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1. David Sirota, socialist, is taking food off the table of a liberal news outlet that is not to his ideological liking. Shame, shame.
2. If PBS discloses the source, it should not be a factor. The bias in the actual reporting wasn't shown, merely hands were waved about hypotheticals.
3. We can't afford these higher public pensions anyway. Sirota is bringing the hard-left SEIU style take to this issue but there has to be more light shed on this and more democracy. This was the crux of what happened in Wisconsin.
4. Obviously if we look at Pando Daily's funding and its stories we'll start seeing the same thing. And honestly, it doesn't matter. We're grown-ups, and we know how to click around the Internet for a variety of sources to make up an adequate news diet.
5. The malicious gloating about sticking it to PBS with this story and making them return money was really low. It could happen to this outfit as well. Then food would be taken of your table. Shame, shame.
2 weeks, 6 days ago on The Wolf of Sesame Street: Revealing the secret corruption inside PBS’s news division
@DDM3 @Kizone Kaprow
Read my book, which examines these issues exhaustively with numerous open sources cited.
In sum, the Snowden myth is that hackers are interested in civil rights, or reform of intelligence agencies to protect privacy.
That's not what they're really about. In fact, this particular set of hackers around Snowden from WikiLeaks and the Chaos Computer Club in Germany have waged war against only Western intelligence agencies for decades (never the far, far more abusive and sinister secret police of Russia, China, Iran, etc.).
And their war is about obtaining invincible encryption, so that they can undertaken an anarchist revolution and destroy liberal institutions and states they don't like.
Copyleftism ties into these ideologies not only as opposition to the rule of law but as collectivization of content and labour online. The hypocrisy at the heart of these anarchist movements is that they scorn encryption to protect copyright (like DRM) but they embrace it to protect their privacy -- even if that involves enabling crime.
3 weeks, 6 days ago on American Media Ignores Edward Snowden Interview on German News Network
This is a very important critique and one long overdue of these extremists who have had such a profoundly damage effect on American national security. They attack a liberal democracy like the US for a reason -- because they can, and because it's easier to overthrow -- their ideology also overlaps with the authoritarianism of regimes like Russia as to their basic notions of collectivism, anti-capitalism, oligarchism, and the "sovereign Internet." The darknet utopia of Julian Assange differs little from Putin's "sovereign RU.net"
I think certain points need to go further, however. For example, Assange's ideology of the conspiracy of government which was first so well elucidated in fact by his supporter, Aaron Bady, early in the Cablegate scandal, is that when hackers disrupt the communications of such a state by leaks, it then shuts down and becomes more secretive. First, it can't communicate with itself and becomes more dumb -- this is the silo effect away from the 'wikification" that had preceded WikILeaks of government. Then finally, it "becomes unlike itself" -- an oppressive state -- and then self-discredits like the Russian regime.
But taken in full, it's merely a Leninist "the worse, the better" -- a strategy for revolutionary take-over.
I have put together a book of all my research on these hackers who were Snowden's helpers and avid supporters, people like Jacob Appelbaum who I was critiquing for years before he became the lead tech in the Snowden Operation, and the Germans at the Chaos Communications Club.
You can read it here
My thesis is that all of this isn't so much about leaks, which are merely an organizing tool, but more about the drive for absolute encryption to secure revolutionary success.
1 month, 1 week ago on Conversation @ http://www.newrepublic.com/article/116253/edward-snowden-glenn-greenwald-julian-assange-what-they-believe
@pierrevauxPierre, long before Skype, a company founded by Estonians, sold itself to Microsoft, it was handing over the conversations of Belarusian opposition to Lukashenka, which he used to prosecute them. Skype has long been known to have back doors in it -- all free services do because the makers need to scrape your data in order to sell it to marketers, that's the contract for all of Silicon Valley's wares. Microsoft turning over the data to the FSB is merely what every single other provider or company operating in Russia, domestic or foreign, is required to do by law. The evil here essentially resides in the East, not the West; Western companies may become venal in dealing with the Kremlin, to be sure, but ultimately, shifting the focus to the Western companies only displaces attention from where it should be -- Putin and his cronies and the system they both inherited and refined.
