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Death of British spy found padlocked in bag was accidental: British police

(Reuters) - A British spy, whose naked, decomposing body was found padlocked in a bag in his bathtub, probably died accidentally on his own, police said on Wednesday, rejecting conspiracy theories that his bizarre death was the work of foreign agents.

In May last year, a coroner concluded that Gareth Williams, who was working for Britain's external intelligence service MI6 when he was found dead at his home in August 2010, was probably killed unlawfully by another person.

His spy background and the fact that expensive, unworn women's clothes were found at his flat provoked a wide range of "weird and wonderful" theories, London Police Deputy Assistant Commissioner Martin Hewitt said, but further investigations now suggested it was more likely he had not been murdered.

"Most probably, it was an accident," Hewitt told reporters. "I'm convinced that Gareth's death was in no way linked to his work."

Fury of spy in the bag's family: As police dismiss MI6 man's death as an accident, parents insist coroner was right and their son WAS unlawfully killed

- Gareth Williams found dead in his Central London flat in August 2010
- 31-year-old's death was ruled to be 'probably' foul play by a coroner
- But Scotland Yard announced that he seems to have locked himself in bag
- Family believe he was killed and refuse to accept result of investigation
- They accuse MI6 of allowing circumstances of death to be 'covered up'

Police also found evidence that Mr Williams looked at bondage websites and visited transvestite clubs and gay bars – but they could not identify a single sexual partner.
The family raised concerns about how such material appeared to be being leaked to the media – so fuelling speculation that Mr Williams was a transvestite who was the victim of a sex game that went wrong.
During the inquest Dr Wilcox concluded that Mr Williams was not a transvestite and that his collection of women’s clothes were probably gifts for friends.
She dismissed claims that Mr Williams had entered the sports bag seeking sexual gratification.
The coroner said: ‘I wonder what the motive was for the release of this material to the media. I wonder whether this was an attempt by a third party to intimate a sexual motive.’

This event was held at Fordham Law last night.  The first 13 minutes is just crowd noise before the event begins.  I hope someone transcribes Schneier's entire talk because he did a great job of boiling it all down.  I'll transcribe a few key things that he said but it's well worth listening to.  All of the talks are worth listening to.  Greenwald focused on countering the notorious meme of "If I haven't done anything wrong it doesn't matter if the govt. is eavesdropping on me."   Ariel Dorfman talks about his experience in Chile as a cautionary tale.  James Bamford talks about the history of the NSA.  Schneier talks about some of the things that we know so far and about solutions.  All of them, to some extent, talk about what needs to be done in the informing and persuading efforts.  The Q&A segment is good too.  They spend some of that time talking about whether they are optimistic or pessimistic about the possibility of fixing this or improving the situation.

Bruce Schneier: "It seems clear that a lot of this is voyeurism and not really useful."
Schneier re: reining in the NSA: "You haven't heard this argument yet but you will: 'If we rein in the NSA, China will win'. Fundamentally that is an arms race argument.  It's a zero sum argument, us or them. That's the wrong argument.  We have to get everyone to understand that a secure internet is in everyone's best interest.  An internet where nobody can eavesdrop is better for all of us than an internet where everyone can eavesdrop.  Once you do that a zero sum game becomes a positive sum game and we know how to deal with this.  I mean, it's hard, but it becomes no harder than money laundering and nuclear proliferation or human trafficking. I mean, all those conventional very hard problems where at least we basically know where we have to go. A secure internet is in everyone's interest. I believe we'll eventually win, this 'protecting is more important than eavesdropping' debate.  It'll take a generation or so but we do have to solve this for the U.S. government, other governments, cyber criminals, rogue actors. Security is important because there are a lot of bad actors out there."  

Note that last sentence turns the terror terror terror argument around on the security hawks.  Only a relative few people are making this argument that the things the NSA is doing is making our personal data more vulnerable to the (other) bad actors out there.  Not only are they working with the private sector to make ways to do exploits, they are demanding that tech and telecom companies create back doors that can be used by (other) bad actors. They've created this huge trove of data that they store and it's pretty obvious that they are not very good at securing their own data from their own employees or auditing what they are doing with it.  Manning and Snowden are the obvious evidence of that, and so are the LOVEINT incidents that were self-reported, and I don't think anyone believes those are the only cases.  Massive amounts of data are vacuumed up under other authorities, including presidential directive 12333 that have no oversight requirements that we know of.  Then there's foreign governments who relentlessly try to (and succeed) hack into government and DoD networks.  

Many thousands of contractors also have authority to get to this and other data on govt. networks.  That's not counting the FBI, CIA and other govt. agencies who get some of this NSA data passed on to them.  The fusion centers share some of that intelligence with local law enforcement too.  I think that's done via the Counterterrorism Center data base.  Huge amounts of data on are being collected and stored in different places.   Keith Alexander said that the NSA is not keeping dossiers on hundreds of millions of Americans.  That was clearly another deceitful word play or an outright lie.  And then there's cybersecurity, the latest obsession, in which the intelligence community wants to have even more authority to share out that data with private corporations in exchange for them sharing more with the government, all in the name of protecting the country from hackers.  

Money is pouring into cybersecurity contracts and every defense contractor and his brother are trying to pass themselves off as IT security experts now.  We've seen the seminars advertised on how to become a hacker and get government contracts.  You can't teach network security or hacking in a set of classes or seminars.  But the govt. gold diggers will do that.  Not only that, we also know that our govt. is paying money to real hackers out there and has created a black market for the exploits, security holes that they find in various widely used software. So who is to say that these hackers haven't found their way into the NSA, FBI, CIA, Homeland Security data bases?  Our govt. is now encouraging that kind of activity and instead of prosecuting the perpetrators we're paying them.  You can be sure that we won't find out about the exploits to govt. networks.  That's the kind of thing that would be highly classified as a matter of national security. So who even knows how many times our personal data has been breached?  There's a market for that kind of data.

Last but not least, the intelligence community admits that they're much better at offense than defense when it comes to cybersecurity.  And it's more exciting.  One of the Snowden documents released early on set out some cybersecurity goals and initiatives, signed by President Obama, and if I remember correctly, most if not all of them were attacks not defense.  So it's pretty clear where the bulk of the efforts are focused.   There's just a massive, obsessive effort to "collect it all" and get rich while doing it or after retiring from govt. service (and by that I mean get rich the legal way -- that doesn't even count the inevitable corrupt ways of achieving wealth and power with these kinds of operations).  It's simply impossible to believe that a trove of information and knowledge like that would not be exploited for greed and power by those who are in a position to get away with it and given the highly secret nature of the work until now, it's even harder to believe.  What's perhaps even worse is the notion, in a supposedly democratic society, of political animals gaining access to information that could be used to advantage themselves in elections.  As many have said, this kind of power is not compatible with democracy.

