Clay and Buck

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The Facebook “Whistleblower” Is a Democrat Operative

5 Oct 2021

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CLAY: Another story that we have not talked about yet and we want to dive into is the Facebook whistleblower. I’m putting “whistleblower” in quotations because it’s definitely an intrigued set of circumstances surrounding this story. Frances Haugen, I believe is her name, and if you haven’t paid attention to this story, it began with a lot of exclusive excerpts of documents from inside of Facebook written about in the Wall Street Journal.

Then there was a 60 Minutes long-form interview piece with her on Sunday. And now she is testifying in front of Congress about the issues associated with social media in general. And look, I believe that basically the technology behind social media has cannonballed into the American populace, just splashing things in all sorts of different directions.

And I think most people would acknowledge that there are massive flaws associated with social media. What I would be careful of is the idea that there are easy solutions that don’t directly impact your ability to share your opinion. And here is one of those moments of testimony that I want to share with you. This is the Facebook whistleblower. She is talking to Congress, and she says that Facebook is the equivalent of Big Tobacco and opioids. Listen to what she said. Let’s play cut 20.

HAUGEN: Left alone, Facebook will continue to make choices that go against the common good — our common good. When we realized Big Tobacco was hiding the harms it caused, the government took action. When we figured out cars were safer with seat belts, the government took action. And when our government learned that opioids were taking lives, the government took action.

I implore you to do the same here. Today, Facebook shapes our perception of the world by choosing the information we see. Even those who don’t use Facebook are impacted by the majority who do. A company is such frightening influence over so many people — over their deepest thoughts, feelings, and behaviors — needs real oversight.

BUCK: Clay, this woman is a Democrat operative — working with a Democrat PR firm with ties, I believe, to Jen Psaki — who is coming forward not because she wants there to be regulation that protects free speech on Facebook but that will actually double down and create a legislative imperative for the continued suppression of conservative speech on these social media platforms.

They keep doing this thing, and you see it from some of the testimony where she’ll say and the media coverage will talk about, oh, kids and young women who have body image issues or something. We say, “Oh, wow. Okay, that’s bad.” First of all, what is Facebook going to really do about that? Are they gonna ban people from looking at things?

There are some folks who have large followings. Anyway. The point being, then they always transition into, “Oh, but the January 6 insurrection, enough wasn’t done!” This woman — the real takeaway here — says we should have or all you need to know is that on our own bio this woman, Haugen, from Facebook, she “handled democracy and misinformation” issues at Facebook as well as working on counterespionage as part of the civic misinformation team.” That’s according to her own website. She’s the misinformation police, Clay. Who do we think she wants to be policing?

CLAY: Here are the challenges associated with this. And look. I do believe that there is no doubt that Big Tech is broken. So there is an agreement that Big Tech is broken, I think, by massive majorities of the American population — Democrat, Republican, independent. But what I want to focus on is that clip we just played, Buck. She said two phrases that are so diabolically difficult to figure out how to legislate and how to apply within the context of our First Amendment. She said that there needs to be “regulation in the common good.” What is the common good?

BUCK: Suppression of conservatives. We know what it is. We know it’s gonna be suppressing you and me, by the way. That’s what.

CLAY: And what is oversight? And again, her motives, I don’t think any doubt, are that Facebook needs to be censoring more, not less, and most of that censorship would fall on conservative political thought. So you begin with an agreement: Big Tech is broken, right? If you’re kind of doing a flowchart.

BUCK: What do you mean by “broken”?

CLAY: I mean that it doesn’t work in the method in which it was designed to work, and let me explain. That’s a good question, “What do you mean by broken?” To me, I am an old school in the idea of the marketplace of ideas. The marketplace of ideas requires some speech that is not true, right? In order for the marketplace of ideas to work — this is a big legal framework — we have to have a robust and uninhibited debate.

And over the course of that robust and uninhibited debate, the best arguments will win, right? I believe in that. Historically, that is the guideline, those are the tenets of the First Amendment. And if you are going to restrict debate — the courts have debated this for hundreds of years — you have to do it in a content neutral fashion.

