Parler Had It Coming

They forgot the first rule of cloud computing: there is no cloud; it’s just some other asshole’s computer.

Mon, 11 Jan 2021

This article concerns current events, US politics, and political violence in the wake of the insurrection attempt on January 6, 2021. The opinions within are entirely my own, and not necessarily those of my employer or any of their clients.

Fuck Parler. Did they really think they’d get away with running a platform open to right-wingers who couldn’t hack it on more “respectable” social media sites and claiming they couldn’t moderate when they had no trouble kicking out anybody whose politics were left of Barry fuckin’ Goldwater? Those fuckheads had it coming.

Fuck Parler’s luserbase. Let the neo-Nazis, fascists, and white supremacists make do with Stormfront. If they don’t like it, they can take a number, have a seat, and wait their turn to eat my dirty pinko ass.

Fuck former Parler CEO John Matze. He should have expected that Rebekah Mercer and her lackeys would throw him under a bus at the first opportunity.

Fuck Rebekah Mercer, fuck that asshole’s father Robert, and fuck the entire Mercer clan. These pusbags are the big money behind Parler and a lot of other right-wing bullshit. But don’t use your own dick. Rebekah Mercer looks like the sort of ideal neo-Nazi hausfrau who fantasizes about being Ilse Koch when she masturbates.

Every one of these assholes is a living argument for punitive taxes on income over a million per year and net worth over ten million. These scumbags aren’t content to claw their way out of the crab bucket; they insist on shitting in it on their way out so the rest of us can’t live in it either.

Of course, the whole point of billionaires bankrolling the conservative movement is to ensure that neither their incomes nor their accumulated wealth are ever subject to the sort of taxes that would prevent them from isolating themselves from the rest of society while lording it over the rest of us from behind the gates of their mansions.

That said, there’s a lesson to be learned from Parler’s downfall. It’s the lesson Andrew Torba seems to have figured out, but we’ll eventually get back to that asshole.

The lesson of Parler is: regardless of your politics/beliefs, this is what you get for not self-hosting.

Self-hosting means you pay for your own pipe, your own hardware, and your own space in which to keep the hardware, whether it’s on your own premises or in a co-location facility owned by individuals sympathetic to your views. It means that you distribute your own mobile apps if a website isn’t good enough for you.

Corporations don’t exist to provide you with a platform for your views, especially if they’re as repugnant as those frequently aired on sites like Parler. They exist to make a profit for their owners/stockholders, and if you hamper that mission they will throw you under a bus.

Whether this is right or wrong is irrelevant; corporations will do as they please unless the governments that issue their charters (which in the US is mostly the state of Delaware) start revoking them and dissolving corporations that abuse their power.

People keep forgetting that “the cloud” is just somebody else’s computer, and that somebody else is NOT your friend or ally.

As for Andrew Torba: Gab might be self-hosted, but all that means is that the next time some asshole shoots up a synagogue and brags about it on Gab while posting his half-assed manifesto, the FBI can just kick down the doors to Gab’s data center and confiscate every server as evidence without having to worry about collateral damage.

When that happens, I will laugh my gun-toting liberal ass off and collect the ensuing conservative crocodile tears for lube. Conservatives’ tears are plentiful; these reactionary assholes have been cry-bullying since the French Revolution. And they’re better than Astroglide since they’re more viscous and slippery.

Update for 4 March 2021: The FBI didn’t have to bother raiding Gab’s data center. As security researcher Troy Hunt wrote on his blog, Gab has been breached. Apparently Andrew Torba has become increasingly unhinged, Gab’s CTO can’t code for shit and is responsible for the SQL injection that allowed the breach to happen, but “tranny demon hackers” are the real problem.