Mind Matters Natural and Artificial Intelligence News and Analysis
cutting card
Male hand cutting banking card with scissors
Photo licensed via Adobe Stock

The New Internet: Reclassify Political Opponents as “Hate Groups”

Maybe this is something to talk to legislators about

You don’t want your tax money spent in a certain way?

Maybe you are a “hater.”

Increasingly, bad things can happen as a result. Even from corporations you trust.

A friend has pointed out that many American corporations are not nearly so interested in making money these days as they are in politically correct positioning. Consider the current trend toward depublishing books the public wants to read and “de-newsing” news stories people want to hear.

But the trend is growing beyond books and news. It could affect your right to bank and use credit institutions.

Successful entrepreneur David Sacks has the story at Substack about how concerns about “hate speech” can further an agenda:

Just as there is no set definition of “hate speech” that everyone agrees upon, the definition of a “hate group” is nebulous and ripe for overuse by those with an agenda. So it should come as no surprise that the ever-increasing list of suspects has grown from unquestionable hate groups, like neo-nazis and the KKK, to organizations who espouse socially conservative views, like the Family Research Council, religious liberty advocates, and even groups concerned with election integrity.

The reclassification of political opponents as hate groups has been enabled by expansive redefinitions of terms like racism, segregation and white supremacy. When “segregation” can be used in The New York Times to describe a 70% Asian school like Stuyvesant; when the notion of color-blindness is considered racist by influential intellectuals like Ibram X. Kendi; and when “white supremacy” has been used to describe any support for any policy that can result in disparate outcomes, then a broad range of organizations can be lumped in with truly vile ones. Until now, these over-categorizations were largely a case of rhetorical hyperbole in academic debates. Thanks to Big Tech, they are now being operationalized.

David Sacks, “Get Ready for the ‘No-Buy’ List” at Substack (July 30, 2021)

It can affect people unexpectedly, as in the case of one American official:

Chase Bank’s motto “What Matters Most” took on a menacing meaning this week after Michael Flynn claimed that the bank canceled his account and the credit card due to the “possible reputational risk to our company.” If true, the report is a chilling expansion of the role of private companies to isolate and harass those with controversial views in our society. As shown with censorship, such private enforcement of speech controls has proven far more dangerous and effective than the traditional government programs. Indeed, the move would show how a type of Chinese “social scoring” could easily take hold in the United States.

While I was highly critical of the handling of his prosecution, I have also been highly critical of former national security Michael Flynn and his reckless rhetoric in the wake of the 2020 election. However, it is precisely his unpopularity that is allegedly the reason for Chase taking action against him.

Jonathan Turley, “American Social Scoring? Chase Bank Allegedly Cancels The Account and Credit Card of Michael Flynn” at Jonathan Turley (August 31, 2021)

How did banks acquire that right? It is not clear:

The Founders had the right idea. Rather than the government — or anyone — trying to determine what might be acceptable speech and what isn’t, just let it all out there — the good, the bad, the hateful, and the sublime.

But that would require trust in people’s judgment. And for those who believe their judgment superior to everyone else’s, that simply cannot be allowed to happen.

Rick Moran, “Coming Soon: A ‘No Buy List’ for Conservatives and Other ‘Hate Groups’” at PJMedia

Perhaps it would help if there were laws against refusing to do business with people (of whatever belief system) who are honest and pay their bills. Most anti-discrimination laws in the past have been aimed at preventing harm to persons of color or who have alternative sexualities or disabilities (just for example).

That’s not what is happening here. Some forms of discrimination today are aimed against people who fail to agree with a corporate political agenda.

So the question becomes, why should business law protect firms that refuse to do business with people who disagree with them on such issues — even if they pay their bills? Have politicians anything to say about that?

You may also wish to read:

Why is “depublishing” so cool among publishers now? Publishers now Cancel their own books in a righteous fury! It’s because the industry changed. Now, often, it’s about currying favor with government, powerful people, not helping readers understand the world around us.


Why did the New York Times discredit the lab leak theory? The Times led the way in zealously discrediting the quite reasonable COVID-19 lab leak theory. But what underlay its zeal?

Denyse O'Leary

Denyse O'Leary is a freelance journalist based in Victoria, Canada. Specializing in faith and science issues, she is co-author, with neuroscientist Mario Beauregard, of The Spiritual Brain: A Neuroscientist's Case for the Existence of the Soul; and with neurosurgeon Michael Egnor of the forthcoming The Human Soul: What Neuroscience Shows Us about the Brain, the Mind, and the Difference Between the Two (Worthy, 2025). She received her degree in honors English language and literature.

The New Internet: Reclassify Political Opponents as “Hate Groups”