Tuesday Open Thread

It's hard to find time to work, follow the Zimmerman trial, and read the news and blog on other topics. Since I have to choose, I'm giving up on "blogging on other topics" for the day.

Here's an open thread, all topics welcome.

< George Zimmerman Trial: Jury Selection Round 2 | R.I.P. James Gandolfini >
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    Fresh toons at AN AXE LENGTH AWAY (5.00 / 1) (#1)
    by Dadler on Wed Jun 19, 2013 at 03:28:11 PM EST
    Dadler's little comic blog. Check it out and chuckle. (link)

    And in business news, you'll never again have to hear, "You're going to like the way you look -- I guarantee it." Yes, Men's Wearhouse has fired founder and pitchman George Zimmer. (link) That's cold.

    Creepy Jeff Bezos -- spymaster (5.00 / 1) (#8)
    by shoephone on Wed Jun 19, 2013 at 04:49:56 PM EST
    I've posted about Microsoft producing cloud computing spy technology for the U.S government before. But, in light of recent events, I think it's worth noting that all the kids want to do it!

    Amazon won a $600 million contract to create spy systems for the government, in a compound right near the CIA compound in Virginia.

    And it's still the case: The melding of corporations and government = fascism.

    And if you're looking for work in the spy field (none / 0) (#9)
    by shoephone on Wed Jun 19, 2013 at 04:55:39 PM EST
    the nut of the story is that Amazon is staffing up. You just need the right credentials:

    More than half a billion dollars will buy you a lot of cloud computing, and now, according to postings on Amazon's own jobs site, the company is staffing up to meet the demand the new contract will require. Specifically, Amazon is looking for engineers who already  have a "Top Secret / Sensitive Compartmented Information" clearance, or are willing to go through the elaborate screening process required to get it. TS/SCI is the highest security clearance offered by the US government, and getting it requires having your background thoroughly vetted.

    Ah, thank you (none / 0) (#24)
    by sj on Wed Jun 19, 2013 at 09:12:27 PM EST
    That explains a great deal.

    A couple of days ago I posted a link to (none / 0) (#53)
    by Mr Natural on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 09:58:11 AM EST
    a spreadsheet estimating the cost of archiving a year's worth of phone call data and content.  Somebody asked if that included all the other stuff people send on their phones now, photos, video, etc.  I've no idea, but as you can see from the $600M price of this accidentally visible CIA contract, there are enormous sums of tax dollars being thrown at similar problems.  The spreadsheet's $27M cost of phone call data and content storage is a proverbial drop in the bucket.

    Money is only an object when... (5.00 / 2) (#56)
    by kdog on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 10:18:14 AM EST
    somebody is hungry or sick...when it comes to the surveillance state, money is no object.  

    Truly. Billions of taxpayer dollars are funding (none / 0) (#61)
    by shoephone on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 11:58:58 AM EST
    U.S. Spy Agency/Tech Company alliances. From yesterday's NYT:

    The sums the N.S.A. spends in Silicon Valley are classified, as is the agency's total budget, which independent analysts say is $8 billion to $10 billion a year.

    Despite the companies' assertions that they cooperate with the agency only when legally compelled, current and former industry officials say the companies sometimes secretly put together teams of in-house experts to find ways to cooperate more completely with the N.S.A. and to make their customers' information more accessible to the agency. The companies do so, the officials say, because they want to control the process themselves. They are also under subtle but powerful pressure from the N.S.A. to make access easier.

    It's not a slippery slope, it's a waterfall:

    Many software technology firms involved in data analytics are open about their connections to intelligence agencies. Gary King, a co-founder and chief scientist at Crimson Hexagon, a start-up in Boston, said in an interview that he had given talks at C.I.A. headquarters in Langley, Va., about his company's social media analytics tools.

    The future holds the prospect of ever greater cooperation between Silicon Valley and the N.S.A. because data storage is expected to increase at an annual compound rate of 53 percent through 2016, according to the International Data Corporation.

    "We reached a tipping point, where the value of having user data rose beyond the cost of storing it," said Dan Auerbach, a technology analyst with the Electronic Frontier Foundation, an electronic privacy group in San Francisco. "Now we have an incentive to keep it forever."

    See, it's just a hop, skip, and a jump from being Max Kelly, Facebook's security officer, to becoming Max Kelly, spook working directly for the NSA.

    Don't you feel so much safe now?


    Oculus turned me on... (5.00 / 1) (#73)
    by kdog on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 01:33:54 PM EST
    to this great Banksy quote, it applies well....

    "I need someone to protect me from all the measures they take in order to protect me."

    It applies perfectly. (none / 0) (#74)
    by shoephone on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 01:38:35 PM EST
    This should go a long way in winning (5.00 / 2) (#20)
    by MO Blue on Wed Jun 19, 2013 at 08:04:55 PM EST
    female votes for the Republicans.

    Rep. Phil Gingrey (R-GA) suggested Tuesday that young boys and girls should be enrolled in classes to educate them on gender roles so that they can learn "what's important."

    "Maybe part of the problem is we need to go back into the schools at a very early age, maybe at the grade school level, and have a class for the young girls and have a class for the young boys and say, you know, this is what's important," link

    Love this line:

    "This is what a father does that is may be a little different, maybe -- maybe a little different, maybe a little better than the talent that mom has in a certain area and same things for the young girls, you know, this is what a mom does and this is what's important from the standpoint of that union.

    Of course the father's talent is maybe a little better than the talent that mom has.

    This is the same "medical doctor" that defended Atkin's  statement that in a situation of rape, of a legitimate rape, a woman's body has a way of shutting down so the pregnancy would not occur. He's partly right on that."

    What I want to know is when did they start giving out medical degrees in Cracker Jack boxes.

    Hey... I know! (5.00 / 2) (#23)
    by sj on Wed Jun 19, 2013 at 09:11:24 PM EST
    The girls can take home ec and the boys can take shop.  That should do it.

    I don't think (none / 0) (#21)
    by Ga6thDem on Wed Jun 19, 2013 at 08:20:36 PM EST
    he can top Bill Frist who tried to diagnose Teri Schiavo from spliced video tape.

    We had so called parenting classes in the high school at one time where girls took fake babies home that cried and the girls had to get up in the middle of the night with them and studies showed that 17% of them NEVER wanted to have children after that and conservatives were up in arms about that. Seems to me if someone does not want to get up in the middle of the night with a baby, they should not have one. But then again, conservatives has just become a bunch of wackos.  


    oh, c'mon, Mo (none / 0) (#30)
    by NYShooter on Wed Jun 19, 2013 at 10:22:37 PM EST
    you're not seriously disputing the fact that men are better than women, are you? I mean, even after Men gave Women a good ole Southern whuppin in The Peloponnesian War a couple of decades ago you're STILL clinging onto the old equality crap? I give you science, and you give me back science fiction. LOL, "science fiction," get it? It's the old play on words thing, you know?

    Oh, what's the youse, you're a woman. maybe you could grow a pare. A pair! Oh man (get it? Man?) Boy, I'm hot tonight!

    BOY! the hits just keep on coming, you know why? I'm a mann, that's why. Ask G*d, he'll tell ya.


    Lovely the way you ignore context (none / 0) (#31)
    by jimakaPPJ on Wed Jun 19, 2013 at 10:34:06 PM EST
    "....maybe a little better than the talent that mom has in a certain area and

    Oh, there we go again, leaving out the (5.00 / 1) (#33)
    by Anne on Wed Jun 19, 2013 at 10:43:07 PM EST
    context that makes this Neanderthal's ideas acceptable.

    "Context." I guess this is what the rest of us recognize as coded, dog-whistling, garbage.

    Good Lord.


    "Context" - Oy (none / 0) (#42)
    by Yman on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 08:34:49 AM EST
    So tell us, Jim ... what exactly is the "certain area" in which men have a "little better talent"?

    Dealing with critters (none / 0) (#44)
    by jbindc on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 09:10:33 AM EST
    I'm not afraid of mice or bugs, but it sure is nice if, on the occasion it is necessary, I don't have to deal with them.

    Bugs aren't so bad, but I remember having a mouse in our basement when I lived back with my parents and saw it dead in a trap.  I made my dad deal with it.

    (And I worked part-time in a butcher shop for years)



    Thanks jbindc... (none / 0) (#45)
    by jimakaPPJ on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 09:25:49 AM EST
    Yman needed that...


    You know, having been married for more than 55 years I can say with 100% certainty that it is a partnership and that there are many things my wife can do that I either cannot do or cannot do in an acceptable manner.


    Jim, there's a big difference between (5.00 / 3) (#49)
    by Anne on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 09:52:03 AM EST
    acknowledging that we all have talents and abilities and wanting to enroll children in classes to

    educate them on gender roles so that they can learn "what's important."

    What is important, Jim?  That women cook and take care of the house and the kids and the men cut the grass and shovel the snow and go out to work and take out the garbage and occasionally kill a scary spider?

    Males and females are not coming off separate assembly lines in a factory, pre-programmed with "female" talents and "male" talents - and that's what is so objectionable, in 20-fking-13, that there is some throwback to the turn of a much earlier century - with a medical degree, no less - who thinks we need to teach gender roles.

    If someone had  put me in a class like that, I might never have learned that I can carve a piece of meat as well as any man, that I have a head for sports and taxes, that I am perfectly capable of shoveling snow and taking out the garbage and disposing of the dead things the cat brings us.  

    It's sad that someone would be so threatened by women - because that's what this is about, you know, that we women don't know our place and are emasculating the men and are neglecting our children - that he would suggest we put our kids in classes to teach them "what's important."

    How's that for context, Jim?


    Well, speaking as someone who ... (5.00 / 3) (#78)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 02:58:32 PM EST
    ... was raised until age 15 in a single-parent household headed by a mother who was widowed in the Vietnam War, and also as a father of two young adult daughters, I believe the notion that there should be distinct gender-specific roles in households outside of actual childbirth is nothing but a bunch of poppycock.

    Further, I believe that those men -- and also, walking female anachronisms such as Phyllis Schafley -- who keep resurrecting this obsolete and wholly offensive vestige of 19th century sexism from the ash heaps of the Victorian Era, are very likely authoritarian-type personalities who are insecure in their own adulthoods.

