Wednesday 1st of December 2021

saving facebook from "misinformation" with censorship, official opinions, religious beliefs and rightful wokedomy...


Much is revealed by who is bestowed hero status by the corporate media. This week's anointed avatar of stunning courage is Frances Haugen, a former Facebook product manager being widely hailed as a "whistleblower” for providing internal corporate documents to the Wall Street Journal relating to the various harms which Facebook and its other platforms (Instagram and WhatsApp) are allegedly causing.


Democrats and Media Do Not Want to Weaken Facebook, Just Commandeer its Power to Censor

"Whistleblower" Frances Haugen is a vital media and political asset because she advances their quest for greater control over online political discourse.


By Glenn Greenwald...


The social media giant hurts America and the world, this narrative maintains, by permitting misinformation to spread (presumably more so than cable outlets and mainstream newspapers do virtually every week); fostering body image neurosis in young girls through Instagram (presumably more so than fashion magazines, Hollywood and the music industry do with their glorification of young and perfectly-sculpted bodies); promoting polarizing political content in order to keep the citizenry enraged, balkanized and resentful and therefore more eager to stay engaged (presumably in contrast to corporate media outlets, which would never do such a thing); and, worst of all, by failing to sufficiently censor political content that contradicts liberal orthodoxies and diverges from decreed liberal Truth. On Tuesday, Haugen's star turn took her to Washington, where she spent the day testifying before the Senate about Facebook's dangerous refusal to censor even more content and ban even more users than they already do.

There is no doubt, at least to me, that Facebook and Google are both grave menaces. Through consolidation, mergers and purchases of any potential competitors, their power far exceeds what is compatible with a healthy democracy. A bipartisan consensus has emerged on the House Antitrust Committee that these two corporate giants — along with Amazon and Apple — are all classic monopolies in violation of long-standing but rarely enforced antitrust laws. Their control over multiple huge platforms that they purchased enables them to punish and even destroy competitors, as we saw when Apple, Google and Amazon united to remove Parlerfrom the internet forty-eight hours after leading Democrats demanded that action, right as Parler became the most-downloaded app in the country, or as Google suppresses Rumble videos in its dominant search feature as punishment for competing with Google's YouTube platform. Facebook and Twitter both suppressed reporting on the authentic documents about Joe Biden's business activities reported by The New York Post just weeks before the 2020 election. These social media giants also united to effectively remove the sitting elected President of the United States from the internet, prompting grave warnings from leaders across the democratic world about how anti-democratic their consolidated censorship power has become.

But none of the swooning over this new Facebook heroine nor any of the other media assaults on Facebook have anything remotely to do with a concern over those genuine dangers. Congress has taken no steps to curb the influence of these Silicon Valley giants because Facebook and Google drown the establishment wings of both parties with enormous amounts of cash and pay well-connected lobbyists who are friends and former colleagues of key lawmakers to use their D.C. influence to block reform. With the exception of a few stalwarts, neither party's ruling wing really has any objection to this monopolistic power as long as it is exercised to advance their own interests.

And that is Facebook's only real political problem: not that they are too powerful but that they are not using that power to censor enough content from the internet that offends the sensibilities and beliefs of Democratic Party leaders and their liberal followers, who now control the White House, the entire executive branch and both houses of Congress. Haugen herself, now guided by long-time Obama operative Bill Burton, has made explicitly clear that her grievance with her former employer is its refusal to censor more of what she regards as “hate, violence and misinformation.” In a 60 Minutes interview on Sunday night, Haugen summarized her complaint about CEO Mark Zuckerberg this way: he “has allowed choices to be made where the side effects of those choices are that hateful and polarizing content gets more distribution and more reach." Haugen, gushed The New York Times’ censorship-desperate tech unit as she testified on Tuesday, is “calling for regulation of the technology and business model that amplifies hate and she’s not shy about comparing Facebook to tobacco.”

Agitating for more online censorship has been a leading priority for the Democratic Party ever since they blamed social media platforms (along with WikiLeaks, Russia, Jill Stein, James Comey, The New York Times, and Bernie Bros) for the 2016 defeat of the rightful heir to the White House throne, Hillary Clinton. And this craving for censorship has been elevated into an even more urgent priority for their corporate media allies, due to the same belief that Facebook helped elect Trump but also because free speech on social media prevents them from maintaining a stranglehold on the flow of information by allowing ordinary, uncredentialed serfs to challenge, question and dispute their decrees or build a large audience that they cannot control. Destroying alternatives to their failing platforms is thus a means of self-preservation: realizing that they cannot convince audiences to trust their work or pay attention to it, they seek instead to create captive audiences by destroying or at least controlling any competitors to their pieties.

