By Paul Dowling
“I wrote Fahrenheit 451 not to predict the future, but to prevent it.” —Ray Bradbury
“Dort, wo man Bücher verbrennt, verbrennt man am Ende auch Menschen.” —Heinrich Heine [“Wherever they burn books, they will, in the end, also burn human beings.” —Heinrich Heine]
“It was a pleasure to burn.” So begins Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451 (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fahrenheit_451), his story of firemen who burn down the houses of book owners, thereby destroying entire libraries while punishing those who dare reject society’s propaganda narratives in favor of thinking for themselves. Bradbury’s cautionary tale has been hailed as a masterpiece; but today, in an age where Facebook and other social media are deleting, blocking, or shadow-banning the accounts of Religious Jews, Evangelical Christians, and Constitutional Conservatives, among others, Bradbury’s dystopia seems more a figurative portrayal of America in 2018, where, instead of burning down houses, Mark Zuckerberg and his band of merry firemen are happily burning down social media accounts instead.
Sadly, America has become a nation where the book-burner mentality holds sway among Democrat censors who are deciding which social media posts and shares to allow or condemn in America’s virtual town square. Google, the world’s preëminent search engine is—at this writing—even “burning” positive news reports about President Trump, using a search algorithm that generates 96% negative results for the president (https://thepalmierireport.com/censorship-google-search-for-trump-gives-you-96-left-wing-website-results/). Google is doing this to influence voters in favor of supporting Democrats ahead of the 2018 elections. And, since most other search engines ride piggyback on Google, the corruption spreads throughout the Internet like a cancer.
This virtual book burning has caused entire businesses to be ruined or, at a minimum, harmed by the Big Data giants’ shadow-banning of their websites. The war against the free speech of Conservatives is often invisible to all but the victims who daily witness the cyber burnings of their virtual books and libraries. A list of impacted sites would include, but not be limited to, the following: Eagle Rising, Godfather Politics, Constitution, Keep and Bear, iPatriot, Breitbart News, The Gateway Pundit, Western Journalism, and Infowars. The Gateway Pundit, the fourth most influential conservative news site (which has also published a partial list of its own regarding shadow-banned conservative sites), has reported that, in 2016, it “received nearly a third of its traffic from Facebook,” but that, in March of 2018, “Facebook blocked all traffic from recent stories to the website.” Also, The Gateway Pundit is reportedly “shadow-banned by Google and frequently attacked and smeared by the liberal media.” (Read more about this by clicking here: https://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2018/03/conservative-pufascism-in-action-here-is-the-tech-giant-purge-list-of-prominent-conservative-websitesrge-list/.)
Imagine the Internet is a huge library, and the websites are publishers of books to be checked out and read; but the books of intentionally targeted publishers and writers are being pulled off of shelves to be torched daily, on orders from the book-burning Zuckerbergs, Pages, and Dorseys who are literally following in the footsteps of Hitler and Goebbels. It was Goebbels who once said, “This is the secret of propaganda: Those who are to be persuaded by it should be completely immersed in the ideas of the propaganda, without ever noticing that they are being immersed in it.”
A Side Note: Seven Sayings of Joseph Goebbels
Here are a few of the things that Goebbels said while he was in charge of Nazi propaganda (https://propagandaprinciples.wordpress.com/joseph-goebbels/): 1) Propaganda works best when those who are being manipulated are confident they are acting of their own free will; 2) Think of the press as a great keyboard on which the government can play; 3) The most brilliant propagandist technique will yield no success unless one fundamental principle is borne in mind constantly—it must confine itself to a few points and repeat them over and over; 4) Propaganda must facilitate the displacement of aggression by specifying the targets for hatred; 5) Not every item of news should be published; rather, those who control news policies must endeavor to make every item of news serve a certain purpose; 6) The truth is the greatest enemy of the State; 7) It is the absolute right of the State to supervise the formation of public opinion.