They're Watching Us: So What? -- An Evening Assessing the Dangers of the New Surveillance Powers

With James Bamford, Ariel Dorfman, Glenn Greenwald, Bruce Schneier

Is the same surveillance that is meant to protect us from danger also harming us?
Are the NSA programs Edward Snowden has revealed inhibiting the way we think, speak, create, and interact? And what about the parallel universe of private sector spying and data mining?

Join luminaries from the fields of literature, technology, media, and policy for a discussion of what we know—and don't yet know—about how surveillance is reshaping our public and private lives.

Presented by PEN American Center in partnership with the ACLU and the Center on National Security at Fordham Law.

This is a really interesting read.  

After 30 Years of Silence, the Original NSA Whistleblower Looks Back

The four-story brownstone at 141 East 37th Street in Manhattan has no remarkable features: a plain building on a quiet tree-lined street in the shadow of the Empire State Building. In the summer of 1920, Herbert O. Yardley, a government codebreaker, moved in with a gang of math geniuses and began deciphering intercepted Japanese diplomatic telegrams. This was the Black Chamber, America's first civilian code-breaking agency. From this was born the American surveillance state, and eventually the sprawling National Security Agency, which you may have heard about recently.

I was standing on the sidewalk outside the building, on a sweltering summer Friday afternoon, waiting to meet a man named Perry Fellwock, also once known as Winslow Peck. Four decades ago, Fellwock became the NSA's first whistleblower, going to the press to explain the spy agency's immense scope and mission to a public that had barely been allowed to know such an organization existed. His revelations in the radical magazine Ramparts were picked up by the front page of the New York Times. He went on to be a key player in the turbulent anti-surveillance movement of the 1970s, partnering with Norman Mailer and becoming the target of CIA propaganda. But today he's a semi-retired antiques dealer living in Long Island, as obscure as the Black Chamber once was.

[...]

"They never thought anybody would ever be able to write about them," said the journalist James Bamford, who has written three books on the NSA, including the first definitive account of the Agency, 1982’s Puzzle Palace. "At the time it was an agency that sort of existed apart from the rest of the government, almost."

And there, in 1972, was a rogue analyst, some kid in his 20s, describing the NSA's business down to the colors of the badges worn at its headquarters. Winslow Peck claimed that the NSA had broken all of the Soviets' codes, that the government's official account of the Vietnam War was a lie, and that the agency was guilty of salacious corruption:

Quite a few people in NSA are into illegal activities of one kind or another. It's taken to be one of the fringe benefits of the job. You know, enhancing your pocketbook. Smuggling. People inside NSA got involved with the slave trade.
If J. Edgar had biometrics: state repression isn't new, but technology raises the stakes

Journalist Seth Rosenfeld’s 2012 book "Subversives: The FBI's War on Student Radicals, and Reagan's Rise to Power" is required reading for anyone who wants to understand how deep these currents of authoritarian power run in the United States.

Using hundreds of thousands of pages of original source material, Rosenfeld describes how J. Edgar Hoover’s FBI conspired with elected officials, university administrators, newspapers, and local police agencies to crush student movements at UC Berkley in the 1960s. The book, the product of a 30-year FOIA war against the bureau – which reportedly shelled out nearly a million dollars to protect its shameful secrets in a legal battle stretching across four separate lawsuits – offers a detailed and damning portrait of how the worst assaults on democratic freedoms fester and metastasize in the dark.

‘Subversives’ lays bare an organization purportedly established to promote the rule of law as primarily concerned with subverting it in the service of entrenched political and economic interests. Anyone who doubts that warrantless or suspicionless surveillance is used to wield political control in the defense of the status quo – as opposed to ‘protecting public safety’ -- will encounter a necessary if bruising education in its pages. Among other lessons, readers learn that the patriarch of the modern FBI was fundamentally disinterested in the rule of law, unless it could be wielded to crush his opponents.

A pretty intimate profile of David Miranda.  I assume that Greenwald approves since he sent out the link on Twitter.
David Miranda Is Nobody’s Errand Boy
When Glenn Greenwald’s 28-year-old Brazilian partner was detained in London this summer while transporting documents related to the bombshell Edward Snowden story, many assumed he was unfairly roped into a situation he didn’t understand. That couldn’t be further from the truth.

David Miranda and I are debating whether or not to take off our shirts in the middle of a throbbing dance floor inside the heart of gay Rio de Janeiro. Silvery blue lights and men the size of sparrows swirl around us as we gauge the euphoria of the crowd. “It’s not that kind of party, honey!” Miranda shouts hoarsely over the Brazilian dance mix of Ke$ha’s “Die Young.”

We opt instead to gulp the night air. We pound our cocktails and bound out of the split-level nightclub to chat and smoke on the cracked Portuguese-style pavement. A thin white man in his mid-thirties with birdy lips, piss-water blonde hair, and uncool jeans follows us out the door. Miranda and I bullshit with some fellow revelers on the patio: a pudgy art dealer, a redhead, and a bespectacled line cook who has a “thing” for Rhoda Morgenstern. The man with the bird lips lingers close by. Miranda, 28, dusky, pillow mouthed, chiseled, with dark wine eyes, is too fine a specimen not to be cruised tonight, but Bird Lips is standing a little too close and appears, by the jutting of his chin and the self-conscious tilt of his head, to be eavesdropping on our conversation.

Miranda and I shoot each other a wary glance and move back inside. Just as we are about to lose ourselves in a Cher dubstep-banger, Bird Lips perches behind us, unmoving, and begins to stare. We traverse the dance floor; he follows.

NYT editorial.  I find it to be a bit ironic, but a good article.
British Press Freedom Under Threat

These alarming developments threaten the ability of British journalists to do their jobs effectively. Britain’s press has long lacked the freedoms enjoyed by American newspapers. Now it appears they are less free from government interference than journalists in Germany, where Der Spiegel has published material from the Snowden leaks without incurring government bullying.

The global debate now taking place about intelligence agencies collecting information on the phone calls, emails and Internet use of private citizens owes much to The Guardian’s intrepid journalism. In a free society, the price for printing uncomfortable truths should not be parliamentary and criminal inquisition.

