Thursday, January 21 2010 - Civil Liberties-Police State
Obama confidant's spine-chilling proposal
By Glenn Greenwald
January 15, 2010
(updated below - Update II - Update III - Update IV)
Cass Sunstein has long been one of Barack Obama's closest confidants. Often mentioned as a likely Obama nominee to the Supreme Court, Sunstein is currently Obama's head of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs where, among other things, he is responsible for "overseeing policies relating to privacy, information quality, and statistical programs." In 2008, while at Harvard Law School, Sunstein co-wrote a truly pernicious paper proposing that the U.S. Government employ teams of covert agents and pseudo-"independent" advocates to "cognitively infiltrate" online groups and websites -- as well as other activist groups -- which advocate views that Sunstein deems "false conspiracy theories" about the Government. This would be designed to increase citizens' faith in government officials and undermine the credibility of conspiracists. The paper's abstract can be read, and the full paper downloaded, here.
Sunstein advocates that the Government's stealth infiltration should be accomplished by sending covert agents into "chat rooms, online social networks, or even real-space groups." He also proposes that the Government make secret payments to so-called "independent" credible voices to bolster the Government's messaging (on the ground that those who don't believe government sources will be more inclined to listen to those who appear independent while secretly acting on behalf of the Government). This program would target those advocating false "conspiracy theories," which they define to mean: "an attempt to explain an event or practice by reference to the machinations of powerful people, who have also managed to conceal their role." Sunstein's 2008 paper was flagged by this blogger, and then amplified in an excellent report by Raw Story's Daniel Tencer.
Thursday, January 21 2010 - Civil Liberties-Police State
Obama staffer wants 'cognitive infiltration' of 9/11 conspiracy groups
By Daniel Tencer
January 13, 2010
In a 2008 academic paper, President Barack Obama's appointee to head the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs advocated "cognitive infiltration" of groups that advocate "conspiracy theories" like the ones surrounding 9/11.
Cass Sunstein, a Harvard law professor, co-wrote an academic article entitled "Conspiracy Theories: Causes and Cures," in which he argued that the government should stealthily infiltrate groups that pose alternative theories on historical events via "chat rooms, online social networks, or even real-space groups and attempt to undermine" those groups.
As head of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, Sunstein is in charge of "overseeing policies relating to privacy, information quality, and statistical programs," according to the White House Web site.
Sunstein's article, published in the Journal of Political Philosphy in 2008 and recently uncovered by blogger Marc Estrin, states that "our primary claim is that conspiracy theories typically stem not from irrationality or mental illness of any kind but from a 'crippled epistemology,' in the form of a sharply limited number of (relevant) informational sources."
By "crippled epistemology" Sunstein means that people who believe in conspiracy theories have a limited number of sources of information that they trust. Therefore, Sunstein argued in the article, it would not work to simply refute the conspiracy theories in public -- the very sources that conspiracy theorists believe would have to be infiltrated.
Sunstein, whose article focuses largely on the 9/11 conspiracy theories, suggests that the government "enlist nongovernmental officials in the effort to rebut the theories. It might ensure that credible independent experts offer the rebuttal, rather than government officials themselves. There is a tradeoff between credibility and control, however. The price of credibility is that government cannot be seen to control the independent experts."
Download a PDF of the article here.
Wednesday, January 20 2010 - Civil Liberties-Police State
FBI 'fabricated terror emergencies to get phone records'
Justice department to accuse FBI of invoking crises to obtain details of more than 2,000 calls, Washington Post reports
by Chris McGreal in Washington
The US justice department is preparing a report which concludes that the FBI repeatedly broke the law by invoking terrorism emergencies that did not exist to obtain more than 2,000 telephone call records over four years from 2002, including those of journalists on US newspapers, according to emails obtained by the Washington Post.
The bureau also issued authorisations for the seizure of records after the fact, in order to justify unwarranted seizures.
The Washington Post said the emails show how counter-terrorism officials inside FBI headquarters breached regulations designed to protect civil liberties.
Wednesday, January 20 2010 - Get Involved
Conference: Treason in America: 911, the Wars & Our Broken Constitution
March 6 & 7, 2010
A two-day non-partisan truth conference with speakers, movies & music discussing what's really going on in our country. From 9/11, the "wars on terror" and the private, not public, Federal Reserve to the undermining of the U.S. Constitution and Bill of Rights via Patriot Acts 1 & 2 . . . Connecting the dots between different events that go unreported (or under-reported), as a whole, in our mainstream media. Come learn what many do not know, but what many are waking up to. Knowledge is power.
