Tag Archive for: Twitter

‘The People Have Spoken’: Musk Announces Mass ‘Amnesty’ For Most Banned Twitter Accounts After Poll

Twitter owner Elon Musk announced Thursday that an “amnesty” for most banned accounts would start next week, following a poll posted Wednesday afternoon.

“The people have spoken. Amnesty begins next week,” Musk posted on the social media site Thursday, before adding the Latin phrase “Vox Populi, Vox Dei,” which translates to “the voice of the people is the voice of God.” He announced the decision just over two hours after the poll on the amnesty closed.

Over 3.1 million people voted in the poll Musk posted Wednesday, with 72.4% voting in favor of the “general amnesty” for account that had not “broken the law or engaged in egregious spam.” The Tesla CEO reinstated former President Donald Trump’s account Saturday, following a similar poll in which 51.8% of users voted for Trump’s reinstatement.

Some suspended accounts that could be reinstated include those of Dr. Robert Malone, who was suspended for supposed misinformation, and MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell.

Musk hinted at future plans for Twitter in a response to a Wednesday afternoon tweet by Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton.

“Please limit content moderation to illegal content (or, at most, a narrow interpretation of moderation under Section 230) and give users the tools that enable the freedom to choose what content they see,” Fitton tweeted.

“That’s the general idea,” Musk replied.

Musk closed the deal to purchase Twitter on Oct. 27, seeking to restore free speech to the site, The Wall Street Journal reported. The Tesla CEO did indicate there was one type of post whose removal he considered urgent.

“Removing child exploitation is priority #1,” Musk tweeted early Thursday morning. “Please reply in comments if you see anything that Twitter needs to address.”

His takeover prompted multiple advertisers to pause spending, while Democratic senators pushed for a Federal Trade Commission investigation into the social media site.

Twitter did not immediately respond to a request for comment from the Daily Caller News Foundation.

AUTHOR

HAROLD HUTCHISON

Reporter.

RELATED ARTICLE: ‘Musk Saw That As Problematic’: Babylon Bee CEO Reacts After Twitter Reinstatement

EDITORS NOTE: This Daily Caller column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved. All content created by the Daily Caller News Foundation, an independent and nonpartisan newswire service, is available without charge to any legitimate news publisher that can provide a large audience. All republished articles must include our reporter’s byline and their DCNF affiliation. For any questions about our guidelines or partnering with us, please contact licensing@dailycallernewsfoundation.org.

‘Groomed And Preyed Upon’: Young Woman Was Pressured Into Mastectomy, Testosterone As A Child — Now She Regrets It

  • Luka, a 20-year-old woman who began identifying as transgender in adolescence, now regrets taking cross-sex hormones and having a double mastectomy at 16; she says doctors pressured her into medically transitioning. 
  • Her story is a microcosm of what’s happening across the U.S.: thousands of teen girls are undergoing irreversible biomedical interventions to resolve gender identity issues they would likely outgrow on their own, experts say, and doctors are encouraging the medicalization of these minors despite health risks the treatments present. 
  • “My parents were told the same thing so many other parents in these situations are told, ‘Would you rather have a dead daughter or a living son?’ despite the fact that, no matter all my mental health struggles, I had never been suicidal,” Luka told the Daily Caller News Foundation.

Luka was 15 when she was first encouraged by her therapist to come out as transgender while she was hospitalized for mental health issues. A surgeon removed her breasts when she was 16 in a “gender-affirming” double mastectomy, and she went on cross-sex hormones soon after, which permanently changed her face, body and voice.

At 20 years old, Luka now regrets listening to doctors and medical professionals, whom she says misled and manipulated her into undergoing irreversible medical procedures.

“There was no stopping to question if this was the right way to deal with the discomfort I was feeling around my body,” Luka told the Daily Caller News Foundation.

At no point did doctors inform Luka that there were ways to resolve her mental health problems besides transitioning, which she now believes would have been enough to prevent her from going through with the procedures, she told the DCNF. Her doctors appear to have adopted the “gender affirmation approach” promoted by transgender activists: they encourage gender transitions rather than helping patients come to terms with their biological sex.

“The only acceptable answer to any medical professional was to ‘affirm’ what I said instead of offering any alternative ways of dealing with the issues I was suffering from. Those constant affirmations really did push me down the path of further medicalization,” said Luka, whose last name has been withheld to protect her privacy.

Luka is one of a handful of “detransitioners” speaking out against what they see as a medical establishment run amok, committed more to transgender ideology than patient well-being; their fears are backed up by a growing body of experts who believe the medical community is pushing minors onto the gender medicalization path to alleviate normal adolescent woes they would likely outgrow. Luka is sharing her story now in the hope that girls who find themselves thrust into the transgender medical world will slow down and reconsider before socially or medically transitioning.

“According to all the studies ever carried out on gender-distressed children, 80% of these kids grow out of it,” said Stella O’Malley, psychotherapist and founder of Genspect, an organization that is skeptical of the efficacy of the “gender affirmation” approach to gender dysphoria.

Numerous studies have shown similar figures.

“It’s very authoritarian of clinicians to pretend to know which child will persist in their trans identity and which will desist,” O’Malley said. “The rising numbers of detransitioners who transitioned when they were children shows that these clinicians are no less fallible than every other human.”

“We have no way of knowing what sort of adult the child will become and we shouldn’t allow clinicians with an inflated sense of their abilities to have this authority,” she told the DCNF.

