Posts Tagged ‘Blogosphere’

PAYOFF FOR LYING TO THE AMERICAN PUBLIC: COULD UN AMBASSADOR SUSAN RICE BE NAMED SECRETARY OF STATE?

by Stephen Levine on Friday, November 16th, 2012

This is article 43 of 116 in the topic Obama Appointments

Another name being bandied about the blogosphere is the name of United Nations Ambassador Susan Rice being nominated to become Secretary of State. With the majority of the democrats in the Senate ready to ratify the nomination.

Rice is thought to be the president’s preferred choice over two other strong candidates, Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman John Kerry of Massachusetts and National Security Adviser Tom Donilon, according to the current and former administration officials. <Source>

Susan Rice, if you are not following the story, was the Administration’s chosen point person to go on five Sunday news programs to spin the story that the 9/11 Benghazi, Libya attack was all about a protest over a little-known YouTube video – even though it appears that the story was not only false, but the Administration’s top officials knew it was false.

Susan Rice, the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, has been the focal point of accusations that the Obama administration misled the American public about the terrorist attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya. On Sept. 16, five days after the attack, Rice asserted on several news programs that the attack stemmed from a spontaneous protest against an anti-Muslim video, a claim that the White House has since corrected. <Source>

Is it possible that General Petraeus, then head of the CIA, allegedly lied to Susan Rice much as he allegedly lied to Congress? No matter what the truth may turn out to be, Susan Rice should be considered collateral damage and not allowed to become the next Secretary of State.

— steve

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Obama Administration Now Admits Benghazi was a terrorist attack – another “campaign mode” statement?

by Stephen Levine on Sunday, September 23rd, 2012

This is article 353 of 794 in the topic Terrorism

There should be no surprise when the Obama Administration lies to the American public for the purposes of promoting Barack Hussein Obama. Now they have changed their tune once again, openly acknowledging what had been reported in the blogosphere and talk radio. The attack on the American consular offices was not a “spontaneous demonstration,” but an act of terrorism perpetrated by members of al Qaeda or an affiliated group.

However, they still are peddling the story that it is possible that it was caused by a little known film trailer on YouTube. Even though the attack occurred on the anniversary of 9/11 and al Qaeda’s number two man was killed in a drone strike shortly before.

Obama official: Benghazi was a terrorist attack

The Sept. 11 attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi was in fact “a terrorist attack” and the U.S. government has indications that members of al Qaeda were directly involved, a top Obama administration official said Wednesday morning.

“I would say yes, they were killed in the course of a terrorist attack on our embassy,” Matt Olsen, the director of the National Counterterrorism Center, said Wednesday at a hearing of the Senate Homeland Security Committee, in response to questioning from Chairman Joe Lieberman (I-CT) about the attack that killed Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans.

As for who was responsible, Olsen said it appears there were attackers from a number of different militant groups that operate in and around Benghazi, and said there are already signs of al Qaeda involvement.

“We are looking at indications that individuals involved in the attack may have had connections to al Qaeda or al Qaeda’s affiliates; in particular, al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb,” he said.

The U.S. government just isn’t sure yet whether the terrorist attack was pre-planned or whether it was an example of terrorists taking advantage of protests against an anti-Islam film, Olsen said.

“It appears that individuals who were certainly well-armed seized on the opportunity presented as the events unfolded that evening and into the morning hours of September 12th. We do know that a number of militants in the area, as I mentioned, are well-armed and maintain those arms. What we don’t have at this point is specific intelligence that there was a significant advanced planning or coordination for this attack,” he said.

His statements go further than those of the White House Press Secretary Jay Carney, who said last week that the protests in Cairo and Benghazi were a reaction to the video and not a pre-planned attack. Today, Carney didn’t repeat the assertion that the video was solely to blame, but he said again that there is no evidence the Benghazi attack was pre-planned.

Committee ranking Republican Susan Collins (R-ME) declared at the hearing that she believes the attacks were planned well in advance and she referenced information she had received from U.S. intelligence officials behind closed doors.