As I have been reporting for more than a year, Democrats do not make any secret of their intent to co-opt Silicon Valley power to police political discourse and silence their enemies. Congressional Democrats have summoned the CEO's of Google, Facebook and Twitter four times in the last year to demand they censor more political speech. At the last Congressional inquisition in March, one Democrat after the next explicitly threatened the companies with legal and regulatory reprisals if they did not immediately start censoring more. 

Pew survey from August shows that Democrats now overwhelmingly support internet censorship not only by tech giants but also by the government which their party now controls. In the name of "restricting misinformation,” more than 3/4 of Democrats want tech companies "to restrict false info online, even if it limits freedom of information,” and just under 2/3 of Democrats want the U.S. Government to control that flow of information over the internet:


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The prevailing pro-censorship mindset of the Democratic Party is reflected not only by that definitive polling data but also by the increasingly brash and explicit statements of their leaders. At the end of 2020, Sen. Ed Markey (D-MA), newly elected after young leftist activists worked tirelessly on his behalf to fend off a primary challenge from the more centrist Rep. Joseph Kennedy III (D-MA), told Facebook's Zuckerberg exactly what the Democratic Party wanted. In sum, they demand more censorship:


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This, and this alone, is the sole reason why there is so much adoration being constructed around the cult of this new disgruntled Facebook employee. What she provides, above all else, is a telegenic and seemingly informed “insider” face to tell Americans that Facebook is destroying their country and their world by allowing too much content to go uncensored, by permitting too many conversations among ordinary people that are, in the immortal worlds of the NYT's tech reporter Taylor Lorenz, “unfettered.”

When Facebook, Google, Twitter and other Silicon Valley social media companies were created, they did not set out to become the nation's discourse police. Indeed, they affirmatively wanted not to do that. Their desire to avoid that role was due in part to the prevailing libertarian ideology of a free internet in that sub-culture. But it was also due to self-interest: the last thing social media companies wanted to be doing is looking for ways to remove and block people from using their product and, worse, inserting themselves into the middle of inflammatory political controversies. Corporations seek to avoid angering potential customers and users over political stances, not courting that anger.

This censorship role was not one they so much sought as one that was foisted on them. It was not really until the 2016 election, when Democrats were obsessed with blaming social media giants (and pretty much everyone else except themselves) for their humiliating defeat, that pressure began escalating on these executives to start deleting content liberals deemed dangerous or false and banning their adversaries from using the platforms at all. As it always does, the censorship began by targeting widely disliked figures — Milo Yiannopoulos, Alex Jones and others deemed “dangerous” — so that few complained (and those who did could be vilified as sympathizers of the early offenders). Once entrenched, the censorship net then predictably and rapidly spread inward (as it invariably does) to encompass all sorts of anti-establishment dissidents on the right, the left, and everything in between. And no matter how much it widens, the complaints that it is not enough intensify. For those with the mentality of a censor, there can never be enough repression of dissent. And this plot to escalate censorship pressures found the perfect vessel in this stunningly brave and noble Facebook heretic who emerged this week from the shadows into the glaring spotlight. She became a cudgel that Washington politicians and their media allies could use to beat Facebook into submission to their censorship demands.

In this dynamic we find what the tech and culture writer Curtis Yarvin calls "power leak.” This is a crucial concept for understanding how power is exercised in American oligarchy, and Yarvin's brilliant essay illuminates this reality as well as it can be described. Hyperbolically arguing that "Mark Zuckerberg has no power at all,” Yarvin points out that it may appear that the billionaire Facebook CEO is powerful because he can decide what will and will not be heard on the largest information distribution platform in the world. But in reality, Zuckerberg is no more powerful than the low-paid content moderators whom Facebook employs to hit the "delete” or "ban” button, since it is neither the Facebook moderators nor Zuckerberg himself who is truly making these decisions. They are just censoring as they are told, in obedience to rules handed down from on high. It is the corporate press and powerful Washington elites who are coercing Facebook and Google to censor in accordance with their wishes and ideology upon pain of punishment in the form of shame, stigma and even official legal and regulatory retaliation. Yarvin puts it this way:

However, if Zuck is subject to some kind of oligarchic power, he is in exactly the same position as his own moderators. He exercises power, but it is not his power, because it is not his will. The power does not flow from him; it flows through him. This is why we can say honestly and seriously that he has no power. It is not his, but someone else’s. . . . 

