Emails released as part of several open records requests and lawsuits provide a behind-the-scenes look at the level of collaboration between the U.S. government and Big Tech companies — including targeting The Last American Vagabond’s Twitter account.
In July 2021, former White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki acknowledged that the White House was working with social media companies to identify and counter so-called “misinformation.” Psaki stated that the White House was “regularly making sure social media platforms are aware of the latest narratives, dangerous to public health that we and many other Americans are seeing across all of social and traditional media. And we work to engage with them to better understand the enforcement of social media platform policies.”
Following these statements, Freedom of Information Act requests were filed to the Department of Health and Human Services, the CDC, the Food and Drug Administration, and the National Institutes of Health. The requests sought information related to the process by which the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Biden Administration are designating content “disinformation” or “misinformation”.
The FOIA requests were submitted by an organization known as America First Legal (AFL). The AFL website says they are “committed to fighting for all Americans–regardless of race, color, religion, or creed” and “oppose the radical left’s anti-jobs, anti-freedom, anti-faith, anti-borders, anti-police, and anti-American crusade.”
After the Biden Administration delayed the release of the requested documents, AFL sued the CDC to force the release of the relevant documents.
One year after Psaki’s statement, AFL has received 286 pages of emails between CDC and numerous Big Tech companies. America First Legal President Stephen Miller called the emails “explosive smoking-gun documents”.
Miller said the documents,
“conclusively demonstrate that Big Tech has unlawfully colluded with the federal government to silence, censor, and suppress Americans’ free speech and violate their First Amendment rights.” Miller also said the government is “expressly prohibited from censoring competing or dissenting viewpoints or from silencing its political opponents whether it does so directly or whether it uses an outside corporation to achieve its draconian, totalitarian ends.”
Most of the emails feature Carol Crawford, a Digital Media Chief in the Division of Public Affairs for the CDC in Atlanta, Georgia. Crawford can be seen arranging Be On the Look Out “BOLO” meetings where the CDC shared information deemed “misinformation” with Big Tech companies, including Twitter, Facebook, and Google. Crawford helped arrange a slideshow claiming to identify examples of misinformation for the companies.
One email shows Twitter requesting help from the CDC to identify misinformation. Emails also highlight how the week Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey was testifying to Congress, his employees were busy arranging meetings with the CDC where they would be instructed on what qualifies as “vaccine misinformation”.
The CDC also requested that Google modify their search results to better promote the CDC’s new vaccine page. Another email shows the CDC directly making edits in Google’s “Knowledgebase”.
Interestingly, one of the examples of alleged misinformation relates to claims that the Pfizer COVID-19 shot could damage sperm or potentially cause infertility. While these type of claims were singled out and social media accounts banned for discussing said claims, recent studies are confirming what was labeled as misinformation by the U.S. government only 1 year ago….