Twitter’s editorial bias in policing the content that flows through its service has been ruffling the Right’s feathers for quite a while. The market responded, and Parler emerged as an alternative, with a promise of more freedom and less censorship.

Google was displeased with Parler’s light touch on Capitol riot-related content, so Google booted Parler’s app from its store. Apple had a similar opinion, and gave Parler an ultimatum: Censor more or be gone. From the store, that is. I haven’t seen mention of blocking access to the site via browser, so Android users are merely inconvenienced by Google’s action.

Predictably, the Right is furious, screaming about Big Tech monopolies and oligarchies, with many hinting that government should step in. To protect a right that doesn’t exist. Private companies are under no obligation to provide you with a service of your liking, under your terms and per your desires.

These are the voices objecting to socialized medicine, to government heavy-handedness in private sector regulation, and to bureaucratic “picking the winners” from on high. This is the same Right that’s been plastering “Freedom!” all over the place, screaming about the Left going socialistic, and claiming fealty to the Constitution and the rights protected therein.

Liberty isn’t about your preferred outcomes materializing. Liberty is about limiting government’s involvement in our daily lives. Demanding that the tech giants be coerced into allowing ‘your’ content to be disseminated is not liberty. It’s just another form of socialistic control.

There was a form of government, back in the early part of the 20th century, that exercised tight governmental control over privately owned businesses, and favored a few very large companies over many small ones (thus controlling them more easily). That form carried the label “fascism.” The Left has been working for decades to portray fascism as a province of the Right, something it has had great success at because nobody can really agree on a definition for the word. That it’s a form of big government, however, is beyond any doubt. If the Right demands government intervention against the social media giants because those giants are not behaving the way they like, then the Right is simply validating the Left’s accusations.

Moreso, such interventions rarely (if ever) work “as intended.” It’s a near-certainty that whatever “mandates” would get hammered out would also carry benefits for those tech giants that would cement their oligopoly status. History makes it amply clear that monopolies only last for an appreciable length of time if they’re protected or abetted by government, and the K-Street lobbyists will ultimately have far more sway over legislation than the People will.

About the only thing I’d actually favor at this juncture is a leveling of the playing field. The techs enjoy certain protections not afforded to content originators, based on the premise that they are merely conduits for content. When they start curating content beyond the basics of legality (e.g. child porn) and nonpartisan terms-of-service (e.g. no goat beheadings), they stop being conduits, and should be on the same legal field as the more traditional originators.

As far as complaints, I say complain all you want, vocally and persistently. Switch to other social media platforms, even if you have to hassle with a browser interface rather than an app. Criticize them from within and don’t click through to their advertisers (seek the products via other channels if you want them). The techs aren’t immune to such, no matter their size.

Just, please, if you purport to be pro-liberty, stop talking like a fascist. Coercion won’t get you what you want.

Peter Venetoklis

About Peter Venetoklis

I am twice-retired, a former rocket engineer and a former small business owner. At the very least, it makes for interesting party conversation. I'm also a life-long libertarian, I engage in an expanse of entertainments, and I squabble for sport.

Nowadays, I spend a good bit of my time arguing politics and editing this website.

If you'd like to help keep the site ad-free, please support us on Patreon.


Like this post?