“First, I will tell you that based on the briefings I have had, I’ve come to the opposite conclusion and agree with the president of Libya that this was a premeditated, planned attack that was associated with the date of 9/11, the anniversary of 9/11,” she said. “I just don’t think that people come to protests equipped with RPGs and other heavy weapons.

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Wade Michael Page Was Neo-Nazi White Supremacist, Not Conservative

by Donald Douglas on Thursday, August 9th, 2012

This is article 19 of 30 in the topic Forms of Government

Following up from my earlier entries, “London’s Daily Mail Features Wade Michael Page Pictured Before Huge Nazi Banner in Write-Up on Oak Creek Massacre,” and “The Oak Creek Massacre and Political Ideologies.”

I want to reiterate the point that the slain suspect Michael Wade Page was not a conservative, he was a Nazi. I think the problem people have is whether or not fascist or Nazi ideologies can be placed at the far-right of the political continuum. I mentioned Bob Belvedere’s post, for example, “Sikh Shooting: Don’t Buy The Leftist Lies.” And linked there is William Jacobson, who writes:

Simple, Free Image and File Hosting at MediaFire

Needless to say, the MSM and left-blogosphere have concluded the shooter was a white supremacist/neo-Nazi based on tattoos and being a former member of what they describe as a “skinhead” band — which they then obscenely generalize to be “right-wing,” a way of trying to link him to the political right. This is the age-old tactic. If Page was a white supremacist/neo-Nazi/skinhead, then he stood against everything the political right stands for.

That’s not a problem, per se, to locate Page on the “far-right.” Conservatives routinely use the term “far-left” in referring to hardcore progressive radicals and neo-communists. The left-right ideological spectrum has been used that way for over 200 years, since the French National Assembly — after the toppling of the Ancien Régime — arrayed political factions from the radicals (on the left) to the reactionaries (on the right). While folks can question that seating arrangement as arbitrary and historically isolated (time-bound), nevertheless since then talk of modern political ideology has employed that left-right axis.

It’s way too simplistic, of course.  This chart below is at The Liberty Papers. This is just one example of how ideology is complicated by situating ideological adherents according to their relationship to political freedom. There are different examples we could use, although for simplification this graphic may serve for basic discussion, even though the placement of Adolf Hitler is too far to the left (since government did not own the means of production in Nazi Germany). The best chart I’ve used is found in Patrick O’Neil’s, Essentials of Comparative Politics, which uses this basic graphic but plugs in ideological labels, such as “socialist” and “fascist” into the template. [This section is updated with the strike through indicating the revision.]

Ideologies

Another complicating factor in analysis is an ideology’s orientation toward race and racial identity. Both Marxian socialism and Nazi millenarianism emphasize cleansing aspects to the social order. Marx was Jewish but despised religion as the “opiate of the people,” and he has often been cited as one of the founders of Europe’s historical anti-Semitism. But Italy’s fascists, while originating in leftist socialist-labor circles, later specifically identified Marxian socialists as the political enemy. As the Interwar Period wore on, Mussolini’s brand of fascism became increasingly identified with Hitler’s Germany. The key difference, however, was that the Nazis’ fundamental orientation was toward preserving the purity of the Medieval German “volk,” which was idealized as the perfect “Aryan” race, and thus the establishment of the Nazi Third Reich would restore a master race of pure-bred Germans to the center of Europe.

The Soviet Union, however, especially it its pre-Stalinist development, was in principle committed to ethnic assimilation under the banner of Marxist-Leninist ideology.

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LOSING YOUR PRIVACY ONE DEVICE AT A TIME: ROUTERS WITH UNRESTRICTED VENDOR REMOTE ACCESS AND SPYING CAPABILITIES

by Stephen Levine on Saturday, June 30th, 2012

This is article 29 of 45 in the topic Cyber space

Once again, it appears that an electronic device manufacturer is going to sell you a product and then – as a condition of use – spy on your activity; ostensibly to improve  your experience with the product.

