Yesterday VICE News published an article offering its audience advice and instruction on how to prepare milkshakes to hurl at “fascists” like United Kingdom MEP Nigel Farage, actively advocating and inciting violence against conservatives, and apparently will receive no punishment for doing so.
On May 28, VICE News published an articled titled “How to Make the Perfect Milkshake for Throwing at Fascists”, written by Kim Kelly, a “journalist” who apparently covers what the publication considers “fascism” and metal music.
In the article, Kelly celebrates British politicians Nigel Farage and Tommy Robinson having milkshakes hurled at their person, in what Kelly describes as “the latest trend that’s swept the young anti-fascist players of the British left.”
Kelly describes this as “activists or regular-ass people who are fed up with the state of things”, who take “matters into their own hands, through either violent or nonviolent means,” appearing to admit that hurling a milkshake constitutes violence, or specifically, assault.
The authorities in the United Kingdom appear to agree on this point, considering they arrested the man who allegedly hurled the frosty treat at Farage and charged him with common assault and criminal damage.
Facebook, Twitter, and other big tech platforms have actively banned conservatives for doing much less. The original ban of Alex Jones and Infowars was sparked by a debunked conspiracy theory that Jones instructed his audience to go to the homes of grieving parents with assault rifles, and the followup ban of Jones by Facebook and Instagram, which may see users banned if they dare to post a link or video containing the Infowars founder, was justified by calling Jones both “dangerous” and a “hate figure.”
Similarly, Gavin McInnes saw his livelihood destroyed and a total purge from social media after the Southern Poverty Law Center determined him to be a “hate figure.” He has been banned from Facebook and Twitter as a result.
Yet, VICE News and Kelly appear to escape consequences for their advocacy of political violence.
Kelly may attempt to characterize assaulting a person with a frozen concoction as a “temporarily inconvenience [to] powerful men,” but following the advice in the article will almost certainly result in an arrest and criminal charge for anyone who takes it.
Worse, this type of advocacy of political violence could lead to escalated violence. This may have already started, as earlier this month Robinson supporters had bricks hurled at them during a campaign event outside Manchester, England.
This illustrates an apparent double standard from the big tech giants. If a conservative can have statements taken out of context to appear to advocate some form of violence, they will likely be purged from all social media, and their supporters will be threatened with bans for defending them.
On the other hand, if a major left wing news outlet, which refers to its readers affectionately as “comrades”, explicitly endorses political violence, they get a free pass.
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Twitter Suspending Bloomberg Bots for Coordinated Fake Engagement
The Bloomberg campaign is taking a page from the strategy of supposed Russian bots.
Twitter began suspending more than 70 pro-Michael Bloomberg accounts from its platform on Friday, citing supposed inauthentic and coordinated behavior.
The platform was alerted to the suspicious behavior by the Los Angeles Times, and shortly after began suspending the accounts.
The reports of the Bloomberg bots are reminiscent of the claims of Russian bots waging influence campaigns in U.S elections. Both operations apparently involve scripted messaging, fake political engagement, and platform manipulation.
Evidence of identical messaging being spread by dubious pro-Bloomberg accounts was published by the Los Angeles Times in their report on the matter Friday.
A statement from Twitter on the suspensions confirmed the Bloomberg shill accounts violated the platform’s rules by “creating multiple accounts to post duplicative content” and “coordinating with or compensating others to engage in artificial engagement or amplification, even if the people involved use only one account.”
The accounts avoid direct connections to the Bloomberg campaign, in an attempt to avoid being identified as coordinated shill accounts.
Bloomberg is paying a considerable cohort of “deputy field organizers” $2,500 a month to shill for the New York oligarch on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter. The messaging strategy is relatively unprecedented in American politics, offering cash directly for a constant stream of political messaging on personal social media accounts.
The Bloomberg campaign claims that paid deputy field organizers are required to identify their affiliation with the campaign in a statement regarding the suspensions. As Bloomberg’s online social media strategy copies a page from the book of supposed malicious Russian bots, high-ranking U.S intelligence community personnel are claiming that the Russian bots are active once again in attempts to promote the campaigns of both Bernie Sanders and President Donald Trump.
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