Blessings on you and your family, and from all the Huckabee staff!
Today's newsletter includes:
- Bible Verse of the Day - Proverbs 3:11-12
- It's been a big, bad week for social media
- New poll
- America the Beautiful - Pittsburgh, PA
- Health Theater
- Cancel Culture continues
- No right to counsel
- Bernie says no to civility and manners
- Hymnal - Be Thou My Vision
DAILY BIBLE VERSE
It's been a big, bad week for social media
By Mike Huckabee
It’s been a big, bad week for social media, with Facebook in the news for an apparently fake “whistleblower” interview on 60 MINUTES meant to justify more online censorship of conservatives. Then Facebook –- the whole blasted thing –- crashed for hours on Monday, sending its value crashing, too, albeit only temporarily, on paper.
Also this week, our staff writer Laura Ainsworth reacted to the attempt by another social media platform, Nextdoor, to control what jokes “neighbors” get to laugh at after someone posting non-PC “blonde jokes” was completely denied access to the site. They call it “being in jail.” Her pointt: that this platform isn’t a REAL conversation among neighbors, because real conversations aren’t monitored, censored and shaped. Deciding what people can laugh at is just one of numerous ways they do it.
On Thursday, she posted the link to her article on Nextdoor as well, as a few people there had asked just how “local” Nextdoor is. Answer: It might look local, but it’s not. It’s HUGE –- based in San Francisco, headed by people from around the world, many with backgrounds in academia in fields such as social psychology, and quite global in its scope, as it’s now in 11 countries and is valued in the billions of dollars. It will be interesting to see if they send Laura to “jail” for starting a conversation about this (or maybe daring to tell a few “blonde” jokes herself). But we’re happy to “out” another social media behemoth that refuses to just let us talk to each other, that insists on shaping and tweaking our conversation.
But as we come to the end of our week, there’s still more social media news, starting with Google, which used to admonish its employees not to “be evil” but from what we understand no longer does. Google is shaping the conversation as well, and is in the news today for its decision to de-monetize advertisers, publishers and YouTube creators (YouTube is part of Google) whose content denies the existence of human-caused climate change.
Here is the new policy in Google’s own words…
This policy will “prohibit ads for, and monetization of, content that contradicts well-established scientific consensus around the existence and causes of climate change. This includes content referring to climate change as a hoax or a scam, claims denying that long-term trends show the global climate is warming, and claims denying that greenhouse emissions or human activity contribute to climate change.”
Google arrived at this policy after consulting “authoritative sources,” notably “experts who have contributed to the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel of Climate Change.” Well, we certainly wouldn’t want to contradict THEM.
The Google Ads team says they’ll use a combination of “automated tools and human reviews” to enforce this new policy. They say that “other climate-related topics” are still okay, including “public debates on climate policy, the varying impacts of climate change, new research and more.” But these all have to start from the assumption that human-caused global warming is a scientific fact.
Question: what if the “new research” cast doubt on “well-established scientific consensus” concerning temperature predictions or the role played by greenhouse gasses, for example? Would they even allow that discussion?
By the way, Google’s new climate change policy ties in nicely with the Department of Homeland Security’s new focus. We all know our homeland could use a lot more security right now, but pish-posh. DHS has been busy putting together a “Climate Action Plan” for its employees, monitoring employees’ progress in “climate literacy” (that means using the right vocabulary) as they complete their training on the climate, and assessing “employee understanding of climate change impacts and environmental justice.”
It looks very involved. But for those who desire extra credit, there’s even an employee honors program to reward the wokest of the woke. Meanwhile, we have NO security on our southern border, and unvetted Afghans from Taliban-istan are being flown to America and then disappearing from our military bases.
Anyway, these new attempts to shape our national conversation on climate change come on the heels of YouTube also banning “misinformation” on vaccines. Their definition of “misinformation” in this context is any claim that “vaccines approved by health authorities are dangerous or don’t work.” This isn’t just for COVID-19 vaccines, but for all approved vaccines. At the moment, however, the decision mostly impacts YouTube content that discusses possible risks of COVID vaccines.
YouTube will allow video of people sharing their “personal experiences with vaccination” but will remove that as well if the channel it's on “demonstrates a pattern of promoting vaccine misinformation.” They might also require "context," such as statements from experts, to counter negative information. We call this "micromanaging the message."
They’re also terminating the channels of prominent anti-vaxxers. Some of these already had been taken down, but now the rest will go. These were part of what was dubbed “the Disinformation Dozen” by a group called --- get ready --- the Center for Countering Digital Hate.
We were curious about what something called the “Center for Countering Digital Hate” might be. They describe themselves as “a not-for-profit NGO [non-governmental organization] that seeks to disrupt the architecture of online hate and misinformation.”
As I have made clear repeatedly, I am vaccinated myself and would never tell someone not to get vaccinated. But the government shouldn’t be forcing vaccination on anyone, or nudging businesses to do it, either. Vaccination for COVID is a decision that should be made by each one of us with the help of good, trusted medical professionals. At the same time, there is a lot of valid information out there about the risks of these vaccines, and when YouTube starts censoring channels and terminating accounts, some of the valuable stuff it is bound to get caught in the net.
