Posts Tagged ‘Public Utility’

How To Alleviate Fake Media Censorship Through Public Utility Legislation

February 28, 2018

The problem of “fake news” cannot be disjointed from censorship and propaganda… Censoring the truth, or replacing it by lies is not very different. The solution to this steering of the public mind into subjugation is to recognize quality thinking and information as “PUBLIC UTILITY”… From the Google-Facebook duopoly, to the most modest websites, as yours truly (legislatively enforced). That means, dear New York Times, and various university professor sites, no more censorship… 

In a few hours, I was censored three times, twice related to Nobel, not so noble, Paul Krugman, the self-described “Conscience of a Liberal”, and his network. More sad than infuriating. 

I had sent to Paul Krugman a pretty neutral piece for his  post “The Force of Decency Awakens”. Krugman claimed that the same emotion, decency, waking up, was the root cause for the renewed fight against sexism, and against guns. Decency comes from the present participle of decereto be fitting or suitable“. Krugman apparently found my comment unsuitable and inappropriate. However that comment was purely about how and why plutocracy grew and how that related to indecency. My comment actually supported what Krugman said, it understood it, it stood under it. Krugman should have been happy to be understood, with not one word against him. But, no, he censored my comment nevertheless (someone at the NYT told me Krugman censors me personally). When Krugman does this, I am always baffled: does he really not understand, or does he censors me because he is afraid of the shareholders of his employers (some of the world’s wealthiest men), or is he simply jealous like the wicked queen was of Snow White?

In his post, Krugman pontificated that:”Political scientists have a term and a theory for what we’re seeing on #MeToo, guns and perhaps more: “regime change cascades.””

 The link was looking at only four revolutions, and asked for big money to go beyond the abstract. I smelled a rotten fish. I looked at that site.  It claims: “REMARQ is a collaboration network from RedLink, designed for researchers and qualified users.” “Qualified users?” I sent a comment. The “Remarq Team” looked at the title of my Aristotle Destroyed Democracy essay (I was electronically informed) and, within minutes, sent me something that got plastered on  my browser: The Remarq team rejected your qualified user request and comment on article Regime Change Cascades: What We Have Learned from the 1848 Revolutions to the 2011 Arab Uprisings. 2018-02-27 14:37”. To be “rejected” by a “team” sounds more abusive than polite.

The theme of ADD is that the respect for Aristotle’s political work is the respect for monarchy, the rule of one. Aristotle’ s main political idea constitutes the bottom principles of today’s political “science”: a few individuals (generally male) should lead We The People, as if we were sheep. This is not idle talk, and a claim Aristotle was a bad influence: Aristotle was actually the leader and mentor of the small group of vicious men who launched the Hellenistic Regimes (which later encouraged the destruction of the Republican spirit in Rome).

The idea of the rule of one, monarchy, defended at the highest intellectual level, is, of course, also the main idea of Judeo-Christo-Islamism, with its big boss, God (which not coincidentally grew with the Hellenistic regimes). Attacking Aristotle, for those who believe in the Guide Principle (Deutsch: Führerprinzip) is like attacking Allah for the worst Jihadists.  Most intellectual professionals paid for their mental work are there to enforce the established order, they do now what the church used to do in the Middle Ages. To rule over minds, one will find more efficient to rule the souls, rather than to wield chains. Here the opinion of Paul Nizan about paid intellectuals, paid to have the correct thoughts and feelings, the watchdogs:

Those whom the establishment feeds wear a chain around their necks, a fable of Aesop already

One difference between someone like me or Nizan (who lived in the Middle East, Europe, Africa) and the political scientists at the “Remarq Team” (who presumably didn’t grew up nor lived in such places) is that I am not paid to tell lies, lies are not what Nizan or I, profess… As paid condottiere of things intellectuals presumably are (why else would they think it is important that others do NOT see my thoughts? If they are so bad, why don’t they rot by themselves?) This observation is not new: since ever, intellectuals have been paid as “watchdogs” (to use Paul Nizan’s expression; Nizan, a friend of Sartre, enlisted in the French army to fight Nazism. Nizan died in combat at Dunkirk, 23 May 1940, part of the enormous French army protecting the evacuation of 330,000 elite soldiers, including most of the professional British army (future instructors to the mass army they would teach), against the entire, vengeful Nazi army

What is clear is that a lot of people are spending a lot of efforts censoring the Internet. The NYT censored my comment on the Krugman essay referred above.  

A physicist specialized in Dark Matter censored my comment on Dark Matter, on her site (not the first time!) although the idea I have been pushing is incredibly simple (thus potentially revolutionary). Whereas people like that physicist are pushing MOND, MOdified Newtonian Dynamics, I am pushing MOQ (MOdified Quantum; which I also call Sub Quantum Patrice Reality, an allusion to the fact that the Copenhagen Interpretation, and its ilk are NOT real…).