The DCNF confirmed the details of Luka’s transition through a review of medical documents and photographs. The names of the clinics and medical professionals involved in her transition have been withheld at her request due to her fear of possible retaliation.

A therapist first encouraged Luka to come out as transgender while she was partially hospitalized for unrelated mental health issues at age 15, as a freshman in high school, she said; this meant she was sleeping at home but spending most days at the hospital. She had expressed general discomfort with her body and said she might be questioning her gender identity, and her therapist told her to come out as transgender to her parents, claiming it was the best way the get the help she needed, Luka told the DCNF.

Luka had only met with that therapist once or twice on a one-on-one basis prior to that meeting, she said. During that therapy session, Luka said she was overwhelmed, shaking with anxiety and nearly blacked out. Afterwards, her parents were told that she was at high risk for suicide if she didn’t transition — a common talking point among transgender activists, politicians and some health care professionals.

“I cannot stress enough how I was not in a good place mentally at that point in time,” she said. “I’d say that first visit to the partial hospital definitely solidified that identity of transgender in me and started that process of social (and later medical) transition, since up until that point I was questioning but hadn’t put any label on myself yet.”

“It was only rather recently after I really was able to take a large step back from having direct interactions with those medical professionals that I was able to process everything and really work through the actual causes of my dysphoria and general discomfort,” she told the DCNF.

Soon after adopting a transgender identity, Luka moved from her all-girls school to a public school, where she began wearing chest binders and going by a new name. Transgender activists refer to this process as “social transition.”

While activists claim the practice is easily reversed, critics say that social transition further confuses children and cements transgender identification.

“Social transition has a critical effect on [transgender identification’s] persistence,” wrote Dr. Stephen B. Levine, a Distinguished Life Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association, in his expert witness statement in a court case over transgender participation in school sports. “It is evident from the scientific literature that engaging in therapy that encourages social transition before or during puberty … is a psychotherapeutic intervention that dramatically changes outcomes.”

“Studies conducted before the widespread use of social transition for young children reported desistance rates in the range of 80-98%, [while] a more recent study reported that fewer than 20% of boys who engaged in a partial or complete social transition before puberty had desisted when surveyed at age 15 or older,” he wrote.

After Luka’s social transition came the more invasive, irreversible treatments.

A therapist she was seeing at her gender clinic recommended she visit a plastic surgery center, she said. Luka did, and underwent a double mastectomy at 16 years old, about a year and a half after “coming out” as transgender. No one at the clinic seemed to have any hesitations about Luka’s age, she said, and the purpose of her appointments prior to surgery were simply to get familiar with the clinic, not to determine if surgery was actually right for her.

“The doctors themselves seemed to have no hesitation about the surgery,” Luka said, noting that the surgery was delayed a few months due to concerns about her mental health and recovery timing. “The initial consultation at the gender identity clinic was around two hours just asking how I felt about things related to gender.”

Double mastectomies, often referred to by doctors and transgender activists as “top surgery,” are frequently recommended to underage girls with gender identity issues; numerous hospitals in the U.S. openly perform them on minors, and some surgeons advertise the procedure on youth-dominated social media platforms like TikTok.

Mastectomies can result in loss of nipple sensation, and some patients choose to have the nipples removed entirely, according to Miami-based plastic surgeon Sidhbh Gallagher, who promoted double mastectomies on TikTok.

There’s no comprehensive data on how many minors have received mastectomies in pursuit of gender transitions in the U.S., but Boston Children’s Hospital performed 65 top surgeries on minors from 2017 to 2020, according to data published by the Journal of Clinical Medicine. The average top surgery patient was 18, and the youngest was 15, according to the review.

At least 1,130 chest surgeries were performed on adolescents (98.6% of whom were female) in the U.S. from 2016 to 2019, according to one study conducted by researchers at Vanderbilt University, but this data only includes hospital settings; it doesn’t account for the patients who had surgeries at private practices or the likely higher number of minors who underwent the procedure from 2020 to 2022.

Doctors often recommend patients take testosterone, referred to as “hormone therapy,” before undergoing mastectomies to promote chest muscle growth, according to the Mayo Clinic. However, Luka said she wasn’t prescribed testosterone until after her surgery.

“After getting surgery at 16, getting on hormones later that fall went very quickly,” she said. “I met with my doctor at the gender clinic, had blood work done and got a prescription for testosterone.”

She continued to take testosterone until earlier this year, at the age of 20, when she realized it hadn’t resolved her underlying problems. It had, however, resulted in a long list of health issues, Luka told the DCNF: she stopped getting her period, her voice grew deeper, she began growing facial hair, her jaw became more square, her figure changed from hourglass to rectangular and she developed a deeper voice.

She also said she was unable to cry while taking testosterone, adding that it affected her thought processes in a way that she struggled to describe.

Gender transitions are an off-label use of testosterone that has not been approved by the Food and Drug Administration, and the side effects still aren’t fully known, according to Kaiser Permanente. The drug can result in permanent infertility and carries the risks of high blood pressure, strokes, heart attacks, cancer, liver damage, weight gain and diabetes.

Medical professionals convinced Luka’s parents to allow her to have the procedures, she said, by telling them their daughter might commit suicide if she didn’t medically transition. She doesn’t blame her parents for what happened, and says they were just trusting a medical system that was supposed to help her.

“My mom was very concerned and opposed to the idea of me getting surgery, but was bullied by my dad and pressured by the doctors and therapists into being ok with it,” she said. “My parents were told the same thing so many other parents in these situations are told, ‘Would you rather have a dead daughter or a living son?’ despite the fact that, no matter all my mental health struggles, I had never been suicidal.”

