News and Analysis

The Rundown: Team Biden Fights For Censorship, Truth Is The First Casualty Of War
US President Joe Biden speaks during an event with abortion rights groups in Washington, DC, US, on Friday, June 23, 2023. Democrats are unleashing an abortion-rights messaging blitz on the one-year anniversary of the Supreme Court decision that overturned Roe v. Wade, seizing on an issue that remains a vulnerability for Republicans heading into the 2024 election. Photographer: Ting Shen/Bloomberg
Ting Shen/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Come for Morning Wire’s Afternoon Update’s straight news, but stay for why it matters. The following six stories, and more, can be heard on today’s Morning Wire Afternoon Update podcast. Click here to listen

1. Biden Administration Fights For Censorship

On Wednesday, the Biden administration appealed a judge’s order blocking several government agencies and officials from contacting social media companies. The appeal sets up a clash over the U.S. District Judge Terry Doughty’s July 4th judgment, which granted the injunction in a 2022 lawsuit by the attorneys general of Louisiana and Missouri that accused the government of violating the First Amendment after the alleged collusion with social media companies to censor “disfavored” speech.

Why It Matters: As previously covered by The Daily Wire, the Biden administration has always shown a keen interest in getting Big Tech to censor speech it disapproves of. Often under the guise of fighting disinformation or protecting national security, the Biden administration has arguably trampled upon the First Amendment in order to maintain power.

Judge Doughty, however, has put a temporary stop to all this and is already having an impact as federal agencies have canceled meetings with Big Tech groups out of caution until they get further legal guidance.

Of course, the Left is going to fight for censorship — it helps Democrats stay in power. The truth is an antidote to their propaganda. For example, if the truth were really allowed to proliferate on social media in 2020 — such as saying men cannot get pregnant, that the Hunter Biden laptop was real, and that everyday household COVID masks didn’t work as advertised — then the Democrats would have likely lost the presidential election.

The Left’s success depends on deceit. To make it work, the Left needs to be able to trample out the truth and command the narrative. It always has, and always will. Unfiltered social media thwarts that control, hence the Democrats’ desire to have Big Government and Big Tech working together to silence dissenters.

2. More Biden ‘Crime Family’ Drama — A New Witness Steps Forward

Another witness in the Hunter Biden saga has come forward, this one a former adviser to the Chinese energy company CEFC. Gal Luft is accusing the Bidens of corruption and the DOJ of covering it up. He made the claims in a video obtained by the New York Post. Luft is an expert in geopolitics and energy security who is currently in hiding from U.S. authorities. He said he’s being pursued by the DOJ on charges of arms trafficking, acting as an unregistered foreign agent, and lying to the FBI. But he says his indictment is an attempt by the DOJ to keep him from sharing what he knows about the Biden family’s dealings with CEFC.


Luft met with U.S. authorities to blow the whistle on the Bidens in March of 2019, but heard nothing in response until authorities arrested him in Cyprus in February. He escaped custody with the help of friends, he said, and is keeping his current location a secret.

Why It Matters: It wouldn’t be the first time that an opponent of the Biden administration has had the DOJ effectively sicced on them. Parents, pro-life fathers, the owner of the laptop repair store where Hunter had it dropped off, and even the former president have all been targeted by law enforcement due to arguably weak cases — with the only common denominator being that they threaten Biden’s power. Read more here. If the allegations about the Biden family’s money-making are even remotely true, it’s no surprise that Luft would feel he has to go incognito for his own survival.

3. Where In the World Is Yevgeny Prigozhin?

The mercenary leader Yevgeny Prigozhin, who led a short-lived mutiny against the Kremlim, is in Russia today while his Wagner troops are in their field camps, according to the president of Belarus. Alexander Lukashenko’s claim could not be independently verified, however, Russian media have reported Prigozhin was seen at his offices in St. Petersburg. It was not clear if Prigozhin’s presence in Russia would violate the deal, which allowed the head of the Wagner Group to move to Belarus and gave a promise of amnesty in exchange for ending the rebellion.

Why It Matters: “In war, the first causality is the truth,” Greek tragedian Aeschylus is believed to have first said. And boy does that ever apply to the Ukraine-Russian War. The truth has been repeatedly twisted from all directions, and we still haven’t learned why Prigozhin started his “coup” in the first place.

But with regard to Prigozhin, Lukashenko, and President Vladimir Putin — none of these people were trustworthy even before the war started. During it, their propaganda has only ramped up. Readers should keep in mind that Belarus has also denied — despite mountains of evidence — that Russia has been moving tactical nuclear weapons into the country — which just happens to border Ukraine. You can’t exactly trust Lukashenko’s claims about Prigozhin here.

4. UPS Strike Looming?

More than 340,000 UPS workers could go on strike if the shipping giant and the Teamsters Union don’t come to a new contract agreement soon. Negotiations appeared to be going well until 4:00 a.m. Wednesday morning — when The Teamsters walked away from the negotiating table.

UPS released a statement, saying, “Refusing to negotiate, especially when the finish line is in sight, creates significant unease among employees and customers and threatens to disrupt the U.S. economy.” The company hasn’t had a strike since 1997.

Why It Matters: While there might be a few reasonable arguments for some voluntary unionism, there are none for forced unionism (or public unions, but that’s a different story) and bullies who take money from unsuspecting temporary workers. And unfortunately, the Teamsters Union has many a time preyed on seasonal workers during the summer and during the Christmas season to demand “union dues” illegally.

For example, in 2014, one poor seasonal worker received a $0 paycheck because Teamsters Fat Cats took it all. Thankfully, attorneys from the National Right to Work Foundation were there to help him out.

As for the potential UPS strike, experts say this would be disastrous for the American economy.

5. Sex Cult Actress Released From Prison Early

Former ‘Smallville’ actress Allison Mack has been released early from her prison sentence for her involvement in the NXIVM sex cult started by Keith Raniere. Mack was sentenced to three years in prison in June 2021 after pleading guilty to a number of charges. Raniere was sentenced in October 2020 to 120 years in prison, and Mack subsequently called her involvement with the group her “biggest mistake and greatest regret of my life.”

Why It Matters: It’s called Hollyweird for a reason.

6. Oceangate Suspends Operations

OceanGate, the company that owned the submersible that imploded on its way to the wreck of the Titanic, said Thursday it has suspended operations. Read more here. All five people who were on board the most recent mission were killed after the submersible presumably imploded as it made its descent into deep North Atlantic waters on June 18.

Why It Matters: Some view those who died as bold pioneers, steeped in the American tradition of doing “things not because they are easy, but because they are hard.” Then, there are those who think the men were idiots — like the kind of people who go “adventuring” in Latin America and plunge to their death after trying out Ecuadorian zip lines to prove how loco they are.

Wherever you stand on this issue, five innocent souls were lost, and that is always a tragedy. But that’s not how the Left saw these deaths.

Numerous people on the Left were glad because five rich men were killed at the bottom of the sea. Much like the “We’re coming for your children” chants at Pride parades across America, when the Left says, “Eat the rich!” there’s more truth to their chants than not. Success is always envied by the Left, and that emotion leads to contempt. The fruit of that contempt rears its ugly head when catastrophe strikes the Left’s opponents.

To listen to the audio version of Afternoon Update, click here. And for more in-depth discussion of the biggest stories of the day, listen to the latest full episode of Morning Wire every morning.

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The Daily Wire   >  Read   >  The Rundown: Team Biden Fights For Censorship, Truth Is The First Casualty Of War