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The times when we quoted Orwell to warn of a dystopian future in which a single-thought dictatorship would be imposed is over, and we have now reached that horrible and long foreseen scenario. The totalitarianism of Big Tech has escalated, the president of the United States has been officially expelled from all the platforms through which humanity interacts today. In the 21st century if yo
u don’t have Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, email, you practically don’t exist, today even without any of these elements in many countries you can’t even open a bank account, you can’t access certain jobs, and of course, forget about making a political career or even starting a business if you can’t access the interaction platforms that pull the strings of the world.
We are now, more than ever, as in the first episode of the third season of Black Mirror “Nosedive,” in which people are graded at every moment by their daily interactions and according to the score, so they can have access to live in better areas, apply for certain jobs, rent a car, or even ask for a bank loan. In that sense, if a group of people doesn’t like your attitude, they will grade you negatively, you will lose points, and in the blink of an eye you could disappear from the real world based on a virtual algorithm.
But you probably already knew all this, what you are probably asking yourself is why Big Tech supports leftist totalitarianism. Why is Donald Trump being killed in the virtual world while Middle Eastern terrorists, the Iranian leader who incites the destruction of Israel, tyrant Nicolás Maduro, the Communist Party of China, and many other human rights violators and inciters of violence survive in cyberspace while American Conservatives are being disappeared as if off to death camps?
Does this have to do with ideology? Are Mark Zuckerberg, Jack Dorsey and company, fanatical Communists who detest capitalism? Not at all, the radical policies followed by Twitter, Facebook, Google, Amazon, Microsoft, Apple, and the rest of the companies that make up the core of the main Big Tech companies aren’t motivated by ideology, but by financial and, of course, political motives.
The more control and political influence Big Tech has, the greater their capacity to continue accumulating capital and to systematically nullify the competition. In this sense, it is much better for them to ally with the doctrinal side of the left, than with the right.
A libertarian right that believes in the free market and with few regulations could allow the rise of new companies that would dethrone the monopoly empire that these companies now hold, while statified administrations of the left can continue to impose regulations that protect the monopoly of these companies, and in turn, all they have to do is position, protect and ride into power the politicians who will obey them. It is a crony and cozy business, a quid pro quo: Big Tech monopoly brings you to power, and in turn power protects the Big Tech monopoly.
You may also wonder why these billionaires like Jeff Bezos and Bill Gates, among others, who constantly proclaim that taxes must increase, that the rich and the middle class must pay more, don’t they simply donate their millions without the need for the state to tax and then “distribute” this money to the population? The answer is very simple, it is in fact the richest who are better off with a high rate of taxation, because they already possess great capital, while the entrepreneurs who could dethrone them in a couple of years see their growth stifled by high taxes.
Obviously, companies run by Gates, Bezos, Zuckerberg and company aren’t affected by paying high tax rates, but a startup that has to pay 30%, 40% or 50% of its profits will be more compromised in its development and will probably stagnate. A children’s drawing I saw on Twitter a few months ago illustrates this in a simple way:
Big Tech adhere to progressive left-wing policies because these are their most favorable partners, once you are at the top you are no longer interested in the free market and the free-for-all capitalism that once brought you to the top.
Now you are better off with regulatory regimes that can protect your empire from the little guy who come after your crown, and yes, for that you must tout identity politics, put all Conservatives into virtual gulags, promote the irrational causes that the left sponsors, and be skillfully hypocritical with the censorship of violence, because business is run well, after all, if you control politics, and so you are also capable of controlling the market, and so in a certain way you end up transforming yourself -the kings of Big Tech- into a kind of Supreme Executive Power that surfs above the republic and its powers.
Evidently, at this point, Big Tech doesn’t care at all about free speech, they no longer want or need more free-market capitalism, now what they need is the crony capitalism which puts up a barrier called “Section 230,” which prevents users from suing them and turns their companies into untouchable empires covered in gold, thus transforming themselves into a team of hypocrites who go against what they say they defend: the same left promoting -corporatism- mercantilism at a small elite, and that small elite destroying the system that helped them become billionaires; and all of it the name of power.
Can Google, Facebook, Twitter be dethroned today? Can they disappear or be defeated by new ventures as happened to Blockbuster or Kodak? It is possible, but not under the current conditions, not under the protection that the U.S. government has given today to these companies that have become a monopoly that dictates what is right and what is wrong, what can and cannot be said, and that has succeeded in defeating an elected president of the United States by leading public opinion to a systematic hatred of the instinct to protect their interests.
The free citizens of the world should fight and demand that section 230, which protects this technological monopoly, the one that today believes it has the power to govern our lives and impose a way of thinking on us, be abolished in the United States; contrary to the fallacious argument by some Libertarians that we cannot ask for state intervention to punish the market, what is happening in requesting the removal of section 230 is precisely to demand that the state protection that makes these companies immune from becoming centers of thought control be dismantled.
If Republicans want to have the possibility of governing again in the United States, they should be directing all their resources to dismantle this monopoly, promote massive and peaceful demonstrations outside the offices of Big Tech to turn public opinion against this media totalitarianism, to overturn this legislation that today threatens freedom of expression, not only for American citizens, but for the citizens of the world who today are being trampled by sheiks from Silicon Valley, who have already proven themselves capable of doing anything to maintain their absolute power over public opinion on planet Earth.
Emmanuel Rincón is a lawyer, writer, novelist and essayist. He has won several international literary awards. He is Editor-at-large at El American // Emmanuel Rincón es abogado, escritor, novelista y ensayista. Ganador de diversos premios literarios internacionales. Es editor-at-large en El American