Free Speech and Liberal Repression

Right From the Start

Right From the Start

One of the pillars of freedom is free speech. Without it a democracy becomes an oligarchy (rule by the elite) and from there devolves to a kakistocracy (rule by the least competent). Free speech only exists when the public has access to all of the information upon which it can, individually and collectively, form an opinion. Back in the ‘60’s and ‘70’s, the Free Speech Movement was populated with America’s intellectuals, students, and liberal activists – its sanctuary was America’s college campuses.

It showed its greatest impact during the protests against the war in Vietnam* and the civil rights movement. It resulted in such things as the Civil Rights Act, the Voting Rights Act, the Freedom of Information Act and a myriad of lesser actions at the state and federal level to ensure that citizens not only could exercise their rights but had the information upon which to exercise those rights and most importantly that the organs of government did not suppress that access.

Oregon was in the vanguard of the Free Speech Movement. Reed College, the University of Oregon, and Portland State University were knee deep in the movement. As usual with any liberal movement it included the goof balls who mistook vulgar for valuable and thus gave rise to such inane decisions as in State v. Robertson in which completely nude dancing was deemed a form of free speech and later in City of Nissa v. Duforth that live sex acts were also protected speech. It was this stretch of credulity that gave witness to Oregon’s absolute commitment to free speech.

But that was then. That was back when Oregon’s uber liberals were in the distinct minority. But not today. Today, America’s left in general and Oregon’s ruling leftist elite have abandoned any support for free speech. They are critical of free speech that does not agree with their orthodoxy. And in places like Oregon (Portland in particular) where they dominate government, they use the power of government to suppress – in fact, prohibit – speech with which they do not agree. The latest incident has been reported on FOX News this past week, citing a story published first by the Portland Tribune:

“The Portland Public Schools board voted last week to ban any materials that cast doubt on climate change, the Portland Tribune reported.

According to the resolution passed May 17, the school district must remove any textbooks and other materials that suggest climate change is not occurring or that says human beings are not responsible for it.

“’A lot of the text materials are kind of thick with the language of doubt, and obviously the science says otherwise,” said Bill Bigelow, a former Portland public school teacher who worked to present the resolution. Bigelow says textbook publishers are yielding to pressure from fossil fuels companies. “’We don’t want kids in Portland learning material courtesy of the fossil fuel industry.’”

That last statement by Mr. Bigelow should read: “We don’t want kids in Portland learning anything that disagrees with our opinions.”

That point was amplified in the FOX News report:

“A petition, meanwhile, circulated by the Oregon Institute of Science and Medicine (OISM) currently lists nearly 32,000 signers, including 9,000 Ph.D.s, who say, “there is no convincing scientific evidence that human release of carbon dioxide, methane, or other greenhouse gasses is causing or will, in the foreseeable future, cause catastrophic heating of the Earth’s atmosphere and disruption of the Earth’s climate. Moreover, there is substantial scientific evidence that increases in atmospheric carbon dioxide produce many beneficial effects upon the natural plant and animal environments of the Earth.”

The original article by the Portland Tribune contained even more eye-popping information:

“School board member Mike Rosen introduced the resolution. He also leads NW Ecoliteracy Collaborative, a project focused on environmental curriculum standards. However, he says that work has been on hold.

‘I have become concerned about its ability to make progress and not have a conflict with being a school board member,’ Rosen said, noting that he is now instead working part-time for the Audubon Society of Portland. ‘I don’t want there to be a conflict between my school board work and this nonprofit.’”

Wow. For a person demanding that texts not agree with what might be “written by the Exxon public relations” Mr. Rosen has no similar concern with demanding that texts agree with his employer.

This ban on information follows repeated scientific studies debunking the findings of those committed to “climate change” regarding the origins and cause of any climate change occurring. When facts, scientific studies and disclosures of errors in progressive thought begin to permeate, the liberals reliably respond by seeking to silence dissent. It is the equivalent of those Neanderthals in the hip-hop movement that think “dropping the mike” ends the contest.

Oregon is not an isolated case. There is a concerted effort by America’s left to repress free speech and more importantly free thought by denying the public access to critical information. It runs from the guaranteed inept like the Portland School Board all the way to the presidency where aides of President Barack Obama – without fear of disciplinary action – have bragged about deliberately withholding information from the press and public regarding the fact that Mr. Obama began negotiations of the fateful Iran nuclear deal with the criminal Mahmoud Amadinejad’s regime in Iran rather than the supposed more moderate regime of Hassan Rouhani.