1 month, 2 weeks ago on Edward Snowden demands press freedom (for journalists who don’t live or work in Russia)
Actually, there were bloggers (like me) writing even lengthy critiques of Pierre Omidyar:
And there is more I hope to write up soon related to the latest Snowden revelations. Did you know that one of the things the NSA cited as a positive thing about Second Life in their report as Omidyar Network's Camp Darfur?
As for the "gate-keeper" thing, I don't think Snowden is a whistleblower, I think he's a felon. Therefore I don't think these documents should have been leaked to journalists. I don't think they contain the "crimes" implied in all their half-stated innuendos. Capture of metadata is not a violation of the Fourth Amendment. Ask any lawyer, even a liberal lawyer in or around the Obama Administration, even just any normal lawyer who isn't captured by the geek squad in the anarchist's collective or is some extreme technocommunist or technolibertarian type -- hey dominate this discussion, and the hordes of others who actually shape policy do not. And that's a good thing. Because no one has compelling provided any 4th Amendment violations and no court of law has accepted any of the ACLU/EFF etc. argumentations. That's important.
So I don't "worry" about whether it's "for the public interest" to release all of them, part of them, to provide them for free, to put them in a pay-wall, etc. etc.
If they were really what they claim, then they would have released them all. If they really, really believed they had the goods on a possible cryptic Panopticon, they would have hastened to release every document for free, not waiting, and not putting out million dollar books in a year.
That in fact is one of the ways you know that's not what they have. It's not what they claim. And at bottom they know that. You see this is all their half-truths and misleading statements that need correcting the next week. Instead, what all this is, is a power struggle of a faction, call it the Wired State, as I have, call it the anarchists or Crypto Party or whatever. These documents are just totemic symbols, tokens, in this game. It doesn't matter whether they talk about spying on Muslim radicals' porn habits or the elves of Second Life or Merkel's cell phone or Al Qaeda. It's just a game in which these things are wielded in a larger battle about who gets to encrypt, and how much. Pierre had a very public discussion on Twitter about this with all of them a few months ago, a long and telling thing which can be found in his back TL in which you see that what interests him the most is the absolute power that comes with absolute encryption, because if you have that, you can then shame society and run it the way you want, which is the wish someone like him has.
All of this isn't about whether Pierre is a capitalist who takes from the middle class to give from the poor or is an evil capitalst who forces Indian farmers to commit suicide; it's about rather his wish to rule and engineer people in the world and the desire of these activist journalists and geeks to help him do that and visa versa. Getting hung up on the gatekeeping issue is like getting hung up on whether he is on Park Place or Readding Railroad with the dog token or the boot token on the board.
2 months, 3 weeks ago on Pierre Omidyar in 2009: “Anybody who publishes stolen info should help catch the thief”
No, I don't think Levine/Ames raise excellent questions at all. They merely hate capitalism with a passion, so they ventilate their spite. That's not journalism. We missed them complaining about much, much more famous micro-credit schemes years ago with the same vicious pressure on loan recipients. Gonzo journalism is always about The Man, but now The Man is only certain Men they don't like -- not any of their own funders who have "betterworldist" philosophies no different, and often worse, than Pierre's. My critique of Omidyar is that he takes from the lower middle-class (on ebay), then gives to the selected poor -- or rather, the NGO sector lords of aid to the third world, which isn't the quite thing. And in doing so, he practices this "capitalism for me, communism for you" philosophy that is the real ideology of Silicon Valley (not mere technolibertarianism or neo-liberalism as Evgeny Morozov pouts about all the time). Then the rents go up on ebay for all those middle-aged mid-Western ladies selling their dolls and doilies, and the third sector also kept alive by Soros grows larger and uses all this soft money to vote for Obama. Nowhere do these people take care to sustain and develop the free market capitalist system itself. Indeed, how could they, with their socialist ideals and with the Leninist press biting at their heels constantly? Omidyar at least gives to the needy, and doesn't call "charity" just finding cures to diseases he suffers from, like Sergei Brin. The problem with the viciousness of Levine and Ames is that they argue against Omidyar (it's not journalism) from this vitriolic perspective of Leninism (Limonovism) but they don't have an answer as to how they and their journal and the rest of society are going to be kept in livelihoods without any capitalism.
