"Among the calamities of war may be justly numbered the diminution of the love of truth, by the falsehoods which interest dictates and credulity encourages." ~ Samuel Johnson, The Idler, No. 30, 11 November 1758
I've spent a good bit of the last few days thinking about Google's recent attack against Antiwar.com. My first thought was: If they've determined that images accurately portraying war in a news context that have been on the Antiwar site for years are a violation of their terms, why now, for what benefit?
Obviously, some research was in order. It turns out that Google has recently begun imposing its highly Puritanical standards on many different sites. One site which carries news content that I often find interesting is called Tech Dirt. Their experience of having a news story fall afoul of the uptight censors at Google is detailed here.
So, it appears clear that Google has chosen to start enforcing policies to attack and, where possible, destroy independent news media organisations. Why now, and for what benefit?
Google In the White House
The Wall Street Journal recently reported about Google having frequent meetings, averaging about one a week, in the White House. Here is a news aggregator review of that story, since I don't particularly wish to scale the monetary heights of WSJ's pay wall. Note that co-founder Larry Page has met with the Federal Trade Commission to attempt to settle the anti-trust issues the government has, and Google chair Eric Schmidt has met with Pete Rouse, a senior advisor to President Obama.
Perhaps, then, the "voluntary changes" that the FTC found agreeable, included Google attacking indy media? The FTC has closed its investigation thanks to these voluntary changes agreed to by Google. Perhaps the White House has sought to use its close ties to Google to economically attack news outlets that refuse to toe the military-industrial complex propaganda line?
Well, if the Obama administration has things to hide, what are they? The revelations by Edward Snowden have prompted some in Congress to sponsor bi-partisan legislation against surveillance. Clearly, the USA government is the worst offender in the history of the world in snooping on other countries, on its own population, on people all over the world. Just as clearly, the Obama administration loves the power granted to it by the USAPATRIOT act and the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, and use that power egregiously.
Perhaps Obama should be embarrassed that his government threatened Germany over the possibility of giving asylum to Edward Snowden. He should be ashamed of the fact that his people told the vice chancellor of Germany that giving asylum to Snowden would result in all intelligence sharing being cut off, with the USA refusing to notify Germany if its people were threatened with terrorist actions.
The particular attack against Antiwar's coverage of the violent and disgusting abuse by enthusiastic American military personnel against individuals detained at Abu Ghraib comes when a judge has just ordered release of more photographs of that very same abuse. Obama's man at the time, Defence Secretary Leon Panetta, attacked the disclosure in 2012 with a perverse and ridiculous claim that releasing the photos would endanger American lives. Obama should be ashamed at his government's repeated attempts to cover up the abuses of his government and its immediate predecessors, but he isn't. Instead, it seems clear that Obama seeks to hide the truth from the American people. And, if he cannot hide the truth through government action, perhaps he can get Google to help out by eliminating significant sources of funding to independent media.
Back home in Chicago, more scandals are brewing. Obama should be ashamed that the police in a major city, a city he has called home, routinely abuse Americans. He's not ashamed, of course, because to Obama it is clear that all violence by the government is justifiable and delightful, judging by his own actions. However, news is coming out lately that reports of Chicago's violence toward civilians and outrageous violations of civil liberties are causing police commanders to resign. Meanwhile, as if the police were not sufficiently violent, racist, depraved, and abusive, Obama has taken actions to federalise the police forces in six American cities.
Google for the Establishment
Julian Assange, the prominent information-freedom activist of WikiLeaks, has written extensively on Google in his book When Google Met WikiLeaks. An extract of that book is found here. Some things to notice: Jared Cohen and Eric Schmidt find themselves very influential in the Obama administration. Both Cohen and Schmidt appear to have travelled for and even represented the Obama government in other countries. They co-authored a Foreign Affairs article on using digital technologies to disrupt foreign governments.
Assange points out that not only is Google a major government contractor, it is also a major government lobbyist. Google spends more on lobbying than Boeing, for example. It is hard to imagine that Google is not pursuing government contracts for its facial recognition technologies. It is evident from the Assange report that Google has shared "petabytes" of information on individuals with the USA espionage complex, presumably because Google wishes to appear eager to help stamp out individual liberty, privacy, and independence.
So, what kind of company is Google? One way to judge a company is by the people they choose. Recently, Google chose a new CFO and picked an influential woman from Wall Street for the job. Ruth Porat is one of those big banking conglomerate executives tapped for advice on the 2008 bail-out of AIG, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. One wonders if there is any giant government programme she isn't eager to see succeed, provided that it helps the established interests in the banking cartel.
Given these facts, Google's "Don't Expose Evil" policies have become the subject of a contest by Bitcoin not Bombs. Perhaps, though, what is really needed is for Google to simply admit that it embraces evil, supports war, and wants to be a part of the subjugation of the human race to the perverse desires of misanthropic psychopaths in government.
Why now? Google wants to attack independent news media, it seems to me, now, in order to prevent coverage damaging to the Obama government and other major world powers from individuals reporting the truth about war, espionage, and violations of civil liberties. For what benefit? Google wants more government influence, government contracts, power, and money, it seems clear, to me, from their actions. Google is getting a great deal from the current administration and wants to serve its masters in the establishment by doing whatever it can to harm independent sources of news. In short, Google is evil.