Zuck doesn’t want to do any of this. Nor do his users particularly want it. Rather, he is doing it because he is under pressure from the press. Duh. He cannot even admit that he is under duress—or his Vietcong guards might just snap, and shoot him like the Western running-dog capitalist he is….

And what grants the press this terrifying power? The pure and beautiful power of the logos? What distinguishes a well-written poast, like this one, from an equally well-written Times op-ed? Nothing at all but prestige. In normal times, every sane CEO will comply unhesitatingly with the slightest whim of the legitimate press, just as they will comply unhesitatingly with a court order. That’s just how it is. To not call this power government is—just playing with words.

As I have written before, this problem — whereby the government coerces private actors to censor for them — is not one that Yarvin was the first to recognize. The U.S. Supreme Court has held, since at least 1963, that the First Amendment's "free speech” clause is violated when state officials issue enough threats and other forms of pressure that essentially leave the private actor with no real choice but to censor in accordance with the demands of state officials. Whether we are legally at the point where that constitutional line has been crossed by the increasingly blunt bullying tactics of Democratic lawmakers and executive branch officials is a question likely to be resolved in the courts. But whatever else is true, this pressure is very real and stark and reveals that the real goal of Democrats is not to weaken Facebook but to capture its vast power for their own nefarious ends.

There is another issue raised by this week's events that requires ample caution as well. The canonized Facebook whistleblower and her journalist supporters are claiming that what Facebook fears most is repeal or reform of Section 230, the legislative provision that provides immunity to social media companies for defamatory or other harmful material published by their users. That section means that if a Facebook user or YouTube host publishes legally actionable content, the social media companies themselves cannot be held liable. There may be ways to reform Section 230 that can reduce the incentive to impose censorship, such as denying that valuable protection to any platform that censors, instead making it available only to those who truly allow an unmoderated platform to thrive. But such a proposal has little support in Washington. What is far more likely is that Section 230 will be "modified” to impose greater content moderation obligations on all social media companies.

Far from threatening Facebook and Google, such a legal change could be the greatest gift one can give them, which is why their executives are often seen calling on Congress to regulate the social media industry. Any legal scheme that requires every post and comment to be moderated would demand enormous resources — gigantic teams of paid experts and consultants to assess "misinformation” and "hate speech” and veritable armies of employees to carry out their decrees. Only the established giants such as Facebook and Google would be able to comply with such a regimen, while other competitors — including large but still-smaller ones such as Twitter — would drown in those requirements. And still-smaller challengers to the hegemony of Facebook and Google, such as Substack and Rumble, could never survive. In other words, any attempt by Congress to impose greater content moderation obligations — which is exactly what they are threatening — would destroy whatever possibility remains for competitors to arise and would, in particular, destroy any platforms seeking to protect free discourse. That would be the consequence by design, which is why one should be very wary of any attempt to pretend that Facebook and Google fear such legislative adjustments.

There are real dangers posed by allowing companies such as Facebook and Google to amass the power they have now consolidated. But very little of the activism and anger from the media and Washington toward these companies is designed to fracture or limit that power. It is designed, instead, to transfer that power to other authorities who can then wield it for their own interests. The only thing more alarming than Facebook and Google controlling and policing our political discourse is allowing elites from one of the political parties in Washington and their corporate media outlets to assume the role of overseer, as they are absolutely committed to doing. Far from being some noble whistleblower, Frances Haugen is just their latest tool to exploit for their scheme to use the power of social media giants to control political discourse in accordance with their own views and interests.


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bullshit truth algorithms?

The Facebook whistleblower behind the Wall Street Journal’s exposes revealed her identity Sunday. Frances Haugen appeared on 60 minutes to explain why she felt compelled to come forward.

Her revelations included stories about elite favoritismnegative mental health effects for teenage girls, algorithms fostering discord and drug cartels and human traffickers’ open activity. While lawmakers warned about this same issues, Haugen’s testimony confirms Facebook knew about problems with the platform.


“I have to get out enough that no one can question that this is real,” Haugen said on CBS.

In addition to working for Facebook from 2019 to April 2021, Haugen has also worked at Pinterest, Google and Yelp. She worked as a product manager. After resigning on her own terms, Haugen posted on Facebook’s Workspace that she’d like to see change.


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the fake whistleblower...