Wednesday, January 20 2010 - In the Media
New Citizens' Media Source in Canada
What is Citizens' Broadcasting Cooperative?
In an epoch characterized by international criminality and malfeasance perpetrated with impunity by those in the highest echelons of society it is imperative that there exists an objective and uncensored media cooperative to scrutinize such state-sponsored lawlessness.
The mainstream media throughout the world has become infiltrated and compromised by those who have a vested interest in a global war without end. The failure of the media, both public and private, to critically analyze the actions of the global elite and their bought-and-paid-for political spokespersons has compelled ordinary citizens to innovate, organize and attempt to combat this state-sponsored war on truth.
The Citizens' Broadcasting Cooperative represents one front in this global struggle against the psychological war being waged by elites and their political representatives against humanity. We at the Citizens' Broadcasting Cooperative suspect that the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) and its twin, the British Broadcasting Centre (BBC), are being prepared for privatization which we believe is tantamount to theft from those tax payers and global citizens who have funded, sustained and benefitted from public broadcasting historically. The Citizens' Broadcasting Cooperative while having no affiliation with the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation does identify with the ground beneath its feet, namely the citizens of Canada for whom the Crown Corporation was founded.
Thursday, January 14 2010 - Other Important News
Flight 253: Anatomy of a Cover-Up
January 10, 2010
by Tom Burghart
New revelations about the failed Christmas Day attack on Northwest Airlines Flight 253 continue to emerge as does evidence of a systematic cover-up.
With the White House in crisis mode since the attempted bombing, President Obama met for two hours January 5 with top security and intelligence officials. Obama said that secret state agencies "had sufficient information to uncover the terror plot ... but that intelligence officials had 'failed to connect those dots'," The New York Times reports.
"Mr. Obama's stark assessment that the government failed to properly analyze and integrate intelligence served as a sharp rebuke of the country's intelligence agencies," declared the Times uncritically.
While the President's remarks may have offered a "sharp [rhetorical] rebuke," Obama's statement suggests that no one will be held accountable. Indeed, the President "was standing by his top national security advisers, including those whose agencies failed to communicate with one another."
While the President may be "standing by" his national security advisers, the question is, are the denizens of America's secret state standing by him? One well-connected Washington insider, MSNBC pundit Richard Wolffe, isn't so sure.
Wednesday, January 13 2010 - Other Important News
Losing the Internet as We Know It / No Ordinary Week for Net Neutrality
January 11, 2010
By Megan Tady
It feels like any other work day. You drove the same route to work. You ate the same breakfast. Around 11 a.m., you looked longingly out your window imaging yourself swinging in a hammock on a beach. Pretty routine.
But there’s something different about today – about the next four days, actually. Turns out, this is no ordinary week. The FCC has invited your feedback before they rule on Net Neutrality, but the window for commenting is closing on January 14.
You have until Thursday at midnight to tell the Federal Communications Commission how you feel about the Internet. The comments you file with them will help shape the future of the Internet for generations to come. Our responsibility to protect it is a mighty one. ...
Losing the Internet as We Know It
We don't think twice about how much we rely on the Internet. Imagine not being able to map directions on Google or check the weather online. A business that doesn't have a Web site? Forgettable. Or rather, unsearchable. Remember when we didn't have e-mail? Would you want to go back to those Dark Ages? Me neither.
The Internet is in the very fabric of how we communicate, learn, shop, conduct business, organize, innovate and engage. If we lost it, we'd be lost. ...
Wednesday, January 13 2010 - 9/11 A/V Galleries
BBC Conspiracy Files: Osama Bin Laden Dead or Alive
BBC Conspiracy Files: Osama Bin Laden Dead or Alive Complete in Six Parts on Youtube
Wednesday, January 13 2010 - 9/11 A/V Galleries
AE911Truth Debates Explosive Expert: Richard Gage, AIA vs. Ron Craig
January 11, 2010
AE911truth.org blog at 911blogger.com
YOU ARE ENTITLED TO YOUR OWN OPINION, BUT NOT YOUR OWN FACTS.
Richard Gage, AIA, founder of Architects and Engineers for 911 truth, and Ron Craig, explosives and Hollywood special effects expert locked horns in their second live radio debate in two years. The exchange was hosted by Richard Syrett of The Conspiracy Show. LISTEN TO THE DEBATE NOW.