The suppression of information has become the hallmark of the left’s liberal icon – Mr. Obama and his administration. Just this past week a federal district judge who was systematically and intentionally deceived by Mr. Obama’s justice department barred any further appearance by Justice Department lawyers until they had successfully completed a course on ethics. There is nothing that Mr. Obama has touched that has not been shrouded in deceit and intentional withholding of critical information – not Obamacare, not the IRS scandal, not Operation Fast and Furious, not Benghazi, not the State Department scandals involving former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton (no slouch at deceit and withholding of information herself) and not the executive orders banning deportation of illegal immigrants.

In the end, the weakness of one’s arguments is defined by the lengths to which you would go to repress disagreement.

____________________________

*Curiously the anti-war movement of the Vietnam era tolerated extraordinarily diverse thought. It included those opposed to war in general, those opposed to the war in Vietnam in particular, those who were supportive of communists regimes such as in North Viet Nam, the Viet Cong and the Khmer Rouge, those who were simply anti-government, and those who, like me, were protesting the sacrifice of young lives in a war that successive presidents (John Kennedy, Lyndon Johnson, and Richard Nixon) refused to win or to withdraw –rather were content to grind up my generation in order to save face about losing.

 

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Posted by at 05:00 | Posted in 1st Amendment, First Amendment, Free Speech, Global Warming, Government Abuse, Hillary Clinton, Liberalism, Obamacare, Oregon Supreme Court, President Obama, Progressivism, Transparency | 39 Comments |Email This Post Email This Post |Print This Post Print This Post
  • Bob Clark

    Yes, there is not profiteering in the wholesome green industry. Err Sylvia Hayes, Solyndra, Oregon Business Energy Tax program implosion, Al Gore, etc.

    PPS Board, the Kool Aide Drinkers, have become here also the deniers.

    The fools gold of progressive ideals: that government itself is not corruptible, incompetent and fallible. The reality endorsed by conservative principles: Teach people to be their own best decision makers by teaching them skepticism, i.e. buyer beware. Don’t be tempted by the calls for entitlement, but be a well rounded spirit who makes his/her way largely on their own through life.

  • thevillageidiot

    “the goof balls who mistook vulgar for valuable and thus gave rise to such inane decisions as in State v. Robertson in which completely nude dancing was deemed a form of free speech and later in City of Nissa v. Duforth that live sex acts were also protected speech.” I would not consider this free speech either but the government has no right to sanction against such behavior. The only crime would be if someone is coerced into such behavior. The most recent evidence of suppression of free speech was the stupid demonstration and march against the banner put up in the school supporting the halt to illegal immigration. the builds a wall banner. from ABC news

    By The Associated Press
    PORTLAND, Ore. — May 19, 2016, 5:02 PM ET

    “…The Forest Grove district has the highest percentage of Latino students in the Portland area. Officials said the students responsible for the banner were disciplined. …” basically punished for free speech.
    friends of mine who do not support Trump but the HC can only refer to the speeches Trump has made not real actions as to why Trump would be a really bad president. He has said a lot of things that have gotten him lots of publicity for free. HC on the other hand has flat out lied and from some perspectives been criminally negligent and these same friends of mine support that. The border banner also alludes to trespass on private property. but that is another conversation.

  • Jack Lord God

    The left has always had an affinity for totalitarianism. The vast over representation of left wing ideology in repressive regimes is the history. Free speech the example.

    We are at the point where it is common for the left to go violent should any speaker on a college campus or political rally be near. We prepare for it, police are called out and riot lines formed because we know the left is so notable for this kind of thing.

    That expectation is the indictment. When a movement is so predictable to act violently towards any expression of thought they disagree with, you have the absolute essence of what totalitarianism is all about.

    • Eric Blair

      I think you gravely underestimate the rights affinity for totalitarianism. I think the danger is ideologues regardless of their political persuasion, who believe that people shouldn’t be allowed to make their own political choices.

      The left has no more of an affinity for totalitarianism than the right. You’ve confused human failings for political failings.l

      • Don Kid Yourself Flatterer

        Bull pucky monsewer Blair. Toke your faux decree in aphid ology and shovel it it under D. Appell tree replete with Kookaburras hallering.

    • Connie Kosuda

      obviously, and I am sure you are aware of this, the right is the fascist brigade / the left stands for an end to oppression.

      trumpster and rand paul’s jackboot ‘assistant’ are some current specimens.

      • thevillageidiot

        prove it by their actions. BO wanted to remove access to the best schools in DC from the poorest ie black students. so who is the oppressor? Oh, my bad, in your language students of color.

