It's not clear to me what the House committee is asking for. From what I read in their letters it's basically, "We think you have more than you've given us, so give it to us".
That's not how this works. If you want to subpoena information, you need to be specific and targeted. If you don't get what you think you want, call people in to testify.
Here's the actual Committee release . Two quotes from the Alphabet letter:
"For example, Alphabet has not produced any documents that fully explain non-public moderation discussions and policies"
"Additionally, Alphabet has not produced documents relating to YouTube’s policy decisions"
But, IIRC, YouTube (and Twitter) were pretty publicly vocal and specific about their policies for months preceding Jan 6th. I just don't see what warrants this round of grandstanding.
They are asking for TV time
I'm sure there is some actual substance to these hearings and there most likely is info that they want to learn. But at this point I will say the whole thing around Jan 6 is 10% substance and 90% media theater.
Did you see what happened when they asked specific and targeted questions to the FBI?
If the FBI won't even answer basic questions why should companies have to give have random arbitrary data that probably won't help with the investigation? This January 6th committee is a complete joke and nothing but theater.
On one hand, a congressional subpoena for "non-public moderation discussions and policies" is broad. On the other hand, there is certainly some version of that request that is within reasonable scope for a subpoena. In the hypothetical world where passing legislation in the US were still possible and Congress was capable of regulating Big Tech (e.g. changing Section 230 or so on), this is exactly the sort of thing a Congressional Subpoena would make sense for, since there would be a germane policy making interest in obtaining this information.
> I just don't see what warrants this round of grandstanding.
The paradox of Big Tech: everyone hates Big Tech because they think their political adversaries control Big Tech.
The Left views Big Tech as monopolies controlled by techno-libertarian ultra-billionaires. The Right views Big Tech as Democrat companies controlled by radical leftist censors.
(As an aside: in a sense, both views have a kernel of truth. Big Tech employees skew left, especially on social issues, although not nearly as homogeneously as the right seems to think and individual FAANG employees have far less power than people seem to imagine. On the other hand, the leadership of these companies are definitely not natural allies of progressives, but are also not -- AFAICT -- nearly as villainous as the left seems to think.)
But the real thing that both have in common is conspiratorial brain candy with Big Tech as the modern stand-in for Illuminati or whatever.
Leftists are anti-corporate power in the public sphere.
None of this is paradoxical.
So called "pinkwashing" is well known among leftist circles so to suggest that entire political spectrum has been hoodwinked by American corporations seems wrong?
The real answer is just that the Left isn't particularly powerful in the US, even during the WTO protests.
There's always the mistake of assuming the person means the US Left as opposed to another country's Left movement, but the Left as understood within the US is quite powerful. It seems really as if both movements divide the country in two.
> The Left views Big Tech as monopolies controlled by techno-libertarian ultra-billionaires. The Right views Big Tech as Democrat companies controlled by radical leftist censors.
I guess it's only a paradox if you are partisan and think there are only two types of people. I don't consider myself left or right and big tech is definitely an adversary to me and my beliefs.
The observation is that Big Tech plays the role of Powerful Boogeyman for both the left and the right in polarizing narrative construction.
Ofc non-partisans can also dislike big tech, and partisans can dislike big tech for rational reasons. Neither of those is inconsistent with the above observation.
There is no way the full scope, procedures, code, algos, and more are public for all moderation methods and channels.
I suspect people are hoping trade secret law will protect, but I think the House wants to see regardless!
To be frank, no matter what side of the political spectrum, we're in very, very deep trouble here.
Our very democracies are at risk, and the manipulation by media, and enemies of our democracies will only get worse and worse.
Hell, even manipulation by members of our democracies, from special interest groups, political parties, to even just nutbars, what we've seen so far, has shown us that people will buy into anything, if it's all they hear.
Our civilization, our world, will live or die by how we all get a handle on misinformation.
And while I embrace democracy, and capitalism, I couldn't care one bit of the required fix tanks Google, Facebook, Twitter and more.
Quite literally, everything is at stake here.
If a crime was committed by the US Executive branch (e.g., President, e.g., Nixon), should the Executive branch investigate itself?
