Amy Klobuchar, Censor

Minnesota Senator Amy Klobuchar has an undistinguished legislative record. She has been a master of small-ball politics, sponsoring unimportant but superficially appealing bills while excelling at constituent service. But now, Klobuchar has stepped out as an advocate for censorship, a key Democratic Party priority.

On October 19, she wrote a letter to Jeff Bezos, complaining that when Amazon’s Alexa, which “relies on a variety of sources to answer questions,” responds to questions about the 2020 election, “it appears that some answers were provided by contributors instead of verified news sources.” The horror!

One wonders what Klobuchar means by “verified news sources.” Verified by whom? And what is the “verification”? Someone has verified that they exist? That what they reported is true? (Just kidding.) That their “reporters” have worthless journalism degrees? That they are loyal Democratic Party foot soldiers? Now we are getting warmer.

Klobuchar’s attempt at censorship roused Matt Taibbi to an epic denunciation at his Substack site, Racket News. Taibbi relentlessly mocks Klobuchar’s pretensions, as endorsed by the liberal press, and then gets to the point. (Links in original omitted):

Minnesota Senator and Hindenburg presidential candidate Amy Klobuchar sent a letter (h/t demanding that he enjoin Alexa from citing “unvetted sources,” specifically Substack and Rumble. No hell is hot enough for this person.

Referring to a Washington Post story complaining that Alexa cited Substack, she wrote: “When asked about the 2020 presidential election, it appears that some answers were provided by contributors instead of verified news sources.”
Now this person, whose “humor” persona was surely cooked up in part to soften a rep for throwing things at aides, who scored roughly John Blutarsky’s grade-point average with the backing of the national media establishment [in 2020 presidential primaries], who managed less than 6% of Democratic voters in her own state, has the gall to push one of the world’s biggest media distributors to disallow voluntary access to “contributors instead of verified news sources.” Klobuchar wants Jeff Bezos to make sure Amazon’s home surveillance robots don’t spit out even occasional answers from a wider pool of real human beings, including thousands of independent contributors. The information landscape must be a pure monopoly of “verified news sources.”

This Senator-to-billionaire communiqué isn’t illegal because she didn’t phrase it as an order or voice the implied threat of regulation, among other things. If Bezos ends up complying, however, I’ve half a mind to sue. Patience is wearing thin with the relentless determination of government figures — whether U.S. Cyber Command or a Minnesota Senator — to weed out independent media from the digital landscape. It’s not enough to have 99% of the informational space? They need all of it?

Of course they do! Any crack in the wall might allow reality to slip through.

About those “verified news sources”: the list includes the Bezos-owned Washington Post, which gave Klobuchar the idea by producing the original news article complaining about “Substack, a subscription newsletter service.” They linked to another Post piece describing this site as a home to “conspiracy theorists” banned elsewhere, pointing a finger at Joseph Mercola and complaining about a contributor who claimed Trump won Pennsylvania in 2020.

The Washington Post has serious boulders to whine about inaccuracy here. When via the Twitter Files I exposed the Hamilton 68 scam they fell for over and over, the Post with reluctance issued “minor” corrections to eight reports. Why “minor”? Because reviewing editors concluded the paper “appropriately reported on emerging research, including Hamilton 68.” Emerging research is code for “We didn’t know it was bullshit yet.” The Post repeatedly claimed to be describing social media activity of “online Russian bots” who were mostly ordinary users in the U.S. and other Western countries. That’s an actual conspiracy theory that they wouldn’t have had to admit without Substack, and they have the cheek to seek a ban on us.

As we have shown countless times, the main purveyors of disinformation are the New York Times, the Associated Press, and The Washington Post. They want to suppress the competition largely because the competition has repeatedly shown them to be dishonest liars.

Taibbi concludes:

These people are the worst. I would pay money to watch them all mauled by bears. Senator Klobuchar, Mr.Bezos, esteemed editors of the Washington Post, to hell with all of you.

A little too mild, but otherwise appropriate.

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