E562: Chuck Johnson, blogger & founder of gotnews.com, on being permanently banned from Twitter & his controversial journalism & beliefs

2015-07-23

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about this episode

Jason wrote a blog post on “Trading Open Standards for Corporate Ones,” in which he referred to the upward trend of corporate agents controlling what we read, especially on Twitter and Facebook. An example he used was Twitter permanently banning all of the accounts of blogger Chuck C. Johnson. Chuck reached out to Jason, who in turn invited Chuck into the studio to talk about censorship. What transpired is a conversation that takes many turns into the territories of aggressive journalistic tactics and controversial human beliefs. We’d love to hear what you think. Tweet @jason and be part of the conversation.

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  • Amazing episode! It was a pleasure to listen to two great journalists and bold individuals discussing such hard topics in such civilized style. Happens only when science, not blind believes drive the conversation. Thank you!

  • thanks for watching / commenting

  • Paul Towers

    Jason, what a bold person to take on/episode to produce. Someone with such polarizing views is sure to create some level of discussion as to whether he should even be given the airtime, however, I agree with your thoughts that it’s better to hear what he has to say, than pretend he doesn’t exist. I also have to say that despite his views, many of which I disagree with, Chuck did carry himself well in the interview and articulate his views in a clear manner.

    The key point of his that I took offence at (and I’m sure others did too) is his view that there is a “violence” gene in people of African descent. Chuck claims to be a man of science/knowledge (he clearly has a high level of intellect) however if we look at history some of the most violent people have been white and or of European descent. A few examples being:

    1860’s – Genocide by Russian Tsarist Empire in the North Caucasus regions
    1890’s – Genocide in the Congo by Leopold II of Belgium
    1904 – 1907 genocide in German South-West Africa (present day Namibia) by German General Lothar Von Trotha
    World War One – Genocide against Armenians, Assyrians and Geeks within the Ottoman Empire
    WW2 – Genocide against people of the Jewish religion by the Nazi German Empire
    Srebrenica Massacre by Serbian Forces during the Bosnina War

    Clearly from the above list some of the worst atrocities in the history of mankind have been committed by people who would not have this “violence” gene. I also hate to bring up crimes against children however a large number of recent school shootings and massacres have been committed by “white” teenagers/youths.

    As you also pointed out to him it is much more likely to be a case of the environment in which African american people find themselves in. If they are more likely to be stopped by police, more likely to be wrongly accused, more likely to be imprisoned, more likely to be sentenced to death than a white person then that does not mean there is a “gene” they possess that leads to this.

    If we were to apply a similar set of circumstances to “white guys” we could say White people are more likely to get jobs as a Trader on Wall Street, white guys are more likely to get promoted to senior positions and faster, white guys are more likely to be given positions where they control large sums of more and white guys are more likely to be convicted on white collar crimes/insider trading. As a result white guys must have a “financial crimes” gene.

    Just because one group of people are more likely to be found guilty of a particular crime, does not mean that the color of their skin is causing them to go down that path. Environment conditions, social support, sense of safety, sense of opportunity and the level of cohesiveness within a community are much more likely to impact a persons life and decision to turn to crime or not. (Obviously there are always exceptions to the rule, i.e. straight A students who go off the rails, but by and large I believe most people generally want to do good, especially when they feel like they have the same rights and opportunities as each and every other person within their community/country).

  • Jason, great interview. I liked how you figured out what it was that Chuck was doing that alienated people. And the advice you gave as to what he could try differently.

    I see so much of Chuck in myself. I wouldn’t classify myself as Asperger’s or any other recognised syndrome. But I do think there are a type of people out there that struggle because we are different.

    I think that what we are highly logical and can’t tolerate hypocrisy. Another characteristic is the desire to point out errors especially where the common “wisdom” is wrong. The problem is people really don’t like being told they are wrong ;-)

    I bet that Chuck would test very high as a D and a C on the DISC scale.