Amazon plays dirty inside the corridors of the Pentagon.
[American Spectator] The past few weeks have shown an alarming series of developments when it comes to the compatibility of today’s tech sector with a free society. The most controversial of these, no doubt, was the banning of Infowars and its flagship host Alex Jones from multiple social media platforms, all at once, a decision that even the ACLU raised alarm bells about, albeit belatedly. Since then, yet more worrying signs have cropped up ‐ in particular, the revelation that tech companies are planning a secret meeting on how to "counter manipulation of their platforms," i.e., to stop such manipulation by anyone who is not a Democrat.
The danger of such actions should be obvious to anyone concerned with ensuring a fair marketplace of ideas. Erratic and bizarre though Jones himself was, no one ever voted to allow tech companies to censor cranks. In fact, it is one of the cornerstones of American legal and political culture that cranks cannot be censored, period. Freedom of the press means freedom of William Randolph Hearst to make up lies that led to the Spanish American War, and of newspapers in the 1980s to spread the entirely fictitious Satanic Panic, just as much as it means freedom of Alex Jones to broadcast whatever nonsense he likes. When major corporations, including some press outlets themselves, arrogate to themselves the right to act as censors where the government cannot, no matter how unsympathetic the target, the world becomes that much less free and our institutions that much less trustworthy.
Still, at least the censorship of American political thought by tech companies is so ham-fisted as to be visible. But it is not merely the public discussion of politics that tech companies want to rig in their favor. It is also the method by which the spoils of political conflict are divided, including and especially government contracts.
The full extent of this is revealed in a recent bombshell article at Vanity Fair, normally reliable redoubt for Leftist causes, but in this case apparently too horrified to glance over the abuses involved. The story concerns a concerted campaign by Amazon and Jeff Bezos to try to literally rig the entire process by which the Department of Defense (DoD) transferred its data onto cloud computing servers.
Posted by: Besoeker 2018-08-27