The Anointed And De-Platforming (Why Google, Facebook, Twitter And YouTube Are Starting To Suck): Part One

Back in December of 2018, the Wikipedia page about Fat Head was targeted for deletion. It only survived after I started poking the founder of Wikipedia on Twitter and he finally looked into the matter and intervened. This was after Wikipedia articles about Jimmy Moore, Uffe Ravnskov, Malcolm Kendrick, etc., etc., were targeted for deletion.

In May of 2019, Facebook banned a group called Banting 7-Day Meal Plans, which had 1.5 million members. After an uproar, the group was eventually reinstated.

In August, Jimmy Moore’s Jimmy Rants videos disappeared from YouTube, supposedly for violating community standards. It took some doing, but Jimmy finally got the suspension removed.

Also in August, we learned that Google (which owns YouTube), has altered its search algorithms to make it difficult to find diet and health sites deemed unorthodox. At one time, Google’s search rankings were a direct reflection of popularity. If your page and my page were both relevant to the search term and your site had more visitors, your page appeared above mine in the search results. Not anymore. Now Google employees monkey with the algorithm to steer people to the “correct” information – or more accurately, to steer them away from the BAD, BAD IDEAS.

Here are some quotes from an article on that development:

Mercola.com, operated by Dr. Joseph Mercola, is one of the most trafficked websites providing alternative views to medical orthodoxy. If I were researching statins, I would certainly read several of the numerous essays questioning statin use and the cholesterol theory of heart disease. Essays at Mercola.com usually provide references to medical studies. Personally, since Dr. Mercola sells supplements and I am a supplement skeptic, I read his essays—like I read all medical essays—with a grain of salt.

Dr. Kelly Brogan is a psychiatrist who has helped thousands of women find alternatives to psychotropic drugs prescribed to treat depression and anxiety. In her book, A Mind of Your Own: The Truth About Depression and How Women Can Heal Their Bodies to Reclaim Their Lives, Brogan reports that one of every seven women and 25 percent of women in their 40s and 50s are on such drugs.

For their unorthodox views, Dr. Brogan, Dr. Mercola, and others like them are treated as medical heretics. Dr. Brogan and Dr. Mercola have documented how a change in Google’s search engine algorithm has essentially ended traffic to their websites.

Welcome to the brave new world of “de-platforming” ideas The Anointed don’t like. And it’s not just happening to people who disagree with The Anointed on diet and health — not by a long shot. If you write or say something that offends the sensibilities of The Anointed, there’s a good chance your Facebook group, or YouTube Account, or Twitter account or whatever will be suspended or banned.

If you have a large following and you really piss off The Anointed, they’ll try to destroy your career. They’ll demand bookstores stop carrying your books. They’ll go after advertisers who buy ad time on any TV shows where you appear. If you’re scheduled to give a speech, they’ll try to get it canceled – through threats of violence, if necessary. The message – often stated explicitly – is this: you should not be allowed to spread your harmful ideas to others, so we’re justified in silencing you.

I’ve written about why The Anointed are hostile to free speech several times before (this post includes links to a series), but let’s back up and ask some deep, philosophical questions, such as WHY DON’T THEY JUST MAKE THEIR OWN COUNTER-ARGUMENTS?!  WHAT THE @#$% IS WRONG WITH THESE PEOPLE?!

There’s plenty wrong with these people, and it begins with their core philosophy, which, unfortunately, many of them acquired in universities — you know, those supposed centers of open inquiry and freewheeling debate and discussion.

To explain how The Anointed operate, I’ve quoted from The Vision of The Anointed by Thomas Sowell, Antifragile by Nassim Nicholas Taleb and The True Believer by Eric Hoffer. They’re all great books. I hope you read them.

But to understand the core philosophy of people who feel justified de-platforming those whose “bad” opinions they don’t like, let’s turn to a philosophy book that I’ve only mentioned briefly: Explaining Postmodernism, by a philosophy professor named Stephen Hicks.

I’ve previously summarized the book like this:

  • Objectivist: if it’s true, I’ll believe it.
  • Subjectivist: If I believe it, it’s true.

Well, the book goes into a little more detail than that. If you want to know why so many university professors and other members of The Anointed have become big fans of censorship and de-platforming, Hicks explains their mindset pretty nicely.