In other words, you can’t decide, “Oh, I don’t like this conservative political belief. Let’s make sure that nobody’s allowed to argue it.” Oh, I don’t like this liberal political belief. And it used to be, Buck, the marketplace of ideas used to be considered a, quote-unquote, “liberal position,” because very often minority opinions become majority opinions by getting involved in the marketplace of ideas.

BUCK: This is why liberals are not actually about liberty and therefore not actually liberals, but statists and authoritarians.

CLAY: So it’s shifted, and it’s even shifted in this generation, Buck, because if you remember Bill Maher lost his job at ABC back in the day — which I think is what pushed him into the Democratic camp for a while, and now he’s shifting back into the conservative camp; I think he’s been red pilled — because he said on ABC that the terrorists weren’t cowards, right?

BUCK: I mean I’ve done his show a few times, he’s conservative on like one out of 10 things. (laughing)

CLAY: Of late, of late he’s been adopting. I think he’s been red pilled. I think he’s looking at the chaos that’s out there.

BUCK: Oh, man, you gotta talk to about climate change, Clay. (laughing) You’re giving… I like Bill. Bill’s a nice guy. But he is —

CLAY: On the climate change, I just throw climate change out the window.

BUCK: Talk to him about Black Lives Matter. Oh, gosh, talk about the police! Oooh, sir, I’m telling you. He is far from red pilled, Clay, I’m just telling, on a few issues he may be.

CLAY: In the larger context, the one that I’m talking about here is — and this is why I think there’s a lot of agreement out there — you know, comedians getting censored because their jokes are considered to be inappropriate. You or me getting censored by Facebook because we share things. We got censored, we got dinged for “misinformation” at OutKick, and I talked about this in front of Congress, because I shared as a part of our reporting, data from the CDC.

And literally on the CDC website, Facebook said, “Well, this is misinformation” and killed our ability to share stories. So I care about this in the context of marketplace of ideas. And I think what this woman wants is to restrict the marketplace of ideas. What happened with Twitter and the New York Post was a restriction of the marketplace of ideas. I believe the way to handle speech is with more speech. Unfortunately, what I’m seeing is the exact opposite of that.

BUCK: The Democrat Party entirely, of course, disagrees with you, abandons this notion, thinks that “speech equals violence.” What you’re having is almost like a civil liberties conversation or a libertarian conversation.

CLAY: The ACLU used to be a liberal organization. They’d defend everyone.

BUCK: You’re essentially giving the ACLU charter from like 30 years ago.

CLAY: That’s me. That’s where I am.

BUCK: The left has completely and utterly eviscerated that, including the ACLU —

CLAY: Which is why I’ve left the left.

BUCK: — and has now gone forward with the, “Speech that we don’t like is violence. Speech that we don’t like must be actively suppressed or else people will die.” They do it on covid. They do it on any issue.

CLAY: They did on president!

BUCK: They do it on transgender rights. They do it on all these different areas, and what we see — to your point about the marketplace of ideas — is the public square is effectively now the digital square —

CLAY: Yes.

BUCK: — which was in and has been in private hands for a long time now. They built it up. They built these platforms like Facebook and Twitter and Google, all of it with the promise that they were providing a utility and a free speech haven where, yeah, there’d be some laws. You can’t be selling drugs.

There’s restrictions on some pornographic material. You can’t threaten to murder somebody. But without those very clear guidelines it was gonna be what you’re talking about. But, Clay, what we’ve seen over the last 10 years, particularly the last five years, is they don’t even pretend that that’s the goal anymore.

CLAY: Can’t threaten to murder someone. That’s right.

BUCK: And this woman that’s coming forward now, Haugen or Haugen or whatever, the Facebook so-called whistleblower, she is trying to now… You’ve noticed there is this unholy alliance between Big Tech and Big Government. They did it on covid, and now they’re trying to open it up even more beyond the covid restrictions and regulations so that they can actually start to shut down speech.

They’re talking about safety issues, and talking about January 6th and all these other things. Clay, who’s gonna be making those decisions? There’s no algorithm that’s going to determine what speech makes people “feel,” by the way. We’re not talking about threats. It’s just we feel unsafe.