Congress investigating things goes back a few centuries:
> On November 4, 1791, some 900 U.S. army troops under the command of Gen. Arthur St. Clair, a Revolutionary War veteran, were killed or wounded in a surprise attack by Native American warriors on the Ohio frontier. The following year, in what was the new nation’s first congressional investigation, a House committee was formed to look into the debacle, which became known as St. Clair’s Defeat. As part of the investigation, the committee asked President George Washington for paperwork pertaining to his administration’s management of the failed expedition.
Do you earnestly believe this?
That seems to be the current state of the internetz everywhere. I have to print that on a sticker or something.
That's not looking for a scapegoat; it's looking for a set of root causes
It's a scapegoat. If you want people to stop looking up content about distrusting the government, the solution is a more transparent government, not to stop them from watching the content.
This rabbit hole encourages extremism in some people, and that can be harmful to society. Why the defeatist attitude, that huge companies have to encourage extremism or people will stop using their products? That's non-sensical
It is also unclear to me that the recommendations ought to be moderated by some embedded state entity to make sure the results align with what is in political vogue.
The other thing is that we really don't have shared definition or word-feel for "extremism". The people who are the most vocal about curbing extremist content also happen to be wildly partisan. I don't think that is a coincidence. I sense the false-positive rate is extremely high in this regard.
I wouldn't say they are looking for a scapegoat, it's just political theater and tactical expediency. Furthermore, I'd also say "root causes" is not quite right either. At the end of the day, this is a very partisan committee and I believe they understand the power in getting these big social media companies to crack down on conservative content under the guise of preventing "extreme/radical content".
It's worth pointing out though, that Congress does in fact have a power of inherent contempt that enables them to enforce their own subpoenas. This is a separation of powers concern: what if Congress needs to subpoena someone in the Executive branch or DoJ in particular?
What I mean by the parenthetical statement is that while the legislative branch does have an established right to ask the disclosure of information, their power to actually compel is limited. Without cooperation from the other branches of government, what they directly control is a handful of operatives who maintain no facilities for detaining people for the long term.
Increasing trust in the outcome would go a long way. How about trying to make the election more verifiable. Put it some real biometric features into mail out ballots. Instead we get, no id required to vote. Doesn't really build trust.
I'm not American, so I'm not swayed by part allegiance. What I did see is 3 am mail in ballot reversals in multiple cities at ridiculous high skewed percentages.
A wildly popular president, the most popular in history, 81 million votes, that somehow is barely polling in the 30%s.
Winning the fewest precincts in history yet breaking record for the most votes.
More black people voting in record numbers much higher than for Obama in downtown Detroit for him.
It smells like a Putin election. Except Putin is actually popular in his country unlike Biden.
Maybe since you're not American, you're missing a little nuance about the situation. First of all, mail-in-ballots are counted last in many places. Sometimes, it's by law (like in PA, where mail-in-ballot counting cannot start until after election day). This is why you saw a lot of 3am mail-in-vote counting.
The reason why it took so long to count those votes as opposed to other years is due to the ongoing global pandemic. Because of the pandemic, voters were encouraged to vote by mail. However, the President had spent months before the election claiming that mail-in-voting was rigged, and encouraged his supporters to vote exclusively in person. This is why the mail-in-vote percentages were so skewed toward Democrats.
Therefore the dynamic on election night was that all the in-person votes were counted first, and they gave the impression that Trump had won. When the mail-in-ballots were counted, they were in some cases able to overtake the in-person vote tally, which caused Biden to win in those cases.
> A wildly popular president
Trump was not wildly popular. Again, this may be a perception you had from abroad. In reality, Trump did not win the popular vote the first time he was elected. He lost the House during his first two years in office, and lost the House again and the Senate in 2020, as well as his own election. While it's true he got 74 million votes, his opponent was more popular, and more importantly won the electoral vote, and that's why he's president today. Also in America, our population is highly concentrated in cities. The 500 counties won by Biden account for 70% of the US population. The 2500 counties won by Trump only account for 30% of the population.
All of the other points you raise are just the result of this being an election with record turnout across the country. I just don't understand what you could possibly infer by more black voters voting for Biden than Obama. What exactly is that supposed to prove? There's really nothing about the demographics or statistics of the 2020 election that point to fraud.
There's no good reason other than narrative that the mail-in ballot ratios would not closely trend the in person voting. It's sampling the same population.
Please provide some evidence that Republicans don't vote by mail.
