Tag Archives: First Amendment

Facebook’s “Libra”: A Backdoor to ChiCom Style Censorship?

Facebook executive David Marcus, formerly of PayPal, appeared this week before the US Congress to introduce what could eventually become the world’s most-used e-currency system.  Facebook has plans for this to become the preferred monetary instrument of the platform’s 2 billion global users.

It’s called “Libra”. Major media deem Facebook’s “Libra” a cryptocurrency. Yet the project is in fact antithetical to what cryptocurrency enthusiasts espouse. This is primarily because of the fact that the digital money will be centralized and there is a very high financial bar to becoming a Libra participant ($10 million to become a transaction-authenticating “node”), thus making it an ideal vehicle for censorship.

Such censorship could be realized via Facebook et al’s de facto ability to financially penalize certain individuals whose ideas and speech are not compliant with its own “Terms of Service,” and likely what Libra and its eventual consortium of major corporate controllers deem acceptable.

In light of state “innovations” such as China’s “social credit/national reputation” system, where its citizens can be excluded from real world activities simply because of their ideas and behavior, such a project brings up special concerns on how access to Facebook money may eventually be used.

In light of this Wisconsin Congressman Sean Duffy poses the most significant question of the hearings:

“Can Milo Yiannopoulos or Louis Farrakhan [both of whom have been banned from Facebook due to the content of their speech] use Libra? … On Facebook you don’t allow gun sales. So can a gun dealer who’s abiding by American law, use your system?”

Facebook’s Marcus replied that “we haven’t written a policy yet” governing such potential exclusion.

What is certain, however, is that the when that policy is written, it will be overseen and enforced not by democratically elected officials, but rather the major private corporate participants comprising the Libra consortium.

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Thank You For Helping to Defend the First Amendment

We Need Your Continued Support

In 2016 James Tracy and the Florida Civil Rights Coalition (FCRC) filed a federal lawsuit against Florida Atlantic University (FAU) for its unlawful termination of Tracy’s tenured professorship of 14 years.

Professor James Tracy Florida Atlantic University 2015 Faculty Profile. Source: WebArchive

The essence of the case revolves around the fact that FAU trustees and administrators disapproved of Tracy’s political views, expressed on his personal blog. They therefore utilized an unconstitutional prior restraint (“Outside Employment Policy”) barring Professor Tracy’s right to free speech as the basis for his dismissal. Moreover, to this day these very officials continue to use the same policy to limit university faculty and employee expression.

In 2017 a hostile court dismissed most of TracyvFAU’s First Amendment claims, ruling in favor of FAU and its administrators, and barring crucial evidence in advance of the case ever going to a jury.

Anticipating such a setback, the FCRC successfully engaged a prominent national law firm which, recognizing the case’s  significance, brought the lower court ruling before the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals.

In June 2019 the Eleventh Circuit’s panel of judges granted the case oral argument. Such a hearing is less-than-common at the federal appellate level. TracyvFAU is scheduled to be heard the week of September 16, 2019 in Miami, Florida. We are uncertain of the judicial outcome, but are grateful that the case is under review at this momentous level.

The James Tracy Legal Defense Fund wants to thank all of you for your moral and/or monetary support along the way. Because we have taken on a state agency with unlimited resources, there is no way we could have endured this fight for over three long years without you.

Yet our work is not finished.

Continue reading Thank You For Helping to Defend the First Amendment

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James Tracy 2016 Interview Banned By YouTube

Free Speech = “Hate Speech”

A March 2016 interview with James Tracy conducted on the popular alternative news outlet SGT Report was stricken from YouTube last week, presumably in the wake of the major video platform’s most recent campaign to rid itself of “hate speech.”

According to YouTube’s new policy, “hate speech” now effectively includes virtually any discussion or insinuation calling into question the veracity of complex public events, including mass casualty events.

“Hate speech is not allowed on YouTube,” the exhibition giant declared on June 5th.  “We remove content promoting violence or hatred against individuals or groups based on any of the following attributes,” which now includes,

“Victims of a major violent event and their kin.”

Yet as SGT Report‘s host Sean points out in a recent commentary addressing the censorship, the 2016 interview wasn’t even about the Sandy Hook shooting event. Rather, the discussion centered on the anti-free speech actions taken by Tracy’s former academic employer, Florida Atlantic University, in retaliation against Tracy for his controversial online speech.

As Sean notes, “We merely discussed the First Amendment and the high cost of free speech as it pertains to discussing, investigating, and/or questioning any event at all. “Evidently now,” he adds,

if you don’t fall in line with the mainstream media version of events and parrot the official story, you will be targeted as an unhinged conspiracy theorist who spews hate speech.

(Video also available on Bitchute.)

In April 2016 Tracy filed a federal civil rights suit against Florida Atlantic and its chief administrators who carried out his firing. That suit is now before the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals.

YouTube’s censorship of the interview is in lockstep with the overall news blackout of TracyvFAU by national media, the same media that focused so intently on Tracy’s personal blogging in 2013, then celebrated the academic’s termination three years later.