    Honestly, most of the women I've known in my life who've bought into the fairy tale that their primary purpose in life is to marry a good man who'll take care of them and provide for their babies -- this includes members of my own family -- have often ended up being disappointed, bitter and depressed by their subsequent lot / predicament in life, if their "good man" hasn't already led them to outright grief.

    And quite frankly, the same thing goes for those clowns I've known who think that men are the naturally-ordained heads of household, and that the women in their lives exist only to please them and to do as they're told. More often than not nowadays, those foolish saps also end up disappointed, bitter and depressed -- and alone.

    I think that women's drive for full equality has potential to be equally liberating for men as well, because the tedium of gender-specific roles otherwise tends to cause us to take our partners for granted, which is a highly corrosive quality in any personal relationship or marriage.



    I was actually kidding (none / 0) (#51)
    by jbindc on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 09:57:42 AM EST
    I always joke around with those I know with "Critters are man's work."

    Of that, Jim ... (none / 0) (#59)
    by Yman on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 11:20:21 AM EST
    You know, having been married for more than 55 years I can say with 100% certainty that it is a partnership and that there are many things my wife can do that I either cannot do or cannot do in an acceptable manner.

    ... I have not the slightest doubt.  Of course, Gingrey was talking about some (unspecified) areas where the fathers were better than the mothers, not the other way around.  More importantly, he didn't want to spell out those "areas".

    Neither did you.



    So the y chromosome... (none / 0) (#46)
    by kdog on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 09:32:26 AM EST
    is just an exterminator to you eh?...tsk tsk tsk jb;)

    Oh, I'll do it (none / 0) (#47)
    by jbindc on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 09:37:42 AM EST
    if I have to.  But I prefer not to.

    But hey - I can handle a drill and hammer with the best of them!

    There are four girls in my family, and believe me, my mother and father were the most equal opportunity employers around - we had the "opportunity" to clean the kitchen, wash dishes, and run a vacuum around occasionally, but we also had the "opportunity" to mow the lawn, wash cars, clean the garage, and snowblow the driveways!


    Just messin' with ya... (none / 0) (#50)
    by kdog on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 09:54:13 AM EST
    I don't doubt it!

    Now that you mention it my family might have been anti-y...3 boys 1 girl, we all had to wash dishes, do laundry, clean and stuff...yet my sister never had to do any leaf raking or lawn mowing or change the oil in the car.  There was no such thing as "women's work", but there sure as hell was "men's work"!

    As long as we got, or eventually get, equality under the law and equal opportunity I see nothing wrong with acknowledging that the sexes tend to have different strengths and weaknesses, though there are always exceptions.


    So you think that ... (none / 0) (#58)
    by Yman on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 11:15:58 AM EST
    ... Gingrey meant we should have classes on "dealing with critters"?  Would that be classes for the boys because they're better at it, or classes for the girls ... so they get better at it?

    Ahhhh ... see it was tongue-in-cheek n/t (none / 0) (#60)
    by Yman on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 11:22:04 AM EST
    In a pitching duel (5.00 / 1) (#28)
    by CoralGables on Wed Jun 19, 2013 at 09:58:16 PM EST
    The Beavers stay alive with a 1-0 win over Indiana tonight. Both starters pitched complete games.

    Go Beavs!

    Google and Privacy aka Data Mining (5.00 / 1) (#41)
    by squeaky on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 08:16:44 AM EST
    Google will face a fine by France's data protection watchdog if it does not rewrite its privacy policy within the next three months, while Spain has begun a "sanction procedure" against the search giant.

    European data regulators are rounding on Google in a co-ordinated campaign to force the company to improve protection for consumers, with the UK, Germany, Italy and the Netherlands also planning to take action.....

    ....Google collects a wide range of information on individuals, including names, photographs, email addresses, phone numbers, credit cards, websites visited, what smartphones, tablets and computers customers are using, logs of queries typed into its search engine, phone numbers called, time, date and duration of calls, and customer locations....

    ...France also wants "definite retention periods" for data, so that it is not held beyond the period required for the purpose it was gathered. Users should be informed before the 'cookies' which track their browsing are stored on their computer. And Google should not be allowed, without legal basis, to continue with the "potentially unlimited combination of users' data", in order to build up detailed pictures of named individuals.


    AN AXE LENGTH AWAY, vol. 42 (5.00 / 1) (#57)
    by Dadler on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 10:49:53 AM EST
    Want to feel slightly better about (5.00 / 1) (#62)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 12:17:33 PM EST
    President Obama?  Josh put Fahrenheit 911 on last night.  Those phucking evil bastards!  

    Unexpected Twist (5.00 / 2) (#66)
    by squeaky on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 12:41:49 PM EST
    Roberts, wrote the 6-2 decision. Scalia and Thomas dissented, Kagan recused.

    Groups receiving federal money to combat AIDS abroad may not be required to adopt policies opposing prostitution, the Supreme Court ruled on Thursday....

    ...The Supreme Court has said the government may not attach strings to money it provides to some people and groups if those conditions infringe on constitutional rights -- even though the government has no obligation to spend the money in the first place and even though recipients are not required to take the money.


    right corner like I used to, is it just me or did that disappear for others as well?

    Noticed it for the first time last night, (none / 0) (#3)
    by Anne on Wed Jun 19, 2013 at 03:46:14 PM EST
    then it looked fine for me today until about an hour ago, when I noticed that the heading is there, but nothing listed.

    Never realized how often I check it until I looked and it wasn't there.


    Ya, I use it all the time. (none / 0) (#4)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Wed Jun 19, 2013 at 03:50:30 PM EST
    Yea, same here (none / 0) (#5)
    by Zorba on Wed Jun 19, 2013 at 04:10:02 PM EST
    The recent comments notifications are on and off.  Sometimes they're there, and sometimes not.  Extremely annoying.

    Me, too. It disappeared last night. (none / 0) (#6)
    by caseyOR on Wed Jun 19, 2013 at 04:15:20 PM EST
    Reappeared this morning. And is now gone again.

    Very weird things happening here at TL.  :-)


    I just emailed (none / 0) (#7)
    by Zorba on Wed Jun 19, 2013 at 04:20:15 PM EST
    Jeralyn to let her know about this.  She doesn't always read the Open Threads.

    "Weird things"... (none / 0) (#52)
    by kdog on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 09:58:07 AM EST
    when in doubt, I blame the NSA.

    same here (none / 0) (#11)
    by Jeralyn on Wed Jun 19, 2013 at 06:48:23 PM EST
    I have asked Colin to check into it.  I noticed it Sunday night and yesterday it was fine so we thought it was a fluke. Guess not!  We'll check into it, thanks!

    Not showing up for me either (none / 0) (#27)
    by sj on Wed Jun 19, 2013 at 09:22:46 PM EST
    and now the [new] comment designator is missing even on old threads.

    Don't Shoot The Messenger (none / 0) (#10)
    by squeaky on Wed Jun 19, 2013 at 05:09:15 PM EST
    Greenwald, Pearlstein et al..  worth a read

    Update I: To be clear, I'm not referring to Rick Perlstein in this post, who is anything but a Big Foot Villager. (I hadn't even read his piece when I wrote this.) I'm friends with both Glenn and Rick and I'm sorry to see them at odds. Rick's point is different than the journalists I'm talking about who are questioning Greenwald's credentials and looking for reasons to discredit his work.

    Greenwald's most rabid supporters are very difficult to deal with --- I know, I've been in their crosshairs plenty of times myself. And Glenn is, right now, in the middle of a whirlwind, under tremendous pressure.


    People should question Greenwald's (1.00 / 3) (#14)
    by SuzieTampa on Wed Jun 19, 2013 at 07:00:05 PM EST
    credentials as a journalist. As I just put in the comments on Rick's article ... I can't remember a time when Greenwald admitted wrong and apologized. His can be crazy and over the top. Remember when he accused Katha Pollitt of "gross accusatory innuendo"? Or, when he accused Ann Bartow of Feminist Law Professors of "drowning in misogyny and contempt for women." Or, when he attacked Imani Gandy on Twitter until Jennifer Pozner stepped in and wrote: "Turns out I have to start 2012 by explaining to a respected progressive journalist why cheap rape metaphors are bogus."

    Even in his private life, he manipulates facts by saying his partner can't come to the U.S. from Brazil because the U.S. doesn't recognize same-sex partners for the purpose of immigration. But gay people can immigrate in other ways.  

    There's a myth that he started his blog Unclaimed Territory to air his progressive views. In 2005, he was still praising Bush and criticizing Clinton. He attacked Seymour Hirsch. He wrote: "It is illegal to disclose classified information to individuals not cleared to receive it. Period." His blog named Harry Blackmun on a list of the "10 worst Americans" for Roe v. Wade. He praised Bush for not dumping Rumsfeld or Rove.

    After writing a book criticizing Bush (who had disappointed him for not being a "true conservative"), Greenwald was embraced by progressives.    

    Perhaps his biggest "civil rights" case was successfully defending Matthew Hale, leader of a white-supremacist church. After one of Hale's followers went on a shooting spree, survivors sued Hale. The Southern Poverty Law Center, the Center for Constitutional Rights and the Anti-Defamation League condemned Hale.

    In 2004, the Chicago Tribune published a column by two people associated with the ADL, arguing that Hale had groomed the killer, befriending him and giving him an award. They argued that a leader who encourages followers to commit violence is doing more than expressing his 1st Amendment rights.

    Greenwald then set up a straw man, writing: "The vast majority of people find Hale's racist beliefs to be odious and evil. Far more odious, and far more dangerous, is the belief that criminalizing certain viewpoints by calling them "hate speech" is something that can be done while still retaining our 1st Amendment freedoms."

    I can provide links to anyone who's interested.


    Seems there are areas where you are (5.00 / 2) (#18)
    by MO Blue on Wed Jun 19, 2013 at 07:31:54 PM EST
    manipulating information to discredit Greenwald. Especially this:

    Even in his private life, he manipulates facts by saying his partner can't come to the U.S. from Brazil because the U.S. doesn't recognize same-sex partners for the purpose of immigration. But gay people can immigrate in other ways.

    Greenwald is stating the facts as they exist here in the U.S. Current immigration law does not allow a U.S. citizen in a same-sex relationship to sponsor his or her spouse or partner. Here is CNN stating the exact same thing regarding another couple.

