In an increasingly phantasmagorical world, here’s my present fantasy of choice: someone from General Keith Alexander’s outfit, the National Security Agency, tracks down H.G. Wells’s time machine in the attic of an old house in London. Britain’s subservient Government Communications Headquarters, its version of the NSA, is paid off and the contraption is flown to Fort Meade, Maryland, where it’s put back in working order. Alexander then revs it up and heads not into the future like Wells to see how our world ends, but into the past to offer a warning to Americans about what’s to come.
|By: Jon Walker Wednesday August 28, 2013 8:25 am|
Apparently under Ray Kelly’s leadership the New York City Police not only engaged in unacceptable racially biased behavior, but also in unacceptable religiously biased actions. The NYPD had several mosques secretly labelled as terrorist organizations. From the AP (whole thing is worth a read):
|By: DSWright Wednesday August 7, 2013 3:00 pm|
The absurd world of natural gas exploitation just keeps on producing wild stories. First there was the revelation of the Halliburton Loophole that Vice President Cheney instituted, exempting fracking from many environmental regulations, including the Clean Water Act. Then the stories of people lighting their tap water on fire due to natural gas from fracking getting into the water supply. And now we learn that natural gas companies demanded that children be included in a lifelong gag order over fracking abuses.
|By: cocktailhag Thursday July 25, 2013 8:00 pm|
As I watched the first tiny peep of congressional rebellion against the odious, authoritarian policies that have swamped America since The Day That Changed Everything narrowly defeated in the House yesterday, I was reminded of the endlessly repeated, tinny refrain of those dark days, “They hate us for our freedom.” According to such preschool logic, the “Patriot Act,” passed nearly unanimously a few weeks later, should have fixed that once and for all.
|By: Kevin Gosztola Thursday July 18, 2013 7:20 am|
Most news organizations spent yesterday giving significant attention to the latest cover of an issue of the Rolling Stone featuring a photo of Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, the young man on trial for his involvement in the Boston bombing. The controversy did not merit the kind of attention it received, although the decision by CVS, Walgreens, Rite-Aid and Kmart to not allow the issue to be sold in the stores may because it is an act of censorship.
However, to the extent that individuals with histories in government, especially the administration of President Barack Obama, are going on cable news networks to make hysterical claims about what they think the cover might do, that is worthy of comment.
|By: Kevin Gosztola Monday July 15, 2013 9:45 am|
Yassin Aref was convicted of terrorism charges that included conspiring to aid a terrorist group, providing support for a weapon of mass destruction, money-laundering and material support for a foreign terrorist organization after being arrested in an FBI sting operation in Albany, New York in 2006. He was sentenced to 15 years in prison in 2007. However, since conviction, he has vigorously fought to prove his innocence and recently new evidence uncovered through freedom of information filings suggests he was improperly identified as an Al Qaeda agent.
|By: Tom Engelhardt Tuesday July 9, 2013 7:00 pm|
Since 9/11, American law enforcement has taken a disproportionate interest in American Muslims across the country, seeing a whole community as a national security threat, particularly in California and New York City. But here’s the thing: the facts that have been piling up ever since that date don’t support such suspicion. Not at all.
|By: brasch Sunday June 23, 2013 3:30 pm|
It makes no difference if Edward Snowden, who had fled to Hong Kong and revealed that the American government was spying upon American citizens, is a traitor or a hero.
Intelligence agencies from China, Russia, England, Israel, and maybe even Lichtenstein, probably already know that the National Security Administration (NSA) is collecting data of all the phone calls and emails of Americans, and linking them to conversations with foreign nationals. What is unsettling is that everything the NSA is doing is legal. Secret federal courts can issue secret warrants to agencies that maintain secret files
|By: papicek Wednesday June 19, 2013 6:00 pm|
Americans are hysterical. This was evident in the reaction to Chris Hayes’ thoughtful question whether we should be calling American service-people “heroes” in knee-jerk fashion. We neither think straight on many issues nor are we prone to thinking slow and relying on what we know.
This hysteria is just now beginning to be questioned.
|By: letsgetitdone Monday June 10, 2013 6:30 pm|
About the recent continuing revelations on the scope of domestic spying, the drone attacks, and the many violations of civil rights and liberties we’ve seen since 9/11; we need to ask: “why don’t we have any sense of proportion about terrorism?” OK, 9/11 was terrible. We lost more than 3,000 people. Since then, we have lost very few people to terrorism, apart from fatalities due to our own choices to prosecute wars in Afghanistan, Iraq, and other places. But right now we lose more than 30,000 to auto accidents, more than 30,000 to domestic gun violence, and 55,000 to lack of health insurance, each and every year.