David Dayen: FHFA Will Secure Up to $28 Billion From Banks in Its MBS Lawsuit

An analysis at Bloomberg Law puts some numbers down that I hadn’t seen all in one place previously. The headline effort is to pin down what other banks being sued by the FHFA over mortgage-backed securities passed to Fannie and Freddie with poor underwriting will have to pay, given the standard set by the JPMorgan Chase settlement for $4 billion.
[...]
GE Capital, Citi, Wells Fargo and UBS have already settled with FHFA in this case. The UBS deal was made public; it was $885 million, slightly above the JPMorgan benchmark (about 14 cents on the dollar). Wells disclosed in a regulatory filing that they paid $335 million. We can safely assume the Citi and GE settlements are in the ballpark of 12-14 cents on the dollar. The Wall Street Journal calculated the numbers based on a 13-cent expectation a few weeks ago. Overall, these numbers feel pretty accurate, as early leaks of the proposed Bank of America settlement are in line with the 12-cent figure. Adding everything up, you find that FHFA can expect to recoup anywhere between $24.5 billion and $28 billion from the 17 banks. That’s in cash, not some fake headline number with a significantly diminished value.
[...]
See the link for a chart of this. The discrepancies are almost identical: with rare exceptions, every bank claimed between 10-18% of second homes in the loan portfolios, when in reality the number was between 21-18%; similarly, the banks claimed between 28-38% of the loans had LTVs above 80%, when the numbers were between 53-63%. So this is further proof that the breakdown in lending standards and the level of duplicity was not only widespread, but very precisely widespread

Finally, some momentum on TPP, and it looks like that's mostly due to a document published by Wikileaks, the same organization that has been criminalized and barred from accepting credit card transactions.  Congress seems to be up in arms and I really hope they start to reconsider their stance on whistleblowers and Wikileaks, get a spine and do something to counter the Obama administration's war on whistleblowers and journalism.
Thanks to WikiLeaks, We See Just How Bad TPP Trade Deal is for Regular People

Among the many betrayals of the Obama administration is its overall treatment of what many people refer to as "intellectual property" – the idea that ideas themselves and digital goods and services are exactly like physical property, and that therefore the law should treat them the same way. This corporatist stance defies both reality and the American Constitution, which expressly called for creators to have rights for limited periods, the goal of which was to promote inventive progress and the arts.

In the years 2007 and 2008, candidate Obama indicated that he'd take a more nuanced view than the absolutist one from Hollywood and other interests that work relentlessly for total control over this increasingly vital part of our economy and lives. But no clearer demonstration of the real White House view is offered than a just-leaked draft of an international treaty that would, as many had feared, create draconian new rights for corporate "owners" and mean vastly fewer rights for the rest of us. ...

Congress has shown little appetite for restraining the overweening power of the corporate interests promoting this expansion. With few exceptions, lawmakers have repeatedly given copyright, patent and trademark interests more control over the years. So we shouldn't be too optimistic about the mini-flurry of Capitol Hill opposition to the treaty that emerged this week. It's based much more on Congress protecting its prerogatives – worries about the treaty's so-called "fast track" authorities, giving the president power to act without congressional approval – than on substantive objections to the document's contents.

That said, some members of Congress have become more aware of the deeper issues. The public revolt against the repugnant "Stop Online Piracy Act" two years ago was a taste of what happens when people become more widely aware of what they can lose when governments and corporate interests collude. ...

Thanks to WikiLeaks, we now have at least partial transparency. The more you know about the odious TPP, the less you'll like it – and that's why the administration and its corporate allies don't want you to know.

TPP Exposed: WikiLeaks Publishes Secret Trade Text to Rewrite Copyright Laws, Limit Internet Freedom

TPP Leak Confirms the Worst: US Negotiators Still Trying to Trade Away Internet Freedoms

After years of secret trade negotiations over the future of intellectual property rights (and limits on those rights), the public gets a chance to looks at the results. For those of us who care about free speech and a balanced intellectual property system that encourages innovation, creativity, and access to knowledge, it’s not a pretty picture. ...

The leaked text, from August 2013, confirms long-standing suspicions about the harm the agreement could do to users’ rights and a free and open Internet. From locking in excessive copyright term limits to further entrenching failed policies that give legal teeth to Digital Rights Management (DRM) tools, the TPP text we’ve seen today reflects a terrible but unsurprising truth: an agreement negotiated in near-total secrecy, including corporations but excluding the public, comes out as an anti-user wish list of industry-friendly policies. ...

The document Wikileaks has published contains nearly 100 pages of bracketed text—meaning it includes annotated sections that are proposed and opposed by the negotiating countries. The text is not final, but the story it tells so far is unmistakable: United States negotiators (with occasional help from others) repeatedly pushing for restrictive policies, and facing only limited opposition, coming from countries like Chile, Canada, New Zealand, and Malaysia. ...

The latest TPP leak confirms our longstanding fears about these negotiations. The USTR is pushing for regulations that would, for the most part, put the desires of major content and patent owners over the needs of the public. No wonder the negotiators want to keep the process secret.

Leaked Documents Reveal Obama Administration Push for Internet Freedom Limits, Terms That Raise Drug Prices in Closed-Door Trade Talks

Secret documents published today by WikiLeaks and analyzed by Public Citizen reveal that the Obama administration is demanding terms that would limit Internet freedom and access to lifesaving medicines throughout the Asia-Pacific region and bind Americans to the same bad rules, belying the administration’s stated commitments to reduce health care costs and advance free expression online, Public Citizen said today.

The leak shows the United States seeking to impose the most extreme demands of Big Pharma and Hollywood, Public Citizen said, despite the express and frequently universal opposition of U.S. trade partners. Concerns raised by TPP negotiating partners and many civic groups worldwide regarding TPP undermining access to affordable medicines, the Internet and even textbooks have resulted in a deadlock over the TPP Intellectual Property Chapter, leading to an impasse in the TPP talks, Public Citizen said.

The Obama administration’s proposals are the worst – the  most damaging for health – we have seen in a U.S. trade agreement to date. The Obama administration has backtracked from even the modest health considerations adopted under the Bush administration,” said Peter Maybarduk, director of Public Citizen’s global access to medicines program. “The Obama administration’s shameful bullying on behalf of the giant drug companies would lead to preventable suffering and death in Asia-Pacific countries. And soon the administration is expected to propose additional TPP terms that would lock Americans into high prices for cancer drugs for years to come.”

