Senator Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) is at least zero for two when it comes to legislation limiting the power of Big Tech.
After hearing from an extreme far-left Facebook whistleblower who is being funded by former eBay founder and current billionaire social engineer Pierre Omidyar, who wants more censorship of conservatives, Klobuchar responded in a clip played by Shannon Bond on National Public Radio saying, “I think the time has come for action, and I think you are the catalyst for that action.”
Bond followed the clip commenting, “And she and other lawmakers say, you know, they've been worried about Facebook and the way its algorithms exacerbate things like mental health problems, vaccine misinformation, ethnic violence for a long time. Now, here comes this ex-Facebook employee with tens of thousands of pages of internal research showing Facebook is also concerned about these problems. But, Haugen says, the company hasn't done what it could to fix them because at the end of the day, it's just so focused on growth. So, she says, Facebook is not going to change on its own, so Congress has to be the one to force it.”
Klobuchar has now introduced her Senate version of the American Innovation and Choice Online Act (S.2992). Instead of restricting Facebook from censoring you or accessing more of your data, the Klobuchar bill would actually give Facebook more access to your data through their apps on your phone.
As Jim Jordan and Mark Meadows wrote in a FoxNews.com opinion piece about the House version of the bill in July, “If you think Big Tech is bad now, just wait until Apple, Amazon, Facebook and Google are working in collusion with Big Government.”
[S]ome of the most progressive House Democrats – including several leaders of the impeachment attempts against President Trump – dropped a package of bills that would empower the Biden administration to command and control Big Tech with an unchecked iron fist. Make no mistake, Big Tech is out to get conservatives and must be reined in. But these bills do nothing to fight Big Tech’s anti-conservative bias and censorship. These Democrat bills will only make things worse. If you think Big Tech is bad now, just wait until Apple, Amazon, Facebook and Google are working in collusion with Big Government. The Democrats have cleverly tried to recruit Republicans to make their bills seem like a serious and noncontroversial bipartisan effort. But a close look at these bills shows them for what they are: a clear and present danger to freedom.”
As a practical example, Klobuchar’s bill would make it illegal for Apple to protect people who use the Facebook app on their platform from having their data mined by Mark Zuckerberg’s social media behemoth.
Remember the saying that if you aren’t paying for a service, it is highly likely that you have become the product they are selling. Well that is Facebook’s business model. They allow you to interact with others on their platform at the cost of your privacy being reduced to bits and bytes that are sold to those who are looking to buy your personal information. And should this bill pass, there would be nothing that Microsoft, Apple or others could do about it to protect their customers.
A pitchman on late-night cable might say, “But wait, there’s more.”
Klobuchar has also introduced a measure, S. 2488, that would compel Facebook and other social media platforms to outsource their fact-checking department to the very people who have been lying to the public about COVID origins, treatments and vaccine efficacy – the politicized federal public health bureaucrats. The same bureaucrats at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) finally corrected their untruthful assertions that NIH had not funded gain-of-function research in Wuhan would control the acceptable information that could be shared on Facebook. What could go wrong?
Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) who has been battling back in forth with Dr. Anthony Fauci on this very subject of the NIH’s funding of gain of function research at the Wuhan Lab in China tweeted in reply, “I told you so’ doesn’t even begin to cover it here.”
Under S. 2488, Facebook would lose its immunity from lawsuits under the notorious Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act if it algorithmically promotes health misinformation during a health crisis as determined by those just outed by NIH as being less than honest arbiters of truth.
In the Orwellian world of Klobuchar’s bill, Facebook could be sued and forced to pay a fine for allowing Sen. Paul’s documented and true accusation that Fauci had granted U.S. tax dollars which ended up being used at the Chinese Wuhan Virology Lab to develop bat viruses that could be readily transmitted to humans. All because the federal bureaucrats who are being exposed would have the ability to censor their accusers.
Facebook execs would love for the government to regulate content on their site that doesn’t fit the big government leftist narrative that they embrace.
And that is where the heart of the problem lies. Not only should the government not be the scientific censor of social media, but the law itself does nothing to deal with the actual problem on Facebook which is the censorship of conservative thought.
Several years ago, Klobuchar joined all of her fellow Democrats in the Senate in voting against the language in the First Amendment when Nevada’s Harry Reid was the Majority Leader, so it should be no surprise that she is embracing a sneak attack where she would enable her trial lawyer friends to create the social media censorship of conservatives that the left has been clamoring to get.
Science is disagreement, and anyone honest about scientific inquiry will admit that it is never settled. The Senate should reject both S. 2488 and S. 2992. Both are bad ideas marketed under the false guise of reining in Facebook.
There is a common saying that is making the rounds these days that if you are getting a product for free, then you are actually the product that the company is selling. Data in the 21st century is king, and the data compiled on each individual who uses a credit card participates in a grocery store discount program or uses Google, Facebook, Amazon or other tech platforms is the currency that pays for access or the discount provided.
As public awareness that we are little more than bits and bytes to those who sell access to us through platforms like Facebook, there is a growing backlash demanding data privacy. The search engine DuckDuckGo is built around this demand for data privacy, and Apple has introduced some privacy restrictions for their product users.
What’s more, platforms like Facebook, Google, Twitter and Amazon actively seek to discriminate against conservative viewpoints
And as strange as it may seem, the House recently heard from a much-ballyhooed Facebook insider/whistleblower.
Richard Manning is President of Americans for Limited Government.