One of the great things about social media and the democratization of media in general is the lack of barriers. Anyone can go to sites like Facebook and Twitter, create a profile, make their case, and try to reach an audience.
And in some cases, folks can even try to create their own social-media platform. Right Wing Watch's Kyle Mantyla had this striking report
Last weekend, the Ohio Liberty Coalition hosted a "Reload 4 Liberty" event at which Janet Porter spoke about her never-ending push to get her anti-choice "Heartbeat Bill" legislation passed in Ohio. But apparently that is not all that Porter is up to these days, as she also revealed to the audience that she'll soon be unveiling something called ReaganBook, which aims to become "the Facebook for patriots." Because Facebook is run by the sorts of people who march in gay pride parades and supposedly censors messages from anti-gay activists like Peter LaBarbera, Porter explained that she decided to launch ReaganBook as a conservative alternative.
In the video
in which Janet Porter makes the case for her project, she tells supporters, "We're tearing down walls. Get it?"
The site's organizers added
, "We stand by what Ronald Reagan said, 'Government has no power except those voluntarily granted to it by we the people.' The same holds true for your social media. We will not partner with government agencies or divulge any user information without a court order because Free Speech is not for sale."
I've long marveled at the "Reagan Legacy Project" and the goal of putting the former president's name everywhere -- schools, bridges, courthouses, highways, airports, children, etc. Last year, Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) tried to rename nearly all of the water
surrounding the United States after Reagan, and this year, Rep. Joe Heck (R-Nev.) tried to name a Nevada mountain peak "Mount Reagan," despite the fact that there's already
a "Mount Reagan."
I guess naming a social-media platform after the Republican icon is the next natural step?
And as long as we're on the subject, Gene Healy had a good piece
this week, reminding the right about Reagan's policies in the Middle East.
Reagan's approach to Iraq was ruthless realpolitik: his administration viewed Saddam Hussein as an essential counterweight to Iranian power and backed the dictator in his bloody eight-year war with Iran. Reagan officials took Iraq off the State Department's list of terror-supporting states, reestablished diplomatic relations and shared intelligence that "proved vital to Iraq's conduct of the war." In the broader Middle East, Reagan fought a naval quasi-war to keep Gulf shipping open and, in 1986, launched airstrikes on Libya designed to punish without inducing regime change. But after cutting and running from the disastrous peacekeeping deployment in Lebanon in 1984, Reagan decided the wiser policy was to keep U.S. forces over the horizon and our boots off the ground. Nor did Reagan think uncritical support for Israel served U.S. interests. He pushed for weapons sales to Saudi Arabia despite Israel's vehement opposition, insisting "it is not the business of other nations to make United States foreign policy," and he backed a U.N. Security Council resolution condemning Israel's annexation of the Golan Heights. As Haaretz's Chemi Shalev has put it, "if Obama treated Israel like Reagan did, he'd be impeached."
This comes on the heels, by the way, of conservatives falsely claiming that Reagan jumped into action in 1983 after a Russian fighter jet shot down Korean Air Lines Flight 007, killing 269 people, including 62 Americans, one of whom was a sitting member of Congress.
In reality, after the deadly incident, Reagan didn't want to leave
his California vacation. In Reagan's diary at the time, he wrote
that having to go back to work ahead of schedule was "heartbreaking" -- not because of the lost lives, but because he was "really looking forward" to a few more days off.
Maybe someone should write an item for ReaganBook about this.