“It is clear from the text obtained by WikiLeaks that the  U.S. government is isolated and has lost this debate,” Maybarduk said. “Our partners don’t want to trade away their people’s health. Americans don’t want these measures either. Nevertheless, the Obama administration – on behalf of Big Pharma and big movie studios – now is trying to accomplish through pressure what it could not through persuasion.”

The Bipartisan Fight Against Secret Trade Deals

The United States is currently writing new deals with 11 other Pacific Rim countries and with the European Union. These deals will lead to more pressure to frack for shale gas, increase potentially unsafe seafood imports, privatize our municipal water systems and privatize our food safety inspection system. ...

In the past week strong bipartisan opposition to Fast Track has emerged on Capitol Hill. Four different letters were sent by Members of Congress to President Obama expressing their opposition to Fast Track—in total 185 Members of Congress have spoken up against it, including 158 Democrats and 27 Republicans.

Make sure Congress votes no. Take action today and tell your Member of Congress to “Vote No on Fast Track”.

Americans’ personal data shared with CIA, IRS, others in security probe

U.S. agencies collected and shared the personal information of thousands of Americans in an attempt to root out untrustworthy federal workers that ended up scrutinizing people who had no direct ties to the U.S. government and simply had purchased certain books.

Federal officials gathered the information from the customer records of two men who were under criminal investigation for purportedly teaching people how to pass lie detector tests. The officials then distributed a list of 4,904 people – along with many of their Social Security numbers, addresses and professions – to nearly 30 federal agencies, including the Internal Revenue Service, the CIA, the National Security Agency and the Food and Drug Administration.

Although the polygraph-beating techniques are unproven, authorities hoped to find government employees or applicants who might have tried to use them to lie during the tests required for security clearances. Officials with multiple agencies confirmed that they’d checked the names in their databases and planned to retain the list in case any of those named take polygraphs for federal jobs or criminal investigations.

It turned out, however, that many people on the list worked outside the federal government and lived across the country. ... Moreover, many of them had only bought books or DVDs from one of the men being investigated and didn’t receive the one-on-one training that investigators had suspected. In one case, a Washington lawyer was listed even though he’d never contacted the instructors. Dozens of others had wanted to pass a polygraph not for a job, but for a personal reason: The test was demanded by spouses who suspected infidelity.

The unprecedented creation of such a list and decision to disseminate it widely demonstrate the ease with which the federal government can collect and share Americans’ personal information, even when there’s no clear reason for doing so.

Hedges: Jeremy Hammond Exposed State's Plan to Criminalize Democratic Dissent

Another issue that needs a lot more momentum and sunlight.
Over 3,000 US prisoners serving life without parole for non-violent crimes

The ACLU's report, A Living Death, chronicles the thousands of lives ruined and families destroyed by the modern phenomenon of sentencing people to die behind bars for non-violent offences. It notes that contrary to the expectation that such a harsh penalty would be meted out only to the most serious offenders, people have been caught in this brutal trap for sometimes the most petty causes. ...

The report's author Jennifer Turner states that today, the US is “virtually alone in its willingness to sentence non-violent offenders to die behind bars.” Life without parole for non-violent sentences has been ruled a violation of human rights by the European Court of Human Rights. The UK is one of only two countries in Europe that still metes out the penalty at all, and even then only in 49 cases of murder. ...

Again, the offences involved can be startlingly petty. Drug cases itemised in the report include a man sentenced to die in prison for having been found in possession of a crack pipe; an offender with a bottle cap that contained a trace of heroin that was too small to measure; a prisoner arrested with a trace amount of cocaine in their pocket too tiny to see with the naked eye; a man who acted as a go-between in a sale to an undercover police officer of marijuana – street value $10.

Occupy Wall Street activists buy $15m of Americans' personal debt

Rolling Jubilee spent $400,000 to purchase debt cheaply from banks before 'abolishing' it, freeing individuals from their bills

A group of Occupy Wall Street activists has bought almost $15m of Americans' personal debt over the last year as part of the Rolling Jubilee project to help people pay off their outstanding credit.

Rolling Jubilee, set up by Occupy's Strike Debt group following the street protests that swept the world in 2011, launched on 15 November 2012. The group purchases personal debt cheaply from banks before "abolishing" it, freeing individuals from their bills.

By purchasing the debt at knockdown prices the group has managed to free $14,734,569.87 of personal debt, mainly medical debt, spending only $400,000.

"We thought that the ratio would be about 20 to 1," said Andrew Ross, a member of Strike Debt and professor of social and cultural analysis at New York University. He said the team initially envisaged raising $50,000, which would have enabled it to buy $1m in debt.

"In fact we've been able to buy debt a lot more cheaply than that."

National defense is supported by a "single payer" system. Why can't health care be that way?

National defense, i.e. the military, is a single payer system. We seem to have no problem with that. The government pays and private firms make the tanks, bombs, planes and ships.

Why can't we make national health care, for everybody, a single payer system? ...

Does the government require citizens to buy "defense insurance?" No, it just pays for everyone's defense.

Yesterday was a very busy news day. I hope to have time to bring some more important stories about torture and Guantanamo tomorrow.
Blue Ribbon Task Force Says Army Field Manual on Interrogation Allows Torture, Abuse

A report by a multidisciplinary task force, made up largely of medical professionals, ethicists and legal experts, has called on President Obama to issue an executive order outlawing torture and other abusive techniques currently in use in the military's Army Field Manual on interrogations. The Task Force, which wrote the report for The Institute on Medicine as a Profession (IMAP) and the Open Society Foundations (OSF), has also called on the Department of Defense to rewrite the Army Field Manual in accordance with such an executive order.

The recommendation for action on the Army Field Manual (AFM) was the second finding and recommendation in the report (PDF):

The president has issued an executive order prohibiting the use of torture and other forms of cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment, and has repudiated Justice Department legal memoranda authorizing its use. However, the Army Field Manual on Human Intelligence Collector Operations, which binds both military and CIA interrogators, permits methods of interrogation that are recognized under international law as forms of torture or cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment. Such methods include sleep deprivation, isolation, and exploitation of fear.
Besides recommending that the Department of Defense (DoD) revise the AFM itself, the Task Force report calls for the United States to "accede to the Optional Protocol to the Convention Against Torture, which requires the creation of an independent domestic monitoring body for the purpose of preventing torture against individuals in custody." ...

A lot has been made in recent years about how the New York Times is reticent to use the word "torture" to describe what is under any common sense or legal definition torture. That is certainly a disgraceful adaptation to the U.S. government's policies on interrogation, which include Bush and Cheney's outright advocacy of torture to the Obama administration's refusal to investigate or hold accountable those who tortured. ...