Two different kinds of activities are being blurred by using the same word, writes Jonathan Cook. And a lot hangs on how we use the term.


The enthusiasm with which much of the media and political establishment have characterised Frances Haugen as a “Facebook whistleblower” requires that we pause to consider what exactly we think the term “whistleblower” means.

Haugen has brought to the surface a fuzziness in what many of us understand by the idea of whistleblowing.

Even Russell Brand, a comedian turned soothsayer whose critical and compassionate thinking has been invaluable in clarifying our present moment, joined in the cheerleading of Haugen, calling her a “brave whistleblower.”

But what do Brand and other commentators mean when they use that term in relation to Haugen?

Manipulated Feeds

There are clues that Haugen’s “whistleblowing” may not be quite what we assume it is, and that two different kinds of activities are being confused because we use the same word for both.

That might not matter, except that using the term in this all — encompassing manner degrades the status and meaning of whistleblowing in ways that are likely to be harmful both to those doing real whistleblowing and to us, the potential recipients of the secrets they wish to expose.

The first clue is that there seems to be little Haugen is telling us that we do not already know – either based on our own personal experiences of using social media (does anyone really not understand yet that Facebook manipulates our feeds through algorithms?) or from documentaries like The Social Dilemma, where various refugees from Silicon Valley offer dire warnings of where social media is leading society.

We did not call that movie’s many talking heads “whistleblowers,” so why has Haugen suddenly earned a status none of them deserved? (You can read my critique of The Social Dilemma here.)

But the real problem with calling Haugen a “whistleblower” is indicated by the fact that she has been immediately propelled to the center of a partisan political row – yet another example of tribal politics that have become such a feature of the post—Trump era.

Democrats see Haugen as a hero, blowing the whistle not only on overweening tech corporations that are taking possession of our children’s minds and subverting social solidarity but that are also fueling dangerous Trumpian delusions that paved the way to January’s riot at the Capitol building.

Republicans, by contrast, view Haugen as a Democrat partisan, trying to breathe life into a liberal conspiracy theory — about Republicans. In their view, she is bolstering a leftwing “cancel culture” that will see wholesome conservative values driven from the online public square.

Deep, Dark Dungeon

Let’s set aside this tribalism for the moment (we will return to it soon) and consider first what we imagine whistleblowing involves.

Haugen has indeed used her position as a former employee in a hyper-powerful corporation —  the globe-spanning tech firm Facebook — to bring to light things that were supposed to be hidden from us.

That meets most people’s basic definition of a whistleblower.

But it is significant that whistleblowers are taking on institutions far more powerful than they are. Those institutions will try to fight back, and do so in the dirtiest ways possible when their core interests are under threat. Whistleblowers typically face a cost for what they do precisely because of the position they have in relation to the institutions they are trying to hold to account.

That is all too evident in the treatment of the bravest whistleblowers and those who assist them. Some are prosecuted, jailed and near bankrupted (Chelsea Manning, John Kiriakou, Craig Murray), others are driven into exile (Edward Snowden), while the unluckiest are vilified and disappeared into the modern equivalent of a deep, dark dungeon (Julian Assange).

It is by virtue of their treatment that there can be little doubt all these people are whistleblowers. It is because they are telling us secrets those in power are determined to keep concealed that they are forced to go through such terrible ordeals.

We might go so far as to argue that, as a rule of thumb, the more severe the penalty faced by a whistleblower, the greater threat they pose in bringing to light what is supposed to remain forever in the dark.

Hidden Secrets

One problem with thinking of Haugen as a whistleblower is that it is far from clear that she has paid — or will pay — any kind of price for her disclosures.

And maybe more to the point, it seems that when she turned to CBS’ 60 Minutes to help her “blow the whistle” on Facebook she knew she would have powerful allies — right up to those occupying the White House — offering her protection from any meaningful fallout from Facebook.


If reports are to be believed, she has already been signed up with the public relations firm that has represented Jen Psaki, the White House spokeswoman.

The support Haugen is being offered, of course, does not mean that she is not drawing attention to important matters. But it does mean that it is doubtful that “whistleblowing” is a helpful term to describe what she is doing.

This is not just a semantic issue. A lot hangs on how we use the term.

A proper whistleblower is trying to reveal the hidden secrets of the most powerful to bring about accountability and make our societies more transparent, safer, fairer places. Whistleblowing seeks to level the playing field between those who rule and those who are ruled.

