participants said.

Despite being billed as the great liberator of human thought, under the crushing weight of trends and what most people seem to prefer it to be, it has been converted into a new form of the Old Media, just as controlling of our minds and controlled by Leftist dogma, and it plans only to expand further until it crowds out everything else, achieving consensus through propaganda.

Net Neutrality Lunges In The Wrong Direction

Thursday, May 18th, 2017

The Left specializes in creating mental spam. Every few weeks, there is a new distraction that they hype into an end-of-the-world style issue, not so much because they care about the issue, but because they need to keep their base panicked and angry so that they become a personal army to crush opposition and demand Leftist power.

Currently the Leftism media-political establishment is raging about net neutrality:

Federal regulators will move to roll back one of the Obama administration’s signature Internet policies this week, launching a process to repeal the government’s net neutrality rules that currently regulate how Internet providers may treat websites and their own customers. The vote on Thursday, led by Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai, will kick off consideration of a proposal to relax regulations on companies such as Comcast and AT&T. If approved by the 2-1 Republican-majority commission, it will be a significant step for the broadband industry as it seeks more leeway under government rules to develop new business models. For consumer advocates and tech companies, it will be a setback; those groups argue that looser regulations won’t prevent those business models from harming Internet users and website owners. The current rules force Internet providers to behave much like their cousins in the legacy telephone business. Under the FCC’s net neutrality policy, providers cannot block or slow down consumers’ Internet traffic, or charge websites a fee in order to be displayed on consumers’ screens.

As usual, the Left wants to confuse one method of addressing a problem with the set of all methods, so that their voters think there is only one way to fix the problem and any deviation from that is treason.

First, we should talk about net neutrality. The original idea of the net was that every node could forward packages to every other node, based on the idea of mutuality, or that each did the same to others. This works in a subsidized or military system, but not in a market, where some sites are massively larger than others. This means that the little guys spend their money and energy supporting Google, Amazon, Wikipedia, Apple, Facebook and Twitter, while the big companies owe them nothing.

This means that net neutrality, as a concept, was dead the minute that the internet was commercialized.

Next, we should talk about monopoly. When a large search engine like Google, or massive site like Amazon or Wikipedia, controls most of the eyeballs, the policies this site uses to list links on its pages regulate who lives and who dies. A site with low Google rank disappears and its business evaporates; a concept that Wikipedia refuses to mention — in a model like that of the mainstream media, excluding its ideological enemies — just drops out of public consciousness. Any concept of neutrality is long dead.

With those in mind, we can turn to a solution. Regulation adds expense and litigation to otherwise thriving industries, displacing little guys and favoring big guys. The consumers ultimately want the ability to see anything they want on the net without consideration of what it is. But they have already lost that, long ago.

Instead, it makes sense to let the market cure this one. If an ISP is blocking your traffic, you can sign up with a competing ISP… except you cannot, because regulation keeps the market small and so you have few options. Instead of piling more bad regulations on top of that, it is time to repeal more laws and let the problem work itself out.

If consumers desire net neutrality as much as they claim they do, they will be willing to put market pressure on their ISPs instead of relying on Big Daddy Government to do it for them.

Fighting The Wrong Enemy Leads To Defeat By Our Own Hands

Thursday, April 13th, 2017

The Western media is the enemy not so much because it is evil by intent, but because it is evil by failing to do good, and it fails to do good because it is a business that sells information, and information that supports convenient illusions is more popular than information of a realistic or even relatively truthful nature.

Today’s trope is a dumb one, which is that Facebook is publishing child pornography, which is not quite true but we all accept it because we hate Facebook for being so popular and yet so manipulative and degrading to information, so whatever reason will snuff it is OK with us. Would that we get to the same outlook regarding Amazon, Google, Apple and Reddit.

Facebook is at risk of a criminal prosecution in Britain for refusing to remove potentially illegal terrorist and child pornography content despite being told it was on the site, The Times can reveal.

The social media company failed to take down dozens of images and videos that were “flagged” to its moderators, including one showing an Islamic State beheading, several violent paedophilic cartoons, a video of an apparent sexual assault on a child and propaganda posters glorifying recent terrorist attacks in London and Egypt. Instead of removing the content, moderators said that the posts did not breach the site’s “community standards”.

