In reaction to last Wednesday’s storming of the U.S. Capitol, two Duke University professors are urging President-elect Joe Biden to create a presidential “misinformation commission” — which would be charged with countering right-wing “lies.”
In an op-ed published by The Hill, titled Misinformation fueled the Capitol riots — a Biden commission could chart a path forward, public policy instructors Bill Adair and Philip Napoli argued that the storming of the Capitol proved the need for a government panel to decide which speech should be permitted — and which speech should not. Think about that.
They wrote, in part:
“Last week’s attack on the U.S. Capitol was based on lies. The mob that stormed the building was acting on a tidal wave of misinformation about the election that was spread by the president, his fellow Republicans, and their supporters using a web of partisan media outlets, social media, and the dark corners of the internet.”
“The dark corners of the internet.” Sure, okay.
“The lies flourished despite an extraordinary amount of debunking by fact-checkers and Washington journalists. But that fact-checking didn’t persuade the mob that stormed the Capitol — nor did it dissuade millions of other supporters of the president. Fed a steady diet of repetitive falsehoods by elected officials and partisan outlets, they believed the lies so much that they were driven to violence.”
Adair, who is the founding editor of fact-checking website PolitiFact, operated by the Poynter Institute, which is described by NewsBusters as “a left-wing ‘journalism’ institute,” argued that recent attempts to censor speech have failed.
“For the past four years, academics and journalists and philanthropists and foundations and tech leaders have thrown hundreds of millions of dollars and millions of words, plus countless conferences and reports — and yet the problem seems worse than ever.”
Despite the “failure,” Adair and Napoli believe the effort deserves another shot and that this time the federal government should be directly involved in “countering the lies.”
Yeah, that’ll work…
— David Ross (@djross95) January 13, 2021
The “public policy” instructors urged Biden to “seize the moment” and consider “all possible solutions,” including “(re)education, regulations, and new laws.”
“In his first week in office, President-elect Biden should announce a bipartisan commission to investigate the problem of misinformation and make recommendations about how to address it. The commission should take a broad approach and consider all possible solutions: incentives, voluntary industry reforms, education, regulations, and new laws.”
Declaring “journalism isn’t working, either,” any guesses who two these two denizens of the “hallowed halls of academia” blame?
You got it: Donald Trump.
“[B]ecause many of President Trump’s supporters seek out the messages they want. They got the reality they preferred from conservative media commentators, at least until those commentators declared Trump had lost the election, when many of them sought refuge from the truth by turning to other outlets even less tethered to reality.”
“They got the reality preferred…” Setting the election results aside, do left-wingers “get the reality they prefer” from Chris Cuomo and Don Lemon on CNN? Joe Scarborough and Rachel Maddow on MSNBC? The New York Times and The Washington Post? Please.
As you might imagine, these guys were “all in” on the recent “festivities” of Big Tech.
“The tech companies now seem motivated to act. After the Jan. 6 siege on the Capitol, Twitter banned Trump for life. Facebook banned him indefinitely.
“Google, Apple, and Amazon Web Services have shown a new willingness to block apps such as Parler because of rampant misinformation and calls to violence. Other platforms, ranging from YouTube to TikTok to Snapchat to Twitch, have shown they’re also willing to take more aggressive action than they have in the past.”
As you also might imagine, Adair and Napoli don’t believe that the above actions or any similar actions have gone far enough.
“Still, the commission needs to take a bipartisan approach and look well beyond the election at the broad problem of misinformation that is eroding trust in government, science (“climate change”) and our institutions.
“We need to go beyond yet another Congressional inquiry. The group needs to be truly diverse. In addition to policymakers and representatives from the media and tech sectors, participants should include representatives from the advocacy community for underrepresented groups, who are often disproportionately affected by misinformation.
“It should include a wide array of experts and stakeholders, such as academic researchers, technologists, legal scholars, advertisers, and community and foundation leaders.”
And so it continues.
Remember during her failed 2020 presidential campaign when Lizzie Warren advocated for the formation of a “Truth and Reconciliation Commission“? Me too. As the Wall Street Journal editorial board noted in a November 9 op-ed titled Canceling Trump Alumni, “some on the Left want to banish anyone who worked for the president.”
One of those “some on the Left” is none other than “Squad” comandante Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-Math Wizard). Check out my RedState colleague Brandon Morse’s recent article titled AOC Is “Discussing” the Launch of a Massive Attack on Free Speech to Combat “Misinformation” for a gander at the “thought process” of our intrepid erstwhile bartender on the subject of “reconciliation.”
If you have the stomach for it, that is.