By Jefferey Jaxen

An uncomfortable shockwave has reverberated across America. Government officials have jerked the steering wheel, hard, towards a road well-worn by authoritarian regimes.

In just a week, the American social and political landscape has shifted. Let’s examine the key events:

President Joe Biden announced “We need to go community-by-community, neighborhood-by-neighborhood, and oftentimes, door-to-door — literally knocking on doors — to get help to the remaining people who need to be vaccinated…”

The outrage was immediate. Several governors voiced their distaste, while South Carolina Governor Henry McMasters ordered his state’s health departments to defy Biden’s orders. 

At this point, things turned dark. Fast. 

Rather than attempting to walk back Biden’s call to go home-to-home, peddling an experimental gene therapy, Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra doubled down on a CNN interview – in a most un-American way. 

Asked if it was the government’s business to know who has and has not been vaccinated, Becerra claimed “It is absolutely the government’s business…” 

Regarding comments from Texas Congressman Dan Crenshaw, who opposed the door-to-door street teams, Becerra went on a bizarre rant that China’s Chairman Mao would have been proud of: 

“We want to give people the sense that they have the freedom to choose.” Becerra continued, “We’re going to make it possible for them [American people] to have a good life.” Forgetting the Bill of Rights and U.S. Constitution, Becerra claimed, “We are America, we [government agencies] try to give people as much freedom and choice as possible” 

Following Becerra’s Stalinist comments, Politico slipped a bombshell admission into their regular reporting: 

“Biden-allied groups, including the Democratic National Committee, are also planning to engage fact-checkers more aggressively and work with SMS carriers to dispel misinformation about vaccines that is sent over social media and text messages.” 

And just like that, we went from “15 days to slow the spread” to realtime surveillance and censorship of Americans’ private conversations on their personal text messages? 

For anyone who didn’t understand the historically dangerous ways in which U.S. officials were behaving, that all ended when White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki took to the podium this past week. 

The former CNN political contributor turned Biden press secretary stated that actions the federal government are taking include “flagging problematic posts for Facebook that spread disinformation.”  

It’s not just the White House working with Zuckerberg’s Facebook. These are sweeping actions, according Psaki, who also said “You shouldn’t be banned from one platform and not others.”  

Following that statement and during a FOX NEWS interview, independent journalist and longtime reporter on the rise of the surveillance state Glenn Greenwald called Psaki’s ‘boasting’ admissions “genuinely an act of censorship by the state” and “as tyrannical as it gets.” 

Greenwald continued: “There’s case law that says that if the government coerces private actors to do the kind of censorship that the government itself can’t do, that in itself becomes unconstitutional.” Greenwald concluded it’s “a free speech issue.”

Author and journalist Matt Taibbi wrote, “America’s burgeoning censorship movement had a great week.”

In a sad twist of both irony and hypocrisy, Psaki committed the sin of disinformation herself in a July 16 Press Briefing, claiming that ‘many’ of the mRNA vaccines “are approved and have gone through the gold standard of the FDA approval process.” Journalist Alex Berenson took to Twitter to call her out:

Biden too stayed on script when asked about Facebook’s alleged wrong think issues claiming social media platforms like Facebook are “killing people” by allowing vaccine misinformation to spread.

Yet in an unexpected twist, Facebook appeared to have fired back at Biden, according to the recent headlines. It claimed Biden was attempting to scapegoat the social media company in an attempt to deflect from missing his vaccination goal of getting 70 percent of Americans vaccinated by July 4, which the White House fell short of.

“Facebook is not the reason this goal was missed,” wrote Guy Rosen, Facebook’s vice president of integrity, in the post. And this is from the company that recently implemented a ‘turn in your extremists friend’ button for its users!

Coming off the weekend political news commentary, the narrative being pushed is that certain speech can kill people. This then leads to an aggressive argument that it must be stopped at all costs. No matter how much money it takes. No matter how many rights get trampled underfoot.

Jefferey Jaxen

Jefferey Jaxen is a health journalist and featured in his weekly segment, ’The Jaxen Report’, on The HighWire. As an investigative journalist, researcher, and compelling writer, Jefferey serves as Lead editor of The HighWire News and Opinion Team.