• creativesoul
    6.9k
    Who decides the narrative? Who decides which terms will be used to talk about which situations? This is a form of censorship...
    — creativesoul

    It's all relative to the size of your steeple.
    frank

    I think you should take that more seriously... if you're serious about censorship.
  • frank
    3.8k
    think you should take that more seriously... if you're serious about censorship.creativesoul

    I'm curious about censorship and the strong feelings it inspires (F 451, for example).

    How do you think it would show up if I took your question more seriously?
  • tim wood
    3.4k
    The Chinese and Russians are presently taking advantage of the West's sentimental attachment to freedom of speech. The West should meet foreign intrusion with censorship. Who disagrees?frank

    I do. Disinformation has always been a challenge, it merely takes on new forms. But in listening to Trump and his goons (aka "Republicans) speak, I think I begin to understand Socrates's and Plato's and Aristotle's outrage towards sophists.

    My own notion - it's just a notion - is that anyone can lie, but the liar accepts the risk of vigorous prosecution with both criminal and civil liability, depending on the lie, with penalties in all cases substantially exceeding the gain from the lie. This already somewhat exists with hate speech and libel and slander, but maybe should be widened, deepened, and broadened. The lie does its damage in being told, but the liar represents a present toxic danger at all times, and that should be addressed as well. That a Trump should become president of anything is of course a problem in itself, but it speaks to the much larger problems of its even being a) possible, and b) so difficult and slow to remedy.

    Constitutionally protected free speech was never either intended nor understood to be a freedom to say anything at all, but over 240 years the boundaries have expanded wa-ay beyond what the founding fathers could even have imagined. And I think the toothpaste doesn't go back into the tube, or the cat into the bag. Prior restraint, then, in the form of censorship I think does not work, or is at least a cure much worse than the disease. Better to penalize the liar and his lies so much that he and all like him are effectively disincentivized.
  • creativesoul
    6.9k


    You would consider what's being censored and by whom and for what reason(s)? In addition, you would consider how censorship is affecting/effecting all of those involved.
  • frank
    3.8k
    You would consider what's being censored and by whom and for what reason(s)? In addition, you would consider how censorship is affecting/effecting all of those involved.creativesoul

    I mentioned a number of cases of censorship in the OP. Did you happen to check it out?

    Let's zero in on my own victimisation, though. There were no books by or about Marx in my high school library, which as eventually learned, was the result of censorship.

    I suppose the purpose was to keep the USA from sliding tragically into leftist hell. The effect: I became enraged and I thought it was evidence of the power of 1 percenters to control the American conversation.

    It was probably just a few old people carrying genuine fear about where their country was headed. Thoughts?
  • ovdtogt
    465
    It was probably just a few old people carrying genuine fear about where their country was headed. Thoughts?frank

    Censorship never works in the long run.
    "You can fool all the people some of the time and some of the people all the time, but you cannot fool all the people all the time."
  • frank
    3.8k
    Censorship never works in the long run.
    "You can fool all the people some of the time and some of the people all the time, but you cannot fool all the people all the time."
    ovdtogt

    Would you say we should allow fascist propaganda?
  • ovdtogt
    465
    You mean like Fox News?
  • frank
    3.8k
    You mean like Fox News?ovdtogt

    I don't watch that, but I think they're missing the anti-Semitic piece.

    So you deflect the question? Are you missing the courage of your convictions?
  • ovdtogt
    465
    I think they're missing the anti-Semitic piecefrank

    I don't know what you mean with that statement. But I do consider Fox News a fascist news organization. And no I would not censure it.
  • creativesoul
    6.9k
    The effect: I became enraged and I thought it was evidence of the power of 1 percenters to control the American conversation.frank

    Not much to stir up that rage... eh?
  • creativesoul
    6.9k
    The narrative the last few times I've checked is sad... forever, it seems, predisposed to all the aspects bullshit brings on.
  • creativesoul
    6.9k
    There were no books by or about Marx in my high school library, which as eventually learned, was the result of censorship.

    I suppose the purpose was to keep the USA from sliding tragically into leftist hell. The effect: I became enraged and I thought it was evidence of the power of 1 percenters to control the American conversation.

    It was probably just a few old people carrying genuine fear about where their country was headed. Thoughts?
    frank

    I was more talking about today's media outlets...
  • ovdtogt
    465
    Wherever you experience censorship, you will find fascism.
  • TogetherTurtle
    351
    The West should meet foreign intrusion with censorship. Who disagrees?frank

    It's damned if you do, damned if you don't, I fear.

    On one hand, censorship I think has value depending on the situation. If you are a dictator and need to maintain the people's vision of your rule, censorship is valuable. It can maintain order that way.

    On the other, keeping your society in a state of submission keeps it from changing. When a newer people who accept the way the world is now gain strength from that, you will be vulnerable.

    Of course, when things are not changing as much and the "free" people grow restless, maintaining order will be hard without censorship. They will be overtaken by those who have no problem with squashing opposition within their own borders.

    There is a reason why no ancient empires still exist. It is this. The balance between telling people what to do and letting them tell you what to do is hard to keep. Cults of personality, religious fanaticism, as well as both the reverence and disgust of the past add to the difficulty of maintaining a people that can adapt when needed and stay the same when beneficial. On top of even that, how is one to even know when to change or stay the same?

