NPR doubles down
As it stands, 2022 will be remembered as the year of disinformation. This year saw the Biden administration's fumbled launch of its Disinformation Governance Board within the Department of Homeland Security. It was criticized to the point where even the far-left pundits acknowledged that they were on shaky ground at best, and the entire effort evaporated. The concept of the federal government determining what is the truth was something between laughable and Orwellian.
Then came Kamala Harris heading up a rekindled form of the board in the guise of an "internet policy task force." Its intent is to create programs and policies aimed at protecting political figures and journalists from harassment, disinformation, and abuse. It raised more questions than it answered — such as how would data be determined to be disinformation, and how exactly it would protect politicians and journalists? Most people saw this for what it was: government-sanctioned censorship. Many Americans believe that the biggest creators of disinformation are the very mainstream media that Harris's task force was going to "protect."
But have no fear: the media will handle this internally. NPR announced this weekend that they would be launching a "Disinformation Reporting Team." Given their utter lack of coverage of subjects such as the Hunter Biden story, a lot of us thought that NPR already was a disinformation reporting team. No doubt, the other mainstream media outlets will announce they too have or are forming such teams. It would be hilarious if they weren't so serious about such efforts.
History has shown that when you have groups that govern themselves and are accountable only to themselves, they rarely do the right thing. Matters are made worse when the government intercedes on any subject.
Rather than allow Americans to think for themselves and come to their own conclusions, the government and media want to tell us what they want to hear. They want to define the truth. Free will as we know it will be something that requires clearance, authorization, and approval. In their eyes, we should not be bothered with figuring things out on our own — they will tell us what to think and how we should feel about that information. Disinformation is an insidious hop-step down the road to tyranny.
Any topic they deem to be disinformation will be cast aside as a wild conspiracy theory or an outright lie. Anyone who refuses to follow their guidelines will be classified, labeled, and eventually demonized. Managing reality for Americans is simply a form of control — and as such is sinister and should be feared. Disinformation will be a tool to ostracize anyone who doesn't think the way the liberal media or the current administration wants.
Imagine Donald Trump saying he was forming a disinformation governance board. What would the reaction be from the left? How would the mainstream media react to conservatives saying the same things the Biden administration has? The cries of "Big Brother" would ring in the halls of Congress in protest. No doubt another impeachment would materialize. If Fox News were establishing a media disinformation reporting team, it would be mocked on late-night TV and decried by the progressives. If you wouldn't like a program or concept under the control of a different political party or entity, then it is probably either evil or dangerous — or both.
What's the harm of NPR doubling down on "disinformation"? A lot of their funding comes from the government. They already dangerously slant what they report and what they don't. Giving it formal sanction, without truly independent governance, means that people with zero accountability will determine what you see and hear from their channel.
We need to call these efforts out for what they are. Forget the label of disinformation — that is sugar-coating the reality of these programs. Disinformation is really just a name for institutionalized censorship. Invisible entities with no neutral oversight will determine what is reality and what is fiction. It is against the freedoms we have in this country, in particular the free speech protections of the First Amendment.
Blaine Pardoe is a New York Times bestselling and award-winning author. He is a regular contributor to American Thinker, PJ Media, American Greatness, Bizpac Review, and other conservative sites. His most recent works include the conservative political thriller Blue Dawn, which tells the story of the violent overthrow of the government by Progressives. The sequel, A Most Uncivil War, is now available along with The Democratic Party Playbook 2022 Edition.