Republicans Must Stop the Big Banks From Destroying the First Amendment With “Financial Deplatforming”
December 29, 2020 (9mo ago)

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Right now, the single most existential threat to free speech in America is the rise of financial deplatforming. If conservatives want to preserve the ability to think and speak freely in the decades to come, they must act to prevent the country’s most powerful financial institutions from imposing a brutal censorship regime on the entire country.

Lenin never actually said “the capitalists will sell us the rope with which to hang them,” but that apocryphal quote exactly describes the present-day hapless Republican party’s relationship to Big Tech and the left. In Congress and across fifty state legislatures, the GOP’s shortsighted support for laissez-fair economics is allowing left-wing corporations to plot their destruction.

Conservative writer Bay Buchanan recently summed up the danger in a piece for CNS News:

Time and time again, corporations [have] bent the knee before outraged activists and stifled the free speech of ordinary Americans. We see this when social media giants regularly censor and ban individuals who run afoul of liberal orthodoxy. … Less noticed is the threat of financial de-platforming. This growing menace means those who dissent from the official left-wing line won’t even be allowed to bank or use a credit card. [CNS]

Throughout the Trump era, the left has increasingly leveraged its cozy relationships with oligarchic corporations to make it difficult or impossible for patriots to raise money or obtain other financial services essential to modern life.

In New York, state financial regulators pressured banks and insurance companies to deny services to the NRA on the grounds that those services created “reputational risk” that would invite further regulatory harassment.

Conservative activist and former Congressional candidate Laura Loomer has been banned from PayPal, GoFundMe, and Venmo in an effort to keep others from donating to her.

At the request of the discredited Southern Poverty Law Center, Visa and MasterCard stopped processing donations to the David Horowitz Freedom Center.

In 2018, Citigroup announced that it would not help any company borrow money or use banking services if it was involved in the (legal) sale of firearms to those under 21. Shotgun manufacturers have had their bank accounts closed. So have contractors working with federal immigration enforcement.

In 2019, Chase Bank forcibly closed every account for Proud Boys leader Enrique Tarrio. Tarrio has also been banned by PayPal and many other credit card payment processors. The intent is clear: Because Tarrio is linked to a group the left hates, he must not be allowed the basic trappings of a normal life.

It is inevitable that under a Biden Administration these tactics will get more and more aggressive. The time to start fighting back is right now.

Some in the Trump administration have fought to reverse the deplatforming trend and hold the big banks accountable.  The Office of Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) recently drafted a rule that would bar major banks from denying services to customers for any reason other than a “documented failure to meet quantitative, impartial risk-based standards established in advance.” In other words, banks could only reject customers for valid financial reasons, not political ones.

The OCC’s leadership understands the importance of this rule.

“Banks don’t set national policy. They don’t choose what goods and services are available to consumers. Nor do they determine which industries are legal. It is the job of democratically elected government to make those decisions,” OCC acting comptroller Brian Brooks and OCC chief economist Charles Calomiris wrote in a November Wall Street Journal op-ed.

The OCC deserves credit for its willingness to stand up against big banks. Unfortunately, this position is not shared by others in the Trump administration. As Revolver recently reported, Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin proposed new regulations this month that would block Bitcoin transactions and hinder the economic freedom of ordinary Americans. In the internet age, Bitcoin and other decentralized cryptocurrencies are the single best antidote to financial deplatforming. Castrating crytocurrencies would therefore deliver a major victory to big banks and the left-wing ideologues who increasingly fill their senior executive posts. The OCC’s proposal to bar major banks from denying services to customers for political reasons would apply to all bank transactions and include cryptocurrency.

Some Republican senators, such as Ted Cruz, wisely support the OCC’s initiative, but other Republicans are distracted. Some even endorse financial deplatforming as a tool. Missouri Senator Josh Hawley praised MasterCard for deplatforming Pornhub earlier this month and urged “every other credit card company” to follow suit.

It’s upsetting to see Senator Hawley be so clueless. It’s clear from his statement that Hawley understands the power of powerful financial deplatforming — if Pornhub loses access to financial platforms, it will be crippled or killed.

To be clear, pornography is insidious and fighting it is a moral imperative. Pornhub should be put out of business. But the way to ban internet pornography is by simply enforcing obscenity laws that are already on the books. Conservatives controlled the Department of Justice for the past four years, and yet they did nothing to combat this scourge. As the National Review has previously noted, this is not a constitutional issue.

