Letter from the Editor


Eric SchaubEric Schaub

Dear Friend of Liberty,

It's been a while since we've sent out our periodic Letter from the Editor. I suppose the recent online censorship purges by the tech giants have provoked a response.
Studying history in high school, we were taught of the NAZI Ministry of Propaganda that controlled the newspapers, film and radio. We all patted ourselves on the backs for living in a country that had a free press and weren't subject to propaganda.

"All propaganda must be so popular and on such an intellectual level, that even the most stupid of those toward whom it is directed will understand it... Through clever and constant application of propaganda, people can be made to see paradise as hell, and also the other way around, to consider the most wretched sort of life as paradise."
Adolf Hitler
(1889-1945) German Nazi Dictator
Mein Kampf, p. 197. 14th Edition.

But in those days, there were only 3 television networks from whom millions got the 'news.' Little did we know how much of it was aimed at Pavlovian human responses even then.

"I would not be fooled by the old myth that reporting is about objectivity. Deciding what is news is the most subjective of acts and it is probably the most important thing that we do."
Carl Bernstein
(1944-) American investigative journalist, author, Washington Post reporter for Watergate scandal

"We are going to impose our agenda on the coverage by dealing with the issues and subjects we choose to deal with."
Richard M. Cohen
(1948-) American journalist, television producer, and author. Former senior producer for CBS News and CNN

"Television, I would say, isn't an advertising medium. It's a selling medium."
William S. Paley
(1901-1990) Founder of CBS
Quoted in Broadcasting, May 31, 1976

Fast forward to 2018 and despite thousands of television channels, there are still only a few TV news channels. Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, and others host thousands of channels yet intentionally regulate users' speech while promoting the MSM party line above the organic content of its users.

"One of the best ways to get yourself a reputation as a dangerous citizen these days is to go about repeating the very phrases which our founding fathers used in the great struggle for independence."
Charles Austin Beard
(1874-1948) Professor at Columbia University

"Every compulsion is put upon writers to become safe, polite, obedient, and sterile. In protest, I declined election to the National Institute of Arts and Letters some years ago, and now I must decline the Pulitzer Prize."
Sinclair Lewis
Letter, 1926

Searching for truth amidst compulsory propaganda -- the typical search result is framed on all sides with paid messages meeting the same search criteria. Google already knows what people are searching for, targeting those phrases and putting them up for bid to advertisers -- that's what Google does.

"And let us remind readers regularly, in editorials,in our promotional advertising, in speeches to civic groups and others, that advertising helps people to live better and saves them money. This fact needs constant selling."
Paul Miller
(1906-1991) President and CEO of Gannett Newspaper Chain (1957-78), President and Chairman of Associated Press (1963-77)
quoted in Editor & Publisher, September 16, 1961

"There's nothing so absurd
that if you repeat it often enough,
people will believe it."

William James
(1842-1910) The father of modern Psychology

Even the shows themselves advertise with 'product placement' of brand names incorporated into the dialogue: Elaine casually offers George, "Snapple?" Political ideology is also being 'branded' in entertainment content, with stories written with 'social justice' agendas. 'The Connors' show without Roseanne should be a doozy.

"Political correctness is really a subjective list put together by the few to rule the many -- a list of things one must think, say, or do. It affronts the right of the individual to establish his or her own beliefs."
Mark Berley
Argos, Spring 1998

Now consider how lucrative the political advertisement market is -- what are they selling (and how much are the media companies charging)? More and more we are seeing the television shows themselves being politicized. Promoting a culture of authoritarianism started long ago with cop shows, doctor shows, lawyer shows, 'educational' shows, 'news' shows, and a Disney world view.

"A human group transforms itself into a crowd when it suddenly responds to a suggestion rather than to reasoning, to an image rather than to an idea, to an affirmation rather than to proof, to the repetition of a phrase rather than to arguments, to prestige rather than to competence."
Jean-Francois Revel
[Jean-Francois Ricard] (1924-2006) French politician, journalist, author, philosopher, member of the Academie francaise

"Public sentiment is everything. With public sentiment nothing can fail. Without it nothing can succeed. He who molds opinion is greater than he who enacts laws."
Abraham Lincoln
(1809-1865) 16th US President

"The third-rate mind is only happy when it is thinking with the majority. The second-rate mind is only happy when it is thinking with the minority. The first-rate mind is only happy when it is thinking."
A. A. Milne
[Alan Alexander Milne] (1882-1956) English author

While Facebook may be a service provider of free online messaging services, what rights do the users have, with hundreds and thousands of postings of content and dialogue, when Facebook denies them service and all but deletes their presence? For the social networks, the users ARE the content, their demographics, their political leanings, their messages, their faces.

"It was terribly dangerous to let your thoughts wander when you were in any public place or within range of a telescreen. The smallest thing could give you away. A nervous tic, an unconscious look of anxiety, a habit of muttering to yourself -- anything that carried with it the suggestion of abnormality, of having something to hide. In any case, to wear an improper expression on your face ... was itself a punishable offense. There was even a word for it in Newspeak: facecrime ..."
George Orwell
[Eric Arthur Blair] (1903-1950) British author
his book, '1984'

"Whenever they burn books, they will also, in the end,
burn human beings."

Heinrich Heine
(1797-1856) German poet, journalist, essayist, literary critic
Almansor: A Tragedy, 1823

"Nobody these days holds the written word in such high esteem as police states do..."
Italo Calvino
(1923-1985) Italian writer
If on a Winter's Night a Traveler

Do you think the book burners at Amazon and YouTube colluding with 'the intelligence community' realize they are embracing the same fascist tactics as the Nazi's? Who exactly is demanding that 'hate speech' and 'fake news' be taken down? Is it not enough to respond with a counter argument or sue for libel or slander? Is the Ministry of Truth that far away?

