American Samizdat

Sunday, April 25, 2010. *
Atheist Death Threat Toon Roundup: Featuring South Park and the Omnipotent return of Godman(!)
posted by Philip Shropshire at 4:21 AM
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Saturday, April 24, 2010. *
They will fuck us at every turn:
Alan Grayson Discloses That Dodd Bill Covertly Eliminates Already Passed Legislation Requiring Full Fed Audit

They will fuck us at every turn, at every time in every way.

"The more we do to you, the less you seem to believe we are doing it." Joseph Mengele
posted by Uncle $cam at 5:51 AM
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Monday, April 19, 2010. *

It was in the 19th century that scientists realized the ridged whorls on the tip of the finger constituted a unique marker that could be used to tell one person from another. And eventually, the FBI built a massive database of fingerprints.

Then came DNA. In the 20th century, scientists learned to use the double helix nucleic acid molecule as a means of identification even more definitive than the fingerprint. And the FBI built a DNA database as well. Now the feds are building yet another database. And it has some folks worried.

Maybe you missed it in the run-up to Super Duper Tuesday when the Associated Press reported last week that the FBI will soon award a $1 billion, 10-year contract for construction of an electronic file that would store not just fingerprints and DNA, but a vast compendium of other physical characteristics. We're talking eye scans, facial shape, palm prints, scars, tattoos and other biometrics, all for the purpose of identifying and capturing bad guys.

But at least one privacy advocate thinks even good guys — and gals — have cause for concern. Barry Steinhardt, director of the ACLU's Technology and Liberty Project, told CNN, "It's the beginning of the surveillance society where you can be tracked anywhere, any time and all your movements, and eventually all your activities will be tracked and noted and correlated."

I know what some of you are saying and it makes a certain amount of sense: If you haven't done anything wrong, you have nothing to worry about. Well, I haven't done wrong, but it worries me just the same.

The government has for years collected fingerprints — not just of criminals, but also of certain job applicants. What's happening now, it could be reasonably argued, is only a high-tech extension of that. Except that instead of just your fingerprints, the government will also have on file the shape of your iris, that scar from your appendectomy and the tattoo on your inner thigh.

It's a discomfiting reminder of the totalitarian states of "Fahrenheit 451" and "1984," oppressive regimes that saw everything, knew everything, regulated everything. Given the advances in technology and the ominous, Orwellian turn our government has lately taken, the comparison seems far less far-fetched than once it might have.

It's not just the government, though. In recent years, the right to privacy, the right to simply be left alone, has also been eroded by the corporate community — everything from supermarket discount cards that track your buying habits to online businesses that install secret spyware in your computer. And we haven't even mentioned that there is a camera on every street corner nowadays.

"I always feel like somebody's watching me." That used to be just the hook from a schlocky '80s song. Increasingly, it is an apt description of modern life.

Now the FBI proposes to collect and collate still more personal information. It swears the information will be protected, and will be used only to ferret out criminals.

But I can't help a certain wariness when I consider the ease with which the program could expand far beyond that mission. As Steinhardt sees it, first criminals, then job applicants and then, "Eventually, it's going to be everybody."

I admit, he might be wrong. But you know something? He might not.

Leonard Pitts Jr. is a syndicated writer in Washington.

I too, I found the digitized voice production fascinating, reminding me of 1984... On steriods.
posted by Uncle $cam at 3:12 AM
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Tuesday, April 06, 2010. *
The Associated Press

WASHINGTON - A federal appeals court has ruled that the Federal Communications Commission lacks the authority to require broadband providers to give equal treatment to all Internet traffic flowing over their networks.

Tuesday's ruling by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia is a big victory for Comcast Corp., the nation's largest cable company. It had challenged the FCC's authority to impose so called "net neutrality" obligations.

It marks a serious setback for the FCC, which needs authority to regulate the Internet in order to push ahead with key parts of its massive national broadband plan.
posted by Uncle $cam at 9:47 AM
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Monday, April 05, 2010. *
Wikileaks has obtained and decrypted this previously unreleased video footage from a US Apache helicopter in 2007. It shows Reuters journalist Namir Noor-Eldeen, driver Saeed Chmagh, and several others as the Apache shoots and kills them in a public square in Eastern Baghdad. They are apparently assumed to be insurgents. After the initial shooting, an unarmed group of adults and children in a minivan arrives on the scene and attempts to transport the wounded. They are fired upon as well. The official statement on this incident initially listed all adults as insurgents and claimed the US military did not know how the deaths ocurred. Wikileaks released this video with transcripts and a package of supporting documents on April 5th 2010

"Well it's their fault for bringing their kids into a battle - Thats Right".