    Sure, taking a certain action today may keep you alive today, but what of tomorrow? Eventually you will make the wrong choice.
  • TheMadFool
    4.3k
    You said it's creeds that feel vulnerable to scrutiny that resort to censorship. I agree, but censors are always sure that their fight is important.frank

    I have no doubts that censors think they're right and to be fair some things that are said or written have the real potential of flaring up simmering tensions, in a locality or even the country as a whole, with terrible consequences. This is the good side of censorship and I support such actions.

    However, there's a dark side to censorship and that's when an oppressive regime uses it to block and/or neutralize opposition.

    The difference between the two is that in one censors are actually doing what's right and in the other they're nothing more than duct-tape in the hands of villains, used to stop victims from calling for help.
  • ovdtogt
    465
    Society is a hierarchical structure with the least powerful at the bottom and the most powerful at the top. Propaganda and censorship are tools to maintain this power structure.
  • frank
    3.8k
    The difference between the two is that in one censors are actually doing what's right and in the other they're nothing more than duct-tape in the hands of villains, used to stop victims from calling for help.TheMadFool

    Stark. I think every target of censorship feels like a victim, though. Those who wield it always feel righteous. No?
  • frank
    3.8k
    Sure, taking a certain action today may keep you alive today, but what of tomorrow? Eventually you will make the wrong choiceTogetherTurtle

    But that's true of most tools. You risk cutting your thumb off if you use a table saw.
  • TheMadFool
    4.3k
    Stark. I think every target of censorship feels like a victim, though. Those who wield it always feel righteous. No?frank

    Yes and I'm interested to know what follows.
  • frank
    3.8k
    Yes and I'm interested to know what follows.TheMadFool

    That whether you say it's good or bad just depends on which end of it you're on. Not exactly a profound insight, I know. I've tended to be reflexively against it, so it's a new idea for me.
  • TogetherTurtle
    351
    But that's true of most tools. You risk cutting your thumb off if you use a table saw.frank

    And table saws have helped to build many fine estates and family homes.

    Perhaps you took me the wrong way. While I personally don't enjoy the media I consume to be censored in any way, (which is what I assume most people arguing against the usefulness of censorship really care about) I do accept it can be useful. However, I also see it as just a tool. It can't solve our problems on its own. A tool can only be used effectively by a skilled user. If the user of a tool isn't proficient enough, or maybe even unlucky, a tool can hurt them as well.

    So, to put it in modern context, You say that Russia and China use censorship to their advantage and I agree. However, what happens when they begin to stagnate as all empires do at some point? Where will the innovation be? They ridded themselves of everyone who dared to disagree long ago.

    As for the west, agreements are rarely made. Deep political divisions keep them from fighting off foreign threats. A chivalrous distaste for control weakens them.

    Personally, I don't even care who comes out on top. As long as I can be a scientist when I finally grow up, it doesn't really matter to me. All I'm saying is that our leaders play with fire that they are almost never good enough to mess with. As of now, I don't think there's any strategy to keep an empire going forever. You can only prolong its suffering.
  • TheMadFool
    4.3k
    That whether you say it's good or bad just depends on which end of it you're on. Not exactly a profound insight, I know. I've tended to be reflexively against it, so it's a new idea for me.frank

    I feel you're using "good" and "bad" too flexibly. For me the agenda of the censors determines good or bad in a moral sense. If the censors want to prevent a violent mob causing mayhem then they're good. On the other hand if the censors are in cahoots with an authority that impedes basic freedoms then they're bad.
  • frank
    3.8k
    Personally, I don't even care who comes out on top. As long as I can be a scientist when I finally grow up,TogetherTurtle

    :strong:

    I feel you're using "good" and "bad" too flexibly. For me the agenda of the censors determines good or bad in a moral sense. If the censors want to prevent a violent mob causing mayhem then they're good. On the other hand if the censors are in cahoots with an authority that impedes basic freedoms then they're bad.TheMadFool

    St. Peter might be up there waiting to explain to us which sort of censorship is righteous and which sort is evil. What I think we humans all have in common is that we think we're right if we're doing it and we're wronged if they're doing it to us.
  • prothero
    228
    The Europeans have a decidedly different approach to "free speech", "libel" and "censorship". Use of hate symbols, incitement to violence or racial epithets are banned in many European countries and censorsed on the internet in Europe. I do not see that speech for political purposes is much affected by this and perhaps in the days of social media we should consider rethinking our approach.
    In any event good reading:https://magazine.areweeurope.com/stories/the-ocean-between-us/sticks-and-stones
  • TheMadFool
    4.3k
    What I think we humans all have in common is that we think we're right if we're doing it and we're wronged if they're doing it to us.frank

    What are you going on about? Are you saying that all the goodness we see is just an outward appearance; that it hides a more sinister agenda? That this is a dog eat dog world, fierce competition everywhere and anytime? Are you trying to sell cynicism through a discussion on censorship?
  • ovdtogt
    465
    Egocentric and emphathatic. Every person is both.
  • Brett
    1.1k


    What I think we humans all have in common is that we think we're right if we're doing it and we're wronged if they're doing it to us.frank

    I think that’s too sweeping. I know when I’m being unfair, manipulative or dishonest. I know when I’m wrong.
  • frank
    3.8k
    Are you trying to sell cynicism through a discussion on censorship?TheMadFool

    Cynicism is just hope that's been disappointed. Hopeless people have no cynicism. I was just saying that there may be some grand truth regarding which kind of censorship is righteous and which kind is evil. But that judgement is otherworldly. How would we know which is which down here in the thick of the fungus?
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