The blogosphere is pulsating with the news about Cisco/Linksys routers that may no longer be configured locally and must be configured through the use of their “Cisco Connect Cloud” service. Or certain routers which have been automatically upgraded to mandate the use of that particular service without the hardware owner’s  permission.

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“Myrv writes Reports have started popping up that Cisco is pushing out and automatically (without permission) installing their new Cloud Connect firmware on consumer routers. The new firmware removes the user’s ability to login and administer the router locally. You now must configure the router using Cisco’s Cloud connect service. If that wasn’t bad enough, the fine print for this new service allows Cisco to track your complete internet history. Currently, it appears the only way to disable the Cloud Connect service is to unplug your router from the internet.”

Check out some of the above links for discussions on intrusive behavior and suggestions for work-arounds.

About Cisco Cloud Connect …

“Cisco Connect Cloud!”

“Now available for Linksys Smart Wi-Fi Routers, Cisco Connect Cloud gives you anytime, anywhere access to your home network.”

This revolutionary new technology delivers a host of free apps for your router, and that’s only the beginning. As new devices and ways of interacting with your home emerge, Cisco Connect Cloud will keep expanding with new apps to enrich your connected lifestyle.”

and their broadly-construed privacy agreement …

“Cisco Connect Cloud Supplement”

“Note that this page is a supplement to the Cisco Privacy Statement. In order to understand the data collection and use practices relevant for a particular site or solution, you should read both the Cisco Privacy Statement and any applicable supplement.”

“The following describes our practices with respect to the Cisco Connect Cloud service, which includes any Cisco-authored apps that are part of this service (the “Service”).”

Collection and Use of Information

As part of the Service registration process, you can also opt in to having your router product registration information sent to Cisco’s product registration database. This helps streamline the registration process for your router in the event you need to contact us for support, and saves you the extra step of having to register your router separately.”

When you use the Service, we may keep track of certain information related to your use of the Service, including but not limited to the status and health of your network and networked products; which apps relating to the Service you are using; which features you are using within the Service infrastructure; network traffic (e.g., megabytes per hour); Internet history; how frequently you encounter errors on the Service system and other related information

“We use this Other Information to help us quickly and efficiently respond to inquiries and requests, and to enhance or administer our overall Service for our customers. We may also use this Other Information for traffic analysis (for example, determining when the most customers are using the Service) and to determine which features within the Service are most or least effective or useful to you.

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Won’t back down: Amidst threats, National Bloggers Club announces Aaron Walker appeal; blogs to crank up pressure on Congress

by Michelle Malkin on Wednesday, June 6th, 2012

This is article 59 of 113 in the topic Free Speech

When I asked Ali Akbar of the National Bloggers Club for help with a website/infrastructure to support the blogger targets of convicted bomber/online terrorist Brett Kimberlin two weeks ago, he didn’t hesitate or waver. He stepped up to the plate because he believes in free speech and new media. I knew and respected him from his past work on grass-roots conservative campaigns and online projects. I was honored to join the NBC board of directors when he asked me late last year. There is no vast, deeply-funded conspiracy behind how it all came together — as some deranged progressive operatives (who habitually indulge in such rancid psychological projection) are claiming. I simply asked for help with organizing/fundraising tasks that were way beyond my paygrade. Ali volunteered to help and hasn’t stopped. The blogosphere owes him bottomless thanks.

Despite threats made to Ali’s family by Kimberlin associates and new legal threats waged by one Kevin Zeese, he and the NBC are not backing down. They are standing with the Kimberlin targets who continue to fight these ongoing menaces. Joining the battle: many, many excellent First Amendment lawyers (including Eugene Volokh, who on Tuesday noted his pro bono involvement at his blog.)

Today, Ali and the National Bloggers Club announce the following important development in the Maryland case involving blogger Aaron Walker — who was gagged by an ignorant, free speech-trampling judge:

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 6, 2012
Contact: Ali Akbar
ali@blogbash.org (888) 308-3606

NATIONAL BLOGGERS CLUB ANNOUNCES THAT BLOGGER AARON WALKER HAS APPEALED AGAINST CONVICTED DOMESTIC TERRORIST BRETT KIMBERLIN

WASHINGTON, DC — The National Bloggers Club, Inc. is announcing that it will continue to raise funds to provide financial relief to member Aaron Walker. An appeal to the peace order granted by Judge C.J. Vaughey was filed Monday.