      • B.S. is righter than ewes

        Tokyo Prosier, Hanoi Jayne Fondler, Hillary Resurectum Poopsure: Stand down in the cesspool of your facets and rot ’til Debbie Wasserman ho’ know nutting Schultz admits she’s a belch forum of smoking gums aft your derrieres.

        • Connie Kosuda

          ah, the right wing intelligentsia has been wheeled out….

      • Hi There

        You are so wrong. The liberal left stands for oppression and hate. The fights against it.

        • Connie Kosuda

          ah

          • Si Anara

            ah…butt it only hurts for a little bile

          • Connie Kosuda

            classy

        • Take herr T’Bird Away

          CK: Ewe lie and allow Dems to poke sup where your sum don’t shine.

        • Eric Blair

          LOL.. you’re too much fun. Such as the Rights well known battle against the foes of gay marriage? They certainly were leading that fight. 😉 There is also their famous battle against voter suppression in Red States.

          • Hi There

            What? very weird.

    • DavidAppell

      Rupert Huss, sex toy elf, does not understand the science and is completely unable to tell anyone what’s supposedly wrong with it.

      That’s why he resorts to name calling — it’s the only retort he can come up with. Because people like Rupert just aren’t smart enough to understand the science.

      But Rupert always has his sex toys to fall back on.

      • guestus augustus

        Wonder what Bi Bi Brown would woo, sans having a Connie Kosuda-burra to sing to?

  • Eric Blair

    Soooo… If I publish a book claiming that the Earth was originally populated by Aliens, and the PPS refused to buy it and put it in school libraries, that would be censorship?

  • thevillageidiot

    you already know the answer to this. No it would not be. but then everyone censors (discriminates) before acting. now. if PPS had your book in their library as an alternative to some other book with a differing view and then decided they did not agree with your view and removed your book then it would be censorship.

  • Connie Kosuda

    fly in the ointment ::: the Bush cartel disseminates its own approved brand of ‘textbooks’ rewriting history throughout the US / millions of copies. go figure. one of the percs of being part of a right wing oligarchy.

    • thevillageidiot

      so does the other. current liberal blather says republicans are racist when historically and currently it is the dems that are suppressing the minorities. The Deep south during the hayday of the KKK was strong majority democrat. republicans were the primary driver of emancipation. maybe you aught to read the real history rather than the liberal version.

      • Connie Kosuda

        huh?

      • Eric Blair

        And perhaps you should read a little past the Civil War. Nixon and Reagan deliberately courting southern Democrats to jump parties. Which they did. And now those conservative, and frequently racist, ex-Democrats, now reside in the Republican Party. Or haven’t you noticed that most of the South is firmly Republican now?

        • MrBill

          It’s worth noting that even though Republicans under Nixon got the support of a lot of racist southern Democrats by appealing to racial issues, Nixon also presided over desegregating schools. During his tenure, desegregated southern schools went from 10% to 70%.

          If racist southern Dem’s were hoping to get support for their policies from Republican’s, they sure didn’t get much.

          • Eric Blair

            Not with Nixon, no. Although they did get a man who was incredibly paranoid. But I still think it is significant that they turned away from the Democrats and joined the Republicans.

            However, today, they certainly must be thrilled with what they are getting.

          • MrBill

            Most of the Dem’s that went GOP back then are now dead. The only thing they’re getting today is whatever their eternal reward might be.

          • Eric Blair

            And you don’t think it’s likely that the may have passed on their beliefs to younger generations? Certainly Regan tapped into those same people and their progeny.

          • MrBill

            Some no doubt did pass on their beliefs, but by and large no. Times have changed and racism is mostly a relic of the past.

          • Connie Kosuda

            except not in Oregon / not in Portland / not in Washington County / and, oh, yeah, not in the rest of the world either.

          • MrBill

            Cute

        • Hi There

          More liberal intolerance and lies?

          • Eric Blair

            Would you care to expand on how that is intolerance or lies?

    • Hi There

      Still crying about Bush, How infantile.

      • Connie Kosuda

        not crying / reminding.

        • Hi There

          History proves you wrong on all counts.

          • Connie Kosuda

            ‘his-tory’ as rewritten by the bush – ites.

  • DavidAppell

    Larry: Why should Portland Public Schools teach that the Earth is flat?

    I know you have no idea of the science behind manmade global warming — not a scrap of it — or how the deniers like you are so are wrong. You just go with what you’re told.

    Really, Larry, you have zero credibilty in this debate and your opinion is absolutely worthless and inconsequential.

    Sorry to be so blunt, but you deserve it.

    • Randy Loonard skid Gloves Ya

      Urine a lot of lot of snot poolery monsew, DisAppell roadsteer maneuver.

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