Other detransitioners have come forward with similar stories; one young woman, Chloe Cole, is suing Kaiser Permanente for fraud after the hospital allegedly told her parents that her gender issues would never go away and that she was at high risk for suicide if she didn’t medically transition. After undergoing puberty blockers, hormones and a double mastectomy beginning at age 13, her gender dysphoria did go away; she is no longer transgender and, like Luka, she regrets the procedures.

“Chloe’s doctors coerced her into a life-altering and highly invasive medical treatment by concealing from her less invasive treatment options and by lying to her about her condition,” Harmeet Dhillon, one of Cole’s attorneys, told the DCNF. “This predatory and barbaric behavior from medical professionals needs to stop. ”

Dr. Joseph Burgo, a clinical psychologist, said some medical professionals ignore the various mental health issues young patients may have and instead focus solely on gender dysphoria, viewing their other problems as mere extensions of gender identity issues and the result of discrimination and mistreatment they may face.

“The current term used to describe this very real phenomenon is ‘diagnostic overshadowing,’ where a diagnosis of transgender identity takes precedence over all other mental health issues and becomes the sole focus of treatment,” Burgo told the DCNF. “Some practitioners hold that those other mental issues are caused by so-called ‘minority stress’ (non-acceptance of trans identities by society) and will actually be resolved through medical transition.”

World Professional Association for Transgender Health (WPATH) and the American Academy of Pediatrics support cross-sex medical procedures for minors, which are legal in most states and widely defended by Democratic politicians. However, a growing number of health care professionals are coming out against the procedures, citing health risks and a lack of evidence of their safety and efficacy.

More than 1,700 medical professionals and concerned parents recently signed a declaration condemning WPATH’s guidelines over concerns about ethics, child safeguarding and the group’s alleged mischaracterization of scientific data. WPATH had removed age minimums for many cross-sex procedures, invalidated the experiences of detrantitioners and ignored scientific skepticism of cross-sex procedures to adhere to ideological positions, the declaration argued.

By ceasing her transition and speaking out, Luka joins a growing cohort of young people who adopted transgender identities, underwent cross-sex medical procedures in adolescence and eventually regretted it. These so-called detransitioners are largely female, and they often attribute their gender identity issues to social contagion or to pressure from transgender activists on social media.

“I would definitely say social media played a role in keeping the process of everything going, as well as some issues with being groomed and preyed upon by people online,” she said. “That probably played a much bigger role than any social contagion aspect.”

Transgender activists claim transition regret is rare, but the systematic review they often cite only counted patients who had undergone surgeries and omitted patients who had only taken puberty blockers and/or hormones. Likewise, the study’s data stretched back to 1989, long before medical transitions became common and readily available. It will likely take years to get more complete data on how many young women who transitioned recently will come to regret their decision.

Luka no longer identifies as transgender, and she avoids interacting with the transgender community. When she began questioning components of gender ideology, including childhood medical transitions, she said members of the transgender community shunned and shamed her.

As for her future, she wants a normal life and is waiting to see how she can recover from her transition.

“I want to get through university, find a job and hopefully in the future find someone, get married and have a family, some of which is definitely dependent on finding out if the damage done from transitioning can be undone,” she said.

AUTHOR

LAUREL DUGGAN

Social issues and culture reporter.

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EDITORS NOTE: This Daily Caller column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved. All content created by the Daily Caller News Foundation, an independent and nonpartisan newswire service, is available without charge to any legitimate news publisher that can provide a large audience. All republished articles must include our reporter’s byline and their DCNF affiliation. For any questions about our guidelines or partnering with us, please contact licensing@dailycallernewsfoundation.org.

Musk’s New Blue Check System Costs Eli Lilly Billions After Fake ‘Free Insulin’ Tweet

Elon Musk’s new blue-check system for Twitter apparently cost at least one multinational corporation billions of dollars in value this week.

Eli Lilly, one of America’s foremost pharmaceutical brands, saw its stock price fall more than 2% Thursday after a fake tweet went viral earlier in the day promising “free insulin.” The account responsible for the fake tweet impersonated the official Eli Lilly account and had purchased a verification checkmark under Musk’s new “Twitter Blue” system.

The account, which used the username @EliLillyAndCo and the official Eli Lilly logo, tweeted Thursday afternoon, “We are excited to announce insulin is free now.” The tweet quickly gained hundreds of retweets and thousands of likes, precipitating the drop in stock value that cost the real company roughly $20 billion in market cap.

The blue check was removed from the account and its tweets were made private later Thursday, but the damage had been done. Eli Lilly issued a statement clarifying that insulin would not be free under its real twitter username, @LillyPad, and apologized for the misleading statement being disseminated.

Musk promised to begin charging $20 per month to users who were verified on Twitter after he purchased the platform last month, a plan that quickly evolved into charging $8 per month for “Twitter Blue,” which would give users the same blue check mark as those who are verified along with some other perks.

Within days of the service launching, misinformation began to run rampant across the platform as accounts impersonating celebrities and politicians now had blue checks to grant them a veneer of credibility. An account impersonating Lebron James requested a trade from the Los Angeles Lakers. Another pretending to be the Pittsburgh Steelers announced the death of starting quarterback Kenny Pickett. A fake George Bush and fake Tony Blair shared memories of “killing Iraqis.”

