So this happened…
What does it mean? Is @jack coming around? Has he been a closet libertarian all along? Is this just the LPMC getting the “Rogan bump” from Dave Smith’s latest appearance? Or are we all on a list now?
First, a throat-clear…
I am pretty firmly in the "I'm in danger" camp by default when it comes to oligarchy-adjacent corporations. I think these tech organizations are subsidiaries of the state, nothing like private companies. They're no different from banks, insurance companies, and weapons manufacturers.
Despite being a nominal (if not practical) agorist, I renewed my membership with the Libertarian Party last year. I renewed in large part because I think libertarians and Libertarians don’t understand the cathedral and the threat it poses, and I want to help change that. Given the LP is the de facto face and voice of libertarianism in America, it’s important to me that the general public not get a twisted message about what it is we believe. “They’re a private company and they can do what they want,” is an inaccurate assessment of the situation, and it’s a dangerous take when personal liberty is at stake.
Ideologically, libertarianism is an outgrowth of the Enlightenment. People drawn to libertarianism tend to be hardcore materialists with no time for incorporeal, mystical, unknown (and unknowable) realities. We can’t combat the cathedral with muh logical consistency.
The Libertarian Party and institutional libertarians (cough-REASON-cough) have not only been terrible on this issue, but they’ve bent over backwards to be seen by the manufacturers of culture as respectable and non-heretical.
Twitter is particularly awful because it's the digital home of the cathedral.
Having said that…
Really, this is probably nothing.
First, and most obvious, why would @jack follow the LPMC on Twitter if his purpose was nefarious? Unless you’re engaging in some kind of reverse-reverse-psychology, if you want to surreptitiously keep tabs on someone, you don’t follow them from your very public Twitter account. You just open their Twitter account in an incognito tab. Duh.
Second, @jack follows a lot of people. Scrolling through his follows, you see a pretty persistent thread:
He’s super into Bitcoin. How many partisan political organizations are also super into Bitcoin? I’d wager a few sats it’s not many. Honestly, I’m more surprised to see Stephan Kinsella there than I am the LPMC. LPMC probably just fits his niche.
Dare we hope?
So, probably, it’s nothing. But maybe…it’s something good?
@jack follows interesting people
Scrolling through @jack’s following tab, I noticed a few other interesting names I didn’t expect to see. For instance, he follows one of the greatest opponents of the cathedral from the left, Caitlin Johnstone. Caitlin Johnstone’s media criticism is second to none, including every libertarian media critic I know of. And her foreign policy analysis rivals anyone you’ll hear on the Scott Horton Show.
@jack also follows former-mainstream-now-disgraced journalists Alex Berenson and Bari Weiss. Alex has been fantastic at challenging establishment narrative on the pandemic. (He’s also spoken heretically about marijuana, which I know rankles some libertarians.) Bari has been a great voice in opposition to cancel culture and woke authoritarianism. (She’s also very thin-skinned when it comes to Israel and perceptions of anti-Semitism, which I know rankles some libertarians.)
@jack follows cultural commentator and crypto entrepreneur Hotep Jesus, perhaps the most heretical black voice in the country.
@jack follows ZeroHedge, a news organization that’s been censored across social media for its non-approved messaging and often-true conspiracy theorizing. (Of course, Twitter throws up a warning when you click on the link to ZeroHedge in their profile. You can’t win them all, I suppose.)
Is @jack getting tired of the game?
It seems like @jack is getting pretty fed up with being hauled before Congress. In those mind numbing hearings, he’s flippant and defiant, unlike his Facebook counterpart Mark Zuckerberg. Also unlike Zuck, @jack wasn’t inserted into the cathedral as a child. Zuck is what Monica Perez calls a “created person”. He was groomed from an early age to manufacture the culture.
On the other hand, @jack had more-or-less working class parents, went to a normal school, a state university, transferred to NYU and then dropped out. There’s no Johns Hopkins summer camps, Ivy League feeder boarding schools, or education from the masters of the universe at Harvard in @jack’s closet. It's possible he's realizing what a Faustian bargain it was to get in bed with the state in the first place.
@jack follows many members of the free speech loving, Enlightenment-minded members of the Intellectual Dark Web. Obviously, the fact that he follows Jordan Peterson and Sam Harris and Eric Weinstein isn’t evidence that he endorses them. He also follows Ilhan Omar and Elizabeth Warren. But I think he clearly was experiencing cognitive dissonance when IDW-adjacent journalist Tim Pool confronted him on IDW-adjacent podcaster Joe Rogan’s show. It's certainly possible the criticism he's been getting since Twitter went woke has caused him to put some thought into his worldview.
Directionally dedicated to dialogue
Despite his wokeness, @jack’s north star has always been open and thoughtful dialogue. The Twitter developers are constantly tinkering (or refusing to tinker) with the platform in the hopes of leading it in that direction. It could be that Project BlueSky, Twitter’s decentralized blockchain-based social platform is the answer to all our problems.
The Telegraph @TelegraphTwitter to remove 'like' tool in a bid to improve the quality of debate https://t.co/19U3eonfrp
Regardless, I don’t think @jack is at all happy with the cesspool Twitter has become, but I also think he fruitlessly tries to thread needles that are really, really tough to thread. I sincerely hope he’s coming around to our point of view on authoritarianism and the perils of getting into cahoots with the state.