    But current immigration law does not allow a U.S. citizen in a same-sex relationship to sponsor his or her spouse or partner. There are nearly 30,000 such couples in America who now find themselves in the crosshairs of two critical national debates: the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act, or DOMA, and immigration reform.

    Even if Servetas were to marry Amaral in the District of Columbia or one of the 12 states that allow gay marriage, that marriage would be invisible as far as immigration law is concerned. Servetas could not sponsor her wife because of DOMA, which prohibits the federal government from recognizing same-sex marriages. CNN

    How about some more facts:

    Many of the saddest personal stories we hear at Marriage Equality USA are from binational couples. Same-sex partners of U.S. citizens and permanent residents are sometimes faced with the prospect of deportation because of the absence of legal marriage rights. Often times both partners leave family and friends for countries that will accept gay couples. Marriage matters because American citizens have the right to fall in love with someone from another country. But in the case of gay people, our government is essentially telling us NOT to fall in love, to accept our second-class position, and allow our loved one to leave, never to return.

    U.S. immigration is largely based on the principle of family unification, which allows U.S. citizens and legal permanent residents to sponsor their spouses (and other family members) for immigration purposes. Same-sex partners of U.S. citizens and permanent residents, however, are not considered "spouses" and are hence excluded from family-based immigration rights. Thousands of lesbian and gay binational couples are kept apart, torn apart or forced to live in fear of being separated.

    Currently, lesbian, gay men, bisexual and transgender Americans in relationships with foreign nationals have no legal way to bring their partners into the United States.* The foreign partner would have to qualify independently, usually by demonstrating some special skill that is needed by employers in the United States. This is very difficult to do, as many people lack the specific skills sought by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).  Even if they possess these skills, they would still be subjected to the strict quota limits on legal immigration. U.S. immigration law would also tear apart a foreign same-sex couple if one of them were to get a job in the United States. Under current law, the spouse of a married heterosexual person would be permitted into the country, but the partner of a gay man or lesbian would have to be left behind. (If you are in a same-sex binational relationship, please be sure to read the information listed below for Stop the Deportations - The DOMA Project.)

    MO, I agree on the issue (1.00 / 1) (#26)
    by SuzieTampa on Wed Jun 19, 2013 at 09:21:13 PM EST
    of gay marriage, but ... Greenwald isn't arguing that U.S. law makes it more difficult for his partner to immigrate; he's saying his partner can't immigrate because of the law. If Greenwald allowed himself to be edited, an editor might help him clarify statements like that.



    No that is not what he is arguing (5.00 / 2) (#37)
    by MO Blue on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 02:54:59 AM EST
    That is the distortion that you are creating to discredit Greenwald. There is no need for any edit to his statement to clarify it because it is a factual statement. This is his factual argument:

    "his partner can't come to the U.S. from Brazil because the U.S. doesn't recognize same-sex partners for the purpose of immigration."

    That is a factual statement. No edit required.


    Omitting facts matters, too (1.00 / 2) (#63)
    by SuzieTampa on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 12:19:41 PM EST
    His statement implies that immigration laws on same-sex partners are THE reason his partner can't come to the U.S. But other avenues exist.

    Yes, facts do matter (5.00 / 2) (#70)
    by MO Blue on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 01:01:24 PM EST
    The reason he states that that immigration laws on same-sex partners are THE reason his partner can't come to the U.S. is because it is true.

    CNN makes the same statement that Greenwald makes:

    But current immigration law does not allow a U.S. citizen in a same-sex relationship to sponsor his or her spouse or partner.

    What proof do you have that Glenn's partner is guaranteed permanent residency through another avenue? Since you want to deal with only facts as you see them, I'm sure you have this information at your finger tips.  Which avenue have you determined would allow Glenn's partner (please provide supporting links) under current immigration law  to achieve permanent residency in the U.S. The categories are:

    People immigrating to the US are divided by immigration law into categories, such as immediate relatives, family-sponsored and employment-based immigrants, diversity immigrants, special immigrants and investors...

    How many people from Brazil are allowed permanent residency each year for what you have determined as his qualifying category? How many are already in line and what is the back log? How many people from Brazil are turned down every year? How many years will it take Glenn's partner to obtain permanent residency.


    I think that if the important part of (5.00 / 2) (#19)
    by Anne on Wed Jun 19, 2013 at 08:00:10 PM EST
    this story for you is Greenwald, I would respectfully suggest that you have lost your ability to see the forest for the trees.

    I don't think there's anyone who thinks Glenn is perfect, or that he isn't capable of making a mistake, but this whole NSA story isn't about him.  That you are making it about him plays ever-so-neatly into the hands of those who would prefer you be distracted by credentials - just as they would prefer that we be repulsed by the cowardly computer geek who couldn't even get a high school diploma.

    As for your shots at Glenn's defense of Hale, you might want to remember that this blog is hosted by a criminal defense attorney who was part of the team that defended Timothy McVeigh; I don't imagine she would view with much regard your sneering condemnation of Glenn for his views on the First Amendment.


    Pls don't assume what I'm thinking (none / 0) (#29)
    by SuzieTampa on Wed Jun 19, 2013 at 10:04:57 PM EST
    I replied to a comment regarding Rick Perlstein riffing on the way Greenwald goes after anyone who disagrees with him.

    I don't think a few comments from me are going to divert the world's eyes from the NSA story, but I do wish more people would read him with a critical eye.

    I don't think Greenwald is important. Little is being said about documentary filmmaker Laura Poitras, who also received the information and helped Greenwald. The Guardian has some great investigative journalists who could have handled the story, and I would have trusted them more.  

    Unlike Greenwald, I'm not an absolutist on the 1st Amendment. I understand that horrible people still have a right to a good defense. But my disgust comes from his insensitivity to Hale's victims.

    I never forget that Jeralyn is a defense attorney, but I think her writing and her approach are much different from Greenwald's.


    Greenwald pushes your buttons, Suzie; (5.00 / 1) (#32)
    by Anne on Wed Jun 19, 2013 at 10:36:41 PM EST
    this is not the first time you've gone after the messenger at the expense of the message.  And based on some of your comments and other writing, I'd have to say that for you, Glenn is always the story - he always eclipses it.

    I think most of us here read a variety of material from a variety of sources, in order to help our understanding of the issues, and to come to some kind of conclusion about them, so whether it evidences itself on this blog to your satisfaction, I think there's a fairly critical eye being cast on almost everything out there.

    As far as I know, it was Poitras' choice to be involved in this story to the extent she has been, but you seem almost angry that she chose to work with Glenn; I guess she appreciated his interest in her own problems being detained by federal agents every time she came back to the US.


    Yes, you're right, I do dislike Greenwald (none / 0) (#36)
    by SuzieTampa on Wed Jun 19, 2013 at 11:17:29 PM EST
    When people praise him, I respond with criticism. If people talked only about the NSA, I wouldn't bring him up. It's not like I went on an NSA thread and attacked him.

    I don't have some personal grudge against Greenwald; he didn't kill my puppy. To me, however, he represents a problem in media and politics.

    After the myth of objectivity took root in 20th-century media, we seem to be reverting back to media being overtly political. I consider MSNBC as bad as Fox. I'm not interested in "my side" winning by twisting or omitting facts.


    If people talked only about the NSA (5.00 / 2) (#40)
    by Anne on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 06:35:32 AM EST
    we might actually be making some headway with the issues of privacy and executive power and overreach and the legality of these programs, but taking these little side trips into let's-beat-up-on-Greenwald territory, and let's-look-down-our-noses-at-the-high-school-dropout-with-the-pole-dancing-girlfriend land are getting in the way of that.

    Which is precisely why much of it is happening - how do you not see that?

    You know, I keep thinking about your comment the other day, about the reporter-friend of yours who reported on the basis of feeling "sure" about something, but couldn't be bothered to find an actual source to verify it, which had you calling on the Zimmerman aficionados for something to give him.  For me, it typified the general I-don't-give-a-sh!t attitude of far too many in the media.  Which you more or less defended, so it's hard to take seriously your interest in the "problem in media and politics."  

    So we go from that, to your ragging on someone - Glenn - for what amounts to being passionate about the issues he writes about - not, apparently, because you think he's got his facts wrong - I haven't seen anything in your comments about the facts, just about a p!ssing contest between him and Rick Perlstein - which is not the story - and a veiled reference to some generic omitting/twisting of facts.

    What twisting, what omitting?  If you know something about that, in relation to the NSA story, why are you making that secondary to your need to tell the world how much you dislike Glenn Greenwald?


    First of all (5.00 / 1) (#55)
    by jbindc on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 10:09:06 AM EST
    While there may be some, I'm not sure who is "looking down their nose" at him for being a high school dropout.  Instead, when a massive story like this breaks, don't you think it's good to know as much as we can about the players involved?  What are their backgrounds?  What are their motivations?

    Secondly, your thoughts about the story turning away from the NSA's role on spying on us, to the personalities involved, well, it seems that Edward Snowden bears some of the responsibility for that.


    Two things: (5.00 / 2) (#67)
    by Anne on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 12:42:43 PM EST
    I lost count of the number of times I heard someone in the media and Congress refer to Snowden as "someone like that," as in, "how does someone like that - who didn't even finish high school - get an important job in national security?"

    So, yes, I do think there was disdain for Snowden because he didn't seem to carry the kinds of educational credentials he should have.  We can't have "someone like that" too close to our secrets, but we can have Ivy League-educated bankers and Wall Street types committing massive fraud on the country with no accountability or meaningful consequence.

    Second, the article you reference in - gag - Politico is a bunch of people giving their opinion that Snowden needs to shut up now - as if doing so would somehow put the focus back on the NSA and all these programs.  Or maybe he needs to stop talking and reminding these "journalists" whose investigative skills died somewhere at the level of figuring out which politicians gave the best cocktail parties that they suck at their jobs.

    I guess this is part and parcel of living in a culture where we demand to be entertained, so that we don't have to think.  


    I disagree with your premise (5.00 / 1) (#75)
    by jbindc on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 01:41:25 PM EST
    I think looking at MULTIPLE sides of a story, including ALL the players and their motivations makes us think MORE, instead of just looking at one side, which definitely makes us think LESS and become more sheep-like. While you disdain the article because it's in Politico (even though you, yourself, quote from it often), I thought it was an interesting thesis - for someone who claims to value his privacy so much, he certainly does love the press now and is not shy about revealing information about himself and things like potential travel plans.