These are the very precepts that Democrat propaganda outlets and social media embrace, even as they monopolize messaging by suppressing the ideas of their opposition. Democrat media outlets always work in concert with one another; there are no dissenting voices, once their marching orders have been issued. Their message is uniform and repetitive across media outlets, a surefire sign that they are all centrally controlled, with no diversity in their messaging and no permission to think freely. A media culture where all are goose-stepping in conformity, the way 340 newspapers recently did, as they all published anti-Trump editorials on the very same day (https://start.att.net/news/read/category/news/article/newser-more_than_340_papers_publish_antitrump_editorials-rnewsernor), demonstrated a uniformity of thought that would have made Goebbels proud.
Big Data’s Book Burnings: Preserving the Traditions of Hitler’s Third Reich
What is Mark Zuckerberg, if not a high-tech book burner on a massive scale, a modern-day, real-life version of Ray Bradbury’s Captain Beatty? (Captain Beatty is a fire chief and high-level book burner, in Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451.) Being the cyber book burners that they are makes Zuckerberg and the other “Captain Beattys”—Larry Page, the CEO of Alphabet (Google et al.) and Jack Dorsey, the CEO of Twitter—much worse than mere Nazi sympathizers; for it is they who are daily ordering the high-tech book burnings, to the point that each of them has become a living embodiment of Joseph Goebbels (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Propaganda_in_Nazi_Germany), wielding the propagandistic power (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Propaganda) of a weaponized virtual town square that holds the potential to create great harm to many on the taxpayer-created Internet they employ for their own selfish purposes.
The pyre of “book burnings” (by deletion or blocking) of conservative “books” (in the form of websites) has bloomed into a full-fledged Bibliocaust, directed not only against the ideas of religious Jews but against orthodox Christians and classically-liberal Constitutionalists (https://eaglerising.com/61556/why-liberal-democrats-are-walking-away-from-progressive-democrats-to-join-the-party-of-lincoln/) as well. What all three of these strands of Western thought share in common is the belief that God wants people to be free to exercise their God-given Natural Rights, so that each person may be permitted to live in accord with his own conscience. Free speech is a God-given right, according to the founding documents of the United States, and one thing that the oppressors of free people tend to share in common is that they idolize Big Government. The large majority of activists seemingly do not believe in God or in the freedom that God wishes to bestow.
Judeo-Christian Traditions Are under Attack by the Censors of Social Media
Judeo-Christian religious practice prohibits lying, gossiping, and the making of false accusations (“Thou shalt not bear false witness”), and Jewish ethics state that the slanderous sin of lashon hara (literally “evil tongue”) kills three people whenever it is committed: 1) the speaker, or disseminator, of the gossip or slander; 2) the willing listener, who repeats what he has not witnessed but believes to be an interesting story; 3) the person spoken about, even if he does not deny the accusation (since many choose not to correct misinformation, based on the knowledge that doing so often just adds fuel to the flames).
Of course, it is permitted to warn a person who is about to engage in a business transaction with someone who is dishonest, if the warner has actually witnessed the dishonesty firsthand. That is why the writer of this article—whose religious and political postings have been blocked, deleted, and shadow-banned—may speak out against the fascistic book-burning propagandists who run Facebook, Google, and Twitter, having had postings of his own articles deleted from, or blocked by, the social networks mentioned; also, searches on Google for many of this writer’s own articles have been blocked entirely or limited severely, with the exception of searches where exact titles of the articles are known or the author page of the publishing website is sought.
Why Burning a Book Is Like Killing a Human Being
Please consider the words of author Ray Bradbury on the subject of books-as-people; Bradbury has said (http://motlc.wiesenthal.com/site/pp.asp?c=gvKVLcMVIuG&b=395007), “[W]hen Hitler burned a book I [a lover of libraries] felt it as keenly, please forgive me, as his killing a human, for in the long sum of history they are one and the same flesh. Mind or body, put to the oven, is a sinful practice, and I carried that with me. . . .” Bradbury believed that censorship of any kind was highly destructive to freedom of thought. Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451 ends with the revelation that many burned books still exist in the minds of book lovers who have learned their favorites by heart (https://www.amazon.com/Fahrenheit-451-Ray-Bradbury/dp/B005WM71TY/ref=tmm_pap_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=1535303917&sr=8-2), to save them for posterity and secure their teachings from the likes of the Captain Beattys—or the Mark Zuckerbergs—of the world: “They weren’t at all certain that the things they carried in their heads might make every future dawn glow with a purer light, they were sure of nothing save that the books were on file behind their quiet eyes, the books were waiting, with their pages uncut, for the customers who might come by in later years, some with clean and some with dirty fingers.”
