Using The Legal System To Suppress Dissent?

MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell filed a federal lawsuit Thursday in Minneapolis claiming that electronic voting machine companies are “weaponizing the litigation process” to silence political dissent over the 2020 election.

Mike Lindell

A few hours later, Lindell’s Minneapolis attorney Alec J. Beck , a respected 30-year litigator, was dumped from his white shoe law firm, Barnes & Thornburg LLP. The web site Law & Crime quoted a Barnes & Thornburg spokesperson as stating Beck failed to obtain prior authorization from the firm before filing the Lindell lawsuit.

Social media erupted with insults aimed at Lindell, who claims the 2020 election was stolen from GOP Pres. Donald J. Trump, calling him a conspiracy theorist, delusional, insane, “a loser crack head,” source of baseless information, etc.

Most of the national media ignored Lindell’s lawsuit but Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos’ anti-Trump newspaper, The Washington Post, took the opportunity to declare Lindell’s claims are not only false but ridiculous.

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The New ‘Woke’ Involves Big Tech Censorship

The new “woke” in America may be a growing awareness of the dangers of partisan censorship by big tech and media oligarchs.

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, a Republican, recently identified big tech censorship of conservatives as “probably the most important legislative issue that we’re going to have to get right this year.”  He cited the suppression of evidence of influence peddling by GOP President Joe Biden’s family prior to the election and Amazon’s decision to kick Parler, a social media platform, off its cloud server.

Parler’s usage skyrocketed after Twitter ousted former GOP President Donald J. Trump and his supporters. Trump and friends also were kicked off Twitter, Facebook and Google’s YouTube.

Amanda Makki, a former GOP U.S. Congressional candidate, wrote in the Tampa Bay Times that big tech’s actions are “shockingly parallel” to those of oppressive regimes in Iran and Korea. She said her family fled Iran in 1979 to escape government control of the media and censorship. She warned that Amazon, Apple and Google are “banning speech” by conservatives and urged Congress to rein in the monopolies.

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Media Censorship Continues, But So Does Election Strife

It’s been a busy week for the multinational corporations and billionaire owners of the American media (social and legacy).

First they declared that Democrat Joe Biden won the presidential election and now they are dismissing as false or outright censoring criticism of the Presidential election results.

StoptheSteal

Facebook has banned a group called “StoptheSteal” that was a rapidly growing focal point for opposition to the media’s contention that Biden won the Presidential election. Facebook said it took the action because “we saw worrying calls for violence from some members.”  

The supposed calls for violence that prompted the elimination of StoptheSteal from Facebook seem less threatening than many incendiary posts in recent months related to protests over racial injustice and Trump.

One of the StoptheSteal’s 350,000 members shared a screenshot depicting a cartoon of a Disney-like girl in a swirl of stars saying, “Neither side is going to concede. Time to clean the guns, time to hit the streets.”

The other post that Facebook found threatening consisted of a cartoon of a Cro-Magnon type of man carrying a club and saying, “I reckon I’ve had enough of this sh.–.”

Constitutional Crisis

Possibly more troublesome to Facebook was the fact that StoptheSteal had a hand in organizing several pro-Trump rallies across the country.

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More Self-Inflicted Wounds? Fox Hit With Race Discrimination Lawsuits

It was humming along, the major cable news network in America, raking in billions in profits.

Now Fox News  has lost (forced out) its visionary chief executive officer, Roger Ailes, and its top star,  Bill OReilly, both accused of sexual harassing female subordinates for decades.  Fox  paid  Ailes and OReilly tens of millions in severance to leave, not to mention millions in damages to their alleged victims.

And now Fox is reeling from a second wave of discrimination complaints – this time involving race discrimination. A Fox News spokesperson has denied the claims and said the network will “vigorously defend these cases.”

Two black women who worked in the Fox News payroll department, Tichaona Brown and Tabrese Wright, filed a race discrimination lawsuit   in New York state court on March 28 alleging  that Fox Controller Judith Slater, who was fired by Fox on Feb. 28, subjected “dark-skinned employees” to racial animus.

Eleven past and present Fox workers joined the lawsuit Tuesday, complaining that they were  humiliated, paid less than white coworkers and passed over for promotions. Continue reading “More Self-Inflicted Wounds? Fox Hit With Race Discrimination Lawsuits”

Penalty for Sexual Harassment Rarely Fits The ‘Crime’

Note: News outlets reported July 21, 2016 that Ailes will receive a $40 million buyout from Fox and a new job as an “advisor” to the network.

What should the penalty be for a manager who allegedly abused his power for decades by sexually harassing female subordinates?

Disgrace? Dismissal? Banishment?

Well, that does not appear to be what is happening in the case of Roger Ailes, the chief executive officer of Fox News who allegedly sexually harassed female subordinates since the 1960s.

According to the Drudge Report, 21st Century Fox, the corporate parent of Fox News, is negotiating an exit package with Ailes that includes a $40 million buyout. Other outlets report Fox wants to keep Ailes on the payroll as a consultant. In other words, the consequences of Ailes’ allegedly abusive behavior may consist of a fat check and a change of job title.

One reason that sexual harassment remains epidemic in the American workplace is the lack of any serious consequences for the abuser.  Victims of sexual harassment lose their dignity, sense of trust and  peace of mind. Many lose their jobs and financial security. In the rare instance that a sexual harasser is held to account, the consequences range from a pat on the hand to a quiet suggestion that it is time to move on.

Women in the workplace are well aware they lack any real protection from sexual harassment and this knowledge understandably deters them from reporting the problem.

Ailes woes began a few weeks ago when Gretchen Carlson, a former news anchor, filed a lawsuit claiming that Ailes fired her because she refused to have a sexual relationship with him. Ailes, 76, vigorously denied the accusation. Some observers (including former co-workers) dismissed Carlson’s complaint as a parting shot by an aging beauty queen whose afternoon TV show suffered from poor ratings.  (Fox is presently trying to move Carlson’s lawsuit out of federal court and the public eye into a closed-door arbitration proceedings.)

The problem for Ailes arose because other women began complaining about his allegedly abusive behavior.  Carlson’s attorney, Nancy Erika Smith, said that at least a dozen women contacted her firm after Carlson’s lawsuit was filed complaining of similar harassment by Ailes. The final blow appears to be a story by New York Magazine stating that Fox News star Megyn Kelly told a law firm hired to investigate Carlson’s complaint that Ailes had sexually harassed her a decade ago.

Fox had no choice but to do something.  When an employer receives a complaint that a manager is sexually harassing a subordinate, the employer is on notice and must act to prevent future harm (including retaliation) or it will risk serious damages.  However, the law does not require the employer to actually penalize the harasser.  So Fox’s game plan appears to be this – remove Ailes from his supervisory position, while keeping him happy and on the job.