I personally don't like this notion of running charities as businesses and trying to make non-profits shape up with business demands and 90-day impact studies and bottom lines. If your project is, say, publicizing torture in Uzbekistan or Turkmenisan, you will never see progress in your lifetime -- there is no bottom line. You just keep doing it anyway because it's right to do. After-school programs for poor minority children -- absent any other reforms of the larger picture for their parents -- is the same thing you will do for the rest of your life. "The poor ye always have with you," as Jesus said. But these people think they can change human nature -- and actually, Levine/Ames are no different in their glazed-eyed idealism about some more perfect world where none of these sins they pounce on will exist because....they say so.
I don't see a problem even with "investing" in micro-credits to make a profit -- why not do that instead of making useless widgets that are outmoded in 6 months and need a new iteration? It's fine. But he should work at changing the culture of brow-beating -- that in fact comes out of socialism -- in India.
All I want these people to do, whose subscripions I actually paid for, and whose ads I click on, is to *pick up the phone* and actually talk in full paragraphs to their sources instead of having silly Twit fights.
And I want them to stop calling me a "troll" if I merely point out the obvious about them.
Investigative journalism doesn't mean having some nerd dredge through old tweets to find something to play "gotcha" with from 2009 (!).
It means calling up Omidyar himself and having a direct discussion with him about whether revealing corporate secrets is the same as revealing classified state secrets. If he won't talk, asking other experts. Obviously it's not the same thing, as Paul Carr concedes in a postscript. It's not because an entire nation's security is at stake, not just the profit of one company.
Investigative journalism isn't merely smearing Omidyar with implications that he's responsible for Indian farmers' suicides, it's actually asking him if he knew about the methods used in loan recovery in his micro-credit scheme and if he did, why he didn't do anything to curb it. It means digging more to see if this scheme actually benefited some people even if unscrupulous loan methods meant it was harmful to others. Mark Ames seems to think that it's enough to fulminate against corporations and capitalism and make insinuations and not have to pick up the phone and actually ask any source anything.
Instead of investigation, we just get viciousness and a default anti-capitalist animosity. That does not substitute for critical journalism.
Also journalistic ethics means not insisting that Mark Ames (formerly of Exiled) is merely writing "fiction" when the issue comes up with his own reporting of his own antics in Russia in the 1990s, involving sex with a 15-year-old Russian girl. It means demanding to know whether it is true or not *from him*. He has been silent. It means not assuming that if someone raises this legitimately, that they are merely out to cover for Greenwald or Omidyar or "attack Mark's reporting". What reporting? It's opinion. And I personally am a bigger critic of Greenwald, Omidyar, etc. than Paul Carr and co. over a longer period of time.
But instead of real investigation, we get name-calling and nastiness on Twitter. Oh, wait. Omidyar finally gets a "respectful" and "productive" Twitter debate because he's worth millions. Those of us in the cheap seats get called "fucking insane" and smeared with false charges based on Wikipedia vandalism by Anonymous. Appalling.
I'm unsubscribing from NSFW, which I once believed in enthusiastically, and hoping Sarah Lacy might shape up this crew before they pull her down. Pando is a very good thing and it's good she is trying to save NSFW. But she should realize that calling people names on Twitter doesn't prove there was "investigative journalism" either.
Like with all the Snowden stories, this story doesn't really reveal an actual violation of the law. No criminal investigation let alone court finding has established that law is violated.
Of course there is the concept of "just law," and just because not everything is found to be wrong in court, doesn't mean that it *isn't* ultimately a violation of justice.
But even, there, too, this story doesn't establish that there's an injustice. To accept that there's an injustice, first you'd have to establish that scooping up metadata for the purpose of tracking criminals and terrorists is a violation of law. Nothing said here proves that it is. The FBI is not creating dossiers it actually fills and reads with human intelligence on massive numbers of people, it's only sifting through machine data to find matches to criminal investigations established in other ways or through the matching of known suspect data, i.e. mafia members home or business phone.
Civil libertarians often make a claim that gathering metadata is overreach because it establishes location and type of machine and "might" be used for government hacking (the claim made here as well). Yet has it? No case is established in fact that it has; no individual whose rights are violated has actually been produced. Given that the FBI has to make their cases stand up in court, it's not in their interests to gather data illegally.