Stepping aside the logical fact that it is idiotic for Facebook to remove any content, since in theory its filters separate normal users from anything extreme, let us look at what has happened: in a frenzy to remove Right-wing material, Facebook has neglected jihadist propaganda, rape and creepy anime.

This mirrors what has happened to the West in general. Egalitarian systems tend to be backward-looking because they are conformist, and so whatever worked in the past that was rewarded is now what people will do until events force them to do otherwise. This is why people are still re-fighting and re-living WWII; it was the last time we had a clear ideological position, and so people ape it.

And so we had the situation during the last election, where fifteen candidates got up on the Republican stage and preached the same thing: strong on defense, pro-Israel, anti-abortion, pro-business. What was this but reliving WWII? They wanted someone who would defeat those evil Nazis, defend the Jews, stop the wartime promiscuity and advance our economic interests, which happened quite a bit in WWII.

That brings us to a point where ideology replaces practicality entirely and we end up living in a weird fantasy world where it is more important to fight symbols than achieve results:

The museum didn’t hesitate to sharply condemn Richard Spencer, a vocal Trump supporter who organized a gathering of white nationalists in Washington in November. Spencer “said that America belongs to white people,” the museum noted in a statement. “The Holocaust did not begin with killing; it began with words.”

Back in reality, America was founded by white — Richard Spencer sensibly uses this as a synonym for WASP — people who made it according to their needs. They used some African labor, but this was a minority of the labor done, and without it the empire would have been created anyway. They also used some Mexican labor, mostly out of pity for the poor illiterate peasants than anything else, but again, this was not necessary.

In reality, homogeneity works for nations and heterogeneity does not. Israel itself is discovering this with Palestinians, and many people there are discovering that asserting European-style nationalism is their only way to survive the onslaught from the surrounding third-world, Arab-descended population.

If we go even further in realism, the Holocaust did not start with words, but with diversity. Jewish people left the middle east during the diaspora, and ended up first in eastern Europe and next in Germany. During this time, something glitched; accusations of racial preference against Germans, and of nepotism and Communist sympathies among Jews, boiled over during WWII. WWII, again.

Our old propaganda is dead and tired. It worked back then, but produced horrendous results, so we are re-trying it now because in egalitarian societies all decisions are made by committee, and committees favor that which is uncontroversial, such as repeating the past. But in doing so, we have ignored real threats.

Real threats? Our society is decaying from within; the West has fallen, replaced by an ersatz nu-West we call Amerika. Islamic and Asiatic invaders are attempting to destroy us. Eurasians want to invade. Our financial system is failing because of too many make-work jobs and regulations. Our technologies have not advanced. We are flailing and cannot admit it.

Instead, we are going to focus on symbols that the crowd knows. They know the WWII propaganda, so expect they will get social approval for repeating it in new and exciting ways, as has been the case for the past seventy years. And yet, this fails for them, because other events keep popping up that have nothing to do with their interpretation of the narrative.

The point is that in the West, we need a new narrative. We are not the people of the Book, nor are we egalitarians. We are not refighting WWII, nor are we refighting the Cold War. We are fighting for our lives, and the sooner we rid ourselves of false targets and focus on actual threats, both internal and external, the sooner we have some coherence in our dialogue about the future.

Never Trust Silicon Valley And The FANG Companies

Saturday, January 28th, 2017

Apple sent this message to a developer. It essentially states Silicon Valley policy: if enough people complain about something, the user who posted it must be destroyed.

This is typical Leftist crowd-oriented thinking. It enables any group that can muster a handful of complainers to destroy someone else, no matter how much time and effort they put into their content, and how much of it previous to that time was inoffensive.

Soft totalitarianism of this nature occurs whenever human individuals become too powerful as a mass, instead of being regulated by a hierarchy and values system.

The FANG companies — Facebook, Apple/Amazon, Netflix and Google — control most of the internet because they regulate its traffic. Sites not listed in Google disappear. Companies whose apps are rejected by Apple die out. Keywords and hashtags filtered by Facebook vanish.

The age of government censorship may not be over, but with “virtual spaces,” our public areas are owned by companies who have no obligation toward “free speech” under the law. As such, as they get more powerful, they will remove anything that threatens them by making their properties less valuable.

An obvious solution is to decentralize: go back to a web of RSS, blogs, independent sites and open protocols like USENET and IRC. Get away from big sites who hope to make money off of us as content providers, and then delete that content when someone whines.

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