[T]he Obama administration is itself involved in torture, from its approval of extraordinary rendition to the documented operation of detention centers, ostensibly under the administration of allied forces, where torture takes place. (See this 2011 report in The Nation by Jeremy Scahill about CIA torture sites in Somalia.) Other accusations of torture by agencies such as the Federal Bureau of Investigation exist as well.

RT Inside 'Modern Gulag': Gitmo inmates in limbo as Obama idles



Action



Stop Watching Us.

The revelations about the National Security Agency's surveillance apparatus, if true, represent a stunning abuse of our basic rights. We demand the U.S. Congress reveal the full extent of the NSA's spying programs.



Blog Posts and Tweets of Interest


The Evening Blues





More Tunes



The Byrds - Mr Tambourine Man

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Comment Preferences

  •  Morning tune (10+ / 0-)

    One, two. One, two, three edition

    "If you pour some music on whatever's wrong, it'll sure help out." Levon Helm

    by BOHICA on Fri Nov 15, 2013 at 05:47:16 AM PST

  •  g'day all; been popping around the Net, trying to (11+ / 0-)

    see if some legal beagle had posted an explanation for the following situation:
    For those who missed out, 3 days ago, TX Open Carry had about 40 of its members armed with long guns congregate in a parking lot to intimidate 4 members of Moms Demand Action.  
    http://www.slate.com/...

    Now it seems, from interviews with the TOC members that they feel black powder weapons are not guns and not subject to gun laws and also that they should be able to open carry weapons onto state property, such as the State House.
    What caught my eye was one of these guys claiming the government, under the Fifth Amendment, had no right to impede his travel in any manner unless he drives another motorist off the road or is involved in an accident.  He also claims to have beaten several speeding and reckless driving tickets with a Fifth Amendment defense of unreasonable government intrusion into his privacy w/o an overriding public interest.

    Unless he is enjoying the fruits of jury nullification, I cannot find anything in the Fifth Amendment that would nullify state speed limit laws.  Anyone able to clear this up?  It is like a splinter in my mind now

  •  Anybody ever listen (9+ / 0-)

    To the Daily Kos Radio thing?

    "If you pour some music on whatever's wrong, it'll sure help out." Levon Helm

    by BOHICA on Fri Nov 15, 2013 at 05:50:54 AM PST

  •  happy friday hippies... (14+ / 0-)

    wow, that week zipped past...

    IMG_2858c (Small)

    i'm part of the 99% - america's largest minority

    by joe shikspack on Fri Nov 15, 2013 at 05:53:12 AM PST

  •  Good morning Joanne and Happenistas! (13+ / 0-)

    Cool and overcast here today.  We haven't gone on a walk with the dogs yet, but I intend to do something this morning.

    There is an interesting diary up this morning that is critical of Hillary's two $200K per speeches to Goldman Sachs.  Based upon the comments, pre-ordination of a Hillary candidacy may not be the most popular position here.  I am awaiting a rebuttal damage control diary any minute now.  LOL

    "I don't want to run the empire, I want to bring it down!" ~ Dr. Cornel West "It was a really naked declaration of imperialism." ~ Jeremy Scahill on Obama's speech to the UN

    by gulfgal98 on Fri Nov 15, 2013 at 06:16:07 AM PST

    •  Oh on other news (12+ / 0-)

      Our weekly Peace vigil may be called off due to the local food pantry Sharing House holding their semi-annual Pack the Pantry drive in the space we normally use for our vigil.  Our group will gladly give way for this wonderful organization to promote donations to the local food pantry.  I plan to go anyway with donations for the Sharing House instead of signs for the vigil.

      "I don't want to run the empire, I want to bring it down!" ~ Dr. Cornel West "It was a really naked declaration of imperialism." ~ Jeremy Scahill on Obama's speech to the UN

      by gulfgal98 on Fri Nov 15, 2013 at 06:21:25 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  That sounds good (9+ / 0-)

        Hmm, I wonder if there's a coalition in all of that.  

        re: Hillary, I've been wondering how the whole thing would play out here.  I'll never forget the way she was "treated" here on dkos.  I wasn't an early Hillary supporter.  It took me awhile to decide who to support but I did choose Edwards and then just before my state's primary he dropped out and we all know how that went.  So I had only a few days to decide who to support after that and I wasn't keen on either Hillary or Obama.  In fact, I had hoped she would not even get into the race, though I believed that she was probably the most well equipped for the job of all the candidates, and given the state of affairs in the country I thought we really needed someone who could hit the ground running.  I had really hoped that Gore would give it another go.

        But in those few days I decided to support Hillary over Obama, for the reasons that I just stated. Plus, I was turned off by the whole Obama worship thing and the marketing campaign and worst of all I couldn't figure out what exactly he was promising to do. Every time I asked specific questions one of his fierce supporters here (another thing that turned me off, and increasingly so as time went on) they told me to go read his web site. I don't think I ever got a straight answer from any of them other than "Obama is the bestest, coolest".

        So after I decided to support her my support was lukewarm but what I wasn't lukewarm about was pushing back against the disgusting way that she was trashed here and the sexism was astounding. I learned a lot about the Dems during that primary.

        I'm for Elizabeth Warren.  And I'd love to see a woman running the country (thought I think that will be much harder than we might think, that sexism might end up a much bigger hurdle than anyone thought).  Heck, I wanted Warren to primary Obama in 2012!  That didn't go over very well.  I remember when I brought it up in the comments of some diary or another.  You can imagine the reaction. I still think that the Dems (and some so called progressives) encouraged, even pushed Warren into running for that Senate seat to remove the possibility that she'd run for president.  


        "Justice is a commodity"

        by joanneleon on Fri Nov 15, 2013 at 06:33:20 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Agree on Warren. (5+ / 0-)

          And as I've said elsewhere, I think the meme has value, whether or not she is willing or not to run, for pointing out the severe flaw in putting 4 or 8 years into Hillary, especially after wasting so much time with Obama. That said, it is hard to come up with a nominee that would/could/should run if not Warren... If not Warren and definitely not Clinton, who...?

          Almost seems like the whole '16 election cycle should be a referendum on the failed state of contemporary American Presidential elections in general.

          I'd go with a populist candidate who could potentially be swept in by the grass roots rather than the machine...