Twitter reportedly circulated an internal memo Friday claiming it is suspending the launch of Twitter Blue and actively discouraging people from signing up while it addresses “impersonation issues.”

AUTHOR

DYLAN HOUSMAN

Chief foreign affairs correspondent. Follow Dylan on Twitter

RELATED ARTICLR: Musk Tells Twitter Staff ‘Bankruptcy Isn’t Out Of The Question’ As Executives Jump Ship Over Privacy Concerns

EDITORS NOTE: This Daily Caller column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

Musk Orders Layoffs Ahead Of ‘Significant’ Payout For Twitter Employees

Just two days after taking control of Twitter, owner and CEO Elon Musk is launching a wave of layoffs ahead of an expected stock grant to employees, The New York Times reported Saturday.

Twitter employees are scheduled to receive the grant on Nov. 1, which comprises a “significant portion” of employees’ compensation, according to the NYT, which cited four anonymous sources. By firing employees before Nov. 1, Musk may be able to avoid paying for some grants, which were set to be paid out in cash under the conditions of Musk’s deal with Twitter to take the company private.

“I was told to expect somewhere around 50 percent of people will be laid off,” Ross Gerber, CEO of Gerber Kawasaki Wealth and Investment Management, told the NYT. Gerber, whose firm has invested less than $1 million in Musk’s takeover, claims to have been informed of the layoffs by Jared Birchall, the head of Musk’s family office.

Some managers are being asked to prepare lists of employees to be cut, and layoffs may begin as soon as Saturday, the NYT reported. The cuts are expected to be company-wide as part of Musk’s efforts to enhance profitability, which include looking for new ways to monetize the platform through advertisements and other means.

Musk on Wednesday denied reports that he intended to lay off 75% of the social media platform’s staff, but was expected to make some cuts to the company, according to Bloomberg. If confirmed, the layoffs would follow Musk’s decision to fire a variety of top executives as he took the helm, including former CEO Parag Agrawal and Chief Financial Officer Ned Segal.

Twitter did not immediately respond to the Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment.

AUTHOR

JOHN HUGH DEMASTRI

Contributor.

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EDITORS NOTE: This Daily Caller column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved. Content created by The Daily Caller News Foundation is available without charge to any eligible news publisher that can provide a large audience. For licensing opportunities of our original content, please contact licensing@dailycallernewsfoundation.org.

REPORT: Musk Plans To End Lifetime Twitter Bans

Twitter CEO Elon Musk intends to end the practice of permanently banning users from the platform, according to a report by Bloomberg.

Musk, whose months long bid to buy Twitter involved several attempts to escape a deal first brokered in April, apparently does not believe in permanently banning users for their speech, Bloomberg reported Friday, citing an anonymous source familiar with the matter. People who had previously been banned, such as former U.S. President Donald Trump, might be allowed to return under this new policy.

“Twitter will be forming a content moderation council with widely diverse viewpoints,” Musk announced Friday afternoon, hours after the report broke. “No major content decisions or account reinstatements will happen before that council convenes.”

The report comes one day after Musk promised advertisers that, despite his commitment to turn Twitter into a “digital town square, where a wide range of beliefs can be debated in a healthy manner,” that “Twitter obviously cannot become a free-for-all hellscape,” in a Thursday morning tweet. Twitter would attempt to show ads that are as targeted as possible to users, since the more relevant the ad is, the more engaging it becomes, Musk said.

“Fundamentally, Twitter aspires to be the most respected advertising platform in the world,” said Musk Thursday. Some advertisers are reportedly planning to suspend advertising on the platform should Trump’s ban be reversed, according to The Wall Street Journal.

One Twitter user, who has over 853,000 followers at time of writing, alleged in a Thursday evening tweet that they remain “[s]hadowbanned, ghostbanned, searchbanned” on the platform, referring to a variety of alleged moderation techniques that surreptitiously reduce a user’s online presence, and that the platform was removing their followers. Musk promised in a Friday morning tweet that he was “digging in more today.”

Musk became the sole owner of the social media giant following the closure of a $44 billion takeover attempt that concluded on Thursday, with one of Musk’s first actions reportedly being to fire several top Twitter executives. At the moment, Musk has taken over as CEO, but may give the role up in the future, Bloomberg reported.

Twitter did not immediately respond to the Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment.

AUTHOR

JOHN HUGH DEMASTRI

Contributor.

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EDITORS NOTE: This Daily Caller column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved. Content created by The Daily Caller News Foundation is available without charge to any eligible news publisher that can provide a large audience. For licensing opportunities of our original content, please contact licensing@dailycallernewsfoundation.org.

Elon Musk Finally Takes Over Twitter, Fires Top Executives

After a months long legal battle, SpaceX and Tesla CEO Elon Musk officially reached a deal with Twitter on Thursday to become the sole owner of the social media giant in a historic shakeup of the tech industry, according to multiple sources.

The deal, initially agreed upon in April, takes Twitter private at $54.20 per share, a roughly $44 billion transaction that the tech mogul has previously attempted to escape over claims that he was misled about the number of spam or “bot” accounts on the platform. As one of his first moves, Musk reportedly fired several top executives, including CEO Parag Agrawal, chief financial officer Ned Segal, and Vijaya Gadde, head of legal policy, trust, and safety, The Washington Post reported.

Gadde oversaw many content moderation decisions, drawing criticism from conservatives and Republicans for a censorship-heavy approach, and was heavily involved in the decision to kick off former President Donald Trump following the Jan. 6 Capitol riots.