While no data is available yet for listenership numbers, we do know that the show could be heard from Thunderbay Ontario to the Carolinas....from Maine to Minnesota, NYC, Chicago, Washington and all points in between. Also, the program is offered as a podcast, so it will be available on iTunes as a download. It's the most downloaded show on the radio station – Zoomer Radio from Ontario. The show will also be broadcast on TV - www.theconspiracyshow.com
After brief introductory statements, the debate began right away with two very different views of reality on display. Gage's comments were based on observations that the three WTC towers did not suffer a natural collapse as a result of plane impacts and fires, but came down due to an engineered explosive destruction. Craig, on the other hand, asserted the belief that the plane strikes delivered three times the kinetic energy that the buildings were designed to withstand, that the construction was faulty, and that there was “no signature of explosions”.
Tuesday, January 12 2010 - Editorials
Is Another False-Flag Provable?
Following is an editorial from James Hufferd about the Christmas Day Underwear Bomber attempt, speculating as to possible reasons for what he considers another false-flag "terrorism" attempt by unknown parties. Factually, however, he draws attention to the testimony of one courageous passenger, Kurt Haskell, whose information bringing into question the government's absurd story-telling has been summarily dismissed by corporate media amidst the massive (and tiresome) fear-mongering as they try to convince Americans (and Brits, now also being subjected to scanners at Heathrow) why we must willingly submit to full-body scans revealing our detailed-image, naked bodies and otherwise - yet again - "give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety" ... (Ben Franklin).
January 12, 2010
by James Hufferd, Ph.D.
Founder, 911 Truth of Central Iowa
Barely two weeks ago, on Christmas Day, 2009, a young Muslim man from Nigeria with a multiple-entry visa to enter the United States was reported to have attempted to blow up a Northwest Airlines jet bound from Amsterdam preparing to land at Detroit International Airport by igniting a bomb hidden in the crotch of his underwear. Passengers aboard the plane prevented him from succeeding, and potentially from killing all 278 passengers, plus crew. He was subsequently reported to have trained or received instruction in Yemen and taken inspiration from an al-Qaeda-connected Islamic mullah who is an American citizen living in that country and implicated in other terrorist events.
Thus, the incident was construed as a new major case of radical Islamic terrorism against the United States. Disturbingly, the plot apparently almost succeeded, for reasons now hotly debated, even though the terrorist's name and profile were already in U.S. security service files and on watch lists. Superficially, it was widely reported as an open-and-shut case of anti-U.S. Islamic extremism, necessitating a new round of "security measures" for air travel.
However, almost from the beginning there was another credible source of information that, when considered alongside other information being reported, substantially alters the picture and the implication of the collective evidence. Doubtless for that reason, this second, partially corroborated source has not been thoroughly exploited or widely examined, but instead has been almost universally ignored and shunted aside without comment by U.S. officials and the corporate media. The source is Mr. Kurt Haskell, 39, a successful former U.S. government lawyer, currently a practicing attorney in greater Detroit along with his wife, Lori. Together, they were returning from a vacation in Africa on that day on that same flight from Amsterdam.
Sunday, January 10 2010 - 9/11 Consequences
Nice Work Creating New Terrorists, You Morons
George Washington continues to churn out excellent, thoughtful, well-sourced entries at GeorgeWashington2.blogspot.com. Following this post on Friday, George pulled together an extensive piece about the economy on Saturday called "The Military-Industrial Complex is Ruining the Economy":
Everyone knows that the too big to fails and their dishonest and footsy-playing regulators and politicians are largely responsible for trashing the economy.
But the military-industrial complex shares much of the blame.
We encourage readers to consider subscribing to and supporting this excellent work.
January 8, 2010
American civilian and military leaders have been creating new terrorists through their:
A high-level American Special Ops interrogator says that information obtained from torture is unreliable, and that torture just creates more terrorists. Indeed, he says that torture of innocent Iraqis by Americans is the main reason that foreign fighters started fighting against Americans in Iraq in the first place.
Sunday, January 10 2010 - 9/11 A/V Galleries
Maddow shreds Giuliani for 'forgetting about 9/11'
By Stephen C. Webster
Saturday, January 9th, 2010
Is Rudolph Giuliani's political career over?
The former mayor of New York City has been making his rounds in U.S. media this week, trying to explain away his false claim that there were no domestic terrorist attacks on the United States during the Bush administration.
For a man often mocked as "the mayor of 9/11," that's an awfully bold suggestion, and one that could spell the end of his relevance in U.S. politics, according to MSNBC host Rachel Maddow.