Imagine if Putin lost the in person vote by a large margin, but won mail-in ballot vote by a huge percentage. And those votes came from inner city Moscow, inner city St. Petersburg, his party strongholds. The winning margin from votes from the poorest citizens, a demographic that rarely votes, but this time voted in record numbers like never before. And their will is apparently in opposition to rest of the country. That alone would be good enough reason to be suspicious.
At minimum if you're going to have an election with mail-in ballots in the US and you want the citizens to trust the results. There needs to be some way to tie the paper ballot to the person for audit purposes. Otherwise, the losing side, will assume it's printers doing the voting. Hence the J6 protest that turned riot.
At least with an in person ballot you have some upper bound of how many people came out to vote, to verify the results against.
With mail-in voting. You could literally delay announcing the results of election and print out as many votes as needed to overcome any margin. It makes cheating on a mass scale much easier.
Most of my statements are from first-party sources like government reports and court filings. My statements about the election results stem from monitoring I did of the results as they arrived on election day. I'm a data nerd and there's a lot of fun data to play with around election time. The results of course were of significant national interest as well. I stayed up for multiple days going over the results, and am proud to say I called Pennsylvania on Tuesday by looking at the Northampton County returns. They turned out to be a good bellwether for how the rest of the state was going to go.
> Please provide some evidence that Republicans don't vote by mail.
Don't take my word for it. Here are some exit polls:
In person (total) By mail or absentee
Trump voters 68% 32%
Biden Voters 42% 58%
If you are hearing the things I'm saying in state/corporate media, I would say that's because they are truthfully reporting on what happened.
> That alone would be good enough reason to be suspicious.
You tried to make this seem nefarious, but let me restate what you wrote. People in Democratic-friendly areas voted heavily for Democrats. That's not suspicious. What would be suspicious is if Trump won places which are known to vote Democratic. That Democrats won in cities is one of the least surprising outcomes of the election.
Do you want to know how Trump really lost the election? It wasn't because of poor people voting extra in cities. It wasn't even because he lost Georgia, because it wasn't critical in his path to victory.
What really sunk Trump were people who voted a straight Republican ticket except for Trump. Think about that. They either left it blank, or wrote in someone else. They didn't even vote for Biden really, although some did. But House and Senate Republicans actually got more votes than Trump did. All of this consternation about Democrats being responsible for Trump's loss is misplaced. If he would have stayed off of Twitter, I bet he would have won easily.
> With mail-in voting. You could literally delay announcing the results of election and print out as many votes as needed to overcome any margin.
This would be caught easily, because it would result in a bunch of envelopes with no paper trail. The attack you describe was alleged quite often during the 2020 election, but the mail-in voting process does not really work as you may expect, so the attack is not feasible.
The first protection is that you need to have requested a ballot for one to be printed. If ballots are printed indiscriminately, there would need to be a corresponding record of requests for those ballots. Even if ballots are sent without a request, as is done in California, there would still need to be a record of the envelope's provenance. Where did it come from, who handled it, etc.
Secondly, there is a signature match process. You have to put your ballot in a security envelope with a signature to be matched against others. If the signature does not match then the ballot will be cast provisionally, and the voter will be contacted to correct it.
Actually this requires more verification than voting in-person. Mail-in voting is one of those things were people think it is less secure, so it's scrutinized more, making it actually the most secure way to vote.
But anyway, I can only describe my local election process, I'm not aware of how every place works. Either way, I don't see why in-person voting is not just as vulnerable to the attack you describe.
I think that if the current administration continues on it's trajectory, people will simply care less and less about j6. Because their everyday lives are being impacted more and more by hostile policies.
Keeping prisoners held in inhumane conditions while awaiting trial is also not helping. Even Democrats are calling this issue out. It was sickening when we did it to foreigners in gitmo, and it's sickening now.
I wish we saw some honest attempts and transparency at figuring out what happened, but... without that- the schism is only widening.
You (and your friends if they are real) are propaganda victims.
Here you will see that the FBI counter terrorism team was spurred by that Oct 4 letter to start tracking potential threats that concerned parents posed. So no, he didn't technically call them terrorists, he just had the counter-terrorism team activated to look for terrorists.
The NBSA sent a letter to the DOJ asking them to look into school board meetings around the country, saying that the parent protests were "equivalent to a form of domestic terrorism."