As a matter of Supreme Court doctrine, the regulation of 21st-century Internet pornography is not a constitutional issue. This is because the type of material found on American porn websites clearly constitutes obscene material, which has never been treated as constitutionally protected speech under the First Amendment. [National Review]

And as First Things previously noted, Ronald Reagan’s DOJ largely put the pornography industry out of business in the 1980s.

The late 1980s saw a major political effort, led by an ideologically diverse coalition of Christian conservatives and liberal feminists, to take on the pornography industry. The movement passed legislation that cracked down on sex trafficking, criminalized digital transmission of child pornography, and required producers to engage in record-keeping and age verification for all participants in the production of pornographic material. President Ronald Reagan put “the purveyors of illegal obscenity and child ­pornography on notice: your industry’s days are numbered.”

In addition to signing anti-­pornography legislation, Reagan directed the Department of Justice to enforce existing obscenity statutes against wholesale and large retail distributors. The strategy was ­successful. According to the DOJ, by 1990, seven of these nationwide distributors had been forced “out of business” after settling with government prosecutors. Unfortunately, President Bill Clinton’s DOJ did not prioritize enforcement of these statutes. [First Things]

The financial deplatforming of Pornhub is clearly a Pyrrhic victory that conservatives shouldn’t cheer, especially as it distracts from the real problem — that the DOJ is either impotent or captured by special interests.

We absolutely must not normalize financial deplatforming simply because one target deserves to be destroyed. Asking banks and credit card companies to censor a nominally lawful business creates a precedent that will be used against conservatives and other political dissidents. Liberal politicians would love to have credit card processors cut off gun rights groups and pro-lifers. If the Pornhub incident becomes a precedent, any business or group that offends the powerful will be subject to an extrajudicial death sentence.

Disgracefully, left-wing organizations that pose as free speech advocates have been quiet on this issue. The Electronic Frontier Foundation denounced MasterCard’s attack on Pornhub, but it has been totally silent on the OCC’s proposed rule. For the left, “free speech” is only useful when protecting pornographers, not for preserving actual political speech.

Republicans must back the OCC’s rule. The proposal is currently open for public comment at Regulations.gov, and all concerned citizens should voice their support. Fighting for financial liberty must be a conservative priority in the years to come. It’s a battle just as important, if not more important, than the battle against Big Tech’s censorship. If conservative and populist groups can’t raise money online, the First Amendment is a nullity. If gun makers and sellers can’t have bank accounts, then the Second Amendment is dead. If ICE can’t find contractors because banks have decided they shouldn’t exist, then we don’t even have a country.

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Guest
8 months ago

Yeah, like the deep state, globalist neocon republicans are not in bed with the big banks just as much if not more than the left is. Please… you are talking about the same corrupt, uniparty, deep state scum that helped steal an election from their own party president.

They won't even have the senate a month from now. The dems won't even need to cheat in GA because 20% or more of us have abandoned the traitors in the GOP.

left blank
8 months ago

The Republicans struggle with the idea that United States has a border, so I find it hard to believe they would ever do anything but defer to their friends in the Banking Industry. In short, the Republicans are basically unwilling to assert any kind of political leadership and have lost their way as a moral or political force in America. They all seem to be laying low until the current crises blow over and then they will be back with more freebies for globalist corporations and invasions for their NeoCon sponsors in the Middle East. Oh yeah… and funding for gender studies programs in Pakistan, where girls can't even open a bank account without the signature of a male relative.

David Simmerman
8 months ago

The Covid lockdowns of small business, is part of same vain. Leaving only large companies, that can control and push a racist communist agenda.

Jilli
8 months ago

Vain vein. 😉

Guest
8 months ago

During consultation with an attorney regarding a financial matter, the attorney made a statement that I've never forgotten. He said "The banks are the government and the government is the banks". And then it dawned on me that the banks and the government have always religiously observed the same "government" holidays for as long as I've been alive. If the banks are involved in financial de-platforming, then the government is on board with that, because it is essentially the same entity or entities.

Jilli
8 months ago

The Dodd-Frank bill gave the Feds the power to confiscate any money you have in a bank account at any time for any "national emergency" they see fit. You'd be better off keeping it in a padlocked safe built under your home's floor. Until they come and confiscate your home too because you can't pay your rising taxes.

Guest
8 months ago

I think we should de-platform the banks.

Guest
8 months ago

We need more Decentralized payment processors and banks that accept Cryptocurrency or can convert real money into crypto easily. Otherwise this is going to be as bad as other monopolies were in the early 19th century were it took literal decades to solve these problems.

