Silenced and Broke

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Silenced and Broke

by baldilocks

Some mock as a con­spir­acy the­ory the notion of a finan­cial elite gath­er­ing to impose its will on the rab­ble. Mean­while, the­ory has become fact.

It is the most total­i­tar­ian form of black­list­ing: not just to be pre­vented from speak­ing on a uni­ver­sity cam­pus, or to be kicked off social media, but to be shut out of the entire finan­cial sys­tem. That is the ter­ri­fy­ing new threat to free­dom that west­ern soci­eties must now con­tend with.

Finan­cial black­list­ing doesn’t just rob you of a chance to spread your mes­sage: it robs you of your abil­ity to do busi­ness, your liveli­hood, your very means of func­tion­ing in a cap­i­tal­ist soci­ety. Thanks to the encroach­ment of pro­gres­sive ide­ol­ogy into the finan­cial indus­try — includ­ing major credit card com­pa­nies like Visa, Dis­cover, and Mas­ter­card — it has now become a reality. (…)

In August, Mas­ter­card and Dis­cover deplat­formed con­ser­v­a­tive and Islam critic Robert Spencer. In the same month, Visa and Mas­ter­card ceased ser­vice to David Horowitz. While credit card pro­cess­ing ser­vice to Horowitz was even­tu­ally restored, Spencer remains finan­cially blacklisted.

Crowd­fund­ing plat­forms like Patreon, which allow online con­tent cre­ators to col­lect dona­tions from their sup­port­ers, are fre­quently cast as the pri­mary vil­lains in finan­cial black­list­ing. Patreon’s recent ban of YouTu­ber Carl Ben­jamin, bet­ter known by his moniker Sar­gon of Akkad, trig­gered a cri­sis for the plat­form. Both donors and cre­ators — includ­ing promi­nent athe­ist Sam Har­ris — quit the plat­form in protest, while Jor­dan Peter­son and Dave Rubin pledged to cre­ate an alter­na­tive plat­form that is pro-​free speech.

But Patreon and other crowd­fund­ing plat­forms are not the real vil­lains. They are depen­dent on the whims of the credit card com­pa­nies, some­thing that was already appar­ent in August when Mas­ter­card forced them to with­draw ser­vice from Robert Spencer. We now know that the credit card com­pa­nies were also a fac­tor in Patreon’s deci­sion to boot Benjamin.

Peter’s Mag­nif­i­cent Seven and my own blog are funded by indi­vid­ual dona­tions through Pay­pal, which pro­vides debit and credit cards from the major com­pa­nies men­tioned. When we look back on some of the recent deci­sions Pay­pal has made – such as rescind­ing the inten­tion to build a cen­ter in Char­lotte, North Car­olina after the state’s man­date for sep­a­rate bath­rooms and locker-​rooms for men and women – the pat­tern becomes clearer. There is also the fact that Pay­pal and other sim­i­lar ser­vices don’t allow card hold­ers to use the cards for the pur­chase of firearms.

One is also reminded of the 2008 pres­i­den­tial elec­tion when the credit card safeties on the Obama cam­paign web­site were inop­er­a­ble. Any com­bi­na­tion of num­bers in the account num­ber field allowed any­one – includ­ing for­eign nation­als — to con­tribute to the campaign.

Nine years ago, I pos­tu­lated that we, the nor­mal cit­i­zens, were being herded by the Orga­nized Left into a sec­ond civil war. One has to admit that their man­i­fold meth­ods of inflam­ing the rab­ble are ingenious.

Is there a way out? A mir­a­cle? Every day I pray for at least one.

Mean­while, hit the tip jar while you can.

Juli­ette Akinyi Ochieng has been blog­ging since 2003 as baldilocks. Her older blog is here. She pub­lished her first novel, Tale of the Tigers: Love is Not a Game in 2012.

Fol­low her on Face­book, Twit­ter, MeWe, and Gab.

