How Far Will They Really Go to “Break Up” Big Tech?

This Dr. Robert Epstein chap, he sounds a lot like me:

Epstein described Warren’s proposals to “break up big tech” as “toothless.”

“Elizabeth Warren … has now published a proposal for quote-unquote breaking up big tech, which sounds kind of great in a way, because you have to do something about these companies,” said Epstein. “But if you look at her proposal, it is absolutely toothless. All she’s suggesting is that these companies — Google and Facebook — divest themselves of some of the companies that they’ve bought.”

Epstein explained, “[Elizabeth Warren] doesn’t understand that that’s not where their power comes from. Their power comes from their main platforms, from Google search engine, which you can’t break up, and Facebook has its social media platform. You can’t break that up, either. That would be like splitting millions of families.”

Epstein continued, “So that’s where their surveillance — most of their surveillance — occurs, and that’s where most of their manipulation occurs, and you can’t break up of those parts of the company. So here’s her proposal that makes it look like she’s being aggressive on this issue, and in fact, I wonder, because she actually has received substantial donations from all three of the companies that she mentions in her proposal.”

Politicians claiming to be concerned about increasing centralization of power within Silicon Valley are often beneficiaries of donations from the same technology companies and related lobbies.

“I don’t think anything’s going to happen, to be honest with you,” predicted Epstein. “I think it’s just going to be talk, talk, talk. I think our politicians are in Google’s pocket. Google is the largest lobbyist in Washington. They spend more money on lobbying than any other company in America, and they have this amazing mind-control machine that they use 24/7.”

Epstein asked, “How do you get people to think bad things about a mind-control machine if the mind-control machine doesn’t want you to?”

“The bottom line for me is that tech changes so fast that I don’t think any regulation or laws will provide adequate protection, because regulation and law changes very slowly,” assessed Epstein. “Look back at AT&T. Look back at Standard Oil. Look back at any case you want to look at. I believe more and more in the need for setting up large-scale worldwide monitoring systems, because they can move fast. They can move lightning-fast.”

Here’s what I said about Sen. Warren’s plan back on March 12:

I can’t find much that’s objectionable here.

…shockingly, her plan says nothing about political censorship and the tech giants playing it both ways by acting as publishers but being protected as mere platforms.

Even more shockingly, the plan says nothing about the pernicious influence of big money in politics–how these giant, powerful megacorps buy and sell politicians. How can the so-called anti-Wall Street, anti-big business Elizabeth Warren not address this in her plan to break up big tech?

Big tech got to where they are because they spread their money around to people on both sides of the aisle.

Epstein’s tone was a little more stridently pessimistic than mine, but the fact remains I share his concerns. However, I do think forcing these tech behemoths to divest certain business units is a good start and a worthwhile step towards containing these unelected wielders of incredible power and influence.

As the excellent Allum Bokhari notes yet again, Google, Facebook, and their ilk actually, verifiably sway elections (emphasis mine):

New research from psychologist and search engine expert Dr. Robert Epstein shows that biased Google searches had a measurable impact on the 2018 midterm elections, pushing tens of thousands of votes towards the Democrat candidates in three key congressional races, and potentially millions more in races across the country.

The study, from Epstein and a team at the American Institute for Behavioral Research and Technology (AIBRT), analyzed Google searchesrelated to three highly competitive congressional races in Southern California. In all three races, the Democrat won — and Epstein’s research suggests that Google search bias may have tipped them over the edge.

The research follows a previous study conducted in 2016 which showed that biased Google results pushed votes to Hillary Clinton in the presidential election. Democrats and Google executives have disputed these findings.

Epstein says that in the days leading up to the 2018 midterms, he was able to preserve “more than 47,000 election-related searches on Google, Bing, and Yahoo, along with the nearly 400,000 web pages to which the search results linked.”

Analysis of this data showed a clear pro-Democrat bias in election-related Google search results as compared to competing search engines. Users performing Google searches related to the three congressional races the study focused on were significantly more likely to see pro-Democrat stories and links at the top of their results.

As Epstein’s previous studies have shown, this can have a huge impact on the decisions of undecided voters, who often assume that their search results are unbiased. Epstein has called this the Search Engine Manipulation Effect (SEME).

According to Epstein’s study, at least 35,455 undecided voters in the three districts may have been persuaded to vote for a Democrat candidate because of slanted Google search results. Considering that each vote gained by a Democrat is potentially a vote lost by a Republican, this means more than 70,910 votes may have been lost by Republicans in the three districts due to Google bias. In one of these districts, CA 45, the Democrat margin of victory was just over 12,000 votes.

The total Democrat win margin across all three districts was 71,337, meaning that bias Google searches could account for the vast majority of Democrat votes. Extrapolated to elections around the country, Epstein says that bias Google results could have influenced 4.6 million undecided voters to support Democrat candidates.

Moreover, Epstein’s findings are based on modest assumptions, such as the assumption that voters conduct one election-related search per week. According to Epstein, marketing research shows that people typically conduct 4-5 searches per day, not one per week. In other words, the true impact of biased search results could be much higher.

Epstein’s study may also understate the level of liberal bias in Google search results, due to its use of a 2017 study from Harvard’s Berkman Klein Center to rank sources by their bias. The study assigns conservative sources like Breitbart News a far higher bias rating than ostensibly centrist but in fact highly liberal sources like the New York Times. The study also gives online encyclopedia Wikipedia a non-liberal bias rating, despite the fact that its most controversial pages are typically hijacked by its cabal of left-wing editors to push partisan liberal narratives.

