Using the Hamas terror attack against Israel on October 7, New York Governor Kathy Hochul has announced that police-state surveillance of online speech will intensify. The governor’s speech on November 13 is particularly ominous given Attorney General Letitia James’s Soviet-style lawfare to shut down VDARE.com with bogus allegations of financial improprieties vis-à-vis the Berkeley Springs Castle. Hochul’s message: I’m watching your social media.
“Antisemitism” and “Islamophobia” are running wild since the attack, Hochul said, and so she will pump another $75 million into law enforcement. Maybe that’s not a bad idea given that Israeli and Palestinian partisans are fighting in our streets.
But here’s what should concern free-speech advocates:
We’re very focused on the data we’re collecting from surveillance efforts. What’s being said on social media platforms. And we have launched an effort to be able to counter some of the negativity. and reach out to people when we see hate speech being spoken about on online platforms. Our media analysis, our social media analysis unit, has ramped up its monitoring of sites to catch incitement to violence; direct threats to others, and all this is in response to our desire, our strong commitment, to ensure that not only do New Yorkers be safe, but they also feel safe because personal security is about everything for them.
[Following Increase in Hate and Bias Incidents, Governor Hochul Deploys Additional Staff to Joint Terrorism Task Force, Governor.NY.gov, November 13, 2023]
Hochul’s newly-fortified Empire State Stasi will also watch for “hate and bias incidences” and “vile language,” and vowed “to make sure that every single complaint is run down and investigated. And if they've crossed the line from hate speech into a hate crime, that there will be prosecutions. … If you’ve been violated, you’ve been harassed, physically, verbally, you have to let us know so we can step up and protect you.”
Every … single … complaint.
Again, Hochul claims she’s responding to “hate incidents” relative to the Hamas terror attack, but the vague communist code words are clearly a warning to dissidents … like VDARE.com.
Imagine what will happen next:
Joe Sobran wrote that “antisemitic” functioned identically to “anti-Soviet.” Both are undefined, and being undefined they are unfalsifiable. Guilt is imputed in the charge itself. So also with “hate speech,” “incitement to violence,” “direct threats to others,” and “harassed physically and verbally.”
Virtually anything and everything on X could fit one of the categories. And again, the governor will “make sure that every single complaint is run down and investigated.”
Dissident New Yorkers better brace themselves to be questioned about if not arrested for Crime Think.
Big Sister is watching you.