The book begins by describing what postmodernism seeks to replace: the objectivist philosophy of The Enlightenment, which traces its roots (most of them, anyway) to British thinkers and philosophers: Francis Bacon, Isaac Newton, Rene Descartes (not British), John Locke and Adam Smith. The objectivists believed that:

  • Reality exists and is independent of our feelings, wishes, hopes or fears
  • Logic and reason are how we discern reality
  • The individual is an end in himself, not the means to the ends of others

Not surprisingly, The Enlightenment thinkers emphasized rationalism, the scientific method and individual freedom. To quote Hicks:

Modern thinkers start from nature—instead of starting with some form of the supernatural, which had been the characteristic starting point of pre-modern, Medieval philosophy. Modern thinkers stress that perception and reason are the human means of knowing nature—in contrast to the pre-modern reliance upon tradition, faith, and mysticism. Modern thinkers stress human autonomy and the human capacity for forming one’s own character—in contrast to the pre-modern emphasis upon dependence and original sin. Modern thinkers emphasize the individual, seeing the individual as the unit of reality, holding that the individual’s mind is sovereign, and that the individual is the unit of value—in contrast to the pre-modernist, feudal subordination of the individual to higher political, social, or religious realities and authorities.

And later:

If one emphasizes that reason is the faculty of understanding nature, then that epistemology systematically applied yields science. Enlightenment thinkers laid the foundations of all the major branches of science.

Individualism and science are thus consequences of an epistemology of reason. Both applied systematically have enormous consequences. Individualism applied to politics yields liberal democracy … individualism applied to economics yields free markets and capitalism.

If you enjoy living in a prosperous, technically advanced society with a high degree of individual freedom, you have no friggin’ idea (unless you’ve studied a bit of history and philosophy) of the huge debt you owe to The Enlightenment thinkers.

Today, of course, many college professors tell us we can simply dismiss The Enlightenment thinkers as a bunch of dead white males. The irony (which is no doubt lost on the professors) is that postmodernist ideas were also conceived and promoted by dead white males.

The bigger irony is that the subjectivist philosophy that eventually morphed into postmodernism began as a reaction against The Enlightenment to save faith, tradition and mysticism from the onslaught of objective science. If you deeply believe that X is true but logic and reason say X is false, well then, there’s a simple solution: simply declare that reason and logic don’t matter.

One of the most influential subjectivist philosophers was Martin Heidegger. We’ll quote Hicks for a summary:

Heidegger and postmodernism Heidegger’s philosophy is the integration of the two main lines of German philosophy, the speculative metaphysical and the irrationalist epistemological. After Kant, the Continental tradition quickly and gleefully abandoned reason, putting wild speculation, clashing wills, and troubled emotion at the forefront.

In Heidegger’s synthesis of the Continental tradition, we can see clearly many of the ingredients of postmodernism. Heidegger offered to his followers the following conclusions, all of which are accepted by the mainstream of postmodernism with slight modifications:

1. Conflict and contradiction are the deepest truths of reality;
2. Reason is subjective and impotent to reach truths about reality;
3. Reason’s elements—words and concepts—are obstacles that must be un-crusted, subjected to Destruktion, or otherwise unmasked;
4. Logical contradiction is neither a sign of failure nor of anything particularly significant at all;
5. Feelings, especially morbid feelings of anxiety and dread, are a deeper guide than reason;
6. The entire Western tradition of philosophy—whether Platonic, Aristotelian, Lockean, or Cartesian—based as it is on the law of non-contradiction and the subject/object distinction, is the enemy to be overcome.

Later in the book:

Postmodernism rejects the reason and the individualism that the entire Enlightenment world depends upon.… Postmodernism’s essentials are the opposite of modernism’s. Instead of natural reality—anti-realism. Instead of experience and reason—linguistic social subjectivism
Objectivity is a myth; there is no Truth, no Right Way to read nature or a text. All interpretations are equally valid. Values are socially subjective products.

Declaring reason and logic to be irrelevant of course leads to some interesting contradictions. As Hicks points out, only a subjectivist could believe that:

  • All cultures are valid and equally deserving of respect, but Western culture is really, really bad
  • All values are subjective, but racism and sexism are really, really bad
  • Technology is destructive and bad, but it’s not fair that some people can afford more of it than others

Totally illogical and therefore rather stupid, right? Yes, you’d think so.  But ya see, that’s because you — lacking the deep, philosophical insight that logic and reason are irrelevant — don’t understand that by gosh, I can be totally illogical and still be right … while you can be completely logical and still be wrong. That’s what the postmodernists believe.

So what does this have to do with why The Anointed consider it acceptable and perhaps even necessary to de-platform anyone who disagrees with them?

I don’t want this to be a mega-post, so we’ll get to that next time.

