19 thoughts on “Your papers please! Write about DeSantis and you must register your blog with the state.

  1. I’d like to think it won’t pass or, if it does, will be cut down in courts. I never could have imagined a bill like that in our nation.

    It is a wake up call to the threat of a DeSantis presidency. Erdogan would be proud. Actually, Putin would be even prouder that his efforts to divide and conquer us is working among at least the weak minded autocrats. I’ll venture a guess that MTG is taking notes, Trump is smiling, Bannon is smug, Jordan is looking for help…his “whistleblowers” were exposed to be paid Trump shills.

    The right wingers have finally admitted they hate the First Amendment. Abolish it and make a state church mandatory. Roundup dissenters, open Gitmo and the barges. Ginny was right, just her timing was bad.

    I know a lot of decent conservatives, but these ain’t them. And not only do they vote, they legislate.

    Unfortunately for America, the Republican Party is the equivalent of a failed state.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Weird, I thought you people were all about curbing malicious disinformation especially that of which the spreader of disinformation is being paid to do so. The bill as far as I can tell didn’t specify a GOP or Democrat government official unless you can point that out please.


    1. You are correct as far as I read.

      “ The bill applies to bloggers who write about the governor, lieutenant governor, a cabinet officer or any member of the state legislature.”

      So you have no problem with the government stepping on your free speech or free press rights, no matter who is in office. The whole point of the First was to allow citizens to say the Emperor has no clothes without be prosecuted. This is not a social media site cleaning up its act, which it has a perfect right to do as a private business. This is the State saying you have to toe the line in your criticism or we will prosecute.

      Big difference. It matters little if the people are Democrats, Republicans, Independents, Socialist Democrats, Green Party. They are the government with the power of the State to arrest, prosecute, fine or imprison for speech they don’t like.

      If this site were bigger and Don had a paying sponsor, he would have to mind his criticism of pols in charge and expose the anonymous posters as well. Assuming a similar law in VA.

      I don’t think the law will pass, or survive court battles.

      I hope.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. The press was specifically excluded. Again, I thought you were against disinformation. Registering is not having to report every post, only that you reveal the paid sources of such.


  3. I don’t see the point. If a blogger is getting paid to post a point of view about an elected official, would that not be covered under existing campaign finance reporting laws? Is that not a paid advertisement?

    In fact, perhaps the Pilot should be required to report the LTEs by those paid by the RGGI industry constantly bashing Youngkin as campaign ads?


    1. If a political site, like yours, were sponsored by a group of citizens, you can write all you want about candidates challenging DeSantis or others in an election. No accountability. But one word disparaging DeSantis’ policies and now you are on the hook for prosecution unless you file the correct papers or they don’t like what you wrote.

      Citizens United allowed for anonymity of big money, but not in this bill, evidently.

      For a fellow who is all upset about Twitter censoring speech, you have no problem with the state doing it? And not just censoring, but prosecuting?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I don’t see anything about being prosecuted for what you write. It appears to be simply disclosure who blog posts are effectively paid advertising.

        The law here in VA, as I don’t know about FL, allows pretty much unlimited advertising but requires disclosure. I don’t see a problem with requiring disclosure of ads disguised as blog posts.

        In fact, I’d like to see that extended to LTE’s in the newspaper.

        I don’t know that registering with the state is the right approach, but just as we require ads to have a disclaimer (Paid for by Citizens for Nose Rings and such)

        Tribune, the owner of the month for the Pilot, is paid to run pro wind and solar ads and to suppress criticism of RGGI.

        So, when a post is really a paid ad, it would be a good thing to disclose it and when an LTE or guest editorial writer is published, conflicts of interest should be noted. If you google the authors of letter criticizing Youngkin over RGGI, they all come from people in the Richmond area with links to the utility industry.

        They should be free to write and the paper free to publish them, but the financial influences should be disclosed.


        1. Yet large donors to qualifying PAC’s can remain anonymous?

          Back to the bill. A political blog can be sponsored and provide a platform for criticism across party lines. Like yours.

          So then I say Youngkin is an autocrat wannabe on your blog. Suddenly, you have file all kinds of paperwork. But Smith comes along and says Youngkin’s challenger diddles sheep, no accountability.

          Plus, the bill wants to make it easier to sue, by the state, for negligence only, not the hurdle of reckless disregard or malice that protects our speech and press now.

          Come on folks, again you come down like a ton of granite on Twitter, but have no problem with censoring political blogs in this case.

          This is in fact an effort BY THE STATE to curb freedom of expression, not a private company.
          The First Amendment is clear that our freedoms are specific to state efforts for control.

          You want it both ways if it affects your political affiliations?

          Liked by 1 person

          1. “You want it both ways if it affects your political affiliations”

            Are you saying that DOn is being hypocritical? Shocked, I am! Gobsmacked! Flabbergasted!😇😱


          2. Read more carefully.

            I said that this should be handled as a campaign finance issue, with disclosure.

            If my blog has a conflict of interest, such as being supported by a special interest group, that should be disclosed.


          3. Why can certain PAC’s have anonymous donors per Citizens United?

            I would support across the board lack of anonymity in all political campaigning. It is important for voters to know who is influencing their candidates.

            But, commentary may be the grey area. What you seem to dismiss as “paid shills” for a poster do still have First Amendment rights. And this bill is specific to sitting elected officials in the administration and legislature. Why? Opposition candidates would have no recourse.

            You have a point, but that is not what DeSantis or his minions are pushing.

            What if your blog were supported by a free speech advocacy group with no partisan affiliation. I post a smear, you get screwed.

            The State needs to respect the First. Let social media edit as they see fit and keep the State at bay. Err on the side of free speech v. the government and let the marketplace decide…isn’t that your position with the Twitter dust up?

            Liked by 1 person

  4. RE: “it sure seems the right is a lot more interested in censorship than any on the left.”

    That’s not fair. The FL bill looks bad, but it is a lot worse to generalize from one bill in one state to an entire political faction. To illustrate, I might note that you have expressed a deplorable opinion; therefore all humans of Scandinavian descent in America are a lot more interested in bad legislation than any Anglo Saxons.


    1. I disagree. This bill is focused on speech challenging or even attacking sitting government elected officials. That it even is considered at the legislative level is disturbing.

      Your analogy falls flat, in my opinion. My opinion may be deplorable to you, but that does not make it deplorable to anyone else. And what does “interest in bad legislation” even mean? That I want it, or that it disturbs me as an affront to freedom of political discourse by the state.

      Liked by 1 person

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