    [Notice that wanting to know more about Snowden and his motivations, and with whom he may have been working, are not mutually exclusive of condemning the practices of the NSA that he has revealed, despite the fact that those who unconditionally support him may feel otherwise].


    Not to nitpick, but I rarely, if ever, (4.00 / 3) (#77)
    by Anne on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 02:56:49 PM EST
    quote from Politico - I leave that to others.  

    I'm not saying the NSA story shouldn't be looked at from multiple angles - I'm saying that making the story about Greenwald and the media sneering about his Snowden's education and what his girlfriend does for a living are distractions from the story.

    The way I think about this, Snowden's current visibility may be in service to his fears about how and when the government will retaliate - the more visible he is, the more vocal he is in controlled fashion, the harder it will be for the authorities to control the message.

    When someone blows the whistle on perceived wrongdoing, it's pretty natural to wonder about motive.  Snowden has expressed his reasons for doing what he did and explained the timing of the release.  No one, to my knowledge has come forward to reveal that Snowden was the classic disgruntled employee.  

    So, at some point, it seems like attention should turn to the subject at hand - the massive data collection and the illusion of oversight of it.  You are left to either believe him, or not.  For myself, given that I am at the point where I believe almost nothing the government tells me, I am more inclined to accept Snowden at face value in order to concentrate on what he has uncovered.

    I can't help noticing that you have once again created a point of view - unconditional support for Snowden - and assigned it to, I guess, everyone who is horrified that their fears about how intrusive the government has become have been confirmed.  You did the same thing with Bradley Manning, and Julian Assange - I guess you think it somehow helps your argument, but really all it does is diminish it.

    Try delving a little deeper below the slick surface of a Politico article and see where that takes you; who knows? - you might learn something.


    Let's talk about the data collection (1.00 / 2) (#81)
    by vicndabx on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 03:56:27 PM EST
    when was the last time you wrote Verizon or AT&T or Sprint to complain about the logs of phone calls they have on you?

    Sent any letters to the owners of {insert web-based email provider here}?

    For that matter, why are you even posting on a blog?  What do you know about the web-hosting service Jeralyn uses and what data they store on you?  Shouldn't you be up in the mountains sending correspondence via carrier pigeon?  :)

    Seems to me if you are worried about nefarious intent, then it's people you should be worried about, not the organization the people are part of.  IMO, people like Snowden, in this context, are the same type of I'm-going-to-buck-the-laws type of person you are worried about.  He just happens to be on the "side" you're more aligned with in your thinking.

    "The gov't will retaliate...."  Putting aside the imagery your wording perpetuates, did the man not break the law?  When should we enforce the law?  When we don't like the person who violates it?

    Beyond that, the phone call data has already been deemed constitutional. The SCt has already determined there is no expectation of privacy w/r/t call logs.  Quibble w/the ruling, but this is not a new issue.

    Gov't has a job to do, protecting it's citizens.  That's in the constitution too.

    Issue here, if any, is data collection & mining in general and what place it has in society.  You and I are just as much as fault here when we started using this free thing (developed in large measure by the gov't) called the internet w/o being worried about intangible costs.  Does anyone remember the discussions around internet regulation back in the Clinton presidency?  I do, and no one wanted any.  We reap what we sow.

    I don't think we should just say oh, well too bad, but let's stop blaming gov't for things we've largely acquiesced to.


    Okay, so here's the thing: you may (5.00 / 2) (#91)
    by Anne on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 05:19:13 PM EST
    have acquiesced to the government just hoovering up massive amounts of data and content on you, because you don't see the harm in it, but no one asked me whether it was okay, and I didn't have the choice to opt in or out.

    As for the legality of it, the 4th Amendment issues have not been litigated, because the government had made everything so secret that no one can get standing to test it.  The FISA Amendment Act significantly watered down any protections or oversight with respect to data collection - and content collection - which you would know if you'd bothered to delve into this any further than the propaganda being brought to you by a compliant and cooperative media.

    Finally, you can mock my use of the word "retaliate," but I bet if you asked any of the whistleblowers that came before Snowden if they felt retaliated against - Kiriakou, Drake, and others - they'd be happy to tell you they felt quite retaliated against.  This administration has gone after whistleblowers in numbers greater than all previous administrations combined, and you might want to ask yourself why, if this is just about "protecting its citizens," it has devoted this much effort to prevent us from knowing what is being done in our names.

    Oh, but wait - you're the guy who doesn't really care, because you're not doing anything wrong.  

    ::rolling eyes::


    Reread the post (none / 0) (#93)
    by vicndabx on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 05:59:32 PM EST
    you glossed over the entire thing which was about private business having access to your data.  That is where you acquiesced and was my point.

    and yes, this was already litigated.  The ACLU petition desires to try the case again since they are "harmed" being a customer of Verizon.

    Smith v. Maryland, 442 U.S. 735 (1979),[1] was a case in which the Supreme Court of the United States held that the installation and use of the pen register was not a "search" within the meaning of the Fourth Amendment, and hence no warrant was required. The pen register was installed on telephone company property at the telephone company's central offices. In the Majority opinion, Justice Blackmun rejected the idea that the installation and use of a pen registry constitutes a violation of the "legitimate expectation of privacy" since the numbers would be available to and recorded by the phone company anyway.



    and yeah what jbindc said (none / 0) (#94)
    by vicndabx on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 06:11:35 PM EST
    pot calling the kettle.  Seriously, come out of the 60's bubble of always being a skeptic when it comes to your representative gov't.  Maybe, just maybe, some of those ideas stuck, and we're not the same nation we were before.

    Why not try discussing the points raised?  You're right, no one asked you, and that is where the law needs to change.  We are in agreement.  The issue is how much and is it limited only to gov't.

    IMO, it seems very short-sighted and more than a little self defeating to be ok w/getting coupons in the mail because you registered at some website, but not be OK w/that same data being used to cover your @ss.


    I have to agree with you, because ... (5.00 / 1) (#95)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 06:43:15 PM EST
    vicndabx: "You and I are just as much as fault here when we started using this free thing (developed in large measure by the gov't) called the internet w/o being worried about intangible costs. [...] let's stop blaming gov't for things we've largely acquiesced to."

    ... as Walt Kelly's Pogo once observed, "We have met the enemy, and he is us."

    Remember the movie American Pie? There's a key moment when Jim (Jason Biggs) invites home Nadia (Shannon Elizabeth) with the undisclosed intention of filming their tryst on his webcam. Instead, he winds up webcasting his own sexual humiliation to the entire world.

    In that regard, American Pie is less a teenage sex farce, than it is a comedy about the near-complete loss of privacy in the age of internet and cell phones. That privacy isn't being taken from us. Rather, we're offering it up, both for convenience's sake when doing business on the internet, and in order to fulfill the late Andy Warhol's prognostication about our destines quarter-hour of personal fame.

    I would argue that we no longer have any reasonable expectation of privacy, simply because we've become complicit partners in our own surveillance. We all too willingly share personal information with others -- both corporate and individual -- on the world wide web, and we generally refuse to mind our own business, asserting our right and obligation to comment upon and expose each other's most intimate secrets, and revel in the humiliation.

    So, since we're all effectively spying on one another as it is, we might as well enjoy the show.



    Really? (none / 0) (#87)
    by jbindc on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 05:03:41 PM EST
    I should read more than one article in Politico?  I had no idea that's how to learn more. Wow!  All those years in school, and  never learned that concept. {smacks head}

    The irony of your comment is what's hysterical - I could learn something by reading more varied pieces of information - you know, to get a whole picture of an issue.

    Here's a thought - Maybe you should give it a try too.

    Thanks for the laugh.


    We see differently (none / 0) (#69)
    by SuzieTampa on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 01:00:47 PM EST
    I see the NSA story all over the news, and in-depth coverage and discussion is readily available to anyone who can get on a computer.

    It is normal for the media and the public to want to know more about people in the news. Thus, you'd expect profiles of Greenwald and Snowden. In making judgments about news, one thing I consider is the source. Did this come from a source I trust or do I need to do more digging.

    Some progressive sites wrote that the NYT was bashing Greenwald by suggesting he was not a "real" journalist.  I thought the NYT story was mild, but pointed out that Greenwald stipulates that he wants no editing prior to publishing, except in the NSA case. To me, he is a lawyer who went into column writing (same as blogging or opinion writing).

    I think of journalists as people who have or had experience presenting the facts of a story, while trying not to inject their personal opinions.

    In the GZ case, I wasn't condoning mistakes. After all, I did message my friend with evidence to the contrary. We were friendly colleagues many years ago and hadn't kept in touch. Unlike you, for example, he did not respond by attacking me. He politely thanked me for my information.

    I didn't defend a I-don't-give-a-sh!t attitude in the media. I was trying to explain that the average reporter has less and less time to research stories. Instead of hating on reporters, we should look at the owners and the top bosses who create the situation.

    On a continuing story, a reporter is unlikely to go back and investigate all the initial "facts" again, especially if he's doing a quick, daily story. He will assume that other reporters at his paper were correct, unless a correction has been appended to the story.

    If you doubt my interest in politics and the media, I'm happy to send you a bunch of links on my previous writing, but I'd have to mail you the ones that came out before my stories went online.

    Media criticism brought me to this site in 2008 because of the way the media treated Hillary and it brought me back as a daily reader of GZ news.  

    I haven't read enough to critique Greenwald's writing on the NSA.  



    Generally, I'm no fan of Glenn Greenwald. (5.00 / 1) (#22)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Wed Jun 19, 2013 at 09:04:04 PM EST
    I often find him grating and smug, especially on television, and I won't disagree with you that he has a hard time acknowledging when he's wrong and backing down graciously.

    But that said, Greenwald's hardly the equivalent of Fox News, and on this NSA fiasco, he appears to be right on the money. Nor do I think he was wrong to defend white supremacist Matthew Hale's First Amendment right to free speech back in 2004.

    As others have asked, please don't shoot the messenger. Glenn Greenwald isn't the story here, any more than is Edward Snowden's pole-dancing girlfriend, and any arguments offered to the contrary are red herrings.



    But y'all attack the messengers all the time (5.00 / 1) (#34)
    by SuzieTampa on Wed Jun 19, 2013 at 10:44:09 PM EST
    There is a frequent critique of the media on this site, and Greenwald writes for the mainstream media. I'm capable of disliking the messenger even when I listen to what they have to say. (Actually, I don't read him anymore, but I do follow the NSA story.)

