Everybody knows who won the 2016 Presidential Election, but how many know who lost?
The current “Facebook Papers” campaign, which is being fought from The Associated Press and Congress, isn’t just about online safety or justice. It is also about forcing Facebook to behave more like YouTube or Twitter before the next election. This is to turn Facebook from a place that is moderately hostile to conservatives to one that is extremely hostile.
Facebook is a mixed personality. Right-leaning entertainers like Dan Bongino might thrive on Facebook, but when something actually threatens Democratic interests, such as a New York Post article about Hunter Biden’s financial shenanigans, Facebook will go to extraordinary lengths in order to stop that content.
Facebook is particularly sensitive around Election Day. The war on Facebook stems from the anger, wailing, and denial that followed Donald Trump’s 2016 electoral victory. This outcome was preposterously attributed to your aunt’s favorite social media platform.
Like Republicans in 2020, Democrats of 2016 couldn’t accept that their incompetent candidate was defeated in a fair fight in 2016. A challenger seemed completely unfit to run for the office. The Democrats didn’t just try to get elected with this tactic. They maintained throughout George W. Bush’s presidency, that he was unlegitimately in office.
However, there wasn’t any Facebook back in 2000 when Zuckerberg was just a sophomore at high school.
Today, Democrats blame fake news and misinformation for every setback. We would have voted Hillary Clinton harder in swing states. Instead, we would think of the Russian bots on Facebook and the partisan fake-newsers on Facebook as we do the Nigerian finance ministers. They are constantly e-mailing us with an incredible financial opportunity.
In reality, the so-called Facebook Papers are not a serious indictment of Facebook. There are some theoretical complaints that Facebook isn’t as assertive in policing the 5 billion pieces of content it hosts, that it isn’t as adept at sifting through content written in Marathi and Amharic, and that it doesn’t respond to the demands of its “woke” internal faction. This is a lot of nothing.
Critics believe we will be shocked by the fact that Facebook’s Instagram app is as effective at changing teenage girls’ perceptions than Cosmo and The Kardashians. They want us to blame Facebook, for terrible things like political violence in India or fake news leading to US elections.
These sad situations are not new. In 1984, Indians killed 17,000 of their Sikh neighbors. Their main tools for political organization were phones and loudspeakers. They then killed another 2000 of their neighbors in a dispute over a 460-year old mosque in 1992. A generation ago, conspiracy theories were being circulated on fax machines by Americans. Fake news was an issue in 18th-century elections. This is not a Facebook problem – it’s a people issue.
Mark Zuckerberg, Philips Exeter, Harvard and Silicon Valley, is silently accused as a traitor of his class. He gives an unneeded voice to those bumptious hinterlanders that “Saturday Night Live,” likes to call “Walmart shoppers.” Progressives have ruled entities such as The New York Times and The Association Press for so long that it is natural for them to assume the role of national umpires of all things, whether they are thoughtable or unthinkable.
Bullying Facebook corporately and Zuckerberg individually is a natural extension to Democratic political strategy. It should be seen for what it really is.
Zuckerberg might have believed he could buy his friends by giving $400m to local elections offices to adapt to the COVID-19 outbreak. The Democrats don’t want Zuckerberg or Facebook to do good. The Democrats want complete control over the conversation.
Facebook faces real problems. There is a large user base of elderly people in the United States, and too many regulators around the world. Mark Zuckerberg, however, is the fifth-wealthiest person on Earth. He is able to take a stand for himself.
We can’t afford to let him go.