Stories like this always imply that the government is sieving millions of people's data and then dip-netting randomly or with prejudice or unfounded suspicion on those millions to "come up with something". But from all accounts, it seems that the government is tracking suspects that it should be tracking and legally gathering data on them.
3 months, 2 weeks ago on Access denied | Foreign Policy
German, Brazil, and their anti-American NGO supporters as well as the whole Snowden hackes' collective are pretty hypocritical about all this.
They allowed Google to reputation-launder with their participation in the lobbying group GNI, and never complained about Google's far more intrusive data-scraping of the content of email and social media communications. They actively sought Facebook's membership, and didn't complain about their privacy busting.
We never learn the content of either Merkel's or Rouseff's conversation, in fact, and we never confirm that in fact they *were* bugged; CNN asked the Der Spiegel editor who ran this Snowden claim and he said all he had was a document showing Merkel's name in a list.
Germany can posture like this at the UN in the full knowledge that Russia, where it has considerable business interests, will never comply with this resolution, which it will sign to harass the US, and never implement at home, where it does far worse surveillance.
3 months, 2 weeks ago on Access denied | The Cable
German, Brazil, and their anti-American NGO supporters as well as the whole Snowden hackes' collective are pretty hypocritical about all this.
They allowed Google to reputation-launder with their participation in GNI, and never complained about Google's far more intrusive data-scraping of the content of email and social media communications. They actively sought Facebook's membership, and didn't complain about their privacy busting.
Germany, Brazil and their NGO and adversarial NGO friends are all pretty hypocritical about this.
They were silent for years when Russia, China, and Iran kept surveillance over their populations far more intrusive and devastating for human rights than anything the NSA does.
They were silent when Big IT like Google scraped and retained all the data of the *content* of their communications -- which the NSA has not done, restricting itself through elaborate checks and balances to gathering metadata in pursuit against terrorists and other criminals.
They were silent and inactive when all the EU countries gathered communications data, and even shared it with the NSA.
It was only when WikiLeaks and the Russian government joined to exploit the defector Snowden that we got all these revelations damaging to the Western alliance -- and profitable to Russia.
And speaking of profits, Germany is happy to make billions from its interdependence with US companies like Amazon on amazon.de -- in fact, it had a banner sales year.
So it doesn't tackle its claims of privacy-busting in ways that might really matter, by demanding that Amazon cede control of all German data and let it be kept on German owned servers -- a deal they might not get for reasons of cost among other issues of interdependency.
Thus, their use of the UN, where every silly anti-American sentiment can be amplified 100 times over, without any care or concern that any universal principle applied tendentiously to a liberal democratic state will ever have to be complied with by authoritarians -- least of all those where there are business interests of Germany, like in Russia.
@zenmastermojo Oh, not at all. I challenged Warren specifically on the quote made by Noam in his article, in which he took great glee, where she confronts the Wall street regulators. She implies in her quote that the purpose of regulation is to produce criminal sentences. That implies that regardless of the truth, regardless of the facts, such boards should nail people to the wall to satisfy populism regardless of the truth. That *is* what Bolshevism *is*.
She herself cites no cases; she doesn't supply any facts; she doesn't say, "I've been researching Jamie Diman and here's why I think that the hefty fine is not enough, he needs to go behind bars because of X, Y, Z facts and argumentations I'm bringing." Instead, she implies in a highly politicized manner that ONLY if people are put in jail -- like Russia -- without due process, without facts, can she "win". Win for her Bolshevik cause, of course, because it's not a win for any just justice system.
Corporate lawyers with PhDs themselves aren't businessmen and aren't even practicing lawyers if they go into politics, and begin to spew ideological statements in a partisan manner. It's great she has a legal background, but she never seems to have run a business and she has a great animus to commerce and capitalism.
Fox News is watched by only 2 million people. The Tea Party is waning. What you're really up against are liberals and centrists in the Democratic Party itself, as well as independents, who will not stand for this kind of socialist demogoguery.
If she really has found corporate fraud, let her bring the facts, let her have hearings, call witnesses, commission reports. I don't any of that. She has no case. She is substituting rhetoric and grand-standing for having a case. That's extremely dangerous and unjust.
