Archive for category censorship

More than just the second amendment

I am going to take a step aside for the most part about gun laws and gun rights and talk about another right that will pop up soon enough and that is the first amendment. The reason I bring up this amendment is because to nobody’s surprise, the Westboro Baptist Church plans to protest the memorial service for the dead in Connecticut’s shooting in their attempts to piss people off and milk a lawsuit from them. Now the WBC can get away with this because they use free speech, free religion and free assembly to legally do this, all from the 1st amendment. The question is should there be limits on the first amendments the same way we are proposing limits on the 2nd amendment? And we could go further. In response to the planned protests, Anonymous leaked private information about the church members. Is that covered by free speech? If that attack hypocritical? Just a thought to ponder.


How Fox “news” Handles The Truth

It doesn’t!

After trying to win the election by having Mitt Romney blame President Obama for the attack on the U.S. diplomatic mission in Benghazi and failing completely, there was one guy who didn’t believe the “story”, and said so yesterday.

Thomas Ricks, a Pulitzer Prize winning author, won the Pulitzer for writing at The Wall Street Journal in 2000. Of course this was before Rupert Murdock acquired the newspaper.

Mr. Ricks doesn’t last a minute and a half on this excuse for a television station.

Funny though!


Are Canadians Just Smarter Than We Are?

Or is something else happening?

Bob Alexander is a great writer and activist, among other things. He is someone to follow. He used to live in the US, but decided to get the hell out about a year ago and move to Canada.

Here is his perspective on the polling results in Canada as compared to the results in America concerning the debates:

I watched the presidential and vice presidential debates on CBC up here in Beautiful British Columbia. During the debates viewers could vote on who was winning. The first debate’s results were: 76% Obama, and 18% Romney. The next morning I went online to read the American Polls. WTF!!?? Romney was declared the winner.

Then came the VP debate between Biden and Ryan. Again I watched it on CBC and the Canadian viewers voted 88% Biden and 10% Ryan. The next day American polls gave a slight edge to Biden. The CNN/ORC poll showed Ryan at 48% to Biden’s 44%. NBC Politics had Biden at 38% to Ryan’s 34% and CNBC reported a tie with Ryan and Biden both at 47%. WTF squared.

Pretty weird, huh?

I don’t trust our polling organizations or media organizations any farther then I can spit. They have refused to release the exit polling results since the machines were rolled out. Things just don’t add up.

Also from the editorial:

A multi-billion dollar PR firm takes control of the media and creates a phony narrative. Then corporate-owned proprietary voting machines count the ballots, and they tell us who “won.” They’ve got both sides of the transaction again. What could possibly go wrong?


“What we really need is a greater global sensitivity to the right of free speech”

Mano Singham in response to the attacks on US Embassies in response to a movie that says mean things about Islam:

When private individuals have been attacked by religious zealots, the acts have been condemned but also resulted in calls for greater sensitivity to the feelings of religious people. That is wrong-headed. What we really need is a greater global sensitivity to the right of free speech. Muslims, like any other religious group, will have to come to terms with the fact that their religious beliefs cannot be allowed to put limits on the speech of others however deliberately offensive it may seem to them.


So Called, “Voter Fraud” Could Be a Win For Republicans

Rep. Steve King (R-IA)

Voter ID coverage is raging across our corporate, public and liberal information organizations like a tsunami. ALEC got caught pimping ID laws which will successfully disenfranchise Utahn’s and others across the country who have been voting for decades, even though there is no reason to believe that more then a handful of democratic voters have been trying to vote illegally.

Just ask Pennsylvania [emphasis mine]:

As the Justice Department investigates Pennsylvania’s voter ID law on the federal level, a coalition of civil rights groups is gearing up for a state trial starting Wednesday examining whether the law is allowable under Pennsylvania’s constitution.

In that case, Pennsylvania might have handed those groups and their clients (including 93-year-old Viviette Applewhite) a bit of an advantage: They’ve formally acknowledged that there’s been no reported in-person voter fraud in Pennsylvania and there isn’t likely to be in November.

Or Texas (from TPM):

When Assistant Attorney General Thomas E. Perez of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division appears before the House Judiciary Committee on Thursday, Chairman Lamar Smith (R-TX) will likely press him for using a Democratic-leaning firm to analyze data in the Texas voter ID case.

Smith wrote a letter earlier this month which stated that DOJ choosing the “left-leaning” Catalist to review Texas’ voter ID data was “a disturbing misuse of taxpayer dollars and undermines the credibility of the Department’s challenge to the law.”