A good reason for not having MOND is that, modifying gravitational mass, as MOND de facto does, opens the can of worms of having to modify inertial mass, and, if not, why not… Whereas MOQ/SQPR fills in a gap in the usual Copenhagen Interpretation and its ilk (the other way to solve the gap is the Many Worlds/Multiverse, in other words, angels on a pin, with no limits, whatsoever…) As an exchange on the comments of the Dwarf Galaxy disk problem (predicted by MOQ/SQPR, not by MOND, nor LambdaCDM…) shows, my comment was finally published. It made an analogy between the present situation and the epicycles (an old point of view of mine now adopted by many physicists)… But I am going in much more details. The epicycles’ theory was a consequence of the wrong, ridiculously wrong, Aristotelian physics, at the root, and it may well be what is going on now… Buridan resuscitated heliocentrism, because, first, he got the physics right (also heliocentrism was obvious…)

Delaying comments destroy the debate: the New York Times delayed my comments, by several days, systematically, for years: that allowed the NYT to claim it practiced no censorship (in correspondence with me)… although nobody would read them, then… and then the NYT decided to just censor ALL of my comments, for years. My point is that this sort of steering of public opinion should be illegal, in a public utility (see below)…

I am used to something paradoxical for whom has never been employed by academia (I have ONLY been employed by academia), the scholar as a thief. I was, bad luck, next to some of the greatest, most decorated thieves ever, one of them was one of my best friends (until I discoverer to my horror and depression that he was a thief… There were pages on his thievery at some point in the New York Times; not only he helped then to demolish my career, but he demolished the career of the famous G. Perelman… Perelman got the top prizes in mathematics, refused to accept them, as he said that, then, he would have to tell the truth, and the world of top math would be revealed as the BS it is. Then an angry and discouraged Perelman gave up math (contrarily to repute, math is a social activity; can’t do it when the people you talk to are, you know, thieves, among other problems…).

I had this problem with Black Holes: I suggested, long ago, that the standard reasoning was insufficient because it neglected Quantum effects (say Quark stars, etc.) Now this point of view is standard wisdom.

Thievery is a general problem in research, in a time of insufficient budgets. I have known the detailed case of junior researchers (not just yours truly) seeing their papers rejected, and then senior “peer reviewers” running away with the ideas… which they had just rejected for publication. Greed is not just a plutocratic problem, nor does plutocracy necessarily have to do with making billions. Verily, the power (kratos) of evil (Pluto) is great… especially when directed at honest to goodness thinkers.

Strange world. A tweet of mine, relating to the Bernie Sanders’ Twitter account, was also “made unavailable”. What did my tweet say? Here it is: Problem: Democrats view as too left-wing the taxes advocated by Carnegie, the USA’s first billionaire (19th Century)! Carnegie explained in detail why it was necessary to tax enormous wealth enormously. The only deep reason for taxation is to prevent hyper wealth accumulation!” https://twitter.com/SenSanders/status/965670396715511809 …

Am I too left-wing for Bernie? Or, more to the point, is Carnegie now too left-wing for the Democrats and US “Socialists”? Anyway, my tweet was removed by the powers that be (such a dangerous tweet, I agree!) At least Senator Bernie Sanders just changed his position on some guns… Tweeted Bernie, 2/28/2018:

We should not be selling assault weapons in this country. These weapons are not for hunting. They are military weapons for killing human beings.” I replied @BernieSanders:

Hillary Clinton used to complain that Bernie Sanders sided with the NRA. Glad to see the clear statement against military assault weapons..(See? Even Hillary can be right sometimes…)

The Internet is big money nowadays: 73% of the advertising revenue in media goes to the duopoly of Google and Facebook (up from 63% in 2015… and 85% of the growth in said revenue). So, we have, de facto, a monopoly of two! By itself, this should impel governments to act (well, OK, they are acting by doing nothing…)

And what do many Internet agents do? Steer, censor and contrive. Indeed, neither Google nor Facebook create content, they are content to steer We The Sheeple towards their idea of decency. They are electronic leeches. 

It is clear that none of this is innocent. what is happening on the Internet is exactly, on a much grander scale, what Putin is accused of doing: a few individuals and their obsequious servants, manipulating public opinion. So what to do?

***

Remedy: The Notion Of Public Utility Medium:

Public utilities provide an infrastructure necessary to society. They are subject to public control, beyond that of standard private industry. In the case of media on the Internet, the infrastructure would be the most important infrastructure of all, the infrastructure of truth!

