Twitter CEO Elon Musk suspended the accounts of more than half a dozen corporate media mouthpieces on Thursday evening for doxxing. But his intervention affecting the press, which has been taken over by the “woke mind virus” Musk has lamented, is only a Band-Aid over a gaping societal wound: an inherently anti-free-speech media establishment.
For years, Big Tech censors did the media’s dirty work without accountability or punishment. When the propaganda press cried wolf over ideologies it disagreed with, Big Tech dredged up new policies to justify nuking anyone who spread them. Together, media and Silicon Valley censors cashed in on the lucrative “fact-checking” machine as an effective way to rid the internet of their political enemies.
It was only when Musk nuked The New York Times’s Ryan Mac, The Washington Post’s Drew Harwell, leftist writer Aaron Rupar, CNN’s Donie O’Sullivan, Mashable’s Matt Binder, Micah Lee of The Intercept, Keith Olbermann, and other accounts over the very clear issue of doxxing that members of the corporate media finally got a clue.
“You’re not special because you’re a journalist,” Musk told some of the suspended journos during a Twitter Spaces chat on Thursday night.
The purge evoked screeching and gnashing of teeth by leftist hordes of journalists. Suddenly, the talking heads who spent years building under-the-table relationships with tech’s masters of suppression were powerless on their favorite platform.
“It’s highly unusual for journalists at The Washington Post and The New York Times to have their Twitter accounts suspended,” one female journo whined on the Thursday night Twitter Spaces.
The absurd and unified reaction from the left’s propaganda arm is more than hypocritical considering the media’s unified treatment of Big Tech’s history of censorship.
While legitimate members of the press such as my colleagues at The Federalist are suspended and shadowbanned for speaking the truth, professional doxxers such as Taylor Lorenz run free. Instead of facing punishment like the New York Post did for allegedly sharing “hacked materials” — a designation the “Twitter Files” recently confirmed was a scapegoat to cover up the exposure of Biden family corruption — journos such as Lorenz, who unethically “exposed” a civilian’s private information, are granted tearful features by their accomplices about online bullying.
The media have not only lived without fear of suppression, but they also leveraged that freedom to call for more censorship by Big Tech. They didn’t just turn a blind eye to the suppression that plagued conservatives for years, they encouraged it. For once, that gross abuse of power was met with swift consequences.
Unfortunately, all good things don’t last forever.
Will these media hacks’ short-lived online prison sentence evoke a change in heart about the partisan censorship of conservatives and inconvenient counternarratives? Likely not.
It doesn’t take a lot to recognize that corporate media hate you and any speech that contradicts their agenda. The media’s preferred Big Tech censors may have been canned during Musk’s staff sweep, but new censors will inevitably climb their way back to the top of the Big Tech oligarch, especially if some new leftist billionaire comes along and takes over the same way Musk did. As my colleague Samuel Mangold-Lenett noted shortly after Musk acquired Twitter:
The faceless blob composed of the managerial elite, the people who really run the United States — to borrow a phrase from Michael Anton — still have near complete control over every other institution that affects our lives. Sure, they probably can’t ban you on Twitter anymore for saying boys and girls are different, but they will, undoubtedly, find their way into a similar role in some other company that is just as influential.
Regardless of their standing with Big Tech, corporate media will seek to destroy their political enemies. Built into our modern-day media establishment is the belief that it is easier to censor speech you don’t like than to humbly admit a self-inflicted loss of credibility and embrace of radicalism.
The only thing that seems to disrupt this standard operating procedure is when the uncensored, unmanipulated truth about the media’s depravity is exposed. Musk is off to a good start with the “Twitter Files.” But those alone aren’t enough to change the trajectory of the state of our press for good.
If Musk’s Twitter commits to punishing corporate media journos for their many sins, the propaganda press will have fewer resources to program Americans’ thinking. Until then, our corrupt media establishment is destined to continue its war on the same amendment that grants them protection.