The NBSA has since apologized and removed the letter from their website.
Politifact responds by saying the word "terrorist" does not appear in the memo, thus the "domestic terrorist" claim is false. They created a straw man and then defeated it. Yeesh.
That's what Garland said per your article. The only ones who mentioned terrorism was the NSBA and they didn't accuse anyone of it, they suggested some of the threats they'd received could be equivalent to terrorism. So, no Polifact is exactly correct here and the NY Post agrees.
I can understand why some people might think the next step would be to improve the quality of the information from the sources that are providing this skewed, stilted and possibly even false coverage, but I have trouble seeing this working well enough to improve things in any meaningful way. On the contrary, it seems like this kind of news will be even more sought after as it becomes harder to find.
That said I don't have a good solution. Maybe somehow promoting better sources of news or making it easier for these more reliable news sources to generate income.
I think the basic idea is that the government shouldn't be involved in institutionalizing or promoting preferred media narratives of any form.
I disagree that the "larger issue" is that people are misinformed. In fact, I would suggest that there have been several thousand years where people were horribly misinformed on a number of topics.
Absolutely. These tech companies know they face the threat of regulation, whether on anti trust grounds or labor issues or whatever. When Twitter banned Trump, they wrote a blog post (https://blog.twitter.com/en_us/topics/company/2020/suspensio...) that offered no good reason and pointed at things like his refusal to attend Biden’s inauguration. AOC also demanded that tech companies censor Parler (https://imgur.com/jJo0lEx), and Apple/Google/Amazon all complied. The timing of this sudden and willing compliance from all these companies who historically would resist, was not coincidental. It happened because there was a coming change of administrations, and this compliance bought them favor.
Glenn Greenwald has written many great articles on this topic, but here’s a particularly relevant one:
I can easily imagine that the next time the GOP controls congress they'll ask similar questions of outlets like CNN and MSNBC vis-a-vis the George Floyd riots.
People should be more considerate of the opposition when they're in power. Payback is almost assured, and sometimes even with escalation.
After reddit shut down /r/TheDonald, the "pedes" migrated to thedonald dot win (which I think has since been shuttered and moved elsewhere). With all the claims being made about a stolen election, I was watching that site with morbid fascination in December and early January, including the planning for the 6th specifically (I assume it's still in the Wayback Machine). The talk ranged from vague protest, to a quasi-Occupy strategy of refusing to leave until results are overturned, to explicit calls to violence and far-right fantasies ("1776 solutions to 1984 problems", "day of the rope", etc).
And the whole time, I assumed: obviously this is on the radar of the FBI and the "IC". These idiots are out of their depth: they don't even know how to use encryption to coordinate their attempted coup, and they're gonna walk right into a regiment of Feds on the capitol steps.
Luckily Trump is fundamentally a coward, and Pence has some shred of integrity (or just sense), and the participants failed to galvanize a response from the more mainstream Trumpers. But if you want to talk about an "inadequate response": the gross incompetence of our bloated national security apparatus failing to do the only thing that justifies their existence really takes the cake; and I can't help but think all the Congressional hearings and hand-wringing and crocodile tears is a theatrical distraction from that institutional failure.
When saying "any other show of power other than that they managed to break through a few weakly-secured doors" you downplay the fact they the rioters interrupted a session of Congress and succeeded in their purpose of delaying the certification of election results.
You did it repeatedly in this thread - that's not cool. Please don't do it again.
We detached this subthread from https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=29935954.
Amazing stability of our government that.
> Political theater by Democrats trying to make Jan 6th "The Day That Democracy Nearly Died" or something.
I agree there's been a lot of political theater around Jan. 6th, but if democracy does in fact die in the US, those events will have been an important milestone. Basically, the point where the breakdown of the respect for the institutions of democracy became in-your-face obvious. It also set some precedents/put options in people's minds that will be hugely destabilizing.
That said, I'm really disappointed that Democrats are basically making only small tactical responses (e.g. party-line voting rights legislation, some justice dept. unit to combat "extremism") to a strategic problem, which is that a large fraction of the population is losing/has lost respect for the system. The Democrats really need to get their act together and, being the less-degraded party, do their duty and make whatever sacrifices are necessary to fix that .