          Trust, but verify. - Reagan
          Vote, but Occupy. - commonmass
          The 3rd Way has squandered our Resistance for a pocket full of mumbles, Such are promises All lies and jests; still a kossack's about the horse race And disregards the effects...

          by Words In Action on Fri Nov 15, 2013 at 07:59:58 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  That is where I am now (4+ / 0-)

            You have summarized up my thoughts perfectly, Words In Action.  Sarge in Seattle has a diary up that talks about how a socialist/Occupy candidate defeated a sitting councilman who was backed by the Democratic party.  People are desperate for a change and for someone who is willing to work for their best interests. Don midwest made a great comment on that diary.

            "I don't want to run the empire, I want to bring it down!" ~ Dr. Cornel West "It was a really naked declaration of imperialism." ~ Jeremy Scahill on Obama's speech to the UN

            by gulfgal98 on Fri Nov 15, 2013 at 08:42:51 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

  •  good morning all (12+ / 0-)

    Glad to hear that your meeting went well, joanne.

    It is warming up here after a few cold days.

    I made the meatloaf last night, but it was only mediocre, at best. The problem with trying to do a recipe from memory.

    I'm listening to the democracy now video.

    I am thankful for Manning, Wikileaks, Snowden, for all those courageous enough to sacrifice so much to expose secret government actions.

    Thank you for the great news roundup, joanne.

    For our fallen solders who come home from Afghanistan in a coffin to Dover, "God bless the cause for which they died."

    by allenjo on Fri Nov 15, 2013 at 06:16:33 AM PST

    •  re: meatloaf (10+ / 0-)

      Mine is not the greatest, but I do find that it helps to add cheese as part of the mixture which helps to keep it moist.  I do not know if you did that or not.

      "I don't want to run the empire, I want to bring it down!" ~ Dr. Cornel West "It was a really naked declaration of imperialism." ~ Jeremy Scahill on Obama's speech to the UN

      by gulfgal98 on Fri Nov 15, 2013 at 06:23:31 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  That's what my mother did (6+ / 0-)

        She made a tunnel through the middle and filled it with Velveeta, lol.  I know that stuff is terrible for you but it really did taste good. Sometimes she'd put crumbled bacon in the cheese tunnel too.  It tasted a little like a bacon cheeseburger. As a kid, I wasn't a big meat eater.  I was repulsed by it sometimes.  But that made it very edible.  I like red meat now but basically unless I had to, I didn't eat it until my late teens, I think.  Occasionally on the way home from the shore we'd stop at Burger Chef, a fast food place, and I'd be the only one in the family who didn't get a burger. UnAmerican!  I started to like them later on though.


        "Justice is a commodity"

        by joanneleon on Fri Nov 15, 2013 at 06:45:40 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  I think it was a bit too moist and without the (4+ / 0-)

        dry mustard spark. I hadn't made it in a long time. Perhaps cold meatloaf sandwiches will taste better.

        I am looking for fudge recipes online now.

        I wanted one for penuche, a brown sugar fudge that my aunts used to make. I found that recipe and a few more interesting ones. "Irish Cream" fudgesounds good and easy to make, so I will save that one.

        For our fallen solders who come home from Afghanistan in a coffin to Dover, "God bless the cause for which they died."

        by allenjo on Fri Nov 15, 2013 at 07:11:23 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Yum (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          allenjo, OLinda, gulfgal98, dharmafarmer

          I've been thinking about what cookies I'm going to bake for the holidays this year.  I just saw a candy thermometer in the pantry this morning, still in the package, and was trying to remember what I bought it for. Whatever it was, I never made it. Maybe I will make something this year.  

          KBO's family used to make British Christmas cake, which takes more than a month to make and you have to keep it in a tin and pour brandy on it once a week or something.   I haven't attempted that yet.  The last step is a multi-layer icing and decorating it with Christmas decorations. If I'm going to make it I think I'm supposed to start now.


          "Justice is a commodity"

          by joanneleon on Fri Nov 15, 2013 at 07:18:37 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  another recipe in storage for lo these many years (4+ / 0-)

            since I moved to Europe from California, is my mom's christmas cake, (only a one day process) ;) that has 3 layers and a pound of butter in it, spices that I don't recall and a frosting, powdered sugar type, with more butter. I would not know how to even attempt that from memory.

            My mom's stuffing always started with her making cornbread for it, cooking the giblets that would go in it.

            For quite some time, I have gone to cornbread stovetop stuffing done in the microwave, along with other short cuts, packaged mixes for mashed potatoes, sweet potato fluff, etc.

            For our fallen solders who come home from Afghanistan in a coffin to Dover, "God bless the cause for which they died."

            by allenjo on Fri Nov 15, 2013 at 07:28:34 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  I've never done (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              OLinda, dharmafarmer

              cornbread stuffing.  I learned how to make it from watching my mother and grandmother make it while they yapped in the kitchen on Christmas Eve.  Just plain white bread is what they used (I use my own baked white bread), celery, onions, seasonings and chicken stock.  Very basic.  The good gravy is the finishing ingredient.  

              KBO likes sausages with his turkey.  My sister usually has a couple of different kinds of stuffing.  But I always end up preferring the plain one that my mother used to make.  It think I'd like the cornbread variety a lot though.  I love cornbread.


              "Justice is a commodity"

              by joanneleon on Fri Nov 15, 2013 at 08:51:03 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

    •  Morning, allenjo (5+ / 0-)

      Well it's probably worth another try with the meatloaf. I find a lot of good ideas on allrecipes.com.  You have to read through the reviews on any recipe too because there are all kinds of tweaks and ideas in there.  

      Yeah, the whole thing with condemning the whistleblowers while capitalizing on the information they leaked bothers me a lot.  It has bothered me a lot that Ron Wyden won't stand up for Snowden at all.  He's far from the only one. And of course we've also got the ones calling him a traitor and even calling for him to be droned.  Let's see what happens when it's their issue that a revelation covers.  This latest TPP leak... I mean it's ridiculous that Congress did not have access to those docs until Wikileaks published it (and only part of it, how much do they still not know? Almost all the politicians have been getting away with the meme that goes something like: "I can't support what he did but I admit that the information was very useful and important to the country".  I just don't think that flies. I think that is a position of cowardice.  


