In the 1973 dystopian film "Soylent Green," Detective Frank Thorn, played by Charlton Heston, investigates the Soylent Corporation. The corporation produced Soylent Green, a wafer that was supposedly made of "high-energy plankton." Turns out, as Thorn discovers in his investigation, Soylent Green was actually made of people.
In the present progressive dystopia where people are shamefully allowed to say whatever they want and anyone who supports President Donald Trump is a racist, the new high-energy staple of existence is social media. It emboldens minority voices into thinking they are the majority. Through a little organization, they take on the likeness of a mob to scare businesses, governments and individuals.
The Achilles' heel of the progressive movement is the willingness of the mob to turn on itself. One day you're on the vanguard of intersectional feminism, and the next you're a troglodyte "phobe" of some sort for not being willing to go that extra mile further into insanity. The progressive mob, when not shuttering Christian businesses and driving advertisers off Fox News, is very good at devouring itself.
That mob has set its sights now on social media, particularly Twitter and Facebook. Outraged that the other side might tweet heresies, they have turned to pressuring social media companies to ban the dissidents.
Complicit in helping the left is the American news industrial complex, which has never come to terms with both a loss of trust from its readers and a loss of revenue from the growth of online outlets. It first tried a pivot to fact-checking where it claimed any progressive myth was true and any conservative fact was false. A great example was the original fact-checking claim that Barack Obama was right. If you liked your doctor, you would be able to keep your doctor, and any conservative who said otherwise was a lying liar telling lies. Then they walked that back.
This past week, President Trump noted the number of illegal aliens coming into the United States who were charged with crimes. The media fact-checkers checked the facts and declared him wrong — because a good portion of those people were charged with crimes the media did not think qualified as crimes, e.g., illegal entry and re-entry into the United States. I wish I were making that up, but I'm not.
Once the fact-checking was exposed as an exercise in thought control, the progressive mob pivoted to video, where they would try to do informative propaganda. They circulated their videos on social media sites in hopes of boosting revenue. But Facebook decided to change its algorithms and media revenue declined.
It is no coincidence that the media has, ever since, unleashed a daily barrage of stories attacking Facebook and other social media sites. The media outlets became convinced Facebook could save them from themselves. But that failed. So, like scorned lovers, they decided to abuse their own public trust to smear and attack the company for failing to save media bottom lines. Hell hath no fury like a reporter who fails to generate enough clicks.
The progressive mob and media have turned on social media companies for daring to allow others with alternate views on their sites and for failing to save media companies from themselves. Their litany of complaints include that senior citizens might share fake news; that fake news exists on these sites; that Facebook does not do enough to help its competitors; and a laundry list of other complaints all basically derived from a common point — Facebook allows all sides on its platform.
But short of banning all other views except the left, Facebook cannot do what they want because Facebook, Twitter, Google and the like are all people. The reason fake news exists on these websites is because people believe lies and generate more. To fix the sites, the companies would have to ban everyone on the planet. Instead of insisting on wholesale overhauls, progressives and the media should do a better job of trying to coexist — like the bumper stickers on the backs of all their cars preach.
Social media companies cannot successfully regulate human behavior, but of course, the progressive mob and media are desperate for someone to do just that.
To find out more about Erick Erickson and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate website at www.creators.com.