At the national and international level, whistleblowers expose crimes and misdemeanors by the state, by corporations and by major organizations so that we can hold them to account, so that we, the people, can be empowered, and so that our increasingly hollow democracies gain a little more democratic substance.

But Haugen has done something different. Or at least she has been coopted, willingly or not, by those same establishment elements that are averse to accountability, opposed to the empowerment of ordinary people, and stand in the way of shoring up of democratic institutions.

Competing Visions

To clarify this point, we need to understand that in our societies there are two kinds of ways power can be challenged: from outside the establishment, the power structure, that dominates our lives; or from within it.

These are two different kinds of activity, with different outcomes — both for the whistleblower and for us.


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you will think what they think...

By Caitlin Johnstone, an independent journalist based in Melbourne, Australia. Her website is here and you can follow her on Twitter @caitoz

Propagandists work so hard to manufacture our consent for the status quo even as more and more people, including extremely influential ones, begin questioning whether we’re being deliberately deceived about everything.

Silicon Valley is working more and more openly in conjunction with the US government, and its algorithms elevate empire-authorized narratives while hiding unapproved ones with increasing brazenness.

The mass media have become so blatantly propagandistic that US intelligence operatives are now openly employed by news outlets they used to have to infiltrate covertly.

NATO and military institutions are studying and testing new forms of mass-scale psychological manipulation to advance the still-developing science of propaganda.

transparently fake “whistleblower” is being promoted by the US political/media class to manufacture support for more internet censorship and shore up monopolistic control for institutions like Facebook who are willing to enforce it.

Wikipedia is an imperial narrative control operation.

They’ve imprisoned a journalist for exposing US war crimes after the CIA plotted to kidnap and assassinate him.


The powerful work so hard at such endeavors because they understand something that most ordinary people do not: whoever controls the dominant narratives about the world controls the world itself.

Power is controlling what happens; absolute power is controlling what people think about what happens.

If you can control how people think about what’s going on in their world, if you can control their shared how-it-is stories about what’s happening and what’s true, then you can advance any agenda you want to. You’ll be able to prevent them from rising up against you as you steal their wealth, exploit their labor, destroy their ecosystem and send their children off to war. You can keep them voting for political institutions you own and control. You can keep them from interfering in your ability to wage wars around the world and sanction entire populations into starvation to advance your geostrategic goals.

This status quo of exploitation, ecocide, oppression and war benefits our rulers immensely, bringing them more wealth and power than the kings of old could ever dream of. And like the kings of old, they are not going to relinquish power of their own accord, which means the only thing that will bring an end to this world-destroying status quo is the people rising up and using the power of their numbers to end it.

Yet they don’t rise up. They don’t because they are successfully propagandized into accepting this status quo, or at least into believing it’s the only way things can be right now. Imperial narrative control is therefore the source of all our biggest problems.

And they’re only getting more and more aggressive about it. More and more forceful, less and less sly and subtle in their campaign to control the thoughts that are in our heads.

Many of those who have this realization see it as cause for despair. I personally see it as cause for hope.

They work so hard to manufacture our consent for the status quo because they absolutely require that consent; history shows us that rulers do not fare well after a critical mass of the population has turned against them. And they’re working harder and harder to manufacture that consent, even as extremely influential people begin questioning whether we’re being deliberately deceived about everything.

They used to look like someone using a bucket to bail out water from a leaky boat. Now they look like someone treading water, barely managing to get their mouth and nose high enough to take gasps of air.

They’re working harder and harder because they need to.

The fact that the propagandists have to work so hard to keep our society this insane means the natural gravitational pull is toward sanity. They have to educate us into crazier and crazier ways of thinking from the moment we go to school until we die, because otherwise we’ll collectively awaken and shake off their shackles.

It takes a lot of educating to keep us this stupid.

You think you’re struggling? You should see the people trying to manufacture consent for a status quo that is both plainly insane and self-evidently unsustainable. They’re the ones doing all the heavy lifting in this struggle. They’re the ones fighting gravity.

Hope is not a popular position to take in a world that is being abused, exploited and being driven mad by manipulative sociopaths. Which is understandable.

But I just can’t help it. I look at how hard they are struggling to keep the light from bursting in and driving out the darkness, and I can’t help but think, “Those poor bastards can’t keep that up much longer.


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We've been on this subject for yonks — actually since the beginning of this site, 16 years ago...


See also:




Note some of the pictures are not appearing. We're working (albeit slowly in retoring the images in place)


SEE ALSO: the age of deceit by GUS LEONISKY:


This is part one (randomly cut) of the unabridged unedited introduction to my forthcoming book, still in writing, titled “The Age of Deceit”. Hopefully I won’t die before I finish it, although some people may wish it that way.



