Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Two Comments From A Blog Brawl

DiegoVan  Anthony McCarthy • 21 hours ago
The problem of controlling free speech is always, who will decide.

The courts and politicial theorists have decided that it is better to leave it alone and not control it in the way you say. Who will decide what are lies? What will be the penalties?

Our society, thank goodness, has decided that any harm caused by lying is not worth the greater damage caused by the curtailment of speech. There are libel and slander laws. Why aren't they good enough?

I find it ironic that the left, the traditional supporters of free speech, have come out against it in recent years. The left would similar support to what I am offering you, now.

BTW, would you mind posting some of the lies you think would need to be controlled or outlawed?

Do you think Hillary and the DNC lied in the released emails? Should their speech be curtailed? What about Benghazi? Did Clinton lie about that? Did Donna Brazile lie about leaking debate questions? Would they be prosecuted?
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Anthony McCarthy  DiegoVan • 2 minutes ago
Judges are tasked with deciding that all the time. The very media people who push that lie, that the lie can't be distinguished from the truth, would be the first to go to court if they thought their vendible scribblege had been cribbed by someone else. Judges are asked by the beneficiaries of "free-speech-free-press" to punish the people who pilfer their "intellectual" property all the time. About the only real sin for them is plagiarism. Plagiarism will get you banished in the way that the most consequential lies won't in the American media and academic world.

Lying is what brought us Nixon, his continuation of Vietnam and its expansion into Cambodia, Reagan and his terror campaigns in Central America, the middle east and elsewhere, George W. Bush and the illegal, catestrophic invasion of Iraq. How many millions of sacrificial victims does your alter of free-speech absolutism require per decade?

Donna Brazile? Really, that's what you're going to use in this argument? You, sir, are not a serious person, you are a dolt of the kind who populate the American media.

The Supreme Court pretty much exempted even the most monumental lies told against, mostly liberal, politicians from having any consequences. Thus the quarter of a century of lies Hillary Clinton had to run against, in opposition to one of the biggest liars in the world whose lies had been carried by and magnified by the freest-press in the world.


  1. The experience of the internet is that the trolls will decide.

    The most annoying, most repetitive, most disruptive, most insistent, will decide. Free speech runs on the economic principle that bad money drives out good. How many websites have simply shut down comments because of trolls? How many comment sections are even worth paying attention to, because of trolls? It can be trolls you agree with, or trolls you disagree with, but they take control of a comments section and refuse to let go.

    And what's the solution? More speech? Less speech? No speech?

    The problem with these vague and glittering generalities is that they are vague and glittering. Study the law, even 1st amendment law, and you soon find the problem is balancing legitimate, and even illegitimate, interests. You can publish neo-Nazi propaganda. But you can't advocate the overthrow of the government, or incite people to kill others.

    Even those are broad limitations, but there are always limitations on free speech, alway someone deciding what can, and cannot, be said. When the fight is over "dirty words," it all seems rather silly. When the fight is over the Nazis marching in a Jewish neighborhood, suddenly it seems rather serious.

    And who decides then?

  2. I would start with what can be done about specific lies that target specific people that can be adjudicated in a civil court.

    One of the things wrong with our judicial system, though, is the ability of rich people or corporations to hire high-power lawyers in large numbers. I think it's necessary to level that field of battle, as well, though I can't see the legal profession voluntarily doing without that lucrative trade voluntarily. I had thought of that before but reading about Peter Thiel's going after Gawker using Hulk Hogan as a proxy. Though Gawker could have protected itself, first, by not going with unverified material.

    I have come to the conclusion that unregulated comments are an invitation to liars and fascists and trolls and state-paid rent-a-trolls, etc. so I have started avoiding them.

    1. speech! And who decides?

      Well, somebody does. That's the pertinent issue. Not that nobody does, but somebody always does.

      And who does that get to be?