09 August 2018

Silencing Dissident Voices: Consortium News Interviews State Department Whistleblower Peter Van Buren

"In a corporatist system of government, wherein there is no meaningful separation between corporate power and state power, corporate censorship is state censorship."

Caitlin Johnstone, Rogue Journalist

"Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances."

Constitution of the United States, Amendment I

"Never forget that everything Hitler did in Germany was legal."

Martin Luther King

"On the premiere edition of Consortium News Radio we speak with Peter Van Buren, a former State Department official, whistleblower and victim of Twitter censorship.

Van Buren speaks about his experiences in Iraq, the critical book he wrote about those experiences and how the Obama State Department eventually attempted to have him tried under the Espionage Act.

This week Van Buren had his Twitter account permanently shut down and seven years of his Tweets wiped from the record. Why? Because he challenged mainstream journalists who contested a Tweet from journalist Glenn Greenwald that mainstream reporters support America’s wars and help bring them about.

One corporate journalist decided to silence Van Buren by complaining to Twitter, which, within two days, and with no due process, obliged.

Joe Lauria, editor-in-chief of Consortium News, interviewed Van Buren on Wednesday, August 8 for 40 minutes."

You can view the Consortium News website here.

I am sure most of us have forgotten Van Buren, and the other 'whistleblowers, activists, and dissenters' that were prosecuted, and sometimes vindictively persecuted, by Obama/Clinton.

Julian Assange comes to mind as well, among others.  How he has been treated is disgraceful and an abusive use of state power and 'the letter of the law.'   But going forward it will set the tone for freedom of the press for everyone who chooses to say things that are at odds with, or even unflattering to, the prevailing narrative.

Pervastive platforms like Google, Facebook, Twitter, and so forth should be treated like common carriers.   That would relieve them from having to bear the burden of defining what is to be censored and what is not.  This places that burden on the government, subject to all the checks and balances and recourse therein.

It is all too easy for government to pressure private companies to excess, and then point the finger at them, holding them as scapegoats.

And those on both right and left should be able to see the excesses that may be justified by this current climate of hysteria, which truth be told, emanates from the corporate Democrats as much as any of the many excesses of the GOP.