      "Justice is a commodity"

      by joanneleon on Fri Nov 15, 2013 at 06:38:29 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  simple meatloaf recipe for you allenjo (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      OLinda, joanneleon, dharmafarmer

      i make meatloaf all the time and the key is really good 90% lean ground beef

      typically i buy 3 pounds ground round, mix with 3 or 4 extra-large eggs, 1 and 1/2 cups Progresso italian bread crumbs,  and about 2/3rds of a bottle of Heinz chili sauce, salt and pepper to taste (you can add onion powder or garlic powder if you want)

      you'll need to mix well till all ingredients are incorporated - may need more bread crumbs

      shape into loaf and bake at 350 for an hour~

      i don't have written recipe but this works well for a moist meatloaf that can be topped with a brown gravy when served or topped with more chili sauce or even cheese in final 5-10 minutes of cooking

      good luck next time !

      In a time of universal deceit - telling the truth is a revolutionary act.'' George Orwell

      by lostinamerica on Fri Nov 15, 2013 at 07:45:50 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Read the article on David Miranda (13+ / 0-)

    now it is clear why he is Glenn's partner

    a diamond in the rough who is getting an "education" after living life at the edge

    interesting how he pushed Glenn to pressure the Guardian to not hold up NSA stories

    more details about his arrest and how his and Glenn's email, skype and other communication systems were hacked before he went to Germany and they knew his travel plans

    and how close he came to ending up in jail, even after the 9 hours

    and his stolen laptop from his house in Rio

    and the power out at his house when Glenn was flying back from Hong Kong

    the NSA story has now been going for 6 months and it continues to expose bad actors in countries around the world

    •  How about the creepy guy (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      OLinda, lostinamerica, dharmafarmer

      following them around in the nightclub?  Who do you think he was?

      It has occurred to me that Putin and Roussef might be giving Snowden and Greenwald & Miranda a security detail. In fact I think they probably are because they don't want anything to happen to them on their watch (though I think there's little they can do if the US decides to do something).  But if it was a local security detail I don't think he would have run off like that.


      "Justice is a commodity"

      by joanneleon on Fri Nov 15, 2013 at 06:52:33 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  link (11+ / 0-)

    to David Miranda story.

    Joanne, the diary link links back here. I see this particular oops a lot. MB has them in the Night Owl Thread frequently. Makes me think the software is doing it somehow.

    Thank you for that Miranda story. Sure looks interesting, but have not read yet.

  •  Miranda (6+ / 0-)

    I remember when Miranda was first arrested, and in one of Glenn's first interviews about it, rather than seeming worried, or sounding protective, he said something like "David is a strong, competent man. I'm sure he will handle... " ... I don't really recall the exact words.

    It struck me at the time though. How nice. How sweet. The right way to treat your partner. Especially in the media. Especially since some might want to think he is weak, well you know.

  •  Watched the session at Fordham Law last night (11+ / 0-)

    Joanne has an excellent overview

    This was the first time that I heard Glenn Greenwald say that it is not safe for him to travel to the US

    In his tweets he has mentioned that he has been advised by attys that it would be a strong possibility that he could be arrested if he came back home.

    The presentation by Ariel Dorfman was important to describe when a full force police state is in operation and how it shuts down life. Even more than political speech, when people are continually being watched and the consequences are disappearance and death, they clam up. He was describing what happened in Chile during the 17 years that Pinochet was dictator. With the new snooping powers of the NSA, FBI, CIA, local police, DEA, etc., they could shut down activity against the state even more than was done in communist countries.

    "It Can't Happen Here" from wiki

    It Can't Happen Here is a semi-satirical 1935 political novel by American author Sinclair Lewis. Published during the rise of fascism in Europe, the novel describes the rise of Berzelius "Buzz" Windrip, a populist United States senator who is elected to the presidency after promising drastic economic and social reforms while promoting a return to patriotism and traditional values. After his election, Windrip takes complete control over the government and imposes totalitarian rule with the help of a ruthless paramilitary force, in the manner of Adolf Hitler and the SS. The novel's plot centers around newspaperman Doremus Jessup's opposition to the new regime and his subsequent struggle against it. Reviewers at the time and literary critics ever since have emphasized the connection with Louisiana politician Huey Long, who was preparing to run for president in 1936 when the novel appeared
    I trained for the peace corps in 1967 for an assignment in Chile. At that time, before the election of Allende, who was later assassinated with the help of the USA, and led to reign of terror there. At the time there were more Peace Corps volunteers in Chile than in any other country in the world. This was a political use of the Peace Corps to show the support of the USA. I was kicked out before I got there but that is another story.
  •  Publishing TPP shows wikileaks terrorist org (8+ / 0-)

    we sorta knew it before when they published the video "Collateral Murder" showing murder by helicopter

    we knew it more when they published state department cables which were not top secret but embarrassed the country

    now that they published secret documents about TPP it is clear that they have declared war on the oligarchs who are pulling off a global coup d'etat

    that is the ultimate act of information terrorism!

    scramble all the information fighter jets around the world for this emergency

    why even respect the fig leaf left of international law and just break into the Ecuadorian Embassy in Britain and say that Julian Assange was firing on JSOC extreme fighters, murder him and push his body off a ship in the ocean?

    •  I wonder (4+ / 0-)

      how it will all play out.  These propaganda movies don't seem to have had the intended effect.  I think they're waiting until they think that Assange has lost popular support. He did more damage to his reputation with that run for office in Australia than was done to him by the propagandists smearing him.  But I don't know how much impact that Australia story had.  And of course there's the rest of it.

      I wonder if Rei is searching for Assange comments today.  Hi Rei!  

      Lecture coming in 3... 2.... 1


      "Justice is a commodity"

      by joanneleon on Fri Nov 15, 2013 at 07:00:53 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Good morning. (8+ / 0-)

    I find out more about what's happening in this diary than I do anywhere else.    Great job and thanks joanne.  

    Off to make another buck.  Have a good day all.

    What we need is a Democrat in the White House. Warren 2016

    by dkmich on Fri Nov 15, 2013 at 06:46:09 AM PST

  •  I'm having trouble staying signed in this am (4+ / 0-)

    I keep clearing the cache and signing back on, aaarrgh.

    I am listening to a "press conference" on the US-EU TTIP, just referred to as the T-Tip by one of the participants.

    Reuters reporter asks if this is not just big companies trying to loosen standards and how can you assure people that you are not just pandering to their needs?

    in case embed code not working....

    http://ec.europa.eu/...

    -

    For our fallen solders who come home from Afghanistan in a coffin to Dover, "God bless the cause for which they died."

    by allenjo on Fri Nov 15, 2013 at 07:00:28 AM PST

  •  Morning joanne, happenistas. (6+ / 0-)

    Another tour de force, joanne. My Lord, a whirlwind of nefarious doings you are tracking. FSM love ya, and thank it that I have this place and evenin' blues to plug in...

