Hillary Clinton has become everything to us.
I wholeheartedly supported her during the elections, but I’m nobody’s “hardcore follower”. Every leader of every era has had hardcore followers, the type that accept them no matter what. I meant that opening line with another meaning.
This is not about her per se, though; it’s about that tenuous concept of ‘freedom of speech’. Is about how a man’s business ‘practice’, figuring out DNA sequence to create pharmaceutical products, became not only his downfall, but also the test for the limits of freedom of speech.
And yet! Hillary Clinton has actually become ‘everything to us’. Every time she shows her face in public there’s mass convulsion. She is the perennial she-devil that half the nation needed to block from access to the most powerful political seat in the world because they were sure she was intent on seeking the presidency to, in her evil way of thinking, destroy the world (for fun, mind you) by causing the third World War. That’s worse than being a ‘bitch’. That’s a witch.
Martin Shkreli felt compelled out of his arduous business of making life-saving drugs by her merely showing her face in public…to sell some books.
Possible humane background for Martin Shkreli need for Clinton’s DNA sequencing
Since distant times, the witches’ own hair have been used by heroes to paralyze them. Heroes of very far away times, well, of mythology, used to cross the planet trying to pull a lock of hair from a witch’s head to make a potion with which to kill her, or to cut her head off, which always proved easier to do. Medusa comes to mind. Medusa, a man-eater. That’s the danger these witches pose to ‘mankind’.
Fast forward to the most modern and advanced millennium in (organized) human history: the 21 first’s.
Medusa, er, Clinton is the embodiment of that mythological man-eater. And Martin Shkreli is the (anti) hero in search of Clinton’s head. Except that he doesn’t carry a sword but a sack of money to pay, as he advertised on FB, any fool who dares grab her by the (head) hair and bring him the evidence of success. He is more like SALOME in that respect, isn’t he?
He can afford to pay $5 grands per hair strand because he is in the pharma business of making people pay with their blood for one vial of life-saving medication. He is a blood-sucker, i.e., a (male) vampire going after a witch. That’s rich, isn’t? He wanted to create a modern potion with her hair, figuring her DNA sequence to make the ‘antidote’ to kill her. Literally.
Well, the case is that he is now, supposedly, in a Maximum security prison for “solicitation to assault in exchange for money that is not protected by the First Amendment,” the judge said. To which Shkreli’s lawyer responded:
“Indeed, in the current political climate, dissent has unfortunately often taken the form of political satire, hyperbole, parody or sarcasm,” Brafman wrote. “There is a difference, however, between comments that are intended to threaten or harass and comments — albeit offensive ones — that are intended as political satire or strained humor.”
This is where my opinion on the issue starts.
The discussion of the political issue of Freedom of speech has become as mindbogglingly ridiculous as those laws passed mostly in the western states of the US prohibiting the collection of rain water, even the rain falling on a citizen’s house roof.
In this latest case of ridiculously mind boggling use of freedom of speech it is MONEY the trigger for the dispute. Had Shkreli just asked for a few strands of Mrs. Clinton’s hair, he would still be a free vampire, um, man, but his crime was in offering monetary payment, in engaging in a business transaction, the type that has made him a billionaire, to wit, figuring out “DNA sequence” of things that would make him richer beyond our imagination. He claims now that it was all just in jest.
He got himself a direct ‘go to jail’ for offering payment, not for the many instances of abuse of freedom of speech in which he has engaged, mostly against women.
His lawyer has a point when he says that “in the current political climate, dissent has unfortunately often taken the form of political satire, hyperbole, parody or sarcasm”. I propose that this satirizing of dissent is a sign of the times, a sign of the political powerlessness of the citizens of this nation.
There has been so many instances of clear abuse of freedom of speech in the past years sanctioned by the SCOTUS and by politicians that We The People are left only with “satire” to fight it off. A corporation is a person. Mind boggling, isn’t it?
Up to the last 20 years of the last century most of us had a good idea of what abuse of freedom of speech meant, we could hear it and read it when expressed. After 9/11 that clarity has become a fog. But more than anything it is globalism which has muddled our minds with its insistence in conflating freedom of speech and freedom of doing business.
Doing business requires advertising the products created through advertisement, and the advertisement industry has desensitized the public to their playful use of freedom of speech to sell the business’ ware with ads portraying ‘bad’ as cool. Shkreli himself prided, not anymore, on being that bad boy of social media.
We live in a world that is politically and economically disturbed. Billionaires feel that they are exempt from moral rules, just as the feudal lords of the 1800s saw themselves. Bad is good, good is bad. War is good, peace is a sign of weakness, according to the elite’s bible. And freedom of speech will continue to be mediated by how much freedom we need to take from corporations to be able to live in a moral social agreement.
The limits of freedom of speech will be tested by how far the likes of billionaires like Shkreli can push immorality, not by ‘DNA testing’.
That is farther down the line.