While Musk’s exact plans for the platform are not yet known at time of writing, he has made several public comments, primarily on Twitter itself, stressing the importance of the medium as a forum that protects “free speech,” according to The Washington Post. However, Musk has clearly stated that he intends to reverse the ban on former President Donald Trump’s Twitter account, a decision he characterized as “flat out stupid,” at an event hosted by the Financial Times.

“For Twitter to deserve public trust, it must be politically neutral,” Musk tweeted on April 27, weeks after the initial deal was made. “which effectively means upsetting the far right and the far left equally.”

Musk has also reportedly told investors supporting his bid to purchase the company that he intends to lay off roughly 75% of the tech giant’s staff, cutting the company to just 2,000 workers, The Washington Post reported. Musk has publicly commented that he believes the company is overstaffed, but former Twitter employees and tech analysts have criticized the move as being too drastic, potentially exposing the company to security and moderation issues.

Musk has been vocal about his intention to use Twitter as a stepping stone to create an app known as X, which he describes as “the everything app.” When a Twitter user claimed that it would have been less difficult to simply build X from scratch, Musk countered that the purchase would shave 3 to 5 years of development time, although he hedged the claim by admitting “I could be wrong.”

Critics have argued that a Musk takeover will cause the platform to be more prone to spreading misinformation and incentivize or encourage dangerous practices that will harm women and people of color on the platform, The Hill reported. Angelo Carusone, president of left-wing media watchdog Media Matters, compared Musk’s attempted acquisition to the formation of Fox News, an organization he characterized as having a “distorting effect” on U.S. media, in an interview with The Hill.

“Elon Musk is about to rip open Pandora’s box and flood the internet once again with hate, misogyny, racism and conspiracy theories,” said Bridget Todd, communications director of feminist advocacy organization UltraViolet in an Oct. 4 statement. “We should all be terrified.”

AUTHOR

JOHN HUGH DEMASTRI

Contributor.

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EDITORS NOTE: This Daily Caller column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved. Content created by The Daily Caller News Foundation is available without charge to any eligible news publisher that can provide a large audience. For licensing opportunities of our original content, please contact licensing@dailycallernewsfoundation.org.

Kanye West To Buy Parler

Kanye West, formally known as Ye, is set to acquire the conservative social media platform Parler just days after getting kicked off Twitter.

Parler’s parent company, Parlement Technologies, announced Monday that “it has entered into an agreement in principle to sell Parler” to Ye, who has been “taking a bold stance against his recent censorship from Big Tech.”

“The terms of the proposed transaction would include ongoing technical support from Parliament and the use of private cloud services via Parliament’s private cloud and data center infrastructure,” the statement continued. Ye and Parliament Technologies are expected to close the deal in the fourth quarter of 2022.

Parler CEO George Farmer said “this deal will change the world.”

It will “change the way the world thinks about free speech. Ye is making a groundbreaking move into the free speech media space and will never have to fear being removed from social media again.”

“In a world where conservative opinions are considered to be controversial we have to make sure we have the right to freely express ourselves,” West said.

Ye was recently removed from Twitter after posting an antisemitic tweet. In the now-deleted tweet, Ye said he was “going death con 3 [sic] On JEWISH PEOPLE.” His account was locked for violating Twitter’s policies.

Ye has since made several other antisemitic remarks, including saying that Jewish people are responsible for doing “bad business” in Hollywood.

AUTHOR

BRIANNA LYMAN

News and commentary writer.

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Federal Government Targeted Dissenting News Organizations & Got Them Censored on Social Media

They claimed to be going after “misinformation.” Of course. Do you think that the notorious fascist regimes of the past did anything other than claim that their censorship was protecting the public from “lies”?

Enemies list? Fed-backed censorship machine targeted 20 news sites

by Greg Piper, Just the News, October 1, 2022:

The private consortium that reported election “misinformation” to tech platforms during the 2020 election season, in “consultation” with federal agencies, targeted several news organizations in its dragnet.

Websites for Just the News, New York Post, Fox News, Washington Examiner, Washington Times, Epoch Times and Breitbart were identified among the 20 “most prominent domains across election integrity incidents” that were cited in tweets flagged by the Election Integrity Partnership and its collaborators.

The Washington Post, New York Times and CNN also appeared on the list, though the consortium’s after-action report emphasizes most of the mainstream media reports “were referenced as fact-checks” that played a “corrective role” against “misleading narratives.”

The report also identified the 21 “most prominent repeat spreaders [of misinformation] on Twitter,” all of them politically classified as “right.” Actor James Woods led that group, followed by The Gateway Pundit blog, Donald Trump Jr. and President Trump himself. The report emphasized 15 were verified by Twitter.

The Stanford Internet Observatory, University of Washington’s Center for an Informed Public, think tank Atlantic Council, and social media analytics firm Graphika claimed their consortium had a 35% success rate getting flagged content removed, throttled or labeled.

The Department of Homeland Security’s Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency, the State Department, and liberal groups such as the Democratic National Committee, also flagged purported misinformation through the consortium.

“No news organization should be subjected to an enemies/censorship list for reporting newsworthy facts” Just the News Editor in Chief John Solomon said in a statement. “It’s even more egregious that this censorship machinery was prodded, aided and sanctioned by the federal government.”

Individuals and organizations named on the lists told Just the News they put no stock in the designations.

“Gateway Pundit is reviewing its legal options,” General Counsel John Burns wrote in an email, calling the “fascist, public-private partnership … a very simple nexus or entwinement case, with deep Supreme Court precedent.”