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Alex Jones Media Circus Continues

News Media Carefully Exclude Mention of TracyvFAU

US corporate news media have provided inordinate coverage highlighting specific outtakes of the recent AlexJones deposition in Texas state court. It is perhaps notable how throughout its hullabaloo coverage of the Jones trial same news media have carefully excluded any mention of Professor James Tracy’s pending action against Florida Atlantic University, an arguably more significant free speech case now before the US Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals.

As some may recall, this appeal followed an eleven day trial in December 2017 before Obama-appointed US District Judge Robin Rosenberg, whose numerous pre and in-trial motions grossly favored the FAU defendants by stripping Tracy of his right to assert First Amendment claims and keeping vital evidence from the jury.

Despite wall-to-wall, front page trial coverage by the The Palm Beach Post and the South Florida Sun Sentinel, the event was almost completely blacked out by national news media–the same media that widely broadcast the case’s commencement in April 2016 and the circus-like antics of Jones’ deposition.* In fact, the Sun Sentinel has yet to even report to its readership the fact that the case has been appealed.

Tracy’s attorneys are still awaiting the court’ decision on the their request to present oral argument before a panel of three appellate judges hearing the case. FAU has argued against the court entertaining oral argument.


*In any self-respecting court proceeding, why is the Jones deposition being so selectively broadcast in the first place. It may well be to try the defendant in the court of public opinion, before his case can reach a jury.

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Trump to Sign Executive Order Promoting Free Speech at Universities

(BDS & Lawmakers’ Criticism of Israel Excepted)

President Donald Trump has announced at this week’s CPAC conference that he will soon issue a Presidential Executive Order requiring universities across the US to uphold free speech on their campuses or be prepared to lose federal funding.

“Today I am proud to announce that I will be very soon signing an executive order requiring colleges and universities to support free speech if they want federal research dollars,” Trump said.

Yet in early February the Republican-controlled US Senate passed legislation allowing state governments to refuse to do business with companies that boycott Israel. The bill passed, 77-23, with 22 Democrats and Republican Rand Paul dissenting; Paul rightly argued that the legislation threatens free-speech rights.

As MintPress News observes,

The most controversial part of the bill by far is the “Combating BDS Act of 2019,” which would authorize state and local governments to retaliate commercially against entities that support BDS, such as by halting business with or refusing to contract or hire companies or individual citizens who either actively participate in or support the movement. A previous version of the bill included possible jail time as punishment for supporting a boycott of Israel or Israeli settlements, their violation of international law notwithstanding.

The legislation, which attests to the power of Israeli’s lobbying prowess, has yet to be voted on by the Democratic-controlled House of Representatives.

Along these lines, in 2011 former Georgia Representative Cynthia McKinney explained that US lawmakers must swear allegiance to Israel or face inevitable expulsion from public office.

Minnesota Democratic Congresswoman Ilhan Omar incurred the wrath of the American Israeli Political Affairs Committee in February when she similarly suggested how the US Congress is beholden to the Israeli lobby. AIPAC used the incident to embark on a mini-fundraising venture.

Since 2004 the US Department of State includes a “Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat Anti-Semitism.” If taken literally, the State Department’s definition of anti-semitism effectively bars any public criticism of Israeli foreign policy toward the Muslim world and occupied territories. This definition is applicable to the speech and activities of the BDS movement on US college campuses.

Boycotts of certain businesses and even countries is part of a long tradition of nonviolent political protest in the United States, contributing to, for example, the demise of South African apartheid in the 1980s.

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Louis Leo IV and James Tracy with Don Jeffries

Author and broadcaster Donald Jeffries talks with attorney Louis Leo IV and Professor James Tracy about the TracyvFAU federal lawsuit, presently on appeal. Tracy was fired by Florida Atlantic University in 2016 for his controversial public views and writings on topics including the 2012 Sandy Hook shooting and the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing events.

The interview was recorded and broadcast on Truth Frequency Radio February 15, 2019.

Listen to interview via MP3 on Google Drive

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James Tracy and Louis Leo IV with Andrew Carrington Hitchcock

Editor’s Note: Andrew Carrington Hitchcock discusses Professor James Tracy’s 2015 termination from Florida Atlantic University and the TracyvFAU lawsuit with Tracy and trial lawyer Louis Leo IV in two separate interviews, available via the links below.

Carrington Hitchcock is a UK-based historian and host of The Andrew Carrington Hitchcock Show. Leo is the lead attorney in the 2016 civil rights lawsuit against the university presently before the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals.

Historian, broadcaster and Pastor Andrew Carrington Hitchcock

AndrewCarringtonHitchcock.com
(January 12, 2019)

In today’s show originally broadcast on January 12 2019, EuroFolkRadio’s Andrew Carrington Hitchcock interviews Dr. James F. Tracy, for a show entitled, “What Happened To James Tracy Could Happen To You…”

Continue reading James Tracy and Louis Leo IV with Andrew Carrington Hitchcock

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