In Today’s Issue 💬
- Zelensky's talk with Congress and some context around it
- DuckDuckGo ruins its search engine and an alternative to use
- Some headlines to keep you in the loop
Zelensky asks Congress to escalate, compares Ukraine to 9/11 and Pearl Harbor
Today, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky live-streamed into Congress to plead with the U.S. for help.
No-fly zone: Zelensky doubled down on Ukraine’s recent pleas for a NATO-backed no-fly zone. He portrayed a no-fly zone as a necessary humanitarian move to save the Ukrainian people. He also reminded Americans of 9/11 and Pearl Harbor and quoted MLK’s “I have a dream” speech.
- Consequences: A no-fly zone would require NATO and American forces to shoot down Russian aircraft and anti-aircraft equipment located on Russian territory. According to Russian President Vladimir Putin, this would be a drastic escalation and could lead to nuclear war.
“This is a terror that Europe has not seen, has not seen for 80 years, and we are asking for a reply to this terror from the whole world. Is this a lot to ask for — to create a no-fly zone over Ukraine to save people? Is this too much to ask humanitarian — a no-fly zone.” - Zelensky
Second best option: Zelensky said that giving aircraft to Ukrainians would be the second-best option. Over the past week, NATO allies debated providing Ukraine with fighter jets.
- Poland wanted to help Ukraine but didn’t want to be dragged into the war. It, therefore, proposed providing the United States with the jets that would be transferred to Ukraine.
- Consequences: Some argue that the move would escalate the situation, but less than a potential no-fly zone. NATO countries are already arming Ukrainians with other lethal defensive weapons.
From Zelensky’s perspective, urging other countries to help Ukraine is necessary to stop the invasion and keep Ukraine independent. For the rest of the world, Zelensky’s pleas risk escalating the situation into a world war.
Big picture: NATO countries are unsure of where Putin’s line is. While they send lethal defense weapons and train troops, they hesitate to send jets and act in ways that could escalate the war.
DuckDuckGo starts ranking searches and an alternative
People left Google search because it was manipulating results. Now, DuckDuckGo is heading in a similar direction.
What happened: Last week, DuckDuckGo announced that they would start down-ranking Russian disinformation. While this may seem great, it is problematic for the following reasons:
- Defines disinformation: DuckDuckGo will determine what is disinformation and what is not; the same mindset that led to mass domestic censorship over the past five years.
- Cuts relevant information: Ideally, you want your search engine to show you the most relevant information. Down-ranking specific sources based on politics makes that impossible.
- Builds censorship infrastructure: DuckDuckGo building out its capabilities to down-rank searches means it will be able to do this again with other issues.
- Precedent and mission: What’s keeping DuckDuckGo from doing this with American politics? After backlash, DuckDuckGo’s CEO made it clear that DuckDuckGo is about privacy, not censorship-free search.
Why not Google: Google manipulates its search results to support its progressive partisan ties. For example, Google filtered search suggestions to benefit Hillary and Biden’s presidential campaigns. Google also suppresses many right-wing outlets like Breitbart.
A good alternative is Brave Search. It’s a relatively new search engine that’s still in beta but operates like DuckDuckGo without bias. We also looked at Start Page, but it’s simply Google search with more privacy.
🔥 In Other News
😷 MASKS: Senate votes to overturn mask mandate on airplanes, transit
🇺🇦NO NATO: Zelensky concedes Ukraine is unlikely to join NATO, seeks security guarantees.
☀️ MORE SUNLIGHT: U.S. Senate approves bill to make daylight saving time permanent
📈 FIGHTING INFLATION: Fed Raises Interest Rates for the First Time Since 2018 in Bid to Curb Inflation, Sees Six More Hikes in 2022
👶 PRO-LIFE WIN: Idaho copies extreme Texas law and bans abortion after six weeks
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