The rise of financial blacklisting

The rise of financial blacklisting, by James Delingpole.

Can you imagine how scary it would be to live in a world where your livelihood depended on having the ‘correct’ politics? It’s the sort of thing you might expect of totalitarian regimes — Baathist Iraq under Saddam Hussain; everywhere that has ever tried communism; increasingly, Xi’s panopticon China — but definitely not of any liberal democracy in the 21st century.

From the world of government funded science research in Australia, it’s already here. Definitely.

Delingpole is one of the latest victims:

That dystopian future, though, may be much closer than you think. I only properly appreciated this recently when the podcast I’ve been doing for the last few years was mysteriously dropped by my regular employer, forcing me to seek funding sources from elsewhere.

If I were impeccably ‘progressive’, this would be a doddle. I could monetize my content through ads on YouTube, I could crowdfund donations through Patreon, I could promote my work with regular appearances on CNN. But if you’re snarky and irreverent and you won’t play the virtue-signaling game then your options are much more limited. Any deviation from the path of ‘woke’ righteousness – even just a misjudged joke or a remark taken out of context – can get you branded a ‘far right’ extremist and your audience won’t be allowed to pay you even if they want to. …

There isn’t space here to discuss why they are doing it. It is simply an observable fact that, as Breitbart writer Allum Bokhari puts it, ‘it has become increasingly difficult for individuals engaged in controversial yet lawful speech to fund their activities online.’ Even liberals are starting to worry. Banks and credit card companies, says the left-leaning Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), have become ‘de facto internet censors.’ …

So the battle lines for free speech in 2019 have been drawn: on the one side Silicon Valley and its authoritarian ‘progressive’ sympathizers everywhere from academe to the card payment processing industry; on the other, all those people who’d prefer the internet to be a place where they are free to make whatever jokes they like, express whatever viewpoint they like and fund whichever creatives they like, uncensored by the tech and finance worlds’ self-appointed Witchfinders General.

Oh and just in case you’re interested, my now independent podcast — which you can find archived at Delingpoleworld.com — is just about the best thing on the internet, especially for anyone craving an antidote to relentless political correctness. If you don’t love it, you can have your money back — and that’s a promise!

via Tip of the Spear