We’ve linked to studies and commentaries that, if they were presented in video form, would no longer be permitted on YouTube, as they discuss the risks and questionable effectiveness of the vaccines. We’ve also talked about natural immunity and how well a growing number of experts say it compares to vaccine-induced immunity. Will talk about natural immunity be verboten, too? And will stories like this one about rare, fatal reactions be squelched?
So, class, here’s what we’ve learned this week: Google says that on YouTube, you can’t present research on climate change that goes against the “consensus,” or else you’ll be de-monetized. Also on YouTube, you can’t critically examine the possible risks and drawbacks of vaccines, or else your videos will be removed and your account likely terminated. And on Nextdoor, you can’t even tell a “blonde” joke, or else you’ll go to jail. What’s the world coming to?
At least some Republican legislators were looking at the problem this week.
By Mike Huckabee
Do you think Joe Biden has done a better job than Donald Trump handling the fight against COVID-19?
Anser this question, plus questions about Afghanistan, Biden's competency, the economy and the border here:
Cancel Culture continues
By Mike Huckabee
Whenever someone prominent, such as Bill Maher, denounces cancel culture, two things inevitably happen: (1.) online mobs declare that cancel culture doesn’t exist; and (2.) they demand that the person saying that it does be canceled.
This laughable lack of self-awareness is to be expected of self-righteous young radicals who’ve had their empty minds poisoned by their leftist teachers. But when the “Burn him at the stake for heresy!!” mentality is exhibited by people who are supposed to be mature adults of advanced education and superior intellect, that’s when you know we have a real problem.
Here are just a couple recent examples of respected scholars and scientists who have seen speeches canceled or been suspended or fired because they riled up the mindless mob by expressing some completely rational viewpoint.
In that second story out of UCLA, a highly-regarded professor of 40 years’ standing was suspended and has endured vilification and even profane, anti-Semitic death threats. All for refusing a "woke" student’s demand that he give black students extra points on the final just because all the racism makes them too traumatized to be able to study and score as high as students of other races.
In a sane world, anyone would instantly recognize who’s the real racist in that story, and it’s not the professor, who insists on grading everyone by the same standard. George W. Bush had a term for that kind of condescending attitude: “the soft bigotry of low expectations.” It’s no longer soft, but is now enforced with an iron fist. And it’s called “progressivism” or “anti-racism,” but it’s still just old fashioned racism under new names.
No right to counsel
By Mike Huckabee
In a related story, here’s the “Burn him at the stake!” treatment being given to a lawyer who committed the heinous crime of providing a legal opinion on the election to former President Trump. Some of the people who are trying to destroy his career and reputation supported providing lawyers for terrorist detainees at Gitmo because everyone is entitled to legal representation – except, of course, people who disagree with their leftist political views.
This kind of pressure campaign caused four law firms to decline to help Trump defend himself during the “Russian collusion” accusations, which, as we now know, were a partisan smear campaign from day one.
This is why I’ve long said, “God, save me from ever needing a liberal to defend my Constitutional rights.”
Bernie says no to civility and manners
By Mike Huckabee
Sen. Bernie Sanders refused to sign a letter signed by fellow Senators, condemning the activists who harassed Sen. Kyrsten Sinema and filmed her inside a women’s restroom as they harangued her to vote for Biden’s $3.5 trillion spending orgy bill.
It’s no surprise to hear that Bernie is a-okay with any sort of tactics as long as they advance his socialist agenda. Generations of previous socialists were infamous for not letting people’s individual rights stand in the way of imposing their agenda by any means necessary.
I’d also like to add that in addition to knowing nothing about civility, manners or basic human decency, Bernie is (like all socialists) also ignorant of math.
Bernie railed on Twitter that two Senators “cannot be allowed to defeat what 48 Senators and 210 House members want.” Uh, Bernie? Those two Democrats plus the 50 Republicans who all oppose this bill add up to 52 against, 48 for. And there are 435 House members, so 210 is also a minority.
As the Redstate article points out, Bernie seems to think it’s the obligation of Democrat Senators to vote for what their party leaders want, even if the voters who elected them oppose it. And if it’s something he really wants, then it should pass even if a majority opposes it.
And what do “Democratic” socialists call this? “Protecting democracy!”
BE THOU MY VISION
Be thou my vision, O Lord of my heart;
naught be all else to me, save that thou art -
thou my best thought, by day or by night;
waking or sleeping, thy presence my light.
Be thou my wisdom, and thou my true word;
I ever with thee and thou with me, Lord.
Thou my great Father; thine own may I be,
thou in me dwelling and I one with thee.
Riches I heed not, nor vain, empty praise;
thou mine inheritance, now and always;
thou and thou only first in my heart,
high King of heaven, my treasure thou art.
High King of heaven, my victory won,
may I reach heaven’s joys, O bright heaven’s sun!
Heart of my own heart, whatever befall,
still be my vision, O Ruler of all.
By Saint Dallan