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Biden’s POFMA knock-off makes USA look like a banana republic compared to allegedly “authoritarian” Singapore
And it may very well be illegal under US Constitution as the government is forbidden from employing private companies to perform actions it is not allowed to do itself.
Oh boy, does Biden administration keep delivering! I can't wait to see how Singaporean "activists" are going to respond now (actually I do know - with complete silence).
So, White House's Press Secretary, Jen Psaki, has revealed during a press conference that the administration is actually actively working with i.a. Facebook to censor and remove content that they deem misleading about the pandemic.
What it is, basically, is a cheap, knock-off - and likely illegal (breaching the 1st Amendment) - application of Singapore's POFMA. And the differences in how it has been deployed highlight the deep gulf separating a civilized country, like Singapore, from the banana republic of the USA that America is quickly becoming.
Let me remind you - when POFMA was announced (to great hysteria among some) it was widely consulted and debated, including via public hearings that some of the staunchest opponents of the law, who often openly accuse Singapore of being "authoritarian", have been granted time to attend.
The law sets very specific rules on its application, giving ministers the role of arbiters of facts, but requires each correction order to be announced, carry specific, verified, factual information and accompany the misleading content.
Moreover, each order can be legally challenged in court by everyone affected.
Now, compare this, if you will, to the "land of the free".
American government has effectively admitted that it has been censoring content:
without any legal basis
without public consultation
without any avenue of complaint for anybody censored by it
without revealing who, how and on what basis made the decision
If they can do this about Covid-19, what's going to stop them from censoring political opponents? In fact, given the political leanings of Big Tech, it may very well have been the case throughout 2020 - with companies like Facebook actively working to paint arguments about the origins of Covid, vaccines, masks, social distancing, but also things like BLM protests and associated opinions of politicians - in a light that clearly benefited the Democratic Party.
Today they have quietly rolled back many of them - like the Wuhan lab leak theory, which you would have been banned for even discussing on Facebook last year.
Oh, I would so love to hear what the Singaporean "activists" - some of whom have actually taken hundreds of thousands of dollars in American grants from organizations sympathetic towards the Democratic Party - have to say and how exactly this blatant governmental overreach sits with them today, particularly after they spent so much time whining about how PAP is trying to silence critics using POFMA.
I have no doubt - and stated so many times in the past - that in this day and age there needs to be some form of regulation of information that is circulated around so quickly.
Just like we have norms governing what we eat, how buildings are made, how safe our cars are, what is allowed to be used as medicine (and so on), we also have to be able to combat blatant misinformation and manipulation, which may have catastrophic influence on the society.
But any such regulation has to be passed in a democratic fashion, after careful deliberation and with mechanisms allowing for legal redress for its targets, to give individual citizens a way to resist unlawful and baseless censorship.
Singapore has, so far, set the golden standard for such a tool - both how it should be passed and how it is, in practice, applied (typically with considerable media fanfare and public scrutiny).
Biden's USA, on the other hand, is showing how not to do it - and what a real authoritarian power grab, out of public view, somewhere behind the scenes, without sufficient laws or controls, looks like.