Guest
8 months ago

You have to understand who owns the finance industry and why they do what they do before you try to circumvent them with something like crypto. If you don't know who holds all the cards (money and power aka armies) and why/how they will consume crypto you don't have a chance. Until you correctly identify the enemy you're spinning your wheels as they laugh at your futile efforts.

Guest
8 months ago

Banks are apart of an oligarchy in of itself and aligned with corperations and congress it's called the deep state due to the webs that are interconnected amongst government itself. Usually entities like banks are not supposed to be partisan in nature but I think they have become a bit activistic in trying to be arbitors of truth rather than being neutral in the sense of providing a service so as long as there is no terroristic threats and motives etc.

Guest
8 months ago

It is even worse when you realize that MI6, the CIA/FBI are all just essentially private armies for the banks whose majority shares are controlled by a handful of uber-wealthy families mostly based out of London & New York …

Guest
8 months ago

This is a very simple Supreme Court issue. Those de-platformed entities need to sue the banks. What the banks are doing is tantamount to depriving people/companies of their first amendment rights.

Guest
8 months ago

Its easier said than done the main issue is congress is mostly elderly and out of touch with what is going on. At times I just think it's time to get younger politicians in who can get things done. The Supreme Court might get involved if things get too bad but who knows.

Admin User
8 months ago

paraphrasing Agent Smith to Neo in The Matrix: what good is a lawsuit if you're unable to pay the lawyer?

Guest
8 months ago

There are 6 heritage foundation approved sc judges and three leftists. How do you really think this very simple issue would go before the sc?

Garion60
8 months ago

They'll treat that issue just like the STOLEN ELECTION issue that Texas and 16 other States brought. They're the SUPREME COWARDS now…it's THEIR COURT so therefore THEIR LAWS. How's that working out for ya?

celticross
7 months ago

It's also lending discrimination.

Guest
8 months ago

So. What kind of car payment do you think you can afford?

Guest
8 months ago

In Weimerica that's not the real question. The question is how much more unaffordable will your car payment (and other bills) be next year than they were last.

K. Hildegraff
8 months ago

(1) One comment stated, "just sue the banks for wrongful account termination!"

If anyone here thinks that the U.S. Supreme Court is going to help … when it can't even stop nationwide election fraud … you must think you're living in the former United States of America. You're in a whole NEW … and much WORSE … country now.

(2) And where were all the many conservatives over a year ago, maybe 2 years ago, when Andrew Anglin of the DAILYSTORMER got completely deplatformed and canceled, EVERYWHERE. Every payment processor, every domain not just in the West, but worldwide.

You "conservatives" are just as bad as the Left, worse maybe:

my enemy is bad, but a TRAITOR within my own ranks is WORSE (paraphrase of quote by Corneliu Zelea Codreanu).

If Nazis! Nazis! Nazis! get censored, conservatives are overjoyed. Even while BLM is all over the place on the web and getting all kinds of money from small donors and from George Soros: no payment processing issues there!

At this point, it seems that "conservative Republicans" don't have what it takes to fight back.

And we'll see by February of 2021 if "conservative Republicans" CAN fight back. If Biden is installed, that will be proof positive that … they CANNOT.

Jilli
8 months ago

Defeatism never solved anything.

Guest
8 months ago

Go be Hasbara someplace else.

Jilli
8 months ago

Go be an anti-Semite somewhere else, hellbound one. Anyone who writes "Jesus wasn't a Jew" like you did is mentally ill, unsaved, and Satanic. Tsk tsk tsk. Your opinion on anything counts for nothing because you are a profoundly stupid, bitter, unloved, hellbound person filled with hate for the Jews and Israel, and you hate President Trump too. Tsk tsk tsk. Get help, ugly soul "man". You're not conservative you're evil.

Guest
8 months ago

He is right. Jesus was not a Jew. He had golden hair and beard and blue eyes and was from Galilee, the land of the Gentiles.

Jilli
8 months ago

Another class A-1 unsaved, hellbound idiot biblical ignoramus. Why did they call Him "rabbi"? Why did the angel tell Mary that someday Jesus would "inherit the throne of His father, David." David was Jewish. Mary was Jewish. Joseph was Jewish. As a Jew, Jesus observed Passover (John 2:13), the Feast of Tabernacles (John 7:2, 10), and Hanukkah, (John 10:22). Jesus was called the King of the Jews (Mark 15:2). The Messiah prophesied in the Old Testament was a Jewish savior, one chosen by God for a special purpose. The Messiah was to serve God by redeeming Israel and then ruling from Zion, bringing peace, righteousness, and security to Israel (see Isaiah 9:6—7; 32:1; Jeremiah 23:5; Zechariah 9:9). When Jesus returns at Armageddon He returns to save Israel and to rule from Jerusalem for 1000 years, the future Millennial Kingdom. Get saved, hellbound one (Ephesians 2:8,9), and start studying the Bible. If you die in a car crash tomorrow you will be in the flames of eternal hellfire. No escape, ever.