3 months, 3 weeks ago on Conversation @ http://www.newrepublic.com/article/115509/elizabeth-warren-hillary-clintons-nightmare
If you have a criminal case, by all means bring it. But you don't. The end.
Noam is rooting for Liza, and Chris Huges the Silicon Valley tycoon must have decided that TNR should become the socialist candidate vehicle, but the graphics guy is resisting. He's portraying Warren with red in every single photo, and that's exactly the problem -- the communist ideology that university professors absorb and regurgitate without question. Go, graphics guy! You're telling the story right here.
At least Noam is admitting that young people openly opt for the "s" word.
So make a Socialist Party, or revive the Democratic Socialists of America, and go into that, rather than wrecking the Democratic Party.
Ever since I saw Warren's clip about "you didn't build that," I've watched her closely to see whether that was a one-off or in fact emblematic of her socialist "progressive" views. And the answer is: the way you know she is a stealth socialist even worse than Obama is her harping on the "middle class". Whenever you hear somebody blathering about "the middle class," you know their real agenda is socialism. They think that is a supercool way to cloak their hidden agenda, like any "single issue" fake politics concealing hard-core cadre organizing for socialist programs. They think that "ordinary people in the middle class" will then follow them. Baloney.
I'm not in the middle class; I'm in the lower class as a single mom of two in the non profit sector. But I'm not fooled by all his talk of middle class. The way to lift all boats is to encourage business to thrive, which creates jobs and commerce. Warren is afraid of commerce; she's a scold and takes a punitive approach to commerce.
She adopted the Bolshevik Occupy rhetoric of wanting to hang the rich from the lamp-posts, asking when these regulators stopped beating their wives. The objective is to regulate, not send to prison. Good Lord. If there is no crime committed worthy of sending someone to prison like Madoff, then fines are the appropriate way to go, and certainly Chase is being shaken down. Punitive practices regarding non-cronies is like Russia; it has no place in America. Keep it away.
First come people's hard work, and for some, entrepreneurialism. Then comes the paying of their taxes. Then comes using that taxes to build roads to sustain them, as government for and by the people. It's not about putting first the socialists in the redistribution committee in power and having them extract and redistribute. Warren doesn't get that. It's not about her and her power to redistribute; it's about people's work and their entrepreneurial achievements.
If the Democratic Party doesn't realize that they cannot have Warren or leftist clones worse than Obama, and can't produce Hillary in 2016 or some reasonable moderate candidate who doesn't hate business, then we will be forced to put in protest votes with the Republican Party. And not for the first time.
It's not about privacy or the content of what is hidden, it's about power -- who gets to encrypt absolutely.
3 months, 4 weeks ago on Access denied | Foreign Policy
I oppose holds like this -- I thought they had worked to get of holds. And I oppose *these* holds.
But I still think questions about Benghazi are in order. I'm not sure John Hudson does, however, since questions asked after he asked them in September 2012 in the Atlantic seem to be deemed "trolling" and never legitimate.
Since the witness being discredited now himself told everyone to look to his FBI testimony, I think there will be more to the story.
It's good that Eli Lake is cited and that this story now appears more balanced than previous ones. Does this happen without prompting from the consumer? No, I don't think it does, quite frankly.
3 months, 4 weeks ago on Access denied | The Cable
This may be a very expert insider's account, but it is terribly one-sided. You behave as if the US "stood up" all of this militarization in a vacuum, just out of some love of toys or geopolitical hegemony or something. You utterly fail to portray the very real enemies the US has from Iran to Russia to China to Pakistan to Anonymous. You aren't credible when you don't supply a real picture of what these countries do, which isn't playing catch-up, but which is launching the cyber attacks in the first place. Most of the cyber attacks on Europe, as we know from the Brussels Forum, come from Russia. Most of the ones on the US come from China these are real threats,and yet you diminish them. That's why nothing you say is persuasive.
4 months ago on Access denied | Foreign Policy
The reason why this is a negative development is that the relatives of those killed or those injured in drone attacks who are not the combatants or terrorists have no way of applying for compensation because it is run by the CIA in secret, so they don't accept applications. Those killed openly by the US armed forces by mistake in collateral damage can get compensated, but not drone victims. Surely that much could be fixed about this program.
4 months ago on Access denied | Killer Apps
And now what?
4 months ago on Access denied | The Cable