Sitting upon Mt. Rushmore is four presidents who many consider to be the nation’s greatest. One of these four is Theodore Roosevelt. He’s well known for his “Big Stick Diplomacy” and conservationist efforts. Perhaps the most controversial policy of Roosevelt was his trust-busting. It’s possible that it’s time to trust-bust the big tech giants like Facebook and Google.
Roosevelt saw trusts that were hurting America. He wasn’t “anti-business” or against the free market. Rather he broke up trusts that hurt America. In today’s America, plenty of industries are great for the nation. Manufacturing provides millions with jobs; Amazon is great for consumers. But not all companies are great for the nation.
Big Tech Tyranny
Big tech and social media companies are suppressors of speech of anyone right of center. Facebook claims to have an open platform while silencing opposing viewpoints as “hateful.” Search engine Google has been revealed to blacklist conservative sites and ban pro-life ads on their platforms.
The federal government has a better respect for your free speech than Facebook does. They won’t stop you from saying something offensive, but Mark Zuckerberg is happy to. Furthermore, many big tech companies have legal immunity. This means people cannot sue them for falsely claiming to be an open platform while policing speech.
Is Facebook providing a platform for ideas? Or are they providing content by deciding what we see? They need to decide.
How Powerful Are They?
These big tech companies essentially have control over the internet. Facebook has sometimes been described as a “natural monopoly.” Facebook and Twitter hold a tight grasp on the market place of ideas. The top alternative to Facebook is Instagram. In fact, it’s growing to be more popular than Facebook. But Instagram is owned by Facebook, meaning all Facebook policies would apply to it as well. Facebook has bought or merged with dozens of companies.
What’s just as dangerous as Facebook (if not more) is Google. Google is a very powerful company. The term “Google it” has become synonymous with looking something up. Google owns the largest video sharing service, Youtube. Youtube is notorious for censoring and demonetizing channels such as PragerU and Steven Crowder.
Google is just as biased as Facebook. Google fired an employee named James Damore. Why? Because in a private letter he wrote that there are differences between men and women. This is scientifically correct, but not politically correct, so he was fired. This shows Google’s clear bias. Moreover, Google uses the scapegoat of labeling things it doesn’t agree with as “fake news” or “hate speech”
Time to Trust-Bust?
Google has the power to practically censor the internet, and they are only growing in power. Big tech companies must decide whether or not they wanna be platforms or gatekeepers. Meanwhile, they are given legal immunity. Companies that suppress speech should not have this immunity.
Trusts are not inherently bad for the economy, but they become a problem when companies harm the nation. When this happened in the past, Teddy Roosevelt brought in the trust busts. If big tech cannot change its habits, it’s time to bust the trusts. We need a market place of ideas and platforms for the media.
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