Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., who self identifies as a democratic-socialist, suggested this week that a federal commission should do to news media what Facebook and Twitter do to their users — control the information that gets disseminated.
In fact, she claimed that such a commission was already in the works.
During an Instagram live stream Tuesday, a viewer asked if there were any discussions in Congress on "truth and reconciliation or media literacy initiatives" in response to the Jan. 6 riot on Capitol Hill.
"There is absolutely a commission being discussed," Ocasio-Cortez claimed.
"But it seems to be more investigatory in style rather than truth and reconciliation. So I think that’s an interesting concept for us to explore, and I do think that several members of Congress, in some of my discussions, have brought up media literacy because that is a part of what happened here and we’re going to have to figure out how we rein in our media environment so that you can’t just spew disinformation and misinformation."
In a New York Post commentary, David Harsanyi called the proposal "creepy" and "wholly un-American" — and it is.
And if it sounds vaguely familiar, think of the "Ministry of Truth" in George Orwell’s dystopian novel "1984."
We have an independent press to keep a check on government — not the other way around.
It’s little more than an attempt to rein in dissent — not by debating the issues and offering alternative viewpoints — but by controlling the conversation, and in so doing, showing contempt for the American people.
Assuming you still believe Congress should establish a central clearinghouse to separate fact from fiction, consider a statement Ocasio-Cortez made a few years back.
She claimed that two-thirds of a "Medicare for All" program could be financed by the "$21 trillion of Pentagon financial transactions [that] ‘could not be traced, documented, or explained.'"
The Washington Post gave that statement four Pinocchios, its highest rating for disinformation, stating that the $21 trillion figure she referred to was over the previous 17 years, and more importantly, represented errors in both funds coming in and money going out.
When she was called on it during a "60 Minutes" interview on CBS, her response was jaw-dropping.
"If people want to really blow up one figure here or one word there, I would argue that they’re missing the forest for the trees," she said. "There's a lot of people more concerned about being precisely, factually, and semantically correct than about being morally right."
Although receiving four Pinocchios, she claimed moral superiority, so that made it OK.
Even assuming Ocasio-Cortez won’t be involved in the actual fact-checking of news stories, consider the House Democrats’ article of impeachment against President Trump.
They claimed he incited insurrection when he told his supporters, "if you don’t fight like hell you’re not going to have a country anymore."
Most if not all members of Congress have said something similar throughout their political careers — probably more than once.
During the same speech Trump predicted that "I know that everyone here will soon be marching over to the Capitol building to peacefully and patriotically make your voices heard."
He said of the unconvinced Republicans, "If they don't fight, we have to primary the hell out of the ones that don't fight. You primary them. We're going to let you know who they are."
But if it’s an actual commission independent of Congress, comprised of “professional” fact-checkers, how would that work out?
Newsweek fact-checked the question, "Did Trump Say to 'Peacefully and Patriotically' March to the Capitol?"
It concluded that "The president did say that the crowd was going to march peacefully and patriotically to the Capitol. After the attack, Trump said he does not condone violence."
It added, "However, it does not necessarily mean the president did not incite violence with the rest of his speech or in his rhetoric prior to January 6."
Taking a cue from Ocasio-Cortez, you could say that Newsweek was being "factually wrong but morally correct."
This is why Congress is broken.
There are countless problems confronting the United States: cracking down on BLM and Antifa rioters in large cities, getting the economy open and back on track, and pushing states into accelerating distribution of the Trump vaccine.
And yes, it’s the Trump vaccine. If the Affordable Care Act is Obamacare, each COVID-19 vaccine that came about as a result of Operation Warp Speed is a Trump vaccine.
But more than that, as my friend Amy would say, "we have to start thinking about the world we leave to Betty White after we’re all dead and gone."
Michael Dorstewitz is a retired lawyer and has been a frequent contributor to BizPac Review and Liberty Unyielding. He is also a former U.S. Merchant Marine officer and an enthusiastic Second Amendment supporter, who can often be found honing his skills at the range. Read Dorstewitz's Reports — More Here.
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