Last week, the Maryland judge issued a 6-month peace order and jailed attorney Aaron Walker, preventing him from mentioning Brett Kimberlin in public. A blogger and Los Angeles Deputy District Attorney wrote of the decision: “[T]his is a clear-cut case of a First Amendment violation — about as clear-cut as you’ll ever hear.” Since then, Walker has been working with a new legal team and the National Bloggers Club to legally restore his free speech rights.

“We’ve got over a dozen lawyers coordinating on this now, volunteering their time. Aaron’s First Amendment rights are being violated when he is barred from even being able to publicly mention the case or Kimberlin’s violent past,” said Bloggers Club president Ali A. Akbar.

Akbar continued, “Yesterday they came after the Bloggers Club and my family — my family. We’re not stopping. We’ve got to raise $5,000 more dollars to continue to stand with Aaron Walker and I’m positive supporters will continue to step up.”

The National Bloggers Club is working to promote KimberlinFiles.org, where supporters continue to give financial and written support to this cause.

In keeping with the ruling of the court, Walker’s response was simply: “Thank you.”

PLEASE give if you can and spread the word.

***

Related must-reads:

*Via Popehat:

It appears that Judge Vaughey has had a respectable career. Moreover, I am sympathetic to the notion that everyone, including judges, makes mistakes.

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Jay Carney Asked About Separate First Family Flights to Hawaii

by Doug Powers on Saturday, December 17th, 2011

This is article 196 of 571 in the topic Media

I’m glad what started out in the blogosphere is now catching on among some reporters covering the White House hypocrisy beat.

It’s funny to watch this administration pretend to be unable or incapable of understanding why the “separate flights to Hawaii” thing is viewed as hypocritical, especially weeks after signing a “promote efficient spending” directive for Federal employees, and after years of carbon emissions chicken-littling about global warming. All Jay Carney can do when called on it is stand up there and justify why it’s okay for the President to spend hundreds of thousands of extra dollars and spew unnecessary carbon emissions into the atmosphere because he’s the president, dammit! I’d agree it’s a perk of the job if they weren’t always telling everybody else to sacrifice wherever possible during these tough times:

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Fishwrap of Record’s resident sap confesses

by Michelle Malkin on Tuesday, September 20th, 2011

This is article 168 of 571 in the topic Media

(Photoshop via Doug Ross)

The last time I blogged about David Brooks’s bloviations, I opened by asking:

“How much of a tool is New York Times columnist David Brooks?”

Brooks answers the question himself in his latest column:

I’m a sap, a specific kind of sap. I’m an Obama Sap.

When the president said the unemployed couldn’t wait 14 more months for help and we had to do something right away, I believed him. When administration officials called around saying that the possibility of a double-dip recession was horrifyingly real and that it would be irresponsible not to come up with a package that could pass right away, I believed them.

I liked Obama’s payroll tax cut ideas and urged Republicans to play along. But of course I’m a sap. When the president unveiled the second half of his stimulus it became clear that this package has nothing to do with helping people right away or averting a double dip. This is a campaign marker, not a jobs bill.

You’ll recall — I do, anyway — that Brooks admitted last October that President Obama told him a year ago that he knew that the “shovel-ready project” propaganda he employed to pass the first, massive porkulus bill was a steaming load of bullcrap.

Brooks’ New York Times colleague Peter Baker reported the newsworthy admission in a Sunday magazine piece. It’s an admission that received much deserved attention here in the blogosphere this week and that invited much deserved derision from Republican critics of the stimulus boondoggle.

Why didn’t Brooks report Obama’s damning admission sooner? In another serving of steaming bullcrap, he claims it’s because Baker was more skilled at getting Obama to talk on the record. Seems to me the real reason Brooks didn’t report it is because he had his nose so far up his bromance love object’s you-know-what that he didn’t see the scoop dropped right in his lap.