"""""''This nation is at war with Islamic fascists who will use any means to destroy those of us who love freedom, to hurt our nation,'' he said, his remarks carried live on television.

Bush read from remarks he had written himself on sheets of white paper. """"""


Today, once again, our nations are fairy-dusted by an old foe, an acid test to our own desires of nation building and preservation, from which the mangled constructing roots are quietly kept away from the general public’s view so we, the populace, do not ask the hard questions — while too many of us are thanking god that Dubya is not asleep on the job. He-he-he… Ooomph… Dud.

Strangely, in this day and age of choice, we can vote whomever, but no matter how often we press the button or tick a box, we do not even scratch the veneer of what the powerful have chosen for us. We should be "happy" anyhow that Tweedledee or Tweedledum are leading the charge, because what else can we do?

“Happy” has varied manifestations for each individual but on average happy means being in a state-of-mind, in which we are not under threat, are protected from threats, while enjoying contentment via natural or acquired comfort. This comfort includes “lifestyle”, money, religious beliefs, and entertainment, most of which comes as a reward for our social contributive toiling of work.

Thus, while we are distracted by the tits and bums of celebrities spread eagle in magazines, while we are amused by clowns, are exhaustively excited by sporting activities and while our after-life is taken care of by priests and preachers, "we" (our government and its institutions) find and squash the everlasting plots (external and internal) against us. We are good because “we” foil these plots (most times). We reinforce our resolve to prevail because these battles contribute to our moral rights to lift the drawbridges, feel smug in our castle-comfort while we delegate out mercenaries to go and fight off more threats in someone else's patch... It’s a jungle out there.

To a great extent, three major philosophical thoughts have influenced our twentieth century nation building — philosophical thoughts, some used since Greek and Roman times, which, from the nineteenth century onwards due to the accelerating development of technology, needed variegation in formulations in order to give out enough slack and still maintain enough controls not to appear despotic or totally anarchistic in a "more democratically enlightened" world.

Some nations failed miserably: Nazi Germany within 20 years, but the USSR took more than 60 years to bite the dust, and it’s still sitting on edge. Reconstruction is usually painful and needs to dig deep into these core philosophical understandings.

Strangely so far, the most successful country on earth is the one that lied the most about its construct — the USA.

I will develop this interesting premise of porkie-building later on.

First, I am referring here to the three modern expression of philosophy underpinning most of our present Western societies relationships: Existentialism (Jean Paul Sartre), Structuralism (Claude Levi Strauss) and Neoconservatism (Leo Strauss)... 

These are HUGE topics and in order not to write a 20,000 pages thesis that would still be incomplete, I will have to massively distil their three-dimensional purpose, their influence and their relationships with our esoteric and exoteric processes such as feelings and actions, with just a few words, quotes and annotations —here, in this far too long introduction to "The Age of Deceit".

Each of these expressions of philosophy can make strange bedfellow with the other by combining parts of one with some part of the other, or one can combine with an opposing concept, in a strange symbiotic relationship. I will of course concentrate on the Neoconservatism philosophy since it carries the most seeds of deceit, is embedded in many modern politicians of various persuasion in the USA — for example tainting a Condoleeza Rice to the core, while a Dubya would not have a clue about any essential philosophical thought, except being a dumb kid on the block having fun helping his “red-neck” mates make a load of cash.

Yes — due to the messy nature of things, we philosophically formulate the whatever of our destinies and these formulations create various cultures throughout humanity, although the neocons wish-list contains the subtle eradication of these.

Quite often, the formulations will contradict themselves within the same system in order to marry expenditure with receipt, while not killing each other. Greed and compassion can thus coexist in continually adjusted percentage points in the greater order of whichever system we choose to name as our main political sustenance — usually chosen for us by the powerful.

I will take the plunge here against my own best advice to suggest for example that Buddhism is the symbiotic relationship of existentialism (“selfish”) with compassion (“unselfish”), bound by a protocol of rituals. The rituals are the exoteric activities that link the esoteric thoughts to an exoteric activity. The aim is to achieve enlightenment of the pure self (“selfish”) while maintaining an unlimited compassion (“unselfish”).

Binding existentialism to compassion is not exclusive to Buddhism — but its rituals are its own. I will also suggest here to my detriment that scientology follow a similar combination, using a different binding ritual, with blend of money and success.