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22 thoughts on “The Anointed And De-Platforming (Why Google, Facebook, Twitter And YouTube Are Starting To Suck): Part One

  1. Bret

    More influential even than a culturally conditioned bizarro worldview are the economic incentives.

    Google etc stand to profit handsomely by propping up massive corporate interests that lazily peddle outdated information. The folks that own all the dinosaur companies do not want to watch their market share disappear to brash upstarts or anyone else for that matter. These dinosaurs used to lobby government for regulation against their competitors, but it is much more efficient to put economic pressure on a snooty Google, Facebook, and Twitter to do this censoring for them. Much more efficient than government rules.

    So Big Tech is now the enemy, and it is way more powerful than government, since billions of brainless NPCs depend on it heavily. The next 20 years will be very interesting to observe, and I fear it will not be a good interesting.

    Reply
  2. Lori Miller

    Of course, the deep philosophical answer to “why don’t they make counterarguments” is that they don’t have any. Well, they do, but they don’t make any sense. If they really believed that making sense didn’t matter, they’d go ahead and make their arguments.

    At some point, we’ll have our own bots that can search the web for us and Google will be as relevant as Gateway. Until then, Jordan Peterson has created a platform and Dave Rubin is creating his own, too.

    As for Facebook, I abandoned it after briefly joining it several years ago. It looked like an exercise in narcissism, something for people apt to follow postmodern dada dimwittery.

    Reply
    1. Tom Naughton Post author

      I’ve noticed the subjectivists are happy to make logical arguments when they believe logic is on their side. But as soon as you make a logical argument they can’t answer, BOOM, it blows up into a sequence of ad hominem attacks and nonsequiturs. Since they don’t actually believe in reason and logic, they treat it like they treat language in general: as a weapon (the subject of the next post). If the weapon isn’t useful at the moment, they drop it.

      Reply
    2. Marion

      If only it WAS ‘they don’t have any’! It’s far worse than that! The daddy of Postmodernism, Jaques Derrida, came up with the concept of Phallogocentrism, the ‘he privileging of masculinity in the use of speech, writing or modes of thought’. In short; White Men Are Priviliged, White Men Use Logic And Argument, White Men Are Evil Therefore Using Logic And Argument Is Also Evil, Therefore I Can Dismiss Your Arguments As Harrassment And Male Powerplay To Oppress Non-White Males And The Non-Priviledged. This is why speech is rebranded as ‘violence’ or ‘hatespeech’.

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phallogocentrism

      Reply
  3. Beatrix Willius

    I read about the changes to Googles search a couple of weeks ago. First I thought that this can’t be and then I did some searches. So I now know not to use Google when searching for health terms.

    I skipped the philosophy stuff. These guys were mostly narcissists anyway. I doubt that the Google has any philosophy. They only have 2 gods: Mammon and Cthulu (I never get the spelling of that one right, he will smite me for that I know).

    Reply
  4. Deb

    Excellent rant, Tom! (Genuine applause!). I run afoul of the “algorithm” on numerous topics, when articles I previously reviewed, and wanted to check again, can no longer be found, mysteriously swallowed up in the ether. (Nevertheless, I persist, LOL!) I have never joined Facebook, Twitter, or any other platform that wants to think for me.

    Related, I think postmodernism is a stain on so many aspects of our lives, and appreciate your illumination of its toxicity. Jordan B. Peterson gave a scathing lecture on postmodernism that is well-worth an hour of your time.

    Reply
    1. Tom Naughton Post author

      I may have seen that lecture, but I’ll check again. I don’t think most people who cherish freedom of speech realize just how hostile the postmodernists are to the idea and how anxious to rid of it. We’ve always taken it for granted that freedom of speech is a core American value that couldn’t be threatened.

      Reply
  5. Trevor

    That’s why I worry about what Silicon Valley is doing. They think of us as a bunch of stupid, inbred morons that need their expert advise.

    Considering the “experts” diet advice has led to obesity and diabetes skyrocketing, you’d think they would learn, but no. It’s why I think of government as having a reverse Midas touch: everything they go near turns to shit.

    How long is it going to be before we have China’s social credit system? Working on a book that had something similar, but at first, I thought it was too outlandish.

    Reply
    1. Tom Naughton Post author

      Dennis Prager (whose PragerU videos have been laughably restricted by YouTube as “hate speech”) believes the reverse Midas touch is that the Left ruins everything it touches. (Before any of my liberal friends have a conniption over that statement, please keep in mind Prager is careful to distinguish between liberals and the Left. True liberals don’t try to shut down speeches with threats of violence, or punish scientists who produce data gender-studies theorists finds troubling, etc.)