“How is this any different from what happens in Communist Party-controlled China?” publisher Jim Hoft said. “The scary thing is, the EIP is only a single office within the greater government-wide Ministry of Truth.”

“We noticed a massive drop off on and around the 2020 elections. It got really bad after [Jan. 6, 2021],” paired with apparent “increased leftwing bot activity,” Turning Point USA founder Charlie Kirk wrote in a text message.

“Compared to my engagement on every other platform, there’s no question that this new revelation fits with our lived experience on Twitter,” he said. “That tax payer dollars are being spent to censor half the country is a travesty and whoever is behind this must be held accountable.”

“The definition of ‘disinformation’ is now any reported facts that go against the world view of the political establishment,” Breitbart News Editor in Chief Alexander Marlow wrote in an email.

The consortium “relies on innuendo and insinuation to imply we are not trustworthy and thus should be censored” rather than accusing Breitbart “of publishing inaccurate stories,” he said. The company is being targeted for “having a massively powerful platform that leads the political conversation every single day.”

“We’re in the middle of what I would call the ‘Great Suppression,’” Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton told Just the News. He was suspended by Twitter for several months for comments on hydroxychloroquine.

“Censorship is a civil rights issue,” he wrote in a text message. “Not only do we have the right to speak, but we have the right to petition the government and be free from retaliation.”

“This is the destruction of American liberty right before our eyes,” conservative activist Pamela Geller wrote in an email. She called it “more than just campaign rhetoric … This is a fascist regime aiming to criminalize political dissent.”

Human Events senior editor Jack Posobiec said “the crooked scumbags that run the regime target me so often” because they are “terrified” of him.

“We are not going to stop fighting for freedom until their entire edifice [is] torn down,” he vowed….

AUTHOR

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Elon Musk Terminates Twitter Deal

Tesla CEO Elon Musk canceled his bid to purchase Twitter Friday, according to a letter from his lawyers published in a Securities and Exchange Commission filing.

Twitter “appears to have made false and misleading representations” and “has not complied with its contractual obligations,” according to the letter. Mike Ringler, attorney for Skadden Arps, accused the company of refusing to provide information requested by Musk, including what percent of its monetizable users were fake or spam accounts.

Musk threatened to cancel his deal with Twitter June 6 after the company reportedly refused to hand over user data reports he had requested. The company has claimed that only 5% of its accounts are fake or spam, but Musk speculated that number could be four times higher.

“We are committed to closing the transaction on the price and terms agreed upon with Mr. Musk and plan to pursue legal action to enforce the merger agreement. We are confident we will prevail in the Delaware Court of Chancery,” the Twitter board said in a statement provided to the Daily Caller News Foundation.

“Twitter has not provided information that Mr. Musk has requested for nearly two months notwithstanding his repeated, detailed clarifications intended to simplify Twitter’s identification, collection, and disclosure of the most relevant information sought in Mr. Musk’s original requests,” the letter from Musk’s attorney read.

Musk agreed to buy Twitter for about $44 billion April 25 after the company attempted to thwart his buyout efforts.

This story is breaking and will be updated as the situation develops. Please check back for updates.

AUTHOR

LAUREL DUGGAN

Social and culture reporter.

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EDITORS NOTE: This Daily Caller column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved. Content created by The Daily Caller News Foundation is available without charge to any eligible news publisher that can provide a large audience. For licensing opportunities of our original content, please contact licensing@dailycallernewsfoundation.org.

Twitter Unanimously Approves Elon Musk’s $44 Billion Purchase Bid

Twitter’s board unanimously recommended Tuesday that shareholders approve billionaire Elon Musk’s offer to buy the social media site for $44 billion.

Musk told Twitter employees earlier in June that he still planned to move forward with the purchase, despite shares in the company remaining significantly lower than his offer price, The Associated Press reported. He noted on Tuesday that approval of the purchase by shareholders was one of a number of unresolved matters halting his purchase, the outlet continued.

The Tesla billionaire’s offer would net a profit of $15.22 per share for investors if it closed now, the AP noted. Musk offered to pay $54.20 per share, despite them falling short of this number upon opening bell Tuesday, the outlet reported.

Twitter’s board of directors said in a filing with the US Securities and Exchange Commission that it “unanimously recommends that you vote (for) the adoption of the merger agreement.”

Musk has previously said that Twitter “will neither thrive nor serve this societal imperative in its current form. Twitter needs to be transformed as a private company.” He then offered to buy the entirety of the company in order to “unlock” the “extraordinary potential” of the social media platform. Twitter founder and former CEO Jack Dorsey has praised Musk’s decision to purchase the platform and has also said that he will “never be CEO again.”

AUTHOR

KAY SMYTHE

Reporter.

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Elon Musk Says ‘Happiness Is A Choice’

Elon Musk shared some great tweets for his fans Sunday night.

The Tesla founder has been in the news nonstop ever since he started his attempt to buy Twitter, and there’s been plenty of negativity thrown his way.

However, he reminded people that every day is a fresh start, and you can always choose to be happy.

“Tomorrow will be the first sunrise of the rest of ur life – make it what u want,” Musk tweeted to his 95.7 million followers Sunday night.

He followed that thought up with, “And remember that happiness is a choice.”

Believe it or not, this is some great advice from Musk, and given the insane hostility in our country right now, there’s no better time to remember it.

Every day you wake up in America, you’re already better off than the rest of the world. Don’t waste it. There are billions of people who would gladly trade places with you.