Rituals are mostly beautifully staged porkies.

I will suggest here, to the outrage of most people, that Capitalism is only a process not a philosophy. Capitalism is only the value-added exteriorisation of wants using the illusion of need... in whichever philosophical framework we choose.




GL — 14 Aug 2006


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the fake facebook face-off...


BY Brian Berletic


Another serious warning sign of Washington’s interest in expanding its campaign of global interference was sounded during a hearing in front of the US Congress featuring Facebook whistleblower Frances Haugen. While at face value it appears to be a promising step in the direction of reining in Facebook’s abusive monopoly over the flow of information and how people around the globe communicate with one another, upon closer inspection it is precisely the opposite.

In reality, Haugen’s testimony is prodding the US government and Facebook closer together ensuring that not only current abuses continue, but that they are actually expanded. This is not by chance, but rather completely by design. The impact this will have on US-based social media platforms and the enhanced threat they will soon pose to the information space of nations around the globe cannot be underestimated.

When considering who has been handling, coaching, protecting, and directing Haugen’s “whistleblowing” for the past year, this all becomes abundantly clear.

Haugen’s Calls for Washington to “Fix” Facebook

Haugen’s opening statement was a combination of hard truths about the very real damage Facebook and its various social media products are doing to society, mixed in with calls to actually expand Facebook’s involvement in regulating the flow of information – not only across America’s information space, but around the world.

It is likely no coincidence that Facebook’s real abuses were mentioned first and given the most attention, while calls for Facebook to become more involved with direct US government intervention in managing the information space of nations abroad being mentioned second.

Haugen would note:

I’m here today because I believe Facebook’s products, harm children, stoke division, and weaken our democracy. The company’s leadership knows how to make Facebook and Instagram safer, but won’t make the necessary changes because they have put their astronomical profits before people. Congressional action is needed. They won’t solve this crisis without your help.

With most people likely agreeing with Haugen up until this point, she would then end her opening statement by claiming (emphasis added):

These problems are solvable. A safer, free-speech respecting, more enjoyable social media is possible. But there is one thing that I hope everyone takes away from these disclosures, it is that Facebook can change, but is clearly not going to do so on its own. My fear is that without action, divisive and extremist behaviors we see today are only the beginning. What we saw in Myanmar and are now seen in Ethiopia are only the opening chapters of a story so terrifying no one wants to read the end of it.

It is the same bait-and-switch methodology Facebook used to attract hundreds of millions of users to its platform in the first place, offering the unfettered free flow of information to the global public before incrementally constricting the flow in ways that suited both Facebook and US special interests.

It was as early as 2011 when Facebook along with the US State Department began weaponizing this control over a social media platform deeply entrenched in the information spaces of nations around the world and particularly in the Arab World.

The New York Times in a 2011 article titled, “US Groups Helped Nurture Arab Uprisings,” would admit that the US government had funded many of the opposition groups years in advance to the Arab Spring, training and equipping them to overthrow their respective governments.

The article also mentions US tech companies and their role in US-sponsored subversion abroad, noting:

Some Egyptian youth leaders attended a 2008 technology meeting in New York, where they were taught to use social networking and mobile technologies to promote democracy. Among those sponsoring the meeting were Facebook, Google, MTV, Columbia Law School and the State Department.

And while Haugen mentioned Myanmar, seemingly suggesting that Facebook had not done enough to bolster the US-sponsored opposition currently attempting to return itself to power there – Facebook along with Twitter and Google had executed a sweeping campaign of censorship to silence Myanmar’s military and current government from accessing social media in Myanmar’s own information space.

An official statement by Facebook regarding the situation in Myanmar would note:

Today, we are banning the remaining Myanmar military (“Tatmadaw”) and military-controlled state and media entities from Facebook and Instagram, as well as ads from military-linked commercial entities.

We’re continuing to treat the situation in Myanmar as an emergency and we remain focused on the safety of our community, and the people of Myanmar more broadly.

Events since the February 1 coup, including deadly violence, have precipitated a need for this ban. We believe the risks of allowing the Tatmadaw on Facebook and Instagram are too great.

Demonstrated is the extreme danger of allowing a foreign corporation to monopolize control over a nation’s own information space, particularly on popular social media platforms used not only for basic communication but also for business and sharing news.