Admin User
8 months ago

+1000 re Andrew Anglin. This all really started with Dylann Roof. His display of Confederate imagery allowed the left to equivocate those symbols with murder.

Remember when Trump asked, after the Charlottesville incident, when the left would pull down Washington and Jefferson? It already happened.

Its hard to believe that the ACLU once defended the NAZI Party of America's right to stage a public march in Skokie, IL before the Supreme Court – and won on First Amendment grounds.

Guest
8 months ago

It already happened while trump was our leader. According to trump it's been bidens American for years but let us not forget who our leader was when those all those cultural icons were torn down.

Guest
8 months ago

The ACLU is a Jewish organization now. Jews define "good" as whatever's good for the Jews. Jews are the biggest enemies of free speech. Look no further than the holohoax industry imprisoning people for applying ration and chemistry to its lucrative, untenable narrative. Until realization that Jėws comprised 5% of the Russian population yet 70% of the Bolshevik leadership that killed more Christians than German Socialists killed Jews, defense of liberty will not be as effective as it could be.
=
Until realization that Karl Marx's father was a rabbi and that Jews comprised 5% of the Russian population yet 70% of the Bolshevik leadership that killed more Christians than German Socialists killed Jews, defense of liberty will not be as effective as it could be. Getting to the root of this subversive, parasitic destruction without finding Jews at the source is like researching malaria without encountering mosquitoes.

Guest
8 months ago

You are extremely right on most counts. The SC is totally compromised. The mainstream "conservatives" have been worse than useless for decades. The problem is that DS was a setup from the start. They wouldn't have had a starting point for the censorship agenda if there wasn't a DS. Then magically there was a DS and the censorship agenda could proceed.

Guest
8 months ago

What's the point of complaining about the Pornhub deplatforming setting a "precedent" when clearly there have already been precedents set? They're already deplatforming the right, as this very article describes. A win's a win, we should take what we can get.
Not that I'm against what the OCC is doing, mind you. I'm not expecting more wins from Mastercard and Visa.

Guest
8 months ago

The main problem with this argument is that it does not go into customer protections. Not only do people who organize to protest lose their their bank accounts,social media they lose their jobs and are unable to get hired anywhere due to constant harassment from organizations.

I would argue that Customers should be protected from being deplatformed from Banks, Jobs, and ways of payment no matter the political views unless they are involved in terroristic activities or are foreign spies.

Also let me state while I can understand porn should not be free and easily accessible it should be paid for. Which it seems like the Credit Card companies are taking a step in doing. I do not think there should be obscenity laws or anti porn legislation other than for real people not works of fiction which unfortunately is a step back in terms of novels and interactive imagery especially if it's 3D or VR on 18+ storefronts which credit card companies are hesitant to take on.

The results are hollow as it is not going to solve the problems of Society overall. And like you mentioned misses the huge point in neutral protections so as long as everyone follows the rules and marks their stuff as 18+ and has warning labels on products.

I will end off by saying to me it seems like right wing organizations are more focused on cheap attacks and false victories than the actual things that matter. Especially with protection laws and understanding differences between fiction and reality.

Guest
8 months ago

Revolver News has just opened up a much-needed national, no, make that global, conversation regarding the banks. FORGET the Republicans, it's just a pretext for the discussion. Banks need to be disintermediated. Period. Full stop.

The misery that has been caused by banks down through the ages cannot be underestimated. They are behind all wars. They are behind the scamdemic. And many other undesirable conditions.

Guest
8 months ago

If a bank deplatforms me, I’ll deplatform them.

lawisevil
8 months ago

That is the single easiest thing in the world to solve. When you do it do you also want to destroy the fed? It would take about 1 year to do.

Here is how you do it. Simply establish a depository bank that loans no money to anyone. There is no fractional banking and hence no real issues other than losing money by hacking or embezzlement.

Charge the average person $1 a month to have an account to do everything from deposit money to pay bills and to use the banks special debit card for regular everyday transactions. The insufficient money fees and things that banks charge a fortune for will be $.25 or nonexistent.

