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free speech

What I Can Say and What I Cannot Say


In one of my Reader Comment threads, a reader made reference to someone granting him permission to say X and the poster (snarkily/sarcastically ) thanked the previous poster for allowing him to say what he wanted.


“Permission” is the word I’ve been searching for. 

Regarding our society’s “debate” on what speech should be “permitted” and what speech should be banned … and what speakers should be sanctioned and punished, “permission” is the word that explains everything.

From 2020-2023, some speech is still permitted by our government and its many sycophant cronies, but, alas, libraries worth of speech are now no longer permitted.

If speech is labeled “misinformation” or “disinformation,” this can be “harmful”speech that might hypothetically kill people or at least traumatize them for life … so such speech can no longer be permitted.

Speech that is permitted by government and social media companies is speech that Big Brother approves and allows.

At the top of the “permitted” category is any speech that supports or agrees with statements of the public health “experts” regarding Covid.

Right here we see the power of government as government – and government alone – gets to decide who, in fact, is the “experts.” The government bureaucrats are the lone experts. People who disagree with them are not.

Not only can you say that Covid vaccines are “safe and effective” … if you agree with the experts and happen to own a media or social media company, you will actually be rewarded with lucrative contracts (such as big advertising spends for promoting the “vaccines.”)

You will also be “permitted” to stay in business.

You will probably get to enjoy all the other benefits that come from supporting the activities of the world’s biggest bully. One of these benefits is …. You won’t get your proverbial butt kicked (as long as you stay in line).

It’s not just the Big Guys …

It’s not just the big companies and players who are rewarded for speaking only “permitted” speech; just about everyone who goes along with The Current Thing receives benefits. 

The main benefit is these people get to keep their jobs or social standing. They’re also allowed to keep moving up the organizational pyramid.

Such people won’t get kicked out of the “herd,” “pack” or “club.”

Another benefit is they get to feel morally superior to the apostates and heretics who – for inexplicable reasons – have challenged the Current Thing. That is, herd members get to view themselves as More Virtuous than Thou.  

Add up all these psychological and sociological dynamics and one can see why the vast majority of the world population will always support The Current Thing. 

Among other perks, this means they will always be in the “majority” and, more so than ever in our New Normal, the majority mob gets to rule. 

(Paul Simon once wrote a catchy song where he sings that he’d rather be a hammer than a nail. One day I’m going to write a follow-up: “I’d rather be in the mob than be chased by the mob … Yes I would …”)

As it turns out, it’s perfectly fine – even encouraged – to discriminate against a minority if that minority doesn’t agree with authorized narratives as set forth by Anthony Fauci, Joe Biden and the New York Times

That is, in the land of the free where everyone wants equity for all, speech discrimination is perfectly legal and actually a “virtuous” goal (at least at the moment, pending a monumental judicial ruling in Missouri et al vs. Biden).

So what speech is NOT permitted?

Off the top of my head, the following statements are NOT permitted according to government and many social media censors. That is, if you utter or write these things, you do so at your own peril.

Important point in the “For-What-It’s-Worth” Category … 

While most of the following statements are now labeled by officials as dangerous misinformation or disinformation, all these statements happen to be …. true  (although, to be clear, one is not permitted to say these things are true).

Non-permitted or non-authorized speech … Covid first …

“The Covid vaccines are unsafe and not effective.”

“The shots are not ‘vaccines’ as they don’t prevent infection or spread.”

“Covid vaccines have already caused millions of deaths and serious adverse reactions worldwide.”

“All-cause mortality has spiked dramatically around the world since ‘vaccines’ were widely administered.”

“Masks don’t prevent virus spread and cause myriad negative health, psychological and learning harms.”

“Natural immunity is superior to vaccine-immunity.”

“The ‘pandemic of the unvaccinated’ mantra was a colossal lie.”

“Healthy children and young adults have virtually zero mortality risk from Covid.”

“PCR tests massively inflated Covid cases and most people who were diagnosed with Covid suffered zero or very mild symptoms.”

“Most people who allegedly died ‘from Covid’ actually died from some other cause(s).”

“Lockdowns killed far more people and created far more misery than these ‘mitigation measures’ prevented or alleviated.”

“Iatrogenic deaths probably killed more people than Covid proper.”

“This virus was spreading around the world months before experts said was possible.”

“The vast majority of authentic Covid deaths occurred in the very old and infirm population. In other words, people who were very close to death.”

“Most hospitals in the world were not ‘overrun’ by Covid patients.”

“Mandatory testing of asymptomatic people did nothing to reduce spread and violated people’s civil rights, was a hassle and benefited only testing companies and the people paid to do the testing.”

“No super-spreader events occurred at sporting events or public gatherings. Outdoor sports and concerts did not need to be cancelled.”

“Students could have safely attended school.”

“The virus was probably created by scientists working for the US government (and/or Chinese government), something that has been covered up and will never be seriously investigated.”

“You didn’t need to stand six feet from shoppers in the grocery store.”

