New York Times Thrilled About Government Censorship Plans

On , the New York Times announced:

100 Radical Papers May Be Suppressed. Government Is Investigatng Pro-German, Anti-American Publications. Some Barred From Mails. The American Socialist Makes Hero of [Senator Robert] La Follette — All for Peace at Any Price.

The Times report was, unsurprisingly, pretty sympathetic to the government’s drive to stamp out competing sources of propaganda such as those “owned, edited and distributed by persons identified, generally in official capacities, with the Socialist, pacifist, anarchistic, and I.W.W. movements… cogs in a propaganda machine which has been built up by professional pacifists, anarchists, I.W.W. agitators, and radicals who term themselves Socialists.” It notes that many such publications “have already been barred from the mails” and that “a drastic order” is anticipated that would ban anything from the mail that would “urge defiance of the Government and laws of the United States.”

Among the examples of “pro-German peace propaganda” now banned from the mail was a paper called The Social War, that included an editorial that (according to the Times) called for tax resistance:

The strike, sabotage, and other acts and demonstrations are expressions of consciousness. He must refuse to pay his tax to existing parasites; to obey any of the reactionary laws of the State; he must refuse to recognize that national flag which symbolizes his down-trodden condition. He must throw off the sham of patriotism and pointblank decline to serve the nation. He must refuse to be the marksman and make targets of his father, mother, brother, or sister.

Save the link to this article for next time you hear the New York Times get all sanctimonious about the First Amendment.

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