Saying the quiet part out loud.
The New Republic, pre-takeover, was liberal and believed in things like free speech and America.
Post-takeover by a Facebook billionaire and then assorted other leftists, it hates free speech. Literally.
“Why Elon Musk’s Idea of “Free Speech” Will Help Ruin America,” is the hot take headline.
You know this is going to be stunning when the leading argument is…
The pro-Musk arguments are complete nonsense, and there are innumerable historical and modern examples of why social media platforms with nearly unlimited freedom of speech produce horrors. The Supreme Court decided free speech isn’t absolute long ago, when Chief Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes noted that you can’t shout “Fire!” in a crowded theater, for obvious reasons.
The “obvious reason” was a Socialist criticizing the WWI draft. That was the actual case in question.
No one at The New Republic predictably knows this. Certainly, the author, Mr. “Brynn” Tannehill, a RAND analyst and transgender advocate, has any idea that the dumb legal meme long ago joined the dustbin of history alongside segregation and slavery.
Tannehill squeals about “disinformation” while spreading it. The New Republic article is vintage hot take disinformation. Had anyone from the right written it, it would be pointed to as evidence that unfettered free speech spreads misinformation. But the Left doesn’t want a better marketplace of ideas, but a monopoly on bad hot takes and idiotic propaganda.
Any suggestion that the sort of “free speech” they envision can have highly undesirable consequences is met with howls of “Libs hate free speech” or other accusations of fascism. Similarly, warnings that unfettered free speech results in dangerous misinformation spreading are derided with “Sunlight is the best disinfectant” and the libertarian belief that in the marketplace of ideas, the best will always win out.
Only fascists want free speech.
Free speech doesn’t necessarily mean that the right ideas or the best ones, good ones or even decent ones will win out. It’s just the alternative to a totalitarian system in which the worst ones will be mandated by the government.
Fascists and other bad guys, including Communists and assorted leftists do exploit free speech (that’s why the ACLU came into being before it decided that it had enough power to get rid of free speech) and they shut it down in a New York minute when they take power.
The whole point of a marketplace of ideas is not that it rewards good speech, but that it prevents any one group from having a monopoly on speech. And that monopoly is exactly what the Left wants. It claims that only fascists benefit from free speech while defining, Soviet style, anyone who disagrees with it as fascists. That’s what progressive fascists do.