It is undoubtedly true that the emergence of social media can help to make the case against big government. It is equally true, however, that the authoritarians who want people to remain in the thrall of the state, obediently paying taxes, following orders, and scorning those who seek to reduce its power can make use of social media for their purposes. Kevin Munger makes that point very strongly in this piece on the FEE site today.

In his great essay, The Anatomy of the State, Murray Rothbard pointed out that rulers (of all sorts) need widespread approval in the populace and employ all kinds of deceptions to secure that approval. It isn’t surprising that today’s authoritarians have figured out that social media can be helpful in their efforts at keeping the people in thrall of the state.