CBC News / YouTube Twitter bot purge sparks backlash...
CBC News / YouTube

Donald Trump is playing us all for fools right now, awaiting his executive order regarding social media, to be unveiled later Thursday, with bated breath. He had his press secretary foreshadow this momentous event to the press Wednesday and then a draft copy was obtained by Reuters. This is what we could be looking at as the New Abnormal in a few hours and you’ll see why I alluded to an army of trolls being actiivated.

The executive order would require the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to propose and clarify regulations under Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, a federal law largely exempting online platforms from legal liability for the material their users post. Such changes could expose tech companies to more lawsuits. […]

The draft order also states that the White House Office of Digital Strategy will re-establish a tool to help citizens report cases of online censorship.

Called the White House Tech Bias Reporting Tool, it will collect complaints of online censorship and submit them to the Department of Justice and the Federal Trade Commission (FTC).

It requires the FTC to then “consider taking action”, look into whether complaints violate the law, develop a report describing such complaints and make the report publicly available.

The draft order also requires the Attorney General to establish a working group including state attorneys general that will examine the enforcement of state laws that prohibit online platforms from engaging in unfair and deceptive acts.

If this doesn’t sound like a sci fi script for how a dystopian society begins targeting and dividing it’s citizens, pursuant to a fascist takeover, let me know. I can just envision a future society, where you go to apply for a job, rent an apartment, whatever, and along with the usual criminal background check warning a caveat is given, “And we check the Barr Lists.”

Get ready for the pundits to go psycho on this one. I think that there hasn’t been that much commentary already because all the heavyweight political commentators are waiting to see what actually materializes this afternoon when Big Boss Trump waddles to the desk and flourishes his Sharpie, but a couple of major things are going on here: First of all, on its face, the First Amendment considerations are paramount and secondly, the Trump/Twitter war is the perfect distraction from COVID-19 and it’s collateral disaster, the cratering of the economy. If you take a look at the stats, eviction forebearance is going to end in June and one fifth of Americans didn’t pay the rent last month. Wells Fargo ends mortgage forebearance in July. And what is the sitting Republican president doing about these crises? Playing golf and fighting with Twitter, that’s what.

Trump is going to do his damnedest to keep America’s attention off of life, death, and the economy and keep the dispute on turf he knows something about, which is social media and television. That’s all he knows or cares about and that’s his goal, make no mistake. This is Trump’s Last Stand, hopefully his Little Big Horn. If he can distract enough here on this side issue and trivialize the issues that America really faces, by getting into an eipic pissing contest with Twitter and undermining the constitution as well, he has a better chance of prevailing in November. That’s what this is all about. This is Fox News fodder, personified. Watch it roll that way.



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