"The Central Intelligence Agency owns everyone of any significance in the major media."
William Colby
(1920-1996) former Director of the CIA
in Derailing Democracy: The America the Media Don???t Want You to See (2000), by Dave McGowan

"Provided I do not write about the government, or about religion, or politics, or morals, or those in power, or public bodies, or the Opera, or the other state theatres, or about anybody who is active in anything, I can print whatever I want."
Pierre-Augustin Beaumarchais
(1732-1799) French playwright, watchmaker, inventor, musician, diplomat, fugitive, spy, publisher, arms dealer, satirist, financier, and revolutionary

People are being denied service for nothing other than being a Trump supporter. How does this differ from refusing 'colored' people service in the 50's? Businesses may not discriminate (i.e. refuse service) based upon race, sex, or age; isn't political-orientation as protected as sexual-orientation? What exactly is the right to free speech if it is not the right to express one's own views?

"Printers are educated in the Belief, that when Men differ in Opinion, both sides ought equally to have the Advantage of being heard by the Public; and that when Truth and Error have fair Play, the former is always an overmatch for the latter: Hence [printers] cheerfully serve all contending Writers that pay them well, without regarding on which side they are of the Question in Dispute."
Benjamin Franklin
(1706-1790) US Founding Father
"An Apology for Printers," Pennsylvania Gazette, 10 June 1731

"And it is not difficult to show, by abundant instances, that to extend the bounds of what may be called moral police, until it encroaches on the most unquestionably legitimate liberty of the individual, is one of the most universal of all human propensities."
John Stuart Mill
(1806-1873) English philosopher and economist
On Liberty, by John Stuart Mill, 1859

The social media companies are businesses subject to regulation as per the Commerce Clause. They are not offering a 'free' service, the price is ownership of the content and personal demographic data, all to be marketed to advertisers -- they have made billions from this market. Their assets are your posts, browsing history, likes and dislikes. They've gotten all their content without compensating the users. Now with so much power, they are skewing distribution of messages to favour specific responses and to prevent others.

"That's not a lie, it's a terminological inexactitude."
Alexander Haig
(1924-2010) Secretary of State for President Ronald Reagan
During a TV interview, defending himself against accusations of lying in 1983. Quoted by Rutledge, Leigh W., "Would I Lie To You?", Plume, 1998, ISBN 0-452-27931-3, p. 81.

"The ultimate result of protecting fools from their folly is to fill the planet full of fools."
James Russell Lowell
(1819-1891) American author and diplomatist

With such power, they openly admit their authoritarian leanings and have instituted automated tagging and ranking of content, those that posted it, those that visited it, commented on it, thumb it up or down. The graphing of user networks, their political affiliations, deduced from their tracked behaviour, offer to advertisers (commercial and political) targeted 'markets'. Online campaigns are tracked in real time to confirm that the 'stimulus' worked and that the desired reaction is obtained. Whether selling SUVs or political candidates, the process is the same. Their claims to protect the online community from violence and hate appear to be nothing more than a cover for the denial of services for political/ideological purposes.

"Power tends to corrupt, and
absolute power corrupts absolutely."
Lord Acton
[John Emerich Edward Dalberg Acton] (1834-1902), First Baron Acton of Aldenham
in a letter to the bishop of London, Bishop Mandell Creighton, April 5,1887

"Mankind are greater gainers by suffering each other
to live as seems good to themselves, than
by compelling each to live as seems good to the rest."

John Stuart Mill
(1806-1873) English philosopher and economist
On Liberty, 1859

The truth sets one free, therefore foundational to Liberty. Getting banned from social media is a badge of honour in my book. Until then, let's keep shining the light for our friends, followers, and fellows in the online world. Liberty is not just for Americans, but for every nation that has yet to throw off the yoke of authoritarianism in any of its various forms. Power must be checked with power.

"The main thing is to have a soul that loves the truth and harbours it where he finds it. And another thing: truth requires constant repetition, because error is being preached about us all the time, and not only by isolated individuals but by the masses. In the newspapers and encyclopedias, in schools and universities, everywhere error rides high and basks in the consciousness of having the majority on its side."
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
(1749-1832) German writer, statesman

What to do? The antidote to propaganda is honest journalism. You are the journalist now, tasked with getting to the truth. Use Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and all the others to make your stand, express your principles, your commitment. That's big news that actually makes a difference.

"Freedom of the press, or, to be more precise, the benefit of freedom of the press, belongs to everyone – to the citizen as well as the publisher… The crux is not the publisher’s ‘freedom to print’; it is, rather, the citizen’s ‘right to know.’ "
Arthur Hays Sulzberger
Newspaper publisher

Thank you for your support over the years, both moral and financial. I can certainly attest that Liberty is an ideal that is alive and well -- our subscribers are proof of that! You are in good company. 
"It does not require a majority to prevail, but rather an irate, tireless minority keen to set brush fires in people's minds."
Samuel Adams
(1722-1803), was known as the "Father of the American Revolution."

For the first time in 18 years, we are launching an online fund-raiser to help us upgrade our servers and software which were developed before Wordpress or Disqus or any of the social media networks. We've recently released a new version of our web site and have more improvements ahead.
Thank you!
Eric Schaub
Editor/Publisher LibertyTree.ca

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Breaker  2/23/21

The "attempted cancelation" of former President Trump on Twitter and all, the other Big Tech platforms, and censorship of other people is all one-sided, it's amazing that people don't wake up and see that. What happens when the "cancelation squad" comes for them. And it will come for them sooner or later.

They even attempted to cancel me on a different platform. When people don't see things their way they cancel them. If that doesn't happen, they throw a hissy-fit like a toddler. It's scary that they will go to that point, and sad at the same time.


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