    So an organizing team for the TPP protest activities is coming in from WA. A small outfit called the Backbone Campaign, from Vashon Island, led by Bill Moyer (different guy) -- whom I met at Occupy at Freedom Plaza, not K Street, in DC -- is driving and flying down today to prepare. They have found downtown digs so I will not be involved in hosting. I will get more details when they get in town, but the major activity, I understand, will take place Tues., though some members will be here through next Fri. A rally/press conference is supposed to take place on Tues. There are some special activities for which preparations are being made, but await "staffing," that I can't talk about... I've heard the venue for the talks is the Grand America Hotel (which, ironically, is owned by the father of one of my daughter's private school classmates, one of several 1% and .1%ers with children there, such that my children have the interesting situation of growing up privileged and comfortable but feeling poor...)

    TTFN.

    Trust, but verify. - Reagan
    Vote, but Occupy. - commonmass
    The 3rd Way has squandered our Resistance for a pocket full of mumbles, Such are promises All lies and jests; still a kossack's about the horse race And disregards the effects...

    by Words In Action on Fri Nov 15, 2013 at 07:27:28 AM PST

    •  Again, this regards next week's SLC-based (5+ / 0-)

      TPP negotiations...

      Trust, but verify. - Reagan
      Vote, but Occupy. - commonmass
      The 3rd Way has squandered our Resistance for a pocket full of mumbles, Such are promises All lies and jests; still a kossack's about the horse race And disregards the effects...

      by Words In Action on Fri Nov 15, 2013 at 08:02:25 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Oh yeah, the rally/press conference is being org- (4+ / 0-)

      anized jointly by Backbone Campaign (Vashon Island, WA), which provides "backbone (i.e., Resistance) training" in an around events, and Citizen's Trade Campaign, a coalition-builder on and around trade issues, specifically efforts to establish ideas and practices that acknowledge "that international trade and investment are not ends unto themselves, but instead must be viewed as a means for achieving other societal goals such as economic justice, human rights, healthy communities, and a sound environment" (contact only lists a D.C. P.O. Box, but I've heard they are out of Portland, OR). Oddly, no personnel listed under "About" for this latter, though its mission clearly requires heavy networking (as a coalition-builder and lobbying center).

      FYI.

      Trust, but verify. - Reagan
      Vote, but Occupy. - commonmass
      The 3rd Way has squandered our Resistance for a pocket full of mumbles, Such are promises All lies and jests; still a kossack's about the horse race And disregards the effects...

      by Words In Action on Fri Nov 15, 2013 at 08:44:52 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Let me know (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      OLinda, dharmafarmer

      if there is anything I can do.  I can definitely put it in the action section of What's Happenin' but if there's anything else, like teaming up with you to publish live reporting or whatever else, just let me know.  


      "Justice is a commodity"

      by joanneleon on Fri Nov 15, 2013 at 08:47:09 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  So, if they define dissent and subversion as (6+ / 0-)

    terrorism and terrorists as stateless, wherefore goeth democracy?

    And why is it the entire establishment-supporting mainstream, including Democrats, fails to appreciate so much as one nanomeme of any of this? Why do we find ourselves fretting, fuming and fomenting on the fringe?

    (How's that for a morning burst of alliteration :)

    Trust, but verify. - Reagan
    Vote, but Occupy. - commonmass
    The 3rd Way has squandered our Resistance for a pocket full of mumbles, Such are promises All lies and jests; still a kossack's about the horse race And disregards the effects...

    by Words In Action on Fri Nov 15, 2013 at 08:11:23 AM PST

  •  On the NYT editorial (Press Freedom) (5+ / 0-)

    and why it's 'a bit ironic' for the NYTimes, as you say:

    in my heart of hearts, I knew you were right, but I couldn't think of anything substantative to pin on them (except when their on-line edition went subscriber fee only);

    so, I went searching and found this from MediaMatters.

    May they get what is coming to them for discontinuing the Green Blog!  Maureen Dowd maybe?

    Thank you for the diary.

    We've reached the point where we're unfazed by things that should shake us to the core. –Bill McKibben (Volva Award recipient)

    by ume on Fri Nov 15, 2013 at 08:21:10 AM PST

  •  Dennis Trainor! (5+ / 0-)

    He was an organizer of Occupy at Freedom Plaza in D.C. He documented the protest/jailing of Cornel West, himself, me and 17 others at the Supreme Court in October, 2011.

    Interesting guy. At the end of the documentary of the above event, the cameraman asks him, as he is on his perp walk, what he plans to do next (definitely staged), and he says: "I'm going to Disneyland, baby!" There was open debate about whether or not this flippant remark undermined the serious message of the event, which, personally, I think it did/does. But he's a really interesting guy on the right side of the issues and the only person I know who makes a living on YouTube.

    Trust, but verify. - Reagan
    Vote, but Occupy. - commonmass
    The 3rd Way has squandered our Resistance for a pocket full of mumbles, Such are promises All lies and jests; still a kossack's about the horse race And disregards the effects...

    by Words In Action on Fri Nov 15, 2013 at 08:21:28 AM PST

  •  2016? (0+ / 0-)

        I wish everybody would stop all the speculation. It's kinda like showing your poker hand. Especially I remember the 1980 election like it was yesterday. Here's what I know 2016 is going to be the fight of fights because the 1% will be spending for "their" supreme court like there's no tomorrow. I don't care who the candidates are or eventual, just that we don't do the same old divide and conquer, tear each other apart. Just keep it civil. Democrats have been brainwashed for so long that the repukes throw out the slop & Democrats, conditioned, start oinkin. Hand over mouth, "What was that?"
        Three years away! That's a LONG time in political parlay. I wish we'd just concentrate on 2014. Hopefully we'll win back the house and touch screen voting will outlawed except for disabled and have a god damned verifiable, can be physically recounted, paper trail. Something they should have done to start with. People don't vote…
        I wish Obama would say, "I'm turning the Presidency over to my wife." That'd throw them for a loop. Can you imagine, the desk, the bill, Michelle pointing with a big smile, "Sign here honey." Things, climate, spying are such a mess we could jazz it up. What the heck. Michelle, "Luckily, he wasn't peeping on other women." Could you imagine the repukes reaction. It'd keep em busy.
        I've always been and will forever be a fan of the Equal Rights Amendment. Will happen someday.

    March AGAINST monsatanOHagentorange 3/25/13 a time warp

    by 3rock on Fri Nov 15, 2013 at 09:39:25 AM PST

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