Yeah, those damn children attacking those brave Americans.
posted by Uncle $cam at 8:48 AM
Anonymous Anonymous said...
Terrorist War Criminals.
7:53 AM  
Blogger a female Faust said...
Ethan McCord, the soldier in the above footage who is seen running with a wounded child in his arms - apologizes for that comment specifically in AN OPEN LETTER OF RECONCILIATION & RESPONSIBILITY TO THE IRAQI PEOPLE: From Current and Former Members of the U.S. Military": "We acknowledge our part in the deaths and injuries of your loved ones as we tell Americans what we were trained to do and what we carried out in the name of "god and country". The soldier in the video said that your husband shouldn't have brought your children to battle, but we are acknowledging our responsibility for bringing the battle to your neighborhood, and to your family. We did unto you what we would not want done to us."

The mother of the two children – both of whom lived – forgave him. Read about that here; read the letter in full and perhaps sign it (all Americans are invited to) here
10:48 AM  
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Sunday, April 04, 2010. *
The Pattern Continues.......So, the Republicans have never been made to pay a political price for their scheming to undercut sitting Democratic presidents -- and to grease the GOP’s route back to power. Whenever a Democrat is in the White House, the Republicans believe they are free do whatever they want to block him from solving national problems, making him look weak and ineffectual.

That was true of Johnson, Carter, Clinton and now Obama.

This GOP strategy is pursued even if it tarnishes the international image of the United States or if it undermines national security, even if it means more than 20,000 additional U.S. soldiers dying in Vietnam, or 52 American hostages facing longer captivity in Iran, or the likes of Timothy McVeigh feeling empowered to blow up a federal building.

The strategy continues even if it raises the current threat level against President Obama and Democratic lawmakers. The strategy continues because it works......

The same two elements – tearing down a Democratic president and creating a sense of political havoc – are again at the center of Republican strategy, except that today the GOP is even better placed to carry out a repeat than the party was in 1994. Then, there was no Fox News dominating the cable TV ratings and the right-wing media was far less developed than it is today.....

In this analysis, the Republicans believe they can reclaim the lucrative levers of national authority by making the country as ungovernable as possible while a Democrat is in the White House, essentially holding governance hostage until they are restored to power. Then, the Democrats are expected to behave as a docile opposition “for the good of the country” (and usually do).

Yeah. It's like watching a tug-of-war with only one "side" pulling.

According to this report, the Reagan-era CIA laid the groundwork for the deployment of the Clinton and now Obama-era strategy of disruption. The author speculates that this strategy dates back to Nixon at the earliest. When the Rethugs aren't in charge of the administration, they engage in a strategy of "ungovernability" on all levels, from far-right Tea Party nonsense to refusing to vote for their own bills in Congress (e.g., Mitt Romney's healthcare plan). So, is this the big reveal? Does this explain it all? The Republican gameplan is, when out of power, to cause as much disruption as possible so that policy can only be enacted on their watch, via foundation money and agitprop info-war. Meanwhile, the Democrats are forced rightwards in a fruitless attempt to enact needed policy reforms and admin. restructuring.

I'm not sure of the reliability of the source, but when you consider this in line with the speculation that the Dumocrats have moved rightwards in order to capture the Repugnantcan voters, and force the Repubs. to rely increasingly on their mouth-breathing racist "core," well, a picture emerges. But it also emerges that Dems have looked away for four decades now, even when they have ample evidence not just of hanky panky but extra-state action--i.e., treason--on part of out-of-power Republicans.
posted by Uncle $cam at 12:21 PM
Blogger Unknown said...
Do not blame the Republicans anymore. The Democrats control the Senate, the House of Representatives, and the White House. News media's such as MSNBC and CNN as well as Hollywood are in their back pocket. Put some blame on the Democrats this year and the next 3 years to come. Or if we all really want to be smart blame a corrupt and broken government. That as a whole needs to sit down and read the Bill of Rights and Constitution and start exectuing the will of its citizens. Oh and it would not hurt if we started using sound judgement, common sense, and being centered morally.
The world is my country, all mankind are my brethren, and to do good is my religion.
- Thomas Paine
11:51 PM  
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Saturday, April 03, 2010. *
The Justice Department has quietly recanted nearly every major claim the Bush administration made about Abu Zubaydah, the alleged al-Qaeda leader who was the first suspected terrorist subjected to the torture of waterboarding and other White House-approved “enhanced interrogation techniques.”

Of course, this is AFTER TORTURED HIM.
posted by Uncle $cam at 11:51 AM
Anonymous Anonymous said...
Just occurred to me that I don't recall any of the invaders propaganda ginning up any stories about the terrorists torturing prisoners that they captured.
6:34 AM  
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