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January 1, Twitter Censors Trump



This Day in History | 1937

San Francisco’s Golden Gate Bridge opens after five years of construction. About 200,000 people walked across it on opening day. The 4,200-foot-long suspension bridge spans the Golden Gate Strait at the entrance to San Francisco Bay and connects San Francisco and Marin County. The Golden Gate Bridge opened to cars the next day. 

Good morning Middle America. 

Well, Jack’s gone and done it now. He’s censored the president of the United States on Twitter. While almost everyone is focused on the personalities involved here – there’s a much more important legal issue at hand.

It’s called section 302 of the Federal Communications Act of 1996. A.K.A – Big Tech’s Favorite Law. That’s not according to us, that’s according to CNBC

 Here’s more… “For critics of the tech industry, Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act has come to symbolize the exceptional treatment from the government that has fueled the growth of a small number of players. 

For tech companies, the law represents the internet’s founding values of openness and free expression, while also allowing them to remove the most insidious speech without stumbling into a legal minefield.

Attorney General William Barr aligned himself with the skeptics, telling a gathering of the National Association of Attorneys General in December that the department was “studying Section 230 and its scope.”

 “Today, many are concerned that Section 230 immunity has been extended far beyond what Congress originally intended. Ironically, Section 230 has enabled platforms to absolve themselves completely of responsibility for policing their platforms, while blocking or removing third-party speech — including political speech — selectively, and with impunity.” Barr said

The Attorney General has been looking into Section 230 since February, you could imagine that his interest is going to increase. 

Man, you gotta kinda respect Virginia Gov Ralph Northam’s f@#k you attitude. He gives zero. While most of us are coming to grips with the fact that we’re going to be wearing masks in public for a while, Gov. Northam is out in public snapping selfies and congregating with the “folks” while he ‘forgets’ his mask in his car. The irony here is pretty think, considering Northam also can’t remember whether he’s wearing a mask in this picture, or blackface.

And you can bet the Department of Justice will be getting involved in this sad story out of Minneapolis. A man has died after he was arrested by police. There’s a heavy racial component to this story as well. You’ve probably already seen or heard about the video of the arrest. The now dead man George Floyd is pinned down, a police officer has he knee on his neck. You can clearly hear Floyd saying he can’t breathe before he died. Four cops have been fired. Rioting has been going on all night. 

You know who’s having a really good morning? The three Senators who woke up to find out they are no longer under FBI investigation for well-timed stock trades ahead of the pandemic and the collapse of the stock market in late February and early March. 

Senator Richard Burr is still in deep deep dog poo though.

Read all about it

-Fraser Dixon

Trump, Twitter Feud Over Fact-Checks Added to His Tweets Against Mail-In Voting

(NY Post) – President Trump accused Twitter of election interference after the social media giant fact-checked two of his tweets in an unprecedented move.

“@Twitter is now interfering in the 2020 Presidential Election,” Trump tweeted Tuesday, shortly after the company flagged two of his morning tweets as misleading.

“They are saying my statement on Mail-In Ballots, which will lead to massive corruption and fraud, is incorrect, based on fact-checking by Fake News CNN and the Amazon Washington Post. Twitter is completely stifling FREE SPEECH, and I, as President, will not allow it to happen!”

Twitter attached warnings to tweets where Trump claimed that mail-in ballots are fraudulent and will lead to a “rigged election” in November.

Read more here

Video Shows Minneapolis Cop with Knee on Neck of Motionless Man Who Later Died

(CBS News) – A video taken by an onlooker Monday evening shows a Minneapolis police officer keeping his knee on the neck of a motionless, moaning man at the foot of a squad car. The man, who was later identified as George Floyd, later died.

Tuesday afternoon, Minneapolis Police Chief Medaria Arradondo announced that four officers involved are now “former employees” with the department, CBS Minnesota reports. Mayor Jacob Frey tweeted, “Four responding MPD officers involved in the death of George Floyd have been terminated. This is the right call.”

A police statement said officers were responding to a “forgery in progress.” “Officers were advised that the suspect was sitting on top of a blue car and appeared to be under the influence,” the statement said. “Two officers arrived and located the suspect, a male believed to be in his 40s, in his car. He was ordered to step from his car.

Read more here

Virginia Gov. Northam Orders Residents To Wear Masks–After Spending Weekend Maskless At Beach 

(Virginia Pilot) – Everyone over age 10 will be required to wear face masks starting Friday inside public spaces in Virginia, an effort to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, Gov. Ralph Northam said Tuesday.

As the state inches toward the second phase of reopening, Northam said people should wear masks “anywhere people can congregate” inside. That means brick-and-mortar retail spaces, restaurants, personal care and grooming salons, government buildings, and on public transportation.

The announcement Tuesday comes after the Democratic governor was seen over the weekend greeting people along Virginia Beach’s oceanfront and taking selfies without a mask, drawing criticism on social media. He said he left his mask in the car, and takes “full responsibility” for his lack of preparedness. He said he wasn’t there “with the intention of being involved with the public,” but was there to speak with Virginia Beach Mayor Bobby Dyer and reporters.

Find out more here, and here

DOJ Closes Investigations into 3 Senators who Made Stock Transactions Ahead of the Pandemic

(Wall Street Journal) – The Justice Department is closing investigations into three U.S. senators for stocks trades made shortly before the coronavirus market turmoil, but is continuing a related investigation into GOP Sen. Richard Burr, according to people familiar with the matter. 

On Tuesday, the department notified attorneys for Sens. Kelly Loeffler, a Georgia Republican; Jim Inhofe, an Oklahoma Republican; and Dianne Feinstein, a California Democrat, that the lawmakers would not face charges over the transactions, the people said. A separate investigation into the stock sales of North Carolina Republican Sen. Richard Burr, who resigned his post as the head of the Senate Intelligence Committee earlier this month, remains ongoing.

The three senators whose investigations were closed had all denied any wrongdoing related to their sales. A Justice Department spokeswoman declined to comment.

“Today’s clear exoneration by the Department of Justice affirms what Senator Loeffler has said all along — she did nothing wrong,” said Stephen Lawson, a spokesman for Loeffler.

Get the latest from the Wall Street Journal here, plus new info here

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