For John, BLUF: It is the Gleichschaltung . Which is why the First Amendment is so important. Nothing to see here; just move along.
From PJ Media (Belmont Club), by Richard Fernandez, 22 July 2019.
Here is the lede plus two:
Intentionally or by accident, the West is developing the equivalent of the Chinese reputational rating system. The New York Times describes how in Xinjiang "children are interrogated. Neighbors become informants. Mosques are monitored. Cameras are everywhere." Then the data is fed into a system and scored according to a Communist Party virtue rating system. Fact-checkers monitor social media to see who's expressed offensive opinions or joined any Hate Groups. The virtuous are rewarded but low scorers on Beijing's community guidelines can be stopped from traveling, excluded from admission to schools, banned from social media platforms, charged in court and doxxed.Life is going to change if we don't develop some tolerance for diversity of ideas. Maybe better, it will regress to what it was in the past. Even Islam had a period of intellectual flowering, now crushed by the Wahhabist School.
If non-Chinese find it disturbingly familiar it is no coincidence. The same technology is involved in policing both the West and the Middle Kingdom. In the West the social scoring system is not yet official but Newsweek has already asked: should racism and hate be illegal? It happily pointed out that "most of those who advocate a ban insist it need not interfere with American democracy. As Jack Greenberg of Columbia University points out, incitement to racial violence is outlawed in most liberal democracies, including Britain, Israel and most of Western Europe."
Organizations dedicated to identifying "hate groups" have proliferated, most notably the Southern Poverty Law Center. Its blacklist is so extensive it has to be divided into categories, including male supremacy, hate music, and radical traditional Catholicism. Ironically the SPLC has itself also been accused of being a hate group after its founder and guiding light, Morris Dees, was blamed for sexual harassment and racial prejudice. Over time there will be many more organizations dedicated to resource and platform denial.
Hat tip to the InstaPundit.
Regards — Cliff