Bradbury, a lifelong bibliophile, was truly in love with books and libraries, having shared the anecdote quite often with others that, unable to afford college, he embarked on a course of regular visitations to the library for ten years running, exposing himself widely to different styles of thinking and writing; and, after the decade of study was up, he graduated himself from the library (http://publiclibrariesonline.org/2013/05/i-graduated-from-the-library-an-interview-with-ray-bradbury/). Bradbury understood that the reason the burning of books is so intimately connected with the burning of people is because both kinds of burning come from a sick desire of the censors to eliminate the sources of ideas that threaten the censors’ very existence.
Heinrich Heine knew what Ray Bradbury knew a century prior to Bradbury’s birth; Heine wrote the play Almansor, in the early 1820s, using it as the vehicle for teaching the world an important lesson about censorship, a lesson the German people had obviously forgotten by 1933, the year that German students—with their National Socialist professors looking on—burned books at least 93 times in 70 German cities (https://tapferimnirgendwo.com/2013/05/06/dort-wo-man-bucher-verbrennt/). But Facebook, Google, and Twitter make Nazi university professors and their Hitler-inspired students look like pikers! Ninety-three book burnings cannot hold a candle to the millions of articles and postings that are being “burned” daily by order of the Totalitarian Trio of Zuckerberg, Page, and Dorsey. As I write this article, their murderous mischief continues, unabated. Their socialist ideology cannot compete with the ideas of freedom, so they must kill libertarian ideas en masse. Facebook, Google, and Twitter are their killing fields.
The Real Challenge for Book Burners: Freedom of Thought
And the danger does not stop there, for people whose pleasure it is to kill ideas will eventually turn to killing the people who write such ideas down in the first place. Ray Bradbury illustrates this in Fahrenheit 451, as a manhunt is undertaken to track down and kill Guy Montag, a fireman who, although he has not written any books, has committed the cardinal sin of falling in love with books—which is just as dangerous! Montag the fireman has quit the intellectual slavery of the collectivist plantation and has become Montag the freeman, an individual with his own ideas. Montag has left behind the world of haters and killers of ideas and people; he has joined up with those who love liberty, who enjoy the right to think freely, to decide things on their own, and to solve problems for themselves.
The only reason to ban certain ideas is because they present too strong a challenge to the power the censors wield. The Nazis in Germany had horrible ideas, destructive ideas, which—once all the opposing ideas had been banned and burned—found themselves without serious competition. People were afraid to speak of the politically-incorrect ideas of rights and freedom, lest they be overheard and incarcerated by the Nazis. And, of course, the National Socialists eventually instituted what they viewed as the Final Solution, as they resorted to the calamitous “burning,” or Holocaust, against the People of the Book—the Jews. And the situation only grew worse, as other human beings with unpopular notions were also destroyed.
The Social Network That Was
Facebook was once a platform where people were free to express themselves—which is the way things ought to be, especially since Facebook profits by using the Internet infrastructure that everybody’s tax money built. Facebook used to allow everyone a platform to share ideas, memories, photos, stories, news, humor, and opinions. Many people invested a great deal of time and energy making their Facebook accounts into virtual photo albums, short story collections, or news galleries, sharing their ideas with each other. All writers were welcome to post their articles and stories.