The news that Brooks is an “Obama sap” is news only to the other smarty pants and panting smarties ensconced at the the Fishwrap of Record.

His ridiculous drool stains have been showing for years:

That first encounter is still vivid in Brooks’s mind. “I remember distinctly an image of–we were sitting on his couches, and I was looking at his pant leg and his perfectly creased pant,” Brooks says, “and I’m thinking, a) he’s going to be president and b) he’ll be a very good president.” In the fall of 2006, two days after Obama’s The Audacity of Hope hit bookstores, Brooks published a glowing Times column. The headline was “Run, Barack, Run.”

Over to you, T. Coddington Van Voorhees VII!

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New York Times Opinion: Heroes as salesmen?

by Stephen Levine on Wednesday, August 24th, 2011

This is article 1 of 6 in the topic Heroes

I find myself in an intellectual quandary, because I  agree with the basic premise as put forth by the left’s newspaper of record, the New York Times, but recognize that the article is intellectually dishonest. So I am standing up and calling bullshit!

Fox News and the blogosphere is lighting up in outrage when the New York Times had the temerity to note that not all people in uniform are heroes.

“NYT Essay Rips ‘Cult of The Uniform’ – Says Soldiers Aren’t ‘Heroes’”

“On the front page of the editorial section of the Sunday paper, The New York Times prominently featured a lengthy essay bemoaning Americans who put the military on a pedestal — and suggests they may not really be heroes.” <Source: ConservativeByte.com>

The opinion piece, “An Empty Regard,” put forth the proposition that the word “hero” is overused and while there are genuine heroes among the military, police, fire and other uniformed services, not everybody is worthy of the appellation.

Excerpts from “An Empty Regard”The term most characteristically employed, when the cult of the uniform is celebrated, is “heroes.” Perhaps no word in public life of late has been more thoroughly debased by overuse. Soldiers are “heroes”; firefighters are “heroes”; police officers are “heroes” — all of them, not the special few who undoubtedly deserve the term. So unthinking has the platitude become that someone referred to national park rangers on public radio recently as “heroes” — reflexively, in passing — presumably since they wear uniforms, as well.

And I agree. The word “hero” is grossly overused. However, the author is not justified in using this singular fact to bash the military or other policy practices and I find much of his remaining work hypocritical. Another example of the way the left starts with a commonsense premise and uses it to put forth their toxic world view and virulent ideology.

NO symbol is more sacred in American life right now than the military uniform. The cross is divisive; the flag has been put to partisan struggle. But the uniform commands nearly automatic and universal reverence. In Congress as on television, generals are treated with awed respect, service members spoken of as if they were saints. Liberals are especially careful to make the right noises: obeisance to the uniform having become the shibboleth of patriotism, as anti-Communism used to be. Across the political spectrum, throughout the media, in private and public life, the pieties and ritual declarations are second nature now: ‘warriors,’ ‘heroes,’ ‘mission’; ‘our young men and women in uniform,’ ‘our brave young men and women,’ ‘our finest young people.’ So common has this kind of language become, we scarcely notice it anymore.”

Backhanded praise with a barb …

“There is no question that our troops are courageous and selfless. They expose themselves to inconceivable dangers under conditions of enormous hardship and fight because they want to keep the country safe. We owe them respect and gratitude — even if we think the wars they’re asked to fight are often wrong. But who our service members are and the work their images do in our public psyche, our public discourse, and our public policy are not the same. Pieties are ways to settle arguments before they begin.

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Wynn-ing the Future

by Doug Powers on Wednesday, July 20th, 2011

This is article 20 of 391 in the topic economy

Today the blogosphere is buzzing with what Vegas casino mogul Steve Wynn said about President Obama during a conference call with analysts.

