A Trump-appointed member of the Federal Communications Commission is being praised for standing up to a left-wing nonprofit that had demanded that the FCC, the Department of Justice and the Federal Trade Commission block billionaire investor Elon Musk’s purchase of Twitter.
“The FCC has no authority to block Elon Musk’s purchase of Twitter, and to suggest otherwise is absurd. I would welcome the full FCC making it clear that we will not entertain these types of frivolous arguments,” Commissioner Brendan Carr, appointed in 2017 by then-President Donald Trump, said in a statement Wednesday.
View the full statement below:
The FCC has zero authority to block Musk’s purchase of Twitter.
And it is particularly frivolous to ask the agency to do so in the name of protecting free speech and open debate. pic.twitter.com/bOB4LpEvlB
— Brendan Carr (@BrendanCarrFCC) April 27, 2022
The decision triggered an outpouring of thank yous directed at Carr.
Good job commissioner 👏👏❤️
— Salimhajj (@Salimhajj9) April 28, 2022
Thank you for your integrity
— Quesowhat 🎸 (@queso_what) April 28, 2022
Thank you, sir. You’re doing us all a great service by standing up for free speech.
— Sofia Jane Lugo (@veearrell) April 27, 2022
So rare to see common sense in governmental positions today. Thank you.
— OrangeCrushBitcoin ⚡₿⛏️ (@13badrobots) April 27, 2022
Thank God!!! Only cowards weaklings and bullies need to censor.. because they lose all arguments when exposed to light=truth! Thank you Trump!! & Mr. Carr!
— rnsr4trump Rnsr4Trump (@rnsr4trump) April 27, 2022
Musk himself also took note of the statement:
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) April 28, 2022
Carr’s decision was made in response to an audacious public letter published Tuesday by the so-called Open Markets Institute, a left-wing nonprofit that purports to “address threats to our democracy, individual liberties, and our national security from today’s unprecedented levels of corporate concentration and monopoly power.”
Issued in response to Musk’s Monday purchase of Twitter, the letter echoed the left’s dubious talking points about how the purchase “poses a number of immediate and direct threats to American democracy and free speech.”
“The most obvious problem is that the deal would give to a single man – one who already wields immense political and economic power – direct control over one of world’s most important platforms for public communications and debate. As has been true from the Founding, the American people have an absolute right to ensure the full openness and neutrality of all essential public infrastructure,” the letter read.
But Twitter in its current form isn’t neutral, and therein lies the reason Musk purchased it — to transform it from a left-wing echo chamber into a genuine public square.
For Twitter to deserve public trust, it must be politically neutral, which effectively means upsetting the far right and the far left equally
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) April 27, 2022
The letter continued by citing the precedent set by the DOJ in 2017.
“Mr. Musk already controls one of the most important internet platforms in the world – in the form of the satellite communications system Starlink. Since the late 19thCentury, the U.S. government has routinely acted to prevent mergers between existing essential platforms,” the letter read.
“Most recently, the DOJ in 2017 attempted to block AT&T’s takeover of Time-Warner. … This means that just as we would now expect the U.S. government to block a takeover of Twitter by Google, Facebook, Comcast, or Verizon, the same rules apply to the owners of Starlink.”
Not mentioned by the Open Markets Institute was that the DOJ’s failed attempt to block ATT’s merger with Time Warner was widely criticized at the time. Though to be fair, the nonprofit was one of the few entities that’d staunchly supported the DOJ’s efforts.
“Open Markets Institute supports the Justice Department’s decision to sue to block AT&T’s effort to buy Time Warner,” the nonprofit had announced on Nov. 21st, 2017.
The letter concluded by urging the FCC, DOJ and FTC to not only block Musk’s purchase of Twitter but also begin regulating all “essential platforms,” including Twitter, Facebook, Google and Amazon.
The reaction to the Open Markets Institute’s letter has been directly opposite of the reaction to Carr’s statement.
Case in point (*Language warning):
Fuck off you cunts, you’re a bunch of left wing nuts
— Shotgun T-Rex (@Shotguns_n_Beer) April 28, 2022
Did you attempt to block Bezo’s purchase of the Washington Compost?
— KFried (@CubbyNAZ) April 27, 2022
Not very open market of you wanting the government to step in and crush a company.
— Ifandbut (@ifandbut01) April 28, 2022
How does it feel to get laughed at by the organisation you were hoping would help you?
— Alan (@advancedflea) April 28, 2022
Seems this “org” is against free speech and approves censorship. Censorship is what kills democracy and Org’s like this are the problem.
— Cilir (@cilir3) April 28, 2022
I don’t remember you putting out a statement when Twitter was blocking and Shadow blocking conservatives all over the place. Let’s not even get into the whole Biden laptop scandal that Twitter got rid of
— whataremyoptions (@ibiobagger) April 27, 2022
“Did you attempt to block Bezo’s purchase of the Washington Compost?” one critic asked.
Records maintained by the Wayback Machine show that the organization came into existence in 2017, the same year that Trump took office, but four years after billionaire investor Jeff Bezos had purchased The Washington Post.
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