As it is, there is a serious problem. As David Chavern has it in the WSJ in “Protect the News From Google and Facebook“: “A partial exemption from antitrust laws would help publishers and readers (Feb. 25, 2018):  The news business is suffering, but not because people don’t want news. They do—more than ever. The problem is that the money generated by news audiences flows mostly to Google and Facebook , not to the reporters and publishers who produce excellent journalism… newspaper advertising revenue fell from $22 billion in 2014 to $18 billion in 2016 even as web traffic for the top 50 U.S. newspapers increased 42%.

Local news is most at risk. As print circulation declines, community news publishers have the hardest time adapting to the ever-changing demands of Facebook and Google algorithms… Tech savvy, digital-only publishers are also struggling. BuzzFeed CEO Jonah Peretti said in December that Google and Facebook are “paying content creators far too little for the value they deliver to users,” and that “this puts high-quality creators at a financial disadvantage, and favors publishers of cheap media.”

And the Wall Street Journal to pursue:Google and Facebook have become the primary and de facto regulators of the news business, and governments around the world are starting to recognize the danger. British Prime Minister Theresa May announced earlier this month that her government would review the economics of internet news consumption. Regulators in Germany, Israel and South Korea are investigating how Google’s business practices have disrupted the media market and harmed publishers and consumers. U.S. regulators, on the other hand, have rarely looked into Google or Facebook—and never at their influence in the news marketplace.

Some voices on the left and right are calling for Google and Facebook to be regulated as utilities. But there is an easier solution: exempt news publishers from certain aspects of antitrust regulation.

U.S. antitrust laws, designed to promote fair competition and prevent consolidation, actually make it harder for traditional news outlets to compete with Silicon Valley giants. Under current law, for instance, news publishers cannot get together and agree to withhold their product unless they receive a return on their investment.”

YouTube (owned by Google) warned some accounts which had reported that the latest school mass shooting in Florida was a “hoax” and the victims were “actors”. Nice, but those sort of “fake news” are not really worse than decades of lies from the Main Stream Media. Lies, or non-saids (French magazines reports that US president Jimmy Carter started the war in Afghanistan, which killed many millions, from his own administration, were censored, so US Americans really don’t know that! By the way, my point of view that Carter, Clinton and Obama were fake, not to say evil, is spreading. In the case of Obama, that depressed me….) For Carter, July 3, 1979 attack against Afghanistan, please consider:

https://patriceayme.wordpress.com/2013/01/21/usa-attack-against-afghanistan/

***

What to do is that there should legal recourse against any medium declared a public utility, and yet, practicing censorship:    

To become a medium of public utility, there should be, and could be, two ways:

  1. Being declared to be so, by legislative decision, and Google and Facebook, and all the major media, certainly should be.
  2. Applying to become so (for example this site would).

Any medium of public utility would have to satisfy some requirements, such as trying to tell the truth when claiming to do so (poetry and fiction would be allowed, but under those labels). Public utility media would also have to avoid censorship, and be ready to justify it (that mean be ready to justify when censorship is applied; for example, the NYT would be required to justify why it censored me systematically when I comment Krugman’s posts…)

More than a decade ago, a philosophy site banned me for life for “fantastic logic” and stealing (from myself) my own (!) intellectual property (which I had made the mistake to put on their site as comments; so they viewed my ideas as their own thereafter, and forbid me to publish said ideas of mine on my old, Tyranosopher, site…) Ridiculous, but at least they provided some reason (last year I learned that the main, very famous philosopher behind that site, an old enemy of mine, called Searle, has been accused of sexual harassment by many girls and women, and was suspended from his prestigious university position; that didn’t surprise me, as I considered him a thief already… Sexual harassment is a form of thievery, and assault.)

When a medium is unwilling to give any reason for the censorship it applies, it should not be given the privileges associated to journalism, the respect of implied scholarship, nor the prestigious aura of “public utility”.  

Your devoted servant, glad to be, hopefully, of some public use,

Patrice Aymé

Censoring “Electrocoal”, Violating Democracy

November 26, 2014

“Scientific American” Censors “Electrocoal”, Violating Free Speech, the Status of the Internet as Public Utility, And, More Generally, Democracy:

President Obama declared last week that the Internet was a Public Utility. Rightly so. Say you build up a bridge. Does that give you the right to do whatever you want with the bridge when people use it? Not so, especially if the bridge has become a Public Utility.

Any media using the Internet is, to some extent, a Public Utility, because the Internet is a Public Utility.

Expression on the Internet is what Free Speech has become now.

A fundamental democratic right in Athens was that of addressing the Assembly.

There should be a right of free speech answer, especially when a site allows public comments.

More generally, the Internet is in need of laws, with the core aim of enabling Free Speech, and disallowing Hate Speech. Commercial, For-Profit Speech ought to be regulated: commerce is always regulated.