Chairman Lamar goes on [emphasis mine]:

“Imagine the outrage if a Republican administration intervened to block a New York City election law on the basis of data provided by a firm run by Karl Rove,” Smith wrote.

As it turns out, Smith doesn’t really have to imagine much: The expert Texas used to defend their law used to work for Karl Rove.

University of Texas Professor Daron Shaw, who testified that Texas’ voter ID law “will not have an impact on turnout,” worked for both of President George W. Bush’s presidential campaigns, the RNC, Fox News’ election desk and Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R), who signed the voter ID bill into law.

Well, Assistant Attorney General Thomas E. Perez did, indeed, appear before the House Judiciary Committee on Thursday and The Chairman opened the hearing by saying he reserved the right to end the hearing at any time. He probably should have done that before the hearing began because the Republican dudes didn’t come out looking too good.

I turned on the TV, just in time to see Representative Steve King make a total ass out of himself – something he’s really good at – by interrupting Perez, just as Perez starts to reiterate what everybody should know about the absence of voter fraud in the US. You can see the exchange starting at about 48 minutes in on this C-Span video, but the whole video is incredible.

The Chairman thinks that any true American plurality would obviously vote Republican, if only given the chance, for once. Funny thing; I thought they’d been telling us we were a divided country. I don’t know why Mr. King is worried about ACORN. It no longer exists because the Republican party got rid of it months ago with almost complete backing from the Democrats.

All this nonsense aside – and in reference to the title of this post; my real fear is that all this voter ID hoopla will help the Republicans take over the country. When the exit polls mysteriously flip at the midnight hour – literally -, the “conservatives” won’t have to thank the soccer moms, NASCAR dads, or the religious masses; they only need say they “won” because of the oh-so-clever voter ID laws they pushed through. Let’s face it, they haven’t exactly been hiding the fact these laws are out there and, in fact, the Governor of Florida, recently, shoved voter disenfranchisement in our faces. These guys are good, aren’t they?

Since the corporate voting machines are NEVER brought up ANYWHERE or ANYTIME by ANYBODY, and have been proven to be hackable, the Republicans can, once again, claim to be the “winners” they always are. Let’s face it, they got everything they wanted, even when the Democrats had all three branches of government after the 2006 midterms [please refer to mia-culpa below].

My hope is that the small-d democrats can hack the machines using only names like Mickey Mouse, George Jetson, Lassie ect… and win the house, senate, and the White House. Maybe we could then, FINALLY, have a debate about, and get rid of these pieces of garbage and have a multi-party system that makes sense.

Update: Seems as though Rep. Lamar Smith must have become ill or had some other pressing concern which forced me to edit my post. As all these opulent white men look the same to me, I didn’t catch it until after I completed the post. The man, henceforth, referred to as The Chairman in the post is actually Rep. Trent Franks (R-AZ), I think.

Mia-Culpa: Damn staff! Of course the Democrats only held the three branches after 2008. They’ll never see a job in this precinct again!


A Grand Farewell to ALEC

Was Alec Baldwin in Salt Lake? I didn’t hear anything on the news. :)

He/she/it wouldn’t give a single interview to the press and prefer to remain unknown. How many freedoms did we lose this week?


The grown-ups

When the conservatives started buying french wine and champagne to pour down the gutters after France had the nerve to say there where no WMDs in Iraq, i assumed the children had taken over the GOP. Did it occur to any of them that after you buy the stuff, it doesn’t really matter what you do with it? I mean they got the cash, does it matter how you waste it? (by the way, how did that turn out? Find those weapons did you? Proved those frenchie frogs wrong did you? Anyone apologize for “freedom fries”? No, I thought not) When the lunatic right started calling themselves “teabaggers” I started to suspect that we didn’t have any adults left in conservative politics. When they started marching around with tea-bags stapled to their hats I really did think it was too late.

When Mitt started the campaign with things like driving in circles and honking the bus horn at Obama rallies, well let’s just say my opinion of his level of class was confirmed. Watching GOP members censor women for daring to speak out about abortion (as if that is an issue women are allowed to have an opinion on! Ha!) and later for using the (gasp!) word “vagina” (I do declare get my fainting couch!) was almost anticlimactic. Watching the GOP campaign and pretend to govern is a bit like watching third graders try to run a country. Backwards third graders. The girls have cooties, the boys spend all their time proving a manhood they don’t have, normal English terms are off limits and I suspect the height of sophistication is fart jokes.

But even given that history, even if those are your peers, some people manage to stand out from the crowd as the most immature of the children.

Behold, dead beat dad, offender of war veterans, and all around class act, Joe Walsh.

