Filling in for host Martin Bashir during the 3 p.m. ET hour on MSNBC on Thursday, left-wing Washington Post writer Jonathan Capehart outrageously compared British Prime Minister David Cameron to deposed Egyptian dictator Hosni Mubarak for asking UK law enforcement to disrupt social media communication among criminals planning violent riots.
If shutting down social networking, or even the internet, over fears that it's used to organize and possibly bring about civil unrest sounds familiar, it should...when things hit a boiling point in Egypt earlier this year, the entire internet was unplugged for fear that people were using it as a tool to bring about the revolution they so badly desired. And how did that attempt at censorship work out, Prime Minister? Not so well.
[Special thanks to MRC intern Alex Fitzsimmons for providing video of the segment below]
Here is a full transcript of Capehart's August 11 report:
JONATHAN CAPEHART: Now to London, where today Prime Minister David Cameron spoke to Parliament after calling its members back early from their summer recess. Cameron said that in the wake of this week's chaos, the government will look into disrupting the use of social networking on sites such as Twitter and Facebook, if they are thought to be criminal in nature. Indeed, he said the government will review whether it may be possible to stop suspected rioters from spreading online messages.
DAVID CAMERON: Everyone watching these horrific actions will be struck by how they were organized by social media. Free flow of information can be used for good, but it can also be used for ill. So we are working with the police, the intelligence services, and industry to look at whether it would be right to stop people communicating via these web sites and services, where we know they are plotting violence, disorder and criminality.
CAPEHART: And you may find it a bit odd that Cameron is now looking to attack social media, especially after he used it as a major tool to vault him into his current political position, and if shutting down social networking, or even the internet, over fears that it's used to organize and possibly bring about civil unrest sounds familiar, it should.
TAMRON HALL: Egypt has cut off most internet and cell phone service.
ANDREA MITCHELL: Breaking right now, a nationwide curfew is in effect, and internet and mobile phone service has been cut off.
DYLAN RATIGAN: There is rioting in the streets of Cairo, the government cutting off internet and text messaging across the country in a bid to silence dissent.
CAPEHART: Yes, when things hit a boiling point in Egypt earlier this year, the entire internet was unplugged for fear that people were using it as a tool to bring about the revolution they so badly desired. And how did that attempt at censorship work out, Prime Minister? Not so well.
For now, social networking is alive and kicking here in the states, so follow Martin and the show on Twitter.com/BashirLive or on Facebook, at Facebook.com/MartinBashir.
- Kyle Drennen is a news analyst at the Media Research Center. Click here  to follow Kyle Drennen on Twitter.