We have all seen the effects of a growing tide of portals and outlets seeking to silence, deplatform, limit, or outright remove specific voices and sources from public view. The justifications are numerous, and usually more hysterical than lucid. What is truly perplexing however is when a member of the media itself - a purported journalist no less - actively calls for the silencing of others in their field. Welcome, fair-minded citizens, to the vocational calling of Oliver Darcy, from CNN.
Darcy works in tandem with the infamous media hall monitor from their Reliable Sources program -- call him Stelter The Lesser -- to put out their daily newsletter. In the latest edition Ollie engages in what has been his stock in trade, the bizarre practice of a journalist promoting censorship. Most would think that someone whose very vocation is rooted entirely in the 1st Amendment would value above all else the freedom of expression and the open exchange of ideas in the public square. Not Darcy. He has found his calling in the practice of targeting and squelching of media figures with whom he holds disapproval.
Darcy got a taste of newfound influence years back when he went on a crusade to have Alex Jones, and his outlet InfoWars, taken down from social media outlets. Darcy played a role in the retribution, as he frequently detailed the ways Jones and InfoWars were in violation of certain standards, declaring he spread disinformation, and challenging the companies to take action against him. Eventually Jones became fully deplatformed. His channel could not play on YouTube, the InfoWars account was taken down by FaceBook, and his Twitter account has been suspended.
Apparently feeling empowered he has turned to this method with regularity. On CNN’s Reliable Sources in May, 2019, Darcy began to attempt to get President Trump de-platformed. Speaking of InfoWars he stated, “These are very extreme individuals. No matter what anyone tells you, they are extremists, and that’s why with Facebook they decided to get rid of them from the platform the other day.” He then continued with the President. “What is the difference at this point between Trump’s Twitter feed and Inforwars.com? Infowars might have been banned from Twitter, but it seems to have found a new home over at Trump’s Twitter feed.”
Darcy’s militance has even raised the notice of famed Lawyer Johnathan Turley of George Washington University Law School. Writing this past November, Turley said of Darcy:
One vocal advocate of censorship and speech controls has been CNN media analyst Oliver Darcy who just ratcheted up his call for de-platforming opposing views. Like many anti-free speech advocates, Darcy simply labels those with opposing views as spreading “disinformation” and demands that they be labeled or barred from social media. In a recent newsletter, Darcy calls for every tweet by Trump to be labeled as disinformation while asking “and why stop there?” Precisely. Once you cross the Rubicon of speech regulation, there is little reason or inclination to stop. Just look at Europe.
Turley noted also the chilling reality that Darcy’s views are shared by many in the Democratic party. This takes us to Oliver’s latest newsletter entry.
He opens with comments by an Assemblyman from New Jersey, Paul Moriarty. The politician sent a text message to an executive of Comcast Cable. "Fox and Newsmax, both delivered to my home by your company, are complicit. What are you going to do??? You feed this garbage, lies and all."
Now, a grownup might approach this offense by simply changing the channel. You could also go to the extreme and enter the SETTINGS section in your television and actively block said channels from even accidently appearing on your screen. But this is all about suppression, something Oliver Darcy is all in favor of assisting to take place.
But what about TV companies that provide platforms to networks such as Newsmax, One America News -- and, yes, Fox News? Somehow, these companies have escaped scrutiny and entirely dodged this conversation. That should not be the case anymore. After Wednesday's incident of domestic terrorism on Capitol Hill, it is time TV carriers face questions for lending their platforms to dishonest companies that profit off of disinformation and conspiracy theories.
Darcy’s indignation here is filled with obliviousness. In one report he made of the desire to muzzle Jones and his outlet, you can see Ollie straining to address the complaints about him -- as a journalist -- promoting the silencing of a source. ‘’CNN has not called for anyone to ban Jones or InfoWars from speaking, but has been reporting on social platforms' stance towards InfoWars, especially as those platforms claim to be combatting misinformation.’’ To summarize - They do not want to prevent Jones from speaking, they just want to prevent people from hearing him. Completely different...but delivering the exact same result.
The desire to stop others did not stop there. After Jones was entirely de-platformed a Reliable Sources panel saw Brian Stelter tossing out this hopeful question. ‘’Have any other media personalties [sic] violated the tech giants' usage policies as gratuitously as Jones has?’’ It was a feeling of having established a precedent; who can they go after next?!
Well, Ollie has his next targets. However if he wants to cling to that small dodge of not being true censorship, as it is private companies taking down these voices, he will have a small matter of the FCC being included. Granted, with a fully Democratic control in D.C. it is likely a sympathetic voice in that department can be installed. But Oliver has set up a dangerous precedent -- not just in journalism, but for himself.
His standard for getting these news networks removed by Comcast is based on their alleged prevarications. Well that metric is bound to ensnare CNN, and Darcy, rather quickly. This is the network, after all, that enthusiastically pushed the Russian collusion lie for three years. For a more recent example, when the Hunter Biden story was brewing just prior to the election, how many stories did Darcy’s network file that claimed the laptop controversy was cooked up by Russian intelligence, all done without a scintilla of evidence?
Maybe the best way for Darcey The Silencer to understand the nefarious nature of his actions is to have him go to cable providers with the call to remove outlets delivering misinformation, and have them answer his request with, ‘’Fine - we’ll start with you first.’’