Ladies and gentlemen, I give you the party of Lincoln. Who, if we could wrap him in copper and mount him in a ring of magnets, could single handedly solve our power problems, due to the unbelievable speed with which he is currently spinning his grave…


Caller Knocks Over The Proverbial Water Cooler

sex scandal

Of course, at least one caller to the Diane Rehm show, on NPR, knocks the cooler over every day Diane Rehm is actually on her own show. A multitude of Americans have been asking this question ever since the invasion of Iraq. I just thought I’d add to the repetition, since the call happened this morning, in hopes of nudging my fellow citizens into some kind of conversation at the water cooler that isn’t about dancing with stars, or the latest sex scandal manufactured for the US.

The caller refers to the latest BIG AMERICAN SEX SCANDAL before going where she really wants to go.

(listen here at about 42 minutes in)

All right. To San Francisco, Calif. Good morning, Denise.

Good morning, Diane. My question is going back to the GSA scandal…


…you know, with them going to Las Vegas. And my point is that where is the outrage over a manufactured war and the cherry-picked intelligence and the trillions of dollars spent and that hundred, maybe 200,000 Iraqi citizens and thousands of American lives and tens of thousands of young men and women living their lives as amputees or with head trauma. Where are the pallets of cash that went missing in Iraq? The bungles and irresponsible way that the Bush administration funded those wars, where does this debt come from? Where is the outrage about that?


It’s a great question. I do think one of the things that’s been really striking to me about this election year is how little Afghanistan and the on-going wars have been as part of the debate. And I think that may intensify as we get closer to the general election, but you have a president whose policy has more in line with Republicans. And I think Democrats thought — that they thought it was gonna be when he came into office.

He’s actually have been fairly hawkish about his foreign policy, and you have a progressive left that is not particularly organized or willing to go after the president in any kind of coordinated way. I think there’s been a willful silence in the Democratic Party of unity behind the president on this. And it has been surprisingly not an issue in this election year so far.

No doubt about it, $822,751 is a lot of taxpayers money to be spending on pleasure seeking, but trillions of dollars, crippled and dead soldiers are probably a little more noteworthy on the eve of memorial day, which most working Americans will spend – uh – working.

Did you notice how Susan Davis tried desperately to steer the conversation towards Obama and the progressive left’s failings. Well, I’ve learned not to expect much from “USA Today” and always turn off the radio whenever that other Susan from “USA Today” fills in for Diane.

The entire American media is a cesspool, except for NPR and PBS, which gives us a window of truth some of the time. I’ve been listening a lot more lately, and I, mostly, like the national and local fare.


Internet Pseudonyms Are Protected Speech

Via Raw Story. Ill Doctrine’s Jay Smooth explains why New York State legislators are idiots for trying to make anonymous (or, really, pseudonymous) comments illegal.

Voltaire never wrote, but probably agreed with the statement, “I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.” Why can’t everyone accept that in a free society?


John Fund Embraces ALEC In Public

The right-wing Guru promoting fake claims of “voter fraud” has taken his effort to a new level and, has actually mentioned ALEC online. Athough it’s, probably, only online at this point; the usual tactic of prominent American pundits is to ignore obvious truths. Fund’s article is actually called “Left-Wing Pressure Causes ALEC to Retreat“.

Left-Wing Pressure?

KFC, Taco Bell, Pizza Hut, Mars, Snickers, M&M’s, Milky Way, Wendy’s, McDonald’s, Coca-Cola, Pepsi, Kraft, Intuit, Microsoft?

Have I missed any subsidiaries? Who knew that the middle class had so many allies?

According to Fund, all of that “Left-Wing Pressure” came from former Obama White House aide Van Jones and The Nation magazine. :) He names John Engler, Tommy Thompson and Rick Perry as distinguished governors that “have come from the ranks of ALEC”, and even adds: (Disclosure: I have spoken at several ALEC events over the last 20 years without receiving any compensation.)

I’m not going to dispute that Mr. Fund didn’t receive any direct compensation for his strenuous speaking efforts at such events, but he’s not exactly living in a tent without a place to poop for his political theater either. Perhaps an air-conditioned bus? :(


Silent Film Star Speaks

Charlie Chaplin was WAY before my time, but when he got the chance to do “speakies”, he used his time wisely.

The reason I never knew about this film is obvious:


Bad words!

New York City, the Big Apple, the city so nice they named it twice, the home of a new education policy that makes Arkansas look like a bunch of liberal hippies…

The NYC department of education has a list of words you can’t say on a test because it might offend someone. Very impressive list too.

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