      Reply
  6. 3Duranium

    Dealing with postmodernists is similar to dealing with cults in that they believe that they hold the “truth” and that others must believe as they do and are angry when the general populace rejects them. For them to accept actual truth based in reality, data, and facts would crumble and shatter the world they established in their minds. It is a painful experience with them either continuing to be in denial, accepting the truth and being bitter, or accepting the truth and truly turn into a new person.

    Was Heidegger a Sith Lord? His ideas/views sound very Sithish.

    Reply
  7. Kathy in OK

    At a recent gathering of like-minded folks (not health or nutrition related), the term thought police came up. And here it is again. Scary stuff.

    Reply
  8. June

    A very real problem is that no one at these platforms is checking to see if the complaints are true. They simply figure if X number of people are making the same complaint then the complaint must be valid. This has also become a new form of cyber-bullying and it is quickly being exploited.

    I also believe that you are not warned that your site being deleted or given a chance to refute the complaints made against you. Tom, did Wiki give you any kind of notice that your site was under review?

    Reply
    1. Tom Naughton Post author

      No, I didn’t get any warning from Wikipedia. The cancel-culture crowd of course simply labels anything they don’t like as racist, sexist, speciesist or whatever and expect the platforms to cave.

      Reply
  9. Elenor

    Great wisdom Tom! (No surprise.)

    I cannot recommend highly enough the book(s) by Vox Day: “SJWs Always Lie: Taking Down the Thought Police” — which is mostly a self-defense manual for “when ‘they come for you” (At your job, at your church, in your gym, on the web, heck even in your family!) Realize, they WILL always come for you, even for some sort of “new offense” you didn’t know you’d committed… I get a huge laugh out of the left now turning on and attacking some their OWN, who — as a part of a school of fish swimming and turning in unison — MISSED the latest/newest signal and didn’t turn with the school.

    His second book: “SJWs Always Double Down: Anticipating the Thought Police (The Laws of Social Justice)” is more about protecting not just yourself, but your organizations… (The third book, we’re waiting not-quite-patiently for, will be “SJWs Always Project.” That his third rule of SJWs…

    DON’T quail in horror at the mere mention of Vox Day’s name! Don’t let the liars and scammers (and SJWs!) who are backlisting and de-platforming and censoring and otherwise trying to force you to only see, only read, only FIND the stuff they want you to find!

    I’d also recommend to you reading Vox Day’s book (or at least his blog entries) called “Jordanetics: A Journey Into the Mind of Humanity’s Greatest Thinker” — which, if you like Jorden will hurt but the book makes absolutely clear that it’s “bafflegarble” Jordan “sells,” not “just” wisdom. (I fought long-and-hard against Vox’s disassembly of my belief in Jordan’s crap; but it turns out Jordan lays out a ‘treat’ on a string and we/you/folks fill in the “apparent wisdom” out of our OWN knowledge base. Jordan may be a finer pointing AT the moon, bu he sure as hell is NOT the moon — nor any way to GET to the moon.)

    And, if you did recoil in shock and horror at my suggestion, maybe just read the synopsis/excerpt of the first book offered free on the blog as an immediate resource when you’ve suddenly been attacked http://www.milobookclub.com/mart/SJW_Attack_Survival_Guide.pdf — and/or — watch the Google Whistleblower Zach Vorhees discuss how the first book kept him from getting destroyed by the Google behemoth: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-ghU24MvdFc&t=596s Yes, Alex Jones is annoying — but this is an excellent interview! Specific review starts at minute 2:30 — great review!

    Reply
    1. Tom Naughton Post author

      I read “SJWs Always Lie” and “SJWs Always Double Down.” Yup, he explains the pattern quite nicely.

      Reply
  10. chris c

    Seen this?

    https://www.lchf-rd.com/2019/08/20/censorship-of-real-food/

    Meanwhile in the UK the Intellectual Yet Idiots at Cambridge University have banned beef and lamb from their canteens. And our Leader Of The Opposition Jeremy Corbyn recently switched from vegetarian to vegan and currently looks like a dead man walking, with a serious case of Vegan Neck.

    Frankly I’m looking forward to being dead. But before I go I will eat all the rump steaks and lambs liver I can before it gets banned.

    Reply
    1. Tom Naughton Post author

      Good lord … a chicken prepared for cooking is “sensitive content” now? If that triggers people, we’ve got maybe a decade before we’re successfully invaded by people who haven’t been thoroughly weenified.

      Reply

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