Furthermore, happiness is truly a choice, and if you’re not happy, find a way to fix it. Find some hobbies, get a different job, add a few friends or just crack a few beers.

Whatever it is that puts a smile on your face, chase it.

Let us know your thoughts on Musk’s tweet in the comments below.

AUTHOR

DAVID HOOKSTEAD

Sports and entertainment editor. Follow David Hookstead on Twitter and Instagram

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House Republicans Press Biden Admin For Answers Over Elon Musk’s Attempted $44 Billion Twitter Purchase

Republican Wisconsin Rep. Scott Fitzgerald sent a letter Tuesday to Federal Trade Commission (FTC) Chairwoman Lina Khan demanding answers about Elon Musk’s attempt to purchase Twitter for $44 billion, saying the review process must be done fairly and without partisanship.

The Daily Caller first obtained the letter, which was signed by four other Republicans. In the letter, the lawmakers expressed their concerns with “politicization seen at the FTC” during the Biden administration, saying they worry it will delay or halt Musk’s attempt to lead Twitter.

They also mentioned issues they have with the FTC under Biden, such as “suspending early termination of merger review transactions with no competitive concerns for well over a year, using a zombie vote to adopt prior approval for merging parties and divestiture buyers on future transactions for 10 years” and more.

“Big Tech is no friend of conservatives and neither is the President Biden’s FTC. The Left has made clear its discontent with Elon Musk’s attempt to restore free speech on Twitter. We must ensure that his bid to purchase the social media company receives a fair review well above the partisan fray by the Commission,” Fitzgerald told the Daily Caller before sending the letter.

The group of Republicans also called for a number of documents and communication, such as:

  • All documents and communication between or among the Federal Trade Commission and any third-party organizations referring or relating to Mr. Musk’s purchase of Twitter
  • All documents and communication between or among the Federal Trade Commission and members and staff of the White House Competition Council referring or relating to Mr. Musk’s purchase of Twitter
  • All documents and communications, including all plans, proposals, or other communications, referring or relating to the FTC’s purpose in making inquiries related to Mr. Musk’s purchase of Twitter that deviate from typical reviews

READ THE LETTER HERE: 

(DAILY CALLER OBTAINED) — … by Henry Rodgers

The lawmakers asked for a response to their inquiry no later than May 31, 2022.

The other Republicans who signed the letter were Ohio Rep. Jim Jordan, Arizona Rep. Andy Biggs, North Carolina Rep. Dan Bishop and Texas Rep. Louie Gohmert.

The Daily Caller contacted the FTC about the letter, to which the Office of Public Affairs replied by saying: “I’m sorry but the FTC does not comment on letters it receives from members of Congress. The agency will respond, and when it does, the recipients may or may not choose to make the response public.”

AUTHOR

HENRY RODGERS

Senior congressional correspondent. Follow Henry Rodgers On Twitter

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Elon Musk Calls Democrats ‘The Party Of Division And Hate’

Elon Musk tore into the Democratic Party in a Wednesday tweet calling them the party of “division and hate.”

“In the past I voted Democrat, because they were (mostly) the kindness party,” Musk said. “But they have become the party of division & hate, so I can no longer support them and will vote Republican. Now, watch their dirty tricks campaign against me unfold.”

The multibillionaire said he will vote Republican for likely the first time in his life in the 2022 midterm election after overwhelmingly voting Democrat in the past. He said the Democratic Party is controlled by unions and trial lawyers.

“I might never have voted for a Republican, just to be clear,” Musk said during a Tuesday “All-In” podcast. “Now this election, I will.”

“It definitely feels like this is not right,” Musk added. “The issue here is that the Democratic Party is overly controlled by the unions and by trial lawyers, particularly class-action lawyers. … In the case of Biden, he is simply too much captured by the unions, which was not the case with Obama.”

Liberal media pundits and Democratic lawmakers have warned of the supposed dangers of Musk’s vow to foster free speech on Twitter in the midst of his $44.3 billion takeover. MSNBC host Joy Reid previously accused the Tesla CEO in a April 26 segment of “The ReidOut” of wanting the “old South Africa of the ’80s” back, in reference to the Apartheid.

“There was a time when people had the double hashtags around their names because they were Jewish and right-wingers were saying ‘get in the oven’ anytime you made any benign comment on Twitter,” Reid said. “They attacked women, the misogyny was crazy on Twitter for a while. Elon Musk, I guess he misses the old South Africa in the ’80s, he wants that back.”

Musk trolled Democratic New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez after claiming she has to “collectively stress” about an increase in hate crimes due to his takeover. Musk responded, “stop hitting on me, I’m really shy.”

Liberals have not taken kindly to Musk vowing to allow former President Donald Trump return to the platform when he officially takes over the social media company. Then-White House press secretary Jen Psaki said the administration is determined to prevent platforms from spreading disinformation at a May 10 briefing.

Musk has been highly critical of the left, recently stating “the far left hates everyone, themselves included,” noting that he does not support the far-right either.

Former Secretary of Labor Robert Reich said Musk’s Twitter takeover will lead him to seek “freedom from accountability” in an April 24 tweet.

AUTHOR

NICOLE SILVERIO

Media reporter. Follow Nicole Silverio on Twitter @NicoleMSilverio

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VIDEO: Elon Musk Doesn’t Think He’s Ever Voted Republican. He Says He Will In 2022

Technology billionaire Elon Musk said Monday that he will be voting Republican in 2022 for the first time possibly ever.