Control over these conduits of information is similar to the control of communication lines in traditional, conventional warfare. A nation would never imagine allowing a foreign nation to control the physical telecommunication infrastructure that information uses to travel within a nation’s information space, yet so many nations – including Myanmar – depend on virtual infrastructure like social media platforms – controlled entirely by foreign and demonstrably hostile entities – to facilitate the exchange of information on a day to day basis.

Haugen’s inference that Facebook did not do enough in regards to Myanmar and Ethiopia is concerning – meaning she seeks to recruit the US government in enabling Facebook to meddle in the information spaces of nations abroad to an even higher degree than it already has.

Frances Haugen’s Handlers are Part of the Establishment, Not Threats to It

Haugen’s comments have set the stage so perfectly for accelerating rather than addressing the abuse of US-based social media platforms by both big-tech and the US government, that many suspected Haugen herself was an agent of one or both circles of special interests.

While Haugen may or may not be a genuine whistleblower, her handlers are undoubtedly compromised.

In a recent Gizmodo article titled, “Who Is ‘Whistleblower Aid’, the Group Helping Frances Haugen Blow the Whistle on Facebook?,” we are introduced to Whistleblower Aid and its role in cultivating Frances Haugen ahead of this crucial US hearing.

The article notes:

The confidence that Haugen alone justified all this commotion was sustained by a refreshing aura of personal agency and responsibility, which she projected with ease throughout each poignant response. But Haugen, in fact, was not alone, and never was. For most of the year, she’s been counseled and protected by one of the nation’s preeminent whistleblower organizations, the aptly named Whistleblower Aid.

Whistleblower Aid’s own webpage notes their role in supporting Haugen, claiming:

Whistleblower Aid is representing Frances Haugen, whose disclosures to the SEC have formed the basis for recent reporting and Congressional investigations.

Also on Whistleblower Aid’s website is a list of the organization’s team members.

They include Libby Liu, a co-founder and CEO of the US State Department’s Open Technology Fund who coordinated with the Department’s US Agency for Global Media. She was also president of Radio Free Asia, one of many US State Department media outlets operating around the globe.

John Tye, Whistleblower Aid’s founder, is a former employee of the US State Department who claims to have sat in on National Security Agency (NSA) related briefings. He also boasts of having top secret/sensitive compartmented (TS/SCI) information clearances.

Mark Zaid is a lawyer who also is claimed by Whistleblower Aid to currently have TS/SCI clearances.

These clearances would not be possessed by a genuine whistleblower organization exposing real abuses inside the US government, but instead an organization posing as such to mitigate the damage real whistleblowers might cause if their information was brought to the press and released to the public before being sanitized, censored, and spun in a politically expedient manner.

Whistleblower Aid also includes Andrew Bakaj who served as an intelligence officer and criminal investigator for the US Department of Defense and the Central Intelligence Agency.

In essence Frances Haugen blew the whistle to a “whistleblower organization” representing the interests that need to be exposed most of all. It would akin to witnessing the local mafia carry out a murder, then reporting the murder to the local mafia. It would only make it that much easier for the perpetrators to cover up the crime and mitigate the damage knowledge of the crime might cause.

Whether Haugen is a real whistleblower or not is, at this point, immaterial. Whatever damaging information she might have had will surely be managed in such a way as to benefit the US government and its partners in Silicon Valley and their continued collective abuses, not inhibit them.

Lip service will be paid to Facebook’s impact on society while the social media corporation entwines further with the US government in their collective efforts to monopolize and control the flow of information both at home and abroad.

For nations abroad, this is another wake up call in regards to Internet sovereignty. If a nation does not allow foreign interests to control physical telecommunication infrastructure, social media platforms should also be protected and controlled domestically.

For nations lacking the ability to protect their information space with domestically derived solutions, acquiring the means to do so from nations with this capability in a similar process used by nations to acquire military defense systems could be explored.

Nations who downplay the current threat Facebook and other US-based social media platforms pose to their respective information spaces by dominating the flow of information within their borders open themselves up to the same sort of prolonged unrest, violence, and even armed conflict that has befallen the Arab World in 2011 onward and now Myanmar in Southeast Asia.

While uncertainty surrounds precisely how these hearings and investigations will manifest themselves in newfound cooperation and focus between Facebook and the US government, the final result will almost certainly be a Facebook more capable and willing to interfere in the internal political affairs of any nation negligent enough to continue allowing it to operate in their information space. There is time to begin securing national information space and achieving Internet sovereignty – but that time is finite.



Brian Berletic is a Bangkok-based geopolitical researcher and writer, especially for the online magazine “New Eastern Outlook”.


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