    Because I follow the GZ case, for example, I've read a couple of blogs that I hate. But I read them for the information that I'm not going to get from the NYT.

    Before you agree with the defense of Hale, please read a little about the case here and here.


    This is one of those cases (none / 0) (#35)
    by NYShooter on Wed Jun 19, 2013 at 11:02:43 PM EST
    where most of the comments are pretty much, if not totally accurate, at least understandable. I don't think Greenwald's talents are too much in dispute, just as those criticisms of his smarmy rejection of his critics  are basically accurate, and, in my opinion, doesn't help his case much.

    He should be a little more sensitive to his non-constitutional lawyer audience when they seem, understandably,  amazed at his vigorous, and needlessly dismissive, defense of the Citizen United decision. Who knows, maybe it's a Constitutional "slam dunk," but, certainly he should understand that simple lay people find it offensive, even obscene.  Why he seems to go out of his way to imply you must be stupid to not instantly grasp the logic of that decision is a trait he really should work on. I mean, shouldn't he be more concerned that his position is understood instead of making his personality the issue?


    Don't Shoot the Messenger (none / 0) (#17)
    by squeaky on Wed Jun 19, 2013 at 07:09:21 PM EST

    Oh, I thought you said: (none / 0) (#64)
    by SuzieTampa on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 12:22:10 PM EST
    "Shoot the messenger." My bad.

    Yes.. Bad (5.00 / 1) (#65)
    by squeaky on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 12:35:42 PM EST
    very bad!!!

    I will take 10 Greenwalds to any one right wing pundits any day..  even if he is annoying, egoistical and unable to admit he is ever wrong.


    I don't follow Greenwald closely (none / 0) (#68)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 12:43:20 PM EST
    But on what I have followed him on I have not experienced him being "wrong".  He argues the basic fundamentals, many who don't want to hear him think that by throwing in the details of existing the fundamentals he is arguing against, that they beat him at the argument. But they don't often fight him on the field of fundamentals because they usually can't win.  It is either Greenwald is correct or it is draw because people are willing to give their rights up for the existing fundamentals.

    OK (none / 0) (#72)
    by squeaky on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 01:20:00 PM EST
    According to Rick Pearlstein he was wrong about how Prism works, and from my POV, he was really wrong to lash out at Pearlstein for suggesting that he made a mistake. Discussion would be better for all involved.

    Greemwald's response to Pearlstein's criticism:

    "the eagerness of Democratic partisans to defend the NSA as a means of defending President Obama."

    Sound's familiar..  

    and this kind of knee-jerk response from Greenwald to someone basically on the same page, namely Rick Pearlstein, does not help our fight  What it does is to make it about Greemwald and not the side of him that helps build allies.

    And one that has nothing to do with whether Greenwald is wrong or right about PRISM (he's wrong, by the way) and why that matters. Ultimately, in a debate like this, the best thing a politically engaged intellectual can do is write in a way that does not short-circuit thought. And my, oh, my, does Greenwald's style of political discourse short-circuit thought--with a fierceness. You see it in the way both his supporters and his critics (even The Nation has turned against him! The national security state has been vindicated) respond to his work.

    The Nation

    Anyway, as I said earlier, I am behind Greenwald, and what he is doing in the bigger picture, but in this case he is wrong, annoyingly so.


    Okay (5.00 / 3) (#99)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 11:36:26 PM EST
    Where does Perlstein get this information though about PRISM?  Think about it.

    The White House is doing exactly what I described, they are attempting to distract and discredit by creating side arguments that avoid attention being placed on the fundamentals.

    Meanwhile Greenwald has let new cats out.  It used to be that the NSA had to first determine that I was not domestic before they could collect on me without FISA court permission.  Not anymore now.

    To make matters worse, if in the course of collecting they discover that I am American, they can continue to collect without any kind of permission if I am suspected of breaking a law.  This is all really horrible.  I don't think people realize how fundamentally changed the ground game is compared to the basic privacy protections we all had prior to 9/11.  

    They are going to come after Greenwald with everything they have.  At this point I am unwilling to pay attention to their self created sideshows only meant to distract us all.


    Got It (none / 0) (#103)
    by squeaky on Fri Jun 21, 2013 at 09:40:54 AM EST
    Anyone who questions Greenwald is either Obama's lapdog, or a right wing hack.

    Ha ha ha ha ha! (none / 0) (#104)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Jun 21, 2013 at 10:25:52 AM EST
    That is the last person that I am or advocate that anyone should be.  That has never been me in any way.  My Goodness :)  I am no Greenwald lover or worshipper.  I have also been in the crosshairs of Greenwald lovers in the past.  It isn't about Greenwald's personality though, or his quirks.....not for me, and it never has been.  Hey, give them all your rights though while you are at it :)  Be easily distracted from knowing and grasping the fundamental truths.

    There's another option: look at (none / 0) (#105)
    by Anne on Fri Jun 21, 2013 at 10:48:29 AM EST
    Greenwald as the conduit by which we are getting access to documents we can read for ourselves, and find someone whose judgment and analytical skills you trust to help you wade through them.  

    I've been following Marcy Wheeler's coverage of this, mainly because she is so good at connecting dots and remembering who said what and when and contrasting it with the latest spin.  She's pretty brilliant at the analytical stuff, so much so that sometimes I have to break down her posts and read them a little at a time.  She asks a lot of questions, and explains what she thinks, but doesn't take the position that her analysis is the only analysis.

    In general, I read Greenwald because he's good at identifying issues and calling out the powers-that-be on their deception and BS, and he always provides tons of source material that I can then follow and read for myself.  Can he be doctrinaire?  Of course, which is why he can't be the only source.

    He's not the story here, as much as some people seem to want him to be.


    Making Greenwald the story discredits (none / 0) (#106)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Jun 21, 2013 at 11:02:03 AM EST
    The information he is providing for those who become distracted by his "flaws".  People will spend their time reading about what is wrong with Greenwald instead of reading about and understanding the documents he is providing to all of us.

    It is disappointing sometimes how successful that strategy can be during a debate when one side knows they are in the wrong and must immediately go on the offense.


    Question (none / 0) (#107)
    by vicndabx on Fri Jun 21, 2013 at 11:10:01 AM EST
    who in gov't is trying to discredit Greenwald?  Asking a serious question because I've not seen any articles where an administration official or Congressperson is trying to diss Glenn.

    Bloggers and random laypeople I've seen, would be interested to see gov't statements.

    Personally, I don't think they're trying to discredit him, rather point out issues w/some of his reporting which, if that's what he purports to be, should be accurate.


    Peter King wants him arrested and (5.00 / 1) (#108)
    by Anne on Fri Jun 21, 2013 at 11:26:19 AM EST
    prosecuted, does that count?  

    Maybe not - King is such a whack-job himself, it's hard to take him seriously - but - that is the message he's putting out there, and doing it with disinformation.

    Here's a link, and an excerpt to one article - there are others:

    "I'm talking about Greenwald," King said. "Greenwald, not only did he disclose this information, he has said that he has names of CIA agents and assets around the world, and they're threatening to disclose that. The last time that was done in this country, we saw a CIA station chief murdered in Greece ... I think it should be very targeted, very selective and certainly a very rare exception. But, in this case, when you have someone who discloses secrets like this and threatens to release more, yes, there has to be -- legal action taken against him."

    Greenwald shot back on Twitter, calling King's reference to a threat to disclose CIA assets a "blatant lie."

    The lie, it seems, was King's as Glenn/The Guardian have not stated anything close to what King says he has.


    Peter King is a Congressman (none / 0) (#111)
    by vicndabx on Fri Jun 21, 2013 at 11:37:32 AM EST
    and can't legally prosecute anybody.

    You asked "who in govt" and last (5.00 / 1) (#113)
    by Anne on Fri Jun 21, 2013 at 11:51:13 AM EST
    time I checked, members of Congress were part of the government.

    While King, himself, doesn't have the power to prosecute anyone, he certainly has access to those who do.  And he has a microphone, from which he can usually be found spewing all kinds of red meat nonsense for GOP supporters.

    I would also not rule out the possibility that a media that has come to rely heavily on anonymous government and administration sources has some of those same people whispering sweet anti-Greenwald nothings in their ears...

    Where all of this is going to bite the anti-Greenwald crowd in the ass is that when the actual documents speak for themselves, the anti-Glenn - and anti-Snowden - sniping is going to sound as petty and irrelevant as it is.


    but thanks for the example (none / 0) (#112)
    by vicndabx on Fri Jun 21, 2013 at 11:39:19 AM EST
    Where are the journalists (none / 0) (#109)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Jun 21, 2013 at 11:28:40 AM EST
    Attempting to discredit Greenwald on "how PRISM works" getting their information?  Up to this point this was all under the very highest security clearance.  Is it on Wikipedia now?

    Thing is, with Greenwald's latest release, those who argued he didn't know how PRISM works have now been discredited just a bit.  Whoever their source was, it either wasn't a very good source or it was just using them.

    Greenwald's source appears to be superior to theirs if they want this to be a source fight, which some of them went to :)


    MT (none / 0) (#110)
    by Politalkix on Fri Jun 21, 2013 at 11:30:24 AM EST
    I normally like your posts because I feel you debate honestly and are willing to listen to all sides of an argument. I will therefore request you to not jump to the conclusion that "one side knows that they are in the wrong and must immediately go on the offense". There are many reasons why a lot of people have made an informed decision to not react to the Snowden leak in the way he or Greenwald or the Guardian would like them to react or are simply agnostic about this surveillance information.
    Squeaky is supporting Greenwald on this issue. I think he has the right approach and attitude about how this issue should be discussed.

    He does (none / 0) (#114)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Jun 21, 2013 at 12:32:11 PM EST
    I am not the one though who said that anyone who questions Greenwald is an Obama lapdog or a hack.  Squeaky said that.

    I am only pointing out well known strategy when you are debating something that you know you are on the losing or wrong side of.  It is debate 101.  Immediately go on the offensive.  Argue each and every point you can find into the dirt at all times in order to avoid the actual issue being debated that you are wrong on :).  Grab onto any error your opposition makes during this distraction debate, and beat that into the dirt too.  There is a science to this :)

    I return to, where is any journalist going after Greenwald getting their information from when the subject being discussed requires the highest of all security clearances?