 As in when some asshole trashes some common area, you have the duty to spend your time and effort clean up after them. You don't have control over their behavior, but you have control over your own, and it's wrong to leave the common area trashed even though it's not "fair" you're the one sacrificing your time to clean it up.
If the rioters had succeeded in murdering every single person in the capital building, there would have been a protocol in place with the leader already determined. The only way this would have been successful is if the rioters killed every single elected official and secretary in the building, followed by having the support of the Army. They were absolutely nowhere near that.
There is no federal procedure or "chain of command" for replacing individual Representatives and Senators -- that goes back to the states they represent, with either elections or appointments.
If they didn't do a good enough job at it, it doesn't mean it didn't happen.
The rioters wouldn't have ended democracy, but if they caused enough commotion to prevent certification there was a significant risk Trump would have taken advantage of the situation.
What happened on Jan 6 was that the transition of power was, for a number of hours, prevented through violent means. Thank God two things happened on Jan 6: (1) Mike Pence refused to leave the Capitol and (2) Mitch McConnell refused to entertain the 10 objections that they wanted (which would have delayed proceedings for at least 20 hours). If either of those two things happened, we'd be in a political situation uncovered by the Constitution and law. That's when things get bad, because either side is just making things up at that point. It becomes a battle of wills and political power; whoever has the most power to reify their will, wins.
The plan on Jan 6 was to delay certification as long as possible, because there was a pressure campaign ongoing in which states were being pressured to "decertify" their votes, and Pence was being pressured to consider alternate slates of electors for Trump.
I think everyone needs to start getting clear on the facts here:
(1) Jan 6 was about stopping Biden from being certified as President Elect by any means, because that's a write only operation. There's no undoing that. Once he is certified by the House, Senate, and VP, the deal is done. Not even the Supreme Court can overturn that: separation of powers and all.
(2) The legal way to do that was spelled out in the Eastman Memo : It argued Pence could just unilaterally refuse to consider slates of electors and cause a contested election, which favored the Republicans electorally. But Pence would not go along with this plan.
(3) Pence was aware of fraudulent certificates of the vote that had been submitted by various states, which purported to be legitimate votes for Trump. Pence could not go along with accepting those without a pretextual reason given by the states themselves. This was the last piece of the plan which was, supposedly according to Trump's lawyer, coming together at the last minute while the Capitol attack was ongoing.
Think of it this way: On Jan 6 the situation was that every state had certified their votes, Trump lost 62/63 court cases and the Supreme Court refused to hear the case, the AG had said he found no fraud. There was no pretext for Pence to accept the alternative electors.
However, that could have changed very quickly had the pressure campaign continued. If Pence had left the Capitol on Jan 6, then the joint session would not have reconvened for several days while the Capitol was secured (actually the Capitol was correctly deemed insecure by Secret Service the day of Jan 6, so there's as open question as to why Pence was there in the first place). At this time, there was a pressure campaign going on to get one or more states to "Decertify" their certificate of the vote. Had one or more states done so, it would be very easy to see how this would have ended up at a contested election where Republicans would have all the votes needed to install Trump as President.
It's also completely irreversible. It turns out, the easiest way to prevent a president from being inaugurated on Jan 20 is to prevent them from becoming president elect on Jan 6. There's a real question as to who would ever have the Constitutional authority to undo that, because all the objections are assumed to have been settled through the process on Jan 6. After that it's a done deal. I would say Jan 20 is the more purely symbolic event of the two dates, because by then the authority of the new executive is more firmly established.
And we can't brush past the fact that there was a delay, no matter how brief. The few hour delay could have easily been multiple days if Pence had left the Capitol, and it could have changed the political calculus in terms of states deciding to decertify their elections. Multiple days could have easily turned into multiple weeks as the Justice system moves at a snail's pace, and then suddenly it's Jan 20 without a decision on the election.
If that were to have happened, the House would have voted and with a majority of delegations Republicans would have chosen Trump.
> If they had control of more institutions, it would likely have been more successful.
Isn’t this the pot calling the kettle black? The political left does control most of the institutions, including most mainstream press outlets, virtually all academic institutions, and all notable tech companies. The one thing I can take away from January 6th that is about the security of our elections doesn’t relate to the security of physical buildings. One political side was able to compel all these institutions to take up their political cause, and have engaged in state-motivated censorship of political adversaries. Hiding behind the legality of whether a private organization can censor is not really meaningful. Democracy begins a lot earlier than when we line up to vote. That to me is a much more direct threat to the stability of our country than anything else.
