Lies About Censorship: Crying Wolf
It is ironic how much people tend to justify censorship, and yet ridiculous claims about alleged censorship are so often used to sell snake oil—and lunatic ideas.
Think about this ad to sell you some instant cure for a gargantuan belly. Gee, I wasn’t aware that physicians were even enabled to ban videos!
The Internet is polluted with tens of thousands of ads to sell worthless books or snake oil on the basis of claims that doctors (and of course, that evil, corporate behemoth, ‘Big Pharma’) don’t want you to know about their ‘modestly priced’ panacea for all your ills.
One has to wonder why doctors wouldn’t want you to get well. Are they afraid of losing all their ‘clients’ and their livelihood if no one is ever sick? Foolish me, I thought the shortage of doctors was the problem, not the shortage of sick people.
And every conspiracy theorist out there insists that the government is suppressing information about UFOs or Lizard People from some distant galaxy living amidst us.
This isn’t to say that governments are not guilty of suppressing real and vital information from embarrassing public scrutiny. Nor is it to defend the serious ‘quasi-censorship’ by the pharmaceutical industry in not releasing research findings questioning the efficacy or even the safety of their products. These are terrible, harmful abuses that need to be addressed.
However, it is to say that crying wolf when there really aren’t any can only detract from real, justified warnings about actual censorship or its more subtle varieties that I’ve been calling ‘quasi-censorship’.