CLAY: No doubt, Buck, but also remember every algorithm is designed by people.

BUCK: Yes.

CLAY: It’s not as if this is an entirely computer-based description. Somebody designed the algorithm. And you can create an algorithm to get whatever results you desire.

BUCK: This was really telling. There was one thing that I pulled here, Clay, where she said that when Facebook was down, democracy wasn’t being heard.

HAUGEN: Yesterday we saw Facebook get taken off the internet. I don’t know why it went down, but I know that for more than five hours may have been wasn’t used to deepen divides, destabilize democracies, and make young girls and women feel bad about their bodies.

BUCK: First of all, “destabilize democracies and making young girls feel bad about their bodies”? I feel like these are very separate things and very different issues. But anyone — any Democrat — who talks about Facebook and destabilizing democracy is effectively saying that we can’t allow conservatives to have free speech because there will be an insurrection. That’s the logic. That’s the approach that they use.

CLAY: Here’s an irony for you, Buck — and we can talk about this when we come back because I think it’s an interesting question. I have tons of people… I don’t spend any time on Facebook, but I know that everybody now has strong political opinions on Facebook, right?

That it has encouraged people who otherwise might not have felt that strongly about things. I feel like Facebook, the algorithm itself, based on all of the research I have done, is creating people who are way more polarized than they otherwise would be. I’ve got people who never cared about any issue at all and now they spend all day long on Facebook arguing.

BUCK: And there are some conservatives who pretend to be really against Big Tech but actually have a special backdoor relationship with companies like Facebook where they can respectively do whatever they want. We found this out recently, too.

CLAY: That was part of the Wall Street Journal story.

BUCK: “Oh, I hate Big Tech; Big Tech’s so bad. Oh, I’m not getting shut down. My competition’s getting shut down, as long as I play within the lines.” These are conservatives I’m talking about, folks. Yeah, that’s a real thing. We might have to be talking about that a little bit too.

CLAY: Well, this is such a difficult situation. I mean, this is not like a 20-minute conversation. This is like a 20-year conversation, I think, that is gonna have play out. By the way, our courts have no idea how to deal with it because many of them have no challenge how Big Tech works which is a challenge. Imagine trying to explain how Big Tech algorithms work to your 75-year-old dad or mom. They just don’t really understand it. It’s not their culture, not their generation.

BUCK: We’re basically 40. There’s a lot of tech.

CLAY: I think I understand it.

BUCK: You think you understand algorithms? Have you ever seen the Facebook algorithm?

CLAY: I don’t know how to design an algorithm.

BUCK: Okay. (laughing)

CLAY: I know how to look at the results of algorithms and determine what their impact is.

BUCK: Here’s a short version: “Conservative, bad. Authoritarian Democrat socialism, good.”


BUCK: I gotta tell you one rule that I always keep in mind is you can never… You can’t trust Greeks bearing gifts. You can never trust Democrats promising that they want to do regulation to save the children. Anytime they start bringing in… By the way, Nancy Pelosi is a constant offender in this regard. Oh, yeah, sure, the money she wants to spend “is for future generations.”

It’s always for the kids, right? And you’re hearing all this Facebook about children with body image issues or something from social media, from Instagram — and then it’s, oh, yeah, January 6th. Here’s Jen Psaki letting everybody know what’s really going on with the Facebook whistleblower.

PSAKI: As we saw, uh, the revelations that came out in that interview, in our view this is just the latest in a series of revelations about social media platforms, uh, that make clear that self-regulation is not working. Uh, that’s long been the president’s view, been the view of this administration. Uh, they validate the significant concern that the president and lawmakers on both sides of the aisle have expressed about how social media giants operate and the power they’ve amassed.

BUCK: Yeah. We want them to regulate neutrality.

CLAY: Yes.

BUCK: They want to regulate bias in favor of the left. That’s the game.

CLAY: Yeah. It’s the difference between content neutral and content biased, right? There’s so many details to dive into here, but what I have come to the conclusion of is one solution is we’ve gotta break up the Big Tech companies.

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