3.  – Free Speech and the Media


How has the recent politicization of science and it’s communication to the public affected society ?

Jonathan Haidt is a social psychologist at New York University’s Stern School of Business. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania in 1992, and taught for 16 years in the department of psychology at the University of Virginia, Here he discusses how science has been politicized.

The politicization of politics. Video – 9 min.

What’s the evidence for political bias in journalism and the media today ?

Matt Taibbi: 2020 in Review: Media and the Left

Matt won a National Magazine Award in 2008 for his columns and commentary at Rolling Stone Magazine.

How can we know if major media outlets are censoring news they publish ?  Who sets the criteria ?

Pulitzer-Prize winning journalist Glen Greenwald looks at media bias. Glen Greenwald is no friend of the right / conservatives. He identifies as left / progressive, supported Bernie Sanders yet is very troubled about the current state of journalism, and the news media platforms / outlets today.


How has the emerging political momentum affected the environment of free speech in our democracy ? Four perspectives.

I.        Matt Taibbi – The current state of the press & journalism, - 2021  - video clip

II.       Matt Taibbi, the free press / media, and the election – Video clip

Few journalists have tossed more hand grenades or built more of a reputation for themselves than Matt Taibbi, who in 2008 won a National Magazine Award for his columns and commentary at Rolling Stone.

II.A.  The Future of the News – What Constitutes “Fake” News ? Is it a Matter of Degree ?  - video clip

Eric Weinstein, Sara Fischer, Ben Shapiro

Eric Weinstein is managing director of Thiel Capital, Peter Thiel's investment firm, a position he has held since 2015. He is also a research fellow at the Mathematical Institute of Oxford University.


II.B.  Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Glenn Greenwald on the difference of news coverage between Bush, Obama and Trump. – Video clip


II.C.  Can we rely on the news ? What is (and isn't) Journalism in the 21st Century.

Investigative journalist James O’Keefe on The Portal, Ep. #026 with Eric Weinstein.  – video clip

Eric Weinstein is a managing director of Thiel Capital in San Francisco. He is also a research fellow at the Mathematical Institute of Oxford University.


       II.D. What are the current cultural influences affecting the New York Times which caused journalist Bari Weiss to resign ?

          KTLA 5 News  - Bari Weiss resigns from New York Times- Video Clip

            Bari Weiss – Original Resignation Open Letter


Excerpted Portions of the Letter -

“The paper’s failure to anticipate the outcome of the 2016 election meant that it didn’t have a firm grasp of the country it covers.

But the lessons that ought to have followed the election—lessons about the importance of understanding other Americans, the necessity of resisting tribalism, and the centrality of the free exchange of ideas to a democratic society—have not been learned. Instead, a new consensus has emerged in the press, but perhaps especially at this paper: that truth isn’t a process of collective discovery, but an orthodoxy already known to an enlightened few whose job is to inform everyone else.

Twitter is not on the masthead of The New York Times. But Twitter has become its ultimate editor. As the ethics and mores of that platform have become those of the paper, the paper itself has increasingly become a kind of performance space. Stories are chosen and told in a way to satisfy the narrowest of audiences, rather than to allow a curious public to read about the world and then draw their own conclusions. I was always taught that journalists were charged with writing the first rough draft of history. Now, history itself is one more ephemeral thing molded to fit the needs of a predetermined narrative.

Showing up for work as a centrist at an American newspaper should not require bravery.”

II. E.  Slanted Journalism and the 2020 Election | Sharyl Attkisson

Sharyl Attkisson, Author, “Slanted: How the News Media Taught Us to Love Censorship and Hate Journalism”. This speech was given at a Hillsdale College National Leadership Seminar on February 19, 2021, in Phoenix, Arizona.



A.      What happened at the Capitol Breach in Washington D.C. during the rally ? An Inside Look.
Video clip - #1

Independent journalist Jeremy Lee Quinn livestreamed the breach into the Capitol on January 6. He has been documenting social unrest across the country, including Black Lives Matter, Antifa , MAGA and Proud Boys events, along with the activities of various militia groups. In this interview he discusses who he met there, the various ideological reasons they came, and how mainstream news got a lot of it wrong.


B.      What are The Effects of Political Alliances Within Traditional & Social Media ?

Video #1

Journalist Alison Morrow recently served as Environmental Reporter for KING TV, the NBC affiliate in Seattle. She is the recipient of two Emmy Awards, an Associated Press Award and the prestigious Sigma Delta Chi Award for Excellence in Journalism from the Society of Professional Journalists.

President Joe Biden was sworn in as the 46th President of the United States while 15,000 National Guard members were stationed in what many called a "militarized" DC. Associated Press reporter Mike Balsamo tweeted, "Downtown Washington is basically a military and law enforcement fortress a day before the inauguration. There are checkpoints at nearly every corner, streets blocked off with giant trucks & National Guard troops continue streaming in."

Meanwhile, protestors were out in Portland and Seattle for the direct action which included reports of smashed windows at the historic Starbucks in Pike Place Market and the Democrat Party of Oregon, - no troops.


C. What is the reality vs the perception of the protestors and protests in Portland Ore ?

Nancy Rommelmann is an author, and reporter in Portland for Reason magazine. She discusses with Bret the current situation in Portland Oregon.

DarkHorse Podcast with Nancy Rommelmann and Bret Weinstein   - video clip



Are News & Social Media technology creating information “Filter Bubbles” ? 

IV.  1. TED talk – Eli Pariser  - Video Clip

The unintended consequence of algorithms commonly used in newsfeeds and online search-engines is to get trapped in a "filter bubble" and not be exposed to information that could challenge or broaden our worldview. Eli Pariser demonstrates how this will ultimately prove to be bad for us and bad for democracy.

2.      British View on US Election (Brendan O'Neill & Bret Weinstein)  - Video clip

Brendan O' Neill is an author and host of podcast The Brendan O'Neill Show for Spiked. He discusses with Bret the current situation in the US and how it relates to historical events.


3.   Evolutionary biologists Bret Weinstein and Heather Heying discuss the principles required to avoid a “soft-totalitarianism” transforming our democratic system.


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