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Tuesday, November 29, 2022

Ex-CIA agent: "This freedom of speech is just nonsense"

Bob Baer, an ex-CIA grifter who pushed the Russiagate nonsense in an attempt to overturn the 2016 election, attacked free speech on CNN. That Baer is a columnist for Time and Vanity Fair as well as an author makes his call for censorship hypocritical as well as anti-American.

If the man is against freedom of speech, why did we hire him to protect our country? The CIA needs to do a better job vetting applicants.

He is upset that Elon Musk is stopping the censorship of conservatives on Twitter.

Baer said, "Putin is going to be all over Twitter if there’s no regulations on this, fake accounts, spoofed accounts … And so when he’s talking about the popular voice, Musk, he’s really talking about Russian intelligence.

"It’s not right. And you know, this freedom of speech is just nonsense because you can’t go into a movie theater and yell ‘fire.’ It’s against the law. What Putin is going to do & the Russians is they’re going to use this as a vehicle to save himself in Ukraine."

Actually, you can yell fire in a crowded theater. Emma Camp made this clear in a column three years ago.

She wrote, "The erroneous idea comes from the 1919 case Schenk v. United States. The case concerned whether distributing anti-draft pamphlets could lead to a conviction under the Espionage Act—and had nothing to do with fires or theaters.

"In his opinion, Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes wrote that 'the most stringent protection of free speech would not protect a man in falsely shouting fire in a theatre and causing a panic.' However, this idea was introduced as an analogy, meant to illustrate that, as Trevor Timm wrote in The Atlantic in 2012, 'the First Amendment is not absolute. It is what lawyers call dictum, a justice's ancillary opinion that doesn't directly involve the facts of the case and has no binding authority.' The phrase, though an oft-repeated axiom in debates about the First Amendment, is simply not the law of the land now, nor has it ever been—something made all the more apparent when Schenk v. United States was largely overturned in 1969 by Brandenburg v. Ohio."

Schenk was wrong. You should be able to protest the draft during wartime without being subject to being jailed (or worse) as a spy.

If anyone is yelling fire, however, it is Baer.

Let us take a stroll down memory lane.

Consider this story from August 10, 2018, "Bob Baer says he knows some of President Donald Trump’s Soviet secrets. The former undercover CIA operative divulged what he’s learned about Trump’s long-running relationship with Russia — specifically the KGB — during a free community event Thursday night at the Wilkinson Public Library. 

"At the Telluride TV-sponsored talk, he explained the chumminess with the Communists dates back to 1986, when Trump, then a real estate developer in New York City, attended a cocktail party that included KGB agents, unbeknownst to Trump. America’s future president unwittingly became an “agent of influence,” which Baer explained is a person who is 'susceptible to KGB manipulation, but the word KGB never comes up.'

"During that time, he added, a KGB illegal (the term for an undercover KGB agent) filled Trump’s head with anti-Ronald Reagan rhetoric and delusions of grandeur, including planting the possibility of a U.S. presidential run, during a 1991 visit to the former Soviet Union, which was close to collapse and broke."

Talk about your QAnon conspiracy theories. 

I haven't seen someone this kookie since 77 Sunset Strip ended.

Baer is not a TV character parking cars. He's attacking a God-given right that is protected by the First Amendment. Baer does not like that Elon Musk is giving access on Twitter to people who will call Baer out as the fascist he is.

Baer said, "The Russians are waiting for something like this. They need a propaganda campaign against the United States and against our support for Ukraine, and they’re gonna be all over Twitter – I guarantee this – supporting the far right, plans, demands to stop arming Ukraine. You just wait."

Oh yes, Ukraine.

How is that war going on?

Maybe if Twitter had allowed critics to point out how corrupt Zelensky is, Biden would not have had the votes to give him $60 billion. 


My weekly Substack column posted on Saturday.


  1. The CIA knows all about "fake accounts" and "spoofed accounts".

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  2. They did invent the term conspiracy theory to throw shade on their own shenanigans.
    And a conspiracy " theory" is always the first step in a RICO conviction.

  3. I guess the CIA is afraid that their agitprop won't be as good as others. Fuck the CIA and their anti-Constitutional attitudes. An honest accounting of all they have done over the years would probably show they do the country more damage than good.

  4. Don, you are really "hitting the ball out of the park" yesterday and today with your columns like this one on the Freedom of Speech, and the ones on College & employment, on 700 Armed Demonstrations, and on Insurrections & Cowards in Iran, Ukraine, and China. Each is well reasoned and researched and brings out original points that others have not articulated. Way to go!

  5. Yes, yes you can go into a movie theater and yell, “Fire!”

    Long ago settled court case.

    For what it’s worth, the CIA has less constitutionality when founded and as how its acted since than yelling, “Fire!” in a theater.

  6. Falsely shouting fire in the crowded theater - claiming the First Amendment won't get you of charges for people getting hurt. That is a subtelty that many don't grasp. The falsehood and the injuries are the thing not the speaking.

    Mikey NTH

    1. The essence of all this is the answer to the question:

      Who decides what another is permitted to speak or forbidden to speak?

      That answer is fairly obvious, to wit:

      The one who can smash your face if you say what the other, who can smash your face, decides you must not say.

      That's it.

  7. Some problems can only be solved by a good funeral. Baer is one of those problems.

    1. All problems are, theoretically, solved by death.

      With or without a funeral.

      Unless, of course, what comes after death presents more problems.....

  8. "Separation of Church and State" is another false "Constitutional" argument about something that just isn't there! Just like Roe. Time to right this fallacy too

  9. What he is demanding is literally Fascism: Government / Corporate partnership to not just run the economy but to control the media and social media platforms.

    The tool to do this is Censorship.

    Call it what it is: FASCISM.

    Anyone that opposes freedom of speech on Twitter, or any other platform, and is demanding that such corporations obey government censorship demands, is entirely Fascist.

  10. So.

    The politicos, the politicacas, are all piling on Trump, in every which way they can.

    Heretofore seemingly sincere "conservative pundits" are now engaged in a seemingly co-ordinated campaign to sling every feeble piece of their imaginitive shit at Trump, all to rid themselves, and associates, of that terrifying event of Trump returning the the oval office.

    Some skunker calling itself 'streiff?' is now 'predicting' that Trump will be indicted, convicted, imprisoned and, get this, die in prison.

    What a loverly 'conservative' fellow traveler!

    These abundancy of swampers must really be spooked by what they all have been doing being exposed.

    Even more reason to vote for Trump.

    1st in the primary, then in the general.

    MAGATrump 2024

    As much of a Crusade for American Constutional Freedoms as any in history.

  11. Here’s the deal: There has been No One - and I mean No One - who has come onto the political scene who has spoken truth to power like DJT has - not ever. He has almost single-handedly been responsible for waking up more than half the country to the diabolical machinations of the Left, the “Deep State”, the “Swamp”, and their wicked and evil designs for us and this country. And he’s done all this at enormous personal expense, bringing the full force of the Federal Govt. down upon him. He is also the first one to come along who not only declared “America First”, but while in office actually did just that, accomplishing what others before him have only mouthed!
    Unless and until someone else comes along who exhibits the same kind of “balls” and willingness to put himself and all he has on the line for his country, as this man has, he will get my vote.

    1. Well said! Right with you on this.

  12. It will be n I'm ce when Trump gets back in and his doj charges EVERYONE involved and promoting russiagate with sedition and locks them all up with no bail and no habeas corpus until trial. Ship them to Guantanamo. And then drag it out for years.

  13. Pretty sure Baer's ancestors all immigrated to USA via the OSA's "operation paperclip".