Elon Musk States That Twitter “Has Interfered in Elections”

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In Brief

  • The Facts:
    • On Wednesday, Elon Musk stated that Twitter interfered with elections.

    • His claim came in response to a report from Reuters about Twitter's move to free speech under Musk.

    • He has not yet provided evidence for his claim.

  • Reflect On:
    • Readers should take note of the evidence provided regarding the influence government has had over Big Tech for the past several years.

    • There is evidence beyond Musk's claims that Big Tech interfered with elections and used their power to influence human perception.

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On Wednesday, Elon Musk stated that Twitter interfered with elections. In response to a report from Reuters about Twitter’s move to free speech under Musk, he replied that “The obvious reality, as long-time users know, is that Twitter has failed in trust & safety for a very long time and has interfered in elections. Twitter 2.0 will be far more effective, transparent and even-handed.” 

Musk, however, didn’t actually provide any proof that Twitter did this. And hopefully he does as proof is what our polarized world needs right now. That being said, it has been well established that the United States government and various federal agencies have long had a close relationship with Big Tech companies.

In fact, last month The Intercept revealed internal Department of Homeland Security documents that confirm their plans to continue censoring opinions about COVID-19, “racial justice,” and US support for Ukraine going forward. Their documents effectively show that government agencies work to control American public discourse online. 

Tech companies – including Twitter, Facebook, Reddit, Discord, Wikipedia, Microsoft and LinkedIn – met with the FBI and other government agencies every month, before and since the 2020 election to talk about this. Facebook even set up a special portal for “takedowns” that requires a law enforcement email to access.

According to NBC News, the meetings were part of an initiative, still ongoing, between the private sector and government to discuss how firms would handle “misinformation” during the election.

This is how we connect the dots between government controlling narratives and public discourse in a secretive way.

This is not anything new,

CIA was directing the coverage of American news organizations, overthrowing democratically elected governments (at times merely to benefit a favored corporation), establishing propaganda outfits to manipulate public sentiment, launching a long-running series of mind-control experiments on unwitting human subjects (purportedly contributing to the creation of the Unabomber), and—gaspinterfering with foreign elections. From there, it was a short hop to wiretapping journalists and compiling files on Americans who opposed its wars.

NSA Whistleblower Edward Snowden, America’s Open Wound. The CIA is not your friend.

Furthermore, Big Tech companies have dozens of high ranking employees that were once employed by various Federal agencies. You can find more examples here.

There are countless examples and it can be shocking to learn just how many there are. 

“In secret, these companies had all agreed to work with the U.S. Government far beyond what the law required of them, and that’s what we’re seeing with this new censorship push is really a new direction in the same dynamic. These companies are not obligated by the law to do almost any of what they’re actually doing but they’re going above and beyond, to, in many cases, to increase the depth of their relationship (with the government) and the government’s willingness to avoid trying to regulate them in the context of their desired activities, which is ultimately to dominate the conversation and information space of global society in different ways…They’re trying to make you change your behaviour.

I think the reality here is…it’s not really about freedom of speech, and it’s not really about protecting people from harm…I think what you see is the internet has become the de facto means of mass communication. That represents influence which represents power, and what we see is we see a whole number of different tribes basically squabbling to try to gain control over this instrument of power.”

Edward Snowden

Since Musk took over Twitter, a number of their censorship policies have been discarded. This has of course created outrage amongst some users who believe speech that opposes mainstream conjecture on certain issues should be censored as it is likely false. Even though it is usually open dialogue and free speech that causes humanity to advance in its sometimes limited understandings. It is also how the powerful can be held accountable.

But back to elections, these days, it seems any loser of an election can claim fraud – and often does. When Donald Trump beat Hillary Clinton, the Russians were accused of colluding with Trump. When Joe Biden beat Trump in 2020, Biden and the Democrats were accused of election fraud. It’s not crazy to think this is possible when you look at the power Big Tech has, including the fact that voting machines can easily be used to change votes.

Either way, it appears that our political systems are inundated with extreme corruption, it’s a system that incentives bad behaviour.

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