As the Los Angeles Times notes, Epstein is not a Republican and publicly supported Hillary Clinton in 2016. Nevertheless, Democrats and liberals continue to ignore or doubt his findings. House Judiciary Committee chairman Rep. Jerry Nadler (D-NY) has repeatedly called claims of big tech bias a “conspiracy theory,” as have other congressional Democrats. And left-wing academics interviewed by the Los Angeles Times also heaped doubt on Epstein’s work.

Dr. Robert Epstein is featured in the 2018 documentary The Creepy Line, which was produced by Breitbart News editor-at-large Peter Schweizer and explores the bias amongst the Masters of the Universe in Silicon Valley.

Breitbart News continues to expose left-wing bias at Google. Recent reports reveal that company managers have told employees that the tech giant must stop “fake news” because “that’s how Trump won,” that Google-owned YouTube adjusted its algorithms to push pro-life content off its top search results, and that the company’s own internal researchers describe the company’s changes in policy since 2016 as a “shift towards censorship.”

I know you come here to read stuff about culture and writing and so on, but this stuff is culture. Not only is it something I’m personally interested in, and will hence write about, it has a direct effect on the state of the nation you live in.

This, of course, influences and is influenced by the culture.

I don’t Google or any other tech giant influencing any election in any way. It’s not their damn job. Our terrible, traitorous media and intelligence agencies spent two fuckin’ years trying to find nonexistent evidence of Russian collusion that influenced the 2016 presidential election, but ignore actual, verifiable election meddling.

Because it benefits them.

And on the other side, the loser Republicans and libertarians also don’t want government to step in in any way, shape, or form, because “Muh private business! Muh government ruins everything!”

So they, too, are happy with the status quo.

Why have an “opposition party” if they don’t oppose anything?

These people are evil. All of them.

Evil technology and those who unscrupulously wield it factor into my novel A Traitor to Dreams, now available for a limited time for $0.99!


  1. Epstein says, “I believe more and more in the need for setting up large-scale worldwide monitoring systems, because they can move fast. They can move lightning-fast.”

    Who sets up these worldwide systems? Probably the same companies the system would be meant to monitor. And if you think governments wouldn’t use those systems against the rest of us for political gain (if they succeeded in setting anything up at all), I’ve got a bridge to sell you. That sounds like a nightmare, not a solution.

    But what IS the solution? I don’t know. If the government could take a sledgehammer to Google & Facebook and bust them into little tiny pieces and then step back and let the open market do its thing, I’d be all for it — but I don’t trust that the gov’t would step back and then leave people alone. Maybe it would…the Bell breakup seemed to work.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Who watches the watchers indeed.

      I’m less and less inclined to see government as a de facto evil and more inclined to see western secular representative democracies as the problem.

      Our system sucks and selects for people who suck thanks to skewer incentives and rewarding sociopathy and amoral money and power seeking. Western secular representative democracies have proven themselves utterly incapable of combating existential threats like radical Islam and open borders. Why should we be surprised it can’t do anything about big tech?

      Liked by 1 person

      • Is there any powerful institution that doesn’t attract the amoral and sociopathic? I think that’s just how human nature works; concentrate enough power in one place, and the amoral and corrupt will be all over it.

        Our constitutional system did work well for a long time. But no system of law can withstand the constant weight of cultural pressure, and our culture contracted an infection that’s crippling it. Postmodernism is like cultural AIDS; it won’t kill by itself, but it will weaken your defenses so that everything else can.

        Liked by 1 person

      • I think if there were actual, tangible,
        and drastic consequences for a leader’s bad actions, you’d get a different type of leader. There have been great leaders throughout history who were good men. Just not anymore in the West.

        Our system worked when the guys who invented it were alive. That’s the thing about “Enlightenment” philosophy. It’s unsustainable in the long term.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. In a recent interview, POTUS said that if you wrote “Spygate” as a novel it would fail because no one would buy it — it’s too inconceivable.

    I agree with him, but why?

    I think it’s because Spygate violates all our expectations. You can get away with a few, sure, but the left totally subverted their own subversions!

    For example, Hollywood instilled in the public the idea that a soft coup against a duly-elected president would originate in the Pentagon, e.g., “Seven Days in May.” Reality: the brass, including General Flynn and Admiral Rogers, formerly of head of the NSA, defended the Republic against a coup hatched and promulgated by the civilian spy agencies.

    The Watergate mythos — and I’m rethinking that entire episode in light of the media’s complicity in “muh Russia” — includes intrepid reporters getting to the bottom of government corruption. Reality: the mainstream media, especially the WaPo and NYT, are complicit in Spygate and largely ignored the ACTUAL story. We’re still waiting to see which reporters took money from Fusion GPS, for example.

    James Bond and the like created the idea of the suave British secret agent. Reality: Christopher Steele, ex-MI6, seems like a loser who can’t even come up with a credible “dossier.”

    In every movie involving the CIA, the director, good or bad, at least seems competent and professional. Reality: John Brennan looks unhinged and just the other day gave an interview from a cheap hotel room with the curtains drawn.

    The list goes on. But what strikes me about this affair is how it’s plain stupid. It’s the type of coup you’d expect from a group of career bureaucrats, journalists, lawyers, weirdos, and losers who can’t and won’t fight fair. Lies, innuendo, rumors, leaks to the press, “controlling the narrative” — it’s all very feminine (or gamma) and unworthy of a serious country.

    It remains to be seen if the conservatives and GOP will use Russiagate, as in the fake news stories, and Spygate, what launched the fake news in the first place, to really attack and discredit the left. I suspect they’ll half-arse it and avoid the really interesting questions, like if the FBI was out to get Nixon, or if Obama and/or the DNC spied on the Romney campaign in 2012.

    President Trump, to his credit, went meta by calling it “ridiculous bullshit.” Mockery is usually the best response to people who aren’t operating in good faith.

    Liked by 2 people

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