Vendors who deposit in the bank can accept the banks debit cards. So they will be forced to establish accounts if they want to accept the debit card that only charges them $.25 and .75% per transaction. (Goodbye Visa, MC, Amex, Pay Pal and on and on and on.)

Now when you get to $5 Trillion in total deposits because of the 500-1 leverage in the derivatives market the ability to do derivatives will end because you just took 2,500 Trillion out of the derivatives market. That means no more FED. That means no more Deficits by the US government. That means no more trade deficits with Communist China and on and on the list goes.

Loans can be taken over by depositors at the bank forming their own lending or micro-lending group where depositors can participate in all loans by simply buying share but with no fractional banking and short repayment periods.

Guest
8 months ago

This has already been solved by Bitcoin.

Guest
8 months ago

I’m skeptical that Republicans can or will stop anything.

Guest
8 months ago

Now we have to start our own banks? Might as well just get it over with and secede from the America hating commies and socialist. We are on the way to being silenced with voice and thought

Guest
8 months ago

It's not about preventing it, it's already happening. Numerous sites I visit cannot take online payments with anything except bitcoin.

Guest
8 months ago

The 1st amendment applies to Congress. "Congress shall make no law". Pretty straightforward.
I am a conservative independent that believes that there was fraud and cheating perpetrated in the voting on 3November.
Zuckerberg's money bought the election and he should be arrested for sedition.

RedBelle
8 months ago

"Republicans" arent going to do anything! They had a chance–they had multiple chances over multiple years. They had all 3 Branches of Govt for 2 years and all they wanted to do was backstab PDT, prevent him from keeping any of his promises, bail on Obamacare and pass a Tax Cut for their crony caplitalist Donors. To think they will do anything now instead of orchestrating more "Failure Theater" is wishful thinking.

Guest
8 months ago

Getting to the root of this parasitic subversion without finding Jews at the source is like researching malaria without encountering mosquitoes. Karl Marx's father was a rabbi. Until realization that Jėws comprised 5% of the Russian population yet 70% of the Bolshevik leadership that killed more Christians than German Socialists killed Jews, defense of liberty will not be as effective as it could be. Refer to Drs Kevin MacDonald and E Michael Jones. Christ our Lord called Jews children of their father the devil: the father of lies and murder in John 8:44.

bitcoin pasada
8 months ago

You can start to see how politically neutral Bitcoin is going to become incredibly important in the years ahead. It might make sense to get some, just in case it catches on 😉

bitcoin pasada
8 months ago

Bitcoin is a politically neutral money that solves the problem of deplatforming. Bitcoin is free speech money. You know how they always say "vote with your dollars." Well that is exactly what you're doing when you hold US dollars. You're voting to stay within the corrupt system that has brought all this dysfunction upon us. We now have an exit ramp, and that is called Bitcoin. Bitcoin doesn't care about your political beliefs, and it doesn't care how you want to spend your money. Your money is yours. I hope this is an opportunity for conservatives to do some research and understand the importance of sound money not only for themselves, but for restoring the American Republic as a whole.

Guest
8 months ago

Bitcoin is neonazi money. Shut it down

bitcoin pasada
8 months ago

You are obviously very ignorant about this. Bitcoin is, as I mentioned above, politically neutral. Anyone can use it, as it is an open p2p network. I suggest you learn more about Austrian economics and Bitcoin before dismissing something you simply know nothing about. Bitcoin will free the world from the communist scourge.

left blank
8 months ago

The Republican party is dead. They aren't able to do anything to help anyone and they aren't willing to fight for anything. The moment the Democrats and the entire Media-Big Tech-Globalist oligarchy decides to shut them off, they are completely shut off. The only thing the Republicans ever had going for them was that business people generally supported their "fiscal responsibility" policies but even that has been flushed completely down the toilet as almost every state has crushed businesses mercilessly with the lockdowns and the Republican party just stood by and let it happen. I would not donate to or vote for such complete losers ever again in my life. My only hope is that Trump starts his own America First party and drives a stake through the heart of this zombie party that has proven itself to be completely worthless.

Guest
8 months ago

To think that Republicans will stop anything is delusional and childish. The GOP aren’t the “good guys”. They are at least 50% of the problem.

left blank
8 months ago

Aaaaaaaaannnnnnndddddddd…. then Trump's personal bank accounts are closed. LOL.

celticross
7 months ago

So redlining of conservatives is A-OK…Just another example of inner city privilege, I guess.

Guest
7 months ago

They are private business. As long as they aren't refusing to do business with someone in a protected class they are safe. Political affiliation needs to be added to the list. It's a case of being persecuted for your beliefs.

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