The overwhelming majority are being charged with class A and B misdemeanors (I assume by "simple trespass" you probably mean class C), but that's not the only charge that many of them have.
About half of those arrested so far have felony charges as well.
It may be more difficult for another country, like England, to get that kind of support from the executive branch of the US government.
You did it repeatedly in this thread (over a dozen comments!) - that's not cool. Please don't do it again.
behind which were hundreds of members of US government, who were at that very moment performing the most critical function of government: peaceful transition of power, to prevent the chaos of civil war https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peaceful_transition_of_power
> England ... breaking unexpectedly into the capital building?
When people assert that democracy was in danger, they don't mean that it was in danger solely from the rioters. In general (and I'm sure there are exceptions to this), they mean it was in danger because of the Trump administration.
So no, this assertion does not imply that "taking control of the US is as easy as just sending a regiment over by boat."
Actually Jan 6 was a surgical strike, aimed at a critical ceremony: the transfer of power. It was exactly as big as it needed to be, to infiltrate and hold the Capitol for as long as possible.
Ask yourself: how does democracy die? When an army invades? When bombs are dropped? No, democracy dies when illegal acts are used to subvert the Constitution. That's exactly what happened on Jan 6. The winner of the election is transmuted into President Elect on Jan 6 through the ceremony that was disrupted by the sitting President. That's one step into an extraconstitutional wilderness, and I'm not sure how far you can go into that void without losing everything. I think that's a place where the slope is very, very slippery due to the power dynamics involved. Due to the brave acts of individuals at the Capitol that day, we took two steps back into the Constitutional order.
> I know that everyone here will soon be marching over to the Capitol building to peacefully and patriotically make your voices heard.
And indeed, the overwhelming majority of the ~10000 people in that march never set foot on the Capitol grounds.
As for doubting election results, I feel like there are two things to consider here. One is why we think it is so easy to trust the American election system but cast so much doubt on those of other countries - I feel like that’s just blind faith, particularly when basic security measures like strong voter identification are not in place. The other is that the grounds for doubting election results were laid by the Democrats more so than the Republicans. Remember, Democrats formally objected to certifying results in 2000, 2004, and 2016 (https://www.nytimes.com/2021/01/06/opinion/democrat-republic...). Look at the claims Hillary and the Democrats made about Russia interfering in the 2016 elections - polls showed that even in 2018, 2/3rds of Democratic voters believed that Russia literally tampered with vote counts (https://today.yougov.com/topics/politics/articles-reports/20...). Where’s the outrage around all of these situations?
Meanwhile, after a year of sustained rioting and manipulation of politics via violence (BLM riots in 2020), the left crying foul seems incredibly disingenuous. All Sides wrote at length about media bias in covering the Capitol riot (https://www.allsides.com/blog/capitol-hill-breach-riot-cover...). Let’s not forget that it was only very recently that hundreds of rioters were arrested for disrupting SCOTUS nominee Kavanaugh’s confirmation hearings (https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-45754771). This wasn’t the first time either, and there are many similar examples previously (example: https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/congress/more-100-arrested-...). Why is it that an escalation of such tactics is only a problem when one political side does it?
That is true, which is why most people are not being charged with seditious conspiracy. But that doesn't mean there isn't a conspiracy. You're correct that he intoned some notions of peace, but I think you have to admit the totality of his message was pretty mixed. It's quite dire at times.
But it's been a year since Jan 6, so we have a lot more to go on to figure out what Trump actually wanted.
We know the morning of Jan 6, Mike Pence had told Trump that he was not going to decertify the election. That was his decision. Meaning, when Trump is at the ellipse wondering aloud "Mike Pence, I hope you’re going to stand up for the good of our constitution and for the good of our country. And if you’re not, I’m going to be very disappointed in you.", Trump already knows what Pence is going to do.
Not long after, chants of "Hang Mike Pence" are heard in the halls of the breached Capitol, and this is televised across all networks. We know from people who were with him at this time, Trump was watching TV and rewinding it, wondering aloud "Look at all of the people fighting for me", while brushing off calls from his son, daughter, lawmakers, and other officials to send out something to quell the mob. He sends this message instead:
“Mike Pence didn’t have the courage to do what should have been done to protect our Country and our Constitution, giving States a chance to certify a corrected set of facts, not the fraudulent or inaccurate ones which they were asked to previously certify. USA demands the truth!”