On a livestream for the “All-In” podcast, Musk told hosts that “the reality is that Twitter at this point has a very far-left bias.” Musk classifies himself as a moderate, “neither Republican nor Democrat,” and has overwhelmingly voted Democrat.

“I might never have voted for a Republican, just to be clear,” Musk continued. “Now this election, I will.” His comments were met with laughter and applause from the crowd after Musk made the statement.

“This is not some right-wing take over,” Musk clarified. He described his purchase of Twitter as a “moderate take over and an attempt to ensure that people of all political beliefs feel welcome on a digital town square and they can express their beliefs without fear of being banned or shadow banned.”

“Free speech is important for a healthy democracy,” Musk continued, noting that free speech matters the most when it’s “someone you don’t like, saying something you don’t like.”

Elon went on to say that he gets “trashed by the media all the time,” and that he “couldn’t care less.” Despite his resources, Musk notes that he can’t get the media to stop trashing him, but that is “actually a good thing,” as it means America still has free speech.

The podcast hosts then pivoted the conversation back to politics, stating that Musk has been a life-long democrat and even donated to former President Barack Obama. The host compared Musk to podcaster Joe Rogan, who was also a life-long democrat.

“The Democratic Party has been openly hostile to Joe Rogan and Biden can’t even say the word Tesla or invite you to the White House when they do an EV summit,” the host continued. “I’m curious, on a very personal basis, what does it feel like to have that experience where the party you supported won’t even say the name of your company, or invite you there. They should be celebrating the work that you’re doing.”

“It definitely feel like this is not right,” Musk responded. “The issue here is that the Democratic Party is overly controlled by the union and by trial lawyers, particularly class-action lawyers… In the case of Biden, he is simply too much captured by the union, which was not the case with Obama.”

Musk concluded his response by saying that Obama was more reasonable than President Joe Biden, and that Obama was able to see the “bigger issues,” which Biden does not.

AUTHOR

KAY SMYTHE

Reporter.

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SCHOEN: Americans Are Sounding The Alarm Over Big Tech

Elon Musk’s Twitter acquisition — which can be summed up as the world’s wealthiest person buying one of the most powerful social media and news platforms — underscores one of the big problems with Big Tech.

In the absence of modernized anti-trust and anti-monopoly laws, Big Tech companies in the U.S. have amassed far too much economic and political control over society, and especially over the news and publishing industries.

The power at Big Tech companies  with respect to their management of sites like Facebook News and Google News – is held by a few individuals who are often times more motivated by a desire to turn profits and promote their own ideology or world view, rather than by a genuine desire to guarantee a free and diverse press.

Due to Big Tech’s market manipulation in the news and publishing industries, thousands of local and smaller news operators — including many conservative publications — have been forced to shutter their doors in recent years.

This forsakes the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, and thus, is a threat to our democracy.

Importantly, new survey research shows that the American public recognizes this threat, and wants their elected officials to act on it.

New polling by Schoen Cooperman Research — conducted among a representative sample of U.S. adults and commissioned by News Media Alliance — reveals widespread concern surrounding Big Tech’s power and manipulative practices, as well as strong support for reforms to rein in these monopolies.

Notably, strong majorities of Americans are concerned about the economic and political power of Big Tech companies (74%) and are supportive of increased government regulations on Big Tech companies in order to curb their economic and political power (63%).

With respect to news and publishing specifically, nearly 4-in-5 Americans are concerned that Big Tech companies have too much power over these industries (79%) and manipulate these industries for their own gain (78%).

To that end, three-in-four Americans agree that “Big Tech’s monopoly over the news and publishing industries is a threat to the free press and unfair to publishers, especially to small and local outlets.” (76%)

In addition to being broadly concerned about this problem, Americans are supportive of Congress taking action to restore fairness, balance, and freedom to the press.

Respondents were asked about a specific piece of legislation proposed in Congress known as the Journalism, Competition, and Preservation Act (JCPA). The JCPA would provide a legal basis for news publishers to negotiate fair terms for use of their content by Big Tech companies — and thus, would demonstrably curb the economic and political power of these companies.

Remarkably, 7-in-10 Americans support Congress passing the JCPA (70%) and believe it is important for Congress to pass the JCPA (64%) after reading a brief description of the bill. And by a four-to-one margin, U.S. adults would be more likely, rather than less likely, to back a candidate for Congress who supported the JCPA.

In my experience as a professional pollster who has worked in opinion research for over four decades, it is rare for an issue or piece of legislation to garner this level of public support.

Our findings present a clear call-to-action to Congress, and elected officials in both parties now have a mandate from the public to rein in Big Tech by pursuing the JCPA or similar reforms.

Moreover, the very survival of American democracy is contingent on our leaders safeguarding free speech and ensuring a fair economy.

Congress must fulfill its duty by passing legislation like the Journalism Competition and Preservation Act into law.

AUTHOR

DOUGLAS SCHOEN

Contributor. Douglas E. Schoen is a Democratic pollster and strategist. He is the author of “The Political Fix: Changing the Game of American Democracy, From the Grass Roots to the White House.” The views and opinions expressed in this commentary are those of the author and do not reflect the official position of the Daily Caller News Foundation.

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EDITORS NOTE: This Daily Caller Column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved. Content created by The Daily Caller News Foundation is available without charge to any eligible news publisher that can provide a large audience. For licensing opportunities of our original content, please contact licensing@dailycallernewsfoundation.org.