As it is, the Internet is the Wild West, and those with the biggest guns rule. Comments, rankings, private information and access are manipulated all over. Some companies’ business is actually to write fake comments and reviews, while passing for non-profit oriented free speech individuals: this ought to be considered consumer fraud, and the appropriate laws ought to be passed to criminalize the activity.

Scientific American is in the habit of censoring comments: “deciding what material is displayed on our website is our right”. They have censored strict scientific comments from me (without explanation).

A law ought to be passed forbidding public utilities to censor comments without some excellent reason. (Journalists are above the law in the sense that they do not have to reveal their sources, nor can be tried for opinion; so journalism always has a public utility aspect at its root.)

Take the example of Free Speech in the street: it is a right of democracy. Yet it can be curtailed by the police if, and only if, it “disrupts the peace”, or violates other laws. In practice, the police rarely intervenes (in democracy, it would have to justify its intervention!)

Scientific American censors, and others, such as Facebook, have argued that their website is their own property, they can do what they want. Well, not really. The problem is that they are in position of monopoly (or more exactly, oligarchy). Then, to empower their oligarchy, they use, and need to use, a Public Utility. That means they are financed by the citizenry in general. Moreover, they got a fiduciary duty: informing and debating in a non grossly misleading, non injurious way.

I related that The Economist censored me for quoting the Qur’an (no, I did not join the Jihad; my aim was to show that, at face value, the Qur’an calls for violent acts, and, thus, the need for Imams to inform believers that this is all allegorical, and outlawing interpretations that are stricto sensu).

In an article on fuel cell cars, the SA Master allowed dozens of comments from (taxpayer financed) Elon Musk’s minions, calling fuel cell cars “fool cars”. That was not censored. I replied in kind.

Scientific American censored me for calling electric cars, ELECTROCOAL. So doing, I claim that Scientific American violated the notion of PUBLIC UTILITY.

Scientific American sent me the following email:

“This comment has been deleted. Scientific American reserves the right to delete comments and revoke commenting privileges without notice. A subscription does not exempt you from our rules, and deciding what material is displayed on our website is our right, not censorship. You can create your own website for your own opinions and views, to share with the world. Scientific American does not owe anyone a platform – anyone may create a website of their own.

This comment is off-topic. Further violations will result in the loss of your commenting privileges, so please review our guidelines carefully. This help desk will not provide another warning.

http://www.scientificamerican.com/page/sa-community-guidelines/

Regards,

SA Webmaster”

[Notice the contradictions and the weasel words, Big Brother speech: censorship desk is called “help desk”, and “further violations…no other warning”.] “Webmaster” is an interesting Freudian slip: in a free society, the Internet should have laws, not “masters”.

Calling Tesla Electric Cars “electrocoal” is an allusion to the fact that electric cars in the USA are loaded with electricity that is half produced in coal thermal plants. So their global efficiency is that of a coal burning installation (more on this in another essay).

The Masters at Scientific American don’t like “electrocoal”. So they censor it, and call me a “violator”. And threaten to unilaterally cancel a contract with me, while still taking my money. No law prevents them to indulge in all these abuses of power.

Just as no law prevents Uber, an Internet based car-rental company, to use the private information it gathers on its clients, tracking them, selling the data.

Uber has apologized. But there should be a law, and employees, and owners, who have violated that law ought to go to jail. Yes, shareholders ought to be punished, as those who owned shares in companies that make money from slaves, ought to be punished; believe or not, those are still around!

Laws are not censorship, they are the common rules which apply equally. Private censorship, though, while using the Public Utility of the Internet, is a violation of said equality, which is the essence of democracy. Violation of democracy ought to be unlawful, just as the equally vaguely defined “hate speech”, or “genocide” are unlawful.

The problem is the same as when plutocrats use publicly financed research to increase their wealth or power (thus scientific publishing ought to be open source, and subsidies from the likes of NASA to private enterprises subject to serious examination… same as subsidies to big banks).

The ultimate reason for democracy, is not fairness, but intelligence. That makes even dictators long for democracy. Democracy allows the group to reach higher intelligence than any other society. The Internet is a tool to further the debate of ideas (ideas which do not violate the law, including hate speech, that is).

Violating the free debate of ideas ought to be left to dictators, and other “Masters”. It ought to be illegal in democracy.

The right of reply ought to be enshrined in democracy. The manipulations of commentary, and censorship for profit or bullies’ sake, or for perverting the minds of the public or children (see Islamism) ought to be illegal, even if done under the cover of higher morality, or hypocrisy.

Internet policing will not solve all the problems of vicious thinking, but it will allow to threaten to address the most egregious of them.

Patrice Ayme’