You know, maybe that should be the new title of this blog: More things to worry about
Obama wants the FBI to spy on you. Unbelievable!
The Obama administration, resolving years of internal debate, is on the verge of backing a Federal Bureau of Investigation plan for a sweeping overhaul of surveillance laws that would make it easier to wiretap people who communicate using the Internet rather than by traditional phone services, according to officials familiar with the deliberations.
The F.B.I. director, Robert S. Mueller III, has argued that the bureau’s ability to carry out court-approved eavesdropping on suspects is “going dark” as communications technology evolves, and since 2010 has pushed for a legal mandate requiring companies like Facebook and Google to build into their instant-messaging and other such systems a capacity to comply with wiretap orders. That proposal, however, bogged down amid concerns by other agencies, like the Commerce Department, about quashing Silicon Valley innovation.
How about quashing our right to privacy? Isn't that a concern any longer?
“I think the F.B.I.’s proposal would render Internet communications less secure and more vulnerable to hackers and identity thieves,” said Gregory T. Nojeim of the Center for Democracy and Technology.
Yes, I am concerned about communications being made vulnerable to hackers and thieves. But I'm even more concerned about private communications being made vulnerable to the freakin' FBI
What bugs me almost as much as this proposal is the way the matter is being framed. The NYT expects readers to accept as a given that FBI spying is an unassailable good, and that the only problem with demanding compliant technology is the fact that non
-federal spies might also gain access.
We need a constitutional amendment guaranteeing the right to privacy. This is an issue on which liberals and libertarians may fruitfully collaborate.
Cannonfire played a small but decisive role in ending the career of the notorious author of Case Closed
. (Gregory Gelembiuk, an occasional contributor to this blog, uncovered the worst of Posner's plagiarism.) Now we learn that Posner may have been party to a scheme to bilk Harper Lee
, the elderly author of To Kill a Mockingbird
The Jewish Holocaust revisionist. Here's a strange story
: David Cole, born to liberal Jewish parents in 1968, became a notorious Holocaust revisionist, arguing that the figure of six million Holocaust victims has been inflated, and that there was no unified Nazi plan for genocide. For a while, in the 1990s, Cole was infamous -- and then he dropped out of sight.
He re-invented himself as David Stein, a Jewish Hollywood conservative and a major organizer of Republican social networks in the entertainment industry. He also made documentaries about the Holocaust. These films presented conventional views on the topic, even though Stein/Cole privately retained his highly un
conventional (and, to my mind, quite absurd) views.
Former friends and acquaintances, most speaking on condition of anonymity, challenged elements of Cole's account to the Guardian and called him pathologically duplicitous, alleging he padded his film resume on the IMDb database with fictitious entries. His purported production company, Nistarim, is Hebrew for The Concealed.
I believe that this
is his IMDB page.
Two days ago, Bostonboomer of Skydancing wrote an incredibly good piece
about Bill Keller, the NYT editor who sanctioned Judy Miller's mis-reportage and who did everything he could to make the Iraq War seem like a peachy idea. One wonders what more Bill would have to do to earn the label "discredited." Now Billikins wants us to "get over Iraq" -- and "get Syria right."
Along with Keller, Judy Miller’s old partner Michael Gordon, who still has his job at the Times, and has been writing story after story pushing U.S. involvement in Syria–as has op-ed columnist Thomas Friedman (I can’t provide links right now because I don’t seem to be able to circumvent the paywall). But here’s Greg Mitchell at The Nation:
Hail, hail, the gang’s nearly all here. Michael Gordon, Thomas Friedman, now Bill Keller. Paging Judy Miller! The New York Times in recent days on its front page and at top of its site has been promoting the meme of Syria regime as chemical weapons abuser, thereby pushing Obama to jump over his “red line” and bomb or otherwise attack there. Tom Friedman weighed in Sunday by calling for an international force to occupy the entire country (surely they would only need to stay one Friedman Unit, or six months).
Now, after this weekend’s Israeli warplane assaults, the threat grows even more dire.
And Bill Keller, the self-derided “reluctant hawk” on invading Iraq in 2003, returns with a column today stating right in its headline, “Syria Is Not Iraq,” and urging Obama and all of us to finally “get over Iraq.” He boasts that he has.
The Times in its news pages, via Sanger, Gordon and Jodi Rudoren, has been highlighting claims of Syria’s use of chem agents for quite some time, highlighted by last week’s top story swallowing nearly whole the latest Israeli claims.
Here's a good rule of thumb: If Billikins (or Tommikins or Judykins) recommends a course of action, do the opposite. If one of those three suggests that you ought to wear shoes, go barefoot.
Finally: How would Yoda swear? (If you are a sensitive soul, you may want to skip this next bit.)
Among my many other talents, I can do a damned good Yoda impersonation. Or rather, a damned good Yoda impersonation I can do. And I was thinking about Yoda when I read that Helen Mirren, dressed as the Queen, told some gay drummers to "shut the fuck up." (Long story
.) My first thought, naturally enough, was: "How would Yoda express that thought?" Because, you know, the diminutive Jedi master his verbs at the end likes to put.
I think that a Yoda-ized Helen would have said: "Up the fuck shut."
If about it you think, profanity must a difficult proposition be, if Yoda you are. How would Yoda say the following?
"Go to hell."
"Damn you to hell."
"Eat shit and die."
"Piss up a rope."
"Get the fuck out of here."
"Shove it up your ass."
"I fucked her brains out."
"Fuck that fucking motherfucker."
After giving the matter some serious thought, I the following suggestions would make:
"To hell go."
"You to hell damn."
"Shit eat and die."
"Up a rope piss."
"The fuck out of here get."
"It up your ass shove."
"I her brains out fucked."
"The fucking motherfucker fuck."
The last one impossible seems.
To those who are now dying to tell me that a Jedi would never use such language: Oh, yourself go screw.