Glenn Greenwald points out that the alliance between US intelligence organizations and Big Tech – or, as I prefer to call it, between the “Deep State” and “Deep Tech”, because (as Sundance has argued in great detail) the intelligence organizations have made themselves into a fourth branch of government – is now clear to see.
A group of former intelligence and national security officials on Monday issued a jointly signed letter warning that pending legislative attempts to restrict or break up the power of Big Tech monopolies — Facebook, Google, and Amazon — would jeopardize national security because, they argue, their centralized censorship power is crucial to advancing U.S. foreign policy.
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While one of their central claims is that Big Tech monopoly power is necessary to combat (i.e., censor) “foreign disinformation,” several of these officials are themselves leading disinformation agents: many were the same former intelligence officials who signed the now-infamous-and-debunked pre-election letter fraudulently claiming that the authentic Hunter Biden emails had the “hallmarks” of Russia disinformation … Others who signed this new letter have strong financial ties to the Big Tech corporations whose power they are defending in the name of national security…
The ostensible purpose of the letter is to warn of the national security dangers from two different bipartisan bills — one pending in the Senate, the other in the House — that would prohibit Big Tech monopolies from using their vertical power to “discriminate” against competitors (the way Google, for instance, uses its search engine business to bury the videos of competitors to its YouTube property, such as Rumble, or the way Google and Apple use their stores and Amazon uses its domination over hosting services to destroy competitors).
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This letter by former national security officials is, in one sense, an act of desperation … The extreme animus harbored by large parts of the left and right toward Big Tech make it very difficult for any lawmaker to go on record in opposition to these proposed bills if they are forced to publicly take a position in a floor vote … As a result, Big Tech’s last hope is to keep the bill from reaching the floor where Senators would be forced to go on record … This is where these former intelligence and national security officials come in … they command great loyalty from Congressional national security committees [which] are notoriously captive to the U.S. National Security State. The ostensible purpose of this new letter is to insist that Big Tech monopoly power is vital to U.S. national security — because it is necessary for them to censor “disinformation” from the internet, especially now with the grave Russian threat reflected by the war in Ukraine — and they thus demand that the anti-Big-Tech bills first be reviewed not only by the Judiciary and Antitrust Committees, but also the national security committees where they wield power and influence, which have traditionally played no role in regulating the technology sector.
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Why would these former national security and intelligence officials be so devoted to preserving the unfettered power of Big Tech to control and censor the internet? One obvious explanation is the standard one that always runs Washington: several of them have a financial interest in serving Big Tech’s agenda … As Rep. Buck, the Colorado House Republican who favors reform, put it: “It is not surprising that individuals who receive money from Big Tech are defending Big Tech. At the end of the day, Big Tech is harming U.S. competition and innovation through anticompetitive practices.” In other words, these former intelligence officials are exploiting their national security credentials to protect an industry in which they have a deep financial interest.
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Big Tech and the U.S. security state are in a virtually complete union, with all sorts of overlapping, mutual financial interests … Needless to say, the U.S. security state wants to maintain a stranglehold on political discourse in the U.S. and the world more broadly. They want to be able to impose propagandistic narratives without challenge and advocate for militarism without dissent. To accomplish that, they need a small handful of corporations which are subservient to them to hold in their hands as much concentrated power over the internet as possible.
If a free and fair competitive market were to arise whereby social media platforms more devoted to free speech could fairly compete with Google and Facebook— as the various pending bills in Congress are partially designed to foster — then that new diversity of influence, that diffusion of power, would genuinely threaten the ability of the CIA and the Pentagon and the White House to police political discourse and suppress dissent from their policies and assertions. By contrast, by maintaining all power in the hands of the small coterie of tech monopolies which control the internet and which have long proven their loyalty to the U.S. security state, the ability of the U.S. national security state to maintain a closed propaganda system around questions of war and militarism is guaranteed.
There’s more at the link.
It’s sickening to any supporter of individual rights and liberties (not to mention the US constitution) to see this marching-in-lockstep mutual support between Big Tech and the intelligence agencies. It’s inimical to freedom and an informed electorate. It’s already given rise to the almost complete destruction of individual privacy in the information technology sphere (and, extending from there, to almost every other sphere). I, for one, resent this bitterly. I was raised to believe that nobody had the right to snoop on another, to invade their privacy, or to try to manipulate them in the way that public opinion is now shaped and formed by the Deep State to build support for its policies and positions. This sort of incestuous, you-scratch-my-back-I’ll-scratch-yours relationship between the intelligence agencies and Big Tech is inimical to every form of individual freedom that I can imagine.
One hopes the bills in the House and Senate succeed. They’ll be a good first step towards reining in the technological narcissists who basically fellate and facilitate each other’s dreams of dominance. We’ll have to go a lot further towards restoring the balance to what it should be – but these bills are a start.
Kind of makes you wonder who really runs this country.
As George Carlin said "It's a big club, and you ain't in it"
"… jeopardize national security because, they argue, their centralized censorship power is crucial to advancing U.S. foreign policy."
Not our foreign policy but their foreign policy.
It's really hard to get the country to go along with your foreign adventures if they can get to hear all the different sides of the story. Like, for instance, going to war against Russia if you plebes can hear what the Russians think about the Ukrainian government and the situation there, and not just the Ukrainian/NATO/EU/WEF/Davos propaganda.
God forbid, Americans just might start thinking for themselves and then disagreeing with what the official US policy is.
The first paragraph of the letter gives it away really:
This is a pivotal moment in modern history. There is a battle brewing between authoritarianism and democracy, and the former is using all the tools at its disposal, including a broad disinformation campaign and the threat of cyber-attacks, to bring about a change in the global order. We must confront these global challenges
When they say democracy of course they don't actuallyD mean democracy so much as rule by the current global elite that allows countries to have elections but gets very upset when the elections don't produce the right result. See e.g. Brexit, Trump, Hungary….
The real worry is that things might change the "global order". These people have now safely co-opted silicon valley onto their side in maintaining the current global order and don't want to see competitors upset that maintenance. Hence also of course the flop-sweat over Musk buying twitter.
Democracy and related concepts of freedom of speech, debate etc. would be far better served if these monopolies where broken up.
Yeah, cause the government can't make an official pronouncement to all and sunder, this post by this user is propaganda, here's the truth. No need to censor, provide the truth and link the two.
But that's not the goal, the goal is to only present the accepted narrative that helps TPTB
The Founders, notably T. Jefferson adamantly warned against a central bank. Who controls the country? To find the answer begin from no later than 1911.
Kabuki Theater, US Politicians are not going to lose their comfy seats, insider trading (which BTW ALSO was a bit of pat the public on the butt law writing that did NOTHING) and ability to milk the system as our Republic continues to de-evolve into chaos.
The Deep State and the Powers that BE keep their disposable face people the Politicians well under control.
Stalin only DREAMED of such a control matrix. And WE PAY FOR IT. Tax dollars and we buy our cellphones, Alexis and smart gadgets.
This, after their tame legislators gave them the legal authority to use their propaganda techniques on Americans, which had previously been limited to foreign target audiences.
Along those lines, Conservative Treehouse did an article a few days ago talking about just what is going on behind the curtain:
It's probably apparent that Jack in the metaphorical Jack's Magic Coffee shop is former Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey.
This has been going on in one way or another for a long time. Forty years ago I was a C-130 pilot. When we received an intel briefing just before the Grenada operation, the Lt. that was giving our crew the briefing commented that the news organizations were allowed to report too much. That is, they were not being properly censored. Now "Deep State" (who he probably became) and "Big Tech" along with "Big Media" are attempting to achieve that Lt.'s goal.