Democrats and the establishment media have been suggesting the potential use of government intervention against Twitter from the very moment it became clear that Elon Musk intended to take ownership of the platform. The reasons why were at once obvious and nebulous to anyone tracking the transition of the company - Democrats enjoyed an immense double standard advantage in the way old Twitter handled TOS and censorship, but the public really had no idea the extent to which government agencies were involved in that same censorship.
While old Twitter received requests for the "investigation" of platform users and comments from both sides of the political aisle, the vast majority of people actually censored or banned from the site were conservatives as well as moderates who spoke out against establishment narratives.
This was most evident in the case of Hunter Biden's laptop, which was immediately labeled a "conspiracy theory" that you could be banned for discussing, anyone defending the January 6th protests and refuting Democrat claims that the event was an "insurrection," and most notably the sweeping censorship campaign to suppress any contrary information dealing with the covid virus and its origins.
The release of the Twitter Files showcased a vast network of government agencies deeply entrenched in the activities of the site, with regular interactions between officials and Trust and Safety heads seeking to manipulate or dictate public discourse on various issues. This behavior was so normalized that the FBI was even paying Twitter millions of dollars for the "processing" of their censorship requests. These were not "criminal requests" as the media claims, but requests for the company to examine specific users and tweets for possible removal.
The files acted as a smoking gun, exposing the reality that governments (primarily leftist governments) were actively colluding with social media giants to eliminate free speech. In the US, this is constitutionally illegal, yet to this day not one agency or politician has been punished for their violations of the 1st Amendment. The media has engaged in an extensive propaganda campaign ever since the release of the files in an attempt to sow doubt about their validity.
There are certainly other reasons why the establishment would be so hostile to Elon Musk taking control of Twitter (data scraping for the benefit of covert AI development is one of them), but clearly, under the previous Twitter regime the company was nothing more than a "Ministry Of Truth" acting at the behest of power brokers and government interests while posing as an independent corporation.
This is likely the reason why the FTC has now been tapped to consistently harass and investigate the operations of Twitter under Musk. The site was under the control of the proper elites before, so there was no need for them to engage in a fear campaign. Now, ostensibly, it is no longer a sock puppet organization, and so the government goes on the attack. The motivations are rather transparent, but the head of the FTC, Lina Khan, continues to deny that their overt pressure on Elon Musk is anything other than normal.
Why's Joe Biden's FTC afraid of free speech? pic.twitter.com/hTZIrj2GmN— Rep. Jim Jordan (@Jim_Jordan) July 13, 2023
One question that Rep. Jim Jordan should have asked Lina Khan is this: If Twitter has been a data or national security concern since 2010, why is the FTC only becoming so aggressive in their investigations in 2023 after Musk's takeover of the platform? As Jordan notes, the sudden government intrusion into Twitter appears to be a harassment effort linked directly to Musk's intentions to increase free speech and reduce censorship of various issues.
Khan has been previously accused by FTC commissioner Kristine Wilson (who resigned) of engaging in extreme partisanship in favor of the Democratic Party while centralizing power and disregarding the rule of law. Her activities appear to be widely influenced by political chicanery rather than legitimate privacy concerns or national security.
Twitter still has a host of problems that need to be resolved in terms of interactions and also foreign government interference, but it is indeed a much freer place to speak in the past year. Those who have no stake in the fate of social media might say that Twitter's fight with the FTC is ultimately meaningless, but they would be wrong. Rising government intrusions into speech hubs and collusion between political leaders and corporate leaders represent a form of shadow governance that should not be tolerated in any free society.
If left unchecked, we risk losing our right to public redress forever.