    If and when Greenwald is found to be "releasing" forged or falsified documents, I'll take a look at that.


    Pearlstein (none / 0) (#115)
    by squeaky on Fri Jun 21, 2013 at 12:56:29 PM EST
    Pearlstein is not doing what you suggest. For reasons hard for me to fathom you seem to discredit Pearlstein rather than read what he and his sources are discussing.

    That does not help Greenwald or any of us to understand these new revelations about Government spying.

    To break it down, Greenwald asserts that Prism has direct assess to everything that goes through Google, Facebook, etc...everything. In essence they own GOOGLE etc..

    Direct link to their servers . where it is disputed what servers mean. Many experts have said that the term in the Powerpoint doc, means a lockbox that the companies who are served with a NSA letter, FISA warrant etc, use to deposit the information demanded by the government, so that they can directly download the info.  Greenwald is arguing that the servers that the government are connected to mean everything in Google has.  The analogy would be a wire tap for lock box or server as used in the power point. compared to the government having direct access to everything that exists in someones home.  

    Greenwald's take on what Server means here, been disputed as a misreading by many techies as not the case. Those techies are not Obama lapdogs, as Greenwald asserts.

    If what Greenmwald says is true, and he is someone who has declared himself to have zero computer skills, why why would the NSA even bother with NSA letters, FISA court rubber-stamp etc.  Window dressing?

    I do not know who is correct here, but it does not serve Greenwald, who is really doing great work,  or any of us, for him to go on attack mode when it is pointed out that he may have made a mistake.


    Greenwald is releasing evidence (none / 0) (#116)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Jun 21, 2013 at 01:34:12 PM EST
    That no permission is needed now for NSA to collect on you.  His latest document release makes that completely clear.  

    Also, wasn't the direct access to servers something that was in the PowerPoint presentation, not something Greenwald threw out there.  I read other techies claiming that the NSA could tap into the server flow without any assist from Google or Facebook.  Is that what they are doing?  Because their PowerPoint presentation says they have that capability.


    Misreading Term Servers (none / 0) (#118)
    by squeaky on Fri Jun 21, 2013 at 02:04:24 PM EST
    The term Servers in th power point document is the entire issue.

    Sorry to have been unclear.

    Feel free to read about it in the link below. That should clear up any confusion about what this is all about.

    The crux here:

    Servers is a generic word and doesn't necessarily mean the same thing as `the main servers on which a company's customer-facing services run.' The `servers' mentioned in the slide are just lockboxes used for secure data transfer. They have nothing to do with the process of deciding which requests to comply with--they're just means of securely and efficiently delivering information once a company has decided to do so."


    In the wake of this interview (none / 0) (#119)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Jun 21, 2013 at 02:22:57 PM EST
    With the other three NSA whistleblowers and what they have to say about "targeting" capabilities, Perlstein's interjections seem to be those of a journalist used.  He was used to create a place for some to over-focus on instead of getting to the crux of our NSA problem, a space to navel gaze into.

    And according to these three, the NSA has spent decades building their digital infrastructure.  I'm sure they'd like to use Google's and Facebook's infrastructure to organize the data but do they really need it if it isn't being granted?  I understand that encryption may or may not be involved but do I think them incapable of breaking encryption or stealing or paying for it?


    OK (none / 0) (#120)
    by squeaky on Fri Jun 21, 2013 at 02:40:09 PM EST
    Obviously you are not interested in any of this. Your link is a non-sequitur. I find it amazing that you would casually discredit Pearlstein without even having read, or followed his, Greenwald's and the back and forth of techie analysis of PRISM.

    More fun to rant, and paint those not in lockstep as traitors.

    At least those who surprised us by naming commie sympathizers were operating out of fear.. you seem to be doing it because it is cool.  


    Who is ranting? (5.00 / 1) (#121)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Jun 21, 2013 at 02:47:23 PM EST
    It isn't as if we didn't know.  We've had enough whistleblowers to know, the FISA court order is finally solid evidence.  And at least 40-79 other companies, telecoms are participating under that order.

    Sorry (none / 0) (#123)
    by squeaky on Fri Jun 21, 2013 at 03:25:30 PM EST
    You are not ranting. But you are accusing Pearlstein of being a sap, at best. I think that is irresponsible, and not so far off from what happens when people rant. When people rant they lose touch with discussion or conversation.

    And you have not even read any of this, yet make nasty allegations about Pearlstein. That is wrong, imo.



    Okay, Perlstein is not a sap (none / 0) (#124)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Jun 21, 2013 at 03:58:24 PM EST
    I did not mean to come off that harshly.  I have read what he wrote, some of it has seemed awfully whiney, and I think he's been a bit used in all this.  Time will tell.

    I don't think Greenwald is done yet either.  And wikileaks is talking about working with Snowden, are they going to release the rest of that PowerPoint?  Snowden wanted the whole PowerPoint released but Greenwald and WaPo did not want to be responsible for that.  I don't know

    Greenwald and Snowden said during the online chat that more was to come out on PRISM and the false statements made by our elected officials.  The false statements made by them really really fry Snowden.  He views it as the destruction of our democracy, we aren't governed by "the people" if you can lie to the people so easily and they can never find out, that seems to be his ethos.


    Winey? (none / 0) (#125)
    by squeaky on Fri Jun 21, 2013 at 04:21:22 PM EST
    If you are interested in the actual issue that Pearlstein brought up, and that Greenwald labeled him an Obama lap dog for,
    it is here.

    I do not believe you read that, if you have, well.. you did not understand it.  Fair enough...


    Also, I hope to not forget (none / 0) (#117)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Jun 21, 2013 at 01:44:05 PM EST
    That in the interest of national security both Greenwald and WaPo held back the majority of that PowerPoint presentation.  We haven't even seen the half of it.

    Question (none / 0) (#122)
    by Politalkix on Fri Jun 21, 2013 at 03:09:58 PM EST
    What if it turns out that the motivation for surveillance is not snooping on day to day conversations of Americans but combating global terrorism, international sex trafficking, enforcement of anti-piracy laws in Asia, tracking crimes relating to tax evasions through Swiss bank or Cayman Islands accounts, etc?
    I have a lot of questions about this Snowden guy. He has already blamed our intelligence services for entrapment of a Swiss banker and has fled to China where piracy issues plague the US government and American businesses. Don't you think one should sit back and get accounts from the government side before rendering judgement?

    If there is a good reason to suspect someone (5.00 / 4) (#126)
    by caseyOR on Fri Jun 21, 2013 at 04:54:46 PM EST
    of the crimes you have listed, then go to a judge, a regular criminal court judge not the rubber-stamp FISA crew, and get a warrant. Make the case like law enforcement has done for years and years and years. No good comes of allowing law enforcement or the feds or any enforcement entity to take shortcuts.

    Said better than I ever could (none / 0) (#127)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Jun 21, 2013 at 06:21:43 PM EST
    If you do not like the law (none / 0) (#128)
    by Politalkix on Fri Jun 21, 2013 at 10:23:04 PM EST
    work to get Congress to change the law.

    Which has more weight? (none / 0) (#129)
    by shoephone on Fri Jun 21, 2013 at 10:29:18 PM EST
    Legislation passed by a Congress, or the laws of the constitution? You do realize they are not the same, right?

    Unless and until (none / 0) (#133)
    by christinep on Sat Jun 22, 2013 at 09:42:04 AM EST
    a law passed by Congress is found to be unconstitutional by SCOTUS, it is presumptively regarded as/considered to be Constitutional...and, there is no difference between said legislation and the reality of the Constitution.  (Although at times we disagree with SCOTUS' interpretation, nevertheless you or I do not get to make that final interpretation.  Preachy, I know, but--shoephone--it really needs to be repeated in debates such as these.)

    There certainly is a difference (5.00 / 1) (#136)
    by shoephone on Sat Jun 22, 2013 at 01:13:25 PM EST
    between the constitution and congressional legislation. It's great that you're so willing to let questionable laws stand until someone with the guts and money challenges it, and that challenge wends its way through the courts -- something that often takes years. Meanwhile, millions of people may be harmed by the "law".

    And, as always, there is a huge difference between our political philosophies.

    Shoephone's philosophy: "Question Authority"

    Christine's philosophy: "The System Works"


    I'm not talking about my emotions nor (none / 0) (#138)
    by christinep on Sat Jun 22, 2013 at 04:59:23 PM EST
    my personal feelings.  Simply put: Whatever the Supreme Court says is the law/Constitutional is so.  

    Funny thing:  I have a history of "questioning authority" within the rules of the democratic system that I inhabit ... you may be surprised to know about quite personal and authorized "whistleblowing."  There are people who raise issues through the system... e.g., one such effort which I'm still glad that I undertook was a year-long effort representing clerical/secretarial staff in the regional office where I worked in a sexual discrimination action before the old national administrative MSPB.  That was minor upstart behavior long ago, to be sure; but, it is important to know that others in the Agency during -- um-- particularly harsh times took the authorized whistleblower route & stayed.  Continuing the "funny thing" stuff ... looking at the reality & progress of world history, the US government works (esp with the full participation of all of us.)  My goodness, 'guess I'm a hybrid under the quick=hand, but artificial, attempt to define my philosophy.


    No, actually it doesn't surprise me to know this: (5.00 / 1) (#139)
    by shoephone on Sat Jun 22, 2013 at 06:42:40 PM EST
    I have a history of "questioning authority" within the rules of the democratic system that I inhabit ...

    That's my whole point, and I think you have confirmed what I commented on before, which is that you like to work within the system, because you believe that the system works.

    Unfortunately, when it comes to whistle blowers working in the intelligence community or for telecoms -- people like Thomas Drake, William Binney,and J. Kirk Wiebe, --going up the chain of command, working within the system, does not gain them anything but vilification and/or prosecution by the U.S. government.

    For years, the three whistle-blowers had told anyone who would listen that the NSA collects huge swaths of communications data from U.S. citizens. They had spent decades in the top ranks of the agency, designing and managing the very data-collection systems they say have been turned against Americans. When they became convinced that fundamental constitutional rights were being violated, they complained first to their superiors, then to federal investigators, congressional oversight committees and, finally, to the news media.