"The whole reason anybody ever thought of Rudy Giuliani as a potential national figure for the Republican party is because of his supposed expertise," Maddow said during a Friday broadcast. "The supposed expertise he had with terrorism and national security because he had been the mayor of New York City when it was attacked on September 11."
Sunday, January 10 2010 - In the Media
Giuliani: 'We had no domestic attacks under Bush'
Speaking of Orwell ...
by David Edwards and John Byrne
January 8, 2010
UPDATE: ABC's George Stephanopoulos has taken responsibility for not challenging former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani on the mayor's assertion on Good Morning America Friday that "we had no domestic attacks under Bush."
As noted below, a Giuliani spokesman "clarified" the mayor's statement later in the day, arguing that the mayor meant no attacks after 9/11.
"Whatever the mayor meant, it’s not what he said," Stephanopoulos wrote on his ABC blog. "All of you who have pointed out that I should have pressed him on that misstatement in the moment are right. My mistake, my responsibility."
Original story follows below
The former New York City mayor who has sometimes been mocked for using "a noun, a verb and 9/11" in stump speeches appears to have forgotten -- or has mentally reclassified -- the worst terrorist attack on American soil. "We had no domestic attacks under Bush," Rudy Giuliani told ABC's George Stephanopoulos Friday.
Even if Giuliani doesn't consider the attacks on 9/11 a "domestic" attack then surely he forgot about the anthrax attacks of 2001 or an Egyptian national who attacked the El Al ticket counter at Los Angeles International Airport in 2002.
While ABC's George Stephanopolous let Giuliani get away with his misstatement both during the interview and on his blog, ABC's Jake Tapper called the former mayor out. "Giuliani's comments that there were zero terrorist attacks under Bush, 1 under Obama, is false no matter how you slice it," tweeted Tapper.
Sunday, January 10 2010 - Editorials
Welcome to Orwell's World
Obama's lies over the Afghanistan war remind us of the lessons of Nineteen Eighty-Four
by John Pilger
January 5, 2010
The New Statesman In Nineteen Eighty-Four, George Orwell described a superstate, Oceania, whose language of war inverted lies that "passed into history and became truth. 'Who controls the past,' ran the Party slogan, 'controls the future: who controls the present controls the past'."
Barack Obama is the leader of a contemporary Oceania. In two speeches at the close of the decade, the Nobel Peace Prize-winner affirmed that peace was no longer peace, but rather a permanent war that "extends well beyond Afghanistan and Pakistan" to "disorderly regions, failed states, diffuse enemies". He called this "global security" and invited our gratitude. To the people of Afghanistan, which the US has invaded and occupied, he said wittily: "We have no interest in occupying your country."
In Oceania, truth and lies are indivisible. According to Obama, the American attack on Afghanistan in 2001 was authorised by the United Nations Security Council. There was no UN authority. He said that "the world" supported the invasion in the wake of the 11 September 2001 attacks. In truth, all but three of 37 countries surveyed by Gallup expressed overwhelming opposition. He said that America invaded Afghanistan "only after the Taliban refused to turn over Osama Bin Laden". In 2001, the Taliban tried three times to hand over Bin Laden for trial, Pakistan's military regime reported, and they were ignored.
Saturday, January 9 2010 - Other Important News
Is Anyone Telling Us the Truth?
January 08, 2010
by Paul Craig Roberts
What are we to make of the failed Underwear Bomber plot, the Toothpaste, Shampoo, and Bottled Water Bomber plot, and the Shoe Bomber plot? These blundering and implausible plots to bring down an airliner seem far removed from al-Qaida's expertise in pulling off 9/11.
If we are to believe the U.S. government, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, the alleged al-Qaida "mastermind" behind 9/11, outwitted the CIA, the NSA, indeed all 16 U.S. intelligence agencies as well as those of all U.S. allies including Mossad, the National Security Council, NORAD, Air Traffic Control, Airport Security four times on one morning, and Dick Cheney, and with untrained and inexperienced pilots pulled off skilled piloting feats of crashing hijacked airliners into the World Trade Center towers, and the Pentagon, where a battery of state of the art air defenses somehow failed to function.
After such amazing success, al-Qaida would have attracted the best minds in the business, but, instead, it has been reduced to amateur stunts.
The Underwear Bomb plot is being played to the hilt on the TV media and especially on Fox "news." After reading recently that The Washington Post allowed a lobbyist to write a news story that preached the lobbyist's interest, I wondered if the manufacturers of full body scanners were behind the heavy coverage of the Underwear Bomber, if not behind the plot itself. In America, everything is for sale. Integrity is gone with the wind.
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