“For some reason, no outbreaks occurred among grocery store check-out girls, people who came in close contact with hundreds of possible carriers every day for months.”

“Government and public health agencies continuously block real Covid data, manipulate data to fit their fear-mongering narrative and despise true ‘transparency.’”

These examples are already making my fingers hurt from the pecking …

At the risk of going overboard with said examples, I would like to add a selection of non-Covid statements that are also increasingly not-permitted and subject to banning, deplatforming or the loss of one’s job, income or promotion prospects.

“Climate is always changing and man’s activities don’t amount to a hill of beans in whether the oceans rise by an inch, if we have two or three hurricanes that hit land, and have not thinned the population of the polar bears, which has never been higher.”

“I should have been able to keep the old light bulbs I like and should be able to keep cooking on a gas stove if I want.”

“We don’t need 10 percent ethanol in our gasoline.”

“Gas-powered cars are fine. They are also bigger, which means they are safer (and more comfortable on long trips).” 

“Speeding, red light, stop sign and toll booth cameras are legalized government theft and don’t save any lives … They probably cause accidents by making people speed up through yellow lights.”

“Public health is worse than it’s ever been and obesity is a genuine epidemic … all of which happened in the 50-year reign of “America’s doctor,” Anthony Fauci.”

“AIDS was never a threat to straight people or people who don’t share drug needles.”

Julian Assange should not be stuck in a jail cell the rest of his life and is not a ‘traitor’ for allowing TRUE documents to be published. Plus, he’s not even an American citizen so how could he be a traitor to America?”

“Russia did not ‘hack” the Presidential Election of 2016 by either tapping into voting machines or by writing some Facebook posts that nobody read.”

Hillary Clinton and her defenders created the whole RussiaGate scam and she should be in prison right now. So should leaders of Congress who produced those Donald Trump show trials and bogus impeachment hearings.”

“January 6, 2021 was NOT an ‘insurrection,’ and all those people stuck in jail without bail for years should not have been there.”

“Elements of the government probably did help orchestrate the events of January 6.”

“Massive election fraud probably did occur in 2020, especially in major ‘Blue cities’ in key swing states.”

Joe Biden has increasingly-worsening dementia and the entire White House staff and 99 percent of the sycophant White House press corp have been covering this up for years.”

“The Department of Justice, CIA, FBI and State Department all know Jeffrey Epstein was running an international sex-trafficking (and blackmail) operation for decades and have covered this up to protect all his ‘Johns” or repeat VIP clients.”

Robert Kennedy, Jr. (and Jenny McCarthy) were almost-certainly right when they said autism diagnoses have exploded since the number of vaccines school children had to get was dramatically increased.”

“Big Pharma does increasingly own media and politicians.”

“America should not be expanding the carnage in the Russia-Ukraine war and Russia did invade that nation because NATO kept getting closer and closer to Russia’s borders.”

“Illegal immigration is a massive crisis and should be stopped.”

“Central bank digital currencies will either eliminate or massively curtail cash transactions, which will probably be ‘checkmate’ for real freedom.

“The WHO, World Economic Forum and the Davos Crowd are increasingly making all the important decisions in the world.”

“A few companies do control all the media institutions.”

“Many or most mass killings are committed by people on anti-depressants or other Big Pharma drugs.”

“Dr. Atkins was probably right that low-carb diets are better than low-fat diets.”

“Anti-cholesterol drugs and anti-depressants probably don’t, in the net, save lives.”

“The transgender, sex-re-assignment craze, especially, among minors, is FUBAR and another example of medical, ‘woke’ tyranny.”

“Gold and silver markets were rigged … just like Covid data and inflation data are rigged.”

I better stop here …

Although I’m barely getting warmed up, this should be enough examples to illustrate my point that taboo speech (speech that’s already forbidden or might soon be forbidden) … is actually true speech. If it’s not “true,” it’s at least “perhaps true” and should thus be “permitted.”

Even if every statement above is false, these statements should still be “permitted” as they are all the opinions of a genuine American citizen.

I guess my critics could point out that I can make all of these statements, because I just did.

But I made them on Substack. 

Trust me here. I know from experience  that I can’t make such statements on my Facebook account. They are simply “not permitted” and the content moderators and artificial intelligence will flag them. If a few are “allowed” to be posted, these statements will “reach” maybe four people.

Also, if I worked for, say, a Gannett newspaper, and made any of these statements, here’s what I would be told by my bosses: “Mr. Rice, go clear off your desk. You no longer work here.”

So, for now, I am permitted to write what I want on one media platform – a media platform that not coincidently is experiencing eye-opening growth because it does permit genuine free speech. Still, one does wonder how long this will continue to be the case.

My main gripe is that society “leaders” – all of whom are either obtuse or fall somewhere on the sociopath/psychopath spectrum – increasingly get to “permit” what speech I’m allowed to make now and in the future.

There’s a reason one of my mantras of the last couple of years has been, “Post while you still can.”

Republished from the author’s Substack

Published under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License
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