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The Main Purpose of Censorship is to Isolate People in Order to Control Them

Elon Musk recently stated that he would not bend to advertisers who are boycotting Twitter (or “Twittex” as I refer to it now.) He repeatedly responded that they can “go f**k themselves” before he will cave to their attempts to blackmail him into suppressing free speech.

So far, it appears that Musk is holding to his word about making sure Twittex is a free speech platform. I confess to some skepticism about Musk’s ultimate intentions (especially when it comes to transhumanism), but I am cheering on his refusal to bend to the demands of anti-speech elites. (And, by the way, I have an aversion to the gross normalization of the F-word, too.)

But I’d like to make some critical points we too often miss about the evils of censorship:

Number 1:  Censorship atomizes us. Number 2: It thus softens the ground for social engineering that leads directly to totalitarianism. This is exactly why the First Amendment prohibits the government from abridging the right to free expression. Without free speech, free association erodes. Then free thought atrophies. As documented in neuroscience, social isolation can change the anatomy of the brain. And if censorship is not constantly kept in check, civil society dies. If we understood censorship in light of the atomization it produces, I think we’d be better equipped to fight it and to see through the censors’ flimsy pretexts of fighting “hate speech” or “disinformation.”

So, let’s never forget that the ultimate purpose of censorship is to atomize us, to isolate us from one another.  When we can’t speak openly to one another, we cannot get to know one another. In a society in which censorship reigns, we’re cut off from others – often through the fear of being demonized if we say the “wrong” thing – and we’re thereby cut off from the cross-pollination of ideas.  Our minds then wither, and we end up living in compliance with tyranny, in a zombie-like state.

I didn’t make this up.  It’s the proven pattern throughout the bloody history of totalitarianism. I trace it in the historical chapter of my book, The Weaponization of Loneliness.  It’s what the Bolshevik war on private life and Stalin’s reign of terror was all about.  It was the whole purpose of Mao’s Red Guard mobs during the Cultural Revolution.  Ironically, we tend to comply because of the fear of isolation and yet mass compliance only invites even deeper isolation across society at large.

The only antidote is non-compliance with censorship regimes.  How?  I’ll explore that in my next post.

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