    To the intelligence community, the trio are villains who compromised what the government classifies as some of its most secret, crucial and successful initiatives. They have been investigated as criminals and forced to give up careers, reputations and friendships built over a lifetime.

    So, how did those "legal options" work for them? According to Jesselyn Radack of the Government Accountability Project, who represents the three:

    Jesselyn Radack: Not only did they go through multiple and all the proper internal channels and they failed, but more than that, it was turned against them. ... The inspector general was the one who gave their names to the Justice Department for criminal prosecution under the Espionage Act. And they were all targets of a federal criminal investigation, and Tom ended up being prosecuted -- and it was for blowing the whistle.

    Radack has also spoken out, quite eloquently, in my view, on the dangerous hypocrisy of the government going after these whistle blowers by way using the Espionage Act to prosecute them:

    "This Administration has brought more `leak' prosecutions than all previous presidential administrations combined. When first elected, President Obama acknowledged that often the best source of information about government wrongdoing is an employee committed to public integrity and willing to speak out. He called such acts courageous and patriotic. So it is especially hypocritical to be prosecuting public servants under the Espionage Act.

    Painting whistleblowers as spies serves another ugly purpose: alienating these brave employees from their natural allies in the legal, civil rights and civil liberties community. It is rank hypocrisy for our government--preaching openness and transparency--to criminalize whistleblowing that exposes embarrassing or illegal government conduct. This Administration--whose mantra is to `look forward, not backward'--gives war crimes, torture and warrantless wiretapping a pass . . . but is going after the whistleblowers who exposed that misconduct.

    The prosecution of Tom Drake is the most severe form of whistleblower retaliation I have ever seen and it sends a chilling message. It is tragic when serving your country gets you prosecuted under the Espionage Act, and when telling the truth gets you charged with `making false statements.' "

    If I worked at a company where I thought malfeasance or criminality was occurring, I might--MIGHT--go through available channels to get the situation cleaned up, but only if I really believed the company's system worked, and only if I believed I would not be retaliated against. I've worked for enough companies to know that is not always the case. One of my family members has been an HR director for a number of companies and organizations, and I know the true inside story on how many of those businesses actually give a cr*p about their employees and will protect the whistle blowers under such circumstances. No surprise, some of the biggest, most powerful companies in America end up protecting the abusers, and further abusing the whistle blowers. Losing your job and your family's only livelihood after blowing the whistle is an ugly reality for a lot of good people.

    If I worked for the U.S. government and saw criminality going on, would I try to go up the chain of command to get it cleaned up? NO WAY. And as a private citizen, I have no power at all in getting the criminality cleaned up. My vote means absolutely nothing. In particular, one of my "Democratic" senators is one of the worst offenders when it comes to representing my values: she not only voted for the Iraq War, a vote which, she said three years later, she "had no regrets" about. She also voted quite happily for the Patriot Act. Twice.

    At this point in my life, I will also forget about engaging in any more peaceful public protests. I've seen enough brutality by the police against OWS protesters--tear gas, pepper spray, beatings, tasings, arrests, and people held for months in jail without even being charged (this just recently happened in Seattle, and the two detainees were finally released from jail in May). And anyone who doesn't know the rallies are infiltrated by undercover cops, and that surveillance technology is being used at every single of these rallies, is someone who is asleep, or in willful denial.

    No, I do not trust the system. I'd be a fool to do so.


    Guess what, shoephone... (none / 0) (#140)
    by christinep on Sat Jun 22, 2013 at 08:58:30 PM EST
    I have a great deal of respect for your thorough comment.  You and I do see the half-full/half empty glass quite differently.  And, I understand that.

    For me, I was not the child of privilege ... not from the Appalachian coal fields of Pennsylvania, no way.  As a woman, I found myself in a position to confront lots of things that even this ol' Slave would not have imagined...and, with fortuity, luck, I broke through some of it. Etc. and Ah Well.  In essence, I look back & ahead, and see so many areas of positive change since when I was coming of age ... this in spite of witnessing how "superpowers" behave when the drumbeat of war is involved and (very especially) this in spite of the backward steps we have had to witness in recent years as to working men & women and unions.  (My Dad, the always faithful union man, would be rolling in his grave over all the was bargained away &/or lost.  Tho, even here, recent awakenings have given me cause for optimism.)

    Yep, some people see the same dots one way ...and others, far differently.  I am very sure of this, however:  The US, while we lurch & fall back & grope & find our way, still offers the best chance for progress for a nation on this earth.  All things considered.  Oh--and double yeah--I plan to keep pushing within the "system" so that the dream is fulfilled.


    "Slave" should read "Slav" (none / 0) (#141)
    by christinep on Sat Jun 22, 2013 at 09:03:20 PM EST
    Well it has been rigged so that no one (none / 0) (#134)
    by MO Blue on Sat Jun 22, 2013 at 09:55:14 AM EST
    can challenge it court.

    It's also worth noting that the Supreme Court judgement is clear in that it accepts "the government's interception of a private telephone or e-mail conversation amounts to an injury that is `concrete and particularized'." The reason the plaintiffs' case failed was that they could not prove that they were subject to surveillance--and they could not do so because the government refuses to comment on its surveillance capabilities or divulge details about whom it is targeting. Indeed, in a bizarre piece of circular reasoning, the NSA told lawmakers last year that it could not even so much as provide a rough estimate of how many Americans it has spied on because it argues that providing this information would itself "violate the privacy of U.S. persons." This hammers home the point that the problem is not necessarily the surveillance per se, but the secrecy that surrounds the surveillance. link

    Should read (none / 0) (#135)
    by MO Blue on Sat Jun 22, 2013 at 09:56:49 AM EST
    Well it has been rigged so that no one has standing to challenge it in court.

    And if I click on a Greenwald story (none / 0) (#71)
    by SuzieTampa on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 01:09:08 PM EST
    by mistake, I feel that it's a bad omen for the rest of the day. I feel the same way about Maureen Dowd.

    On the other hand, I don't read right-wing pundits often. I read my local newspapers, the NYT and the Guardian. If I'm following a particular story, I'll go to almost any site.


    Ah, self limitation.......tsk, tsk (none / 0) (#137)
    by NYShooter on Sat Jun 22, 2013 at 01:51:15 PM EST
    maybe it's because I'm older than you, but, I've found, like broken clocks, even Maureen Dowd may have something useful to say occasionally.

    James Gandolfini has died. (none / 0) (#12)
    by caseyOR on Wed Jun 19, 2013 at 06:50:20 PM EST
    The Sopranos star was traveling in Italy when he suffered a massive heart attack and died. He was only 51.

    He is survived by his wife and two children, the youngest of whom is only 8 months old.

    Condolences to his family and friends.

    Very sad news ideed. (none / 0) (#16)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Wed Jun 19, 2013 at 07:06:56 PM EST
    He most recently played Defense Sec. Leon Panetta in Kathryn Bigelow's Zero Dark Thirty, and was almost unrecognizable in the role.

    Correction: Panetta was CIA Director ... (none / 0) (#25)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Wed Jun 19, 2013 at 09:16:42 PM EST
    ... at the time of the Bin Laden raid in May 2011, which was the backdrop for Bigelow's film. He had been publicly announced as President Obama's nominee for Defense Secretary a couple weeks prior to the raid, but did not assume the post until July 1 of that year, when Robert Gates officially stepped down.

    Sad News. James Gandolfini has died (none / 0) (#13)
    by shoephone on Wed Jun 19, 2013 at 06:51:09 PM EST
    They think he had a heart attack. No real info yet.

    Today's Cool Video Offering: (none / 0) (#15)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Wed Jun 19, 2013 at 07:03:42 PM EST
    Richard Sullivan's "Honolulu: August 14, 1945" has rare 16mm color footage that chronicles the spontaneous street celebrations which erupted across the city on the day Imperial Japan announced it would accept the U.S. terms of unconditional surrender, thus ending the Second World War.

    Providing Material Aid with a Non-Material Object (none / 0) (#38)
    by cboldt on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 05:58:21 AM EST
    So, the FBI has charged a couple of nutcases who were making an X-ray machine.  My question is, can a person actually be conspiring to provide aid to terrorists, when the aid that is being "provided" can't possibly be produced?

    Only in the deluded mind... (none / 0) (#43)
    by kdog on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 08:47:56 AM EST
    of the anti-terror/law enforcement/spoook/military/prison industrial complex.

    As we come to the end of the SC term (none / 0) (#39)
    by jbindc on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 06:26:24 AM EST
    A thoughtful essay about the Court and how, especially this term, depending on the case, liberals and conservatives have actually argued the same constitutional theories.

    Very bad news coming today (none / 0) (#48)
    by CoralGables on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 09:43:54 AM EST
    for Aaron Hernandez, and by extension also bad news for fans of the New England Patriots.

    Are there new developments other (none / 0) (#54)
    by Anne on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 10:00:20 AM EST
    than what I'm seeing on the sports sites - that his home has been searched and the police are looking to search the rental car?

    That he's also being sued in civil court over shooting someone in a club some months ago probably isn't helping his public perception, either.


    Destroying possible evidence? (none / 0) (#76)
    by CoralGables on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 02:08:09 PM EST
    Tough time for the Patriots with (none / 0) (#84)
    by Teresa on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 04:16:06 PM EST
    tight ends and receivers. I think Tebow really really needs to learn to play tight end. I honestly think he'd be a great one if he can convince himself to try it.

    Spiders and mice mentions above (none / 0) (#79)
    by Teresa on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 03:26:23 PM EST
    reminded me of something long ago. When my ex-husband & I first got out of college and had our first jobs, we rented a cute little house that had a detached garage and unfortunately backed up to the back of a Pizza Hut.

    Their dumpsters must have been mouse heaven because we soon realized we had a mouse in the kitchen. We put out a trap and got it (the first of several over the year we stayed there, yikes). We didn't know what to do once we got it and we were both scared to pick up this dead mouse in the trap.

    My ex-husband finally got a shovel and took it to the kitchen door and threw it as hard as he could. It landed on the top of our neighbors garage! You couldn't see it from their yard, just ours. I swear I nearly fainted I laughed so hard. It was still there when we moved a year later and we never told them. My ex-husband failed the no critter fear male gene as I'm sure many men do.

