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This is a one-time offer to the Associated Press. My weekend seminar on free speech and the meaning of the 1st Amendment can be yours, for the low, low price of $10000000000000000000000000. Cash up front.
In a recent piece about Elon Musk, AP offers this stunner:
“Musk boasts that he’s acquiring Twitter to defend freedom of speech. But he has long used the platform to attack perceived foes who dare to disagree with him.”
Let’s see. If Musk really believed in free speech, he would refrain from responding to his critics, right? That’s what FREE and SPEECH mean, right?
Or Musk would write, “I differ from you in my assertions, but thanks for responding. Everything is relative.”
If Musk really believed in free speech, he would send each of his critics a check for $10,000, to prove how tolerant he is.
Musk: “Dear GruffDog2: I acknowledge your disagreement with my recent statement about space travel. If you sign an affidavit swearing that you’re a member of an underserved community, I’ll increase my check to $15,000.”
If Musk really believed in free speech, he would never ever attack (in print) someone who disagreed with him. Because THAT would be a clear violation of the 1st Amendment. This is what AP is declaring.
Perhaps this is what AP is saying: “Hey, man, this dude Musk is the richest dude in the world. So the whole thing is unfair. The deck is stacked against the poor victim who disagreed with him. See, when Musk tweets, the page automatically lights up and glows, but when the little victim dude tweets, the page is dark.”
I’ve reached out to AP with this interpretation, but their office of self-justification hasn’t gotten back to me.
However, some unknown person at AP did send me this: I dug up a 1795 statement penned by James Madison: “Our work launching a new nation means nothing unless we realize that FREE SPEECH really focuses on the comment a person makes when he disagrees with a prior person’s statement. If the prior person THEN disagrees with the first disagreement, he is taking things too far. His speech is not protected. He can be stripped of all his assets and sent to prison for the rest of his life. Or he can be shot at dawn.”
I relayed that response to the offices of Joe Biden and Barack Obama. Biden immediately returned a terse remark: “I approve of this message. Vote for me.”
Obama stated: “The 1st Amendment doesn’t cover misinformation. No one has the right to misinform. The Constitution is a living document, and I continue to interpret it for you. My cronies and I define misinformation in our weekly updates. No one has the right to be wrong. The world is too dangerous a place to permit wrongness. For example, the NSA informs me you’ve written a piece mocking my family for living in our beachfront mansion on Martha’s Vineyard, since we affirm the imminent threat of climate change and drowning of all coastlines. However, you’re wrong; because I say so. I hereby fine you $1000000000. My people will be in touch to provide you with account and routing numbers.”