Ray Bradbury once said to a group of students, in the West Covina Library: “Always write for yourself, first and foremost, because if you don’t like it, how is anyone else going to like it? And always fight for the right to express yourself, for that is who you are; and if you can’t be yourself, who else is going to express those ideas that are uniquely yours to express? Who else is going to be you? And who do you get to be, if not yourself?” But the Zuckerbergs of this world do not want to allow people to express themselves freely; they do not want “you . . . to express those ideas that are uniquely yours to express.” They do not care to answer Bradbury’s question: “Who else is going to be you? And who do you get to be, if not yourself?”
Freedom Lovers Are Better than Book Burners
Nina Munteanu (https://ninamunteanu.me/2015/04/24/when-we-burn-books-ray-bradburys-fireman/) has written of Fahrenheit 451: “Bradbury wove a multi-layered political and social tale that followed one man’s journey to find his soul. Fahrenheit 451 explores the theme of intellectual freedom using censorship as his plot device. Montag is ‘everyman’ who must make a choice for personal freedom at the expense of the ‘good censored life.’ It is the choice all artists must make. In choosing freedom, we make an obligation to respect and tolerate those with whom we disagree; otherwise we are just tyrants and not really free.” Lovers of freedom are better than tyrannical book burners, because they choose life. The lovers of liberty may not vanquish their intellectual foes by burning their published ideas and executing their living bodies. Participating in such behavior would be to fall prey to the dilemma that Friedrich Nietzsche has warned against. Wrote Nietzsche: “Whoever fights monsters must see to it that he does not become a monster himself. And if you gaze long into an abyss, the abyss also gazes into you.” [“Wer mit Ungeheuern kämpft, mag zusehn, dass er nicht dabei zum Ungeheuer wird. Und wenn du lange in einen Abgrund blickst, blickt der Abgrund auch in dich hinein.”]
An Upbeat Message
Amid the death and destruction insinuated by the book burners of the Left, an upbeat outlook is needed to inspire people to continue fighting against the wickedness of social media. (Here might be a good place to point out, however, that not all social media are evil; MeWe is actually an ethical and freedom-loving platform; to find out more about MeWe, click here: https://eaglerising.com/57060/conservatives-need-a-solution-to-facebook-as-november-2018-draws-near/). Near the end of Fahrenheit 451, Bradbury offers hope through the voice of a character named Granger: “There was a silly damn bird called a Phoenix back before Christ, every few hundred years he built a pyre and burned himself up. He must have been first cousin to Man. But every time he burnt himself up he sprang out of the ashes, he got himself born all over again. And it looks like we’re doing the same thing, over and over, but we’ve got one damn thing the Phoenix never had. We know the damn silly thing we just did. . . .” In other words, since we know what Hitler’s Nazis did in Germany in the 1930s and 1940s, we have a chance at stopping Zuckerberg’s Nazis in America in 2018.
The civil war which the Left has chosen to wage—by means of a virtual book burning whose flames are burning so high that a critical mass of people is beginning to notice—is not over yet. But with the president shedding light on what is really happening in the country, the word is finally getting out. CNN has largely been discredited, with Home & Garden Televisionand The Discovery Channel now beating CNN in the ratings (http://dailycaller.com/2018/07/03/cnn-loses-hgtv-ratings/). This is bad news for Team Bibliocaust. But it is good news for Team America. In the meantime, with regard to censorship, President Trump has said, “Speaking loudly and clearly for the Trump Administration, we won’t let that happen. Censorship is a very dangerous thing and absolutely impossible to police. Let everybody participate, good and bad, and we will all just have to figure it out!” Trump’s statement (https://www.marketwatch.com/story/trump-slams-social-media-companies-for-censorship-of-the-right-2018-08-18-131034641) is positive, reflecting the president’s trust in the people’s ability to solve problems, including the problem of deciding who to believe and who to distrust. There is not a hint of the book-burner mentality anywhere in Trump’s statement. Ray Bradbury once said, “I wrote Fahrenheit 451 not to predict the future, but to prevent it.” It has become more than obvious that President Trump—a kindred spirit with regard to his desire to prevent tyranny—has a similar goal in mind.