> Remember, Democrats formally objected to certifying results in 2000, 2004, and 2016
Notably, the 2000 objections were not meritless, yet were overruled by the loser of that contest. That I think should send a resounding message and example as to how electoral losses should be handled.
And anyway, the problem wasn't that there were objections on Jan 6. Objections are Constitutional and built into the process. They happen and there is a method to resolve them.
The problem was how the process was being used on Jan 6. Inside of the Capitol, the plan was to delay the proceeding as long as possible. Trump's lawyers wanted phony objections to 10 states, which would have been a 20+ hour delay. During this time, Trump's lawyer and probably the Chief of Staff were working overtime trying to get at least one state to decertify their results. This would have put renewed pressure on Pence to decertify the election and kick it to the House.
The crucial point here though is that the alleged fraud was a fiction at this point. Trump had already lost all his legal battles, all states had certified the results, the AG had said there was no evidence of fraud, the US Attorney in Georgia said he couldn't see any fraud... there was no basis for any of these objections whatsoever by Jan 6, let alone in 10 states!
> Look at the claims Hillary and the Democrats made about Russia interfering in the 2016 elections - polls showed that even in 2018, 2/3rds of Democratic voters believed that Russia literally tampered with vote counts
The problem here is that Trump's genesis was always suspect, and that suspicion has been proven legitimate, which guaranteed it would never be fully dealt with. The Republican-appointed special counsel found Russians did in fact interfere with the election, and the Republican Senate concurs and characterizes the events as follows:
It is our conclusion, based on the facts detailed in the Committee's Report, that the Russian intelligence services' assault on the integrity of the 2016 U.S. electoral process[,] and Trump and his associates' participation in and enabling of this Russian activity, represents one of the single most grave counterintelligence threats to American national security in the modem era.
I think it is probable she would have been killed. That doesn’t mean they control the us government. But it’s non trivial.
"Fairly close" to me would likely involve more of the rioters being shot. The fact that so few were shot indicates that the state was largely keeping their gloves on, which they would not if there was any risk of a senator actually being killed.
Supposing they instead entered the room, it is probable to me that they would have been immediately shot. I doubt the rioters could have taken the room but who knows. In any case
* I think the rioters would have killed some democratic leaders if given the opportunity
* I think more gunshots would have occurred if the rioters went a different direction by chance
* I think this is way, way too far already in terms of what is remotely ok.
Why shouldn't any of them been shot?
Both were confirmations to the highest level of office in their respective branch of government and both were staged by political opponents protesting and admittedly attempting to block an "unjust" transfer of power.
If "peaceful protest" vs "riotous coup" can hinge on the fact that your ideological allies could only have been there to "righteously have their voices heard" but ideological opponents must be there as "murderous usurpers", then your sympathetic reasoning might be better described as paranoid delusional projections.
Let's remember that it was Eric Holder and Bill Clinton who pardoned a woman who literally bombed the capital building.
Another one of those groups broke into the capitol building, stole things, destroyed things, fought with guards, smeared poop on the walls, audibly shouting about looking for specific senators. and at least one person has been found guilty of carrying a gun. Multiple people found to have discussed killing the senators.
Your final reference (I'm assuming to the weathermen) is a much more apt comparison than the other protest you're discussing.
If that happened, I think the most likely outcome is that there'd be more Ashli Babbits
What leads you to call that probable?
I don't think it's impossible, after all it's only been a few years since that Bernie supporter shot at all those Republican congressmen, and Scalise almost did die. But that guy was actually armed and went with that purpose, these goofs appear to have been unarmed protesters who turned into a mob.
I know you don't need a gun to kill someone, I just find your assessment that it was probable she would be killed a stretch.
Because people with guns who said they wanted to kill her entered the capitol with their guns and started looking for her.
E.g., from one charging document: "Thinking about heading over to Pelosi CUNT’s speech and putting a bullet in her noggin on Live TV [purple devil emoji]."
Charges: Possession of Unregistered Firearms, Possession of Unregistered Ammunition, Possession of Large Capacity Ammunition Feeding Devices.