    Hey, Teresa, nice to see you around the place. (5.00 / 1) (#80)
    by caseyOR on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 03:30:15 PM EST
    I noticed you on another thread, but didn't have the chance to say "Hey." So, "Hey, Teresa, how are you? What's going on?"

    Hi Casey! (none / 0) (#82)
    by Teresa on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 04:02:35 PM EST
    I hope to be around more. How are you?

    Same old same old for me. Crappy back. I finally had to give up accounting and had a lawyer apply for disability for me. She told me college degree + desk job makes it rough in TN, but I got it. I have what Peyton Manning had in one disk, but I have it in my whole dang back. Neuro and orthopedic surgeons both say I'm beyond any help so I mostly just read books. SS sent me to one of their Dr's and she agreed with them, so I guess that's why I was approved. I hate it, though.

    I know it's a few years away, but I'm getting excited at the possibility that Hillary might run, so I decided to get back into politics, though I've been kind of disillusioned in Democrats the past few years. I've read here off and on all along, but I'm back to daily reading now. It's nice to "see" you!


    True story (5.00 / 1) (#86)
    by jbindc on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 04:59:50 PM EST
    When I was a sophomore in college, I took a biology class.  As part of the class, one day we a week we were in the lab.  One of the experiments we did had us pair up and pick up a mouse (by the base of its tail), and put it on what looked like a ball used in elementary school to play kickball.  This ball had a wooden platform on one "side" and the purpose of the experiment was to see if the mouse could figure out where to position itself so the ball wouldn't tip over. (Of course it could - this mouse had already been through 5 or 6 labs of students doing the same thing!).

    I was paired up with the only other soph in the class - a 6'3", 225 pound guy on the football team.  Now, I wasn't afraid of the mouse, but having had a roommate who, a year earlier, who had taken the class, and had been bitten by her hamster, I was a little leery. Also, I was nervous because the little guy was wiggling around (wouldn't you, if someone picked you up by your tail??) and was scared, and I didn't want to hurt him.  So I look at Mr. Big Football Player and he says to me, "Oh, no way.  You gotta pick it up.  I'm afraid of those things."

    So, guess who ran that experiment?


    How funny. (none / 0) (#88)
    by Teresa on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 05:11:40 PM EST
    My fear of mice goes back to high school. Remember those projects we had to do? Mine had something to do with a hamster on Tylenol.

    On the day all our experiments were in the gym, my hamster went missing. Later I opened my purse to get my lunch money out and some guys had taken the hamster and put it in my purse. I screamed out loud right in class, haha. I will never forget that fear!


    Think how the hamser felt! :) (5.00 / 1) (#89)
    by jbindc on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 05:13:08 PM EST
    I can't believe it wasn't making noises. (none / 0) (#92)
    by Teresa on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 05:23:13 PM EST
    It couldn't have been in there too long or surely someone would have heard it. Or maybe I had it too drugged on Tylenol which is the only thing I remember about the experiment. I think I was the only one in the whole school who didn't know it was in there. Fun times.

    I used to get in trouble all the time ... (5.00 / 1) (#97)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 07:16:42 PM EST
    ... as a child because I had absolutely no fear of creepy-crawly things, while my older brother most certainly did -- and I used that to my advantage to torment him.

    Once, when I was 8 and he was 10 and we were on a boat dock at Alamitos Bay in Long Beach, he was teasing me and in retaliation, I found a small crab from a nearby breakwater and returned to him. His eyes got really wide and his face went pale, and as I approached him with crab in hand he screamed in clear fright.

    My mother was telling me to put the crab down and leave him alone, and of course I had no intention of doing any such thing at my moment of discovery and triumph. I jumped on my brother and threatened to put the crab down the front of his shirt -- and he panicked, burst into tears and ran off down the dock. And as I chased after him, crab in hand, he jumped into the bay fully clothed just to get away from me.

    As for my mother, she was just furious with me, and I vaguely remembering her lecturing me and sounding for all the world to me like Charlie Brown's teacher in a Peanuts special, in one ear and out the other. I didn't care, because I knew my brother's weakness and I was going to be the equivalent of Ming the Merciless in ruthlessly exploiting it.

    My brother spent the rest of the day sullen and humiliated, and did his best to keep away from me and whatever crawly critter I might have, by staying close to Mom. Truly, that was a moment of personal empowerment -- at least, it was until we got home later, and I subsequently got grounded for it.

    Four decades hence, my older brother still doesn't like creepy-crawly things.



    MO Blue (none / 0) (#83)
    by Teresa on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 04:08:09 PM EST
    (I posted this in Monday's thread, but for anyone who may have seen my "3" rating & thought I'd lost my mind...)

    If you ever look at your ratings, I accidentally arrowed over and changed a 5 to a 3 on your post. I've never ever disagreed with you. I was re-reading the thread and saw you didn't have all 5s and thought "what idiot rated this less than 5?". It was me, but it was an accident! I was arrowing down instead of scrolling and I must have hit the left arrow instead of down arrow.

     I felt so bad I've been checking my ratings that go back two years. I never rate posts except for 5s. If I don't agree, I just don't rate it.


    For future reference (5.00 / 2) (#85)
    by CoralGables on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 04:23:47 PM EST
    You can go back and change a rating. Take it from someone that once gave a great comment a 1 because I thought it was the #1 of the day.

    I remember having to figure out if #1 (none / 0) (#90)
    by Teresa on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 05:19:11 PM EST
    meant good, too. :) I did change it. I used to always check that before I hit "rate all" but my rating expertise has gotten rusty while I was away. I won't forget again!

    I think the Heat win big time tonight, CG. I don't care who wins - I'd just like to see another close game like game 6 was. I wish the regular season was as much fun as the playoffs are.


    Win or Lose (5.00 / 1) (#96)
    by CoralGables on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 07:05:23 PM EST
    it's easily the greatest season in Miami Heat history. Tonight might be the grestest single game in Miami sports history surpassing the Dolphins perfect season since that final game was played in Los Angeles.

    Win or lose it's been a hell of a ride.


    Regarding Hillary (none / 0) (#98)
    by Teresa on Thu Jun 20, 2013 at 08:52:36 PM EST
    Since I've missed so many threads, I clicked on her name in the tags to the right. BTD wrote a post in Jan 2012 that he thinks she needs to run in 2016 due to Democrats being the incumbent party and he thinks she would win.

    There are some comments by Anne and others that have me rethinking my desire for her to run. Anne's point that it would be hard for her to run to the left of Obama without seeming critical of a sitting President is very good and thought provoking. I need to read up on some other possible candidates in case she doesn't run and/or I decide those points are more important than what I want. My primary vote is the only vote I have that actually counts in this state so the primary means a lot to me.

    Besides here, what are some good blogs where people live in the real world? I'd like the most liberal person around to run and win the GE, but I doubt that's going to happen (though I'd love it to), so I need somewhere realistic to start.

    Wipe the tear and, (none / 0) (#100)
    by NYShooter on Fri Jun 21, 2013 at 01:12:29 AM EST
    have hope, little sad one. In just a few more years American Whites will be in the minority. And, since Non-Whites, statistically vote to The Left you can sleep well, ensconced in the Down filled comfort of listening to the death throes emitted by an atrophying Tea Party and the Glorious thought of an inevitable, Liberal Texas.

     Git along little doggie.....yee-ha


    I'm not sure I'll live to see a liberal (none / 0) (#130)
    by Teresa on Sat Jun 22, 2013 at 02:40:12 AM EST
    Texas. :) After all, NY, I live in Tennessee so I have little faith. I think in the last election we might have beaten Idaho in percentage for Romney. And I live in the most red part of the state. Ugh!

    You're right, though. When we become a minority, maybe we'll become more civilized and actually help people with healthcare and not put possibly innocent people to death. Or any people to death, really. We seem to go backwards compared to other countries we should be similar to. The NSA may come after me, but I'm not always proud of our country as much as I hate to say it.


    Any Democrat (none / 0) (#101)
    by Ga6thDem on Fri Jun 21, 2013 at 06:35:57 AM EST
    is going to have a hard time following Obama. The biggest help to the Democratic Party is the Tea Party and their craziness which makes even people in "red" states recoil in horror.

    I for one am not looking forward to the all the sexism that is going to be thrown at her once again should she run. It's already started with the likes of Maureen Dowd though Dowd thought both Bush and Obama were wonderful.


    Yes and you made some good points (none / 0) (#131)
    by Teresa on Sat Jun 22, 2013 at 02:52:00 AM EST
    in that thread too, Ga6. With this NSA stuff, though, I think a third party might draw all the young people that only got involved in politics due to Obama and that could put a Tea Party Idiot right in the WH. Can you imagine? Obama may have let people down, even his die hard supporters, but he's better than the Tea Party.

    But you're right and it's hard to win three straight terms for either party. I'm kidding myself in that post though. I know if Hillary runs, I can't resist unless she's lost her edge in debates where she really won me over (I actually sent money to Edwards before she won me over). The one thing that I wouldn't handle very well would be for her to get the nomination and lose the general election. If Bill is still kicking and fired up, he'd work his tail off for her, that's for sure.


    Look at Obama (none / 0) (#102)
    by SuzieTampa on Fri Jun 21, 2013 at 09:24:52 AM EST
    As president, he differs a lot from the image he portrayed as a candidate. Hillary, like any politician, will do what she can to get elected. So, it's always best to judge them on their actions.

    I plan to be a big Hillary supporter, but then, my biggest concern is equal rights and treatment for women, including as much of a decrease in male violence against women as we can get.  

    To answer another commenter, when whites are a minority, there's no guarantee that the U.S. will be liberal in all ways. African Americans and Latinos are not always liberal on women's rights, including abortion, and gays. I'm talking about them as a voting group because, obviously, individuals have various opinions.


    I care about those same issues plus (none / 0) (#132)
    by Teresa on Sat Jun 22, 2013 at 03:01:49 AM EST
    taking care of the poor and healthcare where we really dropped the ball.

    Like I posted just above to Ga6th, I'm kidding myself regarding Hillary. If she runs, I won't be able to resist her. She cares about what I care about. She might win and let me down the way Obama did his supporters(I supported him and voted for him because I'm a loyal Democrat, but I was pretty mad about that whole primary season) because it always seems to be that way. I think in the old days, Republicans were more "normal" and moderate. Like our Senator Howard Baker when I was a kid. I think he was a real moderate from what my parents said. At least compared to the senators we have now.