Hit Da Tech Guy Blog’s Tip Jar or hit Juliette’s!

Update DTG: 1st Insta­lanche of the year, thanks Glenn as Juli­ette says it’s get­ting harder to make a buck as a Trump supporter.


This site is paid for by you. Last year we man­aged $5294 of our $22K goal. If you think what we do worth­while please con­sider sub­scrib­ing to help keep our writ­ers and the bills paid.

Choose a Sub­scrip­tion level
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by baldilocks

Some mock as a conspiracy theory the notion of a financial elite gathering to impose its will on the rabble. Meanwhile, theory has become fact.

It is the most totalitarian form of blacklisting: not just to be prevented from speaking on a university campus, or to be kicked off social media, but to be shut out of the entire financial system. That is the terrifying new threat to freedom that western societies must now contend with.

Financial blacklisting doesn’t just rob you of a chance to spread your message: it robs you of your ability to do business, your livelihood, your very means of functioning in a capitalist society. Thanks to the encroachment of progressive ideology into the financial industry — including major credit card companies like Visa, Discover, and Mastercard — it has now become a reality. (…)

In August, Mastercard and Discover deplatformed conservative and Islam critic Robert Spencer. In the same month, Visa and Mastercard ceased service to David Horowitz. While credit card processing service to Horowitz was eventually restored, Spencer remains financially blacklisted.

Crowdfunding platforms like Patreon, which allow online content creators to collect donations from their supporters, are frequently cast as the primary villains in financial blacklisting. Patreon’s recent ban of YouTuber Carl Benjamin, better known by his moniker Sargon of Akkad, triggered a crisis for the platform. Both donors and creators — including prominent atheist Sam Harris — quit the platform in protest, while Jordan Peterson and Dave Rubin pledged to create an alternative platform that is pro-free speech.

But Patreon and other crowdfunding platforms are not the real villains. They are dependent on the whims of the credit card companies, something that was already apparent in August when Mastercard forced them to withdraw service from Robert Spencer. We now know that the credit card companies were also a factor in Patreon’s decision to boot Benjamin.

Peter’s Magnificent Seven and my own blog are funded by individual donations through Paypal, which provides debit and credit cards from the major companies mentioned. When we look back on some of the recent decisions Paypal has made – such as rescinding the intention to build a center in Charlotte, North Carolina after the state’s mandate for separate bathrooms and locker-rooms for men and women – the pattern becomes clearer.  There is also the fact that Paypal and other similar services don’t allow card holders to use the cards for the purchase of firearms.

One is also reminded of the 2008 presidential election when the credit card safeties on the Obama campaign website were inoperable. Any combination of numbers in the account number field allowed anyone — including foreign nationals — to contribute to the campaign.

Nine years ago, I postulated that we, the normal citizens, were being herded by the Organized Left into a second civil war. One has to admit that their manifold methods of inflaming the rabble are ingenious.

Is there a way out? A miracle? Every day I pray for at least one.

Meanwhile, hit the tip jar while you can.

Juliette Akinyi Ochieng has been blogging since 2003 as baldilocks. Her older blog is here.  She published her first novel, Tale of the Tigers: Love is Not a Game in 2012.

Follow her on Facebook, Twitter, MeWe, and Gab.

Hit Da Tech Guy Blog’s Tip Jar or hit Juliette’s!

Update DTG: 1st Instalanche of the year, thanks Glenn as Juliette says it’s getting harder to make a buck as a Trump supporter.

This site is paid for by you. Last year we managed $5294 of our $22K goal. If you think what we do worthwhile please consider subscribing to help keep our writers and the bills paid.
Choose a Subscription level
Fedora : $25.00 USD – monthly Hat : $20.00 USD – monthly Cap : $10.00 USD – monthly Beanie : $2.00 USD – weekly Grand Fedora : $100.00 USD – monthly
Of course one time Tip jar hits and always welcome too. Either way it’s most appreciated.