So... he had a gun, said he wanted to kill pelosi, and then broke into a federal building and started looking for her.
He was probably just trolling and this is all a big over-reaction, right? /s
> that Bernie supporter...
the main different here is that I don't recall there being a systemic effort to defend him and explain that it's really no big deal.
Correct me if I'm wrong, but nobody entered the Capitol with guns. I'm aware that sounds like downplaying the incident, which is not my intention. I just think accuracy matters.
The guy you're referring to (who was thankfully charged), did not enter the Capitol with a gun, according to the charging document. What gave you the idea that he entered the Capitol with a gun, the charging document is pretty clear?
>the main different here is that I don't recall there being a systemic effort to defend him and explain that it's really no big deal.
The effort was just to blame Trump's rhetoric for that guys actions. Which, Trump's rhetoric was less than helpful to say the least, but that was a poor excuse for trying to murder a bunch of congresspeople.
Alas, this is the problem with demanding accuracy. If someone says something false about a bad person or incident, we are unable to ask for accuracy unless we are willing to be seen as defending it.
So there were really two groups of people who showed up on Jan 6. The first large group were Trump supporters there to protest. These people are being charged with misdemeanor trespassing; and if they attacked police, they are being charged with felony assault as well.
The second, smaller group were militia who came there equipped and with a plan. Lower-level members of this group have been charged with conspiracy to disrupt Congress, a felony. Higher-level members have just been charged with seditious conspiracy, which carries a 20 year max sentence.
This later group of individuals were mostly ex-military and law enforcement. They were aware that bringing guns on Jan 6 would have resulted in a commiserate response by Capitol Police, and they would have been outmatched. However, according to yesterday's indictment, they did bring plenty of equipment (including guns) and stashed them in hotels across the Potomac river, with plans to bring them across in a boat in case the need arose. We are still learning more about this plan.
> The effort was just to blame Trump's rhetoric for that guys actions. Which, Trump's rhetoric was less than helpful to say the least, but that was a poor excuse for trying to murder a bunch of congresspeople.
At this point the cause and effect is pretty well established.
- The only reason anyone was even near the Capitol on Jan 6 was because Trump summoned them there.
- Trump then told the assembled mob where to go and what to do: "we’re going to the Capitol" to "stop the steal".
- Trump directed the mob to the Capitol.
- The mob arrived at the capitol and violently disrupted the ongoing proceedings.
- Trump witnessed this on live TV and instead of doing anything for 3 hours, he mused himself by rewinding the live footage of people brutally attacking police.
- When arrested, the individual comprising the mob tell police they did what they did at the behest of the Trump.
I think we're way past the point of saying this was just one big misunderstanding. The individuals who invaded the Capitol did so because they thought Trump wanted them to, and he actually did want them to, because if he didn't, he would have attempted to stop it much sooner.
It was a disgusting action taken by the mob, but the nation heals more if the press acts _honestly_. Media bias (especially on that story) only divides and embitters people.
Was it great? Absolutely not - but it wasn't anything remotely close to, say, even the most minor altercations between America and Britain.
Do you think the senate would still have certified the election? Or would Trump still be president?
I think the fear is that the mob was almost able to make it so that Trump’s lie about a stolen election would have overridden the democratic process.
If such an event happened, it would have been fair to say that event “killed democracy”
In theory, I ran a platform that protected everything the First Amendment did, and protected nothing that the Amendment did not protect, I should be legally in the clear.
But I'm not going to attempt such a thing - because it's clear Congress would do the ultimate shakedown.
Let me break this down for you: you host a weekly poker night. My buddies and I come and during these nights plan a crime. We than carry out a crime and get arrested. The investigators come to you and ask “what did those guys talk about at your poker nights?” You say “poker stuff”. They subpoena you to get a better answer. Where in all of this did the first amendment come into play?
Sure except the subpoena in question was not actually about records of conversations that the rioters had, it was about efforts FB did/didn't take to discount election misinformation.
Election misinformation is covered by free speech.
In the same way as yelling “fire” in a theater.
Not at all? There's a clear moral (and certainly legal) dividing line between the two.
As other have said, this is a bit different then that since it's an investigation but I'm sure you can find some examples from the past years of politicians and government officials trying to influence moderation policies for better or worse.