Skip to main content

Why are the billionaires always laughing?

Because they know the corporate media will never call bullshit on their bullshit.

Why are the billionaires laughing?

It’s easy to laugh when the corporate press treats you as a glorious success instead of the epitome of a broken social order. Billionaires laugh because they know the corporate media prefers to fawn over them rather than hold them to account.

Today, we ask you to support our nonprofit, independent journalism because we are not impressed by billionaires flying into space, their corporations despoiling our health and planet, or their vast fortunes safely concealed in tax havens across the globe. We are not laughing.

We are hard at work producing journalism for the common good. With our Fall Campaign underway, please support this mission today. We cannot do it without you.

Support Our Work -- Join the small group of generous readers who donate, keeping Common Dreams free for millions of people each year. Every donation—large or small—helps us bring you the news that matters.

Trump tweet

A notification from Twitter appears on a May 29, 2020 tweet by then-U.S. President Donald Trump that the social media platform says violated its policy. (Photo: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

Trump Roundly Ridiculed for 'Bogus' Big Tech Lawsuit

"This is not a lawsuit," said Evan Greer of Fight for the Future. "It's a fundraising grift."

Brett Wilkins

Critics of Donald Trump reacted with derision and disdain Wednesday after the former president announced a lawsuit against three tech firms and their CEOs that banned him for violating company policies against false and hateful posts.

The Associated Press reports Trump announced his class-action suit against Facebook, Twitter, and Google-owned YouTube, as well as respective CEOs Mark Zuckerberg, Jack Dorsey, and Sundar Pichai, in Bedminster, New Jersey Wednesday afternoon.

"We're asking the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida to order an immediate halt to social media companies' illegal, shameful censorship of the American people," Trump said. "We're going to hold Big Tech very accountable."

Trump—who is widely expected to run for president again in 2024—has been banned from the social media platforms since January, when a mob consisting mostly of his supporters stormed the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C., resulting in five deaths.

According to the AP:

Twitter, Facebook, and Google are all private companies, and users must agree to their terms of service to use their products. Under Section 230 of the 1996 Communications Decency Act, social media platforms are allowed to moderate their services by removing posts that, for instance, are obscene or violate the services' own standards, so long as they are acting in "good faith." The law also generally exempts internet companies from liability for the material that users post.

Twitter permanently banned Trump, while Facebook has barred the former president indefinitely and YouTube says it will lift the suspension on his channel when the risk of incitement to violence subsides.

Critics of Trump were quick to note that the president is already fundraising off the lawsuit, which some said is perhaps meant to distract from the indictment last week of longtime Trump Organization chief financial officer Allen Weisselberg.

Evan Greer, deputy director of the digital rights group Fight for the Future, said in a statement that "this is not a lawsuit. It's a fundraising grift."

She continued:

While it's silly to pretend that the moderation decisions of Big Tech don't have a significant impact on free expression, the First Amendment enables private platforms to make exactly the kind of moderation decisions they wish to make as nongovernment entities. From a legal perspective, this lawsuit is likely to go nowhere. Moreover, its disingenuous attack on Section 230 reveals a laughable misunderstanding. Without 230, platforms would likely have removed controversial figures like Trump long ago.

"Trump's legal showboating will fan the flames of unhelpful back and forth over whether platforms should or shouldn't deplatform a specific account," Greer asserted.

"His bogus claims only create confusion and downplay legitimate concerns about how haphazard or overzealous content moderation leads to removal of content, often disproportionately impacting marginalized communities," she added.

Summing up the sentiments of many legal observers, prominent legal scholar Lawrence Tribe tweeted: "If I were on the receiving end of this obviously bogus lawsuit, I'd yawn. Then yawn again."


Our work is licensed under Creative Commons (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0). Feel free to republish and share widely.

This is the world we live in. This is the world we cover.

Because of people like you, another world is possible. There are many battles to be won, but we will battle them together—all of us. Common Dreams is not your normal news site. We don't survive on clicks. We don't want advertising dollars. We want the world to be a better place. But we can't do it alone. It doesn't work that way. We need you. If you can help today—because every gift of every size matters—please do. Without Your Support We Simply Don't Exist.

'When We Organize, We Win': Ocasio-Cortez Joins India Walton at Rally in Buffalo

The two progressives joined striking hospital workers on the picket line at Mercy Hospital after the early voting rally.

Julia Conley ·


Fatal Film Set Shooting Followed Outcry by Union Crew Members Over Safety Protocols

"When union members walk off a set about safety concerns, maybe 'hiring scabs' isn’t the solution you think it is."

Julia Conley ·


New Whistleblower Sparks Calls to 'Crack Down on Facebook and All Big Tech Companies'

Hours after another ex-employee filed a formal complaint, reporting broke on internal documents that show the tech giant's failure to address concerns about content related to the 2020 U.S. election.

Jessica Corbett ·


'Catastrophic and Irreparable Harm' to Wolves Averted as Wisconsin Judge Cancels Hunt

"We are heartened by this rare instance of reason and democracy prevailing in state wolf policy," said one conservation expert.

Brett Wilkins ·


West Virginia Constituents Decry 'Immorality' of Joe Manchin

"West Virginia has been locked into an economy that forces workers into low-wage jobs with no hope for advancement, and after decades of this our hope is dwindling," said one West Virginian. "The cuts that Sen. Manchin has negotiated into the agenda hurt our state."

Julia Conley ·

Support our work.

We are independent, non-profit, advertising-free and 100% reader supported.

Subscribe to our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values.
Direct to your inbox.

Subscribe to our Newsletter.


Common Dreams, Inc. Founded 1997. Registered 501(c3) Non-Profit | Privacy Policy
Common Dreams Logo