By way of Newsbusters, here’s part of it:

[T]his administration is the greatest wet blanket to business, and progress and job creation in my lifetime. And I can prove it and I could spend the next 3 hours giving you examples of all of us in this market place that are frightened to death about all the new regulations, our healthcare costs escalate, regulations coming from left and right…[I]t makes you slow down and not invest your money. Everybody complains about how much money is on the side in America. You bet. And until we change the tempo and the conversation from Washington, it’s not going to change. And those of us who have business opportunities and the capital to do it are going to sit in fear of the President…I’m telling you that the business community in this company is frightened to death of the weird political philosophy of the President of the United States. And until he’s gone, everybody’s going to be sitting on their thumbs.

Ouch. Pretty strong words, especially coming from a heavy-hitter in the business world. It’s not the first time Wynn has been critical of Obama, who Wynn voted for (see this video at about the 1:00 mark).

I’m more curious about what Wynn was thinking in voting for Obama than I am about what Obama is thinking. We know what Obama is thinking, and that’s the point. We have since before the election. I’d just like to know what Obama has done that’s come as a shock to Steve Wynn. What part of “we are five days away from fundamentally transforming the United States of America” didn’t Wynn get? Did he not believe Obama was serious? Did Wynn not understand that “this is the moment that the rise of the oceans began to slow” was just a metaphor for massive redistribution of wealth, economic health — Vegas or elsewhere — be damned?

If Steve Wynn didn’t see this coming he’s not as bright as he’s often given credit for. And he still supports Harry Reid — don’t get me started on that one. Harry Reid and Barack Obama are twins conjoined at taxpayers’ wallets, so how he can still support Reid but want Obama voted out is confusing and part of the reason why I didn’t join the chorus with some other fellow conservatives after reading the above quote by yelling “testify Steve!”

This time around in 2012 I hope Mr. Wynn can put his money, not to mention vote, where his mouth is.

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Welcome Back McCotter; Update: A few key votes added

by Doug Powers on Monday, July 4th, 2011

This is article 191 of 1300 in the topic 2012 Elections

To my recollection, in the years I’ve been writing about the political scene in my little corner of the blogosphere, I’ve only mentioned Rep. Thaddeus McCotter once, and that was for getting the Led out on the House floor. I’ve kind of liked the guy ever since, but I’m still in a “learning process” as far as getting to know his overall record. I have to admit though that lately McCotter’s been sort of like the movie Roadhouse: Whenever he’s on I stop to watch and I can’t specifically put my finger on why.

On Saturday McCotter announced he’s running for president. Good. “The more the merrier” I say… especially in this election cycle.

The Alaska Dispatch ran an article entitled “10 facts about Thaddeus McCotter.” Here’s item that might stick out most to conservatives:

McCotter once voted for the Employee Free Choice Act, a pro-union bill that would have made it easier for employees to form and join unions to bargain with employers. It’s seen as anti-business, a move he’ll be hard-pressed to defend in the race.

The EFCA is otherwise known as “card check.” McCotter has since called that vote “a mistake.” Is that a sincere retraction? That will be up to McCotter to explain. The good news for Thad is that the Republican candidate the MSM is already trying to anoint as the nominee is credited with being the brainchild behind Obamacare, and that candidate is near the top of most polls to win the GOP nomination. Given that, McCotter’s card check vote might not be all that damaging, especially when it comes bundled with the apology.

Otherwise McCotter seems to have conservative street credentials (with with some dings along the way). Other than some Internet research though, I’m not completely familiar with Thaddeus McCotter. Neither are most voters, so that’s a problem that will obviously need to be addressed.

I’m going to go out on a safe limb (padded, with all sharp edges filed down) and predict that if McCotter makes it deeper into the process, he’ll at least shake things up a bit. I’m from Michigan though so there’s probably a “pulling for the home team” element to my prediction (until three years ago I remained convinced the Detroit Lions would win a Super Bowl before I died).

Here’s McCotter’s “I’m running” announcement on Saturday. He said his son couldn’t make it because he had to work, so if you give Thaddeus McCotter credit for anything, make it for having a kid with the ability to find a job in spite of living in the aftermath of Jennifer Granholm:

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