Author: Michael

Federal Internet Search Bill Violates the Bill of Rights

Worst of Both Worlds?

In the years following the passage of the Patriot Act, the rationale behind the invasions of privacy receded. A new generation became more concerned about their personal rights. In addition, a better understanding of the 4th Amendment empowered attorneys concerned about the Bill of Rights protections. Now a provision in a recently passed bill flips many of these concerns with a flick of a pen.

Understanding the Law.

As if the Bill of Rights was not straightforward enough, there is ample evidence against mass internet surveillance. Unfortunately, the Obama Admin expanded the original Patriot Act provisions. Now that much of the Patriot Act sunsetted, Congress restored some of the overreaches in the USA Freedom Act. The bill restored powers lapsed in March from Section 215 of the Patriot Act.

This is a topic of particular interest to me. Being involved in civil rights issues in Los Angeles gave me a keen eye for government overreach. The original premise of the Patriot Act was not as well understood in the early days of the internet. Combined with the pressure from the September 11th attacks, Congress handed spy agencies far too much power. Now, nearly 20 years later there is no excuse. The government exists to protect rights, not to trample them.

Next Steps:

The next steps in privacy go beyond the halls of Congress. It is up to each American to protect their data, including using end to end encryption. Unfortunately, the federal government wants to get around that as well. Furthermore, our modern understanding of warrantless surveillance means more vigilance during elections. Often, both Democrats and Republicans seek such laws when elected. Only by electing liberty-minded individuals can there be any restraint on the growth of federal power.

For more info, including updates, keep reading this site. In addition, I’ll update with new articles as the situation evolves.

How Twitter May be Trampling Trump’s Civil Rights

A Large Overstep?

Honest AbeTwitter reached deep into its political bias this week. Following assertions by President Trump that voting by mail could case massive voter fraud, the company responded. Twitter placed an instant “fact check” on his Tweet, claiming otherwise. This led to a sharp and deepening political firestorm. The President and his allies fought back– seeking a means to punish the web giant.

Conservatives Often Censored?

Most definitely, the left runs and shapes social media. And this isn’t an issue that is solitary to Donald Trump. Over the years, conservative accounts complained of regular bias by Twitter. Complaints included that leftist employees refused to verify conservative leaning user accounts, which hurts the user and account holder. Most of all, it is obvious the platform applies a double standard in enforcement of its Big Brother policies.

Furthermore, users are shadowbanned– meaning their account will seem open but will remain unseen by other users. Google pioneered this white listing technique. The idea is to filter the search results of businesses and people who do not support left wing viewpoints. And there is a lot of evidence that Google employees have baked this into their algorithm with tacit approval.

From my experience watching Twitter and the conservative movement– they certainly have a point.

A Terrible Precedent?

Democrats have been pushing hard against verifying the legitimacy of votes ever since the flood of undocumented aliens allowed under the Obama Administration into the USA. The idea is to say there is no proof of voter fraud, while simultaneously refusing to pass a voter ID law to confirm if the person voting is REALLY the person voting. It all started after a tweet this week discussing voting by mail.

Twitter’s leftist leaning fact checkers responded with an unprecedented move. It added a “fact check” to the bottom of his tweet.

According to the New York Times, these actions led Trump’s supporters to blast Twitter. There are many questions still unanswered:

  • Will Twitter apply the same to all politicians? Many mainstream media “fact-checkers” tend to support one side over another– usually Democrats.
  • How will this affect the 2020 election? Is Twitter stepping in to give Joe Biden a hand?
  • Are Donald Trump’s rights being violated? That is more of a question for the courts– but there is one key element. If Twitter does not apply the standard equally, then he could have a strong case.
  • What will be the response from lawmakers? Republicans are already pushing for more regulation of Twitter after the incident. Don’t be surprised if they get legislation through the Senate– only to have it blocked in the House.

Considering the stakes of the election, Twitter’s actions are chilling. They also set a dangerous precedent for future actions against politicians–especially Republicans. We will cover the legal and political ramifications of these actions in the coming weeks and months.

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